Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Fun Exercise Ideas for Summer Fitness

People playing volleyball on the beach as a fun exercise
Need some fun exercise ideas to keep you moving this summer? I’ve got some tips to get you started! It’s so important to make sure that your exercise is also fun; it makes it that much easier to be active every day.

Team Up.
Do you enjoy a little bit of friendly competition? A team sport might be right up your alley! Team sports might remind you of being on the playground as a child, but playing sports with a team can also provide fun exercise for adults! Start up a team with a group of friends or look for adult leagues in your area. Sports like basketball, soccer, and baseball might seem like child’s play when they’re not at a professional level, but they’re great workouts for everyone.

Set a Goal.
Running is a great exercise and an easy way to get outdoors. Sign up for a 5k with some friends, and you’ll have a goal to work toward as well as some peers to train with! Making the commitment of registering for the event makes it easier to stick with your training, and teaming up with others can give you some extra motivation to achieve your goal. You can even beat the summer heat by running in the morning before the sun gets too hot.

Keep Cool.
Swimming is another fun exercise, and it gives you a nice break from the summer heat. Swimming laps around the pool will get your heart pumping and work all of your muscle groups. Did you know you can also do strength training in the pool? Try using resistance bands or weights in the water for a intense strength workout. Pool workouts are a great option for those hot summer days because they allow you to get a full workout while you stay cool in the water.

A Day at the Beach.
If you’re lucky enough to be hitting the beach this summer, spend some time moving around on the sandy shores. Walking and running on sand is a great workout. The sand shifts beneath your feet as you move, so your muscles have to work a little harder. Get a group together for some sand volleyball to ramp it up.

Try these fun exercise ideas this summer! You might just discover a new activity that you love. If you’re passionate about fitness and want to share that passion with others, you should consider becoming a Beachbody Coach! Simply complete this short survey, and feel free to message me with any questions you might have.
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Sunday, June 28, 2015

Finding Motivation to Meet Your Healthy Goals

Woman finding motivation on a beach
Finding motivation might sometimes seem like a difficult task. Motivation isn’t something we can see or touch, and it’s different for everyone. Fortunately, finding motivation is so much easier than you might think!

  • It’s not one-size-fits-all. What motivates someone else might not motivate you, and that’s okay! Finding motivation is all about finding what motivates you personally. You might know someone who finds their motivation through competitive sports while you prefer a more laid-back approach. Try experimenting with a few different motivational ideas. Don’t feel discouraged if it takes a few attempts to find the right source of inspiration for you.

  • Think about what means the most to you. Finding motivation by focusing on things that matter a lot to you can help propel you toward your goals. Weight loss goals can be great for some, but they don’t work for everyone. If weight loss or appearance-based goals make you feel intimidated or discouraged, modify them! For example, instead of setting a goal to lose ten pounds, try making your goal about setting a healthy example for your children. You might find that this makes it easier for you to make healthier choices, and the weight loss will naturally follow.

  • Don’t be afraid to have fun. Just because your goals are serious doesn’t mean your workout always has to be! Try finding motivation in workouts that are fun and exciting. If hitting the gym every day makes you feel bored, mix it up by subbing in some other activities. If there’s a sport you enjoy, start a team with some friends. Or, if you draw your inspiration from nature, try going for a hike or trail run through a local park. When your workout is something that you truly enjoy and look forward to, finding motivation is much easier!

If finding motivation is sometimes a challenge for you, don’t be afraid to take a step back and re-examine your goals. Remember to be flexible, and willing to make any changes necessary to help you succeed. While it’s important to work for your goals, it’s equally important that your goals work for you. Want some help finding your workout inspiration? Get in contact with me! I can provide 1 on 1 support and motivation to help you make your fitness dreams become reality! Why not start today?
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Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Workout Log Tips To Get You Started

Workout log next to a bowl of strawberries
A workout log is a great way to help you track your fitness and stay motivated. No matter what your fitness goals may be, a workout log can be a valuable tool to help you reach them. If you’re interested in adding a workout log to your fitness routine, here are a few things to consider before you get started:

Benefits of Keeping a Workout Log
One of the best things about using a workout log is that it provides you with a realistic picture of your workouts and results. You might not always be aware of how much you are progressing, but keeping a log can make it easier to see how far you’ve come. Your workout log can help you see what is working well for you, and also spot areas where you can improve.

