Readers Voice Awards – Health

Posted on 19 Mar 2008 at 10:49pm


FITNESS IS A BALL: Personal trainer John Gordon won’t talk your ear off or drive you into the dirt. While sculpting abs and strengthening back muscles, Gordon might bring out your inner jock. – DANIEL A. KUSNER/Dallas Voice

BEST PERSONAL TRAINER
John Gordon
Trophy Fitness Club
2812 Vine St.
214-395-7846
Appointment times vary.
JohnMichael.Gordon.org

There are a few breeds of personal trainers. There’s the garrulous type who exercises his client’s jawbone between every set. There’s also the sadistic Nazi who drives his client into the dirt so they can barely walk the next day. John Gordon’s personal training methods are about focusing on results — balancing weight training, cardio, nutrition and strengthening the lower back and abs, so you can keep training and walk the next day.

Growing up in Bristol, Vt., Gordon was an all-around jock — little league, softball, basketball, soccer, track and swimming. He even set two state swimming records.

In 1987, he migrated to Dallas to enjoy the warmer temperatures and our city’s southern charm. And over the past 20 years, he’s stayed with athletics, joining Big D’s gay leagues — bowling, tennis, volleyball, softball and swimming. He brought home three medals from the International Gay and Lesbian Aquatic Championships.

In 1995, he joined President’s Health Club (now Bally’s), mostly to take advantage of the outdoor pool. While lifting weights, he watched personal trainers work with clients, and a bell went off.

"It was something I knew I wanted to do," Gordon says.

For five years, he researched and developed his methods. In 2000, he received his certification from Cooper Aerobic Center. And after umpteen years of working in various accounting and human resources departments, he started his career as an independent trainer at the Centrum Fitness Club. Eight years later, he’s trained about 100 clients. And some clients have been training with Gordon for five years.

He now sculpts bods at Trophy Fitness Club. And after a Gordon workout, clients don’t complain that their time was wasted: He encourages clients to perform cardio work on their own time, and he knows that burning calories can be a bore so he helps them kick it up with a variety of approaches. That’s where his all-around jock credentials come into play. He wants clients to participate in activities that will benefit from training.

"It can be recreational or competitive, but having an outlet that shows how effective your results are," Gordon explains.

But Gordon doesn’t push them like they’re a prizefighter prepping for that ultimate heavyweight bout. His weight training is broken down into building muscle endurance, strength and size.

"I avoid exercises that increase the risk of injury," he says. "I see trainers using methods reserved for highly conditioned athletes and not meant for the average person working out in the gym."

— Daniel A. Kusner


MEDICINE WOMAN: Pharmacist Alpa Patel helps customers at the Walgreens at Cedar Springs Road and Oak Lawn Avenue. – DANIEL A. KUSNER/Dallas Voice

BEST PHARMACY
Walgreens (31 Dallas locations)
3802 Cedar Springs Road
214-443-5160
Sun.-Sat. open 24 hours
Walgreens.com

In a world of "prior approval" headaches and annual deductibles, the last thing you need at the pharmacy is another hassle. Walgreens understands. There are at least 31 Walgreens in the Dallas area. And sometimes there are more than six white-coated staffers hustling behind the counter, which means they can almost instantly mobilize the Walgreens infantry to find something that’s not in stock at their location.

Last spring, when allergy season kicked in, I discovered that the FDA discontinued aerosol inhalers for a more eco-conscious design. While I was gasping for my last breath, a Walgreens staffer called around and found two remaining old-skool inhalers still in stock and had them ready for pick up the next morning. She also refunded the crappy eco-inhaler.

Walgreens also understands discretion: Once, when several people were standing behind me, a pharmacist said, "Mr. Kusner, your insurance company says it won’t fill the prescription that begins with the letter ‘R’ until tomorrow. Do you need a loaner?"

And how about that waiting room? If you just dropped off your script, you can kick back in the awesome back-massage chair as they get your order ready.

— Daniel A. Kusner, satisfied customer.


IMMUNOLOGY ARTIST: Dr. Nicholaos Bellos, one of Dallas’ most experienced physicians in treating HIV. – DANIEL A. KUSNER/Dallas Voice

BEST HIV SPECIALIST
Dr. Nicholaos Bellos, MD, PA
2909 Lemmon Ave.
214-828-4702
Mon.-Thu. 7:30 a.m.-6 p.m.
DrBellos.com

On March 15, 1991, Dr. Nicholaos Bellos saw his first patient living with HIV. The gentleman had an ulcer on his lower extremity. After a biopsy, Bellos began treating his first case of Kaposi’s sarcoma.

