The Fit You

Love Your Body. Love Your Life

Tag: joy

Health & Long-term Keto Diet

My fitness group ladies keep coming back to discussing the new diet fad of keeping your body always in a state of ketosis.  Just today (note: this was a couple of weeks ago) we looked at an article that is again… not very favorable.  And after reading it, I’m definitely beginning to see why these fads can be so annoying to fitness instructors and nutritionists.

When I first heard about the keto diet, I immediately remembered studying case studies of diabetic people in ketoacidosis in college, and was alarmed that there were apparently women who were trying to get their bodies into that state of chemical toxicity in producing ketones in their blood.  BUT those two things are different.  Ketoacidosis is a very high level of ketones, whereas ketosis is just the presence of ketones.  It’s similar, but one is life-threatening, while the other seems benign.

My fitness ladies are skeptical, quite a few have tried it and already been badly burned, having experiences that ranged from physical illnesses and side effects like kidney stones, to higher cholesterol levels that forced them to have to go back to a normal, much healthier diet.

This article delves into those issues from a scientific perspective which is nice.  My background was biology and chemistry… and very heavy on biochemistry – how those two work inside your body – so the science stuff speaks to me.

 

From an obesity researcher quoted in the article:

“But just as other “don’t eat this” or “eat more of that” diets of the past didn’t cure all, so goes the ketogenic diet. “It’s one of these diets where so many people are talking about losing tons of weight, improving their health risks, beating cancer, and all these other lofty claims,” says Stephan Guyenet, an obesity researcher and author of The Hungry Brain. “But all those big claims are far ahead of the current scientific evidence.”

It does work… reading the awesome stories on reddit are incredibly inspiring!  But again, it’s part common sense (following your macros), part fad (eating 90% fat!), and part diet (lowering caloric intake by not eating carbs, which are the bulk of calories per day we normally eat anyway).

The main benefit I saw while I was trying it myself for curiosity, is that if you’re eating crap foods, processed sugars and bad carbs, it at least teaches you those things are bad for weight loss (and overall health).

It also teaches men and women who had poor diets and lazy habits to include a TON more veggies and green leafy fiberous foods into their diet – which of course will aid in fat loss and curb hunger.

Like I said, a lot of it is just common sense, and the main part is restricting caloric intake (which always leads to fat loss, no matter what diet you’re on).


It’s the perfect diet for very overweight men or women who have no idea where to start.


More on that from this article:

“Keto doesn’t seem to be any better for weight loss compared to any other “diet,” Kashey says. And that’s due to how weight loss science works. “People get excited about the idea that the ketogenic diet burns fat stored on your body,” Kashey says. “Yes, ketones can be made from your stored fat, but ketogenic diets are high in fat. Therefore, the fat you eat is what gets converted to ketones. How do you make sure you are burning more fat than you are eating? You eat less fat. That sounds an awful lot like reducing calories.””

For women, it can be a little dangerous as it messes with our hormone production, which affects bone loss longterm. (From article):


“But it may also have some health-based drawbacks, Scott-Dixon says. “Especially in women, it can disrupt hormonal production,” she says. “You also sometimes see immunity issues and nutritional deficiencies, so you’re maybe risking getting sick, and becoming malnourished, which is sort of embarrassing if you live America.” Guyenet agrees, saying “few human groups have ever lived in chronic ketosis, so I’m skeptical that it’s a good idea.””

I’ve read from a lot of the Keto Gurus that human groups have been mostly living in ketosis throughout history.  It’s something you’d have to look into for yourself, but I personally think just following a healthy, well-balanced diet (by which I mean including carbs), is probably the best way to go, especially (as I found out personally) if you enjoy exercise or sports and do endurance or high intensity workouts.

The Keto Diet seems to scientifically harm your overall athletic performance and long-term energy.  So if you do aerobics or are a die-hard runner, the longer you’re in ketosis, you’ll be worsening at your beloved sport or hobby:

“One study of endurance athletes found the diet led to performance declines, and another found that it hurt endurance race performance. One study on mountain bikers, however, did show some promise. Any benefits of exercising in ketosis are likely offset by the drawbacks, covered here. “You know what has been proven to improve exercise performance, though?,” Kashey asks. “Carbs.””

