Fitness

How to create New Year’s Resolutions that actually stick


All this resolution talk over here!

Happy 2019, friends. I always look forward to a bright, shiny new year and a chance to start over with a clean slate. There’s something magical about cracking open a new planner and filling it with ideas, events and goals for the upcoming year. I know many of us are making resolutions and action plans for 2019, so I thought I’d chat a little bit about some tips for making these goals as effective and attainable as possible.

In our NASM training, we learned a lot about client motivation and goal-setting techniques. The main takeaway is to make sure your goals are SMART (<— happens to be a handy acronym).

S = Specific

M = Measurable 

A = Attainable

R = Realistic 

T = Timely

Tips for creating and accomplishing this year's 2019 new years resolutions

The first bullet is that you want your goals be as specific as possible. Instead of saying, “I’ll get a promotion at work”  you’ll say something like, “I’l be promoted to Executive Director by spring 2019.” (Just using Beautycounter lingo as an example.) By making these goals as specific as possible, it’s easy to keep them in mind and create action steps each day to accomplish your goals.

You’ll also want your goals to be measurable. Pick a goal that you can actually measure or assess. Instead of telling yourself you’ll run faster, set a pace for your ideal mile time. Instead of saying you’ll have more date nights with your husband, plan for x amount per month. This way, you’ll know if you’re hitting your goals! Avoid vague words when you’re setting goals.

I think the most important one from the list is to make sure your goals are actually attainable. Should they scare you a little and fill you with excitement? TOTALLY. But in your heart, you should know that you can actually make it happen. If you don’t set goals that are attainable, you’re setting yourself up for disappointment. This kind of goes with the next point that they should be realistic. When you accomplish your goals, it motivates you keep working hard. If you’re setting yourself up for failure with unattainable, unrealistic expectations, you’re going to feel badly when it doesn’t happen. Goals should make you feel happy and excited, not bad about yourself.

The next one is to make sure they’re timely. Does it make sense for you right now? For myself, it would make zero sense for me to decide to run a marathon. I wouldn’t be able to get in long runs on a regular basis and let’s be real, I hate the morning. Pick goals that make sense for where you are in life right now. 

Some tips for resolutions and goals in general:

– Create a vision board. I’m a huge believer in the power of vision boards. Yes, Pinterest is awesome for creating boards, but I really prefer the old-school magazine cut-outs glued onto a piece of paper. Hang it somewhere you can see it (I like the closet because I see it every day but am not subjecting guests to my lack of crafting skills), and this way you’ll stay mindful of your goals. When you have visual reminders of what you’d like to accomplish, you’re much more likely to take steps each day to make it happen. 

W bets

(with Bets!)

– Enlist a buddy. Find a buddy who’s going after the same goals and support each other! I’m so thankful that I have blog buddies, Beautycounter friends, and fitness coworkers I can talk to about my failures, successes, and action steps. 

– Model others’ success. I’m not saying to go full-on copycat mode, but if someone did something you want to accomplish, find out how they did it. Follow the same steps. Usually an accomplishment isn’t a crazy rocket science equation. It’s following specific actions and showing up consistently. 

– Treat yourself. Create a list of small rewards for yourself when you hit milestones along the way. Run a faster master? Get a new running tank or fitness tracker. Completed your barre challenge at your studio? Pick up some new Toesox or leggings. Worked out consistently all month? Book a facial or massage! Find out which treats will motivate you and plan out a schedule.

Best massage

(A massage always does the trick for me.)

– Read! There are SO MANY inspirational and developmental books out there to support your goals. One of my current favorites is Crushing It! I’d love to hear if you have any favorite personal development books.

Happy 2019! I can’t wait to see what this year brings, and am so excited to hear about everything you accomplish.

xoxo

Gina

The post How to create New Year’s Resolutions that actually stick appeared first on The Fitnessista.


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All this resolution talk over here! Happy 2019, friends. I always look forward to a

A LITTLE TIME WITH APPLE WATCH SERIES 4


Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Workout Review Fit Technology Tracker Apple Watch Series 4 First Review Impressions Sweden Travel Archipelago Island Active Lifestyle Tech-7

Over the past 3 years, I’ve authored some of my most in-depth blog posts about each successive version of the iconic Apple Watch since it revolutionised the health and fitness tracking landscape back in 2015 (see review 1, review 2, and review 3); personally I’ve enormously valued the advances it’s enabled for me, arming me with data and awareness, reminding me to act, keeping me in contact with the community around me – and it did this whilst integrating seamlessly with my own ‘life technology stack’ in an un-intimidating, user-friendly way. Now, following an overwhelmingly impressive trip to the Steve Jobs Theatre in Cupertino, California, I have been introduced to my latest wrist companion, Apple Watch Series 4… Click MORE to see my full perceptions about this fascinating piece of kit, which represents a big hope for the future!

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Workout Review Fit Technology Tracker Apple Watch Series 4 First Review Impressions Sweden Travel Archipelago Island Active Lifestyle Tech-3

LOOK & FEEL: 

The aesthetics of the watch have remained a consistent thread throughout the series’ evolution, and this iteration is no different in that sense. The familiar curved-edge rectangular form still declares ‘I’m an Apple Watch’, although this one is perceptibly thinner which removes a sense of stacked heft, and, even though a small touch, makes Series 4 feel a far more refined, and high quality piece of craftsmanship to the wearer. There’s a silver, gold, and space grey instance, with stainless steel versions in black and gold with even smaller bezels.

