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TrainerTiff: December 2007 >

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Get motivated!

What's your training motivation?

We all have different reasons that we get into the gym and also watch what we eat.

For me, knowing I will have a figure competition coming up motivates me. But maybe you have a vacation coming up, and you want to look good in your bathing suit. Or perhaps you need to lose weight for health issues like lowering your cholesterol. Whatever your motivation is, don't lose sight of it. That's the key.

As a trainer, I have seen a lot of people who are really motivated when they begin their programs, but at some point their motivation wanes. To repeat: The key to staying with a program -- and achieving your fitness goals -- is to not lose your motivation. I know, you're probably thinking, "Duh, but how do you do that?"

First, keep in mind the emotions you felt when you decided to begin your program. If your goal is to drop a few dress or pant sizes, then remember how you felt when you looked in the mirror and decided to start working out. When find yourself lacking the desire to workout, just revisit all of those feelings. This should help a lot.

Also, you may want to write your goal on a piece of paper in huge letters, and post it to the fridge. This way when you are about to eat something that you shouldn't, your goal will be staring you in the face.

These things should help you stay on track.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Have a great holiday!

Happy holidays! I will be on vacation for a week and will return will new posts next week. Have a happy and safe holiday!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Avoid Holiday Overeating

The holiday season is in full swing. And with Christmas right around the corner, we will be facing buffets upon buffets of food. Don't panic. This is a difficult time for us all. There is good news -- you can get through the holidays without overeating and gaining a bunch of unwanted weight by following a few of my tips.

1. Eat small meals throughout the day. Don't starve yourself all day waiting for dinner. Eating small meals, starting with breakfast, gets your metabolism working to burn calories throughout the day.

2. Eat before. Before attending a holiday party, have a small snack like a piece of fruit or yogurt before. This will help prevent you from overeating at the function.

3. Just say no. Well, say, no thank you. Don't feel pressured into eating a sampling of each dish. Also, don't give into a pushy host pressuring you into tasting something you don't want. Instead, change the subject by complimenting the host's hard work.

4. Watch your alcohol. Alcohol has a ton of calories, and it is easy to drink more than you anticipated. Before your night out, decide on how many drinks you will have and stick to it. Opt for light beers and wines. Also, limit egg nog as it too is high in calories.

5. Avoid seconds. I can guarantee you that the calories you eat in your first serving will be far more than your body needs. There is no need for immediate seconds. Not to mention that you'll probably be stuffed anyway. Instead, wait a couple hours before you go back for more.

6. Limit dessert. Ah, yes, dessert. I know for many people, this is their favorite part of the holidays. Just choose one dessert or take a very small taste of a couple that you really like so that it equals one serving.

7. Exercise. Just because it is a holiday doesn't mean you can't work out. Try to get 20-30 minutes of exercise.

8. Limit high-carb foods. Try to have smaller portions of potato and pasta dishes. Also, limit the amount of bread you eat. Try to stick with one serving of bread. Instead eat more vegetables and fruit.

Remember, this is a time to be with your family and friends. And although food is a huge part of this time period, don't make it the most important part. If you do eat too much, don't stress about it -- just get back on track the next day.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Interval Training

If you're like most people, you probably can't stand doing cardio -- I even have to force myself to do it. Well, if you're like those of us who dislike cardio, then interval training is for you.

Most people I see in the gym do long bouts of cardio, which can get monotonous. But interval training can help mix it up and make cardio less boring -- and more effective.

Interval training, basically, is when you do a quick burst of high-intensity exercise and then follow it with a lower-intensity exercise for a while.

Interval training is an excellent form of cardio for several reasons. It is great for fat burning. It increases the amount of oxygen you take in during exercise, which in turn burns more fat.

(Uh, burns more fat? I’m sold on that alone!)

Okay, here are a couple more reasons. If you've reached a plateau where you are no longer seeing results with your training routine, interval training will be a great shock to the body to help you get over the plateau.

It really isn’t that difficult to do. Interval training can be performed with any cardio exercise. It is most commonly done with the running/walking form of cardio, but can also be done on or with a bike, elliptical machine, stair climber, swimming and even jumping rope. My favorite piece of cardio equipment is the elliptical, so I usually do it on this machine.

To begin your interval program, start off by warming up for 5 minutes at a low intensity. Increase the intensity to a high level until you begin to feel your muscles "burn" or until you're too exhausted to continue at that level. Then reduce the intensity to a moderate speed where you are able breath at a normal rate. You should exercise at the high-intensity level for about 1 minute or as long as you can stand, then exercise at the moderate level for 2-3 minutes. Repeat this cycle for 30 minutes. Each time you perform this routine, try to increase the time you exercise at the high-intensity level.

Give this type of training a try 2-3 times a week, and you'll definitely start to see the fat melt away, which is what we all want after all, right?

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Updates coming...

Sorry, I haven't posted. My computer was in the shop, but now it is out and I can get back to writing. Yay! Look for new updates soon.