Workouts

So You Want A Strong Butt?

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If you thought a big butt meant a strong butt--there IS a difference. You can get a big butt from simply over eating...well, a lot. But I have a feeling that's not the type of butt you want.

Let me break this other thing down real quick: a heavy "leg day" doesn't equate to a bigger or stronger butt.

A strong butt is muscular--no, not in a "bulky" or manly way. It's used for a purpose, not for the viewing pleasure of men or to fill out your yoga pants better. Having a strong butt will literally make you better in all aspects of training. You'll be able to do more challenging moves, lift heavier weights and move more efficiently through each movement.

Have You Found Your Butt?

I can speak from some seriously sad personal experience, for YEARS I was squatting and deadlifting and never once did I feel anything in my butt. No soreness, no muscle activation--nada. Effing zilch. I thought my ass was broken, it was dead..someone call the coroner and get my butt to it's funeral.

Have you ever been training and can't feel your butt? No soreness, no sensation back there? (maybe that isn't the most appropriate word but you get it)

Our glutes--as in everyone in the world, are pretty much dead  asleep & need to be woken up a bit so you get the most out of your training. When you aren't actively using a muscle, it will inevitably stop working to it's full capacity.

Rachel, How Can I Find My Butt?

I'm so glad you asked. There are specific glute activation exercises you can do to, well, wake your ass up. Here are my favorite:

You don't have to do all of these before each workout, pick 2 or 3 that work best for you after you've tried them all!

Okay, now you know how to wake up your sleepy glutes. Even if you can feel your butt when you're working out--still spend 5-10 min warming up before your workout by choosing 2-3 of these movements so you get the most out of each training session!

Build Your Strong Butt

While things like deadlifts and squats will most definitely make you sore, I don't feel as though they are the best at necessarily building a strong butt. Don't get me wrong, they will aid for sure in the progression of building your butt, but I feel like my favorites below are missed out on and if you don't have access to a barbell to squat/deadlift with these are great options!

     Hip thrust:

  • This can be done with a barbell, kettlebell, dumbbell or sandbag (even a small child--make sure it's yours). Before you load this up though make sure you've mastered doing a glute bridge on the ground, then progress to elevating your feet, finally you can move yourself to a small box or chair and start with your back elevated and feet on the ground. You can make this move challenging no matter what level you're at! If you're still working on getting the basic movement pattern down, I'd suggest staying with your feet on the floor, once that becomes easy elevate your feet and add a band around your knees--think about driving your knees out to further activate your glutes and focus on higher reps here. Once you've mastered that--then it's time to load weight onto your hips (you can use a soft padding here to protect from bruising) and elevate your back as shown in the video below.
  1. Hip Thrust NO weight
  2. Hip Thrust WITH weight

When adding this move into your workout, I would do:

  • Floor: 2-3 sets of 15-25
  • Feet elevated: 2-3 sets of 15-25
  • With weight: 2-4 sets of 10-15

     Kettlebell Swing:

  • This move is not only phenomenal for your butt, but your whole entire body! Click HERE to see a demonstration. A few things to note:
  1. This is a hip hinging movement, NOT a squat.
  2. Before you try this move, it's ideal to be able to first properly RDL (Romanian deadlift)--as this teaches the essential hip hinge movement.
  3. This is a ballistic and powerful movement, it is NOT slow--use your hip thrust to power through the movement quickly.
  4. Keep your core braced and squeeze your glutes at the top like you're trying to keep diamonds in there.

    Cable Pull Through

    If you are still trying to master the KB swing, this is a similar movement but easier to learn, while still providing you with strong glutes! Click HERE to see it done.

  1. Don't squat. Think about pushing your butt back towards the wall. Imagine you have glue on your butt and you're reaching back to grab $100 bills.
  2. Keep a wider stance than squat position.
  3. Your head goes with your body. Try to not to bob your head like a chicken but keep your neck in line with your spine through the whole movement!
  4. Squeeze your glutes when you get to the top of the movement, making sure that you don't hyper extend and create an arch in your low back though!

When adding this move to your workout I would do: 2-4 sets of 10-15 reps.

 

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Finally, a sample workout of how I would incorporate one of these moves into a training day for myself or a clent.

Workout #1

Warm up with some foam rolling + lax ball if needed and pick 2-3 glute activation exercises.

