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Lets talk about SHOULDERS!!! I have been getting a lot of requests for this workout and I want to stress one thing! It's not necessarily a magic set of moves, its consistency. If you are consistent with nearly ANY plan...it will work! And you will experience fabulous results!

I love working shoulders! It's definitely my favorite workout of the week! I think its because its one muscle that will usually stimulate and respond quite fast if you are giving it adequate attention!

I began focusing on building up my shoulders about 6 months ago.  I have worked out for years, but it wasn't until a few months ago I really got organized with my routines, and since then I have noticed a huge difference in the way my body has responded.

** ** Let me preface by saying, I do not workout for looks, or big shoulders. For me, the gym is my sanctuary. I pray there, I relax there, I focus there I push myself there, and I love being there. It's truly my happy place. I absolutely LOVE my time in the gym. Its like a tiny little mental vacation every day.  If you are working out strictly for looks your motivation will never last. True physical Fitness is; feeling good wherever your at, finding balance, physical, emotional and spiritual. A lifestyle, a way of life and a gift from God...that being said....seeing physical changes does HELP motivation, no denying that, and a good routine and consitency is key to making progress! ** **

Previously I would go into the gym, finish my cardio and then throw around  whatever weights weren't being used by other gym goers. Weight training was pretty much an after thought..."If I finish my cardio, I'll use whatever energy I have left to lift whatever weights are laying around." That yielded very little progress over time. Of course lifting any weights in general made a small improvement, but to be able to build muscles properly, and really discover shape and definition, the key is putting your weight training priority before cardio. Iron is king.

Next is to come up with an organized plan,  really get committed to it, don't wimp out,   and allow yourself proper time for rest. (Something I was not previously doing.) If you don't allow time for rest between muscle groups/workouts your muscles have to time to repair. When your muscles repair, they come back stronger every time. Thats what weight training is, breaking down muscle tissue and then building it back stronger every time. Give this routine 3 weeks twice a week and you should begin to notice a difference.

This is a basic version of my shoulder (upper body) routine. It's ever changing, but these are the basics and some of my favorite  exercises I like to  stick to, at least in some form. This workout works your whole upper body. You can't spot reduce or isolate an  (like shoulders) so its better to work the whole top of your body so that all of the muscles in your upper body work together to strengthen. But I have a special love for shoulder muscles so I tend to add more shoulder exercises into my upper body strength plans. Like any exercise routine its a good idea to switch it up every couple of weeks to get maximum benefit from your workout! I don't necessarily do all of these exercises in one workout, but more commonly just pick and choose a few for that day.

If you are unfamiliar with any of the terms a simple google, or youtube search can explain the movement and proper technique. Remember: Proper form is more important than adding weight! Get familiar with the movements before focusing on adding challenging weight to your routine!

Once you have established proper form, find a weight that is challenging for you. Your last few reps should really push you, if not--add more weight!

Fitgirls take note:  *large shoulders make your waist appear smaller.*

Begin with 2-5 minute stretch.

1. Bent over lateral raises (dumbbell) (squeeze the middle of your back)
12 reps 3 sets 20 sec rest in between.

2. Cuban dumbbell press
12 reps 3 sets 30 sec rest between sets.

3. Bent over barbell row
12 reps 3 sets 30 sec rest between sets

4. Behind the neck barbell press (start with barbell add weight when it feels comfortable)
Decrease reps for 3 sets. 12 reps set 1/10 reps set 2/ 8 reps set 3

5. Regular barbell press
Decrease reps for 3 sets. 12 reps for set 1 /10 reps for set 2/ 8 reps for set  3

6. Upright row (barbell)
12 reps 3 sets

7. Dumbbell rows alternating sides.
12 reps 3 sets right side
12 reps 3 sets left side  (alternate sides)

8. Alternate front raise (dumbbells)
12 reps 3 sets

9. Military press (dumbbells)
12 reps 3 sets

10. Kick backs (dumbbells)
12 reps 3 sets right side
12 reps 3 sets left side  (alternate sides)

11. Dips on chair
15 reps 3 sets

12. Wide grip push ups 15 reps 2 sets

13. Narrow grip push ups 15 reps 2 sets

Shoulder workout

Tuesday, March 31, 2015
Gym girl chic.

