Tag Archive for fitlizzio

8 Weeks to a Killer Booty

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It almost never fails when I meet women in the gym: everyone wants a nice butt and great legs.

I’ve always been a big fan of leg/glute workouts. There was a running joke at the gym for a long time where everyone basically thought all I did was work my butt and legs.

(Obviously that wasn’t true)

I will admit, though, I LOVE working legs and glutes. Because of this, I’ve experimented a LOT. I’ve learned from the best of the best, and I’ve been practicing for 8 years (officially last month!). As a trainer, I get to experiment with my clients, too! They love (and hate) it. Since I can’t reach all of you, I wanted to put something out there that you could use to build the legs and butt you’ve always wanted.

8 Weeks to a Killer Booty & Gorgeous Legs

The exercises (click on the exercise for a video demonstration):

  1. Deadlifts
  2. Back Squats
  3. Hip Thrusts
  4. Bulgarian Squats

Here’s what to do:

You can do this program for as long as you want, but I’d suggest taking a de-load week every 8-10 weeks (depending on you and what you/your body needs). You’ll work your legs 3 times per week and I would suggest doing upper body 2 times per week. For example, you could perform legs on M/W/F and do upper body on Tuesdays and Saturdays. Choose weights that allow you to perform the recommended reps. If you can get through the set easily, you need to up the weights. If you can’t get to the minimum number of reps, you’ll need to go lighter.

The goal is to increase your weights every week. For example, if on Day 1 of Week 1 you get your deadlifts up to 135lbs, on Day 1 of Week 2 you’ll try to get 140lbs. Do this for each exercise/day.

Day 1:

Deadlifts: Perform 5 sets of 4-6 reps

Back Squats: Perform 3 sets of 10-12 reps

Bulgarian Squats: Perform 3 sets of 12-15 reps

Day 2:

Hip Thrusts: Perform 5 sets of 4-6 reps

Deadlifts: Perform 3 sets of 10-12 reps

Back Squats: Perform 3 sets of 12-15 reps

Day 3:

Back Squats: Perform 5 sets of 4-6 reps

Bulgarian Squats: Perform 3 sets of 10-12 reps

Hip Thrusts: Perform 3 sets of 15-20 reps

You can also add in any of the following at the end of a workout. I recommend picking 2 exercises and doing 2 sets of each for 20-30 reps as a “burn-out”:

Banded Lateral Walks

Banded Hip Abduction

-Banded Duck Walks

45 Hyperextensions (can be done with or without weight)

Swiss Ball Hip Adduction

Kneeling Hip Thrusts

 

As always, check with a doctor before beginning any new exercise program. If you have questions, feel free to leave a comment below!

 

On Output and How it Relates to Stress in Your Life

Hi friends,

I’d like to talk a little bit about output. It has been a hot topic in my life lately,

and it dawned on me that it may be something others experience as well.

When talking about health and fitness (as I do quite often here), I often talk about workouts, eating healthy, getting enough sleep, etc.

Of course, those are very important.

But mental health is also important. And workouts + what you’re eating are only a small piece of how you feel each day.

The Culprit

We all have “stuff”. I actually had a great conversation with my coach, Erik, about this today. He said “Life-stressors are a constant from adulthood to grave. You either control stress or stress controls you.”

He’s absolutely right.

And for the last year or so, I’ve let stress control me.

Work stress,

family stress,

relationship stress,

personal stress,

it’s all stress. And I’ve let it control me.

It’s been the reason (read: excuse) for all of my personal and professional goals that have gone awry.

That isn’t because the stress did it. It’s because I LET the stress do it. And possibly that I allowed TOO MUCH stress into my life, without getting rid of some of it along the way.

From the exterior, I have a really awesome life. And from the interior, maybe I should be able to recognize that more.

Here’s what it looks like from the outside:

  • I wear workout clothes all day every day (yep, even to work)
  • I have a cute, hilarious puppy
  • I’m in a solid relationship
  • I have an apartment in LA just a few miles from the beach
  • I work from home most of the time, and when I do “go to work” it’s usually on my own clock
  • I work out every day
  • I eat well
  • I make good money
  • I have a wonderful family that I get to see fairly often

Seems like a pretty badass life right?

But nobody sees what goes on in my head.