  • 2x10 lateral band walk
  • 2x20 glute bridge (feet on ground)
  • 2x30 seconds half kneeling hold R/L

Strength:

  • 4x10 push ups (modify if needed)
  • 4x12 goblet squat
  • 4x10 single arm cable row R/L
  • 4x12 hip thrust

Core:

  • 3x20 seconds side plank R/L
  • 3x10 pallof press R/L

Finisher:

30 seconds on//15 seconds rest-- after first round of exercise is completed, rest 2 min and repeat for a total of 3-4 times through.

  • Wall ball
  • Burpees
  • Jump squats
  • Mountain climbers

 

 

Do you feel a little more confident in the process of building yourself a strong butt now?

 

What questions do you have about creating strong glutes?

 

xoxo

Rachel

 

Cardio? No thanks. Try These 3 Workouts Instead!

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I talk a whole lot about how here at Strong Chicks Rock we are "fitness rebels" and we don't follow fitness norms. That encompasses many different aspects of our community but one of the bigger aspects of that is how we train, specifically in regards to cardio. We don't do traditional cardio. What I mean by that is simply steady state cardio. EX: long periods of time on treadmill, elliptical ect.

Let me be clear...

It's not that I dislike or hate steady state cardio. I mean if we're being honest, I wouldn't ever choose to run for fun. Not my thing. If it's yours though, and you love it. Rock on babe.

I have my clients do a variety of different forms of cardio. Things like lifting weights faster, and varieties of HIIT (high intensity interval training).

Start to Finish In Under 20 min

Because hello, who wouldn't want to yield some rockin results with less than 20min of work that was once thought only attainable with hours on machines. Sign me up for that, yo!

Below are three different options for cardio that I would prescribe to a client (seeing they are pain/injury free and at a beginner-intermediate fitness level). Simplicity is key for me, and when I can help my clients (and myself!) achieve killer results in what I believe is the most efficient way possible. I'd call that a major win.

Thats why HIIT rocks. High intensity interval training looks a little something like this: Work at max effort for an allotted time, rest for a short period of time, just enough for your heart rate to drop a little bit, and begin again working at max effort for the specific duration of time. These steps are repeated for a certain amount of rounds.

Workouts

We call these finishers, and they are to be added to the end of the strength training portion to your workout!

#1

30 seconds work period//15 seconds rest// 3x through

  1. Burpees
  2. Medball slam
  3. Lateral box run
  4. Squats (front load a weight ONLY if you can preform squats with perfect form and can maintain that form through all sets)

#2

Set timer for 5 min and complete as many rounds as possible

  • 20 seconds on airdyne or erg (stair stepper is okay too)
  • 10 wall ball
  • 30ft foot hand crawl

#3

Set timer for 5-8 min and complete as many rounds as possible

  • Sled pushes 50ft
  • Farmers carry 50 ft
  • Rope slams (20)

Now it's your turn! Which workout will you be adding to your routine? Comment below and let me know :)

 

xoxo

Rachel

Workout Wednesday

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At last, Workout Wednesday is alive again! I love working out. Granted there are some days I don't have a shit ton of energy and may not want to kill it in my workout, everytime I choose to honor my body through some form of movement..I've NEVER regretted it. I also really love blasting you guys with good solid content that you can take and apply to your own life/workout/lifestyle. So, without further ado..I hope you enjoy the workout below :) It was written in a way that focuses on maximizing your time while giving you the best results possible!

Workout:

  • Push ups x8-10
  • Banded hip bridge x15-20 (band above knees--driving knees out as you bring your hips up)
  • Single arm row x8-10 each side
  • Goblet squat x10-12 (squat to box if needed)

Complete 3-4 sets of the above, then move on to:

Core:

  • 3x30 second plank
  • 3x10 pallof press each side

Finisher:

Set timer for 5 min and complete  as many rounds as possible in the time alloted:

  • Crawl 30 ft (keep butt low to ground, engage core, and keep hips as still as possible)
  • TRX jump squat x20
  • Med ball slams x10

As always, adjust these moves based on YOUR fitness level. There is zero shame in regressing a movement if needed. Solid foundation of basic movement patterns is what will lead you to a happy, healthy and strong fitness journey!

 

I hope you guys (safely) kill it on this glorious hump day ;)

 

 

 

 

SCR MEMBERS ONLY W7F&W

Hello my wonderful Strong Chicks. To make things easier, I'm going to upload the workouts & grocery guide in one post from now on.