Coming from a long-time runner and dancer, it is very hard to imagine exercising at your best level (much less racing like one study found) without the necessary carbs that fuel long-term endurance.  I thought all that was common sense, even as a teenager when our coach was explaining it to us.

The Keto Gurus (who when I researched more on their actual diet, were eating more protein than they should be to be in ketosis, and carb-fueling on days they called “Re-Feed” days, lol), will try to tell you that being in ketosis produces more ATP energy during your workouts.  It’s just not true scientifically.  The body cannot break down fat as fast and efficient as carbs when using them for high intensity workouts or in weight lifting (in order to build muscle), so while 1 gram of fat does in theory produce more ATP eventually, it’s not fast enough or easy enough for the body to do this under exercise stress.

I found a good scientific article explaining what I was feeling in my workouts when being in a constant state of ketosis.  This study that was done was involving different sets of mice, one set that was prone to epileptic seizures, and another that was normal and the control (no physical abnormalities).  The sets of mice were all put on a ketogenic diet to model the human version of the diet.  The mice prone to epilepsy, when on a ketogenic diet, were significally improved in their health and also surprisingly made “normal” amounts of ATP energy that they weren’t previously able to make (so they were under-making ATP on regular diets – whereas the keto diet helped them to be at normal ATP production).  It didn’t make them make “more” than what is normal, but it did help them make more than they used to on regular diets that weren’t working for them health-wise.

The normal mice however, who didn’t have seizure and health problems, when measured actually produced significantly less ATP-energy than what they had been producing when they were allowed to eat carbohydrates.  (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2646796/

So if you have medical conditions like epilepsy, being on the keto diet has been proven to possibly help restore you to normal levels of ATP production, greatly impacting your life in positive ways.  However, if you’re the typical adult without epilepsy, your ATP levels may be “significantly decreased,” on this diet due to the lack of healthy carbs.

It’s actually because of that, heavy weight lifting is not doable on keto – they actually advise against it.  Mostly because you’re not eating enough carbs in order to build and rebuild muscle!

“Therapeutic use of ketogenic diets should not require constraint of most forms of physical labor or recreational activity, with the one caveat that anaerobic (ie, weight lifting or sprint) performance is limited by the low muscle glycogen levels induced by a ketogenic diet, and this would strongly discourage its use under most conditions of competitive athletics.”

(From here: https://nutritionandmetabolism.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1743-7075-1-2)

Here are some hardcore cyclists talking about their negative experiences in exercise performance on keto:

Depending on how hard you work out and how much ATP you need, it may affect your workout and training to a greater degree.

Just as a recent, personal experience I had the other day (already quite a few days in to ketosis), I was working out very hard on the stairmaster at our gym with my husband.  After only doing 15 minutes of that exercise, which was intense intervals of fast and furious climbing against increased resistance levels (large steps), and slow climbing to a lighter resistance, I had to stop and afterward, felt like I was going to black out.  LOL it was NOT cool!

After researching my experience with doing HIIT (intervals of high intensity followed by lower intensity), it turns out “dizziness” and low blood sugar (leading to blacking out) is one of the side effects of this diet.  Grrreeeaaat. Try feeling dizzy when you’re doing an intense cardio workout up high on a stair master!  Oh wait!!  You can’t because you may fall off and break something!  lol

Negative side effects of the Keto Diet:

  • Low blood sugar (bad for me… I already lean toward low blood sugar… this could be why I almost blacked out after only 15 minutes of intervals on the stairmaster)
  • Messed up electrolytes and minerals – you have to be on top of taking extra magnesium and salt daily to counteract your regular loss of electrolytes
  • Heart palpitations – because of the messed up electrolyte (salt and water) balance in your blood, again it can be remedied, but if you are prone to heart problems in your family, this could cause issues long-term and you’d have to be VERY on top of checking your blood levels
  • Muscle Cramps – again because of messed up electrolyte balances
  • Sleep problems – due to lower insulin levels and less serotonin production (causing anxiety at night).  A trick keto-gurus do to combat this is to (surprise!) eat a tiny bit of carbs at night so they can sleep better.
  • If you’re a woman, it will mess with your menstrual cycle hormones, possibly even making you not have a period (amenorrhea), which is known to cause bone loss long-term (and is generally a side effect of anorexia as well)

