Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Balanced Workout Routines for Women

Balanced Workout Routines for Women

By Mel Batterman
Women often look for solutions for the best balance in their workout routines. At the gym you will generally see the majority of women on cardio equipment, while men are lifting weights. What is the real reason that men and women view exercise so differently even though a balance is really the best solution?
Since most women are typically nervous about using weights, but comfortable with cardio they tend to gravitate toward the cardio section most of the time. Most men have been trained to view an extremely muscular body as the ideal, and feel the only way to obtain this is by slinging weights around the weight room while ignoring cardio exercise. Unfortunately this is not good for either men or women, and a lot of times this comes with bad form in both the cardio and weight areas of the gym.

Balanced Workout Routines for Women

The truth is if you want to lose weight, you will need to create a balance between cardio at the right intensity level and weight training that provides the appropriate repetitions and sets. The same goes for the desire to build muscle. It is always good to have some flexibility and balance training to round out a balanced routine, and it will enhance both your cardio and weight training regimens.
Here are some tips for a balanced workout routine for women:
Assess Your Goals
Determine what you are aiming to obtain through health and fitness. For example if you’re overweight, your overall goal may be to lose weight. Now you need to create smaller goals to work toward the overall goal. The first thing you will want to do is determine your body composition which is the percentage of body fat you are currently carrying on your body. To figure this out you can either go to a gym to have it measured or you can create a FREE account at Team Beachbody and use the body fat calculator that is found under Fitness Tools. This will provide you with your current percentage so you can set up realistic, safe, and progressive goals each month to get your body fat to normal levels.
Combine Cardio and Weights
To have a balanced weight loss workout regimen, you must combine cardio and weight training. The key here, is to be sure you are working at an intensity that will provide results. To know this you should know your target heart rate. Again you can use the tools on Team Beachbody to figure your target heart rate. A good daily balance of cardio and weights would be to alternate cardio and full-body resistance training. You can also do a combination of cardio and weights on your weight training days if you so choose.
Some examples of balanced workout regimens would be the P90X program which consists of 12 workouts that include resistance training, cardio training, plyometric training, abdominal training and yoga. Of course if 90 days sounds like too much you can always start with the 21 Day Fix Extreme. This program still provides you with that amazing combination of cardio and weights, but in quick 30 minute workouts that you do for 21 days.
If you are interested in a program that has a greater amount of cardio but still provides resistance training, TurboFire is a 90 day program that would work. You always want to choose a program that best aligns what you like and your goals. Of course if you prefer to do something different every day, you can always create a hybrid of multiple programs as long as you create a good combination of weights and cardio, and still allow for appropriate muscle recovery. A great options for creating a hybrid is Beachbody On-Demand. Beachbody On-Demand gives you access to over 150 workout programs plus a coach. With an online coach and Beachbody On-Demand you can definitely get the right mix of strength-training and cardio to reach your goals.
The Importance of Flexibility and Balance
Flexibility and balance is an important part of any routine, and most of us don’t do it enough or do it at all. The more you stretch and work on flexibility and balance the quicker you will recover. This means less aches and pains, and greater results with your workouts. You will also be less likely to skip a workout because your entire body is stiff and sore.
Some strength and cardio programs already have flexibility and balance training as a part of the program. Even if they are a part of the overall program, it is still a good idea to take an extra 5-10 minutes after each workout to stretch the entire body. As you utilize flexibility and balance training you will see your overall performance improve, and that your body will truly feel better.
Breakfast is truly the most important meal of the day. I know you have heard that before, and we all know that not everyone feels they have the time to prepare breakfast. Some of us barely have time to find our keys, let alone brew a cup of coffee before we’re out the door and on our way to work.
You do need to remember that if you’re looking to lose weight you have to have breakfast. If time is an issue then why not try a protein packed and nutrient-dense shake? They’re fast, easy to make, and your breakfast options becomes endless with your creativity. Make breakfast a priority and get total nutrition with Shakeology from Beachbody.
It is great when you can whip up breakfast with one of these delicious shakes in LESS THAN ONE MINUTE. Shakeology is truly YOUR Daily Dose of Dense Nutrition. It is packed with incredible amounts of high quality protein, antioxidants, phytonutrients, pre and probiotics, digestive enzymes, and superfoods that your body desperately needs and craves.*
Plus, Shakeology can help to increase your energy levels, and reduce junk food cravings. Because Shakeology’s key ingredients are derived from whole food sources, your body will be able to easily absorb and utilize the nutrients immediately.
You now have everything you need to be successful!