Here’s what it looks like from my point of view:

  • I work 1 full time job, and 4 part time jobs (yup, 4)
  • I’m constantly pulled in 5 different directions (see above)
  • On top of that, I have a relationship and dog to spend time with (which I LOVE, but fitting it in can be tricky at times)
  • I have my own personal goals in regards to workouts and my physical appearance
  • I have professional goals in terms of this blog and other business ventures
  • When I fail or don’t live up to what I set for any of the above, I feel pressure and guilt
  • Pressure, pressure, guilt, pressure, guilt.

And where does that leave me? Well to sum it up, I feel like a boiled chicken breast. Bland, soft, empty of all flavor.

I only have so much output, and I continue tapping out the supply day in and day out. I can’t get through the line of people waiting outside my door, so to speak. So eventually, I shut the door. And the week ends.

By the weekend, I just want to relax. I just want to shut everything off. I still see the line (aka the constant problem solving and “work” that goes on in my head), but I’ve got permission to ignore it, because it is the weekend.

By Sunday? I start to meltdown. Because Sunday means Monday is tomorrow.

And that means the 23849023 responsibilities I have are going to be waiting in line again. They won’t go away, they just wait in line until I get to them. The longer they wait, the louder and more rambunctious they get. Some of this loudness is caused by me, and the self-pressure I put on myself. Some of it is actually from those around me asking when, when, when. Do this, do this, do this.

And then I wonder why I’m burned out.

Can you relate?

Starting the Solution

My doctor made a very good point to me as well. She said “you can’t steal energy”. I asked her what she meant, and she said “if you drink a coffee, take a supplement, or drink an energy drink, you’re only stealing that energy from later in the day. You’re not gaining energy”. She is right. And since I tend to think about things a lot, I related this to my daily life.

To my output.

I only have 24 hours in a day.

I should sleep for at least 8 of those

Workout for 1 of them

Be with family for at least 2 of them

This leaves me with 13 hours.

13 hours to:

  • get work done from 4 part time jobs and 1 full time job.
  • Drive to and from some of these part time jobs
  • Eat
  • Smell the damn roses
  • Feed Oscar, take him outside, take him to the park so he can run.
  • work on my personal and professional goals
  • do something for FUN

I’m essentially trying to “steal output” and I can see clearly now why it’s not working.

I can’t add 2 hours (or 6 or 8 for that matter) into my day. I will only be stealing them from another part of the day.

And so I must make choices.

Where is my output best used?

What type of output do I most enjoy?

How much of it should be spent on each of these activities?

And so I start to create my Venn diagram:

-what makes me happy

-what am I good at

-what makes me $$$

good-to-great

And over the next few weeks, I will start to fill in this Venn diagram.

Because life is too short to be exhausted and mentally stressed.

And while stress will only rule it if you let it, sometimes change is necessary to stop it in it’s tracks.

This is where I’m stepping in.

Question of the Day

  1. When life gets tough, what do you do? How do you handle your stress?
  2. Have you ever felt that your output level was higher than your body/brain could handle?

 

Workout & Survey

A new month begins!

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Oscar is stoked about it.

This year has flown by, but don’t they all?

Yesterday was a leg day and I’m definitely feeling it today. Here’s what I did:

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  • Deadlifts – 5 sets; finished with 185×6  as my last set
  • Leg Press – 4 sets
  • Bulgarian Squats – 3 sets w/ 25 lb DB’s
  • Swiss Ball Leg Curls – 3 sets
  • Leg Extensions – 3 sets
  • Goblet Squats – 3 sets w/ 50lb DB

This has been my favorite post-workout meal lately. I was really having a hard time choking down a protein shake after my workout, but oddly enough, using LESS almond milk and making it into a “pudding” makes it totally palatable. Funny how that whole texture thing works.

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This or That Survey

I saw this on Lindsay’s blog and had to steal it! Can’t pass up a good survey!

Chocolate or Vanilla?

I think vanilla wins here. I do like chocolate, but usually choose vanilla. I guess it really depends on what it is!

Innie or Outtie?

Outtie

Hot, Hot Summer or Snowy Winter?

Hot summer for sure!!! I don’t do well in the cold at all.

Save or Spend?

I am a saver for sure. I spend money on food and that’s about it.

Elliptical or Treadmill?

Hmm…neither really, but if I had to choose: treadmill.

