Move-meant: Part 2

Welcome back to Monday people!!!!!!!

Hope you had a great weekend :)

Today is your lucky day!!!!


We’re tackling rest day in the second post on recovery and mindful movement!

I can almost feel your excitement……


Rest days tend to be the most under utilized and misunderstood days in you program. They are also some of the most important…..

You know what time it is??????


science meme

Alright, don’t check out on me yet….this is good and I’ll be quick ;P

When you workout you are tearing up your muscle. That’s the only way that the muscle can release the ATP needed for energy AND it’s the only way the muscle can adapt to loads placed on it. This is true for both strength training and cardio, however strength training places a larger load on most muscles (don’t tell my calves that since they are more heavily loaded running). In order for the muscle to fuller adapt and be able to take on a heavier load the next training session, the muscle must be given adequate rest time to repair.

What does this translate to?

  • Don’t train the same body part repeatedly on consecutive days.
  • Give the muscle 24-48 hours to repair before hitting it again.
  • Utilize some of the recovery options in the previous post.
  • Pay attention to your body! If the muscle is still tender, let it rest and don’t weight so much next session.

Failure to recover will impede optimum muscle growth. That’s science.

Back to rest days….


One of the most common misconceptions about rest days is that they are days of complete immobility. Not true.

Rest days should be days to help further recovery and mobility.

Here are some ways you can implement well thought out rest days:

  1. Sign up for a yoga class, BUT make sure it will stretch and flow….some yoga classes are another workout in and of themselves.
  2. Foam roll!
  3. Stretch it out while you Netflix.
  4. Take a slow walk. Change your music to some slower jams or go sans music and just look at the sites.
  5. Go for a nature walk or hike, especially if you don’t have leg day the next day.
  6. Remember, rest days are NOT cheat days.

How many rest days do I need?

rest day second

This is where paying attention to your body is the biggest payoff.

Most people just starting on a strength training program do well with a 2/1 working to rest split. Some people prefer to check in for workouts Monday through Friday and rest on Saturday and Sunday. Some advanced athletes prefer an 8 day split, with a rest day every 8 days. Personally, I lift for total body 3 days a week with a cardio/mobility day between and I always take Sundays as my rest day (and sometimes I am totally immobile).

There is no one magic formula for everybody, so check for signs of needing rest.

Do you look forward to workouts?

Are you dreading every single workout?

Are you tired all day long?

Do you have trouble sleeping?

Is your appetite/cravings totally out of control?

Are you progressing in your workouts (i.e. upping the weight, reps, or taking the harder variations)?

Chances are, if you feel physically stuck, you need a good recovery day. So, book it, enjoy it, come back stronger.

Always moving,



FREE back and chest workout

How about a totally FREE workout each week????

Yeah, I thought that would be helpful.

Take a walk through my training journal with me and learn about exercise sequencing, loading techniques and conditioning to get the body you want :)

Workout of the Day: Chest and Back.

I performed this exact workout yesterday and logged it into my BODYSPACE account this morning. You can click the link to BODYSPACE and view my workout.

Here’s the basic breakdown.

I warmed up with a 1000 meter row (took about 6 mins) on the rowing machine, then I did 4 sets of 20 back extensions and 2 sets of assisted pull ups. Trainer Tip: Warm up the body part you are WORKING! Don’t hop on the treadmill if you’re working upper body.


Meaty meaty!!!!! A little #pumpday inspiration from #backandchest today #figure #physique #doit #bodybuilding
The Workout (whole thing, with weight used, is on BODYSPACE)
Underhand barbell row 2x warmup with the bar
4 working sets of 12 reps
Incline DB pec fly 4 sets of 12 reps
Straight arm pull down 4 sets of 12 reps (kind of the theme for the day)
Machine chest press 4 sets of 12 reps
Standing reverse flys 4 sets of 12 reps
Incline DB press 4 sets of 12 reps
High Hammer Lat Pull 4 sets of 12 reps *** if your gym does not have a Hammer strength machine, sub a lat pull down
Trainer Tip: Form is KING when it comes to results of any kind. Pay attention to form THEN add weight. Today’s workout was a bit light for me as I was recovering from a tender rhomboid.
Enjoy the workout and let me know what you think!

Gym Talk: Are Fit Pros Helpful or Hurtful?

