Healthy Holiday Travel Treadmill Shredder

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The Holidays are upon us and for many that means travel. Don’t let your workouts fall by the wayside! This is the treadmill program I did while in New Orleans this past weekend :) BONUS! Healthy recovery shake below. I do my workout track by track on the Ipod, instead of having to time things.

Treadmill Shredder

Warm up at 0 incline, 3.0 speed  for 3-5 minutes

Track one: 5.0 speed light jog at 0 incline

Track two: 20 deep squats off the rails (feet wide, belt between). Speed 3.5, incline 15. Every chorus, 20 deep squats, verses are climbs.

Track three: easy run at incline 3.0, speed 5.3

Track four: super slow speed, 0.8 walking lunges at 6.5 incline

Track five: quick run, 2.0 incline, 6.0 speed

Track six: recover and 3.0 pace for 2 minutes. Light jog, 0 incline, 3.8 speed for remaining track

Track seven: 20 deep squats off rails. Side shuffles at 1.5 speed, 0 incline. Repeat squats every chorus and alternate shuffles during verses.

Track eight: hill run/climb. Set incline at 15, speed at 3.5 during chorus. Verses, incline down to 7.5, speed to 5.0

Track nine: incline between 5-10, speed alternates between jog (5.0) and sprints (7.0-8.0) between chorus and verses.

Track ten: 15 incline, 3.0 speed, slow climb entire song.

Cool down with flat walk and make sure to stretch!

Post workout Recovery Smoothie

In blender:

4 oz water

4-6 oz skim milk

1 whole banana

1/2 tablespoon natural peanut butter

1 scoop whey (I use BSN Syntha 6 chocolate peanut butter)

1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa

ice to taste

Blend well and drink within 30 minutes of your workout :)

Thirsty Thursday: Healthy Eats when You Travel

IN light of the vacation I am embarking upon this week, I though it would be fun to discuss healthy eating when traveling. We do not all have the luxury of packing our food, so here are some tips whether you’re on the road or in the air.

  1. Drink up. Remember to stay hydrated with pour water while traveling. The stress of travel can easily dehydrate us, making us appear older! Grab that water bottle now.
  2. Avoid salty foods. Pass on in flight peanuts and opt for the raw ones you totally remembered to pack in your purse. They’ll fill you up with protein, fat and fiber PLUS they’ll boost your brain power.
  3. Don’t overeat while traveling. We sit en route to our destination and mostly eat out of boredom. Lack of movement means the body doesn’t need as many calories. PLan ahead and take a few fruits and veggies. Both are low-calorie, high nutrition and again, help with hydration.
  4. Pick nutrition every time. When at the drive through think about how you want to fuel your body. Opt for a wrap if you’re driving as salads can be cumbersome. Try to get protein, carbs and fats in every meal to keep you satisfied and energized.
  5. Opt for tea. Afternoon tea is quite a lovely tradition and a great way to refresh mid-travel. If you’re at the nearest Starbucks or in the airport terminal, try an herbal tea. Need a quick pick me up? Make sure it’s iced. Feeling bloated? Get it warm to increase digestion.

These are just a few little tips to keep your nutrition and health in check as you’re traveling. Once you reach your destination, take a walking tour of your surroundings. This will immediately reset the body back to its natural state and make your trip more enjoyable.

Be sure to stay tuned as I blog through my road trip next week and check out the video tomorrow on healthy travel beauty!

Have a healthy day!

Michelle

Tough Love Tuesday!

OK, so this post is not going to be for the faint of heart, but if you’re willing to accept the truth behind it then your life WILL change. That’s a big promise, but I deliver :)

Today I want to speak about those goals that you set, specifically your health and wellness goals. Keep in mind that these words will affect just about any goal though. My big question for you is “How is your resolve?” Are you going as strong as you set out to go? Or have you started to wain just a little? We’re only 10 days into the new year, but I know that’s plenty of time to start blurring the lines a bit.

