Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Review of Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred

I've been doing Jillian's DVD workout every day for the past week. Oh. My. Word. I have lost 2.5 inches from each thigh! My calves are slimmer, too! Now, they don't touch when I stand still. My rainboots are no longer tight and actually fit on me! My waist is 1.5 inches smaller!! I cannot believe this! My stomach hasn't changed, but I guess that will happen later. I'm on Level 1, and I love this. After a few days, my stamina had really changed. I am still tired after the workout, but I don't stop nearly as much during it as I used to do. Is this workout effective? Uh, yeah!! I highly recommend this. You won't spend a lot of time doing it, but the results show up quickly! This is amazing!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Scarlett Johansson Avenger Workout

Scarlett hates to diet. So do I. This motivates me to know that you can hate the diet but still lose the weight. I thought she was amazing in both Iron Man 2 and the Avengers. So how does one who hates to diet get in such great shape?

The Workout
The workouts were high-intensity workouts.
  • Circuits - Are we surprised? The past two featured actresses plus Scarlett used circuits to get in shape. Scarlett's trainer, Bobby Strom, created  90-minute circuit workouts, multiple times per week. What help do circuits do? They trim you down quickly, plus allow you to do movements that require quick bursts of speed. Action stars do that a lot. These give you power behind the movement.Strom kept things varied through the use of dumbbells, resistance bands, medicine balls, and TRX; workouts were built around sets of 20, with 25 to 30 reps of each exercise: either five exercises each done four times, or 10 exercises each done twice.
  •  Cardio Intervals - Strom also had her doing running intervals, both in and out of the gym. Strom would also put her on the treadmill for 15 minutes. Each minute, she sprinted for 20 seconds and rested for 40 seconds. Then, he would get her out of the gym and into the parking lot. "I would wrap a band around her and pull her backwards as she tried to sprint," Strom says.
  • Martial Arts - To get in fighter shape, Scarlett did a lot of MMA training. Kickboxing, shadowboxing, it works. This work tones you up and burns fat without the bulk, not that women have enough testosterone to begin with to bulk up. Martial arts is an all-over conditioning. 
 The Diet
For this role, she ate mostly vegan of several small meals throughout the day.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Jessica Biel Workout

With cold weather approaching, not only is my appetite crazy (see post below), I also start to lack motivation to go work out. I live in Puget Sound, WA, and it's already chilly in the mornings and evenings here. This isn't so fun getting out of bed and trying to get psyched up to go to the gym. Lately, I've been working out around lunch time, but I want to switch it up and do early morning workouts. So what do I need? Motivation in the form of learning what others do for their intense workouts. I train not only to lose weight but also for survival. You never know when you might need that extra bit of stamina. When I think of stamina, I think of martial arts. I did karate for years, so I know the endurance needed. I already looked at Maggie Q's workout. Now, I'm looking at Jessica Biel.

The Workout 

Jessica works out six days a week.

  • Combine cardio and weight training in a full body move. Example, using a kettle bell, squat, and as you stand back up, raise the bell over your head. Engaging more muscles burns more, which is why many trainers like moves that require you to work more than one set of muscles. Also, she does a lot of variety of lunges with a medicine ball.
  •  Cardio - Intervals of jogging and sprinting. Kickboxing and shadowboxing. Shadowboxing is where you're fighting an imaginary opponent using martial arts moves. This builds up endurance and speed over time.
  • Calisthenics/Plyometrics - some exercises include sumo squats (squat low and then jump up to standing), stair jumps (jump up on each individual stair all the way up the flight). 
  • Weight training - Jessica uses both free weights and her own body weight. Training should be three times a week for each muscle group. 
  • Yoga - she uses it three times a week for strengthening and stretching. 
  • Ab training to strengthen the core. A lot of power comes from the core, and Jessica would do crunches and leg lifts. She also does a lot of planks; she holds them for 30 seconds each.
Overall, Jessica takes her training seriously and works hard at it.She also does a variety of workouts, such as volleyball and hiking, so as to not get bored

Eat plenty of whole, nutritious foods. Skimping is never recommended. She follows a rule by Bob Harper and that is complex carbs in the morning and then stopping after lunch.

All Over Health
Getting enough sleep, drinking lots of water, having a healthy diet, and staying away from alcohol are musts. 

Friday, September 28, 2012

Maggie Q's Workouts

I've always loved the Nikita line of movies and TV shows, so I was extremely happy that CW brought it back. I wasn't disappointed by the show or the stars. I love action movies/shows, especially ones, like Nikita, that inspire me to workout a little harder and with more focus. Maggie Q is amazing. This show isn't her first time to take on the role of action heroine.

