Bye Bye Bingo Wings! Triceps workout

Helllloooo! Did you miss me? It’s been to long, I know.  I will write about my absences soon, but today lets get back into the swing of things with a few exercises.

We’ve covered the Glutes and Abs… now for the 3rd most asked for area… the back of the arm aka Triceps.

First a little education:

Triceps are not just Bingo wings… and yes through diet and exercise you can wave “Hi” with just your hand…not your whole arm.

The Triceps are made up of 3 “Heads”  Long, Lateral,  and Medial.  Each head of the muscle work together to extend your arm at the elbow.

Triceps

The Triceps are worked when ever you straighten your arm under resistance.  Resistance can be a dumbbell, barbell, or your own weight.  You can isolate the muscle (working mostly just that muscle) or as a compound movement (working with another muscle).

Example of an Isolated movement: Pull down or Push down. See video below

Compound movement: Push up, bench press, Dips, close grip press. These all work Chest and Shoulders as well.   See video below

So why do you want to work the Triceps?

Real world- It makes any daily thing you do that straightens your elbow easier.  (Reaching for anything)

Vanity- Give your upper arm a great shape.

WORD OF CATIONS:

If you have any shoulder problem be aware of extreme range of motions (like dips).  ALSO PLEASE for the love of god do not swing the weight and move at your shoulder when you are doing a Triceps Kickback.  It’s better to use lighter weight to isolate the muscle instead of trying to use a heavier weight and have to pull in other muscles.

Exercises:

Triceps Push or Pull down

Tips- Relax your shoulders. Keep your chest up. Only move at the elbow. Press your upper arm against your body.

 

Incline Skull Crusher or French Curl (You will see this exercise called both)

Tips- Keep your elbow and should inline, bend at the elbow… don’t hit yourself in the head!

Tricep Push ups

 

Keep your upper arms by your body.  Move at the elbow… not the shoulder blazes.

Ladies Eat Your Protein

Last week I was working a demo for Betancourt Nutritional Supplements at a local gym where more than once I was asked by a female…

“Protein shake? I don’t what to get fat or too bulky!”

I was SHOCKED that there are still ladies out there that haven’t learned how important protein is to achieve our health and fitness goals.  Lose weight. Gain a booty. Less hungry throughout the day (once you get over your emotional tie to food that is). Protein helps with all of these.

Yes, if you eat ANYTHING in excess you will gain weight, but protein is not likely to be the problem. For most people it’s too many low quality carbs and fats along with not moving enough (enough is based off your body’s needs).

What is Protein?

If you Google it you will get this definition:

Any of a class of nitrogenous organic compounds that consist of large molecules composed of one or more long chains of amino acids and are an essential part of all living organisms, especially as structural components of body tissues such as muscle, hair, collagen, etc., and as enzymes and antibodies.¹

In layman’s terms, protein is (without getting too deep into the science) a bunch of amino acids joined together.  Amino acids are the building blocks of life that help our everyday functions.

There are 2 types of amino acids:

Essential amino acids, ones that our body can not make enough of

Non-essential amino acids, ones that our body can

protein jug

Kristy… Ok I know I should eat protein because my body needs it? But why does it need it? Where do I get it from? And how much?

Great questions! 🙂

We need to INGEST PROTEIN (eat or drink) for 2 reasons:

1. We need to get those Essential Amino Acids from somewhere.  Without them our body would not function, making every day life activities more difficult.

2. The body does not store protein as much as it does carbs and fats.

Once you ingest and digest protein, it enters the plasma pool of amino acids. (Think of this as your bank account).  But like your paycheck, it doesn’t stay in the bank for long.

Protein is used in:

-Cellular growth/ repair (from the muscles of your heart to your glutes)

-Producing hormones (hormone like glucagon which can help to control body fat. Glucagon is released when blood sugar levels go down.  This causes the liver to break down stored glycogen into glucose for the body

– The creating or helping the functions of your body’s enzymes & antibodies

Where can I get protein from? 

To keep it simple the easiest way to get protein is to eat anything that comes from an animal.

