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Try: The Squat and Press

The best core strength training workouts are those that require strength, speed, coordination and balance.

So with that being said, what move should you try?

Give the squat and press a try.

The squat and press is a compound movement that works almost every muscle group in your body. Crazy huh?

Let’s break it down: While doing a squat and press the force generated from top to bottom puts your core to work by requiring it to tighten up throughout the entire movement.  Sweet!

  • First, get into starting position by grabbing a pair of dumbbells; one in each hand.
  • Make sure you can safely shoulder press the weight you choose, with good form, a minimum of 12 times.
  • Stand with your legs shoulder-width apart.
  • Bring the dumbbells up over your shoulders so your palms are facing forward, elbows are out to the side and your arms are bent at a 90 degree angle.
  • To Squat down by bending your legs at the knees until your thighs are almost parallel to the floor. Make sure your knees do not pass your toes.
  • Stand back up while keeping your abs tight–push up from the back of your heels.
  • Right before you reach the top, begin to shoulder press the dumbbells by pushing them straight up toward the ceiling.
  • Slowly bring them back down.

Try doing 12-15 reps, 3 to 4 sets

Get yourself out of a “Funk”

Meh life happens!! And sometimes we can get into a funk, it happens to us all.  When it happens, it’s never fun.  You feel grumpy,  lethargic, etc…

We’re allowed to have those “funks”. But how do you get out of it!?  Try one or more of the following suggestions.

Go for a walk – You don’t have to walk 10k! Try walking around the bloc

Try a Random Act of Kindness- Try making someone else’s day.  It just might make you feel better.

Pamper yourself!!  Do whatever you like to do!  What makes YOU smile!?!  Take a hot bath, curl up and read a book, go shopping!  The choices are endless.

Get rid of the Clutter– Sometimes clearing out the clutter is one of the quickest ways to generate new and fresh energy.  Tossing out trash may seem like work, but it is totally energizing once you get the hang of it.

Get outside and spend some time with Mother Nature: Getting outside and getting fresh air is one of my favourite ways to feel better.  If you can’t get out of town, at least go for a barefoot run through the grasses in your yard.

Change your bed sheets – Nothing like fresh sheets!!  OR…get out and purchase a new set of colorful bed linens to brighten up your bedroom.

Watch a funny movie AND laugh: Avoid the sappy, make you want to cry movies!   Invite a friend to go along with you and see who laughs the hardest/longest.

Spend time with family: Watch a movie at home, go to the zoo, go for a walk together.  Do something that you will all enjoy together.

 

My 30 Day Challenge to YOU!

For the next 30 days get rid of everything related to weight loss.  You’re thinking WHAT!?!? Is she nuts!?  There is a method to my madness.

Get rid of:

  • Diet books
  • Fitness gadgets or equipment you’ve never used
  • Clothes that are too big or too small
  • Scales, tape measurers, body fat scales or any other tool you might use to measure your size and shape
  • Anything related to fad diets, fat burning supplements or other questionable weight loss ‘aids.’

Before you start panicking, you don’t need to throw them away.  Just keep them out of sight for 30 days.  Let’s focus on getting fit and healthy.  Let’s forget about the pounds lost!!

Why am I asking you to get rid of the scale, tight clothes, etc!?!? Seeing those things will only remind you of how you failed.  Let’s focus on new beginnings, and what you can do right now!

Skip the strict and structured diet.  Just eat healthy, and every now and then treat yourself.

Try….

Keep a Journal

While keeping your journal, record what you eat, your workouts and how you felt.

When you are trying to get fit, learn how to enjoy it!  How!? You will start to see the results of getting in shape.  Daily tasks will become easier, your clothes will start to become loose.  Think long term and not short term!! The long term will keep you focused and on track!

And remember never give up!

The Importance of Drinking Water

Yesterday was a busy day of running around, and other craziness. At 3am this morning I had the WORST muscle cramp in my leg. Why was it happening!? Because I didn’t drink enough water yesterday. I can’t blame anyone but myself for it. I am the first to lecture people on the importance of water, yet I didn’t listen to my own advice. Silly girl!! So let’s do a refresher on the importance of water for the body, shall we!?
Why should we drink water?

Lose weight: Drinking water helps you lose weight because it flushes down the by-products of fat breakdown. Drinking water reduces hunger, it’s an effective appetite suppressant so you’ll eat less. Plus, water has zero calories.

Natural Remedy for Headache: Helps to relieve headache and back pains due to dehydration. Although many reasons contribute to headache, dehydration is the common one.

Helps in Digestion and Constipation: Drinking water raises your metabolism because it helps in digestion. Fiber and water goes hand in hand so that you can have your daily bowel movement.

Good Mood: Your body feels very good and that’s why you feel happy.

Look Younger with Healthier Skin: You’ll look younger when your skin is properly hydrated. Water helps to replenish skin tissues, moisturizes skin and increases skin elasticity. (I was recently complimented on my skin, and my friend asked me what I was doing….I drink LOTS of water!!!)

Better Productivity at Work: Your brain is mostly made up of water, thus drinking water helps you think better, be more alert and more concentrated.

Better Exercise: Drinking water regulates your body temperature. That means you’ll feel more energetic when doing exercises. Water also helps to fuel your muscle.

Helps in Digestion and Constipation: Drinking water raises your metabolism because it helps in digestion. Fiber and water goes hand in hand so that you can have your daily bowel movement.

