Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Guest Blogger Michelle Marie Fit on Working Out for a Fit & Happy Pregnancy!

Hi ladies! 

Hope you all day a lovely Easter holiday with your families. I have a special guest blogger here today to bring her knowledge, tips, and a workout for a fit & happy pregnant mama-to-be! Her name is Michelle Marie Valladares-Diaz and she is a personal trainer to the max; helping pregnant women everywhere stay in amazing shape!

Michelle also recently gave birth to her beautiful baby girl! Checkout what she has to say below!


Workout For A Fit & Happy Pregnancy

Pregnancy can go one of two ways........
You can either enjoy it to the max and be happy......... OR............  You can hate every minute of the long 10 months and be self conscious, cranky and miserable.
I don't know about you, but 10 months is a really long time to feel miserable and cranky.

It doesn't have to be miserable.  Actually, pregnancy can be quite enjoyable.  Well, let me put this in perspective and be realistic......

There are moments where you may not feel well, moments that you are uncomfortable (towards the end), you don't sleep as well towards the end, and well...... your body totally changes.  But these things have to happen.   What I mean is that even though all those things are happening, you can still find a way to be happy and enjoy your pregnancy.

And the chances of you enjoying your pregnancy and being happy throughout it will increase if you have a fit and healthy pregnancy.  Because not only will you gain less excess weight but exercising will make you release hormones that make you happy.  Its a win-win!  There you go, I bet you thought it was more complex, but its not.  After 2 pregnancies both of which were very different.  One easy one and one not so easy one, I can tell you that even in the harder pregnancy, exercise and eating healthy kept me sane and helped me enjoy my pregnancy even with the ups and downs I had.  I had placenta previa the entire second trimester, I fractured my big toe and ended up with pregnancy induced HypoThyroidism.... Ugh!  

But I pushed through it all and exercised and ate healthy, and even with the placenta previa during the 2nd trimester which I was not cleared to exercise, I only gained 20 lbs and lost all of it just weeks postpartum.  I did My Fit Mom-To-Be Workout Program.  Yes, the program that hundreds and hundreds of women are doing right now to stay healthy and fit during their pregnancy.  I did it too, not once but twice.  I did My Fit Mom-To-Be Workouts during both pregnancies and got amazing results as do all my Preggo's.

And by the way, exercise is not only good for you, its good for the baby as well. Check it out!


Here is a sample Pregnancy Workout for you to try. I promise, if you workout during your pregnancy, you will gain less excess weight, be happier, get in pre-pregnancy shape faster, have a faster delivery and have a smarter baby.
Its so worth it.  And if you are not sure how to put together safe and effective pregnancy workouts, don't fret.  MMF is here to coach you through your pregnancy.  Just try my Fit Mom-To-Be Workout Program and you will see how amazing you feel.

A1.  30 Reverse Lunges with Hip Flexions
A2.  30 Plie Squats
A3.  30 Stability Ball Hip Extensions
A4.  30 Stability Ball Leg Curls
A5.  15 The CATS
Rest 60-120 seconds and repeat 1 or 2 more times

There are so many benefits to exercising during pregnancy that I hope you really invest your time, effort and resources into it.  

Check out my post pregnancy body, I am 6 weeks out as of this post and feeling great and today, I am cleared to start exercising and I can't wait.  I know I will feel better and have more energy now.  Now ready to do my BeFit Moms Program.


Good luck my prego friend and I hope this inspires you to exercise and have a healthy and fit pregnancy.

You can follow Marie these ways:

3 Insane HIIT Treadmill Workouts



The treadmill just might be the most overused piece of equipment in the gym; however, many people do not use the treadmill to their full advantage. Sometimes running at a steady pace for an hour just does not produce the type of results that you are looking for. To maximize your fat burn while on a treadmill, you must switch it up by using interval training mixed with HIIT. You've got to keep your body constantly guessing! This guarantees that you will sweat-a whole lot-and feel much more satisfied with the workout instead of feeling like you've just ran around in circles all day.


Here are 3 insane HIIT style treadmill workouts to try today:

HIIT Incline Hill Workout
  • Warm up with 10 minutes of easy running
  • Begin your workout by setting the incline to 8 percent and sprint as fast as you can for 30 seconds
  • Then lower the incline to 5 percent and walk for 30 seconds
  • After walking, sprint for 90 seconds at your 10K pace
  • Then walk for 2 minutes.
  • That’s one round; do 6 to 9 total rounds.

30 Second Interval HIIT Sprint Workout
  • Set the treadmill to a 2.5  incline
  • Run 30 seconds as fast as you possibly can
  • Walk for 30 seconds.
  • Repeat 10 times each.
  • More advanced runners can crank it up to one or two-minute intervals, with a one-minute recovery in between sets

Short Interval HIIT Workout
  • Warm up with 5-minute easy jog or walk.
  • Increase incline to 1% and run at a fast pace for 30 seconds.
  • Run easy pace for 30 seconds.
  • Run fast pace for 1 minute.
  • Run easy pace for 1 minute.
  • Run fast pace for 90 seconds.
  • Run easy pace for 90 seconds.
  • Decrease incline to .5%, run fast pace for 2 minutes.
  • Run easy pace for 2 minutes
  • Repeat pattern of fast/easy intervals (from the beginning) 2 more times.
  • Cool down with 5-minute easy jog or walk.