This week you are getting TWO awesome HIIT routines. I'm obsessed with HIIT. If you're someone who is trying to lose body fat, these types of workouts are made just for you. Strength training alone is awesome, you'll burn fat and gain lean muscle BUT pairing it with HIIT is the perfect recipe for success as it burns 4x the amount of fat as steady state cardio (things like the treadmill/the elliptical), AND high intensity interval training when done right also allows you to continue to burn fat for up to 72 hours AFTER the workout...uh, that's what I'm talking about.

Food wise, here are some more ideas to help you keep things fun and exciting :)

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WEEK7

Weekend Warriors Unite + FREE Workout

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Hello you beautiful, strong, bad ass woman (or man). Can you do me a favor? Can you believe in YOU this weekend, please?

If you're someone who gets lost in the rush of the weekend, or in Nextflix a la pint of ice cream and by Sunday night you find yourself 2 pints deep and full of guilt, you just can't get out of this weekend slump..but M-F you are on point? Girl, I get your struggle.

It doesn't have to be this way though, you CAN enjoy the weekend and still come out strong on Monday feeling confident, happy and guilt free. #balance

 

Here's how....

The SCR Weekend Warrior:

  • She honors her body. That doesn't mean you can't enjoy a slice of pizza, it means you won't trash your body with binge eating. You won't eat until you can't breathe, you will make choices that make you feel good physically and mentally.

 

  • She is intentional. Not just with your food and the choices you make, but it movement and life. If your weekend is jam packed find a 15 min junk and do a quick HIIT session. Be intentional with those 15 min so your time is used to get the most bang out of your buck. If you know that you feel more alive and happy when you make time for yourself, whether it meditation, a manicure ect--make sure you do that. Nothing brings you off "the path" more than losing yourself and not making time for me time.

 

  • She plans. You don't need to be a crazy planner and plan out every single moment that is going to happen. If you know you're going to want to go out to eat and don't want to end up in a "No you pick" situation and then they pick somewhere that has deep-fried everything and at that point you say f*uck it and eat as many fried Oreos as possible. Instead, it helps to have an idea of 3-4 places you enjoy that you know you feel comfortable eating at! If you're going to a party and you know you like to binge at the snack table, plan to eat a little before you go so you don't show up ravenous.

 

  • She is confident. Not in the sense of "hey look at me", but confident in your choices. I know it's easy to go with the flow of friends because you don't want to feel left out. Own the commitment you've made to honor your body though. If you know you can't go to such and such restaurant because there is too much temptation but your friends want to go--be confident in your decision to say no. Your goals aren't weird, I promise.

The SCR Weekend Warrior Workout:

This quick HIIT (high intensity interval training) workout is just want you need to keep you focused on your goals, murder some fat and keep you active this weekend. The point of this workout is to give the 20 seconds of movement your 100% effort (max intensity) and then rest for 10 seconds before moving to the next exercise. Form is KEY. If you feel your form start to break, slow your pace so you are still moving but with proper form. P.S- If you don't have a kettlebell you can use a dumbbell or gallon jug of water. You DO want a challenging weight. One that makes you sweat, but still allows good form!

Let me see you crush it this weekend. Sweat selfie? Food? Post your pictures to social media using #SCRweekendwarrior so our team can motivate and encourage you!

 

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Workout Wednesday!

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Hey friends! Loving today's workout because I added in one of my favorite core moves--plank drag throughs. Here's how it's done: what you're doing here is setting up two 5-10lb dumbbells and then getting in push up position, you'll then be picking up the dumbbell with the hand furthest away and pulling it under your body to the other side. We are really focusing on our core of course and balance/stability.

As always ladies, scale this workout to YOUR fitness level. That may mean doing less reps, taking more breaks or if you're advanced adding in an extra set. Train smart!

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Xo Rachel

Workout Wednesday

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Good morning beautiful ladies! Here's a brand spankin new workout Wednesday. This one will definitely make you sweat!

Training tips: As always, scale this workout to YOUR fitness level. 3-5 circuits is recommended but it depends physically where you're at. You want a weight that's challenging for each move but allows you to preform the move with precision.

When doing your KB swing remember you want to hinge at the hips and push your butt back towards the wall, NOT squat down. Let your thrust guide your arms up, don't force them, keep a slight bend in the knees just enough so you don't lock them out. When you thrust, squeeze your butt so hard like you're trying to keep pennies in there!

Now, go safely kick some ass. Xo Rachel

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Not Reaching Goals Quick Enough? Try This!