Tips for Getting Started
If you have spreadsheet software on your computer, you can create a chart to track your workouts. Set aside some room for each type of workout you do, and a spot to track how much time you spent along with any other details. If you want, you can also include a spot in your workout log to describe how you felt after each exercise.

There are also tons of free printable workout log templates online. A quick internet search will likely turn up a version that can work well for you. You can also find apps for your tablet or smartphone to log your workouts, or keep it simple and use a regular notebook. All that matters is that you find something that works for you.

Tips for Sticking With It
Don’t let your busy routine keep you from starting a workout log. Keeping it up to date is less time-consuming than you might think. Jotting down a few simple notes as you go is all it takes to maintain your workout log. If you prefer to keep more detailed notes, you certainly can! Make filling out your workout log part of your routine, and you’ll discover how easy it is to stick with it. You can also treat it more like a workout diary, and use it as an opportunity to reflect on your day.

If you think using a workout log would be a good option for you, give it a try! Don’t be afraid to experiment with different styles and formats until you find one that works well for you. Your workout log should support your goals, not distract you from them. Remember: this is all about your needs and your success.
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Saturday, June 20, 2015

Rice Bowl Meals Your Family Will Love

Rice bowl with yellow squash
A rice bowl is a great way to pack plenty of nutritious foods into one delicious meal. With a rice bowl, you can use different ingredients to create the perfect flavor combination. They are the perfect option if you have picky eaters in your family, because they’re so simple to customize. Just cook up a big batch of brown rice or quinoa and chop up an assortment of veggies, and you’ll have all of the ingredients for a tasty meal. Here are some of my favorite ways to mix up a healthy rice bowl:

Start with a base of brown rice or quinoa. Brown rice is high in fiber and essential minerals like iron, zinc, magnesium, and potassium. It takes a bit longer to cook than white rice, but it is worth the wait. Brown rice has a subtle, nutty flavor. You can also substitute quinoa for rice. Quinoa is high in protein and amino acids in addition to the nutrients found in brown rice.

Cook as much brown rice or quinoa as you need. You can make enough for one meal, or make a large batch that you can use for several meals throughout the week. Store leftover rice or quinoa in your fridge to use whenever you want. A leftover rice bowl can also be a quick and satisfying lunch!

Burrito Rice Bowl:
Combine some of your favorite burrito fillings for a flavorful rice bowl. Add some black beans, corn, diced tomatoes, avocado, and cilantro to your brown rice or quinoa base. Mix in a little bit of cumin, and squeeze some lime juice over the top.

Asian-Inspired Rice Bowl:
I love rice bowls that combine a variety of different tastes. Top your rice or quinoa with shredded cabbage, green onions, steamed broccoli, shredded carrots, and chopped cooked mushrooms. Mix in a few tablespoons of low-sodium soy sauce.

Mediterranean-Inspired Rice Bowl:
Combine diced tomatoes, sliced roasted red pepper, spinach, olives, and feta cheese with your favorite base for a tasty rice bowl.

You can customize your rice bowl even further by mixing in your favorite protein. Add grilled chicken breast, tofu, or an egg for a healthy protein boost!

Try one or more of these rice bowl ideas the next time you’re looking for meal ideas. You can even experiment with whatever vegetables or protein you have on hand. There’s no wrong way to make a rice bowl!
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Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Partner Workouts for Friends or Couples

Partner workouts with two people running together
Partner workouts are the perfect way to make your workout into a fun social activity. Having a workout buddy can help you stay motivated because you’re much less likely to skip your workout if someone else is expecting you to be there.

If you want to try some partner workouts, it’s important that both partners commit to the plan. It can be discouraging if one partner isn’t as dedicated as the other. Before you register for a class or join a gym together, make sure you’re both on the same page.

