Wealthy Affiliate Promotions

Limited edition Formula 1 Trial Size Variety Pack

Product Overview

Kick-start your healthy eating habits this season and add some variety to your weight-management program with the limited edition Formula 1 Trial Size Variety Pack, a delicious and easy way to treat your body to a nutritious and balanced meal in no time! With a dense mix of protein, carbs, fiber and essential vitamins and minerals, Formula 1 is everything you need in a glass, and now you can mix up your routine and enjoy three delicious flavors (Pumpkin Spice, Banana Caramel, Pralines and Cream) in convenient 10-serving canisters while supplies last!

Key Benefits
  • 17 g to 24 g of high-quality protein to satisfy hunger (when prepared with 8 fl. oz. of nonfat milk or one serving (2 scoops) of Protein Drink Mix)
  • 21 vitamins and minerals
  • A good source of fiber
  • 0 cholesterol, 0 trans fats
  • Gluten-free
Usage
  • Gently shake the canister prior to each use as contents may settle
  • Blend or stir 2 scoops with 8 oz. of nonfat milk or soy milk and enjoy!
  • Directions for kids: Mix 1 scoop (12.5 g) with 8 fl. oz. of nonfat milk or soy milk for a nutritious snack. This product is not intended to be used for weight management for kids, or for consumption by kids under 4 years old.
  • Create your own Formula 1 recipes by mixing with fresh fruit and vegetables and ice
  • Herbalife also recommends using with Formula 2 Multivitamin Complex and Formula 3 Cell Activator® to complete the Herbalife® Core Cellular Nutrition program

Herbal Aloe Concentrate Mango 1/2 Gallon

Product Overview

Soothe your stomach while supporting nutrient absorption and intestinal health with Herbal Aloe Concentrate. Formulated with premium-quality aloe vera, this product is a great replacement for soda or high-sugar juices and it’s available in a variety of flavors.

*Gluten-free, except for Cranberry pint and Cranberry 1/2 gallon.
Key Benefits
  • 0 calories, 0 g sugar
  • Soothes the stomach
  • Supports healthy digestion
  • Relieves occasional indigestion
  • Supports nutrient absorption and intestinal health
Usage
  • Shake well before use.
  • To prepare one serving, mix approximately 3 partial capfuls (½ fl. oz.) with ½ cup (4 fl. oz.) of water.
  • To prepare 1 quart, mix ½ cup (4 fl. oz.) of concentrate with 1 quart of water.
  • Refrigerate after opening, along with any unused portion.

Herbalife SKIN® Clearify Acne Kit

Product Overview

This dermatologist-tested, simple-to-use system contains the acne-fighting power of salicylic acid to help combat acne breakouts. It also pampers your skin with fresh-scented botanicals like aloe, licorice extract, orange and tea tree oils.The Herbalife SKIN® Clearify Acne Kit includes: Cleanser, Moisturizer, Mask and Spot Treatment.

Key Benefits
  • Penetrates pores to eliminate most acne blemishes, blackheads, and whiteheads
  • Clears up most acne blemishes and allows skin to heal
  • Reduces the severity of acne breakouts
  • Helps prevent new blemishes from forming

Key Features

  • No added parabens
  • Dermatologist tested
Fast Facts
  • Contains the acne-fighting power of salicylic acid and fresh-scented botanicals
  • Cleanser: reduces the severity of acne blemishes, blackheads and whiteheads
  • Moisturizer: clears up most acne blemishes, helps prevent new blemishes from forming, and allows skin to heal
  • Mask: penetrates pores to eliminate most acne blemishes, blackheads, and whiteheads
  • Spot Treatment: dries up acne blemishes
Usage
  • Click on the link below to view the Regimen Card
  • See product packaging for complete instructions, warnings, and ingredients