Happy Monday fit peeps and geeks! Cause if you follow my posts, you’re bound to have a little geek in ya ;)

Today’s Gym Talk session will hit hard on a subject pretty close to me: are fitness professionals HELPFUL or are they hurtful?

Little disclaimer here….I am what is considered a fitness professional. I value my career and love that I can spend every day doing what I truly love. If you don’t know me, trust me when I say EDUCATION is the paramount of my success as a trainer, nutritionist and coach. Never stop learning…..i.e. Stay in school kids.

The thought for this post actually came along while I was in California this past Summer for the Idea World Convention. I was a guest with Blogfest (along with a couple hundred other lovely ladies…..and like one man, Hi Laird!). Idea World is the world’s largest fitness convention with a completely mind-blowing array of fit goodies, but I really went for the education. One of my first classes was a nutrition class taught by a registered dietician. Let me break this down real quick: she is an RD, I am a nutritionist. She is more highly educated and knows more than me on the subject of nutrition science. I went to soak up the knowledge :) Sadly, MANY participants acted a bit more like the old guys in the rafters on the Muppets. It was disturbing to say the least. These people travel in packs too, because they cannot defend their unrealistic views without help….any guesses as to the crowd? I’ll never tell….

At any rate, people in the audience started questioning science. Not the good kind of questioning, but the kind that was pretty clear that GOOGLE is their personal nutritionist. When the RD (Jessica Crandall for those who want to know) would answer the question professionally, she was met with theory and statements that made no sense in the nutrition science realm of things. Then, when these people were dissatisfied with her lack of agreement in their argument, they left in the middle of the class….and they did it as loudly as they can. Jessica handled the entire thing FAR better than I could have hoped to.

Another thing I noticed (since I was attending alone) was that many of these fitness “professionals” would travel in their packs and literally walk through others. Keep in mind that the convention hall with all the goodies is open to the public (or commoners as I’m sure this group refers to them). Shoulder back and sauntering, fit pros would look over the heads of those deemed less than functionally fit…..and I believe it is professionals like this that hinder progress on any level.

Even now I notice this behavior in the gym. Trainers look over their own clients and watch others. People new to working out are intimidated to ask a trainer for help. Many trainers don’t make themselves available…unless they think they can get a sale. A lot of the latter can be blamed on how large chain gyms are run, but the previous 2 depend on professionals to put their professional pants on and make a difference.

As a fitness professional, what can you do to create an environment of change, wherever you are?

  1. Maintain an approachable demeanor, especially if you’re on the clock. Make eye contact with patrons, walk up to those who seem to be struggling and ask (with no expectation of being picked up as their trainer) if you can help them with a certain machine or movement.
  2. If you are training a client, pay attention to that client….the whole time.
  3. When you’re off the clock or at a convention, resist the urge to stay comfortable with “your” people. We’re ALL people. None of actually have super powers, so stop acting like you’re better than the rest of the population.
  4. Remember that training is customer service and customer service grows through word of mouth. I have always had a wait-list due to how I treat people, not because of how I look or the demeanor I project.
  5. Get a mentor. They don’t have to live near you, but find a trainer who has been successful in this business and LEARN from them. Learn about people skills, programming, education, etc. Never stop learning.
  6. Make it a point to watch everything around you. As you walk through a convention, stand tall but don’t be intimidating. Give others the right of way for a change and expand your vision past your own 6 pack.

It’s time for fitness professionals to set a standard. I know a lot of trainers don’t turn this into a career, but for those who do it can be very rewarding. The world needs the knowledge we have. We need those in the world to be able to put food on the table.

At the end of the day, we are all PEOPLE. There is no one better than the other or with more willpower or self control……we all have something others need. Carve your path, but carve it mind fully.

BTW, big thanks to Pamela with for making the convention more fun for this fellow introvert :)

Be you,


Trainer Tip Tuesday


I am beyond thrilled to kick off a brand new series called Trainer Tip Tuesday. This series of posts will address personal trainers, coaches and even those who are thinking of joining this wonderful profession.

The goal is to embed knowledge and wisdom while helping trainers and coaches make the most of their education and passion.

Today’s pots is from my dear friend and fellow trainer, Pamela Hernandez, who owns Thrive Personal Fitness.