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Has your progress stalled? Maybe you aren't reaching goals as fast as you'd like? There honestly could be a few issues at play here but what I see most is this: a severe lack of structure in the programming.

What's that mean? How your program or workouts are structured are more important than you know. Did your trainer evaluate you and take note of where you struggle/areas you are weak? And did they apply those to your program? Or did they throw you into a shit ton of stuff? Does your program directly align with your goals?

Issue #1 Has your workout ever told you to do weighted jumping jacks, one legged bosu ball bicep curls or some other odd sounding move? While these moves don't suck, they have a time and a place and to be honest it's place probably isn't in your workout. Do these things make you sweat? Yes. Will you be burning calories? Yes. Does that mean you're reaching your goals? No.

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Here's the thing, just because you're sweating doesn't mean you're working toward what you want. Want to build a booty? Most likely, air squats, jumping jacks and mountain climbers won't get you there. Your programming should incorporate moves that not only are for you and your fitness level, but that help you achieve the proper booty gains you want.

Issue #2

So maybe your program looks like it's giving you what you want, your legs are sore on leg day so you think everything is great. Let's look closer...

Is this program wearing you into the ground?

If yes, read below:

There's a such thing as TOO MUCH work. A lot of programs have an obscene amount of volume (meaning a lot of reps--of A LOT of exercises) . When I first started coaching I sucked. True words, I'd put all the "leg workouts" in one day, and while this achieved a type of result..it didn't achieve the best result or smartest. You could be doing less..and gaining more definition, sculpting those muscles to get the defined look you want. By training very intentionally, ie: not over training the quads (like most people do) and instead focusing on working both planes of the body (AKA:front and back), this would be hammies and quads (this is just one example), it's result would be much greater and your body would be happy. So while you're working one, the other has more time to recover before you hit it again.

Let me say this, volume isn't always bad. In fact volume can be good. I know, did it just make you say "WTF make up your mind??". Volume when programmed intentionally and not as a massacre to a specific body part is good.

Basically, a little done right--you get you some bad ass freaking results. Compared to tearing your about apart.

Bottom line:

1.) Your program should be customized to you and your very specific goals, as well as the way your body currently moves and functions. This is why jumping into fitness classes causes issues for SO many people. These classes are a "one size fits all" approach, no personalization is taken into count. Your injured? Oh well. You want to sculpt your arms? Tough shit. Make sure what you do, is designed for you.

2. A workout isn't a compilation of 10 moves for a body part you want to fix. Your workout should be very intentionally planed. Does it make sense? Is it directly going to move you forward to your goals? Is it smart? Think about that next time you train!

Sample of bad, unplanned workout:

3x50 air squats 3x50 walking lunges 3x20 alternating jumping lunges 3x20 step ups 3x20 frog jumps

See how heavily quad dominated that workout was? Putting our bodies at a huge imbalance by completely ignoring our posterior chain (AKA:back side) , and you just murdered your quads. While some may think that's a good thing--not so much.

Here's an example of a well planed workout:

3x10 kettlbell swing 3x10 barbell bent over row 3x10 push ups 3x10 inverted row 3x20 seconds foot hand crawl

As you can see this was an upper body focused workout, however I still added swings to get a full body movement in. The swings as we know target every muscle group you have and are a perfect option for "cardio". You'll sweat, work every muscle and as a bonus you're even working your core :) Because we did the bent over row (posterior//back), I wanted to add the push up and inverted row to work the anterior//front side. To finish we did a crawl, why? Engaging every single muscle..hello abs!

Have questions? Let me know! Think you need some programming assistance? Email me at strongchicksrock.rachel@gmail.com .

I Can't Believe I'm Sharing My Fitness Secret

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HAPPY FRIDAY my beautiful friends!! I hope you all are off to a fantastic start. I've said it 100x but know this, your health isn't M-F, it's everyday. So don't lose sight of it this weekend.

Ok, enough is enough. I'm sure you're wondering what my big fitness secret is.....

Drum roll please.....

Less Is More.

Before you roll your eyes and click the page away (yes I know you were expecting the answer to be a magical trick to reaching your goals!) just listen.

Where It All Went Wrong

Be it through Pinterest, school, your boyfriend or Cosmo Magazine women (and men) have been programmed into thinking they need to spend 1-2 hours in the gym and that cardio is a must.

