No Equipment HIIT Workout

No Equipment HIIT Workout

If you don’t know already, HIIT stands for high intensity interval training.  In practice, it consists of intervals of anaerobic exercise followed by a rest/recovery period, making it a great way to get your heart rate up fast and burn some calories.  A lot of the movements mimic weighted exercises, though HIIT movements are often performed as body weight exercises, meaning they make for great toning as well! This HIIT workout is perfect for the park, at home, the gym – anywhere you’d like!

 

Method:

This workout is a circuit. Perform each exercise for 30 to 40 seconds (depending on your level of fitness and cardiovascular endurance).  Rest 20 to 30 seconds (depending on how long your exercise interval was).  Each exercise plus its rest period should take a minute for this workout, so plan accordingly!

The key is to maintain intensity during your exercise period, so try to perform each exercise as fast as possible with proper form.

·       Alternating jumping lunges – Begin in lunge position; when you jump you’ll be alternating the lunging leg and landing back into a lunge position These are killer.

·       Jumping jacks – You know this one.

·       Push-ups (or knee push-ups for beginners) — Again, you know this one.

·       Bicycle crunches — Laying on your back, put your hands behind your head, perform a cycling motion with your feet and bring your opposite elbow to your opposite knee in a crunching motion. Keep alternating.

·       Prisoner squats — Stand with your feet slightly past shoulder width apart with your toes angled outward, place your hands behind your head with your elbows back. Perform a squat (neutral spine, to parallel) and come back up.  For more of a challenge, don’t lock your knees when you come back up to maintain constant tension (ow).

·       High Knees — Speed here is key.

This 6-minute circuit can be repeated as many times as you’d like, but 2 to 4 times makes for a solid cardio session. Between circuits, rest one minute (or don’t rest at all if that’s what you’re about).

Happy sweating!

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A Guide to Healthy Eating: Summer Barbecue Edition

July 4th is on its way – which means cookouts and barbecues galore.  

Everyone has different nutrition goals so these recommendations are merely healthier suggestions rather than a one-size fits all nutrition guide.  Okay, let’s get into it:

Hamburgers vs. Hot Dogs

Hamburgers are typically more calorically-dense than hot dogs due to sheer mass – I mean how often have you really seen a footlong hotdog at a summer barbecue? So what we are asking is – how much other stuff are you planning on eating at this event? Eating right is like a puzzle; you just have to fit the right things together.  If you opt for the more calorically-dense burger as your entree, then you’d obviously want to eat fewer side options. But keep in mind, the burger isn’t a bad option. They’re typically packed with more protein, less sodium, less saturated fat, and fewer unhealthy preservatives than hot dogs. Plus, for a less calorically-dense option, opt for a lettuce bun.  We probably wouldn’t recommend that with the hotdog: best to keep the dog classic in our humble opinion.

Chicken

Grilled rather than fried.  Fried chicken packs more calories due to its higher fat content, which probably means fewer cookout sides for you.  Grilled chicken is leaner and its lower fat content means you can have more of it – especially good for packing in your protein for the day.

Fruits

Fruit salad is a summer staple; however, the most delicious ones are typically made with simple syrup, a sugar-water concoction that makes it taste great but can put a real dent into your carb allotment for the day.  If you go for that option, keep in mind the sugar carbs you’re taking in and the increase in calories. If you can find a fruit platter at the barbecue instead, you’ll ideally be taking in fewer carbs – just be sure to watch your portion sizes!

Potato Salad and French Fries

Potato salad is delicious, don’t get us wrong, but it’s also packed with mayo and therefore unhealthy fats.  Same with fries, we love them, but they’re full of unhealthy fats from frying oil. Instead opt for a baked potato with melted cheese (healthy fats – but keep in mind, not all cheeses are created equal).

Corn on the Cob

Corn on the cob is a great way to get in your carbs, but it’s up to you to keep it relatively healthy.  It’s so tempting to slather corn in butter and salt, but that means you’re voluntarily adding fats and sodium to your meal.  Since there is a ton of savory cookout food, these are two things to watch. Fats for obvious reasons – your body should only have so much in a day – and sodium for blood pressure problems and the inevitable problem of water retention.  Be sure to keep your corn as condiment-free as possible for the cleanest meal. Another great option if you can’t resist slathering your corn on the cob in butter and salt is other grilled veggies – grilling them gives them great flavor, and you’re typically less inclined to slather these in butter.  But you should still be sure to watch your sodium intake on these.

