Healthy Holiday Fitness Challenge – December 1st-25th, 2017

Have the healthiest of holidays by participating in my fitness challenge from December 1st to 25th!

You’ll receive:
ūüéĀ¬†Customized fitness plan
ūüéĀ¬†Suggested meal plan
ūüéĀ¬†24/7 digital support

Investment: $25
(That’s just $1/day!)

What I’ll need from you:
 Commit & register by Nov 25th
¬†Submit ‘before’ photos by Dec 1st
¬†Submit ‘after’ photos by Dec 26th
(Let me know if you would not like your photos to be shared on social media)

Prize: Your $25 investment back, and a special gift sent straight to you!

WINNER WILL BE CHOSEN DEC 27TH!
Must live in North America to receive gift.

Summer bodies are made in the Winter!¬†ūüĎô¬†And this is your final push to get in shape for all your holiday parties and maybe even a Polar Bear Swim on New Years Day!¬†‚ĚĄÔłŹ¬†Who’s with me?!

Comment below or email me at xo@sheenalouie.com to sign up today!

xo,
Sheena

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How to Take Progress Pics

No matter where you are in your fitness journey or what shape you’re in, I STRONGLY encourage you to take progress pictures. ¬†Not only do they keep you in check, but they are also very motivating…they either motivate you to work harder when you don’t notice improvement, OR they motivate and increase your momentum when you recognize the awesome results you’re achieving!

I recommend taking them on a monthly basis. ¬†Bi-weekly works too, but just make sure you are patient and don’t get discouraged if you don’t see a huge difference. ¬†Results take time.

Here’s how to take progress pics:

FRONT – stand tall with feet together, flex everything, smile
SIDE – stand tall, flex abs, lift arms up and out of the way
BACK – stand tall with feet together, shoulders back, flex arms

Stay consistent as possible with time of day, lighting, posture, your outfit, and even hair (up vs down can make you look differently).

Some other ways to measure progress:

  • weigh yourself on a scale
  • compare how your clothes fit
  • calculate your BMI or body fat %
  • measure areas of your body (ie: biceps, waist, hips, thighs)

It’s effective to use more than one way to measure your progress. ¬†I can’t emphasize enough how the bodyweight scale should NOT be your main determiner, as there are so many factors that go into how much you weigh. ¬†You will also fluctuate each day depending on what you ate, how much water your body is holding, how much you sweat, etc.

Alright, friends – the month just started, so take your progress pics today and see what your body is capable of in a month! ¬†And if you’re looking for some extra support with an online fitness program, let’s connect.

xo,
Sheena

How to Find Your Motivation

Anyone can get unmotivated at times, but it’s how we recover from the slump that matters!

Here are some quick tips to catapult you back into feeling MOTIVATED:

Write down your goals. ¬†Don’t just think them in your head, physically write them down and post them up where you’ll see them daily. ¬†This will be a constant reminder of what you’re striving for, keeping you laser focussed.

Celebrate the small wins.  Things can seem overwhelming, so instead of only aiming for a big end goal, keep in mind some smaller ones so you can celebrate and enjoy the journey along the way.  This will also help create momentum.

Choose your influences. ¬†Surround yourself with things that lift your spirits and people who inspire you. ¬†Read books/blogs, watch motivational videos, and listen to influential speakers…these are all at our fingertips on the World Wide Web.

Obtain an Accountability Buddy. ¬†Reach out to someone who is willing to check in with you every once in awhile, and call you out when they notice you sliding…and vice versa. ¬†Bonus if they have similar type of goals as you, but not necessary.

Check yo self.  Is your mindset in the right place?  If you catch yourself thinking negative thoughts and psyching yourself out, snap out of it and tell that inner voice to STFU.  You deserve to be awesome, and you deserve to do awesome things.

Know your ‘Why’. ¬†Be crystal clear on it. ¬†If you deeply know why you’re doing something, you will feel driven, excited, and like nothing can stand in your way. ¬†Once you know your ‘why’, write it down.

Do what Nike says…and just do it! ¬†Sometimes you just need to stop overthinking and just go for it. ¬†Stop worrying/stressing/dreading/analyzing, and start doing. ¬†Take that leap and go after the things that set your soul on fire.

Practice these tips consistently and soon you’ll notice the momentum you’ve built. ¬†Things that used to be a struggle will become part of your natural routine. ¬†This applies to all things – health, fitness, work, life, etc…

With all my clients, I encourage them to take control of their goals, which will increase their program adherence and enjoyment.  They set both process goals and product goals that excite them, which makes the journey that much more fun.

Feel free to contact me to bounce goal ideas off of. ¬†I’m happy to support you!

And remember, if you happen to fall, that’s totally okay…you’re human! ¬†Get back up, set your focus, and go after your goals once again.

xo,
Sheena

A Little Update on Me

It’s been awhile since I talked about my health and fitness journey on here, and that’s probably due to a combination of avoidance and life getting hectic. ¬†For the past several months, I’ve been struggling emotionally, mentally, and physically…and only now, am I starting to feel like I’m getting my sh*t together. ¬†It’s still a loooong road ahead, but I am definitely feeling more sane, relaxed, and grounded now.

