Tuesday, March 30, 2010

The I am So Tired, BUT still doing my Kick-Butt Work Out

It's only Tuesday and I am exhausted and really had to push myself to go to the gym today, but I accomplished a lot and I may take a nap in a little while :)
This is what I did:
16 minutes on the Elliptical~ Burn 200 Calories (4 minutes less than yesterday)
22 minutes on the Treadmill-Interval training-Burn 200 Calories
Stretch on Mat
20 Squats
Small Circuit on mat:
1 Leg Hip thrusts 25 Reps each leg then hold the raised leg at the angle of the other knee for 60 seconds Stretch it out!
Leg Lifts-No Hand Thrusts-Reg. Crunch 25 Reps Each
Adductor/Abductor Presses 4 sets of 25 Reps each
Leg Press 130# 1 set of 20 then 1 leg at a time @ 70# 1 set of 20
Dead Lifts with 25# bar 3 sets of 20 reps each
Cable leg work with strapped ankle 35# 3 sets of 20 of 3 positions
Calf Raises- 2 sets of 20 reps
Back Extensions- 2 sets of 20
Arc Trainer Cardio-20 minutes Burn 200 Calories
Stationary Bike 15 minutes-Burn 200 Calories
Yes indeed I did kick my own butt again and I feel Great, still tired though-(My shows were on late last night..LOL) so I will give myself a quick 20 minute power nap
My weight after the Holiday's=151 My weight today after my work out 146 My lowest weight when training-3 years ago 135. I looked a little drawn, so I feel better and look better with a little extra poundage, especially when aging is becoming a very sensitive issue!
It is very important to switch up and challenge your cardio daily. I will post an example of Interval Training when I wake up :)

Monday, March 29, 2010

Clean out your Pantry!

If you are able to do this, please go into your pantry and fridge and throw away the following:
White Flour, White Sugar, Sugar Substitutes (artificial sweeteners), Vegetable Shortening, Candy Bars, Cake, Chips, Cookies, Hydrogenated Oils, Milk Chocolate, Pretzels, Sugary Cereals, Syrup, White Rice, Powdered Milk, Canned foods, Pudding, Cold Cuts, Soda Pop, Diet Soda, Ice Cream, Yogurt with Sugar,  a condiments that contain sulfites or preservatives, and foods contained in non-lined metal cans (metal leaches into our foods).
Is your trash full? If you feel badly about throwing away your food, donate it to your local shelter if possible. Here is another alternative, the next time you shop, make sure your cupboards and fridge are empty, clean it out with some white vinegar and water to remove old food and bacteria,  and do not purchase any of the above mentioned items and place in your cart the following substitutes for the above:
Whole Wheat Flour, Organic or raw sugar, Honey, Olive oil, Organic Canola Oil, Protein bars, Non-Salted Blue Corn Chips (eat in moderation-still high in fat and salt), "Earth Balance" Margarine, Dark Chocolate, Oatmeal, Brown Rice, 1% Organic Milk, Organic Soy or Almond Milk,  Jarred tomato sauces and veggies (fresh is best though) Fresh Fruits and Vegetables (Frozen is OK too), Organic low fat yogurt or soy yogurt-plain ~add fresh fruit and cinnamon to sweeten, Cold Cuts with no nitrites or nitrates, Sorbet or organic soy ice cream are lower in fat than ice cream , but still high in sugar-splurge a little sometimes, Diet soda is poison-read up on it!, limit your Juice intake to 1/2 cup-whole fruit is better. Look at the labels to learn a wealth of information about what you are about to consume!

Here is a great afternoon snack:
1/2 cup low fat Cottage Cheese Blended with fresh basil, 1/2 tsp apple cider vinegar a little olive oil and salt & pepper to taste. Serve with Fresh, Raw Veggies.

What's for dinner?

Sunday, March 28, 2010

2 Great Shakes

Vanilla-Blueberry-Banana (Very Low Fat)
1 Cup Non Fat Vanilla Soy Milk
1/2 banana
1/2 Cup Frozen Organic Blueberries
1 Scoop Vanilla Whey Protein Powder
1 Ice Cube

Chocolate-Peanut Butter-Banana (Higher in Fat-use as a meal replacement)
1 Cup Non Fat Vanilla Soy Milk
1/2 Banana
1 TBS Organic Crunchy Peanut Butter
1 Scoop Chocolate Whey Protein Powder
3-4 Ice Cubes

Note that these 2 shakes are made with Soy Milk. This may be substituted with 3/4 cup fruit juice. I prefer to eat fruit whole and when purchasing fruit juices try to buy organic when available.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Biceps, Triceps, Chest, Pecs and always Abs

