Workouts

GIVING THE GIFT OF HEALTH

I love giving during the holidays but I like to support my clients in their goals by giving them things to support the lifestyle they have worked so hard for. Instead of the cookies, chocolates, or other treats take a closer look at some other ideas to support your family and friends to be healthy and fit also. I promise they will truly appreciate you thinking about their Massage:
It’s not considered just an indulgent to get massages anymore. It’s about taking care of yourself and giving your body what it needs to relax or work out those tight muscles. This is a perfect gift for someone who is over-stressed.

Workout Clothes or shoes:
Everyone that workouts at a gym or does outdoor sports need the proper clothing. This is a perfect gift to support someones fitness regimen.

Workout Equipment:
If you know someone that likes to workout at home or isn’t comfortable going to the gym workout equipment is perfect to support their goals. Think exercise balls, hand held weights, bands or yoga mats with a yoga video.

Gym Membership:
Has your loved one always wanted a gym membership. The gym is the perfect place for support, classes, expert advice and learning about nutrition and fitness.

Personal Trainer:
Do you know someone that wants to learn how to weight train to change body composition but doesn’t know where to start. Hiring them a personal trainer to get them started by showing them proper form and techniques would be perfect. Individualized instruction will give them the confidence they need to do it on their own.

Healthy Food Basket:
Giving a basket filled with fresh, delicious fruits is a blessing to so many this season who are tired of being tempted with all the sugary treats. I hope you enjoy and have a happy, healthy holiday!


How Being Mindful Will Get You a Better Workout

When you hit the gym, does your mind run a mile a minute, while your body struggles to keep up? If you find yourself distracted while working out – constantly checking the clock or running through your to-do list – then you could benefit from a little mindfulness.

Not only will it help you calm that overactive chatter in your head, being mindful can also help you get a better workout.

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Mindfulness simply means becoming more aware of the present moment. Being mindful during your workout helps you stay connected to your strength as you move through each exercise. And when you lose focus, your workouts just aren’t as effective.

Here are some ways being mindful will get you a better workout and better results.

• Mindfulness boosts your mind-body connection. I’m sure you’ve heard this popular term several times. But do you really know how to use your mind-body connection related to your fitness goals?

This is how it works, go within and focus on contracting the specific muscle your working on during the muscle-shortening phase of the exercise. The more focus and tension you can put on that muscle the stronger you will become and the faster your results.

• Mindfulness gets you better results. When it comes to training (and especially strength training), your overall form is extremely important! Being mindful during your workout improves the quality of your movement and exercise technique. This means less injury and better quality workouts for better results.

• Mindfulness leaves you feeling satisfied. If you focus more on your workout, moment by moment, you’ll have a sense of pride and accomplishment when you’re done. You’ll end your session feeling satisfied and knowing you truly did your best – now that’s a good feeling!

Tips on Training with More Mindfulness

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Sounds great, right? But how do you actually put mindfulness to work for you? Here are a few tips to get you started.

• Highlight a purpose for each training session. While you may have a big “why” that’s driving you and keeping you motivated, you also need to enter each workout with an immediate purpose that you can focus on.

For example, you might decide to concentrate on working your lower body for today’s strength training session. Or you might set a goal for a certain number of calories you want to burn during a cardio workout. Make your purpose achievable and measurable – and then, focus!

• Don’t rush it. Your time in the gym is just that – YOURS! Take your time once you start your workout and don’t rush through the movements. Focus on your form, particularly in strength training exercises. The goal isn’t to get in and get out – the goal is to make your time count!

• Breathe. Sounds easy, right? If you find yourself rushing or your mind wandering to a long list of “to do” items you need to tackle, bring yourself back to the moment by taking a deep breath. Remember, this is your time to exercise – everything else can wait.

So, when you feel the need to pop in earbuds and zone out on the treadmill, consider a change of course. Try working out without any distractions and stay mindful during your next workout.

Pay particular attention to what your body is doing and how it feels.

Changing how you exercise can make your time at the gym more enjoyable and unbelievably satisfying!

How To Get Motivated To Exercise

With summer around the corner, do you know how to get motivated to exercise and stay motivated?

Are you still on track with your New Year’s Resolutions to get healthy and fit?

But as spring rolls around and the newness wears off on your resolutions, you might start losing your motivation to hit the gym?

Hey, it happens to the best of us.

But now is the time to take back control and refresh those resolutions so that you can be successful in your fitness journey.

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Here are my tips to stay motivated from New Year’s Day to New Year’s Eve – and every day in between!

How To Get Motivated To Exercise

Strength in Numbers

After a long, exhausting day at the office, you may start thinking about skipping the gym – but if you have a workout partner that’s counting on you, you’re more likely to stay committed.

Accountability is everything when you’re trying to stick to positive, healthy changes in your life. If you want to crush your goals, find a workout partner or trainer to hold you accountable, or consider joining a group fitness class.

As a bonus, social time is great for your mental health, and time flies when you’re having fun with your friends!

