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Guidelines to Your Fitness Budget: Balancing Your Goals

Guidelines to Your Fitness Budget: Balancing Your Goals

You’ve seen a budget before. You have probably come up with one to make sure you can pay your bills every month. But budgets aren’t always financial. The term “budgeting” is extremely relevant when it comes to your fitness goals and in ultimately determining your level of success. We’re going to talk about the standard “you get out what you put in”, and exactly what that means! But first, let’s start with some TOUGH LOVE!

“You get out what you put in.”

TOUGH LOVE

As coaches, we hear it all the time.. “I had a bad weekend. A bad meal turned into a bad day. I went out drinking. I’m going to be honest, I didn’t feel like working out this week, so I didn’t.” And there is plenty more where that came from. And do you know what our answer is? “That’s ok.” Because it is! We preach balance. Our clients know that we harp on it, but it’s true.

If you are prepping for a contest, or are another type of competitive athlete and you are getting ready for your event, there is less room for error in these instances. But for the typical person who is just looking for a healthier lifestyle, this is nothing more than a minor speed bump. BUT, there can’t be any confusion as to why the scale hasn’t moved or clothes aren’t fitting better. A bad day here or there won’t kill your efforts, but it can be enough to stall them. Even if it’s only one bad day per week and you’re cutting, it could be enough to take you out of that deficit or drastically decrease it. So instead of a little over a pound of weight loss, you could be looking at the same number or maybe down a quarter of a pound.

On the other end of it, let’s say you’re bulking- you drank a little too much on Friday night and you used the weekend to sleep it off. Well it’s a little harder to get to your total daily caloric intake with half the number of meals that you usually eat. So that’s two days at significantly lower numbers, which is probably enough to inhibit an increase in weight.

Again, there’s nothing wrong with this, but you’ll have to curb your expectations as far as progress is concerned. One of my favorite quotes is, “If you do something once in a while, you can expect results once in a while.” I love it. Most people don’t understand the amount of dedication it takes to achieve something that they aren’t used to doing. Furthermore, the more you progress and get closer to an elite level, the more dedication it is going to take to continue to progress.

You can’t bust your ass in the gym and then have a free for all in the kitchen and you can’t spend your life meal prepping then half-ass it in the gym and expect to get great results. It doesn’t work like that. Results are HARD to get. They may come easier to some people, but those people may just be programmed already on how to get this stuff done- making it less effort for them specifically.

Setting Your Budget

Again, we’re not talking about money here. This article isn’t about setting money aside for groceries and your gym membership. We’re talking about time and effort. How much time can you budget to your goals. How many things are you willing to give up in order to achieve them. The higher the number, the better the results. You don’t have to want to be elite. You just have to decide how much you want out of this. And that’s exactly what we’re going to breakdown here.

“Do I really need to bring a scale with me everywhere I go?”

Honestly? Yeah, you do. At least until you’ve memorized what an accurate serving size looks like for all the things you eat regularly. And even after that, if you are really hard-core about this stuff, you will have to continue to weigh your meals out because there’s no way you know what 130g of oats looks like vs 115g. Eyeball it after you learn what it looks like: Good Results. You weight it out at every meal: Great Results.

“I don’t have a set program in the gym, but I know what my body likes.”

Cool, do you remember what you did for every set of every exercise the last week? How about the last month? I can probably stop asking there but I’ll move forward anyway.. How about the last 3-6 months? Do you know exactly how much you’ve progressed in every single lift over this time frame? If you aren’t progressing, you aren’t growing and you’re likely not achieving the adaptations that you’re looking for. If you are, you’re probably not being as efficient as you could be for the amount of time that you’re in the gym.. Or you’ve just started working out and you get to enjoy the amazing responses that your body is going to give you for the first few months! But for most of us, we have to make sure we get everything we work for, so tracking your workouts is a huge tool.

If you go through the motions in the gym (busting your ass, but still untracked), you will get good results. If you track your workouts and plan them out, ensuring your volume has increased and you have progressed, you will get great results.

