My Gratifying Morning Routine

Hey! If you've read any of my previous posts about creating a morning routine, you will know that this has been high on my list of priorities. While this routine still doesn't happen every day or as early as I would like, it is definitely my favorite part of the day when it does happen. 

This isn't really a follow along video, it is simply a demonstration of how I go from sleepy and stiff to feeling loosey-goosey and energized in a manner of minutes. Yes, music and coffee are involved. 

In the time it takes to listen to two songs, I was able to stretch my spine, foam roll my troubled hip areas, squeeze in some core work and get my heart rate up a little with some good old fashion dance/hula hooping. Followed with lots of water and a healthy (protein and fiber filled) breakfast, and I'm ready to tackle my day.

If you dread moving each morning try adding some of your favorite things to make it as enjoyable as possible.

A Chest, Back + Core Workout that I am Scared to Show You!

I recorded this video months ago and have delayed posting it because it involves lots of push ups, which I suck at! The video shows me struggling to do modified push ups and at first I was slightly embarrassed to share this with the world. But, over the past few weeks I came to the conclusion that this is just plain silly.

Personal trainers are not super heroes. We have faults, bad habits, and exercises that we hate and therefore leave out of our workouts. I realized that my ego was preventing me from sharing a great workout because I didn't want to show my weaknesses, which is a very selfish act. I was afraid of what people might say or think about my skill or expertise. The fact that push ups and I are not friends, does not cancel out the fact that I have been helping people get fit, including learning to do push ups, for the past 8+ years. I need to let this fear go. Fears get bigger if we justify them. If we simply take a deep breath and face them, they become smaller until they no longer exist.

#dontforgetyourfriday #mintconditionpt

Everyday Abs Level 2

Before you can build anything you must first create a solid foundation. The foundation of our bodies is our core. Every movement involves the core and it is our core that keeps us healthy. A strong core enables us to be active and have less chance of injury. It maintains our posture and our balance. A strong core allows us to keep up with our everyday activities and our sports and leisure activities. I have given you an Everyday Abs Level 1 workout that really focuses on the basic movements that keep the core strong. If you feel you need a little more challenge, give this Everyday Abs Level 2 workout a try. I incorporate some planks into this one and a great tune!!

Move Everyday. Eat Real Food. Drink Lots of Water. Get Quality Sleep. Food Journal.

Why a gym membership isn't your answer.

At most gyms, especially the big box gyms, once you purchase your membership no one cares if you continue to show up. Gyms will make their money whether you show up or not because they are not invested in your results. Ultimately, you will have to get to a point in which you exercise because you are investing in yourself, but everything in life becomes easier when you have someone that is invested in your success. This is why teachers and coaches exist, to help individuals reach their goals, and in turn providing value by helping you to succeed. Even personal trainers have coaches, in the form of our own personal trainers, nutritionists, lifting coaches, yoga instructors and even business coaches. This is because we understand the value that having a coach can bring to our lives and businesses.

If you have been working towards a health and wellness goal but not making much progress, it may be time to recruit some professional guidance. We hire coaches for things like our finances so why not for our health? Who cares how much money you have if you don't have your health? Change your mindset from "How much will that cost?" to "What will I get from this investment?".

Well, when it comes to personal training, here is what you will get:

  1. Motivation that leads to consistency.
  2. Education that leads to better decisions.
  3. Knowledge that leads to efficient exercise.
  4. Fresh ideas to prevent boredom and get better results.
  5. Someone to correct your form and prevent injuries.
  6. Someone to vent to when no one else will listen (and in some cases a good friend).

If a personal trainer isn't in the budget other options include:

  • Find a friend with similar goals that will support you and call you out when you start to slack.
  • Join a running club or a triathlon club.
  • Use apps like MyFitnessPal and Lose It! to help you stay on track
  • Purchase a Fitbit or pedometer.

Please understand that I am not saying to get rid of your gym membership and to no longer bother going anymore. What I am saying is that a gym membership should be a tool that you can use but should not be the only tool. Investing in yourself will not only enhance your well-being, it will allow you to thrive in all areas of life.

