Back to the gym

Getting back to the routine…

I’ve definitely been MIA on social media lately, and unfortunately also from the gym! For the past month I’ve had weeks with 0-2 workouts because of traveling, family visiting, and catching 2 colds. 🙁 And it hasn’t done any good for my diet either. When I don’t work out I’m more likely to cheat with my eating. I haven’t been terrible, but definitely treated myself way too much. I guess it happens when it gets colder and darker outside. You easily end up on the couch instead of going to work out. But now it’s time for me to get back to the gym!

I’m motivating myself now to get back to the routine, because with Christmas coming up I know I’m going to want to enjoy all the delicious foods and treats. To feel good about myself I need to find my routine again, it just makes me feel so much better. I’m still recovering from a cold so I will give myself today as the last recovery day. I don’t wanna risk getting ill again. Tomorrow I’m going back to the gym, and I’m gonna come up with a really fun leg day for extra motivated.

When it comes to eating I’m also gonna go back to 1 cheat day a week, and eating clean the rest of the days.I’ll do a post specifying my diet since I know a lot of people are not sure how to eat. However, it’s important to keep in mind that it’s very individual. You’ve got to figure out what works better for you and your body.

Feel free to send me an email if you have any questions about working out or healthy eating. I’m not a PT or a dietitian, but I’m well informed and happy to help! 🙂

12 tips to find time to work out

 

With a full time job it’s so hard to find the time to update my blog and instagram as much as I would like, but at the end of the day you always have time for what you choose to prioritize and I do want to prioritize my social media accounts! It’s about taking the time out of your day, planning and organizing – two things I love to do! Instead of spending 1h reading blogs and looking at fitness vlogs on YouTube, I can use that time to create fun blog posts. If I add a little bit of time to my workouts I can get some pictures out of it, and same with my cooking.

There are always things you can do to make time, it comes down to prioritizing and planning. It was definitely much easier to run a blog when I was writing my thesis and working from home, but that doesn’t mean it’s not possible now! I’m gonna set some goals and focus, isn’t that what the autumn is for?

The same structure can easily be applied to working out. A lot of people say they don’t have time to work out, but I think in most cases time is not the problem.

Here are 12 tips to find time to work out:

  1. Sign up to a gym either close to your house or close to your work/university
  2. Wake up earlier in the morning to work out before work/university
  3. Cut down on your TV-shows or Internet surfing
  4. Work out in your lunch hour
  5. Work out at home
  6. Remember that a 30 minute workout is better than NO workout
  7. Always work out on the weekends / your days off
  8. Find a gym buddy and plan workouts together
  9. Always work out on Mondays
  10. Find a type of workout that you enjoy and that will bring you to your goals
  11. Follow instagram accounts / blogs / vlogs of people who inspire you to work out
  12. Set goals for yourself, whether it’s loosing weight, being able to run 5km without stopping, building a booty, increasing your strength, or something else.

I’ll try to apply these tips to my own goal of updating my social media more, and I’m sure you can apply them to other things  as well. Remember that everything you do should in the long run lead to something that makes you happy. Sometimes it’s pushing yourself in the gym even though it’s raining out and you’d much rather stay home on your couch. Another time it’s working 12 hours in a row and missing out on TV-shows or dinners with friends, in order to get where you wanna be in your career.

Goals, prioritizing, planning, and balance. And focus on being happy! 🙂

Summer break and Oats for breakfast

Hi guys! 

It seems like I took a break from the blog during summer, just couldn’t find the time or the energy to blog! I have  been updating my Instagram though, so I hope you haven’t missed me too much 😉

I got super inspired to blog today though, so I’m finally back and will do my very best to update the blog much more often! If there is anything in particular you would like me to write about, please let me know!

I’ve never been a big fan of oats, and always been jealous of everyone who eat that for breakfast since it’s so healthy and nutritious. But, I’ve done some research on how you can change things up from the classic version (in Sweden that means rolled oats with water in the microwave, and then adding milk and berries/jam/cinnamon), and thought I’d share it with you.

Breakfast oats

Microwave oats:
  • 1 mashed ripe banana
  • 1 dl oats
  • 1 dl coconut milk
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon

Microwave on full effect for 1-1,5 minutes, then take out and stir, and put back for another 1-1,5 minutes.

