The Technique To Burn Fat and Build Muscle Fast!

If you’ve hit a plateau with weight loss or are just bored as heck with your workouts and need something to light things up, you should give cardio accelerations a try!

What is cardio acceleration?

Cardio acceleration is when you combine high-intensity cardio with strength training.  Instead of taking a typical rest break between your lifts, you do some type of cardio, all out, for one minute.   I prefer to jump rope, however, you could do any type exercise for your cardio acceleration.  Here are some examples: running in place next to the bench, jumping jacks, squat thrusts, skaters, dumbbell cleans, step-ups, etc.

fullsizerender-1Jumping rope is hands down my favorite tool for keeping my body conditioned and agile.  Read more about the benefits for jumping rope along with training tips here: https://healthyjustice.wordpress.com/2017/01/02/jump-in-lean-out-with-jump-rope-training/

What is the benefit?

I got turned on to this training technique when I did Jim Stoppani’s Shortcut To Shred program.  His program did get me shredded.  Another benefit is that there is no hem hawing around waiting for the next set, which is perfect for my adult ADD;) LOL.

My hubby always teases me because if I’m not doing cardio intervals between sets, I’m stretching;)  This was him poking fun of me yesterday when I was stretching between my bench presses.  LOL

img_4172

One thing I REALLY love about this technique is that it fills in for my 20-30 minutes of cardio on the step mill or treadmill!

  • Check this out, 20-30 minutes of these high-intensity intervals burns more fat than spending that amount of time on a treadmill. Trust me, your metabolic rate will be up the entire workout and that means you are burning a lot of calories during and after your workout!

I now cycle through this program twice a year, and lately, I’ve been throwing in cardio accelerations with my leg day once a week.

After doing a set of squats, I do 100-200 revolutions jumping rope.  (BTW, I’ve been performing squats recently with a box to make sure I’m nailing my form and getting good and low).

img_4139

If you’re worried that the cardio could take away from the strength of your lifts, here is research that Stoppani shares from his Shortcut To Shred Training Overview:

A University of California, Santa Cruz, study found that when subjects did cardio between weightlifting sets, they were able to recover better because of increased blood flow. Cardio acceleration elevates your heart rate, which means more blood pumps to your working muscles throughout your workout.

Ready to HIIT it now?  Let’s go!!

Advertisements

Beginner Gym Workout

img_3585

If you have made a decision to get in shape and have recently joined a gym, congratulations!  In case you’re feeling intimidated by all the equipment and the anxiety that everyone will be staring at you, relax.  You don’t have to be an expert.

First off, most people are there to better themselves, and they are glad to see you in there working on your physical fitness.  Secondly, the gym is full of people of all shapes and sizes so don’t feel like you have to be in shape before you can go to a gym.

Let’s get you going with a workout guide and plan to help make your gym time a more positive experience.

Getting Started

  1. Most of the exercises in this program are on machines.   Machines, for the most part, help you maintain good form and this helps you to keep your focus on the body part you are working.
  2. Perform 1-2 sets of 12 repetitions.  A set is when you complete your designated repetitions.  Rest 30sec. to 1 minute if you are going to do a second set.
  3. Tips for setting a weight:  Select a weight that will make you have to work really hard for the last two reps.  You shouldn’t be able to do 15 reps and if you can, the next time you perform the exercise, increase your weight.
  4. Take one day of rest between each of your total body workouts sessions.  On those off days you can do cardio but always listen to your body.

This total body workout includes machine-based exercises and will take you 20 minutes or less.

Warm up for 5 minutes.

If you choose to use the treadmill be sure to adjust the incline to a 2 incline.  This simulates walking outdoors and gives you some ‘ground’ under your feet.

Leg Press- 2 sets of 12 reps (rest 30 sec.-1 min)

Position your feet shoulder width apart in the middle of the platform.  My feet a bit lower on the platform because I’m a shorty and if I put them higher I would not have much range of motion on the exercise;)  lol  💡Extend your legs completely but don’t lock out the knees.

img_3977img_3574

Chest Fly- 2 sets of 12 reps (rest 30 sec.-1 min)

img_4077 img_8813

On a lot of chest fly machines, you can adjust the range of motion.  Look at the top and you will see holes like this one for both arms on the machine:

img_3532

Set it to where you feel a gentle stretch when seated. 💡Bring the arms together like you are hugging a tree.

