Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Ready, Get Set, GOOOOOOOOO!!!!

It is time for the 60 days until Summer Challenge!
I started my fitness journey over 3 years ago and for the last 2 years have been fit, comfortable and enjoying life! I am ready to take it up a notch! I DID take it up a notch a couple of months ago, and I DID increase my fitness and lose a couple of pounds, but then when I needed a rest I failed miserable in my self control of food! For the average person I was probably still doing pretty well. I eat lots of veggies because I love them, I eat fairly low fat as I just don't like fatty food, but I added chocolate back in as a food group...and I ranked it pretty much as a core food that had to be eaten multiple times a day...and I enjoyed ice cream....out of the carton a few times!!! If I had really enjoyed that ice cream and couldn't go on without it I might not take too much issue with it, but I didn't really enjoy it during and especially not after! Oh, and then there were the girl guide cookies!!! But now I am feeling refreshed and refocused! I will indulge on occasion, but I just have to work on my self control not to OVER indulge!!!! It will be there tomorrow, next week, or maybe next year (in the case of the GG cookies). Portion control and over indulgence control...I don't think I am wrong in thinking this is the root of 75% of American's weight problems!!!

So, this challenge I am doing! I don't have a lot of weight to lose, but I would love to see my abs that have been hiding for my WHOLE LIFE!!! I do have abs of steel, they just have a little roll on top :) Time to say bye bye roll!
Current body fat is 22.1%, lets see where I can get it in a month!
There are requirements of 45 min + of working out 6 days a week, food journaling, healthy eating, lots of water...reaching big goals and changing your fitness takes hard work people!!! No one ever said this was going to be easy!
If you would like to join me in Tina's challenge, today is the deadline but contact me ASAP and we can get you signed up. If you would like to alter your challenge a little bit and have some accountability, encouragement but still a few important rules, let me know too and we can get something nailed down for you! My pics and stats are up on the Team Revolution Beachbody message board, Click HERE to check it all out! If you haven't joined the Beachbody site, you can do it for free
with me as your coach.  I can get your Body Fat Measured to start you out as well!  Let's get ready to hit the beach, the pool, the whatever....summer is a coming :)

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution!

Did you catch Jamie Oliver's show on ABC about food in America!  It is amazing what the average household consumes, what our children eat at school and how it effects our bodies!  He isn't scared to use some shock tactics to help parents understand what their kids are eating, and is even offering some healthy alternatives!  Obesity and diet is affecting America's health...not surprising or even new news, but at least he is trying to do something about it!  Click on the button to sign his petition for a "Food Revolution".

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Can you fit 1 hour of exercise, 7 days a week into your schedule?

The new recommendations are: at least an hour of moderate activity a day is needed for older women at a healthy weight who aren't dieting. For those who are already overweight — and that's most American women — even more exercise is called for to avoid gaining weight without eating less, the study results suggest.
Read more:

Craziness you say?  I would agree...but only if you take that as 1 hour at the gym every day!  1 hour of moderate exercise is doable!  When you clean the house do you ever work up a bit of a sweat?  Dusting the bookshelf, vacuuming under the bed...add a little spring to your step and you are "working out"!  Gardening?  Mowing, weeding, trimming the trees...all hard work.  Walking the dog, playing with the kids!  It doesn't need to be 1 hour straight.  The main goal is that you get off the couch and move!  Do more than you used to do. 
To get yourself moving toward the gym idea (which you don't actually need to go to the gym to do), you need to find a fitness activity that you enjoy!  Biking, walking (which could lead to running), roller blading...then we get to gym activities like weight lifting and classes like Turbo Kick, interval training, Zumba...there are so many options.  Try different things and you will surely find something that tickles your fancy.  The next step is to actually make a commitment and do it regularly.  There are many options you can do from home as well.  Beachbody has an amazing array of beginner to advanced programs.  If you like Turbo Kick, try Turbo Jam; If you like interval training try ChaLEAN Extreme, If you are looking for some easy to keep up with programs try Slim in 6 or Power 90. Yoga Booty Ballet, Brazil Butt Lift, Hip Hop Abs, all offer part specific focus, BUT have great fat burning for the whole body.  Limited on time?  Try Tony Horton's 10 minute trainer. If you want to take it to a whole new level you can take on P90X, Insanity and coming late this spring is Turbo Fire...stay tuned for more on this one! Click HERE for an overview of all the products.
You can get your exercise indoors, outdoors, at the gym, in the comfort of your own home...just do it somewhere!  I would love to help me at

