Monday, December 21, 2015

Last Minute Christmas Gifts for Fitness Buffs

Christmas Gifts for Fitness Buffs


It's not too late to get an awesome gift for the fitness buff in your life if you act fast and rush the shipping. I picked some of my favorite items/deals from around the web. 


GoPro HERO4 Session



Amazon and Dick's Sporting Goods are running some awesome deals right now on the GoPro Hero4 camera. It's small, lightweight, waterproof, and perfect for getting all the action caught on camera. This would be the perfect gift for the adventurer or extreme sports enthusiast. 
Garmin vívofit 2 Activity Tracker, Black



As far as activity trackers go, I like the Garmin Vivofit 2 with the chest strap heart rate monitor. This is the best tracker for the money for the person that is serious about improving his/her training performance. If you are just looking to increase activity level, then you may prefer the Fitbit for its syncing compatibility with smart phone apps like Lose It! and My Fitness Pal. If money is no object, then do your research on the reviews before making a purchase. The right activity tracker depends greatly on what you are wanting to track and how you plan to train.





WOSS AttacK Trainer Made in USA Best PRO Trainer System with Rubber Grips




The Woss Attack Trainer Suspension Training Kit is a must have for anyone who is training at home or anyone who has to travel a lot for work. Resistance bands are great, but suspension training seriously ups the core work and the calorie burn. You are probably more familiar with the TRX system, but the Woss kit has the quality for a fraction of the price. This suspension training kit includes a door anchor and mounting kit so that you can train anywhere. Mount it to a tree to train outside or use the door anchor to train in your hotel room. The kit comes with an exercise guide poster to show you how to work the total body.


Women's Microtherm® Stormdown® Jacket - Print | Eddie Bauer



Lastly, anyone that trains hard will always appreciate some new activewear. When in doubt on size and preferences, buy a gift certificate. Fabletics and Lululemon carry menswear. Athleta does not. Dick's Sporting Goods and Sports Authority are great options, as well, since they carry all the top activewear brands (Nike, Under Armour, etc.), footwear, and the gamut on exercise gear/equipment.

Jacket
fabletics.com



Tiare - Fabletics
fabletics.com


Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Sara

Monday, September 21, 2015

Fall Fashion for the Fit Lifestyle

Play Hard Workout Harder





As the climate changes to cooler weather we need to switch our workout gear to make sure our motivation doesn't cool off as well. Remain a girl on fire, and dress in casual sportswear that transfers from the street to the studio with a quick change of footwear.

From Street to Studio

Grunge Hits the Gym





Before you go out on a massive shopping spree for Fall activewear, take an inventory of what you already have in your wardrobe. Last season's t-shirts could be great gym clothes, so don't be too hasty to throw them out. Re-purpose old tees by combing them with a new hoodie or leggings for a fresh, new look.

I try to remind myself to shop my own closet often. Not only does it help appease my shopping addiction, but it also keeps my current wardrobe fresh in my mind so that I'm not buying things I already have. 

Organize your closet and dresser drawers by colors, neutrals, and prints. It will make it easy to see what you already have so you can look for holes in your collection. It may also wake you up out of monotony. Do you always choose the same colors? Do you shy away from prints? The best way to break the cycle of a fashion rut is to see what you already have a ton of, and STOP buying it (gasp!). I mean, how many pairs of black leggings do I actually need? Apparently a lot, if you look in my closet.

Keep working out. When in doubt, just look fabulous.




Monday, August 17, 2015

Strawberry & Goat Cheese Salad


Summer is the season for fresh strawberries. I often eat half a cup of strawberries (25 calories) with two tablespoons of Noosa Honey Yoghurt (46 calories) for a delicious post-workout snack, but the other day I decided to throw them on my salad for lunch. The result was a delicious, nutrient-packed combo. Strawberries are packed with nutrients. According to this article from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics:

"Strawberries are rich in vitamin C, folate, fiber and potassium. Just 1 cup contains 160 percent of the recommended Daily Value of vitamin C, which is necessary for growth and body tissue repair, and for maintaining a healthy immune system. Fiber aids in digestive health and 1 cup of sliced strawberries provides 3.3 grams of fiber. Strawberries are rich in antioxidants including anthocyanins, which give them their bright red color. These compounds may help prevent some chronic diseases, including cancer, heart disease and diabetes."



