The best way to lose your muffin top is with a consistent, progressive exercise program. (Stock art)
If there’s one thing that really irks me, it’s seeing people led astray by the Muffin Top Myth.
These well-meaning folks devote time and effort under a faulty premise that gets them zero results.
And I get fired up!
I know that when you put your valuable time and energy into a fitness program, you deserve to see nothing less than amazing results. That’s my commitment to all of my clients, and is something that I am truly passionate about.
You can see why I’d get so upset when I see people working hard without getting results.
So what’s this Muffin Top Myth?
The belief that doing a magical ab exercise will shrink and flatten your waist, and will rid you of a muffin top.
Sorry, there’s no such magical ab exercise.
In fact, all of the magical ab exercises in the world won’t make a dent in your muffin top, as long as you continue with your current, unhealthy lifestyle.
The true belly-shrinking magic is found in improving your diet and exercise routine to promote fat loss from your entire body, including—but not limited to—your midsection.
Here’s how to really get rid of that muffin top:
Shrink Your Belly Tip #1: Stop Eating Processed Foods
Everyone loves a good shortcut, right? Depends on where that shortcut takes you.
From now on I want you to think of processed foods as a shortcut to belly fat.
I wouldn’t be surprised if future studies prove that the over-processing, chemical additives and high fructose corn syrup that are pumped into processed foods specifically adds fat around your belly.
If you want to shrink your belly then stay away from sugars, sodas, chemically altered fats, processed, packaged, fried and preserved foods.
Shrink Your Belly Tip #2: Eat Fresh, Whole Foods
Once you’ve cut the processed foods out of your diet, fill in the void with lots of fresh foods like:
Whole, organic, seasonal fruits
Lean, hormone-free, high quality meats
Colorful organic veggies
Nuts and seeds
I know this list of foods may seem boring at first, but if you stick with it long enough, you’ll grow to love the tantalizing flavors of real food.
When your diet is filled with the foods listed above, your body will quickly shed pounds and lean out.
Shrink Your Belly Tip #3: Do Challenging Exercise
The absolute best way to lose your muffin top forever is with a consistent, progressive exercise program.
Consistent: You should be exercising 3-5 times each week.
Progressive: For truly awesome results, keep your body guessing with new exercises and increasing intensity.
My exercise programs are specifically crafted to get you into the best shape of your life, and I’m fanatically passionate about seeing you meet your goal.
I’d love to hear from you! Call or email today to get started.
Squats work your glutes, hips and thighs all in one shot. (Stock art)
5 Simple Exercises For Sculpted & Toned Legs
Are you self-conscious about your legs?
Do you dread the thought of we aring shorts-let alone a swimsuit?
Maybe you think your calves are too skinny or you hate that your thighs rub together and your buns jiggle when you walk.
Whatever you don’t like about your legs, it isn’t going to fix itself. So how can you fix it? Include strength training for your lower body in your regular routine.
To sculpt and tone your legs, try the following five exercises two to three times a week and see the difference they make. You’ll be showing off those legs in no time.
#1: The Lunge
Arguably the best leg exercise, the lunge works pretty much every leg muscle as well as your buttocks. There are many variations to the simple lunge, but to do the basic lunge, stand up straight and tighten your core.
Step forward several feet with your right foot, landing heel first. Bend your right and left leg down until both legs are bent at 90 degrees (never more) and your left knee is about an inch above the fl oor. Make sure your knee doesn’t extend further than your toes. Keep your body upright and work to keep your balance by not wobbling from side to side. Lift your body up and bring your hips forward until you’re standing straight again. Then repeat, lunging forward with your left foot.
#2: The Squat
Perhaps the second-best full-leg workout is the squat. This powerhouse of an exercise works your glutes, hips and thighs all in one shot.
Here’s how to do a beginner’s squat. Stand between two chairs (if needed for balance). Place your feet shoulder-width apart. Keeping your back straight, chest up, and core tight, squat down like you’re going to sit in a chair. Bend at the knees until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Hold this position, and then stand back up. Repeat without resting.
#3: The Mountain Climber
This leg exercise mimics the movement of climbing a steep mountain. The faster you climb (move your legs) the more of a cardio workout you’ll get as well.
Get in a push-up position: hands and toes on the floor holding up your body. Holding in your abs, lift your right foot, bringing your right knee toward your chest. Tap the floor with your right foot then extend your leg back to starting position. Then lift your left leg, bring your left knee up toward your chest and tap the floor. Return to starting position. Repeat right, left, right, left for 20 repetitions.