Prolessa® Duo 7-Day Program

Product Overview

Support your weight-loss program with this dual-action formula that helps control hunger and reduce fat.* Add Prolessa® Duo one time per day to your morning or afternoon Formula 1 shake, whenever snacking or overeating may be a challenge. Choose from our 7-Day Program or 30-Day Program options.
Key Benefits
  • Conjugated linoleic acid helps decrease body fat*
  • A unique emulsion of palm and oat oils helps to reduce calorie intake and provide a feeling of fullness*
  • Clinically tested ingredients
  • Stimulant-free
Usage
  • Gently shake the canister prior to each use as contents may settle.
  • Make your Formula 1 shake as usual, add 1 scoop (10.6 g) of Prolessa® Duo and mix for an additional 5–10 seconds.
  • Use Prolessa® Duo one time per day by adding it to your morning or afternoon Formula 1 shake, milk or yogurt.
  • Not suitable for acidic or hot drinks.

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

Cell-U-Loss® 90 Tablets

Product Overview

Support the healthy elimination of water while balancing your electrolytes with minerals found in Cell-U-Loss®.

Key Benefits
  • Minerals help maintain electrolyte balance and a healthy pH level*
  • Formulated with corn silk, an herb traditionally used for healthy elimination of water*
  • Magnesium, calcium, sodium, potassium and chloride help maintain electrolyte balance and a normal pH level*
Usage

Take one tablet three times per day with meals.

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

Herbalife SKIN® Collagen Beauty Booster Strawberry Lemonade Canister 6.03 Oz.

Product Overview

Promote your skin’s health from within for visibly younger looking skin. This supplement is available in Strawberry Lemonade flavor. It is formulated with Verisol®* collagen to support skin elasticity and reduce wrinkles.†

Collagen is what gives the dermis (the thick inner layer of our skin) its firm structure. As we age, the production of collagen in our bodies diminishes resulting in the loss of firmness and elasticity, and the appearance of wrinkles. Herbalife SKIN® Collagen Beauty Booster nourishes the skin from within and provides the nutrients to maintain a youthful and radiant skin.

Key Benefits
  • Formulated with Verisol®* collagen which has been tested to show support of skin elasticity and the reduction of fine wrinkles.†
  • Bioactive Collagen Peptides®‡ can reduce signs of cellulite.†
  • Contains Vitamins A (as beta-carotene), C and E, which help prevent harmful free radical cell damage that ages your skin.†
  • Supports strong nails and healthy hair with selenium, zinc and biotin.†
Fast Facts
  • Powder form
  • No artificial flavors or sweeteners
  • Gluten-free
Usage
  • For men and women
  • Mix 1 scoop in 8 fl. oz. of water or add to your favorite shake, tea or aloe
  • 1 scoop/day = 1 serving. Take once a day.

* Verisol® is a registered trademark of GELITA AG.
†These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
‡Bioactive Collagen Peptides® is a registered trademark of GELITA AG.

Herbalife® Simply Probiotic

Product Overview

Simply Probiotic is a daily, science-backed probiotic that provides 1 billion active probiotic cultures, which promote digestive health. It is formulated with a powerful GanedenBC30®* strain that survives the gastric journey to get to where it counts, helping you feel your best every day.

*GanedenBC30® is a registered trademark of Ganeden Biotech.

Key Benefits
  • Delivers 1 billion active probiotic cultures per serving
  • Up to 70% of BC30 cells survive to colonize the gut
  • Helps provide balance to good and bad bacteria (improving the gut bacteria profile)
  • Made with non-GM ingredients
  • Zero calories
  • No added flavors, colors, sugars or sweeteners
  • Portable, perfect for on-the-go use

†Based on in vitro study simulating gastrointestinal conditions.

Usage
  • No refrigeration required
  • Mixes easily with your favorite food or drink (hot, cold or frozen)
  • Mix one scoop (1 g) with 12 oz. of water or your favorite hot or cold Herbalife® shake, tea or aloe drink
  • Certain intestinal imbalances may be associated with occasional digestive issues such as abdominal discomfort, bloating and diarrhea. Taking two servings daily may help to reduce the occurrence of these incidents.

