Building a Solid Foundation in Your Weight Loss Journey

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Happy Monday! I wanted to discuss a topic that constantly comes up when I am talking to people about their personal struggles when it comes to working out and eating healthy. Often times what I find is that people DO want to make a change, they want to start incorporating a daily workout plan and do want to fuel their body right but they have no idea where to start. Which workouts to do? How much to eat? When to eat? What to eat? There is so much information out there and fads that people hop on the newest trend thinking that this is going to be their saving grace. Most often times, it’s not. Why? Because they have not built that solid foundation and knowledge that it takes to understand what your body needs. There’s no guidance even when you have a personal trainer, most of them do not touch on the topic of food. You go to a gym, pay tons of money to become a member, even pay extra for a personal trainer and you only touch on fitness. What most people don’t realize is that working out only produces about twenty percent of your results. The other eighty comes from your nutrition. So how do we fix this?

So how do you build that foundation and knowledge that leads to success? By being plugged into a community where you incorporate working out, where you are TAUGHT how much to eat, what to eat and the magical question…WHY you eat this way. But the one thing that is CRUCIAL to this foundation stage is support! Ever realize how on January first the gyms will be packed, you may be driving around and see people outside running or walking and then as the month continues you see less and less of this. These people are not held accountable for showing up so it’s super easy to call it quits! By having a community where you not only learn about how to change your lifestyle but also be held accountable increases your chances of reaching your overall health and fitness goals by a substantial margin. I know because this is how I was. I have done every ‘diet’ known to man, every workout DVD but I always fell off the wagon. No one knew if I didn’t press play that day. No one knew if I had that cheeseburger from my favorite fast food joint. No one knew therefore I could be easy on myself and justify that somehow I deserved a ‘break’. Maybe you can relate?

Let me ask you….if you had access to countless of workouts (over 600 to be exact), a workout calendar so that you knew which workout to do on which day, a meal guide that told you exactly how much to eat and what to eat, plus a community that you could plug into for healthy lifestyle tips along with fitness and nutrition tips AND this community would be the KEY to YOUR success would you become a member? A community that would notice if you didn’t show up. A community where people ARE there for you when you were having an awful day and wanted to stress eat. If you are interested in joining this kind of community or maybe just need a little more information then shoot me an email at JenniferHepkaFitness@gmail.com We can go over your struggles, your goals and we can create a plan together that will bridge the gap. You don’t have to be alone throughout this journey.

XoXo
Jennifer

Total Body Circuit 5

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Happy Fri-YAY!! Anyone else completely stoked as we enter the weekend? We have spring break next week and I’m totally ready for some fun family time! What do you normally do over spring break?

This week has flown by and I hope that you have enjoyed this 5 day challenge as much as I have. I know the ladies in our private Facebook Community have and what’s even more awesome is that they are using this as a way to get started in their fitness routine. Slow and steady wins the race, right?!

In today’s circuit I combined all of my personal favorite moves that we have done throughout the week. In this circuit we will be doing…
…20 seconds of jumping jacks
…12 reps of star sit ups
…20 seconds of high knees
…12 reps of squats
…20 seconds of jogging in place
…12 reps of tricep dips

Be sure to share how you have tweaked these workouts to suit your physical fitness level. I would love to know! Also if you missed the other circuits in this challenge, find them here:
Circuit 1: http://wp.me/p2Z44P-v1
Circuit 2: http://wp.me/p2Z44P-v5
Circuit 3: http://wp.me/p2Z44P-v7
Circuit 4: http://wp.me/p2Z44P-v9

Lastly, what kind of Challenge would you like to have for May? I’m starting to brainstorm and ideas are always welcome!

Have a great day guys and enjoy that weekend!!

Jennifer

Total Body Circuit 4

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Happy Thursday Beautiful People!!  I hope that you are enjoying this 5 Day Total Body Circuit this week as much as I am.  What I absolutely love about these circuits is that you can totally tweak them to suit YOUR fitness level!  Increase/decrease speed, add resistance with weights or bands and even multiply the number of rounds that you do.  That’s the whole point of circuit training 🙂

Today’s circuit consists of…
…20 seconds of running in place
…12 Russian Twists
…20 seconds of running in place
…12 outer leg lifts/inner leg lifts
…20 seconds of running in place
…4 rounds of plank holds

I would LOVE to get you opinion on these circuits and how YOU are tweaking to suit you. This will allow me to create even better circuits next month!

If you have found this helpful and know of someone that could benefit please share this with them. Be an influencer

Find the other workouts in this 5 day circuit here:
Day 1: http://wp.me/p2Z44P-v1
Day 2: http://wp.me/p2Z44P-v5
Day 3: http://wp.me/p2Z44P-v7

Total Body Circuit 3

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Happy Wednesday Everyone! The participants in my private Facebook Community are loving these short workouts that can be added into your already existing program. There are several participants that are using these workouts as a way just to become active which I LOVE! Nothing makes my heart happier than seeing people take control over their health and taking ACTION

For today our circuit will consist of…
…20 Cross Jacks
…12 Core Dips
…20 Cross Jacks
…12 Calf Raises
…20 Cross Jacks
…12 Push Ups

Do a complete round with no rest and if you have enough energy and stamina do a second and even third round with a 20 sec rest in between each round.

