or at least some ideas for how to adjust yourself during your next workout. 🙂
Hi friends! How’s the morning going? Hope you’re having a great one so far. Last night, spin was a blast, and when I came home to dinner already waiting for me. Isn’t it the best when that happens? Slow cooker to the rescue. It’s definitely in my top 5 must-have kitchen appliance list. I made some of this turkey and feta lasagna with brown rice noodles, and it makes our house smells heavenly. Garlic + marinara + noodles = smells like nana’s house. (PS nana makes the BEST spaghetti.)
After the class last night, I was thinking about personal training. Since I’m often asked if I’m still actively training clients. I’m not at the time, and while I miss it, I have some fun projects in the works and other things going on in addition to the little one on the way. I definitely plan to dig into more postnatal fitness and plans -I’ll explain this more in the note at the bottom of this post!- and am excited to see where my fitness journey takes me. For now, I’m really enjoying teaching and taking classes. Even so, I look around the gym, and I would love to offer tips or help out anyone who’s interested. (A girl told me yesterday that she had been doing interval training almost every day and wants to lose fat but gain muscle, and I wanted to be like, “I can help you out!!”)
(Photo: James Patrick)
I think hiring a personal trainer is one of the most effective strategies for accomplishing your fitness goals. Not only will a qualified, experienced, trainer help you create a plan and complete a safe workout, but they can also help you in other ways. For example, they can give you the knowledge to break and prevent plateaus, tackle fitness aspirations, MOTIVATE you (!), and take your routine to the next level. I especially recommend seeking out a trainer in your area if you’re just getting started. They can get you set up with a solid plan and safe form as you work towards creating your fitness lifestyle.
If you’ve been working out for a while, there are some simple adjustments you can make in your workout to correct yourself along the way. Think about how you can be your own personal trainer during your sweat sesh, and you’ll get even more out of your routine. It’s easy to cruise through a workout and forget to maintain proper form; this could lead to muscle compensation or even injury.
Here are some rules of thumb that you can apply to many of your strength and cardio workouts:
1) Range of motion. Like we say in BODYPUMP, “Full range for the greatest muscle change.” if you are completing the exercise with a full range of motion, you will recruit more muscle fibers and force your body to work harder and become stronger. Think about how you can increase the range of motion safely within your strength training workouts. For cardio, especially plyometrics, create a dynamic from low to high; you’ll recruit more muscles and likely burn more calories.
(photo: Danny Chan)
2) Is your core turned on? When you walk in the gym, engage your core, and you can let it go when you leave. 😉 Try to keep your abs braced during your workout, whether you’re jogging on the treadmill or lifting weights. It will help to support your back, promote good posture, and also give you a bonus core workout.
3) Drop your shoulders away from your ears. Try to avoid holding tension in your neck and shoulders, as it’s energy wasted that you could be devoting to whatever move you’re completing. It also helps to draw the shoulders down and back to lengthen the muscles in the neck, as they can become tight from constant sitting and hunching.
4) Train your body evenly. Make sure to work the front and back of your body equally to promote muscle balance. For example, for every set of biceps curls you complete, do a set of triceps work. When you train your chest, be sure to train your back. (You don’t have to do this on the same day, but within a week span you should train each muscle group at least one to two times.)
5) Watch your knees. If you’re doing any type of jumping activity, be sure to land with a soft knee, instead of the leg locked out. While strength training, keep a slight bend in the knees. While performing squats and lunges, avoid letting your knees jut out past your toes. Keep your weight in your heels with a lifted chest, tight core, and sink down and back for your squats. For your lunges, the front knee should be stacked right above that front ankle.
6) Posture is king. Actively try to pull your shoulders back and down, lift up from your chest, extend up through the crown of your head, and tighten your core. Practice having good posture during everyday activities as much as you can to keep your core strong and protect your back. If you’re looking for some stretches for good posture, check out this post.
Anything you can think to chime in? Do you adjust yourself during your workouts? Have you worked with a personal trainer before? How’d it go?
Hope you have a great morning! <3
Thank you so much to those of you who have let me know you’re interested in working out with me this summer. I was blown away by the response, and am currently sorting through all of the emails and due dates. Originally I was looking for five mamas, but I will be sending it along to 15 due to the overwhelming response. Expect an email from me this week if you let me know you’re interested!!