Saturday, April 28, 2012

Before You Sweat Read This

It’s so easy to skip the warm up before getting your session in at the gym. It’s especially easy to skip if you are tight on time. By just taking a few minutes before you start really going at it you reduce your risk of injury and prepare your body for stretching. Think about your muscles like Taffy. If you were to try and stretch cold taffy it wouldn’t stretch it would just snap. Taffy needs to be warmed up before the candy man tries to create individual pieces of candy. Softball, basketball, soccer, etc. EVERY sport requires players to warm up for the game. Warming up safely helps prepare the body for the increased demands on the body during exercise. Never is it OK just to jump on the treadmill and start running at full speed. Your body needs to prepare the heart for the activity and warming up helps to prevent a crazy increase in blood pressure.

Here are some benefits:

  • Get into the zone for the upcoming exercise aka getting mentally prepared
  • Boost the oxygen and nutrient delivery to your muscles so you don’t get out of breath too early or too easily
  • Get the body Ready for stretching
  • Increase your coordination
  • Warming up reduces the potential for muscle and connective injuries and increases body temperature.
  • Helps promote sweating and sweating is great! It reduces the amount of heat stored in the body, something your body spends a lot of energy doing.
  • Warming up may actually make you less sore the next day!

What should a warm up entail?

  • Your warm up should be 5-7 minutes long and should be done every single time you have an exercise session no matter if it’s cardio, strength training or stretching. You should be breathing a little harder than normal (but not as hard as the actual exercise) and have a light sweat.
  • You should start gradually and work your way up to the intensity of the main workout. If you are going to have a long workout the warm up should be longer. Make sure all of your large muscles are ready. Ie. midsection, back, chest, shoulders, upper legs, calves, glutes
  • The warm up can be a lower intensity version of the workout you are about to do, or it can be a completely different exercise. As long as it increases your heart rate and breathing, and involves the muscles you are about to use, it is considered a proper warm up.  For your warmup I would recommend some dynamic work. Basically that would be jumping jacks, leg swings (front-back, side to side). Some bodyweight squats as well all performed in a circuit and repeated 2-3 times.

Taking the time to warm up will ensure a great workout and will help you to become a sassy fit you!

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

New Sparkle To Your Sassy Style

My collection is almost complete....what am I talking about? The accessory every sassy girl must have...a sparkly non slip headband. Sparkly Soul has come up with my favorite new headband.  The moment I saw my favorite spin instructor sporting one during class I knew that I too must have one.  She sent me to their web site and right then and there I made my first purchase. I needed the sparkle but I was skeptical of headbands. I have purchased so many headbands over the years but they have always given me a headache no less than two minutes after putting them on my head. I have even purchased the grippy headbands but the darn things wouldn’t stay on my head unless I used a bobby pin to secure it in place. Finding something sassy, girlie and sporty is a dream. I put these babies to the test and wore them while teaching fitness, taking a spin class, running in the park and even out on the town. The result...they actually stayed in place and I never got a headache. Whooohoooo!
There are many different colors to choose from and you can choose the band of the fabric to be wide or thin. These puppies are a must for every sassy girl!
Check out to get your very own.

Tell them that Sassy Girl Sent You

Sunday, April 22, 2012

“The Best Cure For An Off Day Is a Day Off”

Rest days are so easy to do put there are so many that forgoe a day off of working out and push on through even the body is begging for a break.
Often students come up to me after class and ask about muscle soreness and feeling fatigued. Something they normally can do feels almost impossible. My first question is..."When was your last rest day?" Almost always they say "3 weeks ago, or I never take a day off from working out." This is very common. Most people feel like if they don't workout every single day they will "lose" fitness. When in fact it takes more than one day off a week to feel the loss of fitness and performance that occurs when you stop working out. It doesn't happen until you take off more than two weeks. It's not just me saying this years and years of research say the same thing.
When you overuse your muscles you are asking for a injury. Yes your body will adapt for a short time but over time your body will just stop. Taking a day off to let your body restore is better than weeks or months forced to take off because of a major injury that could have been avoided.When you take a recovery day off every seven to 10 days your body restocks glycogen stores, builds strength, and reduces fatigue.
For 5 or 6 days a week I work my sassy ass off and then on the 7th day I let my body just be. I rest, do some light stretching, get a massage. Just knowing a day off is coming I notice I push harder during my sessions. When my body is fatigued I can't work as efficientally and then my workout is not as powerful as it could be. Resting for a day enables me to be physically and mentally ready for my workouts in the coming week.
I understand that it can be hard to not put on your sneakers but remember LESS IS MORE.