-Meat

-Eggs

-Dairy

-Supplements like shakes (casein, whey, beef, and egg)

High Protein, Low carbs could save your life! :)
High Protein, Low carbs could save your life! 🙂

For people that are Vegan/ Vegetarian:

-Chick peas

-Hemp seeds

-Lentils

-Supplement shakes (Chickpea, Hemp, Sunflower)

* Soy is also a protein, but I highly recommend limiting your soy intake.

Yes, nuts/nut butters (like Peanut, almond, etc), cheese, and grains like quinoa do have protein, but they are not a complete protein and are more of a fat or carb.

How much should I eat? 

For a sedentary but healthy person  (someone that sits a lot and does not work out)  the minimum amount needed DAILY is .8g x kgs of body mass.  This amount in the MINIMUM that your body needs to replace the amount of protein turned over in that plasma pool in a day.

For an active and healthy person the recommendation is between 1.0-2.0g x kgs of body mass. (1lb = .45kgs about) to build and recover from your daily life and activities.

Kristy… I did the math… how am I going to get that many grams of protein in on a daily basis?

Some of the tips I give my clients:

1. Make sure you have some kind of protein source every time you eat.  Here’s a good starting point for the “everyday person”.  Think of a serving as the size of your palm.

B- Eggs

S- Nuts

L- Meat

S- Shake

D- Meat

2. Supplement with a protein shake. Most protein powders are between 15-36g per serving.  *If you are looking to lose weight watch the added sugar/carbs.  I like to keep my carbs lower in my shakes, but if you are looking to add weight you can go for one with added carbs.

If you have any other questions when it comes to how protein can help you lose, maintain or gain weight, email me at kristyleconte@gmail.com and I can help you with a meal plan.

Check out this blog about different protein supplements:

https://kristyleconte.com/category/supplements/

END NOTES:

¹ Google Search of Protein, 2015

² Precision Nutrition:  Flatt JP 1978; Tappy L, 1996; Blom WA et al., 2006; Latner JD, Schwartz M, 1999.

What Meditation Taught Me

A show of hands.  How many of your are thinking 5 different things at any given moment?  Good! I’m not the only crazy one.

thoughts

In today’s world we are pulled in so many different directions, it is understandable to at times feel overwhelmed.  We start the day with our “To-do list” and as time ticks on, more and more things come up.  Being someone that gets satisfaction for crossing off the to do list, adding more to it can give me a little anxiety.

About 8 weeks ago I reached the tipping point for me.  I was making breakfast one morning and realized I started my oats, cutting my  apple, poured my protein shake, put my lunch in my bag… all without finishing one completely.  My head was spinning out of control.  I decided I had to get a grab.  I have realized I do these things when I am under/ causing myself more stress.

For a while I had been listening to a podcast at night that helped me unwind form the day.  It was great because normally I was sleep by the time the voice said “now feel the waves wash over your….zzzzzzzz”. It wasn’t great because all day I was stressed and it was taking my energy from other things in my life.  I realized I was being REACTIVE instead of PROACTIVE.  Instead of letting myself get all worked up as the day went on and then relax, why not start the day with a sense of peace and clarity I was really looking for.

Now, like most of you may be thinking, how the heck can you sit (without moving) and no think of anything? Well like my fitness journey I decided to take it one phase at a time.

Phase 1:

I started to meditate for 5 minutes every morning.

inner peace

I didn’t make it a big production.  There was no candles, flowers, chimes, or pillows.  I did it mostly when I could, which was in my car before work or when I was blow drying my hair.  I know it’s not the way it “should be done” but I’m a rule breaker… just kidding… I just made it fight into my life. 

Phase 2:

At first I was a little frustrated because I thought I had to think of NOTHING… how is that possible? This isn’t Seinfeld!  I soon learned it’s not thinking about nothing.  Actually it’s the act of focusing your mind and thoughts back to a “center” or whatever your goal is for that meditation faster.

medate funny 2

To me meditation is practicing the discipline of getting your “energy”/ “focus” back to the your goal faster.   Every time you are able to “let a thought pass by” or in my case bring myself back to thinking  my goal, the more peaceful and focus you become. As you get better at doing this you are less distracted by little things that come in to your thought or even come up in your day. (Like obstacles, doubt, and fear) .