Don't forget that nutrition plays a KEY role in your battle of the bulge.  You can exercise all day, but if you chase it with a big mac, fries and a milk shake you aren't going to progress very far!  As you age your caloric demands decrease.  So if you want to indulge a little, do more exercise or cut something else out!  Make good choices, you are worth it!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Eat Your Veggies!!!

Despite the popularity of salad bars and vegetarianism, most adults today don’t consume enough healthy greens. Your childhood memories of mushy peas and golf-ball-sized Brussels sprouts may have kept you at bay all these years, but your mom was right: You should eat your veggies. Vegetables are extremely important because they’re stuffed with healthful vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals. And they’re low in calories and full of fiber, so they’ll fill you up without filling you out!

All vegetables contain water, but some, such as lettuce, cucumbers, sprouts, and broccoli, are particularly high in water content. The water you get from eating vegetables will increase your oxygen levels, and the oxidation stimulates your metabolism, which helps your muscles convert fat into energy. Still not convinced of a vegetable’s merits? Here’s one more reason: Because of their high fiber content, veggies are digested more slowly, making you feel full and satiated for a longer length of time. So consume at least three to five servings of veggies a day to keep yourself from overeating. ~ from Jorge's Daily Health tip at

Having trouble getting those veggies in? Try some Shakeology as a meal replacement or as a snack!!! Beachbody has this amazing product which comes in powder form and can be mixed with water and ice for 140 calories or with fruit, milk, or whatever strikes your fancy!  It is filling, it is yummy and it is so good for you!  My favorite recipe is a scoop of chocolate Shakeology, 1/2 banana, 1 tbsp natural peanut butter, 1/2 cup of milk (regular or almond), 1/2 cup water, 1/2 cup ice...blend until smooth!  There are TONS of great recipe ideas!   Learn more about how they came up with the whole plan for Shakeology here and how it can help you!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Tune in to a Better Mood

As an active person, you know that a happy spring-in-your step kind of mood can make the difference between a fat-blasting sweat session or an afternoon spent watching Oprah in your sweats. It can also help lower stress, reduce your risk for heart disease and give you the energy and motivation to stay on top of your other health goals. Follow these tips to improve your mood:
*Freshen up your play list. Studies show that music can improve your workout endurance and promote positive emotions. Do you find yourself bopping along to a tune in the car? Write down the name and download it from itunes! Chances are you will bop along to it at the gym too!
*Eat for Happiness. Omega-3s, vitamin B12 and selenium have all been linked to mood improvements. Add some salmon and shrimp to your diet-they contain all three in one shot.
*Laugh at yourself. The next time you're taking a before or after photo to track your fat-loss progress, take a silly shot as well. Be goofy! Post it on your vision board or on the inside of your gym locker-you'll get an instant jolt of happiness before you start your workout!

This article is from the April 2010 edition of Oxygen magazine. If you are looking for a great fitness magazine, this is it! They do have a lot of supplement ads, but the info is geared at all fitness minded women. Great weight lifting ideas and articles to help you focus on muscles groups you might otherwise have ignored :)

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Food Journaling revisited!!!

By now, you probably know the most accurate way to keep track of your caloric intake is to log your food choices in a journal. But it’s not enough to write down what you eat – you also need to analyze your food choices and use this information to make better decisions the next day. Here are some tips to help you out:

* Record your feelings and emotions whenever you eat. If you realize you have a granola bar every afternoon at 4 p.m. just because you’re bored, then schedule in a fun activity at that time instead, like reading a good book to keep your mind occupied. Or make this as your exercise time, chew some gum or play with the kids or the dog!

