Missing a Workout is so much more than Missing a Workout!

Consider how much discipline it takes to workout three to five days a week. Think about how hard it is to keep stretching beyond our comfort zones and how challenging it is to exercise at high intensities. Consider the self-resolve required to eat healthy foods and drink lots of water every day when temptations surround us everywhere we go. But if you have the courage to respect your body – the temple that houses your mind and spirit – personal mastery will not be far away. It says a lot about who you are as a person when you invest the time to take care of yourself. It says you respect and love yourself enough to do the things necessary for you to be at your personal best. Each time you get into the gym for a workout on a day when you just don’t feel like exercising, you grow a little stronger as a human being. Each time you go for a run or walk on a cold winter’s day when you just feel like staying under the warm, cozy covers, you strengthen your character. When you endure a tough workout, it enables you to persevere through any other challenge in your life. Working on improving your physical conditioning will not only enrich your life and make you a better person, you’ll also become a better parent, a better spouse, a better and more productive worker, and a better friend.

Exercising regularly, eating well and taking the time to relax and nourish your body will make you feel happier. It will provide you with more energy than you have ever known. It will give you greater stamina and mental toughness and make you a clearer, stronger thinker. It will make you more patient and loving. There are 168 hours in a week. Surely each and every one of us, regardless of our hectic schedules, can carve out three to five of them to care for our bodies and work on mastering our physical state.

You must remember that a missed workout is much more than just a missed workout! When you miss a workout, you don’t just stay at the same level you were at – you actually take a few steps back. Every time you miss a workout, you have done something to strengthen the habit of not working out. When you’ve made the promise to yourself to exercise so many times per week and then you break that promise, you start to lose trust in yourself. With each missed workout, you start to lose self-confidence and begin to question whether you can actually stick with it at all. A missed workout fuels self-doubt and makes that negative habit stronger. Miss enough workouts, and eventually that negative habit of not working out will replace the positive habit of exercising that you have worked so hard to cultivate. Every time you fail to do the right thing, you fuel the habit of doing the wrong thing. So the next time you’re trying to justify pressing the snooze button and skipping your workout, or working through lunch instead of taking a walk break or heading right home after work instead of stopping at the gym, just don’t do it. Don’t even think about it. Don’t even allow yourself the opportunity to talk yourself out of doing what you know you need to do to be at your best. Just remember that you’ll feel like a million bucks once you’re done. The real challenge for most people is not the workout itself, but actually overcoming the negative thoughts that try to sabotage very good intentions.

“The greatest irony of our physical life is that when we are young, we are willing to sacrifice every bit of our health for wealth, and when we grow old, we are willing to sacrifice so much of our wealth for just one day of health.” Don’t let this happen to you. The little things in life are actually the big things and the quality of success that you will experience in your life ultimately depends upon the tiny choices you make every minute of every hour of every day. It’s the small daily acts and habits that define how big we end up living.

Looking Good, Feeling Great & Living Life to the Fullest!

Last 3 Exercises for your Pumping Nothing Workout

Today is Day 7 – the last day – of your Pumping Nothing workout. You now have 21 different exercises you can do absolutely anywhere with no equipment whatsoever. So the next time you can’t get to the gym, are on holidays or on a business trip…NO EXCUSES!

Here are your last three exercises to complete your Pumping Nothing Muscle-conditioning workout.

Try about 60-90 seconds for each exercise for a 4.5 minute mini-circuit. You might be motivated to just follow along with this clip and get a few minutes of movement. Or you might combine all clips for a 40 minute blast.

If you can’t view this clip, here is the direct link to YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f7FlFZGfqDA

Today’s exercises are:

Hamstring Curl
*Stay strong in your core
*Resist on the way in and on the way out
*Do for about 60-90 seconds total each side

Plank, Cobra & Downward Dog
*Keep your core strong throughout the entire set
*Continue for 60-90 seconds total

Bridging
*Keep you abdominals contracted throughout the entire set
*Contract your glute muscles on the way up and on the way down
*Try for 60-90 seconds total each side

Yours in health and fitness,

Sherri McMillan

3 more Muscle Toning Exercises you do with no equipment

Today is Day 6 of your Pumping Nothing workout – 18 different exercises you can do when you can’t get to the gym, are on holidays or on a business trip. I took my nephew, niece and sis through this workout when I was hanging out at their place in Canada and it kicked their butt. So whether you’re just getting started or you’re hardcore, there’s something for you!

Here are the next three exercises to add to your Pumping Nothing Muscle-conditioning workout.

Try about 60-90 seconds for each exercise for a 4.5 minute mini-circuit. You might be motivated to just follow along with this clip and get a few minutes of movement. Or you might combine all clips so far for a 30 minute blast.