‡Abdominal discomfort, bloating and/or diarrhea may be associated with any number of medical conditions. If these symptoms persist or worsen, it is recommended to follow up with your health care provider.

Formula 1 Healthy Meal Nutritional Shake Mix: Limited Edition Caramel Apple 750 g

Product Overview

Fall in love with the delicious flavor of the limited edition Formula 1 Caramel Apple! With the ideal balance of protein and nutrition and a crisp, sweet flavor, this shake will satisfy your hunger all while keeping your weight-management program on track. Indulge in this new seasonal flavor while supplies last!

Protein is vital to a healthy diet, as it’s one of the essential building blocks for many cell components in your body. Protein helps satisfy hunger, build muscle tissue, maintain lean muscle mass and give you energy. And when you consume 25 g of soy protein a day, as part of a diet low in saturated fat and cholesterol, you may reduce the risk of heart disease. One serving of Formula 1 provides 9 g of soy protein. Clinical studies on U.S. Formula 1 (one study) and on similar products show that Formula 1 shakes taken twice a day as part of a reduced-calorie diet along with moderate exercise help people lose weight.

Key Benefits
  • A nutrient-dense healthy meal with 21 vitamins and minerals
  • 17 g to 24 g* of high-quality protein to satisfy hunger
  • Good source of fiber
Usage
  • Gently shake the canister prior to each use, as contents may settle
  • Blend or stir 2 scoops with 8 fl. oz. of nonfat milk or soy milk and enjoy!
  • Create your own Formula 1 recipes by mixing with fresh fruit and ice
  • Add 2 scoops (one serving) of Protein Drink Mix to your favorite Formula 1 shake and blend or stir with 8 fl. oz. of water to boost your protein intake to 24 g per serving
  • Herbalife Nutrition also recommends using with Formula 2 Multivitamin Complex and Formula 3 Cell Activator® to complete the Herbalife Nutrition Core Cellular Nutrition program

Welcome to my GoHerbalife.com website

Welcome to my GoHerbalife.com website

Dear Whom it my concern,

Come visit my site

 

Start Shopping Now

 

Create a password and you’re ready to start shopping

My GoHerbalife site also includes:

  • Product details
  • Videos
  • Tips and tools for nutrition and fitness.

I am looking forward to supporting your personal goals to reach a healthy, active lifestyle. See you over at my GoHerbalife.com site.

Yours in the best of health,
MARK SMITH

https://mark-smith.goherbalife.com/Catalog/Home/Index/en-US

Don’t Let Weekends Undo Your Diet

Weekends are tough times for dieters. It’s a time to reward ourselves after the busy work week, so we take time to relax, maybe eat out once or twice, or get together with friends. And that often involves eating and drinking. But if you aren’t reasonably careful, you could easily undo a week of good behavior between Friday night and Monday morning.

For most people, checking your weight at the beginning of the week isn’t all that productive because the damage has already been done. It’s likely you’ll just be ticked off with yourself for your weekend binges, and your weight will be pretty much where it was the week before. So you might try weighing yourself on Friday morning instead. When your week has gone well, a Friday weigh-in will tell you so – and you’ll be more likely to stay on track during the weekend.

Most people use part of their weekend to get ready for the upcoming week, so a good strategy is to spend a little time in the kitchen preparing some healthy meals for the work week ahead. Plan your week’s meals before you grocery shop, make a list and don’t go to the store on an empty stomach.

Some people use the weekends for a longer, more intense workout, but others have a tendency to slack off. If you’re not up for your usual workout, use your leisure time for something different that you may not have time for during the week. Maybe take a hike, shoot some hoops or spend some time in the garden.

