Thinking of giving up?

SO many people start exercising and dieting, make it a week or so into their new routine, and then quit when they aren’t seeing the results that they want. This is really sad, because if they would just hold on a little longer they could have gotten some great results. What is important to remember with weight loss is that you didn’t put the weight on overnight, so you can’t expect it to all just fall off overnight.

You just need to have faith that if you continue then the results will come, because they will! Like I said, it didn’t take a week to put that weight on, so it is unrealistic to believe that it will come off in a week. If it does come off that quickly, chances are it is through unhealthy means or extreme changes, and the weight will come right back on when you return to typical eating/exercising patterns.

Do it the right way and stick to it! You won’t regret it if you do, but chances are you will regret it if you quit! Think of it this way: The time is going to pass regardless of whether or not you are eating clean and working out. Would you rather be following the plan and working toward your goals, or would you rather not ,and then find yourself in the exact same position – or worse – a few months later?

Only YOU have the power to make the choice to change your habits. Nobody can force you to eat good foods, just like nobody can force you to do your workouts. Just like that old saying, you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink. I can tell you what you need to do to get fit and healthy, but whether or not you do it is totally up to you!

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Are fad diets any good?

Doing super restrictive diets, like many of the fad diets out there claiming to help you lose weight fast, is not a good idea at all! Sure, you will most likely lose some weight, but chances are as soon as you go back to eating normally you will gain it all back. What you lose with fad diets is the water weight, which comes back as soon as you get back to your normal eating habits. You WILL NOT maintain that weight loss, so what is the point in picking a diet that is not sustainable long-term? What is even more important to note is that it is simply NOT HEALTHY.

Instead, find a variety of healthy foods and meals that you enjoy, and then create a new healthy lifestyle around those foods! Eating healthy doesn’t have to mean depriving yourself of junk food 100% of the time either. It is important to have a cheat meal every once in a while to not only help you stay on track, but also because it revs up your metabolism. As long as you don’t completely pig out and you eat in moderation, one cheat meal is not going to hurt you every now and then – it can actually be beneficial! If you deprive yourself entirely of things you crave for a long time, there is a higher risk of going on a binge at some point. If you plan out your cheat meal and use it as a reward for progress, you will curb those cravings for a while and help yourself continue moving forward. 

Furthermore, you can still have “cheat” meals without it entirely being a cheat. For example, when I crave junk sometimes I will have a plate of nachos made with organic nachos, salsa, and cheese. If your kryptonite is chips, try cooking some homemade popcorn and just melting a bit of real butter to put on top with some sea salt. I also like having homemade pizza every now and then, and I just measure out my toppings so that I know how many calories I am consuming and I can organize the rest of my day around it. 

You need to remember that one bad day is not going to make you gain a bunch of weight. That works both ways though, because one GOOD day is also not going to make you LOSE a bunch of weight. Results will come over time, and with effort.

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Hip and Thigh exercises

Contrary to popular belief, you actually can’t spot train! All of these exercises will work the hip and thigh area, but they also work other areas in your legs as well. If you do any of these, or even many of the exercises in the “butt exercises” note, they will work these areas. One thing I’ve learned throughout my own journey is that you just have to do leg exercises in general, and the weight will come off wherever it feels like coming off lol. I still have fat on my hips and thighs that I would like to get rid of, but doing only these exercises wouldn’t make that happen any faster. It would actually be counter-productive because this area natually takes longer for us as women to lose, so you might as well work all the other areas while you’re at it so that you see progress everywhere else while you wait! The key is that you’ll be building muscle, and the muscle is what is going to burn off the fat.

