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Hello everyone! A lot of the times people complain about cooking and it being time consuming, and a lot of the times it is true. grabbing a bite to eat is much more convenient and not to mention a lot quicker. Cooking healthy does not always have to be so time consuming!

Here I have a picture of my favorite food, salmon. Salmon is a great source of protein and it is not bland either. This takes me less than 10 minutes to grill, I add some olive oil and grill some veggies a long with it. It fills me up, its quick and its delicious!

Now I know not everyone is a fish person, this is just something to show you that it is quick, tasteful and healthy. Grilling is one of the healthiest ways to cook your foods and the fastest! I add some lemon and salt, when I have time I bake it with some breadcrumb on top. There is a number of ways to cook your healthy food. My suggestion is to switch it up, add some flavor so you do not resent eating healthy if you are eating the same thing over and over again.

Healthy does not have to mean flavorless and bland, learn new recipes and ingredients and have fun with it! Do not be afraid to add some salt or even a little butter. Like I said, sometimes I add bread crumb. This is not about perfection, it is about the healthier choice. Do not beat yourself up over some sodium or carbs.

Leg Burn

Warmup:

  • 15 incline walk (6 min, 2.5)
  • 2 incline shuffles (2 minutes each side, 2.0)

Glute Activation:

  • 3×20 banded clamshells (each side)
    • superset: 20 banded hip abductions
  • 3×20 weighed donkey kicks

Workout:

  • 4×15 good mornings
    • superset: banded side walk till burnout
  • 4×15 sumo deadlift
    • superset: banded side walk till burnout
  • 4×15 back lunges
    • superset: side lunges
  • 4×15 hamstring curl
  • 3×20 weighted hip thrusts

(If you do not have the bands, do not worry! do it without them, less difficult, but still effective)

Enough protein.

shakeAnother main concern I hear from people is what to eat to build muscle. It is common for people to workout and think the proper diet is salads and fruit. Although that is never a bad diet make sure you are getting enough protein! To build major muscle it is important to make sure you are eating AT LEAST your own body weight in grams of protein, But again that is for major muscle gain.

I personally like the definition and tone up of muscle without the width of it. I keep my protein low, on leg day I will add an extra scoop of my protein powder because I like the look of a larger build on the lower half on my body. On days I workout my upper half, I keep the protein to a minimum. If you are considering taking protein because you think you don’t get enough from your meals make sure you review it. Protein shakes are often loaded with sugar, sometimes fat. Just because it is protein does not mean it is healthy. Personally I find that whey protein is the perfect one for me.

I know a lot of people wonder why theres protein thats feminine or for women. For an example luna bars are considered to be a feminine snack that is because they offer nutrients harder for women to get as well as the amount of protein. Luna bars are considered protein bars but for women because of the amount of protein. Men often lift and want to get big, they’ll grab a protein bar or shake with at least 20 grams of protein, while women get a lift in but do not want that build so they will have a luna bar (often has 8 grams).

When working out all we think about is protein and cancel out carbs, but completely cutting out carbs is never a good idea. Although cutting out carbs make you lose weight, it is not healthy. Low carbs and high protein however, is how you stay lean. Carbs before and after a workout is very necessary, especially before, after all carbs are our main source of energy.

Protein helps rebuild muscle, if you do not have protein after lifting you are not replenishing your muscle tissue, this is the main cause of injury when weight lifting. Another important thing to know about protein is protein synthesis. An alcoholic beverage slows down protein synthesis by 20%. This means that it is slowing down your muscle build. Now I know we are not all saints, and alcohol is not always an easy thing to cut out of a diet but on the days you drink have some extra protein a few hours before bed to make up for the alcohol drinking

The key to your goals is what you have after your workout. Your protein intake depends on what you are trying to achieve, more protein, more muscle gain. Hope this post helped!

Cardio

cardioLosing weight is never easy! Just remember, when working out the key to avoiding plateu is switching up your workout every once in a while. Routine at the gym is your enemy. you always want to challenge your body. If you are trying to lose weight cardio before and after a workout is key.

Even with cardio you have to switch it up! Treadmill, sprint for a few minutes, walk, switch to incline, try to lightly jog on incline and repeat. I find that just running a few miles on the treadmill is less effective but i really do see results when i challenge myself with sprints and incline.

Running outside is harder than the treadmill , if you want to challenge yourself, take a morning jog. Warming up for a workout is essential, and what better way to warm up then with a little running!

when doing cardio your body continues to burn more calories then it would usually throughout the day. thats right, the entire day! some studies show that it is actually longer, and that your body continues to burn calories for 32 hours after cardio. If you run daily than your body is almost always burning more calories.