* Pinpoint the foods that trigger you to overeat and eliminate them. For example, do you always overindulge on greasy foods when you drink alcohol? Does one sweet make you pine for the whole bag? Shakeology can help decrease your cravings and makes a great snack!

* In addition to adding up how many calories you’re eating, you have to limit them as well. If you find you’re consuming 2,500 calories a day, don’t just shrug your shoulders and continue with the same behavior the next day. Cut calories and bring your count down to around 2,000 if you’re trying to maintain your weight, or 1,500 if you still have weight to lose. There are many great sites to help you determine exactly how many calories you need in a day!  AND will give you some great ideas of healthy foods those calories should come from instead of fast food and processed food!

* Spread your meals evenly throughout the day. If you find you’re eating all your calories in the morning and have none left over come dinnertime, then cut some food out of your breakfast and spend these calories later in the day when you’re hungrier. Even better, divide your calories between 5 meals a day.  If you plan your meals ahead or have specific snacks set aside and you know the calories, you can grab and go!  Good planning doesn't have to be an inconvenience, just do it at the beginning of the week and have it ready to go.  Beachbody has a great menu planning feature if you sign up as a team member you can use all the nutrition services to help you get moving in the right direction.  I would love to help you.

* Record how you feel about your body every morning. You’ll probably realize you feel much better after eating fresh foods, which will give you the motivation to keep up your healthy habits! and try to weigh yourself just once a week if the daily fluctuations are driving you crazy.  Make sure it is at the same time each week so you don't have variances in the amount of food and fluid in your body and clothing you are wearing.

If you take the extra time to analyze your eating patterns, a food journal can definitely help improve your eating habits. And if you just can’t get enough of journaling, keep a fitness journal as well, and attack your flab with the double whammy of diet and exercise!

(portions of this were taken from

Monday, March 15, 2010

Why Shakeology?

Shakeology is a nutritional protein shake that provides a wide spectrum of healthy nutrients in a low-calorie formula. Whether you use it as a meal replacement for weight loss or simply to ensure your body gets all the
nutrients it needs for optimal health, Shakeology takes the guesswork out of nutrition.

Shakeology simplifies nutrition and makes good “cents.”  Shakeology costs approximately $4 per serving ($120 per month) for high-quality antioxidants, 23 vitamins and minerals, super green phytonutrients, whey protein and essential amino acids, prebiotics and digestive enzymes, good carbs, and low fats. Or you can purchase each supplement separately, at a cost of about $250 per month.

Check out this great video on the Breakthrough of Shakeology

How to use it.
It’s simple. Mix 1 scoop (or 1 package) of Shakeology with 8 oz. of water. If you like, add ice.
Or, if you want something more filling and maybe even more satisfying, blend your Shakeology with ice and nonfat, almond, rice, or soy milk. Shakeology dissolves easily, but blending it will give it a thicker, creamier texture.

Take Responsibility

The first step to taking back your power is to look at your life, own your choices and ask how they have brought you to where you are, for better or worse.  Responsibility means not blaming anyone or anything for your situation.  That type of victim mindset saps your will and siphons your power.  By taking responsibility, you will start to see how the choices you make create your reality; this doesn't mean being able to control all the difficult things life may throw your way, but it does mean controlling your reactions to situations, people and events to effect the best possible outcome. It is your choice to let someone's criticism affect you; it is up to you either to fear life's challenges or to embrace them with positive faith in yourself.  Once you are conscious and accountable for your actions and reactions you can dictate the outcome of almost any situation in your favor! (excerpt from Jillian Michaels-Making the cut)
This can be in reference to all aspects of your life!   Set your goals and work towards them!  Once you reach them, make new ones!  Whether you are helping yourself or helping your children, you focus on where you want to get and you get there!  Climb over those obstacles!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Feed those muscles after a heavy workout!