Read on as she tackles some questions that new and old trainers may not have thought about before signing the bottom line :)

cookie monster

What They Don’t Teach You about Being a Personal Trainer:


Congratulations! You’ve passed your personal trainer exam! You’re excited and anxious to get started. Maybe a gym has offered you a place to work or perhaps you’re striking out on your own. Either way, you can’t wait to get your first client.

The problem is they forgot to tell you how to set your prices, find your niche and market yourself. Unfortunately that’s not all your certification program left out.

Your certification leaves you woefully unprepared for the real world of personal training. I compare getting your certification to kindergarten. In kindergarten you learn your letters and some basic vocabulary. You learn to count. But putting together a proper sentence or multiplication is still out of reach.

During your certification program you get your basics of anatomy, physiology and movement. You learn to count reps. You learn about what exercises work what muscles, but no one really shows you how to translate a workout to a program to meet you clients goals. No one prepares you for the unhealthy bodies you will encounter and the behavioral coaching they are going to need. Preparation for the BUSINESS of personal training is completely absent.

Here is the hard reality. If you want to make personal training your full time job, only 20-25% of your time will be spent in the gym with clients. The rest of the time is spent prepping programs, taking continuing education classes, marketing yourself, balancing the books and all the other things it takes to run a successful business.  Your education has only just begun. Here are the important lessons about the business of personal training you need to start with.

  •  Whether you know it or not you have started a small business

You need to set up a separate account for business expenses, set a budget and a separate mailing address. Keep your business finances separate from your personal ones, including credit. While your chances for audit are small, only about 1% according to WalletHub, audits for small businesses are UP 17% since 2009. Keep detailed and organized records and you will be prepared, plus it will help you in the event you decide to seek an SBA loan or other financing.  Also find an accountant you trust. A good accountant is not just someone who puts your numbers into a piece of software to do your taxes. A good accountant will advise you on how to maximize your income while avoiding unpleasant surprises at tax time.

  • Know your value

When I first started training I was told by a gym manager no one would pay my personal training rates. I firmly stood my ground because I had done my research. I compared rates for other trainers in my local area with similar services and priced accordingly. I also knew the personal service I provide ranked higher than the cookie cutter programs at big box gyms. It’s for this reason I also don’t offer discounts. I value what I do and I want my clients to do the same. If I discount my services, I have also discounted myself. For this and many other reasons, stay away from Groupon, Living Social and other discount programs. You might get a short-term burst of clients but they rarely stick around.

  • Find a mentor

My ACSM CPT certification gave me a basic vocabulary. I learned program design and about the business of personal training from other trainers. A good mentor can provide you with the missing pieces of your personal trainer education. They can offer you hands on experience and a sympathetic ear when you have a difficult client or situation. This can be a formal arrangement via an internship or an informal friendship. Online mentor programs, continuing education programs and fitness conferences can offer huge opportunities to learn from experts in your field and expand your professional network.

  •  Read books outside of your field

I used to try to read every new diet book on the market but I couldn’t keep up. I stopped trying when I realized they are all virtually saying the same thing. A better use of my time is reading books on business, marketing, behavior change and nutrition. If you haven’t read Switch by Chip and Dan Heath or The Thank You Economy by Gary Vaynerchuck do so NOW.

  • Rest

I started training part time while I worked a full time desk job. I offered myself for training appointments 6 days a week at any time the client could meet. On Sundays I prepped workouts for the week and wrote for my blog. The consequences verged on exhaustion and what I believe was the beginning of adrenal fatigue. I had to slow down or else. I implemented a set schedule for training and started taking Sundays off – including taking a Social Media Sabbath. It made a huge difference! I got my health and my sanity back. I also could give every client the energetic training session she deserves. It’s important to set boundaries and make time for OUR workouts, to rest and recharge. You have to take care of yourself so you can take care of others.

If you are serious about your personal training career then you have to be smart and passionate both in and out of the gym. If you want to be in this business for the long haul always remember it is a business and never stop learning.


Pamela Hernandez is a fitness maven, author and motivational speaker. Her goal is to empower women with fitness and to help women take control of their health and their lives! She has been on her own fitness journey since 1999 and she started her entrepreneurial journey in 2009 when she founded her personal training company, Thrive Personal Fitness. As a former fat girl and natural introvert, her goal is to take her personal lessons learned, from building her own fitness and building a successful small business, and use them to help other women live their dreams.

Pamela Headshot 2014

How to Break Plateaus

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