Push-up Challenge

PushupsHappy 1st day of August! To celebrate the start of a brand new month, I’m challenging you all to the 20 Push-ups a Day Challenge. It’s pretty simple – you commit to doing 20 push-ups a day for the next month. Easy peasy. You can do any variation, so modified push-ups are fine. Comment below “I’m in” or inbox me to let me know the challenge has been accepted – and away we go!!

Why Push-Ups? 

Push-ups are one of the basic and most common exercises for the human body.  They are great for your chest, and help defining your abs, triceps, shoulders, and torso.  They are an incredible exercise for overall strength improvement.

Push-ups can be performed no matter where you are and don’t require any equipment or gym. The benefits of push-ups are plentiful.  They will improve muscular endurance within the upper body, strengthen both muscles and bones, create lean muscle mass that raises your metabolism and, of course, help keep you fit and healthy. 

~FB

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30 Day Ab Challenge – Redux

I’ve been getting some requests to re-post the 30 Day Ab Challenge from a few years back. That particular post was and has been one of the most-searched posts.  It seems to be pretty popular – especially around this time of year (aka upcoming beach season).

This is a fun little exercise that you commit to participating in over 30 days.  You can do the challenge on its own, or as a complement to your current workout routine.  If you’re already accustomed to working your abdominal muscles, then double (or triple) each day’s challenge.  Push yourself – you’ll be surprised what you can accomplish.

Here’s the Challenge (you can view the original post here):

ab-challenge

Have fun!

~FB

30 Day Arm Challenge

I’ve always been a little paranoid about my arm skin.  I never thought about my arm skin until I read an article with Drew Barrymore in US Magazine when I was 14 or 15.  Drew was complaining about her arms being chubby.  (See:  Even celebrities are body obsessed.)  Since that day I’ve been obsessed with my arms.

A few years ago my arms were pretty awesome. It was after I’d lost a ton of weight and was working out and running more.  My arms seemed to be bombdiggity to me.  But now that I’m older – and since I gained weight resulting from my exercise addiction (read more about that here:  https://nsfitbitch.wordpress.com/2014/08/31/confessions/) – I seem to be even more “obsessed” and have a hard time losing the arm pudge.

Over the last few months I’ve been lifting like a beast – focusing more on my strength routine and adding weight.  And it seems to be paying off some.  But there’s much more we can do to strengthen our arms and upper body.  (I do a lot of strength training in my classes and with my clients.)

That’s why when I came across this 30 Day Arm Challenge recently I was ecstatic.  The workouts contain just a few moves but will build muscle and strengthen your arms and core.

ARM CHALLENGE

I think this challenge is great for everyone – especially those who aren’t able to get to the gym or don’t have a lot of (if any) equipment to work out with.  I am a firm believer in body weight workouts.

Try this challenge for the next 30 days and see your strength improve.

~FB

It’s a Brand New Day (to Train for Your First 5K)

Happy November!!

Halloween was last night and I’m sure many of you ODed on chocolate and candy (and booze) and are feeling the regrets and the grossness today.

October is a big food month around these parts.  It’s my birthday month, as well as my nephew’s, sister-in-law’s, and aunt’s.  It’s also my parents’ anniversary month, Thanksgiving (in Canada), and, of course, Halloween.  So it seems that there’s always tons of food on the go.  I did my best to behave, food-wise, but I did indulge here and there (dam you, Pumpkin Spice lattes!!), and for that reason I’m starting back on my Whole 30 food plan this month.

I know not everyone is able to commit themselves to 30 days of eating whole, natural, unprocessed foods and omitting many every day things (like dairy), but I really enjoy the program and feel so terrific while doing it.  This will be my 4th time on the program since June.

But, again, since not everyone can – or wants to – make this commitment (I still urge you to eliminate as much processed food as possible) I thought another program would catch your fancy.  It’s the Learn to Run Your First 5K.

I never did a training program when I first took up running years ago but many of my friends have joined running groups to learn to run a 5K or 10K and it really seemed to benefit their training.  And it definitely is a commitment.

This Learn to Run program is from PopSugar Fitness and it’s a 6-week training program that incorporates core, strength, and flexibility training into your running workouts.  It’s a great idea and if you’re a newbie to running – and/or to exercising –  this might just be the program for you.

I always feel like November is such a great recovery month – getting over October’s indulgences and gearing up for Christmas and the holidays.  I realize that my American friends celebrate their Thanksgiving in November, but you can still use the month as your training guide – taking your rest day(s) to celebrate with your turkeys.

