The Fitness Games!

I am a HUGE Hunger Games fan, so when the Fit Approach offered the chance to review a new app called The Fitness Games, I was totally in. Ok, I was a little disappointed when no bow and arrow were required, but still pretty pumped.

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The Fitness Games is basically a super awesome marriage of social media and fitness. Here’s how it works:

When you join and make a profile then you have the opportunity to add friends. Since the app is relatively new, you should definitely demand your friends join too! That way you can complete against one other. However! Never fear: if you don’t have any friends (#suckstobeyou), you can compete against strangers or yourself!

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The app contains over 50 awesome workouts between strength, cardio, full body and cross training. Depending in the level of membership you purchase, you will have access to different numbers of workouts for free, but each additional workout is only $.99 and TOTALLY worth it! These workouts are awesome! They’re all written by real personal trainers and vary from beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. I tried a lot of the workouts including all four areas and can honestly say that they’re all really good!

I was able to compete against myself (which is actually really useful to measure progress) and against friends (which is really useful when you alike yourself to Katniss Everdeen).

There are a couple things I would change: the workouts themselves are not really visible while you’re working out. To see the sets, you have to click an external page, which stops the clock on the tracker. I learned that the hard way when it looked like my workout only took 3 minutes because I accidentally left the external page open. Obviously not a huge deal, though. Also, if someone does not accept your challenge, the workout does not go to your tracker…so you just have to trust that you did, indeed, workout. Again…not a huge thing.

All in all, I REALLY enjoy this app. It made me step outside my fitness comfort zone and try some new, awesome workouts! So go! Download the app here! You won’t regret it! Make sure to add me as a friend (Rebecca Mahoney), so that I can kick your little tushes!

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Tweet: Challenge your fitness with #TheFitnessGames! Check out @TFGapp and let the games begin! http://ctt.ec/gd5dj+ @fitapproach #sweatpink

xoR

Disclaimer: This post was sponsored by The Fitness Games through their partnership with Fit Approach. I was was provided the Platinum Version of the application for review. As always, all opinions are my own.

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Fitness Five Friday!

Happy Friday! Here are my 5 fitness faves this week!

1. Circuit training:

imageI’m super short on time lately. Between working full time, training clients, packing my house to move, and everything else, spending hours at the gym is just not going to work. I have about an hour from the moment my sneakers hit the gym floor until I hit the shower, so I have to get the most out of my time. Circuit training allows me to hit strength, cardio, stability and flexibility all during one quick workout. Experiment with varying rest time and adding cardio intervals to find what works for you.

2 The Fitness Games:

imageThe Fitness Games is an awesome new app available on iOS and android! It integrates fitness and social media and allows users to challenge friends (or themselves) to workouts! I’ll have a post dedicated to TFG very soon, but in the meantime check it out! Feel free to add me as a friend! My user name is Rebecca Mahoney.

3. This Buzzfeed article:

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It’s hilarious. And painfully true. I live an Instagram lie #supersorry.

4. Misty Copeland:

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As a former dancer (I know…), this chick is SO inspirational. I did ballet for 14 years and don’t ever remember encountering a positive body image role model like Misty. She’s strong, beautiful, and talented (like me! Or something…). Read more about Misty here and see some workout tips while you’re at it.

5. #nextmilestonechallenge with Katie K!

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our Instagram challenge is underway! Head over to @katiekactive for your daily challenge and make sure to tag your pics with @katiekactive and #nextmilestonechallenge. I’ve had a sneak peak at some of the prizes and they are LEGIT!

Have a fab weekend!

xoR

One Exercise To Rule Them All

Hi! Happy Wednesday!

Yesterday inout out out a plea for some blog suggestions as I was starting to feel super unmotivated…we’ll ask and ye shall receive! My good pal Sarah from the Huffington Post (oh and from high school) suggested that I write about what one exercise I would do if I could only do one for the rest of my life! Oh Sarah, you always have to be so tricky ;)

This really got me thinking. At first I though: easy! Squats! But then I thought about what kind of misery endless squats would be…so I went back to the drawing board. I tried to think of an exercise that would be compound in nature (hit multiple body parts), and not super torturous. Duh! PLANKS!

 So many different types of planks! Elbow planks! Side planks! Rocking planks! Walking planks! I LOVE PLANKS! Planks are an isometric exercise (contracting muscles in a stable position), which require stabilization of the upper and lower body, as well as deep abdominal muscles. Literally your whole body engages during a plank with correct form.

