Why Exercise?

I know not every person loves to exercise. But exercise doesn’t have to be a chore! With the right fitness program and the right motivation, exercise can become a habit that you actually look forward to doing. There are so many great reasons to workout, and many have been scientifically proven. For example, on the days you workout you are more creative, smarter, kinder, and you’ll sleep better that night.  Exercise can help you live longer, it makes you healthier, it can prevent many types of diseases, it makes you happy, and the list goes on and on.

Why don’t some people like exercise?

People who don’t like exercise are usually doing it for the wrong reasons. If your reason to workout is to lose weight, then you will get disappointed and most likely quit.  Humans love instant gratification, but losing weight is more of a long-term benefit. Some people approach exercise as a punishment for overeating or drinking too much. While other people may associate exercise with a negative experience from their childhood like getting chosen last for dodge ball or being pushed into a sport like tennis when they wanted to play ice hockey.

The first step in learning to like exercise is to do it for the right reasons. If your reason to exercise is to feel better, be smarter and more focused, be happier, sleep better, increase your energy, put a spark back into your sex life, and to have fun then you will be successful because exercise does provide these benefits.   And, guess what?  You’ll feel them right away!  There’s your instant gratification.

How can I make exercise a habit?

The best way to start making exercise a habit is to exercise at the same time every day. I love to exercise.  I can do it morning, afternoon, or evening but it is already a habit for me. Choose a time that is realistic.  Whether that is first thing in the morning before kids wake up or directly after work, it is important to find a time when you can’t be interrupted. I know things come up, but you and your health should be a priority. One of the many reasons why I like group classes or personal training session is that you are not holding your phone in your hand while working out which minimizes distractions and you get a better workout. The environment where you workout should be a place that is convenient and a place that you find enjoyable.  Likewise, you should enjoy the people that you see while exercising.

Another great way to make it a habit is to set triggers to remind you to exercise. You can set your workout clothes out the night before so that when you see them, it is a reminder that you planned on going to the club today. Another idea is to set an alarm on your phone for the time to go to the club or meet your trainer. These things will create triggers in your brain to workout and thus creating the habit.

How do I know what type of exercise to do?

Think back to when you were a kid. What types of movement did you do? Was it a sport, riding your bike, playing on the jungle gym, dance, running? I loved riding my bike as a kid; I would ride it over to my friends house, and we ride our bikes around the neighborhood for hours! Hello, exercise! But as a kid, we didn’t think of it like that. I believe that is one of the many reasons I like indoor cycling. Maybe there was a sport you loved to play as a kid; find the adult version. If you loved to dance, then try Zumba.

The key is to try various types of exercises and mix it up, so you don’t get bored. Find a workout that when you are done, you think to yourself, wow I did that! Feel empowered! Find something that you can do. Keep trying different workouts till you find the one or better yet two you like.

I teach Pilates and fitness to people of all levels and abilities. We find out what they like and set a goal. Together, we customize a program that works, challenges them, and encourages them!

Improving your physical well-being will improve your mental well-being, your relationships, and makes you feel good about yourself. Creating an exercise habit is the perfect way to achieve these benefits.

~Workout Wednesday~

Criss Cross / Bicycle

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!!!

~Workout Wednesday~

IMG_7303

 

I have a special Workout Wednesday for you….Pilates Strong Advance.  It is currently available on my new YouTube Channel titled Pilates Strong Video.  And here is the link: http://youtu.be/DTUhCAcQqj4

It is a challenging full body workout and it only takes 26 minutes!  Plus you can do it anywhere!  Give it a try this Wednesday and get your workout in 🙂

 

IMG_7280

 

Pilates is for Everyone

IMG_7288

Pilates is a full body workout that is low impact which makes it great for anyone, at any age.  Pilates helps people to move better, feel better, and perform at their best.  This wonderful exercise system was developed by Joseph Pilates helps people:

  1. Build strength and tone muscles
  2. Improve balance
  3. Increase flexibility and mobility
  4. Develop core strength

Joseph Pilates created Contrology which later turned into Pilates, over 80 years ago.  Exercises are performed on a mat or a specially designed Pilates equipment including the Reformer, the Trapeze Table or Cadillac, the Wunda Chair, the Magic Circle, and Barrels.  The Pilates system includes exercises for every part of the body and applications for every kind of activity.  When Pilates was first created, it was so far ahead of its time that it did not begin to achieve popular recognition until the first few years of the 21st century.  Over 10 million people are now practicing Pilates in the United States and numbers are growing every year.

