Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Sloane's TRX Challenges - Week 2/8

In this week's Challenge, participants had to complete 5 exercises, 20 reps each.   The person who could do all 100 reps in the fastest time was the winner.

The exercises for this week's challenge included:

1. Atomic Push Ups
2. Low row
3. Kneeling Rollout
4. Superman
5. Triceps Press

                            Jordan Shank completed the Challenge in a time of 3:18

Coming off her win last week, Janessa tried to top everyone this week again.  Unfortunately, she couldn't quite match the speed of a few others, including the winner Shawn Lippy.  Shawn completed all 5 exercises in a speedy time of 2:17.  Keep in mind that I monitored most of the competitors to make sure they were performing each exercise correctly with good form.  The objective was to perform the exercises fast, however,  proper form was emphasized to ensure safety.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Better Sleeping - Week 3

Here are this week's tips for better sleeping...

Week #3 ideas:

#1.  Avoid Tobacco - Nicotine, found in tobacco products can interfere with sleep

#2.  Eat Regularly Throughout the Day - This maintains blood sugar levels and you'll be ready to sleep at night

#3.  Don't Oversleep - Don't abuse the snooze button, this can actually make you MORE tired

#4.  Get a Check-Up - If you have trouble sleeping, you might be suffering from a sleep disorder?

#5.  Limit Caffeine - Avoid caffeine at least 4 hrs prior to bed, and aim for less than 1-2 cups a day

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Weekend Workout #8

As I get ready to depart for (hopefully) sunny AZ for a week of vacation, I leave you with this workout.  The  only piece of equipment that you need is a Kettlebell.

Instead of the normal format of moving from one exercise to the next, I would like you to do them in a ladder format, where you start with exercise #1, rest 15-30 sec. then do exercise #1 and #2, then rest 15-30sec., then do exercise #1, # 2, and #3.  Keep repeating until all 8 exercises are completed.  For each exercise you can either do them for 30 sec. or 15 reps.
So this means that you will be doing Burpees 8 times, but Bicycle Crunches only twice.

1.  Burpees

2.  Slow Mtn Climbers

3.  1-Hand KB Swings L

4.  1-Hand KB Swings R

5.  Pushups

6.  2-Hand KB Swings

7.  Bicycle Crunches

8.  2-Hand KB Swings

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

How to calculate daily caloric needs

As part of my free Fitness Assessments that I offer members at Anytime Fitness, I measure each persons body fat% so that I can determine their lean and fat mass amounts.  To me, these numbers are much more important than the number on the scale.  But finding out how much lean mass and fat mass you have is only part of the equation, literally.

Finding out how many calories each of us needs to consume on a daily basis (aka: resting metabolic rate) is one of the most important aspects of nutrition to consider.  Whether you are a professional athlete looking to stay strong and lean, or someone who wakes up, goes to work, comes home and goes to bed, the amount of daily calories (known as fuel) you need to consume can be determined in a simple equation.

Supplying the body with adequate amounts of fuel will provide stable energy levels, improve muscle recovery and repair, as well as encourage better food choices for a healthy, well-rounded diet.

Various studies have shown that NOT meeting your daily caloric needs can cause endurance performance to suffer, decrease the ability to build muscle, increase fatigue, and reduce the immune system effectiveness.

Below I have provided the equation to help you calculate how many calories YOU need each day based on your activity level.

Weight (lbs.) / by 2.2 = weight in kg
[Body fat %*/ by 100] x weight (kg) = body fat (kg)
Weight (kg) - body fat (kg) = lean body mass
500 + [22 x lean body mass] = Resting Metabolic Rate

*Body fat% can be determined by some scales and also by a Personal Trainer with skinfold calipers or bioelectrical impedence.

Activity Levels (Estimated Activity)
Light activity - 1.3 - 1.5
Moderate activity - 1.6 -2.0
High activity - 2.0 - 3.0

Resting Metabolic Rate x Estimated Activity Level = Calories Required Per Day

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Sloane's TRX Challenges - Week 1/8

For the next 8 weeks I am offering to Anytime Fitness Members a TRX Challenge.  I am posting these challenges on my Blog with a video so that you too can participate.  Each week the exercises will change, and the format of the workout will change.  The goal of this challenge is to offer the Members something new to their current workout program, bring out some competitiveness between the Members, and get more Members comfortable/familiar using the TRX.

To kick the Challenge off, I started with some basic movements:

Chest Press
Squat Jumps
Back Extensions
Side Lunge L
Side Lunge R.

