What To Do When You’re Too Tired To Workout?

img_4280

We’ve all heard of the idea that dog owners tend to look like their dogs. Well, I’ve definitely been looking more and more like my Sammy when it comes to going to the gym;)  BTW, he’s making 14 years this Spring💛.

Honestly, I’ve been freaking out a little bit because I’ve never experienced a lack of motivation to go to the gym for a whole week!  Usually taking a day off does the trick for me, but not this time.

I did have a realization today while I was at the gym.  Last week I completed an intense 14-week muscle building program and really should have taken a full week off.  My husband has been trying to persuade me to take a break, but I was too stubborn and maybe even afraid to listen to him.  Well, I guess he was right, as much as I hate to admit it;)

In spite of the lack of mojo I was able to get in four really good workouts.  Here’s how I was able to push through the tiredness and lack motivation:FullSizeRender (25)

  1. I changed up the scenery.  The weather was nice so I got my dumbells and worked biceps, triceps and shoulders on the back porch.  It felt so good to get fresh air and the alone time was nice.  On another day I trained in a different gym.  Trying out new equipment along with changing up my routine made it interesting.
  2. I got a new piece of equipment.  I’ve been working a lot more hours so I decided I needed to get something for the house when I just don’t feel like going to the gym.  I purchased one of those pull-up bars you can attach to your door frame.  I had the best ab and back workout ever in my hallway!  (If you’re interested I can share that workout).
  3. Instead of a structured workout plan, I asked myself ‘what do I feel like doing today?’ This brought some levity and allowed me to listen to my body.  It was nice to get out of my head and drop more into my body.  So much of our day is spent in our minds.  When we check in with our bodies it actually helps us become more present.  💡The next time you walk into the gym ask yourself, ‘what do I feel like working today? Do I want to make it a short workout or do I have the energy to get after it?’
  4. I took some rest days.  I think there is truth in love and in fitness with the idea that absence makes the heart grow fonder.  Give yourself a mental and physical rest day to recharge and appreciate all your hard work.

I’m interested to hear your ideas and tips for when you are feeling unmotivated or too tired to workout.  Feel free to write a comment:)

 

 

4 Exercises to Target Your Lower Abs

You can keep your abs toned through the holidays with this in-home routine.  If you hate going out in the cold, then this routine will be perfect for you.

Tightening up those pesky lower abs is challenging.  Most of the exercises that target that region involve using the hip flexors, so if they are weak then you may not feel the movement.

Engaging the transverse abdominal muscles that will tighten up your core. To hit this area I’ve put together some unconventional exercises that all build upon a plank.

You will need:

  • 2 hand towels
  • mat
  • smooth surface
  • a rock solid focus

*Make sure you can master a standard plank hold before you progress to these exercises.

Plank Row

025

Get into plank position with your towels under your feet.  (The naval is pulled toward the spine and your body is streamlined.) Push yourself back as far as you can while you are pressing into the towels.  Then pull your body back to the starting position.  It’s a small movement.  Keep your body tight and straight the entire time.  Perform 8-12 reps or go for 30 seconds.

Bear

026

Get into a push up position with arms extended and hands under your shoulders.  Press down into your towels and pull your feet toward you.  Then, push back to the starting position.  This can also be done by bending your knees and pulling them toward your chest.  Perform 8-12 reps or go for 30+seconds.

Mountain Climber

027

Holding the extended plank position, pull your right knee in toward your chest then press back while pulling your left leg in toward your chest.  Perform 16-20 reps (right & left leg is a full rep) or go for 30+ seconds.

Army Crawl

*video on Facebook page, click icon @ http://www.totalbodyandmind.net*

028

Get into plank position and tighten up your abs and butt.  Crawl forward on your forearms until you hit the edge of your mat, then crawl back.  4-8 reps (one forward and back is a full rep).

Candy Crusher Halloween Workout

img_3772

 

 

 

 

Did you eat too much candy this weekend?  Let’s crush those calories and have fun doing it!

 

 

 

This is a Halloween-themed workout I put together for my morning bootcamp class.  It is a total body workout that will burn some serious calories!

fullsizerender

Repeat each circuit three times.

Exercise descriptions provided at the bottom of the blog.

Circuit 1

  • Run a couple of laps or run for 2 minutes at a fast pace.
  • Next, take it into the BOOty blast exercises.  Perform each exercise for 45 sec.

Circuit 2

  • Thriller shuffle reaction drill– Get into a squat position (pretend like you are playing defense in a basketball game).  For 45 seconds randomly shuffle right to left.  If you have a partner, have them randomly call out ‘right’ or ‘left’ commands.
  • Killer arm exercises.  Perform each exercise for 45 sec.