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The primary muscles being used during a plank are the erector spinae, the rectus abdomimus and the transverse abdominus, which are all muscles of the core. Strengthening these muscles help protect the spine, promote better posture, and might even give you that sick 6 pack. Stabilizing muscles during planks include all three heads of the deltoid, pecs, traps, and rhomboids, plus a little bicep and tricep. Also! The glutes, hamstrings and quads! Seriously, is there anything planks can’t do?? Source

Anyway, to do a plank with good form: get your elbows directly under your shoulders and keep your torso in one straight line from your butt to the top of your head. Keep your gaze about 3 feet ahead of your hands as to keep your neck nice and long. GO PLANK! NOW!

Oh! I have some exciting news for my local readers! I will now be taking clients are TriJake in Wellesley, MA! I’m super excited to be a member of this awesome team! Make sure to check out the website and come visit us soon!

imageWhat one exercise would you do if you could only do one for the rest of your life?? Let me know in the comments! 

xoR

Help! I need somebody.

Whoa. It’s been awhile.

Last week my grandmother passed away in Milwaukee, so I spent most of the week there with my family. It’s been a pretty tough year for us…but we persevere.
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I’ve been struggling with motivation to blog lately. I feel like I’m in a little rut and need some suggestions about what you want to read! More workouts? Recipes? Recovery articles? Help!

Anyway, check out the above page for the #nextmilestonechallenge that I am co-hosting with Lyndsay from the Balanced Brunette and Katie K Active. Starting tomorrow there will be a daily Instagram challenge, culminating with a virtual 5k! There are prizes! So make sure to head over Katie K’s Instagram account for your daily assignment!

That’s it for me. PLEASE let me know what you want to read here in the comments!
xoR

Fitness Pet Peeves: a rant

Hi! Sorry I’ve been so quiet lately! With school starting up and the big move looming, I’ve been a little preoccupied. I thought today I would share my top 10 fitness let peeves:

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10. No gym etiquette: re-rack your weights. Wipe down your machine. No hogging dumbbells. Come on…be nice!

9. Using machines incorrectly: I’m really not much of a machine user, but if you insist on using the tricep push down machine, stop hunching your shoulders. If you’re using the bicep curl machine, stop flinging your hips around. Got it? Good.

8. Trainers that spend more time looking in the mirror than at their clients: there’s a trainer at my gym that literally fixes her hair for the entire 50 min session with clients. I’ve watched clients attempts exercises that were WAY too difficult, but she was busy addressing her ponytail. I was appalled. Remember: trainers are not all created equal. Research what you want and don’t be afraid to move around until you find a good match!

7. Talking on the phone: I know really important things are happening…but please stop yaking on the phone next to me on the treadmill. I don’t care about whatever gossip you’re spreading, you’re distracting and #basic.

6. Girls that don’t sweat: WTF??? I literally start sweating as soon as I get out if my car in the parking lot…why isn’t your mascara running down your cheeks like a normal human?? These chicks might be the 8th wonder of the world.

5. Lifting weight that’s too heavy: if you want to get an injury, totally lift an obscene amount of weight with horrible form. Make sure to make a ton of grunting sounds, too, so everyone makes sure to see you.

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4. Lifting weight that’s too light: “I lift 3 times a week with 3 pound weights! I don’t know why I’m not seeing any results!”. This is seriously a huge issue for me as a trainer. LADIES: heavy weights will not make you a man. Being “toned” isn’t a thing. You need to build lean muscle for definition, which means lifting weights. You should pick a weight that you can complete each exercise for 10-12 reps. The last 2-3 should be hard, without sacrificing form. I PROMISE you won’t get huge. Unless you start taking testosterone supplements…then that’s your problem. You can read more into my heavy lifting rant here.

3. Unsolicited advice: I know I might look like a helpless little chick in the weight room and you probably think that I don’t know what I’m doing, but unless I ask for help, don’t give me advice on curl form while you swing your hips around like a weirdo. I got this, ok?

2. Cardio bunnies: stop doing program 3 at level 4 five days a week and complaining that you’re not seeing results. Your body will adapt and soon that identical workout everyday is basically useless. Also, stability, flexibility and strength training will increase your overall health and fitness level, not just burn x amount of calories.

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1. Justifying a meal with a workout: this is a tough one. Sure, exercising burns calories. You can eat more when you exercise more. Your metabolism increases as your lean muscle mass increases. But PLEASE don’t make excuses to eat something delicious. If you want that piece of cake, or slice of pizza, or entire bag of jelly belly’s, you should eat it because you want it. You do not need to justify that treat to anyone. Working out should be fun and satisfying on its own, it shouldn’t be a torture device to justify eating food and being a human.

What are your biggest fitness pet peeves?? Leave them in the comments!

xoR

My Top 5 Foods

Hello! Happy Tuesday. Since I’m following a workout plan that I did not write, I figured I’d talk to you about my second love: FOOD. With that, here are my top 5 foods, without which I’d drop dead (or possibly something less dramatic).

