Protect Yourself From These Common Sports-Related Injuries
Getting in enough physical exercise is important for our health. Yet, whether that physical activity involves working out at the gym or participating in sports, it’s important not to overdo it. Pushing yourself can lead to common, yet painful injuries. Being aware of ways to avoid these injuries can help you stay safe, while pursuing your fitness or sports goals.
These types of injuries are more common in competitive team sports and include everything from traumatic brain injuries to incidences of TMJ. Trauma to the jaw or skull is generally responsible for swelling or a fracture of the bone of the skull in both these types of injuries. That’s why regulations for contact sports, such as football or hockey, set guidelines for wearing face and head protection. While some types of sports don’t require this type of protection, that doesn’t mean there isn’t a risk of a head injury. For instance, TBI incidences are still common in sports like basketball and soccer, even though the players don’t wear helmets or mouth guards. In any physically active sport, it’s wise to consider wearing a helmet or similar protection to protect your face and head.
When the neck becomes misaligned, it can cause pain that won’t seem to go away, but this isn’t necessarily due to an injury. In fact, it can begin in the office, while you’re working at you desk. Your neck becomes misaligned through poor posture, but the pain can really intensify later, when you hit the gym. It can become a bigger problem as you lay on the weight bench, if you don’t ensure your neck and upper back are fully supported against the pad. Doing lifts that force you to raise your hands over your head can really aggravate the condition. To strengthen these muscles, do reverse shrugs with the lateral pull down bar, adjusting the weight to a comfortable level. Just pull the bar down to 3-4 inches in front of you.
This is a common injury at the gym, especially with those who don’t practice a proper form. Like the neck, the back relies on proper posture and, when it doesn’t get that support, it can cause a strain in the lower back. A sharp pain, while doing squats can be an indication that you’ve put a strain on your back. To prevent this type of strain, practice working with your neutral back posture, before you begin lifting or doing squats. By laying on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor, you can experience your natural posture. Get comfortable with this posture, before advancing your workout.
These a tiny, hairline cracks in the bones of the lower legs, shins, and feet. Generally, they are caused by performing a repetitive motion too excessively, or they can be caused by overexertion. Symptoms of stress fractures include sharp, shooting pain in the foot and shins, making it difficult to walk. Jumping, running, walking, and even standing still can cause the pain to grow worse and the area around the shin and ankle may swell. To prevent stress fractures, start slowly and increase the intensity of your workouts gradually. Each week, you can boost your workout safely by 10%, giving your body time to adjust and build muscle.
This is common in every sport, among runners, and also in gym workouts. This often happens when you’re running and not paying attention to your footing. A misstep can cause your foot to twist beneath you, bending the ankle in an awkward position. The best way to prevent sprains is to run or jog on flat, even surfaces. If you’re on the treadmill, don’t forget to wear the clip that will stop the machine if you lose your balance. Outdoors, try to stay on concrete when running, as natural trails may be uneven and littered with branches and rocks.
Staying safe is important during any physical activity. To that end, be sure to wear the proper protective equipment and follow safety guidelines for that activity. While getting a good workout is your goal, overdoing it can lead to accidents and injuries that may leave you sidelined.
Nowadays, everyone seems in a hurry to live. But when you stop for a moment and look at the bigger picture, you will see that being in complete agreement with yourself is crucial for true happiness. Fortunately, mind-body balance is best achieved by healthy lifestyle practices, which have other amazing benefits as well. Follow these 5 Major Pillars of a Fully Balanced Body and Mind Through Fitness and discover the importance of living a healthy balanced lifestyle!
Living in a total state of both inner and outer equilibrium is the key towards a successful existence. To help you accomplish this, here are the five major pillar of a fully balanced body and mind through fitness.
It’s no secret that what you eat is reflected both inside and out. For this reason, maintaining an appropriate diet is the most important principle of a balanced lifestyle. And to achieve this, you need to first and foremost rely solely on natural, organic ingredients. Therefore, fresh produce and free-range meats need to become a staple in your kitchen.
In addition, never forget the importance of regular interval meals. Although many people believe that you should eat three meals a day consisting of breakfast, lunch, and dinner, the reality is a bit more different. It is indeed important to have three meals, but you can also have four or five smaller ones too. As long as they’re at the same time each day, you’re set.
Furthermore, your meal plan needs to be in tune with your exercise routine. For example, if indoor cycling is your workout of choice, you need to find out more on what to eat before spin class so that you balance your physical activity with your nutrient intake. In the same way, if you’re a weightlifting enthusiast, that should reflect on your plate.
Drinking plenty of water is essential in the field of fitness, and it is also a direct companion of any healthy diet. Hydration is important because it regulates all your bodily functions. It helps eliminate waste and toxins through urine and perspiration, it lubricates your musculoskeletal system, it promotes tissue elasticity and it maintains a steady core temperature.
Thus, the perfect mind-body balance cannot exist without it. Depending on your gender, age, height, and weight, you should ideally drink 2 to 4 liters of the stuff daily so that your well-being is preserved at all times. Generally, the average woman needs a 2.7-liter daily intake, while men should drink as much as 3.7 liters to support themselves.
Although it’s true that diet lies at the base of any balanced lifestyle and is a focal point of reaching any fitness goal, let’s not forget about exercising. Regular workouts are also an essential part of finding the middle ground between your body and your mind. But how can you find something that you enjoy that also promotes your interior equilibrium?
According to Harvard Medical School, a good way to approach this is by having a go at Eastern-influenced physical activities that are both engaging and soothing at the same time. Yoga is perhaps the number one choice, but you can also choose the path less traveled and practice tai chi or qigong. Classic standing balance exercises are also an amazing alternative.
An essential part of your routine has to do with duration. Exercise for too long and you’ll be left feeling completely drained. On the other side of the issue, if you don’t do it enough, you won’t see any progress. Determine what the best timing is for you and your personal needs. A personal trainer can help you with that if you need further assistance.
There is a common misconception that toning and slimming down-related objectives are achieved through imposing limitations, undertaking the most difficult exercises, restricting what you eat and monitoring everything closely. While there is some truth to that, the most important part of the entire journey is actually ensuring that you feel good.
Not feeling pressured in any way keeps up your motivation, which in turn is beneficial to how much you engage with your workout routine. After all, the key to keeping balance and reaching goals is not what you do, but how well you do it. So, what are you waiting for? Throw your scale into the garbage and focus on what you’re experiencing.
At the end of the day, true balance needs to start with you. But paying attention to these practices is something that will surely further you down the path towards progress. And when you also manage to stay fit in the process, it’s a win on all sides. All you need is a little ambition and a lot of self-confidence.
Image Source: Unsplash.com
Healthy meals seem like a great idea until you realize how little time you have. One of the most common misconceptions regarding healthy eating is how much time it takes and how much money it costs to eat a healthy meal, but it’s simply not the case. You can eat a quick, healthy meal in a matter of minutes if you take the time to learn a few helpful tricks and tips. It’s easier than you think, you don’t need a lot of additional time, and you might even be surprised you never thought of these ideas yourself.
Pre-Plan Your Menus
If you want to spend some time making healthy meals at home, it’s a lot faster when your menu is pre-planned and you have everything on hand. When you know in advance what you’re cooking all week, you get to go to the store and pick up what you need. When you have what you need on hand, you’re more likely to go through with cooking.
For example, if you want to make a healthy salad with grilled chicken one night but you don’t have the vegetables to make the salad, you have to stop by the store on your way home that day. It takes more time, your meal feels like a bigger effort, and you’re less likely to want to stop, get out of the car, and actually take that time. If you have everything at home already, you go right home and cook your dinner.
Consider Meal Delivery
The best about meal delivery is you can opt for a healthy food delivery service. Most all of the meal delivery programs available right now have healthy options for people to choose from, and you can get everything you need delivered to you at home one day a week so it’s all there. The menu is already chosen for you, the food is right there, and you made no effort. You didn’t make a list. You don’t do any shopping, and you just cook the meal according to the instructions. It’s easy, and it’s a wonderful alternative to fast food on a busy week.
The other bonus about delivery services is most companies don’t lock you in. You’re not required to order every week if you’re on vacation, you don’t love the available menu options, and so on. You get to pick and choose the weeks you want food delivered, and that makes your life a lot simpler.
Think of Healthy Alternatives to Your Favorites
There are some meals that might not be so healthy, but they are quick and easy. For example, you can make spaghetti in no time, but it might not be as healthy as you’d like. Try subbing your pasta for whole wheat or veggie pasta or even spaghetti squash. Use homemade tomatoes to make your tomato sauce so it’s a bit healthier. Instead of using ground beef, use ground turkey in your spaghetti. Skip the garlic bread and have a healthy salad on the side.
Instead of eating buffalo chicken wraps, make yourself a Caesar salad, grill some chicken, and wrap it up in a whole wheat wrap for a healthier take on your favorite foods. If you love cheeseburgers, make them with ground turkey, a little grilled pineapple and green pepper on top, and wrap them in large romaine leaves. It’s healthier, it’s easier, and it’s delicious.
If you can find time to create a few healthy menu items that don’t take much time to cook, you might find yourself more willing to eat healthier. It’s all about the time you spend in the kitchen and the effort it takes. If you can find a way to get past your mental blocks about healthy eating, you might find it’s a lot quicker and more affordable than you imagined.
The importance of warm–up exercises should be considered by anybody who works out. Although warm–ups probably won’t help much with burning calories or building muscle, they’re crucial to the success of a workout! Before you even think about running or using the machines at the gym, you ought to make sure you complete a warm up and do a few stretches – but what makes them so important?
A good warm-up will raise your body temperature, which is particularly helpful to your muscles. As your muscle temperature increases, oxygen becomes more available to your muscles, allowing them to contract and relax more easily – so you’ll be able to perform more strenuous tasks with ease. Your heart is also given a chance to prepare, meaning it won’t be too strained during your workout.
The last thing you need when you’ve been faithfully attending the gym and reaching your goals is to become injured. Warming up will improve muscle elasticity and allow for efficient cooling, meaning less chance of accidentally hurting yourself or overheating during your workout and ruining your day!
Jumping straight into a workout without being adequately prepared can throw you off completely, especially if the preparation is mental rather than physical. It’s easy to give up when working out gets difficult, but you’ll be much less likely to do so if you’ve given yourself time to remember why you’re working out. Use your time warming up to think about what you’re about to do, guaranteeing that both your body and mind will be ready to succeed.
Stretching is often considered something that should be done in addition to regular warm–ups. Stretching will increase blood flow to your muscles, and allow your body to increase its flexibility in both the short and long-term – always a plus when it comes to properly performing a workout. Stretch after you’ve already completed your warm up, as stretching when your muscles aren’t properly warm can lead to injury.
Using machines to help build muscle is a great way to spend your time at the gym, but they shouldn’t be used before you’ve had a chance to loosen your joints! Warming up will ensure that both your body and mind are in the right state to handle gym equipment, again reducing your risk of injury.
As well as a good warm-up, workout preparation should also involve ensuring that you have suitable equipment for the exercises you’ll be doing. Crossfit, for example, can be enhanced by the use of accessories; particularly helpful for its Workouts of the Day are resistance bands and palm guards.
Popular warm-up exercises you might like to try include jogging on the spot for several minutes, cycling, or even simply performing your workout at a much slower pace to prepare your body. For your stretches, try static stretching, which involves stretching a muscle slowly and holding it in place for up to thirty seconds.
The benefits of warming up are evident, and warm ups will help you to achieve your goals at the gym; it’s therefore clear that warm-up exercises should not be overlooked by gymgoers at any level. Once you’ve prepared your body and mind and done some stretching, you’ll be ready to make the most of your workout!
“I’m going to work through it”. This is a common saying, especially when we have injuries, or something isn’t right while we are at the gym. Use these tips to help determine when are we “working through” and when are we making things worse.
1. Determine what is going on.
Like most of us, when life presents me with unknown challenges google is my next stop. However as many of you may have experienced, this isn’t the best place for medical advice. First, we can scare ourselves much more than necessary. If you are dealing with anything that alters your ability to go through your normal everyday activities, including what you do in the gym, get a professional’s opinion. It’s important to determine if it’s time to strengthen, make modifications to working out, or rest the area. Often modifications or rehab exercises can be prescribed to put you in charge of your recovery.
2. “It’s overuse”.
Our bodies are built to last when they are nourished properly. Look at overuse as repetitively stressing a tissue incorrectly. Having correct posture optimizes our blood and nerve supply. This allows tissues to repair correctly from our day to day stresses. Small injuries, decreased range of motion and poor posture all create compensations in our body. The more compensatory patterns the greater chance for serious injury. Formulate a plan with a trainer to achieve your goals and get the proper coaching on technique and form in the gym. Exercises with great benefits shift to dangerous without the right form.
3. When do I push through?
Once we know what is going on and we have corrected form and posture, there will be a period that we “push through”. Our tissues are now repairing and have enough strength to withstand some resistance. When we return to the gym give yourself time to ease back to workouts. One of the most common mistakes is picking up where you left off and making the injury worse than before. When you are performing and exercise you feel a discomfort that is a 1-2 out of 10 and is NOT increasing it is okay to continue. It’s normal to feel some slight discomfort, like when you first started working out.
In Summary we want to
1. Determine what is going on
2. Correct posture and form to avoid injury.
3. Slight discomfort that doesn’t increase is ok when we return to the gym.
Is going to the gym and exercising regularly on your list of New Year’s resolutions? Whether you are a complete beginner or returning to your favorite fitness gym in San Diego after a hiatus, this article is the read for you. Discover (or remind yourself of) some of the mistakes most commonly made by fitness beginners and what to do to not get discouraged.
While you should challenge your physical limitations, you shouldn’t be pushing yourself too far, especially at the beginning. Unfortunately, many first-time gym members lack the patience necessary for a sustainable progress. Having an “all in” attitude and not listening to your body can lead to potential injury. Injury recovery can be long and be a major set back to reaching your fitness goals. So pace yourself, this isn’t a race! Lasting results take time.
In the beginning, you may compare yourself with others. That’s not a bad thing, but you shouldn’t measure up your own progress to someone else’s. Some people may be able to see results quicker than others. You should set achievable goals that are reasonable for you and your body.
Whether it’s taking photos or body measurements, it’s important to keep track of your progress. After time, your notes will visually help you to see the changes you’ve made and muscle groups that need improving. Plus once you start seeing results, it’s a great way to be your own motivation!
What you eat is as important as your workout routine. A balanced diet is supposed to complement the workout. Not eating properly can sometimes cancel out all the effort you invest in your local fitness gym in San Diego. For example, bodybuilders; they think about nutrition ALL THE TIME. Proper workout and nutrition combo definitely yields two-fold results.
It’s a common misconception that guys should focus extensively on weights whereas gals should do the same with cardio. While they yield different results, the combination of both is beneficial for both sexes. Cardio indefinitely burns calories and helps melt away fat, while weight training helps build and sculpt muscle. However, for both men and women, incorporating weight training in addition to cardio will keep the body burning calories for several hours after a workout.
It is vital that you use proper exercise form. You will discover that using proper technique can be more difficult, but the payoff in the long haul will be much more rewarding. In order to start seeing changes in your body, you must activate muscles that have been inactive and you can’t expect this to be easy! Besides, using proper form is the best way to get results and most importantly – aids in avoiding injuries. Always quality over quantity.
Fit Athletic Club boasts fitness professionals who will guide you through your workout. We’ve built a lifestyle brand that encourages a healthy and inspired living. Choose one of our world-class fitness facilities closest to you and experience an extraordinary country club-like atmosphere. Enjoy various perks, parties and other social events organized by Fit. Visit us today!
Convincing kids to exercise can be one of the hardest tasks on the modern parent’s agenda. With today’s proliferation of technology regularly tempting children away from the sports-field and onto the couch, those 60 minutes of push-play a day have never been harder to enforce. After reading the up-to-date tips below, though, you’ll be armed with a bevy of ways to get kids exercising. Wondering how to get kids to exercise? Keep reading to find out.
When it comes to how to promote physical activity in schools, we all know that our best teachers came up with creative activities that totally distracted us from the exercise being done. From tug-a-rope to the playground, tag to swimming, there’s multitudes of fun to be had if you think outside the box a little. There are also lots of school programs that one can explore and try!
One of the best ways to motivate kids to be active is by reminding them just how common it is to join a group sport, or to take part in a class-based exercise. Whether baseball or hockey, ballet or judo, one of your kid’s friends is bound to be doing it – and often, that simple fact will be motivation enough.
Activity doesn’t just have to be done outside, or in purpose-built spaces – it can take place within the walls of your family home, too (especially when winter takes outside exercise out of the equation). There are many ways to keep your kids active indoors, including repurposing a spare room into a gym, purchasing activity-based technology like a Wii, or getting your hands on a family fitness video that you can all have a good old dance to.
It’s never a great idea to promise your kid a bag of lollies after they complete a lap around the block, but other rewards of a slightly-healthier nature – like extra pocket money or their choice of a dinner meal – can work a treat in sustaining exercise habits.
On the back of the previous point, you might consider telling your kids that in exchange for their walking or biking to school, you’ll organise a regular movie night for the weekend. That way, you gain some extra time in the morning, as well – it’s a win-win!
Sometimes kids are object-based exercisers and need something physical to base their activity around. By buying a resource like a trampoline for your backyard, your kids will be moving before you know it.
The best thing that you can do to encourage kids to exercise is to normalize it in the family environment. If you don’t exercise on a regular basis, how can you expect your child to want to? Making a habit of family exercise, such as hikes, active summer holidays, and sport-watching will afford your kids a positive attitude towards exercise for life. Here are 7 great ways on how to get kids to exercise!
To Find the Original Article Click Here
To read more blogs written by Alex, visit her blog! Click Here.
Kefir is a unique fermented beverage that contains probiotics and other nutrients that are beneficial for many things, such as improved digestion and immunity, weight control, and building lean muscle mass. While most kefir products are cow, goat, or sheep milk based, there are 3 basic types of kefir: dairy milk kefir, coconut milk kefir, and water kefir. For the purposes of this article, we will focus on the dairy milk kefirs and how you can benefit from drinking these after a workout.
Kefir is similar in taste to yogurt, only in a drinkable form. It contains many of the same beneficial bacteria as yogurt, but it is thinner in consistency and contains almost no lactose. Lactose is the naturally occurring sugar in milk.
Kefir is made by fermenting the milk kefir grains. These aren’t actually grains at all. They are gelatinous masses that have different types of bacteria and beneficial yeast mixed in with milk proteins that are capable of fermentation at room temperature. The grains are removed from the milk and can be used to make a fresh batch of kefir, similar to how sourdough starter is repurposed. The end product is a very digestible dairy beverage that is loaded with beneficial bacteria, also known as probiotics.
In addition to the beneficial probiotics, dairy kefir is a good source of protein and essential amino acids. 1 cup of kefir contains approximately 10 grams of protein. The whey protein in dairy products helps your muscles to recover after exercising, according to a 2011 review in The Proceedings of the Nutrition Society. The type of protein in kefir, casein, is a slower digesting protein. This may help your muscles to synthesize the protein for longer durations of time, thus promoting muscle growth.
Kefir also contains magnesium, calcium, and vitamin D. Magnesium and calcium together are essential for maintaining a healthy and calm central nervous system. This is beneficial for regulation after intense cardio workouts. Calcium and vitamin D together are necessary for bone health, according to The National Institutes of Health. Strength and resistance training, followed by drinking kefir will benefit your bones.
The B vitamins, including B12, are abundant in kefir. B12 is a natural energy booster. If your workout is intense, zapping your energy, you would do well to have a glass of kefir to restore energy, rather than reaching for a sugary energy drink.
After working out, you might feel famished and want to reach for a high-sugar, high-carb snack to get a quick, but temporary, recharge. This might make you feel good for a short period of time, but it will spike your blood glucose levels unnaturally with pretty empty calories. It won’t satiate you like healthy lean meals with plenty of protein and fresh produce will. You will be hungry again very quickly and may find yourself eating more than you need to.
If time is limited, and sitting down to a meal isn’t possible, consider having a nutritious smoothie made with kefir and fresh fruit. The Harvard School of Public Health noted in 2014 that “full-fat dairy may help control weight because it promotes more of a feeling of satiety and the fatty acids in full-fat dairy may help with weight regulation”.
While the newest diet trends for building strong bodies and controlling weight are leaning more toward eliminating grains, sugar, legumes, and dairy, there is some hard evidence that the protein, probiotics, and other nutrients found in fermented dairy may be the exception to current thinking. Chris Kresser, LAc, a leading authority on Paleo nutrition, refers to kefir as the “not-quite-Paleo-superfood”.
The next time you finish an intense cross-training workout, a boot camp session, circuit training, or whatever you enjoy, try drinking some kefir for muscle repair, satiety, bone health, and an energy boost. Be mindful of how you feel compared to having an energy drink or a high-carb snack.
Finding the drive to work out can be tough for many people especially if you find yourself doing the same mundane routine over and over. To keep yourself interested and motivated, it’s important to find new ways to exercise while having fun at the same time. Luckily, dog owners have an energetic companion to keep them active and committed to working out.
Canine companions, much like humans, need ample exercise to remain healthy. While many dog owners bring their pups on a daily walk, there are numerous other options to stay active. Dogs are active creatures that love to explore and play. Unique workouts provide a sense of adventure and bonding that no standard walk can provide.
Regardless of breed and size, most dogs are fully capable of keeping up with humans. In fact, dogs can keep their owners on track. There’s no better motivator to stay fit and healthy than an energetic dog. Fun alternatives provide you and your pup a new way to burn off calories for while providing exciting new stimulation. Instead of sticking to the same designated walking path, why not give these activities a try?
