FitM.U.M 8 Week Summer Body Transformation Check-In

The lucky winner of our FitM.U.M 8 Week Summer Body Transformation, Cassie is just about to start week 4 and will be half way through this 8 week program. However, knowing Cassie and the amazing changes she has made and the way she has embraced the exercise and nutrition changes, this will just be the start of a whole new lifestyle for her. I am so impressed with her motivation and determination to work hard no matter what. She is a  wife and a busy mum of 4 and works part time while trying to juggle everything else that a busy life entails. She has previously suffered anxiety and depression and I am so glad that she entered this competition and made the commitment to do something for herself and start her journey towards a healthier, happier and more active life (for her and her family!!). What a fantastic role model for her children!

As well as seeing Cassie’s physical strength improve and fitness increase, one of the best things as a Trainer is to actually to witness her confidence and self belief grow. She is changing her life and becoming a much stronger and happier person because of it. The workouts I have given her have been HARD but she has done every single one of them with no excuses!

Cassie enjoying a strength workout

Cassie enjoying a strength workout

Let’s hear from Cassie about her first three weeks of her program:

Wow! What an amazing three weeks it’s been. Kelly has given me a workout plan every week consisting of body weight exercises, weights and cardio. She also provided me with some awesome food advice.

I was totally shocked when I read my first workout plan. I thought there was no way I was going to do it. I had six days of workouts with one rest day and Monday consisted of two workouts!
But I did it! I completed the whole week and I felt amazing.
During week two Kelly came to do a PT session. I was really nervous, but didn’t need to be, she made me feel completely comfortable and didn’t mind helping me to correct my technique and to pick her brain.
It’s now week three and I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the whole process.
Next week I go for my massage I won as part of the competition, can’t wait.
Thanks for reading.
P.S. Thank You everyone for your support and kind words of encouragement, I was in tears reading all of your messages x
Cassie.
I hope this story may help, inspire or motivate someone else who has their own challenges and may be starting their health and fitness journey (or thinking about starting). Set yourself goals and do it for yourself! Today is your day to get started.
Head over and join our wonderful FitM.U.M community on Facebook to stay motivated with other likeminded people!
xx
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FitM.U.M Product Review – Polar Loop Activity Tracker

I was lucky enough to be contacted a few weeks ago by the Marketing Coordinator of RunStopShop, a fantastic online fitness store (http://www.runstopshop.com.au/) to be a brand advocate for them and try a few of the awesome products that they stock.

runstopshop logo

This blog post is one of two posts to review the first two products I received. As well as ooohhing and ahhhing over the many, many fitness products, I also spent some time finding out more about the company and I love that their purpose is simple: to provide the products which enable you to get the most out of your active lifestyle, and enable you to reach your goals faster. This is something I’m all for…. as a busy mum of 2, who is not only on my own fitness journey, but who also motivates and trains many mums who are all embarking on regaining their health, fitness and active lifestyle! The timing could not have been more perfect, I was literally in the market for a fitness activity tracker and was researching different brands so when I saw the Polar Loop 24/7 Activity Tracker I knew I had to have it. It looks great, is extremely easy to set up and is very comfy to wear.

Polar Loop from RunStopShop

Polar Loop from RunStopShop

It’s features include:

  • Heart rate (when you are wearing the Polar H7)
  • Calorie expenditure
  • Total steps
  • Time of day
  • Activity Benefit gives feedback about your day, week, month
  • Waterproof

I love that it is simple to use and displays all the important information at the touch of a button but also has a smartphone app and website syncing which provides an accurate insight into your everyday activity and movement & sleep habits. I am definitely someone who is driven by having goals and targets to reach so, in the week that I have been wearing it, I have been so motivated to reach my daily fitness activity goal of 14,000 steps. Another feature I really like is that it tells you how much more activity you need to do to reach your goal (eg. jog for 30 mins or walk for 1hr 15). So far, I have achieved my goal each day.