Perhaps, we can learn a thing or two from this guy. Do not try this at home!

3 Moves to Beat Armpit Fat

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For ladies, one of the most annoying things about wearing a bra is that tiny bit of fat that pokes out the sides, front, and back! How attractive, right? As a woman, we tend to store fat in isolated parts of our body. 

Unfortunately, since we cannot spot reduce or target fat burn in one specific area alone, we feel as if the area will never shape up! This is not the case, luckily. For ultimate fat burn, a clean diet paired with high intensity interval training will lower your body fat percentage all over.

However, in addition to a clean diet & smart cardio, here are 3 moves that can help you tone that area to improve the appearance:


Tricep Kickback
  1. Hold a medium weight in both hands and bend over until your torso is at a 45-degree angle or parallel to the floor (more advanced). Bend the knees if needed and keep the abs engaged to protect the lower back.
  2. Begin the movement by bending the arms and pulling the elbows up to torso level.
  3. Holding that position, straighten the arms out behind you, squeezing the triceps muscles.
  4. Bend the arms back to starting position and repeat for 10-16 reps.
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Triangle Push-up
  1. Begin the move by positioning the hands on the mat directly under the chest with the fingers spread and the thumbs and forefingers touching, making a triangle shape.
  2. Straighten the legs into a plank position (harder) or keep the knees on the floor for an easier version.
  3. Make sure the back is flat and the abs are engaged as you bend the elbows, lowering until your chin or chest touches the mat. If you can't go that low, go as low as you can and work to build enough strength to lower all the way down over time.
  4. At the bottom of the movement, your elbows will naturally flare out to the side.
  5. Press back to start, keeping the torso rigid, and repeat for 1-3 sets of 8-16 reps.

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Chest Fly
  • Lie on the floor, bench or step. Hold weights over the chest with the palms facing each other.
  • Keeping the elbows slightly bent, lower the arms out to the sides and down until they're level with the chest.
  • Keep the elbows in a fixed position and avoid lowering the weights too low.
  • Squeeze chest to bring the arms back up as though you're hugging a tree.
  • Repeat for 1 to 3 sets of 8 to 16 reps.
  • What You TRULY Need In Your Hospital Bag


    Before I gave birth to Grey in the hospital, I had all of these checklists on what to bring, but just like you are wondering now, I wondered what I TRULY would need. Turns out-you do not need a whole lot at all! Most of the crap that you bring, you won't pick up once. Let me save you the hassle and tell you what you need.


    I prefer the minimalist route when giving birth because the birth of your baby is going to come first and when they are born, you won't be able to focus on anything else while at the hospital!

    What you need:
    • ID/Insurance Cards
    • Pajamas or Robe for you
    • Your bed comforter & pillows
    • Socks 
    • Sweatpants and comfy shirt to go home in
    • Granny panties (don't laugh, I am serious)
    • Nursing pillow
    • Camera, video camera, iPad, phone, magazines (though I barely was on mine because I was in pain the whole time)
    • One fluffy receiving blanket for baby.
    • Going home outfit for baby
    • Carseat
    • Clothes & toiletries for dad to take a shower
    • Toiletries for you
    • And that is about it!
    What you really do not need:
    • baby clothes for the stay-they give them to you
    • pads-they give them to you
    • vaginal pain relief-they give you nifty things
    • baby soap-they give them to you
    • snacks-most of the time you cannot eat in labor anyway just in case you need a section so don't bother-eat before going to the hospital
    •  a thousand blankets (not necessary)
    • nursing pads- usually do not need these since milk does not come in until day 3 
    • makeup- really?
    And this is my minimalist & honest guide to packing for the hospital. For those who need to pack everything they can (just in case), here is a printable. 


    Morning Inspiration


    THROWBACK! 26 weeks preggers

    Monday, April 21, 2014

    Ruffles With Love Review + GIVEAWAY

    Ruffles with Love

    Hi ladies, today I am reviewing Ruffles with Love founded by Vanessa Hermanson.
    Vanessa started Ruffles With Love with her business partner, best friend, and husband (so awesome!). Her business started from an idea alone and has blossomed into something truly amazing by inspiring countless women out there through adorable apparel. Vanessa is such a bubbly and outgoing person, as you read her about me section on her main site, you will feel like you know her personally and can connect with her. She has certainly become my personal inspiration for developing my new Fit Mommy Apparel line launching later this year. Gotta love & support our lady entrepreneurs!

    Meet Vanessa, the girl behind the ruffles!