You don’t have to stick to dry land to get some exercise. Kayaking is a great activity that works out the core and arms. A single kayaking trip can burn hundreds of calories depending on the water current. For dogs, a kayaking trip is an exciting excursion that exposes them to something they’re not used to. Usually dogs will sit on top of the kayak while owners do all the work. However, dogs can also hop in and go for a rigorous swim if they’re comfortable and the water isn’t too rough.
The best type of kayak to use is a hollow model that’s designed to sit on top. Sit-in kayaks won’t provide enough room. Dogs can either sit toward the front of the kayak on a soft pad or near your feet. Either way, they should sit where they will be always in sight. It’s important to start off slow and stay in the safe shallows until the dog gets used to the ride. They should be taught to get into the kayak on their own and given a treat when they do it correctly for positive reinforcement. Before long, the pup will love being out on the water.
If your dog is always full of energy on your daily walks, you may want to switch to biking or rollerblading. Typically, energetic dogs are fully capable and ready to go for a run. Whether you’re cycling or rollerblading, you will personally experience an intense leg and core workout and your dog will burn calories while running alongside with you. . These activities also increase your heart rate to and burn off fat. With a dog by your side, you can push yourself harder than you might if you were alone.
Keeping your dog safe while working out together should always be a top priority. Dogs should always stay on their leash. This ensures they keep up and stay out of trouble. Biking or rollerblading with a dog can actually teach the dog to stay by your side. If you’re wary about the dog taking off after a critter and throwing you off the bike, you can invest in a springer lead. This device attaches to the bike frame and provides a bit of slack. The design absorbs shock so that it doesn’t throw you off your cycling game. When it comes to rollerblading, you’ll want to keep an eye on your pooch and be ready to slow down. It’s good to have a few rollerblading skills and a well-trained dog prior to heading out to ensure that you don’t end up falling and get injured.
Like rollerblading, cross-country skiing is a great way to explore and exercise with speed. Snow is a great stimulus for dogs. Some breeds are designed to withstand the rigors of snow, while others will enjoy the cool weather, they may need some extra protection. Snow coats and booties will keep them warm and prevent frostbite.
Cross-country skiing is an excellent full-body workout. Everything from your core to your legs will experience the benefit. Furthermore, the activity is good for the joints. It’s considered a low-impact activity, making it ideal for people of all ages. When a dog is thrown into the mix, the activity becomes a game of exploration and fun. Dogs will enjoy the speed and fresh air while also receiving a great workout. It’s important to prepare the dog with ample protection and monitor its condition throughout the run to ensure that they aren’t experiencing hypothermia.
Dogs have an exceptional sense of smell. While some breeds are better at tracking scents than others, all dogs have an innate sense of smell that goes beyond the abilities of humans. Scent tracking in a natural location like the woods will exercise your dog’s body and mind. Many competitive activities are available for participation. Scent trails are created beforehand, leading to a hidden object. Dogs must pick up the aged trail and find the hidden object. Alternatively, treats and familiar items can be buried or hidden to create a fun challenge.
In a wooded area, dogs will have to lead their owners through obstacles, hills, and rough terrain. In terms of exercise, the activity is very similar to that of a nature hike. The activity can burn hundreds of calories depending on the terrain. It’s important to keep the dog leashed. Without a bit of restraint, dogs can take off to follow the scent trail, leaving owners behind in the dust. Keeping them leashed will ensure that they pace themselves while still guiding you to the end. It’s also good to bring water for hydration and a treat to reward the pup for finding the final prize.
With a lovable pooch in tow, your workouts will be fun and rewarding. The unique activities are also a joy for your dog. Instead of following the same beaten walking trail, your dog will be exposed to new and exciting things. They can stay active and receive all the exercise they need. Activities like kayaking and biking with a dog will also keep you motivated and accountable. By regularly participating in these unique ways to work out with your dog, you’ll both quickly see the benefits of leading an active and healthy lifestyle.
At some point everyone faces setbacks on the road to fitness. While it is easy to beat yourself up about missing a workout or hitting a weight loss plateau, it is important to keep moving forward. To get back on track, use these tips that will help you forget that you ever experienced a setback.
Start by taking a second look at your goals to make sure you didn’t set standards too high and overwhelm yourself. You can eventually hit your goals if you break loftier goals into smaller ones that give you a sense of achievement. If you have recently experienced an injury or new health condition, then it is important to alter your goals to fit your current level of physical health.
Once you have your goals set, it is time to start thinking about the future. Professional athletes utilize visualization techniques to hone their focus before competitions and you can use this same method to increase your motivation. Whether you are looking to finish a marathon or need to master that complicated gymnastics routine, spend a few minutes each day visualizing what you want to happen.
Having goals is important and sharing them with others helps to keep you accountable. Let your coach or best friend know what you are attempting to accomplish. Alternatively, you can create a social media post or start a blog detailing your journey. Whatever method you choose, make sure to keep the people involved updated, and invite them to ask you about your achievements along the way.
People often get frustrated when they don’t feel like they are seeing the effects of their workouts on their body. Instead of getting stuck ruminating on a scale that won’t move or your inability to lift that certain amount of weight, try to see that each workout builds your stamina along with improving your mental health. That elevated mood you get after a strenuous workout is just as important as looking amazing in your swimsuit.
Boredom is a big reason for fitness setbacks, and losing motivation means that it is time to change up your routine. As you plan for changes, try to come up with ideas that are completely different for your normal routine but that will increase your skills. For example, a football kicker might take dance lessons to fine tune their kicking skills while still enjoying a cardio workout. Alternatively, a swimmer might go for a long run to increase their stamina. Just doing something out of your normal routine will kick start a positive attitude making your regular workouts more interesting.
While it might be tempting to go out for a luxurious restaurant meal after winning that marathon, it is important to stick to healthy rewards. Giving yourself little markers for your achievements helps improve your motivation while reinforcing positive behaviors. Consider giving yourself something fun like a stadium blanket with your favorite team’s logo, or you could get some new gear such as running shoes. Either way, rewarding yourself sends signals to your brain that will keep you wanting to achieve even more.
Remembering why you care about fitness is as simple as watching others who also pursue a healthy lifestyle. Take a break from your regular workouts, and go watch a professional or high school sports team in your field of expertise. From catching a football game to enjoying a gymnastics competition, watching others playing at their peak performance will help you renew your determination to hit your fitness goals.
It’s possible that you have been focusing too much on your workouts and not enough on how much fun physical fitness is when you add some friends. Get your friends or teammates together and head to the park for a game of soccer. Alternatively, you could schedule a weekly jog with a friend. Even walking with another group of moms as a stroller group turns a mundane workout into an uplifting experience, and having someone depending upon you to show up helps keep you accountable.
Changes in your routine are another common reason for setbacks that are easily correctable. Getting sick, having a baby or starting a new job are all potential hindrances to your normal workout schedule, and it is possible that you just need to change it up. Think about what happened before you got off track, and see where changing your workout schedule might help. For example, you may just need to get up an hour earlier in the morning instead of doing your jog at night. Once you set your schedule keep in mind that flexibility is still important. On days when you can’t stick to your routine, have a backup plan such as breaking your workouts up into smaller chunks so that they are more manageable.
Talk to any professional athlete, and they will tell you that setbacks happen to everyone. The important thing is to not let it deter you from accomplishing your goals. While you can’t take back the time that you have lost, you can take control over the future by implementing these strategies for getting back on track. By renewing your focus and adjusting your workout routine as needed, you will be able to accomplish every one of your fitness goals.
Oh, exercise. We all know that we should do it, we all understand its benefits and yet so many of us struggle to make it a daily part of our lives. It’s not necessarily because we’re lazy; rather, we all deal with mental roadblocks that keep us from lacing up our gym shoes and hitting the jogging path.
If you struggle to find the motivation to hit the gym, don’t sweat it. (Pun intended!) Instead, use these eight motivational methods to help yourself to get into a better mindset to make exercise a regular part of your life.
1. Visualize Your Goals
There’s no shame in physical changes being a huge motivator for you to workout. Plenty of people exercise primarily for aesthetic reasons. This is why it can be useful to visualize what you would like to look like. Whether that’s an older version of yourself or a popular Instagram fitness model, there’s nothing wrong with focusing on what you would like your end goal to resemble.
2. “Just Do It”
Nike didn’t come up with this phrase randomly. The concept of “just doing it” can be incredibly helpful when you’re trying to get into a fitness mindset. If the idea of hitting the gym feels overwhelming, then just get up off the couch and go for a walk around the block. You’ll have done something, which is better than doing nothing.
3. Write Out Your Intentions
Putting pen to paper can be a great way to make your goals seem more real. It’s a good idea to sit down and actually write out an exercise schedule that you’d like to follow. Try not to plan for too much too soon. If you’ve been a couch potato, don’t start out with a full week of difficult boot-camp classes.
4. Consider The Non-Body Benefits
Sure, a lot of us workout because we want that swimsuit body. But there are other benefits to fitness, such as combatting depression and addiction. For example, many facilities offering sober living in Los Angeles advocate fitness as part of therapy. If the physical results aren’t enough to motivate you, focus on the other benefits of exercise. Addiction Helper states “Taking up a sport will keep you active and healthy and will ensure that you always have something to do. Team sports will also mean meeting new people, which is an added bonus. That is why sports plays a massive part in the recovery process fro recovering addicts.”
5. Stop Focusing On The Scale
Focusing on the scale can be frustrating and discouraging. After all, our weights fluctuate and you rarely see quick results at the beginning of a new fitness regimen. Instead, try focusing on athletic achievements. For example, if you can only run a mile, keep training until you can run two miles. Focusing on your accomplishments instead of your weight can be far more motivating.
6. Reward Yourself For Accomplishing Goals
No, we’re not talking about rewarding yourself with pizza or beer. Instead, promise yourself a non-food treat if you stick to your fitness schedule for a month. A great reward would be a new dress or suit, which you’ll probably need if you’ve stuck to your program.
7. Recruit A Friend
If you’re trying to meet fitness goals, odds are one of your friends is as well. Recruit a like-minded buddy to be a source of motivation, inspiration and accountability. The two of you can keep each other on track and help one another to stay motivated.
8. When You Fail, Get Back On The Horse
So many people beat them+selves up when they miss a day of working out. While it’s great to stick to your fitness goals, keep in mind that even professional athletes occasionally skip a day. If you miss a day of working out or fall off of your set schedule, don’t beat yourself up. This is bad for motivation and bad for your morale. Instead, just pledge to get back on that horse the next day.
Exercise isn’t just beneficial to our bodies, it’s beneficial to our minds and overall senses of wellness. If you use these tips, you can stay motivated and stay on track as you work to accomplish your fitness goals. Remember that getting in shape is a marathon, not a sprint. Pace yourself and eventually you’ll get to where you want to be.
Each year on New Year’s day, thousands of Canadians clad in nothing but bathings suits and take the “polar plunge” into the freezing English Bay to celebrate the start of a new year. In the Netherlands, more than 10,000 people do the same, collectively diving into the icy cold waters of Scheveningen in swimsuits, mittens, and hats. The United Kingdom has a similar tradition, the “Loony Dook” where over 1,000 participants parade through the streets of South Queensferry, Scotland dressed in crazy clothing before plunging into the freezing sea.
Places across the United States are even catching onto this tradition, with annual events held in states like Washington, Colorado, New York, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Hampshire, and Minnesota. And while the thought of plunging into below-freezing water in the middle of winter might seem insane to you, you might think twice after learning just how good ice water is for your body. From gulping down glasses of the stuff to soaking in an ice water tub, experts have discovered that classic, cold H2O actually benefits the body much more than we ever thought.
As a health and fitness enthusiast, you’ll find these four cold water perks particularly interesting.
Do you feel like you suffer from a lack of hydration while exercising or that you tend to burn-out quicker than you used to? Switch to chilled water instead of warm or room-temperature water. Experts at Columbia University recommend cold water for athletes that exercise vigorously, as it helps lower your body’s core temperature to a normal range, which allows you to last longer and burn more calories during your workout. Studies have also shown that the human stomach absorbs drinking water that’s been cooled to approximately 41-degrees Fahrenheit much faster than warm or room temperature water, which ultimately helps fend off the side effects of dehydration.
Before exiting your nice, warm shower, crank the water temperature down to as cold as you can stand and try to stay in the cold water for two to three minutes. By subjecting yourself to ice cold water, your body will activate what’s called brown fat cells. Unlike white fat cells that are the predominate form of fat in the body, brown fat cells contain a large number of iron-containing mitochondria, which act as the cell’s heat-burning engine. Furthermore, the purpose of brown fat is to burn calories in the body in order to generate heat. Thus, when you withstand time in cold water, your brown fat cells will vamp up their heat-generating process and burn more calories.
Cold water stimulates your system in two different ways:
First, splashing cold water on your face makes you alert and helps wake you up. Underneath your skin lies thousands of tiny, sensitive sensors that, when exposed to cold water, send messages of shock to your brain. These shock signals tell your brain to pump up your adrenaline levels and the steroids aldosterone and cortisol, which gives you that jittery, heart-pumping feeling that get’s your body moving.
Second, drinking cold water boosts your immune system. Emerging, research-backed products like the ASEA Redox Supplement can bring your cellular communication to optimal levels which helps improve the health of every system in your body. Every cell in your body relies on something called redox signaling, a cellular messaging process that helps detect and correct problems within the cells. As you age and encounter more environmental toxins, cellular messages are sent less frequently and less efficiently, but with products like the Redox Supplement, these cells are stabilized and activated to improve the overall health of your body.
Whether you’re a current athlete, former athlete, or simply into fitness, you probably know first hand just how painful and annoying sore muscles can be. Within the last few years, however, experts have found that soaking in an ice bath after an intense workout can be incredibly effective. Chris Bleakley, PhD, and researcher at the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland says that an ice bath can reduce sore muscles by about 20%, especially in cases of delayed onset muscle soreness, or DOMS. By soaking in an ice bath, you can fight the inflammation, pain, stiffness, swelling, and localized muscle soreness that often comes after a hard workout routine or difficult new exercise.
The benefits of cold water for the body are important to understand if you want to give yourself an extra edge in overall body health and wellness. I hope the next time you’re in the shower after a tough workout, you’ll give a cold rinse an extra thought or two!
I get it. You’re short on time and your to-do list is longer than Santa’s. You have gifts to buy, people to see and parties to attend. As you dash about town spreading your good tidings and good will while sipping cider and adding sparkle to everyone’s day, just remember an overdose of holiday cheer can lead to extra pounds if you fill your belly like a bowl full of jelly.
‘Tis the season of giving. So give thanks. Give presents. And please give your body a break from the stress of the go-go-go by being creative when it comes to sneaking in a quick holiday workout and watching your diet.
This year why not make a commitment to really enjoy your holidays and all the activities they bring? Keep your workouts in check so you can keep your stress levels under control. Yes, there are things to do, people to see and places to go; but if you keep it all in perspective, manage your stress load with planned workouts and occasionally refer to tip number three, it should be a very happy “Kwan-Hanu-mas” for all.
Want to avoid putting on your fat pants after you awake from your tryptophan stupor this Thanksgiving? Then move on from the old-school style “gorge fest” (like licking the butter off your roll before you sop up the leftover gravy with it) and focus on a kinder, gentler holiday dinner that won’t play arterial pinball with the leftover lipids floating around in your blood.
The average American consumes over 4,500 calories and 229 grams of fat on Thanksgiving (says the Calorie Control Council, and yes, there is one!). Most people can also expect to gain five to ten pounds between Turkey Day and New Year’s. Even though that keeps the fitness industry in business, it is sure to make the rest of you feel like cranky fat butts, and we don’t want that!
So listen up and make a pre-plan for your holiday feasts and parties to keep your eating under control. Rounds of appetizing hors d’oeuvres and free flowing libations can wreak havoc on your gym efforts. The key is moderation. Variety is the spice of life and moderation allows you to have a little of it all. Simply sample small portions of your favorite selections, not necessarily one piece of every dessert, but petite portions of the spread. You’ll have a better chance of avoiding a post meal coma and feel satisfied at the same time.
Of course, if you’re the cook then you have more control of the fat and calorie content and can opt for healthier design. Experiment with ingredients that create the same great taste, with all of the pleasure and none of the guilt. Substitute whole wheat flour for all purpose flour, evaporated milk becomes evaporated skim milk and get the lower fat versions of butter and cream cheese. You can also use two egg whites in place of a whole egg (unless the recipe specifically requires the yolk, like custards and puddings), use low-sodium, fat-free chicken broth in your mashed potatoes and stock up on fresh seasonal veggies such as green beans, sweet potatoes and winter squash.
However, if you are a muscle bound, health-conscious eater and you happen to be someone’s guest who isn’t, remember to mind your manners. Avoid preaching to everyone about what they should or shouldn’t be eating. That will get you about as far as a nickel’s worth of gas. They might not care and you may not be invited back. Try to lead by example if you can with your own portion control and food choices. And don’t lift your shirt at the table to show off your six-pack to prove a point. That’s simply distasteful.
So let’s say you just ignore my advice and pig out like it is your last meal. Guess what you’re in for a dose of holiday reality because serious consumption leads to serious cardio repentance.
A 160 lb. person would have to run at a moderate pace for four hours, swim for five hours or walk 30 miles to burn off only a 3,000-calorie Thanksgiving Day meal, according to Dr. Cedric Bryant, ACE chief exercise physiologist. If this “Thanksgiving Repentance Marathon” sounds appealing, then dive right in for another piece of that pecan pie and then get out your running shoes.
So dump piggin’ out and encourage your friends and family to do the same. Just be reasonable about your choices and give thanks. Seriously, give thanks. There is a lot in your life to be thankful for: your friends, some family members, pets, great travels, second chances, being in front of the line, killer parking spots, a passing grade, a promotion or an unexpected bonus (does that really exist?). But most of all give thanks for your health; you wouldn’t be here without it, so don’t take it for granted.
By Dr. Rafael Ramon; Acru Health: Precision Chiropractic
We all know that we should get more sleep, but what is the lack of sleep actually doing to our bodies? We tend to sacrifice your sleep for friends, work, family, or the next big thing. While I can respect the fact that so many of you are trying to do something amazing with your life, you have to realize that quality sleep is a non-negotiable. What ever you are trying to accomplish it can be done faster and with a higher level of quality if you are recharging the battery to its full level each and every night.
I want you to imagine your body as an iPhone. You would never leave the house to take on the day without making sure your phone has a full charge. Now I understand that some days you do, and that is the beauty of this, not everything has to be perfect. When you sleep you engage the parasympathetic aspect of your nervous system. That is the part of your brain that is in charge of sending out informational signals that tell your body how to heal and repair damaged tissues. It controls the immune system, rebuilds your muscles, regulates hormonal production, it activates the anabolic state that basically rebuilds and keeps you youthful.
Newsflash: When you sleep you are entering the deepest and strongest state of parasympathetic activity.
When you are not getting a large amount of good quality sleep you start to enter a state of sleep debt. Just like with a credit card, you can survive with a small amount of debt but it will continue to accumulate over time. Eventually our very adaptable bodies hit a wall and become overwhelmed with the amount of sleep debt…this is when we enter the sleep deprivation state. These effects suck for lack a better term. The dangers of sleep deprivation include immune system failure, diabetes, memory loss, depression, oh and let us not forget obesity. The list goes on but we don’t have time to sit here and scare you, we want to help you improve the quality of your sleep so that keep doing what you love and allow your body to heal and repair from the stressors of life. Lets look at three of the simplest tips for improving your sleep tonight.
Don’t channel surf before bed! Actually don’t watch T.V. or use any electrical devices that have screens for a full hour before you go to sleep. This includes computers, tablets, and phones. When you look at the screen of your T.V. or device you are exposing yourself to an artificial blue spectrum light. This “blue light” tricks your body into producing more daytime hormones like cortisol and sets up a roadblock for your body’s natural sleep preparation phase. Now if you’re saying “there is no way I can not be on my computer before bed, I have e-mails to answer or work to do” then please do the next best thing. There are apps that block the blue spectrum light from exiting your computer (Unblue). If you have to use your devices please get these installed, your body will thank you for it. The newest apple update for iOS actually has a built in button called “night shift” that does this for you.
The Caffeine Curfew:
It may seem like common sense but when you drink caffeine it will arouse an alert state. While this may be a good thing in the morning, it can keep you awake when you drink it too late in the day. Caffeine mimics the structure and shape of something called adenosine in your body. Adenosine will act as a central nervous system depressant that helps your body move into a relaxed state and prepare you for a great night’s sleep. When Caffeine binds to the adenosine receptor sites there is no longer room for the adenosine to bind, therefore not letting your body move into the stages of sleep preparation. Depending on your tolerance, and how your body reacts to caffeine, your curfew may differ. I would say that a great starting point is 4:00pm. Try not to drink anything with caffeine after that cutoff time and watch your sleep (and life) improve.
Early to bed, Early to rise:
We all have sleeping patterns and rhythms that our bodies become accustomed to. Some of us believe that we are night owls, while others believe that we are morning people. The reality is that you are what you repeatedly do, so if you stay up late every night then yes, you will become a night owl. Get it? The human body is designed to sleep when it’s dark and you should be awake when it is light. This causes our bodies to produce different hormones when we are in the light vs. in the dark. If your goals include: building and repairing muscle, burning fat, and balancing your hormone production then you are going to want to make sure you are getting to bed at a decent hour.
