Tagged: new years resolutions

2017 Fitness Challenge

Every January a large percentage of our population renew their vow to get into shape and embrace fitness as a way of life. Every March the amount of people still on track or experiencing any success in their fitness goals is about 20%! If that’s you, read on because I’m going to help you succeed this year by giving you some much needed direction.

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The problem is usually that most people jump in too fast (or pick only one course of exercise) resulting in either burn out, boredom, injury, or just lack of sustained motivation. Without keeping your fitness routine varied and effectively focused you will not be able to sustain – especially if you aren’t already addicted to exercise.

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So below is a generic (yet adjustable to each individual) fitness routine that will last you through January. Those of you who stick with it, write to me and I’ll give you February, etc. If after 3 months you have stayed the course and seen and felt results – well then you can sign up (and pay) for more routines. But I am offering first quarter 2017 free routines, so take advantage people!

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Keep in mind, that nutrition is 70% of your battle. So if you are really committed you may want to order a customized meal plan from me (workouts247.com), but regardless I urge and remind you NOT to DIET. Diets do not work! Keep your nutrition lean and clean 85% of the time (15% is free for you to drink, eat sugary, fatty, hi-caloric stuff) and eat 6 small meals/snacks per day. Drink water water water and follow this routine and I know you’ll see results!

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Also stay off the scale – we’re trying to build muslce and reduce fat and the scale will not show the results you’re looking for. Only the way your clothes fit and the way you see your body are valid proof of your fitness success.

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So here is your FREE 3 Day – 30 mins workout routine for January. Most of this can be done with little to no equipment, and all of it is perfect for a gym. Either way, modifiy as you need to for your fitness levels and access to equipment, but do not modify how aggressively you attack this workout. BE A BEAST! If you need clarification on exercises, weights, etc., you know where to find me. Stick with this and next month you’ll be ready for a 5-day workout!

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DAY 1 – UPPER

10 burpees
10 incline push ups
15 Triceps dips
15 DB curls
10 DB up-out-in-downs
15 DB hammer curls
15 DB triceps kick backs
10 Leg lowers & raises (Abs)

Repeat circuit 2-3 times

DAY 2 – LOWER

25 Jumping jacks
10 Step Ups (each leg)
15 Jump Squats
10 DB Tap Squats
15 Wide to Narrow Squats
10 Dead lifts into Calf Raises
15 Single Leg Lunges (each leg)
25 V-sit in and outs

Repeat circuit 2-3 times

DAY 3 – TOTAL BODY

5 Mins steep incline treadmill walk (Or any cardio that kicks your butt)
20 DB Lunge walks with shoulder presses
10 DB push ups with alternating single arm rows
20 DB squats
20 Mountain Climbers
15 DB Curl to presses
15 DB Shoulder Flies
15 DB Triceps Ear Busters
3 Thirty-second Planks (prone iso abs)

Repeat circuit 2-3 times

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No Resolutions

A few years back I created this post and it seems like a good time to remind you all to embrace the new year, and renew your motivation to change or meet goals you want to achieve. Set yourself up in a positive way and perhaps this time, you’ll accomplish more than any year prior!

Every year thousands of us make New Year’s resolutions that 99% of us break or don’t complete. Most prevalent are goals to lose weight and get in shape. But just like the chronic cigarette smoker who knows that smoking is bad but can’t stop because they’re addicted, losing weight and getting into shape needs more motivation than just your brain saying (along with everyone around you) that you need to do this to be healthy.

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When you’re in the thick of it, the last thing you want to do is stop doing something that seemingly makes you feel better (i.e., smoking, eating that pint of ice cream, drinking that bottle of beer). Even though you know that these choices are not in your body’s best interest, your brain is used to these comforts to deal with life’s stresses.

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This is why we fail at new years resolutions. They’re made because it’s traditional to make them not because we have complete conviction behind the need to change. So, while the concept of a resolution is good – setting goals and starting them on a pivotal date – there is clearly not enough motivation placed on these goals to sustain our focus, and motivation is key!