I guess it’s just human nature to look for a magic formula or easy route to get healthy, but it seems a little more complicated than what cutting out an entire food group (long-term) can do.  Does the Keto Diet have pros?  Yes.  Does it work?  Yes, you can check out all the success stories on reddit to see for yourself!  It’s honestly the perfect intro diet for very overweight people who aren’t exercising normally and eating loads of bad carbs in their diet.  It weans them off of the bad carbs, gets them eating a TON more veggies and leafy greens they should be eating anyway, and really does help them lose fat due to these habit changes.

 

But is it a little dangerous in how it paints carbs as the “Bad Guys” for optimal health?  Yea… and with all my training and experience in sports and athletics, I can see how this diet would be annoying to fitness instructors or coaches who understand how much protein their athletes need, along with carbohydrates for maximum performance.

 

You won’t find any Olympic Athletes on the Keto diet, and if they are, they’re definitely incorporating carbs on “Re-Feed” or re-fuel days on the weekends to compensate.  But with the protein restrictions to be in ketosis, I highly doubt any Olympians are on it, and definitely not long-term.

 

Ultimately you have to do what’s best for you long-term and do what you can realistically stick to.  There’s no way I’d be willing to give up my high intensity workouts and weight-lifting to build muscle to lose fat on this diet, when I’m already able to lose fat (and train like an athlete) on a healthier diet including carbs I love.

 

But if you can stick to it, and you’re willing to brave the negative side effects and messing with your feminine hormone production, then go for it.  To me that’s too much fuss to be tracking electrolyte balance and ketone production in my urine everyday, and part of overall fitness is keeping your mind at peace and relaxed and less stressed out (which being worried about not messing up my electrolyte balance, or if I’m messing up my period and bone density, would stress me out).

 

This blog is dedicated to approaching fitness for lifelong benefits and in a positive, relaxing way.  I want people to be aware how easy being fit really is once you have the knowledge and power to act on it, and make changes in your life.  There’s no need to pee on pH sticks everyday or track ketones in your blood.  There’s no need to stop eating carbs or a healthy amount of protein in order to build muscle.  In my opinion, any diet that cuts out an entire food group for the rest of your life, is just not peaceful or easy to do longterm.

 

 

Stephanie

Advertisements

Valeria’s Easy Weight Loss Hacks

 

Valeria is  a Russian model, 27, two children, and a long history of taking excellent care of her mind and body.  I adore her ❤

One of the main purposes of this blog is to show women how ridiculously EASY and SIMPLE losing weight can be when you have the correct knowledge and advice.  You DON’T have to stop eating carbs, or start making complicated meals that are super high in fat.

Losing weight should be a relaxing, simplistic, lifestyle change that fits into your already busy routine.  It should be something SUSTAINABLE over the length of your entire life!  I don’t promote the most popular diet fads or pills for weightloss or weird supplements that mess with your hormone production.

None of that.

Just simple, easy, kind of “lazy” ways to change your life so that you start seeing and getting the body you feel strong and comfortable and proud in.

And these tips are so easy & true.  I’ve been implementing the “hacks” she mentions since about 2009.  So that’s almost a DECADE of knowing these things work for maintaining a fit and beautiful body you love.