These are just a few tips to improve the quality of your sleep and unlock your body’s amazing potential for health. There are other ways people regulate their sleep problems such as CBD oil and other natural remedies. Stay tuned for more information on other topics in order to be as healthy as possible.
Don’t forget… Life can be challenging and the stresses of our days tend to beat us up. It is imperative that we get enough sleep and allow our bodies to recover and recharge. You heal when you sleep, so enjoy it.
-Dr. Rafael Ramon
Summer is officially here! Whether it’s poolside or during your FIT workout routine, enjoy our FIT SUMMER FEELZ playlist to jumpstart your summer jams.
Chill. Vibe. & Enjoy your three day weekend!
Workout #: 3
Group Ex Class: Fit Booty Barre with Sophie Blicher
Location: FIT Downtown
I’ve always thought one of the most elegant and graceful forms of dance is ballet. That is until light hand held weights are used, it is formatted it into an hour long group exercise class and I’m added to the mix. I do not have a dance background, rhythm, or even the slightest knowledge of executing a precise plié. However, I do know that my inner thighs and booty have never felt more challenged than they did during Fit Booty Barre.
Fit Booty Barre is an amazing mix of butt wrenching, ballerina inspired, killer moves. Sofie Blicher, our classically trained instructor, exudes the perfect mix of grace and skill while inspiring the rest of us to perfect our posture. I learned first, second, and fifth position? I can’t tell you which one is which, but I can tell you that holding one of those positions while lifting weights will change anyone’s perspective on a ballet barre workout. Yet with pain, there will be gain. I’m hoping to soon be the proud owner of a well sculpted lower body and abs, with impressive flexibility, rhythm and enviable posture.
I believe this vision, even for me, is attainable under Sofie’s outstanding guidance. She is passionate about body awareness and even though I was thinking about a million different things I’d rather be doing while my inner legs screamed, “Stop!” Sophie stays focused and present and keeps her class on point. Her motto is: “Enjoy your workout, regardless of what it may be, and most importantly, be present.”
When I spoke with her after class she expressed to me how important it is not only to enjoy your workout, but to enjoy the benefits of being active. “Use a workout as a way to break away from your day and fully experience your body.” What a beautiful reminder; and I’ll try to think about that next time my legs are shaking like Jell-O in her class.
Not only is she an outstanding barre instructor, she has an amazing skill set in various dance styles including Latin, African and hip hop. Additionally she is currently studying for her Master’s Degrees in both Exercise Psychology and Nutritional Science.
As I write this, I realize Sophie’s class was not just physically challenging but mentally challenging as well. I now realize that if I can’t allow myself to be present with my body for a 60 minute class, it’s time to press the reset button and remember Sophie’s advice.
Don’t think of your workout as a workout, but as a gift to yourself. It’s time that we reflect on how extraordinary our bodies are. We don’t have to be in a yoga class to be present in mind, body and spirit. It can happen in Fit Booty Barre too!
How to Make Spring Cleaning Count as Exercise
Do you ever wish you had more hours in a day? Keeping up with kids, housework, laundry, shopping and all of the other mom jobs you do can quickly fill up your schedule, leaving you with little time to take proper care of yourself.
A great way to find time for those things that get left by the wayside is to multi-task, something most modern folks do quite well. Whether it’s listening to your favorite audio book on your way to work or running while listening to a new podcast, we’re always finding ways to do more in less time.
For instance, going to the gym is probably something you rarely have time for. But did you know sweeping your floor for 60 minutes gives you about the same workout as riding a stationary bike for 30 minutes? So why not take your spring cleaning tasks — something you have to do anyway — and turn them into an effective workout routine?
Below are a week’s worth of spring cleaning activities you can do in two hours or less that equal 429 calories burned, based on a 150 pound body weight, to help you get your house and your body in tip-top shape. To make sure you get the most out of cleaning time, you can add in small exercises such as squats, lunges and calf raises while you work.
Start with your windows. An hour of window washing will rid you of about 214 calories. Spend the next hour cleaning out a closet, unpacking some boxes and occasionally lifting with moderate effort, for another 250 calories and a grand total of 464 calories in two hours.
Tackle the tile and tub. Scrubbing your bathroom can burn as much as 271 calories an hour, and if you hand-scrub the floor as well you can double that amount, for a sparkly clean bathroom and a major calorie burn of 542 in a two-hour period.
Attack those floors today. Sweeping floors and carpets can burn up to 236 calories in an hour. Take another hour afterward to mop them, and you add an additional 250, for a satisfying expenditure of 486 calories.
Washing dishes, taking out the garbage and other kitchen cleaning chores can net you a calorie loss of about 179. Hand-scrub the floor and you can add an additional 271 calories shed for a Thursday total of about 450.
Spring is a time for new beginnings, and re-arranging your furniture can make your home feel brand new. It can also be a major calorie burner, coming in at 429.
Get the kiddos outside and spend an hour washing the car for a 312 calorie expenditure. While you have the hose out, one hour of watering your lawn burns an additional 107 calories for a total of 419 calories in two hours.
You and your house look great. Take the day off and just enjoy what you’ve accomplished.
Tips to Add an Extra Calorie Burning Boost
If you want to add an extra boost to your calorie burn, try one or more of these tips:
While we are comparing two hours of cleaning with one hour of exercise, it’s important to remember that you’re not only getting a workout but you’re accomplishing tasks you would be doing anyway. By combining activities, you get the best of both and still have time for all the other mom jobs that make up your busy daily routine.
Megan Wild is an avid outdoor exerciser who enjoys hiking and biking outdoors. When she’s not sprucing up her home, you can find her updating her blog, Your Wild Home.
We are well into a new year. Your resolution to start eating healthier may already be a distant memory, but maybe it’s time to revive that decision with a kitchen makeover that provides the tools and inspiration to make it a reality. Below are a few suggestions for making your kitchen a healthy eater’s haven.
Color Me Healthy
Believe it or not, the color of your kitchen has an effect on your eating habits. The best color to help calm those junk food cravings is blue. If you can’t paint your kitchen, try adding blue accessories and decorations. If you don’t like blue, the next best thing is an earthy green. Think about small changes you can make like cabinet hardware or using dish towels in these colors.
Avoid bright colors such as red, yellow and orange — these are signature colors of fast food restaurants that want you to crave their particularly unhealthy fare. Emulating those establishments is probably not the best path to a healthier lifestyle.
Go for the Greens
Using fresh herbs can make you feel like a culinary connoisseur, and it enhances the quality of your food. An indoor herb garden can supply you with your favorite herbs all year round. If you’re the crafty, green thumb type you can build your own, or you can opt for one of many different self-sustaining herb planting systems available on the market.
Learn the Art of Food
Create a living still life centerpiece with fruits and vegetables using a decorative cake stand, a punch bowl or some other creative vessel. Add some fresh flowers to enhance its visual appeal, then place it in the center of your table or island so it’s in plain sight. Keep it well stocked so you can easily grab a healthy treat, but don’t create a masterpiece that’s too beautiful to eat. The purpose is to make fresh foods desirable and easily accessible.
Remember That Accessibility Is Key
Unclutter your countertops and replace that stack of mail and display of junk food with healthy appliances. For instance, if you plan to start your day with a tasty smoothie, having to dig your way through cluttered cabinets to find the blender is probably going to be counterproductive. Instead, keep the tools you need — like your blender, slow cooker and food processor — available and in front of you.
Shrink the Saucers
Portion sizes are important in developing healthy eating habits. Use smaller plates and trick your mind into thinking you’re eating your fill. Most adults will eat 92% of what’s on their plate. If you use a smaller plate, you can eat less and still maintain your membership in the age-old clean plate club. This tactic probably won’t work if you fill your plate with potato chips and pretzels.
Know There Is a Tool for Every Task
Making healthy eating a lifetime habit is much easier if you actually enjoy it. Learning to cook nutritious meals is a lot more fun if you have the proper tools. Throw out all of your mismatched measuring cups and spoons, melted spatulas and scratched and dented pans. Replace them with brand new utensil collections.
A good cutting board and set of sharp knives will make cooking an enjoyable cooking experience. Invest in some quality green non-stick cookware and one of those cute utensil caddies. Select kitchen tools that reflect your style, such bright fun colors or sassy stainless steel.
Go the Distance
Once your kitchen design reflects your commitment to making a healthy lifestyle change, it’s time to take it to the next level. Enroll in a cooking class or subscribe to a recipe kit delivery service like HelloFresh, Plated or GreenChef. These will introduce you to interesting new food concepts and give you a foundation on which to build more advanced cooking skills.
If you’ve already blown your New Year’s resolution, it’s not too late to implement and maintain a lifelong commitment to healthier eating. Before you know it, healthy eating will be a way of life — instead of a fleeting annual resolution.
Megan Wild is passionate about living a healthy lifestyle that is aided by home design. She writes about her ideas on how the two correlate on her blog, Your Wild Home.
As the month of February focuses on the ones we love, we decided to showcase some of the “Things We Love” within the walls of Fit Athletic Club during this Valentine Season!
Give a women the right shoes and she can conquer anything. There’s a whole lotta love in this pair of spin shoes. 15 years of love to be exact. And they could only belong to the one and only, Connie Cook – a spin class we LOVE!
Cardio can be a pain in the butt, but what’s not to love about this view?! Enjoy getting your sweat on with a VIP view of Petco Park from the balcony at Fit Downtown.
Let’s be honest, happiness is a gym all to yourself. But true happiness is a gym that actually has the space to comfortably workout. If you haven’t already, check out the 5000 square feet Turf Zone at Fit Athletic Solana Beach!
What’s better than sweating it out and not having to work for it? Take advantage of the Dry Sauna at any of our three Fit Athletic locations!
Because who doesn’t like to hangout poolside on a rooftop deck? Oh, and not to mention with a stellar view of Petco Park.
Tennis, the fun kind of cardio. Discover your inner Serena Williams at Fit Carmel Mountain’s tennis courts!
Each year at this time there’s a huge commercial attention placed on the status of your heart – is it broken, lonely, filled, overflowing, fragile or hardened? Just how much chocolate does it take to mend a wounded heart? How many flowers prove one heart loves another? How many sappy love songs confirm no one has the answers to the mystery of this thing we call love, which seemingly comes from our heart?
If this love struck holiday gets you thinking about the status of your heart, then the most important question to ask yourself this month is: “How STRONG is my heart?” I don’t mean strong as in resilient. We’ve all been through a few daisies (“he/she loves me -loves me not”) and we ultimately get over it.
What I mean is how efficiently is your heart performing? With each heartbeat your heart pumps blood around your body. Blood provides your body with the oxygen and nutrients it needs to function and it also carries away waste. The average heartbeat is 72 times per minute. In the course of one day it beats over 100,000 times. In one year the heart beats almost 38 million times, and by the time you are 70 years old it beats an average of 2.5 billion times. That may be hard to comprehend considering your heart weighs less than a pound, but it’s a busy little muscle with more work to do than a hungry mosquito at a nude beach.
If your heart is unable to pump the amount of blood required to meet all of your body’s needs, then blood is diverted away from less-crucial areas, including your arms and legs, in order to supply the heart and brain. When this happens you will often begin to feel weak and tired. Then, simple, ordinary activities such as walking, climbing stairs or carrying groceries will begin to feel exhausting.
The good news here is that unless you have some pre-diagnosed heart condition, you have control over how healthy your heart can be. Yes, you have the power to create a healthy heart through what you choose to eat, how you choose to use your body and the life you choose to live.
You are what you eat and that is not a cliché. (Think about that the next time you reach for a Ding Dong!) We live in a world of convenience with quick bites and fast foods practically knocking on our doors. Unfortunately, the “good for you” food isn’t always around. But if you will simply make a daily effort to put fresh, clean food in your body on a regular basis there is a higher chance t your arteries won’t get clogged up with junk and your heart will be able function efficiently.
Unless you‘ve been living under a rock for the last, let’s say ten years or so, you should have some idea of the do’s and don’ts of eating healthy. It’s practically impossible to screw it up if you just use some common sense. Did it grow in the ground or on a tree and are you eating it in as close to its natural state as it can be, like an apple? Good. Is it wrapped in plastic, like a caramel apple? Not so good. Did you get a 2 for 1 deal at the drive through, like fried apple pies? Run Toto Run!
Now back to your heart. Your heart is a muscle and to make it stronger it needs to be trained just like all the other muscles in your body. You do that by getting your heart pumping by moving with vigor and energy. I know some of you think treadmills, stair climbers and cross trainers are the devil’s spawn, but sweat and dedication on these machines can help create healthy hearts.
There are endless ways to raise your heart rate and strengthen your heart and they don’t have to be regimented to a piece of equipment. James Brown suggested many years ago: “Get up off that thang and dance til you feel better!” I agree. Dance! It frees the soul and is a great way to express yourself at the same time. Walk the dog, skate, swim, play tennis, take a bike ride or just pucker up with your Valentine; because even a good roll in the hay has its cardio advantages!
Living as stress free as possible is one of the best ways you can protect your heart. All too often we get way too caught up in the daily little nuisances that trip us up and raise our blood pressure: bad drivers, bad breath, irritating co-workers, annoying sounds, lost homework, lost causes, lost keys, long lines, short patience, and the list goes on. These things add up and can cause stress to your heart’s performance without you even being aware of it. Try your best laugh things off when you can, like you do when you’re watching your favorite sitcom and these things happen to someone else.
Nuisances, however you define them, will be with us for a long time. Get over them and don’t let them get the best of you, it’s not worth the stress and potential damage you can do to your heart. Instead, lighten up and live longer. If you’re going to harbor things in your heart, make sure the things you hold close are positive and worth holding on to. Leave the stress behind so your heart can thrive. Your heart has plenty of room for good company.
Area Group Fitness Director
Fit Athletic Club
Fit Member, Travis Bain, tells us his inspiring true story of overcoming a tragic accident and becoming a competitive body builder. This is a journey you can’t miss.
[vsw id=”b5_u4Yaggkk” source=”youtube” width=”560″ height=”315″ autoplay=”no”]
Workout #: 2
Group Ex Class: 12:00pm BOSU Fit Challenge with Tori Brillantes
Location: FIT Carmel Mountain Ranch
It’s a New Year and with that comes with the expectations of new goals. Maybe floss my teeth more, dabble to learn the guitar or speak a new language. This year, the goal on top of my list is to finally discover my inner Jillian Michaels and hopefully end up with washboard abs.
Some mornings are hard when you’re reaching for the gold and this morning was no exception. My goal was to make the drive to Fit Carmel Mountain and take Tori Brilliantes’ “BOSU Fit Challenge” noon class. Little did I know what kind of workout I was about to walk into.
Tori is a straight badass. It doesn’t matter if you’re a marathon runner, body builder or weekend warrior this class is a legit Fit Challenge. Holy smokes! I am 26, in relatively decent shape (but like I said…still in search of my abs), and I was the youngest person in Tori’s class.
To my amazement everyone was perfectly in sync with Tori, but it was clearly evident to me and everyone else that I was the most uncoordinated person in this class. It was comical, really.
Tori’s vitality for fitness is contagious and never in a million years would I think this woman is 56 years old. She’s ripped and has the body that I could only dream of (ladies, there’s still hope!). She worked out with us the entire class, if not just as hard then harder and coached us through the full workout. The class was high tempo, core centric with a definite focus on breathing. I was sweating from head to toe. Even my biceps were drenched! Yea, it was that kind of class. The class was awesome and you must try it if you’re looking for a super charged workout incorporating balance and strength training with killer cardio.
I spoke with Tori after the class, thanking her for a solid butt kicking. Come to find out the lady is a Full Contact Stick World Champion who won the title at the age of 40. I asked her what got her into such a sport, especially later in life. She said that every year she challenges herself to do something fearful.
This struck me. Not that my goals are not substantial enough, but it ignited the reminder that fear isn’t always a bad thing, that fear brings discovery and growth.
I didn’t write this blog to create fear about the BOSU Fit Challenge class, or maybe I did. We should embrace our fears in a positive manner and confront them head on. Tori’s mantra as an instructor is to extract the best out of her clients, no matter what fitness level they are. So consider this your reminder to allow fear to bring out the best in you.
Workout #: 1
Group Ex Class: 11:30am Vinyasa with Stephanie Powell
Location: FIT Solana Beach
I woke up this morning with a migraine and everything about today screamed, “Just lie here with your eyes closed… Forever.” But as the infamous Instagram meme says – ‘Drink some coffee (or in my case, pounded it + 2 Excedrin), put on some gangsta rap and deal with it.’
How happy I am to have dealt with my migraine by the balls. I decided to take Stephanie’s Vinyasa 1130am class at Fit Solana Beach. My oh my, how much she made me feel more than better.
I forgot my yoga mat and Stephanie said “no problem,” she had a moment before the class started and had a loaner in her car. She came back with the yoga mat, but to my surprise she was wearing 3 inch heels and yoga pants (not to mention that this is during the recent San Diego monsoon).
This woman, Stephanie — at the age of 52, is straight killing it. Her energy, poise and charismatic vibe immediately made everyone feel right at home. In the dimmed light, she welcomed each one of us. Her introduction – “that this class is our own personal journey, at whatever moment we might need to take a different path, the path is ours to take.”
After the class I had a chance to speak with Stephanie and was seriously blown away by her insight on her practice. Her passion to help people find the sacred space within Yoga and her drive to encourage people to hold the poses was so inspiring.
This class was the perfect balance for any beginner or intermediate Yogi. A beautiful flow of sun salutations to more challenging balance postures. Everything about her class came off as a positive feeling. The part that struck me the most was when she said, “the challenge is in holding the poses.”
Side note; I’ve never really cared for yoga. Mainly because I hate holding the poses for so long.
But for the first time, Stephanie made it clear to me that it’s not that I don’t care for Yoga, it’s the challenge that I’ve been avoiding.
A note from our blogger: Hi there!
I am the Social Media Coordinator at Fit Athletic. I’m a cat lover, wine enthusiast and drive a 1991 Volvo. I’m not a personal trainer or the girl looking for a fitness quick fix. I am your average girl who goes back and forth of wanting 6pack abs and the reality that I want that dark chocolate and sea salt candy bar more. This is my Fit Journey through GroupEx classes, workout playlists and fitspo. Cheers to sweaty selfies and finding Lululemon on sale.
We know, we know…you’ve been on your feet all day and are too tired to get to the gym. We all do it – forget to eat, skip the gym or give up on routine all together. The truth is, not taking care of yourself during your day to day tasks will leave you behind. It’s time to trade in those excuses for some functional routines. From a Student to a Retiree, New Mom or Desk Job – we have the Fit Tips to keep you in shape and on the move.
Find your lifestyle below!
[vsw id=”5wfhKaqHNVo” source=”youtube” width=”425″ height=”250″ autoplay=”no”]
Fit Tips for Service Industry Professionals with Personal Trainer, Michelle Trapp.
[vsw id=”cA1WUNIm5FM” source=”youtube” width=”425″ height=”250″ autoplay=”no”]
Fit Tips for Mom with Personal Trainer, Amy Rauch.
SEDENTARY PROFESSION (DESK JOB)
[vsw id=”T4JX2mzv0OM” source=”youtube” width=”425″ height=”250″ autoplay=”no”]
Fit Tips for a Sedentary Profession with Personal Trainer, Murray Webb.
[vsw id=”bv8YhDhLdkU” source=”youtube” width=”425″ height=”250″ autoplay=”no”]
Fit Tips for a Physically Demanding job with Personal Trainer, Aaron Bazz.
[vsw id=”ESPqi8diLDc” source=”youtube” width=”425″ height=”250″ autoplay=”no”]
Fit Tips for a Retiree with Personal Trainer, Kim Brutzman.
HIGH STRESS PROFESSION
[vsw id=”izij0f-ANp8″ source=”youtube” width=”425″ height=”250″ autoplay=”no”]
Fit Tips for a High Stress Profession with Personal Trainer, Jacques Stroud.
[vsw id=”eCfpDgLk7lM” source=”youtube” width=”425″ height=”250″ autoplay=”no”]
Fit Tips for a Student lifestyle with Personal Trainer, Abe Al-baba.
Fall activities, exercise, cleanses, holiday recipes and more! We’ve got you covered for a Fit fall.
The summer’s heat lingers on, but fall is in the air and it’s the season to eat, drink and be cozy. Yes, we all want to kick back and bundle up after a summer of fun in the sun, but it’s time to fall into action! Get back into a routine with some basic essentials.
Energy flows where intention goes.
Make it your intention to create a fall foundation. Whether it’s a dynamic, athletic experience or slowing down and rejuvenating, Yoga is the best way to get yourself re-centered and back in routine. Regardless if you are a beginner or advance yogi, it’s about making your body feel the best it can, even if it takes a few falls along the way.
It’s back to school for the little ones, and that means getting them back into a routine. Fall activities for kids are the best way to start off your school year. Give your active adventurer their “me time” before they have to practice their ABC’s and 1,2,3’s.
A healthy outside starts from the inside.
A fall cleanse is the best way to re-start. The word “cleanse” may sound intimidating, but the truth is, its mind over matter. Give yourself a fresh-start by letting go of the “cleanse concerns” and having fun with it! It can take as little as 24-hours to give your body the jump start it needs. A good rule of thumb is don’t choose the cleanse that seems the most popular, choose the one that fits your needs and your lifestyle. It’s time to clear your mind and palate. – here are two Fit suggested essential cleanses.