-Squat with leg lift (Do a regular squat with feet shoulder width apart, then when you are standing up lift one leg out to the side. Be careful not to lean to the other side, and focus on standing straight just lifting the leg up and out to the side. You can alternate legs if you want, or you can do one leg then the other)

-Standing hip opener (Stand straight and bring one knee up so that the top part of your leg is parallel to the floor, then bring the leg out directly to the side but keeping it at the same angle, and then lower the leg back to the ground. Again, try to remember to stand up straight and not to bend into the turn. This will work your legs as well as your core and your abs from balancing and using that core strength to stand straight)

-Bowling lunge (Get into a lunge stance with most of your weight on the forward leg, and then inch the other leg behind you and to the side. You should be able to lift your back toe off the ground and balance on the front leg for a few seconds. It will feel like you’re about to throw a bowling ball. Once in position, lunge down, then come back up slowly. Repeat as many times as you can)

-Sumo squats (Get into a wide foot stance with toes facing outward. Squat down and then come up slowly. Again, repeat as many times as you can)

-Pulsing sumo squats (Same as regular sumo squats only this time instead of coming all the way up when you finish the first one, you only come halfway up. Do that pulse three times, then on the fourth you can come all the way up. This counts as one rep)

-Hip raises (Lie on your side on your mat and hold yourself up with your arm resting on the mat and your foot closest to the ground on the mat on its side with the other foot resting on top of it. Slowly lift your hips off the ground so that the space between your body and the mat forms half of a triangle. You can do this with your knee on the mat instead of your feet if you don’t have the strength to get up, but try it with the toes first)

-Leg lifts (Get in the same position as the hip raises only this time you will lift the top leg up into the air as high as you can)

-Wall sit (Get into squat position with your back against the wall. Your legs should be at a 90 degree angle, with the top part of your leg parallel to the floor. If it starts to burn too much just come up for 10 seconds and then inch back down. If your legs start shaking too much, you’re done)

-Step ups (If you have a stepper or a small stool this would come in handy. Otherwise just use something about the same height or even just a regular stair if you have to, but ideally it will be a bit higher than a typical stair. You just step up with one leg, step back, and then lunge back with the other leg. This is one rep, and do as many as you can on one side before switching to the other)

-Toe touches/deadlifts (If you have weights you can use them to make this a deadlift, otherwise you can use cans of soup or something to make it at least a little more difficult. Stand up straight and then bend down but keep your back straight as you come down and try to bring your hands or the weights as low as you can)

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Butt toning exercises

Here are some moves you can do to tone your butt. You can add weight to a lot of these to make it harder and work better, but it isn’t necessary.

-Regular squats (feet shoulder width apart)

-Sumo squats (feet further apart with toes pointed outward)

-Pulsing squats (Squat down, then only come halfway up 3 times, then come all the way up on the fourth pulse. That is considered one rep)

-Squat and hold (Squat down and hold position for 10 seconds, then come up)

-Wall sits (Put your back against the wall and squat down so that your knees are at a 90 degree angle. When it starts to burn just come up a bit to give your legs a break, then get back down into it. If your legs start shaking, you’re done)

-Lunges (You can do these as walking lunges where you do one on each side, or if you don’t have much space you can do them standing still in one place doing a full set on one leg and switching)

-Screamers (Get in a lunge stance with most of your weight on the forward leg, then you bring the back leg off the ground with your knee coming up. Pull your hands in as you bring the knee up, it will almost feel like you’re pulling someone down to knee them in the gut or something. Do this repeatedly as fast as you can. You will know why they are called screamers within like 5 seconds lol)

-Leg extensions (Get on your knees on a mat and raise one leg up into the air as high as you can repeatedly, then the other leg. This can also be done standing up, but you have to be careful of your posture and that you aren’t cheating by leaning forward)

-Leg pulses (Get in the same position as above on your mat and raise one leg up as high as you can, then only bring it back down halfway and keep pulsing up)

-Bridge (Lie down on the mat with your feet planted down below your butt, then lift your body up into a straight line)

-Hip thrusts (Rest your shoulders on a bench with your feet planted on the ground and lif your body up into a straight line so that your legs are at a 90 degree angle. I usually do this with a barbell and some plates by resting the bar across my hips)

-Back kicks, aka donkey kicks (You literally just kick straight behind you. You will have to bend forward to do this one, and you probably shouldn’t try this at the gym or you may get some strange looks lol)

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Buffy The Vampire Slayer Workout!

So you guys may not know this about me, but I was a HUGE Buffy fan back in middle/high school. I love just about anything that involves a strong female lead, and I just loved Sarah Michelle Gellar in the role. I remember when they played reruns on Much Music when I was in high school, and I would rush home every day so that I could catch the episode.