  • Eat on small, salad-sized plates- you psychologically see the plate with TONS  of food and you feel more satisfied and are less likely to get seconds
  • Fill up HALF of your plate with veggies (greens – dark leafy greens especially – are GREAT for this).  I’ve consistently lost the most weight when I was practicing this daily habit.
  • Chew your food… chew it slowly and take your time to eat.  It’s been proven you digest better and that your brain is able to understand more correctly when you’re “full” and need to stop
  • When you do eat out, always order your dressing or sauces on the side.  Yes!  I don’t bring my own usually, although I know women who do that… it’s too much work for me and this is about “lazy fitness” 😀  But just ordering it to be “on the side” that way you can carefully “dip” your food into the high calorie, high fat flavor, you WIN big time in not smothering your food in that stuff!
  • Detox water – I used to do this with lemon, but her recipe is much better (and she promotes making a big batch to keep in the fridge – yea I totally do things like that)

Hope you enjoyed her tips as much as I did!

Remember… losing weight isn’t really that hard… a TON of what you need to do to even begin is just slightly alter what you’re already doing.

Stephanie

Meal Prep – Pulled BBQ Chicken!

IMG_6219

More gorgeous Meal Preps!!!  Ooooo and this one is so tasty!!!  It’s like a healthier version of “pulled pork” except it’s with BBQ chicken breasts, shredded.

  • 3-4 lbs of chicken breast, boiled and shredded
  • Homemade BBQ sauce (super easy, just look online for recipes!) or bottled BBQ sauce if you’re pressed for time)
  • About 1 cup of white rice cooked for each meal prep container
  • About 1 cup of veggies of your choice.  I chose corn and broccoli this time since it seems to go better with the taste of the BBQ ❤

Soooo delicious!  And again, soooo healthy and makes life a million times easier for us this week when it comes to easy and healthy dinners!

If you have any ideas your family does or for ours to try, please leave them in the comments I’d love to hear new ideas about healthy meal prep options!

Stephanie

Meal Prep Your Way to Fitness

IMG_6198

One of the things I’ve found to be really helpful in maintaining a healthy diet while avoiding bad food in a crunch, is to simply meal prep.

It’s too easy to reach for something on the go – namely fast food – when you’re pressed for time or stressed.  Turns out the Boy Scouts were right in their motto:

BE PREPARED!

Just taking the little bit of extra time to portion out your healthy meals and some handy-dandy snacks you’ll find makes life a lot easier for you!

IMG_6177.JPG

Super healthy greek yogurt cups homemade with blueberries & strawberries!

I always try to cook a big dish either on the weekends or Monday night, and have a second or third, smaller option, that way dinners for the week are completely covered!

So. Easy.  It’s. Ridiculous.

IMG_6176

Left: Breakfast Eggs & Chorizo Mix to eat each morning without having to cook!  Just scoop into a couple of tortillas, microwave, add salsa and GO!

AND it saves so much money!

 

IMG_6172

$$$$$$$

Think about how much people pay to have healthy, pre-portioned meals like this delivered, and yet if you do it yourself, you can save hundreds a month!

Seriously, we’ve saved so much through doing this… and it’s all super healthy food that tastes amazing, too!

***

It also makes it easier for your husband if he’s trying to stay healthy as well, to be able to just reach in to the fridge and grab an already perfectly portioned, prepped meal in one  container.  There have been countless times my man has thanked me for doing this for him ❤ his favorite part is that I know just how much of everything to portion out, that way it’s filling and meeting macros but not over-loading.  

It’s the perfect portion control, because everything is right there and you’re discouraged from getting “seconds” – which would mean eating another day’s MEAL!

So…

Meal Prep… to borrow the famous Nike motto:

JUST DO IT!

Stephanie

Pro Tennis Beauty’s Workout

 

Phew!  Keto diet experiment is done finally, my husband actually had to make me stop – it was ridiculous not being able to make enough ATP (keto does make technically “some” and some claim it makes “more” lol, but since it’s actually harder work to convert fat into ATP, it’s not generated fast enough to be able to support high intensity workouts and heavy lifting that we’re currently doing in replacing the kind of energy used and then needed for longterm strength and endurance).  I’ll be writing a scientific post that goes into experts’ thoughts on why and how it’s not beneficial to athletes (unless they load up on carbs before an event… which debunks the entire keto claims that it’s good for athletes to always be in ketosis).