If your palate prefers sweet, spice and everything nice, then a Vitality Tap 1-day “Juice Fest” cleanse is for you. This cleanse is filled with fresh, raw, organic cold-pressed fruits and vegetables. Each colorful juice (6 all together) leaves you with a variety of tastes; from a sweet start to a spicy, energetic middle and ending with a grounding medley. These fun juices won’t leave you feeling starved or tired like most cleanses. Instead, they will keep you feeling nourished while giving you boosts of energy throughout your day. Allow yourself a day for this cleanse. A simple work out and a great night of sleep and you’ll wake up feeling completely refreshed and back on track. Busy schedule? Quickly order online and pick up a Vitality Tap juice cleanse by visiting one of their many locations, including their new Carmel Valley location opening at the end of this month!
For the down to earth taste type, Beaming’s 1-day reset is your perfect Fit. This reset is not only raw & vegan but incorporates plant based, organic superfoods that detox and renew. The best part is you get to eat actual food while you juice! Beaming’s 1-day reset is great for both a beginner juicer and your weekly kick-starter type. Simple and easy, this reset gives you all the essentials to make it through your day feeling completely balanced. Beaming’s 1-day reset comes equipped with delicious juices, a salad and an anytime snack. You will taste, feel and see the difference – get started today by visiting livebeaming.com!
Trick or Treat
You’re never to old to want candy.
Fall, the season of pumpkin spice lattes, caramel covered treats and gravy soaked, well everything. After all that work you put in, now is not the time to lose sight of your wellness goals.
Make yourself a “trick or treat bag” filled with healthy choices to satisfy that sweet tooth while you’re on the go! Toss in an Energy Truffle Bar, Fudge Brownie Paleo Pops or a S’mores Quest Bar. Kill that craving with Glutino Yogurt Covered Pretzels, or pump your protein with a Pumpkin Spice or Snicker Doodle Complete Cookie. It’s easy as stopping by your Fit Café or local store and grabbing these tasty treats after your next work out.
Fall recipes and Thanksgiving dishes
May you be healthy and full this holiday season.
Don’t sit at the table this season and think “I wish I could eat that.” Instead prepare your fall dishes with a healthy mix. Follow these fall favorites that can be used for everyday meals and Thanksgiving recipes. Enjoy the best part of the holidays without feeling guilty by switching out some of your favorites for its healthier counterpart.
Extreme Wellness Physician, Dr. Clayton’s Cauliflower Mashed “Potatoes” would be a great addition to any meal. Meanwhile his Thanksgiving Turkey Dressing would a perfect topping to your thanksgiving dinner. Following up with a Pumpkin Spice Mousse, fitting for a special Autumn night in or thanksgiving dessert. (Click to download all recipes.) Dr. Clayton’s wellness program will soon be offered at Fit locations!
Fit Natural Food’s Executive Chef has some appetizing selections for you. A savory Grilled Chicken Butternut Squash/Pumpkin Puree and a Paleo Frittata with Sweet Potato Crust could fit right in your fall meal plan. (Click to download all recipes.) Need a meal to go? Pick one up at a Fit location or order online.
Life starts all over again…
What time is it?
Featuring: Andre Houle, Rachel Mulvaney, Julie Quinn, Dominic Mineo, Leah Berzon & Dylan Jones
Want to try a Fit Yoga Class? Visit www.fitac.staging.wpengine.com for a FREE day pass and schedules!
Suns out, buns out! We know you have been working on having the best asset all year long, but summer is officially here and it’s time to kick it into high gear. For the baddest butt in town incorporate these four Fit trainer suggested exercises into your workout.
Bulgarian Split Squat
Burn, baby burn! Grab a Smith machine and lower the bar down to the lowest hook and wrap one or two cushions securely around it. Assume lunge position leaving one foot on the ground and the top of the other on the bar. While keeping the body square and upright drop into your lunge. Fit trainer Scott Hoare says, that although you may see something similar done by others using a bench, “this is non-optimal as it places their pelvis in an undesirable position at the bottom of the movement.” Once this exercise becomes comfortable with body weight, grab a pair of dumbbells. Scott suggests, “Combining set structures such as 4×10 reps with a moderate weight one day as well as 4×4-6 reps with a heavy weight on another day will achieve the best booty building results.”
Keep it moving with walking bodyweight and weighted lunges. From a standing position, take one step out and step down so that the lead leg forms a 90-degree angle at the thigh and calf. Make sure to sink down in a vertical fashion and drive yourself up through the heel while keeping your chest out to prevent your torso from dropping forward. Fit Trainer Eric Sax says that “Stride length is key here, a longer stride will target the hips and glutes more than a shorter stride. For a challenge, place a barbell behind your head. Really switch things up with a swoop step. Swooping the leg across the body as you take a step to target the hips. Eric suggests four sets of 20-30 lengthy strides.
Elevated Glute Bridge
Elevated Glute Bridges or what we like to call, Booty Bridges are an awesome exercise for lifting and perfecting your bikini bottom. Fit Trainer Natalie DiTerlizzi adds, “Bridges are a great way to stretch out the hip flexors while simultaneously strengthening the glutes.” First, lie down on the ground and place one foot on an elevated surface while the other leg is up towards the ceiling. “Elevating one foot allows for a bigger range of motion and will work the glutes and hamstrings,” says Natalie. Once in position, raise the hips off the ground while squeezing the glutes.
Flex those glutes! Fit Trainer Cleveland Haggerty’s favorite glute exercise benefits not only include a high and tight bottom, but will also help to increase your range of motion. Begin in the standing position with the kettlebell in the left hand. Move into a reverse lunge bringing the left foot behind the right while angling the hip flexors and left foot to a 45-degree angle. “This will trigger the hip flexor and gluteus to begin to engage,” says Cleveland. Return to your original upright standing position and swap the kettlebell into the other hand and repeat on the right side. Cleveland suggests 3 sets of 12 reps to get a banging booty.
*Please ask your trainer if you have the mobility to perform this exercise safely.
No one is more incredibly difficult to buy gifts for other than good old Dad. There are only so many handmade cards, macaroni frames and number one Dad mugs to show how much you care. With the help of Fit Perx partners, here are 7 awesome gift ideas every type of FIT Dad and wallet will love.
Sun, sweat, sand and songs are all essential ingredients for a sizzling San Diego summer. Nothing compares to the vibes that music contributes, so we decided to get a head start on collecting some of our favorite songs to assure you have the perfect playlist to kick off the 2015 season. Whether your schedules jam packed with barbecues, hanging out by the pool or workouts to stay in sun worthy shape, here our top ten 2015 summer songs.
1. This Summer’s Gonna Hurt Like A Motherf***** – Maroon 5
2. Cheerleader (Felix Jaehn Remix) – OMI
3. Hold My Hand – Jess Glynne
4. Pretty Girls – Britney Spears & Iggy Azalea
5. Nobody To Love – Sigma
6. Lean On – Major Lazer
7. Sun Goes Down – Robin Schulz
8. Five More Hours – Chris Brown
9. Bang That – Disclosure
10. Ride Out – Kid Ink, Tyga, Wale, YG, Rich Homie Quan
Break out those crop tops and tank tops – the season of music festivals is upon us! If the festivities snuck up quicker than you expected, have no fear, we’ve got Fit Athletic Master Trainer David Sutton here! Follow our bulletproof guide to get you whipped into shape for an epic weekend of music, heat and fun in the sun!
Abs – Don’t forget your favorite six-pack
To develop envious abs, try David’s favorite exercise – The Jackknife. “Begin by holding a weighted medicine ball and lying on your back with your arms behind you. Leave one knee bent while the other knee lies straight on the ground. Bring your straight leg and torso up simultaneously to meet in the middle. Make sure to bring your shoulder blades up off the floor, allowing for your abdominals to contract,” says David. Power through three sets of 15 reps on each leg to reach a “concert core.”
Arms – Curls for girls and tris for guys
No need to practice your hand on hip sorority pose after this workout. “A neutral grip pull up using your body weight will get your biceps, shoulders and lats on point,” suggests David. Not ready for a full pull up? Try the assisted Pull-up machine. The goal is to reach the state of fatigue around the 8th-10th rep for four to five sets. Long recovery breaks between sets allows the ability to maintain the 8-10 rep range.
Diet – Don’t “Coachella Diet”
David’s most important nutrition advice – “Keep clear from fad diets, they are not sustainable and only work short term. Stay festival ready all season long by eating real food…personally I like to balance my macros. Apps like MyFitnessPal help to track proteins, fats and carbs keeping you on track. Journaling your food intake will help you stay within your macros and caloric limit.” Keep confident with your physique throughout the festivities; bring some non-perishable healthy snacks, like a GoMacro bar. Why not go crazy? Bring the whole box for you and your festival friends.
Cardio – Dancing in the dark
Prepare your body to look and feel good while dancing the night away! Let’s be honest – nobody looks forward to cardio. High intensity cardio intervals will help you shed those extra pounds fast. “I preach interval training, HIIT causes an undulating heart rate which produces the best hormonal response for maintaining muscle mass and shedding unwanted fat,” says David. Start with a five-minute warm up, and then aim for 30 seconds of high intensity cardio hitting an exhaustion level of eight or nine on a scale of 10. Take off some resistance or speed for a minute and a half for active rest allowing your heart rate to fall and breathing pattern to revert back to normalize. Completing 10 sets of these intervals should take you 25/30 minutes and having you looking fly in no time.
Long yoga flows, live music, massages and healthy juices at sunset are our idea of a perfect date night here at Fit. Many thanks to Lululemon Fashion Valley staff & guests and our very own yogi superstar Andre Houle for a fashionable and fun yoga evening by the pool! Take a look at our favorite Lulu ensembles from the stylish soiree:
1. Happy Hour Chic
All eyes were on Mariah in her Lululemon “Party Onesie.” This chic piece will keep you comfy and looking fabulous! The sheer peek-a-boo back detail accommodates your favorite strappy sports bra and with just a swap of sandals for a pair of heels, you can take the party from day to night.
Free To Be Bra
2. Long-line Look
As Emily left the yoga room, we couldn’t help but fall in love with her Lululemon long line sports bra paired with basic black crops. The longer sports bra is perfect for hot group exercise classes when you can’t bear to wear another layer. The “If You’re Lucky Tank” is perfect for throwing on after class while still showing off your criss-cross straps. For a casual look, simply swap out the black crops for a pair of cutoff shorts.
Bonded Sports Bra
If You’re Lucky Tank
3. Dress To Impress
Be the effortless fashionista with this simple ensemble. Whether it’s lunch with friends or running errands, this is the perfect casual outfit. To replicate Alisha’s look we suggest pairing Lululemon’s “Breezy Skirt” and “Studio Racerback” tank. Throw on your own chambray button down and favorite sandals or go sporty-chic with the Atomic Flower Lululemon “Define Jacket” and a comfortable sneakers.
4. Swiftly Styled
Soft and stylish, Fit Athletic Personal Trainer David looks ready to sweat. These Lululemon “Surge Shorts” are made of soft moisture wicking fabric to keep you comfortable during a long workout. The Lululemon “Get the Funk Outta Here” long sleeve shirt is perfect to combat the post workout chill.
Get The Funk Outta Here
5. Go With The Flow
Don’t be afraid to play with color. Steph’s “In The Flow” Lululemon crops are a favorite amongst yogis and a staple piece in stores. Choose from a variety of colors and patterns to pair with this laser cut tank, you’ll be fully suited in a lightweight breathable downward dog get-up.
In The Flow Crops
Water Bound Singlet
6. Stand Out Strong
Theresa is dressed and ready to take on any workout thrown her way. Are you hesitant to try printed bottoms? I bet your face will be striped with surprise with Lululemon’s “Speed Tight II” pants. These tights are an essential piece for keeping your gym look fresh while staying on the reserved side of style. A pop of color on top will bring life to your workout – it’s important to have fun and feel comfortable in your athletic apparel!
Speed Tight II
*Please note, these styles are flying off the shelves and will only be available for a limited time!
Looking for a fresh new way to kick your workout into high gear? Grab a few friends or co-workers and sweat off some calories with small group training. Whether you’re training for a marathon or just prefer high intensity and cross training style workouts, here’s five reasons you and your crew should try out small group training right now.
Imagine that guilty feeling of bailing on your workout with your personal trainer or gym buddy where you couldn’t show them the discipline required to get yourself to the gym. Now, imagine a group of people waiting for you, disappointed that you backed out; I guarantee you would make more of an effort to get your butt to the gym! Small group training allows you and your gang to hold each other accountable and stay on track.
Sometimes one-on-one personal training expenses just don’t fit the budget. Teaming up with some buddies to work with a personal trainer will prevent you from breaking the bank. In small group training, you still get a well-designed program with the support, knowledge and expertise of a personal trainer – but usually at a discounted rate.
Whether it’s your first time lacing up a pair of running shoes or just trying to get back into an old routine, this guide will help you get back on track.
It’s every fitness-savvy singleton’s dream to be a part of that in-shape, head turning gym couple everyone envies. And what better place to meet like-minded, good-looking individuals than at the gym? But beware, there’s definitely wrong and right ways of going about finding your fitness “One”. When looking for love on the gym floor or before/after class, use these tips and you’re sure to land your dream swollmate.
DO Be Outgoing and Patient
Ladies and gents this goes for both of you; say “hello”, smile a few times and give the other person time to begin recognizing you as a familiar face. Fit trainer Becky Underwood says, “The gym is a huge meat market and personally when I’m training – I’M TRAINING! If you’re interested in someone, you should gather the courage to say hi, ask for the person’s name, then walk away and leave it at that. Next time you see that person don’t be afraid to say hi again (make sure to use their name for brownie points) and ask what their plans are for that weekend. Keep it simple. Don’t cling on during a workout, it’s awkward.” At the end of the day, nothing will make you stand out more than presenting your genuine awesome self. Be patient and let the relationship evolve over time.
Ever feel like someone’s watching? It’s because most likely someone is, and if that somebody is you – you will get caught. The gym is a very vulnerable place to many, and constantly feeling like “all eyes are on you” doesn’t help their situation. Don’t stare at or “coincidentally” always be working out in the same area as your gym crush. It’s awkward, not to mention creepy. Keep in mind that less is more! It’s okay to give a flirtatious look now and then, but be sure to keep those eyes moving.
DO Be Smart and Read Body Language
Who has time for the gym? Those who make time for the gym. Most people are trying to get in a quick, efficient workout and carry on with their busy day. Be considerate and pay attention to see if the apple of your eye is in a rush and shouldn’t be be bothered – the ability to read body language is crucial. Here’s a big tip – if headphones are in and their iPod is securely strapped, you should probably keep your distance. Have you seen them chat with other members mid-workout? Go for it. It’s also a good idea to plan your approach in common areas such as the pool, café, or lounge.
DON’T Go Overboard
If you’re not trying to catch your breath between sets, you probably aren’t working out hard enough; which is a turn off in itself. However, there’s a happy medium somewhere between a “la-dee-dah” workout and an unnecessarily loud, grunting and weight-dropping session that only screams “look at me!”. Live by the words of Fit trainer Joe LoCascio, “Making every rep look easy is much more impressive than making every rep look difficult.” It’s true confidence is sexy; but showing off and turning heads for the wrong reasons is absolutely not! So tone it down a bit, and keep your workouts real.
DO Dress to Impress
You don’t have to wear makeup or style your hair before going to the gym, but it doesn’t hurt to look like you’ve put in some effort. If you’re looking for love, don’t even think about showing up for a workout in old sweats, basketball shorts or ratty old memorabilia tees. The way you dress is an outward representation of your personality. Men, make sure your athletic clothing choices match, fit well and show off your figure; this shows that you know how to put yourself together. Ladies, we are fortunate to have a multitude of options in fun, sexy and functional activewear. Remember that the way you present yourself will determine the type of person that you attract – so dress to impress!
DON’T Develop a Bad Reputation
No one wants to be “that guy” – the weight room sleazeball or “that girl” – the promiscuous princess. The gym is meant to be a social scene but if you’re not careful with the way you conduct yourself, the workout floor could end up feeling like high school all over again. Most members already have at least one cringeworthy story about how they were approached and hit on at the gym – don’t be another “story”! Make sure you don’t develop a desperate reputation – I guarantee your name will make headlines in the locker room!
Everyone has experienced the dreaded awkwardness of getting back to the gym after a long hiatus, or the first couple of weeks ever stepping foot into a health club. It’s scary – but you’re not alone (especially around the New Year)! Whether you’re intimidated by rock hard bodies or just feel like a lost puppy roaming around the gym, here’s a bulletproof guide that will help you feel right at home in no time.
1. Bring a friend
Find strength in numbers. Bringing a friend to the gym can keep you from feeling like all eyes are on you. Instead of walking around with a lost face, friends can keep you smiling with engaging conversation and help you feel more comfortable in your new surroundings. Most gyms offer extra guest passes at signup or throughout the duration of your membership. So ask a friend to come along – you might even land yourself a permanent workout buddy.
2. Just ask
You’ve probably already taken an initial club tour, but all of the information might be hazy at this point (“how do I use that exercise contraption again?”). Don’t be shy – ask away! Chances are that your questions have been asked many times before (there’s no stupid question). Whether you’re curious about when group classes are being held, how to use strange looking equipment or you just need extra assistance in getting fitness results – trainers, membership counselors and front desk staff are always eager to help. Getting to know the employees at your health club will help you feel the comfort and support you need to get a good workout in.
3. Plan your workout
As the old saying goes “If you fail to plan, plan to fail”. When nerves kick in, you’re likely to draw blanks when it comes to navigation around the gym and just give up & leave. Contact your nearest trainer and ask them to show you a quick 15 or 30 minute routine – that’s what trainers are for! Keep your new plan in your smartphone fitness app or typed in your notes, and follow up with your trainer friend for a more personalized approach. Planning ahead will help keep you focused and less concerned with what’s going on around you.
4. Dress the part
Look like a pro, feel like a pro. Think about it – would you feel more confident giving a big presentation in jeans and an old tank top, or a fancy suit? Walking around the gym in your old college t-shirt wont boost your confidence or help you overcome your anxiety. So go ahead and splurge a bit – those shiny Nike shoes and fancy Lululemon top will give you the extra confidence you need to workout a little harder, and for a little longer.
5. Take a class
Join the club. Fitness classes automatically put you into a group mentality that’s hard to find on the workout floor. Not only that, it’s almost impossible not to meet a few new friendly gym-goers before and after class times. Starting a new membership by attending various group fitness classes is also a sneaky way of becoming more familiar with navigating new territory – on your way to and from your spin or yoga class, check out where all of the equipment and machinery is laid out so you don’t have to wander when you finally feed ready to crush it on the workout floor.
Out with the old and in with the new workout trends for 2015! The New Year is such a special time for people of all fitness levels; some people begin their journey for the first time, while veteran fitness fanatics look forward to an even stronger year. The best part about fitness is that it’s dynamic and ever changing, and doesn’t allow us any time to get bored. Check out this list of fresh workouts, trendy fashions and new concepts that Fit Athletic trainers think will be huge hits this year.
January is finally here, which means that the gym is going to be busy with people looking to burn off those holiday treats and get back into shape for the new year. Fitness resolutions are made by countless people every New Year’s Day, but without a strategic plan in place these resolutions tend to fizzle fast.
Follow these tips to set yourself up for success at the gym all throughout the year:
1. Schedule your workout time like it’s a meeting, and stick to it.
As previously mentioned, the gym WILL get busy at this time of the year – so be strategic about picking your workout time. If you’re a little intimidated by crowds, don’t plan your workout during peak hours, which tend to be after the workday at around 4:30pm-7:30pm. Consider moving your workout to the early morning or later in the evening. By defining a certain time slot as your official gym “me time,” you make working out a habit that you can look forward to each day.
2. Say it loud. Say it proud.
Verbalize your fitness goals to someone you know – whether it’s a friend, a family member or everyone on your favorite social media networks. When you tell others about your future intentions it makes the process more real, and you will be held accountable.
3. Be realistic.
If you’re at the beginning of your fitness journey, don’t set yourself up for failure by aiming for a goal way beyond your current ability. For example, if you have never worked out before you might not want to resolve to “work out seven times a week for more than one hour each time.” Instead, a more appropriate goal might be to eat out only once weekly and hit the gym 3-4 times per week. Everyone is at different stages and has unique needs. By making mini-goals that lead up to bigger goals, you’re more likely to find yourself making greater strides.
4. Tune out all of the resolution naysayers.
Some people will have comments about others making fitness resolutions, and even you may think that weight loss resolutions never work – but that’s not always true! Two years ago, my weight training journey started as a New Year resolution. I’m sure many who saw my intention thought it would burn down after a while, but by taking it day-by-day, working hard and truly believing in myself, my fitness resolution became my new lifestyle.
As we approach the coming year, visualize what you want your life to be like and then work, work, work to see it through. Anything is possible when you’re committed to making your dreams a reality.
As 2014 comes to a close it’s only fair to pay tribute to the best workout buddy out there – music.
There’s nothing quite like a good playlist to rev up your gym sesh. Your favorite beats can help keep you motivated and moving, and help you to sustain that no-excuse attitude. Check out a few of our favorite beats from the past year and power up your workouts like never before.
1. Uptown Funk, Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars
Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars will help you get funky fit with this new hit. Next time this retro beat drops, I guarantee you’ll notice some extra pep in your step and the endorphins of a killer workout.
2. 7/11, Beyoncé
Let’s be honest, I could have filled this whole list with this year’s epic Beyoncé album, but this song takes the cake. Let Beyoncé and her lyrics inspire you while you get your squatting and lunging on.