#4: The Step-Up
Step-ups are great because they mimic movements you perform on a daily basis. This exercise works your legs and gets your heart pumping. When you do this exercise you can hold a dumbbell in each hand to increase resistance. In addition, you’ll need some sort of step. This could be a bottom stair, sturdy box, or low stable chair.
Step up with your right foot, and then bring your left foot up. Step back down so both feet are on the floor. Then repeat, s tepping up first with your left foot. Continue doing this 20 times.
#5: The Carving Curtsy
A little more complicated but worth the effort, the carving curtsy works the abs, buttocks, and legs (including your inner thighs).
To do the carving curtsy, stand up straight with your arms bent and hands by your chest. Lunge back and to the right with your left leg so your left foot lands behind your right foot and to the right of your body. Bend both knees to a 90-degree angle like you’re performing a curtsy.
Swing your left arm forward and up and your right arm back by your side. Then stand up straight, lifting your left knee out to the side, and tap your left knee with your left hand. Do 20 reps on each leg, and then switch sides.
A solid strength training routine will tone your legs, lift your buns, strengthen your core, and will result in healthy weight loss.
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If you’re ready to begin your body transformation then feel free to reach out to me. Email or call to get started today.
I haven’t experienced the exhilaration of The Color Run or any other similar “paint races” currently trending throughout North America and overseas.
But I gotta admit it looks like fun — if you don’t mind having your whites blasted with a rainbow of coloured powder as you run five kilometres through the streets of your town.
I’m thinking “free dye job.” What would my greying goatee look like in magenta? Or indigo?
Anyhoo, this blog certainly supports any event that puts so much stock into health and happiness.
The Color Run hits London, Ont., on Aug. 17.
Here’s the press release issued today …
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – August 7, 2013
The Color Run™ debuts in London
The “Happiest 5k on the Planet” plans for thousands this month
TORONTO – The hugely popular The Color Run™, the single largest event series in the United States, will debut in London, Ontario on Saturday, August 17. The event will be held at the Western Fair District (856 Florence Street, London) and will begin at 9 a.m. Registration for the event is open for teams and individual runners.
With no official race winner or times, The Color Run celebrates health, happiness and individuality. Runners of all ages, sizes and fitness levels participate in the run, beginning at the start line with all-white clothing and finishing covered in a rainbow of colors. Each kilometre, a different shade of powder fills the air covering runners. By the time the finish line is reached, the air and runners are filled with vivid color combinations. Over 60% of ‘Color Runners’, as participants are called, are first-time 5k runners and participate as a celebration and capstone of their healthy living accomplishments.
“The Color Run is all about having fun and healthy living, while giving back to local charities,” said Travis Snyder, founder of The Color Run. “The event brings the community together and creates energy so positive it’s contagious. Our mantra is ‘Be Happy. Be Healthy. Be You’.”
“As a small but mighty charity we’re delighted to be working with The Color Run here in London,” said Sheri and Scott Houston, founders of Tara Boom Houston Children’s Foundation. “This exciting partnership will assist us to provide unique and direct financial support to families here in southwestern Ontario.”
“The Color Run and One Run both have similar attributes by encouraging healthy and active living,” said Justin Tiseo, organizer of One Run. “Both organizationsdemonstrate this through the aspects of fun and getting involved. It’s a natural partnership between two great organizations, striving to make a difference.”
Since its debut in January 2012, participation for The Color Run has exploded with more than 1.5 million ‘likes’ on Facebook. Last year The Color Run visited more than 50 cities with more than 600,000 participants. This year, the run will launch more than 100 events with an estimated 1 million participants.
Following the London event, The Color Run will also take place in Ottawa, ON on Saturday, August 25 and Vancouver, BC on Saturday, September 14. Solo runner/walker cost is $50 (early entry fee). Team runners and walkers cost is $45. Children under the age of five are free. To register, or for more details, please visit: www.thecolorrun.com/canada.
About The Color Run™
The Color Run is the largest event series in the United States and the first of its kind. Travis Snyder founded the 5k paint race event series in 2012, creating a new genre of running event. The Color Run celebrates healthiness, happiness and individuality, bringing the community together to create a five-kilometre canvas of colorful fun. For more on The Color Run, visit www.thecolorrun.com or watch this video. The color run has been featured on Today, O: The Oprah Magazine, MSNBC, USA Today Travel, The Wall Street Journal, CNN and many more. To view additional press on the Color Run please click here.
