Monthly Archives: September 2014


Cheese Steaks, Pizza…and a Great Exercise to Burn Those Things Off!

The Philly Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon was this past weekend. Not only did I set a personal record by running the entire thing in 1:30 min, but the headlining band at the post race concert, Rusted Root (never fear, they’re still alive) actually brought me up on stage and asked me to sing back-up vocals for Send Me On My Way 

rustedroot

They’re like a cool band, minus the cool part.

And then I woke up, and realized I’m still not allowed to run around the block, let alone a half marathon.

Yes, I’m still banned from running. It’s been almost six months since my last run.  After all this time, you’d think I would be used to sitting on the sidelines. But not being able to run still pains me, especially as the temperature cools down, and every day becomes “perfect running weather”. Fortunately, I’m able to work on the cardio equipment and do some lower body exercises to keep in shape, which is pretty much saving me from going stir-crazy.

Since cardio machines can be pretty boring, lately I’ve been using compound body-weight exercises to get my heart rate up. They even have fun names. I am especially fond of the spider man-mountain climber, with a little push-up action added in.  You can insert this challenging move anywhere in your workout. It’s a total body exercise that really gets your heart rate up.

Here’s a little video I made on my phone to show you:

Try it and let me know!

Being a bit bummed by the lack of running in my life doesn’t mean I can’t go to races and be a kick-ass cheerleader for my friends.

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Turns out I’m pretty great at making signs. And of course, I’m always happy to help someone stretch their sore hammies.

The Philly R ‘n’ R Half is quite the party, with bands along the route and free beer handed out at the finish. And although I didn’t get the chance to eat a cheese steak, I did finally get a tour of the city I missed out on in 5th grade (I got sick during the field trip and had to lay on a chair in a hotel lobby all day).

Liberty Bell Madness!

Liberty Bell Madness!

And Now A Very Important News Article

Apparently Pizza Hut is testing out the “Skinny Slice”, which I  will be avoiding at all costs once it hits New York City. Much like I abhor “skinny margaritas”, a low-cal pizza just doesn’t do it for me. I eat healthy foods all of the time. So when it’s splurge meal time, I’m going for it baby!

http://www.takepart.com/article/2014/09/20/and-pizza-huts-latest-offering-is-skinny-slice-pizza?cmpid=foodinc-fb

What do you think? Will you be trying out the “Skinny Slice”? Or will this go the way of the Burger King “Satis-fry”?

Facebook.com/blitzyourbody Twitter @AmyBlitz1

The Stuff You Have to Add to Your Smoothie! (and I don’t mean tequila)

It’s mid-way through September, and the 28 Day Blitz rages on! Hmmm, maybe rages is the wrong word in my case. Let’s say that the 28 Day Blitz nagged at me as I tried to navigate a social life with long-lost friends this past Sunday. I was all set to tuck into my cheat meal–the best veggie burger in NYC, located at La Flaca down on the lower East Side. (Go there ASAP) I had good intentions and ordered a salad with said veggie burger. Unfortunately, the *200 margaritas I drank after  dinner definitely negated my best intentions.

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*estimate of margaritas, 5 is probably more accurate. 

Just a reminder: the 28 Day Blitz is a challenge to eat only the best, cleanest food during the month of September. No fried foods, nothing overly processed, no ice cream, candy, or chips…and for goodness sake, moderate your alcohol intake please.

So yeah, things happen, even to health-conscious personal trainers who create 28 Day challenges. I don’t let these things set me back, I just shake it off and start over the next day.

Pump Up Your Protein Shake

Thanks to the wisdom of rock star client Kerry, I started adding psyllium seed husk powder to my breakfast smoothie.  Sounds delicious, right? Well, this stuff  almost tasteless and is high in soluble fiber which swells in your stomach, making you feel fuller, longer. The gel that is formed once the powder is mixed with liquid helps move metabolic waste through your intestines.

Uh-huh,that’s right,  it fills you up, then makes you poop. These are good things.

Adding psyllium seed husk powder can also help slow down the breakdown of sugar and fats, which keeps your glucose levels in check. Don’t use the powder if you are already taking medication for constipation.You certainly don’t want to go overboard and have an unfortunate mishap on your commute to work.

siFerry2.med

A public transportation bathroom, or Hell on Earth. You be the judge. 

I add only 1/2 to 1 tsp in my smoothies, which is enough to thicken and add volume to my breakfast. It really does keep me feeling full, therefore I eat less. Win, win!

Does anyone else use an almost empty nut butter jar as a vessel for their smoothie? I actually can’t wait to get down to the end of a jar so I can enjoy the nutty goodness with whatever concoction I’ve come up with.

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Yay! An empty almond butter jar! Obviously, I need to get out more.

Remember, if you have committed to a having a healthy fall, one slip-up is not  justification to let the entire month go.Your next meal is your opportunity to set yourself right and get back on track.

Facebook.com/blitzyourbody Twitter @AmyBlitz1

Banish the Post-Workout Munchies

Don’t forget the 28 Day Blitz is ON!!! No junk for the rest of the month! Yes, I am aware that football, aka, buffalo wing season has begun. My advice is to have a taste and then move along to something healthier. Here’s the link I posted a few months ago to a delicious paleo-friendly buffalo chicken that is grain-free and baked.

http://stupideasypaleo.com/2014/03/30/crispy-buffalo-chicken-fingers/

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This is the pic I posted a while back when they were made for me. Turkey bacon  wrapped asparagus is optional.