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Workout Review Fit Technology Tracker Apple Watch Series 4 First Review Impressions Sweden Travel Archipelago Island Active Lifestyle Tech-4Watch-Series4-Hero_PR-SCREEN

FEATURES I LIKE: 

Under ‘the hood’ there are significant enhancements, with an infinitesimally small 64-bit dual core processor – on my wrist(!!!) – making functions lightning fast. 

Whilst the device is thinner, the screen is almost a third larger with almost no bezel whatsoever, delivering me that satisfying technological holy grail of ‘more from less’. And beyond just size, the screen seems to have a far richer colour representation, a more imperceptible dot pitch for retina-style visualisations, and a more vibrant backlight. 

I’m also a fan of the Walkie Talkie feature, where, if I’m on Wi-Fi or connected through cellular signal, and so are friends, we can just have an instant verbal conversation via the watch; the speaker is 50% louder, meaning conversation is far easier to hear, and sound quality is improved thanks to a relocation of the microphone 

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Workout Review Fit Technology Tracker Apple Watch Series 4 First Review Impressions Sweden Travel Archipelago Island Active Lifestyle Tech

FITNESS

It’s got all the same fitness features I know and love from the previous instalments, plus a new Yoga and Hiking workout type, both of which are very much in keeping with my workout patterns. Whilst in Sweden on a Yoga retreat, I’ve been trialling these daily and have found them to be useful and necessary additions to the suite of options within the Fitness menu.

It also triggers workouts when it detects you’re hitting the trail, then gives you the retrospective credit for what you did just before it triggered your workout. That’s neat, because remembering to activate ‘workout mode’ can often slip the mind – this way, it’s harder than ever to forget. 

For runners, Series 4 has several new features too which I’ve been appreciating – I get alerts if I run too fast or too slowly compared to my set goals as well as being able to see how many steps per minute I take. This is super helpful because rather than having to wait to look at the end of the run, you get real-time, cumulative feedback.

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Workout Review Fit Technology Tracker Apple Watch Series 4 First Review Impressions Sweden Travel Archipelago Island Active Lifestyle Tech-5

HEALTH

This is where the category-advancing features are delivered, and which is extremely exciting, as I’ve long believed a smart watch should and will be far more than a mere fitness tracker; Apple are going there. An ECG app draws upon the integrated electrodes and electrical heart rate sensor to monitor heart rates and patterns, storing the readings for easy sharing with your GP, and informing you if an irregular pattern develops. Given that Coronary Heart Disease is the single  biggest killer in the UK, with 160,000 deaths each year, it is heartening that Apple are helping to consumerise the measurement of early warning indicators. I believe this is a blueprint of a serious revolution for preventative intervention, where the smart watch will one day monitor the vital stats perpetually, informing the wearer of early signs of disease and enabling early remedies. 

Watch-Series4-ECG_PR-SCREENFitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Workout Review Fit Technology Tracker Apple Watch Series 4 First Review Impressions Sweden Travel Archipelago Island Active Lifestyle Tech-6

SAFETY FIRST

Also, a warming feature of care is in fall detection, where the user is able to initiate an SOS call to emergency services when the watch detects they’ve fallen, conveying the coordinates. If there’s no response to the alert for a minute afterwards, an automatic communication takes place with emergency services, and key contacts; its quite nice to know someone’s looking out for you if you land in a spot of trouble!

Watch-Series4-Fall-Detection-Emergency-Services_PR-SCREEN

Those are my initial thoughts following week 1 with my wrist-based companion. I will endeavour to test the farthest reaches of its new functionalities and report back anon!

Faya x

P.s. Special thanks to Michaele Wissen for her beautiful photography!

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Workout Review Fit Technology Tracker Apple Watch Series 4 First Review Impressions Sweden Travel Archipelago Island Active Lifestyle Tech-2

_____________
N.B. THIS IS NOT AN ADVERT FOR APPLE, NOR HAVE I RECEIVED MONETARY COMPENSATION FOR THIS REVIEW. I WAS SEEDED WITH AN APPLE WATCH SERIES 4 AND AM MAKING THESE ENTHUSIASTIC OBSERVATIONS BECAUSE I HAVE FOUND THEM TO BE TRUE AND VALID. FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE SEE MY DISCLOSURE PAGE HERE.

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beauty fail + other Thursday things


Hi friends! How are you? What day is it? What year is it? What’s going on?? As much as I’m loving this festive blur and non-stop partying with the girls, I’m looking forward to some kind of structure in my life again. My 2019 planner has been entirely neglected so far, but for now, I’m trying to just enjoy the moments and know that routine is around the corner.

Snow day

It’s snowed in Tucson the past couple of days! By the time we woke up on New Years it had all melted (oops) but we had the opportunity to play in a straight-up winter wonderland yesterday. When we woke up, snowflakes were falling in the backyard! We put tights on under our pants, did the tank top, shirt, sweater and jacket combo, mittens, beanies, and took a drive to Agua Caliente park where it was blanketed (ok, a lil patchy) with snow. We had the best time throwing snowballs at each other, making a mini snowman, and attempting snow angels. 

