Booty’s are all the rage right now but what about your guns? Buff not burly biceps & triceps are a must for all chicks. They give you the strength to perform everyday activities, from shopping, picking up the wee ones, twisting open jars, and driving your car. As well it balances out your arms in a beautiful and awesome shape!
In Episode 52 of FIT CHICKS Chat, Head Chicks Laura and Amanda discuss:
Why women shouldn’t be afraid to work out the bi’s and tri’s
Where are the biceps and triceps and how they are worked
Specific exercises to target these muscles
Why lifting light weights for high reps won’t get you the arms you want
How to keep your upper body workout interesting and FUN
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March Bootcampsand with this long, cold winter, you may be needed some motivation to start or crank up your workouts (remember chicks, summer bodies are built in the winter so you gotta start now!)
And what is better motivation than a good ol’ fashioned SUCCESS STORY….and we have an awesome one for you!
Meet new mom Jen from our Toronto Forest Hill Location who has fallen in love with fitness and is an incredible example for her son but has lost 11 inches and is 2 sizes smaller than before she was pregnant. Her story and commitment to making healthy changes for her family and herself totally pumps us up and we know her story will for you too….Take it away Jen!!
What made you decide to join FIT CHICKS?
I first discovered FIT CHICKS when I was looking for fitness classes in my neighborhood. I had a baby a few months ago, so I needed something close by so I could minimize the time I was away from home. I also wanted to find something that would be a good workout to make the most of the time I had for fitness.
I have been going to Fit Chicks bootcamp classes twice a week since August. I have regained strength and have lost 11 inches! I recently went shopping in preparation for returning to work and was surprised to see that I am now two sizes smaller than I was before I was pregnant!
What is the biggest change you have seen in your life since joining FIT CHICKS? How has fitness and nutrition changed your life for the better?
The biggest change has definitely been in my strength. After having a baby via c-section, just walking down the street was a huge challenge! FIT CHICKS helped me not only regain my strength but also increase it.
What do you find is your biggest challenge to continue to choose to be active? How do you overcome it?
My biggest challenge in continuing to be active is finding the time and energy, especially after many sleepless nights with a baby. My main motivation for sticking with it is that I want to continue to lead a healthy lifestyle for myself and as an example for my son. The progress I feel in the increase in strength, the increase of energy and the measurable loss of inches also help me to keep going.
What are 2 – 3 tools you use to keep you on a healthy track outside of class? Do you use the FIT CHICKS Workout Map?
I try to go for a long walk each day. I also eat a whole foods, plant based diet and I try to ensure everything I eat has fibre, fat, and protein.
If you could give one piece of positive advice to a chick just starting on her fitness journey, what would it be?
Don’t give up! If you are trying a new routine, give it a few weeks and try your best. Its ok if you can’t keep up right away, it gets easier!
Do you have a healthy “go to” recipe that you use for a meal that you take with you? Please share
My favourite breakfasts are those that I can make the night before. Chia pudding is a favourite. I mix 1/4 cup of chia seeds with 1 cup of non-dairy milk in a mason jar and leave it in the fridge overnight. It will last a couple of meals and I top it with whatever I have on hand: fruit, dried coconut, hemp seeds, oats, etc.
What are 3 things in your gym bag and/or kitchen could you not live without? (ie could be a product, piece of clothing, music, etc)
a vegetable spiralizer. I love pasta, so having spiralized vegetables is a great healthy and satisfying change. I also use it to spiralize vegetables for salads to keep things interesting.
comfortable, well-fitting gym pants
a good blender for making green smoothies
What is your fave FIT CHICKS Signature workouts & why? Is there anything that is different about your experience at FC than at other gyms or classes?
I love the tabatas workouts. Having shorter bursts of exercise makes it easy to power through the workout. I like the motivating and supportive environment at Fit Chicks. I also appreciate the focus on form to make sure we are doing the exercises safely and correctly.
Being fierce is about healthy inside & out. How do you stay motivated and thinking positive about fitness and health? What do you do to nurture your soul and celebrate your fierceness?
I occasionally have weeks where I am not as active as I’d like to be, or maybe I wasn’t able to eat as healthily as I wanted to. What really helps me is to not dwell on it and turn my focus to the next week. Being positive and accepting that I’m not perfect pushes me to do my best.
Jen, thank you so much for sharing your story, inspiring us all and we are so proud of you!