This couldn't be farther from the truth, I've trained over 100 women and successfully lost 45lbs myself, all without spending hours in the gym, doing a billion exercises or doing cardio. How? I'll tell you.

What Is Functional?

Your training should be functional and here's my version of that: Training that honors your body and it's natural movement patterns. Moving and using exercises the help you move better in everyday life. Crawling, pushing, pulling, carrying , picking up and putting down. When we train this way, we are training for life.

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Some may look at this say and say "no way", they don't see how doing things so simple could get them any sort of results. That's ok, maybe they aren't ready.

I'm not saying you'll never touch a weight, because you will--a lot. The thing is, you can accomplish your goals doing very few movements, while simultaneously working your whole body, lose weight and gain that definition you want. All that, without pounding your body into the ground.

Here's How:

Take a look at this workout:

3x30ft foot hand crawl 3x12 kettlbell swing 3x10 inverted row 3x10 push ups

Breaking this down, you can see that when done right, the foot hand crawl uses every muscle in your body. Want to know how I got abs? I crawled, I kept my core tight and crawled some more. Our swings move us to the "cardio" portion of this workout. This is a ballistic movement, so much power, strength AND endurance coming from this move! Again, the swing uses every muscle! Now we go to the inverted row, because I added push ups to this I wanted to add a pull as well. Working both planes of the body (front and back) allows us to not just strengthen both, but get the most of our workout in a short period of time.

I see a lot of things like one legged bicep curls on the bosu ball. Why? Yes you are placed at an imbalance and your stability is being challenged but is this one move really helping you get the most out of your workouts and use your time wisely? Not so much!

So next time you train, think about your goals. Program your workouts to be functional and allow you to get he most bang for your buck each time!

Now go functionally kick some ass!

Rach

3 At Home/Bodyweight Workouts!

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Hey ladies! I'm all for movement, wether in the gym/outside/at home. You don't need the perfect setting to get a good workout in. If you're waiting for the perfect space, gym, ect you may never reach your goals #truth.

There is a "gym" everywhere you look. Yes, everywhere. Your stairs, the park, a rock. You can train using SO manny different things, today however we are going to focus on using solely your own body! Yes--you can transform your body using nothing but YOU!

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#1 3x5 pistol squats R/L (use couch for assistance if needed) 3x10 split stance squats R/L 3x30 seconds foot hand crawl 3x10 split jack lunge 3x20 second plank

#2 20 seconds burpees 10 second rest 20 seconds stairs 10 seconds rest 20 seconds foot hand crawl 10 second rest 20 seconds push ups

2min rest-----Repeat for a total of 10 times through!

#3 3x10 broad jumps 3x12 frog jumps 3x12 speed skaters 3x8 surfer jumps

As always in my workouts scale to YOUR fitness level. Some of these are tough, 2 of them are very heavily leg focused. Workout #1 will really attack your quads so if you're looking for something lighter then these may not be for you!

Be safe&kick some ass!

Workout Wednesday!

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The good thing is today I know it's Wednesday..not Thursday and this is being posted on the right day haha. Today you're going to be crawling,pushing, pulling and pressing. To me, this is a perfect workout. Why? You see how I just listed what you'll be doing, the actions being taken by your body? Those are all movements you do on a daily basis in some way shape or form.

Strong Chicks Rock training goes beyond body image and into the mechanics of our body. Moving with intention, moving so when you bend down to pick up a case of water you don't hurt your back.

With that said, here is today's workout. As always scale this to YOUR fitness level. NEVER push through pain and modify as needed. I recommend doing 3-5 circuits of this based on your fitness level.

Enjoy :)

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Workout Wednesday!

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It's hump day so obviously that means we are going to be working on growing the rump today! I want you to follow the workout as laid out. Squats should always be first! Why? If you were to swing, step up and glute bridge THEN squat, you wouldn't be able to have as big of load on your back and move with precision because you would have used most of your energy up. Doing squats first allows you to knock em out with a good and challenging weight while maintaining great form!

As always scale this workout to YOUR fitness level, adjust weights as needed.

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If you've never squatted before than I advise you to only attempt them once you've learned from a fitness professional. Squats are AMAZING, not only are they working your quads, glutes and hammies but you're engaging your core like crazy--hello abs! However this is a move, that needs to be learned the right way. Jumping right in without proper knowledge and mechanics of the squat can lead to injury so train smart!

Xo Rach

Workout Wednesday!