Set goals for your partner workouts that are important to both of you, and in line with your current fitness levels. If you’re hoping to run a marathon by the end of the summer and your partner just wants to get out and have fun, they may not be a great match for you as a fitness buddy. A little bit of friendly competition can be a great motivator, but don’t get discouraged if your partner does a little better than you in some areas. Stick with it and you’ll get there, too! Make sure you’re having fun together, but don’t get so caught up in conversation that you forget to exercise!

Time to find a workout buddy and get going! Here are some fun partner workouts you can try together:

Dance classes. Dancing is a fun activity, but, surprisingly it can be one of the more challenging partner workouts, too! Instead of a traditional dinner and a movie date night, why not sign up for a dance class instead? You’ll both get a full-body workout while you have a blast spending time together.

Bodyweight exercises. You might be familiar with doing bodyweight exercises (such as push-ups) on your own, but having a partner opens up new possibilities for you. Try doing some partner squats. Facing your partner, hold on to each other’s forearms. Slowly lower your bodies as though you are sitting in a chair, stopping when your thighs are parallel with the floor. Move back into a standing position, and repeat. It’s that easy! If you and your partner enjoy that, try doing a few other kinds of bodyweight partner workouts.

Sign up for a 5k. Setting goals is an incredibly important part of successful partner workouts. Signing up for an event gives you a specific goal to work toward together, and you’ll both be more likely to stick to it. Be each other’s cheerleader, and celebrate together after you’ve crossed the finish line.

Partner workouts help you get fit while strengthening your bond with your workout buddy. If you’re looking for new ways to shake up your routine, I suggest trying one of these partner workouts. Are you trying to find a fitness and nutrition plan that works for you? I’m here to help. Contact me today, and I can help you find a healthy routine that will put you on track to reach your fitness goals!
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Saturday, June 13, 2015

Easy Breakfast Ideas for a Healthier Day

Easy breakfast with oatmeal and fruit
An easy breakfast can make the morning much less stressful, and help you feel productive and focused throughout the day. While it might be tempting to reach for unhealthy convenience foods on mornings when you have a full schedule, enjoying a healthy, easy breakfast is simpler than you might think. Here are some of my favorite ways to enjoy an easy breakfast!

Overnight oats are an easy breakfast that uses ingredients you probably already have in your pantry. Simply mix ½ cup of your favorite oats (this is a great way to make steel cut oats) with about ⅔ cup of unsweetened almond milk (you can also use coconut milk). Stir in about one teaspoon of honey or maple syrup for just a hint of sweetness, and let the mixture sit in your refrigerator overnight. In the morning, give it a stir and add some extra milk if you prefer a thinner consistency. Top with some nuts or fresh fruit, and you’ve got a delicious and easy breakfast. You can even store your overnight oats in the fridge for a few days if needed.

Egg muffins have become a popular easy breakfast, and with good reason! They’re packed with protein, and you can fill them with your favorite veggies to make them extra tasty. Since they’re pre-baked, you can make a large batch and store the extras in your fridge or freezer. Crack about six eggs into a bowl (you can sub in egg whites for a few of the eggs if you prefer) and whisk them, then add about ¾ cup of cottage cheese. From there, simply add your favorite veggies (diced into small pieces). You can make your egg muffins even more filling by adding some cooked quinoa or brown rice. Spray a muffin tin and fill each cup just over halfway with the egg mixture. Bake them at 350 degrees for around 20-25 minutes, and you’ve got an easy breakfast that you can store in your fridge or freezer. Just pop them in the microwave when you’re ready to enjoy them.

If you’re short on time and didn’t get a chance to prepare anything in advance, try an easy breakfast that requires almost no preparation. Spread some nut butter over a whole wheat tortilla, and roll it around a peeled banana or fill it with an assortment of berries for an easy breakfast that you can enjoy on your way out the door. Plain Greek yogurt topped with some honey and fruit makes for another quick and easy breakfast that tastes surprisingly creamy and indulgent.

Try some of these ideas and see what you think! Once you find a few easy breakfast recipes you enjoy, it’s so simple to keep those items on hand, so you’re ready to tackle even the busiest mornings. Are you looking for more information about nutrition and fitness? Contact me today! I can help you find a fitness and nutrition plan that will work for you!
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Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Outdoor Exercise for Summer Fun

Outdoor exercise like kayaking is a fun way to stay fit
Outdoor exercise is one of the best ways to enjoy the beautiful summer weather. With warmer temperatures come more opportunities to get outside and be active. It gives you tons of opportunities to switch up your usual workout routine. Want to try something new? Here are some outdoor exercise ideas you can do this summer!