FIT CHICKS xo
PS- If you are ready to lose weight, build strength and feel amazing this summer, join our Springtime Shed Bootcamp starting March 6th for 8 weeks FIERCE, FUN & FAT BLASTING Workouts that will get you results in time for summer. But you gotta start NOW! Enter code “chickpower8” to save $50 off your March Bootcamp starting March 6th…see you there 🙂
We re gearing up to kick off our Jan Bootcamps on Jan 9th (make sure to grab your spot!) so let’s get super inspired and positive in this first month of 2017 by celebrating an awesome fitness success story from one of our Toronto chicks, Vanessa from our Toronto Orde St Bootcamp
Vanessa is an awesome inspiration to all chicks. After looking for a new way to challenge herself, Vanessa found the support of the Toronto Orde St chicks and transformed her workout routine , changed her body, her diet and most important her health for the long haul (livin la vida FIT CHICK does a body good!)
1. What made you decide to join FIT CHICKS ?
At the time, my life was moderately active. But most of those activities (i.e. cycling, jogging, swimming) were solitary. I started looking for new ways to challenge myself physically, and loved the idea of doing it in a supportive group setting.
2. What is the biggest change you have seen in your life since joining FIT CHICKS? How has fitness and nutrition changed your life for the better?
For me, it’s all about the mindset. I can’t deny that I’m in better shape than I was when I first joined. But truthfully, I try not to put too much stock in numbers.
Instead, there are little things that bring me a lot of joy. Sleeping more soundly. Waking up with more energy. Feeling more confident in day-to-day life.
Another huge joy is the opportunity to work out with so many brilliant, fun women. Exercise is a lot more enjoyable when you’re laughing with someone else.
3. What do you find is your biggest challenge to continue to choose to be active? How do you overcome it?
Having a solid routine is key. Planning ahead for each weekday is the only way I can ensure I’m going to fit in exercise, nutritious meals, and a good night’s sleep. Even then, life doesn’t always go according to plan — and that’s okay!
The flexibility of this program is great. It’s so helpful to know that if work runs late, I can go to a class at a different time or do a make-up class at a different location.
3. What are 2 – 3 tools you use to keep you on a healthy track outside of class?
Since joining, I’ve worn a pedometer to track my daily activity. I plan my weekly meals on a spreadsheet. I also adore the New York Times’ cooking app for healthy recipes. Of course, I also use the resources on the Fit Chicks website.
4. If you could give one piece of positive advice to a chick just starting on her fitness journey, what would it be?
Be kind to yourself.
5. Do you have a healthy “go to” recipe that you use for a meal that you take with you?
These days, I really enjoy making pear and parsnip soup. It’s perfect for the colder weather, and one batch can be easily stretched into a work week.
Omelette muffins are also a fun, versatile recipe.
6. What are 3 things in your gym bag and/or kitchen could you not live without? (ie could be a product, piece of clothing, music, etc)
– Headband: Truly the hero of my gym bag.
– Blender: From soup to smoothies, it works hard.
– Phone: All of my grocery lists, pedometer results, and meal plans are stored on it. Not to mention, my online calendar.
7. What is your fave FIT CHICKS Signature workouts & why?
Partner drills always get me laughing, and they’re a great way to stay motivated. Tabatas are always the most punishing in the moment, but feel so rewarding.
8. Being fierce is about healthy inside & out. How do you stay motivated and thinking positive about fitness and health?
My instructor Lara is a huge part of that. She is a tireless positive spirit, and a total force of nature. When I first joined, I hadn’t expected support to extend beyond class time. It’s always such a pleasure to receive additional resources from her via email — from kind words, to her playlists.
On a more personal level, I try to make peace with where I am on any given day. Observing what I can do without negativity allows me to be constructive, and focus on what I can do better. It also makes life a lot more joyful.
Vanessa, we are beyond proud of you and your hard work…it is so inspiring to all chicks that starting (or already started!) living la vida FIT CHICK that they can make healthy changes too. Thanks for allowing us to help along your journey, sharing your story with us and keep up the fabulous work!
Make today fabulous xo
FIT CHICKS XO
PS- If you want to join in the fitness fun, our next bootcamps start Jan 9th PLUS we have 2 awesome promos including save $50 off your 8 week bootcamp when you enter code newyear8 and 3 month autopay from $129!* Sign up here:)
We are buzzing around the Coop today as we have a HUGE announcement….today is the day we launch our FIT CHICKS Chat Podcast!
Every year we go into our planning mode where we look at all the ways we can help women reach their goals.
This past January, we kept on getting emails from women asking our views/opinions/advice about specific areas of fitness, nutrition and wellness and Amanda and I would sit and banter about our thoughts during these meetings before answering their emails.
