Jackie The Trainer

Helping You Reach Your Fitness Goals!

Monday, October 28, 2019

Making that Monday workout more manageable

It's Monday again, and the weekend sins are staring you in the face -Gasp!
The start of a week,  we try to get back into the healthy habits of our
exercise routine and "clean" (cleaner??) eating.
Why do we feel so yucky coming off our weekend?
Why does that 5am workout feel like we have an extra person on
our back and that salad just isn't enough?!  

Think of it from your body's perspective:
It’s the weekend! I get to relax, do an easier workout, or even take
Saturday and Sunday off.
And the food! So delicious and satisfying.
And now you want me to get up at the crack of dawn and workout? 
And you’re going to starve me to boot? 

Here are a couple strategies to make that Monday more bearable:

1. Get a good workout in on Saturday or Sunday before your weekend splurge.
Some great weekend activities include an extra long walk or jog with the kids,
a session of hot yoga, or a quick high intensity cardio and strength circuit. 
Just remember to get your body moving. 

2. Try to limit your splurge to one or two meals  If you are trying to lose weight
and those who are maintaining a healthy lifestyle definitely have room for a splurge
or two across the course of the week.
It’s important and healthy for you to “loosen” the reigns on the diet.
Part of a healthy diet should be the ability to include an indulgence.
Letting the Friday night pizza, turn into Saturday boozy brunch, then Saturday date night out
and finally comfort food Sunday, makes getting to your fitness goals a lot harder!
You work hard, you deserve a splurge but don’t a weekend takeover that derails all your hard work!

3. Use your body’s built-in systems to your benefit.
Do a vigorous workout right before your splurge meal.
Yes, calories still count even if you workout. But you can take advantage of having
a higher metabolism from that workout. Exercise post-oxygen consumption (EPOC) is at work here.
This bodily process can be in your favor as it continues to burn calories and fat after your workout is over. 

4. Throughout the weekend, get a healthy amount of vegetables and fruit in.
It really will make a difference on Monday! Fruits and veggies provide both water
and fiber which your body desperately needs, especially surrounding a splurge meal or two.
They will help to debloat you and keep you regular.

5. Plan for some healthy snacks along your day on Monday.
You may have eaten more than you should have over the weekend, and your stomach will
definitely remind you. If you start hearing that rumbling, have a snack plan to help your stomach
have a better day.

6.  Listen to your body and pick the right exercise for the day.
You overate and under-worked on the weekend; this must mean you can't eat anything
and you need to have the toughest workout ever to start the week. Not exactly.
Your body is using the fuel from the weekend to fuel that first workout.
You can push it, but be mindful of what your body is telling you.
If it's too much on Monday, maybe plan for Tabata Tuesday morning.
This works especially well after you have had great hydration and better food choices under your belt.

7. Drink a lot of water mixed with a healthy squeeze of a lemon.
Help your body detoxify and hydrate so you are better off for that early morning workout
at the start of the week.

8. Please, please, please -- DO NOT weight yourself on Monday!
It's not kind and can lead to very inaccurate results. Tuesday morning, sure go ahead.
The Monday morning weigh sets you up for disappointment and unnecessary grief.
Waiting, even a day, will help to decrease the weekend bloat and possible water retention.

Happy Monday, I hope this helps set the tone for a better week and a more prepared
weekend going forward!  


Jackie Byrne
Certified Personal Trainer
Certified Nutrition Specialist
Pre/Post Natal

Monday, January 16, 2017

New Year

Happy New Year!

I know the new year seems to bring many resolutions: people start a new diet or maybe a new fitness plan. It seems so promising, and it can be if you lean into it the right way!

I love this time of year; I love seeing people's excitement about the possibilities of what their new commitment means! The only problem is many people dive into resolutions that are way too extreme: "I'm never eating carbs again" or "I will workout for an hour every day, no matter what!" I think the best thing to do is just something healthier. It doesn't have to be an all or nothing commitment-those usually don't work because we become overwhelmed with the changes, and the failure rate is 90%.  When we change one simple thing, the success rate is over 80%. It's so much better to have a goal of doing one thing a day to be healthier. Some great ideas would be taking the stairs, adding lemon to your water, writing in your journal, or adding in a vegetable or fruit at every meal. Pick something that gives you a leg up on yesterday!

Achieving a healthy lifestyle is all about balance; it's not the all or nothing attitude! We tend to forget part of being a healthy, fit person is being mentally healthy, too. Constant negative self-talk and deprivation is going to beat a person down, take those healthy additions, and turn them into something negative. So, with your additional healthy add-in, give your self some slack if it's not a "perfect" day.

