Stop focusing on how much you can sweat during an exercise session: Trust me- I know there is NOTHING like a good sweat session at the gym. Its an intoxicating feeling to be covered and drenched in sweat-however this is not the sole indicator of a good workout. When is the last time you focused on form, breathing, proper body mechanics. Are you activating the proper muscles or just going through the motions to sweat as much as possible? Aim for different goals once in a while.
Get Enough Sleep: I have been seeing this more and more with clients. They just don't get enough sleep and this effects more than just their workouts. They are low energy, fatigued and find it hard to focus at the job or even enjoy simple activities with friends and family. Ghrelin, a hormone that tells your brain to eat now, increases when you sleep poorly. Leptin, on the other hand, helps put the brakes on the brownie cheesecake. No surprise: when you don’t sleep, you become more leptin resistant. Insulin is also impacted by poor sleep. Chronically elevated insulin makes it difficult to burn fat for fuel.
Stop saying "Is this okay to eat": Two of my pet peeves. When someone says "Is this okay to eat" and "I ate a cookie is that bad?" (well not a cookie specifically, but when they attach the 'is that bad' at the end of a sentence of a food they just ate) I just do not understand this question! Of course everything is okay to eat! What you eat, when you eat it and how much you are eating depends on your goals, hunger level, how much you have consumed during the day. So you want a slice of pizza? Eat it! As long as you are not eating whole pizza's everyday, there is never anything wrong with eating something that you truly want. I promise you that nothing will happen to your body. Live a little.
Kick Cardio in the Ass: If you are someone who is already in very good shape cardiovascular, get off of the fun and mindless machines and challenge yourself with some intense conditioning and metabolic work. (note-this should not be done every single day) Learn how to swing the kettlebell properly (ask a trainer!) go outside and sprint some hills. Grab the TRX and go through an intense cardio circuit, try the rowing machine and see how fast you can row in 5 min (3 sets of 5) You will be completely toasted and challenged in a whole new way then listening to "call me maybe" while bouncing on the elliptical.
Short on Time? Superset! Don't sit around...why would you come to the gym to sit around?
Perform a set and you can either throw in a sprint for 30 seconds-1 minute or perform another exercise.
- Front squats w/ KB swings
- Deadlifts w/ slide board lateral slides
- Face Pulls w/ Stability ball jacknife
- Pull ups w/ push ups
Focus on Posture: Most people sit at a desk all day. At a computer. Their posture is the #1 area that I always want to work on with clients. This will help them feel stronger, more alert, not to mention build sexy upper back and shoulder muscles. Make sure you always are focusing on bringing your shoulder down and BACK when perform pulling exercises to really make sure the lats are engaged to their fullest.
- Pull ups
- Face pulls (with rope attachment)
- Cable Back Rows (or standing or bent over)
- Lat pull down (activate the back BEFORE performing this exercise)
- Single arm plank row
Stay Consistent: Really. Just pick a program. See progress. Its that simple. Bodybuilding style workouts one day, crossfit the next, P90x the day after that? Really?
Stop Reading Into Things So Much: Magazines, articles, the web, blogs. Information is all around us at all hours of the day. One day you will see the Paleo diet is good, then you will read a blog saying how its awful and to stick to another way of eating. Its no surprise people get confused! If you believe in a certain way of eating and it works for you, why would you change it? Sometimes experimenting can be great, but it can also have detrimental effects if you have no idea how your body will react. Just be careful and be aware of all the crap that is out there. There is no need to change your entire diet and workout because the newest article in "SHAPE" magazine suggested a tip that you liked.
Life is Too Short To Fill it With Toxic People.
Stay Focused: Walk into the gym with an agenda. Make it your business to accomplish everything you stepped foot in there to do. Walk out. Feel even more accomplished. Oh yeah, and eat some protein and carbs.
Set Goals: Personal goals. If you have been working hard at a certain lift, make it your job to increase. It may not be every single time you perform that exercise, but overtime you will. Set realistic goals and kick it up!
Foam Roll: Before EVERY workout. Your body will thank you and so will your strength.
LIFT: Pick up heavy weights. Ladies you will not bulk up. Enough with this myth already
Rest: Give your body a rest. If you are working at a high intensity 6 days a week, I am sure you are a bit tired and fatigued throughout the day. The body can only handle so much, not to mention you most likely are hindering muscle growth. Bragging about lifting heavy and performing HIIT 6 days a week is really nothing to brag about. Feeling better, looking better, feeling stronger and setting yourself up for a lifetime of health? BRAG ON!
Have Fun: For goodness sake-if working out feels like a chore-you're doing something wrong! Have some fun. Find a workout buddy, try something new. Get yourself a trainer for a brief period of time to learn some new movements (and heck-you may be even inspired to set new goals!)
Get Outdoors: Take advantage of the weather and park yourself right in your backward to go through a killer conditioning workout!
The 480 workout is one of my favorites!
This body weight workout is a great one too!
I Pinned this workout from Pinterest and it looks like a perfect outdoors workout as well!
Build Your Glutes: Focus on the glutes. They are the strongest muscle in the lower body. I don't mean go for a run either. Lift heavy things using your rear. Deadlifts, barbell glute bridges, hip thrusts, single leg hip thrusts and squats. Put these exercises FIRST in your workout
Don't be "The Victim" If you are choosing to embark on a weight loss/fat loss journey, there is no need to play the victim. What I mean by this is if you are out to eat with a friend and they order something that you 'can't eat' there is no need to sit there and feel bad for yourself, let alone make your friend feel bad for eating what she chose. Remember, this is YOUR CHOICE. Embrace it and suck it up if you so choose. There is no need to bring drama with you. Your life-your choices. You should be able to make solid choices for yourself and feel 100% good about them. If you don't, do something about it!
Eat FOOD: And Eat it often. If you want to lose weight/lose fat...you NEED to eat especially in order to support muscle recovery. When you drastically cut down calories or skip meals, this will lead to a loss in muscle, slowing of metabolism and possible weight gain in the long run. Of course, you want to be aware of your body, listen to its hunger signals and cues. Personally, I aim to eat every 2-3 hours (combination of complex carbs, protein, fibrous veggies and healthy fats. Low sugar fruits as well) I find that this works for me--This is not to say it will work for everyone, but eating smaller portions more often keeps my blood sugar levels stable and keeps my metabolism going.
Protein: Protein at EVERY meal. Some of my favorites: chicken, turkey, steak, lean ground beef, salmon, white fish, shrimp, scallops, eggs/eggwhites, cottage cheese, Greek yogurt, tuna fish, all natural whey protein
Buy one of THESE: Ok, just kidding. Sort of. CLICK HERE! if you do!
Stop aiming For Perfection: Its exhausting! Be YOUR best. That's pretty damned good, I think.
What Do You Do All Of the Time?