Pasta Salad

Whether we’re talking macaroni salad or an oil & vinegar style dressing, this cookout classic is sodium-dense.  In proportion to a 2000 calorie diet, pasta salads can make up around 50% of your recommended daily sodium intake.  Plus macaroni salad is mayo based; you already know the deal with that. Lots of fat. This may be a bland recommendation, but it is a smart one.  If a regular salad option is available, go for that. It’s less calorically dense, meaning it’s a great food if you’re looking for volume. You can eat a ton of it and the calorie count is minimal – depending on what you top it with.  Our recommendation: a lower fat dressing (less calories), a serving or half a serving of unsalted almonds for some healthy fats and protein, avocado for your healthy fats if you’re not an almond person, fresh fruits (blueberries, strawberries, grapes, apples), or sunflower kernels (yay for fiber!).

Tortilla Chips and Salsa / Potato Chips and Dip

Both tortilla chips and potato chips are sodium traps.  Super delicious, but not the best for your overall health.  Dips are typically sour cream based, making them fat-based, and not necessarily the good kind of fat either.  Additionally, the serving size on these dips are about 1 tablespoon… and as we all know, that is near-impossible to stick to when chips and dip are such an irresistible combo.  If you can manage your portion sizes on these, you can probably afford to work these into your cookout palate. Getting to salsa; it’s really not a bad way to get some flavorful carbs in.  Our recommendation? Go for raw veggies dipped in either salsa or hummus. This is a healthier route and great for volume if that’s what you’re looking for. Just watch your dipping – nothing is good in excess.

Baked beans

Baked beans have a mixed reputation.  Some laud them for being healthy and others steer entirely clear. Why? Well there are different versions of this BBQ favorite that need to be accounted for.  The kinds that are avoided by health enthusiasts are those that are high in sodium (some up to half of your daily sodium intake) and those that contain tons of sugar.  If you’re the one bringing the beans, make sure you go for the reduced sugar recipes or no-salt-added versions. Other than this stipulation, beans are a great source of fiber, protein, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, making them a great diet option.

Pies/Brownies/Cupcakes

The baked treats are always the hardest to avoid at a summer cookout.  They’re calorie-loaded, carb-heavy, sometimes fat-heavy, and typically not very protein-rich.  Popsicles (juice/water-based) are a great option to stave off a sweet tooth because while they are sugar-heavy, they amount to way fewer calories than baked goods.  Less calories doesn’t always mean better, but given the amount of food you’re probably consuming at this cookout, it’s best to go for the lower-calorie option. Another good option – jello.  It has no nutritional value, but it’s a great low-calorie dessert option and is almost solely carbs (it contains a very small amount of protein). Another tip: steer clear of the desserts at the cookout entirely and wait until you get home! This way you can pick a more preferable or healthier option instead of just eating what someone puts in front of you.

Sweet tea, beer, fruit cocktails

Drinks at cookouts are a carb-fest.  Beer? Obviously. Sweet tea and fruit cocktails? Sugar haven.  So how do we get around this if we still want to have a good time and enjoy ourselves?  Nothing beats a good sweet tea in the summer. We get it. Instead of scratching it completely, try a half-sweet, half-unsweet tea.  It’s a decent compromise: a little less of that classic sweet tea taste for way less sugar and carbs. Not too bad of a trade-off. As for beer, go for light beers.  Or opt for a dry wine instead if the cookout only has regular beers. Instead of fruit cocktails, try these modifications: a shot of your favorite liquor chased with lemon or lime, a gin and tonic with fruit garnishes, tequila and lime club soda, a mojito (but watch the sugar), the list goes on.  If you ever run out of ideas, Pinterest is your friend.

Also, a shameless plug for water: HYDRATE. Your body will thank you later.

 

Follow these tips and tricks to stay on track – or just have the ultimate cheat day.  No judgement. Chances are the food is good, and you deserve it. Happy BBQ season!

 

Comment below with your favorite tips, tricks, and food ideas; we love to hear from you!

TheFitExpo’s Best: 100 Songs You Need in Your Workout Playlist

Nothing accents a good pump or cardio session like the right music.  Toss these jams into your workout playlist to keep it fresh – We’ve got a little bit of everything in here for you. Special thanks to Alina over at Universal Music / Interscope Records for collaborating with us to make this playlist happen!

(Disclaimer: some of these songs ARE explicit; if that’s not your thing, grab the edited versions!)

