Tag Archives: weight loss

6 Ways to Burn 1 Extra Pound Per Week

Need to burn a little extra belly fat? Here are 10 easy ways to start.

Burning 1 lb. per week essentially boils down to burning an extra 500 calories per day. Whether that means eating 500 fewer calories or stepping up your exercise routine, it’s a lot easier than you think. Try any of these tips to burn 1 extra pound per week:

1. Substitute foods

One of the easiest ways to cut calories is to substitute some of your foods, not cut them out entirely. Swap sour cream with Greek yogurt, mayonnaise with avocados, eggs with egg whites. Of course the portions matter but these healthy alternatives are higher in protein and unsaturated fats, and are lower calorie options.

2. Add a few more minutes of cardio to your plan

Adding a little bit of more cardio to your workout routine every day can help you burn more calories each day, making it easier to hit that 500 calorie deficit.

3. “There is no such thing as snacking”

Try your best to eat in the form of meals. If you prefer to snack throughout the day, turn your plan into 6-7 small meals that you can eat every 2 hours instead of grazing throughout the day.

4. Mind your coffee

Do you always use cream, milk, and/or sugar? Try cutting your sugar and milk portions in half, or drink your coffee black (you get used to it). I’ve seen people put 3-4 packets of sugar in their coffee every day. It’s not an outlandish amount of sugar but that extra 50-60 calories per cup (before milk) can add up, especially if you’re drinking a few cups a day.

5. Watch your high-calorie food

That means anything with a lot of oil, or cooked in oil. Just because something is baked doesn’t mean that the oil all over it doesn’t count. Use olive oil or coconut cooking sprays for extra flavor with less than 1 calorie per 1/4 second spray. Then, use a tsp. of oil or butter if you absolutely need to.

How to Keep Yourself from Binge Eating

6. You booze, you lose

When Mr. OnlyEatsProtein&SaladAllDay or Mrs. Haven’tHadCarbsSince2003 tell me that they can’t lose weight no matter what they do, they usually fail to mention the bottle of wine/day they’re drinking. 1 drink = 100 calories or more. So, if you have several drinks per day and you cut out 3, you’re already down 300 calories per day. Only 200 to go and you didn’t have to do a thing.

Will Drinking Alcohol Make You Fat?

Top 10 Healthiest Beers

 

10 Cardio Exercises That Are Better Than Running

Tired of running? Try one of these cardio exercises instead.

Don’t get me wrong, running is a great way to get back in shape but it comes at a cost. Running is a high impact activity that over time may cause joint pain. Also, depending on the type of running you do you may find better metabolism-boosting effects with these exercises:

Cardio Acceleration Supersets for Fat Loss

1. Kettlebell Swing

Kettlebell swing intervals are a great way to torch fat while also developing explosive thrusting strength, building the legs, core, and shoulders. Perform 5 sets of 30-60 second intervals with 30-60 seconds rest in between. This form of HIIT training will help you burn fat, build muscle and keep your metabolism boosted for up to 48 hours.

2. Mountain Climbers

Try adding 30-60 second sets of Mountain Climbers in between your lifting sets (instead of taking a break) to pump up your heart rate and burn fat in place of your resting sets. All of the cardio benefits of running without the joint impact.

3. Jumping Jacks

This classic exercise incorporates your core, hip adductors and abductors, calves and shoulders making a great way to warm up vs. jogging for 15-20 minutes. Do a few sets of jumping jacks to warm up your muscles and joints before you turn up the intensity.

4. Burpees

Speaking of turning up the intensity…any time the word “burpees” is mentioned in a group exercise class I hear a collective, audible “UGHHHH”. These aren’t for the weak of heart. Burpees are a combination of a push-up and a jump squat. At your own pace, do 5-10 burpees in between your lifting sets or for several intervals for a full-body scorching cardio and resistance workout.

5. TRX Row

Give your legs a break. Build up your back and arm strength with TRX Rows. Perform 5 sets of 25-30 reps in between weight lifting sets or superset them with a lower-body cardio workout for a full-body workout set.

6. Step Ups

Target your quads, glutes, and core by doing knee-level step ups, meaning the platform you step up on should be at your knee or slightly higher to hit your glutes harder.

7. Body Squats

Body Squats can be done any time, anywhere. Build explosive quad strength while you elevate your heart rate and develop better balance and posture. Try doing 5 sets of as many perfect reps as possible in 30 seconds.