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Happy Hump Day! Today you're doing a mix of all of my favorite lower body movements! Working towards sculpting those legs for summer.. Or just life in general, because hey, we're training for life. Not just 3 hot months.

As always adjust weights as needed based on your fitness level. The workout should be preformed for a total of 3-5 circuits, again this is based on YOUR fitness level.

Now go rock it!

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Xo Rach

Becoming Fearlessly Fit!

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Are you someone who shys away from the gym? Or maybe someone who goes, but stays away from the weight room? This is something so completly common in women unfortunately. What is it that has made you fear the gym? Is it the other people there or lack of knowledge when it comes to what to do? Theres no wrong answer, but both answers have solutions.

People use to tell me all the time (because I was dealthy afraid of the gym, like sick to my somach afraid) "Whats the worse thing that could happen?". As they asked this I created a list a mile long in my head of all the things that could happen.

What is Fear?

Here's the thing. The story we ae playing in our heads is just that. A story. You've walked into the the gym and already told yourself that you are going to fail. You've played out the situation. You know if you go over to the squat rack that someone will stare at you and make you feel bad. You already know this.

image Whats the easiest way to stop the stories in our head from playing at 100mph? Realize this, fear is just an emotion. Just like happiness and excitement. We can choose to be happy, and we can choose to be fearful. It's important to know that fear isn't a man with an axe running after you. It is only an emotion we give power to. One that we 100% don't need to.

Getting Over Fear

I'm not saying that if you think of rainbows and butterflies that you'll never encounter fear. Trust me, I know fear. I suffered from serve anxiety for years. When I realized I had a choice though, to not let fear consume me. My life changed. When I feel those feelings creeping up in my mind I acknowledge them, I realize they are there and I keep going. I don't feed their thoughts, I don't plant a story. I let them come as they are, then let it go. I still may feel nervous occasionally, but I know that fear isn't real.

I know what you're thinking, well no I don't but if you were anything like me then maybe these thoughts are running through your head. "You're a trainer it's easy for you to say that" or "Yeah think happy thoughts and I can do everything I wanted..yeah right". Those are both valid thoughts, truly.

Think of this, the olympian athlete didn't just wake up one day and acquire super human strength over night. He decided he had goals, and in order to meet them he had to put in work. Even if he didn't always like it or feel comfortable he had to, if he wanted to reach the olympics.

This is the same with dealing with fear. We don't want to live a fearful life, we want to be happy and confident. Not just in the gym but in life. Evey step we take to achieve this may not always be easy and it definitely may not always be comfortable. Think of the alternative though, a life never reaching goals. Never accomplishing the things you want because you feed the story of fear to your mind.

So, lets bring it back to the gym. You've never lifted before, or maybe you have in private but never in a gym setting. That's ok. The people you see rocking it, all started out somewhere. They made mistakes and still make mistakes. You have to be ok with being new at something. You must accept that it's ok to look silly, or do something wrong. That's all part of learning and growing. Everyone in the gym from pro athletes to beginners are in there to progress. You don't reach your goal then say F it and never come back . You stay to learn and grow.

The gym is a school of fitness (I say this lightly..). Walk in knowing that you won't give power to your negative thoughts. Focus on yourself, not on others. I promise you, they are focusing on themselves..not on you!

Your Fearlessly Fit Workout

Here's a workout to take with you to the gym, each move is linked to a YouTube video that shows proper form. Keep this post up with you when you go to the gym and click the links as needed so you know what to do.

Adjust weight based on fitness level. Do 3-5 rounds of this workout, again based on your fitness level. Form is key, so if you feel your form lacking then lower your reps.

Weighted walking lunges x10 R/L Push ups x10 Box step ups x12 R/L TRX rows x10 Bugarian split squat x10 R/L

Know that you freaking rock and you can do this! You are not bound to cardio and abs. Take control of your mind.

You are a Strong Chick.

xo Rach

Friday Fit Tip!

Happy Friday everyone! Let's get into our first Friday Fit Tip...

Cardio is on the menu today. While steady state cardio (running on the treadmill, using the elliptical) can deffintley benefit us in ways. It's not the only way, nor best way to achieve our goals. More so if fat loss is our goal.

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For those of you that have been running mindlessly on the treadmill hoping for a way to reach your goals in a more efficient way.. I have your answer.

HIIT or high intensity interval training.

What is it?

HIIT is working at intervals. Giving 100% all out effort (with proper form) for the allotted "work" time then rest for a short period and beginning again.