1.     Five Hours x Deorro (a good pump up song with a great drop)

2.     Work Hard, Play Hard x Wiz Khalifa

3.     Lights – Bassnectar Remix x Ellie Goulding, Bassnectar

4.     Slide x Calvin Harris, Frank Ocean, Migos

5.     Gyalchester x Drake (good for heavy lifts)

6.     That’s What I Like x Bruno Mars

7.     HUMBLE. X Kendrick Lamar

8.     Work x Rihanna, Drake

9.     Like a G6 x Far East Movement

10.  I’m the One x DJ Khaled, Justin Bieber, Quavo, Chance the Rapper, Lil Wayne

11.  Slippery (feat. Gucci Mane) x Migos, Gucci Mane

12.  Mi Gente x J Balvin, Willy William

13.  Met Gala (feat. Offset) x Gucci Mane, Offset

14.  I Get The Bag (feat. Migos) x Gucci Mane, Migos

15.  Caroline x Aminé

16.  Ric Flair Drip (& Metro Boomin) x Offset, Metro Boomin

17.  Girls @ (feat. Chance the Rapper) x Joey Purp, Chance The Rapper

18.  Stir Fry x Migos

19.  The Buzz (feat. Big K.R.I.T., Mataya & Y…) x Hermitude. Big K.R.I.T., Mataya, TAPZ

20.  X (with 2 Chainz & Saudi) x ScHoolboy Q, 2 Chainz, Saudi

21.  Vámanos x Audop Push, Kap G

22.  B.I.D x Tory Lanez

23.  Trikot von Paris x Sugar MMFK

24.  Lemon – Drake Remix x N.E.R.D, Rihanna, Drake

25.  Walk It Talk It x Migos, Drake

26.  Remember the Name (feat. Styles of Beyond) x Fort Minor, Styles of Beyond

27.  Yes Indeed x Lil Baby, Drake

28.  Ain’t Sh*t Changed (feat. Chris Brown)

29.  Tell Somebody – Phil N Good Remix x Kid Ink, Phil N Good

30.  Wait (Featuring Offset & Vory) x Chantel Jeffries, Offset, Vory

31.  Throw Sum Mo x Rae Sremmurd, Nicki Minaj

32.  Taste (feat. Offset) x Tyga, Offset

33.  Yeah! X Usher, Lil Jon

34.  GDFR x Flo Rida, Sage the Gemini, Lookas

35.  Panda x Desiigner

36.  New Level x A$AP Ferg, Future

37.  All The Way Up x Fat Joe, Remy Ma, French Montana, InfaRed

38.  Classic Man – Remix x Jidenna, Kendrick Lamar

39.  Powerglide (feat. Juicy J) x Rae Sremmurd

40.  POWER x Kanye West

41.  Qa bone x Azet, RAF Camora

42.  Uptown Funk x Mark Ronson, Bruno Mars

43.  I Took a Pill in Ibiza – Seeb Remix x Mike Posner, Seeb

44.  Hey Mama (feat. Nicki Minaj, Bebe Rexha & Afrojack) x David Guetta

45.  Man Of The Year x ScHoolboy Q

46.  Light It Up (feat. Nyla & Fuse ODG) x Major Lazer, Nyla, Fuse ODG

47.  Hymn For The Weekend – Seeb Remix x Coldplay, Seeb

48.  You Don’t Know Me x Jax Jones, RAYE

49.  Summer x Marshmello

50.  One Kiss (with Dua Lipa) x Calvin Harris, Dua Lipa

51.  Gucci Gang x Lil Pump

52.  More Than You Know x Axwell /\ Ingrosso

53.  Fade x Kanye West

54.  Survivor x Destiny’s Child

55.  Ima Boss – feat. Rick Ross x Meek Mill, Rick Ross

56.  Skateboard P (feat. Big Sean)

57.  16 Shots x Stefflon Don

58.  Pick It Up (feat. A$AP Rocky) x Famous Dex, A$AP Rocky

59.  Jumpman x Drake, Future

60.  Blasé (feat. Future & Rae Sremmurd)

61.  Feeling Myself x Nicki Minaj, Beyoncé

62.  Go Off (with Lil Uzi Vert, Quavo & Travis Scott) x Lil Uzi Vert, Quavo, Travis Scott

63.  Trophies x Young Money, Drake

64.  Truffle Butter x Nicki Minaj, Drake, Lil Wayne

65.  Champions x Kanye West, Gucci Mayne

66.  U Mad x Vic Mensa, Kanye West

67.  For Free x DJ Khaled, Drake

68.  I Don’t F*ck With You x Big Sean, E-40

69.  Trap Queen x Fetty Wap

70.  LUV x Tory Lanez

71.  Low (feat T-Pain) x Flo Rida, T-Pain

72.  Bad and Boujee (feat. Lil Uzi Vert) x Migos, Lil Uzi Vert

73.  HYFR x Drake, Lil Wayne

74.  Look At Me! x XXXTENTACION

75.  Loin – Pilule Violette x Maitre Gims, Dany Synthé, SoFLY & Nius

76.  DNA x Kendrick Lamar

77.  XO TOUR Llif3 x Lil Uzi Vert

78.  wokeuplikethis* x Playboi Carti, Lil Uzi Vert

79.  Magnolia x Playboi Carti

80.  BabyWipe x Ski Mask The Slump God

81.  Butterfly Effect x Travis Scott

82.  Shooters x Tory Lanez

83.  New Freezer (feat. Kendrick Lamar) x Rich the Kid, Kendrick Lamar

84.  Plain Jane REMIX x A$AP Ferg, Nicki Minaj

85.  King’s Dead (with Kendrick Lamar, Future, James Blake) x Jay Rock

86.  Barking x Ramz

87.  Work REMIX x A$AP Ferg

88.  Breathe x Jax Jones, Ina Wroldsen

89.  Zigarren Havanna – KMN Street EP. 2 x Azet

90.  Wieso? X Zuna

91.  Rap Saved Me x 21 Savage

92.  Spectrum – Redlight Remix x GoldLink, Hugh Pescod

