Shoulder Boulders – 5 mistakes when training shoulders

Shoulders can be tough to train because people feel limited with exercise moves. Ok Military press, then what else is there? Lots of people make up moves but shoulders are tricky and many train them wrong!

Here are 5 mistakes many people make and how to correct them!

1. Over working anterior delts – Since they typically carry the heaviest loads, your front delts are not only primary movers during overhead presses, they’re also secondary movers during chest and triceps workouts, helping during presses and dips. If you’re doing front raises in addition to a lot of shoulder, chest and tri compound lifts, you’re likely overworking your front delts.

Solution – workout chest and delts on different days and be mindful of the secondary muscles you are working out when training larger muscle groups

2. Under working Posterior delts – In the same breath as #1 since anterior delts tend to get too much emphasis, posterior delts tend to get too little. Rear delts assist during lat exercises, such as rows and pulldowns; but if you’re targeting your lats correctly, it’s unlikely that your rear delts are receiving enough work on back or shoulder day to reach their full potential.

Solution – Add rear delt training into your back day or if you train them on shoulder day don’t wait to the end of your workout, mix in moves to target all the heads of your delts.

3. Speed Racer – You lift too fast to make any growth to the muscle fibers.

Solution – Try sitting during shoulder moves to prevent any momentum from legs and isolate shoulders. Or try to add counts to your lifts – 1 count up, 1 count pause and 2 counts down, this will ensure you are properly firing off your muscles.

4. Poor form – Along with speeding through the moves, improper form can not only stall any progress and muscle growth but also can cause injury. Plus, correct form is especially important on shoulder day, because of the ball-and-socket joints’ vulnerability to injury.

Solution – Throughout each set, focus on the deltoid heads you’re targeting, not on the resistance. Work the muscle, not the weight. After reaching failure in a shoulder exercise, don’t cheat to eke out extra reps. Instead, do a drop set, have a partner help with forced, reps or use the rest-pause technique. Quality over quantity, especially with shoulders. Shoulders are smaller muscles so don’t worry if you are using lower weights. Proper form with appropriate/challenging weight will result in muscles growth!

5. Mix it up – You do the same should moves over and over.

Solution  – Try including a different pressing exercise each shoulder workout. Here are three free-weight presses you likely aren’t doing: underhand presses (press a barbell over-head with a shoulder-width underhand grip); Arnold presses (press dumbbells from underhand at the bottom to overhand at the top); and rack military presses (press each rep from a dead stop off of power-rack supports set at chin level). Or you can perform many shoulder moves with cables or machines and go unilateral. You can also do wide-grip bent-over rows to focus more on your posterior delts. A Smith machine is an effective tool for wide-grip rows; hold each contraction and flex your rear delts. Don’t be afraid to change your grip or tool (dumbbells, barbells, or cables).

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If you want to get a new shoulder routine or a full body monthly program email maketimeforfit@gmail.com. I can help you fit workouts into your busy schedule! Start today!

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You are what you eat!

Food has so much effect on your feelings, attitudes and your appearance! Here are few foods that are good for skin!