Until here, it’s pretty basic! But the key lies, as always, in the topping! For me what’s been off putting with oats is the blend texture, and the blend taste. I need different textures and flavors to not get sick of it after a few spoons.

When your done with the microwave add: 

  • 1/2 scoop protein powder (I used salted caramel, I think vanilla or chocolate would be yummy too)
  • Toppings of your choice:
    • Fresh berries and fruits (if you have frozen berries, add them in when your stirring the oats at “halftime”)
    • Nuts, coconut flakes, puffed quinoa, seeds (chia, sunflower, pumpkin etc.)
    • Nut butter
    • Dried fruits and berries
    • Quark, cottage cheese, or greek yogurt (I personally didn’t try this, but found this in another recipe)

I chose fresh blueberries, raspberries, grated coconut, pumpkin seeds, puffed quinoa, and crunchy peanut butter. Yummy!

Leg workout and cardio

 

Hi guys! 

I thought I’d share a leg workout and cardio session with you. I did it last week, but for once I’ve got some pictures from the gym 😀 It’s so hard to take pictures there now, and it sucks because I wanna share my workouts with you, and what better way than pictures? First of all I’m going when it’s super crowded since I’m working normal office hours now. Second, loooots of people are going to the gym at this time since many realized summer is here and they wanna feel and look their best!

Is it just me, or is it harder to find the motivation to gym in summer? It’s so hot out lately that everything makes me absolutely exhausted! I’m allowing myself 2 days off the gym during the weekdays so I only have 3 days when I have to drag myself to the gym after I get home from work. Phew! Weekends are sacred, haha I LOVE my weekend workouts. I have lots of time and energy, and a bit more space.

Also there are always other things you wanna do in summer. The long days with daylight until late. Lots of fun plans during the evenings and weekends that might seem more appealing than sweating in the gym. I try to “force” myself to go anyway, I feel so much better after. I also know I need to stick to my routines as much as possible, that’s when I feel the best.

Shuffle on treadmill variation

Leg workout and cardio:
  • Hack squats: 3 x 12
  • Leg extensions: 4 x 16
  • Seated leg press (both legs, single leg, single leg): 3 x 10
  • Glute kickback machine: 4 x 15
  • Lower back extensions machine, focus on glutes and hammies: 2 x 20

When it comes to the cardio, all treadmills were taken of course. But we found a new machine that was way better! My friend named it “the death trap” lol. We did shuffles, intervals, and low “sledge pushes”, and it was SO hard! Loved trying something new, and it felt even worse than normal intervals on a treadmill haha.

Hope you’re having a great week, tomorrow it’s FRIDAY! 🙂

Stay healthy when traveling

 

I’ve written about this before, but I think it’s worth mentioning again since summer is here and some of us will be traveling. How do you avoid losing track of your eating and workout routine when you’re traveling? Basically what to do  to stay healthy when traveling. As it happens, I’m traveling to Sweden today to celebrate Swedish  Midsommar (Yay!) and I thought I’d share how I think about how to stay healthy when traveling.

First of all, if you’re going on vacation you should definitely let yourself enjoy it to the fullest! It’s only a short time if you look at a whole year, and since you’re already being so good for the rest of the year (I’m sure you are! Don’t be too hard on yourself) I say you should indulge a little when you’re on holiday.
However, you still wanna treat your body and soul right. The sunshine, the new cultural experiences, the trying of new exciting foods, and meeting new people are already giving you so much on your holiday, but there are more things your body might “crave”.

For example I wouldn’t eat food with no nutrition, or drink alcohol every day (ok, maybe if it was a bachelorette trip haha), but I’m going to have pasta, ice cream, cocktails etc. whenever I feel like it. I would still want to be active, maybe there’s a gym at the hotel? Or you can do everything by foot? I love traveling and for me to go to the gym for 45 minutes a few times during my stay somewhere would just be fun! It becomes a bit obsessive (in my opinion) if you for example skip exploring the culture because you have to go run or go to the gym. You want to stay healthy when traveling, but also remember the reason for your holiday, and that you don’t wanna miss out on fun activities that you would love to experience!