As a mum of a 10 month old baby, who isn’t the best sleeper, I am up A LOT during the night to breastfeed her, so even though I am aware I am getting a very interrupted nights sleep, it has been good to see how much restful sleep I am getting at night. It accurately shows the times I get up and I find it quite amusing to see the tracking of me walking to her room (blue activity lines) and then sitting in the chair feeding her (grey activity lines) and then walking back to my room again and going back to sleep….. hey, at least I’m getting extra steps in my day. There are 24 usable hours in every day…. it’s no wonder I’m reaching my target.

Polar Loop App - Activity Breakdown

Polar Loop App – Activity Breakdown

So, although I have only been wearing my Polar Loop Activity Tracker for 1 week, I am hooked! I only take it off to charge it and I am much more aware of my movement and activity patterns and I am making sure I am staying active throughout the day. If you are looking for extra motivation to help you on your fitness journey and want to track your daily fitness, activity and sleep then I highly recommend using an activity tracker and, personally, I am loving my Polar Loop. I think it is on sale at the moment and you can shop this awesome product here.

Enjoy xx

Your reason or your excuse… which is greater?

It happens to all of us, sometimes we just don’t want to exercise. Whatever the reason, it doesn’t matter, there will be a day where you just do not want to get out there and get it done, plain and simple! But it’s funny (almost ironical) because those are usually the days that if you can overcome that feeling and switch to ‘mechanical’ you mode and do it anyway, you will probably enjoy it more, get good results and feel a whole lot better afterwards.

This is something I have been working hard on in the last 6 months. Yesterday I went for my run, it was my seventh day in a row and my legs were heavy, I had quite a bit going on, living on about 5 hours of sleep and quite honestly, it would have been very easy for me not to go. But I knew that wasn’t really what I wanted and that I would actually be disappointed if I didn’t do it. I set myself a realistic goal and off I went. I went through the paces and surprisingly I felt good and actually went 4 km’s further than I set out to go! The distance wasn’t huge and it wasn’t my fastest run but the whole way I felt proud of myself. It’s these workouts that actually make you a stronger person. I kept repeating things to myself like “I’m one run stronger than I was yesterday”, “I’m closer to my half marathon goal”, “my legs are strong and my breathing feels good so keep pushing!”, “make your family proud but more importantly make yourself proud”, “do it because you can, and for the people that physically can’t”….. there are lots more mantras I use to get me through. I use my running time as my thinking time, my planning time, my reflection time, my alone time. I always surprise myself at what I am capable of and what I can achieve. It’s my mental strength that has surprised me the most above and beyond my physical strength and capabilities! If you can overcome the mental barriers and negative talk etc you are well on your way to achieving whatever you put your mind to!

The reason I put my shoes on and went outside yesterday and did it was because my ‘want’ to get it done was far greater than my ‘excuses’ not to! This is not a post about #noexcuses…. do you know why, because at times we all have real reasons why we can’t train and that is totally OK. We are mums, and we have sh!t going on, I’m no different, but we deserve to do something for ourselves and we deserve to spend time on our own health, fitness and sanity! For me that’s keeping fit, healthy and active and sticking to my training plan for my half marathon this year!

stronger than your excuses

I know I am much happier when I do fit my exercise in and I find it also means I tend to eat better too. If I skip a day or a session, for some reason it carries over into the rest of my day/lifestyle and I seem to not eat as well and I am grumpy (hence the reason my family are so supportive of my training ha!).

I’ve said it before in my posts and anyone who knows me will tell you, I am no elite sportsperson. I am a mum who has decided that this is my year to be the best I can be! I am constantly striving to be a better me, stronger me, fitter me, healthier me, happier me….These are my reasons for getting it done every single day! .This is my motivation.Every run or workout I do brings me a little bit closer to all of that, especially the ones where I bloody well didn’t want to do it!! What are your reasons and motivation? It’s so much easier when you have a clear and defined purpose for doing what you do (and that’s in all areas of life, not just exercise!).