93.  Fuego x Alok, Bhaskar

94.  Now and Later x Sage the Gemini

95.  House Every Weekend – Radio Edit x David Zowie

96.  Dynamite – Original Mix x Hot Light, Slow Motion

97.  Leather in the Rain (feat. Kyndall) x Tyga

98.  The Time (Dirty Bit) x The Black Eyed Peas

99.  My Songs Know What You Did In The Dark (Light Em Up) x Fall Out Boy

100.  Praise The Lord (Da Shine) x A$AP Rocky

Think we missed a song? Comment your recommendations below!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What to Expect at TheFitExpo

If you’re about to attend your first fit expo, get excited! It’s a blast! Many people have some common questions before attending their first expo, so we’re here to answer them!

Planning Your Trip

First thing’s first, you have to plan your trip. If you’re from out of town, check out thefitexpo.com for a  discount on local hotels for a limited time. Before you go, be sure to check out our website to make a list of the celebrities and companies that you want to see! Also be sure to check out our schedule of events. This way you won’t miss out on what’s important to you! Again, all of this information can be found at thefitexpo.com . If you’re planning on competing in any of the competitions that are offered such as powerlifting, bodybuilding, Max Reps,etc., check our website to see how to sign up!

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First Gympressions: A Judgement-Free Gym

No one is judging you. I know, I know, it sounds crazy. Of course, everyone must be judging you, you’re the newbie in the gym and they can all sense that right? Wrong. I’m sorry if that sounds harsh, but that was my own honest thought process when I first started working out. I didn’t have any idea what I was doing, and there wasn’t an ounce of muscle on me. How could anyone not judge me? Well, the truth of the matter is that 99% of people are too worried about their own workouts to even pay attention to you. The other one percent are just insecure people who are so worried about judging others that they’ll never make any progress of their own. Pay no attention to them, because you’ll pass them up within the year anyway.

You may feel like you don’t belong near some of the ripped, muscular beasts in your gym, but you couldn’t be more wrong. Anyone who has made that much progress relates to you more than you’d expect. You see, even these people who have been working out for quite a while remember their first day in the gym better than you may think. To reach that level of fitness requires absolute determination and a crazy level of consistency. In order to remain this consistent, there must be a deeply personal and meaningful source of motivation for them. Be it feeling like they needed to gain muscle or lose weight, there was likely a point in time when they hated the way that they looked and felt. This need for self-improvement still lives in them to some extent or else they wouldn’t still be in the gym. What I’m trying to say is that they still think of themselves as someone looking to improve, and they still remember being completely unhappy with how they looked and felt about themselves. Knowing all of this, how could they possibly be judging you? They’re not judging because they were in your shoes not too long ago, and they likely picture that memory every single time they workout as motivation to keep progressing.

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TheFitExpo’s Hardcore Leg Day Routine

If you’re one of the people who skips leg day most weeks, this workout isn’t for you. This workout is for the people who kill their leg days week in and week out, and are looking for a new challenge. This program is designed to not only challenge your muscles, but to challenge your heart, your willpower, and your mental fortitude. It is not an easy workout by any means, but the results are definitely worth it. We’ll be relying on a mix of high and low rep ranges, varying rest times, and multiple different exercises to train your legs from all angles. The reasoning behind each exercise selection is broken down below, with the complete workout routine at the end of the article.