Banana or Apple?

Applesssss!!!!!! I love pink lady and honeycrisp the best, but jazz is right up there with them.

Morning or Night?

It totally depends. I think night is probably the right answer for me, but at the same time, I do love something about an early, crisp morning.

Love or Money?

Love. But money is also pretty necessary in this world.

Lip Balm or Lipstick?

Lip balm. I almost never wear lipstick. I’m actually not sure I own more than one, and I’ve worn it MAYBE one time.

Butt or Boobs?

Butt for sure. And I’m not just saying that because i have no boobs. Good butts are awesome!

Alone or with others?

Totally depends. Sometimes i’d definitely rather be alone. Other times, i want people around.

Coffee or Tea?

COFFEE.

Straight or Curly?

Curly is more fun…but straight is easier. My hair is wavy and doesn’t like to hold a curl, so this is what I get when I actually try to curl it.

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Three squares or graze all day?

Grazeeeeeee. I love to snack.

Right handed or left handed?

Right, usually. I have some weird things I do totally left-handed and I attribute that to my left-handed father.

Beach or Mountains?

Lake. But if I had to choose? Man, i don’t know. i live close to a beach and don’t go too often. Mountains are really pretty. I’m going to stick with lake.

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Mac or PC?

MAC.

Shy or Outgoing?

Depends. Usually outgoing, but sometimes I get awkwardly shy.

 

Why Is It So Hard to Change?

Why is it so hard to change?

IMG_8563This is something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately.

Mainly because after 2 years of “wanting” something, I finally dug in and started DOING it.

As many of you know, I competed in the NPC Bikini division in 2009. I did 2 competitions and then hopped on a roller coaster of disordered eating and a poor relationship with food shortly after.

It took me over 2 years to pull myself out of that hole and learn to love myself again. I literally defined myself by my weight at that point and just felt like such a failure.

When I finally decided that I needed to love myself and move on, it became easier. I was able to make a change for the better, and although it certainly didn’t happen overnight, I pulled myself out of disordered eating and started having a normal relationship with food again.

That was change #1. Even though I had wanted it for 2 years, it wasn’t until I was READY, that I was able to make that change.

Now I sit here today and I’m once again curious about what it was that allowed me to make this change (Operation: Get Lean).

For the last 2 years, having felt that my relationship with food was good and feeling like I had regained control of myself, I decided I wanted to get lean again. I had the best of intentions, but for some reason, could not make it happen. I wasn’t gaining weight or doing anything detrimental, but just simply not allowing myself to eat in a deficit that was needed for fat loss.

So for 2 years, my body stayed relatively the same.

Finally, 6 weeks ago, I was able to turn that corner and start changing. So I’ve spent a lot of time looking into myself and wondering what it was about THIS TIME that was different.

Here’s what I’ve come up with:

I was truly ready. While I felt I was ready before, I wasn’t. I wanted to be lean, but I wanted to eat whatever I wanted more.

My life is really hectic lately, and while you may think that would make this harder, it’s made it easier. This is the one thing I feel in control of. It is the one thing that I can do and nobody can stop me.

I needed to fail. This was a big one. In order to really dig in, I needed to fail. I needed to trip up so many damn times that I finally had enough. I needed to recognize that if I continued half-assing it, I would continue getting the same results.

I needed someone tough in my corner. I needed someone who would not take anything less than 100%. Because the people that told me I could get away with 80-90%? I took it to heart and didn’t try as hard. But when you have a coach that literally calls you out when you give anything less than your best? When it is someone you trust and respect? Well you better bet you’re going to push yourself as hard as I can. It’s human nature to want to impress those who you look up to.

What this has really shown me is that anything is possible. It truly reminded me that you can fall 2304823 times and STILL get back up and move forward.

I think that is where a lot of people give up. They’ve tried so many times that they’re embarrassed to even admit that they’re trying again. I was in that position too! Hell, I’m a freaking personal trainer that writes a health and fitness blog. And I couldn’t achieve my own fat loss goals? Talk about feeling embarrassed. My life revolves around this stuff and I couldn’t make it work for myself. I GET YOU.