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So how then do you get and sustain true motivation? That, my friends, comes from within, when you are truly ready to acknowledge how unhappy you feel in the physical condition you’re in. It’s not about needing to get healthier for someone else; it’s not about wanting to feel sexier or more attractive; it’s not about wearing a different clothing size. It’s about YOU wanting to be different. YOU wanting to end the depression that follows you around because you feel unattractive or don’t have the energy to keep up with your kids or friends.

If personal changes are important enough to you, nothing will stop you.

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Once you want the change for reasons so strong that nothing can deter you, then it instantly becomes a goal you can achieve. You don’t need a date on the calendar to get your started. You don’t need an extreme diet. You don’t even need a personal trainer (did I just say that?!). All you need to keep your desire for change always in the forefront of your brain. What do you stand to gain by this change. Don’t focus on what you’ll lose (energy, clothes, life) – focus on what you’ll gain. Gaining something is actually a stronger motivator than losing something.

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So enjoy the holidays and your New Year’s celebration, but skip the resolutions. Instead contemplate what you want to gain and how badly you want it. Then go get it!

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(And of course, if you DO want a trainer, or a tailor-made workout routine created by a professional trainer, give me shout. I’m here to cheer you on and help you stay focused!)

Happy or Bah Humbug?

This post first ran last December, but I believe it bears constant repeating, so I gave it a little update and serve it up again.  Please read and remember – life can be stressful and intrusive to your goals, so don’t beat yourself up about unrealized dreams – but DON’T GIVE UP either.

As the year winds down and the holidays rear their busy, caloric, stressful heads I want to take a moment to remind you to be accepting and compassionate – OF YOURSELF! Clearly all of us should be accepting and compassionate of others, but I find that so many people can give love and compassion to others but NOT to themselves. Those types are even tougher on themselves this time of year, which leads to more stress and less enjoyment of what should be a wonderful time. Is that you?

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The most typical issues that you might beat yourself up about are:

  • I didn’t reach my goals
  • I didn’t get in shape
  • I’m still at the same dead-end job or relationship
  • Once again I don’t have enough money to enjoy the holidays

So listen what I am yelling at you right now: STOP IT!

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If you didn’t reach your goals because you didn’t try, okay, so know you must see that inactivity and/or indecisiveness clearly doesn’t work. So find stronger motivation and perhaps an easier goal to reach (i.e., the first step towards the total end goal) and come January, get off your ass and start moving towards that goal!

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If you didn’t get in shape because you didn’t stick with healthier nutrition and an exercise regiment, again, nothing will change until you do. But you are human and not alone in this – so stop beating yourself up about it. Just follow this blog, join a gym, find a trainer, or whatever it is that will MOVE you (pun intended) toward your fitness goals in the new year.

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If your job still sucks the life out of you, and/or a relationship has run itself into the ground with no hope of improvement, then decide if you’d rather be exactly where you are NOW one year from now, or somewhere else. If you can’t bear the thought of still being STUCK this time next year, then again, get off your ass and do something about it. There’s ALWAYS a choice that can be made and implemented.

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Lastly, as for the dreaded cost and stress of holiday shopping – I know for a fact that most of us would really rather spend quality time with our friends just sitting around being together, drinking wine, playing cards, watching a movie, having a meal, etc. Same goes for fun or funny homemade or gag gifts that break no one’s bank. A token present or little joke gift to remind someone that they’ve got a friend who cares is really the best gift of all. No one wants a gift when the giver has stressed themselves out over it or incurred debt. The only person who truly demands a certain amount of money spent or certain high quality of gift is usually YOU, the giver. Otherwise, they’re not a person you should be hanging with anyway.

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I’ve actually implemented a White Elephant gift exchange with a large group of my friends. Everyone spends a maximum of $25 and then after an hour or so of drinking and laughing over the constant stealing of gifts (look up white elephant parties if you don’t understand) everyone leaves with one nice gift and no one went broke.

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So do what you can to be happy and not bah-humbug this holiday season, and get your ducks in a row to hit the ground running come January. Then let the rest of your worries go and just enjoy life as it is. (And remember you’ve got me in your corner – I’m always happy to help keep you motivated too!)