TGIF! I had a great workout today! Starting on the arc-trainer 20 minutes and burned 200 calories and then 20 minutes on the treadmill and burned another 200 calories. Standing Stretch.
On Assist Machine: Chip-ups and Dips 2 sets 15 reps each.
Bicep Pull-Downs on Cable Lat Machine 80# 2 sets 20 reps
Tricep Press (cable) 2 sets each 20 reps pressing out and then pressing down(see me for details)
Standing Cable Chest Press 3 sets 15 reps
Free Weights 15# 2 sets 20 reps each:
Bent over Tricep Press
External Rotations
Slanted Chest Press
Tricep press-1 weight/both hands behind head
Alternating Bicep Presses
20 minutes Eliptical burn 200 calories
Abs on Mat-lighter day rotation leg lifts, obliques, crunches 4 sets of 25 each
EAT- Cliff Bar (my favorite, but need more protein after a hard workout so I have a shake when I get home)
Water consumed during workout: 32 ounces
Food consumed during workout: small apple
Supplement: Emergen-C Joint Health

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Thursday's Cardio and Leg Routine

A tip to stay focused on your fitness is to switch up your routine. I have been challenging myself to do this since January and have lost all but 1/2 a pound to get to my goal. Today I switched it up even more by Starting my routine with switching machines in the middle and I burned more calories in less time because when I got home & weighed in it was lower than expected (yay me) and this was even after leg day which is usually when I don't weigh in because large muscles such as Quads, Hams and glutes muscles weigh more after being pumped, mine do anyway and everyone is different. So here's the routine:
30 minutes Interval Training on Arc trainer-Burn 200 cal/20 min Treadmill-Burn 200 cal/20 min Stretch. Ab work- 8 Sets of 4 different exercises X 25 Reps each
Lunges-alternating legs 25 Reps each leg 2 Sets
Kick-Ups holding Stability Ball 25 Reps each leg 2 Sets
Leg Press 130# 25 Reps/2 Sets
Back Extensions-25 Reps/2 Sets
Dead Curls 25# Bar-25 Reps /3 Sets
Cable Leg Extensions 15#-25 Reps 2 Sets each leg
Push ups-15 Reps/ 2 Sets (just for fun)
Adductor, Abductor work on mat (inner thigh work)
Glute work on mat (see me for details)
Stationary BikeBurn 200 more calories-20 minutes
Stretch it out
My Goal is to burn 600-700 calories per day, 6 days per week just doing Cardio
Quick Recipe: Tofu Parmagiana
Ingredients for 1 serving:
1 thick slice extra firm tofu
1 slice low sodium ezekiel bread-toasted and cooled
Generous amount of fresh or dried herbs of choice
Salt & Pepper
1 egg or 2 egg whites lightly beaten
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup organic marinara sauce
1 ounce fresh parmagiana cheese
Toast Bread and cool. Place in food processor with fresh Herbs and salt & pepper to taste and pulse until crumbs are dry. May want to use stale bread for better results.
Coat Tofu slice with egg mixture, then bread crumbs.
Heat olive oil in iron skillet and saute tofu until crispy. Drain on paper towel
Place 1/2 the sauce in small dish. Place tofu on top of sauce and add top with remaining sauce.
Sprinkle grated cheese on top and bake for 20-25 minutes or until cheese is browning.
I is so yummy, I couldn't believe it and Hubby loved it!
High in Protein, low in fat, medium in carbs

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The Fitness Trainer's Grocery List

