What to do when you are not seeing results?

frustrated-with-losing-weight-2I know how frustrating it can be when you are on your health and fitness journey, you are working out and eating healthy, but it doesn’t seem like things are moving. This is typically when people get frustrated and want to give up or try an extreme measure to
speed up the results.

The first thing that you should realize is that this will take time and extreme measures will only make it worse for you in the long run. Instead, here are some tips that I have used for myself and share with my clients who are struggling to see results.

 

1. STICK WITH IT! I know that this is not what you want to hear, but it is true. Consistency is key to getting lasting results. If you are not seeing results, chances are you have not been at it long enough, so keep going. If you have been at this for awhile, maybe you should ask yourself “Am I giving this 100%?” or is there an area where you can step it up a notch? Add higher weights or maybe you are eating more sugar than you should or maybe you don’t need that extra glass of wine at dinner?

2. Track Your Activities: If you are not sure what to change or tweak, take a week and track EVERYTHING! I use my Fitbit and MyFitnessPal to track my food, my steps, my calories burned, and my sleep. I also journal about my mood and stress levels. When I track my activities I have a clear view of what I’m doing well and what I”m not doing, this is huge. You can take that information and figure out things that you want to change.

3. Test & Analyze: Once you have an idea of where you can improve, make a small change and test it for 2 – 3 weeks. If you upgrade a current habit with an even better habit, usually that will shock the system enough to get some things moving right along. Maybe you add more intensity to your workouts or you cut out the after dinner snack or get one additional hour of sleep or take a yoga class on sundays. See if that makes a difference, if not, keep that good habit going (remember consistency is key and it may take more time) and add another better habit.

4. Focus on Non Scale Victories: As you go through this journey and adjust your habits, don’t focus so much on the scale. The scale doesn’t always tell the full story and can leave you feeling defeated, even though you have improved your sleep habits, increased your workout intensity, meal prepped like a boss, and have less anxiety. These are all pluses and just know that you are focused on improving yourself, soon you’ll feel so great, the weight loss will be a bonus, not the priority.

This process takes time, so be patient and trust the process. If you have been on this journey for a long with no significant changes, then it may be time to consult with a fitness professional, nutritionist, or your doctor for additional support and help.

If you would like to speak more about how to work together to help you reach your goals, comment below!

10 Sneaky Ways to Get Healthy

shutterstock_217194712Most people don’t realize that can actually be pretty easy to get healthy, the key is to remember that small changes compounded over time can lead to big results.  This is a concept I learned from reading The Compound Effect by Darren Hardy. So, I wanted to share a few ways that you can actually “sneak” in healthier habits into your day.

  1. Keep Healthy Snacks EVERYWHERE: If you are surrounded by junk food, you’ll eat it when hunger strikes.  If you keep healthy foods stocked in your desk at work, glove compartment, and in your house, you will be sure to avoid giving in to junk food.
  2. Do something physical during mundane tasks: One of my clients likes to respond to emails while she is on the treadmill, it’s easy for her to do both and kills two bird with one stone.
  3. Set reminders in your phone: If you have a super busy day, it may be in your best interest to set reminders in your phone to alert you to “Get up and walk around” so you don’t sit for too long or to “drink a glass of water”.  A lot of times our days get the best of us and we simply get stuck at our desk.
  4. Schedule your workouts and meals: Piggy backing off of #3, if you plan your days and schedule your workouts and meals into your calendar, you are more inclined to respect that as a meeting with yourself and will take the time to go workout or eat a real meal.
  5. Keep a pair of sneakers nearby: If you have your Sneakers under your desk at work or in your trunk, if you find that you have some free time that comes up, you can swap out your shoes and go for a nice stroll during that break.  “Not having shoes” can no longer be your excuse!
  6. Keep Bottles of Water Visible: I tend to not drink enough water during the day, so I started to keep water bottles in visible places – on my desk, on my night stand, in my cup holder in my car, and next to the couch. This way, when I see it I’m prompted to drink more water.
  7. Create a Fitness Inducing Playlist: One of my clients needs tons of motivation to work out, so I had her create a playlist of her favorite mood boosting, booty shaking tunes. I then had her to listen to it not only when she works out, but also 30 minutes she is scheduled to work out with me so she is pumped.  She says she now listens to the playlist when she feels sluggish or unmotivated in other areas of her life.
  8. Drink Your Fruits & Veggies: If you follow me on Social Media, you know that I love Shakeology, because it gives me everything I need to get my fruits, vegetables, minerals, vitamins and more.  You can also make a Superfood Smoothie at home, here is a list of Green Smoothies that you can try.
  9. Make Fitness Social: If you are typically meeting up with your friends or having date nights that are centered around food and cocktails, maybe try to switch things up and do something physical together. Maybe date night can be a hike or ice skating, or you can swap out happy hour for going bowling or rock climbing.  It’s the perfect way to make fitness fun and it’s always better when you have a partner to do it with you!
  10. Cook More Meals at Home: Each month I run a 5 Day Clean Eating Group via Facebook and typically my challengers lose 3 – 5 pounds during that challenge. The kicker about those groups is that everyone cooks all of their meals, because I provide a meal plan with a grocery list and recipes.  When you cook your meals, you can control what goes into them and the portion sizes (which are always too big when you eat out).

