Saturday, August 18, 2012

Ask the Trainer: Do I have to eat 1200 calories a day?


That is such an exact number, that is my short answer.  Should you eat more, should you eat less? Why? What if I am extra hungry??  What if I am just not hungry?

How much you need is going to vary on a day-by-day basis.  Depending on your activity and your nutritional needs, it could fluctuate by as much as 500-1,000 calories a day.  Yes, some days you may need to eat 2,000 calories or more!!

Most of those on a weight-loss track won't need to get that high unless they are working out like Michael Phelps (who eats about 3,000 calories a day when he is training).  So think about that, the more you do, the more you need to eat.

The less you do....(and nobody reading my blogs better be a couch potato)...the less you need to eat.

So say you stay around the house all day and did nothing, maybe just sit around watch TV and do a few runs to the bathroom.  That 1200 calories would work, maybe even less.  Yes, I said it!  You're not burning off anything so you don't need as much.  Although, even adding just 10 minutes of a continuous walk, now you need to eat more.

If you are like many losing weight the proper way (eating healthy foods AND exercising) then you can eat a bit more.  And if you are eating healthy items like fruits and veggies, whole grains, beans, lean protein and the like, this is going to seem like a lot of food when you are trying to eat at least 1200 calories a day.

Oh yeah, and if you weigh more, you EAT MORE!  A 200 pound woman trying to loss 50 pounds and a 150 pound woman trying to lose 20 should NOT be eating the same things. No way! 

So this 1200 calories you always hear is just a very basic baseline.  There are various calorie calculators around to calculate what you need based on your height, current weight, amount of exercsie you do. 

If you workout 2 hours a day like I do most days, you need to eat more.  Trust me, it's hard for me to "eat more" when I am trying to lose weight.  The key is to eat more of the foods that are high calorie, nutrient dense like nuts and beans.  In fact, both of these items help accelerorate weight loss.  Eat them!

Also, check out calorie cycling.  It's when some days you eat on the high range, other days you eat on the low range.  This works for me.  It's almost like a cheat meal built in for me.  On my high day I will eat something liek pancakes with syrup for breakfast because it's high calorie.  On low calorie days, breakfast would be smaller liek low-fat yogurt and fruit, egg white and whole wheat toast or a protein bar.  High calorie breakfast may be 400 calories, bversu low-calorie breakfast 250-300.

Same with other meals throughout the day.  I can eat more, so I have small treats.  On low calorie days, I stay strict.  I give myself 2 high calorie days (and place them strategically after official weigh-in days) and then stay fairly low the other days.

Example: Weigh-in Thursday morning, and have a high calorie day. Back to low-calorie Friday. Saturday may go high. Sunday (sometimes this is the high day) I go back low, but maybe not as low as my real low days.  Then Mon-Wed I am strict.  I don't stray on my strict days.  I am trying to get the body to release any access I have put on over those high days.  Guess what, it works every time!  Thrusday morning I weigh-in and see a loss. Repeat!

Try this to shake things up.  It's also great for your metabolism because it keeps it working, guessing, burning more efficiently.  It's not in starvation mode, it's not being overworked.  It's science people, a hard cold fact.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Hire a personal trainer, it's worth it

I have been certified as a Personal Trainer for nearly 3 years now.  I feel like it has been just a title.  Very few people actually want to pay for my services, but I dish out all kinds of free advice.

That's about to change.  I am going to find some highly motivated individuals that are ready to change their lives.  I'm not talking weight loss.  I'm not talking me yelling and screaming at them while they lift weights.  I feel like I am the whole package.

I have yo-yo'd with my weight to know this is not just about "dieting" and exercise.  It's so much more!  It's mind control.  It's commitment. It's having a strong support group helping you, not hendering you.

It's a constant battle.  There's no finishline.  This journey goes on and on.

Getting clients is pretty easy.  Getting clients to stick with it for the duration is another thing.  They want a quick fix.  They will sign on for 6 weeks, but if they haven't hit some idealic number, they lose motivation and give up. 

Six weeks to change YEARS of bad habits?

I don't think so.  It's very intricate how I break down client's bad habits and give them new ones.  Workable ones for them, and only them.  Do you start your car and go zero to 60 in one second?  Don't expect to start a healthy lifestyle and go from overweight and out of shape to fit and healthy.

No, I'm not a mean trainer (oh, I can be) I'm a realistic trainer.  I understand your struggle because I go through the same.  It's not going to take one session.  Not even in six weeks.  I may be by your side for a long time.