People with back injuries may also benefit from practicing Pilates as the movements performed help to strengthen the back muscles without placing any pressure on them particularly on the Reformer or Cadillac.

So why not give Pilates a try!!!

Pilates is for Everyone

 

New Teaching Location!!!

I am so very excited to announce that I am now available to teach Private Pilates Sessions at Body Design in Newport Beach, CA.

Unknown

Body Design is one of Newport Beach’s premiere Pilates and Fitness Studios located above the Old Newport Theatre in Fashion Island.  Body Design has a beautiful Pilates studio overlooking the ocean and state of the art Pilates equipment.  Personally I have been taking classes there for months and have found it to be one of my favorites.

photo-personalized-fitness-services

Please contact me at TallGirlPilates@gmail.com to schedule your session today!!

 

Get The Skinny on Fat!

Good-Fats-Vs-Bad-Fats1

Good fats, bad fats… what is the difference?  But there is a difference, there are good fats and bad fats to look for in your diet.

Fat is the target of much scorn, yet it serves up health benefits you can’t live without.  Fat supplies essential fatty acids (EFAs).  Your body is incapable of producing EFAs, known as linoleic acid and alpha-linolenic acid, so it must come from your diet.  In addition, fat carries vitamins A, D, E, and K, which are fat soluble vitamins, into and around the body.

Fat is also necessary for maintaining healthy skins, and plays an important role in promoting proper eyesight and brain develop in babies and children.

Although fat does good, it is usually the culprit in the battle of the bulge.  And it is easy to understand since fat contains 9 calories per gram.  Good fat or bad fat, it packs more than twice the calories per gram than carbohydrates and protein.  Yet, it’s a mistake to equate dietary fay with body fat.  You can get fat eating carbs and protein, even if you eat little dietary fat.  Excess calories from any source is what is responsible for weight gain, not fat per se.  If weight gain is your concern then watching your total calorie intake.

There is an established link between fat intake and heart disease and stroke.  Diets rich in saturated fat and trans fat, both “bad” fats, raise blood cholesterol concentrations, contributing to clogged arties that block the blood flow.

When it comes to fat quantity and quality count.  Make sure you read the labels on your food!

To understand the game, you need to know the players.  There are four major types of fats:

  • monounsaturated fats (good fats)
  • polyunsaturated fats (good fats)
  • trans fats (bad fats)
  • saturated fats (bad fats)
GOOD FATS
Monounsaturated fat Polyunsaturated fat
  • Olive oil
  • Canola oil
  • Sunflower oil
  • Peanut oil
  • Sesame oil
  • Avocados
  • Olives
  • Nuts (almonds, peanuts, macadamia nuts, hazelnuts, pecans, cashews)
  • Peanut butter
  • Soybean oil
  • Corn oil
  • Safflower oil
  • Walnuts
  • Sunflower, sesame, and pumpkin seeds
  • Flaxseed
  • Fatty fish (salmon, tuna, mackerel, herring, trout, sardines)
  • Soymilk
  • Tofu

 

Saturated fats and trans fats are known as the “bad fats” because they increase your risk of disease and elevate cholesterol.

Appearance-wise, saturated fats and trans fats tend to be solid at room temperature (think of butter or traditional stick margarine), while monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats tend to be liquid (think of olive or corn oil).

