The mathematical look at health

The 80/20 rule of fitness:

Shoot for working out 80% of the time (the week, the month and the year) and allow yourself to have 20% of down time. Down time is important!
         That is: workout 5-6 times a week and it will come out to about 85% of the week
                80% of the month and
                80% of the year.
The rest of the time is fun, active, play time!
This means rest and recover your body and your mind. Do not get caught up in the over-training, over-doing-it cycle and burn yourself out or worse, injure yourself. Build rest days into your workout plan!

The 80/20 rule of eating:

Eat well 80% of the time and allow some treat-meals 20% of the time .....don't sweat the small stuff!

Results are in...and life continues

Life has finally settled down and it dawned on me that I never posted my before and after pics (ok, I was avoiding it). I'll do that, I'll also post my placing :)

I wanted to start this blog to motivate others in a real-life way and I realize that the fitness competition atmosphere is not real life, for almost ANYONE...myself included. Especially anyone who has children, a husband and a house to take cate of...successfully. I am a fitness and nutrition enthusiast/professional but I cannot sustain that contest-prep lifestyle for a long period of time without letting something else important slack. Heck, I was only 95% in for the actual prep for this contest, if I'm being honest with myself, which is not good. I enter things to win, not to just try. But it is what it is, I have school and a family that needed me more than my contest did. My husband and daugter are most important, but I did find fun and happiness...and as Steve says, Happy wife, Happy life.

What I do want to do with this post is show people that setting goals is important not only for fitness but for life, accomplishment is a wonderful feeling and something that, I feel, is important for everyone. So the results are.....

Protein powder-gluten free and yummy

       So I had an awesome, active day including our launch of BodyPump! 5 classes finished off with earning my spot in the 5 Minute Plank Club...whoop woop :) We made it a family affair with Steve doing a class and Gia cheering us on from the windows. What a great start to Labor Day weekend! I'm officially 6 weeks out from the fitness competition so it is in full swing. Nutrition is number one, workouts second. I eat cleaner than ever (hard to believe, I know.) and have increased protein and over all calories to get one more solid week of building muscle before I start to dial it all in. I have got to get that scale to budge---upward. by muscle mass. pronto. (Yes, I do know the muscle gain rules, 1 lb per month on average for average women..I know this... but I'm trying to push the limit. We'll just see how my body responds. So far, it's been one lb/ month...)

       Well I promised a review of the newest protein powder I found so here it is. It is called About Time 100% whey isolate. Now, this is important...if you are in the market for protein powder, whether it is gluten-free or not, you should look for whey isolate, as opposed to concentrate or blends. Whey isolate is the best, most readily available form of protein. This brand is not only gluten-free but sugar free, Sucralose (fake sugar sometimes included in "sugar free food"), and lactose free. So it's pretty clean and allergen free.
My review is a good one :)
Content: obviously great, no tummy aches which is common for me with some not so clean ones.. On top of that it is only 103 calories per scoop and 25 grams I protein- that is a high amount for such low calories. Look at it this way, (put on your math-caps)1 gram of protein has 4 calories, that means 100 calories come from protein and only 3 calories come from other ingredients (a marginal amount of fat). That is clean protein!
Taste: good- even sweet compared to other sugar free ones but really good vanilla flavor. Oh! And I can't forget to mention their other flavors- cake batter and chocolate and so many I haven't tried so I can't say how good they are but sound tasty.
Texture: very powdery and smooth
Mixability: I try all shakes/powders with water first and it was pretty tasty, granted the last one I had was really gross, but even comparing it to others I loved the flavor of this one. I use it mostly with unsweetened vanilla almond milk and it mixes into my almond milk very well and is more vanilla-y and smooth. I only mix with about 3/4 cup.
Price: $$- really good comparatively and when buying from you can get free stuff too so it makes it better. Just make sure you order the next tub BEFORE you run out or you'll be waiting for their slow shipping while craving the protein yumminess.