If you want to lose weight while getting your muscle mass up then keep the cardio before  a workout at a minimum. On leg days I try to run for only 5 minutes as a warm up because then i can squat with heavier weights and if i feel like i need to burn off some fat then ill do more cardio after. Nothing to intense because although cardio helps you lose fat, it can make you lose some muscle as well.

I often dedicate at least 1 or 2 days to complete cardio at the gym and on those days i get some ab workouts in as well. I find that those 2 days actually do a lot for my body, especially if i switch up the cardio. I am usually switching back and fourth between cardio machines, and as silly as that sounds I really break a sweat and see results. It also keeps me going, when i get tired of one machine ill switch to the next, it challenges your body and burns more calories. Get that intense cardio in!

Habits

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Bad habits are easy to pick up, and hard to break. We all have our guilty pleasure, and for most of us, its food. Now let me start off by saying it is nearly impossible to eat completely clean right after eating junk and completely sticking with it. And even if you do succeed (god bless you if you do, you are stronger than I am) It won’t become a lifestyle, more of a forced thing.

The key to eating healthy is to not deprive yourself. Take it step by step. If you are a soda drinker, let that be the first thing you cut out. They say it takes 21 days for something to become a habit, so just get through those 21 days.

Slowly stop snacking on chips, pick up some cheese and crackers. Do not reward yourself with pizza and donuts after a workout because than you’re just missing the point. Don’t completely cut out carbs, or sugar, just lessen it one step at a time. Once you see your body changing and feel better you’re gonna want to go further, and you’ll actually enjoy it, it won’t be forced. But do not feel bad about having a slice of pizza, just do not have it everyday.

I found that once i cute out 1 junk food at a time I eventually just did not want it, before i knew it my body, mind, and energy was completely different. Now if i eat close to the way i used to my body responds differently, I get sick and nauseous, which is a good thing! It makes me crave it less.

Now I know most of us are working, in school, or whatever the case is, making food is time consuming! Forget all those fitness accounts telling you you have to meal prep, and count your macros and calories, that is torturous! This is not to achieve perfection, but to better yourself.

I have a simple solution that takes up less time. By the healthier choice! You stop by wawa or dunking for a morning coffee and need breakfast? Reach for a egg and cheese not a muffin or a donut. Dunkin even has one of those low calorie spinach wraps, and they are delicious!

Craving something salty? Pick up some salted almonds and snack on them. There is no need to deprive yourself of food or count every single calorie you intake, just make sure you are making the healthiest choice you can make in whatever situation you are in. There have been times where I had a lunch break but the only place close by was a wends….it happens! And what do you do? you pick the healthier option. Get a chicken sandwich, skip the fries! sure it is still fast food, but it is better than the double stack fries and soda you were going to get. Do not stress yourself over little mistakes, just improve day by day!

Why I Started

Hello  all, and welcome, to my very first blog post. First off let me start off by explaining why i started this blog. Throughout my entire life and some of my high school career I was a twig. I never cared about weight loss or being healthy, for a good part of my life i was uncomfortable with how skinny I was, all i wanted was to gain weight. Well everyone, my wish came true and i gained that weight.

My junior year of high school there was a loss in my family and I turned to food for comfort. I kept putting on weight, and I could not stop myself. I would try to workout but i was on and off with it and after a workout I would reward myself with 3000 calories worth of snacks. Now don’t get me wrong I still was not “fat” but i was not comfortable with myself, and anyone who knew me knew that i put on a significant amount of weight. When I got to college I did not have the time to eat so the weight slowly came off and I loved hearing people tell me I lost weight, now I still wasn’t healthy but I loved keeping the weight off so I limited what I ate, and i would go to the gym most days.

By the end of my freshman year, i was once again, too skinny. I was obsessed with my gym routine, could not skip a single day, so what did I do? I started to pick up the weights and now its been about 2 years and I have never been happier with my body. The gym is no longer a chore, it is something I look forward to. Eating healthy is no longer my diet it is a lifestyle, i never crave fast food but if i want something I don’t deprive myself from it, I have it. I have it because I work hard and i deserve it. I have it because i know it will not become a habit again. I share this with you because I never thought I would be the person to get here. I hated sports, I hated physical activity, i was never good at it. I was lazy and loved food, I was completely content with being unproductive, and now I am a person who looks forward to waking up early. I am now a person who will squeeze a 40 minute workout in my schedule instead of a nap. If you told me two years ago I would be like this I would have laughed in your face and looked at you crazy. The point is I started, and you can too.