New Year. New You!

Steps to successfully completing your health and fitness goals this year!

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Happy New Year!  This is the time of year that everyone wants to set their resolutions or goals for the upcoming year. The majority of the time when people set resolutions, they don’t accomplish them.  Mostly because they set themselves up for failure. They don’t have the correct structure or process. So how can you set a health and fitness goal that you can accomplish?  What is the process that leads to success? Here are my key steps to being successful in your goal setting this year!

Step 1. Be specific. To set a health and fitness goal you need to be specific.  Don’t just say I want to lose weight, instead use, “I want to lose 20 pounds.”  Don’t say, “I want to run more,” instead use “I want to run a 10K,” or “I want to run a half marathon.”  Maybe you just want to get in better shape or stay healthy, then make a goal to workout 3 days a week for 45 minutes.  Then make another goal half way through the year to workout 5 days a week for 45 minutes. Our brains don’t process things that are vague, so clearly identify your goals with what, when, and how.

Step 2. Write it down.  Something awesome happens when you write down your goals. Not typing it in your phone or iPad, but physically write it down on paper. It takes it from your brain and starts the process of making it a reality.  Write your goals down and place  them somewhere you can see it every day so they are consistently present in your mind. Personally, I like to set my goals by the side of my bed so when I wake up in the morning, there it is – my goals!  It starts my day with motivation, focus, and excitement.

Step 3. Accountability. You need accountability to be successful. Unfortunately, we can easily let ourselves off the hook, saying things like: I can miss class today or I will walk tomorrow instead of today. But if you are meeting a friend at a workout class or for a walk you wouldn’t let them down, because they’re your friend and they’re counting on you, this is accountability. Someone that can keep you accountable could be an online group where you have to check in, a friend who will keep you accountable, a coach, or a teacher. Let this person know your goals and your plan then ask them to help you stay accountable. And even better if you can find a friend who is also setting health and fitness goals.

Step 4. Diet plan.  It is important if you are setting a health and fitness goal that there is a diet plan portion.  They say that fitness is 80% what you eat. Personally I don’t “diet”.  I eat healthy because I love it, it makes me feel good.  I haven’t always had a healthy diet, but step by step I changed my diet and my taste buds.  Now I crave healthy options instead of unhealthy ones.  Start by finding a diet structure that works for you. One of my favorites is not eating any carbs after 4pm.  Not a huge diet change but something that will make a big difference.  There is so many options and resources to finding a diet plan that works for you and doesn’t make you hate it. Because it you hate it, you won’t do it. You can always take it step by step.

Step 5. Set real and tangible goals. Don’t set a goal to lose 100 pounds in one month.  First of all, it isn’t safe and it isn’t tangible.  Set a goal to lose 5 pounds in a month, then set another goal to lose another 5 pounds the next month.  Don’t set a goal that you are setting yourself up for failure, set one that you know if you work at it you can do it.

Step 6. Come outside your comfort zone. Yes your goal should be tangible but they should also be outside your comfort zone and scares you in a good way.  In a way that you say to yourself this is so cool and it would be amazing if I could do this. And yes you can!

Step 7. Have a reasonable time frame. Goals should be fast approaching, 1 to 3 months.  A goal much farther than that seems to out of reach and chances of you procrastinating are high.  Set a goal in January for February or March.  Then in April set another goal for 2-3 months out and so on. Also, it is super important to put an exact date.  You must know what it takes first before you set your time frame.  For example, one pound of fat is equal to 3500 calories, so if burn 500 calories a day you can lose 1 pound of fat in 7 days. Or if you want to run a marathon and currently you aren’t running more than 5 miles at a time, then allow time to build up to the 26.2 miles.

Now you are ready! Set your goals and make 2016 amazing!

Fun, Fit, and Fabulous Summer

The official start to summer is just a couple a weeks away!!  I want you to have the best

Here are my Top 10 Summer Time Tips!

1.  Drink lots of water!  The weather is hotter,  you may be more active, and all the more reasons why your body needs more water.  So drink up!!  Add fresh fruit to your water to mix it up.