So in conclusion: Love it, go buy it!
I make a delicious nighttime snack with this powder and as I mentioned, here it is:
1/2 cup -3/4 cup vanilla almond milk
1 scoop About Time vanilla powder
1/2 cup frozen blackberries
Oatmeal to desired thickness-sometimes I add more if I have carbs/calories to spare by the end of the night.
Drizzle with honey.

I eat it every night as a sweet desert while my hubbs is chowing down on his nightly Magnum ice cream bar that I drool over (ooohhh when competition is over I am so having one).

Protein crisis fixed- cheap, fast meal included

So it's been too long but I wanted to post an update on my life as a mom-wife-grad student-personal trainer-fitness competitor-in-training- bodypump-memorizing-maniac of a life. Wow, I'm doing a lot but it's fun for me (probably not for the hubs but I certainly appreciate all his help). As you can see, still no pictures posted. This is for two reasons, 1) I'm embarrassed. and 2) Gia lost my camera! Ok, so I've seen progress.... 3% bodyfat gone and no pounds gone. That is my goal, I don't want to lose weight, I actually want to see it go up by 2 or stay the same. I need to loose bodyfat and gain muscle so I'm doing it right so far. I'll tweak it for the next week and keep tweaking until comp time.

Here's the crisis: I ran out of protein powder last week! Call the news station, call the National Guard- we almost had a national crisis. Well, at least that's how I felt! When I ran out of protein I was so low and my muscles just couldn't recover like I needed them to. I tell everyone that protein is important! My friends that have listened have seen results.  It is hard to get a lot of protein sometimes, especially if you are in "contest prep" mode, like myself. And honestly, it's hard even if you just want a normal amount.  I need between 115-140 grams of protein a day and for someone that doesn't like meat, that is very very hard. I was nearly crying while choking down my 2nd piece of chicken after eating 2 fish fillets and a can of tuna earlier in the day :-/

Well, I found a great shake- it's the 4th brand I've trie.... I just want a good one, that's all I ask. I have been in the market for a Gluten-free, sugar free, sucralose free, lactose free whey isolate protein powder that has BCAAs (branched chain amino acids) for recovery- and I think I finally found one. I received it Friday and will use it for one week before I review it... I'll let you know if it's a keeper!

Favorite meal of the day-Cheap, low cal, easy:
Swai fillet (fish) sprinkle with oregano, thyme, basil and chili powder all to taste- baked in the oven 15mins
peach salsa from Trader Joes 1 tablespoon
gluten-free corn tortilla - Mission Yellow corn are gluten free
Green beans or broccoli --- or awesome salad of your choice (watch the dressing, salsa is a good one for low cal and adds veggies :) )
black beans- make sure they are low sodium. Eat 1/2 cup, it's a decent amount!

aaahhhhmazing. Low carb version is no tortilla and only 1/4 cup of beans. But either way, it's a great fish taco with high protein, good fiber and great veg choices.
Follow it up with my favorite protein packed after-dinner snack that I'll post during the protein powder review. So check back in a week or so!

Here's a great pick from our active-recovery day at Ha Ha Tonka state park...400+ stairs one direction, plus a mini hike! (don't mind the post-picnic lunch food baby protruding from my midsection..mmmmm picnics)

Live Happy and Healthy!

Happy and Healthy :)..Workout included

Alright, well it has been too long...but I can say I've not gotten off track. Gia, as you know, had surgery on her kidney and she is doing great, totally recovered and running around. The only sign is the large scar on her side but that will go away in time. We'll go back in a week for the post-op and then one more time going under to get the stent out in a few more weeks. Thanks all for the calls and stuff, it made it go by faster.  But now it's hot and we are back to normal loving the heat and playing in the water every day!