“I didn’t drink that much, but we got back at like 3 o’clock this morning. I’m pretty beat but I’ll still meet you at the gym at 7.”

I’ll be honest, this was my downfall for a while (college). But I probably wasn’t saying I didn’t drink that much… For whatever reason, I still felt good when I hopped out of bed after a few hours of sleep. Fitness was my religion and I wasn’t going to miss a meal or a workout. Especially not with spring break on the horizon.

But I overlooked how critical sleep was to everything else I was so dedicated to. You don’t grow while you’re lifting. You grow while you’re resting and recovering. Where does most of that take place? Sleep… And the deeper sleep the better. Can you progress off of a limited sleep schedule? Yup.. Results: Good. But get into that sweet spot of 7-9 hours of sleep.. Results: Great.

“I had a family barbecue this weekend.”

This one is easily the most common. Family/friend cookouts/get togethers. It happens all the time. You don’t have to be a party animal for this to be a common occurrence in your life. And this is really what we’re talking about with balancing your lifestyle with fun and fitness. If you aren’t competing and you just love being in shape, isn’t it ok to enjoy the quality time? That’s up for each individual person to debate. But we say yes. Absolutely enjoy it. Life is too short. BUT, if you have a show or competition coming up in two weeks and you’re already cutting it close.. Pack your own damn meals! Haha you can still enjoy the company of others while eating your prep food. Too many people shut themselves out from the world when it comes to crunch time. That’s not very enjoyable. You just need a little self-discipline and to remind yourself of why you started. You are doing something that’s very important to you. That should outweigh the big ass brownie you’re staring at.

Even if you aren’t competing, if you’ve just gotten into a rhythm in your weight loss after a long rut, stick to it! Make some tasty meals to bring with you to keep your progress rolling. We’ve done it.. Your family and friends might throw some playful jabs at you, but you’ll survive, and you’ll have abs to show them at the next one.

Mindful/intuitive eating: Good results. Meal prep: Great results.

Conclusion

So, do you have to be on top of your game all the time? That just depends on where you’re going with this. There are two extremes to every spectrum. The majority of people will find themselves somewhere in between. If you want to be elite, you do need to be at the high-end of the spectrum, on your game all the time. If you are perfectly happy being good, then make good choices most of the time. That’s your balance. That’s your budget. At the end of the day, if you are happy then you already won.

 

Josh Scutnik

SD Evolution

The Nation’s Elite Training Team

Live Happy. Live Healthy. Evolve.

Do You Really Know Why You Workout? Probably Not…

Do You Really Know Why You Workout? Probably Not…

I workout because

I wanted to do a different type of blog today. I still wanted it to be fitness oriented but from a different perspective. I didn’t want to do this one on a new trend or on tips to grow your arms or shrink your waste. I wanted to go deep. So I started with myself. What would I want to know? What haven’t I really heard or learned about in a while? What topic would really benefit our clients the most? Then it hit me…

Why the hell are we doing what we’re doing?? This may seem like a pretty dumb question. But here are the top answers to the question, why do you workout?

  1. I want to be healthier.
  2. I want more energy throughout the day.
  3. I want to look good naked!

Do these sound familiar? Another common one would be, because my doctor said I should. But for the purpose of this article, I want to focus on personal reasons, not outside sources.

So let’s dive in… You want to be healthier- Ok, why? Are you sick? Overweight? Do you have a genetic predisposition to something happening down the road? You want more energy throughout the day- Go to bed earlier. I can probably guarantee you don’t get 8 hours of sleep every night. If you think I’m wrong, write everything down for 7 days in a row. What do you end up at? 42 hours maybe? You want to look good naked- Well I have no response to that one. Ask your mirror, or your significant other (go easy on them if you don’t like the answer).