Warm-up: Begin by foam rolling any spots that feel tight, then warm up with a few minutes on the exercise bike to get some blood pumping through your legs. 1-2 minutes of bodyweight walking lunges followed by 2-3 sets of bodyweight back extensions are very helpful to prepare for leg day. If wish to perform other additional warm-up exercises that you have found helpful in the past, do them here. Whatever you do, don’t jump straight into this workout without a warm-up. Especially on leg day, skipping your warm-up is a recipe for disaster.

Exercise #1: Front Squats

Front squats are a very effective, yet very underutilized exercise. Regular back squats may be substituted if you are uncomfortable performing front squats, but remember that the point of this workout is to get outside of your comfort zone and challenge yourself. Give yourself a few warm-up sets before you reach your working weight, eventually working up to a weight that you can do for 4 sets of 6-8 reps. While this lower rep range won’t jack up your heart rate the way that higher rep ranges do, higher intensity resistance training leads to greater boost in EPOC (excess post-exercise oxygen consumption), resulting in more calories burned throughout the day. (1) We’ll be performing these front squats before deadlifts because while it is difficult to deadlift with tired quads, it is much harder to try and squat with an already exhausted lower back.

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Top 5 Pre-Workout Ingredients

There’s a lot more to a good pre-workout supplement than just a caffeine boost! Pre-workouts can help to boost muscle protein synthesis (mps), endurance, strength, pump, energy, even help to limit muscle soreness. Listed below in no particular order, are 5 of the top pre-workout ingredients on the market. If you’re looking to take your results to the next level, read on to make sure that you’re getting the most out of your pre-workout.

  1. Beta-alanine

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Beta-alanine is a non-essential amino acid that is taken up by muscle fibers where it will combine with histidine to create carnosine. Carnosine helps to buffer metabolic waste such as lactic acid, resulting in increased endurance, strength, power, and recovery. (1) The wide variety of proven benefits offered by beta-alanine make it a top pre-workout ingredient for anyone looking to boost their performance in the gym. Optimal dosage ranges from 2-5 g. (2) Some people prefer to split up these doses due to the tingling sensation (called paresthesia) that is often caused by taking large doses of beta-alanine. Don’t worry though, this is a harmless side effect that some people actually enjoy.

  1. Citrulline Malate

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Citrulline Malate (or L-Citrulline Malate) is simply the amino acid citrulline bonded to malic acid. Citrulline is one of the premiere pump-inducing ingredients on the market. A majority of arginine consumed is broken down by the liver long before it can cause an increase in NO levels (and give you a pump). Citrulline, however, bypasses the liver and is then converted to arginine within the body, and eventually to NO. In fact, citrulline has been shown to boost blood arginine levels more than citrulline itself! (3) Though L-Citrulline can provide great pumps on its own, combining citrulline with malate also provides the ATP boosting benefits of malate which helps to generate more ATP through the Krebs cycle to give you more energy. (4) Optimal dosage for L-citrulline itself is about 1-3 grams, while doses of citrulline malate should be about 6 grams in order to provide you with a full dose of L-citrulline (5). Also, look for citrulline-malate in a 2:1 ratio, meaning that there are 2 molecules of citrulline bonded to each molecule of malate, for optimal dosing.

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What is your WHY?

Working out is hard. It’s tough, painful, time-consuming, and exhausting. Exercise is both physically and mentally demanding. So why even do it? That’s a question that you must ask yourself. As cliché as it is: when you want to give up, remember why you started. For many of us, we started working out to change our appearance and gain confidence. A lot of us (myself included) started working out to attract attention from the opposite sex. Some of us started working out simply to be healthier. Whatever your why is, remember it. Write it down. Look at it every day. With each decision you make, think about how it will affect your why. If it isn’t helping you to achieve your goals, why do it?

Do you know your why? Without a clearly defined reason to push yourself it is almost impossible to stay motivated. If you don’t have a clear why, take 10-15 minutes to define it. Everyone’s why can be reduced down to one thing: being successful. Picture your own personal image of success and compare it to where you are right now. That jump that you want to make from your current situation to your ultimate vision of success; that is your why. Remember the image of your why, write it down if possible. Every time you think about your why associate it with what you personally define as success. Picture reaching your goals so vividly and so frequently that when you finally reach them, it feels like déjà vu. This is a key to success. Without a clearly defined vision of success, you will never know what you’re reaching for. Know that your why may change over time, as mine certainly has, but never stop striving to reach your goals.

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