On a "my thing, my time, non-mommy" topic...We, my friend and I, are about 12 weeks out from our Fitness Competition and it's SO on.... cleaner eating, more focused workouts and walking in 5 inch heels daily! I'll get some before pics up soon, I will have to have a shot of some adult beverage or some other inhibition inhibiting substance first but I'll post it in the next week or so. :)  If anyone is curious and wants to get on a schedule here's my workout plan (and plans change sometimes...)
                 Monday- cardio, either swim or bike (one hour max), lifting back and biceps and an at home HIIT workout in the evening (see below workout).
                 Tuesday- slight cardio (only because I teach my cycle/sculpt class) and lifting legs       
                 Wednesday- Lift chest and triceps (maybe back), cardio swim
                  Thursday- same as Tuesday
                  Friday- cardio, bike or swim...or both! and abs
                  Saturday- BodyPump
                  Sunday off or family hike or swim
You can join in and make it a group thing...I'd love to know people are doing it too.

 So anyways, while in the hospital Gia was pretty much knocked out so I was able to get in a workout while's your Mommy's-at-home-workout- Sippy Cups and Water Bottles:
20 plie squats (legs out wide with toes pointing to out)
20 front knee raises each leg (raise knee to opposite elbow, twisting your torso)
20 tuck jumps (put your hands waist high, palms down. Jump from standing position but jump/tuck your knees up high enough hitting them on your hands)...these were interesting to do in the hospital!
20 chair dips for triceps (sit on a chair, place hands beside your hips with fingers facing the front of chair. Scoot butt off the chair holding yourself up with hands and dip up and down.)
10 push ups with hands on the chair for easy or floor for harder- push yourself- make it harder!
20 jump lunges (get into a lunge, hold one second then jump up and switch your legs, do this 20 times!)

Repeat this workout as many times as you can...after the dishes but before the kiddos wake up from naptime! ;)

And for our newest clean, gluten-free meal favorite...
Salmon with lemon zest and juice (or if you're lazy just lemon juice, ask me how I know that.) and garlic
Black beans from the crockpot seasoned with salt, pepper and chili powder
Broccoli and green bean veggie mix (um, totally from the frozen department, much easier)
Tomato Basil polenta baked! yummmmy

Secret desert: I cup of plain Greek yogurt with a cup of frozen berries on top (no sugar added fruit).

Work it Wednesday

You can do it, get up and work out, drink your water, core tight and good posture! No, I'm not talking to a client...I'm motivating myself! It's been one of those weeks and it's Wednesday, a day that most people will lose steam and only keep rolling downhill into the weekend (where we may, or may not drown our "fell off the waggon" pitty with more eating out). You get tired from work and kids and school so you put off the grocery store, then you go out to dinner because you don't have any food. Then you're too lethargic to work out. Then you just go out for lunch because you'll hit the store after work but that cuts into workout time...I know how it is. Don't let that snowball start rolling. Melt it away. Right. Now.  Life awaits you!

I, myself have been trying to do two-a-days to jump start the muscle building for the fitness contest coming up in October. But between that and Gia's teethinga (to be read: no sleep) I'm starting to get exhausted. I've been about 1- and- 1/2- a-days lately and I'm perfectly happy with that. It's not healthy to stress about your health, remember that. It will only be counterproductive. Just because I get asked by friends a lot...I'm increasing protein to fuel my muscles but also to help me stay on track while eating. Some people have taken my advice and added protein to your day and there have been pounds lost, yay! It's not just for putting on muscle but it's to help your body stay full longer your muscles burn. So take the protein challenge and add protein to every meal and snack and see how you feel. Add greek yogurt to a snack that was just carbs, peanut butter (almond butter) to your apple, shredded chicken to your salad or an egg to your breakfast.  Here's a protein packed GF (gluten free) dinner we all loved! (workout follows)

Tofu Tacos with brown rice and black beans:
 *tofu was the protein for the tacos and beans and rice combines is a complete protein which will keep you full and give your body all the amino acids needed*

1 package extra firm tofu- pressed between paper towels by a heavy pan or book or something
1 tablespoon of taco seasoning (or more, your choice)
gluten free corn tortillas (Mission Yellow Corn are my go to)
3 cups coleslaw mix
lime juice
Greek yogurt, plain
shredded cheese
olive oil/ coconut oil
Avocado- sliced

Slice the tofu in strips, about an inch wide. Brush the tofu with the oil then coat with taco seasoning and put in a non stick pan to crisp up.  While that's happening take the coleslaw and mix in a few dribbles of oil, some lime juice (about 2 tablespoons...I don't measure, I just go for it). Add to the coleslaw olives, sliced radishes, pinch of salt and pepper. Then take about a cup of Greek yogurt and mix in some lime juice, salt, pepper and tiny dash of cumin. 