One day, we looked at each other and said, “Why not instead of answering via email, let’s record these convos so other peeps with the same q’s can listen to.” (plus typing that much info can lead to serious finger cramps lol).
We then wondered “What will we talk about for 30 – 60 min each week?!” Which quickly turned into us looking at each other and dying laughing as the last thing you will ever say about us is that we are boring or quiet. Between our personal ups and down in the industry, our chicks and all of our experience…we def won’t be lost for topics 😉
We have done many podcast interviews and they were always a blast and decided to launch our own…introducing FIT CHICKS Chat!
Starting today, episodes will be available every Tuesday on Itunes, Stitcher and right here on the blog. (Each episode is between 30 – 60 min and covers a topic of fitness, nutrition & wellness and is perfect to download and listen to while doing your workouts or commuting to work!).
Here is a quick overview of FIT CHICKS Chat with your truly – Laura Jackson & Amanda Quinn
Laura Jackson & Amanda Quinn are founders of FIT CHICKS® & FIT CHICKS® Academy – Canada’s largest women’s only fitness company, leading Fitness & Nutrition Experts and TV Hosts of “Shape Up with FIT CHICKS”.
Each week on FIT CHICKS Chat, Laura & Amanda get you PUMPED to create your FIERCEST life – inside & out. Whether your goal is to lose weight, get toned, eat healthier, stress less, feel inspired or just have some healthy cheerleaders in your corner, each episode is packed with their own tested, ACTIONABLE fitness, nutrition and wellness strategies to get you there!
Why? Because after helping 1000’s of women of all levels transform their bodies and minds, Laura & Amanda figured out what they really love: helping women like YOU reach your goals by breaking down the BIG, confusing info about fitness, nutrition & wellness into easy step-by-step actions…so you can see BIG, life changing results, fast – no matter where you are in your fitness and life journey!
*For informational purposes only. Please consult a physician before starting an eating or exercise program
Meet the Head Chicks, Laura & Amanda, in episode 1 of FIT CHICKS Chat! From learning how they met and started FIT CHICKS and how fitness and nutrition changed their lives to the top 3 things that drive them crazy with the current state of the fitness industry that is keeping you from reaching your goals and what you can do TODAY to stop this cycle, Episode 1 is a fired up to kick off the FIT CHICKS Chat Podcast (plus a sneak peek of what to expect coming up!).
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And if you have a question about fitness, nutrition, wellness or business that you would like us to give our 2 cents about or have any feedback about the show, simply email us at email@example.com …we would love to hear from you!
You know how much I LOVE to talk so in this 30 min we covered a TON of ground around a specific question his listener, Joy, sent in about how she exercises every day with cardio, weights and classes and still can not lose weight. Check out her question below.
I feel like I’m lucky because I actually love to exercise. I go to the gym every day to do cardio, weights, classes, and almost always look forward to it (not always, but most of the time!) but I still carry a little extra weight around my waist and in my butt. Sometimes I wonder if I’m exercising too much. What do you think? I really just want to be healthy, but would love to tone up too.
In true FIT CHICKS form, we look at the whole picture – from fitness, nutrition and wellness -and chatted about what factors in each areas could actually be holding you back from reaching your goals. Plus how you can make easy health tweaks that will make all the difference, exercise less and ge BETTER results (how fab is that!?)
If this sounds like you, make sure to listen. I want you to reach your goals to feel like the fierce chick you are meant to so please leave your questions / comments below and I will help as much as I can 🙂
Laura Jackson is Founder of FIT CHICKS®, Canada’s largest women’s only fitness company. Starting in 2008 with only 7 chicks and many companies in the industry failing to grow, Laura’s goal of “fierce fitness made fun” that’s accessible to ALL women expanded their award winning women’s only boot camp from over 20 locations to include health retreats, fitness DVD’s programs, nutrition challenges and FIT CHICKS Academy(r) online certification programs. To date she has helped over 7500 women reach their goals.
Certified Personal Trainer, IDFA Fitness Competitor, Culinary Nutrition Expert and Holistic Nutritionist, Laura is the TV Host of “Shape Up with FIT CHICKS” on Rogers TV. She is also a fitness and nutrition contributor to national publications and TV Shows such as Canadian Living Magazine, The National Post, Breakfast Television, CTV Morning Live and has appeared on CBC’s “Dragon’s Den” and The Shopping Channel
Laura’s commitment to women’s health earned her 2015 Top 3 Fitness Professionals in Canada by Can FIT Pro & Stevie Award for Women in Business – Health & Wellness Company of the Year.