As with everything health and fitness related it’s all about listening to your body, enjoying yourself, and not mistreating your body! Eat what you feel like eating, it’s only a week or a weekend so don’t be too strict with yourself. Most likely you are going to want to eat nutritious foods because you’re used to it and your body will let you know that’s what it needs, but do indulge in that yummy lasagna, or those fried calamaris!

Enjoy your vacations this summer guys, and feel free to write me if you have any questions or need any advice on what to do or how to stay healthy when traveling! 🙂

My awesome leg and shoulder workout

 

I finally went back to the gym yesterday, and of course I did a leg day! Felt soooo good to be back, and I had a great session! Today I did a shoulder workout and finished off with abs, I got such a great pump in my shoulder muscles. I feel so excited about being back in the gym, and am already planning what I’ll do tomorrow, and this weekend 😀 Anyway, I thought I’d share both my leg and shoulder workout with you guys, maybe there’s someone out there who’d need some inspo? These were both “new” routines for me, sometimes you get stuck doing the same exercises, but these workouts are a bit changed up. Especially the one for shoulders 🙂

Leg and shoulder workout:

LEG WORKOUT 

Warm-up, Leg press: 2 x 20

  • Squats in the smith machine: 4 x 10
  • Kneeling squats in the smith machine: 3 x 10
  • Leg curl machine (hamstrings): 4 x 12
  • Straight leg deadlifts with dumbbells: 4 x 12
  • Cybex squat press (the leg press machine where you push more upwards): 4 x 10

After this my legs were barely keeping my up straight!

SHOULDER WORKOUT

Warm-up, upright rows – shoulder press – front raises with dumbbells 2 x 10 on each with no rest in between the each exercise.

  • Shoulder press: 4 x 10
  • Shoulder circuit; front raise – Y raise – T raise: 4 x 10 on each
  • Shoulder press machine: 4 x 8, with drop sets x 10
  • Face-pulls with cable: 4 x 20-15-12-8 (increasing weights)
  • Upright row with cable: 4 x 10-12, plus a drop set of x16

I finished off with 4 sets of 3 abs exercises, and now after having had dinner I’m dead. I’m sure I’m gonna be super sore in my shoulders tomorrow, my hamstrings are killing me from yesterday. Love it!

Protein bowl

 

This morning I was out of acai powder, and couldn’t make my usual (been eating it for the last couple of days) yummy acai bowl. Many times it’s when I realize I’m missing an ingredient that I also come up with a new recipe or dish, and that’s exactly what happened this morning with this protein bowl. Nothing extremely innovative, but basically a mix of my acai bowl and my protein smoothie. Sooo delicious, and super healthy as well!

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 As promised, here is the recipe for this mornings protein bowl:
  • A splash of coconut milk (around 0,5-1 dl)
  • 1 scoop strawberry stevia protein powder
  • 1 banana
  • Oats (I didn’t measure, but maybe 0,5 dl)
  • 1 tbsp chia seeds (finally find a way to get those slimey bastards down! haha)
  • 4 fresh strawberries

Mix well in a blender, and serve with your favorite topping. I chose 1/3 banana (what was left from a snack yesterday 😛 ), fresh blueberries, fresh raspberries, grated coconut, and a spoon of peanut butter. YUMMY!! Definitely recommend this for breakfast guys, so delicious and full of nutritious things! 🙂

Working out when you’re sick

 

Happy Monday everyone!

I’ve spent the weekend super sick. Somehow I managed to get a flu, with fever and everything 🙁 Not how I planned my weekend to go. I’ve been in bed or on the couch the whole time, and today I even had to stay home from work. I’m really not feeling good at all, and I have no energy for anything. Just doing laundry made me feel dizzy and completely exhausted. I’m really feeling sorry for myself as you can see!

I’m missing the gym so much, it sounds silly but I realllly wish I could go work out! Since I started my new job I haven’t been able to get any amazingly long workouts in during the week days so the weekends became my favorite gym days. So having a weekend with basically no activity what so ever (my fitbit is probably laughing at me) feels no bueno. I’m still adjusting to having a new job, and I’ve had a lot of people visiting here since I started, so I was really excited now to really find a new routine for when I go to the gym. Ugh. Anyway, I’m hoping to feel better tomorrow and that I can get back to the gym soooon!