 Your body will thank you!

And now a question for Blitz Your Body …

Amy, I have a question for you. When I do a lot of exercising (mostly walking and biking each for 30 min to an hour), I end up so very, very hungry the entire next day. Is there something that should be eaten before or after exercise to help curb this spike in appetite?–Linda

Before we get to the best foods to fuel and nourish your workout, let’s make sure that what you are experiencing isn’t really thirst. Many times, we are dehydrated and not truly hungry, so you must drink a lot of water, especially on your active days. How much does that mean? Well, there isn’t too much evidence that proves the “8-8 oz of water” per day rule is actually true.  But, the Mayo Clinic suggests that women take in 2.2 liters (9 cups) and that men take in 3 liters (13 cups) a day, adding an extra 1.5 to  2.5 cups when you exercise, which is pretty close the the conventional wisdom of 8/8 glasses of water. 

Here’s an accurate portrayal of what I look like drinking my water, post-workout:

drinkingwoman

Yes, I wear pearl earrings when I workout. You don’t???

Now for fuel. We need to pick foods that will satisfy your hunger and be in line with your fitness goals. Pre-workout, you want to make sure you eat healthy carbohydrates that will give you energy without weighing you down. The closer you are to your exercise session, the simpler the food should be.

What I eat BEFORE a workout

A handful of grapes (15-30 min prior)

Banana with peanut butter (30-60 min prior)

Coffee Smoothie (60 min prior-recipe below!)

Half Ezekial English muffin with almond butter (60-90 min prior)

Fruit smoothie with half scoop protein powder (90-120 min prior)

Nothing.

That’s right. Sometimes I don’t eat before I go to the gym. My body is used to a fasted workout and sometimes I just grab a coffee and go. 

What I eat AFTER a workout

Carbs + Protein = a satisfying post-work out meal or snack that will keep you feeling full. Stay away from heavy fats, since they inhibit your body’s ability to quickly process all the good stuff.

Fruit Smoothie with whole or half scoop of protein powder (cardio or weight training)

Eggs with 1/2 cup of rice or half a potato and green veggies (cardio or weights)

Plain 2% Greek yogurt (cardio or weights)

A veggie wrap (cardio)

Roast or grilled chicken (usually left-overs) with veggies (weights)

Coffee Talk

I recently discovered that freezing coffee in ice cube trays is an easy and tasty way to add a little zip to my protein shakes.

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My moose mug is my best friend.

Moderate amounts of caffeine can naturally enhance your exercise performance. The better your performance, the more your calories you burn, and you can have greater strength gains. Just brew a strong cup of coffee, then freeze.  Side note: coffee cubes are also great for homemade iced coffee!

Coffee Protein Shake

Blend the following:

8 oz unsweetened almond milk

half or whole scoop of vanilla protein powder

1/2 frozen banana

1/2 TB of peanut butter (if you want to bulk it up a bit. It’s good without too)

1 TB raw cocoa nibs or cocoa powder

1 Tsp of psyllium seed husk powder

3-4 frozen coffee ice cubes

A drizzle of maple syrup (or any natural sweetener) to taste.

Sometimes I throw a TB or 2 of raw oat bran to increase the amount of fiber. 

Try it as a pre-workout fuel source, or a perky mid-day snack. Let me know what you think!

Facebook.com/blitzyourbody and Twitter @AmyBlitz1

28 Day Blitz!

There’s a myth out there that people naturally slim down during the hot summer months…something about the higher temperatures making it too uncomfortable to overeat. Yeah right! Personally, the warm weather makes me want to eat more fro-yo, and go to more happy hours. When you factor in vacations and long weekends, the little indulgences can really start to add up.

I can’t be alone in this. In fact, I know that I am not. In the past few weeks, I’ve been asked by a number of people to create a month-long challenge that will inspire a healthier lifestyle, and help shake off that extra summer weight.

So, here we go…

The 28 Day Blitz

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No sugar is pretty self explanatory. It also means no white bread or pasta–these foods convert too quickly in your body, and spike your insulin levels, just like sugar does.

No fast or fried foods– a no-brainer.

Nothing highly processed– no soda, no scary Kraft products, nothing “light” or “fat free”…if it comes out of a package and has a ton of unfamiliar ingredients, stay away.

No junk: cookies, crackers, bagels, pizza, burgers, fries, cupcakes, ice cream,  frozen yogurt (yes, even fro-yo!)

So what can you eat? This is NOT a deprivation diet. I want you to eat REAL food and measure your portion sizes. Your exercise goal, if you accept, is to move your body five days a week. These five days can include a long walk, your favorite yoga class or intense HIIT training, you just have to get going.

Take this month to clear out the junk in your cabinets AND in your “trunk.”

asstrunk

I couldn’t resist!

And since I don’t want you to feel totally deprived, give yourself one “cheat” meal and one “cheat” snack each week. Also, you’ll notice that I haven’t banned booze. But let’s try to limit alcohol to 1-2 glasses of wine a week.

Every week I’ll feature a workout, healthy meal ideas, and encouragement to help you through the next 28 days. If you want to really get serious, measure/weigh yourself, or take a “before pic” before you officially start. By October, I hope you are looking and feeling better than ever!

So, what do you say?

Talk to me FB.com/blitzyourbody or Twitter @AmyBlitz1

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