So this New Year, I challenge you to do something healthier, something that makes you feel good and will also do your whole body some good!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Pushing through the pain

Have you ever been working out and you feel some weird pain? Maybe it's your knee bothering you or your shoulder, it feels weird, but you HAVE to finish your workout. The thought process of "let me just finish this exercise" or "let me just finish this workout" is what leads us to end up with more pain and more injuries.

I have been there many times, more so in my 20s, where I would feel something funny in my foot or shoulder and I would just think: I just need to finish this workout, I will take off tomorrow. If only I had stopped my workout or at least stopped working out that area that felt suspicious, my recovery time would have been better.

Now, that's not to say every little muscle soreness means something, it's when you feel something irregular and you ignore it. It's that nagging voice in your head that says, "you should stop!" Listen to that voice and if an exercise doesn't feel right or you feel weird pain when working out, then stop!

I want you to push yourself and get stronger and leaner, if those are your goals, and muscle fatigue comes with those goals. Make sure to differentiate between the two, muscle pain versus muscle fatigue.  Fatigue the heck out of your muscles, but don't workout when you have nagging pain. I've so learned and maybe you have too, it's not worth "pushing through the pain" if something doesn't feel normal, give it a rest and try it again another day!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

What Oil Do You Cook With?

I think there was a time when I only used extra virgin olive oil. Whether it was salads, sauteing, or baking, evoo was my go to oil. I now know that just because extra virgin olive oil is so good for you, it doesn't mean it can be used with any cooking process. That's where smoke points come in, great another thing to worry about! You are using healthy oil but you can use it for this but not that?! How overwhelming!

So what is smoke point anyway? It's the temperature that the oil goes from being beneficial to possibly toxic, it's the point that an actual "smoke" can be seen. You don't want your oils to get to this point, especially if you are using the oil for healthy purposes. I'm not saying this to freak you out, this whole "smoke point" is a range and doesn't mean the food you are eating is officially toxic and you shouldn't cook with said oil. It just means that there are oils that will do the job better and you will reap more of the health benefits.

There are so many great oils out there now that can be used and it can feel really confusing as to which one you should use for salads, cooking, baking. I don't want to deter you from using a variety of oils, especially since more popular ones have such great benefits. As a general rule, if you can buy organic, cold-pressed, unrefined oils that is going to be your healthiest bet. The more they have to heat and refine oils, the less health benefits the oils tends to carry. The more refined the oils are also equals higher smoke points, which we obviously need for certain types of cooking!

Below I am giving you a guide for some commonly used healthier oils, their smoke point (which you don't want to go above) and when it's best to use them.

Extra Virgin Olive Oil-unrefined
Smoke Point: 320F (this is a lower smoke point)
Use: Salads, or added after cooking process (high intensity flavor!)
Don't Use: Frying or Deep Frying (which I'm sure no one does anyway :-)

Olive Oil
Smoke Point: 420F (Medium to High)
Use: Sauteing, roasting and baking
Don't Use: Won't be as flavorful in your salads or drizzled on top

Coconut Oil
Smoke Point: 350F (unrefined is a bit lower 280F)(low-medium)
Use: Light sauteing, baking, body lotion, oil pulling (I could go on)
Don't Use: Deep Frying or Grilling

Canola Oil
Smoke Point: 400F (High)
Use: Good for most cooking
Don't Use: Not very flavorful

Avocado Oil
Smoke Point: 450F-500F (pretty high)
Use: Great for sauteing, baking or salads (food topper) great flavor
Don't Use: Deep frying

Grapeseed Oil
Smokepoint: 392F (High)
Use: Salads, baking, sauteing, roasting
Don't Use: Deep Frying

Sunflower, Safflower (Vegetable Oils)
Smokepoint: 450F (High)
Use: Neutral oils for baking, frying, salads, searing
Don't Use: if hoping for intense flavors or low-heat cooking

Flax Oil
Smokepoint: 225F
Use: Dressings and garnish
Don't Use: Frying, or more than low-heat cooking

Monday, August 4, 2014

Makeover Mondays

The start of another week always feels promising, the goal to get more workouts in this week, eat cleaner, anything's possible! I know Mondays are normally no fun, especially coming off the weekend, but try to view your Mondays as the reset of your health journey. Maybe you had a tough weekend, too many parties, too many drinks or cake or whatever your poison; today is your day to reset any of those things that felt like they derailed your goals. Maybe you had a great weekend, you were on track with you workouts, your nutrition was clean and you got ample sleep, take that and start your Monday knowing this week you will set a new goal for yourself and pat yourself on the back! I think the biggest thing to remember is, it's never to late to start eating clean again or getting good workouts in, that's what Monday is all about! Have a great week and make healthy choices!