BAD FATS
Saturated fat Trans fat
  • High-fat cuts of meat (beef, lamb, pork)
  • Chicken with the skin
  • Whole-fat dairy products (milk and cream)
  • Butter
  • Cheese
  • Ice cream
  • Palm and coconut oil
  • Lard
  • Commercially-baked pastries, cookies, doughnuts, muffins, cakes, pizza dough
  • Packaged snack foods (crackers, microwave popcorn, chips)
  • Stick margarine
  • Vegetable shortening
  • Fried foods (French fries, fried chicken, chicken nuggets, breaded fish)
  • Candy bars

If you are concerned about your weight or heart health, rather than avoiding fat in your diet, try replacing trans fats and saturated fats with good fats. This might mean replacing fried chicken with fresh fish, swapping some of the meat you eat with beans and legumes, or using olive oil rather than butter.

  • Try to eliminate trans fats from your diet. Check food labels for trans fats. Avoiding commercially-baked goods goes a long way. Also limit fast food.
  • Limit your intake of saturated fats by cutting back on red meat and full-fat dairy foods. Try replacing red meat with beans, nuts, poultry, and fish whenever possible, and switching from whole milk and other full-fat dairy foods to lower fat versions.
  • Eat omega-3 fats every day. Good sources include fish, walnuts, ground flax seeds, flaxseed oil, canola oil, and soybean oil.

Beach Body Bootcamp

wedding lawn BBC I was asked by the Balboa Bay Club to teach a bootcamp class for a special group that is coming in for one day only.  Having taken bootcamp classes and teach Pilates, I decided to do some research and develop a full body workout that can be done anywhere without any props!  It has short but intense cardio intervals, full body strengthening moves,  and some killer ab work. There are 10 exercises which takes 10 minutes, then repeat the series 2 more times for a total of 3 sets for a killer 30 minute workout!  Do as many reps as you can for each exercise!

1. Jump Rope – 1 minute, 30 seconds

Jump rope in place as if you were holding a jump rope.

2. Squats – 2 minutes

Do as many as your can in 2 minutes with your knees shoulder width apart, feel slightly turned out squat down keeping chest open and weight in your heels.

3. Lunges – 1 minute

Step forward with one foot and lunge forward so that knee is above your foot and you are balancing on your ball of your back foot.  Step back and switch legs.

4. Crunches with Legs Extended – 30 seconds

Lie on your back with your legs and arms pointed straight upwards.  Keep legs together and lift your head, neck and shoulders reaching your hands towards your toes.  Keep head lifted as you crunch up and down and do as many as you can for 30 seconds.

5. Twist Crunches with Legs Extended – 30 seconds

This exercise is just like the previous one, but when reaching upwards you will add a rotation.  When you reach up you will bring your hand pass the opposite knee by twisting in your torso.

6. Flutter Kicks – 1 minute

Continue lying on your back, place your hands by your side (or under lower back for support) and have your legs extended about 1 foot above your mat.  Keep your back flat on your mat as you move one leg up and the other down, like you’re swimming in a pool.

7. Lower Back Bends – 30 seconds

Lie on your stomach with legs straight, feet shoulder-width apart, and the tops of your feet touching the mat.  Your arms should be bent at the elbows, hands slightly higher than your shoulders, and palms on the mat.  Flex your butt and lower back and slowly raise your legs and arms about 6 inches off the mat, then lower and repeat.

8. Push-Ups – 30 seconds

Get in push-up position with your feet a few inches apart, your arms straight, and your hands near your shoulders.  It is ok to start with your knees on the floor until you get stronger.  Your body should form straight line from your head to heels.  Bend both arms and lower until your an inch off the ground (or as close as you can) then return to the starting position.

9. Dive-Bomber Push Ups -30 seconds

From the push up positions, widen your feet about shoulder width.  Lower your body to the floor by slowly bending your arms then press your torso upward until arms are straight and back is arched into back extension.  Reserve the move back to the starting position.

10 Jumping Jacks – 2 minutes

Yes, a classic but a good one! Stand up with your legs together and arms down by your side.  Keeping your arms and legs straight, separate your legs about 3 feet and raise your arms above your head in one jumping movement.  Then return to the starting position.

 

Make sure you consult a doctor before starting any workout routine.  I suggest a 5-10 minute warm and a 5-10 minute cool down.  Ok, now it’s your turn!  Give it a try!!