If you are just coming across this challenge be sure to check out the other circuits that we have covered in this 5 Day Challenge
Day 1: http://wp.me/p2Z44P-v1
Day 2: http://wp.me/p2Z44P-v5

I would love to hear how you are doing with these circuits and what you are doing to push yourself out of your comfort zone! Please leave me a message below.

Now…here is your circuit for today. Enjoy!

Total Body Circuit 2

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Good Morning! It’s time for day 2 of our Total Body Circuit Challenge but first I would love to hear how day 1 went! How many rounds were you able to get in. Were you able to get all of the reps in? Did you do more reps? How did you feel afterwards? What I love about these workouts is that you can totally tailor it to fit YOUR fitness level and then CRUSH IT!

For today we are targeting different muscle groups. In Total Body Circuit 2 you will be doing…
…20 High Knees
…12 Star Crunches
…20 High Knees
…12 Front Lunges
…20 High Knees
…12 Tricep Dips

Be sure to come back tomorrow for Day 3 Circuit and if you found this helpful I would really appreciate your feedback! This will let me know to do this again in the future or not so please like, leave a comment and even share with a friend that you think would benefit! Have an awesome day today and don’t forget to make things happen!

Jennifer

Total Body Circuit: Day 1

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Happy Monday Rockstars!! I hope that you all had a fantastic weekend and are ready to crush this week with me. I thought that I would do something that I have never done with my blog community which is have a 5 Day Total Body Circuit Challenge. I do these short fun challenges on Facebook all of the time but for whatever reason have never done them here so that changes today!

Before we get to the circuit for today I did want to give you a quick overview as to what is going down this week. In honor of my clients and I starting our second Summer Prep Challenge today I decided to go back yet again to 21 Day Fix. It’s the program that always works for me in terms of shedding fat and leaning out. I often find myself going back to the strength training workouts of 21 Day Fix even when I’m doing a different program because they are just THAT good. Here is my schedule for this week…

As you can see I am also trying to increase my steps so I will be adding in at least 30 minutes of walking each day. Plus since I do work from home, it’s a great way to get out for a little Vitamin D. As far as my nutrition go’s for this week I planned from today until Wednesday. I was planning an entire weeks of meals however I was finding that our tastes were changing and what we were hungry for earlier in the week just wasn’t doing it for us when it came time to actually eat it. So we adjusted. On Wednesday I will plan for the remaining of the week based on what we have in the house including leftovers. Not only will it satisfy our tastebuds better but we’ll also save more money! Win, win..right?! Here is what’s on the menu for Monday through Wednesday…

Now..let’s get to the Total Body Circuit for today, shall we?! Each day this week (Monday through Friday) I will be sharing a short circuit that will include cardio, core work, lower body and upper body. I would suggest doing a complete circuit then if you have the energy and stamina for another round or two GO FOR IT! Here’s the break down for today.

You will do…
20 Reps of Jumping Jacks
12 Reps of Crunches
20 Reps of Jumping Jacks
12 Reps of Squats
20 Reps of Jumping Jacks
12 Reps of Push Ups

Be sure to come back tomorrow for Day 2 Circuit and if you found this helpful I would really appreciate your feedback! This will let me know to do this again in the future or not so please like, leave a comment and even share with a friend that you think would benefit! Have an awesome day today and don’t forget to make things happen!

Jennifer

Honey Dijon Chicken

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Finding meals that everyone in our family can agree on is challenging especially since I have one extremely picky eater!! However, yesterday’s dinner was a SUCCESS therefore I definitely wanted to share it with you 🙂 If you would like weekly recipes and other Healthy Lifestyle tips feel free to subscribe for the weekly Healthy Lifestyle Corner Newsletter here.

Know of someone that may enjoy this recipe? Then share it with them!

Honey Dijon Mustard Chicken
Serves 5

What you’ll need:
5 thin chicken breast
3 Tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1/3 cup organic raw honey
2 Tablespoons dijoin mustard

What you’ll do:
1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees
2. Spray shallow baking dish with non-stick spray then place in chicken breast
3. Bake chicken breast for 12 minutes then flip and cook for another 10 minutes or until juices are clear.
4. While chicken is baking in the oven, in a small skillet place the 3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil with minced garlic and cook over medium-low. You DO NOT want the garlic to burn…you are simply allowing the fragrance of the garlic to disperse into the oil.
5. Once oil is warm and garlic is soft add in honey and dijon mustard. Whisk together to combine and simmer, whisking often.
6. Once chicken is done, pour half of the glaze mixture onto chicken breast and bake for 2 minutes. Flip chicken, place the remainder of the glaze on the other side of the chicken and bake for 2 more minutes.

I served this with home cut fries using Yukon Gold potatoes sprinkled with extra virgin olive oil, garlic and parsley. These were baked on a large cookie sheet in the oven along with the chicken. Also on the side was whole string beans which were cooked in a microwavable steam bag. Super easy and quick clean up!!