The tofu should be crispy on two sides, take it and lay one or two slices in your tortilla, top with coleslaw mix, top that with greek yogurt dressing and shredded cheese (or leave off if you watch calories). You should also add some avocado either on top of that or mix with your beans and rice on the side.

 For the beans, I just take black beans and put them in the crockpot for about 5 hours, and cook brown rice on the stove top with 1 3/4 cups of water for every cup of rice for about 15 mins.

Ok, here's your at home workout..sweat and enjoy:
--High knee running, 50 high knees
--squat, step right leg wide to right and plie, step back to a squat, then step left leg to left for wide plie(add weight by holding your kid, holding weights or holding anything heavy about shoulder height)
-- 10 Push up, up up/down downs. push up then lower self onto elbows for plank then push each arm back into push up position, that's 1.
--10 mountain climbers switch to 10 bicycles- repeat this duo 10 times!
-- 5 handstand burpees... do a burpee and after the jump do a handstand. Preferably against a wall. The workout will come with the trying to get up there... Don't worry if you don't make's all in good health!

Repeat all 5 exercises as many times as you can... if you're feeling adventurous drop the number of reps (the "I'm just getting started" level) and do each exercise for 20 seconds on 10 second rest ("still gettin' it together" level) or step it up to 50 seconds on 10 seconds rest ("really wanna sweat" level).

Happy, healthy day! -Picture this while working out:
Might make it go by faster....

Water, water and more water! +workout

       Welcome to your weekend! It has been a week since a post but I had to get life back together after one of the best Memorial Day weekends :) Family and friends was awesome. We spent our entire weekend on the water...river, lake and baby pool. But that is not what I'm talking about when I say "water, water, water and more water..." It is important to drink your water. We all hear it every day but do we really do it? I don't....and I wrote a statement/thesis paper on it in college! I'm one of the worst offenders but as most teachers, coaches and trainers say "do as I say, not as I do". I am a proponent (and doer) of six small meals a day but what do you do in between? Drink water. Water cleanses the body and makes you feel full, two very beneficial properties. So drink your water, you will see a major difference in your body, it will change. Whether you want to lose weight or just get healthier, water will play a major part. One glass at every meal and as many in between as possible.
          On that note...Get off the soda/pop whatever you call it, don't drink it. I know that it's hard, people say they are addicted but it is so important to quit that habit. It's bad for your teeth, it's bad for your bones and it's bad for your body. It is not a cleansing beverage...would you take 30 scoops of sugar, dissolve it in a glass of water and then drink it? That sounds gross right? Well, soda is just that--- along with a bunch of coloring and dye. Grab your bottle of water and get it going. Your body is 70% water, not soda or sugar....Water is your lifeblood! So as the weather gets warmer and your body starts sweating make sure you grab water to drink.

Ok, being that it is warming up we will be showing more skin! Here's a workout I did for a quick bout of abs and cardio. It's an at home workout so grab your water and sweat!

jump rope for 1 min
25 reverse crunches x2

High knees (run in place) 1 min
25 v-though crunches x2 (legs up straight and spread like a v, reach arms through legs towards wall)

Mountain climbers 1 min
15 side plank dips each side

Jumping jacks 1 min
15 full extension crunches (lay on back arms and legs outstretched, lift hands and feet up towards the middle and together so your body makes a V and extend them back to lay out flat)

Burpees 1 min
40 russian twists- tapping each side 20 times (weighted option: hold a jug of milk or a dumbbell)

Repeat this up to 4 times!!!! Killer...drink up!

