Easy At-Home Workouts for Busy Women

Whether you’re rushing to the bus stop to make your 8:00am meeting while juggling your handbag, laptop and latte or you’re home changing diapers while cleaning, cooking and doing laundry, chances are you’re living a very busy lifestyle.  Who knew women could manage so many important tasks all at once without losing their minds??? We did! In any case, the many responsibilities of today’s modern woman oftentimes leaves little opportunity for caring for oneself. What many fail to realize is that this is THE most important task before any other.  If we do not have our own physical health and mental well-being, no other task will get done.  The laundry stays dirty, there’s no food to be had and the baby is crying like mad. Plus the spreadsheets aren’t submitted and we lose our best client to the competition who is on their game.  So how do you go about taking care of yourself and getting the physical activity you need when there doesn’t seem to be another minute left in the day?  Do what you always do: MULTI-TASK.  While you are on your next conference call/roasting a chicken/watching over your sleeping baby, try my top 10 moves for a full body workout which can be done in the comfort of your own home with zero equipment.

WALL SIT

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BIRD DOG

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SUMO SQUAT

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REVERSE CRUNCH

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SIDE PLANK

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TRICEP DIP

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FIRE HYDRANTS

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MODIFIED PUSH-UP

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WINDSHIELD WIPER

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HIP BRIDGE

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Music to Make You Move

It’s no secret that music can greatly impact your mood.  You may have heard of the “Mozart Effect” which states that listening to classical compositions by Mozart may enhance your brainpower.  Since the Mozart study was published in the early 90s, many other analysis have surfaced squashing these claims.  Yet overall, experts agree that listening to music we enjoy undoubtably makes us more alert thereby producing better results at a given task.  When it comes to exercise we need energy and a good cup of coffee will only get you through so many reps.  So why not utilize the power of uptempo music with a dash of inspirational lyrics to energize your workout? Personally, I enjoy weight training to some fast and tough hip hop, artists like Jay-Z and Drake.  When it comes to cardio, especially during sprints and interval training, I need my upbeat dance music.  And finally, a slow jam or two during cool down. Here is my current workout playlist. Download some new tunes, grab your Beats by Dre and get moving!

WEIGHT TRAINING

  • Trophies – Young Money & Drake
  • F*ckwithmeyouknowigotit – Jay Z & Rick Ross
  • Brand New – Pharrell & Justin Timberlake
  • Thim Slick – Fabolous & Jeremih
  • Flawless – Beyonce
  • Na Na – Trey Songz
  • Loyal – Chris Brown & Lil Wayne
  • I Got It – Ashanti & Rick Ross

CARDIO

  • Grown Woman – Beyonce
  • Turn Down For What – DJ Snake & Lil Jon
  • The Fire – Felix Cartal & Clockwork
  • Under Control – Calvin Harris & Alesso
  • Boy oh Boy – Diplo & GTA
  • Need U – Duke Dumont

COOL DOWN

  • Part II – Jay Z & Beyonce
  • Not a Bad Thing – Justin Timberlake

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SPRING into Action

While the calendar might indicate that Spring has arrived, the weather hasn’t been quick to agree.  But have faith, you will be BBQing poolside before you know it and what better way to prep for Summer than with a solid fitness training and nutrition program.  You are not too late. In fact, it’s never too late and you’re never too old to take charge of your health enabling you to look and feel your absolute best.  If you do not currently exercise then implementing a new, simple strength training and/or cardio routine is sure to yield positive results.  Over time you should increase the duration and intensity of your program.  This method is guaranteed to help you reach your goals in a realistic fashion.  If you’ve been training and eating clean but have hit the dreaded “plateau” then enlisting the services of a personal trainer will give you the guidance you need to up the ante.  Making small, yet important tweaks to your diet and adding diversity to your fitness regimen will pave the way for a real transformation.

No equipment? No gym membership? No problem and no excuses – here is a quick circuit routine to kickstart your Spring training. Complete this circuit 3x with minimal rest (if possible) and you are on your way to full body toning and increased cardiovascular endurance.

  • 30 Jumping Jacks
  • 15 Bodyweight Squats
  • 10 Pushups
  • 12 Tricep Dips
  • 20 Second Mountain Climbers
  • 30 Second Plank on Forearms

When all else fails, grab a hoola hoop and Spring into Action!

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Taking the New Year to the Next Level!