Nutrition for Honey Dijon Chicken:
Calories: 230 calories
Fat: 8g
Carbs: 14
Protein: 26

Top Tips to Save Money While Grocery Shopping

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It’s meal planning day in the Hepka Household which means hitting the grocery store tomorrow! Often times when I’m talking with clients the subject of how to save money and still eat healthy arises…so I thought that I would share with you my TOP TIPS to save money while grocery shopping! You ready?!

1 – Try a discount store like Aldi’s or hit the farmer’s market. Prices will be cheaper especially on produce which means you can splurge on healthy cuts of protein OR use the money you saved from your grocery bill and apply it to a fun family activity this weekend.

2 – Be flexible. Yes, meal planning is a MUST however if you get to the store and the price of turkey filets are too much but the price for chicken is spot on…then make the substitute. If the price of fresh parsley is out of your budget then go with dry. If the strawberries don’t look good that day change it up and try a different one! You are heading to the store with a PLAN however it’s not set in stone. Be creative and swap protein for another protein or a fruit for a different fruit.

3 – Join a Bulk store. We have Sam’s Club and Costco here in NC. Are you able to get a family member on board and split the membership fee? Y’all can make meal planning and shopping a team event. Hit the store together, make healthy choices together, save money together.

4 – Buy only what’s on your list! I get it, it’s difficult grocery shopping especially when you take the kids. Even mine who are older constantly ask if they can get this or that. So what helps our household is getting their opinion BEFORE going to the store. Ask them what they would like for breakfast, for lunch and snacks. If you have multiple children have them agree on 1-2 snacks. I give my 3 boys a choice between two chips that they all like but I do not like so that they can have chips in their lunch. It not only save me money with buying one bag but by giving an option that I don’t care for keeps my paws out of the bag 😉

Do you have a tip that is not mentioned here? Share it with us below! Did you find this helpful? Please feel free to share it!

Have a great Saturday
Jennifer

5 Tips to Help with Negative Self Talk

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There is nothing more that upsets me than when I hear someone talking negatively about themselves. Most of the time I hear this when it comes to wanting to become healthy and more fit. I get it you guys…we all have something that we don’t like about ourselves. I was no different and if I’m being honest there are still things about me that I’m trying to improve on. I use to make comments about my large bum, my jiggly thighs or my love of food because I felt if I made the comments that I assumed others were thinking that I would address the ‘elephant in the room’ so to say.

But here’s what’s wrong with that…by saying these things not only was I putting it out there for other people to believe but I was also starting to believe these things about me. I was believing that no matter how healthy I ate, I wouldn’t lose weight. No matter how what workout I did, nothing would change. This was just me … how God intended and I should just get use to it. Bull!!

Those negative thoughts take up space in your head for one reason…because you feel you aren’t good enough to be healthy. Aren’t good enough to be happy. Aren’t motivated enough to take action. Well, I’m here to tell you that you can! Embrace your imperfections because y’all there are some things that we simply cannot change. I will always have a booty…however I can work on shaping it and lifting it…but it takes ACTION! Stop hiding behind those negative thoughts and excuses and really decide if becoming healthy, becoming more fit is a priority. If it’s not…then you need to accept what you aren’t willing to change. But if you decide it is a priority then COMMIT…go ALL IN…it will be intimidating and difficult but I promise you….it’s SO WORTH IT!

Here’s 5 ways to flip the switch for negative self talk

1. Focus on what you have done – stop comparing yourself to others. Take a look at your own life and make a list of your accomplishments. Are you raising responsible children? Did you get promoted at work? Do your friends come to you because you are a great listener and have amazing advice?

2. Create goals that are specific – ‘I want to lose weight’. ‘I want to become stronger’. ‘I want to run faster’. These are great goals but these mean nothing. If you lose 1 pound is that enough? Or are you looking to lose 10, 15, 20+ pounds? If you want to become stronger…stronger than what? Again, if you are able to do 1 more push up is that enough for you? Probably not..so again make a plan to do 15 push ups every night for a week and add in 5 more each week. Your goals MUST have numbers assigned to them because without them they have no value.

3. Positive Affirmations – when you wake up write down 3 to 5 positive ‘I am’ statements. This will help you get into a positive mindset before your day even starts. Feel free to come back to these during the day if you need to. Several ‘I am’ statements are…
‘I am a valuable lovable person and will find love’
‘I am worthy of being happy and choose to be around people who lift me up’
‘I am in control of the food that enters my body and will make healthy choices today’
‘I am an active person and will choose to be active for 30 minutes today’

4. Writing and Destroying – Journal your thoughts..all of them! Get all of your frustrations out onto paper…then tear it up or burn it. There is something very therapeutic of allowing yourself to feel your imperfects, think through them while writing them out and then seeing those negative thoughts burn into flames.

5. Change your surroundings – It really is true that we mimic the people that we have in our lives. If you find that your friends are negative or create drama…it may be time to find new friends. If you are wanting to become healthy and more fit you should surround yourself with other people who also are wanting that. Be people around people with common interests will not only help your mindset but it will help you to actually reach your goal!

Found this helpful? Be sure to like and feel free to even share with someone else that could benefit!

Much Love
Jennifer