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Jump Start The New Year

Happy new year. We’re six days into January and the annual surge in attendance at most gyms is ramping up quickly. Thousands of us make resolutions to get in shape, and to that end many people joined or received the gift of a gym membership this January. This happens every year, and every year by March 75-80% of new members have dropped off as old habits kick in.

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So today I wanted to offer you a “Jump Start” workout that can be done at the gym or in in your living room. If you can stick with this simple and quick workout – three times a week (every-other day) for 4-6 weeks, you’ll not only find yourself already in better shape that you are right now, but you’ll be more likely to stick with your resolution and that gym membership will not go to waste.

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One of the pitfalls people face each January is that they think they have to reinvent their wheel. In other words, they convince themselves that they have to have the right clothes, shoes, and gear, and buy a bunch of food and supplements that they don’t even know how to cook or use. Very quickly either budgetary constraints stop their momentum, or lack of seeing results due to improper workouts or confusion as to how to eat differently leads to frustration and they give up.

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I always suggest biting off only what you can chew (forgive the pun) is the best way to start something so radically new and different to one’s current lifestyle. This is why I am posting this very simple (yet still challenging) three-day workout, and some basic nutritional guidance to get you started. As I stated previously, if you can stick with this you might find the motivation you need to continue on into 2016 past January. If not, then hey, at least you won’t have lost a bunch of money, and you can go back to being out of shape until you’re ready to try again next year!

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You can Google most of the exercises listed and see photos or videos of how to properly perform each (I have examples on my websites and YouTube page too). I’ve given a beginners weight spectrum for the dumbbells (i.e., 3-10 lbs. should cover anyone who is just starting out, no matter size or gender). Pick the weight that challenges you but you can still complete the required repetitions. If it’s too easy, it’s too light! If you can’t do the full amount of reps now, then work up to it, but push yourself each week to do more.

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As for “gear” – clearly a gym will have the what you need for this workout, but If you have no hand weights, try two evenly filled gallon-sized water bottles (that doesn’t mean they need to be full, just filled to equal levels). They have handles and are durable and easy to use, and you can buy two at any Dollar Store. Start fairly light, and add more water if you find you’re ready for them to be heavier.

 THE WORKOUT:

DAY 1:

10 burpees

15 biceps curls w/3-10 lbs.

10 push ups

15 shoulder presses w/3-10 lbs.

20 air squats

1 30-second plank

Perform each in subsequent order then repeat entire set 2 more times.

 

DAY 2:

15 jumping jacks

15 bent forward rows w/3-10 lbs.

10 incline push ups (on bench, chair, or counter)

10 triceps dips (on bench, chair, or counter)

20 lunge walks

10 leg lowers & raises

Perform each in subsequent order then repeat entire set 2 more times.

 

DAY 3:

10 jump squats

15 biceps curls w/3-10 lbs.

10 up-out-in-downs (shoulder/chest) w/3-10 lbs.

20 wide-to-narrow jump squats

10 v-sits

1 30-second side plank (each side)

Perform each in subsequent order then repeat entire set 2 more times.

 

NUTRITIONAL GUIDANCE:

30-mins after waking:  Breakfast + glass of water

2-3 hours later:                Mid-morning Snack + glass of water

2-3 hours later:                Lunch + glass of water

2-3- hours later:             Mid-afternoon Snack + glass of water

2-3 hours later:               Dinner + glass of water

All meals/snacks should be small portions consisting of lean protein 65% (chicken, fish, pork), clean unprocessed carbs 20% (veggies, grains, beans, legumes), healthy fats 15% (avocado, fish, nuts). Avoid refined sugar, sodas, full-fat dairy, and processed salty-fatty snacks.

New Year, Old You?

Whether you’re a new year’s resolution kind of person or not, everyone tends to approach the new year as a fresh opportunity to change when they’re not happy with – most notably, getting their body in shape. “New Year, New You” is a common slogan with weight-loss products and services.

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However, as I’ve discussed in several articles last year, most people set unreasonable expectations and therefore unattainable goals when it comes to their fitness. Everyone wants it to happen quickly, affordably, and without having to spend a lot of time actually exercising. Worse yet, there are still millions of adults who think they need to go on a diet. As all of you who have read my articles know, a diet implies temporary. Temporary changes to your nutrition will not result in a successful and permanent transformation of your body.

