Category Archives: Fitness

You Should Know Squat

In the world of health and fitness, there are so many schools of thought, opinions, and techniques. How is anyone ever to know who to trust, what will work for them, and what is B*!!shit?

Find out for yourself. Do some research. I’m not saying you need to become the biggest expert and most forward thinker in the field, but knowing your basics can help you steer clear of the things that can harm your body – because there are tons of fads that are just plain bad for you.

I’ve always been the kind of girl that wants to get to the bottom of everything. I want to absorb all the knowledge that I can. This may come from my inherent need to be right (but at least I earned the right to be confident that I am!… right?). This also translated into me being the kid in high school staying home on friday nights watching documentaries in my room on my sweet tv/vcr combo. I like learning. I like knowing what I’m talking about. I like having conviction and not looking like an idiot.

I started an online class recently to receive a certificate in Sports and Exercise Nutrition. This is not to say I want to change my career, but I wanted to learn about what my body needs in order to be active, and the science behind it.

Also, let me tell you, the more you learn about this stuff, the better you’ll treat yourself. You realize the crap you’re putting into your body, and the damage you cause when you don’t give it enough fuel and energy. I’m not here to give you lessons on what you should be doing (we just like to share what WE’RE doing!), you need to find out what works best for you, because we’re all different. I see a lot of girls doing these insane diets and cleanses that I, personally, disagree with. These are unhealthy short term solutions to something that should be a slow and longterm lifestyle change. You may drop some pounds at the beginning (though, mark my words, they’ll come back with a vengeance once you fall off the wagon (which you will (because it’s unrealistic))), but your body needs nutrients to function; because it’s not just about weight, the things you put in your body – or don’t put in your body – affect so much more: energy levels, skin, hair, nails, sleep, brain functionality… but I digress.

Do your freaking research before you mix hot pepper and honey for 10 days, or whatever. Please. If you still want to do it – to each their own; but at least know what you’re depriving your body of. We need to stop with the “everything for vanity” mentality, and concentrate on being healthy and fit. Trust me, the hot bod will follow. It really will. It will be even better, because you’ll feel great.

-kylie

tumblr_m33ui0b1gr1ruh3yzo1_500

Oh. Hello Summer. I didn’t see you standing there.

britney_spears_work_bitch_art

Holy shit. It’s June. It’s summer, and it’s hot outside. Where did it come from? Am I the only one that didn’t see it coming? Where are all my summer clothes? Do I even fit in them? Why are my legs so white? Did my thighs just rub together? Don’t say “bikini” to me, I’ll hurt you. I’m not ready, I’m seriously not ready.

As I strolled down Queen West this weekend surrounded by out of shape people and blinded by pasty skin – I realized that I’ve screwed up…and by the looks of things I wasn’t alone. I had so much time to get my summer body ready and to at least rub on a fake tan; but I’ll admit I slacked off a bit and then summer punched me in the face. But it’s not too late..it’s never too late.

In the wise words of Britney Spears – “You want a hot body? You want a Bugatti? You want a Maserati? You better work bitch.”

So, here’s a fun little workout that you can do at home, in the park, or anywhere you’ve got a few feet of open space. It’s fast, painful, and effective. Let’s get to work!

Warm-up!

5 minutes skipping (alt – jog on the spot)

25 Jumping Jacks

1 minute of High Knees

1  minute of Butt Kicks

The Good Part

25 Squat Jumps

25 Pushups

25 Jump Lunges

1 Minute – Plank

25 Leg Lift Crunches

25 Hill Climbers

1 Minute Side Plank – 30 seconds each side

25 Elbow to Knee Standing Crunches

25 High Kicks

50 Straight Punches

Repeat!

Don’t forget to stretch and hydrate once you’re done. Good luck!

Alyssa

xoxo

Beachbody? Yes Please.

These past few months I have been going through what I would like to refer to as a ‘quarter life crisis’, though the fact is the average life expectancy in Canada is 80 years old, which means this is realistically more of a ‘third life crisis’ and that really stresses me out.

I think we all have our own perception of what 30 was/is going to be for us. I know for me I thought most certainly I would have an important power position at work, married, kids, 2 dogs, white picket fence, I mean I will be OLD!!! Flash forward… I sit here writing this and as I am fortunate enough to have a great job, I am single and live in a tiny condo downtown, by myself. I still feel like I am 21… how did this happen? It feels like yesterday I was being told, `you are so young, live your life’. These days when people ask me how old I am, it is more often than not followed by “Oh wow”. It’s all happening.

That being said, I am embracing this upcoming milestone (that’s what they all say, I know) and I have decided since I have all of this independence and freedom, I am going to challenge myself and get into the BEST shape I can by my birthday – July 17th. Typically, whenever I say I am going to do something like this, it lasts about 2 weeks and then I have a cheat day, which leads into a cheat month. Not good. This time is going to be different. Consistency is going to be the key to my success. In order to maximize my time, I will have to put my abs and booty in the trusty hands of Shaun T.