Lat Pulldown- 2 sets of 12 reps (rest 30 sec.-1 min)

img_3582 img_3583

Grip the bar where the indentations are or just slightly outside of the curves in the bar.  Set the pad on top of your knees. 💡Lean back about 10 degrees and pull the bar to your upper chest.

Rear Fly- 2 sets of 12 reps (rest 30 sec.-1 min)

img_2785 img_2566

The rear fly machine is the same machine in my gym as the chest fly.  By adjusting the arms of the machine to be completely closed, it becomes the rear fly.  Sit facing INTO the machine.  Grab the handles so that your palms face down.  Pull back until your arms make a ‘T”, hold for a brief second, then control the arms coming back to start.💡You might sense your shoulders creeping up to your ears.  Mentally focus on keeping your shoulders down and neck relaxed.

Tricep Pushdowns- 2 sets of 12 reps (rest 30 sec.-1 min)

fullsizerender fullsizerender-3

Adjust the cable to a high setting and attach a rope.  Bend at your elbow and then extend down.  Pause to squeeze the back of the arm.

Bicep Curls- 2 sets of 12 reps (rest 30 sec.-1 min)

Lower the cable to the bottom and attach a straight bar to the hook.

fullsizerender-2 fullsizerender-1

Bring the bar just in front of your shoulder and extend all the way down.💡Keep your abs and lower back tight while you pull equally with both arms.  In other words, don’t swing:)

Ab machine- 2 sets of 12 reps (rest 30 sec.-1 min)

In most gyms you will find some type of ab machine or two.  This is the one we have in our gym.

fullsizerender-5 fullsizerender-4

Adjust the seat to accommodate your height and allow you good range of motion. 💡Exhale as you crunch forward to deepen the contraction.

 

 

 

 

Build-A-Booty Part 3

IMG_2826

In this workout I have included several of my favorite exercises along with plyometric exercises at the end.  These will all help build up your glutes and improve athletic performance.  Plyometric training recruits fast twitch muscle fibers which means building stronger glutes and burning more body fat.

Warm up for 5-10 minutes.

Sumo Deadlift– keep your chest lifted.  A modification is to hold one dumbbell with both hands to perform this movement.

IMG_2813

Skaters- you can modify this by not using a kettle bell.  Advanced option is to superset the sumo squat with skaters.

IMG_2812

Cable squats– begin this exercise by stepping back far enough to feel resistance with the bar.

IMG_2822

Leg press jumps– set the weight low enough to propel off the platform and complete the suggested number of jumps.  If you don’t have a machine like this, perform squat jumps on the floor and hold a 5 or 8 lb dumbbell in each hand.  Advanced option is to superset this with the cable squats.

IMG_2816 IMG_2817

Pullthroughs- step forward to where you feel tension on the rope.  When you stand, squeeze the glutes.

IMG_2818 IMG_2819

Reverse Abduction- we are putting a spin on this machine.  Hinge forward slightly at the hips.  Push out and pause for 1-2 seconds.  Advanced option is to superset this exercise with the pullthroughs.

IMG_2823

10 min of plyometrics

I set up a circuit format and it was awesome!  You can see the video on instagram @ https://www.instagram.com/ndenisejustice/?hl=en

We spent 40 seconds at each station and we went for 4 rounds.  Pace yourself and do your best.  If you get through 1-2 rounds, that’s great.  Have fun and train with passion!

Here are the stations:

  1. Weighted broad jumps
  2. Step jump
  3. Weighted bosu jumps
  4. Medicine ball slams

 

Build-A-Booty Part 2

Building a beautiful fit booty requires you to literally work your butt off, however, that doesn’t mean the process can’t be fun!  I love glute day!  Working out these large muscles challenges me to push my body, and I love that feeling!  I also enjoy the variety of exercises and methods you can use to train your glutes.

Working out with a friend that brings passion into her workouts helps keep it fun and challenging.  You see him or her hitting a certain number of reps, or practicing good form and it makes you want to push that much harder.