So here's a bonus snack.... clean eating is easy to do and I want to give you recipes to help
Organic apple with 10-12 almonds....and a large glass of water :)
   -it's a slow to digest carb with natural sugar (a good pick-me-up) and a protein-

Happy Healthy weekend!
ps...if anyone reads this and needs a video of the exercises, it's something I'm considering but want to know if it's needed in the first place :)


That's right, I committed to my friend, I'll do it with her. I will be training for a fitness competition (bikini is the category- it's more feminine than a figure competition, more about overall muscle tone). As I said before, I'm a goal oriented person and neither of us can train for a running goal, so this is, it will enhance my personal training. Great, since I put it on the Internet does that mean that it's final and I can't back out? I'm now accountable to the Internet people :) Maybe now I really won't give up. So the story will be told along the way, we're beginning with eating clean (I already do that but I'll clean it up even more...less random snacking but not taking the fun out of life!). Remember, I'm a regular girl with a regular family and a regular life (that includes MBA studies, a 1 year old, some personal training clients and a house that I have to try and keep standing), this is going to be a stretch to accomplish- that's the point. It just might be a hysterical journey but laughing is an important part of a happy life, right?!

Eating clean is basically not eating processed foods and eating food closest to it's natural state. It is not always easy for everyone so if you're going to transition your family into eating healthier for life (remember, it's a lifestyle not a diet) my suggestion is to start slowly. Begin with breakfast and your morning snack- the two most important meals of the day. Then every so often, add some more clean meals. Here's the first day of eating clean-er meals and snack ideas:
Breakfast- Oatmeal with almond milk and 2 eggs (same thing I've been eating forever- minus the sugar adding Agave nectar, it's sweet with a lower Glycemic Index)
Snack- 3/4 cup non-fat Greek yogurt with berries (frozen is cheaper and just as healthy if they are frozen fresh)

So I'm avoiding some homework from my marketing's the workout I've come up with. You can do it in your house (the best kind!) Engage the kids and you've got a game to keep them entertained- and moving.
  • -Frog Jumps 10 (standing position, jump by bringing your heels up towards your body like a frog, land standing and keep knees soft)
  • tricep chair (or coffee table) dips 10 (sit on edge of chair with hands griping the seat by your hips, scoot butt off of edge while holding yourself up then lower body and push back up straightening your arms)
  • push-ups 10 (no resting after dips, go right to these)
  • leg swings 10 each leg (you can use an exercise ball, chair bottom or anything you can swing your leg over while standing up.) swing let over the object from in to out then swing it back- that's one.
  • High-knees 1 minute (running with super high knees, you can just slow it down if you're not running yet or if you're still postpartum and can't jump, just step with high knees)
    • REPEAT...AS MANY TIMES AS YOU CAN (resting 1 min before starting over). Try to beat your number each day you do this.
Enjoy...sweat...and live happy and healthy!  *leave any questions in the comments

Stop the DIETING maddness

I hope everyone had a good Mother's Day and I hope you are still being celebrated and are still pampering yourself even though it's all over :) I heard something said this weekend that irks me and I had to put it out there to make sure everyone hears this. Someone said this weekend "well, THIS is a bad day for my diet! Guess I'll diet again on Monday..."  That is so frustrating to me, I with the word 'diet' would just disappear. Or at least only be used when talking about someones dietary in "their diet consists of...", not A Diet.  When someone is on A Diet it gives them a something to fail at, or take time off of (and usually not go back to!). But when we lead a Healthy Lifestyle, those random days where you eat something 'bad' is just a fun day, not a day where you think "I failed, I ate wrong or I will have to start over." Does that make sense? Diets fail. But healthy lifestyles are there forever, it's your lifestyle, how you live every day and there's no way around it. Those little dietary indiscretions aren't going to hurt as bad or be as detrimental when you feel good about yourself every other day of the week.