As the holidays approach it seems life is getting busier by the day! From Ugly sweater parties, to friends and family coming into town,  to Christmas shopping,  to trees to be decorated, this time of year is just plain chaos. Good chaos, but certainly chaos none the less! As for me I've found that I haven't been able to work out during my normal time (which is usually at the beginning or end of a day.) Which is convenient because that leaves me good time to be able to shower, get and cleaned up and pretty afterwards. However, the past few weeks  i've had to squeeze in an hour where I can squeeze it in, which is usually at a super inconvenient random hour  before or in between an appointment and work, or for some maybe that quick hour between classes. The challenge isn't so much the workout, but fitting in a decent  workout with time left over to get yourself looking half way decent to jet to class right away or or pick up an item at the grocery store without looking like a total  train wreck! Here are a few tips to avoid showing up on The people of Walmart site when you have to go out and about after a gym session!


 If you are in a jam and need to go out immediately after a gym session this is probably the most important step, because ladies should ALWAYS smell good. Even if you don't look good, smelling good is important! Now while I always suggest you shower right away if you have the option, sometimes you just don't....My gym doesn't have a shower, so when in dire straights and your determined not to skip your workout, (assuming your not on your way to a hot date or anything!)  Here is how to cope!

1. Wet wipes. A little sponge bath freshen up your skin and  remove sweat.
2. An extra swipe of deodorant.
3. Baby powder to absorb any dampness on the skin.
4. A fresh smelling perfume or body spray.


If emergency strikes and you find yourself in a time crunch after your sweat sesh, with no time to curl or straighten,  ladies have 2 options.

1. Baseball cap or winter beanie or headband. Make sure its clean, a nice solid color that will match whatever you are wearing and tie your hair up into a nice neat bun and wear the hat. You immediately look like a polished sporty chick as opposed to sweaty wet dog.

2. Dry shampoo, I can often get away with this if its a lifting workout. (I usually don't get quite as sweaty and my hair is still slightly in tact. (as opposed to a cardio workout)  Add a little dry shampoo to dry up any moisture at the roots. Tousle your hair and tie it into a cute messy ponytail, it looks unkept but purposely so ;)


1. Cleanse. This is important. Even if you only have time to splash water from the sink, its important to remove sweat from your face to avoid breakouts. I have a pack of Biore skin wipes in my gym bag just in case.

2. I love the glow skin has after a tough workout. Play it up with a simple sweep  of blush, a natural colored lip gloss, and a swipe of travel size mascara. You can apply it in less than 1 minute and it helps you look relatively polished in record time.


1. A scarf is the simplest way to make an athletic outfit look appropriate for running a quick errand around town before or after a workout. Pick a flattering color, tuck it into a nice fitting warm up jacket. There you go! Fitness Chic.

2. To take it up a notch, add a pair of leather boots in place of your gym shoes.

*personally I think this look works best with a monochromatic color scheme, I like all black. Black is crisp, its chic, and its minimalist.

A pair of pearl earrings. I swear by this. Timeless, feminine and minimalist. A small detail that can have big impact on your vibe and add just the right touch of femininity to your sporty girl look.

A stylish pair of shades are the quickest, easiest  accessory to throw on that can express your personal sense of style!

--Gym bag essentials--

--Wet wipes
--Dry shampoo
--Small cosmetic bag with small blush compact, lip gloss, travel sized mascara)
--Extra baseball cap
--Sample size perfume (from Sephora)
--Small black scarf
--Biore facial wipes

Gym girl chic. (How to squeeze a workout in when, 'aint nobody got time for that'.

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

                             Beauty and the beach

Although it seemed like the warm weather and sunshine was just something we Wisconisinites thought we might just have to live without this year, its here....the sunshine the warm breeze and the smells of Summertime are finally upon us. Finally.

Because Summertime seemed to take its sweet time arriving this year, there was plenty of cold rainy days to do some summertime day dreaming which lead to some shopping! Here are a few of my top must haves for the beach!