If only I had had this workout game at that point in my life.

If you happen to go on a Buffy bender, at least give yourself some exercise by playing this game!

Magic Weight Loss

Have you wasted HUNDREDS of dollars on pills, drinks, supplements, wraps, fad diets, and more and simply not lost the weight? I have. Before Beachbody I had tried so many different weight loss remedies and fad diets, wasting money that I didn’t really have in a desperate attempt to lose the weight.

Let me let you in on a secret.. there is no magical weight loss remedy. What will ALWAYS work is eating nutritious foods, working out, and sticking to it! If you commit yourself to a workout program and eating healthy, not dieting, just eating healthy, you will lose the weight!

Let me help you reach your goals the healthy way, and send me a message detailing where you are at currently as well as your goals (whether it be losing 10 pounds, or losing over 100 pounds!) so that I can help figure out what program would work best for you.

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Core/Ab exercises you can do from home!

This is a list of some simple core/ab moves, as well as some moves straight out of various Beachbody workouts. Keep checking back for a bigger list, because I will add more over time.

-Hold weights in each hand straight down beside your thighs, and then shift your body from left and right bringing the weight down toward the floor. This works your obliques.

-Leg lifts; lie down flat on the mat with your hands on the mat for balance, and then raise your legs up into the air at a 90 degree angle. Then you’ll lift your butt off the floor and push your legs into the air as high as you can, come back down slowly, and then repeat as many times as you want.

-Crunchy frog (P90X): Sit on the mat and lean back at an angle. Lift your legs up off the floor and bend your knees up to your chest as you wrap your arms around your knees, then your legs go straight outand arms go out to the sides. Repeat.

-Sit at an angle with your legs off the floor and knees bent, then reach from side to side and touch the floor. This move can be done just by linking your hands to tap, or you can use a light weight.

-Leg extensions: Start this move on your knees and put your hands down on the floor for balance. Then you will just lift one leg up so that it is parallel to the floor, let it come down but not hit the floor, and repeat. If you want to make the move harder you can extend the leg and raise one arm out also parallel to the floor, then bring the knee up to your chest and pull the arm in at the same time.

-Leg extensions standing up: This time you balance on one leg with your hands on your hips, and then just raise the leg out to the side as high as you can. Starting out you can tap the floor between reps, but over time try to do them without touching your toe to the floor.

-Scissors: Lie down and start with both legs up straight in the air at a 90 degree angle and your arms down on the mat for balance. Then you will bring one leg down parallel to the floor, but not touching. As you bring that leg back up, the other one comes down.

-Cross crawl (Les Mills): Lie down on the mat with your hands behind your head and start by just bringing one knee up but bend it so that only the bottom half of your leg is parallel to the floor. Then switch back and forth a couple of times to get used to the movement. Once you’ve got it, (let’s say you are doing the right leg) you’ll add the crunch and then turn your body to the right, bringing your left elbow close to your right knee. Do this again several times on each side.

-Bridge: Start in a sitting position and put your hands on the ground behind you, then bend your knees and plant your feet on the ground. You will then lift yourself up until your body is parallel to the floor. Hold as long as you can.

-Plank: Start by lying face down and then resting your toes on the mat. Plant your hands in a pushup position, and then lift yourself up parallel to the floor. Hold as long as you can. This can be done on your hands or on your elbows if holding on your hands is too difficult starting out.

-Modified plank (Les Mills): Start the same way as plank, hands and feet planted body parallel to the floor. Then come down off of your right hand and onto your elbow, then the other hand, and then lift back up onto your right hand, then the other hand. Repeat. This one buuuurns when you do it enough times.

-Banana rolls (P90X): This sounds silly, but you will look just like the shape of a banana. It is probably easiest to start lying face down. You’ll want to do this at the end of your mat because then you will have more range of movement, and the mat should be positioned under your hips and butt. You’ll want to have your legs lifted off the floor as high as you can get them, and the arms straight out in front of you also lifted as high as you can get them. Hold for 10 seconds, then turn onto your side and position your arms and legs in the same manner just to the side. Hold for 10 seconds and repeat on your back, and this one will be tough so you can bring your legs a little higher if you have to. Then do the other side.