PHASE 3:

After doing this for 8 weeks I have seen a change in myself?

I don’t feel like the white rabbit running around worried about what I have to do next. This is a HUGE change for me.  I normally worrying about the emails I have to return or what the next thing on the “to-do list”.  I remember one of my mentors Stella tell me he practicing focusing on one thing at a time.  I was in my mid 20’s and I thought there is no way to do that and get things done.  I was wrong.

Meditation has helped me be more present… in the moment.  This is a work in progress and I’m ok with that.  I do feel I am getting better at enjoy the task, event, or person in front of me at that moment.  Just like Stella was trying to tell me- it would helping me be a better trainer, worker, friend/ family member, and wife.

Interestingly, it has helped with my workouts.  I’m no longer worried about what my body will look like in X weeks,  instead I  focus on what I am doing right now which will help me reach my goal.

In closing, don’t worry if your mediation does look like typical.  Start off slow and reminder you wont be perfect.  The important thing is that it helps you in the ways you need it.   There is no right and wrong… just what is best for you.

Yes, this made me LOL
Yes, this made me LOL

Namaste and stuff! 🙂

Hurry up and Wait.

What do you do when a moment turns into a bad day… which turns into a bad week?

By now you can probably got the idea that I’m more  a “Tigger” personality than an “Eeyore”.  (If you don’t know what I am referring to  read The Last Lecture… It will change your life).  With that said, this Tigger was in a very deep “funk” the first week of 2015.

Here’s a screen play of what was going on in my head:

Voice 1: “Great way to start the new year… brrr”

Voice 2: “Hey it will be ok…”

Voice 1: “Really? Because it doesn’t seem like that today.  I hate everything right now. ”

Voice 2: “Now, now.  You don’t hate EVERYTHING… ”

Voice 1: “Yup- Hair -hate it!

Skin- hate it!

Clothes- Hate them!

working out – hate it!

Most of all I hate that I feel like my life is all about Hurry up and weight”.

Voice 2: “At least you have something to wait for… Stop being a stick in the mud! Look you always tell people to focus on what you can control RIGHT NOW… It’s time to take your own advice!”

(end scene)

After giving myself some much needed tough love, I had a break through.  In the competition world we have a staying, “Trust the Process”.

That means when a client, friend, or even when I’m having a moment of doubt,  we are reminded that there’s a lot that can and will  happen between now and the day of the show.  All you have to do is follow what is laid out in front of  you and you will get where you want to be.

I realized “Trust the Process” can and should be used in EVERY goal you have.

– Keep your body fat at healthy levels

-When building muscle

-Quitting a habit that doesn’t serve you

-Staring your dream job

-Saving for a house

– Trying to get pregnant

Ha… These are just some ideas of goals… ok ok they are my goals.

Most of these goals are very “future” focused, making it hard to feel like I am “winning”.  BUT that is only because I was looking at them with doubt clouding my vision.

Whatever your goal is, set up “Stepping Stone” goals.  They can help you celebrate mini  “wins” every day.  If you are like me this will help you stay on track.  In the competition world we can these progress updates.

Things to remember when you set your stepping stone goals:

1- Make sure they line up with your long term goals.

2- Focus on a behavior more than an outcome goal.  Meaning If you want to lose x amount of weight in 3 months, make a weekly behavior based goals each week that will help you improve a habit that will lead to your end number.  (side note… word this behavior goal in the positive… stay away from “I wont eat cake” instead say, “I will get all my water in”).

3- Time frame- Like I said above, make it weekly.  I like to write the goal in my planner so I will reminded of it every day.

4- Be patience- AHHHHHH I What it all NOW! (yup I said that for each one of the goals listed) Here’s one of my deep moments… When you are so busy look at the future you miss the things that are happening in the present.  Every day something little is happening that in bring you closer to you goals. We just have to be aware.  (and grateful…)

I want it now

5- Celebrate the little victories!- with every step forward give yourself a little pat on the back.  YOU DID IT…. YOU’RE ONE STEP CLOSER!