The great Gurmukh is India-bound after a three-city Canadian tour this month.
Internationally renowned yoga expert Gurmukh Kaur Khalsa wrapped up a four-day seminar today in Ottawa.
She taught a Kundalini yoga training course for yoga teachers Oct. 27-30 at The Shunnya Centre, 63 Beechwood Ave.
It’s the last official stop on a three-city Canadian tour this month that included visits to Vancouver and Edmonton.
The 68-year-old former yoga teacher-to-the-stars is now preparing to go to India.
In case you missed her, here’s a collection of wisdom-filled quotes from a recent interview I conducted with the woman commonly known as Madonna’s ex-yoga instructor, followed by video clips from the Vancouver and Edmonton workshops:
• On balance
“Body, mind and soul … (are) the three aspects of the human being and once they come into balance, that’s when you find happiness.”
• On happiness
“Happiness is that which doesn’t deviate due to circumstances. You know, you have a girlfriend, she breaks up (with you) and then you’re sad. … You had a bummer day. … When you’re truly happy, you just keep constant. It doesn’t mean you’re not emotional or sad when something happens. But you don’t give away that permanent gift inside of you.”
• On inner peace and geographic location
“If you find that peace inside of you, you can almost be anywhere and not be affected by your environment. But if you don’t have that inner strength and connectiveness, the environment dictates your emotions. … Kundalini yoga gives you the interior peace no matter where you are.”
• On whether a certain physical activity is worthwhile
“Is it fun, does it make me feel good, and is it also challenging? If all those three things I can answer (affirmatively), then to me it’s so worthy of doing.”
• On her formative years in the U.S. midwest
“I worked hard at ice skating and then swimming and being on the swim team and water ballet and all that. I always loved movement and dance. I loved to read and I loved school, but I really liked to move. I always have.”
• On breathing at full capacity
“That’s why people get high when they climb mountains, when they do marathons, when they ski — because they’re using full breath capacity. It’s hard at first, but then you get a high without any drugs at all. The high comes from the connection of your breath to your spirit. They call it a second wind in sports. We just call it a spiritual connection. It’s all the same thing.”
• On teaching yoga to celebrities
“I did that for a number of years. … That was a chapter of my life I would never go back to. It was interesting, it was entertaining, but it wasn’t sustaining for my soul. I got so less impressed as time went on with all the celebrities. I enjoyed them, but I saw then just as anybody else. They still had to learn to breathe and quiet their mind and move their bodies. They just became wonderful human beings, but they weren’t any different than anyone else.”
• On her worldwide notoriety
“I never planned on it. … I never asked for this at all. It just was my destiny. It wasn’t like I went out looking for it. I just kept teaching and working hard and carrying on, and lo and behold, this thing happened. But it wasn’t any of my doing. It was more just destiny’s doing, you might say. And I’m thankful for it.”
• On teaching
“I teach a lot of teachers to become teachers. That’s my biggest goal because I’ll leave my body, but what am I leaving on the earth? I want to leave teachers that will carry this ancient technology on. … I feel so blessed every morning I wake up and it makes me really be more dedicated to wanting to help other people to feel the same way — to feel alive.”
• On yoga
“It’s the most ancient science in the whole world. It’s 40,000 years old. It wasn’t just thought up in the ’80s and the ’90s. And you don’t need anything but yourself and your breath. You don’t even need any equipment. It’s such a built-in ancient technology that just came up. It was lying dormant, you might say, and then in the mid-’70s, it started awakening. And now … everybody’s doing yoga.”
• On tips for trying yoga
“Find a class in your area. It doesn’t matter what kind. Just give it a try. Everybody’s got yoga everywhere and maybe that won’t be the yoga that you’ll stick with, but you’ll get an experience and then maybe try another yoga class or get a video. And the best test is how do you feel? Do you feel more calm? Do you have more energy? Are you less worried? Whatever it is. Does your back feel better? Whatever it is. And that would be the sign. If you feel sicker and stiffer and more angry or whatever your thing is, then it’s not for you, but I’ve never met anyone that it’s not for them.”
• On the essence of yoga
“The expression is: ‘Off the mat and into the world.’ Like, get off the mat, your spirits are up, your body feels good, now go and help other people who don’t feel this way.”