Sunday, May 17, 2015

7 Tips for Busy Moms: How to Exercise at Home

7 Tips for Busy Moms: How to Exercise at Home

When it comes to stay-at-home or work-at-home moms, knowing how to exercise at home is often not just a matter of timing, but setting your environment, arranging something for your children while you are exercising, and planning out both warm-up and recovery routines. With so much thought required for home exercise, many moms do not take the time to exercise, even though they know the health benefits: physical, emotional and mental. 
With the issues faced by moms in mind, these 7 tips will help you take the time to exercise without undue stress:
1. Schedule – There is a reason the best classrooms have regular periods every day, predictable activities and more. There is also a reason kids complain any time a new teacher or substitute messes with the plan. Schedules are comforting and predictable, and ensure that life will have some structure to work around. When you are beginning a home exercise routine, it is important that it becomes a part of your regular schedule. If you have school age children, fit it in in the morning after they have gotten out to school. With younger children, exercise during nap times or quiet time. 
2. Set the Environment – In the busy living spaces we call home, there is rarely space to set up a complete exercise room. But, moms can set the environment by putting exercise materials out by some open floor space. Pick space which will not interfere with other family activities when you do your regular exercising. 
3. Set Your Goals – Exercise is an important part of healthy living, but the vague goal of “being healthy” is rarely enough to overcome the challenges to a regular home exercise routine. What motivates you to workout needs to be measurable (lose 30 pounds, run a marathon) and have a time frame. Without the motivation from a great goal, you will not overcome your natural inertia.

7 Tips for Busy Moms: How to Exercise at Home

4. Involve Others – As a parent, there are two groups of people who can help you exercise, free of charge. Friends and your family. Some moms don’t have enough time with their children, some don’t have enough time with their friends. Let that desire for fellowship push your daily activity. Whether it is planning that parent/child run your teenager has been begging you for, or taking a morning jog with a friend, the companion will inspire you to continue exercising, and vice-versa. With modern technology, you can not only connect with friends and family through home-based exercise routines, but also connect with nutrition and fitness coach on mobile computing devices. 
5. Regular Warm-Up and Cool-Down Routines – Often a big obstacle to in home workouts is the mental energy it takes to decide what to do. With regular stretching and warm-up routines at the beginning of your exercise, you will have time to calm down and focus on what your exercise goals are. With a regular cool-down routine, you will be able to take time to plan how to do the rest of your day, without stressing about how to cool down. Don’t forget that your cool-down and recovery program needs to include quick nutrition like a quality shake.
6. Plan Nutrition – From the cool-down recovery program to your regular meals and snacks, nutrition is a key part of any exercise planning system. Get rid of the sugary and fatty snacks: yogurt, nuts and fruit, and cheese are all healthy, easy alternatives to the candy and bagged goods (chips, pretzels, etc) which moms so often use. Our “101 Healthy Shake Recipes” is a great free resource for building your nutrition. 
7. Plan on Failing – Whether you are just starting home based exercise or are a pro, the secret to a great program is it makes you stretch. The important thing about stretch goals is you often don’t hit them. This is a positive thing: you can learn how to better plan, set more appropriate goals and gain better health. Do not beat yourself up when you do not hit your goals, when your exercise takes too much out of you or when family gets in the way. Rest, recuperate, learn, and get back in the saddle. 
An exercise at home routine is only one decision away, so why not start your work outs today?

