8 to Great: Week 5

I’m sorry for slacking on the week 5 update! I went away with my parents and children for some sun and fun. I planned on updating while I was on vacation but decided my time with family was more important. This is a good time to talk about how taking breaks are so important and necessary.

The boys and I vacationing in Florida

The boys and I vacationing in Florida

1) Part one of this weeks challenge is to take¬† break! And no, not from working out. ūüôā

Mental congestion is a real thing … and it’s affecting us all, since our brains need downtime to process, sort and organize the massive amount of information many of us take in every day. Meditation can help, but breaks during the day are important too.”

“In a few days, you should start to notice your stress levels decrease a bit, and also your productivity and creativity increase. When the brain is given time off, it can return to task more efficiently. Research also says that you will make more ethical decisions, and better ones, since your brain will have incubation time, which allows you to be a smarter dot-connector.”

Studies show that those who take lunch¬† breaks¬†and vacation regularly instead of working at their desk and saving those days off for emergencies only are far more productive, creative and add more value than people who do not take that much-needed¬†time off. This week I would like you to monitor your breaks to see how much down time you are actually giving yourself and then try to improve on it, making sure that A) you are giving yourself enough free time and B) you are using that free time wisely. For example, don’t use that free time to play video games or read¬†depressing¬†news. Do things to actually clear your head like meditate, workout, perform yoga poses, take a walk, or read some uplifting literature. There are lots of books out there on how to think more positively that can be helpful, like Wayne Dyers “The Power of Intention“.

2) Plan¬†for warm weather exercise. Now that the weather is getting nicer think about what you will do for exercise come the summer months. Hiking, biking, swimming in the ocean etc… It’s so much easier staying fit when the weather is nice isn’t it!?? Even going for a jog outside can be enjoyable in the right environment, far better than the treadmill! Plan some cool trails to check out, maybe even plan on healthy picnics along the way.

3) Workout. This weeks HIIT is as follows: (20 seconds on 1o second off for each exercise)

– Skaters with single leg squat. Modification: Step side to side instead of jumping.

skater to single leg squat

– Kick to a punch, right side for 10 seconds and then left for 10 seconds.

kick to a punch

Take a one minute break.

– Plank tucks. Modifications: Jump in and out for more intensity step in and out for less.

plank-tuck

 

РSteam engines. Modifications: Jump side to side to increase intensity, step to decrease.

steamenginefull2bw2

Please feel free to ask any questions in the comments section or email me at: Hilary@ugobabyfitness.com

Xx,

Hilary Ann Lambert

8 to Great slim down challenge: Week 4

running buddy

Spring is finally here! I hope you are starting to see results from the weekly diet and workout challenges I’ve been posting. If you are genuinely following along and doing the workout at least 3 times a week you will see results.

Here’s this weeks challenge:

1) Find a workout buddy. Studies show that people who have friends they workout with are much more likely to get themselves to the gym or go for that jog then those who don’t. I even found a couple of applications that helps you find someone in your area with similar workout interests to partner with.

1) SportPartner.com

2) ExerciseFriends.com

If you use one of these sites or have used them please let me know if you had any success and if you have advice or tips on how to get the most out of using these sites.

2) Bag you snacks. Get a box of zip lock bags and portion out your snacks for the day / week. I suggested planning your meals ahead of time, this is a great way to plan your snacks and make sure you aren’t over doing it and a good way to make sure you’re not buying to many packaged good that are full of preservatives and other junk that isn’t good for you. If you are having trouble thinking of healthy snacks here are 100 ideas I found…

100 Healthy Snack Ideas

3) Workout. Here’s this weeks challenge. Again, this is an HIIT workout¬†in Tabata format (2o seconds on, 10 seconds rest for for reps each exercise)

Round 1

1)Squat with medicine ball (if you don’t have a medicine ball substitute with some dumbbells or a few books). For this exercise you are going to squat down as far as you can, holding the medicine ball with both hand in between your legs, arms straight. Come up and swing your arms up over head ball in hands.

sumo-squat-with-medicine-ball

2) Plank with leg raise. Get into standard plank position and raise one leg off the ground then switch. If this is too difficult, knees on the floor and raise.

plank with side taps

Rest for one minute.

Round 2

1) Box jumps. Modification: Step ups.

box-jump

2) Planks with side taps. Again, in standard plank position, tap one foot out then switch. Modification: Bring it to your knees.

plank with taps

And relax…

Repeat this series at least once more, maximum 3 reps.

Let me know how you like this weeks workout and if you would like me to include anything for next weeks workout. I’m open to suggestions so please send them in!

Stay motivated, summers almost here!

Xx,

Hilary Ann Lambert

8 easy ways to cut calories…

cutting calories

Wanna be happier with what you see on the scale and more importantly in the mirror? Here are some easy ways to cut calories out of your daily diet that you may not even notice.