The format for this week was to complete as many reps possible of each exercise within 30 sec.  The highest total # of reps completed determined the winner.  Members could do the challenge as many times as they wanted during the week.  Rest intervals were up to the participants, but 15-30 sec. was recommended.

Shawn Lippy (white shirt) completed a total of 117 reps

10 Members competed in this weeks' challenge and the winner was one of my clients, Janessa Lott.  She showed everyone how strong and fit she is by cranking out 150 total reps.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Better Sleeping - Week 2

Here are this weeks' tips leading to better sleep...

Week #2 ideas...

#1.  Turn Your Back to the Clock - Studies show that watching the clock into the morning hours makes you more anxious and less able to fall asleep

#2.  Clear Your Mind at Night - Decrease brain activity by writing down your thoughts, it will allow you to let today end and look forward to tomorrow.

#3.  Turn the Lights Down - Too much light can make it difficult to fall and stay asleep. Try wearing a sleeping mask and closing the blinds...that full moon can be bright.

#4.  Exercise in the Morning - Working out late at night (3-4 hrs prior to bed) can make it difficult to fall asleep.

#5.  Go to Bed Earlier - Try to aim for at least 7-8 hours per night

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Weekend Workout #7 - Step It Up!

This weekend I have a workout for you that will have you performing 140 total reps.  Now, this may not seem like a lot to some, but to others it could be very intimidating.  All of the reps will be completed on steps/stairs (if you don't have access to steps or stairs, use a step box in a gym).

In the video I am only doing 5-6 reps for each exercise, however, for each exercise YOUR goal is to do 20 reps except the side lunges (which is only 10 reps per side).  For the stair runs you will also do 20 reps, of at least 10 steps if you can, more is better though.

Step Jumps (20 reps)

Forward Lunges (20 ea. - 40 total reps)

Push Ups (Decline or Incline) (20 reps)

Triceps Dips (20 reps)

Side Lunge (10 ea. - 20 total reps)

Stair Runs - run up walk down (20 reps)

140 total reps completed!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Core class - video

Each Monday and Wednesday I offer a 20-min. core class at Anytime Fitness.  I started the class with the hope of showing Members some new and exciting exercises they could do to help build a stronger core.  I try to incorporate as many exercises as I can to keep the variety high.  Some of the equipment used in the class includes TRX Suspension Trainer, TRX Rip Trainer, Kettlebells, Swiss Balls, Medicine Balls, BOSU Balls, and Cable Pulleys.

Exercises that are included in this video are the following:

1.  TRX Rip Trainer straight-arm twist

2.  TRX side plank with a crunch

3.  1-arm partner towel pulls

4.  BOSU bicycle crunches

5.  Scissor kicks

Exercises included in the class but are not in the video were the following:

1.  TRX kneeling rollout

2.  Med Ball slams

3.  Plank with 1-leg lifts

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

National Nutrition Month

Most of you may not know this, but next month (March) is the 40th anniversary of National Nutrition Month.  

As a personal trainer, my primary objective is to get clients healthier; this includes everything from getting stronger, faster, and more powerful; improving balance and coordination and improving flexibility.  However, one of the more overlooked pieces to the "healthy" pie is nutrition.  Unfortunately, what we eat is much more difficult to change than adding in more daily exercise.  In my opinion nutrition is the key to all successes (results).

When sitting down with potential clients, the first 15 min I like to spend talking about what they eat.  Now don't get me wrong, I am not a registered dietitian or a nutritionist, and don't go outside my scope of practice, however, I try and help make simple changes in one's eating habits so that all the effort they put in the gym strength training doesn't go un-noticed.  I like to have those who are looking to lose weight sign up for an online food journal account (MyFitnessPal.com, FitDay.com, etc).  Something as simple as tracking the foods you eat can make a big difference, you will be amazed by how many more calories you eat than you think.  If after several weeks they continue to struggle with their nutrition, I will refer them to one of our local dietitians to explore more options.

Visit Eat Right for lots of helpful information and some healthy recipes.

With just over 2 weeks to go until March, think of ideas you can incorporate now to help improve your overall diet.  Don't opt for the "quick diet" plan that promises that you will lose 20 lbs in 3 weeks.  Instead, choose food habits that you can sustain for the rest of your life.  Here are just a few ideas that may help get you started.

     1.  Eat breakfast - You have probably heard this more than once, but eating breakfast (doesn't have to be big) will immediately help improve your diet.  Eat some oatmeal, have a banana and some yogurt, or even better make an omelet with veggies and a piece of toast.  You'll be surprised by how much more energy you will have during the day, and may even find that you are less hungry at lunch.