But I wasn’t ready. I WANTED to be ready, but I wasn’t. And if there is anything you can take away from my experience, it’s that you should never stop trying. I know you hear that ALL THE TIME. But it’s true. Because I did fail A LOT. What I didn’t do, was stop trying. I didn’t even believe in myself when I started this 6 weeks ago. The first 2 weeks I literally felt like at any moment, I would sabotage myself. But I put my willpower into play and just kept going. And now? I feel like me again. I believe in myself again. I KNOW what I’m capable of. I’m still not done yet, and there is still plenty of work to do. There will be much harder times, and I know and expect that. I also know that I can get through it all. I’ve gained that confidence through this process. Nobody can stop me.

If any of this resonates with you, know you’re not alone. And in fact, you’re probably in the majority. If you’re sitting there feeling like a failure. Like you’ve given up and don’t want to try anymore, just keep trying. You may not be ready yet, but eventually you WILL be ready. As long as you don’t give up. Fight the urge to quit. Unless your goals and ideals have changed (in which case, you change your course), you must keep going.

If you’re ever in need of support, I have a great group of people in a private Facebook group and we’re constantly sharing our achievements and struggles. If you’d like to be a part of that group, just send me an e-mail at fitlizzio@gmail.com

Here’s to YOU. YOU can do this, your goals are within reach, just don’t give up.

Life is a Bumpy Road

Good morning!

Hope you’re all having a great start to your day.

How I feel after my workouts.

How I feel after my workouts.

Life Stuff

I’ve always said I’d be truly honest in my posts, and today is no different.

Life is a bumpy road, that’s for sure.

In all honesty, I’ve been in quite a funk lately.

My workouts have been AMAZING

My Operation: Get Lean has been on-par

But other areas of my life have been rough.

I suppose part of it is that I’m in my late 20’s…

and from what I hear..this is what late 20’s people do.

We question life, question ourselves,

question our mission, our direction.

We.question.everything.

  • Is this where I should be living?
  • Is this the job I should be doing?
  • Am I going after my passion?
  • Am I doing enough?
  • Am I doing too much?

And at this point, I still don’t have an answer to any of that.

So I’ve been doing what I KNOW how to do.

Working hard in the gym, and sticking to my personal goals.

Workout Stuff

Okay, enough of the negatives, how about some positives!

-I hit a new PR for DB Push Press: 10 reps w/ 35lb DB’s

IMG_9995-I’ve been working hard on perfecting my deadlift form, and it’s paying off!

IMG_9996-I can see my quads through my pants

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what? you don’t lay on your couch flexing your quads and take photos??

Online Training

I’ve got three awesome people who embarked on a fat loss journey with me this past Monday. They are super stoked and I am too! They’re all tracking their progress, so I’ll be sure to share their results when they finish up the first stage (1 month). (If you’re interested in the next start date, go here)

Food Stuff

I’m going to document an entire day of eats tomorrow since I’ve had many people ask me about it. Stay tuned for that!

My favorite foods this week have been peaches, strawberries, shrimp, and avocado! I also still love my nighttime protein pancake with peanut butter drizzled on top. It’s definitely a great way to end the day!

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Question of the Day

  1. Have you ever felt a bit lost in life? Any tips? Haha
  2. What have you done well this week in regards to fitness?

Operation: GET LEAN Update #2

Happy Friday peeps!

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#workmode

I wanted to pop in and give you an update on Operation: GET LEAN!

In my last update, I was feeling really good and like I had finally gotten in the right head-space for this.

I’m happy to say that I feel even more dialed in today than I did then!

STATS:

Starting Weight: 152 lbs

Weight Today: 145.4 lbs

I’ve lost:

  • 1 inch in my waist
  • 0 inches in my bootay (that will be the last to go for sure..)
  • .75 inches in each leg
  • 2 inches in my chest (REALLY?! ugh haha)
  • 1.5 inches on my hips
  • 0.5 inches on each arm

Are these crazy numbers? No. But 5.75 inches in 6 weeks is fine by me. I’m not trying to win a race, I’m just trying to lean out and be healthy. Progress is progress and as long as I’m moving in the right direction, that’s all that matters to me.

What I’m Doing:

I’m lifting 4 days per week, with 1 ab circuit each week.

No cardio. (except for 1 baseball game I play every Sunday and the occasional rollerblading by the beach, which only happens about once every 2-3 weeks)

I think that’s one of the biggest things that makes people’s jaw drop.

“What?? No cardio?? How is that possible?!”