3. Blame, Calvin Harris ft. John Newman
You can “blame it on the night” but it’s up to you to blast this song after a weekend of “retoxing”. Perfect for a run or getting your supersets out of the way, this electro beat will inspire you to work just a little harder.
4. Hideaway, Kiesza
Ever notice that while doing cardio, your pace matches the beat of the song playing? Hideaway is perfect for jumping on the bike, spiking your heart rate and warming up.
5. The Devil In I, Slipknot
Need to crush your workout? Slipknot will fire you up for a heavy chest press. The heavy rock sounds will help you to release all the stress you’ve built up after a long day at work.
6. Jealous (I Ain’t With It), Chromeo
Everything about this song makes me want to dance. This fast-paced, poppy hit will keep you energized and smiling throughout those dreaded TRX core exercises.
7. A Sky Full of Stars, Coldplay
Hop on a stationary bike and climb some hills with this slower, yet exhilarating beat. Not a fan of the bike? Try some wind sprints on the treadmill. Turn your incline up, walk at a fast pace and when the build up hits – run for it.
8. Animals, Maroon 5
You may turn into an animal at the gym just from the sound of Adam Levine’s voice. Whether you’re getting your cardio out of the way or powering through those overhead presses, this song will help you switch on beast mode.
9. Every Other Freckle, alt-J
Looking to get in the right mindset for an intense hot yoga flow? “Every Other Freckle” will both calm and energize your body, keeping you focused through your chaturangas all the way to savasana. alt-J’s eclectic combination of vocals and tribal beats will leave you feeling tranquil, strong and accomplished after your practice.
10. Yellow Flicker Beat, Lorde
What would be a 2014 playlist without a little bit of Lorde? Her nontraditional beats and unique voice will help you cool down from your intense workout and relax while stretching.
The hectic holiday season is in full swing, and what better way to decompress than with good ol’ yoga. Check out some of our favorite Fit-approved products to get your holiday Om on in style.
‘Tis the season of cookies, cheese platters and cocktails! While most of us love to indulge during the holiday season, nobody looks forward struggling into their regular pant size after the festivities have passed.
Rest assured! There’s no need to neglect yourself of holiday treats – you can still enjoy all of the wonderful holiday events that the season has to offer. Here are some simple tips to ensure you enter the New Year guilt free.
1. Don’t Show Up Starving
Yes, we are all guilty of this grave mistake. You’ve been fantasizing about all of the glorious food and beverage options that will be available to you at a party all day long, and eating very little because of it. By the time you show up the night of the party, you are absolutely famished and make a beeline straight for the cookie platter a-la-Santa!
To avoid stuffing yourself silly at a party make sure you eat regular meals the day of, and eat a small handful of healthy snacks (such as nuts, an apple or banana, or maybe a piece of toast with peanut butter) before you head out the door.
2. Chew Slowly at Dinner
We often rush through our dinners. Lets face it; when your dinner is delish, you often want to gobble the whole thing down lickity-split. This is a huge mistake when it comes to practicing healthy habits. Chewing thoroughly and swallowing before shoving the next bite down your throat helps you shed the pounds. Practice some behavior modification – after taking a forkful, place your fork down, chew, swallow and repeat until satisfied — NOT stuffed. This allows your body the time it needs to notify you of satisfaction.
3. Sip On This
Most of the time our minds think we’re hungry when really we’re dehydrated. Feel like snacking because you’re “hungry?” Put down the eggnog and try taking a few swigs of water and then wait it out for about 10 minutes, then see how you feel. Drinking water also helps in the process of digestion while naturally cleansing the body. Need some flavor? Add halved cranberries to help aid in weight loss and boost your glass with a little holiday cheer.
4. Use Small & Creative Utensils
Be sneaky; use smaller utensils such as salad forks and soup spoons when setting for a big meal. It’s an easy little trick to prevent from overeating. And have fun! Anything can be eaten with chopsticks, and this nifty utensil can help slow down your eating speed, especially if you are new to it! Ask Santa for a pair of custom chopsticks this year, and keep them with the rest of your utensils so you can incorporate them into your daily eating habits.
5. Partake in Petite Plates
Need help fighting the urge to overfill your plate? If you like to see it covered in food, simply downsize with a smaller plate. Sometimes it’s all a mind game! A full and visually pleasing small plate can make you believe that you are eating the same portion of ham and mashed potatoes that you would eat on a big plate, saving you the extra calories.
6. Take it To-Go
Exhausted after holiday shopping and looking to grab dinner at the mall? Watch out! Many restaurants have a habit of going to the extreme with portions. For example, The Cheesecake Factory is an excellent place to doom yourself to holiday weight gain. Think their salad is a healthy option? Try again! Those salads alone should be broken into 4 servings, but unfortunately people eat them all in one sitting and then wonder why they only fit into stretchy pants.
So ask your waitress for a to-go box as soon as you order, and split your dish before you begin eating. If you need even more self constraint, kindly ask your waiter or waitress to only bring out half of your dish and box the other half for you. Leftovers are a great way to savor that amazing meal and save money!
Enjoy the holidays this year, without the belly bulge fear.
Fall is in the air! Cool weather is perfect for staying home and cooking up a storm. Here are four quick, easy, and healthy recipes to bring you right into the holidays guilt-free.
Cranberry Pecan Breakfast Cookies
1 cup rolled oats
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1 tbsp chia seeds
1 tbsp cinnamon
2 tbsp of honey (or to taste)
1 tbsp vanilla extract
¼ cup pecan pieces
1/2 cup almond milk
1. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and let sit at room temperature while preheating the oven to 350 °f.
2. Use a spoon to scoop batter into small clusters and place onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
3. Place in over for 10-15 minutes, or until golden.
Roasted Apple Salad
4 cups organic spinach
1 medium honey crisp apple
¾ cup grated parmesan cheese
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
¾ olive oil
1. Preheat oven to 300 °f and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Slice apples into even sized wedges and dust with cinnamon
3. Place apple wedges on the prepared baking sheet and place in the oven for 15 minutes.
4. In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil and balsamic vinegar.
5. In a large bowl, toss the spinach, Parmesan cheese, and dressing.
6. Top each serving with warm apples wedges and serve immediately. Serves 4
Sweet Potato Zucchini Haystacks
1 medium sweet potato
1 medium zucchini squash
½ medium onion
2 tsp garlic powder
2 tsp of salt (or to taste)
1. Finely grate sweet potato and zucchini into a medium sized bowl and mix in the finely chopped onion.
2. In a small bowl crack and whisk together the eggs, then add and mix well into the bowl with the vegetables, garlic and salt.
3. Evenly spray olive oil onto a heated pan over a medium flame.
4. Scoop and flatten ¼ cup cluster onto the heated pan. Make sure you flip the haystack until crisp on each side.
5. Serve with unsweetened applesauce on the side for dipping. Serves 4
Pumpkin Protein Chai Latte
¼ cup organic pumpkin puree
¾ cup unsweetened original flavor almond milk
½ cup Tazo chai organic latte
1 tsp cinnamon
1 scoop vanilla protein powder (optional)
Whisk all ingredients together until smooth and enjoy. Serves 1.
Keeping up a healthy lifestyle isn’t easy – if it was, everyone would do it. While many individuals are able to start up a quick-fix diet or workout routine and see results, few are able to maintain consistency over the long haul. Luckily, with some planning and dedication, you CAN increase your chances of making fitness a longstanding piece of your lifestyle. Here are five tips to help you stick to your new personal fitness goals:
1. Figure Out Your WHY.
Before determining how, it’s always helpful to first understand WHY you have a particular goal or wish in mind. Follow these simple steps: first, ask yourself “Why do I want to do X?” (for example – participate in a triathlon, lose 10 lbs., enter a fitness competition, etc.) Write down the first answer that comes to your mind. Step two – ask yourself “Why?” to that first answer. Repeat this sequence about five or six times until you get to the root reason for your particular goal. This process is helpful because our root reason for doing something is often much more profound than the surface outcome of your goal. Knowing the true reason for a goal will help you stick to it when the times get tough.
2. Create SMART Goals.
You have likely heard this piece of advice many times before, but the reason it’s so popular is because it works! A SMART goal is Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic and Timely. This isn’t to say you shouldn’t “dream big” and push yourself outside your comfort zone, but it’s important to remember that several smaller SMART goals will propel you forward towards the bigger goals in the future.
3. Renew Your Passion.
There are bound to be moments when you feel fatigued or lacking in motivation. Luckily with our connected world, you have access to a plethora of free resources that can help continually renew your passion, and change up/improve your training techniques. Sign up for a challenging Spartan or silly obstacle race, try out a new fitness class or simply give a new workout or nutrition plan a shot. On the other hand, renewing your passion may mean disconnecting completely, or taking a solid break once in a while. Sometimes the mind and body need to take a step back and get back to your why, in order to feel renewed again.
4. Change When It Makes Sense.
There will come a time when you look at your life and realize you’re simply no longer who you used to be. This probably means your values have also shifted. This may mean that goals that took center stage before are no longer that important, or you are experiencing a “been there, done that” type feeling. When either of these situations happen, work on developing new fitness goals that get your adrenaline pumping again.
5. Never Ever Give Up.
As you continue pushing through your fitness goals, old or new, the most vital piece of advice is to never give up. This one is easier said than done, but remember: EVERYONE experiences struggles when it comes to healthy living whether they like to admit it or not, even health coaches. The lucky few who are able to break past hurdles & plateaus always find a way to reach success time and time agan. You can always find a way to keep on going. As the famous Japanese proverb states, “fall down seven times, get up eight.”
Long term fitness success will never be a linear path to glory, but with continual focus and effort you CAN make it happen!
Feeling bombarded by the overwhelming amount of new health foods lining grocery store aisles? Well you’re in luck, because we’ve narrowed down a few of our local favorites for you.
Rau bottles up everyone’s favorite guilty pleasure in an unexpected way. Chocolate in it’s raw form is called Cacao, an ancient superfood discovered originally by the Mayan’s and known by them as “food for the gods.” Rau all began when college roommates Daren and Brian experimented mixing cacao with different spices and eventually developed their secret recipe. Only the finest cacao beans are picked in Ecuador, and cold pressed to maintain their vital properties. The combination of fresh cacao and organic spices is packed with super foods, antioxidants and vitamins, and an overload of delicious flavor (without any added sugar). Sipping on Rau maintains healthy blood sugar and pressure, increases intake of antioxidants, and includes excellent doses of magnesium, Vitamin C and Vitamin D. But wait, we have more good news! Rau is completely dairy, soy, preservative and sugar free. The Rau Original tastes like a healthier & lighter chocolate milk, and Rau Mint can easily be mistaken for a juiced peppermint patty. Next time you’re craving a spoon full of Nesquick, drink Rau instead. You won’t be sorry.
2. Perfect Bar
Don’t be fooled, this nut bar may be new to you – but it’s old school and awesome! Perfect Bar was created in the mid 60’s by Dr. Bud Keith, who passed on his healthy living company down to his family. Dr. Keith was quite a legend in the fitness scene here in San Diego, opening one of the first gyms and juice bars ever in Mission Beach. Keeping with the wellness spirit, Dr. Keith created Perfect Bars in order to share the belief that whole foods are crucial for healthy living and complete nourishment. All 7 Perfect Bar flavors are non-GMO, gluten free and naturally sweetened with organic honey. Paleo Pops are an excellent way to get in your complex carbs before or after your workout, or as a healthy alternative to sweet indulgent treats. For breakfast, I like to grab the Almond Acai bar – it gives me energy and keeps me full for a good portion of the day. I also like to go for Perfect Bar’s Carob Chip (instead of a chocolate bar) when lounging around watching a movie. Although those two are my longtime favorites, I must admit that all Perfect Bar flavors are delicious, and the perfect choice for an “anytime” grab & go snack.
3. Green Bee
Green Bee is fairly new to the San Diego juice scene. Founders Dave and Kent have collaborated to promote their love of juicing by creating a product that meets their high standards of quality and health. Utilizing their combined knowledge and experience, they have developed the “Green Bee Super Smoothie” and are changing lives “one glass at a time.” The Super Smoothie is raw and unpasteurized, and contains a special ingredient that sets it apart from any other product on the market – Royal Jelly. Created by worker bees over a span of three to four months, Royal Jelly is not to be mistaken for squeeze-out-of-the-bear honey – it’s the Queen Bee’s secret jelly that enables her to live an exceptional five to seven years longer than other bees. Royal Honey, the super food known to increase energy, promote healthy skin, build lean muscles, and kickstart a healthy metabolism, also packs more than 20 amino acids. At first sip, you may think that this super smoothie is loaded with sugar, but look at the label and you’ll see that each serving contains only 6 grams of sugar. Just one serving contains super foods such as kale, spinach, spirulina, flaxseeds and chlorella. Try it for yourself at Fit, or check out the cleanse packages on the Green Bee website!
From Brazil to La Jolla, these naturally dehydrated banana snacks are deliciously addictive. Professional triathlete Caue Suplicy shared his secret family snack with other athletes all over the country before deciding to go big and create “Barnana.” Whether you prefer them plain, covered in organic chocolate or peanut butter, or coconut flavored – Barnana never disappoints. Barnana takes pride in their slogan – “the super potassium snack,” which keeps muscles energized and nerves moving for healthy digestion. Here’s what’s most impressive about the original Barnana flavor – it consists of only one ingredient, banana. All options are non-GMO, gluten free and high in fiber to help maintain low blood pressure and promote a healthy heart. Here is a special “Fit” tip – employees and members love to eat them cold. Keep them in the fridge for a post-workout, refreshing and revitalizing bite.
5. Ocean Ranch Organics
Cranberry Orange, Meyer Lemon Blue, and Pomegranate are just a few flavors that make up the line of our favorite San Diego granola company, Ocean Ranch Organics. Kim Redman, an organic farmer with fourteen years of experience as a chef, created Ocean Ranch Organics Granola when people just couldn’t get enough of her granola. Kim is no newbie to the health industry, her cooking career took her throughout various spa and retreat locations, and gave her the opportunity to cater for professional athletes. What sets Kim apart is the uniqueness of her recipes – adding a bit of “zest” helps liven up her extra scrumptious granola. Ocean Ranch Organics granola varieties will catch you off guard with unexpected flavor combinations, but will leave your palate pleasantly surprised and wanting more. Eat Ocean Ranch Organics granola on it’s own for an easy snack, add it to your favorite yogurt for breakfast, or use it to top off a fruit bowl for delicious dessert.
6. Paleo Pops
One word, YUM! Paleo Pops are a new favorite everywhere in San Diego! With these morsels of deliciousness, Paleo Pop creator Keisha has finally proven that eating like a caveman doesn’t need to be boring or difficult. Bite-sized Paleo Pops come in four delicious flavors that can easily be mistaken for regular cake pops upon first glance. However, these nutrient-dense energy bites are no joke – they’re all gluten, dairy and soy free. Don’t be fooled by the green colored, organic spinach packed “Popeye Pop” flavor – it still tastes like a treat. “Brownie and Cookie Dough” is a crowd favorite, a perfect replacement for a real cookie or brownie. Just one pop will keep you satisfied! Paleo Pops are perfect to grab on your way out the door before your workout, or a guiltless treat for those late night sweets cravings. Paleo Pops prove that even with a healthy lifestyle, you don’t have to deprive yourself of mouthwatering delicacies.
Getting healthier can be as simple as finding room for a new pet in your life. Not only will you have a new best friend – you get an instant new workout partner & stress reducer! Check out some of the reasons why we think pet ownership is a great way to make health and fitness a more important (and fun) part of your life.
As San Diegans we are lucky to enjoy beautiful weather all year round, but it’s easy to fall into lazy habits and take this beautiful place we call home for granted. Fortunately there’s no shortage of organized activities for San Diegans to take part in! Here is a list of 7 local events that will get you moving in the crisp Fall air. Get out there, get active, try something different alone or with friends, and most importantly – have fun and turn spring into a new mindset!
1. 80’s 5K
November 1st – Tecelote Shores, North Park
Flashback to the 80’s with some totally teased hair and some rad leg warmers for this time warp of a run! Make sure to go all out for a chance to win the individual and group costume contests and be fashionably fit. Enjoy an awesome rock band performance and 80’s themed medal at the finish line, and here’s my favorite part – your scrunchie-dressed canine friend is more than welcome to participate!
2. Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer 5k
November 2nd – Balboa Park
Whether you want to gather with friends for a leisurely walk or race them to the finish line for some friendly competition, your participation in the Susan G. Komen 5k helps raise awareness and money for breast cancer research. Members and staff of Fit Athletic Club have come together to create a team for this event, and anyone is welcome to participate – find out more information here!
3. Ride the Point Memorial Charity Bicycle Ride
November 8th – Liberty Station, Point Loma
Join 500 other bikers and help support UC San Diego Moore’s Cancer Center. Begin and end in Liberty Station and pass through beautiful scenes of the shore. Not an avid-biker? No problem, there are three route choices that cater to different fitness levels, from beginner to advanced.
4. CicloSDias Hillcrest and Bankers Hill
November 9th – Bankers Hill, University Avenue & 6th Avenue
Keep those pedals moving, or walk it off on 2.5 miles of road blocked off from traffic. The idea of “ciclovia” was adopted from Colombia with intentions of bonding the community. Take advantage of this opportunity to go for your run, or bike with your friends. Along the route you can expect exciting activities, shopping, and delicious food at local participating businesses.
5. Fit Foodie Run 5K
November 15 – San Diego Bay Front
Calling all fitness fanatics who love some GOOD food! This is the 5k for you. “Health” and “Cooking Light” magazines created this event to express that healthy lifestyles and culinary deliciousness can go hand in hand. At the end of the 5k, all runners will be rewarded with access to the “Finishers Village” where they enjoy cooking demonstrations from celebrity chefs, refuel stations, wine and beer tastings, and samples from local San Diego restaurants. Unlike most other races, this particular one isn’t a one day affair – check out the activity schedule and make sure you take advantage of Fit Foodie fun all weekend long.
6. Silver Strand Distance Classic, 5k, 10 Miler, and Half Marathon
November 16th – Coronado to Imperial Beach
What better landscape could you possibly choose for a run over the beautiful island of Coronado? This race is great for all runner levels – pick between a 5k, 10 Mile or Half Marathon and go at your own pace. Enjoy entertainment and the sound of crashing waves along the course, and treat yourself to a free beer garden at the finish line. Here’s a unique opportunity – racers are allowed to rollerskate and rollerblade!
7. Turkey Trot, 5, 10, or 15K
November 27th – Rohr Park, Bonita
Thanksgiving is often misinterpreted for “stuff yourself until you can’t move day.” Reduce that post T-day guilt by getting your run in early that morning. Earn those calories! You won’t have to think twice before going for that second, or maybe third helping of mashed potatoes. Don’t forget to to bring non perishable food donations for the Salvation Army, in order to help those less fortunate enjoy a happier holiday.
See why Fit Athletic Club in Downtown San Diego was voted “Best Gym” in the San Diego A-List Poll, and “Best Personal Trainers” in Downtown San Diego News. Get a FREE Day Pass and experience Fit Downtown San Diego for yourself.
Almost everyone enjoys a good solo workout. Headphones in. Tune out. Get moving.
But switching it up and working out in a group setting has perks you wouldn’t believe. Endless benefits come with group fitness classes such as yoga, spinning or dance – benefits that are hard to accomplish on your own.
1. Achieve more by surrounding yourself with like-minded people.
Being drenched in sweat next to your classmates within the confining walls of a room may seem a little uncomfortable at first, but when the initial awkwardness wears off and spring into a new mindset, you will feel an awesome sense of community that just doesn’t exist on the gym floor. There’s no denying the contagious sense of respect and appreciation that permeates throughout the room. You’re all pushing yourselves to improve, and that underlying feeling of camaraderie is unlike any other. And if you’re lucky, you might even hit it off with the person on the spin bike next to you post-class.
2. Discover amazing new music.
Group classes are an excellent place to discover new motivational music. When those speakers are turned up and blasting powerful beats with inspiring lyrics, they make participants want to work harder and get that extra endorphin flow going. If you like what you’re hearing, don’t be afraid to ask your instructor for the song title and artist. From retro-ride spin to hip hop yoga, most group fitness instructors put countless hours and energy into crafting the perfect playlist and will be so happy to know that you have enjoyed it.
3. Let your instructor push you to the next level.
Have you ever noticed the sweaty and exhausted (but happy) hordes of people walking out of a group class? One of the biggest benefits of group fitness classes is going through exercises that aren’t a part of your regular routine under the watchful eye of a true expert. It’s easy to wander from machine to machine on the gym floor alone without a set plan or routine – but having a teacher telling you exactly what to do in a class can really help you kick it up a notch and optimize your time spent at your health club.
4. Get in “the zone.”
Muscle memory develops well in a group fitness setting. Instead of carefully planning and executing every step you take, you follow your instructor’s commands and move along with the rest of the classroom floor. Oftentimes being in the group workout zone allows the mind to put focus elsewhere. While your blood is pumping and oxygen is moving throughout the body, you unlock parts of the brain that you may not have access to during other parts of your day. Some of your most brilliant subconscious ideas are bound to materialize during yoga (even if you’re trying so hard NOT to think), dance or barre. In fact, this article was crafted in my head during a spin class!
5. Discover a new hobby or passion.
Talk to other members at your gym and you will hear countless stories about class attendants-turned-instructors, or incredible mind & body transformations thanks to a newfound passion for group classes. While I personally like to switch up my routine and use fitness classes as a supplement to weight training and cardio, anyone could exclusively walk into Zumba or Piyo classes and feel like they did something amazing for themselves. Some people find a particular instructor exceedingly inspirational and dedicate all their workout time to their class, or even decide that they want to change other people’s lives and become an instructor themselves.