  • Tomatoes
    Why: They’re full of lycopene, a phytochemical that provides red pigment and health benefits. Lycopene helps eliminate skin-aging free radicals caused by ultraviolet rays – in other words, it protects against sun damage. To reap the most benefits, heat them up: A half-cup of cooked tomatoes, for example, packs 16 milligrams of lycopene. A daily dose coupled with sunscreen will help block the burn.
  •  Mangoes, Papaya and Apricots
    Why: Got that washed-out look? Load up on some fruit. Mangoes, papaya and apricots are full of pigments called carotenoids, which are stored in the layer of fat directly beneath the skin and can improve color. “They peek through, giving you a rosy glow,” says registered dietitian Karen Ansel, a spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics and co-author of “The Calendar Diet: A Month by Month Guide to Losing Weight While Living Your Life.”
  • Cocoa Powder
    Why: Flavonals, the antioxidants in dark chocolate, reduce roughness in the skin and protect against sun damage. A study published in the Journal of Nutrition found that women who drank cocoa fortified with 326 milligrams of flavonals a day had better skin texture and stronger resistance to UV rays than those who didn’t get as much of the antioxidants. Just a few ounces a day – or a standard Hershey’s Dark Chocolate bar – is sufficient. Another tasty way to get enough? Spoon some cocoa powder into your morning coffee, Ansel suggests.
  • Flaxseed
    Why: Think of these as tiny wrinkle fighters. They’re packed with omega-3 fatty acids, which erase spots and smooth fine lines. In one study, participants who had about half a teaspoon of omega-3s daily for six weeks had less skin irritation and redness, as well as better-hydrated skin, according to findings published in the British Journal of Nutrition. That’s likely because fatty acids attract water to skin cells, plumping the skin and reducing wrinkling.
  • Sweet Potatoes:
    Why: They’re full of vitamin C, which smooths wrinkles by stimulating the production of collagen. One study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, found people who consumed 4 milligrams of vitamin C – about half a small sweet potato – daily for three years reduced the appearance of wrinkles by 11 percent.
  • Spinach:
    Why: Want to protect yourself against skin cancer? Take a page out of Popeye’s book. A study published in the International Journal of Cancer found that folks who ate the most leafy greens (more than four times a day) developed half as many skin tumors over 11 years as those who ate the smallest amount (once a day or never). That’s likely because the folate in spinach helps maintain and repair DNA, reducing the likelihood of cancer-cell growth
  • Canned Tuna:
    Why: It’s packed with selenium – a nutrient that preserves elastin, which keeps skin smooth and tight. Selenium also prevents free radicals that are produced by UV rays from damaging skin cells, protecting against sun damage.
  • Safflower Oil
    Why: If you have dry, flaky or itchy skin, take note: This common cooking oil doubles as a moisturizer. It contains omega-6 fatty acids, which keep cell walls supple, allowing water to reach the skin. Some research suggests consuming safflower oil can help ease skin problems such as dermatitis, inflammation, acne and dry skin.

Why are you not seeing results?

Often we get caught up with in the instant gratification. You can post a picture online seconds after you take it or you can Google the answer you any question you may have.But somethings can’t be sped up or shortcuts just won’t cut it. Your health is one of those things.  Good things take time, and great things take consistency.

Some reasons you may not be reaching or maintaining your fitness and lifestyle goals.

  1. Fail to plan then plan to fail
    It takes a little bit of effort but a little planning goes a long way. When hunger strikes, the last thing you want to do is make food. You want something easy and quick. Try making salads in a bag or jar so you have a go to snack or meal easy and ready! Planning ahead will help you stay on track and not worry about making a poor decision! Plan your meals out for the week on a Sunday and you can prevent yourself from making hasty choices when hungry!
  2. Share your fitness goals!
    Eating healthy is so much easier as a team than as a individual. Share your goals with your friends and family and work together!
  3. Eat Protein
    Try to incorporate protein into every meal, especially if you have increased your workout routine. Protein helps rebuild your muscles so feed them properly to get the results you want!
  4. Avoid alcohol
    Sometime this is the hardest thing to do! Going out with friends or after a hard day at work you just want a nice cocktail or glass of wine. Be smart and limit your intake to only one drink.
  5. Exercising more to eat more
    No matter what way you slice it you can NOT out exercise a bad diet. Your body needs certain foods for nourishment and you just can’t justify eating an entire pizza and 3 rounds of drinks because you ran 2 miles, sorry it just doesn’t work like that!
  6. Cutting out sweets entirely
    Don’t deprive yourself completely or you are setting yourself up to fail. Keep yourself in check with moderate portions and you can enjoy a treat once in a while.
  7. Eating healthy and living active is a life style!If you keep yourself in check each day you will want sweets and unhealthy foods less and less, your body will stop craving it! Don’t set up a “cheat day” or “cheat meal” just keep consistently eating vegetables, protein and complex carbs and it will be easier to stick to your plan and reach your goals.

Good luck on your journey to healthy living!

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Remember to stretch after your workout!

You finish your workout and are ready to walk out the door. Just before you leave you see a few people stretching and you think “I probably should, but i just wait to get home.” Well well well let me tell you that just because you can’t SEE the results of stretching – it is just as important to help reach your goals, whether it’s losing weight or wanting to compete.

Stretching can lead to better posture, fewer aches and pains, greater confidence, and EVEN a cheerier outlook on life (yep! sure can!). Sitting can be hard on your glutes and your back. Stretching helps keep from these muscles from atrophying over time. If stretching hurts – it’s cause you really need it. Breathe through the stretch and imagine your muscle tissues releasing. Practice makes perfect. The more you stretch the easier it is and better you will feel over all.