Where did those answers get us? Not very far right… Those answers were all pretty shallow, as were the top three responses to the original question, why do you workout? To truly dedicate yourself to a program, you have to truly know what you are working out for. How do we do that? I’m going to show you! It’s called “Root-Cause Analysis”. This is actually one of the cooler things I learned about when I entered the fitness industry. Unless you’ve done this before, or are a fitness competitor of some sort, you honestly probably don’t know why you’re working out. You might think you do, but it’s much broader than the actual reason. It isn’t hard to get lost. I sometimes find myself spinning in circles trying to hit 15 different goals at the same time. So this was fun for me to go through and refocus! The concept of root-cause analysis is very simple: keep asking “why” until you get to the real reason (root cause). This isn’t even limited to fitness, you can apply it to anything you are struggling to understand about yourself in your life.. Your psychiatrist was on to something…

So here we go! It might sound a little weird having a conversation with myself, but bare with me. You’ll get the jist of it.

 

Josh: Why do you workout?

Josh: So I can get stronger.

Josh: Why?

Josh: So I can use that strength to add more size.

Why do you want more size?

So I can look more filled out on my large frame. I’m 6’2 so I need more mass to show muscularity.

Why do you want more muscularity?

Because I feel like I’m smaller than most fitness athletes my height.

Why do you care if you’re smaller than most fitness athletes your height?

Because I want to be the best at what I do, and my body is my trademark. If other athletes have a better physique than I do, they will seem more credible than I am. A picture is worth a thousand words and, in the fitness industry especially, a lot of times a picture is your best marketing tool. I want people to see me as an inspiration. I want to be viewed as a goal for someone else to strive for. I don’t want to bust my ass day in and day out to be viewed as an average joe who goes to the gym after work just because it’s something to do before bed. I want to be the best and I want to look the best. I want the physique of a greek god. Large, lean, and proportionate. That’s what I want.

 

And that, my friends, is Root-Cause Analysis. We’re all going to come up with different answers, and that’s the point. Your answer might be, “I workout so I can keep up with my kids.” I’ll be honest, I didn’t know how this was going to turn out as I wrote it. I literally asked myself these questions as I typed this article. Notice how my answers get a little longer after each “why”. It forces you to think. More thinking creates more elaboration. More elaboration requires you to dig deeper and ultimately reveals WHAT YOU WANT. This shit is therapeutic. Excuse my language but that felt good. There’s nothing more frustrating that not knowing what you want. I’ve been in this rut for a little while. I couldn’t choose between training for strength or size or athleticism or a blend of everything-which would limit my growth in all of them as a compromise to get better at all of them at the same time. When we do this to ourselves, we ultimately find ourselves in a rut because we are spread too thin trying to do too much.

Throughout this little experiment I went a little bit deeper, off the record. It got me thinking about competing again. I’ve been competitive my whole life. I always had something to train for- basketball, baseball, football, track, even MMA for a little while. So I didn’t have to think about it. That’s why I trained. So because of my root-cause analysis, I discovered I might want to do a physique competition. How else am I supposed to judge if I have the best physique? So there we go. That’s why I train. That’s why I workout. Will I enter a competition? Maybe.. But I now have a focused view of what I want to train for, and when I’m ready, I’ll make that decision.

As we get older, most of us are no longer competing in any athletic leagues. Life takes over. We work. We get married. We have kids. But be a little selfish and do something for you.

Continuing on the therapeutic trend this has put me on, I went one more level and asked myself why this has become so important to me, a perfect physique. The answer to that one? I’m inspired each and every day by this amazing girl I get to call mine. My girlfriend, my best friend, my partner in crime. She inspires me because she inspires literally thousands of people every single day. The girl is 122 pounds and is breaking records for lifting more weight than the kids I used to play football with. Her physique is also phenomenal. And her heart is second to none. The passion she shows with our clients overshadows everything she has done on a personal level. She has changed so many lives (and bodies) and is a role model to an incredible female base. They look up to her as a role model and reach out to her on a daily basis for help and advice. She is my inspiration to get to an elite level. And I won’t stop grinding because she’ll be right there with me. I’m a lucky guy to be on this team.

So why do you train?

 

Until next time,

Josh

Why we hate the scale…and you should too!

Why we hate the scale…and you should too!