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So how can you make this year’s attempt at fitness finally a success? First, you can stop trying to make it happen quickly. Your body didn’t get out of shape in a month, conversely it can’t get into shape in a month.

Next, your nutrition, or in plain English HOW AND WHAT YOU EAT (and when), must be a lifestyle change, i.e., permanent, for your body to stay healthy and lean. Please remember as I frequently rant, this does not mean you have to give up fun foods, comfort foods, sweets, alcohol, or any foods you’ve previously labeled as your “vices.” It simply means an overhaul to the ratio of clean, unprocessed foods in a balanced proportion (proteins, carbs and fats) consumed in small quantities on a regular basis.

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Lastly, you have to deem exercise as a priority, and it MUST be scheduled on a weekly basis (by that I mean 3-5 times a week). As I have written on numerous occasions, exercise can be highly effective to your fat loss goals with as little as 30 minutes a day. Approaching your exercise schedule with the same level of commitment you approach responsibilities such as work or getting the kids to soccer practice is the key to making these necessary changes stick.

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So for those of you who are set to make 2015 the year you reduce your waistline, tone those jiggly legs and arms, or lower your blood pressure, risk of diabetes and heart attack I offer these three simple mind-set alterations that will definitely help you finally succeed at having a New You in the New Year!

Once you’ve embraced them, feel free to contact me for more specific help with your fitness goals.

2015 Will Be The Year You Succeed!

The door on 2014 is closing tonight and a brand new shiny hope-filled door called 2015 awaits you. Once again you face another opportunity to set goals, make “resolutions” and attempt to achieve them. Unfortunately every year many people fail at those goals within the first three months (for one reason or another), and then resign themselves to trying once more in the next new year. Well this is the year that cycle can stop for you. It’s easier than you think – here are three tips to help you achieve your goals whether they be getting in better shape (fat loss), career enhancement, or better relationships.

WORK IN INCREMENTS.

Having a big picture goal is important (losing a % of fat or scale weight, finishing courses that will enhance your career, etc.) but success is easier to achieve if you work in increments – 10 lbs. at a time, one class per quarter. Set a realistic time line for achieving each increment, make sure you have someone keeping an eye on your progress (holds you accountable), and use your phone or calendar so schedule daily time increments where you work on said goals.

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Seeing and feeling the completion of each increment and it’s furtherance of you toward your goals keeps your motivation fresh. Also, by making sure that each day you attend to those goals (daily workout, time spent on homework) it sets you into a routine that will soon be hard to ditch.

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FIND A FRIEND.

All goals in life that are worth pursuing are worth sharing. Support systems are the key to success in everything in life. As long as your goals are realistic and attainable, and cause no harm to those around you – everyone will be in your court and gladly help you. – you just have to ask! Buddy up with a friend to share weekly updates on your nutrition and exercise achievements AND set backs. Put together a group of people who are seeking to enhance their careers and have a weekly “mastermind” meeting where you help each other think outside the box and network. Schedule a weekly “catch up hour” where you and your significant other, child, or friend talk, share and reconnect.

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TWO STEPS FORWARD, ONE STEP BACK IS OK.

Set backs are NOT failures. Life for most of us is a series of a few steps forward combined with one or two steps back. If you give up every time you have a set back, your life will stay stagnant and unmoving. Embrace the set backs, learn from them, and make sure the next set back is something different. In my experience, failures cut a path to success if you allow yourself to learn from them.

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So take a deep breath and open the door to 2015 with the knowledge that you can achieve ANYTHING you want if you simplify and stay focused. I’m here, as always, to offer my support, guidance and expertise. Happy healthy new year to you all!

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Inspiration From Odd Places

I like to find inspiration from odd places. A friend, Micol Davis of the band Blue Mother Tupelo (check them out: http://www.bluemothertupelo.com/) posted this link on Facebook, and it’s courtesy of Business Insider (again another odd place for finding inspiration). I am reprinting it here to inspire all my friends and fitness-peeps to find a way to start 2014 with a strong mindset for achievement and success with all your goals!

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“If you’re having trouble nailing down your New Year’s resolutions, here’s a good place to start.

