GEARFit is a 12 month research study specifically for individuals who complete the original GEAR study.

The Hussman Institute for Human Genomics (HIHG) is collaborating with the UM Miller School of Medicine and the UM Medical Wellness Center to better understand how an individual’s genetic background can impact his or her ability to respond to physical activity, and identify genetic and lifestyle factors that will be important for developing preventative medical treatments to benefit individuals who are at increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease and other related medical conditions. GEARFit is an extension of the GEAR 3 month program. GEARFit participants will be monitored for a subsequent 12 months to determine whether additional gains in fitness can be achieved/sustained, and to identify the genomic signatures resulting from long-term exercise. In order to enroll in GEARFit, participants will need to sign an additional consent. We will also perform “mini” fitness assessments to collect data on weight, circumference measurements and blood pressure every 10-12 weeks. There will only be one additional blood draw for GEARFit.

GEARFit is different from the GEAR study in many ways: There is not one exercise protocol, but many options based on a participant’s schedule and fitness goals. Upon enrollment in GEARFit, a participant will discuss the different exercise routines with the GEAR staff, and choose the amount of days they want to come into the gym, and whether they want to take wellness center classes. GEARFit has no requirement for how many days per week the participant works out, we just want to keep track of all physical activity, and would like to encourage participants who were so successful in the GEAR study to continue exercising.

We are excited to announce the inception of the GEAR GAMES – A fun, innovative, motivating, team oriented method of training. For all GEARFit members who sign up for the GEAR Games, PRIZES will be awarded for both individual and team accomplishments. GEARFit members will be assigned to a team led by one of the GEAR trainers (Jon, Rich, Amanda, or Orontes).

Once assigned to a team, the GEARFit member will be put in direct contact with their coach via email, telephone, Facebook and/or (We’ll talk more about that later). They will consult directly with their team leader, who will put together a 3 month fitness plan based on the member’s personal fitness goals.

The fitness plan will consist of personalized individual workouts as well as biweekly team workouts and classes!

Once your respective coach contacts you, members will schedule a time to take the Functional Individual Test (FIT).
Weigh in*
1 minute maximum repetitions of:
Step ups (queen step test)* / Estimated VO2 Max*

The Functional Individual Test (FIT) will serve as a starting point and we will have subsequent FIT assessments at 3 month intervals, at which time quarterly winners will be determined based on their overall fitness changes. Additionally, there will be annual awards given to the GEARFitters who complete the 1 year GEARFitness challenge.

Points will be earned in the following categories:
1 minute maximum repetition of:
Pushups, Sit-ups, and Step-ups – 1 point per repetition/step

How will winners be selected? *Total Team points will be added together. The winning team will be decided by total point percentage improvement from baseline FIT to quarterly (3 month) FIT assessment. *Within each team, an MVP will be selected based on greatest point percentage improvement. *Additionally, team and overall MVP for adherence will be awarded.
Adherence will be measured on the following scale:
2x/week = 1 point
3x/week = 2 points
4x/week= 4 points
5x/week = 6 points

**Additional measurements may be given upon member request

Each winning team will be awarded a catered luncheon (delicious AND nutritious) courtesy of the GEAR team.
Each team MVP will be awarded a GEAR Gym Bag
Overall Adherence MVP will be awarded a gift basket courtesy of a local GEAR sponsor to be determined (it will be a good one, we promise)

A helpful tool for all GEARFitters
The GEAR staff has recently become involved with a great (free) service, All GEAR staff members are on the website which allows us to log our individual fitness goals, exercise routines, and most importantly, the foods we eat. MyFitnessPal is like a Facebook for health. It’s a great way to not only keep track of ourselves, but stay accountable to the MyFitnessPal community, which in this case will be the GEARFit community. Participation is completely voluntary, but we STRONGLY encourage you to create a username and join. There is also a free mobile app available, which allows you to update your profile on the go.

Sign up for free at