Here is my cool down stretching routine. Find whatever works for you! I promise with consistent stretching you will feel like a new you!

Walk on treadmill til my heart rate is down (wear a heart rate monitor so you are always aware of your heart rate). Then legs a little wider than shoulder width apart, stretch down feeling it your hamstrings, go to the right side then the left and finish back at center – holding each for about 10-15 counts.

Hip flexors right leg back in a lunge position and press hips forward and squeeze right glute, then straighten left leg and lean forward to feel the stress in your hamstring. I do this 5 times alternating hip flexor and hamstring holding about 8 counts for each stretch. Then do this same thing with the left leg back squeezing that glute and pressing hips forward then straighten right leg out for hamstring stretch on that side, again holding for 8 counts each.

Next I sit on the mat and stretch my glutes by bringing my right ankle to the top of my left knee and you’ll feel that pull in your glutes. The closer the leg is to your body the deeper the stretch. Then do a spinal twist turning to the right – repeat this on the left side.

Then I lay on my back and do some spinal twists with bent knees.

Stretch out my neck from side to side then reach high then I’m done!

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Reference here

Don’t beat yourself up!

I used to get the worst guilt if I missed a workout or ate too much at dinner or even ate a cookie. But it’s important to remember – You are human and you don’t need to be 100% perfect all the time.

It’s simple, try to eat unprocessed foods and if you want a cookie have one maybe two, just not the whole box.

If you put yourself on a zero tolerance diet, you are setting yourself up to fail. Remember the first bite is always the best. Enjoy it then move on.  Don’t beat yourself up if you accidentally splurge!  Just don’t let it ruin the rest of the day.

One bad meal is just that one bad meal! If you crack your phone screen you don’t take a hammer and shatter the rest of it! It’s about moderation. Each meal, snack, dessert are independent of each other so don’t let one bad meal trigger a chain reaction! Plus, the longer you eat unprocessed foods and load up on vegetables the less you’ll crave sweets and other unhealthy foods!

Good luck, happy eating and here’s a quote I like to read if I get off track.

“Balance is key. In everything you do. Dance all night long and practice yoga the next day. Drink wine but don’t forget your green juice. Eat chocolate when your heart wants it and kale salad when your body needs it. Wear high heels on Saturday and walk barefoot on Sunday. Go shopping at the mall and then sit down and meditate in your bedroom. Live high and low. Move and stay still. Embrace all sides of who you are and live your authentic truth! Be brave and bold and spontaneous and loud and let that complement your abilities to find silence and patience and modesty and peace. Aim for balance. Make your own rules and don’t let anybody tell you how to live according to theirs.”
Rachel Brathen
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Fun Fitness Friday – Pyramid Run

I was very active in high school and college playing sports so running has been apart of my life for basically. I actually love love love running, but let’s be honest running on a treadmill can get kinda boring!

So I came up with this pyramid run to change it up a little bit. With this run you are constantly changing paces and the longest period of running at the same pace is 5 minutes! 5 minutes anyone can do 5 minutes! These little time goals during my run help me to keep me going!

The pyramid run alternates between running at a “race pace” (RP) and “recovery” (R).

If you don’t know your race pace I suggest setting at a mile time goal.  For example, if you want to run a 10 minute mile as your RP go 6 mph and on the R you can adjust to mph slower so 4-5 mph.
The best part is that you can always adjust as you go.

What I love about this type of run is that it fits with any type of runner from the novice to the marathon runner because you adjust the speed to whatever works for you!

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The key to remembering how many minutes that the RP minutes increase 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and the R is 2 minutes except on the 1 minute RP.

Having little 1-5 minute goals really pushes me to keep going since I know can recover!

Hope you guys enjoy this run as much as I do! And I promise it’s not as easy as it looks! ;););)

Start today! Email maketimeforfit@gmail.com for a free consultation for a personalized workout program!

Simple and delicious salad

One of my “go-to” salad is this spinach avocado tomato salad. It’s easy and delicious.