Some people cut back too much during the week, figuring they have a lot of extra calories saved up for a weekend splurge. But a large plate of nachos and a couple of margaritas, for example, could cost you well over 1,000 calories. That’s a pretty big setback, even if you’ve been careful all week. And that’s just one meal – keep eating like that all weekend and you’re likely to get nowhere fast.

When you’ve been sticking close to your diet plan all week, it’s natural to want to reward yourself. But rewarding yourself with food is probably not the best approach. Of course, you should go out and enjoy yourself, but let the relaxing time you spend with friends and family be a reward in itself. You’ll be more successful at managing your weight if you stick fairly close to your healthy eating patterns, food choices and portions – no matter what day of the week it is.

Five Workout Secrets for a Perfect Body

Use these answers to common fitness questions to help get you on your way to achieving your 2018 fitness goals:

I’m new to exercising. Where do I start?
Getting started with an exercise plan may seem daunting, but once you get going it will feel very natural. The most important thing is to listen to your body. Push yourself enough so that you feel like you’re challenging yourself, but not too hard that you risk getting injured or feeling terribly sore the next day.

Here is a stepped approach to getting fit:

• Perform simple stretches to ensure you’re moving your muscles and joints through their full range of motion each day.
• Increase your daily activity level by taking the stairs, parking in the furthest space from the store, gardening, dancing or playing with your children. Just get moving!
• Start adding regular walks to your day. You can slowly increase your time until 30 minutes feels comfortable. Then increase your intensity level by walking faster. Start including varied terrain such as hills and then progress to a jogging or running pace.
• Perform body weight resistance exercises such as simple squats, lunges, push-ups and then progress to using weights.

How much exercise do I need?
There are several sources that recommend 150 minutes of exercise per week (about 30 minutes, five times a week) for weight-loss and general health. This is classified by moderate to vigorous physical activity. However, let’s say your goal is to run a marathon. In this case, you’ll need to train for a lot longer than 30 minutes at a time. If your goal simply is to lose weight or improve you overall fitness level, 30 minutes may be all you need. Striving to achieve the minimum recommended amount of activity is important for everyone. When you think about it, 30 minutes is a relatively short time commitment and an achievable goal for most people. I believe that although a workout time of 30 minutes is adequate for achieving the health benefits associated with exercise, you should attempt to schedule a longer workout.

What should I eat before I work out?
Eating a snack that contains carbs and protein before a workout can provide you with energy, keep you focused and give your body what it needs to build muscle once the workout is over.

What is the best exercise for getting a flat tummy?
There are so many great exercises that target the tummy area, but your diet is the most important factor for weight loss. One of my favorite ab exercises that I add to my weekly workouts is:

Forearm Plank (60 seconds)
Place your forearms on your exercise mat in line with your shoulders. Plant your toes into the ground so that you are using your core strength to hold your forearm plank. Take deep breaths and be sure not to put too much pressure on your neck or back. Your abs should be working to hold you up.

What is the biggest mistake people make at the gym?
Improper use of equipment. They perform exercises incorrectly and end up injuring themselves. So, don’t be afraid to ask a trainer how to use the equipment.

What would you recommend for a quick 20-minute workout?
When you only have 20 minutes to squeeze in a workout, try to do 10 minutes of cardio. This can be a mix of jumping rope, burpees, jumping jacks and high knees running. Spend another 10 minutes focused on functional, strength-based exercises, such as squats, lunges, pushups and planks. If you work at a high intensity and take short, active rest periods, 20 minutes can feel like an hour.

If I’m short on time, what can I do at work to burn calories?
If you’re able, do squats or other exercises that involve using the large muscle groups, such as legs and glutes. You can hold onto your chair and try squats or leg lifts, or you can sit at your desk, squeeze your glutes and kick your leg out for a quad extension. Walking around the office or using your lunch break to do a 20-minute fitness routine would be a great way to keep from being sedentary.