Thursday, May 14, 2015

10 Healthy Snacks for Weight Loss

10 Healthy Snacks for Weight Loss
Is there such a thing as healthy snacks for weight loss? That is the million dollar question. Because let’s face it, we all snack. It’s just the way we’re put together. A little something can provide a much-needed afternoon energy boost. Unfortunately, snacking can also pack on the pounds. For this reason, most dieters avoid snacking. What if we told you that there are a number of good-for-you snack foods that won’t sabotage your healthy weight loss plan?
In the interest of slim snacking, we are pleased to present ten guilt-free snacks that won’t sabotage your weight loss plan. Each of these light and healthy snacks for weight loss offers taste and nutrition and no more than 200 calories:
Greek yogurt and berries
Dump the contents of a single-serving cup of plain, Greek-style yogurt into a pretty bowl. Top with one cup of raspberries, blackberries, blueberries or sliced strawberries. Drizzle with one-half tablespoon of honey and enjoy an indulgent treat that won’t weigh you down.
Hummus and pita plate
Slice one pita pocket bread into eight triangles. Scoop ¼ cup Mediterranean-style hummus onto a plate with twelve cherry tomatoes, six kalamata olives and one sliced cucumber for a light snack that provides flavor and fiber.
Apple slices with peanut butter
Slice a crisp red apple into six wedges. Smear each wedge with a dollop of creamy or chunky no-sugar-added peanut butter for a nutritious mid-day snack that will hold you over ’til dinnertime.
Avocado with cottage cheese
Cut a ripe avocado in half and fill with 4 tablespoons of low-fat cottage cheese for a smooth snack that will take the edge off your hunger without ruining your diet. Save the other avocado half in a zip bag in the refrigerator for tomorrow.
Tuna and whole wheat crackers
Dress a half-can of water-packed tuna with thinly sliced shallots and minced celery and serve with six whole-wheat crackers for a protein-packed snack that provides a healthful dose of omega oils.
Air-popped popcorn
Not only is popcorn light and tasty, it’s also a lot of fun to eat. When popped without oil, popcorn is guilt-free and delicious. Enjoy three cups of unbuttered popcorn for a mid-day or midnight snack that won’t sink your diet plan.
Baked zucchini chips
Wash a whole zucchini and slice it into paper-thin disks. Toss with extra-virgin olive oil. Spread disks in a single layer on a non-stick cookie sheet. Sprinkle with sea salt, coarse black pepper and a generous dash of paprika. Bake at 450 degrees Fahrenheit for 25 minutes to make a yummy crisp snack that may offer significant health benefits.
Cottage cheese with cinnamon
Scoop a half-cup of low-fat cottage cheese into a bowl and top with several generous shakes of ground cinnamon. The cottage cheese will give you a nice serving of protein, while the cinnamon helps to process glucose in your system and prevent fat accumulation.
Black beans and salsa
One-half cup of cooked black beans offers a whopping eight grams of fiber that can keep you from feeling hunger pangs for several hours. Top with tomato salsa and wrap in a raw corn tortilla for a tasty treat that will give you a boost of energy without ruining your diet.
Turkey-avocado wrap
Super-thin slices of roast turkey provide protein your body can use. Wrap avocado wedges with turkey meat and dab with your favorite mustard for a wholesome snack that delivers a boost of energy without a lot of calories
There’s no good reason to starve yourself while trying to lose weight. In fact, in less than 30 seconds, an ultra quick healthy nutrition dense protein shake can stave off feelings of deprivation and keep your metabolism revved up. An active metabolism speeds weight loss, so moderate snacking can absolutely work with your diet and help you achieve your weight loss goals.!18

Monday, May 11, 2015

How To Get Fit Fast in 3 Easy Steps

Let’s face it, our New Year’s Resolutions don’t stick quite as easily as the weight does. With summer upon us and nearly half the year over, your beach bod may not elicit the ‘wows’ you had hoped for.
But don’t sweat it. There’s still plenty of time to shape up and get fit fast. Whether your goal is tolose weight, slim down, build muscle or gain strength, this guide will help you along on the way.

