1. Change your mind-set. I hear people often say “I’m so tired today, I don’t have the energy to workout!” Instead you should say the exact opposite. “I’m so tired and have no energy so I NEED to workout!” Energy creates energy. Almost 100% of the time, you are going to feel so amazing when you are done!
2. Ask the right question! People will often consider “Should I workout today?” That is the wrong question because the answer to that question should always be yes! You should always try to move your body every single day – unless of course under unusual circumstances like if you’re really sick. It doesn’t mean you have to have a hard workout everyday but you should do something active everyday. Instead of asking yourself whether you should workout, instead ask “What type of workout should I do today?” because you will do something!
Cardiovascular conditioning: Focus on consistency this week. Get at least 3 cardio workouts in of various lengths and intensities.
Muscle Conditioning: Follow along with today’s routine. Today you will need an exercise tube with handles – you can purchase at Target, a sporting good store or online at www.twistconditioning.com We also use a staircase today but if you don’t have one in your house, you can still follow the program without. Beginners complete one set, intermediate complete two sets and advanced complete three sets.
If you cannot view the video clip above, cut and paste the following link into your browser. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ckGyXVUP644
After week one, you should be developing some good healthy habits. Continue doing everything you learned last week and add on today’s tips. Remember that Knowledge + Action = Results. This program will provide you the tools and the resources you need to make sure you’re doing this the right way and my goal is also to inspire you to take action. By consistently taking the right kinds of action steps, you will achieve incredible results and get into amazing shape!
Cardiovascular conditioning: During your shorter, high intensity cardio day, try brief 30 second intervals. So go hard for 30 seconds and then back off for 30-60 seconds and then repeat. Do this for 20 minutes. Remember to mix up your duration and intensity of your cardio workouts during the week. Sometimes go long and easy and other times go hard and short. We want to train all levels of your energy systems.
Muscle Conditioning: Follow along with today’s routine. You will need a set of light and heavy handweights and a bench or step. Beginners complete one set, intermediate complete two sets and advanced complete three sets.
If you cannot view the video clip above, cut and paste the following link into your browser. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_zq1BwPvyd4
Today we launch the “Love Yourself” Fitness and Training program and what better day to start taking better care of yourself than on Valentine’s Day! You are the only person you are going to be with every day and every moment of your entire life and your health is your most important asset! If you take the time out of your busy schedule to do what you need to do to be at your best then that will positively impact every part of your life – physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually! And then you’ll be better able to take care of all those you love! Remember what they say on an airline flight…put your oxygen mask on first before you help the person beside you!
Now remember it’s not enough to just think about taking your health and fitness to a new level. It does you no good to just talk about it. You actually have to DO something. So today I propose you give yourself the best Valentine’s Day gift ever and launch this program and get in the best shape of your life!
Each week I will provide you with easy tips that you can implement right away so that week by week you are getting closer to your Personal Best! If you make the commitment and follow along with this program, you can expect to improve your aerobic fitness, muscle tone and flexibility, increase your energy levels and reduce your body fat.
Week 1: Focus on this week’s tips. By the end of the week, you will have started to develop a fitness habit in these areas and you’ll be ready for week 2.
Cardiovascular Conditioning: Find an aerobic activity like walking, jogging, cycling, hiking, fitness classes, dance or swimming that you know you can stick to a minimum of 3x/week. Don’t choose jogging if you hate to jog. You’ll never stick to it long enough to get any results. One workout go shorter and harder, another more moderate intensity and duration and another workout long and easy.
Beginner: Perform your activity 3x this week.
Intermediate: Perform your activity 4x this week.
Advanced: Perform your activity 5x this week.
Muscle Conditioning: Complete the YouTube Muscle conditioning segment below. Go for 3x this week on alternate days. Today’s program doesn’t require any additional equipment. I wanted to show you that you can give yourself an amazing workout anywhere with no equipment whatsoever. You’ll see I’m right in the privacy of my living room and I’m just using body weight. You’ll have to excuse the low production quality. It’s just me and my girlfriend and a flip camera. But heck, what do you expect?! It’s free! And sometimes, the best things in life don’t cost a thing! Have fun!