Spice Things Up

Variety is the spice of life, and this applies to your workouts as well. It’s hard to get excited about the same old boring routine – so break out of your rut! Incorporate different machines and movements, as well as real-life activities like hiking or tennis.

Not comfortable enough in the gym to step outside your comfort zone? Then a personal trainer is a great way to go. After all, the magic happens as soon as you step outside your comfort zone and try something new.

Be a Goal-Digger

It’s hard to crush your goals if you don’t set them in the first place. Write down both short- and long-term goals and look at them often. You may even want to write them on sticky notes that you post in different places around your house, so you’ll see constant little reminders to stay on track.

And don’t forget the best part of setting goals: Celebrating when you cross them off your list!

Make Fitness Fun

Exercise doesn’t have to feel like “exercise.” It’s ok to have fun while getting your sweat on. If exercising is enjoyable, you’ll look forward to your workouts and stay committed. Do you like rock-climbing? Then take your workout outside and into the fresh air for a tough but fun climbing session.

Maybe you love the calming energy that yoga gives you. In that case, make the mat your go-to exercise when you’re feeling burned out.

Remember Your Why

I saved the best (and probably the most important) for last. Remember why you started your fitness journey. Whatever got you moving will help keep you motivated.

So, whether you’re trying to lose weight, add muscle, or just get a better overall bill of health, your “why” is your secret weapon when you need a little extra boost of motivation. If you have that fire within, you will keep going. If not, find your reason.

Could it be for your health, to be a good example for your children and family, to be the hottest and most fun grandma out there or maybe you want to rock your bikini at the beach. All you need to do is find your “why”!

Now that you know how to get motivated to exercise, stop reading and start doing!

Choose one (or more!) of these tips and put it into action. Before you know it, you’ll find yourself at the end of the year looking back at all you’ve accomplished.

Arm Toning Exercises - Your Guide to Sexier, Toned Arms

Today I want to share my arm toning exercises that will get your the sexy, strong arms we all love. (see video below)

When you see a picture of yourself, do your eyes go right to your arms?

Whether in pictures or in person, “bat wings” are hard to hide, especially if you want to rock a sleeveless top for a fun night out. We all want sexy, toned arms, and this guide will help you get your arms ready for their close up.

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Start by sculpting sexier arms in the gym.

If you want killer arms that look great in sleeveless tops, then focus on strength training exercises that develop your muscles and give your arms definition and tone.

While cardio will help you torch serious calories, strength training helps you burn calories even while sitting on the couch and watching Netflix.

Strength training is an absolute MUST if you want to get toned.

The main arm toning exercises you’ll want to focus on are moves that target your biceps and triceps.

Bicep curls and tricep extensions are my go-to exercises, and there are lots of ways to perform these two exercises, depending on what machines or weights you have available.

Remember to move through a full range of motion – squeeze at the top and then go slow on your negatives. This gives you more bang for your buck in these exercises.

Watch My Favorite Arm Toning Exercises.

If you can’t make it to the gym, try bodyweight exercises right in the comfort of your home – or even on the go! Pushups and tricep dips (using a chair) are excellent bodyweight exercises that really make your arm muscles pop. And they don’t’ require any special equipment.

But don’t forget that muscles are born in the kitchen.

There’s just no way around it – your diet is a huge factor in changing your physique. Muscles give you that fabulous toned look, but it’s hard to achieve tone and definition if you have excess body fat. And if you store a lot of fat in your arms (like many women do), that extra fat hides the muscles you’re working so hard for in the gym.

This means you may need to lose some weight first if you want to achieve better results from your arm toning exercises.

Unfortunately, you can’t spot-reduce fat.

So, your goal should be general weight loss. A slimmer body overall can noticeably change the appearance (or disappearance!) of flabby arms.

For muscular definition, make sure you’re eating plenty of protein and focusing on whole foods to get in healthy calories rather than empty ones.

Simply put, if you combine the arm toning exercises I shared with a healthy diet, you’ll have sexier, toned arms in no time.

The countdown to summer is on – and your arms are going to be ready for some fun in the sun!

5 Benefits To Combining Yoga and Strength Training

Have you ever thought about combining yoga and strength training?

While you may be hitting the gym regularly to strengthen and tone your body, you should really think about adding yoga to your fitness plan.

It’s been around forever and for good reason. Yoga boasts a ton of very real, very powerful benefits for both your body and mind.

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Let’s break down all the benefits of hitting the mat and incorporating yoga into your strength training.

BENEFITS TO YOGA AND STRENGTH TRAINING

Mobility

With regular yoga practice, you can increase your range of motion. How does this help you in strength training? Better mobility opens your hips, allowing you to sit deeper in your squats. If you’re working on overhead work, such as pull-ups, better shoulder flexibility will make your training much easier.

Plus, suppleness and mobility make you less prone to injury. If you have tight hips or shoulders, try a few basic poses, such as Down Dog, Warrior, or Pigeon.

