Tag Archives: crossfit

What is HIIT you ask?!

17 Sep

High-intensity Interval Training! Oh how wonderful it is! So many people make comments to me such as “you must spend HOURS doing cardio” or “how much cardio do you do a week?!” Well the truth is….hardly any! Once I became aware of HIIT, I was hooked! I never liked cardio. I would get extremely bored and just completely give up. Once my brother told me I should try HIIT…I was a little confused. He told me to only do it for 12 minutes! I was used to trying to get 45 minutes of cardio in and now he is telling me only 12 minutes?! Sure I was excited about the short period of time..but I was also skeptical. So, I did some research on my own and wanted to share it with you guys!

High-intensity interval training consists of short bursts of going as fast and as hard as you can followed by a short recovery time. Then you just continue to repeat that process. HIIT has been shown to reduce body fat while making sure you don’t lose any muscle! It also greatly increases your cardiovascular capacity and keeps your metabolic rate increased for hours…and sometimes even days! The coolest part about it….you should not do HIIT for more than 20 minutes!!! (bodybuilding.com “3 ways to boost cardio intensity).

So..what are some examples of HIIT you ask? You can literally do it with anything! If you have access to a track…try sprinting the curves and jogging or walking the straights! If you are just starting out I would recommend walking the straights. If you want a challenge try jogging! Or, if you are on a treadmill…sprint for 30 seconds and then job/walk for 1 minute (or longer if you need to). I personally like doing HIIT on the stairclimber! I will do a moderate pace for a minute…then go as fast as I possibly can for 30 seconds..then back to a moderate minute..then 30 seconds as fast as I can…all the way up to 12-15 minutes! Don’t try to kill yourself starting out! Pick a pace and speeds that seem reasonable to you…my sprint might be a lot slower/faster compared to yours…THATS OK! Everyone’s body is different! The important thing is that you are doing it!

HIIT is especially important when you are lifting weights and trying to gain muscle. Steady-state cardio…such as running for an hour or doing 45 minutes on the elliptical is not going to improve your level of fitness. That kind of cardio breaks down your muscles. It burns fat with burning the muscle as well..which is NOT what you want! The more muscle you have on your body, the more fat you burn, and the faster your metabolism works! “The American Journal of Physiology found that steady-state cardio decreases the ability of muscles to absorb glucose after training” (bodybuilding.com “HIIT Can Get You Huge, Especially If You Are A Meathead”). Steady state cardio limits hypertrophy which is the primary regulator of muscle growth!! (bodybuilding.com).

So…I challenge you to try HIIT this week! It is a GREAT burn and it will really make you sweat!! It also is quick and fast and it doesn’t get boring!! I really think you all will like it…and see amazing changes in your body!! Also, try picking up the weights this week! Weight lifting does WONDERFUL things for your body! Girls..DO NOT BE AFRAID OF DUMBBELLS!! THEY ARE YOUR FRIENDS!! 🙂

-Live healthy and God bless xoxo M

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About This Blog & How I Lost The Weight

13 Sep

Since I have a lot of new followers…I thought it would be a good idea to share what this blog is about and how I lost the weight again!

Hi all! My name is Maria and I am 22 years old. I am a social worker and dedicate my life to healthy living!
After my weight loss story was featured on the cover of PEOPLE magazine in August of 2013, I decided I needed to share my success with others in a different kind of way….so here’s my blog!

This blog is for all those who are trying to make
their lives healthier and who need some tips, motivation, and support!

I post things such as workouts, recipes, and weight
loss tips! I believe in healthy living and making it fun! Everyone needs a little inspiration in their life!

Here’s to making our lives happier and
healthier!

When I lost 105 pounds 6 years ago, I NEVER thought I would get my story out. I had always dreamed of it happening, but I never thought it would. There were many times I would send my story to magazines, websites, etc. and always get turned down. It got to the point where I finally gave up. I trusted that God had a plan for me, and getting my story out was not in his plan. In February, I decided that I needed to go to counseling to heal some past hurts and issues. I will post more about that soon! I needed to heal myself emotionally. When I lost the weight, I only healed myself physically. The same month I first started counseling, my mom sent my story into PEOPLE magazine. Well, the rest is history! I landed on the COVER of PEOPLE magazine! God DID have a plan! It was when I finally fixed my emotional problems and past hurts, he allowed me to share my story with the world. My story is raw. It is true. It is real.

I got so many amazing texts, emails, calls, and messages from people who saw the magazine cover and the news stories. Everyone wanted to know how I did it! What my secrets were! Everything I ate! Well, now everyone can! From a little push by a good friend, I decided it was a great idea to start a blog! I am new at this….so bare with me! I plan to post pictures, recipes, what I do in the gym, random ideas and motivational tips, and a look into my personal life of living a healthy lifestyle!

SO….HERE GOES NOTHING!