In my line of work I see a lot of blurring. In my own fitness efforts I constantly have to overcome the need to blur. So, what am a talking about here? I’m talking about being totally honest with yourself. When you finished that last workout, did you really feel like you gave ALL you could, or did you hold back just a little? It’s human nature to preserve ourselves. We lift the weight and realize that although it is heavy we could probably go a little heavier. Then we decide to just keep that thought to ourselves for the sake of preservation. Did you  really stick to your meal plan ALL week? Not one single fudge right (lie, not candy!). You didn’t pick food off of your kids plates or nibble a bit of popcorn at the movies? KEEP READING! If you stop now, the blur gets worse…

The reason why I ask all of this is I have clients and students who move into the “Woe is me” attitude that they just cannot succeed where others (a VERY small percent of others) have. I’ve had clients self diagnose and search for any medical anomaly that will free them from the daily strife of improvement. I’ve had many who flat out lie to me. How do I know? Because I do it, duh! However, the thought that plays over and over in my psyche is the indisputable fact that life is made of the CHOICES we make. Think about it: you choose to get married, to have kids, to get up and go to work everyday, etc. I have clients say, “I HAVE to work!”. My response? So, you choose not to live under a bridge? Bravo! It’s all about choices. What choices do you need to make today?

We choose what we eat. Don’t roll your eyes! You have the same choice as everybody else: Do I pack healthy snacks just in case, or do I leave it to chance and end up hitting a random drive through for something more than mostly likely fried and void of nutrients? We choose if and when we move. Yeah, yeah, I totally know that your day came with far fewer hours and you will feel vindicated when everybody else finally admits that! So what if you don’t have 2 hours to spend in the gym (hello? me either). Take a 5 minute walk several times per day, stand up at your desk and do a few squats, jump an imaginary rope in the bathroom, do push ups during your favorite TV show, just do something! Speaking of TV, I find it intolerable that those who claim to not have the “time” to work out can ALWAYS tell me who was voted off the ranch. Something to think about….

As parents, our choices affect more than just us. What we choose eventually trickles down to the next generation. Youth obesity and it’s detrimental effects are on the rise. What does that say about our choices? Is it OK to sleep in on a Saturday? You bet! Is it acceptable to indulge in some holiday sweets and birthday cake? YES! Is it OK to become apathetic about the life you could have because making the choices is just too damn hard? Absolutely not. You are worth a tiny amount of effort to eat better foods that are better for your overall health (a smaller waistline is really just an added bonus). You are worth moving during the day to ensure your heart keeps working for you! You are worth the 5 minutes it takes to plan out some meals for the week. Every Time you choose to ignore your basic needs for health and fitness you reinforce that you think you are worthless. Harsh, but ultimately true.

So, what will you do with this information? Studies shows over 90% will never read it again. Be the 10 % today. Let go of fad diets (Um, meal replacement shakes anyone?) and fuel your body right. Make small changes each week. Don’t expect perfection, but strive towards your best self everyday. Keep moving forward!

Michelle

DVD Review Monday! Jillian Michaels Killer Buns and Thighs

If you are looking for those buns and thighs that really hold up (against gravity) then Jillian Michaels Killer Buns and Thighs workout DVD is a great place to get started.

http://www.amazon.com/Jillian-Michaels-Killer-Buns-Thighs/dp/B0051GLDQI/ref=sr_1_5?ie=UTF8&qid=1326124466&sr=8-5

Jillian is perhaps one of the most well known trainers out there and is putting out serious amounts of DVD’s like there is no tomorrow. SO, in light of that, some of these DVD’s can get pushed to the wayside. Her videos are all doable for any fitness level and they are very beginner friendly. If you’re a heavy lifter, look elsewhere. IF you are just starting out and need modifications, this is a good one to start with. She uses a chair in a couple of workouts, but you can always omit that if you don’t have one that fits the bill, or if you’re just not comfortable with props yet. the pace is steady and easy to follow. My biggest recommendation is to make sure you perfect your squats beforehand. I only say this because knee injuries are rampant amongst video exercise users and that’s normally due to a lack of personal instruction and/or body awareness.