The saying is “Motivation is what gets you started, habit is what keeps you going” but I actually think motivation is what gets you started and your purpose and reason is what keeps you going… no matter what. If I give up on my reason, I am giving up on myself and I am not going to let that happen. I’m sure we can all come up with at least 10 legitimate excuses why we just can’t be bothered exercising today, but how much will we let them get in the way and actually stop us from doing it anyway and getting closer to reaching our goals?

This post was in my head while running yesterday and it didn’t quite come out as well written down as it sounded in my head (I really need to start recording myself while running as things seems much clearer when I’m not at a computer) but I am sure it will resonate with someone else and hopefully it will motivate even just one person to not give up on your own goal just because you might have an excuse or two. You are not alone, I was there yesterday!! It’s all part of the journey.

FitM.U.M xxx

Fit, Fast & Furious Training Session with Guin from Guin’s Everyday Style

Guin and Kel

WOW! What a session.We were both super excited about starting our first Personal Training Session. Guin wanted to be pushed and push her I did. I put Guin through a 45 minute High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) Session which was predominantly body weight exercises. We did use a set of dumbbells for some of the exercises but most can be done without.

Guin already does a variety of exercise so she wanted to compliment her other workouts with a full body High Intensity Session. These sessions are awesome as they full of short burst intervals with minimal rest and they burn mega calories and get the heart rate up high. My trusty stop watch was getting a workout that’s for sure as I wanted everything we did to be between 20 – 50 seconds of hard work (max. Effort) and 15-30 seconds of rest. HIIT Training is no good without a stop watch so we can keep an eye on the time and really make the most out of the workout.

HIIT Trainers Secret Weapon

HIIT Trainers Secret Weapon

We also did a hard set of Plyometrics. For those who are unfamiliar with Plyometric Training, it is explosive, fast paced moves which work several muscles at once. It is a great way of training to increase fitness, speed and agility and also burns mega calories as your heart rate stays elevated the entire time, allowing you to continue burning calories after your session is finished.

The Plyo set I put Guin through was Squat Jumps (reaching up nice and high on the jump), alternating lunge jumps and mountain climbers. It’s fair to say her heart rate was up and her legs were burning! But she was still smiling at the end of it so I continued to push her with an upperbody strength session with shoulder press, burpees, pushups and punches followed by abs and lots of stair sprints!

It was a fantastic first session, Guin pushed through everything I threw at her and never once stopped. She is a machine and I am looking forward to our weekly workouts and seeing Guin’s results. She is also working on her nutrition at home and paying particular attention to snacking and ensuring she has healthy snacks handy at all times. The key to good nutrition is planning and preparation, see my previous blog post all about this topic!

So, session one has been conquered and we are both looking forward to session two next week. Stay tuned via FitM.U.M’s Facebook page and blog and Guin’s Everyday Style Facebook page and for updates, tips, progress, photos and workouts and feel free to comment with any questions or words of support for Guin, who has been fantastic to share her health and fitness journey with us all!

Peace xx

A FitMUM’s busy week… if you can’t find the time, make the time!

It’s no secret that there is a lot to fit into a week, especially for mummies. I am lucky enough to currently be on maternity leave (bubs is now 4 months old) but some weeks I still struggle to fit everything in to a week. It’s crazy! This week was quite a busy one for us so I thought I would use it as an example and elaborate on how I make time (even if it’s only a small amount of time) for myself and to make sure I fit some form of exercise in every day.

findaway

Like a lot of you, it was back to school for my eldest daughter this week after a busy and fun filled holidays and it was immunisations for my youngest. Irondad is in training for a short course duathlon on Sunday which he has set a pretty high expectations and goals for himself (EDITED post race to say that he smashed it by the way but that’s a different story!). We’ve had plenty of appointments, visits and of course all the household jobs that don’t do themselves as much as we’d like them too. So at the beginning of the week I knew I would have to work hard to fit in my exercise and not use any of that as an excuse to let it slide. It is easy to say “stuff it, I’ll just skip it today” but that can lead to the next day and the next day and before you know it you’ve changed your habits again. That is self-sabotage, try hard not to head down that path. Keep your motivation high and remind yourself of your goals. I am constantly reassessing my short term and long term goals to help me stay focussed and always have something to work towards. I do this in life and in fitness and I find that it really helps me stay motivated, accountable and achieve things.