“I have to do cardio everyday!!! How are you doing that?!”

The truth is, quitting daily cardio was the best thing I ever did for ME. It doesn’t mean cardio is BAD by any means. In fact, a little bit of cardio is good for you. And if daily cardio makes you feel good, clears your head, or of course, is part of your training for a race, then by all means DO IT. But daily cardio for the purposes of fat loss is just unnecessary, in my opinion.

I lift heavy (for me) weights, and I go hard in the gym. I’m a sweaty, out of breath MESS after EVERY one of my workouts. I don’t half-ass them. I’m also diligent with eating well and staying within the parameters that will help me achieve fat loss.

The formula is SIMPLE

Executing it is CHALLENGING.

BUT, if you have your eyes set on a goal and are WILLING to put the work in,

Results Happen…

Photos are 8 weeks apart, but I didn't start dieting until 6 weeks ago.

Photos are 8 weeks apart, but I didn’t start dieting until 6 weeks ago.

Question of the Day

  1. How are you doing with your goals?
  2. What do you find to be the hardest part about fat loss?

Fit Lizzio Life Update

As I sit here sipping my coffee, I figured I owe you all an update!

Life has been going pretty well over the past few weeks!

I’ve recently added a job as the personal trainer at a production company to my schedule. As a perk to the employees, they not only have access to a gym, but access to a personal trainer (me) now! It’s an early morning position, so I’m up with the birds, but I’m done before the rest of my work day starts.

I’m still running around with Oscar in tow..

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I’m still working out 4-5 days per week..

My training has been excellent over the last few weeks. While I haven’t been upping the weights as much lately, I’ve been maintaining my strength, which is a win considering I’m dropping body fat. I’ve been putting a lot more focus into the tempo of my lifts and focusing on my form, so I haven’t been trying to hit any PR’s over the last few weeks. It’s hard at times to not just load up the weights as heavy as possible and muscle through, but this is also extremely helpful and essential in my training, so I’m embracing it with open arms.

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I’m still working towards my goal of leaning out/dropping body fat

I didn’t know I had it in me (yes, even I doubt myself sometimes), but I’ve been executing my diet really well and shoving any and all excuses away. I’m down about 7 pounds and several inches (will have a check-in post later this week when I check in with my coach). This was about a week and a half ago. I’m super happy with the results I’m seeing and I feel great!

progressaugust10th

I’m still working hard at my many jobs each day!

Since adding another job to the mix, I’m definitely keeping busy! I have to be super efficient in everything I do in order to make time for it all. I know it’s not sustainable in the long run, but for now it’s working for me. I have some plans up my sleeve, but need to do a few things before I execute them fully.

The Blog

I’ll be posting more articles (all related to fitness, motivation, eating/diet, etc.) and how-to videos on the blog moving forward. I’ll still be giving a glimpse into my daily life (about once per week), but it will be peppered in with more informative posts/videos. I really want to make this a resource for people out there and as always, I will be 100% real and honest. I’d like for Fit Lizzio Fitness to be a catalyst for change. To show the world that no matter where you are, what your resources are, or how much time you have in your day, you can still achieve a healthy lifestyle that includes fitness and good food.

Question of the Day

1. What are you kicking ass at lately? (eating more vegetables? being super productive at work?) Leave your answer in the comments!

Good Coach vs. The Right Coach

Looking back on our lives, I’m sure each one of us can think of a teacher we had in school that really impacted us in a different way than the others. That person was someone we looked up to, wanted to impress, taught us lessons, and made us ultimately feel good and empowered.

I also would bet that there was at least one teacher you had that you just didn’t jive with at all. It didn’t necessarily mean they were a bad teacher, it just meant that there was something that didn’t work between the two of you. Maybe the way they taught you wasn’t the way you learned best. Or maybe their way of giving criticism had a negative effect on you.

Just like academics, this holds true in health and fitness as well. There are literally 10’s of thousands of coaches out there. Some good, some bad, and plenty in between. If we narrow it down to the good coaches out there, we can safely say that there is someone out there for everyone.

A Good Coach

A good coach is someone who has education, experience, and a genuine interest in helping their clients succeed. They have spent their time researching and learning best practices, put them in action successfully, and grown a business that allows them to help others.

