Getting Started

Beginning a new task can be difficult.

When we are looking at the task as a whole, it can feel like a huge, overwhelming weight hanging over our heads. This leads us to put it off, when in fact, the best action we could take is to get started now.

Diving in without a plan could leave us feeling frustrated and even more overwhelmed than before.

Planning out our project means we can both start and finish it. Our plan places us in control and breaks down the big project into smaller, more manageable steps.

Accomplishing one step at a time keeps your momentum going so that you can finish your project once and for all.

How does this relate to fitness?

Deciding you want to become stronger without a plan will lead to disappointing and likely random results. Choosing to become stronger and beginning a structured, individualized workout plan suited to your goals and abilities and executed consistently will lead to results.

If you’re a beginner with the goals of performing 10 full chest-to-floor bodyweight push-ups and squatting your bodyweight, those are absolutely attainable goals that can be worked toward with a plan. Having shorter term goals along the way (2 push-ups, then 5 push-ups, etc) will keep you motivated and excited to keep going.

What’s the big project or goal you haven’t tackled yet? Cleaning the house counts as a big project, imo.

Leg Workout at Home for Women



This circuit is perfect if you’re short on time and want to get in some strength training + cardio.

Also, if the seasonal change is killing your motivation, incorporating circuits into your workout program might help. Circuits = no rest periods between the exercises. So you won’t be tempted to drag out those rest periods scrolling your phone, chit chatting, etc.

Doing the workout with no interruptions and getting it over and done with will feel GOOD.

If you want to make any of the first 6 exercises more difficult, just add more weight. You can also add weight to the clamshells by holding a dumbbell in place on the top hip.

The workout (repeat for 3-4 rounds):


20 chair squats
15 romanian deadlifts
15 lateral squats (hello inner thighs!)
10 reverse lunges each side
30 knee banded glute bridges
15 single leg glute bridges each side
30 knee-banded seated hip abduction (10 sitting straight up, 10 lean forward, 10 lean back)
30 knee-banded clamshells each side (lose the band if it’s too challenging)

SMART Goals

🧠 Become an effective goal setter with SMART goals

When we first start thinking about our goals, what we usually come up with are broad terms or vague ideas. “I want to look good.” That’s a start, but if we really want to succeed we have to get more detailed and make a plan.

🏝 Let’s say we have a client named Kevin and he wants to feel more confident on an upcoming beach vacation. We ask Kevin more questions and discover that what he actually wants is to lose 10 pounds of extra weight for his vacation in three months. He’s 37 years old, 5’11”, weighs 200 pounds, and has no medical conditions. Here’s how we can make Kevin’s goal SMART:

👉🏻Specific- Kevin would like to lose 10 pounds in 3 months.
⚖️Measurable- A scale can be used to measure overall weight loss. If there are other body composition goals, these changes can be measured and tracked as well.
🧗Attainable- A 10 pound loss in 3 months is an attainable goal.
👍🏼Realistic- At his height and weight, 10 pounds in 3 months is attainable for Kevin.
Timely- 10 pounds can be lost in 3 months at a steady and sustainable rate.

💪🏼If you have a goal of your own in mind, get started with your plan by asking yourself these action-oriented questions:

❓What is my goal?
📆 When would I like to have this goal accomplished?
💰 What do I need to accomplish this goal? (Support from friends/family, money, time, gym equipment)
🤒 What are some possible challenges I could face on my journey to reach my goal? (missing workouts, holiday goodies, out of town trips, etc)
👟What steps can I take each day to keep moving in the right direction?

😁Answering these questions will serve many benefits. Not only will you be developing a plan of action, but you’ll also feel empowered, focused, and motivated.


💪🏼🔥Happy goal crushing!

How much protein do you need?

If your goals are to either build muscle or lose fat, it is a good idea to increase your protein intake. Protein is one of the three macronutrients (others being fats and carbohydrates). Our bodies use protein to build and repair tissues, make enzymes, hormones, and other chemicals in the body. It is also an important part of building bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood.

Protein for Muscle Building

If your goal is to get the most out of your resistance training in building muscle and strength, you should make protein intake a top nutritional priority. In a review by Brad Shoenfield and Alan Aragon, they conclude that a daily protein intake of 1.6-2.2 grams of protein per kilogram of bodyweight is a range to aim for to maximize muscle building. That’s 0.72-1 gram per pound of bodyweight. 

If you typically eat four meals each day, you would aim for each of those meals to contain 0.4g/kg/meal to reach the minimum of 1.6 g/kg/day. Using the upper daily intake of 2.2g/kg/day would mean that each of your four meals should contain 0.55 g/kg. 

Sometimes hitting your protein target with just your meals can be difficult. You might find yourself needing to supplement with whey protein and that is normal and okay.

Protein for Fat Loss

Protein intake can help with fat loss, but you do not need to consume as much protein for fat loss as you would for muscle building. If your goal is to lose weight, your first priority is to make sure you are creating a consistent calorie deficit. This means you are eating fewer calories than you are expending. There is no one-size-fits-all diet that will ensure this happens for you. The best weight loss diet for you will be one that you can stick to over time in that calorie deficit. 

Weight loss typically happens quickly at the beginning, but then most people will notice this process start to slow down. Your body will try to defend against the weight loss, because from an evolutionary standpoint losing weight is a threat. This is called adaptive thermogenesis. To break through this weight loss plateau, or metabolic slowdown, you will want to increase your metabolism. A higher protein diet can help accomplish this for a couple of reasons:

  1. In addition to resistance training, eating a higher protein diet will help increase muscle mass, which in turn will increase your basal metabolic rate. The higher your basal metabolic rate, the more calories you will burn over the course of 24 hours because muscle burns more calories than fat.
  2. Protein has a higher thermic effect than other macronutrients and the process of digesting protein requires more energy. 
  3. Protein helps us feel full more so than carbohydrates and fats for fewer calories. So, if your diet is high-protein you will consume fewer calories while feeling fuller and chances are you won’t be thinking about food all day. 

For fat loss purposes, you can aim for 0.7-1 gram of protein per pound of your goal weight.

References

Schoenfeld BJ, Aragon AA. How much protein can the body use in a single meal for muscle-building? Implications for daily protein distribution. J Int Soc Sports Nutr. (2018) 15:10. 10.1186/s12970-018-0215-1
[PubMed]