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The dreaded scale. We’ve all been there, stepping on it for the first time in a while only to be disappointed with the numbers that flashes up. This square piece of metal sadly can have control over your attitude, self-esteem & overall emotions. It’s time to address why we care so much about those 3 numbers we see. What makes them so special?

scale

In reality, the scale is just measuring your relationship with gravity. Who realistically cares about that? If you are stepping on what we refer to as the “enemy”, chances are you are looking for one of two things: to see if you gained, or lost weight. Luckily, there are far superior ways to measure your progressions. These include:

Measurements: Grab a tape measure and track your progress by inches gained or lost. You are much more likely to see these numbers change than the scale. We have our clients measure their hips and waist at minimum, but you can even track your biceps, thighs & calves.

Skinfold Calipers: Most gyms or personal trainers offer body fat testing. The skin fold caliper looks similar to a pair of tongs with measurements on the side. How it works is it pinches the fat on your body that covers the muscle and is closest to the surface (subcutaneous fat) and reads a measurement. The instructor testing you will then proceed to calculate your level of body fat after a series of measurements on different parts of your body.

Progress Photos: Many people make fun of all of the fitness “gurus” on Instagram who post progress photos however this can be the BEST way to track your progress. When you’re seeing your own body every single day, you aren’t going to notice differences in your physique. Taking a photo before and weekly or bi-weekly as you go, then comparing each week to the first photo is a for sure way to see any change to your body, no matter how small!

 

The scale truly does not matter when it comes to reaching your goals unless of course you are competing in a sport where you have to fit in a certain weight class. The average person however should really not rely on the scale at all when trying to lose or even gain weight. Weighing yourself daily is not only pointless but may begin to drive you into a crazy obsession. We all fluctuate weight daily because you are consuming water and food. Sometimes I weigh almost 10 pounds more at night than I do in the morning! It is absolutely normal (especially females) to fluctuate weight thanks to our hormones which is why we constantly have clients who send me progress photos of AWESOME progress yet are discouraged because the scale didn’t budge. Fixating yourself on a numerical value seems even crazier when you are actually seeing progress in your photos or measurements. In fact, to prove this theory I personally weigh about 15 pounds heavier than I did 4 years ago, yet I am smaller, and more compact and definitely in the best shape I have ever been in.

TO SUM IT UP:

The scale is truly an insignificant way to measure success in your program. Use one of the other methods to track your progress, celebrate positive changes & start to love your body!

 

 

 

What exactly is HIIT & why should you be doing it?

What exactly is HIIT & why should you be doing it?

 

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HIIT. You’ve heard about it, maybe you’ve even tried it, but do you know exactly what it is?

High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is a form of anaerobic exercise that alternates between short, intense bouts of exercise and a less intense recovery period. It’s popularity is starting to grow in the fitness world however when I walk into a commercial gym, I still witness so many individuals sluggishly walking over to their elliptical machine and floating around at the same pace for the duration of their workout. This, also known as steady-state cardio , has always been the “go-to” prescription for losing weight and burning calories. The protocol: hop on your machine of choice and pedal away for 45-60minutes at a time. From the time I began working out seriously to just about a year ago I used to be the Cardio Queen. Sure I started to lift weights also but I never felt my workout was complete unless I slaved away on the stair master for a half hour or ran my legs off for 7-8 miles per day. Now this is totally fine (and awesome) if you are training for an endurance activity and during some of that time I was in fact training for my half-marathons. Most people, however are in the gym trying to lose weight, or more accurately lose body fat. Is torturing yourself on the dreadmill the most efficient way?

Not anymore! Let’s get back to HIIT. You’re probably wondering how it can possibly work better than steady-state cardio when it comes to fat loss. Research shows that HIIT not only burns calories during your exercise, but for up to 24 hours after it can increase your resting metabolic rate (the rate at which your body burns calories while at rest). This is known as EPOC (Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption). I mean how could you not love the idea of burning fat while sitting on your coach?! (after your intense session don’t forget!)