The Right Coach

While there are plenty of good coaches out there, the right coach will be different from person to person. The right coach is someone who has all of the qualities of a good coach, but in specifics to you, has some additional qualities. Their values align with yours, their way of operating feels good to you, their methods are something that you can manage, and most importantly, you get along well.

Coaches Benefit from Coaches

I’m a firm believer that coaches need coaches too. I don’t care how well educated you become, there is always more to learn and an added accountability from having a coach that you don’t get on your own. I actually would shy away from any trainer or expert that tells you they don’t “need” a coach because they are a coach. They may prefer not to have one, which is totally fine, but if they claim that it wouldn’t be useful or that it isn’t necessary because they know everything, they probably don’t know very much. A teacher never stops learning. In fact, I’ll take that one step further and say that any intelligent person will never stop learning because they are smart enough to know they don’t know it all.

With that said, even before I was a trainer or coach myself, I had many coaches. It started with my flag football and baseball teams growing up. I had several different types of coaches. Oddly enough, my favorite ones were the type of coaches that yelled at me when I made an error. They weren’t total dicks, but they definitely let you know when you weren’t doing your best. I could appreciate that because at the same time, they gave me praise when I did well. The coaches I didn’t like were the ones who didn’t take the games very seriously. They were the “don’t worry, you’ll get it next time!” type of coaches. I didn’t learn anything from them because all they cared about was making everyone feel good. I hated feeling more competitive than they were and those teams never did very well (shocker).

In-Person Coaches/Trainers

My first personal trainer gave me the best foundation I could ever ask for. Even though I was a total pain in the ass, he was always (and still is) there for me whenever I needed anything. THAT is a good coach. He was never one to just “give me a trophy”. If I did something well, he told me. If I was sucking it up, he told me.

My next trainer was at a different gym since I had moved and it was during a stage I like to call the “I’ve been training for a year so now I know everything” phase. Seriously guys, I got a little ahead of myself. (Side note: Bret reminded me just a few weeks ago about the time I went back to his gym with all the “cool new things I learned from my new trainer”. I think I actually told him that I was thankful for the “beginning stuff” he showed me, but that my new trainer was showing me more advanced stuff. I cannot believe he didn’t slap me! I think I’m lucky I was cute.) Anyways, this trainer was the type of trainer that just pushed me to my limits every workout. I really liked training with him and he was a big help in getting me ready for my first NPC Bikini Competition. He didn’t make it easy and he never let me give up.

This is where things went down hill. The next trainer I had (about 3 years later) was an IFBB Pro (which shall remain nameless). She actually didn’t even charge me beyond the 1st month she coached me and was quite honestly the worst coach I’ve ever had. She gave me a restrictive diet to follow that was about 1200 calories per day and consisted of mainly veggies, chicken, fish, and egg whites. Surprisingly, I couldn’t stick to it. The workouts I did with this coach were “fancy” but didn’t make me work very hard. It felt more like she was trying to show off than anything. I would leave the gym sweaty, but the constant “you’re doing great! great job!” got old quickly.

Because of this lackluster experience, I moved on to another trainer that was recommended to me. This might have been even worse. The workouts we did were cookie cutter and involved constant high reps with no consideration for form. I seriously felt like a bunny rabbit jumping from station to station (literally…these workouts were about 80% plyometrics) and I’m not even sure my trainer was in the gym half the time I was doing these workouts. Bye Felicia.

The last trainer I had before moving to LA was Karl. He is a former competitive power lifter and has really helped me to perfect my squat and deadlift form. He is so in tune with the human body and so practical that sometimes I wonder if he’s human. Talk about giving it to you straight. There were times I’d be working out on my own and Karl would grab my workout log and just look at me. He’d say “why are you doing this?” and I’d feel myself stumbling with my words to try to find out the answer he was looking for. Needless to say, NOTHING is sugar coated with Karl. He tells it like it is and I know I’m in good hands with him.

Online Coaches

I’ve since had 3 different online coaches and this is where the idea for this post came about. All 3 coaches are fantastic coaches. I don’t have one poor thing to say about any of them, but I can clearly see why 1 of the 3 has helped me actually see results and progress. Yes, I realize that me not seeing results or progressing is on ME, but there is also a correlation between the coaching styles. While I don’t want to get into their coaching styles since it is irrelevant, I do want to highlight the attributes that I believe are making me successful with my current coach.