1) Cut out the cream and cut down the sugar in your coffee. The amount of sugar and cream you put in your coffee can make a big difference in your calorie in take for the day. Try using reduced fat milk or skim and less sugar. I don’t¬†recommend using sucralose¬†(Splenda) or sugar substitutes as they have found health risks¬†attached to¬†both and I find that they make me more tired and irritable.

coffee

2) Eat more protein earlier in the day. Have an egg, yogurt or peanut butter¬†(Sunbutter if you’re allergic to peanuts) on whole wheat toast¬†at breakfast. Studies show that eating more protein early in the day keeps¬†you more full and energized throughout the day.

3) Stop drinking your calories¬†but don’t switch to diet. There are over 100 calories in your average can of cola and many of us don’t just drink the can anymore with the 20 oz. bottle option that’s supposedly 2 servings. These are empty calories giving you little energy and certainly not giving you the nutrients you need to get through your day. Drink more water. Hydrating has so many benefits including giving you a feeling of being more full so you eat less.

On the diet tip, diet sodas contain sugar substitutes that both drain your energy and have been shown to lead to obesity and heart disease, among other things.

4) Whole wheat pita for lunch. Using whole wheat pita bread for your sandwich instead of regular bread will save you 70 calories.

5)  Use whipped butter instead of stick butter. It contains fewer calories since there is air added to it in the whipping process. Just stick to the same amount you would normally use!

6) Pat away grease from your slice. You’re pretty much alone if you don’t love pizza and it’s incredibly hard to avoid. So when in Rome, no pun intended, pat your pizza with a napkin to rid it of excess grease. This can cut up to 100 calories!

7) Afternoon break. Lot’s of us enjoy a coffee break in the afternoon and end up getting calorie ridden lattes instead of plain old coffee. Try and cut back on those afternoon calories by going for the skinny latte when you can. This will save you about 70 calories.

8) Bag it. Portion out your snacks for the day in zip lock bags so you know exactly how much you are eating. And try to make those snacks fruits and vegetables!

Do you have anything to add?

Thanks for stopping by!! Hope you all are doing well on your 8 to Great challenge this week!!

Xx,

Hilary Ann Lambert

Ready, set, go! 8 to Great Slim Down Challenge: Week 1

Are you ready to look and feel better than you thought you ever could?

Before we begin I want to stress that this is not a get fit quick and easy plan. This is an 8 week challenge that will motivate and push you to live an overall healthier lifestyle. The added benefit of living healthier: you will look and feel the best you ever have!  Over the next 8 weeks I will simply be giving you the tools to make better decisions about what you eat and how to create an exercise regimen that works for you so you will stick with.

I’m in this too guys! I need some motivation as well so this is going to be really helpful for me. ¬†My eating habits have gotten much better over the years but I can still use a lot of help. I’ll be working with a professional nutritionist from Whole Foods Market, Lisa Caldwell, who also provides nutrition counsel to individuals through her own business, Kitchen Confidant.

Check back here every Saturday morning where I will post a new workout, healthy eating tips and more influential material to get you motivated to achieve your goals, whether it’s losing weight, toning up or just overall living healthier.

Ready, set, go….

1) First up, exercise. I will provide a workout that I would like you to perform at least 3 times a week. The workout will change weekly to keep it interesting, but if you find that there is one workout in particular you enjoy doing and want to stick with go right ahead! The point is to find something you like to do so you KEEP doing it.

Start counting steps and find ways of getting more exercise into your day:

It’s recommended that one perform 10,000 steps per day, get a pedometer and you can keep track and make sure you are reaching this goal. Once you have gotten to 10,000 it’ll be easy to challenge yourself and do a few more for added benefits.

What other ways can you squeaze more exercise into your day? Every time you move you are exercising, so try and move more! Instead of trying to get right in front of the grocery store, park at the back of the lot. Take the stairs instead of the elevator, if you’re going up 30 floors, take the stairs up 5 flights then get the lift. Tell us how you’ve found more exercise in your day on Insta and twitter @ugobabyfitness or on our Facebook page, facebook/ugobabyfitness.

The Workout for Week 1. 

I really like High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT). It’s the best way to burn the most calories, get multiple muscle groups working and have an efficient and effective workout. I prefer the Tabata Protocol form of HIIT. It’s scientifically proven to burn the most calories in the least amount of time and has the best aerobic and anaerobic benefits. It’s easy to follow (not an easy workout just easy to understand and perform). The intervals are done in a 20 /10 format. Perform one exercise at your highest intensity for 20 seconds, take a 10 second break. Repeat 8 times = 4 minutes. Take a 1 minute break. Repeat this scenario as many times as you want. Do at least 10 sets for a ten minute workout.