If that’s not enough to convince you to incorporate HIIT sessions into your fit life then maybe the fact that they only last 5-20 minutes will be the icing on the cake? Yup! Crunched for time? Jump on the rowing machine for a quick 10 minute interval session. That’s obviously just ONE example of what you can do but regardless of what exercise you are performing, 20 minutes will fly by way faster than your boring 45 minute dreadmill session. With that being said, since we are chopping off time, that only means your intensity has to go up. High-Intensity truly means all out WORK or as Josh & I like to say “Empty the tank!”.

 

Since I started performing HIIT cardio 1-3 times per week, I have not only lost body fat but found that I actually enjoy my workouts a lot more. I am almost always looking forward to them regardless of how fatiguing they may end up being! My gym time was cut in half and I have more time to focus on my true love of lifting weights. Nearly all of our clients who have a goal of weight loss are prescribed HIIT into their training programs and even some of our endurance athletes have one or two sessions a week since it has also been studied to improve athletic performance.

So there you have it. You now know what HIIT exactly means so it’s your turn to figure out how to incorporate it into your weekly schedule. Not sure where to start? Luckily for you we just launched our new download: HIIT & Evolve which consists of one month of HIIT workouts to add to your strength routine or to simply do on their own. Check out more info on that at the bottom of our website linked here:  HIIT & EVOLVE

HIIT & Evolve

As always if you have any questions regarding HIIT or ANYTHING fitness related we would be happy to help you! Email us: FitnessTeam@sd-evolution.com

 

Happy Hump Day!

Alessandra

Low Calorie Pumpkin Protein Cookies

Low Calorie Pumpkin Protein Cookies

After posting a picture of this delicious treat last night I was so surprised by the amount of people interested in the recipe!

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Josh and I spent the afternoon carving our little pumpkin we got from Trader Joe’s. I got the lucky (or yucky!) job of scooping out the guts while he got to carving. While he was so intently carving, I decided to prep the seeds to be roasted! After cleaning off the “guts” I spread them out on a baking sheet and sprinkled Sea Salt lightly over the top before popping them in the oven to bake for 35 minutes at 300. The perfect substitution for movie night popcorn!

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Before starting our scary movie night, (we decided on Insidious 2) I wanted to use my can of Pumpkin Puree I bought (obviously from Trader Joe’s also) so I whipped up some healthy protein cookies!

Anyone who knows me knows I have a HUGE sweet tooth so if these cookies satisfied me, they will for sure satisfy you- and the best part? All cookies are under 600 calories!

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INGREDIENTS

1 cup Pumpkin Puree

1/2 tsp Baking Powder

1/3 cup Liquid Egg Whites

2 tbsp Cinnamon

2 tbsp Natural Peanut Butter

1 tbsp Organic Vanilla Extract

2 scoops Whey Protein Powder (I used Vanilla Optimum Nutrition 100% Natural)

1 tbsp Organic Maple Syrup

**Additional add-ons: Dark chocolate chips, raisins, etc. (Not included in 600 calorie recipe)

Mix all of the ingredients together in a bowl. Mixture will be more liquid than regular cookie dough. Plop onto baking sheet using tablespoon (Mine made about 20 small cookies) and bake at 350 for 15 minutes or until solid.

Cookies will be more of a cake-like texture but the perfect fall evening treat! Enjoy will a glass of unsweetened almond milk!

I guilt-free ate most of the batch (Hey if it fits your macros right?!) as I nervously watched the movie. Safe to say I did NOT wake up to use the bathroom in the middle of the night- no way was I stepping out into the dark! 🙂

~Alessandra

 

 

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Want abs? Skip the crunches and try this.

Want abs? Skip the crunches and try this.

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Whether you’re a guy or a girl looking to get in shape, it is almost guaranteed one of your goals is to “get abs”. The interesting thing here is you probably already have them, they’re just hiding under a little bit of fat. You can train your abs every day for the rest of your life and never see them. No matter how many crunches, side-ups, reverse crunches, mountain climbers or bicycles you do- those exercises alone unfortunately won’t be giving you the shredded look you desire. Now sure, these core exercises are important and definitely help, however there are much more efficient ways to strengthen the core, and build your six pack.

