5 Sculpting Triceps Moves

Are you looking to sculpt your triceps? Below I have 5 different exercises that use 5 different types of equipment. Let’s lose the sleeves and tone up those arms. When you incorporate some or all of these moves into your total body weight lifting routine and eat healthy diet you will be on your way to sculpted triceps.

5 Sculpting Triceps Moves

 

Single Arm Tricep Extension – using dumbbell

  1. Stand tall with your core tight, hips in neutral position and shoulders back and down.
  2. Holding the dumbbell with palms facing forward slowly lower your dumbbell to the opposite shoulder.
  3. Keeping your tricep stable bring the dumbbell back up to the starting position.

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Tricep Kickbacks- using bands

  1. Come to a split stance position.
  2. Keep your core tight and shoulders back and down.
  3. Stand on part of the band to keep it stable.
  4. Using one arm at a time and keeping your palms facing up, slowly bring your arm straight back until you feel tightness in your tricep.
  5. Lower back down to the starting position and repeat.

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Standing Overhead Tricep Extension  – using bar

  1. Stand tall with your core tight, hips in neutral position and shoulders back and down.
  2. Hold the bar above your head.
  3. Elbows should be pointing forward the entire time.
  4. Slowly lower the bar down keeping your bicep and triceps stable and only your forearms moving. (triceps should be working to lower the bar.)
  5. Bring you arms to a 90 degree angle.
  6. Using you triceps push the bar back up top the stating position.

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Tricep Extension – using TRX

  1. Start at an angle with your body in a standing plank position. (core tight, hips in neutral position and shoulders back and down)
  2. Arm are parallel with your shoulders.
  3. Slowly lower down using your tricep muscles to keep you stable until your forearms are about at a 90 degree angle. The more you can bring your hands closer to your head the better.
  4. Using your tricep muscle push your body back up into the starting position.

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Tricep Pushup – using body weight

  1. Start in a pushup position with hand together in a diamond shape. Thumbs touching and 2nd finger touching.
  2. Slower lower to the floor making sure you arms  stay close to the side of your body. Your arms should rub against the sides of your chest.
  3. Push back up and repeat again.

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Creamy Butternut Squash Soup

DSC_0023It’s that time of year again when the squash are growing like crazy in your garden. Fall seems to be a perfect time for soups made with squash. Butternut squash are a great nutritionally rich food to add into your diet. Check out this website for the nutrient content of these hourglass beauties. http://www.wholeliving.com/134734/power-foods-butternut-squash

While I was serving this soup to my kids one of them exclaimed that I should call it “Magic Soup” because it was SO delicious! I was planning on having leftovers for lunch the next day, but much to my dismay (and delight) everyone ate it all up.

go Creamy Butternut Squash Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 butternut squash – hard skin removed and squash diced
  • 1 sweet potatoes – diced
  • 1 large onion – diced
  • 1 tablespoon Mediterranean Basil
  • 1.5 teaspoon cinnamon
  • salt pepper – to taste
  • 3 cups of stock – you can use vegetable, chicken or beef
  • 2 cups tomatoes – diced

Instructions

  1. Place all of the ingredients into a crockpot and cook for 8-10 hours.
  2. After the soup has cook, pour the soup into a blender and mix until smooth. You might need to blend the soup in batches.
  3. Serve right away or you can pour it back into the crockpot to keep warm.
  4. ENJOY!!!

Cauliflower “Mashed Potatoes”

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If you can’t tell, I love to cook with cauliflower. It’s amazing what you can make with this white beauty.  This recipe is a delicious substitute for mashed potatoes. I’m sure you could have anyone fooled with what ingredients you are using to make this dish.

Cauliflower “Mashed Potatoes”

 Ingredients

  • 1 large head cauliflower
  • 5 large cloves garlic
  • Salt  to taste
  • 2 tablespoons grassfed butter
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
  • ½ tablespoon basil
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Cut the cauliflower in small pieces.
  • Start boiling a large pot of water on the stove.

Instructions

  1. Once the water is boiling place the cauliflower in the pot and steam until tender. (about 10 minutes)
  2. Remove the cauliflower and place into a food processor.
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients and blend until smooth.
  4. Remove from the food processor and serve immediately.

           ENJOY!!!

4 Butt Toning Exercising Using Bands!

You can use bands for many different exercises. They are a great item to take with your while traveling or tuck away in a draw at home for easy access. If you do not have one they are fairly cheap and can be bought at almost any sporting goods store. Today I will be showing you 4 exercises using the band that will help tone and lift your butt.