IMG_2691

practicing sassy poses with Sarah between sets;) LOL🍑🍑

My recommendations for the Build-A-Booty Challenge:

  1.  Train your glutes/legs twice a week.  For example, Monday and Thursday, just make sure to have enough days between to rest the muscle groups.  For another complete leg workout: https://healthyjustice.wordpress.com/2014/09/08/rockin-leg-routine/
  2. Warm up for 5 minutes with cardio and use the foam roller to stretch before starting.
  3. Practice the guides from Build-A-Booty Challenge Part 1:  https://healthyjustice.wordpress.com/2016/04/22/build-a-booty-challenge/

Here is a complete workout that Sarah and I did last week.

Hip Thrusts 4×12

IMG_2640 IMG_2652

I like starting with this move to isolate and activate the glutes.  I wrap a pad around the barbell and use  large weights because it makes it easier to get into position.  A modification is to do a bridge on the floor.

Deep Squats 4×12

IMG_2676

My focus is on going deep and having a strong mind-body connection.  I choose a weight that allows me to get that depth while keeping good form.  A modification is to perform a squat on the smith machine.

Single Leg Press 4×8-10

IMG_2706 IMG_2707

I don’t have to put any weight on the leg press for this exercise.  You can use the non-working leg to self spot if you need that little bit of help on the push up.

Superset the Single Leg Press with the Bulgarian Split Squat 4×10

IMG_2713 IMG_2712

Make sure your working leg is positioned well enough in front so the knee tracks over the ankle.  Keep your chest lifted.  Think about pushing up through the heel so you will better activate your glutes.

Sumo Squat 3×15

IMG_2745

I like doing these between two benches to get more depth and recruit more glutes.

Superset Sumo Squat with Single Leg Deadlift

IMG_2699 IMG_2701

I love heavy Stiff Leg Deadlifts more than anyone, but this exercise is challenging in a way that will wake up untapped muscle fibers.  Work your balance, core and different muscle fibers to get even the most stubborn glutes to grow.

A modification is to do this on the floor.  I stand slightly off center on top of the bosu ball.  

NOTE:  If you haven’t done single leg work, you’ve got to start working it into your training.  We all have one leg/side that is more dominant and stronger than the other.  Single leg exercises addresses those muscle imbalances and helps you gain even greater strength and power in your athletic lifts.

Enjoy your workout and make sure to stretch!💞

 

 

Change Up Your Workouts With Kettlebells

Struggling with stale and boring workouts?  Your body might just need a good ole shock treatment to get it producing results again.  Shocking the muscles might seem a little on the aggressive side, but trust me, this is where the fun happens with your workouts.

It’s a known fact that the more you do something, the easier it becomes, especially with exercise.  When you start a new workout plan, the body is going to be initially challenged by the stress but it recovers and comes back stronger and more adaptive.

What this means is that the workout that used to challenge you, doesn’t anymore.  You don’t burn as many calories and you stop seeing results.  That’s why you need to switch things up and keep your body guessing regularly.  The positive side to all of this is that you are steadily making progress, developing your potential and keeping things interesting.

I’m always changing things up just because I’m crazy like that;)  I get bored easily, and I love a challenge. My recent change has been to train with kettlebells as the focus of my workouts one day a week.  WOW!  It’s been the shock treatment I’ve needed!  It’s different than dumbbells in that it challenges even more of your stabilizing muscles and core engagement.

Here is the workout I did that has given my body the challenge it’s needed.

NOTE: If you have never picked up a KB or are a beginner exerciser, I strongly encourage you to get some coaching on proper technique and start off basic.

warm up for 10 min to get your joints lubricated and prepared.

  1.  Front squats with barbell (10 reps) superset with Figure 8 rear lunges with KB (16 reps total)

Image

2. Leg Press (15 reps) superset Squat with elbow strike (20 reps: see video on my instagram page https://www.instagram.com/ndenisejustice/)

Image (4)

3. Sumo Squat & Deadlift with KB (16 reps) superset Jump squats with KB shoulder level (15 reps)

Image (3)Image (2)Image (1)

4. KB swings (16-20reps) superset Goblet squats

(16-20 reps: http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/detail/view/name/goblet-squat)

5.  Walking deadlifts (10 total steps) superset Walking lunges (10 total steps:  see video description on my instagram page, https://www.instagram.com/ndenisejustice/)

This was a killer workout so adapt it to your fitness level or take one of the supersets and work them into what you are already doing at the gym.  I did 3-4 sets on each superset.