It's not about how much weight you can lift, how many reps you's about the fact that you are making changes to better your life.  I have offered a 6-week package to a client to test my model on.  I am elated by this.  I want to do something very few PTs do.  I'm more of a coach than a trainer.  Always felt that way, even when I was excited about becoming a PT, I just wanted to help others, not focus on designing weight lifting plans.

So that's why I added the Lifestyle & Weight Management Coach certification.  That's more my speed.  I combine these 2 certs, plus my love for teaching fitness classes (Group Exercise is my next cert). 

Trust me, if you hire me, you will get a professional commoitted to working with you on a one-on-one basis, in for the long haul.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Come Turbo Kick with me!

So, where have I been? Working out! I finished P90X and did a great job and saw some results, too bad my eating still sucks so the results could have been better.

Then I tried to do Insanity. Oh, that lasted about a week then I gave up.

If I’d rather do another workout while doing it, I won’t do it…I need to do the other workout.

So I go back and forth with P90X, but mainly LOTS of Turbo Kick and Zumba.

I’m now a licensed Zumba Instructor and teach Turbo Kick classes. Woohoo!

Many people won’t try Turbo Kick because the want Zumba. Many Turbo Kick fans while not give Zumba a try. I happen to LOVE them both, and equally so.

I teach at a small fitness studio called K.I.S.S. Fitness. There are many, many Zumba classes, but their specialty is pole fitness, flirty girl fitness, and the like. Oh yeah, see, K.I.S.S. stands for “Keep It Sexy Sistas.” I like the atmosphere of the studio because it’s not a large big box studio, it’s close and intimate and you get to know other members fairly well and cheer on their successes. The Instructors are real down to earth too.

And the owner Kem is awesome! A fitness enthusiast like me with so many certifications in various things. I’m trying to catch up with her, lol!

Anyway, if you live in the North County area of St. Louis, please check out some of the classes. Here’ a brief overview of their classes:

3:00 p.m. Bellydance
4:00 p.m. Slide Dance

5:30 p.m. Zumba
6:30 p.m. Zumba
7:30 p.m. Teen Hip Hop
8:30 p.m. Pole Dance

5:30 p.m. Zumba
6:30 p.m. Zumba
6:45 p.m. Abs
7:30 p.m. Zumba

4:30 p.m. Circuit Training
5:30 p.m. Turbo Kick (with me!)
6:30 p.m. Zumba
7:30 p.m. Slides dance

4:30 p.m. Bellydance
5:30 p.m. Vegas Stiletto Fitness
6:30 p.m. Sexy Sculpt
7:30 p.m. Zumba
8:30 p.m. Late Night Pole

5:00 p.m. Yoga
6:00 Pole Jams

9:00 a.m. Zumba
12:00 p.m. Video Vixen
1:15 p.m. Pole Virgins
3:00 p.m. Intermediate Pole


Monday, February 13, 2012

P90X Day 44

Yes, I am still at it! And actually loving it right now. Feeling stronger and seeing results! Not losing any weight, so definitely gaining muscle and that’s fine by me.

Not like Shoulders, Back and Tris at all!! Too many push-ups. And I like push-ups, there’s just too many of them in that workout!! I actually skipped through it last night, only doing the ones I really liked. I also find that Tony talks waaaa-aay too much in that one, and if you fast forward through the 55 minute workout, you’re getting maybe a 45 minute workout.

I am also training for a half marathon in April. Oooo! I have heard that running diminishes any muscle gain. Well, I also read in my new Oxygen magazine that you can gain muscle and run. So we shall see. I am trying to lean out so I can actually seen the muscle. My body fat is super high for my size and that’s just crazy. I’m trying to change the way I eat and see if that will help.

I can't wait to say I have reached Day 90!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

P90X Week 5 Day 32

And so I enter a new month….this is my first time doing most of these workouts and I like them! Tuesday I did Shoulders, Chest and Tris for the first time. Last night it was Back and Biceps for the first time.

I am loving Backs and Biceps! My arms are still sore! I did pretty good with all of the moves and competed the whole workout. With Shoulders, Chest and Tris, I did maybe half the workout, and that’s mainly because I had a bootcamp class earlier that day that wore out my muscles.

I am going to try and go heavy with all the moves that I can. My biceps are pretty string, but I was scary last night, still doing 10s. I do have an interchangeable hand weight set that was a 12.5 weight, so I may try using those.

Do I see results so far? Not really. I feel a bit stronger. Have lost a few pounds since the start of the year (actually I lost and gained and lost again which is bad). This month, if I stay focused and on, I hope to finally start seeing results!