1. Oats

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I eat oats pretty much every day. My breakfast is almost always the following:

  • .33 cup rolled oats
  • .66 cup water
  • .25 cup liquid egg whites
  • .5 banana
  • 1 tbsp peanut butter
  • 1 tsp chia seeds

Cook oats in water in microwave for 1 minute. Whisk in egg whites, zap for additional 30 secs. Top with banana, PB, and chia seeds.

Oats are awesome because they are a good source if soluble fiber, which has been shown to reduce cholesterol and lower blood pressure. That fiber also keeps you full longer than other cereals, plus it tastes damn good (in my bumble opinion). Source

2.  Speaking of peanut butter: Peanut Butter:

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I’ve raved about the benefits of this delicious butter of the gods, but in case you forgot:

“Each 2-tablespoon serving of peanut butter contains more than 8 grams of protein, nearly 2 grams of dietary fiber, 208 milligrams of potassium, more than half a gram of iron, 24 micromilligrams of folate, 188 calories and 3 grams of sugars. The fat content is 16 grams per serving, but only 3 grams of those are saturated. The rest of the fats are mono- and polyunsaturated, which have proven benefits for heart and muscle health. While the amounts of protein and fiber are not large, every bit counts when managing your macronutrients.” Source

3. Coffee:

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Real talk: I’m addicted to coffee. Not even good coffee. Just any resemblance of coffee-like drink will do. I’m no snob (although I would never say no to coffee!). I start every day with my eggy oats and exactly 2 cups of black coffee. My brain doesn’t function otherwise.  Caffeine is a stimulant, and there have been numerous studies confirming the benefits of coffee from increased energy to lower risk of Parkinson’s! Check out this article for more! (You can trust HuffPost. They only publish really awesome articles by very good looking people ;))

4. Hummus:

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Ok, I know this makes me a total #basicbitch, but if I had to marry a food it would be hummus. I eat it by the bucketful.

A 2-tablespoon serving of hummus contains 50 calories, 2 grams of protein, 3 grams of fat and 4 grams of carbohydrates, including 2 grams of fiber. Only 0.4 grams of fat is saturated. This combination of protein and fiber will help keep you feeling full for longer than a high-fat dip that doesn’t contain much fiber, such as a full-fat ranch dip. Source

5. Champagne:

Some say there are health benefits to champagne. Honestly, I don’t care. I just wanna drink bubbles all day, everyday.

xoR

AMRAP Workout and GIVEAWAY!

Hello! What a crazy week it’s been! School has officially started and I am TIRED! Zzzzz.

lets talk AMRAP. AMRAP is an acronym for As Many Rounds/Reps As Possible. It’s a pretty awesome workout format that is exactly what you think: a series or circuit workout that you just complete as many times as possible for a set amount of time. It’s no joke and really forces you to work ruhl hard.

Here’s an AMRAP workout I wrote earlier this week. I did this as a finisher to my lower body workout and made it through 2 rounds. It was a lot harder than I thought! Give it a try and let me know how many rounds you made it through!

AMRAP Body Weight Workout

complete as many rounds as you can of the following circuit for 6 minutes straight

  • 10 jump squats
  • 15 pushups
  • 20 KB swings
  • 15 inchworms
  • 10 burpees

Speaking of AMRAP, I was invited to try some new protein bars by AMRAP USA. HOLY YUM these things are awesome! Here’s what AMRAP has to say:

The 100% Paleo, Non­GMO, gluten­free, dairy­free, preservative and artificial anything­free, high fat to carb ratio, high protein bar designed by experts, athletes, enthusiasts, discerning moms and health nuts.

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They are jam packed with real food and nutrition power houses! They’re great for a snack, preworkout, post workout, or meal supplement! Even Chris ate one by mistake and rave about how delish it was! They’re a little on the sticky side,  but otherwise have a really nice smooth texture, no chalky aftertaste, and REALLY filling! Since there’s no artificial sweeteners, there’s no belly ache, and since they’re sweetened with fruit, they keep you full!

Aaaaaaand it’s your lucky day! I’m giving away a free box of AMRAP bars (a $48 value!). A winner will be chosen at random next Thursday! Click the rafflecopter link below to enter!
*UPDATE!* there will be 3 winners! Each winner will receive an 8-pack of bars in your choice of flavor!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Make sure to follow AMRAP on Facebook,  twitter, Instagram and Pinterest!

have a fab day!

xoR

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disclaimer: I was provided with the aforementioned product for free in return for a review. All opinions are my own.