Another wonderful year on Earth has passed us, bringing with it a variety of people, places, experiences, emotions and opportunities.  Thinking back to NYE 1999 when everyone was afraid all the computers would crash at midnight, makes the year 2014 sound very futuristic.  The thought of my children one day being amazed at the fact that mommy and daddy were born in the 1900s is also quite hysterical.  Needless to say, time flies whether you’re having fun or not. So why not just have fun? Be your best this year by setting goals and working diligently to achieve them, treasure the time you spend with family and friends, count your blessings and make everything you can – make out, make dinner, make fun of yourself, make amends, make money just don’t make EXCUSES.  The new year comes with a fresh opportunity to start anew – new job, new attitude, new body, new home, new you. The choice is yours but the time to start is absolutely  NOW.

So, as the days pass on and the excitement of the new year fades, life sets in and we all return to the grind, never lose sight of your resolutions and goals for the year.  Make sure you have a constant reminder of your dreams whether it be in the form of a picture, a mantra or an item that acts as a symbol (bracelet/stone etc).  We all try our very best to keep the promises we’ve made to ourselves but inevitably, as humans, we will falter at times.  The important thing is to resist the urge to beat yourself up and just get right back into the swing of things.  Slip up for a moment but don’t hesitate and whatever you do – don’t give up.  Enjoy the ride whether it’s a Bentley or the Griswold’s family station wagon; Attitude is Everything!

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The Power of Personal Training

Pass by your local gym just about any time of day and you are bound to see many members visiting the facility.  The fitness craze in America has hit an all-time high and gym memberships are on the rise.  Now, this doesn’t necessarily mean everyone is getting fit.  There are many types of gym members including:

  • Members that attend regularly, work out hard, understand their body and know how to train to achieve their desired results (these people make up an extremely small percentage of members)
  • Members that are generally fit but only know a few exercises, performing them over and over again, week after week with zero transformation
  • Members that sign up, pay and don’t show (you won’t see these people – they are too busy to be healthy) LOL
  • Members that are anxious to get fit and attempt techniques that are challenging, they execute moves with terrible form and are very close to inflicting injury upon themselves due to ignorance.  *Please stop performing lat pulldowns behind your neck with your cervical spine flexed – unless of course you are trying to break your neck.  OUCH
  • Members that go for the social scene – that creepy guy that won’t take his eyes off your assets (and every other woman’s); the girl that stretches in yoga & pilates and only eats salads in hopes of one day finding the perfect sugar daddy at the gym. YIKES
  • Members that are retired, laid-off or housewives that are just there to pass the time – please stop passing the time on my bench. I am really training over here. Thank you 😉
  • And last but not least, the dreaded copycat gym-goer that follows those around the gym who actually know what they are doing, mimicking their every move.  Please do not be this person it’s extremely obnoxious and borderline stalker.  OMG STOP!

Forgive me if I’ve forgotten a particular type of member (feel free to insert your own in the comments).

So, it’s time to face the music. What type of gym member are you?  It’s ok, you don’t have to admit it to me or anyone else.  Admitting to yourself that you have a problem is the first step to recovery… Just kidding.  The fact of the matter is all of these members listed above, with the exception of the first, need guidance and could benefit tremendously from a knowledgeable personal trainer.  Whether or not your motivation to join the gym was fueled by a desire to get fit, please remember you are paying for this membership every month possibly for the next 1-2 years.  Why not realize your full potential and make the most of what the facility has to offer?  Oftentimes a lack of understanding comes into play or perhaps a lack of motivation or intimidation.  This is where the power of personal training is invaluable.  Yes, it costs extra and yes it requires a commitment.  Unlike a regular gym membership, you must show up to your scheduled personal training sessions.  You are accountable to your trainer and he or she may inquire about your diet and cardio routine.  Don’t just join the gym, own the gym.  While you are there spending your precious, short-lived free time make the most of it. Enlist the expertise of a personal trainer and watch your physique transform and your health and happiness flourish!  Get started now! Call (201) 370-1710

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Healthy, Happy Comfort Food ~ Italian Style

The morning air feels crisp and fresh while the evenings are dark and brisk.  We are slowly but surely moving into the season of warm, comfort foods.  When we think of comfort food we often visualize heavy sauces, meats, breads and cheeses. Yet, delicious, warm meals can also be clean and healthy.  It all depends on what you add to the dish.  My favorite comfort foods generally fall into the category of Italian cuisine. I suppose these dishes remind me of my youth when the whole family would join for dinner on Sunday afternoon at my Nan’s house in Jersey City….what I would give to taste one of her signature Sicilian meatballs again!