Here’s what I’m doing this week. This is a 10 minute workout that I want you to perform 3 times through for a total of 30 minutes. You can do it all at once or throughout the day, so when you get up, right before lunch and then before dinner. My suggestion is to plan on doing it for the ¬†10 minutes. This will make it easy for you to motivate knowing it’s only 10 minutes. My presumption is that once you’ve performed 10 minutes of this workout you will keep going. It’s hardest to start and easy to keep going once you’ve started, right? If you do only manage to squeeze this workout in once it’s still one of the best workouts you’re gonna get in the least amount of time.

Workout for Week 1:

High Knees. 20 seconds on, 10 seconds walking in place, repeat 4 times. You can either walk or run this move in place, whatever works for you. Just make sure  you are pushing yourself during your intervals. 

¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† – —-

Burpees. 20 Seconds on, 10 seconds walking in place. Repeat 4 times. Modifications: With this exercise there are jumps involved, if you want less impact simply step it. To amp up your burpee add a push when you are in plank position.

1 minute break walking in place. (Drink water.)

Jumping Jacks. 20 seconds on, 10 seconds walking in place, repeat 4 times.  Modification: step out instead of jumping if you want less impact. To make it harder you can add a squat when in position B below. 

¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬† ¬†–

Mountain Climbers. 20 Seconds on, 10 seconds walking in place. Repeat 4 times. Modifications: Normally you are jumping from position A to B, if you want less impact step it. 

 

1 minute break walking in place.

Repeat these intervals as many times as you would like for a maximum of 30 minutes.

When you have completed the workout send me a pic on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter, all are @ugobabyfitness. I will post on all three when I’ve completed my workout for the day. This is a good way to keep myself in check too!!

2) Now onto the diet challenge for this week. 

A) Keep a journal of the calories you eat per day. This will show you how much you are actually consuming and hopefully motivate you to eat a little less if necessary.

B) Start checking ingredients on what you are eating. This seemed daunting to me for a long time, but it’s really very simple. I’ve learned that if I have to be a chemist to understand what makes up my food I shouldn’t be eating it. ¬† Foods with less ingredients and all natural ones will keep you fuller longer and of course are more healthy for you.

C) Plan out your meals and snacks for the week and eat less more often. Research shows that people who are most successful at dieting and keeping weight off plan their meals for the week ahead.

That’s it for week 1! Check in with us at the end of this week and let us know how you did. Send photos or videos to Instagram, Twitter and Facebook: ¬†hashtag 8toGreat,¬†to get us inspired and really feel like we’re all in this together! I’ll be doing the same.

Good luck!! Remember this is just for one week, you can do it. Then we’ll ¬†move onto more challenges next Saturday.

Please send any questions, thoughts or suggestions on how to make this the most effective fitness challenge out there!!

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? 

 

Exercise requires healthy joints.

My 8 week slim down plan starts next week and of course a big part of slimming down requires a fair amount of exercise. Many workouts that promise intense results require a lot of high impact moves which take their toll on your joints. My workouts will have some high impact exercises but I will be sure to include modifications for those of you who prefer or don’t feel comfortable performing these moves.

A good way to prepare yourself to live a more active lifestyle is by taking care of your joints:

Keeping your joints healthy will allow you to run, walk, jump, play sports, and do the other things you like to do. Physical activity, a balanced diet, avoiding injuries, and getting plenty of sleep will help you stay healthy and keep your joints healthy too.

Here’s how:

1) Use it or lose it! Staying active promotes joint health, if you don’t use your joints they try to get away with doing as little as possible. So stay active and make sure your stretch before and after working out so your joints get the extension they need.

2) Weight Training. Weight training not only builds muscle that protect your joints but also increases bone strength and thickness. Thicker bones protect your bones from problems down the road.

3) Don’t over do it! Exercise helps protect your joints but is also detrimental to them if you are not doing them correctly or if you are overdoing it. Pay attention to your body and do what feels comfortable for your. Exercise should not hurt. It’s good to challenge yourself aerobically and strength wise but your joints should not hurt you in the process.

Here are some foods that can help:

1) Salmon. Omega 3 fatty acids are a great anti-inflammatory which is important for joint health. Salmon particularly wild salmon, is a great source of this.

2) Almonds. Rich in vitamin E, these nuts protect the outer membranes of the joints.

3) Papaya. This fruit contains the most vitamin C of any. Vitamin C is an anti-oxidant that penetrates into cells and protects DNA from free radical damage.

Want to know more food that help? Check out the list here: 8 Foods for Healthy Joints

Make sure to follow along on the U Go Baby fitness Plan starting March 1. It’s only 8 weeks and will get you into great shape for summer if you take it seriously.¬†

Xx,

Hilary Ann Lambert