Here’s Maria Sharapova, pro Russian tennis player, working out/warming up and getting ready at a tournament.  Her diet is high protein (which keto limits as well… too much protein apparently knocks you out of that desired “ketosis”), low fat, and low carb.  Basically the way we’ve been eating for 10 years and have never had a problem losing weight.

Something I wanted to call attention to in the video was her usage of resistance bands for strengthening.  They are so cheap to get!  And they really work and can be used for a total body workout all over!!!  Definitely worth getting and implementing into your at home workouts (or to take to the gym – they’re so tiny they can go in your purse!).

And I love the tennis players’ body type.  Lean, long muscles, so strong and yet graceful.  A lonnng time ago I used to play a lot of tennis.  It’d be nice to get back into it!  Watching Maria is inspiring!

Enjoy the tennis beauty!

Stephanie

New Year’s Bounce-Back is Totally Normal

26056005_10213430512290119_3970792088535370118_n

When that muffin top became a full-blown, busted can of biscuits! 😀

Yep, just after writing a post a little disappointed in all the fad diets people tend to try at the beginning of the New Year, I’m going to come out and say that wanting to “get healthy” or “start over” again, is totally normal 🙂 .

There’s something beautiful about a new year.  Maybe it’s the excitement of the fresh days of an early beginning, or the unknown of the future, and the promises that are to come.  I truly do get a little pumped up each time, and not so much in a resolution-making kind of way, but rather a general excitement for the new-beginning the year will bring.  I also enjoy looking back on the past year when it’s closing, and finding beauty in it to treasure moving forward.

So with all that said, I do believe it’s totally normal for people to want to look ahead to new and better things, to make promises to themselves about their fitness or whatnot.  I think it’d be a little strange if a person wasn’t motivated by the optimism a new year can bring… but then again, I am forever an optimist. 🙂

But yes, I am definitely relating to the picture above 😉  My muffin top from Thanksgiving has bloomed into what I would say a busted can of biscuits, as it should be after the holidays ❤  And now it’s my annual time to reset everything and bring a much welcomed balance back to our enjoyment of eating healthy.

The New Year’s “Bounce-Back,” is totally normal.  You’d have to eat ZERO pies or dressing or sweet potato casserole (and live a miserable life) to not feel the need to “bounce-back!” 😀

How Do You Have a “Fit” Postpartum?

IMG_4625 (2)

My husband took this picture without me knowing 🙂 my body is still not exactly where I want it to be (so much loss of muscle and probably still some fat to lose), but it does make me happy that my body is relatively back to normal.  I feel strong and full of energy, and am so proud of what it can do so soon after having our 3rd baby.  It’s like a celebration! ❤

Going on a beach vacation and celebrating our 10th anniversary this early postpartum was a little difficult, but thankfully the difficulty wasn’t so much because I was “out of shape,” but just due to having such a little baby.  We’re a very active, athletic family… so being out of shape really lessens the quality of my life as I’m not able to keep up or do the things I want to do.

But why is getting back in shape after having a baby important?  Obviously, it may not be important to everyone, but to the majority of women out there who eventually do want to get their bodies back, it seems like it is.

One woman in my fitness group recently admitted that if she had known how much excess skin would be hanging off her stomach postpartum, and how awful it would feel to even look at it, she would have DEFINITELY changed all her eating habits while pregnant and would have kept her weight down and been only gaining the minimum amount necessary.

I think it’s relatively normal for Western women to disregard their fitness while pregnant, not really understanding (or caring at the moment) how hard it will be to lose that weight, or to get the skin to go back in, after the baby is out.  And then once it’s a few months or a year postpartum, they start to realize how hard they made it for themselves and live with regret.

So what is the “secret” to having a fit postpartum?  What is the secret to having a pretty good body almost right after you have your baby?

The simple answer?

Having a fit pregnancy.

That’s it.  And it’s the truth. 🙂 The more “in shape” you are, the stronger you are and yes, even “thinner” you are while you’re pregnant, normal weight gain aside of course, the fitter, stronger, and even thinner you’ll be postpartum.

