First week of the New Year has got everyone on acceleration trying to get to those NY goals by Feb 1st. I had a friend come up to me as ask why her knees and lower back were starting to hurt even though she was working out & doing core moves. Unfortunately this was a conversation I have had one too many times with numerous woman. First things first, if you haven't worked out in the past 6 months, you need to to ensure you have a good foundation before you jump into the next high-impact, all the rage, workout class.
Listen to your body, like actually. Think of your body as if its being re-born again ok. First things first you have to learn how to eat, how to digest food. You start off sucking human fluids out of your mom, once mastering that you dive into the new goal of digesting blended foods and then once mastering all that you can move to the end goal of solid foods. How long does that take? 4-6 months! Compare that to getting back into shape. You need to start with foundation training. Yes, it can boring, yes it's not super cool or #hashtag worthy, but it's going to ensure you don't end up with a bad joint and in pain for the rest of your life.
I have had the pleasure of working a contract job with lululemon for the past 2 months and they give perks of free classes to all the hippest fitness classes around town. I have thoroughly enjoyed myself in all these classes, but it makes me so nervous as I look around at all the 'beginners' who don't have the foundation for these High-Intensity-High-Impact classes. Yes the classes are great, with great music and unique moves, but they are all at an advanced level! Yes I know some of you are shaking your heads right now, because they are fun and I'm sure you are seeing some results from them, but you can't skip straight to the solid foods without training your body how to first digest fluid & blended foods. I'm hoping this is kind of making sense to you guys.
I want to share an awesome exercise post by Matthew Ibrahim, he demonstrates & explains 8 PREHAB EXERCISES THAT BELONG IN EVERY TRAINING PROGRAM
If you have any questions, or want help with creating your body's foundation I'm here for you! Check out my prices here.
Take that word “Can’t” out of your vocabulary! Please, do yourself a favour. Can I just take a moment and remind you that you have such a limited time here on earth, why would you waste it with a bunch of “I can’t’s?”. I’ll give you an example. “I can’t devote 3 days a week to working out”, replace that with “I am going to give myself 1hour a week to workout!” Just replace that phrase, go to the gym just once per week, just once. Yes you do have time. Stop thinking that in order for you to get ‘back on track’ or ‘back in shape’ you need to have all the time in the world to devote to working out and meal planning. Do you seriously think that those that you idolize have more time than you to get into shape? No they don’t, let’s be honest.
This rant is due to the overwhelming amount of comments I hear from people I run into that say “Oh I want to hire you so bad, but I just don’t have time”. I have clients that are moms of 2, work full-time jobs and don't have a nanny that still make it a priority to invest at least 1 hour/week to come to train with me.
You know what they say to me “this is my ‘me’ time, and I wouldn’t trade it for anything, including my favourite TV show”. I am not sharing this rant because I am greedy and want more clients, I don’t care if you come train with me, I just want you to make 1hour a week a priority that you will devote to yourself; your body and your mind. Are there any studies out there that say working out, sweating, getting stronger is bad for you? Hmmmm I think not. Don’t take the easy way out people, it’s not worth it in the end.
Need a little more motivation? This past week I received so many Christmas cards filled with words of love, words that touched me and made me tear up.
“Thank you for giving me back”
“Thank you for helping me get stronger”
“I am a new woman now, thank you”
“Even when I felt I couldn’t do it, you pushed me, and now I am stronger”
I had to share these quotes as they are real, they are from confident women who are proud of themselves and changed their “I can’t” to “I can”.
Need more motivation? Come Train with me - Holiday Packages
Want more words of confidence? - Read my Testimonials
Well you are all in luck, you know why? Because you are AWESOME and so is Vancouver. You have so many super cool things at your finger tips! Studies show that trying something new increases your confidence, appreciation for yourself and helps you break out of a rut! Who doesn't want all of the above eh!!!
I have realized that I have a serious addiction to trying new things. Some of my peers have labelled this as an 'addiction to change' and have found this odd, silly and simply just a bad way to live. Although I respect my peers & value their opinion, I know there is a reason why I crave change and it has caused me to investigate myself just a little deeper as to why people, like myself, crave and love trying new things.
Trying new things strengthens your courage, opens up the possibility for you to enjoy new activities that you may have not known you would have liked! I remember this one female client of mine hated running, never wanted to even try it, and ensured I knew this when I first started working with her. After 6 months, her loyalty and trust in me as a trainer, opened her up to new things. Dah-dah-dah, to the treadmill we go! Today she runs an average of 7km's 2-3 times per week. She never would have known that she truly loved running unless she would have tried it! It's like you would have never known you liked waffles and ice cream unless you tried it. Am I right, or am I right?
Trying new things prevent you from becoming bored, getting in a rut. Although I do think ruts and momentary boredom can be healthy, it is not healthy to stay in this stage for too long. You need to have downs and stand stills to give allow yourself to reflect and create new goals, which brings me to what I feel the ultimate reason why I, and many others love trying new things...