6. You will never, ever regret it.
Above all, the feeling you get after completing a group class is never one of regret. Even if the class happens to be extra challenging throughout the duration of the session, the profound sense of accomplishment afterwards makes it all worth it.
For some people, fitness classes are simply a training activity, but for others the classroom is a real life playground; a place to learn, reflect and grow.
Fit Athletic offers Fitness classes in gyms San Diego downtown, Solana Beach Gym and Carmel Mountain gym locations and best outdoor fitness events in San Diego this fall.
With all of the confusing and contradictory information on the subject of saturated fats out there, you might be surprised to learn that the naturally occurring saturated fat in coconut oil has AMAZING health benefits, some of which include:
1. Promoting heart health
2. Promoting weight loss
3. Supporting immune system health
4. Supporting a healthy metabolism
5. Providing an immediate energy source
6. Keeping skin healthy and youthful looking
7. Supporting proper functioning of your thyroid gland
Cooking using coconut-derived products can be an easy way to sneak this superfruit into your regular diet. If you’re someone who doesn’t like the taste of coconut (and many people don’t), have no fear – the taste of coconut oil is very subtle. Coconut also makes a great substitute for traditional dairy, or other oils. Try this simple and delicious breakfast recipe to start incorporating coconut into your diet today:
Potato & Egg Casserole
1 large yellow onion, peeled and diced
1 bell pepper, cleaned out and diced (I use red)
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
2 teaspoons sea salt, divided
8 large eggs
1 cup coconut milk (I use ‘SO Delicious’ brand)
1 teaspoon fresh-cracked black pepper
1-2 cups shredded cheese (optional)
1 can organic black beans, drained
3 cups diced red potatoes
Heat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease a 13×9″ baking dish with coconut oil.
In a lightly oiled pan (using coconut oil), add the onion, yellow bell pepper, garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, and 1 teaspoon of salt. Cook over medium heat until all the vegetables are fragrant and soft – about 5 minutes. Turn off the heat and let cool slightly.
In a separate bowl, beat the eggs thoroughly and whisk in the milk. Whisk in the remaining teaspoon of salt, and the black pepper. Stir in the cheese, potatoes, black beans and vegetables from the skillet. Pour the whole mixture into the prepared baking dish. (At this point the casserole can be covered and refrigerated for up to 24 hours.)
When you are ready to bake the casserole, bake for 40 minutes or until the eggs are firm and the top is slightly golden. A knife inserted in the center should come out clean. Top with fresh avocado – delish!
Thanks in part to the increase in fitness education via social media, the topic of weight lifting for women has become less taboo over the years (finally!). However, there are still many women out there who are hesitant to lift heavy weights out of fear of gaining mass and “getting too buff”.
Let’s set things straight – in order to get that extremely muscular look, a woman has to intentionally TRY to put on size through highly specific supplementation and meal plans (take it from an ex-cardio bunny turned bikini competitor). Many women are surprised to learn that instead of turning their bodies into “Hulk” status, adding weight lifting to their regular workout routine gets them to the coveted “lean & athletic look” much faster.
It’s been exciting seeing an increase in women pumping iron at the gym these days, and I invite you to give it a shot. Need more convincing? Here are four reasons why I believe all women should lift:
1. Lifting keeps workouts interesting.
Do you often find yourself shuffling away on the treadmill or elliptical for what seems like hours at a time, staring at the clock and waiting for it all to end? Lifting can help make the gym grind a lot less mundane. While you can always try to “switch up” your cardio, there are endless ways to change up your training when weight lifting is incorporated. Techniques such as super setting & circuit training not only prevent boredom, but also help you break through those frustrating fitness plateaus.
2. Lifting boosts confidence.
Walking into the gym and crushing every rep on your workout plan has a way of creating confidence that spills over into life outside the gym. The self-esteem bump continues once you begin noticing the positive changes happening to your physique. While the physical changes are amazing, it’s once you start hitting personal records and seeing the weight you’re pushing increase that the feeling of being strong and unstoppable really happen.
3. Lifting builds strong bones.
Muscle development is usually at the forefront of one’s mind when it comes to resistance training, so the bone building benefits of weight lifting are often forgotten, but are a big plus. According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, one in two women will break a bone in their lifetime due to the silent disease that causes weakened bones. While there isn’t a cure, doing regular weight-bearing exercises is one of five recommended steps women can take to help prevent it.
4. Lifting gets you fit fast.
Most mainstream fitness magazines and media use words like “tone,” which influence women to believe that low weight/high rep is the best way to train for swimsuit season. In reality, many women get better results more quickly by picking up heavier weights at the gym. Again, heavy weights do not cause bulky gains, but rather help a women develop strong curves & lean muscle — the perfect combo to rock any tank top or dress with conviction!
Whether you’re stuck in a fitness rut or just wanting to feel good inside and out, there’s no better time than now to step away from the treadmill and start pumping iron. I’ll see you in the weight room, ladies!
Fit Athletic offers best outdoor fitness events in San Diego this fall and training in Club Fit San Diego downtown, Club Fit Solana Beach and Club Fit Carmel Mountain locations.
Here you can find 6 reasons you need to try group exercise.
Doctors and nutritionists can help people better understand certain health issues, but they often don’t have the time, resources, or individualized approach to guide and motivate people through their unique journey to lifelong, sustainable health. While they are able to provide advice, meal plans and prescriptions, oftentimes the most important missing components are ongoing accountability and support.
That’s where a Nutrition & Lifestyle Coach comes in.
Nutrition Coaches bridge the gap between the desire to be healthy and actually being healthy, assisting clients with every step of the process. They also fill a void in the current healthcare paradigm, helping keep people disease-free so that they seek medical treatment less frequently. Coaches are vital in helping to solve the healthcare crisis/obesity epidemic by helping countless individuals unlock the true potential of their lives.
Nutrition & Lifestyle Coaches are knowledgeable advisors who provide ongoing support and guidance as you set goals and make sustainable changes that improve your health and wellbeing. Your Nutrition Coach will listen carefully and help you to navigate the world of contradictory nutrition advice, to determine what changes are necessary for you and your unique body. He or she will look at the entire picture of health, including food, mindset, movement, relationships, finances, spiritualty and career – to create a total body, mind & spirit transformation.
While many health professionals dwell on calories and what not to do, Nutrition Coaches are committed to looking at the body as a whole, while finding upgrades to promote an enjoyable transition and ultimately, a more vibrant long-term lifestyle. Health is about so much more than what we put on our plate, and your coach will help guide you on your journey to WHOLE BODY healing, from the inside out.
Forget the endless lists of restrictions – coaches teach clients to create a happy, healthy lifestyle in a way that is flexible, realistic and free of guilt & denial. Being healthy should be fun, and nutrition coaches provide the tools and guidance to show clients that no matter what stage they’re in now, they can achieve anything they set their minds to.
Fit Nutrition Coach Sheree Trask’s personalized programs are designed to radically improve your lifestyle, in addition to upgrading your dietary choices. Together, you will explore concerns specific to you and your body, and discover the tools you need for a lifetime of balance.
This is your life, what are you waiting for? Contact Sheree at email@example.com to schedule your FREE 30-Minute Consultation and find out if nutrition coaching is right for you.
Lately short, intense workouts have become the name of the game in weight loss, and for just cause! They’re a great way to get the physical results you want out of the gym. But what if you’re stressed, depressed or anxious? You may have found that these kinds of workouts make your situation worse.
Fear not, gym junkies. There’s a simple solution to keeping your stress levels low while you get your sweat on and it’s this: get aerobic. No, I don’t mean the kind that requires shiny leotards or pearls and sweater sets.
Though it may not be your trainer’s choice for fat loss, aerobic workouts like jogging and trotting along on the elliptical have been proven to be incredibly effective for easing stress, anxiety and even depression (as effective or more than Xoloft in the long term!). Conversely, high intensity workouts have actually been shown to be detrimental to those who struggle with high stress. Yikes.
I’m not saying you should avoid your Tabata workouts altogether. I’m suggesting that you devote at least a couple of workouts per week to your Zen place instead of Beast Mode so that you can start getting your brain fit, and your body will follow suit.
So what kind of cardio workout should you be doing based on your stress level? Read on and find out!
Calm it down whenever you get a chance! You need as much chill time as you can get. Ideal workouts for you include:
Hatha Yoga or Hot Yoga
The emphasis in this yoga class is placed on stretching and gentle movement, which allows your body to release stress in giant gobs of sweat. It won’t increase your stress beyond the workout. In fact, it could help you better cope with stressful situations as they come up in your life through the class’s emphasis on mindfulness.
Walks, Jogs, Swims, or Runs
Do what comes easily for you, but push yourself to a difficulty level of 6 or so (1 being lying down, and 10 being sprinting away from a bear). Keep up this pace for 30-60 minutes 2x/week, but be careful not to do too many days in a row without rest: that’s when the detrimental aspects of long, slow workouts come into play, raising fat-storing stress hormone cortisol and shifting your metabolism priorities to your brain and out of your body. Sounds like a good thing, but if you’re not a fan of muffin tops, I advise you schedule these workouts accordingly.
Barre or Pilates Mat Classes
Since these classes are focused on good form and posture, you can lose yourself in concentration, which allows you to be completely mindful and present while plié-ing or teasering. That mindfulness will follow you into your daily life the more you practice it in class, so start really focusing on those port de bras!
The key to a beneficial cardio regimen is one that gives your mind and body adequate rest to recover in between workouts, which will keep you from further raising nasty stress hormones in your body.
When you do lift, make sure that you’re being mindful of your breath and movements. Let it calm you down instead of rile you up. These weights can make you stronger emotionally as well as physically.
Go by how you feel that week, but your general guideline is to mix up your cardio workouts so that one day, you’ll be really pushing your limits, and the next, you’ll be taking it easy with intervals. Try these workouts:
The harmony between breath and movement that’s encouraged in this class can serve as a moving meditation. The mindfulness that lasts long beyond the workout is the cherry on top.
You can do these on any piece of cardio equipment or outside. I prefer to do mine with a jump rope because I can take it with me no matter where I go (seriously, I’m the jump-rope-in-the-purse lady).
Warm up at an easy pace for 5 minutes, then alternate 1 minute at a moderately difficult pace with 1 minute at a recovery or moderate pace, 10 times. Cool down for 5 minutes. Want to shake it up? Switch up your cardio equipment. My fav combo is jump rope, Jacob’s Ladder and step mill… and you don’t need to stay on any of them longer than a minute. Just walk it off in between. Score!
You might be stressed because you’re short on time. With circuit training, you get your cardio and strength workout in with only half the time!
Aim for full-body strength or combination movements (planks or squats to an overhead dumbbell press), which raise your heart rate higher than traditional single-muscle movements (like crunches or overhead press on its own).
Do 3 moves as one circuit, then do 1-2 minutes of difficult cardio. Jump rope, ladder drills or even just running in place is great for this because you don’t have to worry about someone taking over your lifting area! Repeat 3 times, then do a different circuit 3 times, then stretch, foam roll and call it a day!
If your stress escalates, scale back your intense workouts in favor of stress-relieving ones (check out the Chronic or Extreme Stress workouts for more ideas). When your life starts to calm down, step it up with the next category…
Woohoo! The gym is your oyster, my friend. You’re pretty much limitless in what you can do, but you should still make sure to get at least one to two full rest days a week. I know it’s exciting when you can go all out, but remember that results are made in recovery. Without rest days, all your hard work might go to waste!
Since you have very few limits in the gym, try challenging yourself with one of the below workouts in addition to any of the cardio workouts listed in the above categories when you need to chill out your mind.
Traditonally, Tabata is performed for 4 minutes. You can do anything for 4 minutes, right? Before you agree, let me go through exactly what you’re getting yourself into.
For 20 seconds, you do high intensity movement, then recover for 10 seconds, and repeat this cycle until the 4 minutes is up. Now, we’re not talking bodyweight squats or jogging in place here. We’re talking burpees, combat rope or Turkish get-ups: full-body movements that raise your heart rate something fierce. By the time these 4 minutes are up, you should be spent. 4 minutes will feel like a lifetime, but it’s well worth the effort.
Think you’re strong with the weights? Challenge your smaller muscle groups, focus, balance and cardio endurance with one of Fit’s Hot Vinyasa classes. With world class instructors leading you through flowing postures in a 85-95º room, you won’t leave disappointed… but you will leave drenched and Zenned out.
Whenever I say “sprint,” people automatically think I mean that they have to run. Let me clear things up: sprinting can involve any kind of movement that gets your heart rate up to near maximum beats per minute. A proper sprint gets you to the point at which you feel your body might give or you might throw up… or both.
That said, these sprints are short at 30 seconds max each so that you can push yourself to that point. After each sprint, recover as long as is necessary (typically 1-2 minutes, but if you’re advanced, try recovering for only 10-30 seconds!). Start with 5 minutes of a dynamic warm up, then try 6 sprints with recovery, then cool down for 5 minutes. It’s short, but really, really effective for burning fat and raising metabolism!
Whatever you do, the key to working out without raising stress and its associated hormones is to do what you love. If you love a certain workout, but it doesn’t fit into the rule book of what you “should” be doing, eff it. The workout that you look forward to all day is the one that will work for you.
Keep moving, and stay strong in and outside of the gym.
Difficulty Level: Easy
Time: 5 min.
Nutrition Facts Per Serving: Calories – 210, Protein – 17g, Fiber – 10g
1 green apple, cored and quartered
1 cup spinach or 2 leaves green Kale, stems discarded
1/3 cup juice from fresh squeezed organic lemons
1 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
1/4 cup unflavored rolled oats
*Optional – 1 scoop unsweetened, unflavored Whey Protein Powder
Blend all ingredients except ice and half the juice, until greens are completely blended (approx 3 min).
Add remaining juice & ice, and blend for another 20 seconds or until desired consistency is reached.
“American Ninja Warrior” is back for a sixth season with all new episodes and new cities – featuring fresh new obstacles on the course and some of the biggest surprises in the show’s history. Fit Athletic Club member Rachel Mulvaney is an American Ninja Warrior competitor this season, and we asked her to share her experience in the interview below!
I became attracted to the show because I have always loved obstacle courses. Even when I was a kid I would turn the swing set in my backyard into an obstacle course that I would traverse across without touching the “water” or “lava”, the ground. I’ve run a few obstacle course races such as the Spartan Race, Alpha Warrior, Urban Warrior, and ROC race. I was a competitor last season as well, but I unfortunately went out on the first obstacle. This year I was selected again, and got my chance at redemption.
To be selected as a contestant on the show you are required to make a submission video highlighting your athleticism and your personality. They want to see what kinds of things you are interested in and what would make you a good competitor to take on the course. Basically you need to show them why they should pick you. If you don’t get chosen from your submission video you can travel to the qualifying city closest to you and try to get on the show as a walk-on. These walk-ons camp out in line sometimes for 3-4 nights just hoping for the chance to compete. Competitors include men and women from all walks of life including teachers, firemen, doctors, current and former members of the military, avid parkour enthusiasts as well as Olympic medalists.
The course is different than any other obstacle course race you might have run. There are only obstacles, and they are tough! You have to make your way through the course with out touching the water. If even your toe skims the top of the water you are disqualified. The top people who make it the furthest the fastest go on to the next round. And, the person who makes it all the way to the top of stage four in Vegas, Mt. Midoryama, wins the grand prize of $500,000!
In the city qualifiers there are around 130 or so that get to run the course. From there the top 30 that got the furthest the fastest get to compete a second night where the course is extended and the top 15 get to go on to the national finals in Vegas. There are five cities that held qualifying rounds; Venice Beach, Dallas, St. Louis, Miami and Denver.
Now that the show has aired I can finally say that unfortunately, I missed top 30 by just one spot! I had an amazing time and I can’t wait for my opportunity to become a finalist next year. Next year I’m going all the way!
American Ninja Warrior premiered Monday, May 26th. The heart-racing obstacle course competition show will air exclusively on NBC Mondays at 9/8C with repeats airing on the Esquire network. Congratulations Rachel, we are so proud of you – you will get ’em next year!
Follow Rachel on Instagram – @rachelmulvaney22
2014 Winter Olympian in the Luge.
2x Olympic Gold Medalist Rower
Olympic bobsledder- the one who was trapped in restroom and busted his way out
Olympic gymnast – silver medalist
“Ghost Adventures” host
X-Games gold medalist
Former Olympic gymnast medalist-now a cop in Kansas city- a returnee
Olympic Canoeist (Silver in 2008/Bronze 2004)
Pro Wake boarder, 4X world medalist
Pro Wake boarder, current World Champ
Olympic Luger, Sochi 2014
Baltimore Ravens cheerleader
Former Pro baseball player
Fit Athletic Club in downtown San Diego is the first gym in the country to get their hands on the most functional cross training tool we’ve seen yet.
OMNIA™ is a functional training system which optimizes strength, endurance, flexibility, coordination and speed. It is designed specifically for small group personal training (4-8 people), to provide the same individual attention as one-one-one training but also the community dynamic of training in a group setting.
Technogym made it a point to keep OMNIA™ slim and sleek, not just for the external appeal, but also for purpose. OMNIA™ was designed to be intuitive for each participant, and easy for the coach to monitor the form and technique of all users during a workout. Additionally, the modular design lends itself to some pretty awesome high-intensity interval circuits, so you can amplify your metabolism and conditioning level.
For an in-depth, workout-style tutorial on this revolutionary piece of equipment, contact me at the information below and I’ll get you set up with one of our coaches for a free hour.
Also, be on the lookout for our launch of Fit Studio (in the mat room), which will consist not only of the OMNIA but also new Woodway Curve treadmills, TRX Rip trainers, traditional strength equipment and the Polar GX system – gamifying your workout by putting your real-time heart rate on the big screens.
Difficulty Level: Easy
Time: 10min Prep, 40min Inactive Cook Time
Servings: 2 Entrees/4 Sides
Nutrition Facts Per Serving: Calories – 40, Protein – 1g, Carbs – 1g
1 large spaghetti squash
extra virgin olive oil
sea salt & fresh cracked peppercorn
crushed red pepper flakes
1 cup organic reduced fat mozzarella, shredded
1/3-1/2 cup organic parmesan, shredded
1 cup organic fresh basil, stems removed
1 cup organic arugula (or spinach) stems removed
2 cups organic tomato sauce
1 – 8oz can organic diced tomatoes, juice removed
Pre-heat oven to 425° F
Prep the Squash:
1. Halve squash length-way with a serrated chef knife. Remove & discard seeds with a spoon.
2. Place open-side-up on a baking sheet lined with foil. Lightly drizzle inner & top edges with olive oil & season with sea salt & fresh cracked pepper. Roast uncovered about 30 minutes or until edges are lightly browned and shriveled. Remove & let cool.
3. Drain diced canned tomatoes. Dab with paper towel to remove excess fluids. Lightly salt & set aside.
4. Rinse basil & arugula. Discard stems & dry between paper towels. Set aside.
5. Hold squash over a bowl and use a fork to scrape along the grain in long swift motions; letting the stringy content fall into bowl. Discard empty outer shells. Add tomato sauce. Stir to combine.
Make the Casserole:
6. Grease a small oven-safe casserole dish with olive oil. Add half the squash/sauce mixture, a layer of arugula (or spinach), layer of tomatoes, then a layer of basil & half of the mozzarella.
7. Pour second half of squash mixture over casserole & spread with rubber spatula. Top with a second layer of each of the remaining ingredients in same order. Top mozzarella with 1/3 – 1/2 cup shredded parmesan & lightly drizzle with extra virgin olive oil.
8. On your oven’s broiler setting, bake under flame on rack positioned in middle level of the oven, until cheese is browned & juices are bubbling around edges; about 6-8 minutes give or take. Check every minute or so as the cheese can burn very quickly.
9. Cool for at least 10 minutes before slicing into the casserole so it holds its shape and retains its juices when sliced into.
Tip: Pairs great with chicken parmesan, grilled shrimp, or as a vegetarian entree with a salad.
If only the blogosphere worked that way. Building your fitness or healthy lifestyle brand by blogging requires considerable time and energy—not to mention talent. In a world becoming increasingly proliferated by life coaches, healthy-eating foodies, fitness junkies and weight loss crusaders, you may find yourself up against some stiff blogging competition without having a clear sense of direction or purpose.
Whether you are looking to grow ad revenue, increase awareness, build your brand or simply share your health & fitness story, these simple blogging tips that I picked up at the FitSocial conference might just help give your blog that extra oomph:
Are your posts the right length? Short and concise is key.
Most readers don’t have time to read paragraphs upon paragraphs about the effects of a cross-training workout on the synaptic responses of their neurons. While you may be the ultimate expert in these highly complex subjects and have a wealth of fascinating information to share, the truth is that most people just want to scroll through “how to get a firmer butt” or “5 reasons dark chocolate is a health food ” while standing in line at Starbucks or waiting in their cars for their kids to get out of school.
Your audience is short on time and attention span. Be aware of your word count and use layman’s terms wherever possible, so that you can get to the nitty-gritty of your post quickly—and they can, too.
Remember when Kale was the hot new thing? The Paleo diet craze? Quinoa, juicing and cross training? Staying on top of the latest fitness and health trends and topics will help keep your readers engaged and show your level of expertise.