If you can’t view the clip above, cut and paste the next link into your browser. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pZjhyrZbC6A
Next Monday is Valentine’s Day. In honor of this special day, I am going to launch a ‘Love Yourself’ fitness program. Every week, I will provide you with exercise and nutrition tips and live video clips that you can follow along with anywhere – home, work, hotel…
To help you mentally and physically prepare, here’s what I need you to do.
1st. Grab a sheet of paper and pen. If you’re not working out right now, ask yourself why it’s important that you start. What about your current situation are you not content with? How would your life be better if you were looking and feeling your best? Keep asking yourself why it’s important to you that you start taking better care of yourself. If you are currently exercising, ask yourself why you are ready to ramp things up a bit? Are you ready to take things to the next level? Finding the compelling reason to stick to an exercise and nutrition plan every day no matter what is the most important thing you can do as you launch a new program.
2nd: Go Shopping for Food – If you workout already consistently, achieving a lean physique is about 90% nutrition. So it’s time to get focused and serious about what you put in your body. So here are some good nutritious items to stock up on. Go through the list and pick up those items that you would enjoy eating regularly.
Cold cereal – Cherrios, , Bran, Granola
100% whole grain bread or English muffins (or other bread products)
100% whole wheat pitas
100% whole wheat tortillas
100% whole wheat pizza shells
100% whole wheat pasta
Meats (I will let you choose whether you include meat into your diet or not):
Skinless, boneless chicken breast halves and/or frozen cut-up chicken for stir-fries
Skinless salmon filets / 1 whole fish
Skinless turkey breasts
Sliced cooked salmon, turkey or chicken
Ground turkey or lean beef
Frozen chicken or vegetable meat patties
Dairy (Again, I will let you choose whether you include dairy or not):
Skim milk or low-fat soy/rice/oatbran milk fortified with vitamin D and calcium
1 bag of part-skim shredded mozzarella cheese
Container of feta-cheese
Low-fat probiotic Yogurt cups
Bags of frozen veggies – green beans, peas, broccoli, corn, stir-fry
Bags of frozen fruit – blueberries, raspberries, strawberries
Frozen Meals – Lean Cuisine or Healthy Choice – When you’re too tired to cook or in a hurry, these are life savers. They are low in salt, calories, fat and Trans-fats plus they’re actually quite yummy! Nothing better than the real thing though, however, this would be a better fast-food choice that a hamburger joint.
Soups – look for low sodium
Soy-nut peanut butter or all-natural peanut butter (no trans fat, no added sugar)
Bottled Water/Flavored Water
100% Orange with pulp/Cranberry/Grapefruit Juice (fortified with calcium, magnesium and Vit. D)
V-8 (low sodium)
Fresh Produce: Fruits/Vegetables
You’ve got complete freedom in this area. Buy what you love. Here’s some must haves…
3-5 bags of salad mix like Romaine, Spinach or Mixed Greens (make it easy to make salads everyday)
Bag of cut-up stir-fry veggies
Pre-cut and washed veggies – carrots, broccoli, sweet peas, cauliflower, celery, asparagus, mushrooms (make it easy to eat your veggies!)
Peppers – red, yellow, orange, green
Apples/Pears/Grapes/Bananas/Oranges/Grapefruit/Tangerines – plus whatever is in season
Soy sauce – low sodium
Salad dressing/Salad spritzers – vinaigrettes are a great choice
Other favorite spices
Nuts – raw walnuts/almonds unsalted– don’t buy too much. And once you get them home, put them in mini-ziplock snack bags separated 10 to a bag
Dried fruits – apricots, cranberries, apples…
If you have a real sweet tooth and are looking for healthier options to prevent the 500 plus calorie dessert binges, try the following:
Yogurt and granola
Weight-watcher deserts – they typically keep them at 100 calories per serving
Pudding cups – 60 calories per cup
Gum/Small bag of hard candies – when you feel a craving coming on, chew on some gum or pop a hard candy and suck on it for a while. It will often do the trick.