If you are working out long and hard, be sure to pair protein and a high-GI carb within 15-30 minutes after exercise to replenish the depleted glycogen in your muscles and start recovery. A protein shake with fruit juice nicely balances high-GI carbs and protein. The protein triggers protein synthesis (muscle building) and the carbohydrate replenishes the fuel that you used during exercise and gets you refueled for your next workout. This is even a time you can hit some white (cringe) carbs. This is really the time when your body knows exactly what to do with quick carbs. The rate of carb/protein absorption drops down after two hours, and continues to drop for the next 24 hours. By this point, eating high GI foods may end up going into storage as fat rather than fuel for your muscles. IMPORTANT-with post workout refined carb foods is to eat very small portions of it. And, you always need to pair it with a protein - at least 15 grams.
It seems odd to be allowed white carbs or fructose which is a prime ingredient in the P90X Results and Recovery formula, but your body uses them for the right thing at this time, your recovery time is faster and your body is ready for your next workout. If you are carefully watching your calories, make sure you subtract these calories from your total for the day!
Join me at Beachbody for great products, nutrition, and accountability!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Overtraining? or just overtired?

This past week was my fourth week of Insanity!  The last week before my rest week...the last week to enjoy the daily workout I have been raving about each day.  BUT, by midweek I was dreading my workout and trying to figure out how to force it into my day-and boy have I been moody!  Lets take a look back: I taught for two hours on Wednesday evening, then again on Thursday (on top of Insanity); I had meetings for my volunteer group on Tuesday and Friday; I have been stressing about my new house, or lack of a new house due to the bank dragging it's feet over our mortgage; my husband who is obviously also stressing has pointed out that I haven't got a few things done towards our new house when I OBVIOUSLY should have free time being a stay at home mom and all (I refrained from attacking...he is obviously stressed too ;)); I haven't been getting to bed before 11 recently; my 4 y.o. daughter is behaving like a tantruming, moody teenager; and I haven't stayed on path this past week with my goals to be more organized. I also have been a bit annoyed that despite my healthy eating and greatly increased exercise I am not seeing any significant changes on the scale!!!  Although my belly pooch has definitely gone down!
Hmmmm, on one hand, I don't have to go to work all day too!  On the other hand, I might have stretched myself a bit too thin!  Time to take a little break from the Insanity, maybe a yoga class tomorrow, and slowly work the heavy hitting back in.
The most common error people make is not exercising enough, but the other extreme is overdoing it!  This is a reason that exercise doesn't stick with some people.  They dive into the deep end, overdo it, work too hard and get exhausted, or just can't keep it up and they quit!  Moderation would be the goal.  I still plan to finish my program and I will, but then I think I will find a comfortable middle ground of hitting the gym combined with Insanity and a more laid back program like Slim in 6 or maybe I will get Brazil Butt Lift to get my swim suit booty ready...and work on maintaining the health and fitness I have worked so hard to achieve.
I think I have eaten all of the chocolate in the house so I should be safe for the rest of the day ;)

Friday, March 5, 2010

Making time for "Personal Time"

I think Chalene Johnson's weight loss tips on YouTube are awesome, so I will be sharing them through my blog...two more sets up today!

I have been thinking the past few days about "personal time", and a conversation last night put it more into perspective. Personal time is different for each person, what they crave, what they "need" to recharge their own batteries. For me a little peace is nice...I do get that now that my kids are at school, but as a stay at home mom, sometimes that "peaceful" time has been pretty hard to find. My most important requirement these days is a good workout. My friends expect to hear this from me, I seem to find a connection into fitness no matter what the topic these days, but that's only because there IS a connection. If I have a rough day, I know my Wednesday evening will be here soon where I have an hour of TurboKick and an hour of weights and cardio and I am recharged...don't get me wrong, I am exhausted, but I am emotionally recharged! A run with my dogs and my daughter on her bike got me out of a funk yesterday gets my blood pumping enough to get rid of the bad energy. Finding what recharges you will help you immensely in life and making time to actually do it will get you where you need to be. Don't feel selfish for making time to better yourself, if you aren't happy, how can you make other people happy. It is about creating a balance. Much easier said than done, but it needs to be done! If you aren't there, make that a goal. Put it on your To Do list and take baby steps to get there.
I am listening to an audiobook right now by Robin Sharma and he has great comments about exercise. "saying you have no time to exercise and look after your body is the same as saying you have no time to get gas for your car. We all know what will happen if we don't gas up our car. It is a lot harder to get your health back then it is to lose it".
You need to make the decision to get fit and healthy, and you need to live it if you want it to work. Find out what you like and go with it...let me know how I can help!