And don’t forget to keep seasons, holidays, or well-known events in the forefront of your blogging mind. Sharing healthy Superbowl dip recipes in February or hotel room workout videos around the holidays will give your readers information they can actually apply to their lives, in real time.
You don’t have to be an incredible writer with a Masters in English to build a large following of readers—they just need to like you and feel a connection to your brand. Be consistent with your writing voice and stay true to your style.
Some health and fitness blogs are consistently emotional (weight loss journeys, for example), some are highly informative and others are just plain hilarious. Don’t be afraid to be a fitness nerd or give a gangster’s edge to healthy cooking. In the blog world, originality always wins.
Don’t underestimate the power of a headline. What sounds more interesting to you – “How to Improve Your Diet” vs. “3 Surprising Superfoods that Will Change Your Life”?
Is your blog formatted correctly, and is it visually appealing? Create lists, bullet points, photos and slideshows that showcase your content effectively. Make the most of your blogging platform (such as WordPress) by filling out the “about” section, including a place to sign up for a newsletter, integrating social sharing icons and allowing reader comments.
Use tracking tools such as Google Analytics and bit.ly to help you analyze and assess your blog post performance. Amplify post reach and simplify multi-network scheduling with nifty organizational tools such as Hootsuite and Sprout Social. Let technology do the heavy lifting for you.
And finally, keep to some sort of consistent posting rhythm so that readers gain a sense of how often to check back.
At the end of the day, a blog reader has to know, like and trust you before becoming a loyal visitor. But with enough work and effort, your fitness or health blog can be in tip top shape for success.
Every year at this time there is a ridiculous amount of commercial attention placed on the status of your heart – is it broken, lonely, filled, overflowing, fragile or hardened? Just how much chocolate does it take to mend a wounded heart? How many flowers prove one heart loves another? How many sappy love songs confirm no one has the answers to the mystery of this thing we call “love” that supposedly lives in our hearts?
Your heart is a muscle and to make it stronger it needs to be trained just like all the other muscles in your body. You do that by getting your heart pumping, by moving with vigor and energy. I know some of you think treadmills, stair climbers and cross trainers are the devil’s spawn, but under all that equipment, sweat and dedication exists healthy hearts, striving to maintain or improve their ability to sustain our lives.
There are endless ways to raise your heart rate and strengthen your heart and they don’t have to be regimented to a piece of equipment in the gym. Do something that you enjoy and that’s fun. Dance! It frees the soul and is a great way to express yourself at the same time. Walk the dog, skate, swim, play tennis, take a bike ride or just pucker up with your Valentine; turns out that even a good roll in the hay has its cardio advantages!
All too often we get way too caught up in the daily little nuisances that trip us up and raise our blood pressure: bad drivers, bad breath, irritating co-workers, annoying sounds, lost homework, lost causes, lost keys, long lines, short patience, and the list goes on. These things add up daily and can cause stress to your heart’s performance without you even being aware of it. Try your best to just laugh things off when you can, like you do when you’re watching your favorite sitcom and these things happen to someone else.
Nuisances, however you define them, will be with us for a long time. Learn to get over them and get into yourself. Lighten up and live longer. If you’re going to harbor things in your heart, make sure those things are positive and worth holding on to. Your heart’s chamber has plenty of room for good company to take with you wherever you go. Leave the stress behind so your heart can thrive. ♥
“New Year’s Resolutions”. I’ve heard those magical three words every January throughout the course of my 20 year personal training career; often uttered by people who are hoping to shed body fat and improve their health to feel and look better than the previous year. However, this common phrase often means something different to every individual.
This year I decided to deconstruct the definition of “resolution” and analyze its parts, in order to find my own meaning. I found that definitions of the word “Resolution” included: tenacity, fortitude and consistency. Naturally, these words are also descriptive of someone who truly wants to make a change, and these words should always be kept in the forefront of the Resolutionist’s mind:
Do you have the mental tenacity to adhere to your goals? This one is hard; it’s your True Grit – your mental toughness. You decide on an activity and then you do it. The 6 p.m. cycle class that you avoided all last year now becomes “hard scheduled” in your planner. That yoga class you’ve been putting off, because it doesn’t sound all that fun – now becomes part of your routine.
Do you have the internal fortitude, or guts, to keep it going when it gets tough? When someone says, “Hey, It’s Taco Tuesday,” do you say, “Sorry bro, I have bootcamp class. Why don’t you come with me?”
Do you have the will and energy to follow through? Your energy and enthusiasm will wane – count on it. Test your mettle and challenge your resolve by planning ahead, eating for good nutrition (not just fun) and getting enough rest.
Monday: Start the cycle! Wake up early and go for a walk. If you’re at a more advanced level, take a cycle class. Do your best to build the intensity as you go. Get a buddy to go with you so you can’t back out.
Tuesday: Push it! Start with 100 pushups by completing five sets of 20 pushups, taking a moderate break in between sets. This could be enough for the day for some, or could just be a warm up. Push yourself to do 100 reps a day of all your favorite exercises, including bench press, shoulder press and squats. Take your time and don’t try to get fit all in one day!
Wednesday: Stretch it! Take a yoga class that matches your ability and add it to your schedule.
Thursday: Step it up! Stadium steps have long been the choice of the choicest athletes, so why not give it a try? Find a local high school or college and take it one step at a time; spending 20 minutes the first time you go. Call your best bud when you go again and make it a habit.
Friday: Ab Fab it! This is where you test your guts—literally. It’s the core strengthener called plank. Hold your body in a pushup position as tight as you can for one minute, and then repeat five times. Lying on your back, bring your elbow to the opposite knee slowly, completing as many repetitions as possible.Saturday: Repeat your favorite exercise! Be the trainer, bring a friend and inspire someone.
Sunday: Rest.Of course, make sure to get your doctor’s OK before starting your New Year regimen. Challenge yourself to make changes for a better you. Write down your plan, and keep adding & improving it – because the better your resolve, the more successful your resolution.
I’ve seen it all. Twenty plus years in the fitness industry and I’ve got a few stories to tell. From too much nakedness in the locker room and doing things with towels that are completely unnecessary, to talking on cell phones during class, leaving nasty sweat marks on equipment, hogging the cardio machines and locker room brawls over hair dryers and Q-tips. Seriously, I have seen ordinary people turn into extraordinary etiquette imbeciles once their foot hits the gym floor.
It’s time to tidy up your fitness faux pas a bit and make your mama proud again. Let’s get back to the basics of good old fashioned manners with a few friendly reminders.
Whether you’re wiping your sweat off of the equipment to re-racking your weights after your set, being mindful of others who come after you is crucial when you are sharing workout space. Making messes is usually more fun than cleaning them up, so keep it tidy and clean as you go. You don’t want to sit in someone else’s sweat and they don’t want to sit in yours. Sliding across a bench shimmering in slippery sweat is sickening. That’s just gross. Keep your sweat to yourself.
I’m amazed at the number of people who leave their weights all over the floor after their workout, in spite of the posted signs reminding everyone this very simple rule of gym etiquette. If you can pick it up you can put it up. Just as you were told to put away your toys once you were finished playing with them, fast forward that rule 20-30 years and re-rack your weights when you’re done with your workout. Besides, who doesn’t appreciate a nice rack?
We all sweat; some of us more than others. Gyms are full of sweaters and when someone’s personal hygiene becomes a public issue, we all have a problem. Going au natural, sans deodorant, is not the best idea when your pores begin to reek the equivalent of rancid onion.
I’m not suggesting that you try to overcompensate by dousing yourself in cologne to cover your body odor, that’s another gym etiquette faux pas in itself. Just be aware of your immediate scented surroundings and pack that trusty roll-on in your gym bag. No one else wants to “catch your drift”.
So you really think the hottie on the elliptical trainer isn’t aware you’ve been staring and heaving directly her way for 43 minutes? Guess what, buff dude working out next to her (aka her boyfriend) would like to have a word with you.
Yes, you will surely see good looking, healthy and fit people all over the place, but remember, it is a gym and should not be treated like a meat market. There is a time and a place for everything and the vast majority of gym goers are there to get their sweat on, have fun and socialize with their friends, and not dodge piercing stares from weirdos. A slight glance at a nice looking individual is usually ok, but don’t be a creeper.
You can make your own kind of music and sing your own special song, but if you want to do your own workout then stay away from group fitness classes. I can tell you first hand there is nothing more annoying, distracting and disrespectful than having someone in class not paying attention to the instructor or the other participants around them. It’s as if they are oblivious to the fact that they are sharing space with 20 other people who show up with the understanding that everyone is there to work out together and be led by an instructor. If you want to be the leader, then learn to be an instructor. However, if you want to march to the beat of your own drum then do it Sheila E. style, “solo”.
I’ll be brief about this. Downward dogs in yoga classes, seated climbs in cycling class, crunches in front of mirrors; all these movements should compel you to wear your underwear when you participate in them. Shocker, I know. How do you get dressed to work out and forget your underwear? Are you running so late you can’t spare the extra 10 seconds it takes to put them on?
A gratuitous “peek a boo” can be completely distracting and at times just gross. Again, there’s a time and a place for everything. Peep shows belong in the red light districts, not in the gym. Panties and skivvies are not passé, so put yours on and don’t be “THAT guy or girl”.
Good manners and etiquette never go out of style and often help define us as individuals. So the next time you head to the gym, make sure to mind your P ’s and Q’s in between your reps and sets.
Intra-abdominal adipose tissue, also known as belly fat, is not only viewed as unpleasing aesthetically but also has a direct affect on the organs of the guttural region, slowing their function and wreaking havoc on your metabolism.
All the crunches in the world won’t get you those washboard abs you’ve been seeing in magazines and on your favorite celebrities if you don’t monitor your nutrition. Here are 5 things you should try to avoid so you can stop hiding behind loose clothing.
Xenoestrogens are a type of naturally occurring or artificially produced compounds that have hormone-like properties and imitate estrogen. They are created artificially in the form of herbicides and pesticides to protect our produce from pesky bugs and insects. Unfortunately they have an estrogenic affect on your body and can cause you to store belly fat. This is why it is always important to thoroughly wash your produce before preparing it. Or, better yet, select certified organic products that don’t use these pesticides. Try to choose local, community based farms that refrain from using these contaminants.
Sugars, such as refined, simple carbohydrates and especially high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) are troublesome carbs and are lurking in most package and processed foods like breads, pastas, cereals, snack bars, cakes, and almost anything that is white in color. These carbs will spike your insulin levels, decreasing your natural hormonal response to breakdown and utilize abdominal fat as energy.
Try to consume more complex carbohydrates like sprouted, complete whole grains and legumes like cous cous, quinoa, barley and buckwheat. But remember, carbs aren’t just grain-based, they come from vegetables also. Cruciferous veggies in particular are packed with phytonutrients that fight against estrogenic chemicals (remember xenoestrogens) further whittling away at that stubborn midsection.
Bad fats contain genetically modified, hydrogenated, trans-fatty acids. Run from these types of fats! They are hard to process and expel from the body. They’ll linger around like an old spare tire around your belly.
Another type of fat that shouldn’t be consumed in high amounts is saturated fat – measuring in with high calories, slowing digestion and our metabolism.
Lastly, Omega 6 fatty acids are linoleic acids found in all types of oils, examples are safflower, soybean, corn and sunflower oils, which tend to cause pro-inflammatory responses in our bodies. Try cooking with coconut oils or extra virgin olive oils, but be careful not to burn them – this converts their structure into trans-fats. With our Westernized diets being high in Omega 6’s we need to increase our intake of Omega 3 fatty acids, these are found in oily fish (choose wild, not farm raised), shellfish, avocados, flax seeds and walnuts. These anti-inflammatory agents help to return our bodies to homeostasis where it can perform optimally and produce a conducive atmosphere for getting toned.
Try to avoid high-protein, low carb diets. Replacing carbs with protein from meats, poultry, fish and diary can have negative, long lasting consequences. Symptoms of stomach distention and dehydration can be felt within days as our bodies spiral away from their natural state of homeostasis and begin storing excess levels of proteins as fats. Look at the big picture and think about balancing your diet You need all three types of macronutrients for repair, energy, cellular reproduction and repair, as well as hormone response and signaling.
Simply avoid packaged and processed foods. Your strategy in the supermarket should be to circulate around the outside of the store and avoid the aisles. Fresh produce, meats without contaminants, raw unpasteurized dairy, sprouted whole grains, foods with short label listings of two or three ingredients are all great ways to go. Foreign substances, chemicals and processing procedures alter not only our food but the way our bodies respond to them.
In conclusion, keep it fresh. Shop often and cook regularly, rotating your produce, proteins and fats to get all your essential nutrients. That’s what my nutrition professor in college taught me. If you want six pack abs you have to consider eating right and having your food work for you. When inflammation occurs in the guttural region it inhibits our organs from performing their intended processes of digestion. Avoiding the bad choices I’ve provided and implementing the good ones will help you feel more energized, improve your workouts and keep your body balanced lowering your stress levels. Remember folks, you can’t exercise your way out of a bad diet!
As summer comes to an end, you may find yourself losing your drive to keep coming to the gym and maintaining your workouts. However, it’s important you keep your motivation moving all the way to the year’s finish line, and beyond.
Here are 3 suggested strategies to keep your momentum going so you can continue to decrease body fat and increase muscle mass, without the threat of “swimsuit season” being your main source of motivation.
Put your skin in the game of fitness – don’t underestimate the power of accountability. One of the best ways to keep your fitness routine in check is with partner or group workouts. Affiliation style workouts keep all parties inspired, motivated, accountable – and even competitive. If you don’t show up, you might have to face disappointment or punishment (dinner’s on you). When you’re not the only person involved in your fitness development, it’s easier to get where you want to be.
Prize incentives (a vacation, a new outfit, etc.) are a great way to reward yourself for a job well done. When you know an amazing prize is awaiting you at the end of the finish line, it’s hard not to run a little faster, do another pushup, or lose a few more pounds.
Or, reward yourself at the start line. Go ahead and spend $200 for those colorful new running shoes you’ve been eyeing – sometimes investing in new apparel or equipment before you begin can give you that extra push you need.
Finding the right metabolic training and nutritional program combo is vital to fat loss, weight maintenance and muscle toning/building. When you really see results, how can you not feel motivated?
Placing heavy loads on your body in high intensities at the correct times and in the correct volumes keeps the body “anabolic” (building muscle and burning fat). A spike in your hormones (testosterone and HGH) and other regenerating processes in the body propel your metabolism to work extra hard, burning additional calories even after workouts – this is known as the “afterburn effect”.
Do a little research and experimentation, so you can find the training and nutrition combo that always gives you that afterburn. As always, you can talk to any training professional at Fit to help you with the groundwork.
Just because summer is over doesn’t mean it’s time to bust out your stretchy pants and sit on the couch all day. Remember, being “fit” is not a destination, it’s a way of life. Don’t give up now!
Listen up you fitness fashionistas, it’s not just about looking good. Well, ok it is!
We’ve come a long way with our workout apparel since spandex, leg warmers, and psychedelic leotards. A very long way. Now it’s all about sports performance, sleek fitted, eco friendly and fashion-forward clothing that looks good on you, while you’re working out to look good.
Vanity is NOT one of the seven deadly sins. So with that in mind, here are three sporty style trends you should take note of the next time you’re looking for the perfect outfit to wear to the gym since valentines day is near got a heart on.
Supplex is the goddess of all workout fabrics. Almost all of my workout clothes are made of it, and trust me, it holds up amazingly, especially when you care for it properly by washing it in cold water and then hang it to dry. I’ve got workout pants made of supplex I’ve had for more than five years and they have definitely withstood hundreds of classes and buckets of sweat. (The only thing they were no match for is my Chihuahua mix Lola, she has managed to eat the crotch out of about 8 pairs of my workout pants, and for that my friends, there is no recovery.)
Supplex is mixed with Lycra. It’s fully breathable and able to hold its shape (it doesn’t stretch out). It’s as comfortable as cotton but dries faster and offers firm support. Most of the higher end fitness clothing brands use supplex as a staple in all their clothing.
Cross training workouts are IN, so cross-training shoes are a MUST. These days very few of us do just one thing when we workout so we need a shoe that supports our varied demands. As we’ve all found out at one time or another, high heels don’t work well for walking across the lawn, but they certainly have their place in a night out on the town. Similarly, workout shoes made for walking don’t belong in a Boot Camp class.
Whether you’re working out with a trainer, busting your rear in a group ex class, or simply taking a quick trek around your neighborhood with your pooch, cross training shoes will support your feet for all of these exercises.
Specialize motions need specialized shoes. Running shoes are made to support your foot based on the way your foot moves when you’re running – forward momentum with a heel toe strike – so don’t run in walking shoes. Walking shoes are made to walk in – not for agility training. So don’t do speed drills in running shoes
The right shoe for you is one that can handle your physical demands, unfortunately it’s not necessarily the one that has the coolest design or best color combination. Understanding this point is very important to the serious, yet sporty fashionistas out there. Luckily sports shoe designers have literally stepped up their game in the race to win your hard earned dollars and now there are amazing cross-styles and color combinations to fit your cross training workout regime.
Finally, follow the trends, but be unique. It’s no surprise that fluorescent colors are hot right now. But, that doesn’t mean you need to wear them from head to toe. It’s one thing to be trendy; it’s another to look like a glow stick. With fluorescent colors, a little goes a long way. Try a hot orange headband, electro pink sports top or even neon blue pants, but not all at the same time. Trust me; it’s easier to overdo it than you think, as I recently found out when I made my fluorescent faux paus. I realize I overdid it one day when Reza, one of my co-workers let me know (in a loving, yet chiding way) that I looked like a piece of grape bubble gum! At home, and apparently in the dark, I thought it worked. In reality, it was overkill. I have since retired the blue/double neon purple combo. What are friends for, right?
Choosing your workout clothing is just as important as choosing your professional wardrobe. It says something about you, your sense of style, your sense of self. The right clothes can actually inspire you to workout harder. Generally speaking, if you look good, you’ll feel good. Don’t overdo, but do what looks good and feels good to you – and if you’re not sure about your choice, just stop by the office and ask Reza, he’s a straight shooter with a fabulous sense of style.
Fit Athletic offers tips to help you stick to your new year resolutions and gym classes in San Diego downtown, gyms in Solana Beach and gyms Carmel Mountain locations.
Whether you are just starting an exercise program or you’re a seasoned athlete, soreness from exercising will happen. While the benefits of stretching and massage are great (relaxation, increased blood flow, injury prevention) – they can be expensive and hard to fit into your daily routine. Good news! You can get the benefits of a massage and stretching AND save time and money by using that long, spongy cylinder located at the stretching area in the gym – the foam roller.
Check out these 5 simple foam rolling moves you can add to your regular exercise routine, demonstrated by Fit Downtown San Diego Trainer Ryan Haines (thanks Ryan!)
To help our bodies metabolize fat properly, we need to make a list of the worst enemies of fat metabolism. So, what are they?
To avoid overloading your body with toxins, you should avoid Splenda, sucralose and aspartame. Stevia is okay.
High levels of alcohol intake can cause serious liver problems, damaging the organ that helps in controlling fat metabolism. Minimal alcohol intake is recommended.
These are unnatural and toxic to your body. Preservatives are found in almost all packaged goods.
Be cautious about the types of fruits and vegetables you consume. Organic fruits and vegetables can even contain pesticides. Find a local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) or farmer’s market you trust. Use them as a source for your daily dose of pesticide-free fruits and vegetables.
Avoid MSG. Check the label and watch out for soy protein isolate and citric acid. Both of these additives produce MSG as a by-product. Many protein shakes and protein bars contain one or both of these additives and should therefore be avoided.
Any products containing hydrogenated or even partially hydrogenated oils should be avoided.
Especially those with high fructose. They are often artificial and very high on the glycemic index, indicating that the blood sugar levels can rise very quickly after ingesting.
It is unnecessary to completely avoid caffeine, but one should limit their intake. Caffeine affects the body much like carbohydrates do. Ingesting caffeine can cause blood sugar levels to rise and fall, resulting in the storage of fat
When it comes to an eating plan for your healthy lifestyle – who cares what you call it as long as you have boundless energy, strong immunity and can do anything your body asks!
The goal is to train your body to derive it’s energy from proteins and fats instead of grains, legumes, processed dairy and other foods that irritate and inflame your body and deprive it of important nutrients.
There is a growing body of research documenting the health benefits of making this switch. In short, the benefits include reduced risk of heart diseases, autoimmune diseases, cancer and diabetes, all of which can be traced to excessive inflammation in your body, high insulin levels, and other processes and imbalances that are too detailed to review here.
Aside from the heath benefits, you will simply look better, feel better and perform better. If you decide to follow the principles of clean eating – do it strictly at first, and notice how it affects you… then “modify for moderation”. Give it a month, document it in a food/ lifestyle journal that you can always refer back to as a study guide. Even better, give that chronicle to a friend to pay it forward
Flours, grains, legumes, processed dairy, processed and refined sugars, corn and soybean oils. Pretty much everything in a bag or box. Remember, if you’re reading the ingredient list and can’t pronounce something – it is probably a Red Light Food. PUT IT BACK!
Grass fed and antibiotic/hormone-free meats and wild fish are best, as are organic vegetables. Focus on nutrient-dense veggies (those with dark or bright colors – colors that correspond with specific anti-oxidants). Save the starchy veggies like sweet potatoes or yams for post-workout meals, or to load up on for the tough workouts of tomorrow! Avocados, nuts (walnuts & almonds, not peanuts) are friendly foods – they aren’t going to make you fat with moderate consumption… same goes with fruits, (not fruit juices) like organic apples, and berries.