8. Stepper Switch Foot

Set up a stepper with 4 risers (2 on each side). Place one foot on top of the stepper and the other foot slightly behind you. In one motion, explode off your back foot switching positions so the foot that was on the stepper is now behind you and the foot that was behind you is now on the stepper. Repeat for 30 seconds as fast as possible.

9. Kettlebell Goblet Squat

Kettlebell Goblet Squats are a level up from regular body squats. Holding a kettlebell under chin while squatting allows you to place more resistance on your quads, engage your core more, and place extra stress on the biceps and delts.

10. Row Machine

This underrated piece of cardio equipment is probably abandoned in the corner of your gym somewhere. Several sets of high resistance rowing for 60 seconds or 250 meters at a time is a sure-fire way to burn massive amounts of calories in only a few minutes.

3 Mistakes People Make When Cutting Carbs

If cardio feels like a chore that you keep putting it off then try mixing up these cardio exercises. If you do each one of these cardio exercises for 1 minute and take 60 seconds of rest in between each set you will have done a 20 minute, full body cardio workout that is guaranteed to burn more calories and burn more fat than 20 minutes of jogging on the treadmill.

Xtend BCAA Watermelon Jello Recipe

Enjoy this fresh, summery sugar-free dessert chock full of BCAAs!

Jello Recipe
Photo from: www.scivation.com/xtend-watermelon-jello-2015-09

The only thing better than dessert is dessert that you can eat without worrying about putting on slabs of body fat. This BCAA watermelon jello recipe does just that. It actually goes one step further by providing 7 grams of branched chain amino acids to help curb hunger, burn fat, and build/maintain lean muscle. Here’s what you need:

Ingredients
1. A large watermelon rind.
2. 8 scoops of watermelon Xtend.
3. 1/2 cup unflavored gelatin mix.
4. 8 cups of boiling water.

Instructions
1. Cut a large watermelon in half and scoop out the pink flesh leaving only the green-yellow bowl-shaped rind.
2. Mix all of the ingredients in a bowl and heat for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3. Pour the mixture into the watermelon rind.
4. Refrigerate for 4 hours.
5. Slice and serve.

Nutrition Info
Protein: 7 grams of BCAAs
Fat: 0 grams
Carbohydrates: 0 grams

Full Disclosure: I did not create this jello recipe, I got it off of Scivation’s website. It looks awesome though and I’m definitely going to try it. I thought it was worth sharing with anyone looking to do fun new things with their BCAAs besides just drinking them.

30 Minute Upper Body Workout

Are your days jam-packed? This upper body workout is designed for when you only have 30 minutes to spare.

Upper Body workout

Don’t waste any time with this 30 minute HIIT upper body workout. Using half of your lunch break to fit in some gym time? Supersets, dropsets, and short breaks are all you need to get a super, upper body pump. Try this out:

Circuit #1
Push-Ups: 5 sets x 10 reps
Pull-Ups: 5 sets x 10 reps
Rest: 30 seconds

10 Different Ways to Do Push-Ups

Circuit #2
Dips: 4 sets x 10 reps
Straight Arm Pull Down: 4 sets x 10 reps
Rest: 30 seconds

Circuit #3
Incline Dumbbell Press: 3 sets x 12 reps
Incline Dumbbell Row: 3 sets x 12 reps
Rest: 30 seconds

Circuit #4
Incline Cable Fly: 4 sets x 12-15 reps
Barbell Shrugs: 4 sets x 15 reps
Rest: 30 seconds

Circuit #5
Dumbbell Flyes: 3 sets x 15 reps
Bent Over Fly: 3 sets x 15 reps
Rest: 30 seconds

Sometimes people avoid working out all together when they don’t think they can dedicate an hour of their time. This 30 minute upper body workout is designed with that person in mind. Don’t have 30 minutes? Try this 20 minute home workout.

10 Core Exercises That Aren’t Planks or Crunches

Tired of doing planks and crunches and still not seeing results? Try these 10 Core Exercises instead.

 

Core Exercises

If you’re doing planks and crunches for every core workout you’re going to want to change things up to see new results. These core exercises will target every muscle of your core ensuring you get the best results.

1. Cable Rope Crunches
Clip a double handled rope to a cable machine and set the weight to as close to your bodyweight as possible. In a kneeling position, holding the rope behind your neck, bring your elbows to your knees. Repeat for 15-20 reps. Make this exercise more challenging by twisting so you’re bringing your right elbow to your left knee, then your left elbow to your right knee, alternating with every crunch.

