Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The One Leg Squat, Simple & Effective

The one leg squat is one of the simplest (as partains to equipment standards) but effective exercises. It's a great way to recruit all the muscles of the leg and utilize the leg in a very functional way.
Although this exercise requires no equipment it is extremely different for the average individual. When working with clients, I have found the best way to teach this exercise is by using a TRX Suspension strap, Airfit Trainer or other similiar means of suspension training. I have my clients hold on to the strap with both hands and  lower their body to the ground. I coach them to sit into their hips while holding on to the straps. This allows them to sit deep into the ground and keep their chest lifted. Over time with practice and improved hip flexibility the leg will gain strength and the movement will become natural.
Attached is a clip of someone completing this exercise, he calls it the "Pistol Squat."

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Healthy Holiday Meal Ideas

The hustle and bustle of Christmas is in full swing. Everyone's making a mad dash to complete there holiday shopping and get ready for holiday guest. With all the madness around gift giving, let's slow down just a moment and begin to think and plan for the upcoming holiday meal. Christmas dinners can be loaded with extra calories, oversized portions, and lots of left overs. Let's plan a few holiday meal substitutes to help you rethink Christmas dinner and start your New Year's on the right foot. Below are a list of holiday favorites fixed with a healthier spin.

1. Healthy Egg Nog- Make this holiday favorite by using skim milk instead of heavy cream and equal parts egg whites to whole eggs. Sweeten to your liking with a low calorie sweetener.

2. Cheese Log- Loaded with calories this holiday favorite ranks high on the calorie list. You can make it healthier by substituting sour cream with tangy greek yogurt. Better yet, skip the cheese log and go for a lighter dip. Dips with a tomato base like marinara or salsa tend to be lower in calories and just as fun around the holidays.

3. Gravy-Most gravy is made from pan dripping which is loaded with fat and calories. This year try making gravy using chicken or beef broth, cornstarch and seasoning. This is great way to protect your health and save on calories.

4. Dessert- Save on calories by choosing a delicious fruit fill pie such as apple or cherry. Choose a slice with little or no crust will also help by allowing you the festive holiday flavor with fewer calories.

Merry Christmas and Looking forward to seeing you this New Year!

For more Healthy Holiday Makeovers check the link attached.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Get Your Rear in Gear

The New Year is right around the corner, and if you're like the most of us, getting into shape ranks pretty high on your priority list. Below are three exercise I recommend when looking to get your rear in gear.

1. Lunges - Lunges often get a bad wrap. When done correctly they're a great way to shape the muscles we use in day to day tasks like walking, riding, or reaching to pick something up. A safely executed lunge creates a ninety degree bend in the front and back knee. Always check to make sure your joints line up to prevent injury. One way to do this is to lunge side ways in front of a mirror. Watch your body as you bend into a lunge position. Make sure your front knee remains over your ankle, your shoulder over your hip, and your hip over your back knee. Press through your front heel as you rise. This will tell the butt to turn on and really help in creating that great shape your looking for.


2. Squats - Again another excellent exercise that resembles our natural body position. When squatting make sure to tighten your core by pulling your belly into toward your spine. This will help protect your back by recruiting extra muscles for additional support. Sit into your hips as if you were sitting into a chair and keep your chest lifted. Watch your self in a miror as you complete this exercise. Look for these specific postural cues and squatting can be very effective.
3. Hip Lifts- My favorite. For those of us with a little extra junk in our trunk, this exercise really isolates the glutes and works to strengthen a weak bum. To complete this exercise, lye flat on your back, push throught your heel as you raise your hips off the ground. To increase  intensity, recruit hamstring (back of the leg) muscles by pointing and flexing your toes while you lift and lower your hips.

Lookin' forward to seeing you Rock Your Skinny Jeans this New Year! Happy New Year!