Week 2 of the 8 to Great Slim Down Challenge!

How did week 1 go for you ladies? As a review, I asked you to count calories, find opportunities to squeeze exercise into your day and performing a tabata circuit that I provided to you 3 times a day for at least 2 days this week (admittedly this was a tough one to accomplish as getting through it once was difficult for me).

Last weeks challenge was about self-awareness. Counting calories shows you how much you are actually consuming per day and hopefully will help you find places that you can cut back. Finding new ways to squeeze exercise in your day is a great way to get into the habit of thinking of opportunities for you to get fit. And the tabata challenge was to show you that you can get an intense workout in a short period of time, and once you get started it’s easier to keep going. You just have to start!

Week 2:

1) Eat breakfast. Many people skip breakfast, including myself when I’m in a rush! Before I had children I skipped breakfast regularly. Now I realize how important it is to keeping me energized, less anxious and content throughout my day. The weight loss benefits of eating breakfast are that it kick starts your metabolism and will diminish overall hunger throughout the day.

Of course I want you to choose a healthy breakfast. An example, whole wheat toast, organic preserves, eggs whites, fruit, yogurt and granola.

2) Meditate for at least 2 minutes per day. This will provide you more clarity, awareness, good sense and the ability to take pause when necessary (like when you’re reaching for that cupcake). If you are thinking to yourself that you cannot find the time or place to meditate that is absolutely not true. That’s why I posted a picture of a woman in a board room meditating, obviouly I don’t expect you to so this but the point is that you can find the time and place to clear your head for two minutes. No excuses!

If you need pointers check out my post on how to meditate here.

3) Workout. This weeks routine is going to be another Tabata circuit. In fact all of them are and it should get easier for you each week as your strength builds and you see the pounds come off. I want you to perform this circuit at least 3 times this week, that’s the only way you will begin to see results.

This weeks routine has a focus on your thighs, booty and arms. However, all of my routines will be full body workouts.

To review, I want you to perform each move in this circuit for 20 seconds on 10 seconds off for a set of 4. A total of 2 full minutes for each move.  The entire circuit will take 10 minutes. After 10 minutes rest for 2 minutes then repeat the circuit if you can. Try to repeat it up 3 times. Remember that this is a great calorie burning session so push yourself!

1) Skaters. Modifications: Jump side to side for more intensity, if you would like less intensity step it.

2) Push ups. Modifications: For less intensity out your knees on the ground, for more intensity knees off the ground and try and lift one leg up for 10 seconds and then switch for 10.

After these 2 moves rest for one full minute and move on…

3) Jumping lunges. Modifications: Remove the jump and simply step and lunge.

jump lunge

4) Side to side planks.  Modification: Bring the plank to your knees and simply hold it for 20 seconds on one side, switch sides for the next 20 second interval.

side-plank-turn-400x400
That it! Good luck everybody! And let me know if you have any questions about diet or exercise at Hilary@ugobabyfitness.com.
 
Xx,
Hilary Ann Lambert

How do I get started with a healthy eating lifestyle?

How do I get started with a Healthy Eating Lifestyle?

By: Lisa Caldwell, Nutrition Consult for U GO Baby Fitness

Consider the question’s,”What is food to me?”  “What is my eating style?”  Once you have taken a look at what role food plays in your lifestyle, then you will be able to make adjustments that will be easier to adopt and enjoy.

Changing your eating style is going to be as positive or as negative as you would like it to be. This is crucial to have with you along the way.  Your view on change is going to help you see it through or not at all.

Be patient with yourself.  It is easier to create a habit than to break one.  You can train your brain, cells and synaptic pathways to do anything. Give yourself time and be “aware” of what you are eating…. and why!

Understand that many will call you and your decisions into question.  Taking stock in our own lives and how one goes about it is something not many do. It is a tough question and GOOD FOR YOU for doing it!

Establish an understanding of Nutrition, just the basics.   Being able to identify the two types of carbohydrates, different fats, quality proteins and food sources of vitamins and minerals will help you in any situation.

Understand that there is a lot of misinformation out there.  Find sources (i.e. specialists, literature, research, people) you can trust, rely on a series of methods that work for you and the plan that you have designed.

Food Labels: the Nutrition Facts are confusing, but the ingredient listing is the real deal.  This is where you are going to learn the sources of those carbohydrates, fats and proteins. If you can’t identify them or cannot imagine them on a tree, in the ground or on a bush then consider another choice.

One way to start eating with health in mind is to just ADD whole foods into your day.  There is no rule that says you have to take anything away from your daily eating habits.  This could be an additional salad, fruit or whole grains to your regular meal.