So, what's up with Organic shopping? There has been much to do about the validity of Organic foods. My Main reason for buying mostly Organic foods and products can be defined with one word, MONSATO and GMO. The food Supply in the US has become over-run by a political force who are endangering it's population for mere GREED. I have vowed not to buy into it at this stage of my life. Here are some facts about organic products: Organic Farmers use natural fertilizers such as compost or manure to feed the plants and soil as opposed to chemical fertilizers to promote plant growth. Use insects and traps to reduce disease and pests as opposed to using insecticides. Rotate crops, till and hand weed to manage weeds as opposed to chemical herbicides. Give animals organic feed, fresh air outdoors and use preventative measures such as a balanced diet, clean housing to help minimize disease as opposed to giving animals antibiotics, growth hormones and medications to prevent disease as conventional farmers do. Some people such as myself buy organic because I think it tastes better and it is better for our environment by reducing pollution and conserving water and soil. I have changed my diet in the past couple of years to about  mostly Organic and I truly feel better too. Not everything must be organic though, just those on the Dirty Dozen List and be careful with your purchases and it doesn't have to break the bank. In my opinion, if it has a peel, just wash it before you peel it and you should be OK. I really don't worry so much about it. I have meat on the list, however I have cut back a great deal on meat and fish. We eat meatless meals at least 4 times a week now and we feel better for it! I do not eat much dairy and prefer almond milk to use on cereal and organic soy cream for iced coffees, if at all. Soy has gained a bad reputation lately..Hello Monsanto, once again! I love cheese, so I limit the intake to low fat and thin sliced for the huge 1/2 sandwiches I eat...Yes, I eat Huge 1/2 sandwiches every now and again when I feel like I need to eat meat, and I am maintaining my weight loss forever now :)
Here is my shopping list:: (Mostly Organic)
Chicken Breast-Boneless/Skinless
Turkey (ground or cutlets)-Lean or Extra Lean
Extra Lean cuts of Beef: Top Sirloin or Flank Steak are great choices
Wild Salmon
Peanut Butter
Whey or Vegan Protein Powder
Cage Free, Extra Large eggs
Egg Whites
Low fat Milk ( We don't drink Dairy milk)
Unsweetened, Vanilla Almond Milk or Coconut Milk
Soy Cream (it's the only soy product that I use and only sometimes)
Low Fat Cottage Cheese (limited for me)
Low Fat, Plain, Greek Yogurt
Unsalted, Creamy, Organic Peanut Butter
High Fiber, Whole Grain Bread or Ezekiel Bread
Whole grain Sourdough bread..We LOVE Sourdough Toast..it's a staple at around here
Earth Balance Margarine (lower in fat than reg. margarine and no trans or saturated fat)
Butter is OK in Limited Amounts I only eat KerryGold Irish Butter now.
Brown Rice/Brown Rice Pasta
Frozen Veggies
Green Beans
Bell Peppers-Green, Red, Orange, Yellow and I have seen Purple too!
Onions and Leeks
Fresh Herbs-Grow your own. They add so much flavor to your food
Spices-watch out for sodium contents
Fresh Ginger
Beans-Garbanzo, Kidney, Black, Pinto (the only canned items that I buy)
Legumes-Lentils, split peas
Grated Parmesan or Romano Cheese
Low Fat String Cheese
Low Fat Sliced Jarlsberg or Provolone Cheese
Deli Meat No Nitrates or Nitrites
Extra Virgin, Cold Pressed Olive oil
Unrefined, Organic Coconut oil
Balsamic Vinegar
Apple cider Vinegar
(Jarred) Tomato Sauce (Cans can leach metal into the food)
High Fiber Cereals (No Corn or sugar-good luck finding these)
Organic Oats
Organic Apples
Organic Pears
Organic Berries
Summer Fruits-Organic Peaches, Apricots, Plums, Nectarines, etc.
Honey-Raw, Local
High Protein, Low Sugar bars "Think Thin" high fiber bars are my new kick :)
Dark Organic (72%+) Chocolate
Coffee, YES!
Green Tea
Medicinal Teas
Herbal Tea for Relaxation
Vitamins-Multiple, Wild Salmon Oil, Oil of Evening Primrose, B-12, Cranberry, Calcium, Glucosamine and Chondrointin, Oregano Oil, Candida Control, Turmeric
Probiotics 50 Billion active cultures per pill..Yes my gut needs this every day
I have updated this list and every time I look at this article i update it again. I haven't trained since March 13 and I haven't gained any weight however, I have lost most of that muscle I worked on for a few years...Life changes and then we grow older and wiser...hopefully! ;)

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Great Ab Workout!

Here is a great Ab Workout that I switch up daily. Remember, for tight abs, every day is a must.
Everyone is different, but this is how I begin a workout Cardio 30 minutes, Stretch for 10 minutes then ABS:
25 Leg Lifts
25 Bicycles
25 Regular Crunches
25 Reverse Crunch
Repeat 4 times
25 Bent knee/pointed toe leg lifts
25 cross-overs with Medicine Ball
25 Hand to toe rotations
25 Pilates 45
Repeat 4 times
This may take 20 minutes or so to do
I would love some feedback!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Monday, Monday..Can't trust that day...

Monday is usually the day everyone despises. I am looking at it as a new week and perhaps a new beginning in Nutrition. It seems as though most people do not have control of their diet on the weekends and I have tried to put a stop this this in my own life. The power of your mind exceeds any slip ups on your diet. I used to say, "Just eat what you want, but in smaller portions" however it is much more important to read the labels of what you are eating. I am promoting the idea of eating clean. What does this really mean? Every day consuming fresh, organic fruits and vegetables..at least 3 fruits and unlimited amount of (the lower carb) vegetables, lean, organic if possible meats, poultry and wild fresh fish (Salmon is the lowest in mercury), a gallon of water, low fat dairy such as yogurt, cottage cheese, string cheese or organic soy products and whole grain breads. My food lists are very comprehensive so as not to get bored. So, Breakfast:
1 cup organic oatmeal cooked with mashed banana and 1 scoop Whey Protein
1 cup French Pressed Coffee (yes, I think coffee is good for you)
vitamins with water
In 2-3 hours a snack of 1 small apple and 1 T peanut butter
Huge fresh salad with 6 oz boneless, skinless Chicken breast
1 slice whole grain bread or 4 crackers
Iced tea or water
Mid Afternoon Snack:
1 cup low fat cottage cheese dip made with basil & balsamic served with celery
6 oz Grilled Salmon with Lemon
1 bunch steamed broccoli
1/2 cup Brown Rice
Night time Snack:
Herbal Tea or Protein Shake made with water, protein powder blended with 3 ice cubes
Remember to drink lots of pure water and get plenty of rest