Snow day 2

It pretty much never snows in Tucson, so it was pretty amazing that we got to see it! We also got a surprise snow in Valdosta last year. This is a pic from our backyard almost exactly one year ago. (Someone please hold me while I cry because the girls are so big now.)

Snowman 3

The fam came over the other night and we ate potluck style (my mom brought quiche and broccoli cheese soup, while I made Ina’s roasted vegetable soup and a giant cheese board).

Cheese board

All of the usual staples were there: different types of cheese, smoked salmon, charcuterie, dried fruit, nuts, Harry & David pear, Skinny Dipped almonds, Whisps, olives, an olive tapenade, Dijon, and jam. It was one of my messier boards – I put it together super fast while the girls were playing with their doll house – but it did the trick. 

Fitness-wise, it’s been a little interesting to get in workouts this week. Our two main babysitters were both out of town, and barre3 Play Lounge was booked up. I’ve done a couple of Peloton classes, and also got in a BODYPUMP workout while the girls played. (Sometimes while they’re home, I’ll stream a Physique 57 class or get in my own strength workout.) I don’t have any barbells or plates right now – they’re all still in Georgia – but did the release using a couple of pairs of dumbbells. I really like the 108 release so far and think the biceps track is my fave.

Now that we talked about food and fitness… I have to tell you about facial hair. There’s no way to seamlessly transition to this topic. I’m sorry.

So I feel like over the past year, I’ve heard beauty bloggers rave nonstop about Tinkle razors for shaving peach fuzz and lady mustache. I was definitely intrigued, but weirded out. Like shave your face? Won’t that give you a 5-o’clock shadow? Will it make you prickly? It was something I thought was cool, but just stored the information in my brain in case I needed it later. My facial hair has never bothered me and I’m fortunate that it’s blond for some bizarre reason (my arm hair is, too! Thanks, dad. <— he’s blond). 

Tinkle razor fail

Then, one afternoon, I caught a glimpse of myself in the rearview mirror and my peach fuzz glimmered in the sun. I was like WTF and made an Amazon impulse purchase when we got home. A couple of days later, the Tinkle razors arrived and I was oddly excited to give them a try. I washed my face, dried it, and went to town on the peach fuzz. It was gone instantly and my face felt super smooth! Feeling overconfident, I decided to go for the lady mustache which is where I MADE A MISTAKE. Yes, I got the little bit of peach fuzz off. I put moisturizer on my newly smooth face and went to bed feeling like I was in on an awesome secret!

Then, a couple of days later, I licked my lips and felt a strong poke on my tongue. The lady mustache was back and it was angry. It was sharp, spiky and painful. When you shave hair, you hack it off at the thickest part, which makes it more pokey. Fail to meeeeeee. I just had to share this information so it doesn’t happen to anyone else. Peach fuzz: sure. Lady mustache: HARD NO.

So there ya go.

Any beauty fails lately? Any wins? Did you have a hard time getting in workouts this week or did you rock it?

See ya in the morning with some faves!

xo

Gina

The post beauty fail + other Thursday things appeared first on The Fitnessista.


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Hi friends! How are you? What day is it? What year is it? What’s going

7 WAYS TO SMASH THROUGH YOUR PLATEAU!


Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Training Healthy Workout Park Primrose Hill Outdoor Training New Years Resolutions Exercise Plateau New Progress Movement Workouts-5

Happy New Year, my good reader! If you’re anything like me, you’re most likely not new to the whole fitness thing; you’ve possibly been training for years, and you might even be in groundhog mode with your regime – which would be totally normal, we all visit that place! Hitting a plateau can be super confusing because you probably don’t know what’s causing it. The sorts of questions swirling around your mind are likely; am I not training enough, am I training too much, am I training the wrong way, in the wrong place, with the wrong people, wearing the wrong clothes, listening to the wrong music (etc.)? Well fear not, dear 2019-ready reader, for this post contains my top 7 simple tips to help you to break through that training plateau! Click MORE for your download to start the year the way you mean to go on – in blitz mode!

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Training Healthy Workout Park Primrose Hill Outdoor Training New Years Resolutions Exercise Plateau New Progress Movement Workouts-15

  1. IMPLEMENT ‘PROGRESSIVE OVERLOAD’ TECHNIQUE

With any form of training, this technique can be implemented. In its simplest terms, it means that you’re sequentially increasing the volume of your training – whether that’s increasing number of reps, sets &/or weight-load – in order to keep the exercise challenging. In theory if you are comfortably squatting 15 reps x 3 sets of 20kg, you could make it harder by either:

  • Increasing reps to 20
  • Increase sets to 4
  • Or by increasing the weight by some challenging percentage.

Remember that the body is outrageously smart and adapts to any stresses placed upon it. When those stresses are balanced, the body itself will remain in balance. Soft tissues (muscles, tendons and ligaments) will adapt to gravity, momentum and ground reaction forces by sensing and reacting to body position. Soft tissues are placed under both static and dynamic stress in everyday activities and thrive under that stress by improving and adapting accordingly. However, if you’re looking to get stronger, faster, leaner – whatever it may be – you need to keep your body guessing. Once your muscle memory has become accustomed to 3 sets of 15 reps at 20kg, you simply have to change it up or you’re only to blame for indulging your plateau!