Look at the world of whole foods as an endless adventure.  Wouldn’t you love to learn about something else that makes you enjoy life more than you already do?

Lastly, but most importantly…..eat breakfast.  It is literally just that, you are “breaking the fast” that your body is going through from the night before.  If it doesn’t get any morning fuel, it tries to hold onto the next meal instead of using it right away.

 

Motivation is what gets you started, habit is what keeps you going…

 

 

 

I wasn’t able to get to the gym yesterday, despite my best efforts of scheduling the kids at the gym daycare, getting bundled up to face the sub zero temperatures and even picking up my neighbors kids (I watch them twice a week) to head over there. When we finally got to heading up the street in the direction of the gym I had a crying child at my side and one screaming “I don’t want to go!!”.  I knew it wasn’t meant to be. And I got a little frustrated naturally, but then I thought “Ok now’s not the time, when can I get a workout in? If not today then tomorrow?”

This thought process is something that happen very naturally with me as working out is a habit of mine. It’s something I know I have to do to keep fit but also feel my best. I’m lucky because I started this habit at a very young age, I have always worked out at least a few times a week. This habit has stayed with me and gotten stronger over the years as I’ve learned how important it is to living a good, healthy and yes, happy lifestyle.

Don’t Fall Off the Wagon

Giving up on working out is something a friend of mine at my last job used to call “falling off the wagon”, which I think is very appropriate and funny. Sometimes things come up or I’m just plain old too tired to workout. This could be for a day or two or sometimes almost a week, but I never give up! I know I’m getting back to my normal workout routine eventually. This is because I’m aware that I need this in my life, it’s ingrained in me.

Creating this habit requires adjusting your thought pattern to think of when and where you can get in a workout.This will happen with time, they say it takes 28 days to form a habit right? So I want you to think about when and where you are going to workout every day for the next 28 days. If you can’t get to the gym have something you can do at home. That’s part of why the HIIT workout I have you doing this week is great, you can do it anywhere. I love finding new, fun ways to workout at home. Jumping rope is great exercise and jump ropes are super cheap, hula hoops are another fun way and the kids love them. If you have the money invest in an exercise machine.

Obviously I don’t want you to just think about working out but actually doing it, but if it’s on your mind you are more like to do it then if not.

Xx,

Hilary Ann Lambert

 

Basics of weight loss…

 

I’m really excited to get started on our “8 to Great” slim down challenge starting this Saturday! To gear up for 2 months of intensely focused health & wellness, I wanted to go over a few basic facts about weight loss.

1) Start by counting calories. This is not something you need to do forever, but it’s a good way to gauge how much you’re actually consuming. When you realize your calorie intake per day you will be encourage to cut back on some things.

How many calories a day should you be consuming to lose weight? Here are some numbers that will be helpful for you to achieve your goal:  1,200 / day = 15 pounds, 1,500 /day = 10 pounds, 1,800 / day = 5 pounds

2) Recognize your “triggers”. For example, I always want sweets at night-time after I’ve put the kids to bed. Many a night I have devoured a large ice cream sundae as a way of “rewarding” myself for getting through the day. I know this is a tough time for me so I need to figure ways of combatting it. Sometimes I actually just go to sleep in order to avoid tempation! And that’s perfectly fine, I get good rest and wake up feeling great that I didn’t eat a ton of calories in sugar the night before.

Here are some ideas on how to control binges: 

Workout instead. Go to the gym, take a walk, perform some yoga poses to get your mind off of food.

Meditation. This practice is so good for you for so many reasons, check out my post on the benefits here. One being that it’s a way of clearing your head of distractions, like food.

Substitute. Find foods that are healthy and low in fat, calories and sugar to substitute the unhealthy craving. Since I have such a sweet tooth I’ve been buying a lot of dried fruit to keep in my house when I’m itching for something sweet. Dried cranberries, mango and pineapple are delicious and satisfying.

2) Invest in a food scale. I know it sounds daunting, but weighing things like fruits, vegetables and meat are a good idea to know exactly how much you are consuming.

3) Get a pedometer. Start implementing some moderate exercise into your day. A good way to know you’re getting the right amount of exercise is by having a pedometer on you to keep track of your steps. It’s suggested that you take 10,000 steps per day to maintain good cardiovascular health and burn a fair amount of calories.

4) Plan ahead. Many people want to lose weight for a special event and attempt to crash diet and rely on very unhealthy ways of losing weight in order to do so. Here’s an idea, plan ahead! Look at your calendar and see what you have coming up so you can be prepared for those times when you want to look especially fit. Crash diets play a number on your health and have a very negative affect on your metabolism.

5) Prepare yourself to make permanent changes. It’s been said over and over again that if you want to lose weight and keep it off you need to make lifestyle changes.