I don't know about you, but I'm so interested in learning how she gets in shape. Maggie has done several interviews on the matter. I've scoured the Internet to find out how she does it. Here are her tricks.

The Workout
"To prepare for Nikita's demanding action sequences, Maggie followed a routine combining core exercises, plyometrics and martial arts," says the show's stunt coordinator, Jonathon Eusebio.
  • Power Yoga - she uses power yoga to give her both strength, flexibility, and endurance to continually perform the martial arts for the show.
  • Cardio Weight Training - pretty much do circuit training. Go at a quick pace with weights. It'll build muscle without bulking and get your heart rate up. Think of exercises like squats with weights. I like calisthenics with the weights. 
  • Cardio Intervals - so many trainers swear by this, and I've seen results from it. Do things like run for a minute, walk for 30 seconds and continue like this for 30-60 minutes. Same idea on the elliptical: one minute fast with resistance, 30 seconds normal.
Sources: here and here.

Friday, June 10, 2011

At-Home Manicure

I love a good manicure, but I'm short on $$. I've decided to learn how to give myself a manicure at home. I've painted my nails in the past, but I've never used a base coat. So, I went out and bought one. For the top and base coats, I'm using Sally Hansen Double Duty Strengthening Base & Top Coat and for the color, I'm using Sally Hansen Hard as Nails 08 First Blush. This is a soft, romantic pink. I almost did a soft white, but I'll try it next.

  1. Clean nails with nail polish remover, even if you don't have any color on.
  2. Shape your nails. Use clippers and a nail file to shape nails. When you file, don't saw back and forth -- it can weaken nails. Instead, start at one edge and move across the top in one fluid motion. I'm keeping mine short-ish. The nail will still be over the finger. The shape will be slightly round.
  3. Soak in soapy water for a few minutes to soften cuticles. Use warm water and add dishwasher detergent to it - no too much!
  4. Use a cuticle cream. Rub in and then push back cuticle.
  5. Wash off and then add a lotion to hands.
  6. Use polish remover again on nails. Dry.
  7. Add base coat. Dry for 1-2 minutes.
  8. Add two coats of color. Always apply polish by starting on the side of the nail. You should be able to cover the nail in three stokes, one on each side and one in the middle. Be sure you let them dry between coats.
  9. Apply top coat.
There you go! I recommend doing this while watching a movie you love and have seen before.

Friday, June 3, 2011

And Something About Her Air... - Posture

I have a tendency to hunch. I know I shouldn't. I've thought about it in the past, but I keep on not standing straight. I'm going to try to make a conscience effort to have better posture. For one, it does make you appear thinnner.

According to Genevieve Antoine Dariaux in Elegance, slouching creates an image of discouragement with life, of being older than you actually are. Women tend to stand straight when trying on clothes, so don't be surprised if they no longer appear the same outside of the dressing room!

I love Elegance; it's filled with great ideas. But Dariaux's opinions do cause me to rethink how I walk. Whether we like it or not, we give off an image and theme when we go out in public. I really need to stand straighter and retrain myself.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Choosing a Lipstick Color

Finding the right lipstick color is a chore for me. I have a lot of problems with it. I like to play up my eyes, so I use a shad that's very close to my own. The key is if you play up the eyes, don't play up the lips; play up the lips, play down the eyes. Everything's about proportions. You don't want to look like a clown.

This might be another time where I have to go to the makeup counter and get someone to help me. I'm going to try to see if I can find the solution myself. I've read about color having undertones, which I can't figure out.

Keep in mind I have fair skin, dark brown hair, and bluish-gray eyes. Turns out, not just looking at the skin plays into the color choice. My skin has red tones in it.

  1. Light-brown beige with pink or orange undertones complement a lighter skin tone. I think the pink undertones would be best for me.
  2. Try medium tones with richer colors, like caramel or deep pink, if you have dark hair and light skin. I usually do a dusty rose color.
  3. The most flattering lip tones will be one or two shades darker than your natural lip color, according to makeup artist Bobbi Brown. To test shades, apply lipstick or gloss to one lip. If that color is just a shade or two deeper than your bare lip, then you've found your shade.
Now, I want to go out and test some shades. I lost my great lipstick. It's Rose Aglow from Clinique, but I think it might be a shade too dark. Need to go back and get a shade.