Is it worth the bucks? It’s on for $8.99 so I say go for it and throw it into your rotation 2-3 times per week. Once you’ve outgrown it, loan it to a friend or donate it to the library, but this is a good starting point for a great ending ;-)

Michelle

P.S. Head back tomorrow for some tough love about those resolutions and goals!

 

Dance Central 2

OK, so I am severely excited about my Christmas purchase for the fam (read:FOR ME!) of the Dance Central 2 for Kinect. I did a review on the first one a while back http://www.michellecfitness.com/blog/2011/02/20/kinect-for-xbox-360-review/ and you’ll remember I’m not a gamer. So, this is a huge deal for me to totally get into a game of any sort. I tend to get a little too competitive for board games! Shocking, but I digress…

So, Dance Central 2 has been steadily blowing me away. We even fired it up for a bit during our new years eve party. The moves make you feel a little more like a dancer, even when you don’t look like one :) . My entire family danced for a couple of hours Christmas morning, which was great since we eat cinnamon rolls (I had egg whites cause I’m weird like that). The dancing itself is pretty low impact, but the more intensity you bring to the moves, the better the Kinect reads your movements. That means you totally win! But we aren’t talking about competition here…

Both of the kids love Dance Central 2 and mostly we do dance battles. Do it with friends and family and you get the added benefit of great big belly laughs. DC2 also has a fitness component that I can really say is excellent. The workouts range from 10-45 minutes and offer EVERYTHING. My kids did them with me and we all got sweaty and seriously out of breath (on the easy setting!). Best of all, you can pick your level so you feel good about your workout.

Dancing is a serious workout and a great way to bust out of you workout rut or simply  supplement your existing routine. I’m heading into the living room to bust a few moves when I’m done here :) . Don’t have a Kinect and can’t invest right now? Turn on some tunes and dance like no one’s watching!

OH, and I have a new Bob Harper workout that I’ll be doing and reviewing tomorrow so stay tuned. Get up and get something done!

Michelle

 

What Works….

I am NOT  a runner.

I feel like I should be in a support group for people who think they could be runners, but just aren’t. i have read not only running magazines and articles, but entire books devoted to the holiness of running. I have tried running at different times during the day and night, and I have bought just about every running gadget there is. I am however, not a runner.

I have struggled with feeling of jealousy for those friends of mine who enjoy the sport of running. Those who run marathons as often as I enjoy shopping trips are abundant in my life. I have friends that enjoy the freedom of running and the runners high they receive. I know people who revel in the solitude and I even know some who pray while they run in the twilight hours. As hard as I have tried to force myself to be a runner, it just doesn’t work out (keep reading, it gets good). I rarely feel the elusive runners high. Mostly I just feel beat up by the voices that tell me I’m a loser. I do pray when I run, though you probably do not wish to hear the subject of those prayers. I have wonderful form when running, and being a running coach (THE IRONY!) I can correct form with relative ease and I do so all the time. Running is not my chosen sport despite the hours I have devoted to studying it.

You see, when the new year hits people come out of their warm homes in droves to hit the track behind my house. They pounds miles on the pavement in the hopes of losing the winter weight and gaining a new lease on life. Running, in and of itself, is a wonderful form of exercise. It’s not everybody’s soul mate workout though.

So, what do I mean by soul mate workout? Well, if you’re going to stick with a workout, you need to enjoy some capacity of it right? Notice that you will not enjoy every aspect of your chosen workout all the time. There has to be something that stirs inside of you when the opportunity comes along to move in this way. I think far too many people limit themselves to what they believe “should” be their soul mate workout.