-Superman (P90X): This is exactly the same as the first part of banana roll. Keep your arms straight out, legs straight out, both as high as you can get them. Hold for as long as you can, give yourself a break, repeat as many times as you want.

-Cobra: Lie down on the mat with your hands straight out in front of you, then lift your chest as high off the ground as you can manage while bringing your arms out to the sides and pushing them as far back as you can. Repeat this as many times as you want.

-Lunge and reach (P90X): With this one you’ll want to be standing with wide legs, and then you lunge down to one side and reach for the ground. Then you will start to stand up and as you get halfway up you’ll start turning your body to the opposite side and reaching your arms up into the air. It will feel like you are picking something up off the ground, and putting it up on a high shelf on the other side. Repeat on the same side, then do the other side separately. You can do this with or without weights. If you want to add weight but you don’t have dumbbells you can even use something as simple as a can of soup.

-Stand up crunches: Can be done with a light weight or without. Just stand in a wide leg position for better balance. Then you’ll hold the weight or grip your hands together and crunch down from side to side. Do not lean forward, make sure that you have good posture and your back is straight. It should be like your back is up against a wall and all you’re doing is moving side to side.

Figure eights (Turbo Fire): Can be done with a light weight or without. Again you’ll stand in a wide leg position for balance, and then reach your arms straight out and bring it down to one side, then up, back down as you cross in front of your body to the other side, back up, etc. This literally is a figure eight, and the wider you make them and the further out your hands are the harder the move will be.

-(Les Mills) Start this move by lying down with your legs straight out but not touching the floor, and then bend your knees up toward your chest as you crunch up and reach your arms toward your toes. Then you’ll lie back and bring your legs out straight in a hover again, then lift the legs up straight in the air at a 90 degree angle while crunching up and again reaching your arms toward your toes. This counts as one full rep.

-Mountain climber: With this one you plant your hands on the floor, and then bring one knee up close to your chest. Once you put that leg back down you just switch to the other leg, and repeat. The faster you go, the harder this gets.

-Spider: Here you will start in a plank position, and then lift one leg up and bring the knee up to the side and crunch it toward your upper body. Do this on both sides repeatedly.

-Burpees: With this one you start standing up, plant your hands down on the floor quickly, jump your feet back to a plank position, jump them back forward, stand up. That is one rep. If you get good at these and you want to get a little crazy and make it harder you can add a knee tuck jump in between reps, you can jump your feet out wide after the plank before jumping them back in and standing up, or you can do both.

-X press (P90X): This one is done standing up, and you’ll want a wide stance with your toes pointing out toward the sides of the room. This one is best done with light weight, so if you don’t have those just grab a couple cans of soup. You start by squatting down and your arms just hang in between your legs, then as you come up out of the squat you reach your hands up overhead into an X. Repeat.

-Lying toe-touch: Start this move lying down with your legs straight out and your arms up behind your head. Crunch up and reach your arm across your body and touch it to the floor on the opposite side, then come back down slowly before doing the other side. Repeat as many times as you want. You can also do this with your legs crossed if you want a bigger challenge.

-Steam engine (P90X): Start standing up with your hands behind your head. Then you will bring one knee up as high as you can, and turn your body toward the knee so the opposite elbow almost touches. Then you’ll switch back and forth repeatedly.

-Another one to do standing up is to hold weight on one leg and lunge back with the other, your arms and upper body turns in the opposite direction of the lunge. Then you bring your knee up as high as you can, and your arms and upper body turns to the other side toward the knee. Repeat on this side as many times as you want before doing the other leg. You can also do this move by reaching your arms into the air straight up as you lunge, and then crunching your arms and upper body down as you bring the knee up.

-Running man (P90X): This one is done with most of your weight on the front leg, and the other leg in a bit of a lunge backward. Then you just move your arms back and forth as though you are running. The faster you go, the harder the move gets. You can also do this with light weights to make it harder.

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