1. A bold bathing suit cover up! Cover ups are a must have! I love them, they are bright, they are beachy and they scream summertime and effortless cool. I hit the gold mine at JC Penney a few days ago! Tons of gorgeous colors and all sorts of styles! Here were a few of my faves! I've also repurposed a few of my old scarves as sarongs! Tie them around your waist and just like that, whats old is new!
 $19.60 JC Penney
$26.60 JC Penne
$22.00 Kohls

 Had to feature at least 1 Michael Kors $140.00 Macy's

2. Dry sun protection! There is nothing I hate more than feeling oily while enjoy a hot summer day. Thanks to a great suggestion from some friends I discovered Peter Thomas Roth's Uber-dry sunscreen SPF 30. I know $26.00 seems like a fortune for a bottle of sunscreen, but you must understand how much I hate feeling like a grease ball. Its great, not shiny, not greasy and I can even use it on my face and it's absolutely weightless! 
Sephora 26.00

It also comes in mineral form for $30.00

Neutrogena Ulta Sheer takes the cake for best drugstore variety.  A bit more oily than the Peter Roth, but for 15 dollar range it's pretty good stuff!!

3. A good sunless tan. I have written an entire blog post on this topic, which you can check out, but I can recommend one and only one over the counter brand that I swear by...Lo'real Sublime bronze Pro perfect airbrush mist. For $7.00 is absolutely awesome! Doesn't streak, doesn't smell, fades evenly, doesn't transfer to bedding or clothing and color is buildable and natural.
4. Pretty feet. A pedicure is around $25.00 the price of 5 or 6 Starbucks coffee's and can really help pull a summer look together! Pretty feet make a woman look put together. Its a tiny but noticeable detail. If you don't have $25.00 to spend, a home pedicure can do the trick as well! Here are a few of my all time  favorite colors for summer toes! 
OPI 'Cajun Shrimp'
OPI 'Senorita Rose'

OPI 'Your a pisa work'
OPI 'Italian love affair'

5. A pair of sassy shades. The cool thing about sunglasses is that you don't need to spend a fortune to find a good pair! My very favorite pair was actually under $10.00 at Tj Maxx. 

 Franco Sarto sunglasses $9.99 TJ Maxx

TJ Maxx also has a large variety of Michael Kors sunglasses for 20-30.00!

 Jackie O Ray Bans  Raybans.com $144.95
Marc Jacobs Black Havana $345.00

6. Create your own shade!  Some days, throwing a hat on is easier than bothering with sunscreen and shades! Here are a few of my picks!

A sportier variety by Ralph Lauren
Merona sun hat $13.00 Target
Mossimo Fedora $10.39


Wednesday, May 15, 2013

I've been meaning to get this post up for a while now! Today presented the perfect opportunity seems both our vehicles are frozen solid and covered in a sheet of ice! Which brings me to the subject of this post: If it’s cold enough outside to freeze my car into a solid ice cube, winter skin, hair, body is practically inevitable. That dry flakey dull looking skin topped off with straw-ey dry lifeless hair. It’s happening. At least it was! Until I did some research and took a trip to Sephora (and the drug store) :)

Here are a few of my top beauty finds to cure the winter doldrums.

1. Take the time to give yourself a full facial. That means, deep cleansing, exfoliating (using baking soda) toning and a mask. Winter time can get busy so it's easy to forget to give your skin a little tlc. You'll be amazed what spending 15 minutes to treat your skin will do for the way you feel. Finish your at home facial with a big drink of moisture for your skin. Nighttime is the perfect time to load up on heavy moisturizer. Your skin renews itself while you sleep. Give it a little boost with luxurious moisture and you are sure to wake up glowing. I love St. Ives Collagen moisturizer its around $5.00 at the drugstore and i've had it for over a year and I use it very liberally. It's a great bang for your buck! *it is a little heavy for day time wear under makeup, so I prefer to use it at night only! My skin is very sensitive and I have never experienced a reaction to this! Love it.
2. Switching up your everyday cleanser can make a world of difference! During the summertime I had been using an acne oil free cleanser and I hadn't taken the time to make the switch back to a less drying winter cleanser. My favorite is another cheap gold mine of a product: Cetaphil gentle bar cleanser. I learned of this little gem while in Esthetician school. The spa girls fell in love with it and before the course was over we traded our discounted professional products for this lowly little bar of white soap....Its seriously amazing. Removes all traces of makeup including eye makeup without irritating or drying. Its great stuff! Best of all? I think its 4.99?