If you can’t view this clip, here is the direct link to YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qP_Ph8vXi90

Today’s exercises are:

Standing Side Leg Lift:
*Try not to lean while you lift your leg to the side
*Do for about 60-90 seconds total each side

Tricep Pressups
*Keep your core strong
*Continue for 60-90 seconds total

Opposite Arm and Leg Extension with Rotation
*Keep you abdominals contracted throughout the entire set
*Focus on reaching and lengthening versus lifting upwards
*Try for 45-90 seconds total each side

Yours in health and fitness,

Sherri McMillan

Day 5 of your Pumping Nothing workout brings you 3 more exercises you can do anywhere!

Today is Day 5 of your Pumping Nothing workout. You now have 15 different exercises that you can do absolutely anywhere using no equipment whatsoever. Keep these emails on file for the next time you can’t get to the gym, are on holidays or on a business trip.

Here are the next three exercises to add to your Pumping Nothing Muscle-conditioning workout.

Try about 60-90 seconds for each exercise for a 4.5 minute mini-circuit. You might be motivated to just follow along with this clip and get a few minutes of movement. Or you might combine all clips so far for a 25 minute blast.

If you can’t view the clip above, click below for the direct YouTube link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XIwUbOOIunY

Today’s exercises are:

Airplane/Knee Lift/Walking Lunge & Touch Down
*Try a mini-lunge, intermediate or deep depending on how strong your knees are
*Keep your core strong into airplane and as your reach towards the ground
*Do for about 60-90 seconds total

Side Pushups
*Continue for 45 seconds each side

Full Sit-ups + V-sit Rotations
*Keep you abdominals contracted throughout the entire set
*Focus on a long spine during the rotations
*Try not to use any momentum or strain during the full sit-ups
*Feel free to adjust your range of motion during the full sit-ups
*Try for 60-90 seconds total

Yours in Health and Fitness,

Sherri McMillan

3 more Muscle Toning exercises you can do anywhere!

Today is Day 4 of your Pumping Nothing workout. Keep these emails on file for the next time you can’t get to the gym, are on holidays or on a business trip. There are never any excuses for why you can’t get your workout in because everything you will ever need, you will always have with you!

Here are the next three exercises to add to your Pumping Nothing Muscle-conditioning workout.

Try about 60-90 seconds for each exercise for a 4.5 minute mini-circuit. You might be motivated to just follow along with this clip and get a few minutes of movement. Or you might combine the last few clips for a 20 minute blast.

If you can’t view this video clip, click on the following direct YouTube link:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D1BeDJDW4LU

Today’s exercises are:

Lunge & Kick
*Try a mini-lunge, intermediate or deep depending on how strong your knees are
*Keep your core strong as you kick
*Do about 45 seconds each leg

Supine Arm Presses
*Continue for 60-90 seconds total using various angles

Prone Back Extensions – Upper/Lower/SkyDive
*Keep you abdominals contracted throughout the entire set
*Focus on reaching and lengthening versus lifting upwards
*Try for 60-90 seconds total

Three more Pumping Nothing Exercises

Today is Day 3 of your Pumping Nothing workout. Remember, you don’t need any equipment whatsoever to give yourself an incredible muscle conditioning workout. Review the last two posts for more tips.

Here are the next three exercises to add to your Pumping Nothing Muscle-conditioning workout.

Try about 60-90 seconds for each exercise for a 4.5 minute mini-circuit. You might be motivated to just follow along with this clip and get a few minutes of movement. Or you might combine the last few clips for a 15 minute blast.

If you can’t view the clip above, click here for the YouTube file:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rCPPej8D-wM

Today’s exercises are:

Circle Squat & Jump squat
*Only reach as low as you feel comfortable
*Continue for 30-45 seconds in each direction and then finish with a Power Squat

Push-ups with Leg Lift
*Try this from either your knees or toes depending on how strong your upper body is
*Alternate Legs
*Keep your core strong throughout the entire exercise
*Try for 60-90 seconds total

Side lying Lateral Leg Lifts
*Lift one or both legs
*Keep your core strong throughout the entire exercise
*Try for 30-45 seconds each side

Yours in Health and Fitness,

Sherri McMillan

Here are your next 3 Muscle Conditioning Exercises you can do anywhere!

Today is Day 2 of your Pumping Nothing workout. Remember, your body is the BEST piece of equipment ever and you can keep it strong, fit and conditioned with absolutely no equipment whatsoever! Review yesterday’s posts for more tips.

Here are the next three exercises to add to your Pumping Nothing Muscle-conditioning workout.

Try about 60-90 seconds for each exercise for a 4.5 minute mini-circuit. You might be motivated to just follow along with this clip and get a few minutes of movement. Or you might combine today and yesterday’s clips for a 9 minute blast.