How did I come to this conclusion about running not being for me? It was actually quite simple. I dabble in a wide variety of workouts, but there are a few that I will not only teach, but also do at home. Kickboxing and weightlifting top the list of my preferred workouts and I gain the most all around from both of them. You see I realized that when I run I actually judge myself very harshly and allow more negative thoughts to invade my workouts. Not only that but my nutrition suffers greatly. Since I do not enjoy running, I find that I eat more when I am hitting the pavement. Since running does not serve as a reward for me, I substitute it with ice cream or an extra glass of wine. With other sports my nutrition is kept very tight since I expect more out of my body. The sport itself then becomes the reward and the strength and endurance gains abound.

So, have you taken the time to find your soul mate workout or do you simply follow the crowd? Don’t worry about what’s in style or all the rage (there was a time jazzercise was as big as Zumba. Fads fade…) Try something new this week and see how it feels to you. Let me know what you’ve found! Stay tuned for some more workout class/DVD reviews to help you on your path.

Michelle

Goal Setting for 2012 PT 5

T=Time Sensitive

Welcome to day 5! This is your fifth and final day of goal setting techniques to help you become a more successful andn happier you in 2012. Today is all about time. Now that you have your specific goals (chances are, even after weeding through them you have a few) you can start setting a time to reach these goals. This is where more research really comes in handy.

Let’s say you’re goal is to loose 20 pounds. Well, losing 20 pounds in a year is very broad and will likely end up pin failure since it will give you so much leeway. On the other hadn, you’ve probably heard about “miracle diets” that promise a 20 pounds weight loss in a week and surely by now you realize that’s not healthy. So, look into it. What is a healthy weight loss per week? Well, if you only have 20 pounds to lose then you’re looking at 1-2 pounds per week. If you have over 50 pounds to lose, you can safely drop 3-5 pounds per week. So, back on that 20 pound mark: If you’re seeking to drop it and watching the nutrition along with challenging yourself in your workouts you can expect to meet you overall goal in 10-12 weeks.

What if you make it through the weeks and have a tad bit left? Reset your time! You are never tied down to your time table, but it is important that you research what CAN be done so that you can expect great things to happen. Life can get in the way of goals sometimes and it is important to be flexible. I run 3 bootcamps a year and they are all 6 weeks long. I love when people come into bootcamp with a specifically timed goal for that 6 weeks. Those people usually always exceed their goal! That is because they have given themselves a SMART goal and committed to a specific time frame. Losing 10 pounds is 6 weeks is totally doable and healthy but NOT if you do not stick to specific goal setting. Just wanting to “lose weight”, “do better”, or “eat right” doesn’t cut it. Put the time in to set actual goals by following these teachniques and you will accomplish them!

Come back tomorrow for a very special treat! I’ll tackle the idea of motivation and determination as well as finding your perfect workout.

Happy New Year! Be safe!!!

Michelle

Goal Setting for 2012 PT 5

T=Time Sensitive

Welcome to day 5! This is your fifth and final day of goal setting techniques to help you become a more successful andn happier you in 2012. Today is all about time. Now that you have your specific goals (chances are, even after weeding through them you have a few) you can start setting a time to reach these goals. This is where more research really comes in handy.

Let’s say you’re goal is to loose 20 pounds. Well, losing 20 pounds in a year is very broad and will likely end up pin failure since it will give you so much leeway. On the other hadn, you’ve probably heard about “miracle diets” that promise a 20 pounds weight loss in a week and surely by now you realize that’s not healthy. So, look into it. What is a healthy weight loss per week? Well, if you only have 20 pounds to lose then you’re looking at 1-2 pounds per week. If you have over 50 pounds to lose, you can safely drop 3-5 pounds per week. So, back on that 20 pound mark: If you’re seeking to drop it and watching the nutrition along with challenging yourself in your workouts you can expect to meet you overall goal in 10-12 weeks.