I recently discovered the Eat Smart Sweet Kale Salad Kit at my local market. It contains a blend of superfoods plus a packet of Poppyseed dressing, pumpkin seeds, and dried cranberries. For this salad I only used the greens, which include broccoli, brussel sprouts, cabbage, kale, and chicory. This nutrient-dense combination of vegetables provides 20% of your recommended daily vitamin A and 70% of your vitamin C. 



I prefer to mix the superfood greens with romaine so that it has the texture of a salad instead of a slaw. I added fresh strawberries for some vibrancy and candied pecans for crunch. The goat cheese adds a creamy, tangy note that also pairs well with strawberries and pecans. I added chia seeds for a little protein, fiber, and omega-3 fatty acids. I have made this salad a couple times and found that I like it with either Marzetti's Poppyseed dressing (70 calories/tbsp.) or Trader Joe's Champagne Pear Vinaigrette (25 calories/tbsp.). 




Ingredients

1.5 oz. Dole Italian blend salad
1 oz. Eat Smart sweet kale salad blend
1/2 cup strawberries
1 tbsp. goat cheese crumbles
1/2 tsp. chia seeds
5 candied pecans, chopped
1 tbsp. champagne vinaigrette or poppyseed dressing


The first thing I do with any salad is dress the greens. You won't need anywhere near as much dressing if you dress your salads this way. Only the greens need dressing. If you add the toppings before dressing the salad, then you will end up using a lot more dressing than you really need. Cut those extra calories by always dressing your greens first.

Combine the Italian blend, kale blend, and dressing in a bowl. Toss until the greens are evenly dressed. Then top with the strawberries, goat cheese, chia seeds, and candied pecans. 





Nutrition Facts

(w/Trader Joe's Champagne Pear Vinaigrette)

165 Calories, 8.9g Fat, 17.9g Carbohydrates, 7.2g Fiber, 9.1g Sugar, 5.3g Protein

This is a great salad to serve as a first course at dinner or serve with grilled chicken breast for a well-balanced lunch. Please share your favorite low-cal summer salad recipes ideas in the comments!













Thursday, July 16, 2015

Abs Workout At Your Level


Early on in my training career, I heard another personal trainer state that you are only as strong as your core. What he meant was that in the gym you have a bench that provides you lumbar support, but in everyday life you don't have a bench to support you when you lift something heavy.  Your core is the bench. Your biceps might be huge, but if you have a weak core you are at risk to injure yourself when you lift something cumbersome outside of the gym. I'm not knocking large biceps. If the sun's out, guns out! Just make sure you have the strong core to match. 

Allow me to elaborate on what the core actually entails. It's not just the rectus abdominus (the six-pack). The core is actually, as many would argue, everything except your limbs. Another way of looking at it is the core includes all the muscles that support your posture. This includes the abs, of course! However, we must not forget about the obliques, the transverse abdominus (underneath the six-pack, deeper towards the spine), the erector spinae (lower back), the glutes, the multifidi along the spine, the pecs, the traps, the rhomboids, the lats, and the shoulder girdle..... OH MY!

Without launching into an anatomy lesson, let me just skip to the moral of the story. Don't skip planks! The plank hold, when performed correctly, activates the core muscles. Keep those muscles activated throughout your strength training workouts to protect your back. If you do nothing else, then at least start doing planks! I will admit they are my nemesis. I do not enjoy them, but I still do them. They are necessary!

I have put together three "ab" videos so that you can choose the appropriate video based on your fitness level. I snuck some overall core work in there, too! All you need is an exercise mat, preferably a cushioned one. 

If you are a beginner, then start with level one. Go at your own pace, and take rest when you need it.




If level one doesn't challenge you, then move to level two. Remember that if it doesn't challenge you, then it doesn't change you.




If you have been working out regularly for awhile and need more of a challenge, then try level three. 

No matter what level you are at, please exercise caution. Listen to your body. If something doesn't feel right, then don't do it. Don't try to work through lower back pain. If you are feeling fatigue or pain in your lower back, then modify as needed. Always protect your back. Don't try to progress too fast. The key is to be able to do these exercises with great precision and control. Consistency is vital to achieve results, and it is impossible to have consistency if you injure yourself.  Be patient and keep working!