When it comes to working out when you’re sick I really make sure to listen to my body to not make things worse. A lot of people will still go to the gym even if their bodies are craving rest. Of course it depends on how you’re sick; for example if your throat is hurting or you have a fever, you shouldn’t work out at all. So since I’ve had both those symptoms, and been super dizzy and with a heavy head, I haven’t been able to go. But as soon as that goes away, and I’m just congested, I’ll be back at the gym but starting light. You know when you’ve had a flu or a bad cold, and you feel like you’re back to normal but you still sound sick and sniffly? At that point I consider my body ready to go back and work out. It really makes no sense to force a sick body to exercise because you’ll get no results from the workout, and worst case you’ll even make more damage to your body, meaning you’ll end up having to stay away from the gym even longer!

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And what do I do with the cravings that come when you’re sick and feeling sorry for yourself?
I really try to eat healthy also when I’m sick, because in a way that’s when you need nutritious food the most! I’ve had big healthy breakfasts, light lunches, healthy snacks, and dinners. Basically I’ve been eating the same as I normally do, but lotssssss of fruits for snacks. There’s been a little bit of Häagen Dazs going on (oops!), but overall I’ve been good! 🙂

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I hope you’re having a better start to the week than I am!
Hit me with your workout for today so I have something to look forward to doing when I’m better! 

Great leg day

 

Happy Sunday!

Yesterday I did such a great leg day, I can really feel my glutes and hamstrings suffering today, haha but what a lovely feeling! I’ve signed up in a second gym that is even closer to my house, so like this I can manage to get workouts in even when I really have no time. I don’t love it as much as my normal for leg days, so I had to look for some new inspiration for what exercises to do. I of course found some from one of my favorite fitness bloggers, and I basically copied one of her workouts for legs 🙂

Here is the workout from my great leg day!
  • Front squats with barbell, not super heavy and with focus on technique and doing them deeeeeep: 4 x 12
  • Lunges with dumbbells: 3 x 10 each leg
  • Step-ups on a bench with dumbbells: 3 x 10 each leg
  • American deadlifts (squeeze the glutes on top!) with dumbbells: 3 x 10
  • Sumo squats with dumbbell: 3 x 10-12
  • Back extension with focus on the glutes: 2 x 16
  • Glute kickbacks with elastic band: 2 x 12 each leg

I’m now gonna go get ready for a lunch in the sun with some of my favorite people 🙂 Best way to spend a Sunday!

I hope you also have a great day! 

How to find time to work out

 

I get a lot of questions regarding how to find time to work out. A lot of people find it very hard to get time over for the gym after work, university, studying, groceries, house work, and spending time with family and friends. And on top of all the things you have to/want to do in a day, you also need to have time for coming up with healthy meals, cooking, eating, and getting the right amount of sleep. HOW is this even possible to manage? I thought I’d share some tips on how to find time to work out. It doesn’t have to be so complicated, and it doesn’t have to mean you never see your friends, or never sleep haha.

Tips on How to find time to work out:
  • MAKE time. You might have to sacrifice watching TV, getting stuck in front of Facebook or Instagram for hours. I’ve had to cut down on my time spent on tv shows, Instagram etc. to free up more time.
  • Every minute counts! It might be hard to get in 1-2h a day at the gym, but even if you’re only there for 30-45 minutes it still counts! Save the longer workouts for the weekend or your days off.
  • Wake up earlier. A lot of people get their workouts done before going to work/uni. This way you still have the afternoon/evening free for everything else, although you might need to go to bed a bit earlier.
  • Work out with your friends. You’ll get your workout done, and you’ll spend time with your friends as well – win win! It’s more fun to work out together anyway, and it makes it more motivating as well. To birds with one stone!
  • Plan your days. If you know you have a lot to do in the afternoon, then make sure to get the workout done in the morning. Weekends will be the days where you can do a massive leg day for example, or really take your time with those intervals.
  • Move working out up on your list of priorities. If you want to be committed to the gym, you’re gonna have to prioritize it.
  • Be creative! Go out and run for 20 minutes, do a HIIT circuit at home, start walking or riding a bike to work/uni, do a little abs workout before bed. There are many ways to get your workouts in without spending lots of time!