It's like talking to a child and telling them they can't do something, what do they do? They want to do it more. What do teen girls do when you say they can't date that bad-boy? She wants to date him more. What happens when you tell yourself you can't have that cookie? you can't stop thinking about cookies until  you go to the store and get a box! So give yourself that cookie. Then have a salad for dinner :) If you tell yourself you're "on a diet" then it's something that you will really not want to do. But if you decide to live a healthy life and just be healthy because you need to then it won't be so tempting to be "bad". This is your one live, live it, love it and be healthy. the Golden Rule of life: Treat your body like you want to be treated, with respect.

I challenge every one of you to STOP DIETING! Free yourself from that ball and chain and just live healthy, you will be happier. Food is fuel for your body, it helps you get though the day. And that bowl of fettuccini alfredo will not be your 'last one you can ever have' so don't eat a heaping amount like it's your last meal. Have a small portion, savor it, add some veggies and be OK with your choices. Make healthy choices for life.

Ok, talking with a friend today about protein and how it is important to weight loss.... so here's a protein packed snack:
Protein Packed Peanut Butter balls-

1/2 cup Peanut Butter (natural- try a Mennonite store here in MO, it's way cheaper for fresh PB)
1/2 cup Agave nectar (organic. Agave has a lower glycemic index so it won't give as much of a "sugar rush" as honey...or sub honey)
1 cup oats (quick or regular)
3/4 cup brown rice flour (it's gluten free. but you can use any flour)
1/4 cup vanilla protein powder (or just 1 cup of flour if you don't have protein powder)
*optional: craisins or raisins to tase...about 1/4 cup

Combine flour and protein. Mix peanut butter and Agave nectar. Mix remaining ingredients together then add it all together in to a large bowl and evenly combine. Roll into little balls, about 1". Place them on a wax paper covered cookie tray and put in the freezer for 30 mins. Eat, enjoy!

Have a Happy, Healthy day! If you have questions about a workout or gluten free eating please leave it in the comments...

Sprung! (and a workout)

It has sprung, Spring, that is.... I'm so excited because now we can do even more things outside. Here is a preview of what the rest of our Spring will consist of! So stoked and I know Gia is too.  I tell all of my spin classes that I am not an outside rider because what I do outside on a bike I don't necessarily call bike riding. It's more...cruising or meandering, but we do it for a long distance and the ride is always great! My FitTip for you all...You pull the kid trailer! It adds weight and creates drag, it's an extra fun workout that includes the whole family. (your workout of the day/week is below)
 This is Gia getting us ready to go ^
This is Gia saying, "I'm waiting!" ^
OK, on the off-chance you'll be busy with kids and household stuff (to be read with sarcasm!)'s a workout you can do fast and at home but it will get your heart rate up and metabolism flying:
(since this is the "Sprung" post it's a lot of jumping):
Jumping Jacks 40
push up jacks 10
burpees 10
squats 10
alternating lunge jumps 10 (5 each side)
Do it, Love it, Feel it burn!

*OK, I say "workout of the day" but you should do these types of workouts 3 times a week and on the other days (maybe 2 or 3 days) add in another workout that I've previously posted or a walk/jog outside or other active activity, that will make 5-6 days working out and 2 or 3 different workouts. Varying them too much can be less effective because you are not familiar with the moves and if you're focusing too much on working hard and not enough on the motion then it puts you in danger of injury. On the flip side, if the moves are always new and you focus too much on the actions then you don't get a good enough workout. Therefore, the better you know the moves the harder you can work without being distracted by new, complicated moves. So Work, rest and repeat :)*

Fitness competitor, what?! Plus workout

A lot of us are goal oriented people, we need something to shoot for or to accomplish. I am that way. I always need something to go for or look forward to; a vacation, a visit from a friend, an event, a lunch date, breakfast, lunch or dinner... How ever big or small, I am always looking forward to something. So, half marathon- check. Now I need something else on my docket.