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  1. STEP UP THE FREQUENCYThis could be for your overall training program – so for instance training 4 times a week instead of 3. Or the frequency in which you train a certain muscle/muscle group (remember recovery is key!). It may be that to observe real, demonstrable progress with a muscle group such as shoulders / upper back, you’ll need to train more frequently than once a week, provided there’s the requisite rest period in between. This ‘targetted’ frequency consideration will help you advance specific muscle group goals.

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Training Healthy Workout Park Primrose Hill Outdoor Training New Years Resolutions Exercise Plateau New Progress Movement Workouts-7 Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Training Healthy Workout Park Primrose Hill Outdoor Training New Years Resolutions Exercise Plateau New Progress Movement Workouts-6

  1. MAKE IT MORE COMPLEX

In this instance, complexity refers to the degree of biomechanical difficulty provided by the exercise. The performance of more complex exercises in training can increase training intensity. Doing the same exercises week after week, month after month isn’t going to break a plateau, but rather reinforce it. Going back to my earlier point that the body adapts accordingly, and that after a time you need to ‘fire up’ the body by doing something different, this complexity point is critical. It’s also going to prevent boredom and who doesn’t love a challenge?

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Training Healthy Workout Park Primrose Hill Outdoor Training New Years Resolutions Exercise Plateau New Progress Movement Workouts-12

  1. PICK UP THE TEMPO

Tempo training – increasing the ‘time under tension’ to which you subject your muscles (i.e. for how long is the muscle contracting) is also a way to implement a form of progression without having to necessarily add more weight. The muscle is working harder for a longer period of time. This also touches on eccentric and concentric training which you can read more about HERE.

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Training Healthy Workout Park Primrose Hill Outdoor Training New Years Resolutions Exercise Plateau New Progress Movement Workouts-13

  1. THAT’S INTENSE, MAN

Increasing intensity really comes down to honesty with oneself. You’ve got to ask yourself ‘how much effort did I really put in to that session?’ If you think out of ten… was it a 5 or a 7? For how much time are you ‘resting’ between sets, whilst chatting to your mates or looking at Instagram… You don’t necessarily have to give it a 10 every single time and be a quivering exhausted wreck plastered to the gym floor, but if you’re leaving every time and haven’t really broken a sweat then maybe it’s worth stepping the intensity up a notch. I have had a lot of female clients throughout the years coming to me with huge goals and aspirations to be followed by the comment ‘by the way I really don’t like and want to sweat’. Some people naturally don’t sweat very much but the likelihood is that if you don’t train hard enough, you won’t see the results you want. Intensity is key, and only you’ll really know how hard you’re pushing it.

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Training Healthy Workout Park Primrose Hill Outdoor Training New Years Resolutions Exercise Plateau New Progress Movement Workouts-18

  1. DON’T OVERTRAIN

This is something many people overlook; overtraining is often caused by repetitive overuse or overstretching. Muscles and tendons have an elastic limit at a point whereby an elastic structure cannot stretch any further and is likely to rupture. It’s the combination of training the muscle incorrectly in the sense that it’s pushing it too farwhereby the body cannot adapt to the stresses or demands placed upon it and is not receiving enough rest and recovery in between training sessions. When you train hard, fitness levels will naturally increase but fatigue will also increase, which can reduce your preparedness for the next session. My view is that you want to step into the gym (or to approach whichever form of training you’re about to do) full of energy, not feeling mentally and physically depleted. For me, a minimum of 7 hours sleep, enough recovery between each training session and the occasional sports massage does the trick nicely. There should be no guilt about taking a break when it would be detrimental not to do so.

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Training Healthy Workout Park Primrose Hill Outdoor Training New Years Resolutions Exercise Plateau New Progress Movement Workouts

  1. HOW’S MY FORM?

Form & Technique – possibly the most important point I can make in this post. If you’re not performing the exercise correctly, you’re not targeting the right muscles and it may be your doing more harm than good. There’s a chance you’re compensating for your poor form by engaging the wrong muscles in the wrong plane; so, before you start loading your squat with too many plates (machismo alert!) ensure you’re doing the exercises correctly, so you don’t end up damaging your back instead. Once you sustain a back injury from squat, there’s a decent chance that will haunt you for a long time to come. My preference is always to go slightly lighter, but to ensure my form is right. Use the mirrors to help you gauge body planes and angles, and don’t be afraid to ask a PT at the gym to help show you an exercise if you’re not sure.

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Training Healthy Workout Park Primrose Hill Outdoor Training New Years Resolutions Exercise Plateau New Progress Movement Workouts-11

That’s not by any means an exhaustive list, and there are of course countless considerations such as nutrition, supplementation, sequencing of training load (etc…) but I thought we’d start there! Hope that’s given you something to bite into for now. Best of luck for 2019 and once again, a very happy new year!