Biceps and Triceps plus Abs and Cardio

 

Happy Sunday!

I started my day with a yummy breakfast and am now getting ready to hit the gym! Yesterday was a rest day for me, I spent the day organizing my house and tanning, but today I’m excited to get a workout in! I’m going to do biceps and triceps, and finish with abs and cardio. Not my favorite workout, but I’m excited to go to the gym and sweat anyway. I might sneak a few booty exercises in there as well if I have time and extra strength. FullSizeRender

When I do biceps and triceps I like to do one exercise for each muscle group back to back, like a superset.
This is my workout plan for today:

Biceps & Triceps
    • Bicep hammer curls
    •  Tricep overhead dumbbell extension
    • Turning bicep curls
    • Bent over tricep extensions
    •  Elevated bicep curls
    • Lying tricep dumbbell hammer extensions
    • Straight bicep curls
    • Tricep dips on bench

I’m gonna do heavier weights than normal but with fewer reps, it’s always good to change things up a little bit, especially when you’re not too motivated about the workout..
Haha and I might not have the energy to also add a couple of booty exercises, this already looks pretty intense! Might be a better idea to save the glutes for tomorris, perfect to do a leg day on a Monday anyway 🙂

What are you doing at the gym today or is Sunday your rest day?
Hope you have a great day! 

Favorite shoulder exercises

 

Hi guys!
Yesterday at the gym I worked shoulders and abs, and finished off with 15 min intervals on the  treadmill. Super sore today, and I’m also still sore from my leg workout the other day! Speaking of that, I got to the gym and they had changed around all the machines to new places as well as changed everything for a new high tech model! I mean it’s great that it’s all brand new, but it took me forever to find everything haha Also, they have gotten rid of some machines and gotten a couple of new ones. Unfortunately there is no longer a glute kickback machine which I loved 🙁 But I guess I’ll have to use the cables instead.
Anyway, yesterday was shoulder day, and I thought I’ll share my favorite shoulder exercises with you guys! I might have shared these before, but it’s so good it can be repeated 🙂

Favorite shoulder exercises:
  • Dumbbell shoulder press
  • Rear lateral flies with weight plates
  • Standing pull up with dumbbell
  • Altering front dumbbell raises
  • Straight arm standing dumbbell flys
  • Bent arm lateral dumbbell raises

I finished off with a circuit that I described before . It really kills you and takes the laaast bit of strength you’ve got in your muscle. They changed the benches as well though, so it was impossible to do them leaning on a bench haha I was too short 🙁 But I did them standing up instead, and that worked just as well!

image1Dumbbell flys 
IMG_0264Bent arm lateral dumbbell raises 

Back in My Routine

 

Hi guys, I’m back home in Barcelona now after a few weeks spent in Sweden. I did have time for a weekend back here a little while back, had a meeting that went very well 🙂 Feels good to be back with my routine even though I managed to stick to it pretty well in Sweden! I kept the gym routine up, although I didn’t work my abs almsot anything, and also did less intervals. My diet was pretty good, I ate healthy breakfast, lunch, and dinner, but I did have a lot of cheat meals haha My mom baked and I went for ice cream i couple of times. Oops! But now I’ll be back to clean eating, and I’m actually excited about it!

I’ve made a list (I love making lists! haha Who else does?) of things to do this week, and am now sharing an apple with my little dog before hitting the gym. I’ve obviously already had a big breakfast, but felt like I needed to fill up on the carbs a little bit before doing a great leg day! I’ve planned this to be my workout:

Leg Day
  • Seated leg press
  • Seated hamstring curl machine
  • Glutes kickback machine
  • Abductor machine
  • Back extension machine targeting glutes (Have posted a picture of this one on Instagram!) 