Recipe:
Spinach leaves
Half an avocado, diced
Half a tomato,  diced
Dash of olive oil and balsamic vinegar

Viola simple, easy and nutritious! And the best part – there’s no wrong way to make a salad. Add in more of what you like and take out what you don’t.

What are your favorite salads?!

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Hitting the gym?  Email maketimeforfit@gmail.com for a FREE consultation for a personalized workout program!

Stay on track even when dining out

Headed out for dinner? Here are some tips that can help you stay on track with you fitness lifestyle goals!

One tip I use when dining out is to order half my meal. Just ask the server to box up half for you before you get it.
You’ll be surprised how much food half is, and you trick your brain because when you clean your plate you won’t feel terrible afterwards!

Another tip I use is to always get the side of vegetables! Fries have zero nutritional value, just don’t get them -you’ll be OK I promise!

You know you can order those veggies dry? They won’t be raw but they won’t use a half a stick of butter when sauteing them.

This is half of my dinner from the other night

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I got a chicken caprese sandwich with a side of zucchini and squash. That doesn’t look like half a meal does it? Portion sizes are outrageously large in restaurants and often times our eyes are way bigger than our stomach! Go to the restaurant with the mindset to order half and you’ll get to enjoy your meal without the guilt! PLUS you get leftovers!

Need a workout program? Start today! Email maketimeforfit@gmail.com for a free consultation to get your personalized workout program!

Self Love is the Best Love

Here’s a little hump day break that I hope will encourage you to take a few minutes and reflect how great you are. We are so critical of everything and the most critical about ourselves! Constantly comparing, critiquing our minds and bodies to “fit in.” Before the days of social media you could just enjoy yourself and not be constant bombarded by pictures and posts about this and that. Sometimes I need to remind myself, that if you can’t love yourself, it’s impossible to love anyone else and fully live your life. You aren’t conceited or cocky because you love yourself, you are treated yourself the way you deserve to be treated; with love and respect.

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Here is are 30 Ways to Practice Self-Love from lifehack.org

So do yourself a favor, take a deep breath, give yourself a little hug and start practicing the following:

  1. Start each day by telling yourself something really positive. How well you handled a situation, how lovely you look today. Anything that will make you smile.
  2. Fill your body with food and drink that nourishes it and makes it thrive.
  3. Move that gorgeous body of yours every single day and learn to love the skin you’re in. You can’t hate your way into loving yourself.
  4. Don’t believe everything you think. There is an inner critic inside of us trying to keep us small and safe. The downside is this also stops us from living a full life.
  5. Surround yourself with people who love and encourage you. Let them remind you just how amazing you are.
  6. Stop the comparisons. There is no one on this planet like you, so you cannot fairly compare yourself to someone else. The only person you should compare yourself to is you.
  7. End all toxic relationships. Seriously. Anyone who makes you feel anything less than amazing doesn’t deserve to be a part of your life.
  8. Celebrate your wins no matter how big or small. Pat yourself on the back and be proud of what you have achieved.
  9. Step outside of your comfort zone and try something new. It’s incredible the feeling we get when we realize we have achieved something we didn’t know or think we could do before.
  10. Embrace and love the things that make you different. This is what makes you special.
  11. Realize that beauty cannot be defined. It is what you see it as. Don’t let any of those Photoshopped magazines make you feel like your body isn’t perfect. Even those models don’t look like that in real life.
  12. Take time out to calm your mind every day. Breathe in and out, clear your mind of your thoughts and just be.
  13. Follow your passion. You know that thing that gets you so excited but scares you at the same time. The thing you really want to do but have convinced yourself it won’t work. You should go do that!
  14. Be patient but persistent. Self-love is ever evolving. It’s something that needs to be practiced daily but can take a lifetime to master. So be kind and support yourself through the hard times.
  15. Be mindful of what you think, feel and want. Live your life in ways that truly reflect this.
  16. Treat others with love and respect. It makes us feel better about ourselves when we treat others the way we hope to be treated. That doesn’t mean everybody will always repay the favor, but that’s their problem not yours.
  17. Find something to be grateful for every day. It’s inevitable that you are going to have your down days. This is fine and very human of you. It’s especially important on these days to find at least one thing you are grateful for as it helps to shift your mind and energy around what’s going on.
  18. Reach out to family, friends, healers, whomever you need to help you through the tough times. You are not expected to go through them alone.
  19. Learn to say no. Saying no sometimes doesn’t make you a bad person, it makes you a smart person.
  20. Forgive yourself. You know that thing you did one time (or maybe a few times) that made you feel bad, embarrassed, ashamed? It’s time to let that go. You can’t change the things you have done in the past but you can control your future. Look at it as a learning experience and believe in your ability to change.
  21. Write it down. Head swimming with so many thoughts it’s giving you a headache? Write them all down on a piece of paper, no matter how crazy, mean, sad, or terrifying they are. Keep it in a journal, tear it up, burn it, whatever you need to do to let it go.
  22. Turn off and inwards. Grab a cup of your favorite tea, coffee, wine, whatever your choice of drink, and sit down for a few minutes on your own. No TV or distractions, just you. Think about the wonderful things that are happening in your life right now, what your big dreams are and how you can make them happen.
  23. Give up the need for approval from others. “You can be the ripest, juiciest peach in the world, and there’s still going to be somebody who hates peaches.” – Dita Von Teese
  24. Be realistic. There is no person on this earth that is happy every single moment of every single day. You know why? Because we are all human. We make mistakes, we feel emotions (good and bad) and this is OK. Allow yourself to be human.
  25. Get creative and express yourself in whatever way you like. Painting, writing, sculpting, building, music, whatever takes your fancy, and make sure you leave your inner critic at the door. There are no right ways to be creative.
  26. Let go of past trauma and wounds. This can be a really tough one and it may be one of those times you need to turn to others for support. The truth is though, when we let go of things that have happened to us it’s almost like a weight is lifted off our shoulders. We don’t have to carry that around with us anymore. We deserve better.
  27. Find your happy place. Where’s the one place you feel totally at ease, calm, happy, positive, high on life? Go to that place when you are going through hard times, or imagine yourself being there. Think about how it feels, what it smells like, what it looks like.
  28. The next time you are feeling happy and on top of the world make a list of your best qualities and accomplishments. It may sound a little corny, but it can be a wonderful reminder when you are having a day that’s less than amazing.
  29. Get in touch with your inner dialogue. If it’s anything less than loving, encouraging and supportive, it’s time to make a change. You deserve to be spoken to in the same way you would speak to your best friend, sister, brother, daughter, or son.
  30. Have fun! Get out there and do the things that light your fire. Enjoy them, enjoy being you and enjoy your incredible life.

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If you want to start, continue or revamp your fitness journey email maketimeforfit@gmail.com for your personalized workout program!

Do you foam roll?

I’m sure you’ve seen them at your gym. People rolling and contorting their bodies on this foam cylinder, and you think “what does that even do?”

A foam roller is a very helpful tool that helps your body recover and can help to prevent injury. When you use the foam roller  it digs into muscles to release tension, specially Self-myofascial release. It a massage technique that require longer low pressure on a muscle until it releases and the mobility and tissue are restore to their proper form. A foam roller allows you to have this type of massage by yourself.

Benefits

  • Increased blood flow throughout the body
  • Better movement and increased range of motion.

Ideally foam rolling should be down both during your warmup and your cool down. It’s so important to get your body prepared for a lift and to stretch after a workout!

Now why does it hurt?

Now if you’ve tried foam rolling and feel like you are almost forced to tears, chances are you are doing it right AND you really need it. Similar to the pain you get while stretching. It should be uncomfortable, but not unbearable, and when you release you should feel looser.

How do I do it?
I like to start with my calves and work my way up to my hamstrings. Then I move to IT bands (which usually hurt a lot because I hold a lot of tension in my hips). When I find a spot that’s tight I hold in place and bend my knee to increase the pressure. Then I move onto my quads and then inner thigh. Then the other leg – IT band, quad and inner thigh. After that I sit on the foam roller rolling over my glutes sometimes crossing my leg putting my ankle to my opposite knee to dig in deeper, switch sides. At the end I lay on the foam roller in line with my spine and up my arms up like a touchdown signal and am just still for about a minute (which is actually really long time to be still). I usually feel my shoulder and neck tension release and a great sense of calming to do nothing for a minute.

This is just my routine. There are many ways to foam roll you can what works for when you consistently include foam rolling into your workout regime.

Here are some pictures!

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I promise after a week or two of consist foam rolling your body will recover faster and your muscles will be looser over all!

references here and here