Where you were spending 30-60min doing cardio before, now with HIIT you'll be burning 2x the amount of calories in your cardio session AND be done in less than half the time. With most HIIT sessions lasting anywhere from 10-30 min, you are blasting fat like a mother trucker.

If you thought you were someone on a plataeu, I highly encourage you adding this form of training to your programming 2-3x a week. You'll notice signifigat changes in your body.

The Benefits

Healthier Heart: One study has shown that after 12 weeks of incorporating HIIT training the studies where able to bike DOUBLE the amount they could before!

Happier Insides: Research has also shown that you can improve your insuiln sensitivity by 25%. That alone, is just incredible to me. By adding 2-3 HIIT sessions a week, your body from the inside out it completely improving and becoming fitter, and healthier.

Happier Weight Loss: Where once you had thought you had to spend hours doing cardio you can now achieve double if not triple the results by spending less than an hour a week doing this.

How

One thing needs to be clear, HIIT is great. However, you need to adjust accroding to your fitness level. If you've never worked out before and you're trying to demolish a HIIT workout, you are likely to injure yourself. So let's be smart. Take this workout below and adjust as needed for your fitness level. By that, I mean maybe you'll do less rounds or stretch your resting period by an extra 5 seconds.

20 seconds kettlebell swings 10 second rest 20 second split jack lunges 10 second rest 20 seconds jump squats 10 second rest

1-2 min rest then repeat the circuit again for 7-10 circuits.

See what I'm saying, that's only 7-10 active minutes of training!

You can add a HIIT workout to the end of a normal workout, or if you want you could just make a HIIT routine your workout for the day!

What do you think, will you be adding more HIIT into your training?

Would you guys like more HIIT workouts to be added?

Have a great weekend.

Rach

Break Out Of Your (Fitness) Cage!

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Hey you wild thing you. You know how people say the gym is like a zoo?

Everyone running, not really getting anywhere. Not able to be free.

I like this reference because I think it's so true. Don't get me wrong I love the gym, after years of struggling with it, it has turned into a place I enjoy (most of the time). The thing is, I don't use it the way I "should".

Let's review a basic workout you may find on pinterest or some random website:

Smith machine squats Leg curls Leg press Abductor machine Adductor Machine Calf raises

Now, while these moves certainly will give you a result. It' may not be the best, nor the most efficient way to do so.

When you use machines, they are having you move in their line of motion, and not a natural path of motion. You are sacrificing all the benefits by being locked into the machine. We'll talk more about that later.

Training should be functional. When you limit yourself to machines only, you conform to what the machine wants you to do. Which may or may not play out in real life. Your body is meant to push, pull, squat, walk, twist, lunge. e.g, You should be able to squat down and pick up a case of water without a rounded back and our knees collapsing in.

Your training should enhance your life, help you move better and preform better. By training functional movements, correctly the outcome will enhance your life and body.

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Here's a good example to help you understand better: The Squat is a move that is phenomenal and everyone should do it in some variation. However there are many components to this move, but when you only use the smith machine we are being restricted from doing a squat in a full range of motion, e.g, Being forced to move in this locked position, you won't get the booty gains you normally would from a full barbel squat.

When you squat with a barbel you aren't just focusing on your quads, glutes or hammies you are focusing on balance and your core like crazy. Having such a heavy load on your back, squatting down and driving up, require us to fully engage our core and keep it tight. BUT when we use the smith machine we don't have to do that because the bar is stabilized for us. Meaning it's connected to the machine, it doesn't allow you to control the bar.

Now you know why I don't use the smith machine, I'm not saying throw it out completely but lets focus on more functional movements that will give you more bang for your buck.

I'm not saying bail on the gym, but I am suggesting to use more bodyweight, use the barbel, squat//deadlift//use kettlebells. Beyond that, try taking your workout outside! Push and press logs, throw rocks..deaddlift them too, crawl, sprint. The possibilities are endless.

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Here's a great workout you can do IN the gym, but without using machines:

Based on your fitness level do 3-5 circuits, use a challenging weight that allows you to perform the move with proper form.

12 Renegade Rows R/L 10 Push Ups 12 Weighted Burpees (Medicine ball OR EZ bar) 30 second Plank 10 Kettlebell Push Presses R/L 10 Kettlebell Swings

How are you currently training?

If you're using a lot of machines, how can you start to train more function to your program?

Let me know, leave a comment below!

Rachel