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2. Sunscreen!   It is important to protect your skin from the sun’s harmful rays.  Make sure to apply an ample amount of sunscreen, reapply very 2-3 hours, and don’t forget your hands and feet.

3. Eat fresh!  There is so many wonderful fruits and vegetables that are in season this time of year, so take of advantage of this!

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4. Sleep.  With the busy summer days, and nights, still make sure you are getting enough sleep.

5. Stay cool.  Go to the pool, water park, splash pad.  But if it’s too hot for that, then stay in, go to the movies, play a game, do a project in your home.

6. Transform your activities into exercise.  Instead of laying out at pool, jump in and swim a few laps.  At the beach, try kayaking or paddling boarding.  At the park, try pull ups on the jungle gym.  Get creative and remember very little bit helps!

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7.  Try something new!  Summer is a perfect time to start a new workout program, try a new workout class at the gym or a studio. Changing up your workout program is also good for your body and working your muscles in a different way can give your metabolism a boost.

8. Relax and rejuvenate.  It’s great to be active in summer but take time to relax and rejuvenate.  Get a massage, take a nap, get your nails done, try yoga.

9.  Fun!  Fun is a must in the summer.  Make a summer bucket list of all the fun things you want to do!  They can be big or small as long as fun is involved!

10.  Read.  Reading is a perfect summer activity and a great exercise for your mind!

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Hope you enjoyed these tips and have the best Fun, Fit, and Fabulous Summer!

Defy-ing Gravity

I am very excited to announce that I am now teaching at Defy Gravity in Corona Del Mar in Newport Beach, CA.

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This is a great studio that specializes in Pilates and cycling! Of course I was interested in this studio because I personally love the combination that Pilates and cycling offers. And after teaching cycling and Pilates at separate locations, I was very happy to teach both at this location. In addition the studio owners are both amazing people and a pleasure to work with. I have also had the opportunity to get trained on a brand new system introduced into the Pilates world last year. This is the Bodhi Suspension System and Defy Gravity is the first place to have this system in Orange County.

Come workout with me and check out this awesome studio.  I teach Reformer Pilates Thursday at 9:30am and Cycle with Bands Thursday at 5:30pm.

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Top Nutrition Tips

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Because I have a degree in Nutritional Sciences people are always asking me for nutrition tips.  So I put together my top 7 Nutrition tips that I have found to be key in establishing and keeping a healthy lifestyle!

 

1. Find out how many calories you should be taking in each day. The number of calories you should eat each day depends on several factors, including your age, size, height, sex, lifestyle, and overall general health.  Go to www.calorieking.com to help calculate your daily caloric needs.

2. The cliché is true… YOU ARE WHAT YOU EAT!!!  So know what you are putting into your body!! Make and keep a food journal. A great app I like is “My Fitness Pal” you can input everything, yes everything, you put into your mouth: all food, drinks, gum, snacks, etc.  Another great thing about this app is that it calculates your BMI and any fitness goals you might have.  Be faithful to your food diary!  To start any fitness program be faithful to your food diary for at least 1 week!

3. Drink water!!  Drink lots and lots  of water! At least 8 glasses a day.  But if you are doing strenuous exercise and sweating a lot you could need even more water.

4. Lunch should be your biggest meal of the day.  Not dinner, it is hard on your digestive system to have a big heavy dinner and then go to bed.

5. One pound of fat equal 3500 calories.  A healthy way to lose weight is to have a deficiency of 500 calories a day.  The deficiency can be from diet or exercise.  7 days a week multiplied by 500 equals 3500 calories or 1 pound of fat!

6.  Make sure you are eating your protein!  If you are exercising and/or strength training your protein needs have increased.  Here how you calculate how much protein you should be eating:

a. weight in pounds divided by 2.2 =  weight in kg

b. weight in kg x 0.8-1.8 gm/kg = protein gm

The number you multiply your weight in kg in part b is dependent upon how active you are.  An active person who lifts weights regularly should multiply by 1.5.  For example:

120 lbs divided by 2.2 = 54.54

54.54 x 1.5 = 81 grams of protein per day

7. Choose whole natural foods!  Whole foods in its most natural state, lots of fruits and vegetables, organic dairy, whole wheat and grains, natural sweeteners.