My week from Sunday to Sunday included 7 runs (1 treadmill interval training run and 6 road runs) ranging from 4km – 7.5km, 3 x HIIT sessions, 1 Gym session and stretching and foam rolling (my old muscles can get a bit sore after running and foam rolling is perfect for easing those knots in your muscles).

Even on the days where I think it is going to be hard to fit it in, I find opportunity when I can and try my best to make it happen. Two good examples of this which I had to do this week were:

* Thursday my little one had her immunistations late in the afternoon and I hadn’t had a chance to do anything beforehand. That night we were having dinner at my parent’s house (they have a treadmill) and I didn’t want to be too far away from bubs, so going out for a run was out of the question as was the gym. I planned to get to my Parent’s house a bit early, got baby to sleep and did a 40 min interval session on their treadmill. It was actually a great sessions because it broke up my running week and provided intervals and heart rate training that I wouldn’t otherwise get on a road run. I was sweating hard, burnt mega calories and it gave my dodgy knee a bit of a rest from the road * all boxes ticked*.

* Friday I had a full on day so once Irondad got home we decided to do our weekly food shopping as we knew we had a busy weekend and wouldn’t get it done. Never one to miss an opportunity, once we had loaded everything into the car, including the children, off they went home with Dad and I ran home from the Supermarket. It is only 4.5km to our house but at least I fit it in, otherwise it just wasn’t going to happen. Do you know, the bonus of this is that by the time I got home all the shopping was put away too. I also did a quick 10 minute HIIT session out the back when I got home to finish the session off. I am usually dressed in my workout gear, you never know when you can improvise and squeeze in a quick run when you are out and about.

As you can see it is not rocket science and if I can fit these little exercise sessions in, hopefully you can too. Sometimes you just need to think outside the box and use 20 minutes when you can grab it. The shorter the timeframe, the harder you should push yourself! It all counts. I am just an average mum like everyone else, who’s time is in demand but all I do is make sure I plan and prioritise so that I don’t miss out! I am so thankful I have such a supportive family too.

If you have to go somewhere as a family on the weekend make sure you wear your workout gear (or at least have it with you in the car along with a hat and suncream and earphones if you like to run with music – be prepared and you can’t go wrong) and get dropped off on the way home and run there. Make sure you pick a distance you know you can comfortably run and increase it each time. I’ve actually lost count of the number of times I have done this. Sometimes the family even pace me in the car and drive along side me for part of the run. My 7 year old loves yelling out the window to encourage me.

4 percent of your day

If you can’t find the time, make the time!

I have done previous posts about the importance of planning and having a goal, read here https://fitmumblog.com/2014/09/29/good-choices-planning-a-goal-results/ it’s the only way to get things done. So, even a busy week can be just as productive, it’s what you do with your time that counts. The choice is YOURS.

30km run week

H.I.I.T Sweat Session

Try this awesome High Intensity Interval Training (H.I.I.T) session. Give your maximum effort and get maximum results. You will feel amazing afterwards and you will burn more fat doing this type of workout and continue to burn calories long after you’ve finished! Now that’s a bonus!

sweat

Perform each exercise for 45 seconds with 15 seconds rest between exercises. Enjoy this full body session. It will take 10 minutes so if you are feeling brave and want more of a workout… do it twice!