     2.  Eat 4-5 meals during the day - By spreading your daily calories over more meals, you will eat less at each meal and not overheat.  This can be difficult for some and requires some planning ahead to have meals ready.  Instead of eating 3 (700 calorie meals), try 5 (400 calorie meals).  Depending on your BMR (basal metabolic rate - the amount of calories YOUR body needs to maintain a heart beat), you will need to adjust the amount of calories per meal.  Keep in mind, the more you exercise the more calories your body will require.

     3.  Eat more fiber - Foods high in fiber will help keep you "feeling" full longer and prevent you for overeating.  foods high in fiber include:  vegetables, black beans, brown rice, avocado, raspberries or even some ground flax seed in your cereal.  Fiber can help reduce cholesterol, and lower blood sugar levels.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Better Sleeping - Week 1

For each of the next 6 weeks, I will post 5 ways to help you get better sleep.  For some of us, getting plenty of sleep is not a problem, however, for others it can be nearly impossible to get a good nights' sleep.  And then there is the issue of getting quality (REM) sleep, so even though you get 8 hours do you wake up feeling tired or lively?  Which one are you?

These simple ideas are from SparkPeople; which is a great tool for many things fitness-related.  I will provide 5 simple things you can do each week to help give you more energy for the things that require you to be at your best.  Whether it's a company meeting, a family obligation, or an effective workout, getting enough sleep will lead to more production.

Week #1 ideas:

#1.  Relieve Stress - exercise, yoga, or meditation will be your your best stress reliever!

#2.  Exercise Regularly - can help increase energy, and regulate sleeping patterns

#3.  Keep a Sleep Schedule - Try to go to bed and wake up at the same times, even on weekends.  This will help you fall asleep faster.

#4.  Think Positive - Being optimistic can lead to better sleep and better health, being pessimistic can lead to insomnia

#5.  Eat a Light Snack at Night - Eating heavy at night can interfere with sleep.  Avoid caffeine-containing foods and beverages

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Weekend Workout #6

This weekend I have some exercises that will target the core while also utilizing many muscle groups.  Most of the exercises involve multi-joint movement that require some balance as well.  I have 3 versions to each exercise; a beginner , intermediate and advanced version, so depending on your fitness level you should be able to do one of the variations.  If you are starting with the beginner version, set a goal to try and progress to the next level of progression.

Aim to complete 3 sets of each exercise (either doing the same variation, or progressing to a more advanced variation each set).  Perform 12-16 reps total (or 6-8 reps per side).  Hope you enjoy the workout!

#1  Reverse Lunge with Twist




#2  Hip Press (Bridge)




#3  Hi/Low planks




#4  Side Lunge with Leg Lift




#5  Pull Ups




#6  Burpees




Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Red Bull adrenaline

Once again Red Bull sponsors an adrenaline junkie's event.  This time is big wave known as JAWS.  Check it out.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Weekend "Warrior" Workout # 5

This weekend's workout will involve using some equipment such as kettlebells, a spin bike, a Bosu ball, and a TRX Suspension Trainer.

The workout will consist of 3 pairings of two exercises, and each pairing will be formatted slightly different.  You are going to like this one if you have been doing the same old workout week after week.  This is, however, a very difficult workout and should only be performed by those who have been exercising for several months and have no recent injuries.

For each of the pairings of exercises, you should be working hard enough to the pint where the rest periods are appreciated.  Try to make the "work" portion of this workout as quality as you can.  If your form begins to falter stop, otherwise try to keep pushing hard for the entire length of work time.

Warm up good for at least 10-15 min of walking and some dynamic moves; jumping jacks, seal jacks, forward and reverse lunges, and squats.  Rest for 2 minutes between each pair of exercises.  Total workout time (including warm up and cool down) should take about 60 min.

Perform each exercise for 45 seconds and then rest for 90 seconds.  Keep alternating back and forth between exercises for 10 min.  These will become extremely hard, so pace yourself.

Kettlebell swings


Perform each exercise for 20 seconds of work and only 10 seconds of rest.  Keep alternating back and forth between exercises for a total of 10 min.

Spin bike (no need for a video on this one, pretty self explanatory)

Bosu mountain climbers

Perform each exercise for 45 seconds of work and 45 seconds of rest.  Alternate back and forth between exercises for a total of 10 min.

TRX Sprinter Start

TRX Jump Squat

When finished, make sure to cool down and stretch.  I would recommend walking easy on a treadmill or outdoors for 5-10 min.  This is a difficult workout and will definitely challenge your cardiovascular system.