Circuit 3

Exercise descriptions:

Wall squat– Stand with your back against a wall, placing your feet about two feet out in front of you. Feet should be hip-distance apart. Bending your knees, slide your back down the wall until your knees are at 90 degree angles. Adjust your body position so that your knee joints don’t go over your ankle joints.

Sumo pulse– Get into a wide stance toes slightly turned out and squat low.  Stay at the bottom end of the movement as you do tiny pulses.

Bridges– Lie on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Raise your hips of the floor so that your body forms a straight line from your shoulders to your knees. Pause at the top then slowly lower your body back to the floor.

Spider pushups– Place your hands on the floor underneath your shoulders and get into a push-up position.
Move your left hand forward and bend your elbow while simultaneously stepping forward with your left foot and draw your knee to the elbow.

Bicep curl to an Arnold press– http://www.bodybuilding.com/exercises/detail/view/name/arnold-dumbbell-press

Witches cauldron– Perform a plank with your arms on a stability ball.  Make tiny circles toward the right for 10 seconds then repeat on the left.

Reverse crunch with medicine ball– Place a medicine ball or towel between your knees.  Pull your knees in toward your chest and do a small hip lift.

Scissors–  Lying on your back with your legs extended off the floor, alternate crossing your legs.

Wall sit twist- Get into your wall squat position with a medicine ball.  Alternate tapping the medicine ball to the right and left.

 

The Muscle You Must Work To Break Through Plateaus

Working out is easy, eating healthy is tough but it’s the mind that is the hardest to train.  You can get on the Elliptical for an hour and lift weights five days a week but if you don’t get a grip on your mental fitness you will struggle every inch of the way to reach your goals.

Here are the things I’ve learned from my own life and in observing my clients that might help you conquer the mental game.

  1. Make peace with failure.  I’ve competed in about five bodybuilding competitions and never won first place.  I’ve done duathlons and powerlifting competitions where I’ve won some and lost many.

383850_243108732428192_399410553_nMy first duathlon I rode the entire race with the front brake on.  Talk about feeling like a novice!  The whole race I was so confused why everyone was passing me;) LOL  I learned from that experience and never repeated that again!

If you’re new to the gym or trying a new sport, don’t expect yourself to be an expert overnight.  Give yourself time to learn, consider getting a coach or personal trainer and don’t be afraid to fail.

2.  Your mind quits long before your body does.

This was something my triathlon coach would often say to our team during training.  He would usually say this when we were all dog tired and he would challenge us to pick up our pace.  He was right, I found that my body could go harder.  His influence helped me reach another fitness level, become a better athlete and personal trainer.

img_3708This is one of my client’s who came to me with goals that she wanted to accomplish. I would be doing her a disservice if I didn’t challenge her to push past her comfort zones.  We are always able to laugh, but we mean business;)

There is going to be discomfort, the mind will scream ‘STOP!  That’s enough!’  There can be no change if there is no challenge.

Hire a personal trainer, get a workout partner or join a fitness group that will call your bluff. Think about it – your last workout did you give yourself an out to stop?  A good personal trainer will know when you can do more and push you to achieve your best.

  • What helps me to always give my personal best is to ask myself, “can I go one more minute?  Can I do two more reps?”
  • If you’ve been doing the same 3 sets of 12 for months, make it 4 sets of 12.  If you’ve been running at the same pace on the treadmill, increase your pace or add more of an incline.

3.  When your focus stops your power stops.  The past few months my mental motivation has been slipping and I’ve had a harder time getting to the gym.  I’m realizing that because I’m always multitasking I’m mentally exhausted.

There is value in focusing on one thing at a time.  Focusing the mind helps you be more at ease in the present in the moment.  Focused attention slows the clock down and makes life more full.  My personal goal is to focus in on one task to help me regain my mojo and bust through my mental blocks.

Feel free to comment what ideas you will try.  Remember….b1ckhfziaaakezz

 

 

 

How To Get Past Self-Doubt

e70ac32b65a192c48a868b98692ab651What if I told you that believing in yourself is a concern of God’s?   Humility is a virtue, but there is nothing honorable about walking around defeated and insecure.  Philippines 4:13 says, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”  How many times have we quoted this verse, but not really believed the words?

Self-doubt used to be a major factor in my life and continues to be in varying degrees, but I’m so much better these days.  I’m sure my being small , (one of my coaches used to call me half pint;), having a soft voice and being taught to be a good girl played a role in these insecurities.  God has been teaching me throughout my life that just because I might feel small that doesn’t mean I don’t have greatness inside of me.

c0ff8da792dc7bca83be36a925c8343d

I believe we all have potential.  Romans 12:3 says He has dealt to every man the measure of faith.  The key is to expose yourself to people, challenges and opportunities that will draw out the greatness that is inside.