He refers to the early ’90s as "the dark ages — when we had no drugs. Now we have 24 licensed drugs," Bellows explains.

In 2005, he opened a 26,000-square-foot practice on Lemmon Avenue that contains a clinic, a laboratory, a pharmacy and clinical trials wing. Bellos oversees 26 employees who treat more than 2,800 patients, and Bellos is currently accepting new patients.

"We have a rule. I have to see each patient at least once a year," he explains.

If patients are coming in for routine viral load and T-cell results, they can see a midlevel provider. "But if they want to see me, they see me," he says. "And the biggest thing I’ve learned is to listen to patients’ concerns — if they’re worried about how they look or how they feel.

"If they’re concerned about their lipids. If they want to talk about their breakup with their boyfriend. If their meds are causing erectile dysfunction …"

About 90 percent of his practice is focused on HIV primary care.

"I’ve been doing this since day one. When I was a medicine resident, we couldn’t get nursing for HIV-impacted patients. We had to give total care, which included bathing and feeding. Because the nurses wouldn’t do it," Bellos remembers.

But times have changed.

"Now HIV is a chronic manageable illness. But there’s an art to the management," he explains.

Some of his artistry is second nature.

"Like aggressively treating patients with multiple opportunistic infections and getting them through those illnesses … It’s interesting to see these kids who are coming out now. They’ve never had that experience — never had that experience when we had no drugs," Bellos says.

— Daniel A. Kusner



BEST GENERAL PRACTITIONER
Jaime J. Vasquez, D.O.
Vasquez Clinic
2929 Welborn St. 214-528-1083.
Mon. and Wed. 9 a.m.-5 p.m.,
Tue. and Thu. 9 a.m.-7 p.m.,
Fri. 9 a.m.-noon.
Saturday appointments upon request.
VasquezClinic.com


BEST GYM
24 Hour Fitness
5706 E. Mockingbird Lane
214-827-8700
Fri. 5 a.m.-9 p.m.,
Sat. 8 a.m.-9 p.m.,
Sun. 10 a.m.-9 p.m.,
Mon., 5 a.m.-11:59 p.m.,
Tue.-Thu. 12 a.m.-11:59 p.m.
24HourFitness.com


BEST YOGA STUDIO
Sunstone Yoga
(various locations in the U.S.)
2907 Routh St.
214-764-2119 x101
Fri. 6 a.m.-7:30 p.m.,
Sat.-Sun. 8 a.m.-7:30 p.m.,
Mon.-Thu. 6 a.m.-9:30 p.m.
SunstoneYoga.com

BEST HOSPITAL
Baylor University Medical Center
(various locations in Texas)
3500 Gaston Ave.
214-820-0111
Sun.-Sat. hours vary
BaylorHealth.com

BEST CHIROPRACTOR
Dr. Eric Peay
3626 N. Hall St., Suite 629
214-219-3300
Sat. 10 a.m.-12 p.m.,
Mon. & Thu. 3 p.m.-6 p.m.,
Tue., Wed., & Fri. 11 a.m.-6 p.m.
corehealthwellness.com/

BEST OPTOMETRIST
Dr. Bill Henderson
Uptown Vision
2504 Cedar Springs Road
214-953-3937
Sat. 10 a.m.-5 p.m.,
Mon.-Fri. 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
UptownVisionDallas.com

BEST DENTIST
Dr. Clint Herzog
2828 Routh St., Suite 310
214-969-1000
Mon.-Thu. 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
HerzogDentistry.com


BEST COSMETIC SURGEON
David Morales
6901 Snider Plaza
214-706-6901
Mon.-Fri. 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
DavidMoralesMD.com


BEST DERMATOLOGIST
Farhad Niroomand, M.D. P.A.
2501 Oak Lawn Ave., Suite 450
214-303-1102
Mon. & Wed. 8 a.m.-5 p.m.,
Tue. & Thu. 8 a.m.-6 p.m.,
Fri. 7:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
uptownderm.com

BEST GYNECOLOGIST
Melissa K. Crochet
411 N. Washington Ave., Suite 2700
214-823-7900
Mon.-Fri. 8:30a.m.-4:30 p.m.
obgynofdallas.com/physicians.htm

BEST FERTILITY CLINIC
Fertility Center at Methodist Charlton Medical Center
3500 W Wheatland Road
214-947-8181
Mon.-Fri. 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
methodisthealthsystem.org




This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition March 21, 2008

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