How do you keep your body guessing?  What do you think, are you going to give kettlebells a go?

7 Strategies For A Sexy Physique

Strong women they inspire me, they make me want to grab the world by the lapels and go kick ass.  When I see a woman in the gym who has defined muscles and is throwing some serious weight around, I have immediate respect for her.  Sure, I respect the outer displays of strength, but mostly I appreciate the inner resolve that goes into achieving that level of physical success.

I was fortunate to get the opportunity to talk to such a woman, Wendy Heaslip, a 48 years old woman who backs up all that strength in the gym with being independent and charming.  

IMG_1730

She shared with me her strategies for creating a lean physique (along with a workout at the end of the article) and for the record, Heaslip is a mother, engineer,  photographer, friend and cares for her dad who has Alzheimer’s.  If she can do this with her busy life, you can too.  

Here are those strategies she shared for developing a fit physique.  

Secret #1  She wakes up early.

In her words;)  “I’m up at 4:30 AM and out the door to walk the dogs (2 ancient Chihuahuas and 1 young ‘ratdog’).  Then breakfast with my man, which he cooks.”  

Takeaways:  

🚶get in a few minutes of activity, like walking, to boost your mood and energy levels throughout the day.

😉 allow your man to make breakfast. New research shows that women find men most sexy when they’re working in the kitchen…Sounds like a win-win!

Secret #2  She meal preps for the week.

Heaslip is an engineer during the day and doesn’t get home until around 6pm.  How many of us can relate to this?  Walking the dogs and going to the gym doesn’t leave much time to make a meal, so her and her boyfriend, Richard, meal prep on Sunday.  

During the week all they have to do is a “quick warm up or veggie prep and dinner is ready.”  

Heaslip’s tip:  Focus your meals on protein.  She suggests investing in shaker bottles.  Protein shakes are good for supplementing when you can’t get enough protein with food during the day.  

Secret #3  She eats clean during the week and plans a splurge meal on the weekend.

Restrictive diets generally backfire so it’s important to plan a splurge and enjoy it without guilt.  When planning your splurge be clear on your boundary and eat a moderate portion.  

While food is wonderful, it’s important to find other ways to bring fun and sweetness into your life. For Wendy, she gets to play with her weekend job/hobby of photography.  

Secret #4  Meet yourself where you are.

Wendy said she got into lifting a few years ago after she read an article about the importance of resistance training to fight osteoporosis.  She said, “I found a fitness app with some beginner routines and started doing them at the gym. I’ve always loved to see muscles move in response to lifting something heavy. It appealed to me right away.”

Takeaways:  There are free resources available all around you so take advantage of those.  

⚫️Ask your gym if they offer a complimentary session with a personal trainer.  

⚫️Find out from your human resources dept. if they offer any wellness programs. I’m a health coach for Omada Health and many of my clients receive access to our program through their HR dept.  https://omadahealth.com/

Secret #5  Enjoy fitness with your family.

Around 2012 when Wendy started getting into fitness, her daughter, Tess, started showing interest too.  It was all fun and games until Tess got her personal training certification in 2014, and Wendy became her 1st client/guinea pig.  This is when her training was taken into a whole ‘nother ball game.  

Just another day at the gym for this powerful mother and daughter duo:)

IMG_6160Tess developed programs tailored to her mom’s personality and goals, which involved training like a powerlifter.  Wendy lapped it up!  Deadlifts, squats and bench she loved it all:)

These big lifts that stereotypically you see big bearish men performing in the gym became part of my routine.  The heavier I lifted the more I dug it.  I’m a little woman lifting heavy weights and there is just something so kick ass about that.”

IMG_6162While Wendy is extremely serious about her workouts I have often seen her on her phone and wondered what the heck she was doing;) She said that Richard and her text each other in the gym, sending funny memes or support to each other.

Secret #6 Make a bucket list.

Heaslip is training for a figure competition for Fall of 2016, and she said, “The competition is a bucket list thing for me right now.”  