Frozen yogurt – but just buy the smaller cartons to prevent eating a whole gallon
Step 3: Buy some toysYou are going to need some fitness equipment to follow along with the program. So head to your local fitness or sporting goods store (even Target stocks up on a lot of these items) and pick up the following items:
Set of handweights – you will need some light and heavy options. For me, I would pick up a set of 5, 10, 15 and 20 pound hand weights. If that’s not an option, chose 5 and 10 pound weights. If you are a guy, go with some heavier options.
A step/bench – we will use this a lot to step up onto, to use as a bench to lie on or sit on
A medicine ball – Go for a 5 – 8 pound ball
A kettlebell – Go for a 8-15 pound option
An elastic band exercise tube with handles – Go for a medium/hard resistance
A skipping rope
If you are going to be following along with the program on hard floors, pick up a mat. You won’t need a mat if you will be on carpet.
Note: I will provide options for any exercise if you don’t have any of the pieces of equipment listed above so don’t be detoured if you can’t find the time or money to pick up these items.
So take the next week to prepare and be ready for a “Love Yourself” kick-butt workout and nutrition plan. Keep in mind, it would be pretty awesome to Love your best friend, your spouse, your kids, your co-worker, your sister, your brother, your mom, dad, your neighbor and invite them to join in the program too!
“Character is the ability to carry out a good resolution long after the excitement of the moment has passed.” — Cavett Robert
It’s been one month since many of us set a New Year’s Resolution. It’s a great time to analyze and assess your performance so far. Are you on track? If not, it’s time for an intervention. Ask yourself what you need to start doing? What do you need to stop doing? What do you need to keep doing?
It terms of exercise, for most people, it’s a chore. There’s no enjoyment associated with it whatsoever. So whatever you can do to make exercise more fun, the greater the chances you will stick with it.
Try some of these tips:
Workout with a buddy. You may find that having a friend around really helps with exercise adherence and you may be able to encourage each other to try out new activities. Or hire a personal trainer. They will add variety, safety, fun and keep you accountable to ensure you experience great results. And that will motivate you to keep working out!
Enroll in fun, active programs. For example, sign up with some friends for a Zumba, BallRoom, Latin or Swing class. Take a scuba-diving class together. Participate in a recreational sport program.
Get out your IPOD and workout to your favorite play-list. Music always makes a workout more enjoyable.
Purchase some new exercise DVDs: Do you follow exercise videos? Well if you can recite the cues from the instructor word for word, you may want to purchase a few more videos to add to your repertoire.
Knowledge is Power. Make it a goal to learn about your body. Attend lectures, purchase exercise, nutrition or motivational books or consult with a personal trainer. The more you know, the easier it is to convince yourself to stick to your program.
Do something new. Next workout, try a brand new exercise you’ve never done before. If you always do tricep pressdowns to work your triceps, next workout try a tricep dip. If you always jump onto the treadmill for your cardio training, try the stairmaster or rowing machine.
Vary your pace. If you always do level 3 on the stairmaster for 30 minutes, next workout go for level 4 for only 20 minutes. If you always run for 40 minutes, next workout run for only 20 minutes and incorporate some high-intensity intervals. If you always do the same number of reps, go for a change of pace. For example, if you always do 15 reps of any exercise, next workout increase the resistance a bit and do only 10 reps. This will keep you mentally and physically stimulated!
Change the sequence of your workouts. If you always do your cardio exercise first, next workout do a brief warm-up, then do your muscle conditioning exercises and then finish with your cardio. If you always do your leg exercises before your upper body exercises, reverse this next workout.
Mix up your classes: If you’re a class-goer and you’ve found yourself attending the same type of class, mix it up! If you are a regular stepper, next class go for an indoor cycling, boxing, Yoga, Tai Chi, Pilates, funk or hip hop class.