  • Focus on a slow pace (2 seconds up/ 1 seconds hold/ 2 seconds down) 
  • 15 reps each side
  • repeat all 4 sets 2-3 times

Lateral Leg Extensions

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DSC00293Donkey Kicks

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20 Ways To Exercise With Your Kids

20140721_125500I am a mother of 4 adorable little kids and unless I am waking up at 5:00 a.m. to exercise, finding time to get it in can be difficult. There have been many times where my exercise session are with the kids and I actually really enjoy these times. Teaching my kids to get up and move is priceless to me. Most of the time my kids don’t even realize we are exercising, but they think we are just having fun playing games, and that’s the point of it. It’s a great way to bond, laugh and play with your kids while getting your body up and moving.

20 Ways To Exercise With Your Kids

1. Carry your own weight

If you are lifting weights have your kids join you. Giving them an appropriate weight teach them the moves you are doing. Younger kids can use bean bags, wooden blocks, or water bottles. Count together as you lift and you’re practicing numbers too!

 2. Dance it out

This is one of our favorites in our house, plus it may be the easiest way to exercise with children. Pump up the music and dance. Do it vigorously enough and it gives you a cardiovascular workout. You can even put in an aerobic dance video and call it a dance party.

 3. Frisbee throw

Have your kids throw a ball or Frisbee as far as they can then you sprint after the ball or Frisbee and then sprint back to them. If they can not throw very far try jumping, running backwards or lunging to the ball.

 4. Crab walk

Go out side and pretend you are all crabs and have crab wars. You do this by getting in a crab walk position then try to tip the other crab over with your legs. My boys love this one, but it not suitable for younger kids. Try just a plan old crab walk with the young ones.

 5. Hang on front squat

This exercise always seems to turn into a full on competition with my kids. Who can hang on the longest, by the time they have all had their fill of hanging on to me while I do my squats my legs are usually exhausted. You perform this by having one of your kids hang on to you by wrapping their arms around your neck (not to tight, so you don’t choke) and there legs will wrap around your hips. You can either have them in front or behind, try mixing it up each time. Then having GOOD form go down into a squat with out holding your kids and see how many you can do before them have to let go.

 6. Weighted push ups

Get in push up position and have one of your little kids climb on your back and hang on as you perform as many push up as you can with good form.

7. Run, walk, bike – scavenger hunt game

Go running, walking or biking with your kids in a stroller, bike trailer or even running or biking right beside you. Make a game out of it and have the kids try to find different landmarks or items along the way.

 8. Hiking

Get OUTSIDE!!!! I love going for hikes with my kids. I realize that sometimes hiking at your kids pace can seem like a snails pace, so stop enjoy the scenery, do a couple of cardio bust like jumping jacks or burpees, then move again. You can also get your kids jumping from rock to rock while you perform some front lunges on the rocks.

 9. Go to a track

You can run around the track or do some speed and interval training while your kids play in the middle of the field. You can also have your kids time you. They hold the stop watch as you run around. Encourage them to cheer you on while you run.

 10. Wall sit contest

Have a contest with your to and see who can perform wall sits the longest.

11. Jump on the tramp

Get out there and jump away!

12. Play a family game of soccer

This is another regular occurrence at our house. You would be amazed at how fast your can get your heart pumping while playing soccer with your kids.

 13. Make an obstacle course

You can make one inside or out, create one that requires you to jump over and crawl through objects.

 14. Go to a pool

Let the kids swim with life jackets while you wade in water. Try running, swinging your legs out and in or doing scissors in the pool.

 15. Kids yoga video

There is a bunch of great yoga kids video out there. If you don’t want to buy one try your local library.

 16. Horsing around

Put one of your kids on your back and run back and forth as fast as your can for 1-2 minutes, then rest for 1.5 minutes. Repeat this 6-10 times depending on your fitness level.

17. You pick the move

This is a game where each of your kids get the chance to pick a crazy move that you all do for 1 minute. During that minute you do the move your kids picked with all your heart, you’re going to look silly, but this is about moving and getting your heart going!

18. Play the WII or Xbox Kinnect

So, I am usually really opposed to letting my kids play video games, but there are some games out there that gets you up and moving. We have a Kinnect and the kids love playing the Olympics games as a family.

19. Jump Rope

Bust out your old jump rope and teach your kids how it was done when you were a kid (if you even did jump rope) I have one in my studio that I use on clients and my kids love getting it out.

20. Freeze Tag

This is another favorite of ours, the good old game of freeze tag. We love playing this at a play ground, the best part is that there is so many things that you can run around, jump over or crawl through. It’s a great way to get your body moving in different planes of motion.