So, the question of the day….HOW DID YOU LOSE SO MUCH WEIGHT AT 15?!?! Simple answer…WEIGHT WATCHERS! Growing up, I was always overweight. I didn’t play any sports, I wasn’t active, and I LOVED to eat! I especially loved to snack. There was always a snack after school…and usually two before bed! I had a good group of friends growing up and was never bullied, which was a huge blessing. I have two older brothers who were both football players…they needed to eat a lot! So, I just fell into their eating patters. I was always the “clothes holder” going shopping with friends because I couldn’t fit into the clothes in the stores they loved. It was miserable, embarrassing, and downright AWFUL!

At 15, I was 240 pounds. Size 28. And a freshman in high-school. The best friends that I had all through growing up were involved in sports once we got into high-school…I wasn’t. Therefore…they made new friends and I was left out. It happens. Being left out is a part of life. However, being so overweight, I had no self confidence to stand up for myself and try to become involved in their lives again. I simply put up a GIANT wall and ate my pain away. The hurt was terrible. I cried everyday after school. There were moments when my mom and I had to plan out who I was going to talk to in school and where I would sit in the mornings before I needed to be in homeroom. Most times, I would just sit alone.

One night, I was sitting at my kitchen table. My mom came in the front door, walked into the kitchen, and set books on the table in front of me, and walked away. I picked up the books because I was curious where she was for an hour and I saw that they were Weight Watcher books. Now, I know my mom wasn’t pressuring me to lose weight, because she did my entire life, and eventually gave up. I didn’t like knowing that people wanted me to lose weight…it actually made me eat more! So anyway, I picked up the books, and started to look through them. That’s when I saw that Weight Watchers was based on a points system. Everything you eat has a points value and you have a daily target. You use a tracker to track your points each day. When I saw that PIZZA and FRENCH FRIES had points values…and I could still eat them if I tracked my points…I knew I needed to do it! I think my mom had a heart attack when I told her I wanted to join!

That Saturday morning, my mom and I got into the car and headed to weight watchers! We got myself all signed up (with a doctors note of course) and then it was time to face the scale! I didn’t know how much I weighed. I never weighed myself and I wouldn’t even let the doctors tell me. So, I stepped onto the scale. The receptionist was so sweet and so supportive. She made the process a lot easier. They keep the scale very private so I didn’t see what I weighed until I went into the meeting room. When I saw 240…I was shocked! I knew I was heavy, but I didn’t know I was that heavy.

That was the first day of the rest of my life! I was completely changed that morning. Something just came over me and I knew good things were going to happen! My leader was incredible. My mom was by my side. I knew it would work. There were weeks of gains and weeks of binging like I used to. But I took it step by step and day by day. I never said I need to lose exactly 105 pounds. I took it 5 pounds at a time! Thinking of the end result was just too overwhelming!

SO…my advice to you…If you are ready for a change. Do it. Walk into Weight Watchers. Throw out the bad food. Start to research healthy eating. I promise it will become second nature to you and worth it! Its going to be hard. Its going to take a lot out of you. There will be tears. And there will be haters. But the end result will be wonderful. Your life will be changed.

If a normal girl like me can do it…ANYONE CAN! Feel free to ask questions in the comment box!

Another great blog!

20 Aug

Hey everyone! Want another awesome blog about weight loss and healthy living?? Check out Mama Is Losing It! She just posted some great before and after pictures I think all of you would like to see! She is such an inspiration! http://mamaislosingit.com/

Instagram Photo – Workout of the day!

14 Aug

So….if you follow me on instagram, I told you to come to my blog to see what the heck I was doing in the picture! If you just follow my blog, you may have seen the picture on the right hand side of my blog. Well….that exercise is called I-w-I. This exercise is great for developing the lower traps and scapula. It helps to pull your shoulders back….which is so important! My mom always yells at me and tells me to pull my shoulders back! It definitely makes you look taller! This exercise also promotes flexibility and range of motion for shoulders. All of this is so important! My shoulders were so weak when I first started lifting heavy and because of that, I injured my rotator cuff. I was completely cut off from lifting and had to go to physical therapy for 3 months! It was awful! I don’t want that to happen to any of you…so I thought I would share this exercise with you!

First, you want to lay flat on your stomach. Grab 2 pound dumbbells – keep your thumbs up – and arms straight out in front of you. Keep your head down.

Lift your arms up…they wont go up very high…just enough to give you range of motion. Pull them back in a W like position. You are going to have to engage your core and use those back muscles.

Then bring your arms back to the original position

Do this for two sets of 10 reps! You will feel the burn big time! Also, I have noticed that this helps with the back fat right behind my armpit! A lot of women complain about some fat hanging out over their bra or shirt…this is really going to help tone that area of skin! Also, it will make your back and shoulders look super good!

-This exercise and information was given to me by a certified personal trainer..aka the boyfriend! 🙂
-Enjoy! Let me know if there are any questions!
-Live Healthy and God bless! M xoxo