Back in October 2016, I started to feel a bit off. ¬†My stress levels started to increase and my health started to decrease. ¬†Up until December 2016, I was still training to compete in a bikini fitness competition…but I finally cracked and decided it’s not the right time. ¬†For my sanity, I needed to take the pressure off and just focus on feeling better.

In January 2017, I developed a pain in my shoulder and severe tension in my upper back and traps, which hindered my training and caused lack of sleep and moodiness from the constant discomfort. ¬†I was going for Active Release Therapy (ART), RMT, acupuncture, chiro, and physio appointments every single week, while working two jobs and taking my Personal Training course. ¬†I was tired, overwhelmed, and unhappy… It was about this time that I started to binge eat…like there was no tomorrow. ¬†I succumbed to every little craving, and would eat even when I was super full.

I progressively gained weight, lost energy, lost motivation, became depressed and just went into this deep dark hole where I also convinced myself that it was a good idea to take some time away from the gym. ¬†So for three months, I let myself relax (though I did not feel relaxed at all) and focussed on work and my studies (though I also had a lot of trouble focussing). ¬†My health didn’t get any better and neither did my stress levels…in fact, it got worse. ¬†Soooo, I highly recommend that you DO NOT approach stressful times this way ūüôā

In April, I decided it was time to get my a$$ back to the gym…so I did, and it felt amazing. ¬† It was a struggle, and it was not fun trying to wear my gym outfits and realizing they don’t fit the same way anymore…but I still went. ¬†I wouldn’t let that bring me back down. ¬†It was this part in my journey where I realize that patience is key. ¬†When I can accept where I am and be gentle with my approach, the whole process just feels that much more enjoyable.

In May, I had an intense few weeks as I prepped for my Personal Training exam, but I made sure to fit in workouts because I realized the importance of them, not just physically but very much mentally. They made me feel good, they energized me, they reduced stress.

And NOW, here we are…wrapping up the month of June! ¬†Everything is gradually coming together again. ¬†I have not lost any of the excess weight that I recently gained, yet I am feeling SIGNIFICANTLY happier, calmer, more energized, and confident compared to just a few months ago. ¬†Why? ¬†Because I made ME a priority and got myself back into that fitness lifestyle, doing what I love. ¬†There are so so sooooo many benefits to staying active, even if it’s just a brisk walk or a few bodyweight exercises a day… keep moving and your body and mind will thank you for it.

There’s still a long road ahead for me, and I am super excited to work towards my best body, inside and out. ¬†I’m excited for the learning that will come with it, and I’m excited to share and inspire along the way.

Tomorrow, I will be kicking off my 3-month program alongside my friend, owner of High Level Think. ¬†He sees the value in health and fitness like I do, and we are going to be “accountability buddies” to achieve our PEAK FITNESS! ¬†Can’t wait. ¬†This will be amazing to experiment with our own individual programs so that the learning can transmit into the work we do with our clients. ¬†(Btw, he’s not a personal trainer…visit his website to see what he does!)

Follow my journey on Instagram @xosheenalouie, and feel free to contact me if you have any questions or would like start working towards a happier, healthier, more confident version of YOU!

xo,
Sheena

#xoSLfit – Daily Workouts

We’re all really busy and sometimes we skip out on our workouts just because we didn’t feel there was enough time to plan it out, or because we think a workout needs to be at least a full hour… so I’ve put together some workout routines for you that are between 30-60 min long. ¬†This way, you don’t need to think about it and can go straight to crushing your workout!

For all circuits/supersets, complete them 3x before going on to the next with a 30-60 sec rest in between.  Be sure to challenge yourself with a heavy enough weight and intensity, while also listening to your body to prevent injury, of course.

Give these a try and let me know what you think.  Feel free to share on your Facebook or Instagram, so your friends can try them too!  And tag me, so I can see how you liked it Р@xosheenalouie / #xoSLfit

Have a good sweat! xo

PS: Sunday is rest day – and meal prep day! ūüėČ

#xoSLfit – Build Your Own Workout

Even though there are COUNTLESS workout routines available on YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, etc…sometimes it’s fun to put the control¬†in your hands and build¬†your OWN. ¬†Not quite sure how¬†to start though? ¬†Here’s one¬†way, in the format of a fat-burning circuit!

  1. Download ‘Tabata Timer’, or any interval timer app
  2. Think of your 9 favourite exercises (tips: choose bodyweight or dumbbell exercises for quick transitions and easy accessibility, and select a range of exercises to cover all muscle groups)
  3. Write them down in sets of 3
  4. Try it!

screenshot_20170225-111426.pngTabata Timer

This is how my app is set up. ¬†I do a 3 minute warm-up (ie: jumping jacks, skip rope, high knees, walking lunges) then I start the app. ¬†I do each set of exercises 3x around before going on to the next set. ¬†With this, it runs for just under 23 minutes and then I do a cool-down stretch. ¬†From start to finish, I’m done in 30 minutes and dripping sweat!