1. Trust. I’ve been following him online for a long time. Probably 5-6 years, actually. I’ve read multiple articles written by him, seen his personal FB posts that resonate with me, and chatted extensively with him before signing on with him. Because I know his track record, I feel a compelling urge to impress him. Knowing he has had so many clients come in and out of his life, I want to be one that he remembers. This has helped me to push myself harder than I have in a long time.

2. Honesty. In our first conversations, he was extremely realistic. He didn’t try to massage me into being his client or tell me what I want to hear. In fact, he told me the opposite. He gave me the harsh realities and expectations. He didn’t leave anything out and told me just what it would take for me to achieve what I wanted. He also helped me refine my goals, as what I had in mind wasn’t totally realistic either.

3. High Expectations. He doesn’t allow me to be anything but my best. Great example: I sent a video to him of my front squats last week. I was really proud of this video and was excited to hear his feedback. Unfortunately, I had not followed what he had told me and he called me out. So what did I do? The very next workout, I made corrections and sent it back over. I appreciate this completely. High fives are EARNED, they are not handed out.

4. Methodology. While macro counting is a fantastic method for fat loss (and oddly enough what I do with 90% of my clients), it actually wasn’t right for me. I found it harder to manage and instead, I eat a pretty simple meal plan each day, with flexibility in my post workout meals. It’s the best of both worlds for me. There is consistency, ease of preparation, and I do get to fit in treats each day, so I don’t feel deprived.

Applying this to You

While these traits are specific to me, it can help YOU in the search for the right coach. Along with seeking out someone who is experienced, educated, and has a proven track record, ask yourself these questions:

  • How do you learn best?
  • What is your current lifestyle like?
  • How do you handle praise and constructive criticism?
  • What did your favorite teachers/coaches have in common? Look for those qualities in a coach.

Just like in love, there is someone for everyone. What’s right for one, may not be right for the other. Take your time when looking for a coach and don’t base your decision off of progress pictures or testimonials. Read that coach’s material, spend time messaging with them to see if your personalities work well together, and get an idea of their methodology before you jump in. Having a coach can be a GAME CHANGER, but if you don’t have the right coach for you, it can be a giant flop.

Have you had a good or bad experience with a coach? Share it in the comments.

Liked this article? Check out Who Should You Trust?

Lizzy Ostro is a NASM and AFPA Certified Personal Trainer with over 8 years of experience. She is currently working on her NASM FNS Certification and currently trains clients out of Santa Monica, CA as well as providing online coaching to clients across the U.S. 

 

Dog Beach Sunday + Operation Get Lean Update

Most Sundays, I spend my time thinking about the week ahead, planning, prepping, and most often, dreading. Dreading because I start to think of the 23043 things I need to do and I get really overwhelmed. This week, I decided not to let my mind go there. To just enjoy my day, have fun, and not be on someone else’s clock. Don’t get me wrong, I love my clients, I love my work, but it’s also nice to not have any appointments or scheduled events. Yesterday was just that.

Charlie and I got up around 10am (score for sleeping in!) and finally Oscar couldn’t take it anymore and demanded that we get out of bed. Not kidding, he growled at us until we got up. We got dressed and headed straight for coffee. (Priorities)

We decided it was the perfect day to take Oscar to Rosie’s Dog Beach in Long Beach. The weather was great and watching him run around the beach is too much fun. The first 60 seconds after you let him off the leash is just pure crazy joy. He SPRINTS through the sand, weaves through all the people, splashes into the water and frolics around like a deer. It is seriously awesome!!

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After our day at the beach, we headed home and Charlie went to work. I went grocery shopping, started prepping my food, doing laundry, and finally started preparing for the week around 6pm. I think I like this schedule much better than many other Sundays!

Operation Get Lean!

Speaking of prepping food, I owe you guys an update on how my diet is going. I’m happy to say that it is going really well! I’ve got my head in the game and I’m actually really enjoying this process. I’m training my ass off, eating what I need to eat and the results are showing. I won’t say there aren’t times that are tough, because there definitely are! But I’m in such a good mental state and feel so glad that I’m doing this with a healthy relationship with food, unlike the way I dieted years ago (when all or nothing was how I saw dieting). My post-workout carbs on most days have been a McDonalds ice cream cone or cereal and that definitely satisfies any sweet cravings I have.