When it comes to burning calories, there are a TON of misconceptions you may be hearing.
Do any of these sound familiar?
MYTH 1. Longer workouts are better and burn MORE calories (aka elliptical trainer for 60 min)
MYTH 2. Cardio works the best and should be done separate to strength training
MYTH 3. Women should avoid strength training to lose weight
These are all NOT TRUE!
TRUTH 1. High intensity + shorter time = Fierce results!
Studies have shown that by working at a high intense pace for a short period of time not only BURNS more calories than a steady state 60 min (and this is due to a sweet thing called EPOC or what we like to call “afterburn” which keeps your body burning calories at a high rate for up to 24 hours following your sweat session!) but also does not deplete your calorie burning muscle mass which we do not want to get rid of (check out truth 3 as to why)
TRUTH 2: You can get cardio WHILE you do strength if you do it RIGHT
You do not have to do cardio and strength training separately. By adding total body strength moves you and moving quickly through your exercises, you are going to get your heart PUMPING aka you are getting strong and burning cardio cals at the same time (aka there is no need to spend more time working out than necessary if you are moving through them quickly!)
TRUTH 3: Women NEED strength training more than men do…especially as we age.
Muscle is metabolically active (ie you burn more calories doing nothing at all) and the more you have will keep you from gaining weight, hormonal imbalance and osteoporosis.). But if you don’t use it, you lose it! After 50, your muscle strength decreases by 15% per decade which is a contributing factor to weight gain so let’s keep those muscle working and STRONG!
So what have we go to help you bring these truths to your workouts? Chick Sergeant Jenn (who brings the tough love to her Toronto Harbourfront & King / Bathurst Bootcamps) was kind enough to share an awesome 15 min AMRAP for all levels (and if you don’t know what that is, watch and find out:) that combines all 3 truths for a fierce calorie burn.
Sharing is caring so please click on the Facebook share or tweet and let’s get the TRUTH out there 🙂
We wanted to take this time to celebrate an awesome and valuable member of the FIT CHICKS family who has just reached a kick butt milestone…1 year of teaching bootcamp with us and helping chicks reach their fab fitness goals!
We are so proud of her dedication, passion and hard work she puts into her chicks and her camp each everyday and wanted to take a moment to give her a huge shout and celebrate her hard work. We could tell you but thought it would be more fun for Anna to tell you herself:)
So here is Anna to share a few things about her and what she loves about bootcamp, teaching and living la vida FIT CHICK…take it away chick!
What is your favorite exercise/workout in bootcamp that you love to teach and gets your chicks the best results?
My favorite workout in bootcamp is the Dirty 30 HIIT (high intensity interval workout) workout, which consists of a succession of 3 exercises performed 3 times over each for 30 seconds. Dirty 30 HIIT alternate between high intensity cardio and low intensity strength training and I love the diversity of exercises I can create in this workout and combing total body training in all movements to get desired results in the shortest amount of time. It’s fabulous for raising your metabolic rate higher and longer which means burning fat calories when resting. Score! You gotta admit, it feels pretty good knowing that.
What motivates you to be a fitness bootcamp instructor (and a fitness professional in general)?
What motivates me to be a bootcamp fitness instructor is developing my skills, experiencing change, activating and expanding my inner light so I can positively impact others. I love to create butt kick workouts that are smart and fun to dramatically transform the way chicks feel from the inside out. What motivates me is achieving a vibration that is in alignment with what feels good mentally, physically and spiritually and being an inspiration for others. I love life, celebrating successes and being part of a community of like minded people. Being a bootcamp fitness instructor allows me to be a cheerleader– encouraging others to bring out their personal best and to live life fully. Life is suppose to be fun and we’re suppose to feel good!
Music is so great to get us pumped and make working out fun! So let us know, what is on your playlist?
Here is a sneak peek of some of my fave workout tunes….
David Guetta – The World Is Mine
Madonna- Give It To Me
Mariah Carey- We Belong Together
Shakira- Give It Up To Me
Selena Gomez- Naturally
Destiny’s Child- Lose My Breath
Rihanna- Don’t Stop The Music
Justin Timberlake- Carry Out
Jennifer Lopez- On The Floor
Tim Berg- Seek Bromance
Ofra Haza- Love Song
Above & Beyond- Good For Me
Thanks for sharing Anna and we love having you as a part of our FIT CHICK Family – you rock chick!
It’s my first Wellness Wednesday post of the New Year – yippee! I still can not believe we are in 2012. I recently went to the Prince concert and was jammin’ to “I wanna party like its 1999” thinking “OMG, that was 13 years ago?!”.