Canoeing or kayaking. This fun outdoor exercise lets you get a great workout while you take in the scenery. As you paddle along, you’re also working out your arms, shoulders, and core. Because you need to use your leg muscles to balance the kayak and brace yourself, you’re also building strength in your legs. Don’t feel intimidated if you’ve never tried it before! Many parks offer rental equipment and even classes so that you can learn at a fun and manageable pace!

Trail running. A daily run might already be your go-to outdoor exercise, but why not try something new? Rather than your usual jog through your neighborhood, try going for a run on a nearby hiking trail. You’ll get to enjoy the beauty of nature, and the uneven terrain will give you an even better workout. If you’re lucky enough to be spending time at the beach this summer, a run through the sand is an amazing workout!

Volleyball. Speaking of spending time at the beach, volleyball is another fantastic outdoor exercise. Group up with some friends, or make some new ones, for a fun way to get a full-body workout. The challenge of staying balanced as the sand moves beneath your feet will also work your leg muscles. If you’re not hitting the beach this summer, try looking for a volleyball court at a nearby park.

Swimming. One of the best things about summertime is getting to sit poolside. Why not turn your day at the pool or beach into a fun outdoor exercise? Swimming is a great full-body workout, and the water supports your body as you move. A regular swim can improve circulation and flexibility without straining your joints. Do a few laps around the pool before you lounge with your favorite book.

If you’re happy with your current routine, why not take it outside on days when the weather is nice? Whether you’re hitting the beach or just your backyard, many of your favorite fit activities can come along. Try doing some yoga while you enjoy the fresh air, or turn the staircase in a local park into a fun workout! Don’t be afraid to get creative and see fitness challenges everywhere you go.

Outdoor exercise is such a fantastic way to have fun with your fitness this summer. I love helping my clients discover how enjoyable fitness can be. Want to find out more about how you can achieve your summer fitness goals? Sign up for a FREE Beachbody account today, and choose me as your coach. I can help you find fitness and meal plans that will help you meet your goals.
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Saturday, June 6, 2015

Toned Arms Exercises

Toned arms exercises being done outdoors
Toned arms are one of the best accessories to have, especially in the summer! Having toned arms means you look amazing in your favorite clothes, and you will also notice a big difference in how you feel. While you may normally think of toned arms as something that requires hours of work in the gym, I’ve got some easy exercises that you can do at home!

Arm circles: standing up tall and straight, extend your arms straight out to your sides (so you’re in a “T” shape). With your palms facing the floor, move your arms in quick, tight circles. These circles may not sound like a very intense workout, but they will help tone your upper arms.

Push-ups: push-ups are simple, but they’re a great exercise to give you toned arms. The key is to make sure you’re doing your push ups with the right form. Use the same straight, tall posture you would if you were standing standing up and hold a nice line through your body. Make sure you’re holding this form even when you’re in the lower position of your push-up.

Planks: like push-ups, planks are going to help you get nicely toned arms while also working your legs and core. Get even more out of the standard plank by raising one arm and touching it to your shoulder on the opposite side of your body. Repeat this for the other arm, and continue alternating until you are done.

Weights: if you have some dumbbells at home, try adding in a few weight exercises as well. Bicep curls are a nice way to sculpt toned arms. Hold a pair of dumbbells, letting your arms hang slightly. In a slow, steady motion, bend at your elbow to lift the weight, bringing your forearm to your chest. With the same motion, lower the weight back down until it returns to the starting position. Bicep curls are a simple way to start doing weight lifting exercises.

By adding these easy exercises to your existing routine, you’ll have toned arms before you know it! What I like most about these exercises is that you can do them just about anywhere, and most of them don’t require any equipment. That means you can squeeze in a quick workout on even the most hectic day! Whether you want toned arms or just want to learn more about nutrition, I’m here to help. Please feel free to contact me to find out how I can help you start your fitness journey!
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