Another staple found in many Italian cookbooks, as well as up and down Mulberry Street during the Feast of San Gennaro, is Sausage and Peppers.  This classic, hearty dish is loaded with flavor but also full of calories and fat.  So I created this healthy version for you by swapping out the traditional pork sausage with lean chicken sausage and cooking the meat on the grill rather than pan frying it.  You can enjoy this dish during the Fall & Winter season of comfort food without having to compromise your fitness efforts.
Buon Appetito!

sausage_pepper

INGREDIENTS:
1 Package Premio Sweet Italian Chicken Sausage
2 Red Bell Peppers – Stems and Seeds Removed, Sliced Thin
2 Green Bell Peppers – Stems and Seeds Removed, Sliced Thin
1 Yellow Onion, Sliced Thin
2 Cloves Garlic, Minced
1 Teaspoon Dried Basil
1 Teaspoon Dried Oregano
1/2 Teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
1/2 Teaspoon Ground Fennel (optional)

RECIPE:
Heat a grill pan to medium-high temperature. Add 3 tablespoons water and place chicken sausage links in the pan. Cover the pan and cook for 10 minutes. Remove lid and continue cooking for 10 minutes, turning the links often until each side is golden brown.

Meanwhile, spray a separate skillet with light cooking oil and heat to medium-high temperature. Add minced garlic, sliced onions and peppers. Saute and stir often until peppers and onion are tender (approximately 15-20 minutes), adding water as needed.

Once sausage is fully cooked, remove from heat, slice into bite-sized rounds and add to skillet. Sprinkle dish with dried herbs, red pepper flakes and ground fennel. Cook for another 5 minutes, stirring to combine flavors. Spoon onto dinner plates and mangia!

 

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Fit Life or Bust

I’d like to start this post with a sincere apology; I realize I’ve been M.I.A. all summer. Fortunately I’ve spent 90% of my days killin’ it in the gym rather than sitting sedentary on the computer. If only I could find a way to blog via iPad while doing walking lunges. Needless to say, this season has been amazing for me – I moved into an incredible new pad and my independent personal training business is absolutely booming. I feel so blessed to have the opportunity to work with a multitude of clients each with unique goals and varying degrees of experience. Whether you are a new mom looking to shed the baby weight, an athlete looking to add strength and perform better or you are simply ready to devote some much-deserved time to yourself, your health and your body, then you’ve come to the right place because my greatest passion in life is helping people realize their potential and achieve their dream physique.

So are you currently living the “fit life”? If your answer is no then I must ask – WHY NOT? WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR? (yes that was in all caps because I am totally yelling) You were given one body and you are destined to wear that body all day, every day until your last day. Why wouldn’t you make the time and find the money to invest in your health? Remember when you cleared your schedule to spend 3 hours sitting in the salon and shelled out $300 for those fabulous, fast-fade highlights? You could have begun a series of personal training sessions and been well on your way to looking much better than any warm, honey-caramel hombre hairstyle your colorist coaxed you into. Each person has a different set of priorities and people train for various reasons and for many its vanity. They want to look good in that short dress or skinny jeans. No matter what you determine as your reason for living the fit life, it all boils down to health. The fact is that strength training combined with a clean diet will boost your metabolism, increase your bone density and improve your immune system ultimately enhancing your vitality and quality of life.

So what exactly does it mean to live the fit life?  Well it doesn’t necessarily mean working out with a fitness trainer forever.  Although I have a few dear clients who have worked with me for a long time and every day they look in the mirror and can truly see and feel the results of their undying efforts.  The bottom line here is that we all have busy lives which may include school, work, kids, cooking, laundry, errands and hopefully some sleep as well.  Finding the time to exercise or simply stay active can be very challenging especially in today’s anti-DIY society.  People rarely clean their own homes anymore and now we no longer have to do our own laundry or purchase our own groceries.  Everything can be done from the computer or couch.  Yikes!  This is definitely not the fit life.  The fit life (if you are physically capable) means lifting a case of water out of your trunk and carrying it up your front steps.  Honestly, who needs the gym…just bleach your entire shower and you will have completed endless shoulder front and lateral raises. Hello deltoids! So if you absolutely cannot make it to the gym or can’t afford the expert guidance of a personal trainer, you can still keep active. No excuses. DIY = FIT.  Anything and everything is possible, you just have to want it bad enough and then go get it.  Consistency is key.  You can’t expect to see a true transformation when training a few hours a week yet remaining relatively sedentary the rest of the time.  Also, proper nutrition is crucial.  Sad but true, an hour of intense training will just barely negate that pint of Ben & Jerry’s you devoured because it was buy one get one free.  Damn you ShopRite can can sale! Seriously, we all have our moments, myself included.  Sometimes you just need to indulge in incredible cuisine or skip the gym and hit the spa. Yet, if you live the fit life on a regular basis those slip ups will not be detrimental to your fitness success.  Wish it, dream it, do it.  Fit life or bust!

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