Mix up the indoors and outdoors. Do you find yourself always working out indoors? Once a week, go outside for a power walk, run, hike, inline skate or cycle – climb a set of stairs outside instead of the machine-version. If you’re always outside, go indoors for one workout a week. Start a resistance training program or indoor rockclimbing. The change of scenery may be something your body needs.
Go for an adrenaline rush. Every few months, we encourage our clients to set a new, challenging goal. We’ve had clients train for fun runs, triathlons, half marathons, marathons, extreme hiking adventures, snowboarding or skiing, and cycling treks. These types of goals have really helped inspire our clients to stick to their fitness program. Try new activities like hiking, indoor rockclimbing, snowboarding/skiing, skate-skiing, snowshoeing, whitewater rafting, sea kayaking, or a running clinic.
Practicing a few of these tips will definitely add some flavor to your exercise program and increase the chances that you will stick with it long enough to experience incredible results!
Yours in health and fitness,
ps. If you have a workout tip that has helped you stick to your program, please leave a comment. You may inspire others!
I am so excited to relaunch my Shape up with Sherri blog. It’s got a new look and feel with functioning that should make it more user-friendly for you and easier to interact and post comments. My goal is to blog two times per week and provide you with exercise and nutrition tips to help you look and feel your best and live life to the fullest!
I’m sure many of you have heard of the recent passing of Jack Lalanne age 96, fitness industry pioneer. Well, I thought it would be fitting to relaunch my blog with a post highlighting what we can all learn from Jack Lalanne and his incredible life.
Exercise and nutrition tips from Jack Lalanne
Lessons from Jack Lalanne:
Exercise Everyday: I was fortunate enough to serve on a committee with Jack Lalanne and it was endearing to watch him spread his message about the benefits of exercise. No matter where we went, he was telling someone about the importance of taking good care of yourself. He 100% believed in his message and was so passionate about inspiring everyone to adopt a healthy lifestyle. He knew firsthand that exercise and good nutrition can change lives. He himself was a scrawny, nervous, shy little kid at age 15 until he started working out. He understood that he could positively impact his whole life – physically, mentally, emotionally – through the benefits of working out!
Eat like a Champion: I had dinner with Jack a few times and I was so impressed that he always walked his talk. He made special requests for grilled vegetables and had no issue with asking for substitutions to order exactly what he needed to fuel his body correctly. You are what you eat!
Build Muscle: Jack understood the importance of cardio but he was a big proponent of muscle conditioning. He understood way before the research was conclusive that muscle conditioning is the true fountain of youth! So lift something heavy!
Live on the Edge: Jack was always trying something new and challenging himself physically and mentally. Once he did more than 1000 pushups in 23 minutes. For his 60th birthday, he swam from Alcatraz to Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco handcuffed, shackled and towing a boat. When he turned 70, he did the same in Long Beach harbor. I challenge you to live life the Jack LaLanne way. Step out of your comfort zone. Do something new and exciting every 90 days. It will keep you feeling young, vibrant and alive!
Have a magnetic personality: Jack was a charmer. He was witty and fun and made people laugh! People are drawn to others that challenge them, inspire them, build them up and provide support and guidance. Success followed Jack wherever he went because he knew how to communicate with others and understood how to make people feel good about themselves. He provided a positive energy and was a joy to be around. Be like Jack!
Here are some quotes directly from Jack Lalanne: Lots of incredible insight here!
“The only way you can hurt the body is not use it.”
“Inactivity is the killer and, remember, it’s never too late.”
“I’ll tell you one thing, you don’t always have to be on the go. I sit around a lot, I read a lot, and I do watch television. But I also work out for two hours every day of my life, even when I’m on the road.”
“How do you build up your bank account? By putting something in it everyday.Your health account is no different. What I do today, I am wearing tomorrow. If I put inferior foods in my body today, I’m going to be inferior tomorrow, it’s that simple.”
“I never think of my age, never – I could be 20 or 100. I never think about it, I’m just me.”