In today’s world it’s instant everything… but goals are always going to be a work in progress.  Give yourself the time to reach, strive, and enjoy the ride.

Keep Moving Forward.

Being SMART and No weights needed

Happy new year everyone! With the year comes new goals. Most people have some tip of fitness goal they like to start the year off with. I love this time of year! Everyone is excited and ready to attack their (inserted goal). A couple of tips:

1. Be S.M.A.R.T – by this I mean your goals should be smart…
Specific– What do you want to achieve?

Measurement– Your goal doesn’t have to be weight lose, but can you measure the progress you are making towards your goal? (daily, weekly, monthly, year)

Attractive– Some people change the “A” to mean something different, but I like attractive because the goal should be something you really want… Even on snowy days, bad days, hard times, and when the cookies are in front of you.

Realistic– I know I will never be 5’6… But I can work on my posture to stand taller. When you set your goal set it high but make it something that (right now) you are able to be achieved.

Timely– When do you want to achieve this goal? (day, week, month, year)

The other thing to think of when it comes to your new goals is to pace yourself. It is important to start where you are, not where your ego thinks you are. Also, stop looking at everyone else’s paper… Your buddies is not you and you are not them so stop comparing your journey to theirs.

Now that I’ve giving you “the talk” here’s some fun things you can do in the gym or at home:

  • Always keep your stomach tight.
  • Focus on pulling with the hamstrings (back of your legs) by pushing your heels into the ground.
  • Keep your back straight (no arching or sagging)
  • Your knee should stay over your ankle.
  • Push back at the hips, BUT keep your chest up so you don’t fold forward
  • Only go as far as you can and come back in 1 motion.
  • Again, keep your core tight.  Think pulling your belly button to your spine.
  • Knees to chest is a modification, if that is to easy try the pike ones.

Be safe! Listen to your body! Have fun and wear a cape… Everything is much more fun in a cape!

Best wishes in 2015! Make it the Best Year Yet!

Reflect and Reach for the Stars

It’s that time of year… time to reflect… and set better goals.  Yup, I said “better”.  Why? Because there were a lot of great things that happen in 2014, but this is just a chapter in the highlight reel of life.

Before I step forward here’s my year in review. This is my vision board (a little more than a year ag0).

2014

2014 vision

Why these things-

“At first they’ll ask why you’re doing it, but later they’ll ask you how you did it” – I wanted to do my Prep and live my life in the most healthy and “balanced” way.  I love competing but my passion is to help other reach their goals. (I joked with a friend that I want to be the Lorne Michaels of fitness… if you don’t know who Lorne Michaels is… we can’t be friends 🙂 )

There’s so much “stuff” out there that can turn people away from fitness/ competing.  I put myself through the process, got more education, and learned first hand the does and don’t so that I could then teach other… so they could have the best experience that they chose to.

2. I wanted to have 40 clients… I didn’t realize that my business would grow the way it did. My online business has grown more that I ever thought.  I am very thankful that I get to help people all over the U.S. and even in OOOOH Canada! 🙂 .

3. Do what you think you can’t.- In 2013 I squatted 225 lbs… at 115 lbs.  I thought I would be crushed! But it happened… and it gave me steam into 2014… my “do what you think you can’t” was starting this blog this year.  It was  something that I kept telling myself:

-You can’t spell and you have no idea where you should put a ,./…:; so on.

-What do you really have to say?

– … you just got lucky a couple times.

…so on… ya I doubted myself ALOT… it’s a battle I work on everyday, but it does get easier the more I know WHO I am and what my place in this world is.  How did I overcome this… I read a few books and I love podcast! (message me for the list)

4.  I wanted to start my .com .  I wanted to be able to help more people… even if It’s not a paid session.  These is the place I can do that.

5. I wanted to balance “clean eating” and “paleo” diet.  I still don’t eat a lot of bread… but I do eat pizza (still gluten free mostly) but I don’t freak out if I have something here and there with gluten.  (I don’t have an allergy I just keep very little in my diet).