When I share these tips with my clients and they begin to implement them, they find that they are more consistent with their workouts and eating clean, but also find that they feel better, tend to lose weight, and feel empowered by developing healthier habits.

If you are looking to get a better handle on developing healthy habits, send me a note on Facebook or comment below.

 

Try this goal setting technique to reach your weight loss goals

64186-we-are-what-we-repeatedly-doMany of my clients come to me with very specific goals, like “I want to lose 15 pounds in one month” or “I want to lose my stomach flab by my trip to Maui in a few months”. While I commend my clients for setting SMART Goals, which are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time Specific, I often have to have a conversation with them about how “Realistic and Attainable” their goals are. Is it possible to lose 15 pounds in one month? Absolutely. Will it be easy and will they enjoy the process? Absolutely not. Typically, when I lay out the plan of action, their eyes glaze over and they are hit with the reality that the goal they want may require more than they are willing to do to reach that goal in that amount of time.

One thing that I work on with my clients is setting goals that are motivating and actually make them excited to push for. How do I do that? We change the focus from achieving a specific result to adopting a specific habit, which will ultimately lead to their desired results. There is power in forming healthy habits, mainly because once you form those habits, naturally they will lead to results of getting healthier, losing weight, feeling better and more.

When I task my clients to set goals, I give them these specifics and I call them SMART 2.0 Goals: 

  • Specific
  • Meaningful & Motivating
  • Action Oriented
  • Realistic
  • Time Framed

For example, instead of saying, “I want to lose 15 pounds in one month”, your goal would look something like this:

Weight Loss SMART Goal 2.0: I will lose 15 pounds by developing the habit of eating a healthy breakfast and taking my dog on a 30 minute walk every morning for the next 4 weeks.

This type of goal setting provides you with a better aim and focus on developing habits, also it gives you a better idea of what you need to do each day to make that goal become a reality.   You are no longer focusing on the 15 pounds, instead you are focusing on creating a habit to eat a healthier breakfast and to use your dog walking time to be active.  By the end of the month, will you have reached your goal of 15 pounds of weight loss? Maybe or maybe not, but will you be well on your way? Absolutely! Will you feel good about yourself if you are able to make two small adjustments to your daily routine that will lead to feeling better, looking better, having more energy, fueling your body, and spending more quality time with your dog? Absolutely!   If you keep this habit up and make it a lifestyle change, will you eventually lose those 15 pounds? HECK YES!

This type of goal setting is great because at the end of the day you are forming habits that will lead to a healthier lifestyle and the bonus will be the weight loss or whatever result you are looking for.   Aristotle nailed it when he said, “We are what we repeatedly do.” 

If you would like to learn more about how to set better goals to help you achieve a healthier lifestyle, connect with me on Facebook and send me a message. 

How I lost 3 lbs on a 8 day all inclusive vacation in Mexico!

13754460_10111174801729644_1663793885540118672_nWhen most people think of all inclusive vacations, they immediately are drawn to the allure of the all you can eat and all you can drink portion of that package.  Anyone who knows me, knows that I love to eat and I love my Margaritas, but this time around, I had to be very intentional about what I ate and drank on my 8 day vacation at the Now Sapphire Resort in Riviera Maya, Mexico.

On July 6th, I started the 21 Day Fix Extreme program which also included replacing one meal a day with Shakeology.  This 21 day program focuses on 30 minute workouts which vary from upper body, lower body, total body, plyometric, pilates, cardio, and yoga. On top of that you have a very simple nutrition plan that you follow that incorporates portion control containers and a list of foods that you are able to eat.  The whole thought of this program is simplicity, it takes out calorie counting or spending endless hours working out, yet yields pretty amazing results, because you do the program for 21 days without rest days or cheat meals.  In my mind, you can do anything for 21 days, but I will say when 8 of those days are spent abroad, I was a bit nervous, but I am happy to report that I actually lost 3 pounds while on vacation and feel like a total rockstar for staying on track.