A bucket list reminds you of what’s really important to you and brings some color and motivation into the regimented lives that most of us have Monday-Friday.  

The preparation is stretching Heaslip past her comfort zones.  Currently she is in the stage of bulking and this has been really challenging for her, as all of us women can understand.  Heaslip says, “it’s hard for me to wrap my head around (Gain weight? On purpose?), but I’ve been doing it for about a month now and have noticed larger, fuller muscles and I can lift heavier so I’m slowly getting on board.”

Takeaways:   Create a bucket list of anything and everything you’ve ever wanted to do, be or have.  

Secret #7 Get a workout plan that excites you.

Wendy shared her special leg/glute routine:

Barbell Squat 6×5

Straight Leg Dead Lift 4×10

Smith Machine Hack Squat 3×10-12

Single Leg Curl 3×20 each leg

Goblet Squat 3×12

Leg Extension 3×15 (dropset last set)

 Wendy didn’t start out with all these habits, she developed them over time.  Pick 1-2 small goals that you can do everyday and start.  No one is too busy to take care of themselves.  Everyone gets the same 24 hours a day.  We make time for what we really want.  The thing is, when you honor your health it makes room to give even more to the people and work you love so much.  

Tess Redsky Heaslip is a personal trainer in Houston, TX and this is her boyfriend, Brandan Lacatino, with Richard.  Talk about a #fitfam?!  I think if Pixar ever needed a modern day family for The Incredibles, this is the one!  lol

 

 

1000 Calorie Workout

Happy Thanksgiving!                                                                                                                                                   woodchop

I hope you all have fun, food-filled plans in store with family or friends.  Starting your day off with a high intensity workout is a great way to set a positive and healthy tone for the day.  Vigorous exercise will keep the body burning calories for hours after the workout is finished.

This “1000 calorie” high intensity workout I designed will ignite your body’s metabolism into burning the turkey before you even start feasting!  It’s balls to the wall intense, so get your game face on and have some water nearby.

This can be done at home or at the gym.

Here is what you need:

jump rope, dumbbells, stopwatch and a mat

How it works:

You will be running for 2.5 minutes, then going straight into Tabata intervals for 4 minutes.

Tabata is a type of High-Intensity Interval Training (H.I.I.T) that lasts four minutes, but it’s likely to be one of the longest four minutes you’ve ever endured.  You will work hard for 2o seconds, rest 10 seconds, and complete 8 rounds.  I suggest that you download a free tabata timer on your phone.

In this workout I have 4 rounds.

  • Each round consists of 2.5 min of running (or brisk walking).  I play around with my speed and incline each round to keep it interesting.
  • Tabata intervals with 2 exercises that you alternate performing during the 4 minutes.  For example, perform up and down planks for 20 sec., rest 10 sec., then perform weighted jump rope for 20 sec., etcetera.
  • Rest for 2 minutes then start the next round.

*Modify if necessary to make this work for you.  If you need help with modifications, leave me a comment.

Let’s get this party started!

*warm up for 5 min with a walk or jog.

1st Round:

  1. Fast run for 2.5 min.  If you are on a treadmill increase the incline to a 3 and increase your pace.  When I do this at the gym, I jack the speed up to 7.5 (I generally run at a 6.5)
  2. Tabata Time!

▪️Up and down planks

▪️Weighted or traditional jump rope (if you don’t have a jump rope do Jumping Jacks)

2nd Round:

  1. Fast run for 2.5 min.
  2. Tabata Time!

▪️Burpees

▪️Russian Twist (use 1 dumbbell or a medicine ball)

3rd Round:

  1. Fast run for 2.5 min.
  2. Tabata Time!

▪️Dumbbell or Kettlebell swings 

http://cdn.shape.com/sites/shape.com/files/styles/600×600/public/sumo-squat.gif?itok=_WVhEf4k

▪️Scissor leg lifts:  

http://www.frolic-through-life.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/04/health-exercise-nutrition-wellness-fitness-loving-mom102.jpg

4th Round:

  1. Fast run for 2.5 min.
  2. Tabata Time!

▪️Skaters

▪️Mountain Climbers

Cool down or cycle through all these again for a Power Hour!