As I mentioned earlier, abs can be made in your living room and uncovered in the kitchen. I'm excited to announce that I now offer meal planning. If you've already got a six pack, but you need help with your diet to uncover those rock-hard abs, then check out my meal planning options.  Contact me for a FREE consultation at saramoser@choicescoach.com.




Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Diet Tips for Local Dining

Garlic Grilled Cheese at the Eden Alley Cafe on the Plaza


I have found that one of the obstacles with calorie counting is that I like to eat at local restaurants that do not have that information available. Many of my clients face the same issue. I plan on being a foodie for life so how can I eat the fresh, local cuisine without crashing my diet? I actually started writing an e-mail to answer that question for a client before realizing it was turning into a blogpost! 

For dining out locally, I would suggest starting with a salad to load up on vegetables before your entree. Also, make sure you finish a full glass of water.  This will do a few things:

1. The fiber + H2O combo will help your stomach feel full.

2. If your blood sugar is low it will help it normalize before the calorie-packed entree arrives, so that you don't feel like you are starving.

3. If you haven't been good about getting your vegetables in during the day, then it will give you a big dose of them to make up for that.

4. The fat from the salad dressing will activate your CCK hormone (it takes 20 minutes, and tells your brain that you are full, and it is activated by fat).

Try to choose wisely for your entree. Look for lean cuts of meat like sirloin, filet mignon, pork loin, pork chops. Order fish or chicken breast, but be careful on sauces. Skip rich sauces that contain a lot of butter or cheese. When in doubt, ask your server. Pay attention to how menu items are prepared. Opt for items that are grilled, broiled, roasted, baked, steamed, poached, or braised. Try to stay away from fried foods. If something is sauteed, then ask your server what the item is sauteed in, butter, olive oil, etc. Ask for a lighter preparation if available.

Try to get in the habit of eating only half to 3/4 of your entree, and save the leftovers for lunch the following day. Sometimes this is difficult so you have stay mindful of your goals, and change your thought process. Replace the urge to clean your plate with the following mindset:

1. If it's so delicious that you want to finish it, then remind yourself how awesome it will be to have it again the next day. 

2. It will also save you the trouble of prepping your lunch. 

3. It's economical. You get your money's worth when you get two meals out of it for the price of one.

4. When you have no idea what the calorie content is of what your eating, you can still rest assured that by splitting the meal that you split the calories too.

5. Feeling bloated, stuffed, and (even worse) ashamed is no picnic. Eating lighter feels better physically and mentally. Knowing that you are working to accomplish your goal of eating healthy produces a positive mental outlook that transfers to better self-esteem.

Please share your nutrition/diet tips for dining out locally in the comments! Let's crush our goals together!


Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Peach Cobbler Oatmeal


I love to turn oatmeal into a deliciously decadent treat that is great for breakfast or a pre/post-workout snack.  One of my all-time favorite desserts is my Mom's peach cobbler.  It's sinfully delicious and loaded with calories, so it's a rare splurge.  This oatmeal recipe packs all the flavor without all the calories.  The recipe is also included in my book, Choices Coach: Weight Loss Menu Guide (under breakfast at home/oatmeal).



1/3 cup of Quick Oats or 1 Plain Instant Oatmeal Packet 
1 tsp. Brown Sugar 
1/8th tsp. Cinnamon or Pumpkin Pie Spice 
1/4 cup boiling water

*I love Bonne Maman brand preserves, not only because they are French & delicious, but also because they contain simple ingredients with NO high fructose corn syrup. If you don't like peach you can sub in a different kind of fruit preserves.


Mix all the ingredients. I like my oatmeal a little thicker to concentrate the flavors, but if it looks a little dry you can add more water. Let it sit for 30 seconds for the oats to soak up the water. 

Total Calories = 168

Enjoy this guilt-free pleasure! What are your favorite low-cal oatmeal combinations?
















Sunday, June 14, 2015

Chambray Splurge vs. Steal

Chambray Splurge vs. Steal

Love 21 camisole dress / Splendid blue jumpsuit / Dolce & Gabbana leather handbag / Lipsy buckle purse / BCBGeneration bangle set / Alexis Bittar charm pendant / Alexis bittar necklace / Kanupriya multi strand necklace

I'm not a baby, but I'm still a sucker for a onesie. Who doesn't love a jumpsuit? Am I right, Andy Cohen? Whether it's a jumpsuit or a dress, you may replace the basic black with chambray for a more casual, daytime look. It also doubles as a blank canvas for jewelry to showcase your favorite pieces.