Personal growth. We were raised to learn and to move forward in life, well we were forced to by our school system. Yes of course it was annoying, of course we hated it at times (no one likes being told what to do), but it forced us to evolve. Once we get out of school or we get comfortable in that 'career' we seem to think that we have completed our mission. “No more growing for me, I stopped at 15 years old, that was my last growth spurt.” No way-hosay! Get out there, go to a different coffee shop, order a different meal, go for a walk on a different trail, try a different part of the gym or a different bike in your spin classes. Start small, or hell start super big, but just start.
The point of this rant is that maybe I can convince 1 or 2 of you to try something new, something that scares you or intimidates you. It will do you good and it will sharpen some those crayons in your box ;)
Take a moment and think about how many health & fitness fads you have tried, spent your time, money & energy on. Now think about if that fad benefited you at all? Did you learn anything from it? Did it inspire you to achieve your goals? Or did it come and go in a blink of an eye (just like a vacation). When you hire a Personal Trainer you are investing in yourself. Therefore some of your other 'investments' like your Daily Grande Latte and nightly glasses of wine or candy will have to be replaced with healthier and less expensive options. Are you nodding your head "no way, I need those things in my life". Guess what you don't. You feel like you need those things because you are human and you have come into a pattern of habits & addictions. Take a step back and really look at what you want. Do you want to remain in your set ways and routines but also loose like 10-20lbs? Ha! Welcome to the club! We all want this, but we all know it's not going to happen.
So let's be realistic, and look at an average day (of a random woman)
Breakfast: Starbucks Grande Vanilla Latte + Pumpkin Scone = $8
New Habit: Starbucks Grande Cafe Misto + apple wtih peanut butter = $3.80 (healthy & real food)
Mid Morning Snack: Granola Bar + Coffee/Tea = $7
New Habit: Handful of nuts & banana = $3
Lunch: Sushi 3 roll Combo = $12
New Habit: Bring your own salad or sandwich = $5
Mid Afternoon Snack: Pastry & Coffee/Juice/Tea = $7
New Habit: Lara Bar & Hot Lemon H20 = $2
Dinner: Take Out Chinese & 2 Glasses of Wine = $45
New Habit: Fish Filet, Rice & Vegetables home cooked & H20 = $15
Dessert/Night Snack: Dairy Queen Blizzard = $5
New Habit: Grapefruit & Herbal Tea = $2
Day Total: $84 ($588/week)
New Habit Total: $27 ($189/week)
You may be saying "Well I don't eat that badly" or "I don't have 2 glasses of wine or Starbucks everyday". I dare you to write down a food diary for your next 3 days. I want you to write down EVERYTHING that goes into your mouth (with the exception of explicit items haha) and the approximate cost. Then you can decide for yourself if your habits are cheap & healthy or not.
Moral of the blog is hiring a Personal Trainer is not THAT expensive, they make you change where you are spending your money. They are an investment that many of us need to make in our lives because not only do they make you accountable for your actions, they actually MAKE you sweat and workout. Think about it, if you could do it on your own, why aren't you?
Check out my prices when you're ready to make that commitment to yourself & the future you.
Chew until the food becomes liquefied. Think of your mouth like a Magic Bullet, or a Vitamix. Break that food down!! Typically this is 5-10 chews for soft foods and 20-30 chews for harder foods. Chewing breaks down your food which helps your body in so many different ways. It allows your body proper digestion. The more you chew allows your food more exposure to saliva which has digestive enzymes which helps breakdown fats, nutrients and brings them to the right places in your body. If you chew your food using your teeth, the less energy your body needs/uses to break down the food. Therefore the more energy you will have for other fun things! Next time you take a bite of something, become aware of how many times you actually chew before you swallow. The more time you take to chew your food, the better it will taste and the less you will actually eat because it slows down the eating process, and this will allow you to feel full before you overeat.
THE BOOTY. Your Gluteus Maximus is the largest muscle in the human body. The stronger your butt is the more calories you will burn while just sitting on the couch or at your desk. This is why so many people find that they benefit from adding a 'Leg & Butt Day' to your routine. This is also why squats are so damn popular. What I tell my clients is at any point in your life squeeze your bum! When you stand up from sitting, squeeze your bum! When you bend over to pick something up, once you're back to standing, squeeze your bum! When you're waiting in a line at Starbucks, squeeze your bum! Haha, you get the message. The next largest muscle is The Latissimus Dorsi, which is the widest muscle in the human body. I call these the 'swimmer muslces'. They are the most beautiful back muscles that are very dominant in swimmers. This is also why it is so important to train your back, completing heavy sets of Lat-Pulls, Rows and Wide Grip Pull ups (palms facing away from you). Isn't it interesting that both of the largest muscles in the body are on the posterior side? Hmmmm....makes you rethink how you workout eh?