Recovery

One good way to combining yoga and strength training, is to use yoga after a particularly tough training session to loosen tight, sore muscles. All that stretchy goodness speeds up your recovery and reduces soreness.

Making yoga a regular part of your routine will keep you fresh and ready to hit your next strength session, and you’re less likely to get injured than if you train with hard, tight muscles.

For optimal recovery, stick to gentle yoga poses that focus on stretching. Also, transition slowly between poses, while listening to your body about what feels good.

Strength

Strength training isn’t the only way to build and train those muscles – yoga incorporates some strength elements as well. Once you get into the more advanced yoga poses, you’ll be engaging a variety of muscles and challenging them in new ways.

Why does yoga and strength training go so well together?

Yoga strengthens your muscles through extended poses, it also strengthens your joints. And as a bonus, moving slowly and holding poses for an extended time builds endurance as well.

Relaxation

Namaste your way to less stress with yoga – it’s the perfect way to create balance in your life with its combination of control and relaxation. Hit the mat regularly to for a reset and release the tension and stress from everyday life.

And remember, with less stress, comes less cortisol (that pesky, fat-inducing hormone that can wreak havoc on our bodies).

To get the most relaxation our of your time on the mat, end each session with the indulgent Corpse Pose – lie on your back, relax, close your eyes, and breathe deeply.

Focus

Mental focus is undeniably important in many aspects of life – including when you hit the gym. Deep concentration and focus bring an awareness of your body and its mechanics as you power through your reps.

Likewise, balanced breathing goes a long way when you’re working on either conditioning or heavy lifting. It calms your mind and keeps you focused on the task at hand.

Yoga can help you conquer both breathing and focus, as these are foundational components of the practice.

Now, that your convinced of all the awesome benefits to combining yoga and strength training, it’s time to roll out your mat and start enjoying all that yoga goodness!

6 Ways Senior Women Can Start Taking Control Of Their Health

Guest post by Jason Lewis from strongwell.org

I want to share 6 ways senior women can easily find ways to stay healthy. The changes that we often associate with old age, such as reduced mobility, fragility, or cognitive ability, are often the result of lifestyle factors rather than the passage of time.

This means your quality of life is within your hands and that you can take back control of your well-being at any time.

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6 Ways Senior Women Can Get Healthier

1. Get Moving (Any Way You Can)

Seniors should aim for 150 minutes of moderate-intensity endurance exercise every week. Of course, for women who have been sedentary for many years, the idea of a full-on cardio session can be intimidating.

This is why you should take it slow; start by taking a brisk walk every day and build up from there. Or, if your joints are giving you a hard time, try swimming instead. Any movement is a step in the right direction.

2. Strength Training

Senior women tend to believe that weight training is not for them, but they could not be more wrong. Strength training has many great advantages for senior women, including preventing the deterioration of muscle mass and protecting the bones.

As long as you do it safely, under the guidance of an expert, there is no risk of injury — in fact, it can actually prevent injuries by making you feel more strong and stable.

3. Eat Right

In many ways, the nutritional needs of women over 60 are not very different from the rest of the population. However, many women struggle in specific areas. Some have trouble keeping on weight, others losing it.

Some should focus on getting more calcium for their bones, while others need more potassium to lower blood pressure.

If you do need to lose weight, do not engage in any dramatic diets. You need to feed your body the foods it needs, especially if you are exercising regularly. These foods include calorie-rich things like healthy fats and wholegrain carbs.

That said, if you like the prescribed nature of a specific diet, try one of these healthy senior-friendly diets.

4. Use Technology to Stay Safe

Assistive technology has come a long way, and life-changing innovations continue to be released onto the market every day. Today’s tech for senior women is sleek and unobtrusive, allowing you to stay safe and prevent injury in a variety of ways.

If you have mobility problems, for instance, you should look into getting an easy-to-use medical alert system.

5. Take Energy-Boosting Supplements

If you are feeling too tired to exercise, you could consider buying supplements that naturally boost energy. The best way to find one that will work for you is to take your time thinking about how and when you want to take them — a smoothie in the morning, a pill in the evening, a quick shot before workouts?

Also, check with your doctor before taking any new supplements.

6. Set a Nighttime Ritual

Regular sleep is essential to good body function, but seniors tend to have more difficulty falling asleep.

One way to combat this is to create a consistent nighttime ritual that relaxes your mind and body. Soothing sounds, essential oils, hot baths, nightly reading — whatever works for you is good.

The main thing is to keep it regular and get seven to nine hours every night.

If this doesn’t work, you might have a more serious sleep disorder. Speak to your doctor about your symptoms, and they will be able to recommend a course of treatment.

What I can tell all senior woman is, just because you’re over 60, it doesn’t mean you can’t make significant changes to your lifestyle. It’s never too late to get fitter and healthier, and doing so is not as difficult as you might expect.

Just remember to stay safe, consult your doctor, and rely on the expertise of professionals where possible.

Believe us, you can do it.