 

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18 Ingredients That Sound Dangerous, But Aren’t

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I came upon this article on the Team Beachbody website on 18 ingredients that sound bad, but actually are not that harmful for your body. I almost always try to stay away from food that has an ingredients list a mile long with a ton of ingredients that I would have a hard time pronouncing. EAT REAL FOOD is what I go by, but if you come across some of these ingredients every once and awhile you may not have to pass them by. I am definitely not saying if you see any of these ingredients you could eat the item as much as you would like, but they are not as harmful as most people would think. In the end, try to stick with real and natural food as much as possible.

Check out the article –

http://www.teambeachbody.com/about/newsletters/-/nli/316#407508265

Greens and Eggs Dish

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One of my healthy go-to lunches is a delicious blend of kale, chard, beets, avocados and 1-2 eggs. You have your greens, healthy fats and proteins. This meal also makes a great option for breakfast and dinner too.  This dish is so simple and easy to make, whether you’re in a hurry to get out the door in the morning or need a filling lunch during the day, this dish is a great option.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups chard or kale – chopped
  • 1/2 small beet – chopped into small pieces
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 1-2 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil
  • salt & pepper – to taste

Instructions

  1. Heat online oil in a pan on medium heat.
  2. Add greens, beets, salt and pepper.
  3. Cook for a couple of minutes until greens have become slightly wilted.
  4. Add 1-2 eggs and stir until eggs are completely cooked.
  5. Remove from pan and transfer onto a plate.
  6. Add avocados and Enjoy!!!

Curry Chicken Lettuce Tacos

DSC_0034Curry Chicken Lettuce Tacos

This recipe if quick, easy and YUMMY! I love to use my crockpot any chance I can get. Food just seems to taste better when cooked in the crock pot and my life is busy, so I love recipes that requires little prep time. You can use any kind of large lettuce leafs for the taco shell, I used some delicious chard and lettuce freshly picked from my garden. Add whatever toppings you want and ENJOY!

Ingredients

  • 4 large chicken breast
  • 4 Tbsp red curry paste
  • 1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 cup salsa – your choice (I used homemade green tomatillo salsa)
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup cashews
  • 2 gloves garlic minced
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 2 Tbsp thai basil or regular basil
  • 1 tsp cumin

Instructions 

  1. Mix everything (except chicken & cashews) together in a large bowl.
  2. Add the chicken, cashews and mixed ingredients to the crockpot.
  3. Cook for 6-8 hours
  4. Remove the chicken when finished cooking and shred with a fork.
  5. Add the shredded chicken to a large bowl.
  6. Take everything else left in the crockpot and pour into a blender. Blend until completely mixed.
  7. Poor liquid in blender over chicken and mix together.
  8. Add chicken to your lettuce taco and ENJOY!

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Is Sitting Killing You?

The one thing I always ask my clients during our assessment is “how long do you sit during the day?” When you sit for long periods of time it can affect your body in many different ways, and not for the good. There are more and more studies are coming out on the effects of long-term sitting on your body. So if you spend most of your day sitting, this post is for you.

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Effects of Sitting –

In this latest study by, Daniela Schmid and Michael F. Leitzmann of the University of Regensburg in Germany analyzed 43 observational studies, amounting to more than 4 million people’s answers to questions about their sitting behavior and cancer incidences. The researchers examined close to 70,000 cancer cases and found that sitting is associated with a 24% increased risk of colon cancer, a 32% increased risk of endometrial cancer, and a 21% increased risk of lung cancer.

Disease

The pancreas produces insulin, a hormone that carries glucose to cells for energy. But cells in idle muscles don’t respond as readily to insulin, so the pancreas produces more and more, which can lead to diabetes and other diseases. A 2011 study found a decline in insulin response after just one day of prolonged sitting.

Muscles burn less fat and blood flows more sluggishly during a long sit, allowing fatty acids to more easily clog the heart. Prolonged sitting has been linked to high blood pressure and elevated cholesterol, and people with the most sedentary time are more than twice as likely to have cardiovascular disease than those with the least.

TIGHT HIPS

Flexible hips help keep you balanced, but chronic sitters so rarely extend the hip flexor muscles in front that they become short and tight, limiting range of motion and stride length. Studies have found that decreased hip mobility is a main reason elderly people tend to fall.