I’m gonna try to do a bit heavier and fewer reps this time to change things up, so I’ll do maximum 8 reps per set on leg press, hamstring curls and the abductor machine. Kickbacks and the back extension I’ll do a little bit lighter (still heavy though!) and higher reps. So excited! 🙂

Enjoying the sea

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How is it already Thursday?? I’ve had such a great start of the week. I went to my family’s summer house on the west coast of Sweden, and it’s been so nice to just relax and enjoy the nature and countryside. I love being next to the sea, it’s something so peaceful and relaxing with the smell of the sea, and the nature around it. My little doggy loved running around there to and smell all the scents of bunnies, foxes, cows, and horses. I wasn’t able to gym there but we took lots of loooong walks and it was really well needed. It’s amazing how good it is for you to get out in the nature and just walk and experience everything around you, at this time everything is so green and blossoming too so it was really beautiful.  Thanks to my Fitbit I was constantly reminded to get up and go for walks, I did spend a fair share of the time reading and tanning too.. 🙂  It’s really helpful to make sure you’re active also during lazy days!

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Yesterday when we got back I did a Tabata class to get a quick workout in, felt so good to sweat and do a high intensity class where you don’t need to think about what exercises to do. Today I’m really sore in my thighs and shoulders, so my sister and I will do a back workout at the gym. If my knees feel good afterwards we’ll finish with some intervals, but I’ll listen to my body and see how I feel. It’s very important to remember that your body can give you lots of warning signs that something is not right, or that you’re about to injure yourself, so make sure to be receptive of those signals.

I’ll get back to you with a post on what back exercises we did and hopefully some pictures too 🙂 We’ll see how crowded the gym is, but it should be ok since we’re going early.

How to loose fat

 

One of the most common questions I get is how to loose fat, and I guess it is one of the most common struggles when it comes to health and fitness. Personally I’ve always been skinny and have had a hard time gaining weight and muscle, something that bothered me a lot when I was younger and always was the stick thin one. I hated it! Anyway, I do understand the problem, and I will give you a few advice on how to go about it.

How to Loose Fat
  • First of all, there is no quick fix. Forget about “Fit/Skinny Tea” or other magical pills that claim to make you loose fat. It’s not true. Think about it, if all it took was a pill or a cup of tea, no one would be over weight.
  • Diet is everything. You need to make sure your intake of energy (food) is smaller than the energy used in exercise. I don’t like to count calories etc. because it can easily turn into an unhealthy obsession, but you need to make sure you don’t eat more than your body uses, if that makes sense.
  • Try to do both cardio and weight training in your workout. Cardio will burn a lot of fat in the moment, but with weight training it burns during the workout as well as for a very long time afterwards. It speeds up your metabolism in general, which is great  for fat loss.
  • You can’t burn fat in isolated areas. The adductor machine (the one where you sit down and press your legs together) wont burn fat off your inner thighs. Doing 1.000 crunches a day wont give you a tiny, flat belly etc. Weight training means building and shaping a muscle, cardio means burning off fat all over your body.
  • Everyone is different. I don’t mean this in a “unique snow flake” kind of way (all though you all are unique snow flakes!!), but that there is not one method that works for everyone. Bottom line is that you’ll need to eat clean and nutritious food, eat less than what you use up so that you’re on a constant calorific deficit (sounds horrible but it really doesn’t have to be!

Having said this, this is how I personally would go about loosing weight/fat:

  1. Weight training 5-6 days a week
  2. 12-20 minute intervals on the treadmill 4-5 days a week (after the weight training)
  3. No simple carbs (sugar, white flour, alcohol, etc.)
  4. Complex carbs for breakfast and lunch, but not for dinner/at night
  5. Keep the fat sources clean; olive oil, coconut oil, nuts, nut butters, fish, avocado, etc.
  6. Drink lots of water, put lemon, mint, or similar to flavor it if you prefer
  7. Supplements: BCAA, protein powder, Pre Workout, L-Carnitine (fat blocker), Green tea extract (metabolism booster)
  8. One rest day where you can eat complex carbs whenever you want (also for dinner)

This might sound very tough, but I’d recommend a tough period first and then as you go along you can start including a cheat meal per week and be a bit less strict with your meals. It also depends how much weight you want to loose, and how your body is used to working out, so this is definitely not a “one size fits all” method.

Feel free to send me an email if you have any questions or want some more personalized advice! I’m happy to help out with suggestions for eating and working out! 🙂