This is also a 6-week training program so it will bring you right into mid-December so even when you’re doing your Christmas baking or already into the parties your body will be conditioning and burning extra calories while at rest.

So, give this program a go and as always, have fun!

Via PopSugar

Via PopSugar

30 Day Whole Food Challenge

Real Food

I’m finishing up Day 17 of a food elimination program (I will be posting about this when I have completed the program).  I have struggled with stomach issues since I was a small child and I’ve had doctors and allergists put me on elimination “diets” in the past that completely sucked the life out of me – not to mention the medications and invasive tests that I’ve undergone in my lifetime.

The program I’m participating in allows me to eat real, whole foods – fruits, vegetables, and meat – nothing processed.  Like I said above, I’ll be posting about this experience once I complete it but the let me just say the theory behind this program is that there are foods that cause systemic inflammation in the body which can have other effects on us (allergies, sleep disorders, skin problems, tummy troubles, etc.) and so the foundation is to eliminate all the processed stuff and whatnot and rely on fueling your body – your temple – with nutritious, delicious, whole foods.

So I have cut out sugar in all forms – except what I get from fruits and vegetables – all processed foods, dairy in all forms (which isn’t so bad for me since I’m allergic to dairy anyway and sometimes indulge in foods that make me feel like I got hit with a bat), etc.  And you know what?  I.Feel.Great!

I was trepidatious and doubtful going into this program but by day 3 I really started to notice a change in my digestion of the foods I was eating.  I’m not going to elaborate (at least not yet) but I will say that for that reason alone this elimination program has been worth it.  And for the most part, it’s a program that I can sustain.  AND the best part of it:  nothing I eat has to come from little silver packages.

So, all of that being said, what I’m about to challenge you to is a little different than what I’m doing.  Instead of eliminating everything, I CHALLENGE YOU to eliminate a processed food from your diet for one whole month.  It sounds easy enough, but believe me, letting go of something you “rely” on daily isn’t always that easy (I sorta miss my mayo – but am learning to love avocado).

For instance – try cutting the cream out of your coffee for a month.  Either go black or drink it blended with a little coconut oil or coconut milk.  (I do this all the time anyway and love it.)  Or, go without bread in all forms for the month.  That means no morning bagel, no cronut at the office, no weekend PB&J.  I swear you can do this.

Step outside you comfort zone and try something new.  If you like pasta try using zucchini or carrot “noodles” instead of actual pasta noodles.

Zucchini-Noodles-with-Pesto-8

Or try making your regular ice cream from frozen bananas and fruit.  Instead of going out for that sugary, calordie-dense frappuccino, make your own at home with fresh brewed coffee (cooled), sliced frozen banana, 100% real cocoa, and some coconut milk – this is just as delicious and refreshing and it’s pretty healthy.

Instead of topping it with all kinds of crap, instead add some unsweetened coconut (toasted is even better), cinnamon, or mint leaves.

Instead of topping it with all kinds of crap, instead add some unsweetened coconut (toasted is even better), cinnamon, or mint leaves.

Give this 30 day challenge a try.  It may seem hard – but it’s really not; and it’s only 30 days.  You can do anything for 30 days.  Try it.  See how you feel before, during, and after.  See if your body changes at all – inside or out.  See if any part of your health improves.  Try it.  You’re worth it.

And if you do it – hashtag it, baby!  Let the world know you’re participating.

#wholefoodchallenge  #realfoodchallenge  #30daywholefoodchallenge  #justeatrealfood  #nsfitbitch

~Fit Bitch

Note *Remember, this is not a calorie-restrictive, low carb, low protein, unhealthy plan.  The goal is to focus on clean eating – therefore eating an abundance of nutritious foods without the added sugar, chemicals, or unhealthy benefits

30 Day Plank Challenge Starts TODAY!!

My last post was an intro to the 30 Day Plank Challenge….and it.starts.now!

You have an easy 20 seconds to do.  Start planking.

via source

via source

The great thing about this (as with most) exercise is that you can only improve.  (Unless, of course you suffer injury, and please, let’s all avoid that!)

You can do each day’s challenge once or several times.  Become a master!

And you can do it anywhere….I will find no shame in dropping down by my desk to plank for 20, 30, 60 seconds.  🙂

No excuses for this one (again, unless you have suffered an injury, especially to your lower back.  With a physician’s approval, however, planks are excellent for strengthening back muscles  – along with the rest of your muscles).