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Optimal Fitness is Acheived Through the Infinite Power of Your Mind

My name is Karen Brennan and I am Obesity Survivor. In 2005, I was 47 years old in the body of a 54 year old, I was 210 pounds and extremely miserable. I looked at myself in the mirror (naked). That was a very defining beginning of my lifestyle make-over! Our daughter moved across the US to attend University, and when she came home after her first year it was very noticeable that I had gained the "Freshman 20" and she gently told me that I must start taking care of myself. Later on I found out that it was my husband, who confided in our daughter about how concerned he was for my health and well being and she took action with me. Sarah had worked at the local gym during her high school years, and was well liked by mamagement thus I got a great deal on my membership! It was terrifying at first. I wore men's baggy clothes and couldn't look in the mirrors there..they are everywhere! I was intimidated by the enormity of the facility and I was feeling like I was being laughed at at first. It is incredible who people look right through you when you are Obese. It is as if you do not exist and. I soul searched and reached down deep within and continued to go to the gym 3 days a week, no excuses! I changed my diet too. For the first 4 months, I deprived myself of carbs. This was not the right decision to make. Since then, I have become a Certified Fitness Trainer and I now know that your body needs carbs (at least the good ones) for energy.. I lost 20 pounds though and I was making progress and used a rule of no carbs except (non-starchy) Veggies after 3PM. This is my #1 rule for weight loss. In one year, I lost 75 pounds and went from a size 16 + to a size 6 jeans! I have maintained this weight loss for 7 years and counting.  Now I am 56 and have had a rough year with incredible hip pain and I fell into deep depression at times, but I have started up again at the gym after healing through acupuncture. I have had many ups and downs in these past 8 years, such as getting terribly ill with diverticulitis and landing in the hospital in 2010. Just when I thought I was on the right path..the nuts and seeds coupled with stress + dehydration almost did me in! And then it happened again 6 months later. I think it was stress and dehydration related that time, though. Our beloved jack Russell Terrier died in my arms and I was so grief stricken, I forgot about myself...completely lost myself for a bit.
Before I started my weight loss journey, I suffered from back pain, heel spurs, asthma and depression. At this stage of the game, the  apart from the bone spurs and arthritis in my hip from over-training, the Other aches and pains that I have are usually exercise induced and I like that sort of pain (now), my heel spurs are still there because they never go away, but my feet don't hurt like they used to..there was a time where I couldn't walk from the intense pain . My asthma is controlled by one puff a day of that purple disk and exercise is my natural anti-depressant..ask anyone @ the gym! My goal in life is to help others to also change their lifestyle with a sensible program of exercise and diet that is tailored to their personal needs. I create programs of Exercise that is fun to follow and it changes all the time so you don't get bored and also a sensible eating plan. For example if you have wheat allergies, I have been experimenting with Gluten Free recipes that are really easy and yummy. It takes the first step from YOU! It really is not that hard to do this, it is all in the power of your mind. I will list on this blog from time to time healthy alternatives to some of the very fattening and unhealthy recipes that are often presented on television, magazines and newspapers. One must be ready to change their life to begin a program and stick with it and I am hoping with this Blog and my "Long Distance Fitness" page on Facebook that I may inspire some people to do so because it is so worth it and so are you! Take that first step to change your life forever and become a little selfish with your time for yourself. 10 "Secrets" to my success: 1)Embrace yourself and be realistic about changing your life 2)Be Determined to never give up 3) Eat 6, small, well balanced meals a day 4) Take all of the White out of your diet-eat whole grains, raw sugar (no artificial sweeteners), no trans fats, no animal fats other than very lean meats and cheeses. I prefer low fat to non fat. You need some fat in your diet to absorb the vitamins in food 5) Eat less meat 6)Drink at least 8 Glasses of water per day 7) Do your Cardio.Sweating is required. Aim @ burning 200 calories in 20 minutes for a total of a 600 calorie burn at least 4 times a week~choose music with a good beat 8)Believe in yourself and your family will follow. 9)Take Vitamins 10) Use Relaxation techniques to relieve stress..Breathe and Stretch.
Now it is up to you to do this. It is no so easy to do. There are so many obstacles in life. One foot in front of the other and the Power of Now is something that helps me. Remember the past, but do not dwell there. Live for this moment, grasp the beauty of every moment and move forward.
In Great Health and Fitness,
Karen Brennan