Here are a few things that I did, that made this possible and actually pretty doable for the vacation:

  1. SHAKEOLOGY EVERY SINGLE DAY!: I made sure that every morning, before leaving my hotel room, I used one of the ice cold bottles of water and mixed it with one serving of Cafe Latte Shakeology. It was like my morning Iced Coffee that I didn’t feel guilty about.  Shakeology is packed with nutrients, vitamins, minerals, probiotics, protein, and has 9 servings of fruits and vegetables. This was my morning fuel.
  2. Beachbody OnDemand & the Gym: Since the resort had free wifi, I was able to bring my phone or laptop to the resort gym and do my 30 minute workouts each morning. Since the program uses dumbbells and resistance bands and doesn’t take up a lot of space, I was able to get the workouts done. Plus, the gym area with the weights was pretty empty, as most people either stuck to the cardio machines or used the cable weight machines.
  3. Make Friends with the Chefs & Wait Staff: The chefs and waitstaff were pretty regular and I made it a point to make friends and explain my dietary needs on day one.  This way, it was easy for me over the course of the 8 days to get foods that I could eat. I frequented the grill area, where I could order a piece of fish, steak, or chicken to be grilled for me on the spot. I brought over the olive oil that was near the salad bar and asked them to use that instead of the oil that was next to the grill, which wasn’t olive oil and didn’t have any additional additives. I also, brought over fresh veggies from the salad bar and asked them grill or sauté them for me and they did without blinking an eye.  I opted out of the fried foods or foods drenched in salty sauces, and ate mostly grilled protein and veggies at each meal.  I also indulged in tropical fruits that we don’t typically have here in the states like Mexican Papaya with a squeeze of lime juice, dragon fruit, and tons of melon, pineapples and mangos. For breakfast, I stuck with egg white omelets with a bit of cheese and tons of veggies.
  4. SKIP THE ALCOHOL: The 21 Day Fix Extreme doesn’t allow for alcohol, which was a bit of bummer, especially seeing all of the cool concoctions being served in pineapples or hearing people order a “Dirty Monkey” from the pool bar.  However, I was able to still have a refreshing “mocktail” – Sparkling Water with muddled mint and lime with a pineapple slice. It was the perfect drink and still felt fancy and tropical. I actually didn’t even miss the alcohol, being that it was so hot and humid, my drink was perfect and I could drink them all day! Which was helpful, since I needed to make sure that I drink at least 10 glasses of water.
  5. Challenge Tracker App & 21 Day Fix Tracker App: To help me stay on track, as when I am on vacation I rarely know what day it is, so having a tool to ensure that I was eating on track and doing the correct workouts for the day, was key.  Plus, I was a part of a Challenge Group, where I was able to see everyone else checking in with their meals and workouts, it was a great reminder when I didn’t want to workout or wanted to pig out at the buffet, that I had goals and made commitments and that I wasn’t alone on this journey.

I am pleased with myself and my results so far, especially because I didn’t make excuses and stayed on track.  If I can do it, that means that anyone else can.  This just proves the power of having a true system and plan for your nutrition and fitness that is simple and sustainable, coupled with an accountability system and tracking tools.  If you are interested in trying the 21 Day Fix or the 21 Day Fix Extreme, I have a Challenge Group starting soon and I’d love to have you join me and the rest of the group.

Click here to learn more!

3 Tips to Make You a Faster Runner

As the summer months kick off, it means that Marathon and Race season is a few months away.  When a client tells me that they want to train for an upcoming race, I know that I must update their training program to incorporate 3 important components:

  1. Sprint Training – Helps to increase aerobic capacity
  2. Strength Training – Increase muscle and bone density and prevents injuries
  3. Plyometrics Training – Activates fast twitch muscles, which you don’t hit at lower intensities

What I’ve found is that my clients have not improved their running, when they couple it with their own cardio training program, like a Couch to 5K or more traditional marathon prep trainings, we saw an increase in speed and endurance, plus a reduction in body fat.  Which basically means, a faster, stronger and more efficient athlete, who is ready to compete! Plus, this helps to prevent injuries and assist with recovery post race.

