The Fitness Lab

Saturday30 August 2014

Make Exercise a Lifelong Habit

power of habitIt can be a struggle to get a new habit going or stopping a bad habit no matter how much we know it would be good for us to to do so.  Here are 6 ideas for establishing a new habit and if you really want to get into the nitty gritty of habits, read The Power Of Habit by Charles Duhigg. 

  1. Tell yourself how much you love the benefits. I used to wake up in the morning bemoaning the sleep I was missing out on and how achy I felt, but I soon realized that my grumpy attitude wasn’t very motivating. Remind yourself how great it feels to exercise. Praise yourself for working hard. Come up with a mantra you say to yourself after each completed work out.
  2. Give it your all. If you don’t keep things interesting in your exercise routine, you can get bored quickly. One way to avoid burnout is to constantly look for ways to challenge yourself. If you’re currently working hard to master plank, make a goal of doing plank on your forearms. If that’s easy for you, move onto one leg in the air during plank. You get the picture...set higher standards and give yourself something to constantly be working toward. Check out this video: The Planks You Should Be Doing. 

6 Simple Swaps For a Speedier Metabolism

fitness lab ballardDo you ever wonder what you could do to amp up your metabolism without having to do much? Here are six simple ideas to get your metabolism back up to speed. 

  1. Swap 2 days of cardio a week for a fat-blasting circuit training session. If you’re like me, you need to maximize every spare minute you have for yourself. Weight bearing exercises build lean muscle mass, which speeds up your metabolism and helps you burn more calories all day long. Classes like Body Revolution combine weight training with high intensity movements that keep your heart rate up AND strengthen muscles at the same time. In other words, you can work harder and smarter.
  2. Swap cereal for eggs at breakfast. You’ll stay satisfied for longer with eggs’ protein power and get your metabolism burning at the start of your day. Plus, you’ll reduce your intake of hidden sugars found in most cereals (even those dubbed as healthy.) To make even better, top your eggs with fresh veggies and you’ll enjoy a breakfast with all real-food ingredients and no extra, unwanted additives.
  3. Walk instead of drive. If you live in Seattle, there is no reason you can’t walk most places you go. Build in the extra time and make it a habit to walk or bike everywhere. You’ll enjoy the scenic route, hit a higher level of fitness and health, and torch calories! It’s a win all around.

5 Ways to Slash More Calories This Week

boy drinking waterWho doesn't want a simple way to cut a few calories out of their day? Here are 5 easy tips that you can start doing right now - in fact why not do number one right now!

1. Drink More Water. 

Replace every other drink you’re drinking: morning coffee and creamer (120 calories), mid-day soft drinks (100+ calories), and evening alcohol (200-500 calories) with water.

Total Calorie Savings: 720 calories

2. Nix Nighttime Noshing.

No matter the snack, your body’s metabolism slows down closer to bedtime as melatonin levels start to rise to prepare your body for sleep. It’s a good idea to cut late night snacking all together. The average bowl of cereal with milk is about 300 calories. 2 scoops of your favorie ice cream are 480 calories.

Total Calorie Savings: 500+ calories.

3. Add a Day of Exercise.

If you’re currently only working out 2-4 times a week, an easy way to burn more calories and up your game, is to work out more days a week. A typical Body Revolution class burns 400+ calories for me. And, a typical high intensity workout for you should burn about the same if not more calories.

Total Calorie Savings: 400+ calories.

Why Do You Do This?

pancakesThis last year has been a busy one for me. My business exploded, and suddenly BOOM, I had many more clients and a lot more work to be done. We moved into a new house (and have been frantically working to feel settled, and get our 4 kids settled in our new digs.) And, at the same time, I’ve had a host of health problems this year that have left me playing guessing games with my health providers and my body.

The stress and overwhelm caused me to turn to everything I know is bad for me. More coffee. Less sleep. And, less time on things that make me feel happy, healthy, and whole.

But, when life gets in the way of me reaching and/or maintaining my goals, I have to come back this very simple question: why do I do this?

Why do I get up at 5:30AM to head to a Body Revolution class? Why do I push myself to run faster and farther on each morning run? Why am I blending up veggies and coconut milk with my favorite Greenberry Shakeology smoothie each morning instead of my favorite morning treat: hotcakes?

5 Things To Do Less

stress lessGet More Out of Your Weight Loss Goals

  1. Eat less. I know, it seems so simple. But, some people are under the impression that if a food is healthy, you can eat endless amounts of it. Actually, portion control matters even when you’re eating healthy foods. Cut back your portions, and you cut back your calories.
  2. Buy less. That’s right, if you only have healthy food in your fridge, you will only eat healthy food. Don’t load up on junk foods thinking you’ll have self control. Don’t have it in your home, because when temptation hits, you won’t even have it around to consider binging on.
  3. Drive less. Walk when you can. Rollerblade, ride a bike, even take public transportation. All of these options keep you more active than driving alone will. Often, when you factor in the time it takes to find parking, most of the local activities you enjoy would be better if you walked or rode to them anyway.

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