 

These are some basic fundamentals of nutrition.  Food is fuel and our bodies are temples, lets take care of them and give them the best fuel.  Now go eat and fuel your body!!!

~Workout Wednesday~

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Happy Workout Wednesday!  I know this is a busy time of year, but all the more reason to workout!  Working out releases endorphins that make you feel good which is good for your mind, body, and spirit.

A great quick full-body workout is a plank!  Make sure your hands are below your shoulders and you have a straight line from your shoulders to your feet.  Keep your core tight and hold this position.  Here is a great workout series:

1 minute straight arm plank

30 seconds rest

1 minute side plank on right

30 second rest

1 minute side plank on left

30 second rest

1 minute forearm plank

~Workout Wednesday~

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Pilates is for Everyone

 

Start by lying on your back with hands behind your head, the head and upper body lifted off the mat, one leg bent in towards the chest and the other leg reaching out away from the body.  The back is in imprint or supported neutral until you can keep the back absolutely still as the legs lower.

EXHALE – rotate the torso and reach the rib cage towards the opposite knee while keeping the elbows wide and the abdominals engaged.  The lower abdomen stays still and both hips stay on the mat.  No rock and roll!

INAHLE – as you switch sides.

Keep the lower abdomen and hips still while rotating the upper body as far as possible in each direction; lower the straight leg so it is on the same level as your eyes.

Do 8-12 sets!!!

Don’t Let the Holidays Ruin Your Diet!!!

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So summer is officially over and the holiday season is quickly approaching…  But don’t let the holidays ruin your diet!!  Here are my top tips to stay fit this holiday season.

1. Make your workouts mandatory.  There is always an excuse to miss a workout, but don’t.  Write your workouts in your schedule and don’t miss them.  This is a busy time of year but you deserve to make time for yourself.  You will happier and if you stay with your workout schedule.  And if you are feeling lazy then take a group class or workout with a friend.  Summer bodies are made in the winter!  Especially with the parties this time of year and all the food and sweets that are readily available, this is not the time to be missing a workout.  Do at least 30 minutes of exercise 5 to 7 times a week.

2. Find balance.  On Thanksgiving it’s tradition in my family to have pumpkin pie so I will have a slice.  The important part is not to go back for seconds or thirds, that day and the next.  Find balance and moderation, don’t deny yourself and make yourself miserable, instead have reasonable portion sizes and eat healthy the majority of the time.  You will notice the healthier you eat, the less you will crave unhealthy foods.

3.  Know what you are putting into your mouth.  When you are at a party or dinner eat off a plate.  Snacking or eating from a tray and lead to over eating, and when we over eat, we gain weight.  It is important to know what you are putting in your mouth.  Health pros suggest eating a small meal or snack that is rich in fiber and protein before a party to avoid over eating.  Also, make sure to eat plenty of vegetables because they are full of nutrient dense carbohydrates that will help you stay satisfied longer than refined carbohydrates.  Another great tip of knowing what you are putting into your mouth is to make and keep a food journal.

4. Drink water.  Sometimes we mistake being thirsty for hunger. The cues from our body that tell us we are hungry and thirsty are every similar.  So staying hydrated will help you from not eating when you are not hungry. In addition, if you trying to lose weight the process of burning calories requires an adequate supply of water in order to function.  In addition, when you are exercising it creates toxins and water has a vital role in flushing them out of your body.  There are several different recommendations for water intake and it can vary from person to person, however, drinking six to eight eight-ounces glasses of water each day is a standard recommendation.  So drink up and stay hydrated.

Enjoy your holidays and stay active!  Remember that shopping at the mall should not replace your workout, but it does add to your step count.  Every day is a new start, so if you had one bad day or even two the worse thing you can do is beat yourself up about, just start fresh the next day and stay positive!  HAPPY HOLIDAYS!