Things to remember:
Rest one day a week to prevent overuse injuries and prevent mental burnout.
A rest day will help to improve your endurance and increase your blood volume.

A sassy girl always listens to her body. If you are feeling sluggish doing workouts that normally make you feel amazing then take a day or two off and then return to your activity. Taking care of your bod now will ensure you stay super sassy well into your Golden Years.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

5 Reasons To Get Moving

Every time you watch the morning talk shows you hear that everyone should be getting between 30 - 60 minutes of exercise every single day.
As I have written before it is sometimes hard to get motivated to work out.  Here I hope, are
some reasons why you should get off of the couch and onto the treadmill.

1. Weight Control-Exercise alone won’t help you maintain your weight. You have to eat well. The good news is exercise burns excess calories and helps prevent unwanted weight gain.
2. Happy Pills not Needed-Exercise releases endorphins and endorphins make you feel good. No need to spend money on prescripition pills to get rid of anxiety. Get your body movin and groovin to keep the doctor away.
3. Decreased Risk of Disease-Exercise can reduce the chances that you will get type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis or high blood pressure
4. More Verile Muscles-Besides being more physically appealing the more muscles you have the more calories you burn doing everyday activities.
5. Give Doogie Howser a Run For His Money-When you exercise you increase the flow of blood and oxygen through the body and that means your brain is getting it too! Plus exercise helps to prevent Alzheimers later in life.

The most important thing to remember is that you don't have to sweat buckets or fall down from exhaustion to reap the benefits of daily exercise.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Sassy Girl Testimonial

Part of living a Sassy life is to experience new things.  You can only do so much at the gym to enhance your life.  Some times the things that make life better are the simple pleasures that you find at the store.  Today I would like to begin from time to time sharing with you some sassy products that I use and love.  I am not being paid by any company to do this.  I just want to pass on to you various things that will go a long way to making your life sassier.  

Exactly one month ago today I fell in love....with yogurt. Not just any yogurt but with Chobani Blueberry Greek Yogurt. When I was about 8 I told my mother that I needed yogurt and that she should buy some for me. She did and immediately when we got home from the grocery store I decided to put it in the freezer. My thought...I can make frozen yogurt! That would be awesome! Well to my disappointment it didn’t work and the frozen container didn’t give me the yummy ice cream like flavor that I was hoping for. It tasted awful, so for many years I didn’t go near the stuff. Last month one afternoon I was at the health food store and on a whim I decided to give the stuff a try. I brought it home and prepared for the worst. I had the memory of yogurt tasting terrible so I expected to spit my first spoonful out into the trash. I wasn't prepared for the wonderful surprise of taste and texture when I tried Chobani Greek Yogurt.
What made me pick up Chobani when there are so many brands to choose from? To be honest it’s appearance is so lovely. It fits into my palm, there isn’t marketing surrounding the name and the nutritional facts are amazing!
The truth is in the label. Below are the nutritional and ingredients:

The moment this thin slice of heaven touched my lips I was a goner. Love at first bite. It's thick, heavy and sweet but not too sweet. Not only does is the rich texture appealing but you can tell the quality is par to none. Plus this brand donates 10% of it's profits to charities! Totally Sassy!
You can find Chobani at your local grocery store if you live in the following states: New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Illinois, Ohio, North Carolina, South Carolina, California, Louisiana, Oklahoma, and Texas. If you don't live in one of the 14 lucky states try Costco or buy online.

