Fitness has been my saviour for the past couple years, though for me it hasn’t always been a positive relationship. Growing up as a dancer and dancing professionally for a year had a toll on me and my relationship with my body. Recovering from an eating disorder and regaining the appreciation for my body has helped a lot. I can also thank my current position as a professional cheerleader with regaining the love for myself and showing me that being strong and healthy is the most important thing.
When is comes to eating I have tried every fad diet, weight loss trick in the books and let me tell you a secret.. they don’t work (or they’re only temporarily). Here are some things I have found that work best for me.
- Eat simply. You’re probably thinking: “What the heck does she mean!?”, but let me explain. By this I mean eat whole, fresh foods and stay away from complex ingredients and processed foods. Turn a package around and read the ingredients before you buy it. If it includes something you can’t say or don’t know what it is, it’s probably not the healthiest choice. Fill your meals with fruits and veggies, and cut back on the sugar.
Some of my recent favourite recipes:
–Fresh Rolls (I subbed in chicken)
–Red Lentil Soup (I subbed in low-fat coconut milk and it’s TO DIE FOR)
–Banana Pancakes (3 ingredients, so simple! I add in a 1/3 cup of oats to keep me full longer, 1/2 scoop of vanilla protein and blueberries!)
- Make going to the gym or fitness class a priority. If you write it in your schedule and make time for it in your day, you will more likely go instead of skipping out. I like to go in the mornings best. It’s a great start to the day, even though some mornings it’s hard to get out of bed, I’m always thankful I go.
- Include a mix of weights and cardio. I use to think cardio was the best and only way to lose weight at the gym, but I was wrong. I now love lifting weights and the way it makes my body look. I try to do 20 minutes of cardio, which usually includes: 30-second sprint intervals, inclined walking or some kind of HITT warm-up. I then move on and do 45 minutes of weight training and then end with some kind of ab workout and stretching.
(my go to ab work out!)
- Drink water! I use to HATE the way water tasted.. like HATE, but I quickly learned to love it while dancing in +40 weather in Mexico for a year. Water has so many benefits for your body, I mean we are mostly made of water. I literally can tell right away if I haven’t drunk enough that day, not only in how I feel but also in how my skin looks. If I am ever not feeling well, I’m feeling bloated or having stomach issues, the first thing I do is go drink a huge glass of water and see if that helps me at all (and it usually does).
- Get enough sleep. This one was huge for me. I think I’ve preached about it before on other posts, but getting enough sleep is SO important. For your body and mind. I never used to sleep enough and I definitely can tell the difference between then and now. I just feel 100 times better.
- Jump OFF the booze cruise. Cutting out (or minimizing) alcohol from my diet is the first thing I do when I’m trying to get in shape. Not only is alcohol full of sugar and empty/useless calories, it also leads to poor eating choices at the end of a night out drinking.
- Find a way to include fitness in your daily life. This is another simple yet effective trick. Choose to take the stairs instead of the elevator. Ride your bike to places instead of driving. Go for a walk with friends instead of chatting over coffee. Making even these easy changes in your life will help a lot!
- Surround yourself with people who have the same goals as you. Get a gym buddy! This helps a million. If you have someone to motivate you to go to the gym with, you are way more likely to go. They’ll also help keep you on track and be there to motivate you on those off days.
- Find a type of workout that you love to do. If you don’t like running (which I highly dislike), find another way to do cardio. For me, I love spinning. There’s an awesome spin club in my city called The Wheelhouse, that I love going to. I literally leave this place dripping in sweat and feeling so motivated. I also like mixing up my workouts. A friend and I recently went on a little rampage of trying out a bunch of different fitness studios and classes in our city. One of my favourites was a barre class, and let me tell you, my butt was sore for like a week!
Some other fitness studios and classes I really enjoy in my city:
–Level 10 Fitness
–Core Connection (Barre Class)
- My last tip for those of you who are still not bored of me is: Listen to your body. This is probably the most important one. Working out is wonderful and makes you feel great, but make sure you’re not overdoing it. Remember to take rest days and to stretch. Remember that eating a chocolate or some ice cream is not ruining your body. Everyone deserves a treat every once in a while. Massages are wonderful and naps are my best friend. Treat your body like a machine and make sure you’re maintaining it the best you can!
I want to leave you by saying I am not by any chance an expert in fitness. I have not been trained in nutrient or personal training. These are just the things that I have found over the years that work best for me! 🙂
Have a great Monday all! Make sure you do something today that makes you sweat! 😉