WRONG. Did you know we all have 2-4 million sweat glands, and woman tend to have more then men. Our body sweats to cool us down, so if you're a particularly warm person, when you workout you will probably sweat more.
On the flip side, if you look next to you in a hot yoga class and the person is lightly perspiring and you're drenched, it could be because they are dehydrated or blessed with minimal sweat glands. Some studies also indicate that the fitter you are the less you sweat. Through my experience I wouldn't completely agree with this, as some of my fittest clients look like they just went swimming after our workouts. Another study indicates that if you smoke, drink caffeine and/or alcohol your body will sweat more because these 3 lovely habits stimulate the central nervous system, activating your sweat glands
In conclusion the amount you sweat has nothing to do with the amount of calories you burn. Sweating is a great way to rid the body's toxins so make sure you sweat at least once/day if not a few times/week.
What have we been procrastinating...it's time to get chipping away at that long list, I want to help you with one item.
Health & Fitness: If this is not on your long list - congrats you're the minority and also very hated amongst everyone else. haha. For the rest of you, please continue to read on as I have tried to break it down into 5 easy steps on how to get control of this part of your life.
Just Have Fun! Yep that's the true meaning of life right? Happiness and Health. You only life once. So why not live the best life you can. Is waking up going to work, coming home and watching tv the best life you can live? The more active you become, the more energy and confidence you will have! I wish you all luck with September and getting your sh*t together. Be patient with yourself and take one day at a time.
Legs, Legs, Legs! If you’re coming to a plateau in your workouts it’s time to make some changes. Add a leg day – a 30-60 minute workout series that focuses solely on your lower region. Why? Your legs have the largest muscles in your body and we use them every day. On top of the basic and beautiful benefits from daily exercise such as increased happiness, increased sex-drive, increased range of motion & flexibility and of course increased confidence I have summarized 3 of my favourite benefits that I have personally experienced and witnessed within my clients once implementing a leg day into their weekly routine.
We all know that exercising is good for your body & your heart but what you may not have known is exercise can improve almost every aspect of your life more than you think. Below I have gathered 5 benefits that may shock and impress you. But most importantly its going to make you want to get off your phone, computer and/or TV and start moving your way to a better, more successful and more vibrant life.
1. Boost your sex drive: I thought this would be a good one to start with. Exercise increases your circulation which will allow more blood flow to your happy parts. More blood to your happy parts will allow more sensation when being touched. Of course once you get back on that exercise wagon your self esteem and confidence is going to increase! Thus making it very hard not to want to rip off your clothes and....well you get the picture!
2. Lower Anxiety & Increase your Mood: I have 3 words for you: Endorphins, Endorphins, and Endorphins. Even as little as a 20 minute aerobic (staying at the same pace) walk can and will release these amazing chemicals (endorphins). These chemicals are released throughout your body interacting with receptors in your brain that reduce your perception of pain. How? Well they act as analgesics and sedatives creating that 'euphoric' feeling. Some refer to it as a 'runners high' or a ' post workout high'. If you take a moment and google natural cures for anxiety & depression exercise will most likely be in the top 2.
3. Increased Energy: I know you think "But I dont even have enough energy to get me though my day let alone adding in 30-60 minutes of exercise". Well stop the excuses! Heres the chemistry behind it: Your body rises to the challenge for more energy by becoming stronger at a cellular level. You are demanding more energy by moving more than your body is used to. Located in our cells are little organs called Mitochondria (is Biology 11 and 12 coming back to you now?). These little guys work like power plants to produce energy. So the more energy you ask your body for the more your body will produce, thus giving you overall more energy. For example, the more you wash your hair the more grease it will start to produce because its used to getting washed so often. Does this make sense now that I put into our functional life?
4. Better Sleep: This benefit is all to do with body temperature. When you workout your body temperature rises and can actually stay that high for 3-4 hours post exercise. Your body naturally cools itself when it starts preparing for bed. So if you choose the correct time to exercise (before dinner) this will aid in falling asleep faster and sleeping deeper.
5. A New Found Confidence: This is one purely from my experience with over 40 clients in the past year. I have seen countless clients of mine almost reborn into a new person, even within their first month of starting exercise! Their energy is unstoppable. Their positivity & happiness shines through their smile and overall spirit! It is what makes me love what I do and I have never felt such a sense of fulfillment then seeing someones true happiness come out...
All my research are from the following 2 sites:
If you have any comments or more unique benefits to exercising please share :)
Feeling weak, anxious and unconnected to my body lead me to start exercising. I joined a dance class once a week and after every dance class I had a glow about me, and it wasn't just from the sweat that I built up in class, it was something more. I realized it was the endorphins that were being produced from the physical activity I was doing. Join me and start moving and feel the difference. Read my blog to get motivation, try the exercises I've posted, contact me for personal training, bootcamps, workout cards or just go for a walk. Any activity is good activity.