More of Chalene's tips

Get new gear? Remember back to school clothes increased the excitement of a new school year? Maybe new shoes will help you at the gym :) Make it exciting to get going.

Know your numbers...there is no magic to weight loss! Create a deficit of 3500 calories to lose a pound! NO guessing, write it down!!!

Chalene's guaranteed weightloss tips

If you want to incorporate exercise into your lifestyle you need to find something you enjoy---your "soulmate workout program". Sure it is good to mix it up and add other exercise in, but always having something that you look forward to do makes it that much easier. Biking, running, Group exercise classes at the gym, TurboJam, Brazil Butt Lift, TurboKick, mountain climbing, jumping jacks....there are so many things...try something new until you find your "soulmate" exercise!

Accountability-the more layers you have the more likely you are to succeed. You might let yourself down, but will you let someone else down? I jump started my fitness 3 years ago with a weight loss contest amongst friends...guess who won ;)

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Losing weight is about math!

Bob from the Biggest Loser recommends the Calorie King book for knowing what the calories are for all foods going into your body...a calorie bible!  Calories in = Energy out.

Chalene Johnson weighs in on the Calorie King Counting book too:

and on Food Journaling:

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Try something healthier!

When it comes to changing one's diet the excuses of "I am not cooking a separate meal for myself", "my  kids won't eat that", "my husband/wife won't eat that" and "that will be too expensive" often arise.  Well guess what?  You will all learn to adjust.  The best thing you can do for your kids is slowly adjust their diet while they are learning what is right and wrong so they don't have to change later on like you are now!  and your husband/wife...well, they are just going to have to accept it ;)
Baby steps will make it easier!  We are looking at lifestyle change, permanent change.  This isn't a fad diet, this isn't a quick fix, this is forever baby!  Sure, you can have some of your old favorites every so often, but once you adjust the norm, you will learn to like it, and as you see the positives on your health and well being you will be sold!
Brown rice!  Add some chicken stock to the water!  Experiment when you cook meal add a little extra water, see how you prefer it.  It takes longer to cook so cook extra and freeze or store in the fridge if it is for the next couple of days!  Try a rice cooker!  It is a great investment to help out your brown rice!!!
Whole wheat pasta!  Last week I was going out and my husband went looking for pasta...all the white was gone!  He accepted it (he had little choice), put a little extra tomato sauce on and he and the kids enjoyed their dinner.  When I cook pasta I always throw some broccoli in with it a few minutes before it is ready.  This allows me to fill the bowl the same as I used to but the broccoli takes the place of some of the pasta and some of the calories!
Potatoes!  I fortunately LOVE Yams and sweet potatoes.  These are a much healthier and nutritious choice over white potatoes.  1/4" slices with a bit of olive oil and sea salt baked in the oven for 30-45 minutes!!!  My kids think they are eating french fries and we are all happy and healthier!  Try some of the other colored potatoes, root veggies...they are delicious cooked this way!
Chicken breast! It doesn't need to be boring and bland.  Mine is sliced into strips, mixed with some spicy brown mustard,egg whites and a little sesame oil, a little cornmeal sprinkled over, now baking in the oven.  There are so many healthy, CLEAN recipes for these basic healthy foods.  Explore the internet, explore the cook book section at the book store.  Don't focus on low fat as often sugar is used to replace the oil for flavor...sugar is not so good for us!  CLEAN eating is a good search tool.  Whole grain, vegetables, lean meats...
Try one new recipe a week.  Look for the healthy choices on sale and stock up!  If you plan ahead things don't need to be too expensive, but we do need to look at more than the immediate costs!  Better health will be MUCH cheaper in the long run.  Healthcare costs, missing work, illnesses...these are expensive problems we may be able to avoid by choosing the nutritious and sometimes a little bit more expensive options now!  Look to the future not just tomorrow when you plan your nutrition!
Check out the Beachbody site for meal plans and recipes, also the programs come with great nutrition guides!
Lets get better health coming our way!