I was definitely one of those girls spending at least 30 minutes of my workout laying on the ground in my local gym doing ab exercise after ab exercise but it wasn’t until I incorporated compound strength movements like the Back Squat, Deadlift and Pull-up until my core not only got stronger but developed that “toned” look most individuals strive for. Compound movements build up total body strength including the core by using more than one muscle group. This is more challenging for your body therefore more calories are burned. Not only are you strengthening your body but you are blasting fat at the same time. When you incorporate weight lifting into your workout routine, you are putting stress on your body that it is not used to: a challenge for your mind AND body.

Not only do these movements build core strength, they build confidence. To me, there is no better feeling than knowing your body is able to lift such a heavy amount of weight. Whether you are new to lifting or have been doing it for a while, being able to continue to add weight each week provides such a feeling of empowerment.

One product I find that helps me especially with my squats is my Harbinger Foam Core Belt. Now I know what you’re thinking, only those big, macho guys in the gym wear those belts around their waist to throw their weights around. First of all, tell me this doesn’t look cute….

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and ALSO weight lifting belts provide lower back support, keep your form correct and reduce stress on your spine when lifting heavy weight. I feel so much more secure and I am able to lift so much heavier when I wear my belt. I have a super flexible spine so for example when I squat, I tend to hyperextend my back. Wearing my belt keeps my spine in alignment and thankfully prevents me from getting injured. Harbinger makes many different kinds of belts so find the one that fits best for you! (www.harbingerfitness.com) and as always don’t hesitate to email me with questions! (FitnessTeam@sd-evolution.com)

Getting under that bar can be intimidating or even scary for some at first but I challenge you to step out of that comfort zone, build your core and challenge your mind.

Need help incorporating this into your routine? Need a new goal? Sign-up for our personalized training and meal plans!  contact FitnessTeam@sd-evolution.com for more information.

Artificial Sweeteners: Why they are not the answer for weightloss or to curb sugar cravings

Artificial Sweeteners: Why they are not the answer for weightloss or to curb sugar cravings

We’ve all seen and maybe have used these products before:

artifical sweeteners diet coke sugar free gum

The one thing these products all have in common is the catchy phrase, “Sugar Free”. Sounds awesome right? A low or zero-calorie product, with no sugar…it must be healthy!

That is not only so SO wrong but these products are the latest threat to our nation’s Obesity and Diabetic epidemic. Researchers at Yale University School of Medicine have recently published (via The Journal of Physiology) that “the pleasure we get from eating sweet things comes from the amount of energy we expect to gain from it.” Basically your (very smart) brain can recognize these sugar imposters and in turn cause you to continue craving sugar when it doesn’t receive that burst of energy after consuming your favorite “innocent” sugar-free products. Since you aren’t getting that energy burst, you may in fact end up consuming more calories LATER than the individual who chose sugar in the first place.

I know I’m not the only person who has opted for a low-calorie option at breakfast time to then rationalize my decision later that night by saying, “Oh I ate well today, let me indulge in this bowl of ice cream or chocolate chip cookie.”  What would have happened if I had a more filling healthy breakfast and skipped the coffee with Splenda, or sugar-free gum to “fight the cravings” ? I guarantee I would have been less inclined to pick up that cookie because I was full and satisfied my metabolism instead of trying to trick it.

So what you’re saying is to eliminate all sugar AND artificial sweeteners from my diet?

Definitely not! Your brain needs sugar to function but that doesn’t mean go stuff your kitchen cabinets with M&M’s, Sour Patch Kids and Oreos. While there is no percent daily value set by the FDA for sugar, the American Heart Association (AHA) suggests 24 grams per day for women and 36 grams per day for men. To compare, one can of coke has 35g of sugar! So where can you get your sugar from? Here’s some suggestions:

  • Fruits- Apples, Bananas, Pineapples and Prunes all contain sugar yet also contain powerful antioxidants and fiber.
  • Yogurt- I am a huge fan of Greek Yogurt due to its high calcium and of course probiotics!
  • Vegetables- Believe it or not carrots and beets both include sugar and are a great snack option.
  • Agave Nectar- From the Agave plant, this is a natural source of sugar and a great alternative to artifical sweeteners.