Today’s exercises are:

Alternate Leap Lunge
*Only reach as low as you feel comfortable
*Choose low or high impact
*Continue for 60-90 seconds total alternating legs

Prone Arm Lifts
*Press thumbs towards the ceiling
*Continue for 60-90 seconds

Single and Double Leg Extensions

*For stabilization – Only extend and lower as low to the ground as you can keep your abdominals engaged and your low back stable
*Continue for 60-90 seconds

Here’s the clip:

If you can’t view the video clip, go to:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FPcc4iig0dA

Yours in health and fitness,

Sherri McMillan

Tone up with 3 Pumping Nothing Exercises

I recently conducted a workshop titled “Pumping Nothing” at the world’s largest Fitness Conference, CanFitPro in Toronto Canada. The principle was simple – that is that the body is the BEST piece of equipment ever and you can keep it strong, fit and conditioned with absolutely no equipment whatsoever! So what does that mean? No excuses ever! Muscle conditioning is critical for fat loss, posture, bone density, endurance, strength, weight management and more. If you can’t get to the gym because you’re on holidays, home with a sick child or on a business trip, you can still give yourself a fabulous workout!

The template for this workout is as follows:

Warm-up
Lower Body Exercise
Upper Body Exercise
Core Conditioning Exercise
Repeat multiple times with different exercises
Cool-down and stretch

So I thought it would be fun to give you some video clips of the exercises we did. I apologize for the filming – this wasn’t a professional production – just a friend taking some clips at the workshop. But you’ll get the idea.

Each day, I’ll share with you three exercises – lower body, upper body and core. We did about 1.5 minutes for each exercise for a 4.5 minute mini-circuit. So you might be motivated to just follow along with this clip and get a few minutes of movement. Or you might combine all the upcoming daily blog posts for a full one hour workout with a variety of different exercises that you can do absolutely anywhere. Even right now at your desk!

Today’s exercises are:

Lunge with Rotation
*Try a mini-lunge, intermediate or deep depending on how strong your knees are
*Keep your core strong as your rotate towards that front knee
*Do about 45 seconds each leg

Pushups with Rotation
*Try this from either your knees or toes depending on how strong your upper body is
*Keep your core strong throughout the entire exercise
*Do about 60-90 seconds total

Leg Extension with Core Crunch
*For stabilization component – Only lower as low to the ground as you can keep your abdominals engaged and your low back stable
*Do about 60-90 seconds total

Here’s the clip:

Yours in health and fitness,

Sherri McMillan

4 Tips to a Achieving your Dream Life

I just returned from IDEA, a convention in California for Health professionals from all over the world. I attended the keynote with Matt Weinstein, a motivational speaker and author. He said the problem with all the self help books is that they’re too hard to remember – the 8 secrets, the 7 Habits etc…So he’s come up with the 4 unforgettable keys to a Successful Life. He promises that you will never, ever forget them! I thought I’d share them with all of you in hopes that it will help you live your dream life.

#1 Key to an Incredible Life: ‘ Row, Row, Row your Boat’
This is your boat – your life! And if you want something, you’re going to have to work at it – you’re going to have to row, and row, and row some more. You’re going to have to put some muscle into it. Rowing can be a challenging activity but you can direct which way you want that boat to go! This is your life to create!

#2 Key to an Incredible Life: ‘Gently down the Stream’
Go with the flow. Don’t fight so hard. It’s so much easier to row your boat downstream rather than upstream! You’ve got to Focus on your strengths – that will make everything so much easier.

#3 Key to an Incredible Life: Can you already guess it??!! Yep – “Merrily, Merrily, Merrily, Merrily”
Be positive. Be content. Focus on what you have versus what you don’t have. Look for the good in everything. Notice everyday miracles. Incredible opportunities come to those with a joyful spirit. No one wants to be around or offer opportunities to those who are negative! Why? They are just going to complain about it anyways!

#4 Key to an Incredible Life: ‘Life is But a Dream’
Life should be a dream – a pleasant, beautiful, wonderful dream – Not a nightmare. Reality happens first in your mind. Dream big for your life. Make the life that you want so vivid in your mind that it’s easier to make it come to fruition!

That’s it! Four keys that you will probably never, ever forget. Simple but powerful messages! We’ve all heard it before and now all we have to do is live it! I hope it gives you a little boost for your week!

Yours in health and fitness,

Sherri McMillan

By challenging yourself, you challenge others!

“Do something everyday that scares or challenges you!” I love this photo of my friend Tamara as she jumps off a 20 ft cliff into Crater Lake. She inspired me to jump shortly after – a big accomplishment since I’m crazy scared of heights. That’s how inspiration works. Someone sees someone else do something cool and they think “Hey, maybe I could do that too!” So do something amazing and you’ll most likely inspire someone else too!

This thought process reminds me of this poem…

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, “Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous?” Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small doesn’t serve the world. There’s nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We were born to manifest the glory of God….And as we let our own light shine we unconsciously give people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”
Marianne Williamson – Read by Nelson Mandela

So let your life shine brightly and as you do so, it will inspire others to live their best life too!

Yours in health and fitness,

Sherri McMillan