Some people have sensitivities or allergies to certain foods. The reactions can vary from feelings of fatigue or inflammations to a full blown allergic reaction. You are the CFO – Chief Food Officer of your body and need to pay attention to your discomforts and reactions to certain foods such as: eggs, nuts, tomatoes, potatoes, eggplants, peppers and more. I call these “Yellow Light Foods” and I proceed with caution. For example, I now know that a dose of Tabasco pepper sauce can leave my joints with arthritis-like symptoms. Keep track of your reactions to these foods – this is where your food/health journal can come into play!
The power of plyo-what, you ask? I’m talking about fitness. And I’m talking about a type of fitness that will get you in top shape, fast. Plyometrics are insanely time efficient – you’ll never want to go back to the elliptical again! And you might never have to.
Plyometrics are movements which involve jumping, or any “loading” of the muscles with power, which will be translated into force. They are quick, explosive movements. This could be anything from your most basic jumping jack, to a mini squat jump, to a burpee or even to a 36 inch high box jump. Plyometric movements involve quickening the time between when your muscles contract and lengthen, or in the language of fitness newbies, the time between when you are jumping and landing in some sort of movement.
So while you may risk your reputation looking rather insane, jumping around wildly simply in order to burn some calories and tone up, rest assured – plyometrics are great for a variety of reasons:
You can structure a plyometric workout to become a high intensity interval (HIIT) cardio session to burn serious calories in much less time. HIIT is not only time efficient, but actually can be more effective at burning fat and stimulating weight loss than your traditional “steady-state” cardio – i.e. the mind numbing elliptical. So don’t linger for an hour on that awful machine, jump around outside for half an hour and reap even more benefits in half the time! (But don’t completely ditch out on those longer, slow cardio days – they are great for active recovery!)
This type of exercise also results in not only maximized calorie burn while jumping around, but greater calorie burn afterwards and at rest, increasing your resting metabolic rate, sometime even days after. Yay for quick metabolisms! Who wouldn’t be smiling to themselves knowing they are burning more calories sitting on the couch watching the latest Modern Family episode had they not done their “plyo” (trendy trainer slang for plyometrics) workout.
Furthermore, plyometrics simultaneously combine muscle strengthening and toning with the calorie and fat burn of a cardio session. I don’t know about you, but I am all for killing two birds with one stone. We’re all busy bees, so getting a good, quick and effective workout in feels so good! Building muscle + burning calories = effective and efficient fitness.
Oh, and for all you runners or bikers, roll it out these plyo workouts will make you quicker! Plyometrics are meant to improve the speed at which your muscles contract, making them work more efficiently, more powerful.
And finally, for women, you may forget their your dainty little bones are at a lot more risk than our rugged male counterparts. Activities which involve ground-impact, such as jumping, promote increases in bone density, so you don’t have to worry about osteoporosis when you get older. So jump around and beat the post summer workout slump, it’s good for you!
Here are some more exercise examples:
Squat down and take a small jump up, just to lift feet off ground, landing back in a squat, only to immediately jump up again. Repeat until heart rate is sky high!
Jump sideways from one foot to another, reaching across with your opposite arm, “speed skating”, from one imaginary cone to another.
Squat down and jump up, tucking your feet under you, as if to kick your butt. Upon landing in a squat, jump immediately into the next one.
Find a sturdy step, bench, etc. to place on foot on and step up using one leg and once up, jump up on that same foot for a tiny hop. Then tap back down to the ground, leaving the same active leg on the step, only to repeat the movement, hopping up again with the foot that steps up.
Assume a lunge position, and quickly switch your feet in and out to bring one foot forward in the lunge, the other one back in the lunge, still getting deep in the lunge.
Get deep into a squat, touch the ground with your hands, chest still tall, jump up as high as you can with your hands, and land back into the squat only to jump up again immediately.
Find a box, stool, or step which you can jump onto from standing, landing low in a squat. Jump, or step off, only to repeat again.
Don’t be afraid to jump around to get fit!
There seems to be a tempo epidemic in the gym with everyone pretty much doing the same thing. Three sets of ten reps, at an arbitrary, unconscious tempo is what I see every day. What most people don’t understand is that the speed of their lifts can heavily dictate the specific adaptations their body will make, and this may or may not be aligned with their fitness goals.
For instance, doing bicep curls at a 2-2-2-2 tempo means that you would curl upward at a two-second count, hold for two seconds at the top, lower the weight at a two-second count, and hold again for two seconds at the bottom before repeating. This specific tempo would elicit more strength and mass gains if performed in the 8-12 rep range with heavy weight, and more muscle tone if performed in the 12-15 rep range with moderately heavy weight.
What tempo should you be doing? Here are some tips for the appropriate tempos for each goal:
Strength gains are best developed with very heavy weight for lower reps (4-8) and at a faster tempo (1-0-1-0 or 2-0-2-0). If the goal is hypertrophy (mass), then more time under tension would be ideal, such as moderately heavy weight, performed for 8-12 reps, and at a slow tempo (3-3-3-3).
If your goal is fat metabolism, you could benefit from performing a workout roll it out with an eclectic mix of tempos. For example, you might begin with a stabilization endurance focused circuit, performing a slow (3-2-1-2) tempo for 12-15 reps with light to moderate weight; then progress to a strength-endurance superset where the first exercise is focused on strength (2-0-2-0 tempo, 10-12 reps) and the second on endurance (3-2-1-2 tempo, 12-15 reps); and lastly you could finish with a metabolic circuit by performing exercises quickly (1-1-1-1 or 1-0-1-0 tempos, as many reps as possible in a given duration) in a circuit fashion (3-4 exercises in a row before resting).
Every athlete would benefit from undergoing a stabilization endurance phase (4-6 weeks) to improve movement efficiency, but their fundamental pillars reside in strength, speed, agility, and quickness (reactivity). For this reason, faster tempos work best, such as moderate tempos (2-0-2-0 or 1-1-1-1) for strength, and explosive tempos (0-0-0-0 or 1-0-1-0) for speed, agility and quickness.
Regardless of your goal, tempos are important for like jump to get fit the power of plyometrics. Results aren’t achieved by going to the gym haphazardly and performing trivial workouts. For the best results, make (or find) the appropriate workout plan for your goals, with every acute variable outlined (sets, reps, tempo, intensity, rest, etc); or hire a personal trainer.
If you want to run a faster foot race, here’s two tips on how to take a step in the right direction.
If you look at videos of world-class runners, you’ll notice that they are really fast and they have quick steps, and as a result their head barely moves up and down as they run — generally it stays fairly level. Why is this important? For two reasons:
1. They are spending less time in the air (they use less vertical force)
2. It is extremely efficient
Because they are spending less time in the air, they are using less energy to propel themselves upwards, and using more energy to propel themselves forwards. After all, the finish line is in front of you, not above you. Your calves, achilles tendon, and glutes are the primary movers when running – if you bounce/bob a lot as you run, you are wasting the energy they are providing you.
Not only is this inefficient, it also promotes injury. Every time your foot hits the ground you are placing stress on your feet, shins, knees, and hips. Depending on your pace (and stride), it is generally 3-5x your body weight on one leg. So logically, if you are bouncing, and not smooth as you are running, then you have to absorb all of that extra force into those movers. Extra energy to propel yourself upwards, and extra force incurred on your legs on the way down. Doesn’t really add up does it?
Watch different runners on the treadmill, and you’ll notice different running gaits. You’ll see (and hear) the bouncers; it doesn’t look easy or natural. It looks tough. And you’ll see the gliders; the runner’s who take smaller, quicker, and smoother steps — they make it look easy. Once you master your stride, it will be easy!
→ The Stride Rate Remedy
A good elite distance runner has a stride rate of around 180 steps per minute. This means their right and left foot each hit the ground 90 times/minute. This great stride rate is a product of correct training, and pace. The faster you run the faster your stride rate will be, but you can still increase your stride rate without running a 4-minute mile. And actually, running an eight-minute mile at 180 steps/minute is awkward and tiring. Right now just focus on gradually increasing your current stride rate so that you feel comfortable and light on your feet. These two exercises will help train your body to run smoother and more efficiently.
Make sure you get a thorough warmup before going through these exercises. They also place a large load on the joints, so do not perform them if you have lower-body injuries
Find a hill with a shallow grade, around 10-15%, preferably on a soft surface. 100m should be plenty long enough. Slowly ease into running down the hill. Don’t land on your heels, land on your midfoot, with your feet directly underneath your hips. Lean forwards, down the hill. Pump your arms a little bit. As gravity pulls you down the hill, your legs will start to move faster than they are used to. This is what we want! It might feel like you are out of control – just focus on pumping your arms and keeping your feet underneath of your hips. Slowly decelerate at the bottom of the hill, walk to the top, and repeat 8-10 times.
A 2006 study published by the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research showed that short term plyometric exercise improved running economy in highly trained middle and long-distance runners jump to get fit the power of plyometrics. This is likely due to the fundamental basis behind lower-body plyometrics: performing powerful movements fast, and spending as little time on the ground as possible. By training the body to be light on it’s feet, you’ll spend less time on the ground and more time propelling yourself forwards.
These are advanced! Make sure you are adequately warmed up, and able to handle this kind of force safely.
Forward progressive hops: Find a soft surface, lay out 4-5 obstacles of different heights in a straight row in front of you. Space them out by about 2-3ft between each obstacle. With feet together, hop over each obstacle, focusing on punching your feet into the ground and spending as little time on the ground as possible. Use only one jump to jump over each obstacle. Rest 90 seconds. Repeat 3 times.
Frog Hops: Find a long hallway. You will be jumping repetitively in sequence. Squat down until your glutes are just above your heels, then explode upwards. As you land, bend your knees and fall back into the squat position, immediately jumping again. Make sure you’re doing a full squat, but don’t lower too much at the bottom portion of it otherwise you can injure your knees. Once again, the focus is to spend as little time on the ground as possible. Think of the ground as extremely hot. Do four sets of 10-15 frog hops. Take 90 seconds rest between each set. You can jump for height, for distance, or both. Try to incorporate all three.
Skipping, high knees, and butt-kicks: While seemingly innocent, these drills are actually a great way to warm up before running because it teaches lightness on the feet, and mimics good running mechanics. Play around with these drills before and after your run for five minutes or so.
Foot strike goes hand-in-hand with stride rate. You’ll probably see that as your stride rate improves your foot strike will be at your midfoot, which is exactly where we want it. Landing just on the ball of the foot is more for sprinting than distance running. Landing on the heel of your foot usually means your leg is straight, and your foot is in front of your hips. Look at the video below of some elite runners and you’ll notice a great stride rate, and that they land midfoot with their feet directly underneath their hips. This is natural, and in this position the achilles tendon and calf act as a spring: absorbing the impact then sending the force back up again. With a heel-strike, you are stopping yourself with every stride, which means more force into the legs, more time on the ground, and an increased potential for injury.
In this video, Bernard Lagat, a top U.S. runner with a beautiful stride, shows us how having a high stride rate and midfoot strike can lead to a 1st place finish.
The reformer came about at the end of WW1. The method creator Joeseph Pilates was interned in England with other German Nationals. During his internment, Pilates rigged springs to hospital beds, enabling bed ridden patients to exercise against resistance, an innovation that later led to his equipment design for the reformer.
Pilates consists of a gliding carriage inside a metal frame connected to a system of springs, pulleys, and ropes/straps. Clients can sit, kneel, plank, lie on the carriage and push and pull the foot bar and ropes. Resistance is provided by the attached springs(the importance of tempos in resistance training) and exercises target every part of the body.
Pilates creates better posture so one can stand taller and look fitter. It activates deep abdominal muscles and promotes a flat stomach (unlike many ab exercises that only work the rectus – a superficial ab muscle). Pilates reformer exercises lift ‘buns’ and create the long lean ‘toned’ look!
Consider weight lifting, which trains the big muscles we all have. Pilates training activates the smaller, stabilizing muscles (the muscles around the joint that can only be trained at a small load – or they turn off and the big muscles take over.) Using correct movement patterns, reformer Pilates strengthens the smaller supporting muscles around the joint. Your larger muscles will be able to handle a heavier load because the smaller muscles have been strengthened as well. This also can help support and stabilize your joints and run like the wind for a faster race.
Heal & prevent injuries.
Reformer Pilates is excellent rehab for your body. It’s perfect when addressing spine, neck, shoulder hip, knee and repetitive stress injuries. The pilates principle of core stabilization addresses posture, muscle performance and motor control; the same concepts that form the basis of most orthopedic rehabilitation and therapy. The reformer has an extensive repertoire of exercises that can be modified to each client. IMPROVE your sex life! A Pilates workout is part gymnastic, part stretch and part strength training. The level of control you develop over your muscles will parlay nicely in the bedroom, where control issues can at times get the best of us.
Enhance your sex life.
A specific muscle known as the pubococcygeus, or PCG, is responsible for helping men sustain their stamina and for helping women to intensify their own experience. Pilates is like doing Kegels all the time! This muscular contraction is used frequently in Pilates but really pays off later, when you need it most.
And of course, gaining flexibility in the hips and legs and increasing strength in your pelvis and butt will give you more choices on what positions you can attempt, and more physical endurance for longer rounds! It can also prevent pulled muscles and potential injuries if you enjoy more athletic sexual experiences, wink wink.
Without a doubt, my favorite part of a healthy and fit lifestyle is the EATING! But when it comes to eating nutritious, real food, one topic that often comes up is: which is better, raw or cooked food? The easiest way to help answer the question of raw food vs. cooked food is by measuring digestibility.
Legumes and grains are indigestible in their raw state and definitely should be cooked or fermented for a long period. When cooking think slow and low… and yes, that means that instant oatmeal is not real food. When it comes to fermentation think about the long process of making miso paste or soup.
Nuts will cause irritation or indigestion if not prepared by roasting or soaking and dehydration.
Many vegetables are difficult to digest in their raw form because they contain naturally occurring toxins that interfere with mineral absorption, block thyroid function or irritate the digestive tract. Cruciferous & green leafy vegetables like broccoli or cabbage fall into this category. Cooking neutralizes these anti-nutrients and makes these vegetables much easier to consume (fermentation also neutralizes these substances, such as when cabbage is made into sauerkraut). Raw salads can be extremely beneficial – however, if your digestive system is compromised they should be avoided.
It is best to consume milk products in their raw state. Pasteurization destroys enzymes that promote ease of assimilation and digestion (the reason why people who are lactose intolerant have problems with dairy). Pasteurization also makes many nutrients less available, especially vitamin B12 and B6.
Many nutrients are available in raw meat & fish, but cooking them (and being careful not to burn!) breaks down proteins and makes amino acids easier to absorb. A well balanced diet will include meat and fish in both raw and cooked forms.
Fit Athletic offers wellness classes in San Diego downtown Fit, Fit Gym Solana Beach and Gym Carmel Mountain locations.
See our tips on proper fueling a fit trainers roadmap to clean eating and turn beast mode off and cardio zen mode on.
We’ve all been there.
A long stressful day at work, and we failed to plan our meals accordingly.Or worse, we exert the time and energy to prepare our food, but office calamity and eponymous ‘fire-fighting’ steal the wind from our sails. So, in turn, our blood sugar turns into a turbulent roller coaster leaving us lethargic, ravenous and ultimately capitulated by comfort food.
But why do we reach for comfort food?
There are three elements which drive us toward the bad stuff: low serotonin, poor gut flora, and imbalanced hormones. And here are three tips for improving them.
Serotonin is a neurotransmitter which is responsible for maintaining our Circadian Rhythm (natural sleep cycles), memory, and boosting mood. Our brain, just like our muscles, consumes blood sugar to function and produce serotonin. So, when blood sugar drops, so do our serotonin levels.
For the sake of efficiency, our body seeks what it knows to be the quickest source of energy to spike serotonin levels: comfort food. The reason being, comfort food is generally composed of processed, refined carbohydrates and/or simple sugars which are guaranteed to give an instant jolt in blood sugar. The problem with this is that not only does this add inches to your waistline by signaling body fat storage, but the brain also recognizes this pattern and begins to crave these substances when your blood sugar crashes.
The solution: retrain your brain by eliminating tempting junk food and replacing it with unprocessed, whole foods. A diet higher in quality animal fats (i.e. raw unpasteurized cow’s whole milk, organic whole eggs, etc) willkeep your blood sugar stable and optimize fat-burning hormones. Be sure to limit caffeine intake, as well. Caffeine desensitizes key serotonin receptors in the brain, reducing the efficacy of your healthy eating efforts. Also, try supplementing with amino acids such as L-Tryptophan or 5-HTP, which are precursors to serotonin. Take 500-1,000mg 1-3 times per day for optimal results.
As mentioned above, comfort foods are typically composed of processed sugars and starches – enemies of gut flora. When we ingest these foods, the development of Candida overgrowth occurs in the intestines.
Since the intestines are where we absorb vitamins and nutrients, it is essential to keep them in good health by fostering the growth of good bacteria.
Fermented foods with live cultures, such as kefir, natural sauerkraut, kombucha tea, and yogurt can help harvest good bacteria. Also, refrigerated probiotic supplements such as Jarro-Dophilus are an effective way to immediately promote gut health by delivering 6 or more beneficial probiotic strains in easy-to-swallow capsules. Start with the lowest dosage and work your way up as needed. When your gut is in optimal health, your body has an easier time stabilizing blood sugar. This equates to an elevated mood, and better eating decisions in the long-run.
When our hormones are in balance and optimized, our body becomes a fat-burning, muscle-building machine. Not to mention, our overall sense of well-being relies on this. However, when that balance is compromised by poor eating habits, our hormones work against us.
A diet high in processed, nutrient-shallow carbohydrates will leave our glands depleted and incapable of proper function. Our body needs saturated fats, such as high-quality animal fats, to provide our glands with the essential vitamins, minerals, and environment for production of hormones.
The additional problem is, of course, that so much of what we love to eat is also too high in omega-6 fatty acids. Packaged goods and unnatural vegetable oils (such as canola oil), provide a high concentration of omega-6 fatty acids, but our bodies necessitate a balance between omega-3, -6, and -9 for proper brain and hormone function. Eating a serving of fish (such as wild Alaskan salmon, mackerel, wild herring, sardines, etc) 3-5 times per week can provide a good dose of omega-3 fatty acids to get your body back in balance. Also, try supplementing with Butter Oil and Cod Liver Oil. Butter Oil delivers a high concentrated dose of fat-soluble vitamins and minerals, and Cod Liver Oil provides highly bio-available Vitamin-D and omega-3 fatty acids.
The suggestions provided will hopefully help you make better eating decisions, regularly. I’m not advocating you eliminate comfort foods completely, but the goal should be to eat whole foods and high quality fats to keep your brain happy, your stomach satisfied, and your day manageable.
See our tips on proper fueling a fit trainers roadmap to clean eating and difference between raw vs cooked food
Welcome everyone to what is now spring time.
For some that hopefully means spring cleaning, as in “out with the clutter” (you know that pile of magazines in the corner, old bills you meant to file crammed in the kitchen drawer and that stray, matchless sock (or two) hibernating with the dust bunnies between the wall and the dryer, ewwwh!).
For others, it means Spring Break, that amazing time back in our youth that gave us the illusion of pure freedom as we delighted in a week-long blur of beaches and booze. These days, it’s a little different. Now we’re just happy to have time to sip a smoothie with the window rolled down while we dart from the dry cleaners to the bank on our lunch break.
And for a select mischievous few, a spring fling is in order. A short-lived romance complete with warm fuzzy feelings and passionate kisses, romantic dinners, a small disagreement here and there, walks in the park, running late for a date, slight annoyances, making up, more passionate kisses, missed calls, lame excuses, “it’s not you it’s me”, then on to someone else, oh well, c’est la vie.
Whatever your definition of the season, spring definitely signifies rebirth and renewal. It’s a perfect time to embrace life and take a peek at where you are in yours and make sure you are living up to your full potential by striving to be the best you can be every day. That sounds cliché, but if you do your best, who can possibly ask more of you?
We are all capable of so much more than we realize. With the pressures of this world it’s sometimes easy to feel inadequate, inferior or imperfect, but the truth of your genuine capabilities always resides within yourself. No one knows you better than you, so take some time to slow down, focus and get re-acquainted with yourself and how you live in this world. Evaluate where you are and invigorate yourself with new direction if you need it.
Sometimes we get so caught up in the hustle and bustle of our lives we run though our workouts in a hurry and then check them off our “to do” list. While a quick vigorous workout might release enough endorphins to make you feel an immediate rush of accomplishment, by slowing down and focusing on your mind as well you can truly integrate your whole body into the process and become more mindful of your actions.
One way to calm your mind is with a guided meditation class. Meditation is a technique you can use any time and place to still your mind and restore peace and harmony within yourself. It’s a great way to put things into perspective. You are what you think, so you should think as clearly and as positively as possible.
Another way to integrate your mind and body is through yoga. Yoga teaches you to focus on breathing while you hold the poses, which creates an all over calming effect. In yoga, you “surrender” to the pose by letting go of the tension. Once you learn to use yoga breathing, stress and anxiety can be dissolved in any situation from the dentist’s chair to being stuck in traffic.
Take a journey of mindfulness this spring and reap the rewards of finding clarity in your life. Learn to find your zen within and you’ll be able to better cope with the curveballs life may throw your way.
Fit Athletic offers Fit Gym in downtown San Diego, Fit Solana Beach and Fit Clubs in Carmel Mountain locations and give you tips to help you stick to your new year resolutions and stay fashionably fit.