How To Get Fit Fast in 3 Easy Steps

Step 1: The Diet
The diet – perhaps one of the most difficult actions to take in your fitness regime. Let’s discuss the foods you should be eating, rather than the meal choices that will compromise your progress. You want foods that are full of nutrients and protein that start slimming down your waistline the moment they enter your mouth.  Vegetables, fruits, lean meats, legumes, fish and low-fat dairy products build muscle, burn fat, and keep your body well-nourished and performing optimally.
Try to eat as many of the foods below:
  • Salmon, tuna, and mackerel for muscle building proteins.
  • Yogurt and cheese strengthen your bones and fire up weight loss.
  • Spinach and kale to fight free radicals, improve muscle recovery.
  • Beans and legumes to build muscle, burn fat, and regulate digestion.
  • Beet juice for stamina, berries for satiety, grapefruit for metabolism.
  • Leans meats like turkey to build muscle and strengthen your immune system.
These foods are chock full of proteins, nutrients, and health benefits to help you get into shape faster and your muscles roaring. It goes without saying ( but let’s say it anyways ) that burgers, fries, chocolate cake and the like should be eaten sparingly, or you’ll put right back on whatever weight you lost.
With that said, sacrifices at the dinner table aren’t enough. You’re going to need to get off the couch and move.
Step 2: The Cardio
To lose weight, you must create a caloric deficit, meaning your body needs to burn off more calories than it takes in. Cardio workouts are not only the best way to create a caloric deficit and shed some pounds, but it also encourages a healthy heart, improves blood circulation, and makes your body lean.
Whether you decide to bike around your neighborhood, get some miles in on the treadmill, or swim laps in a pool, you should aim for at least 30 minutes of cardiovascular activity to reduce the risk of heart disease and fight off any gains in weight. But if you want to get lean, you’ll need to double that time to start seeing results.
Remember, your options aren’t limited to the gym: mow the lawn, play with the dog, go dancing or clean up the house are great activities to help burn calories and keep you in shape.

How To Get Fit Fast in 3 Easy Steps

Step 3: The Workouts
Now it’s time to get your body looking toned and fit. Adding strength training to your fitnessregime will enhance your metabolism, improve your strength, while helping you get lean or gain muscle mass depending on the exercise. 
To sculpt your arms, upper back, shoulders and chest you’ll need to invest in some weights or head on over to your local gym. Bench presses, shoulder presses, lunges and dips are great ways to bulk up your muscles, spike your metabolism, and get a lot stronger.  Try to do some weight training 3-4 times a week on non-cardio days. Remember to start off light, gradually adding more weight to avoid injuries, and to take a day or two off to let your body rest.
To do some belly blasting and reduce those love handles crunches, sit-ups, air bikes and Russian twists will help flatten your midsection without the need for equipment. If these are a bit mundane for you, search or ask around the gym or web for tummy toning exercises that work just as well, if not better.
To top off your fitness regime, add some yoga to the mix for a bit of mind and body exercise. Whether you join a class or practice in your living room, yoga is a great way to improve your balance, flexibility and your overall health and well-being.
Staying Motivated
Getting fit requires discipline and motivation. Getting fit fast requires the same, plus an iron-will. But both start with the right mind-set. In fact, the only obstacle preventing you from a beautiful body and exceptional health is your motivation.
Getting fit alone can quickly get frustrating. Without the right guidance and advice it can even be dangerous. But support is there.
If you’re looking for the best place to get fit fast, Beachbody On Demand provides hundreds of online workouts proven to get you burn off calories and get you ripped. You can stream all the world-class programs right from your computer, get unique meal plans customized to your goals, and  connect with others, so you don’t have to do it alone.  
It’s a great way to stay motivated. On top of that, you’ll get your own personal coach for one-on-one guidance and support to help you get fit even faster.!18

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Turkey Burgers That ROCK!

Have you ever eaten pre-made frozen turkey burgers? I don't know about you, but it felt like I was eating CARDBOARD and not very appetizing at all. After my good friend Alice shared her AMAZING turkey burger recipe with me, I just had to share this goodness with you! What's been your experience with pre made Turkey Burgers?

By Alice Conradt
Many people are used to DRY pre-made Turkey burgers that have no flavor and are nothing to write home about! Well this recipe will make you revisit (and re-think) picking up a frozen bag of burgers again! By making your own homemade Turkey burgers, you will get more protein, more flavor and a great juicy turkey burger in less time than it takes to thaw those frozen patties out. Plus, no preservatives, processed grains and fillers! We left out the breadcrumbs and substituted egg whites to bind the burgers together.

Turkey Burgers That ROCK!