IMG_9389I’m also eating plenty of food, so while I do feel hungry at times, I feel pretty good for the most part. On the nights I’ve felt really hungry, I’ve had an extra serving or 2 of vegetables, which almost always takes the hunger away. I’m eating enough for my body and in no way starving myself, but some hunger is expected when you’re aiming for fat loss. The other thing I’m doing I like to call “Macro-Sunday”. I basically eat what I want within a set of macro-nutrient parameters so that I can get any cravings I have satisfied. For example, yesterday I made a pizza bagel with a whole wheat bagel, shredded cheddar cheese, and turkey pepperoni. Totally hit the spot!!!

I’ve had many questions about this, so I thought I’d answer here. For those wondering, I’m NOT following an IIFYM plan for the other 6 days of the week. I’m actually using a set meal plan (created by Erik Ledin) and it is because I’m finding that to be easier for me. I also really trust Erik and he isn’t “just another coach”. The dude is smart and knows what he’s doing. I don’t have to think about my food 24/7 or plan every day, which I’m terrible at doing anyways.  I just plan for the week and then eat the food I have prepped. So much easier for me. This isn’t to say that IIFYM isn’t a good thing. In fact, for many, this is much better for them. I just would actually prefer NOT to have endless options each day. It actually makes this process harder for me. Everyone is different and what works for one might not work for another. I start my clients on an IIFYM plan because I do feel that it can be one of the safest ways to diet (when it comes to the mental side of things), but some of them prefer a set meal plan. Anyways, just thought I’d throw that out there. There is no one way to do this, so don’t be afraid to experiment and DON’T feel like a failure if you try one way and it doesn’t work for you.

Here is what I look like 2 weeks in:

IMG_9380Please excuse the fact that I’m wearing socks (haha) as well as the deadlift bruises on my shins!

I’ve lost –

  • 1/2 inch off my waist
  • 1/2 inch off my hips
  • 1/2 inch off my chest (oh yay! cuz those needed to get smaller! (rolls eyes))
  • 3.5 lbs

Nothing crazy, but that’s just the way it should be. Slow and steady wins the race! I can’t wait to see what the next 2 weeks bring. I feel like I’m in my groove and I think the next 2 weeks are going to see some really great changes. 😀

On top of this, I hit some new PR’s this week too!

  • Deadlift: 6 reps at 205 lbs
  • Front Squat: 6 reps at 100 lbs
  • DB Push Press: 8 reps at 35 lb DB’s
  • DB One Arm Row: 10 reps at 40 lbs

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Overall, this is definitely going as well as I could have wanted it to and I’m just feeling good.

Question of the Day

1. Have you ever taken your dog to a dog beach?

2. What’s your favorite way to spend your Sunday?

Random Updates

Hey guys!

It’s been a while, so how about some random updates!

-I’m still going strong with my quest to lean out. I sort of feel like I’m on auto-pilot. I think it helps that I really like the food I’m eating and I’m not deprived at all. My post-workout meal includes carbs of my choice, so I’ve been getting creative when I can! For example, this was today’s post workout carb=

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It was soooooo good.

-I’ve been taking the time at least once per week to rollerblade at the beach with Oscar. He’s finally got the hang of it (and doesn’t just try to bite my feet the whole time) and LOVES running down the boardwalk with me.

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-My before-bed protein pancake with peanut butter makes me happy. It’s Quest PB Protein + almond milk, mixed together and cooked on a pan (so simple). Then I add drizzly peanut butter on top. It’s so filling and soooo good.

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-I’m trying to plan my fall travel. So far I have a few days in AZ planned, and looking into a trip to NYC and Chicago as well!

-Workouts lately have been soooo good. I’ve been really pushing myself lately and even got a PR on deadlifts today: 6 reps at 205lbs! I’m feeling really strong and I think part of that is due to fueling myself better (timing my carbs and fats better throughout the day).

IMG_9319Post-workout pump!

 

Other than that, life has been pretty normal! I wish I had something more exciting to say, but I don’t!

I’ll be back later this week with my first progress pics since starting this (eek!) and will also have a workout or two to share.

Question of the Day:

1. What are your travel plans for the rest of the year?

2. I’ve never been to NYC (i know!)….where should I stay and what should I see?

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