If you stay active and only gain what you and the baby actually need, you won’t have pounds of excess fat and weight to lose afterward.

I’m lucky to be in a fitness group right now where I’ve seen many ladies go through pregnancy and come out extremely fit and strong and capable.  They not only don’t use pregnancy as an excuse to eat anything they want, they don’t even use pregnancy as an excuse to stop lifting weights!!  Or to stop running and working out fairly hard!  It’s amazing to watch these women conquer the usual setbacks of pregnancy with hard work and discipline.  Very inspiring and motivating ❤ 🙂

Will pregnancy set you back some?  Definitely, in those first weeks, doctors don’t want you to workout again until cleared for a reason – because your body really is still healing.  But they also tell you right after you have the baby (the next day in my experiences with all our 3 kids), to start walking like you’re planning to do a walk-a-thon in a month lol!

Walking IS exercising, and they want you doing that 24 hours after having a c-section!

So yes, while you need to wait until your doctor clears you to do more strenuous things, your doctor also expects you to be walking and gently moving your body around actively on your own the day after a c-section.

Why?  Because they know for a fact that it helps you heal faster if you gently exercise those muscles and it keeps your blood flowing which also aids in a faster healing.

We were created to move, and its really no different during and after pregnancy.  Hence the more fit and strong you are during pregnancy, the better (and easier!!) it will be for you afterward.

So take care of yourself during your pregnancy!  You’ll never regret making healthy choices that make it easier for you when you have your baby 😉

It’s already hard having a newborn, but being overweight or weak and fat make it a lot harder.  Be good to yourself, and keep your body in shape.

Stephanie

“Fat Girl Fed Up” and Her Journey to Weight Loss

Article on Staying Fit Being One of the “Best Gifts” You Can Give Your Husband

fit couple

I’m pleasantly surprised how much traction this “staying fit” throughout life – even during and especially after having children – is gaining in our culture.  It’s still a somewhat taboo topic that seems to inflame many people wanting to deny that weight and healthy body size matters, but it makes me happy to see more people writing about it in a positive way.

Here is an article with a title I couldn’t have picked better myself (so elated!!):

“STAYING FIT FOR YOUR HUSBAND IS ONE OF THE BEST GIFTS YOU CAN GIVE HIM”

This is undeniably true, and yet, sadly, we just are not “allowed” to talk about this – or write about this – without people being offended at the simple truth.  Men are visual and love to see their wives looking sexy and thin.  Being fit and in shape makes them less likely to feel tempted all the time by other women, or to look at porn even, according to my husband!

Give the article a click, it’s a good, balanced read.

It reminds me of after my husband and I had our first baby, my husband, in a moment of brutal honesty, actually thanked me for not letting myself go.  He really appreciated it. ❤

 

So yes, I agree, staying fit for your husband truly IS one of the “best gifts” you can give him. 😉

Tracy Anderson’s Post Pregnancy Workout Review

IMG_4376

I wanted to talk some more about the official postpartum workout I chose to do this time.  I really didn’t do any kind of specific immediate postpartum workout with our first baby 7 years ago, or with our second just 2 1/2 years ago.  I did “workout,”my husband even trained me at the gym and did workouts with me at home, but nothing this well-structured for helping your body to go back to normal after being pregnant for 9 months.  Tracy has moves especially designed to get your muscles to come back to skin and to get that flap of skin (where the belly left) to disappear.  They are remarkable and get results fast.

Our bodies really take a beating during pregnancy, everything seems to move around – your hips, your pelvic muscles, your abs, and even your spine apparently along with sometimes your ribs.  It is just insane!  Tracy mentions these things in the video and gives actual specific workout moves/techniques that are supposed to make everything go back to normal.  It really works according to women who have done it and stuck with it.  And I’m amazed how incredible it feels – it’s hard but in a good way, I can actually feel my abs waking up and responding better each time.