6. Nathalia Melo Glutes- I know, I know I do not have her glutes… a girl can dream… BUT I have improved my glutes from 2013!

7. “Take time to live your life, will only inspire your work better”-  In the past I have let work take over my life.  I miss friends birthdays, family events, and become completely overwhelmed that I resented my job.

Last year I made it a point to join my friends at their birthday parties.  I said no to clients on Sunday afternoons. I also made Wednesday my day with my Husband… which meant no work or emails.  (I’m about 90% NO emails, text, or work… still a work in progress).

What I found from doing this is I’m not as burnt out and I enjoy the non-work life more because I made it a priority.  With the limits on both the work and social I am able to enjoy both knowing there is a time for each.

Moving forward: 2015

vision 2015

Last year was about myself… and growth.  I feel I have a firm foundation of who I am and what my goals are, so this year it’s time to build my SNL case 🙂

1. I want to buy a house in 2015.  In this house I want a sunny office that I can do my online business.

2. Reach 1,000 followers to this blog.  I know that is not a huge number but I’m not there yet so it’s step one! The goal is to use this blog as my hub for everything I do.

3. Help my Team Gemini member reach and crush their dreams… I want to create the Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, and Kristen Wiig of the fitness world.  Strong females that know who they are and what they stand for.  Also, that show the fitness world that you can be classy, fun, healthy,  and sassy all together.

4.  I am a big superhero geek.  I think of my husband as Superman… now there is nothing wrong with Ms. Lane, but I do like to think I have some super strength Like Wonder Woman or Rogue. We would like to create our own little superhero this year.  This is actually the other reason I started this blog, to help document my journey through a some day pregnancy and the crazy world of raising a baby Hulk. 🙂

5.  Lastly, to make sure I keep a balanced life, I would like to schedule at least 1 trip.  We have a very good friend that lives in Vegas.  DUH of course we want to go to Vegas to get away from the Maine winter…. SOLD!

In closing, I encourage you to make your own vision board!

  • Have it cover each “area” of your life.
  • Make it clear and in living color (YOU CAN DO WHAT YOU WANT….IN LIVING COLOR) sorry had to.
  • Make it positive! No – NOs….
  • Put it somewhere you will see it daily.  This will help remind you what you are reaching for.
  • Also check in with the vision.  Are you on the right path?
  • Nothing is to big or to small… each goal is a step in the right direction.
  • Be flexibility with the time line… but not the goal.

Happy holidays! I hope you’re 2014 was amazing and that you are ready to step up to the next level in 2015!

“What you get by achieving your goals is not as important as what you become by achieving your goals” – Henry David Thoreau

Supplement “Stocking Stuffers” Savings

It’s the season for GAINS! Oh sorry I mean GIVING!

Are you or do you have someone on your shopping list that has giving up the chocolate bar for Quest bar?  Well YOU ARE IN LUCK! 🙂 I have teamed up with Portland Nutrition Corner in South Portland to help save your holiday and your wallet!

Present my business card to the guys at PNC with 3 or more of these items below and get 10% off

AND 4 free bars (quest or victory).

Runs through new years! How great is that!!

With that said here are some of the Elves favorite supplements and brands to make your holidays Happy and LITE Weight… sorry I did it again.. I meant Bright. 🙂

archer

Dynamic Greens or Greens

raw greensGreens-Chocolate-9

Brand: Barlean’s or Garden of Life Chocolate

Why take them:

Most of us don’t get enough veggies in our diet daily, some groups suggest 9-11 servings which is about a cup.  This supplement has roughly 5 servings of those 9-11 servings.  Why do we need so many vegetables? Well besides the vitamins and minerals… they helps with with digestion.  This is extremely important in supporting your immunity and how your body functions and feels.  These greens are loaded with enzymes, probiotics and fiber to keep things moving!  If it keeps moving you keep moving!

Other great things from Greens:

A clean and healthy digestive system
• Increased energy levels
• Enhanced mental acuity
• Balanced pH in the body (another buzz word for this Detoxification) 🙂

Why did we pick this brand? It taste great as hot chocolate, mixed with milk, or with your protein powder.