2. Hanging Leg Raises
You can perform this exercise hanging from a pull-up bar or in a roman chair. For this example let’s say you’re doing Hanging Leg Raises from a pull-up bar. Begin by hanging with your legs straight down. In a controlled motion, keeping your legs straight, bring your legs as close to the bar as possible. Return to the hanging position. Repeat for 15-20 reps.

3. Twisting Side Planks
Hold a stability ball in between your legs and keep your legs 6-12 inches from the floor. Sit up, reach diagonally (left arm to right foot) and touch the ball. Repeat, alternating sides, for 16-20 reps.

4. Windmill Leg Raises
Beginning in the same position as our Hanging Leg Raises, lift your legs up to the bar in a circular, clockwise motion. Repeat in a counterclockwise motion. You should be making large, 360 degree circles with your legs.
This is one of the hardest mentioned core exercises. Perform this exercise as slowly as possible. I perform them here on my Instagram. Try to go even slower than that.

5. Diagonal Medicine Ball Slam
Grab a 10-15+ lb medicine ball and start by holding it straight up over your head. Simultaneously throw the ball down on either side of your body and squat slightly. As you throw, you should twist your torso slightly so your right hand is over your left foot on one slam and your left hand is over your right foot on the other slam. Repeat for 15-20 reps.

6. Lumberjacks
Set the cable machine to a relatively light weight, with the handle up high. Begin with both hands holding the handle over one shoulder. Keeping your arms straight, bring the cable across your body at a 45 degree angle so your hands are now down at your opposite hip. Repeat for 15-20 reps on each side. Hold each rep for 1-2 seconds.

7. Smith Machine Sit Ups
Begin in a smith machine Bench Press position, with your feet flat on the bench. Keep your complete straight and sit up as high as you can, lifting your shoulder blades completely off of the bench. Hold for 1 second and return to the starting position. Repeat for 15-20 reps.

8. Ab Roll
Hold the Ab Roller with both hands and kneel on the floor.Now place the ab roller on the floor in front of you so that you are on all your hands and knees (as in a kneeling push up position). This will be your starting position. Slowly roll the ab roller straight forward, stretching your body into a straight position. Bring your hips as close to the floor as possible and pause. After a pause at the stretched position, start pulling yourself back to the starting position as you breathe out. Do this movement slowly and breathe.

9. Stability Ball V-Ups
Lay on the floor with your legs straight and arms stretched out behind your head holding a stability ball. Pick your feet up a few inches from the floor. This is your starting position. Keeping your arms and legs straight, bring the Stability Ball up to your legs, hold it in between your legs, and bring your legs back down to several inches from the floor. Repeat, this time catching the stability ball in your hands. Repeat for 15-20 reps.
Of all the mentioned core exercises, this is one of my favorites for beginners/novice level gym goers.

10. Turkish Get Up
Lie on your back on the floor and press a kettlebell to the top position by extending the elbow. Bend the knee on the same side as the kettlebell. Keeping the kettlebell locked out at all times, pivot to the opposite side and use your non- working arm to assist you in driving forward to the lunge position. Using your free hand, push yourself to a seated position, then progressing to your feet. While looking up at the kettlebell, slowly stand up. Reverse the motion back to the starting position and repeat.

Use any of these 10 Core Exercises in your next workout and see how much different they feel than just doing typical 30 second planks. Do a core workout 2-3 time per week, 5 sets of 15-25 reps or 30-60 seconds.

5 Superfood Snacks to Boost Energy

Need a snack? Ditch the chips and make one of these Superfood Snacks instead.

 

Superfood Snacks

Chips, cakes, and ice cream offer you nothing but fat, salt and sugar, and in overabundant quantities. These Superfood Snacks offer you fiber, vitamins, minerals, protein and healthy unsaturated fats that could even help you burn fat. Try these out:

1. “PB & J” on Ezekiel Bread

Toast a slice of sesame or cinnamon raisin Ezekiel bread. Then, spread 1 tbsp. of natural almond butter and 1 tbsp. of raspberry preserves on it. This super-satisfying snack is the super-version of the classic Peanut Butter & Jelly on white bread.

Healthy Snack Ideas to Crush Cravings

2. Avocado Toast

Dominating the superfood world right now is Avocado Toast of all varieties. Toast a slice of 100% whole wheat or multigrain bread, then add 1/4 of an avocado (sliced) on top. Try topping it off with tomatoes, lox, 1 sunny-side up egg, or turkey bacon. The possibilities are endless.