So there you have it! After doing some research on my own I have decided to eliminate gum and artifical sugars from my diet in hopes of increasing my health. Since I already consume some of the healthy carriers of sugar as listed above, I will still provide fuel to my brain and avoid tricking my body! Our bodies are the only place we have to live, it’s about time we start treating them respectfully. Will you think twice about pouring that Splenda into your coffee or buying that pack of “Sugarless” gum now?

~Alessandra

As always feel free to email any questions to fitnessteam@sd-evolution.com!

**Disclaimer: I am not a certified Nutritionist or Dietician however I pride myself on spreading the healthy lifestyle and speak from experience as a certified health fitness specialist with a degree in Exercise Science.

Energy flows where intention grows.

Energy flows where intention grows.

With it being my last two weeks as an intern at Fitness Quest 10, it is so important to keep my energy going. The past few months have been the most amazing and most physically demanding of my life and as long as some days have been I am incredibly sad this experience is coming to an end.

I think one of the most important things I have learned being at FQ10 is to always have a contagious, positive energy about you. From the first day I walked into the gym back in May, I felt at home. There is simply no other way to describe it. Moving from the East Coast to the West Coast, leaving my family and friends, and knowing less than a couple people out here it was safe to say I was nervous. I had never lived more than 30 minutes from my house in Connecticut so this huge life change was new in so many ways for me yet upon walking through the door of “the roots” (FQ10’s upstairs facility) I suddenly felt comfort. I felt so welcomed and somehow knew that these people were going to become my family for the summer and that became true in so many ways.

All of the employees at FQ10 are unique in their own way, and I could go on and on about how each one of them has impacted my life but I think the take-away for me is that they all have one thing in common- they are passionate about their jobs and that passion spreads like rapid fire. My mentor and friend Janet “B-Train” Bertrand expressed to me that “You either are fueled or repelled by greatness.” and that comment has stuck with me throughout the duration of this internship. For me personally, just being in the same room as many of these people inspires me to want to become better. I want to continue to follow my dreams of establishing FITGIRLMOVES, become the best trainer that I possibly can be and make a name for myself. I am filled with such motivation just being able to surround myself with such positivity and greatness each day and ultimately I have become the happiest I have ever been in my life. On the other hand, I have also witnessed certain situations here where the “greatness” is too much for some to handle. Janet was right in every aspect of that statement and although it took me a little while to understand both sides of it, I realized that being able to respond to this “greatness” is truly a gift.

Energy is defined as the strength and vitality for sustained physical and mental activity.

Although there are just 7 days left here for me, I believe in bringing all of the energy I have to the gym. Something I always tell my clients is to “finish strong” and being someone who practices what they preach that is exactly what I intend to do. The positivity and overall “energy” at Fitness Quest 10 is something I intend to take with me upon my departure. If I can impact one person per day like Todd, and the staff do to every single one of their clients then my daily goal has been met. Although spreading health and fitness is my true passion, spreading positivity to people you encounter on the daily is just as important and fulfilling to me.

 

So my question to you:

What can you do this week to bring a positive, contagious energy to your work, home or friends??

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Be a weekend warrior!

Be a weekend warrior!

The weekend is usually a time when most people slack off and forget about exercising and eating healthy. While I agree that the weekend should be a fun time to enjoy yourself with the people you care about, I also think it is highly important to stay on track with the same regimen you perform during the week.

In my previous post about finding balance, I discuss the importance of creating that equilibrium in all areas of your life. Rest is just as important as exercise, while having your favorite treat every so often is key to creating balance in your diet. I have definitely had weekends where I have slacked off to the max- having cheat meals turn into cheat days turn into cheat weekends. When that happens, I would always start off my Monday feeling awful. I decided that was not worth it to me. I prefer to keep it clean, have one treat meal and start my Monday the way I ended my Friday- feeling fresh and ready to own it!