Sitting requires your glutes to do absolutely nothing, and they get used to it. When you have weak glutes you lack the ability to perform many exercise with correct form, loose stability and

FOGGY BRAIN

Moving muscles pump fresh blood and oxygen through the brain and trigger the release of all sorts of brain- and mood-enhancing chemicals. When we are sedentary for a long time, everything slows, including brain function.

STRAINED NECK

If most of you’re sitting occurs at a desk at work, craning your neck forward toward a keyboard or tilting your head to cradle a phone while typing can strain the cervical vertebrae and lead to permanent imbalances.

SORE SHOULDERS AND BACK

The neck doesn’t slouch alone. Slumping forward overextends the shoulder and back muscles as well, particularly the trapezius, which connects the neck and shoulders.

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How Does Sitting Effect Your Future

Immediately After Sitting

Right after you sit down, the electrical activity in your muscles slows down and your calorie burning rate drops to one calorie per minute.  This is about a third of what it does if you’re walking. If you sit for a full 24-hour period, you experience a 40% reduction in glucose uptake in insulin, which can eventually cause type 2 diabetes.

After Two Weeks of Sitting for More Than Six Hours a Day

Within five days of changing to a sedentary lifestyle, your body increase plasma triglycerides, LDL (bad cholesterol), and insulin resistance . This means your muscles aren’t taking in fat and your blood sugar levels go up, putting you at risk for weight gain. After just two weeks your muscles start to atrophy and your maximum oxygen consumption drops. This makes stairs harder to climb and walks harder to take. Even if you were working out every day the deterioration starts the second you stop moving.

After One Year of Sitting More Than Six Hours a Day

After a year, the longer term effects of sitting can start to manifest subtly. According to this study by Nature, you might start to experience weight gain and high cholesterol. Studies in woman suggest you can lose up to 1% of bone mass per year by sitting for over six hours a day.

After 10-20 Years of Sitting More Than Six Hours a Day

Sitting for over six hours a day for a decade or two can cut away about seven quality life years  (the kind you want). It increases your risk of  dying of heart disease by 64% and your overall risk of prostate or breast cancer increases by 30%.

In the same study listed above done by Daniela Schmid and Michael F. Leitzmann of the University of Regensburg in Germany, it showed that you can’t exercise away the sittings harmful effects. “Adjustment for physical activity did not affect the positive association between sedentary behavior and cancer,”  Even participants who achieved the daily recommended levels of physical activity were at the same risk as those who spent their day sitting. “[The results] indicate that the increased risk of cancer seen in individuals with prolonged time spent sedentary is not explained by the mere absence of physical activity in those persons,” the researchers say.

Take a look at these short videos on the effects that sitting all day has on your body and health.

http://youtu.be/F0rB9AoD2Ek
http://youtu.be/GSO6g3dNR7s

What Should You Do?

  • Get up and walk around every 30-60 minutes.
  • Get up and do some chair exercising. Here’s a link to a great chair workout.
  • Try a standing desk.
  • Walk more during your lunch break.
  • Get up and stretch.
  • Do something active instead of watching t.v.
  • Anytime your on an office call stand up and pace around to talk.
  • Take micro breaks and march in place for 30 seconds or touch your toes 20 times.
  • Get up and move around during commercial brakes while watching t.v.
  • Set a timer on your phone to remind you throughout the day to get up.
  • When browsing your computer, do it standing up.
  • Wander around and pick up or reorganize your desk (eventually your desk area may even be clean)

The most important thing to remember is not to stress about all this information. Taking little steps at a time will help you in the long run. 

 

Benefits Of Exercising Outdoors

IMG_2407I live in Utah, so when the Summertime hits one of my favorite places to exercise is up in the mountains. You do not need to stick with the gym to get a great workout in. It does not even need to be mountains, just head outdoors. You can run, hike, walk, bike, kayak, paddle board or anything that gets your body moving outside. One of my favorites now is to get out to the mountains on my morning runs when the sun is just peaking over the mountains, the air is crisp, my mind is clear and the surrounding are beautiful! It is such an exhilarating way to start your day. I also find when I am going for a longer run I can mentally go longer up in the mountains than I can down in the city, time seems to go by fast and before I know it my long run is done. On those days when I am feeling built up stress in my life, getting outdoors seems to help calm me down. My mind feels clearer and the little stresses in life seem to lot not matter as much. Read below and you will find out the science behind why you might feel that way.

We all have amazing, beautiful and unique bodies that should get out and enjoy the beauty that is in the great outdoors. Below is a great article from the Huffington Post written by Abigail Wise on ways the outdoors make us healthier.