This guy does it all, choreographer and fitness expert, he really knows how to motivate you and most importantly – he gets results. I had the great honour and privilege of working out with Shaun here in Toronto last year. It was such an incredible experience. Talk about a man who is genuinely passionate and kind. There were hundreds of people there and he stood for hours after the group workout and took pictures and spoke to each person individually about their experiences. He is a real inspiration to me.

shaunt

Insanity is a Beachbody program created by Shaun T. It claims to be the hardest workout ever put on tape, and I believe it. Using nothing but your own body weight, you do endless push-ups, squats, jumping jacks, suicides, burpees, you name it… then the warm up is over. WARNING: This program is not for everyone. If you are extremely out of shape or afraid of hard work you might want to try something less intense, this will prevent injury and you will be less likely to get discouraged and quit. “It’s get fit, or get out people”. On days when I am tired, I literally dread it. BUT, it gives you equally as dramatic results. I did this program for the first time about 4 years ago, I was out of shape, lethargic, and had every single excuse in the world as to why. Let me tell you, as that version of myself, Insanity was one of the hardest things I have ever done, and in retrospect one of the greatest. I lost 50 pounds and gained a new appreciation for everything and everyone around me. Amazing things happen when you push your body past its limits and take back control of your life. There is no better feeling, for me at least.

What you can expect from Insanity

They were not exaggerating when they named this program. Each workout is done at a very strenuous pace (if you have any lingering joint issues be extremely careful). Insanity is based on the ‘Max-Interval Training’ principle which is essentially the opposite of traditional HIIT workouts, meaning you work hard for 3 minutes and rest for 30 seconds.

Month 1 – consists of 5 videos that are scheduled differently each week.

If you can make it through these 4 weeks, it is then followed by a week rest phase that consists of 1 video. It is very important to get this much-needed recovery. Trust me.

Month 2 – is really tough, these 4 videos are much more demanding and longer than the first month, but at least now you can now see the light at the end of the tunnel, and the results are motivating and exciting.

An easy to follow schedule and eating plan are also included to ensure you are eating properly to get the most out of all of your hard work. Abs are made in the kitchen!

I am a huge supporter of Insanity and Shaun T. It will not be easy, but if you are up for the challenge I promise it will push you out of your comfort zone and throw you into a pile of your own sweat on the floor. You will get insanely incredible results but you will have to work for them, and hard.

So here I go again. If you think you have what it takes, please join me!

I am currently on Day 4/60. Day 60 being my birthday. I will be posting my progress every 2 weeks (with pictures, at the end). #DIGDEEP everyone!

GET INSANE

Ash xo

Reader Question: SQUATS!

We recently received a question from a reader/awesome chick. We thought we’d share it here because, it’s a great question, and something that a lot of people are curious about – since squats and boo-tays are all the rage right now.

 

Hi ladies this page rocks! I don’t really know how technology works or blogging but I have recently decided to give a fuck about my bod and feel like I’m trying to educate myself and doing it wrong. I was wondering if you know anything on the topic of doing squats and how they really affect one’s overall workout? I’ve been trying to figure out why. I feel like everyone is telling me to do them when no one seems to be leaving me with a clear answer. I would to love read a something that doesn’t feel markety when it comes to health trends. Thanks for listening.”

 

We are so happy you like our page, and trust us with your hips and glutes.
Squatting is an amazing exercise!!! It not only builds muscle, but improves overall balance and core stability as well. As you build muscle, the amount of fat you burn goes into overdrive. This is a beautiful thing – and since our glutes are the largest muscle group in our body, it’s very important to give it some special attention. You will reap all the benefits, trust us.
With some solid effort, you will soon be able to jump higher, walk faster, dance longer… Just about everything you do on a regular basis will become easier. So, yes. Do squats.
It is a great way to build strength and improve overall fitness. Plus, your a$$ will look amazing in just about anything. It tightens everything up, and works wonders for getting rid of cellulite.
Make sure you are doing them properly to ensure they are as effective as possible.
Just a few things to keep in mind:
1. Legs about shoulder width apart
2. Chest up, back straight
3. Keep your core tight (think of drawing your ribcage into your belly, it sounds weird but just try it)
4. Do your best to achieve your best ‘ass to grass’ – go as low as possible without compromising your form
5. Keep your knees over your toes, and BREATHE

 

Here is an extreme depiction for you… I mean, not even the same person, but you get the idea.

 

 

butts
Try to work these into a regular program – just squatting isn’t enough.
If you are feeling really brave you should do BURPEES. Even start with 10 every morning and night. They suck, and you will hate them – but they work! They incorporate squats, jumping, push-ups, and cardio. Also, you can do them anywhere – NO EXCUSES. When life knocks you down, do a burpee!

 

Keep ’em coming guys!

 

AKA