3. Sort of along the same lines of switching up cleanser is switching your foundation. The same foundation formula that looks awesome during the summertime will not look the same in the dead of winter. Your skin texture and shade changes through out the seasons and so should your foundation. So while a matte foundation (same goes for powder foundations) looks great in the summer ( *I love dream matte mousse by Maybelline) and keeps your skin from looking shiny and oily during the summer months, in the winter it doesn't seem to work its magic in the same way. I always prefer a more matte look as a opposed to a dewier finish, which is just a personal makeup preference but using a foundation that’s TOO matte over dry skin in the winter time can  look dull and chalky and accentuate dryness and imperfections, and we don't want that!! I found a great matte foundation that I fell in love with that is still smooth moisturizing, creamy, and matte but without the dullness my summer foundation tends to give me in the wintertime.  $36.00 @Sephora--Amazing product!

*Sometimes pressed powder is also a culprit for making your skin look dull and ashy. Try a translucent powder instead of a powder matching your foundation. I love the translucent mineral veil by Bare minerals. Its just a pure white powder that sets makeup without adding another layer of makeup to your foundation. It blots out shine but doesn't leave a cakey, ashy texture like pressed powder can.

4. I know practically ALL makeup artists SWEAR but moisturizing your skin before applying makeup. I like the idea, but I couldn't stand that when I would use moisturizer in the morning it melted my makeup right off, and I was left with blotchy makeup and a shiny looking face 20 minutes after applied! Until I found the RIGHT moisturizer! Not too water based and not too oily. I think finding a moisturizing serum is the key, as opposed to a cream under makeup. I found this stuff at TJ MAXX its actually really great stuff!  I thoroughly moisturizes, and my skin completely drinks it in less than a minute without any shiny or oily residue to hide under makeup. Bielenda Collagen Serum $6.99 at TJ Maxx * Estee Lauder has excellent moisturizing serums as well, that are worth checking out! 

5. Find a fun new blush shade to liven up a winter complexion! Okay I realize this blush looks completely crazy, but I think it’s so far my FAVORITE winter find.  I'm so glad I had the guts to try it on because I LOVE it! I've never LOVED a blush before; to me...blush is just blush...until I found this beauty! It looks crazy red in the palette but it is gorgeous when blended correctly! I normally wore more of a rosy pinky colored blush but the red/orange hue (when used sparingly) is a much more natural shade of glow! Sort of like the color my cheeks get when I’ve had a good workout or when i've spent a day in the sun. Your skin looks awesome after a sweat session and or a day at the beach and this blush mimics it perfectly! I love it so much! Probably a little bright for really light complexions but for women with olive shades like me, its to die for! I dare you to try it! You will fall in blush love! It’s called 'Exhibit A' by NARS. Sephora $28.00

6. I've talked a lot about the face but we can’t ignore the body. What good is a luminously moisturized face when you've got a dry scaly body huh? I like to treat my entire body to a homemade olive oil/brown sugar scrub, 2-3 times a week.  I use about a half cup of brown sugar and a half tablespoon of olive oil mix it up in a small bowl and bring it into the shower and exfoliate head to toe. I swear olive oil serves as THE best shaving cream you can buy! I finish it up by slathering rich cocoa butter body oil before bed (make sure you give it 15-20 minutes to completely soak in so you don’t oil stain your sheets!) a little goes a long way! Don't over do it! All you need is about the size of a penny for your whole body! 

7. Let's talk about the cure for winter hair! Nothing freshens up your mane like a professional moisturizing treatment and a trimming off dead ends, but there are plenty of ways to combat winter hair at home too in between visits to the salon. I know I go on and on every post about my love for coconut oil and here we go again: My favorite wintertime hair solution is a hot coconut oil treatment.  Coconut oil is the beauty miracle product. I use it for EVERYTHING…removing makeup, dry skin, dry hair-- it does it all! You can buy a whole jar of it for less than 10 dollars at the grocery store. Heat it up in the microwave for 1:00 or until it’s warm almost hot to the touch and has completely liquefied. Apply throughout your hair paying special attention to your ends, wrap in a towel and wait 20 minutes and rinse and cleanse with a deep cleansing shampoo (I like Neutrogena anti-residue shampoo) $6.00 at the drugstore. It works great for removing hair masks and hot oil treatments, and its recommended to be used twice a week to remove dulling product build up! Win win.

8. People have used aromatherapy for years to cure the winter doldrums! Different scents and essential oils in perfume can affect your mood and how you feel about yourself. Spritzing on a light pretty scent will make you more lively springy and fresh even in the dead of winter! It has been said that Orange blossom is of the most uplifting of the essential oils. This Prada scent 'Infusion d'Iris'  is infused with mandarin, orange blossom and iris. Its to die for! I'm crazy about it! Ask for a free sample to try it out at Sephora! You'll feel better in no time!