FISH OIL / Omega 3’s

fish oilnodic 3

Without getting to deep in the science… I don’t want your eyes to glaze over… There are 2 ways to get your Omega 3s.

Vegetarians get omega-3 fatty acid called alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) from things like Flax seed.  (but for my vegetarian friends know that Humans aren’t great at converting this in to the omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexanoic acid (DHA) which has had most of the benefits.)

Everyone still with me? Ok good!

The EPA and the DHA are what you should look for when you are taking fish oil.

Next is the source which the oil comes from.  The best fish oils come from small fish such as anchovies, mackerel and sardines in the deep, pure, cold waters of the North and South Atlantic Oceans and Pacific Ocean. Like with salmon, sourcing fish from these oceans ensures the oil is higher in quality than when it comes from a fish farm.

Some benefits of taking an Omega 3 supplement:

  • Reduced psychological distress
  • Improved brain development
  • Reduced symptoms of depression
  • Enhanced eye health
  • Reduced body weight (from overweight/obesity)
  • Increased skin health
  • Diabetes support
  • Reduced inflammation
  • Possible reduction in infant allergies if used during pregnancy
  • Possible reduction in chest pain (acute coronary syndrome)
  • Reduced age-related sight loss

Vitamin D

raw d3vegan d3

You may know we get Vitamin D from the sun… but when was the last time you were outside in the sun?  Some studies say that 20-30 minutes of mid-day sun on most of your skin produces 10,000 IU vitamin D.  Some people believe you can get the vitamin D you need from things like Milk…. well to get the amount of Vitamin D most people need you would have to drink around 40-50 glasses of milk a day! If you are like me you are inside,  wearing layers upon layers, and haven’t had milk in a while. It’s time for a supplement.

There are 2 types of Vitamin D (Vitamin D2 and Vitamin D3) Medical science is leading physicians to recommend D3 as the preferred type of Vitamin D for optimal bone health, immune health and disease prevention.

Other things Vitamin D helps with

  • Healthy Colon & Digestion
  • Memory & Concentration
  • Breast & Prostate Health
  • Proper Cell Replication
  • Immune System

Multi Vitamins

womens multi mens multi

The body is an on going science experiment.  There are so many things that have to happen to make just your daily life happen. MOST, not all but MOST people don’t get the vitamins and mineral they need for optimal health.  Leading to fatigue, breaking down of your metabolic pathway, illness… so on. This is why we have multi vitamins.

Just like all these supplement it’s important to have a good quality multi vitamin.  Make sure you read the label to see what is in them before you buy.  That is what Chuck and Chris at PNC are great for!  They will help you pick the best ones for you and your healthy and fitness needs.

I am taking the Garden of Life brand.

Protein Powder

about time

Last, but not least… Protein Powder…. For those that workout regularly it’s goes hand and hand with daily coffee.  For me it goes in my coffee… Try it with iced coffee it’s a great pre-workout mix.

But Kristy I don’t want to “Make crazy Gains”… My answer to that is you are CRAZY! But if you aren’t into a routine workout, why should you use protein powder?  In short because again MOST people don’t get the amount of protein they need a daily to keep and develop lean body mass.  Even in your daily life, you the more lean body mass you have the easier/ more energy.

Other benefits to more protein in your diet:

  • Decreasing the loss of bone density associated with aging.
  • Weight loss by because whey protein seems to “stimulate two appetite-supressing hormones, CCK (cholecystokinin) and GLP-1 (glucagon-like peptide-1)’. It also helps maintain glucose and insulin levels after later meals
  • Reductions in triglycerides in you LDL (your bad cholesterol)

BUT PLEASSEEEEE Look at what is in your Protein powder! Stay away from artificial sweeteners or additives.  Also, know what you want role you want your protein powder to take.  Is it to add protein to your diet or do you want your protein powder to be a replacement meal.

I like About Time Protein but it’s a very “clean” product with like added, (only about 4 ingredients).

  pnc

*Always consult with your medical doctor before starting any new nutrition supplements, to ensure they are safe to take for your medical needs.*