I can’t believe I am a third done already! Sheesh!

Friday, January 27, 2012

Popchips and other great things to try!

Okay, my peeps know I am slightly obsessed with Popchips. I eat at them a lot. The whole bag has 3 servings, 120 calories a serving, 4g of fat, 190mg sodium, 18g of carbs. Now, I am not saying these are “good for you,” because they are still “junk food” but they are a whole heck of a lot better than regular potato chips!

So imagine my delight when I find that my fave health food store Trader Joes, has their own brand of popped chips! For HALF the price I was paying!! I saw them, quickly read the stats and they were near identical, so I grabbed a bag of plain and barbecue.

But it doesn’t stop there!!

Next to them were some chips called “Reduced Guilt Skinny Fries.” It’s described as “air-popped potato sticks with sea salt.” They were the same price as the TJ’s popped chips, and the same amount of servings per bag. The calories are a bit lower at 110 per serving, fat lower at 2g, but the sodium is almost double at 320. I grabbed 2 bags of that anyway. I LOVE salty snacks!

I opened a bag in my car, I couldn’t wait. The sticks were pretty good, not as salty as chips, but enough…with an almost airy taste, which means you will want to eat more. They would be a combination of potato chips and fries.  Love them!  It looks like a lot for 3 servings, so maybe I won’t devour the whole bag in one sitting like the popchips!

Other must grabs when you get to Trader Joes:

Kind bars: If you have a sweet tooth, these are better than ANY candy bar I have ever tasted. Well, my opinion. They even have one drizzled in chocolate. These are addictive! I like to buy them buy the case, about $1.49 per bar.

Raw, unsalted nuts and seeds: I have stock piles of nuts, so I only grabbed some raw, unsalted sunflower seeds this time. But try almonds, cashews, pecans, walnuts, pumpkin seeds or pistachios (they are roasted, but unsalted)

Hummus: If you never tried this, get thee to Trader Joes and try it! A container is only $1.99

Pizza dough: I didn’t get any this time because I went on my lunch break, but this is great for making homemade pizza.

Edamame: Again, go try these. When I was vegetarian is was a good source of protein for me.

Ezekiel bread: This is one of the very few breads considered “clean” and therefore helpful when trying to live healthier. You’ll have to adjust to the taste, and it’s a bit pricey (TJ has their own brand of sprouted bread).

Pitas: They have various sizes, but I like the mini ones for scooping up hummus, but the regular sized ones are good for stuffing with sandwich fixings.

Tea: Trader Joes has some of the best, cheap tea selections…except they stopped making mine awhile ago and I have yet to find a replacement.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

To see big results, get comfortable being uncomfortable

Losing weight is not easy, so get ready for some hard work!

No boo-hooing that drinking 8+ cups of water is too hard! In fact, that is not enough! Half your body weight in ounces…plus more if you work out at a high intensity (which you should be).

No complaining that lifting weights is boring, or hard, or you don’t know what to do! Get a trainer, even just for one session to show you what to do. Lifting weights should be done THREE times a week. And after your body adjusts to doing it, add more weights and/or reps. Yeah, it’ll hurt, but SO WHAT!

Ha ha ha! You really believe that 30 minutes of walking will help you lose weight? Okay, good start, but your body would adjust to that rather quickly, then you will have to pick up the pace. For serious weight loss, 60 minutes or more. I didn’t stutter! If you are just going through the motions to say you did something…expect to be comfortable with no results.

Eeew! My egg whites and chicken breasts are not that great with no salt added! Yep, but guess what, I am comfortable being uncomfortable for a bit. Try new seasonings that give your food flavor without adding sodium. And by the way egg whites? Yes, lose those yolks please.

But everybody else is going out and enjoying McDs and Pizza Hut, it’s no fair! Yep, say bye-bye to all the fast food. Hey, I love the stuff myself, but it does not love me. There are a few fast food places where you can make better choices…find them! Subway is high on my list.

“I give up! It’s just so hard, hard, hard!” How many times do we feel like this? What did I just tell you in my first sentence? “Losing weight is not easy, so get ready for some hard work!” There, I repeated it, now read it, underline it, cut it out, post it on your forehead. Heck, I’m a personal trainer, I KNOW what to do, and this does not make it any easier for me. I get tired…I want some French fries…I want to lay down and read a book instead of working out…I want a handful of Skittles and not munch on these apples…oh well!

I hope I made you mad.