What if you make it through the weeks and have a tad bit left? Reset your time! You are never tied down to your time table, but it is important that you research what CAN be done so that you can expect great things to happen. Life can get in the way of goals sometimes and it is important to be flexible. I run 3 bootcamps a year and they are all 6 weeks long. I love when people come into bootcamp with a specifically timed goal for that 6 weeks. Those people usually always exceed their goal! That is because they have given themselves a SMART goal and committed to a specific time frame. Losing 10 pounds is 6 weeks is totally doable and healthy but NOT if you do not stick to specific goal setting. Just wanting to “lose weight”, “do better”, or “eat right” doesn’t cut it. Put the time in to set actual goals by following these teachniques and you will accomplish them!

Come back tomorrow for a very special treat! I’ll tackle the idea of motivation and determination as well as finding your perfect workout.

Happy New Year! Be safe!!!

Michelle

Goal Setting for 2012 PT 4

Day 4 and the question that must be approached is, how are you doing? If you find that your goal setting is becoming increasingly overbearing and stressful then take a step back and re-evaluate. Are your goals working for you? Make sure you are setting goals that are personal and not simply goals that you are setting to make others happy. Just a thought :)

OK day 4! R=REWARDING

What keeps you pressing towards the mark? There has to be some kind of a reward involved right? That’s why so many of us fall into the emotional eating trap. Food in and of itself is an immediate reward. Sugar is sweet on the lips and releases the same endorphins as running sans the sweat and expensive shoes. We like rewards and that’s OK ;)

So, today’s homework is a lot of fun, but it will take some creativity on your part. Take a look at that health and/or fitness goal you want to reach asap. Now write it at the top of a page. Under that write down any possible, conceivable reward that you may gain from reaching this goal. Let’s take the goal of losing 20 pounds shall we? Some of the rewards one can reap are:

  • More energy
  • More confidence
  • New clothes
  • Better body image
  • Sense of accomplishment
  • Sense of sexiness
  • More productivity

And this is really just the tip of the ice berg as rewards are more deeply personal than the goals themselves. If your goal is to eat more vegetables you can bet you’ll lose weight, have more energy, clear up existing skin problems, boost your confidence, and so on. Think extremely big and outside of the box here. Do a little research on your goal (you’ll be doing a lot more later) and enlist the help of friends and loved ones. The rewards can truly be limitless IF you allow them to be.

Now, take the challenge of empowering yourself to dream really big. Don’t allow negative thoughts to come in and alter your perception of what you can accomplish. Take a look at your list and really let these rewards sink in to your soul. I told you this was the best homework ever…

Keep this list where you can see it and refer to it every day. Come back tomorrow to finish up your SMART goal setting :)

Michelle

Goal Setting for 2012 PT 3

Welcome to day 3 of your goal setting success journey!

A=Achievable

This is not a new idea in the world of goal setting and therefore should not take up the entirety of your brain power today :) Achievable goals enable you to better break down your overall goals into bite sized pieces so that you can then ride the wave of momentum (not good in weight training, but great in goal setting) to the finish line. Keep in mind that your goals will change due to the state of your overall life. Think of your teenage goals: I can say with certainty your goals looked a bit different than they are in the present state of life. Knowing that changes are inevitable allows you a little flexibility.

Today’s work should take a small fraction of your time so let’s get started. Take a look at your overall goals. These are the ones that you have dreamed about reaching. Be very honest with yourself as to how achievable these goals are for you. If you set a goal to lose 50 pounds, yet you are only 10-20 pounds overweight, that goal is out of reach and quite frankly, unhealthy. Your goals must be personal, beneficial, and achievable. Be honest with yourself here. If you have trouble coming up with honest goals, enlist the help of some of your closest friends and supporters.

Now, start to pick that one goal that is achievable in the near future. THAT’S the goal you start to tackle right now. Be back tomorrow to get the next step towards your successful future.

Michelle