Faya x

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Training Healthy Workout Park Primrose Hill Outdoor Training New Years Resolutions Exercise Plateau New Progress Movement Workouts-16 Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Training Healthy Workout Park Primrose Hill Outdoor Training New Years Resolutions Exercise Plateau New Progress Movement Workouts-2 Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Training Healthy Workout Park Primrose Hill Outdoor Training New Years Resolutions Exercise Plateau New Progress Movement Workouts-4 Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Training Healthy Workout Park Primrose Hill Outdoor Training New Years Resolutions Exercise Plateau New Progress Movement Workouts-3 Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Training Healthy Workout Park Primrose Hill Outdoor Training New Years Resolutions Exercise Plateau New Progress Movement Workouts-10

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Happy New Year, my good reader! If you’re anything like me, you’re most likely not

Upper Body Blast (15-minute workout video)


This is 15-minute upper body workout that you can do at home or the gym with only a pair of dumbbells. Follow prenatal and low impact modifications in the video!

Hi friends! Hope you’re having a wonderful morning. Today is an avalanche of work stuff and topped off with a holiday girls’ night party. On days like today, where I feel like I’m running around all day, I’m really thankful for short workout options! I think one of the tough things when you’re pressed for workout time is spending some of that valuable time assessing what you’re going to do. Without a plan in place, it’s easy to feel like you waste your time wandering around and figuring out your exercises, or it’s enough to intimate you from working out entirely.

For days like this, you can just hit play! 

I have another short (but killer) workout video for you today. This one is focused on upper body with no cardio, so you can easily sandwich it with HIIT intervals and/or core work if you have time. If all you have is 15 minutes, this one’s got you covered.

This is 15-minute upper body workout that you can do at home or the gym with only a pair of dumbbells. Follow prenatal and low impact modifications in the video! fitnessista.com

(Pin it for a rainy day!)

Please follow my friend Katie for any modifications along the way, and as always, honor your body. Check with a doctor before making any fitness or nutrition changes.

Here’s the upper body workout:

  

Exercises and form cues:

(Complete 3 rounds of 12 for the following exercises)

Deadlift to row and upright row:  Hold a barbell, pair of dumbbells or kettlebell, and tap one leg behind you. You can keep it here, with the weight in your front foot as you tilt forward, bringing the weights just below the knees. Exhale and rise with a flat back. For more advanced variations, you can float this top foot off the floor. Make sure to keep hips parallel to the floor. As you rise, complete your upright row, leading with your elbows.

Biceps curl to overhead press: Holding a dumbbell, squeeze your biceps and exhale as you curl, inhale to bring the weights up to 90 degrees and exhale to press up overhead. 

Reverse fly: Your feet will be just under your hips with a slight bend at the knees. Hinge forward from your hips, keeping your back flat (shoulders pulled back) and core braced. Raise your arms, bringing them high and wide, engaging into your rear delts. Stop the elbows at shoulder height before carefully lowering back down. 

Chest fly with hip raise: Start on your back with legs bent and feet flat on the floor. Hold the weights out to your sides with a slight bend at the elbows. Squeeze your glutes to lift your hips, keeping your upper back pressing into the floor and hips parallel to the floor. As your hips lift, bring the weights in front of your chest, performing a chest fly. Lower down towards the floor and exhale to rise back up.

Skull crusher with optional march: Lie on your back with feet flat on the floor and elbows bent at 90 degrees. Extend your arms, pressing the weights towards the ceiling, and keep your arms in line with your shoulders. As an optional core challenge, march one leg (keeping a 90 degree bent and stopping in line with your hips), alternating legs with each rep.

Push-ups: On your knees, toes, or modified against a wall. Keep your hips down in line with your spine, and exhale, squeezing your chest, to rise.

If you find yourself with more time, try adding in this HIIT and strength, this leg and booty burner, this one-dumbbell workout, or this core video.

Please let me know if you give it a try!

xo

Gina

Video: Grant Hunker

Workout partner-in-crime: Katie Surridge

Studio: Animas Tucson

Graphic: Luminous Lines

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This is 15-minute upper body workout that you can do at home or the gym

MY PHOTOGRAPHY REVIEW OF THE IPHONE XS CAMERA


Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-15

It’s been some 3 years since I wrote one of my most well-read ‘how-to’ posts, entitled Blogging 101; in that article, I focussed on my camera selection as a part of what makes FitnessOnToast so much fun to create, and a way to differentiate your own creative pursuits. Time has moved on, as has technology, and now I have professional-grade photography integrated in my smartphone. After visiting Cupertino for the recent launch of the Apple iPhone XS, I’ve been test-driving one of their golden phones for the past fortnight, and this post is the result of my creative experimentation. Shot almost exclusively on the iPhone XS (all except for the 2 shots of the phone itself), these images were captured around Hampstead Heath in the glorious late-summer British sunshine. Click MORE for a full look at the new Camera capabilities and my full perceptions…

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-19

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-16

I’ve spent quite some time evaluating the quality of these images with my photographer. We usually shoot on a main rig which has been updated since the ‘Blogging 101’ post, and are currently using a Canon EOS 1DX Mark 2 and an array of their superb L-series lenses. That is an unrivalled, exquisite suite of kit, but it requires an entire suitcase to lug around, weighs as much as a freight train, and leaves a deep score on the shoulder of whoever’s strapped into it! With the notably-more-portable iPhone XS, sure the results are simply not technically comparable because the two devices don’t even pretend to compete in similar categories, but there are material advancements in the ‘mobile photography’ category which have been made here, and must be shared. 