    The item that I had the chance to review was the "Some Moms Lift More than Their Kids" tank. I freaking LOVED this tank at first sight because it goes perfectly with who I am and what I do. The shirt is such great quality, even for the burnout design. The glitter wording is so pretty & fun and the bow adds just the perfect feminine touch. I really enjoy this tee! I get compliments in the gym and wherever I go!


    As you browse Ruffles With Love's collections, you will find the tank that is perfect for you. It will speak to you and you will know it when you see it! The messages are so powerful, but also cute and motivating. It literally makes you want to get into the gym and go BEAST MODE on your workouts.

    I loved the tank so much, I used it for my new blog banner! :)


    Now, here is a chance to win your very own Ruffles With Love tank of choice. Enter the Rafflecopter below!




    To follow Ruffles With Love, please visit their:

    Main Site
    Facebook
    Twitter
    Pinterest
    Instagram

    Disclaimer: I was given a Ruffles With Love tank to test, at no cost. All opinions are my own.

    Peach Cobbler Protein Smoothie


    Who would love to eat a peach cobbler for breakfast without any guilt?  Well, now you can! This smoothie with its peachy, creamy goodness is guaranteed to satisfy your sweet tooth and provide the perfect breakfast for you while on the go! I personally love using it as a post workout shake!

    Peach Cobbler Protein Smoothie

    Ingredients
    • 1/4 cup nonfat Greek yogurt
    • 1/4 cup almond milk
    • 1/4 cup protein powder (vanilla)
    • 1 fresh peach, sliced
    • 1 tbsp honey
    • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
    • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
    • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
    • 1 cup ice cubes
    Directions
    1. Place all ingredients into a blender and blend thoroughly.
    2. Add more ice cubes for a frostier smoothie.
    3. Sip & enjoy!

    Calories: 310
    Traveling? Don't feel like getting to the gym? Don't have any equipment at home? No prob. Try this awesome cardio workout you can do from anywhere (no equipment required!).

    Saturday, April 19, 2014

    F*** Thigh Gaps!

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    Who all out there believes that having a thigh gap is a form of self worth or beauty?
    What do the men out there think: are thigh gaps truly sexy to you?

    Beyonce's recent Instagram picture sparked much controversy when fans were left wondering if a thigh gap had been photoshopped in and Old Navy's poorly photoshopped "thigh gapped" ad made headlines just the other day. It seems that there is so much focus on how skinny a woman can get her thighs. But why haven't beauty standards changed and why are we still dragging ourselves through the same vicious cycle of hating our bodies?

    As a new mother, I can't imagine how difficult it must been for teenage girls these days who are facing the pressures of social media. Countless Tumblr accounts such as ThinspirationforyouWelcome to Skinnyville, and Stay Thin This Time teach women that being skinny is the equivalent of beauty. Many of us fall victim to these false ideas of beauty & glorified eating disorders and the message that starving yourself is the only way to achieve this. Though I am a mother to a son, I am frightened to think about the pressures that my future daughter would face with how the trend is going. Where have all the role models gone? Why are companies still putting these ads out there, giving us the idea that if we want to wear their clothing, we must look just as the photoshopped model does.

    Studies show that 80% of teenage girls dislike their bodies by the time they are 17 years old. Up to 24 million people of all ages and genders suffer from an eating disorder in the US alone. 69% of girls in 5th-12th grade reported that magazine pictures influenced their idea of a perfect body shape. 81% of 10 year olds are afraid of being fat (Mellin et al., 1991). These are just a few of the very real and sad statistics. Though there is something about seeing those pictures or ads in high fashion magazines, suggestions from peers or parents, or #thinspo quotes and messages telling us that if only we would lose just 5 more pounds, we could be something special, too.

    What bullshit!

    I am so thankful to have turned to sources such as BodyRockTv or BodyBuilding.com that teach you that eating clean and working out is the way to achieve the body you have dreamed of. Their models have abs, arms, legs-MUSCLES! I honestly wish there were more positive reinforcements out there. Women are so afraid of lifting weights out of fear of looking like a man and they have this idea that having muscles is "gross."

    We should be teaching that strong should be the new skinny. 

    mybeforeandafter

    As a fitness enthusiast, so many people ask me these days about how to get a "thigh gap." My first question is "Why the hell would anyone want a thigh gap as a goal?" Since when did thighs that touch determine our beauty, our worth, and who we are? My thighs touch and I am totally okay with that. This gap between our legs does not determine how fit or healthy we are-it is simply our bone structure so not every one can have this feature and that is alright!

    photo


    If you are not happy with your thighs or lower body for that matter, then try some of these workouts.

    Also, check out this hilarious video that one blogger made on How to Fake a Thigh Gap. I love the sense of humor she has and how the trend does not seem to affect her in the least bit!




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    Always remember that your reflection does not define you-it is what's from within. Cheesy and cliche as it may sound, I realize that. However, there is proof that we are not being told this enough. Just as Bruno Mars said, "You are amazing, just the way you are"-thigh gaps or not.

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