3. Grapefruit & Honey

Taking a break from agenda of pushing my Loaded Apples recipe, try 1/2 a grapefruit with 1 tbsp. of honey instead of regular sugar. You get the health benefits of honey and some extra sweetness added to the fat-burning, high fiber grapefruit.

4. Sweet Potatoes w/ Honey & Cinnamon

I swear this tastes like eating a Sweet Potato Pie without any guilt and a fraction of the fat. Bake 1 large sweet potato and slice it down the middle. Sprinkle cinnamon on top and a drizzle (1 tsp.) of honey. Is there anything better than Superfood Dessert?

5. Date Bars (Lara Bars)

Lara bars are an amazing snack if you’re looking for a healthy fix. Made up of only 2-3 ingredients, Lara Bars are essentially just date bars with cashews, coconut, apples, almonds, etc.

What are the best fruits for diabetics?

Unbelievable Protein Muffin Recipes!

These superfood options are a great way to boost your energy and your  metabolism when you feel yourself crashing in the middle of the day. Pair them with a cup of coffee and get ready to feel 100% again.

Carrot Cake Protein Pancakes Recipe

What’s better than breakfast for dinner? Dessert for breakfast. Try this Carrot Cake Protein Pancakes recipe.

Carrot Cake Protein Pancakes Recipecarrot cake protein pancakes recipe

Imagine being able to eat spiced carrot cake bursting with autumn flavors without any guilt. What’s more, imagine being able to eat carrot cake after your workout to BUILD MUSCLE AND BURN FAT. Now that’s possible with this Carrot Cake Protein Pancakes recipe.

Ingredients
1/2 cup Flapjacked Carrot Spice Pancake Mix
1/2 cup of water
2 egg whites
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 tbsp. lite maple syrup
1 tsp. coconut oil

Instructions
1) Mix pancake mix, water, egg whites, cinnamon and vanilla extract.
2) On a coconut oiled pan, cook the pancakes on a low-medium flame until golden brown on both sides.
3) Plate and drizzle maple syrup.
4) Serve.

Nutrition Info
Protein: 30 g
Carbohydrates: 41 g
Fat: 11 g

Want to make these Carrot Cake Pancakes even more Carrot Cakey? Make a cream cheese glaze or frosting:

Ingredients
2 tbsp. cream cheese
2 tbsp. butter (melted)
1 tbsp. powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla extract

Want more delicious pancake inspired recipes? Check these out:

Maple Glazed High Protein Jelly Donuts Recipe

High Protein Cookies

5 Reasons to Meal Prep

There are 5 important reasons you should start to meal prep.

 

5 reasons to meal prep

If you want to save money, get better fitness results, eat better meals, never get “hangry”, and have fresh food “on tap” then read on. Making your meals in advance, whether that be 1 day, 3 days, or 5 days in advance, can have enormous benefits on your health and on your wallet. Here’s why:

1. Save Money

Bringing home-cooked meals to work can cost you as little as $2-3 for that meal. Compare that with closer to the average $10 that people generally spend on lunch and you can see how those savings can add up over time.

How Meal Prepping Can Save You Thousands

2. Get better fitness results.

Meal prep means you have more control over the exact amount of protein, carbohydrates, fat, fruit, and vegetables you’re eating. This puts you in the driver seat on the road to fat loss and muscle building.

3. Eat better meals.

When you meal prep you put yourself in charge of how the meals come out. You don’t have to be a great cook to make great meals. My recipes are easy to make (with the exception of some of the more extravagant ones) and take very little time. No disrespect to the classic bagel & cream cheese, but you could have a protein packed Greek yogurt parfait instead and be full way longer.

Cinnamon Vanilla Greek Yogurt Parfait (Recipe)

4. Never get “hangry”.

Like the Snicker’s commercial, are you not yourself when you’re hungry? Are you more irritable, sleepy, or light headed? When you meal prep you have access to high quality food every 3 hours which means just as you’re really starting to get hungry again you have a meal waiting.

5.Have fresh food on tap.

Piggy-backing off of #4, when you meal prep you have fresh food on tap. Being able to make your diet at least 80% whole food means you can eat high quality, nutrition dense food when you eat, instead of eating greasy pizza and calling that a meal.

High Protein, Low Carb Seafood Zoodles (Recipe)

I highly recommend checking out 6 Pack Fitness if you plan on getting into meal prepping. They make several lines of meal management bags ranging from backpacks and totes, to purses and briefcases.