Tracy Anderson’s Post Pregnancy DVD (link to buy)

Since I’m still kind of in a fog of sleep deprivation and it’s hard to write thoughts out well, here are some easy-to-read bullet points about the workout dvd you need to know:

  • It’s 49 minutes, which honestly… it’s a little too long for my “ideal” workout, but it’s so worth your time.  There are workouts out there that are 20 or 30 minutes and then you’re done for the day – I did that for our first baby, but it took a YEAR to lose the excess weight.  And my body was still better served by this woman’s “Metamorphosis” workouts I did **after** that… everything got tinier and I developed leaner dancer-type muscles with Tracy’s workout moves than with anyone else’s.
  • It’s HARD. I mean really pretty hard, especially that first time you try it after having a baby.  Even if you were active, it’s just a very strange feeling to experience how stretched out your muscles got during those 9 months.
  • It gets miraculously easier each time you do it!  I was amazed there were 2 positions/moves my muscles just would not respond to that first time, and then miraculously they did a tiny bit the next, and then MUCH better the next, and so on.  It’s like your muscles’ take time to establish those electric connections that make them move again… so weird, but Tracy mentions that as well when you’re doing it with her.
  • It’s totally safe to do this even if you had a c-section.  Just wait until your doctor clears you for exercise because this definitely counts as exercise.
  • She does all the moves with you.  I really respect a trainer who does Each. Repetition. With. You.  Most don’t… Jillian Michael’s will do a couple of examples and then stop and coach you through.  Tracy does every single move that she’s asking you to do – which for me is extremely motivating and makes me take her more seriously.
  • Speaking of repetitions… each move or exercise she has you do, has like 1,000 repetitions each.  I’m only slightly exaggerating here.  It’s what makes it so hard, your main muscles go into exhaustion phase, and you’re forced to use the lesser used, smaller/supporting muscles you never knew you had. Scientifically this works to make everything pulled in tighter and smaller – literally giving you that dancer’s body most women covet.  I’ve experienced this effect with her before after my first baby – after trying Jillian Michael’s and losing the weight, but still not being able to fit into my old clothes.  Her workouts were why I didn’t have to buy a new wardrobe.
  • You really need to buy this thing.  It’s so cheap, and again, it’s gone out of print ( is that the word you use for dvds?) before.  It’s so valuable, and yet I got mine I think for $8.00 online.
  • I should have said who this woman is 😀  She is a celebrity trainer that has worked with Hollywood clients for over a decade.  She’s a little strange (like you’d expect anyone from Hollyweird to be), and wears really skimpy outfits, kind of an exhibitionist really, but her workouts work.  It is a crime that you can get her teaching and training right now on dvd for so cheap.  Access to her personal training or special gyms in New York is a fortune!  And yet regular moms have access to her dvd for almost free (seriously)?!  Again, wise women will take advantage of this.
  • It’s only for women who really want to work hard.  Or find the time.  It’s not for women who make excuses and remain overweight.  You can make ALLLL the excuses you want, but in the end, it’s only you, your attitude about life, and your will or desire to make the changes you want.  No one’s going to force you to take your health seriously, it’s a choice you and only you can make.  Or you can continue to make those excuses.
  • She tells you to start it RIGHT AFTER you’re cleared for exercise.  Most American women just don’t workout right after they’re cleared, and then complain about how unsexy or fat they feel.  So the women who use this are the ones who really deserve the body it gives, because it is hard work but feels so good.  Be different.  Be a woman who chooses NOT to gain too much weight during pregnancy, and then be a woman who chooses to make her body strong again after she’s had her baby.
  • It’s actually relaxing if you do it at night.  I can’t believe how good and relaxing it feels – I mean it’s a workout and it’s painful, but somehow it feels so slow and nice that I’m ready for a hot bath or shower after, some chocolates and then to sleep.

And the best thing of all???  The endorphins and sense of feeling so accomplished and happy after you’ve completed another workout.  It’s simply taking care of yourself.  Like brushing your teeth, except the work and difficulty gives you a sense of healthy pride for persevering through the pain or desire to give up.  And spiritually it makes me more thankful to God for my health and strength He’s given me.  It makes me feel like I’m being a better steward of this body He’s given me instead of neglecting it.

Get it and enjoy it!

Stephanie