Less Cramps and Sprains: Proper hydration helps keep your joints and muscles lubricated, so you’ll less likely get cramps and sprains.

Relieves Fatigue: Water is used by the body to help flush out toxins and waste products from the body. If your body lacks water, your heart, for instance, needs to work harder to pump out the oxygenated blood to all cells, so are the rest of the vital organs, your organs will be exhausted and so will you.

Good Mood: Your body feels very good and that’s why you feel happy.

Salad of the day: Pesto Kale and Cabbage Salad

It’s time to get out and pay a visit to your local farmers market!  Mmmm, fresh veggies galore!!  Tired of your boring old salad!? Give this recipe a try:

Ingredients

  • 1 cup Walnuts
  • 1 1/2 cups Kale
  • 1/4 cup Pesto Sauce
  • 1 cup White Wine Vinegar
  • 2 cups Red Cabbage

Directions:

Place walnuts in a pan over medium low heat and toast for 5-8 minutes, stirring often. Rinse kale well, drain to dry, and remove the ribs. (To remove the ribs, lay the leaf face down on a cutting board and slice along the middle stem sothat you are left with two leaves and the stem). Chop into small pieces and place in a large bowl. Mix pesto sauce and vinegar together. Toss red cabbage with kale, drizzle with pesto mixture, and toss in walnuts. Add sea salt and pepper. Let stand at room temperature for 1 hour before serving.

Makes 12 servings

Working Out At Home

Today instead of getting up at 5am, I slept in.  Which is unlike me!  Mind you, sleeping in until 6am is sleeping in for me.  I opted not to go to the gym this morning.  My workout wasn’t on purpose! Ha ha…how bad does that sound!?

This workout started by several trips up and down the stairs.  I kept forgetting things that I needed from my room.  So I decided to keep going up and down the stairs.  Several trips turned into 20 trips.

Every time I reached the top, I did 20 squats.  When I reached the bottom I did 20 push-up’s.

I definitely got my sweat on, and I got my muscles to scream a little.

Get Walking!!

Since my move last month, I have made walking everywhere a habit.  It’s become a big habit, because my workplace doesn’t have parking.  LOL  And, call me cheap….but I don’t want to pay $8 a day for parking.  (Don’t judge…I could be using that money to buy fresh chicken, fish, or shoes!!)

Since I started walking to walk, I see and feel changes. 

According to Dr. Mike Evans, the single best thing you can do for your health is to walk.  Give yourself at least 30 minutes a day.  If you can do more, than great!  But the average healthy person should really do between 30-60 minutes a day.

Here are just a few ideas:
-Grab your better half and go for a walk in the morning or even at night.  Not only are you getting exercise, but you can use that time to reonnect, check in, and just enjoy each others company. Get healthy together!!  
-Get a dog! 67% of dog walkers walk 158 minutes a week just by walking their dogs.
-Take the stairs.
-Walk to work.

Every step counts!

But the average healthy person should really do between 30-60 minutes a day. So what should you do? Live a fit lifestyle. A few ideas:
-Couples can take a half hour walk in the morning or night to check in, touch base, and get healthy together.
-Get a dog! 67% of dog walkers walk 158 minutes a week just by walking their dogs.
-Take the stairs.
-Walk to work.

Moving and turning another year older

The last three weeks has been an interesting ride.  And out of those two weeks, I have been living out of a hotel.  I have been doing my best to stay active, and I have kept my eating relatively clean.  Okay…except on my birthday!  ha ha….don’t hate!  I’m allowed to have a cheat day.  Okay… maybe it was more like two days.  🙂  My younger brother and I are two years and 3 days apart, so we celebrated his birthday as well.

I am back on track, and feeling pretty good.  To be honest, I couldn’t take another day of crappy eating.  I was starting to feel sluggish and gross. 

I found a new gym, but I won’t be starting there until June 6th. Ekkk…what will I do!? I plan on walking everywhere, and doing at home workouts.  My goal is to walk at least 5k a day, which doesn’t seem like much.  But it will add up.  Remember, every step counts!

I found a great article on eating that I wanted to share with everyone: What are the best times to eat

OH MY!

Recently I was offered a new job, in a brand new city.  EKKKK! So I packed up half of my life and headed out of town.  Why only half packed? Well the real big move won’t happen until September. But you can still imagine the stresses that come with starting a new job, in a new city.  I knew it wasn’t going to be easy.  As long as I had my workouts to keep me sane, I was going to be fine.

Yesterday I worked out with my trainer before I hit the road.  I swear he had it in for me yesterday.  What an evil man!  LOL But it’s all good, I needed it.  I was chatting with a few friends before I left, and they asked me what I was going to do for my workouts. I told them I would use the hotel gym.  My friend Luanne gasped, laughed and then proceeded to tell me that it was going to suck. My response to her was, it can’t be that bad.

WELL….it sure is a nice hotel.  The workout room not so much!  LOL

It took me back to a time when I first started working out.  I was training at this little shady gym in Niagara Falls, where it was only $200 cash for a membership. No wait, they had newer equipment than what I experienced today.  Alright….maybe that sounds more dramatic than it really is.  🙂

Regardless, I was determined to get a workout in.  Which I totally did! I just stayed focused, I was there to get my sweat on and that’s what I did.

It’s all about making the best of the situation.

Now I can get started with my day.

Wish me luck, it feels like the first day of school for me.  🙂

P.S I’m going gym shopping this evening!  And I hate gym shopping!!  I rather be shopping for a formal dress, or shopping for jeans!