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-9

The dynamic range is most observable for its improvement, such that highly-exposed daylight backgrounds aren’t blown out with under-exposed subject foregrounds suffering at their expense. There is a balance to the imagery, which typically requires ultra-sophisticated chipsets and plenty of post-processing in the DSLR world, but is nicely adjusted in-camera with the iPhone XS. That’s a user-friendly feature that most people probably won’t ever consider, but it’ll be one fewer problem they notice with their captures – and it’s a significant one too, in my experience of travel photography. I’ll look forward to trying this out on beaches and around highly-exposed landscapes. 

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-6

Depth of Field – that beautiful blurriness – has ever been a huge differentiator of DSLR imagery. My Canon 50mm F1.2 lens generates such a gorgeous background blur (a.k.a ‘bokeh’) when wide open, that it’s hard to imagine anything getting close. Today however, software can simulate this effect quite convincingly, and in the iPhone XS, the combination of improved dual cameras, and a slider to control (in post processing) the amount of background blur to the desired level, is a big leap forward, to my mind. The new chipset’s Neural Engine makes it possible even around the dreaded ‘frizzy hair zone’, so that almost all the shots we took were highly convincing rivals to a DSLR – but with all the convenience of handbag-sizing. 

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-3

Colour too seems ultra rich, as does sharpness of imagery; subjects always seem to stand out in the shots we took. In Portrait Mode, the more-tightly-cropped framing simulates the effect achieved by a 50mm prime lens, whilst in wide mode, one can achieve a towering sense of perspective, width or breadth, whilst losing none of the sharpness around the edges. Knowing that I have access to that diversity of capture is reassuring.

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-20 Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-10

For too long, mobile shots have looked (surprisingly) pixellated, but I believe that is a thing of the past – an advancement which means travels armed with just my iPhone are now possible. There is of course no suggestion that it will be replacing my ultra-sophisticated main rig, but for those many occasions when it’s just not feasible to carry the big-rig, there is now a reliable, high-quality solution, which just happens to sit in my pocket all the time. That is a big step forward. Give it a shot…

Faya x

My entire autumnal outfit is by the classically-Swedish brand, Gant, who’s softness of colour palette and softness of cashmere touch I have grown to love over the past 10 years.

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-18Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-11 Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-14Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-13Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-7  Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-4 Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-17Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Walk Wandering Blogging Camera Photo Technology Picture Shooting Snaps Imagery Blogger Tips Cam Shoot Style Fashion Gant Swedish Hampstead London-22

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N.B. THIS IS NOT AN ADVERT FOR APPLE, NOR HAVE I RECEIVED MONETARY COMPENSATION FOR THIS REVIEW. I WAS SEEDED WITH AN APPLE IPHONE XS AND AM MAKING THESE ENTHUSIASTIC OBSERVATIONS BECAUSE I HAVE FOUND THEM TO BE TRUE AND VALID. FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE SEE MY DISCLOSURE PAGE HERE.

The post MY PHOTOGRAPHY REVIEW OF THE IPHONE XS CAMERA appeared first on Fitness on Toast.


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It’s been some 3 years since I wrote one of my most well-read ‘how-to’ posts,

Merry, bright, holly, jolly


I hope that whether you’re celebrating a nice Monday, or Christmas festivities, that you’re enjoying time spent with those you love, delicious food, lots of downtime, and amazing memories. I’m looking forward to all of the usual traditions with the fam, and seeing the joy and magic on these amazing faces.

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Sending so much light and love to you all this Christmas! Thank you so much for being here and making this blog something I look forward to each day. You’ve all turned this into quite an awesome community and I can’t wait to see what the next year has in store. For the next few days,  you can find me drinking mulled wine while eating a Grammie (<— madre’s famous Christmas cookie bars), watching the nuggets open presents, and spending time with the crew. Blogging will be a little scarce this week, but I’ll be back in action in time to cheer you on for those 2019 goals.

Have a wonderful day!

xo

Gina

I also wanted to share a little note of love for those who are having a difficult time this holiday season. Please know that I’m holding you in my heart.

The post Merry, bright, holly, jolly appeared first on The Fitnessista.


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I hope that whether you’re celebrating a nice Monday, or Christmas festivities, that you’re enjoying

10 WAYS TO BE A DUFUS AT THE GYM!


Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Workout Training Gym Pet Peeves Etiquette Annoying Habits from Members Top 10 List-3

FitnessOnToast.com has always been a warm, friendly, inclusive place to share helpful, optimistic, focussed material. Well, NOT TODAY motherfos. This Gym Etiquette 101 post is motivated exclusively by burning rage and shall act as a form of cathartic therapy for me! I go to the gym on a regular basis, between 3 and 5 days per week. I consider the gym to be a shared space in which many people pay a fee to be allowed its use. However, my observation over 15+ years of gymming is that many people believe ‘once I’m a member, it’s my space’. They’re often disrespectful to the equipment, staff and other members, are messy and all too often, just really, really loud – just to name a few pet peeves. For me, I think of it as a privilege to use the gym. Yes, one pays a fee – sometimes a substantial one at that – but it’s not your property, or your private space. The better I look after the equipment, and the more respectful I am to other members, the more enjoyable and easier their time will be using the gym. In return, I’d expect the same consideration from others. So, without further ado here’s my TOP 10 of things that drive me up the wall every single time I go to the gym! Maybe you can relate to a few of them – alternatively, feel free to add your own irritations in the comments section below. I’d love to know if I’m the only one who feels this way.

