Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Bring On The Cute New Gear!

Motivate Me Baby!

It takes different things to get us going at different times. Sometimes it's enough to want to feel good or imagine ourself in a bikini...and other times it's nice to motivate thy self with cute new gear to get through a killer week of workouts.

I say....whatever works!

Bring on the cute gear!

Monday, February 11, 2013

AB Exercise To Try!

Here's a little ab exercise I have been loving lately and want to share with my workout buddies. ( That's you! )  You can purchase a swiss ball like this one for less than $30...so there's no excuse not to have one at home. This exercise is great for working those abs of steel as well as improving coordination and balance.

A.  Begin in a pushup position and shins resting on swiss ball.

B.  Without changing your lower back posture, roll the ball toward your chest by pulling it forward     with your feet.

C.  Pause and squeeze your abs tight for 2 seconds, then return to starting position.

             Repeat this with 3 sets of 8-12 and pat yourself on the back.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Stay Motivated all year!

Here's to your most motivating & fit year yet!

"THIS is the year I am going to shed the weight, get my dream body, FINALLY get fit, stop eating crap, commit to being healthy, stick to a fitness regime, wear a bikini to the beach, take care of my body, get rid of the spare tire around my waist, feel good!"


All too often we start our New Year off with some well intended resolutions, but somehow the enthusiasm starts to slip a little by this time in January. A good way to keep the enthusiasm going strong is to find little ways to STAY MOTIVATED! We can all be motivated by different things, so in a sense half the battle is figuring out what gets YOU going..and stroking that fire a little.

We ALL need a little bite from the motivation bug at some point, I don't care who you are. So here are a few tips I have gathered from others, as well as a few of my own, that might help you stay motivated throughout the year. 

1. Set Goals. Write them down. Look at them weekly. Set new goals often. This can be as simple as "I am going to workout 4 times this week." Setting long term as well as short term goals is also important.  The short term goals are the one's that keep us moving toward the bigger ones. When you write them down start with "I WILL" before every goal. The power of words is strong. 

2. Stay Positive. In this world today it's the easiest thing in the world to be negative...to me that's the lazy way. Just the way the little, fat devil on your shoulder loves it. Even our setbacks can bring about a positive lesson if we pay attention. Surround yourself with positive people and positive self talk. The second you start thinking you will never reach a goal, make the effort to flick that fat devil right off your shoulder and remind yourself that you can do ANYTHING you put your mind to.

3. Get inspired with pictures. Let's be honest here. Looking at pictures of people who look great & are fit is motivating. You are kidding yourself if it doesn't inspire you to work even a little harder. We don't all have the same ideal body, so find pictures that motivate YOU. Doesn't matter what anyone else thinks..you are trying to motivate yourself and nobody else.

4. Reward yourself along the way. You don't have to wait until you lose 50 lbs to reward yourself. Geez, that's no fun. Little things. If you set small goals and achieve them, like get to the gym everyday you set a goal to during that week...give yourself a pat on the back. It's well deserved! 

5. Moderation. When it comes to diet, I am all about moderation. Yes, do everything you can to eat clean food, have small meals spaced throughout the day, stay away from junk and stay on the healthy path. BUT, for myself anyway, the second you tell me I CAN'T have a slice of pizza for 3 months I am going to be thinking about how much I want that slice of pizza all day long. Of course this tip works best when you are able to indulge a little and move forward, not when you wolf down an entire large pizza. 

6. Keep a fitness journal. Consider it a way to show off to yourself. When keeping a fitness journal, you get to go back through it and marvel at how much you did or how far you have come. I did this when I ran my first marathon and it still inspires me when I look through it. Another great thing about a fitness journal is that if you have hit a plateau, you ( or a qualified trainer) are able to look through it and assess why and make adjustments.

7. Keep it fun! Seriously. This one is easy but often forgotten. Exercise was not invented as a form of torture, get that out of your head. If you are not enjoying it at all then find a fun and motivating friend or partner...go outdoors...try different sports...switch things up...blast some killer music! When eating healthy, try new recipe's..hit up those great new restaurants that offer healthy menu's...and hey, BUY those cute workout clothes and use them! 