You can’t overcome what you can’t confront. TD Jakes

Steps to confront your fears and achieve your potential:

  • Notice the voices of self-doubt in your head.  The monsters inside your head aren’t so scary when you turn the lights on!  Understand that you might fail, people might judge you and they won’t always love you or your work.  That’s okay.  What’s important here is that YOU love YOU.
  • Do it afraid.  You don’t have to be perfect, that’s not what this is about.  It’s about you learning to believe in yourself.  It’s about who you become by confronting your fears and doubts.  Moses was one of the most insecure people in the Old Testament, but he was also one of the greatest leaders of all time.  One of the things that made him great was that he did things afraid.

In spite of his speech impediment, Moses stuttered his way to greatness!

  • Lean into the discomfort.   There will be opportunities presented to you that are not going to feel natural but YOU CAN push through.  When your mind screams no, let it have it’s temper tantrum, and just keep on pushing a bit beyond your comfort zones.

d9781d429de485881f054ca6a7ca41a0

 

Our Wedding Day

donnatalie100

I’ve always dreamed of being married outside so this time around I was excited to plan a romantic beach wedding.  I couldn’t wait to say our vows with the sun setting behind the emerald blue waters of the Gulf of Mexico. The week of our wedding that vision came to a squeaky halt when the rains came in and it didn’t stop!

I went back and forth between disappointment and hope.  I finally accepted that Mother Nature can’t be stopped and that I needed to get a grip on my perception of things.  Instead of fighting against the circumstances I decided to embrace the rain and make the best of it!

It would be fun kissing in the rain!  LOL  We could get a picture like the sexy one from the movie Notebook where Allie and Noah kiss in the pouring rain:)

I was about to get blue rain boots and white umbrellas, but my man stopped me!  That was a bit much whimsy for him;)  In my quest to find the silver lining I discovered the superstition that rain on your wedding day is good luck!

Superstitions of rainy wedding days: 
  • It symbolizes cleansing from sadness in your past.
  • When you “tie the knot” on a rainy day is signifies that your marriage will last.  This is because a knot that becomes wet is very hard to untie.
  • Rain signifies washing away of bad memories or occurrences.  The gift in this is that you get a completely new, fresh chapter in your life.

Don and I have both been through a lot so these beautiful thoughts resonated with me.

The good news is that we had the luck of the rain without getting rained on!  The hour of our ceremony the rains stopped.😀  It was perfect and all about us.

donnatalie056

  When you’re older, you’ve been through things, you’ve made mistakes. So you come into it (a second marriage) still giddy, but wanting it to last.  -Nicole Kidman

Sometimes it takes a heartbreak to shake us awake, at least it did for me.  I have found that everything that I went through makes me appreciate my husband and our life together even more.

donnatalie050

In our ceremony our wedding officiant, Ken, had us take a moment to talk about our wishes. We then threw our seashells into the giant wishing well.  Afterwards I got hoisted off my feet and the games were on! LOL

donnatalie104

Not exactly the Notebook scene, but we sure did a lot of kissing that day and still do!❤️

donnatalie079

Some things really are better the second time around.

img_3628

 

Making Fitness Fun For Kids

Getting to share my love for the outdoors and fitness with my family is really special to me.  Not to mention it’s a great way to spend quality time with your kids and burn off some of their energy!  My future granddaughter really soaks it up!

IMG_3174

This activity was hit!  It’s a combination of hopscotch and an obstacle course.

All you need is some sidewalk chalk, a pinch of creativity and get ready for some FUN!

IMG_3141

Pattern #1

Twirl (pick a random #, i.e. 5x)

Touch your toes (3x)

Happy Dance (I traced her feet for her to do a little jiggy on)

Spidy crawl (I drew small triangles for her to put her feet and hands on)

Roar (I drew a lion)

BE HAPPY (a smiley face) — then jump in the pool!!

Pattern #2  (she came up with this one by herself!)

IMG_3143 IMG_3144

Jump 3x (she drew a box)

Windmill 2x (rectangle)

10 seconds running fast (triangle)

BEAR You tiful (blow a kiss) — then jump in the pool!!

We each took turns being the “coach.” IMG_3179

 

 

 

 

 

 

After doing each other’s obstacle courses a handful of times we played some volleyball and worked on treading water.  Needless to say, when I was ready to get out of the pool, she was too;)IMG_3168 I hope you and your family have as much fun as we did!  Share in the comments below the obstacle course you and your kids put together. 🙂