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Here are some things to consider adding to your training regimen:

  • Sprint Training Circuit – Perform the circuit and rest 2 minutes, then repeat 4-5 more times
    • Sprint 30 seconds
    • Jog 60 seconds
    • Sprint 50 seconds
    • Jog 60 seconds
    • Sprint 70 seconds
    • Rest/Walk 2 minutes
  • Strength Training Circuit – Perform each move with minimal rest. At the end of the circuit rest for 90 seconds
    • 15 Bodyweight or Goblet Squats
    • 10 Push Ups
    • 20 Alternating Reverse Lunges
    • 60 Second Plank
    • 20 Alternating Lateral/Side Lunges
  • Plyometric Circuit – Perform one or all of these moves each for one minute, then rest for one minute. Repeat up to 5 cycles to complete 10 minutes
    • Jump Rope
    • Bodyweight Jump Squats
    • Bodyweight Switch Lunges
    • Low Box Jumps
    • Ladder Shuffles or Skater Lateral Jumps

Give these a shot and add them to your training regimen!  For more information or assistance with your marathon/race training, shoot me a message on my Facebook Page. 

Sweet & Savory Post Workout Parfaits

Many people ask me about what to eat after a good workout and yes, protein is important, but many of the protein shakes on the market are not the cleanest of healthiest for you.  Here is an option, that I have fallen in love with and it’s a perfect recipe that you can meal prep a few in advance for a nice grab and go snack, that’s as filling as it is fancy!

I typically use plain greek yogurt for my parfaits, but I wanted to try something a little different, especially since my basil plant, Peter (yes, I named him), was started to wilt so I wanted to make use of the basil I had on hand.  So, I figured I’d swap out the yogurt for cottage cheese, which I have never been a real fan of, until now, and figured that strawberries would be a nice pair with the lemony basil.   For added sweetness and depth of flavor, balsamic vinegar and honey round out this recipe.

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  • 1/2 Cup of Cottage Cheese
  • 1/4 Cup of Diced Strawberries
  • 1 Tablespoon of Fresh Basil, chopped
  • 1 Tablespoon of Balsamic Vinegar 
  • 1 Drizzle of Honey
  1. Place cottage cheese at the bottom of a bowl or a mason jar.
  2. In a small bowl, combine Strawberries, Basil and Balsamic together and add to cottage cheese. 
  3. Drizzle with honey and enjoy!

For more of my recipes, I now have a Clean Eating Instagram account – www.Instagram.com/iCookClean. Follow for more recipes and meal prep ideas!

3 Tips to Get (& Stay) Motivated in 2016

Happy New Years! As we kick off 2016, I wanted to share with you 3 Tips to Get (and Stay) Motivated for 2016.  I know that many people start off the new year excited and ready to crush their health and fitness goals, but as the days and weeks roll by, our level of commitment can begin to decline.  Last week, I hosted a free webinar where I go into detail of my 3 tips (click here to watch the webinar or scroll to the bottom), but I wanted to share them with you here.

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1. Clearly Identify Your WHY and Your Goals: Take some time and think about WHY you want to get healthy and fit this year. One of my favorite quotes is “If you are considering QUITTING, think about why you started in the first place.”  This gets me every time, when I want to give up on a goal, I simply remember why I started in the first place and it helps me push past my excuses.  The same thing with your goals, get very clear on what you want to accomplish and make sure that your goals are SPECIFIC, MEASURABLE and REALISTIC. Once you have your WHY and your GOALS, read them at least once a day so that they stay in front of you!

aaeaaqaaaaaaaakuaaaajdvkzdnkyjuylwnmogitndi2mi1imzlmltflywm5owexndjiyq2. Make a Plan, Work Your Plan & Do It Consistently: Once you have your goals, break them down into daily, weekly, monthly and quarterly tasks.  This way you will know exactly what needs to be done and how to move forward with your goals. The biggest thing here is to make sure that do what needs to be done CONSISTENTLY, not just when you feel like it or when it is convenient for you. News flash, success isn’t always going to convenient and comfortable, so just suck it and keep pushing forward.

the_workout_buddy_tn-6630403. Get Connected to an Accountability System: The biggest success factor I found with my challengers last year, was those who actively participated and checked into the group or with their Accountability partner. When you know that you are expected to show up and check in to a group or for a weekly check in call, it creates a sense of urgency to do what you said you would do.  This is why I love my monthly groups, because you have people with the same goals as you, who are right there with you pushing and working on their goals. You are not alone and you have the support needed when you feel like giving up.

These 3 tips may seem super simple, but they have been game changers for my challengers in 2015 and hopefully, they will work for you, too!

If you are looking for more accountability to reach your goals in 2016, you’re invited to join my upcoming January 2016 Kick Off Challenge. To learn more, click here or watch the webinar below and at the end I discuss more about the challenge group and the special bonuses I’m throwing in for my participants.