I am so much of a goals person and so much dislike running that as I was plotting my next task and coming up empty I actually considered, wait for competitions. After about 48 hours of seriously considering it and researching it to the end of the Internet- I haven't actually counted it out yet :-/

Ummm, that's right, you read that right. My half marathon goal was directly tied to my being a mom and wanting to complete my first one within a year of having a baby. (I would have it done 4 months earlier but I broke my foot so I was a month late, whatev, I did it). This "new goal" if I choose to accept it would be an accomplishment for me personally because my post baby body is so different prom my pre-baby body, like most moms- unless you're Heidi Klum or Giselle. So you might want to stay tuned because along with mom and family oriented FitTips I might be posting about that journey... Or another one if I find a better goal. We'll see.

On that note, I've seen the need to bump up or at least just vary my training so I added some different things. I have always been into HIIT training (high intensity interval training- the latest "fad") since I'm a spinner for the last 10 years. But I added sculpting moves to it.
Here's yesterday's killer:
2 mins on a spin bike or jump rope
Push ups -max reps
Walking lunges -30( 15 each leg)
Squat jumps- 12-15
Lateral raise- 10-12 directly to
Overhead press-10-12
Mountain climbers- 20 secs
* rest 15 secs in between moves and 1-2 mins between repeats. Repeat 2-5 times*

Happy HIITing

tatoos needed to get job done?

So, that arm workout killed...and I'm still a tad fatigued, so I did it again and can't wait to be sore again :)  During spin this morning we were talking about how it seems that personal trainers these days are so full of aggression, are angry and they use a hardcore attitude to motivate their clients. We see it on TV fitness shows and on workout videos (ala Shawn T on Insanity)...I, personally, blame Jillian Michaels for that attitude but that's a whole 'nother topic. One guy today said that it's like a trainer must be aggressive and have a sleeve tattoo to be taken seriously or to be perceived as a kick a$$ trainer. Well, I definitely see this portrayed in the media but I certainly want to change that attitude!  I'll never be an angry man with a sleeve tattoo but I AM an aggressive personal trainer.

Not every person that is a personal trainer wants to be the yelling, screaming, get-to-the-root-of-your-problem-crying type. Most of my current clients are older (50s+) and my goal with them (and my own personal health and fitness goal) is to "keep them upright" and moving well into their older years. It is not yelling, grunting and tattoos that is going to motivate them to keep moving, reduce their body weight and increase muscle strength, it's the healthy lifestyle and the prospect of a longer, more independent life. 

So on that note: your motivational workout for the day... 10 jumping jacks followed by 10 push-ups repeat 8-10 times.  Get it done fast, get it done right (butt down during your push ups! soft knees while jumping!) and feel great going into your weekend :)
(thanks for the motivation!)

FitTip of today

Hola, and good morning! I had a few clients today, one was after I taught the 5:30am spin class so it's been a long day already. I've been wearing the BodyBugg to track my calorie expenditure during workouts in order to see where/how my body works the best now that I'm nursing less and my body is regulating. I can say that during both spin (50 minutes) and the lifting I did later in the morning, I almost burned the same amount during each workout! I was doing a semi-circuit lift so it was faster paced. That was rather frustrating but at the same time, felt good to know I was burning...but I would expect spin to burn way more than I did- I must push myself harder. Moral: workout, period. Just get moving and don't forget to lift strengthens and protects your bones from osteoporosis breakdown.
Here's the arm workout I did:

Do's awesome! I would recommend doing it 2-3 rounds as one is just enough to get tired but not enough to really FEEL the Burn :)  I like it because it's supposed to help you look good in a strapless dress (that's what Alyssa from Life of bLyss posted it for and I want to give her credit... ) but as a mom, these are all the same muscles to help you lift, carry and hold your little ones...especially those lucky ones with cute chunky-monkeys :)

Happy, Healthy day...