9.  One of the best tricks in the book of achieving luminous skin in the middle of winter is using a highlighter. A highlighter is basically a cream or powder that attracts light to your face. When our skin is dull it lacks radiance. Achieving radiance is easy. Find a good cream or powder than has an iridescent sheen to it...iridescent NOT sparkly. The finer the iridescence the better. I was given a free sample of Bare minerals eye shadow primer and discovered it works great as a highlighter all over my face! Its not too shiny or sparkly very subtle and gives just a soft glow when worn under foundation highlighting cheek bones and bridge of the nose, and under the brow bones, it beautifully illuminates places where the light naturally hits your face.

Bare Minerals Prime time eyeshadow primer in 'Brightening pearl' $18.00 Sephora.

10. Get a spray tan! Spray tan! Spray tans have come leaps and bounds from the days of orange pumpkin skin! Today's spray tans in my opinion look better than real tans. They are 
-more even
-less brown
-more golden (think, Florida tan)
-less orangey than a natural tan
-fade naturally
+you dont have to deal with the dryness you get from a real tan! 
I am a huge fan! I swear by the Versa Spa spray tan! I suggest getting a spray tan in the evening on a weekend so that you can let the tan develop for as many hours as possible before showering. Nothing like waking up in the middle of January looking like you woke up from a nap on a beach in the tropics! 

Here is how to find a versa spa spray tan near you! 
11.  I save the best for last! The best cure of all for the winter 'slugs' is getting active! Sweating makes you feel beautiful from the inside out. When you take care of your body it will show in your skin your hair, the whites of your eyes and the sparkle in your smile! Natural beauty comes from within! Drink lots of water and sweat out those toxins even if you can only squeeze in 15 minutes a day! Remeber, the nutrients you put into your body is what all those new cells your body is making (including skin cells) are made of! Do you want to be made of greasy french fries?...Didnt think so ;)

Curing the Winter Doldrums!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Its hard to believe its that time of year again already! Heres a few tips to keep your Holiday dazzle through out the Christmas season! ;)

Use your Christmas shopping to your advantage! One of the tell tale signs of the Christmas season, no parking spaces in the Mall parking lot...Why not use a terrible parking spot to your bodies advantage this Christmas? Using a parking space farther away from the entrance can help you burn some extra calories without even thinking about it! Lets say your shopping for  a few hours...at 5
different stores....say 3 minutes to the door for each store thats 15 minutes of walking! 15 minutes of walking = around 50 calories burned. 50 calories= Christmas cookie incinerated. BOOM! PS who says you can't power walk through Super Target?

Play in the snow! It may seem like a drudging chore but it has to be done, and  shoveling snow can really torch some Christmas calories! 20 minutes of snow shoveling can actually burn you up to 100 calories! Why not build a snow man or hike up and down the sledding hill? Talk about a fun way to get yourself a smokin bod this season :)

Drink egg nog the fit girl way! Simply blend together a cocktail of half eggnog and half skim milk (or light soy or almond if you prefer) *soy and almond have the creamier texture of eggnog but slightly more calories. Still less than drinking full cup of egg nog!

Fill up before the party In the same way that going to the grocery store on an empty stomach is a bad idea, its almost a worse idea to hit a holiday party on an empty stomach. Fill up on lean protein and fiber rich foods before you go, these will keep you full and discourage you from indulging more than you should! Sometimes sipping on a  cup of coffee through out the night  helps me to stay away from sweets. Im not sure why it works that way, but it does! I just decide to enjoy my coffee instead of thinking about sweets. Try it.

Dont skip meals In your head it sounds like a good idea to skip a meal in order to indulge at your Christmas party after work. This is a bad idea. If your starving your rational mind will be unavailable to you to make healthy food choices. Eat small healthy meals through out your day to avoid going nuts once you see the cookie table.