“It’s a lifestyle, it’s something you do the rest of your life – How long are you going to keep breathing? How long do you keep eating? You just do it.”
“Do you know how many calories are in butter and cheese and ice cream? Would you get your dog up in the morning for a cup of coffee and a donut?”
“Focus on your problem zones, your strength, your energy, your flexibility and all the rest. Maybe your chest is flabby or your hips or waist need toning. Also, you should change your program every thirty days. That’s the key.”
“I do it as a therapy. I do it as something to keep me alive. We all need a little discipline. Exercise is my discipline.”
“I only eat fish – no chicken, no turkey, just fish. I get all my protein from fish and egg whites.”
“I’d rather see you drink a glass of wine than a glass of milk. What’s the good of living if you can’t have the things that give a little enjoyment?”
“So many people drink Coca-Cola and all these soft drinks with sugar. Some of these drinks have 8 or 9 teaspoons of sugar in them.”
“If you’ve got a big gut and you start doing sit-ups, you are going to get bigger because you build up the muscle. You’ve got to get rid of that fat! How do you get rid of fat? By changing your diet.”
“Look at the average American diet: ice cream, butter, cheese, whole milk, all this fat. People don’t realize how much of this stuff you get by the end of the day. High blood pressure is from all this high-fat eating.”
“Millions of Americans got up this morning with a cup of coffee, a cigarette and a donut. No wonder they are sick and fouled up.”
“Remember this: your body is your slave; it works for you.”
“So many older people, they just sit around all day long and they don’t get any exercise. Their muscles atrophy, and they lose their strength, their energy and vitality by inactivity.”
“The only way you get that fat off is to eat less and exercise more.”
“We don’t know all the answers. If we knew all the answers we’d be bored, wouldn’t we? We keep looking, searching, trying to get more knowledge.”
“What you need to do is get that tape measure out, and start measuring that gut. Then you start working out and you start eating properly till that gut gets down close to it was when you were in your 20′s. Then you’ll find out what your weight should be.”
“Yes, exercise is the catalyst. That’s what makes everything happen: your digestion, your elimination, your sex life, your skin, hair, everything about you depends on circulation. And how do you increase circulation? Exercise!”
“Now the medical profession is saying something different. Every one of the doctors without exception is saying, “Build muscle.”
“Everything you do in life, I don’t care, good or bad – don’t blame God, don’t blame the devil, don’t blame me, blame you. You control everything! The thoughts you think, the words you utter, the foods you eat, the exercise you do. Everything is controlled by you.”
“You don’t have to call it God or Jesus. That’s religious humbug to a lot of people, but you’ve gotta believe that nature and spiritual things surround us. That is what put us here! I thank the universe for that every day of my life.”
“I can’t die, it would ruin my image.”
Well, Jack, you have passed but it definitely hasn’t ruined your image. It’s just caused us all to reflect what an impact you have had on so many of us. Thank you for paving the way for the rest of us! Boy, I sure do hope heaven has been conditioning and preparing for your arrival. You sure are gonna shake things up up there! Rest in Peace Jack.
Yours in health and fitness,
Ps. Here’s a YouTube video of Jack spreading his message. Do a search on YouTube for other Jack Lalanne clips. Tons of Pearls of Wisdom!
If you have kids, you’ve got to help them learn to love to move their bodies and eat well at an early age. Then it will be easy to continue as they get older!
I had the opportunity to work with some Vancouver kids today to teach them that working out and eating healthy can be a ton of fun. Check out the video above. It’s so cute!
