#1 - Chew Your Food
Have you ever finished a plate of food and ten minutes later felt overstuffed? Picture this: when you chew your food, your body starts to react to the rise in blood sugar. The more you chew, the more saliva is produced. Not only does this preliminary deconstruction help with the absorption of nutrients, but it also sends signals to your brain that food is being digested. If you swallow your food partially chewed or whole, the sugars being released from your food are delayed. Your body doesn't feel satiated even though you have had enough to eat, so you keep on eating. Take your time! Your tummy will thank you for it.
#4 – Take a Probiotic Everyday
Studies have shown that taking a probiotic can help you shed those unwanted inches around your waist. Your digestive system is filled with billions of bacterial organisms, good and bad. Those with an imbalance of organisms have a harder time losing weight and body fat. When introducing a probiotic, the digestive system is replenished with beneficial bacteria. Make sure your probiotic has multiple strains and anti-yeast ingredients. You can pump yourself with billions of live cultures, but if you don’t address the yeast, those beneficial bacteria will die off before they get a chance to do their job. High quality probiotics, like ProBio5 by Plexus, offer enzymes that kill off harmful bacteria and yeast that slow down your metabolism and cause other health issues.
#5 – Get More Sleep
Sleep quality often gets overlooked when it comes to health and weight loss. Lack of sleep causes a spike in cortisol and insulin resistance. Unfortunately cortisol also breaks down tissue and puts the body in a “fight-or-flight” mode which is not an ideal situation to lose body fat. Tired people will try to energize themselves with food, many times with sugar and carb heavy snacks. Sleep deprivation can also decrease insulin sensitivity which allows the body to feel satisfied after meals, so tired people have a tendency to overeat. To help keep these hormone levels in check, make sure you get an average of 7-9 hours of quality sleep every night.
#6 Bonus! – If You Can’t Tone it, Tan it!
Fake it till you make it! You may feel a little impatient on your quest to a flat tummy or sculpted abs. Why not take advantage with a little lighting magic? Tanning brings out the contours of your shape especially on your arms, legs and abs. If you don't want to lay out or live in frigid temperatures, consider a spray tan or invest in a good self-tanner.
Thank you to the lovely Annie Alves for contributing to this blog!
High Intensity Interval Training, or HIIT, has become all the rage in the fitness industry over the last few years. HIIT describes any workout that alternates between intense bursts of activity and fixed periods of less-intense activity or even complete rest. There are many reasons for its popularity.
HIIT does have a lot of benefits, but is it right for YOU?
The first thing to understand is that HIIT intervals are performed at 80% to 95% of a person’s estimated maximal heart rate which means giving it your all! You have to WORK and WORK HARD. If you're new to HIIT, take it slow. The second thing to consider is your diet plan. If you cringe at the idea of eating carbs, this type of exercise is not for you. You simply cannot workout at the intensity required by HIIT without glucose in your system and if you don't have carbohydrates in the diet to any extent you will not have the resources to complete the session. You have to FUEL your body! Finally, what are your fitness goals? If you're hitting the weights hard looking to put on muscle mass and doing multiple HIIT sessions in the week, you may be at risk of overtraining. Listen to your body. If you're strength is lagging, REST. If your goals are to boost your anaerobic capacity, improve your speed and sports performance, and get in the best shape of your life, then YES, HIIT is for you! Remember, as with any workout, make sure to keep proper form to avoid injury.
Try this workout and find out just what you're made of!
HIIT WORKOUT (click the blue links to watch videos on how to do each exercise)
>Jump Lunge to Feet Jack
Repeat rounds 3 times with 1 minute of work and 30 seconds rest between each exercise.
Spring is almost here! Which means SUMMER is just around the corner. For some, summer means the chance to finally show off all their hard training by rocking a bikini at the pool. For others, the mere mention of "bikini" can spark cardiac arrest. Wherever you fall on the spectrum, this is a great workout to strengthen your core which underpins almost everything you do at the gym AND in everyday life.
Sit-ups are commonly associated with building strong abs, however, sit-ups only target the front abdominal muscles. They also place undue stress on the back. This strain can eventually lead to bulging or herniated discs, compressed vertebrae and nerve damage.
Plank and rotational exercises are much more efficient for tightening the entire core. Compared to roughly seven muscles used during a crunch, the plank engages a whopping 20 muscles! This core workout, which can be completed in LESS THAN 20 MINUTES, will help strengthen not only the front abdominals, but your obliques and deep abdominals leaving your whole body feeling and looking stronger and LEANER.
Keep in mind, however, that all the core exercises in the world are not going to give you those six-pack abs if you're not eating right! Combine this workout with my meal plans and you'll be strutting your stuff in no time!
If this is your first workout of the day, make sure to do a 5-10 minute dynamic warm-up. High knees, butt kicks, jump rope and squats are great exercises to get that blood flowing!
CORE WORKOUT (click the blue links to watch videos on how to do each exercise)
> Spider Crawl - 12 reps
> Side Plank Hip Raise - 12 reps each side
> Scissor Kick - 30 reps
> Bicycle Crunch - 12 reps, slow and steady
> V- Sit Crunches - 12 reps
Repeat circuit for 5 rounds. Rest 60 seconds in between rounds.
This is a much debated topic as it should be! I'm #sorrynotsorry, but no pill is going to cure a disease, burn all of your excess body fat in 7 days, make you never want a piece of chocolate again or magically give you a smokin' body like Jessica Biel or my personal favorite fitness gal: Vanessa Tib pictured here. I wish!! But it's not that easy, folks. It takes work, effort, self-love, being clear and confident with your priorities and being consistent over time with your eating and training in order to be well, healthy (inside and outside) and fit!
Food and exercise first. Then vitamins and supplements.
So here's the skinny and my take on vitamins and supplements...
According to WebMD, vitamins and supplements primary function is to fill in small nutrient gaps. They are "supplements" intended to add to your diet and not replace a healthy meal or regular exercise. Even though eating REAL FOOD is still, and always will be, the best source of nutrients, no one's diet is perfect and none of us are getting any younger. Some common health issues that can be helped with vitamins and supplements are:
So which vitamins and supplements do I take for the above issues?
(click on the blue links below to learn more about each product and to order)
It's a turbo-charged multi-vitamin with extra antioxidants made with aloe that aids with absorption into your body and contains extra Vit D and B12! Vit D supports extra calcium absorption for our bones and improves muscle function. B12 boosts energy!! It also helps regulate your central nervous system (i.e. STRESS), aids in cell reproduction and renewal of skin (hello, anti-aging) and protects against heart disease and high blood pressure. Take 2 every day.
It’s a probiotic which will balance the good and bad bacteria in your intestinal and digestive tract. If you’ve ever taken an antibiotic, you need to take a probiotic. Most illnesses, diseases and health issues stem from your gut. A probiotic will encourage your internal systems to work efficiently and harmoniously. Probiotics help eliminate gas, bloating and will also HELP SEE YOUR ABS!!!
Take 2 every day.
3. MegaX It’s plant-based omegas! No more fishy aftertaste from fish and krill oil. Omegas help burn fat and build muscle, decrease inflammation, lowers risk of heart disease, promote joint and muscle health and feed your brain. Take 2 every day.
These products are all-natural and non-GMO. There are also supplements you can take for weight loss like Plexus Slim. Click here to learn more and to order any of these vitamins and supplements.
Last thing to remember: Taking vitamins and supplements is not an excuse to slack off. Make eating well and training hard and smart your LIFESTYLE! You won't regret it!
Happy Fri-YAY, Fit Friends!