Work on yourself
Work on yourself

Everyday Ab Workout - Level 1

No matter who you are or what your fitness level, a strong core is a must. Most aches and pains, and injuries stem from having a weak core. Every movement starts with your mid-section so it only makes sense to make sure that it can handle all of the movement we do on an everyday basis, let alone with sports and fitness activities. Here is a workout that is aimed at beginners, but it will challenge everyone if done correctly. It focuses on quality of movement, not quantity. It takes about 10 minutes to complete so it is a great option to every morning.

Subscribe to my Mint Condition Personal Training YouTube page for other workouts and Quick Combos to add to your workouts.

If this is waayy too easy, here is an Everyday Abs Level 2!

Anywhere Workout

Need a quick workout that can be done anywhere? Look no further! Below is a Lower Body Workout and an Upper Body Workout that cane done separate (3-5 Rounds) or back to back (3 Rounds). No excuses now, do these workouts before you start your day for all day calorie burn. One round of either would make a great 15min Morning Movement workout!!

Air Squats - Keep the weight in your heels. You should be able to wiggle your toes at the bottom. To modify use a chair and practice sitting and standing without using your hands.

Jumping Jacks - Standard jumping jacks. To modify you can do big side steps instead.

Birdfeeders - The technical name of these is a SL Deadlift. Standing tall, tip forward on one leg while allowing the other leg to lift up behind you. Reach forward and down as far as you can while maintaining your balance. Start small!!

Lunges - You can actually do any lunge variation you would like: forward lunge, reverse lunge, side lunge, or curtsey lunge. Keep your knees from traveling to far over your front toes no matter which you choose.

Kick Backs - Standing up tall and while balancing on one leg, kick the other leg back in a controlled manner. You can place one hand on the back of a couch or a countertop to allow for complete control during the lift.

Bridges - Lying on your back, bend your knees up and place your feet flat about hips widths apart. Press through your heels to lift your buns off the mat. 50 pressing up and down, then hold at the top for 60 seconds!

If you want the total package, keep moving right into the Arm Workout.

Small Arm Circles - With your arms out to the side in a T position, make small circles with your arms. Alternate directions with each set.

Mountain Climbers - In a high push up position, bring one knee in towards your chest. From that position jump and switch knees, bringing the opposite knee up and in! To modify simply slow the movement down, no jumping. Or just hold the high push up position for 20 seconds.

Plank Shoulder Touches - In a high plank position, transfer the weight to one arm and take the free hand up to your opposite shoulder. Slowly switch sides trying to minimize any hip movement. To modify perform from a modified push up position on your knees.

Push Ups - Push Ups are no joke. Start with your hands on an elevated surface, such as a couch or counter top. Slowly make your way to the ground and start from your knees. No matter which option you do, make sure your belly button is tucked in as well as your tush!!

Tricep Chair Dips - Start seated on a chair or couch. Place your hands right outside your hips. Slowly lift you buns of the chair and move slightly forward so your hips are up and out front of the chair. While keeping your hip as close to the chair, bend your elbows and lower your hips towards the ground. Level 1 will be with 90 degrees in your knees, progressing until your legs are completely straight.

Field Goal Supermans - Lying on your stomach with your arms in a field goal position, lift your legs and chest off of the ground while pulling your elbows towards each other behind your back. Keep your gaze down as to not kink the back of your neck.

Low Plank Hold - Same as a push up position, but on your elbows instead of hands. Squeezing your belly button to your spine and tucking your hips under, hold for 60 seconds.

Quickie Combo - Push Up to Toe Touch

Here is another great exercise combo that can be used as a Quickie or can be incorporated into your exercise regimen! I used it to finish off a workout filled with chest exercises. See if you can do 2 sets of 20 of either the Standard or the Modified versions. Just do your best and remember that consistency is key. Do something active everyday!!

Have a great week! Let me know how you like this combo and if you have any requests for new Quickie Combos :)