Seventy years ago, American folk legend Woody Guthrie scribbled in his journal a list of 33 tasks he would dedicate himself to in the coming year. According to WoodyGuthrie.org, he called them “Rulin’s.”

At age 31, he was in the prime of his life, with a wife and three kids, as well as a good deal of life experience, having survived the Dust Bowl to make it out to California.

As a result, it’s a pretty unbeatable list. Here’s the transcribed version:

33. Wake Up And Fight

32. Make Up Your Mind

31. Love Everybody

30. Love Pete

29. Love Papa

28. Love Mama

27. Help Win War — Beat Fascism

26. Dance Better

25. Play And Sing Good

24. Send Mary And Kids Money

23. Have Company But Don’t Waste Time

22. Save Dough

21. Bank All Extra Money

20. Dream Good

19. Keep Hoping Machine Running

18. Stay Glad

17. Don’t Get Lonesome

16. Keep Rancho Clean

15. Learn People Better

14. Listen To Radio A Lot

13. Read Lots Good Books

12 Change Bed Clothes Often

11. Change Socks

10. Shine Shoes

9. Wear Clean Clothes

8. Write A Song A Day

7. Drink Very Scant If Any

6. Eat Good — Fruit — Vegetables — Milk

5. Take Bath

4. ShaveimagesP0788E6J

3. Wash Teeth If Any

2. Work By A Schedule

1. Work More And Better”

http://www.businessinsider.com/woody-guthries-new-years-resolutions-2013-12

Skip The New Year’s Resolutions.

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Every year thousands of us make New Year’s resolutions that 99% of us break or don’t complete. Most prevalent are goals to lose weight and get in shape.  But just like the chronic cigarette smoker who knows that smoking is bad but can’t stop because they’re addicted, losing weight and getting into shape needs more motivation than just your brain saying (along with everyone around you) that you need to do this to be healthy.

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When you’re in the thick of it (no pun intended) the last thing you want to do is stop doing something that seemingly makes you feel better (i.e., smoking, eating that pint of ice cream, drinking that bottle of wine).  Even though you know that these choices are not in your body’s best interest, your brain is used to these comforts to deal with life’s stresses.  This is why we fail at new years resolutions.  They’re made because it’s traditional to make them not because we have complete conviction behind the need to change. So, while the concept of a resolution is good – setting goals and starting them on a pivotal date – there is clearly not enough motivation placed on these goals to sustain our focus, and motivation is key!

So how then do you get and sustain true motivation?  That, my motivationfriends, comes from within, when you are truly ready to acknowledge how unhappy you feel in the physical condition you’re in.  It’s not about needing to get healthier for someone else; it’s not about wanting to feel sexier or more attractive; it’s not about wearing a different clothing size.  It’s about YOU wanting to be different.  YOU wanting to end the depression that follows you around because you feel unattractive or don’t have the energy to keep up with your kids or friends.

 

If whatever is to be gained by you changing is important enough to you, nothing will stop you.

Once you want the change for reasons so strong that nothing can deter you, then it instantly becomes a goal you can achieve.  You don’t need a date on the calendar to get you started.  You don’t need an extreme diet.  You don’t even need a personal trainer (did I just say that?!).  All you need to keep your desire for change always in the forefront of your brain.  What do you stand to gain by this change? How badly do you want it?

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Don’t focus on what you’ll lose, it’s too easy to say “well I don’t have that now anyway.”  Focus instead on what you’ll gain.  Gaining something is actually a stronger motivator than losing something. Take gambling for instance, we bet on what will win, not what will lose.  Focus on what you’ll win, and then remind yourself that any progress towards this goal leaves you in a better place than if you’d done nothing.  This wonderful quote by Winston Churchill sums it all up:

SUCCESS IS NOT FINAL.  FAILURE IS NOT FATAL.  IT’S THE COURAGE TO CONTINUE THAT COUNTS

So enjoy the holidays and your New Year’s celebration, but skip the resolutions.  Instead contemplate what you want to gain and how badly you want it, then go get it! (And of course, if you DO want a trainer, or a tailor-made workout routine created by a professional trainer, give me shout. I’m here to cheer you on and help you stay focused!)

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