Travel Savvy If your worried you won't be able to hit the gym during your visit over the river and through the woods, bring the gym with you! Jump ropes are a great workout you can use them anywhere and they are easy to pack! Pilates is also easy to do anywhere and doesnt require any equipment. Heres a link with a few good exercises to do anywhere! zero equipment exercise

Remember: Not all Christmas cookies are created equal! It's true....Best and worst cookie choices

Put away your reindeer sweatpants: I promise your significant other won't be the only one to thank you. ;) But really, you'll be glad you did. Simply wearing figure flattering clothes that make you feel good about your body and your self image will help to keep you from making poor choices. If you feel like you look good your gonna treat your body right. If you feel like  slug in sweat pants...that's how you'll treat your body. I know its easy to throw on a pair of yoga pants...but they make it so darn easy to veg out and over indulge. Its just a womans fact of life. If your wearing elastic waisted pants and a baggy t shirt all day your probably 90% more likely to binge. I made that statistic up, but for me its true. If you feel good about your self you will take care of yourself. :)

Relax Christmas should be a joyous time! Time that we can indulge a little. Rest assured, 1 night  won't derail a year of hard work. Sometimes we get so concerned that we can't enjoy anything and we forget that a little indulgence now and then is good for us! Be self forgiving. Live a little. Enjoy this time of year. Dont over do it, but treat yourself to a little Christmas cheer, all too soon your routine will return and you can hit your fitness program with renewed commitment and enthusiasm! ;)

Tips on staying dazzling this through the holidays

Friday, December 14, 2012
Abs. It seems like abs are a badge of good health and fitness these days. Everybody wants them, if they don't have them they are trying to get them. Something I always think is interesting is seeing very thin people who lack definition. Theres a difference between losing the fat around your middle and getting toned and sculpted around your mid section. Im not a pro by any means but heres what I do, and it's worked well for me! If me, (the chubby girl in high school) can go from having chub to what now actually resembles pretty toned abs I assure you, you can to! It takes some work but if you stick to it you'll be seeing results in no time!

This picture is a bit extreme but it really puts it in perspective for me. Absolutely no disrespect to marathoners (usually the ones I know look 1000 times better than this fella on the left) But what you see here is the marathoner, he's taking long runs burning tons of calories a day and hes skinny for sure, but you don't see that definition that you do in the sprinter. The sprinter is doing shorter bursts of higher intensity exercise. (HIIT training) as I will go into detail later. These high intensity runs work his muscles harder than longer more moderate running.

To uncover your abdominals you first need to start out by lowering your overall body fat. You can do crunches and sit ups till your blue in the face and while you may feel like your abs are getting stronger, it will show no real difference in the way your tummy looks (if you aren't also losing body fat in the process.) Losing body fat means obviously eating right, and CARDIO. Running is a great way to lose overall body fat. Really any exercise that gets your heart rate up and makes you sweat will help you to shed the fat that is surrounding your abs.

Now I mentioned before that sit ups won't give you toned abs....sit ups  or crunches ALONE that is. Once you get into a good cardio routine, begin to incorporate abdominal strength exercise to your workouts to beef up those muscles so that once you start to lose the fat surrounding them, you'll have a nice toned up muscle to show through underneath!  One way I have found to do this most efficiently is cross fit type high intensity interval training. (known as HIIT training) This type of exercise works your heart while also working large groups of muscle at a time. Think of exercises like squat jumps, burpees, push ups, mountain climbers, ones that are used to build muscle but are also really good at making you sweat and getting your heart rate up as well! These exercises work double time to chisel off the layer of fat while strengthening up the muscles underneath which is what will give you nice defined tummy. 

There are usually 3 reasons why people who work out fail to get the results they want in their midsection. As I said before, if the chubby girl in highschool can get anything that resembles abs, I promise you can too! 

1. Some exercisers can be too focused on the cardio aspect. Think of  runners. (While there is no doubt running IS good for your abs) Runners usually have low body fat, super great muscular legs and  flat tummy's but sometimes they are a bit more lax on strength training when it comes their abs, so while their tummies are flat they are sometimes not as defined as their counterparts who include strength exercises after their runs! For quite a while that was me....i'd run miles and miles a day and once I would finish I was only able to give my strength training maybe 10%. A few months ago I started getting serious about my strength training and I've noticed what a difference it has made in just a few short months! The first picture is me as a runner and the second is me after 2 months of HIIT training and soon after starting a program that offers HIIT classes in my area called Eupraxia. Going to the class has been great because it forces me to push myself and also has given me more variety which is so important when you are looking to get results. Your body eventually gets used to running. If you run everyday your body eventually will adapt and you won't get near the fat blasting results you did when you first began. If you live in my area and are interested in trying Eupraxia and familiarizing yourself with HIIT training just shoot me a private message on facebook! https://www.facebook.com/hillary.twite


                                               Runner Hilly                             HIIT Hilly

Here is a link to an introduction to some HIIT training exercises. Give it a try you'll be amazed what a great stregth/cardio workout you can get in just 20 minutes

2. The opposite of the runners are people who focus only on trying to strengthen their abs! They do crunch after crunch after crunch followed by sit up after sit up just trying to lose that belly pooch. The problem is, ripped toned abs arent very satisfying if they are covered up by a layer of fat. The bottom line is this. Balance. If you want abs you need to put time and effort into a combination of cardio and strength training while eating right. 