Time goes by so fast and this year will fly by too so now that it has started I want to ask you, what do you have planned to make 2012 the most kick butt, amazing, fantastic year of your life?
I recently did an interview with The Huffington Post about New Year’s resolutions and if I believe they work. While I don’t personally set “resolutions”, I am a HUGE believer in big dreams, goal setting, action plans, hard work and one question “how bad do you want it?” (doesn’t sound as sexy as New Years resolutions, I know!). This is a question I get a lot from my chicks and in interviews, “How can you actually be successful at reaching your goals?” Well, here is my FIT CHICKS formula that has not failed me yet:
THE FIT CHICKS FORMULA TO SUCCESS
Chicks, make sure you do everything listed below in this order. You can’t skip one or only do it halfway. It may seem tedious but it works and is actually really fun!
1. DREAM BIG!
I am talking HUGE pie in the sky ideas, if you had all the money, time, energy in the world…what do you want to achieve?
2. GOAL SETTING.
Now from your dreams, decide what it is you really want to make you happy. This is the one thing that so many people do not take the time to do but is so important to do! You have to write down your goals: fitness, personal, professional. Write them down but make sure they are SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, timely and realisitic). Here’s an example: I want to lose 25lbs by June 2012.
3. ACTION PLAN
Now you have the dream and the goal, how are you going to get there? You need a plan of attack. Again write down what your action plan is for the next 6 months for each of your goals (ie I will go to the gym for 1 hour on Mon, Wed and Friday at 6pm. I will pack my lunch for work everyday to ensure I eat healthy, unpackagaed, unprocessed foods). It will keep you focused.
4. HARD WORK
Any goal is attainable if you are willing to do the work to get there – no matter how big! Are you doing everything you can to get what you truly want? Are your actions reflecting what you say you want (ie. You want to lose 25 lbs but are skipping the gym and eating processed foods?) Be real here, chick – it can be tough but setting goals and sticking to your plan will make you visually see you can do it.
5. HOW BAD DO YOU WANT IT?
This is my favorite and most important part of this process. You have dreamed, set goals, made your action plan, are willing to do the work to get there. Now this is where are bodies are programmed to let a little bit of self doubt creep in, a nagging little chirping that might say “That dream is too big, you are crazy!” or “OMG, I have to do all that to get there?!). This is where you have to take a step back and ask yourself “How bad do I want it?”. Because when you want something bad enough, you push that voice away, you do whatever it takes and you get it (like Jen, from my Toronto Danforth Bootcamp who just reached her goal of losing 100lbs– woot woot!) ! Make sure you find that passion inside because it is this fire that will get you anything you want in life and make you successful at everything you do.
Here is video Amanda sent to me recently ironically called “How Bad Do you want it?” that inspired her for this New Year. I love it! Make sure to watch the whole thing. He really starts talking around 2min but there are also some great conditioning moves (walking plank pushups with weights – crazy!) and is also some great eye candy too;)
“When you want to succeed as bad as you want to breathe, then you’ll be successful”
So, chicks – what’s in store for you in 2012? I have big plans but you will have to wait until next week to find them out:)
As y’all know music can help create a mood for any environment.
Your favourite song can put you in the right mind frame to tackle anything. It can also be the best song to listen to for your warm up before your workout. It can help you focus and get pumped and ready to push yourself.
Super upbeat tempo music full of variety can help to keep your feet moving in to tackle those Jumping Jacks, Football Runs and other crazy High Intensity Interval Segments your Instructor may throw your way during Bootcamp Class.
Music plays an important role in everyday life which is why at FIT CHICKS bootcamp classes, we always play the hits to keep you engaged and your mind off how difficult those reverse crunches or kickboxing moves can be! Even when we head outdoors next week, our Chick Sergeants always have portable music to keep you pumped and motivated!
Here is my current fave workout playlist that keeps me motivated right to the end of my workouts:
Bass Down Low – Dev
I Gotta Feeling – Black Eyed Peas
All I Do Is Win – DJ Khaled
Tik Tok – Bob Sinclair and Sean Paul
Higher – Taio Cruz & Travis Mc Coy
Hey Baby (Drop it to the floor) Pitbull Feat T-Pain
Born This Way – Lady Gaga
I Like That – Richard Vission
Bottoms Ups – Trey Songz
Perfect – Pink
So tell me chicks what is your favourite jam to keep you moving, sweating and get you really pumped in class or during your own at home workout?