Here’s the reality…
These days kids hardly get any activity. Most schoolwork involves sedentary activity and with television and video games as after-school pastimes, the temptation to sink into couch potato-land becomes pretty overwhelming for our kids. Check out these startling stats:
Children today are approximately 40% less active than they were 30 years ago
20% of children and teens are overweight enough to threaten their future health
One report states that the number of overweight children ages 6-11 has increased by 50% in the last 15 years and by 40% in those ages 12-17. Lack of exercise is considered a major contributing factor
40% of children already have at least one risk factor for heart disease and reduced fitness due to an inactive lifestyle
Children spend an average of 26 hours a week watching television and also spend 25-30 hours a week sitting behind a desk
As the school year winds down, parents can plan ahead to ensure your kids get lots of activity this summer. “Go outside and do something” or “Go ride your bike” you yell to your kids as you watch your favorite daytime show or football game. The “Do as I say, not as I do!” approach doesn’t have a very good track record. Children tend to mimic the actions of their parents so, if the extent of your daily or after-work activity consists of channel surfing and munching on chips, guess what fitness rituals your children will develop. The lifestyle habits you’re developing in your children today will determine how much junk will clog their arteries 30 years from now. Read the rest of The best thing we can do for our kids!
Here is your final Day Six of your 6-Day Core Conditioning program. You now have all all critical components of a solid core conditioning program with movements and exercises in a variety of planes and angles. As a reminder, your core is not just your abdominal region. It includes all layers of the abdominal musculature (deep and superficial including the external/internal obliques, rectus abdominus and transverse abdominus), the muscles surrounding the spine on the posterior side of the body, the hips and glutes, and the pelvic area. This program will hit everything!
A strong core provides strength that radiates out to the rest of your body so you can move with more grace, power, efficiency and be less likely to get injured.
Day Six Exercises include:
• Full sit –up (ascending reps)
• Holding V-sit
• Holding V-sit with Rotation
• Extension up and forward fold
Note: Today’s program is hard-core so take as many breaks as needed and be sure to modify any movements that don’t feel great on your body.
Here’s the video clip so you can follow along.
Here’s a direct link if you can’t see the video above…
My suggestion is to complete Day One program on Monday, Day Two on Tuesday and so on. Then take one day rest and repeat the sequence the following week. All you need is about 5 minutes or so every day to really challenge your core from all angles. Follow the program for about 6 weeks and email me your results. A strong and toned core is the ultimate goal!
Here is Day Five of your Core Conditioning program. By the end of this week, you will have all 6 days of your Core Conditioning program! Hopefully, you have mastered Days One-Four and are ready for some new exercises. Practice these and Day Six will come on Friday.
This 6-day program will address all critical core components and include movements and exercises in a variety of planes and angles. As a reminder, your core is not just your abdominal region. It includes all layers of the abdominal musculature (deep and superficial including the external/internal obliques, rectus abdominus and transverse abdominus), the muscles surrounding the spine on the posterior side of the body, the hips and glutes, and the pelvic area. This program will hit everything!
A strong core provides strength that radiates out to the rest of your body and you will move with more grace, power, efficiency and be less likely to get injured.
Day Five Exercises include:
• Bicycle Crunch • Alternating Leg Lowers • Straight Leg Extension Crunches • Dead bug (Arm and Leg extensions)
Here’s the video clip so you can follow along.
Here’s a direct link if you can’t see the video above…
Here is Day Four of your Core Conditioning program. This circuit is especially important for those of you who work at a computer or desk all day. It will help to improve your posture, elongate your spine and work those weaker posterior muscle groups. Hopefully, you have mastered Day One, Two and Three and are ready for some new exercises. Practice these and Day Five will come on Monday.
By the end of next week you will have your complete Six Day Core Conditioning workout. This program will address all critical core components and include movements and exercises in a variety of planes and angles. As a reminder, your core is not just your abdominal region. It includes all layers of the abdominal musculature (deep and superficial including the external/internal obliques, rectus abdominus and transverse abdominus), the muscles surrounding the spine on the posterior side of the body, the hips and glutes, and the pelvic area.
Remember, when you have a strong core, that strength radiates out to the rest of your body and you will move with more grace, power, efficiency and be less likely to get injured.
Day Three Exercises include:
• Back extension breaststroke • Reverse back extension Leg Lifts • Plank on elbows for 15-30 seconds • Child’s Pose for 15-30 seconds
Here’s the video clip so you can follow along.
Here’s a direct link if you can’t see the video above…