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Workout Training Gym Pet Peeves Etiquette Annoying Habits from Members Top 10 List-5

1) PLEASE HAVE SOME SPATIAL AWARENESS

Yesterday, I was doing some deadlifts and an oblivious meat-head almost walked into me – thankfully my gym buddy stopped him just in time. This is incredibly dangerous; were this chap to have collided with me, I could’ve been seriously injured, as deadlifts can already render the body quite prone to injury – add in a push from an unexpected plane, and it could be game over for your back.

Faya’s considerate tip #1Whilst it sounds obvious, try to be aware of the space around you. At times, the gym equipment layout is planned badly. For instance, I would personally never place the squat machine near a heavy tracking area where people are frequently running / walking behind you. The likelihood of someone accidentally walking into you is greater. However, space is limited, and compromises are made. People often walk around looking at their phones whilst playing music and aren’t aware of what’s going on.

2) PLEASE BE QUIET

Sounding like a cow in labour whilst squatting is NOT macho, sexy or endearing, and nobody ever found this a turn on. It’s ultimately unnecessary – at times humorous, given how absurdly preposterous it can sound – but mainly it’s just annoying beyond about the 3rd rep. I know that focussed exhalation and deep breathing can be important to maximise oxygen flow and power, and that’s obviously fine, but the level and variety of noises I hear in the gym is a truly ludicrous symphony of dying animal groans.

Faya’s considerate tip #2Don’t imitate The Hulk when at the gym. Probably no one wants to hear your stupid noises.

3) BRO-HAVIOUR

Shouting out something moronic to your mates across the gym floor? Studies show you’re 100% definitely an idiot. I have to laugh, because this stuff happens all the time, and the laughter therapeutically dissolves my maniacal rage. Typically, it’s a group of guys.

‘No Bruv, I’m carb cycling. I’m on 50 grams innit’. ‘Listen, yeh, you gotta get them CLA’. ‘Yeh Bruv, I smashed out 300kgs – BIG leg day POW.’

Hmmmmm.

Faya’s considerate tip #3:If you’re about to misbrohave, stop yourself, and observe how literally nobody at the gym gives two hoots about how many grams you’re on – probably not even this ‘Bruv’ chap – who coincidentally, seems to be in all British gyms everywhere at the same time. Absolutely everyone just wants you to be quiet.

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Workout Training Gym Pet Peeves Etiquette Annoying Habits from Members Top 10 List-2

4) WHAT ARE YOU WEARING?!

Now this could be a post on its own… and of course people can wear whatever they want but here are a few points to consider if you haven’t already…

a) Crotch Sweat…

We all sweat, some more than others. In many ways, it’s to be encouraged in the gym. Just remember that certain colours and fabrics show sweat patches more than others.

Faya’s sweaty crotch tip #1 – I recommend avoiding greys and cottons if you tend to sweat a lot. No one wants to see a sweaty crotch whilst you do a stiff leg deadlift, and the likelihood is you don’t want to show it either.

b) See-through Pants

Faya’s visible crotch tip #1 This one mainly goes out to all women. Before purchasing any leggings, check in the mirror… if your pants are even mildly see-through, don’t buy them; it’s a waste of money because under the bright lights of the gym, with a little stretching, you might as well just walk around in your knickers instead and save yourself the £££. Perhaps I’m a prude, but unless I’m running along Miami Beach hoping to catch a tan, or in a Bikram class, whilst in rainy cold London, I don’t train in transparent hot pants and see through sports bra.

c) Men and tight pants…

I swear I could see absolutely every little millimeter of one gentleman’s modesty at the gym last week. The anatomical study of the human body fascinates me – I went to see Body Worlds the other day and it was mind blowing. However, at the gym I only want to see Swiss and medicine balls. Please guys, retain a little sense mystery!

Faya’s visible crotch tip #2 – If I were a gentleman, I would consider avoiding tight lycra leggings and opt for altogether looser shorts or joggers instead. Channel your inner ‘80s dude’ and go baggy.

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Workout Training Gym Pet Peeves Etiquette Annoying Habits from Members Top 10 List

5) ‘MY TRAINER FORGOT I WAS HERE’

Trainers on their phones whilst training a client – well, this isn’t gym etiquette per se, but I want to throw it in here anyway as it actually upsets me. To channel Mr T, I pity the fool. A client is willing to pay you good money, and you’re on your phone looking at photos of yourself from your last body building competition? This is what gives PTs a bad reputation. You should be looking at your client’s form, correcting their technique, inspiring them, and delivering them the specialism they’ll require to get stronger, fitter, healthier!