In this version, I serve it on a sandwich thin but my favorite way is to eat it as a lettuce wrap. Pile leaves of bibb or butter lettuce together to make a top and bottom “bun” and you will get additional veggies and extra crunch too!
I like to make extras and freeze the burgers after I cook them. They are easy to thaw and take for lunch or dinners in a pinch!
Turkey Burgers        (Serves 4)
  • 20oz Package lean ground turkey
  • 2 Cloves garlic – finely minced
  • ½ of a small yellow onion (finely diced)
  • 1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • ½ Tbsp Sriraccha (these will not be hot)
  • ½ tsp Salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • 2 egg whites
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix thoroughly. Take a small amount of mixture out and fry on griddle to make sure it is seasoned to your liking… taste. (I always do this before making the whole batch).
**Adjust seasoning if necessary. Divide mixture in 4 to make (4) 5oz patties. Fry on griddle until cooked through (approximately 6-7 minutes per side).
 Burger toppings:
  • 4 Oroweat Sandwich Thins (or) bibb/butter lettuce wraps
Bibb lettuce, tomato, onion slices, pickles and favorite condiments. (Be careful to limit your condiments to a few teaspoons, as they can add significant calories to your meal quickly).

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Coconut Oil… Is It a Good Oil?

Do you use coconut oil? For several months, I used it to swish prior to brushing my teeth and to keep my skin moist. I can definitely say I had a whiter smile and smoother skin. My friend Mel wrote this post about several other benefits with coconut oil, so I had to SHARE it with you! Give it a read and you’ll see why I've made it a staple in my home and why you should too.

By Mel Batterman
It seems daily I have people contacting me about my thoughts on coconut oil… Is it a good oil?I am sure that you have seen coconut oil be more prominent in nutrition articles and other nutritional information. You may have also seen in be incorporated into nutritional shake recipes and specific nutritional plans.
Since I get questions often and there is so much information flooding all aspects of media, I thought I should set a few things straight by providing some proper information.

Coconut Oil…Is It a Good Oil?

Coconut oil is one of the only oils that could be classified under the “Superfood” Category. Coconut oil has a unique combination of fatty acids, which have been found to have positive effects on the body, brain function, and more.
In the past coconut oil has been classified as not being a nutritionally sound food because it is 90% saturated fat. Recently studies have changed this thought process because these saturated fatty acids are so different from the standard saturated fats found in red meat, cheeses, and other high saturated fat foods.
The saturated fats in coconut oil are actually MCT’s (Medium Chain Triglycerides). Since they are medium versus long, like most other saturated fats the body processes and metabolizes this fat differently. Which means that when digested they go directly to the liver to be used at energy versus being processed just as a fat that could potentially cause artery clogging issues.
Knowing that coconut oil metabolizes into energy and may potentially increase your overall energy expenditure by 5% over a 24 hour period makes this oil a cut above the rest. Research has also suggested that this overall heightened energy expenditure may help the body burn off more stored fats both in the adipose tissue (external fat), as well as the visceral fat (internal fat).
Another interesting feature that has been found with coconut oil is that is seems to have a hunger depressant quality to it. In a recent study done of men consuming a teaspoon of coconut oil at breakfast per day over a fourteen day period, found that on average their consumption of calories decreased by 256 calories per day.
Both of these studies can be very promising when many nutritional plans are starting to implement coconut oil into the overall plan.
The truth is coconut oil can really provide some extra advantages when added appropriately to your nutritional plan, and is clearly a much better oil choice overall for cooking and consumption.
 These reasons and more is why you may see coconut oil in some of our Beachbody nutrition programs that are associated with some of our top fitness programs. A couple of examples of programs that you will see coconut oil in the nutrition plan is the 21 Day Fix and 21 Day Fix Extreme. In the 3-Day shred portion of the 21 day fix, coconut oil is consumed 4-5 times per day. In the 21 Day Fix Extreme Count Down to Competition you will see coconut oil as a part of the program daily.!18

Monday, February 23, 2015

Unbreakable Fitness - 21 Day Fix Extreme Preview

I really enjoy the fact that this program ties extreme fitness with extreme nutrition that is EASY to follow. No more trying to put the guess work in knowing what to eat. This is a MUST have for any fitness enthusiast!