H.I.I.T Sweat Session
Push Ups (knees or toes)
Burpees
Jumping Jacks
Mountain Climbers
Plyo Lunges (alternating lunge jumps)
Tricep Dips (use a chair)
Ab Brace (plank)
Squat Jumps
Step Ups or Skipping (if you have a rope)
High Knee Sprint

enjoy 1

Good Choices, Planning & A Goal = RESULTS!!

be proud

Do I proclaim to be the fittest person going around… No I absolutely do not! I am not a 20 something gym junkie, I am a 30 something mother of two who leads a very busy life. What I do proclaim is that I ensure I live a healthy lifestyle, keep active, eat well and be a good role model for my children. After all, we are shaping our children’s lives and they are watching us every single day. I have had many people tell me this is why I am ‘relatable’. I am not trying to be the next figure model but I am determined to be the best version of me I can be and I am learning so much in the process!

My Babies

My Babies

Of course, I like the odd indulgence, who doesn’t? I wouldn’t be being honest if I said I didn’t. I strongly believe that you shouldn’t deny yourself of things, but you should take responsibility and control of what you are consuming and understand the effects it has on your body. I love to socialise and have a good time with friends and family and I lead a ‘normal’ life, but I always realise that everything I do is a choice and sometimes I have to use willpower and discipline when making certain choices. It has actually been amazing for my personal development and growth to see how strong I can be. Since being pregnant with my second daughter, I have loved seeing the strength and determination I have found with my exercise and nutrition. One thing I will stress is that you do have to be in the right frame of mind to make it work. You have to be honest with yourself and be prepared for it to be hard work, but I can promise you it will be so rewarding and you will feel so much happier!

Truth!!

Truth!!

It is a well known fact that it takes 21 days to break old habits and form new ones and you will start seeing awesome results in that short amount of time too! For me, once I made the time for myself to exercise (this does not have to be hours and hours sweating it out at the gym, I will discuss that in a minute) the nutrition part came quite easily because I was feeling so good after exercising that I didn’t want to undo it by eating poorly. It has a roll on effect and BINGO….. that is how you form your new healthy habits.

As I mentioned earlier I am busy like every (super) mum, I also have an Ironman Triathlete hubby who, as well as being extremely dedicated to his family, is also very focused on his own training and reaching his goals so we have to find balance and make that work for us. He has taught me so much about self discipline, training and how much you can do when you are determined. I’ll do a separate story about him another time. Obviously you will also have to find the balance and make it work with your family/work life too, try writing out everyone’s schedules or investing in a family planner/organizer and slot in YOU time. Being busy doesn’t mean you are any less important, or your goals should suffer, it just means you need to work hard on making yourself a priority. I plan my days as much as you can with a 7 year old and a 3 month old. At the moment my preferred form of exercise is running, weights/strength work (at home) and stretching/yoga. I find this easy as I don’t need to go to the gym to get it done.I do quite a bit when my eldest is at school and my littlie is napping or I take her out in the pram. My longer runs I obviously have to wait until hubby is around, something that works for us is he is out on his bike at 6am every Saturday and he gets home around 9ish so I am all ready to go in my running gear and when he gets home I head straight out the door. Sunday he will go for his run first thing and then I go and do a run or a gym class once he is home – Perfect! That way everyone is happy and we are all done and dusted for the day by around 10am.

H.I.I.T (High Intensity Interval Training) is an effective way to exercise especially if you want to work hard but only have limited time. It is a circuit of high intensity exercises performed non stop for 45 seconds with a short 15 sec rest in between, these can vary in length from 10 mins to maximum of 40 minutes. It really gets the heart rate up and is great for fat burning! Later in the week I will post a tough but short H.I.I.T workout that I do so make sure you are following my Facebook page so you don’t miss out https://www.facebook.com/fitm.u.msa

Here’s what you should do next….

Set a personal goal

Write it down

Plan time for yourself

No excuses. Make it happen!

Take note of your progress, be proud of yourself and Enjoy!

set goals demolish them