 

Here’s some important things to keep in mind this weekend:

1. Stay active and keep it clean! The weekends are an easy time to “slack off” so try your best to stay motivated to power through the weekend just like you do during each week. The weekend is never an excuse to slack off on your nutrition or training.  I challenge you to do something ACTIVE that you wouldn’t normally do (ex. Go for a long hike, a trail run, a walk along the beach, climb some stairs). It’s important to keep our bodies guessing and this can also be something fun and new for you to get those minds right!

2. Conquer those food cravings! When I start to crave certain foods that I know aren’t the best choice I try to remind myself how great my body feels when I fuel it properly. Keep that in the back of your head at all times- a healthy body is a happy body! Jump on Pinterest (or dig back into my previous recipe posts) to get alternative, healthy versions of your favorite foods!

3. REST. Yes you heard me! Get adequate sleep, let your body recover from the hard work you put it through during the week. Sleep is just as important as eating right and exercise because it allows your muscles to repair.

4. Party smart. If you have a weekend BBQ planned, or just a get together with friends instead of picking on those tempting appetizers and desserts, whip up something healthy of your own to bring or to feed your guests! There are so many recipes out there that apply to any event and most people won’t even realize it’s healthy! Stay on track while pleasing other party goers= a win/win!

 

With that I will leave you with a happy Friday Fit Girl Mob. Choose to be a “Weekend Warrior” and not a couch potato! This weekend in Cali is going to be a hot one so try to stay cool!

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Simple ways to live inspired

Simple ways to live inspired

During the past few months at Fitness Quest 10 in San Diego I have lived more inspired than ever before. Not only to better myself through my career, but changing my whole outlook on life. I not only have learned more than I could imagine about training and running a successful business, but the way I interact and connect with people has changed. My outlook on every task I complete throughout my day is positive and I truly believe it is through the connections I have made here that have unleashed my true passion. Not only do I want my goal in life to be to share my passion of fitness and health with others, but I want to help others live as positively and passionately as I do. I have come up with a list of ways to bring out your true passion and ultimately live an inspired life yourself.


“We are all connected.”

I realized there is a reason why someone may enter your life. It could be to help you or it could be to hurt you, but there is always a reason behind it. Connections can lead to great things and open up many doors if you realize what you have in front of you. Make it your mission to make at least one person smile per day. You never know who you are affecting so why not try to affect as many people as positively as you can? -And I guarantee that positivity will come right back around to you when YOU need it.

“It’s not the circumstances that create joy, its YOU.”

Life is what you make of it. Even on your worst day, if you fake a smile long enough before you know it that smile will be genuine. Todd tells us all of the time, “Fake it til you make it.” and I 100% agree with him! Waiting around for something to turn your day around is less effective than decided that your “bad day” is over and making the best of it yourself. When you decide your fate, you are destined for success.

“Do more of what makes you happy.”

We all see it on social media every single day. People complaining. Whether it’s about work, school, or someone messing up their coffee order, they are spreading their negativity to you. When someone makes you unhappy, think to yourself, “What can I do to change this situation?”. You are not stuck, you are not a tree. Do what you need to do to be happy!

“Surround yourself with people who make you hungry for life, touch your heart, and nourish your soul.”

This one in my opinion is the most important. By surrounding yourself with these kind of people, you are bettering yourself. Their positivity, inspiration and inner fire are spreading to you whether you realize it or not. When I am around people like this (and realize it in the moment) I get goosebumps, my heart starts racing and my excitement almost comes out through my ears. These are your soulmates. These are the people that effect you so highly and you need to make sure they stay in your life.

 

I used to think I lived inspired. Yet when I look back now and compare my thought process to where it is now, I realize that was only the beginning. My inspiration continues to grow every single day because I follow these simple tasks. Living inspired, and living with purpose has allowed me to figure out why I was put on this earth. So what are you waiting for?

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