Friday, March 29, 2013

Freebie Fridays!

Freebie Fridays!

Photo Credit Reaction GIFS
Well maybe that should be Friday . . .  Today’s special gift from JKF Fitness & Health to you is a new cardio workout approach. I know so thoughtful of me, I mean who here doesn’t like toiling away in a monotonous exercise in the quest for the oh so flatter stomach or leaner physique?

Honestly, I don’t, and neither should you. Unless you’re training for a race/event that requires you to do something for a couple of hours, hitting the elliptical/treadmill up for an hour probably isn’t going to do you justice. And take it from someone who has had to train for a long event, don’t do it if you don’t have to or you don't enjoy it.

Cardio workouts should always be a complement to your weight lifting and cross-training routines. Cardio is one of the most effective ways to take advantage of the fat burning capabilities of your newly developed muscles from weight training. I like to say muscles are great, but they’re awesome when they’re actually functional and working as a unit (more on this in a later post).

So, what do I do, when I get that rare call to take it off for the camera . . . okay, fair, those calls never come in . . . so what do I do after a little too much cerveza and bar food consumption while enjoying some March Madness? 

 Well Kittie, it doesn't have to be awful if you follow these go to 

Cardio Tips:

1.) Full Body Machines!
If you’re in a gym, gravitate to machines that require use of your arms, legs, and core. The more muscles working at once the more calories/fat you’ll burn. My Go To Machines:
-Elliptical with Arms
-Arc Trainer with Arms
-Versa Climber

2.) Mix It Up!
Spend between 10 to 20 minutes on 3 different machines for your cardio workout session. The constant mix up doesn’t let your body get comfortable and allows you to work at higher intensities for a long period of time.

3.) Engage!
The biggest mistake I see people make with cardio is hopping on and going through the motions. Be as efficient with your cardio as possible by giving yourself minute-to-minute benchmarks. My favorite benchmarks:
-Calorie TargetsSelect an amount of calories you want to burn in a workout and break it down by minute. Push yourself to be at the calorie amount, each minute
-Resistance and Pace GoalsPick out a Pace/RPM or Resistance Level baseline, then challenge yourself to stay above it for 2 to 5 minute intervals, or only drop below it for one-minute intervals.
-Track your Personal Best! – Nothing is more motivating like achievement and accountability. Keep a record of how many calories burned, distance, pace, and resistance level for each cardio exercise and use them as baselines. You don’t always have to beat them, but I find a reminder of what I typically do keeps me honest on lazy days.

And there you have it, your new Cardio routine. Try it once or twice a week and checkout our Cardio Calorie Chart for Calorie Targeting. And as always, if you want to train/work with the purveyor of these great tips (that's ME!) sessions are available!

Download the pdf here


Monday, March 25, 2013

Introducing JKFFH Q&A

While I can spout on endlessly about a variety of wellness topics, I do try to keep the focus at JKF Fitness & Health about the people. So with that in mind, I introduce JKFFH Q & A. 

Questions will be taking through comments on our blogs and social media outlets and answered, hopefully, in the same day or at least within a couple of days (no one is perfect, but I'm trying).
Here are the first two questions and their responses:
-Leah F: How much weight/reps is a good amount for a girl to lift - 3days a week, to not get all bulky, but not be flabby? Ready- go!
Hi Leah, great question! My core routine for females and really anyone trying to lose weight, but gain strength and tone at the same time is a full body routine, with two focused cardio sessions, and cross training moves in between lifts. You should lift 2 sets, with less than a minute of rest in between. The first set should be 20 reps, and the second set you can go up in weight slightly for 15 to 20 reps. In terms of weight, I stress lifting a weight that is heavy enough that you really have to try for the last 8 to 5 reps of the set. Though you might be lifting weights heavier than normal, you won't bulk because of the aerobic nature of the reps and the short rest time. An example of the workout can be found at this link!program-examples-young-professional-woman/c1osz Thanks for the question and let me know if the answer is helpful!
-Ben J.: what's the most widespread and/or destructive myth about fitness?
Hi Ben, this is a great, albeit, big question. I’m going to cop out and say that there are probably a couple of myths that I’ve encountered with clients, I’ll list them in no particular order.
•Dieting – Diets are a short-term solution for what I consider a terminal problem. Diets are effective in emptying fat cells, but not in regulating them. The body’s main consumer of fat (energy) is muscle. Thus any long-term wellness solution begins with muscle development/functionality and adjustments in what you eat. More on this in a future blog post.
•Workout With No Pain – This is probably my most hated statement. If you’re effecting change in the body, there’s going to be some discomfort. Soreness/pain is a great tool in helping a person determine if they’ve worked a muscle area and whether or not they’ve worked that area too hard or too little.
•The All-In-Approach. There’s a philosophy that you should punish yourself or go extreme with a diet or new workout routine. The problem is these are normally unsustainable for several reasons – injuries, lifestyle, and adaptability.  You don’t need to go to the extreme; you’re actually better off doing something that you can stick with for 1 to 3 years
Those are 3 quick ones, I’ll see what else I can come up with in the next week or two.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