Saturday, June 9, 2012

More Water Please.

Ok seriously, I have always known that we are supposed to drink lots of water. As most people do, I have been good about drinking lots of it...and then been bad at times. Sometimes we just need to be reminded how important it really is to be properly hydrated. Lately, I have had a workout partner badgering me to drink more water and telling me how important it is for my skin so I have been paying much closer attention to it...and how much more I should be drinking. I can tell you this..when I am drinking what I am supposed to be, I feel SO much better on so many levels.

Have you ever run up a flight of stairs and felt out of breathe when you KNOW you aren't normally that tired from a few simple stairs? Well, sometimes the reason for that can be simple dehydration! Just the other day it happened to me. Ran up ONE flight of stairs and my heart was beating like crazy...something that does not normally happen to me because I run stairs all the time for exercise! When I began calculating my water intake for the day prior and day of...I realized I had been neglecting the ever important H2O.

Water & Performance

The body cannot adapt to dehydration, which impairs every physiologic function. See the following EFFECTS OF DEHYDRATION! YOWZERS THIS IS SCARY!!!!

Decreased blood volume
Decreased performance
Decreased blood pressure
Decreased sweat rate
Increased core temperature
Water retention (Puffy face!)
Increased heart rate 
Sodium retention
Decreased cardiac output
Decreased blood flow to the skin (Hello breakouts!)
Increased perceived exertion (Tired up only 1 flight of stairs!)
Increased use of muscle glycogen (muscles get exhausted wayyyy faster!)

MEN! You should be drinking approximately 13 cups daily. Ladies! You are looking at around 9....and that's only if you are SEDENTARY. Water intake should be increased if trying to lose weight, and should also be increased if exercising briskly or living in a hot climate.

Consuming an adequate amount of water will improve body temperature regulation, metabolic function, and endocrine gland and liver function. ...As well, nutrients are distributed throughout the body MUCH better, blood volume is maintained, and fluid retention is alleviated. 

So to sum it all up...let's all start drinking more water. I'm in!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Sweet Potato or Bust!

Key Benefits Of A Sweet Potato

Being a girl from Idaho, I sure do love my potatoes. Sweet potato's are where all of the nutritional value is though...I can't get enough of these things and eat them everyday. Many days I eat 1/2 of a sweet potato with 2 or 3 of my meals and I feel like they give me the perfect amount of energy. Always steamed or baked in strips, with a sprinkle of cinnamon. Yum! This is definitely a carbohydrate that should be your best friend if you are trying to get or stay lean.

Checkout all of these great benefits you get from a sweet potato!

1. Full of antioxidants..such as Beta-Carotene. 
This means they are great for your skin too!!!

2. Packed with Vitamin A. 
438% of the recommended daily Value to be exact. Yowzers!

3. Contain Anti-Inflammatory Nutrients.
Studies have shown that after eating a sweet potato there is less inflammation in brain and nerve tissue.

4. Controls Blood Sugar Levels.
This is a big one! It can even help control blood sugar levels for those with type 2 diabetes. Low glycemic index means your blood sugar levels will maintain constant and you won't feel like a yo-yo after eating this great carbohydrate. Keep a steady stream of energy after eating a nutrient packed sweet potato! 

5. Contains 65% of your Daily Need for Vitamin C.
...also high in Calcium, Folate, Potassium.

1 cup of Sweet Potato's (Which is ALOT of Potato) contains 180 calories, 41 grams of carbohydrates and 4 grams of protein...on top of all the other great for you nutrients listed.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

One Of My Favorite Breakfast Recipes...

A Great Way To Start Your Day

I truly believe that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. If you don't put great nutrients in your body to get through the day then how the heck are we supposed to have the energy to tackle the obstacles coming our way..let alone workout? If you are a person that eats a low carbohydrate  diet, I still think it's important to get some good carbohydrates in your body early in the day. This recipe for my favorite "Torrie Made" cereal is a great one...and sure is yummy too! I've been eating almost everyday for months now...