Tile Print Handbag



In addition to chambray onesies, I'm also falling in love with Grecian-inspired tile print handbags. While I cannot afford a gorgeous Dolce & Gabbana handbag, I can certainly appreciate it as a thing of beauty. Can't we all? Big sigh...(I'm mentally adding it to my Lisa Vanderpump dream closet).


Tile Print Crossbody




Stay fabulous, my friends!



Friday, June 12, 2015

10-Minute Cardio Warm Up


It's always important to warm up before your exercise program or before my other workout videos. No matter what your fitness goals are you have to be consistent to achieve results. It's going to take a lot more than one workout, so the last thing you want is to be excessively sore or get injured.

I made this video so that you can warm up without having to invest in a treadmill or elliptical.  Plus you don't have to have a lot of space. You can do this in your living room or even in a hotel room. Now there are no excuses for skipping your warm-up.

Still tempted to skip it? Here are 6 major reasons to warm up before exercise: 


  1. Warming up enhances the delivery of oxygen to the muscles.
  2. Increasing the body temperature increased muscle elasticity and reduces the risk of muscle and connective tissue injuries.
  3. The warm-up increases blood flow and nutrient delivery to the muscles.
  4. The increased blood flow to the heart reduces the risk for exercise-induced cardiac abnormalities.
  5. Warming up may reduce muscle soreness.
  6. Warming up promotes sweating which is the body's natural cooling system.



Fit > skinny,

Sara




Thursday, June 11, 2015

Only 5 Days Left! Personal Training Program


PROGRAM DESIGN & FOLLOW UP SESSION

$80

($125 VALUE)

OFFER ENDS JUNE 15, 2015.



For the Kansas City area, I am currently running a personal training special featuring a program design plus a one-hour follow up session that may be used as a training session or health coaching session.  

The program design (regularly $65) is great for the novice or the highly motivated individual who just needs guidance on what exercises to do including amount of weight, sets, and reps to reach personal goals.  It's also a great way change up your current program to break through a plateau.

We go over each exercise in an hour long session to make sure you feel comfortable with your program.  At the end of the session you receive a spreadsheet including all the exercises so you can keep track of your workout progress.  

As an added bonus I am throwing in a one-hour follow-up session (regularly $60) just to make sure I get you started on the right track.  The $80 special can be purchased through June 15, 2015.  It must be redeemed within 90 days. 




For help with diet and nutrition please purchase Choices Coach: Weight Loss Guide, and/or consider doing a health coaching session.  Call today to set up a FREE consultation. 

Fit > Skinny,

Sara Moser 
Choices Coach
A.C.E. Personal Trainer
A.C.E. Health Coach
(816) 813-8122

Saturday, June 6, 2015

Swimsuit Season Begins with Water Aerobics

By Land or Sea

Ready or not, swimsuit season is actually here. It's time for fun in the sun, and hopefully some water workouts too! 

Bikini Workout

 Athleta Separates 


I want to help you start the season off right, so I am sharing a 30-minute water aerobics routine to keep you working out all summer long. You can increase the intensity of the workout by adding aqua dumbbells or increasing speed.



Here are my picks for fashionable swimsuits that are great for water aerobics, swimming laps, and lounging afterwards.


One-piece Swimsuits


One-piece Swimwear



Swim Laps in Style






Stripe Avila One Piece



Don't forget to apply sunscreen! 

SPF




Protect your skin with SPF, and reapply often even if it's waterproof. I like L'oreal sunscreen products, because they don't have that zinc oxide smell that can be hard to get out of your swimsuit.  I have washed some old swimsuits three times with baking soda, color-safe bleach, and Borax trying to get that smell out. 

Have fun in the sun!

Fit > skinny,

Sara




about Sara

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On-site Personal Training & Nutrition Coaching in the Kansas City metropolitan area. I offer personal training at your home or work site. I also offer personalized online nutrition plans and corporate wellness programs. Contact me at saramoser@choicescoach.com with any questions.

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