I love this stuff for a healthy snack. I think you too should try it too! You won't be disappointed.
I'd love to hear what your favorite yogurt is or what you think is a sassy snack. Let me know via twitter @sassygirfit

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Simple Ways To Stay Sassy

Killing an afternoon on the couch and watching a marathon of  trash tv can be more appealing than getting and staying fit. Then again there are a lot of things that can be more appealing then getting yourself to the gym, even for me sometimes.  That being said, there are a few things I know I'm good at and being a successful life long fitness buff is one of them. Here are a few tips on ways I've managed to make exercise my way of life. Maybe you'll find something that connects to you and if you already workout on a regular basis maybe you will find something that reinvigorates your commitment to fitness.

1. Be Consistent
No matter where I am I make sure that I carve out at least 30 min to use my thera-band, do body weight exercises or use the local facility. I know that I will enjoy my time wherever I am if I take the time to devote to my health. Consistency is his best tip for maintaining a successful fitness regimen. What makes one person’s success is doing a workout EVERYDAY. Nothing will work if you don't do it consistently.  

2. Three things you must do to make sure your routine is effective

a. Strength training. Try 20 minutes a day twice a week and your body will be so much better for it. You will age better, sleep better and look better!

b. Interval training its very effective and time efficient. Short bursts of high intensity followed by low intensity work to allow your body to recover so you can push hard during the next round. Example: Run at a moderate pace for two minutes, sprint for one minute then walk on a slight incline for two minutes...then repeat for 25-30 minutes.

c. Expand your cardio
Just 60 minutes a day of low to moderate physical activity like walking or dancing.

3. Be Realistic
Aiming for perfection is a concoction for disaster. No one is perfect so if that's your goal you'll never get there. A goal of making healthy choices is much more attainable. Maybe your goal is to do a workout everyday...even if it's just 15 minutes

4. Have a Sister in Arms
A great way to strengthen your relationships is to sweat together. I love working out with my friends. They encourage me to work harder and not to take the easy way out.

5. No financial investment needed
I've said it before and I'll say it again. You don't need a gym to get fit.
I have lots of clients that don't have a gym in their building so we workout wherever they have enough space for a mat, chair and 1 or 2 sets of hand weights.
Example of what you can do:
10-15 pushups
Plank/forearm plank 45 seconds
Tricep dips using edge of chair 15-20
Bridge hold for 45-60 seconds. Try lifting the hips high and from there lower and lift one inch. For more of a challenge pick one foot off the floor.
Swimmer 45-60 seconds. Lie on your front side and lift your legs and upperbody off the floor. You should feel as if you are balancing on your hip bones. Pull your belly in and use your inner thighs to lift your legs and relax your buttocks.
Squats 15 reps. Do 2-3 sets
Cat/Cow 30sec

These are just a few of my "secrets" that make fitness part of who I am. I hope that taking care of yourself through physical activity is something you will do to insure a sassy you!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Straight Up!

Make sure you rock your bikini this coming summer. Here is a super simple secret and something you've heard thousands of times...don't slouch! Turns out your Mom was onto something. Take her advice and keep your back straight, chest lifted and your shoulders back and down.  Think about your shoulder blades melting down your back and tucking into your rear pockets. When you slouch your belly looks rounder not to mention you look shorter too!
Remember this at the pool and I guarantee you'll look super sassy in your swimsuit!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

No Sweat

A personal training client asked me an interesting question today.  Am I burning more calories when I sweat more? The truth...not so much. Sweat is your body trying to cool off.  You do not have to sweat to get a good workout. When your body temp increases we sweat but how much you produce has zero affect on how many calories you burn. Focus on Frequency, Intensity, Time
  • Just because you are sweating buckets does not mean you burn more calories. If you are working out in a hot and humid room expect your body to sweat because your body is trying to cool off a bit. A hot room will make your muscles more pliable but that doesn’t mean you are burning more.
  • Your gender plays a role too! Women don’t sweat as much as men. (women glisten)
  • Do you love the sauna? Sitting in the sauna or steam room for a long period of time will help you lose excess weight but it’s only water weight. The moment you drink water you will gain in right back.
  • Wearing heavy clothing, sweaters or plastic sweat suits does not equal better fitness and you may overheat yourself and maybe have a stroke.

What I want you to get out of the post is that sweating and burning fat has no direct correlation. Keep committed to your fitness goal and you will stay super sassy.