Gluten-free meals for the day

Going gluten-free has been an interesting change for us. (Please see Gluten-free living page to see why we must eat this way). I am half Italian so carbs are a MUST in my life and as a fitness professional I understand that carbs are a necessary fuel for the body. Peanut butter on whole grain toast was my go-to for a pre-workout snack, whole wheat pasta with scrambled eggs and spinach topped with balsalmic vinegar was our quick but healthy dinner. I would never advise anyone to eat gluten-free unless they are sensetive to gluten, are breastfeeding a baby that is or are living with someone who is and you are supporting them. Whole grains are integral to a healthy diet- unless it makes you unhealthy that is.
Here is what we may eat on any given day:
      -oatmeal with banana or blueberries
      -apple and peanut butter
      -stir fry tofu with veggies
      -flavored rice cakes and yogurt
      -stuffed bell pepper (ground turkey/cheese)

Our favorite after dinner snack recipe...
Greek yogurt covered blueberries!

Fresh blueberries
Honey flavored greek yogurt

How to:   skewer berry, roll around in yogurt, put it on wax paper and repeat for remaining berries. Place wax paper in the freezer for about an hour and enjoy

Earth Day Family Fitness

It is upon us, Earth Day! This day is to celebrate our present environmental fitness and to promote the future by preserving and creating anew the environment we live in. This is a day that signifies Spring, rebirth and the future health of our environment.  Plant a tree with the family and you've begun your active lifestyle activity for the day. Go on a walk and enjoy the weather, observe the trees, collect leaves and make leaf prints. Pretty much everything about Earth Day is active, so get out there!

Earth Day is today! and we have had a wonderful weekend. It started out with the Great Diaper Change where moms all over the world changed their baby's cloth diaper at 11:30 am in an attempt to break a world record for the most cloth diapers changed at one time. We don't know yet if we did it but we sure had fun. I changed Gia from a IcePink Grovia into a BumGenius covered mathematical equations (her Geek Chic diaper).  I held a special preview class of the Body Back Bootcamp but instead of strollers we all wore our babies in carriers...that was a fun twist! Use your baby for extra weight while lunging and squatting, do some dances for cardio and then take her off and do push ups over her, giving a kiss everytime you hit the bottom of the pushup! Bam, 1/2 hour workout with your baby in tow.

 Then we went to the local nature center and walked the trails and looked at the animals with a friend and her baby. It was a wonderfully active day and I can't wait to do it again.

That's us on the front page of the local paper...yay!

Teething releif ...FitTip of the day:

Ahhh, teething. Something all humans go though and all moms come to dread. Gia's been teething these last two weeks- molars! Four all at the same time. Today was insane as it just hit her all at once and it was just pain and runny nose and crying just all of a sudden. Sun, fresh air, a little swinging and a stroller ride is what cures her every time :) By going to the park and distracting your little one with fun and fresh air is the best remedy for almost anything, especially teething. Some like to give medicine every time but this is a fact of life, an act of nature, teething must happen for baby to thrive (how else will they chew?). Medicine is great but not all day, every day. I mean we teethe for what, 12 years right? -that's when the last set of molars come in. Do we really want to be putting acetaminophen or ibuprofen through their livers regularly? Don't get me wrong, we've given her Tylenol for pain but also distracting her and playing with her helps too and it teaches her to get through it on her own.

FitTip of the day: In those times when you can get outside with the baby do it :)  in the afternoon, after work or after dinner! Push the swing, pliee, push the swing, pliee, and repeat. You'll have 10 pliees in no time!

New Beginings...

It is so true- 9 months on, 9 months off... Whether that means the pounds the mindset or just how you feel, it takes time. Don't stress about looking good and getting "back to where you were" so quickly- you had a BABY. Stress only makes it harder. It might even take you a year. Just know, the body was meant to do this and it will get to where it needs to be in due time. Your only duty is to get active, get motivated and get moving! See you outside.

Spring Time!

 Time to start thinking about rejuvinating, new beginings, and rebirth. HeartStrong fitness and health is here to get your health rejuvinated, it's a new beginning for your body, mind and spirit. GET YOUR STROLLERS READY!  11am Memorial Park by the wooden playground! Check the Facebook page for more details and regular announcements-  *Now partnering with the YMCA! You don't have to be a member to join the Body Back Bootcamp!