Torrie Made Cereal

1/2 C Puffed Wheat Cereal.
1/4 C Kashi Lean Crisp Cereal
1/4 C Cheerios
1/8 C Pumpkin Seeds
 1-3 T Dried Cranberries
1/2 C Lowfat Greek Yogurt OR 1 C Almond Milk
   1     Scoop Low Carb Protein Powder 

If you have an allergy to Dairy Milk, Almond Milk is a great alternative to yogurt. I like to use Greek Yogurt as opposed to other types because it has a higher protein content, but you can substitute another low fat  yogurt as well. 

Approx. Calories: 350
              Carbohydrates: 50g
              Protein: 34g (26g if using Almond Milk)
              Fat: 9g

Sunday, April 8, 2012

The Power of Sleep on your FAT Levels

Sleep Away Weight Gain!

The Power of sleep is amazing. We have all heard time and time again how important it is, but when we have deadlines to meet, test's to cram for, or children crying in the next room we can quickly forget just how important it is for our own health to have adequate sleep. Sometimes we just need to be reminded...

Sleep deprived people often suffer more from:

1.   Obesity
2.   Type 2 Diabetes
3.   Heart Disease
4.   High Blood Pressure
5.   Depression
6.   Anxiety
7.   Injuries
8.   Poor memory
9.   Premature aging
10. Sickness

WOW! What a great list of reasons to aim for as much sleep as we can possibly get! Today I am only focusing on one thing: The affect sleep (or lack thereof) has on your waistline. It's astounding how much only a few hours every night can affect how much fat you may gain or lose, but it makes complete sense! The average adult needs 7-8 hours per night. Children need 11 and teens need 9-10.

It starts out innocently enough...when you haven't slept much and are running on low energy, you almost automatically reach for comfort foods like chips or candy. You might be able to fend off sleepiness short term with the sugar rush but ultimately the lack of sleep begins to set the stage for weight gain....

Exactly How Lack of Sleep Affects Our Ability to Lose Weight

...Has much to do with nightly hormones. 

"LEFTIN" is the hormone that tells you to stop eating or that you are satisfied. When you are sleep deprived you produce less Leftin. Meaning if you are producing less Leftin from not getting enough sleep, you may not be satisfied with one donut...it might take 5 until you feel you have had enough. Yikes!

"GHRELIN" is the hormone that stimulates your appetite and tells you when to eat...and when you are sleep deprived you have MORE Ghrelin! What does that mean? YOU WANT TO EAT MORE!!!!

I can tell you that when I don't get enough sleep I definitely feel like I want to snack on crappy food all day long. It's almost like I feel that the crappy food is going to give me a "surge" of energy that never really comes. Studies done at Stanford and University of Wisconsin on 70,000 women show that specifically, those who slept the fewest hours per night weighed the most. Women who slept 5 hours or less per night generally weigh more than women who sleep 7 hours per night. In these studies, women who slept 5 hours per night were 32% more likely to experience major weight gain (an increase of 33 lbs or more) and 15% more likely to become obese compared to those sleeping 7 hours per night.

Um OK So What Can I Do To Help This Sleep Thing Along?

Tips for better sleep...

1.  Avoid caffeine and other "uppers" in the afternoon. Not just because they may make it harder to FALL asleep, but because they will keep you in a LIGHTER stage of sleep. Deep sleep is where it's at!

2. Avoid big meals and alcohol before bed.

3. Don't Smoke.

4. Try to exercise at least 30 minutes per day.

5. Make the atmosphere at home RELAXING at bedtime. This means putting a muzzle on chaos...put the dang blackberry AWAY when you lay in bed, along with any work that needs to be done.

6. Minimize light exposure at night by keeping the t.v. or computer off and the curtains closed.

7. Try to keep a regular schedule. (Go to bed and wake up about the same time everyday)

Sometimes we may be in bed sleeping for 8 hours, but because the quality of sleep is so bad, may only be getting 2 hours of good sleep! If you feel like you aren't getting the sleep you need, it may be a good idea to look into a great new gadget I found called the Zeo Sleep Tracker. This device actually tells you how long you are in your deep REM sleep, dreaming and how long you are awake. I challenge you to really focus on getting enough sleep for the next 30 days and see how much you feel the difference. Don't let SLEEP hold you back from meeting your goals!!