Here’s Proof Going Outside Makes You Healthier

Summer is here, and we’re all for burgers, ocean breezes and an ice cream cone or two. But getting outside is about more than beaches and barbecues. Science shows that spending time in the great outdoors can actually make you healthier. Escaping to the woods, mountains or even your neighborhood park helps both your body and your brain.

Here are seven ways the outdoors make us healthier.

Getting outside makes exercise easier.
Research conducted at the University of Essex showed that the color green, such as that found on trees, grass and other plants in nature, makes exercise feel easier. The small study tested cyclists pedaling in front of green, gray and red images. Those exercising in front of the green showed less mood disturbances and reported that they felt lower exertion during their cycling. Plus, other research showed that those who exercise outside are more eager to return for a future workout than those who stick to the gym.

It can spur weight loss. 
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When John Muir wrote, “Climb the mountains and get their good tidings” in theMountains of California, we kind of doubt he was talking about dropping a few pounds. But as it turns out, not only are the outdoors great for making exercise feel easier and often more enjoyable, but some outdoor elements — like those mountains — directly contribute to weight loss. Simply spending time at high altitude could help shed some pounds, even if you’re just visiting. The higher heights can speed up your metabolism, while actually lessening hunger cravings. So go ahead and plan those mountain escapes, hiking adventures and ski trip getaways.

Nature increases brain function.
Taking in a bit of nature can help your brain in more than one way. For starters, logging outdoor hours may increase concentration skills. One study compared concentration between children with ADHD who played outside, versus those who played inside, after school and on weekends. Kids who spent time in green, outdoor spaces reported fewer symptoms of ADHD, even when the exact same activities were compared.

Taking a stroll can also increase creativity. Research published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology found that walking increases creative production. And while walking anywhere — whether through the woods or in a mall — is beneficial in that it prompts creativity, researchers found that the actual act of spending time outside also influences novelty.

Plus, all of that fresh air is a quick way to kick your brain into high gear. Ditch the caffeine and stick to a walk in the park. Some say that 20 minutes outside can wake you up just as much as one cup of coffee can.

It amps up vitamin D intake.
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Vitamin D can be a tricky nutrient to get enough of strictly from foods, because so few naturally carry it, so most of us soak up between 80 to 90 percent of our sunshine vitamin from those golden rays, Dr. Michael F. Holick, M.D., Ph.D. tells The Huffington Post in an article on vitamin D deficiency. And while we all know to protect ourselves from the sun to avoid skin cancer, we also need vitamin D for bone growth, cell growth, inflammation reduction and neuromuscular and immune function. Unfortunately, your skin can only drink in the D from unprotected exposure. That’s why Holick suggests what he calls “sensible sun exposure.” That means only going out in the sun for about one third to one half of the amount of time it would take your skin to mildly burn, or roughly 10 to 15 minutes for many. After you’ve gotten a bit of vitamin D, reach for the sunscreen, grease up and continue your exploration of the great outdoors.

The outdoors may even help us age gracefully.
Research published in the Journal of Aging Health shows that getting outside on a daily basis may help older people stay healthy and functioning longer. Participants in the study who spent time outdoors every day at age 70 showed fewer complaints of aching bones or sleep problems, among other health-related problems, at age 77 than those who did not head outside each day.

Outdoor activities that revolve around group-oriented exercises or hobbies have their own benefits for older people. Research shows that gardening can help dementia and stroke patients improve social skills and confidence, while even increasing mobility and dexterity.

Nature is great for stress-reduction. 
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Spending time in nature has been shown to lower stress levels, Seattle-based environmental psychologist Judith Heerwagon tells The Huffington Post. “Just looking at a garden or trees or going for a walk, even if it’s in your own neighborhood, reduces stress,” she says. “I don’t think anyone understands why, but there’s something about being in a natural setting that shows clear evidence of stress reduction, including physiological evidence — like lower heart rate.”

One reason Mother Nature may work as such a great stress-buster is through scent. The smell of many flowers, including jasmine, lilacs and roses, have beenproven to decrease stress and increase relaxation. The scent of fresh pine has even been shown to lower depression and anxiety.

The outdoors make us happy.
In addition to helping decrease stress levels, spending more time with nature shows a shift toward more positive moods, says Heerwagon. While we don’t know exactly why this happens in our bodies, “the theory is that we respond positively to things that are good for us,” she tells The Huffington Post. “Trees offer shade, protection and often have fruits and nuts, so they are a source of food as well as protection and comfort.” The idea is that we like things that are inherently good for us and our survival, which is why trees and other natural elements can help lift our moods.