Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Prepare your Mind to get in Shape

I've been thinking a lot about the challenges of getting in shape and the reasons why we sometimes lack the motivation to see our goals through to completion. And I think it has a lot to do with our state of mind. It's hard to find motivation to work out if we feel negative about our bodies, but it's hard to improve our body image if we feel unsatisfied with how our bodies look. I always find it much easier to motivate myself to keep going once I start to see some results. But seeing results usually takes time. So how do we keep our motivation to work out and diet until this tipping point? Well, this is where "mind fitness" comes in. It's very important to include some kind of mind motivation into your workout program. This could be in the form of guided meditations, positive affirmations or hypnosis.

I also find doing a meditative movement exercise really helps my state of mind. Try Tai Chi, Qi Gong or Flow Yoga, also referred to as Vinyasa Yoga. Or check out one of my favorite workout series, developed by fitness expert Patricia Moreno, called intenSati. intenSati combines the best of group fitness with the elements of yoga and life coaching to create a new workout that is exactly right for our times, combining both physical and spiritual disciplines to create excellent results.

How do you keep your mind fit? We'd love to hear from you! Please leave a comment below.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Tips to get You Bikini Ready

So, I've been unofficially gearing us up for bikini season . . . not to mention gearing MYSELF up for my upcoming wedding! I've talked about eating well and making your workouts fun. And don't forget the Instinctive Weight Loss Hypnosis audio I mentioned a few weeks back. Like many things in my life, I sort of fell off track with listening to the self hypnosis audio programs regularly. It's hard to find a block of time to dedicate to this. But I have lost 7 pounds since starting this journey and I do owe partial credit to this program. From this day forward, I am going to re-dedicate myself to reserving a block of time to listening to these downloads. I've also been looking into joining a bootcamp fitness class to really jump start my toning and strengthening goals. But I've found that these types of programs can be really expensive and I wish they would come to my house!

So instead of investing some of my wedding budget in a bootcamp class, I've decided that all I need is a workout buddy. Someone to motivate me and push me when I'm not feeling in the zone! I found these bootcamp workout downloads that I can try with a partner. The great thing about downloads is that they are portable. So the sky is the limit as to where we can work out. We could go to the park and work out there if we wanted to. I can download the workout to my laptop and we can watch it there or I can hook up my computer to my TV and get the big screen effect. I can also download to my iPhone if I don't feel like lugging my computer around. It is the ultimate convenience!

Tips to help you get bikini ready:

  • Get a fitness partner: Fitness partners can help motivate you and also hold you accountable.

  • Create weekly goals: Be specific and try to choose goals that you know you can accomplish

  • Reward yourself: Once you reach a goal, give yourself a small reward. Preferably not in the form of food. This can be a simple reward like treating yourself to a candlelit bath or downloading a favorite song. You can give yourself bigger rewards for bigger goals accomplished

  • Try to give up one indulgence: If you know you have one particular weakness that you can't help but overeat, try to take it out of your meals all together. Allow yourself one cheat day a week where you eat that item, but don't overindulge!

  • Eliminate high fructose corn syrup and highly processed foods from your diet: Try to eat whole grains, and fruits and vegetables as much as possible. Your body can more easily digest natural foods.
  • Don't under eat and try to divide your meals into 4 or 5 meals a day. I've taken to saving some of my lunch and eating the rest of it 3-4 hours later. This really works!

Do you have any tips to get bikini ready? We'd love to hear from you! Please leave a comment below

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

How You Can Get Marisa Tomei's Great Body as Seen in "The Wrestler"

A couple of weeks ago my friend invited me to join her for a three hour hula hoop class. At first, I was mortified. I am kind of a hopeless case when it comes to coordination. I mean, I can barely do the hula hoop exercise on my Wii Fit! I could just picture myself looking like a pathetic dork in front of a class of people who were gyrating geniuses. But at the same time, I thought it might get me out of my exercise rut. Even though bikini season is right around the corner and I'm getting married in September, I've been finding it really hard to stick to my routine. Maybe if I learned something fun, I would actually WANT to exercise. Plus, I heard that hula hooping was how Marisa Tomei got that killer body for "The Wrestler".

So I went to the class and now I'm hooked! I mean, it was challenging and a little frustrating because I just couldn't get some of the tricks that they taught us. But at least I learned to keep the hula hoop up for more than five seconds! I even bought a hula hoop from the instructor so I could practice on my own. The trick is to get a large hula hoop if you are an adult. The smaller hula hoops are for children or for more skilled hula hoopers. I've been practicing most mornings and I'm really getting the basics down pretty well. It's really enjoyable to put in a CD and just hula hoop to the music. It's almost meditative and it is so much more fun than my normal routine!

When I told a coworker what I had been up to, she reminded me that we had a couple of hula hoop videos in our library. I was so excited because I wasn't sure when they were going to be offering another class! I just downloaded the Hoopnotica: Hoopdance Basics. This video teaches you how to keep the hoop spinning on your waist, hips, above your head and also how to take the hoop on and off your body in a beautiful spiral. Once I master these moves, I'm going to download the advanced video Hoopnotica: Hoopdance Workout. This video teaches hooping on your upper body, hooping on your thighs, additional corkscrews and angles. Plus it includes a 20 minute work out.

If you are getting bored with your workout routine, I really recommend that you try hula hooping or some of our other dance oriented workouts like Latin Groove, Bollywood Dance Workout and Brazilian Body

How do you keep your workouts fun? We would like to hear from you! Please leave a comment below.