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

You can't out-train a poor diet, but you can at least try...

We've all been there, running, strength training, swimming, pushing ourselves to try and out smart the cupcakes we just devoured or the pizza that somehow disappeared. The more you read on calories consumed and calories expended, and the more you do an experiment on yourself, it's easy to see, your nutrition matters.

It's not that you can't have a splurge, you can, it's just if you live on splurges, even if you run 5 miles a day, you might not hit those fitness goals.

I truly believe in making your nutrition count and focusing on good clean foods, and I also believe in making your splurges count and really enjoying them!

That being said, maybe there are a few weeks out of the year where you say goodbye to clean eating. Some may call this lapse in clean eating vacation, Christmas week, summer, whatever you call it, it happens to all of us. Thing is, my previous self used to get so wrapped up in the anxiety of it all and at the end of said vacation or break berate myself. I've found, that's not worth it.

If you are on vacation, or it's a special holiday week, enjoy yourself, you don't do this every day (you don't, right?!) The "fun" you have can easily be taken off when you get back to your routine, just don't stay away too long and when you are back from your break, really get back into it.

Another pitfall some of my clients tend to have is the "screw my diet and my fitness." This is where I go back to my original thought, no you can't out-train a poor diet, but if you are on vacation, you certainly can get in some great exercise to off-set some of it. When it comes to nutrition and exercise,we all need a break from rigidity, best if you can make those breaks happen at separate times.

On that note, happy summer and happy vacations!

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

No food ruts please!

It's been said way too many times that exercise alone isn't enough for weight-loss and good nutrition. I hate to even put a percentage on how much nutrition matters, because there isn't one. Exercise, without sound nutrition, well good for the body, kind of defeats the purpose. Kicking butt in the gym and then going and eating whatever you want because you "earned" it, isn't really focusing on that "living a healthy lifestyle." Although you are doing great things for your body by exercising, not following it up with clean eating isn't going to get you the results you want. Your body works best when you treat it right, which means, getting great workouts in and following up those workouts with good carbohydrates, lean protein, healthy fats, and vegetables galore!

I'm not saying you can't eat a brownie or enjoy a yummy dish of pasta, but good nutrition matters. I think people get so caught up in how they look or wanting to be thin, that they forget, the inside of our body matters! Yay for the 100 calorie snack pack but how much better are you going to be to your body if you fill it with 100 calories from something healthy, say peanut butter and apples or carrots and hummus instead of that oreo pack? When you want a splurge, have it and make it worth your while, but try to maintain that 90% clean eating, 10% splurge ratio to really see great results (inside and out :-)

I know sometimes you get sick of the same old chicken or boring vegetables. Which brings me to some awesome resources I have been using lately to find some great recipes. I am a regular subscriber to clean eating and eating well magazine, tons of great recipes which you can also find online-http://www.cleaneatingmag.com/ and http://www.eatingwell.com/  Don't forget about Pinterest, I'm obsessed with pinning healthy recipes right now! It's so easy to make the same things over and over, but it can feel limiting and get old really quick. It's best to have a few staples you know you can make, but I encourage you to try something new, yummy and healthy to avoid getting in a food rut. If you did the same workout for a year your body wouldn't get results anymore, think of nutrition the same way!

What I'm loving right now is adding greek yogurt as a sauce instead of cream, mayo, sour cream, it's so versatile; you can use it cold or add it to a chicken entree and bake it! Also, avocados, I can't get enough- such good healthy fat and can spice up so many things. Below I'm pasting a kale salad with avocado recipe-amazing!

Enjoy this nice weather and try a healthy new recipe!

Kale Avocado Salad
1/2 shallots chopped
1/2 lemon squeezed
1/4 cup toasted walnuts or really any nuts works here
1 large bunch of kale massaged and cut up
1 avocado
salt and pepper
optional add-ins: 1/4 cup dried cranberries or cherries, 1/4 cup parmesan cheese

*Combine shallots, lemon, walnuts, salt, pepper and Kale, add in avocado "massaging" kale to cover leaves.
*Top with optional add-ins-YUMMY!