Faya’s considerate tip #4Trainers gonna’ train.

6) CRASH-BANG-WALLOP

Breaking the equipment, and in particular, dropping the cable machine; MEGA ANNOYING. In fact, this is probably what annoys me the most. We all share a space, we all pay membership, yet there is a small group of people who ruin it for everyone else. The cable machine always breaks because some meat-head muppet insists on dropping the weight after every set, therein tearing the cable. This not only confirms the unfathomable nothingness between said people’s ears, but it means next time anyone goes to use the machine it’ll be broken for them too.

Aside from the obvious breakage point (bad!), we often forget about the subsequent lowering of the weight after it has first been lifted.

Faya’s form tip #1By exclusively pursuing this noisy and dangerous approach of throwing down the weights, the ogre is missing out on a vital part of the exercise – the eccentric phase. Rather than just letting gravity do all the work for you (i.e. where you just drop the weight as if ‘meh’), actually controlling the weight’s passage on the way down delivers significant benefit from a workout perspective. So, have a look at the brief explanation as to what the different phases are below, and then have a think about your own workout technique, and how you might apply it to the likes of press-ups, pull ups etc to squeeze that extra 25% out of your sessions! For more on this read here:

 http://fitnessontoast.com/2018/06/18/technique-freak/.

n.b. Faya’s considerate tip #5: Avoid being an inane ogre, by being gentle with the kit!

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Workout Training Gym Pet Peeves Etiquette Annoying Habits from Members Top 10 List-4

7) MIRROR, MIRROR, ON THE WALL…

…who’s the vainest of them all? Turns out, loads of people are equally vain at the gym! I understand that for many people, gymming is in itself a narcissitically aesthetic pursuit (I disagree), but endless flexing…checking your reflection after every set in the mirror is unnecessary. It’s been 2 minutes my friend, nothing’s changed – trust me you still look exactly the same. Are you doing it for yourself, or perhaps for everyone else? They probably don’t think it’s cool either.

Faya’s form tip #2: On a serious note, a lot of people don’t know but mirrors are a very useful tool in the gym,  perhaps the most important tool. They are there to ensure your form and technique is correct when training. Observing alignment, monitoring pace, overseeing planes… these are all helpful activities involving a mirror. Auto-arousal is not.

8) SHARING IS GLARING

Occupying one or several pieces of equipment for long periods of time is just inconsiderate.

Common scenario 1: It’s leg day and today I’m going to get my personal best on deadlifts. I’ve worked hard on this for weeks and I can’t wait! Only problem is the dude in the gym is doing not 3 sets, but 8 sets…. this is truly ridiculous as it’ll mean I won’t get a chance to do my deadlifts. Of course, in this instance you’d share. It’s something we learn at kindergarten – to share the toys. I could easily do a set IN BETWEEN his sets. That is gym selfishness and totally unacceptable! “ASK!” you say? I shouldn’t have to.

Scenario two: Two friends are training together and rather than share the squat rack they’ve taken two! And refuse to allow anyone to jump in to do a set in between their sets!!

Scenario three: This guy has some sort of Round-Robin circuit going on and has taken three machines which he uses back-to-back and in no way can anyone use them in-between his sets!

Faya’s considerate tip #6: I don’t know, be nice, or something. Just don’t man-spread the gym equipment – everyone needs to use it.

9) TIDY UP AFTER YOURSELF!

Perhaps you’re used to your mum making your bed, but in the gym, once you finish using something put it back where you found it. Thanks guys, walking up to the squat rack the first thing I have to do is remove all your weights! This is super mega inconsiderate.

Faya’s considerate tip #7: Also a little wipe down every now and again doesn’t go amiss. Most gyms have towelettes for precisely this purpose, and even a little sanitising spray. Disinfectant is a nicer thing to see on a bench than a dribbling shiny bacteria-laden slick of perspiration. :: shudder ::

And finally 10) BE PATIENT!

Aware that I currently sound like the worlds least patient gym-goer, but a little bit of patience goes along way. If someone is doing a set, perhaps wait before jumping in to grab a weight right beside him/her. I know myself if I’m on a set, I’m really focused, maybe its PB day and someone skirts in beside me and grabs weight…. It blocks my view of my form in the mirror, interrupts my headspace, breaks my concentration, makes me think about whether they’ll bump into me by mistake… this is all super distracting, so just take a moment and jump in when it’s safe to do so!

Fitness On Toast Faya Blog Girl Healthy Workout Training Gym Pet Peeves Etiquette Annoying Habits from Members Top 10 List-6

Well, that’s all for now. Only another 250 pet peeves left on the list, but that’s enough to start things going…

Thanks for reading my vented-scribbles of fitness frustration, and if you have any more to add to this list, PLEASE PLEASE write them in the comment section below! I would absolutely LOVE to know what ticks you off at the gym, because I’m probably the same too 😀

Faya x

________________

Wearing: Lululemon Pants & Hoodie, Adidas Ultraboost Uncaged shoes..

The post 10 WAYS TO BE A DUFUS AT THE GYM! appeared first on Fitness on Toast.


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FitnessOnToast.com has always been a warm, friendly, inclusive place to share helpful, optimistic, focussed material.

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