The next 8 weeks I’m going to show you ways to live a healthier, thinner and happier life. These are all suggestions that if taken seriously and implemented into your daily activities as “habits” will make you look and feel your best everyday.

Do you have anything to add to this list? Do you have any questions for me or my nutrition consultant before we begin our 8 week slim down? 

 

A great way to start your day happens the night before…

Meditating By The Sea

Meditation is so important to help maintain balance, patience and happiness in our everyday lives. It only takes a few minutes to get some of the benefits. I’ve been meditating for about 5 minutes before bed every night the past few weeks and it has made a huge difference in how I feel in the morning. I feel more energy, less stress and not as much negativity or mental blockage.

If you’re new to the process of meditating here are a few tips:

1) Pay attention to posture. Sit straight up in a chair or on the floor with legs crossed.

2) Eyes open. The inclination is to close our eyes but it’s easier to stay focused when your eyes are open. Pick a spot on the wall and keep your eyes pinned.

3) Pay attention to your breath. Breath in and out slowly, focusing on your breath. When your mind wanders bring it back to the feel and sound of you breathing.

When I meditate I imagine myself in a place like a desert or a forest with no one else around me. I have no needs or wants. I’m not hot or cold, not hungry or thirsty, I have no pain and for that matter no joy. It’s a state of complete peace.

For more tips on how to meditate successfully check out this article from Good Life Zen.

Do you have some tips to add? How often do you meditate and for how long? How does it make you feel?

Xx,

Hilary Ann Lambert

 

Why being thankful is good for your health…

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! This time of year most of us are thinking about what we are grateful for, our families, friends, being able to put food on the table! It got me wondering, is being thankful good for you? Like any positive attitude, YES it is absolutely good for your health; mind and body.

Here are some reasons why gratitude is good for you according to the Huffington Post:

1) Good for teens mental health… Grateful teens are happier, according to a study presented at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association this year. 

Researchers also found that teens who are grateful — in the study, defined as having apositive outlook on life — are more well-behaved at school and more hopeful than their less-grateful peers. 

“More gratitude may be precisely what our society needs to raise a generation that is ready to make a difference in the world,” study researcher Giacomo Bono, Ph.D., a psychology professor at California State University, said in a statement.

2) Boosts well being… Being constantly mindful of all the things you have to be thankful for can boost your well-being, research suggests.

In a series of experiments detailed in a 2003 study in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, daily exercise practices and listing off all the things you are thankful for are linked with a brighter outlook on life and a greater sense of positivity. 

“There do appear to exist benefits to regularly focusing on one’s blessings,” the researchers wrote in the study. “The advantages are most pronounced when compared with a focus on hassles or complaints, yet are still apparent in comparison with simply reflecting the major events in one’s life, on ways in which one believes one is better off than comparison with others, or with a control group.”

3) Linked to better grades… Grateful high-schoolers have higher GPAs — as well as better social integration and satisfaction with life — than their not-grateful counterparts, according to a 2010 study in the Journal of Happiness Studies.

Researchers also found that grateful teens were less depressed or envious.

“When combined with previous research, a clearer picture is beginning to emerge about the benefits of gratitude in adolescents, and thus an important gap in the literature on gratitude and well-being is beginning to be filled,” researchers wrote.

4) Makes you a better friend… According to a 2003 study in the the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, gratitude could also boost pro-social behaviors, such as helping other people who have problems or lending emotional support to another person.

5) Helps you sleep better… Writing down what you’re thankful for as you drift off to sleep can help you get better ZZs, according to a study in the journal Applied Psychology: Health and Well-Being

Specifically, researchers found that when people spent 15 minutes jotting down what they’re grateful for in a journal before bedtime, they fell asleep faster and stayed asleep longer, Psychology Today reported.

6) Strengthens your relationships… Being thankful for the little things your partner does could make your relationship stronger, according to a study in the journal Personal Relationships.

The Telegraph reported on the study, which showed that journaling about thethoughtful things your partner did was linked with a beneficial outcome on the relationship.

7) Benefits to Heart Health… A 1995 study in the American Journal of Cardiology showed that appreciation and positive emotions are linked with changes in heart rate variability.

8) Linked to better immune health… Gratefulness is linked with optimism, which in turn is linked with better immune health, WebMD reported. 

For example, a University of Utah study showed that stressed-out law students who were optimistic had more immune-boosting blood cells than people who were pessimistic, according to WebMD.

And the list goes on for a total of 12 reasons listed, for the rest of this list visit http://www.huffingtonpost.com.

Cheers! Have a happy and healthy Thanksgiving!

Sincerely,

Hilary