The Athlete's Challenge

Okay, disclaimer about the above picture, it’s really more of a party trick (my take on the whole planking craze), and I kindly request you don’t ask me to replicate it if you see me in person. Well maybe you can ask, if you’ve seen I’ve had a drink or two . . . nothing like a little liquid courage.
All joking aside, while that picture may imply that the Athlete’s Challenge is filled with crazy tasks and exercises, the workout is actually grounded in the basics. It’s been my go to when I need a quick total body workout that’s fun, tones, builds endurance and gets a lot done in a short amount of time.
The Athlete’s Challenge can be found under the program examples page on the JKF Fitness & Health Website. What’s even better is each workout/program has a downloadable pdf with notes, instructions and columns to track and document your workout/progress. I designed the pdf’s to be a helpful tool in your gym going, travels, and home workouts. You can print them out or just keep them on your phone to use while in the gym.
As clients can attest, I like to think up workouts and programs, so there will be plenty more to come, check in from time to time for updated programs, or purchase a packet of workouts for your own specially designed program.
If you have questions about The Athlete’s Challenge, or any parts of it, or want to talk about your experiences with it, leave a comment below.

Why did I start JKFFH?


 Why did I start JKFFH? Well, it’s best to describe it through a recurring happening in my life.
I’ve had the distinct . . . pleasure? . . . of sitting across from interviewers for various sales, administrative, analyst, etc positions since graduating from college (read – it’s hard to shake the professional wanderlust of a former wannabe actor).
A similar question was often poised to me by these adroit interviewers.
Interviewer: Tell me about a project/moment/time in your work life that you’re really proud of.
Now the land the job answer probably had something to do with a response along the lines of
“this one time at band camp . . . oops, wrong blog post, my apologies.”
“I mean, this one time in a position similar to this I did (insert impressive, slightly hyperbolized example) that really benefited (insert name of said company/boss).”
However, I found that my typical response went like this.
Me: “I remember working as a trainer right out of college and starting with my first client after apprenticing. I was terrified. Here was this young professional male paying my company a large sum of money to have me help him meet his fitness/image demands. On top of this, the man, lets calls him Jake, was recovering from an ACL injury and didn’t have, lets call it a “strong athletic background”. All of which means, I really had to apply my knowledge of training and more importantly step outside of approaches that work for me to get in shape, to create something that 1.) worked for him, 2.) was enjoyable, and 3.) asserted a degree of knowledge and professionalism
I was stunned 6 weeks later to see a completely transformed Jake. Leaner, more muscular, and capable of athletic feats I thought unobtainable weeks earlier. But perhaps the most stunning and the most gratifying changes were in Jake as a person. He was more confident, he spoke of getting compliments on his appearance and how he felt more in control of his body and health than he ever had before.”
The short version of that somewhat rambling tale of what I consider one of my most memorable and rewarding work experiences is:
Having the ability to positively effect change in a person’s life through your work.
I consider myself extremely fortunate to have been giving the opportunity to work week in and week out with people as they change and grow. It’s a responsibility I take very seriously. At the beginning of starting a program with every new client, I still experience the moments of terror of that first session post college. Will they like me? Can I really help them? Please don’t let them get hurt doing what I said . . .
I guess I would say I face down these moments of fear and self-doubt, but it probably has more to do with the clients coming back (for the most part) and letting me try again. What I think is the real take-a-way is that I worry because I care and it’s pretty cool to really care about the work you do.
So as was the case with my first client, here goes my first big solo business venture, JKF Fitness & Health. Here’s hoping that the terror and self-doubt are once again assuaged by returning clients and friends.