I CHALLENGE YOU ALL TO THE NEXT 30 DAYS!!

~Fit Bitch

30 Day Plank Challenge

Did I do this before? I thought maybe I had but looking back at past posts it seems that I didn’t actually post a separate Plank Challenge but plans were also included in the 30 Day Ab Challenge.

I noticed a few of my friends doing a version of the Plank Challenge on Facebook this past month so I figured I might as well get in on it too and share it with you.

Now, I plank all the time.  I do it at the gym, in my classes, when I’m bored.  And I make the girls in my boot camp classes plank all.the.time.  They hate me. 🙂

Planks are one of the best exercises because it works and strengthens so many areas of the body. Think about it – when you’re in proper plank position how many parts of your body are engaged?  Core, back, shoulders, arms, wrists, neck, legs, ankles, butt…everything is working here.

There are two basic planking positions you can choose from for this challenge:

The low plank:

Low Plank - from the elbows

Low Plank – from the elbows

or the high plank:

High Plank - arms extended

High Plank – arms extended

and of course there is a beginner/modified version (*note – you can modify the high or low plank):

Modified Plank - which can be done high or low - from the knees

Modified Plank – which can be done high or low – from the knees

The proper form of either of these planks is to ensure a straight line from head to toe.  Be sure not to strain your neck or let your back sink (or butt raise)…these will only lead to injury, AND if either of these occur then you’re not engaged properly and defeating the purpose.

There is no shame in modifying your plank (or any exercise, for that matter) – whether it’s from the start or you’re halfway thru your daily challenge and need to take a knee a for a second or two or go fully into the modification.  If you’re feeling shaky or weakness or pain that’s your body telling you to smarten up and take it a little easy.  You can’t go beast mode if you’ve got a broken back or wrist.

So, since we’re at the end of January, take the next day or two to “practice” your plank and then for the next 30 days enjoy the challenge.

via source

via source

~Fit Bitch

New Year, New You

Hope everyone is enjoying their holidays.

We’re coming up to the start of a new year and I’m sure a ton of you, like me, are going to commit to some New Year Resolutions.

To kick off the new year I’m doubling up on a challenge and posting below the 30 Days Abs and Squat Challenge.

It seems that the 30 Day Ab Challenge and the 30 Day Squat Challenge have been two of the most popular challenges and the most searched….so, badonkadonk!  This challenge has them both.

As always, this challenge can be done on its own or as part of your regular workout regime.  Just be sure to take your rest days.

abs and squat challengeI’m really looking forward to the new year and what’s to come.  Wishing you all a Happy New Year!

~Fit Bitch

30 Day Chest Challenge

Happy October!!

I thought since it’s a new month I’d post this cool Challenge I found.  It’s great for guys and girls and even though it’s a Chest Challenge, you’ll also be working muscles and areas of your body.

As with all the Challenges, you can do this one on its own or accompanying your regular workout routine.

You’ll do it for the next 30 days (just in time for Halloween!), making sure to take your scheduled rest days (and any additional rest days if required).

My only concern with this Challenge is with the Judo Pushups – BE CAREFUL of your lower back!!  This is a great move and performed properly you’ll be fine.  But if you’re new to this move please be overly careful so that you don’t injure yourself.  It’s always better to be safe than sorry when it comes to a potential back injury.  Believe me, I speak from experience.

Other than that, have fun.

via Jodi Higgs

via Jodi Higgs

~Fit Bitch

30 Day Killer Body Workout

I haven’t posted any challenges lately and I figured, since summer is pretty much over, it’s as good a time as any to post one.  So here it is:

Full Body Workout

These are some great exercises – which you can do as high or low impact.  Just, please, be sure to take your rest days.

I, personally, love squats and burpees and could do them all day long (I’ve been doing some wonderful squat challenges in my boot camp classes and my girls hate me) so this challenge, to me, looks super fun!  So, grab a friend (or do this on your own), blast some music and get your sweat on. 

Keep in mind that there are ALWAYS modifications for exercises (ie. Leg lifts can be done one leg at a time as opposed to both legs, pushups can be done from your knees) – just do what’s best for your body; don’t overexert yourself.  We always want to prevent injury with everything we do. If  you have any questions feel free to comment or inbox me.

Have fun!!

~Fit Bitch