 

5 Tips To Get Up & Workout This Winter

12376700_10109900696187364_4999197646206342273_nIt’s raining here in San Fran, but that doesn’t mean the workouts have to stop! Here are a few tips to get motivated to workout.

1. SUCK IT UP! Success isn’t comfortable or convenient. The truth is, if you want to reach your goals, it will require you to do things that you don’t always want to do! Get dressed, and get it done!

2. Find a workout buddy. When I don’t feel like working out, I can usually rely on my girls Jessica  or Kylie  to workout with me and push me in a killer workout. I always dread it before, but never regret it after. Who’s your workout buddy? 

3. Review Your Goals and ask yourself “Why?”. Think about why is it important for you to reach your goals. How will your life change? How will you feel if you don’t reach your goal?

4. Reward Yourself. If you are motivated by positive reinforcement, give yourself a reward (not food!) for actually getting it together and working out.

5. Track & Review. Do yourself a favor and figure out a way to track your progress. You can either use photos, take weekly measurements or use an app tracker, to help keep you motivated.

The key is to look at how far you’ve come and keep the eye on the prize. Don’t let excuses keep you from being the better version of yourself. You got this!  If you are struggling to stay accountable this winter, join my next 30 Day Fitness & Clean Eating Accountability Challenge.  Click here to learn more! 

5 Tips To Recover from Thanksgiving

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Well, Thanksgiving has come and gone and now it’s time to get back on track with your health and fitness goals.  Remember, on average people gain 7 – 10 pounds between Thanksgiving and Christmas, so check out these 5 tips to help you keep that from happening.

  1. Drink TONS of water: Typically, your Thanksgiving meal is packed with carbs and sodium, which can cause you to bloat. Flush out your system with water, at least half your weight in ounces. If you don’t like water, add lemons or cucumber for added flavor.
  2. Eat Your Veggies: Dark Leafy Greens are great detoxifiers and full of amazing vitamins, nutrients and antioxidants. Try making a big salad and throw in some pieces of turkey for protein and to help get rid of left overs. I stick with my Shakeology once a day, especially during this time! 
  3. Move Your Body: Aim to get at least 30 minutes of physical activity, especially over the next few days. Go for a walk, hit the gym, gather the family for a dance party in the living room or yes, Black Friday shopping can count as your cardio. Aim for 10,000 steps! For a quick HIIT workout, check out my latest video
  4. Portion Out Leftovers: Avoid over-eating by portioning out your leftovers and making meals in Tupperware containers. Whatever is left either freeze or give away to guests! Keep one or two meals per person and get rid of the rest. For more info on Meal Prep Tips, check out this post
  5. Forgive Yourself: If you overdid it yesterday…so what?! Today is a new day and with the 4 tips above, you will be able to get right back on track. Focus on the time spent with friends and family and know that you still have the power to change your body and reach your goals!

Hopefully, you had a great Thanksgiving and if you need a bit more accountability with your health and fitness, join my upcoming Health Holidays Clean Eating & Fitness Challenge.  

Have a Healthy & Happy Thanksgiving!

On this day, we set our intention towards Gratitude and Thankfulness. Among all of the things that are on your list to be thankful for, take some time today to be thankful for your body. You may not be where you want to be, you may be on the first step of your health and fitness journey or you may be in the middle and still have a ways to go until you reach your goals, but if you simply believe that you have the power to make those changes and reach those goals…you will get there. When you love and respect your body, you will make choices and decisions that will support your goals, so keep pushing.

BONUS Thanksgiving Gift for you – Thanksgiving HIIT Workout (Under 30 minutes)

Before you PIG OUT on Turkey Day, don’t forget to Workout! Here’s a simple workout that you can do to burn some calories!

Start your workout with something to get the heart rate up for 2 – 3 minutes like running in place, jumping jacks, X jumps, etc.

2. Perform each move for 60 seconds

  • Squats
  • Skaters
  • Push Ups
  • Mountain Climbers.

3. Rest for 60 seconds and then repeat step 2 at least 4 more times for a HIIT workout in under 30 minutes.

However, if all else fails…just MOVE YOUR BODY! Run around, do cartwheels, dance around, act like a fool…the key is to get moving, get the blood flowing and burn those calories!

Have a healthy and happy thanksgiving from my heart to yours!

Allison Tibbs
Certified Personal Trainer & Healthy Lifestyle Coach
http://www.AllisonTibbsFitness.com
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