Options to make it more challenging:

  • Add another set of 3 exercises
  • Do 4 rounds of each set, instead of 3
  • Workout for more time, rest for less time
  • Add weights, increase the intensity, move faster

I’m not going to post¬†the¬†exercises that I use in¬†my circuits, to allow you to¬†think up¬†your own ūüôā but if you’d like suggestions, feel free to contact me or leave a comment!

Hope you give this a try, and have a fun sweat sesh!

xo,
Sheena

Attaining and Maintaining a Fit Lifestyle

Hope you’ve all had a great start to 2017 so far! ¬†Goal setting, trying new things, setting your intention for the year… and if you’re like me, settling in¬†to a new schedule and finding balance again, that’s ok too. ¬†Remember to be gentle with yourself, as you would with your best friend ūüôā

wp-1483636886244.jpg

This was me and my girlfriend, Katrina (check out her blog www.lovekatslist.com), on New Years day. ¬†We stepped out of our comfort zones (aka: our warm, cozy beds) and into the ice cold waters at English Bay. ¬†We were screaming with fear and laughing with excitement, and then we finally took the plunge…shoulder deep haha It was quite an¬†invigorating¬†experience and plan on making this an annual tradition now!

With the new year just beginning, even if you didn’t start off with something as crazy as the Polar Bear Swim, I’m sure many of you have set some health and fitness goals. ¬†Regardless of whether you’re calling them “new years resolutions” or not, a new year brings the¬†opportunity for a fresh start and¬†encourages everyone to amp up their lives.

The gym is never as busy as I’ve seen it this month. ¬†It’s been a freakin’ ZOO at Steve Nash Downtown…and while I miss having the space and more available machines, I give props to everyone challenging¬†their comfort zones by hitting the gym and getting active. ¬†It’s exciting seeing so many people want to take care of themselves by improving their health!

If you are one of these people new to the gym or getting back to the gym after a long hiatus, good on you! ¬†I know it’s not easy to take that first step and especially not easy to maintain it, but I promise that if you are consistent with your training, you will soon see results and become addicted to it…it will naturally turn into your lifestyle!

Here’s a list of what to expect when you’re new to exercise, and this includes when you try a new style of exercise that your muscles aren’t used to:

  • Discouragement – Expect to feel moments of this when you enter the gym, while you’re working out, or when you’re attempting to return to the gym again… just like anything, when you’re doing something new, you may feel a little intimidated. ¬†Everyone starts somewhere though, you can’t expect to be amazing at it from Day 1…or 2 or 3. ¬†So keep going and tell that little voice in your head to shut up ūüôā
  • Muscle soreness – Learn to love this feeling! ¬†It means you did work and now your muscles are growing. ¬†Speed up the recovery process by supplementing your workout with BCAA’s (Branched-Chain Amino Acids). ¬†I take THIS one. ¬†Doing a light cardio session the next day will also help warm your muscles up and reduce the soreness.
  • Mindset change – Whether you start to feel discouraged by the challenge or you start to become more motivated by the results, your mindset will change…so prepare for this and stay on the positive side of things to ensure you don’t fall off track with your goals.
  • Having to be patient¬†– Results take time, so don’t expect to see them right away…but you will notice those awesome endorphins right away, so that’s a plus! ¬†You must¬†be consistent and put in work, and then the results will start to show.

Tips to Maintain a Fit Lifestyle:

  • Ease into it – There’s no rush to get into a routine so don’t burn yourself out¬†by trying to go 5-6x a week in the first couple of weeks. ¬†Set a goal to go 2-3x in the first week, then 3-4x the following week…until you’ve reached a maintainable weekly fitness routine.
  • Lay out a plan – Schedule in your workouts and stick to them. ¬†If you just play it by ear through the week, the week will pass and you will likely end up skipping your workouts. ¬†Goal setting (think S.M.A.R.T.) is also important to help keep your motivation up.
  • Nourish your body with good food – Diet is a major part of leading a healthy, fit lifestyle. ¬†If you aren’t fuelling yourself with a proper diet or enough food, you won’t have the energy to train and could be depleting yourself.
  • Get support – Hire a trainer, find a workout buddy or even pair up with an accountability buddy who will help you stay on track. ¬†It’s more fun when you can share your achievements and encourage each other to grow! ¬†You could even set rewards for each others’ accomplishments or have a friendly competition – whatever works for you ūüôā
  • Enjoy the journey¬†– Don’t have your eyes strictly set on your final goal, because you’ll miss all the fun getting there. ¬†During my competition prep, I was so worried and obsessed over how I needed to look when I stepped¬†on stage that I was no longer enjoying the process. ¬†It’s SO important to enjoy your sweaty workouts, trying new exercises, your body getting stronger, eating clean, and¬†little achievements¬†along the way. ¬†This is how you will¬†maintain a healthy, fit lifestyle for the rest of your life…by enjoying it!

If you’re looking for some guidance to get you started, I¬†am putting together¬†custom health & fitness plans¬†and would be happy to be your accountability buddy. ¬†Contact me at xo@sheenalouie.com for details. ¬†Spaces limited.

xo,
Sheena