I love this picture

Remember this ^ You can work your butt off but if you are sabotaging your workout with all kinds of junk food, sugar and white flour it will be that much harder to reach your goals! 

When it comes down to it you can't spot reduce any place on your body....if you hate your thighs working them might make them stronger but they won't look better, same goes for your abs!   Your body is one single unit. It all works together. Its quite simple when you think about it, make it work, make your muscles work make your heart work make it sweat and feed it healthy food and you are well on your way to a tummy you can be proud of! You've got the whole winter to work on your summer body. Start today. You won't be sorry! <3

Abs. They are for anyone.

Friday, September 21, 2012

For a quite a while now I have been an exercise enthusiast, it wasn't until a few months ago that I really started to hone in on my diet. I was able to achieve most of my goals through mostly exercise and continuing my 'healthier than most' as in, I usually stayed away from soda and junk food but I basically ate whatever was available for meal times. So not 'bad'--- but not 'good'. Recently I've discovered I really enjoy cooking, so the last few months I've found a couple excellent tasting and best of all healthy substitute recipes for my husband and I. These recipes I am about to share are tried and true and YES, husband approved :) Fall is the time of year for rich cozy comfort foods, instead of going without them this year, try these slimmed down versions! Just as good sans the guilt! ;)

*These arent my own personal recipes but they are ones that I have found on the internet and made and liked that are definitely worth giving a try!

Skinny chicken enchiladas! So great! Mexican food is normally super high in calories and if your in the mood for it, this definitely hits the spot! Simple changes like using greek yogurt in place of sour cream to gives it a great creamy texture! This recipes is an awesome skinny alternative! You won't feel jipped! I also use whole wheat tortillas (which they didnt in this recipe!) Even less guilty! :)

Another high calorie meal that is a definite favorite of mine---Pasta Alfredo! I've known the calorie count of this dish for years so I've tried to stay away for the most part, but now I have discovered the secret! Avocado! My husband is a pasta snob and very Italian and I'll tell you this- it's even Italian pasta snob approved, now thats good! 

...And all this time you've thought chocolate ice cream was off limits......


Spaghetti? You got it! I didnt feel a bit unsatisfied using Quinoa instead of spaghetti noodles. I love this because I can cook up the quinoa in the rice cooker, its done in 10 minutes and then I just pour the sauce add a little parmesan cheese on top and wa-la! Healthy "spaghetti" lunch or dinner!
(another good alternative for spaghetti is spaghetti squash I'll post a link on how to prepare that below!)You'd be surprised how much a squash can taste like pasta!

Light Pumpkni cheesecake.Satisfy your cheesecake and pumpkin spice cravings here. Light fluffy and delectable!

This last one I didn't find online I just sort of stumbled upon it while having a major chocolate craving one morning.  I named it 'Almond Joy Oatmeal', and oh what a joy it is to indulge in its chocolatyness!

*Prepare quaker oatmeal (not the packets--lots of added sugar in those) then add unsweetened cocoa powder a teaspoon to a tablespoon, its up to you! Next throw in some coconut flakes and almonds and ENJOY!

As an end to this post I wanted to post this photo that was posted by a fitness studio I attend. Normally I wouldnt post a picture of ladies backsides on my blog but this is so true and it really gives you perspective. Remember--- to get the body you want, you have to include all the components of a healthy lifestyle. Its not about JUST eating better or JUST working out...its about changing your entire way of living. Eating better, moving more, and letting your body get the rest it needs to be at its best! If you baked a cake with a third of the ingredients needed, it might turn out... but it wouldn't be the best. Same with your body. To build your best body you need 3 main ingredients: Diet, exercise and sleep. The recipes simple. :)
Be encouraged! Keep up the good work! 

Naughty foods made Nice

Wednesday, September 19, 2012