Three Steps to a Stronger You

Muscle building doesn’t have to be difficult. Let’s break it down in three simple steps. Getting results and changing your body composition takes hard work and consistency. Whether your goal is to build muscle, improve your overall fitness level or lose weight, you must do certain things on a regular basis to reach your ultimate goal. These three steps will work within your fitness improvement regimen and contribute to your muscle-building plan.

Step 1. Perform specific exercises on a regular basis.

Step 2. Eat a well-balanced diet including adequate amounts of protein and micronutrients.

Step 3. Schedule some rest days to allow for adaptations to occur.

In order to stimulate muscle growth, your body must be pushed with resistance style exercises. Muscle growth occurs when small muscle fibers tear as a result of stress, and then regenerate themselves. This growth occurs during periods of rest, and your body needs fuel to regenerate efficiently.

Your muscle-building plan must include the following:

  • Hard work: Stimulate muscle tissue by training hard. Use your body weight as resistance, or lift weights on a regular basis, 3-4 times per week.
  • Balance: Do exercises for the upper and lower body to ensure you maintain a good muscular balance in your body.
  • Patience: Allow time for the results to appear. It takes time to see muscle growth and gain strength.
  • Rest days: Don’t over-train because your recovery ability will be compromised. Plan to take at least 1 or 2 rest days per week.
  • Motivation: Understand that you need to motivate yourself to make it happen.

Best Way to Train for Muscle-Building

Progressive training is important if you want your muscle-building routine to be productive. You must be dedicated to training in a way that helps you to improve over time. If you lift the same amount of resistance for the same number of repetitions (reps) during each workout session, you’ll stay the same. At some point, you must attempt to either perform more reps, or use more resistance.

Following a reps and weight increase schedule will allow you to easily measure if you’re improving from workout to workout. Rep ranges is a simple concept to understand and apply to your training.

I like to recommend a rep range of 10-14 for strength training in the initial stages, especially when someone is just getting started. High reps will force you to choose a moderate weight. This way you’ll become proficient with exercise form (important for safety) as the weight increases. As your workouts transition more into the power range, increase weight and decrease reps.

Beginning a Muscle-Building Plan

Your goal in your first workout is to reach muscular fatigue within the set range using a set amount of resistance. For example, if 50lbs was your chosen weight for squats and you achieved twelve perfect reps, you’d simply record 1 set of squats = 50lbs 12 reps.

The goal in your next workout would be to achieve more reps with the same weight until you can perform 14 full reps. Achieving the set reps should prompt you to increase resistance in your following session, because the top end of the rep range was achieved.

Increasing Weight

The resistance for that set should be increased between 5-10% with the goal of achieving at least 10 reps in the 10-14 rep range.

Your ongoing goal should be to increase the number of reps within the rep range and then increase the amount of resistance when the top end of the range is reached. This method of training is slow, but it’s a foolproof way to increase your overall strength and muscle mass.

Diet

You’ll need to ensure that you’re getting enough fuel for your workouts and recovery. You should aim to have a good breakfast, a mid-morning snack, a sensible lunch, a mid-afternoon snack and then an appropriate dinner in the evening.

You’re attempting to build muscle and you need fuel to accomplish that. You can’t restrict your calories too much, but don’t get confused by that. You should always restrict your consumption of unhealthy calories. Choose nutrient-dense foods that are high in protein and get your carbohydrates from whole grains and fruits. Many people who are trying to gain weight or muscle will make the mistake of thinking they can eat a lot of unhealthy food. This will make you gain weight, but weight gain with unhealthy foods is detrimental to your overall health. Be sensible with your choices.

Ultimate Core Toning Workout

It’s time to get focused this week. Join me for an advanced abs routine. It’ll be like boot camp for your abs in just 15 minutes!

Are you looking to get a toned midsection? I’ve got just the workout for you. Today’s ab routine only takes 15 minutes, but it’s challenging enough that I like to call it my core boot camp. You can do this routine after a cardio session, or you can do it as a quick workout on days when you can’t spare more than 20 minutes for a workout. Let’s get started.

15 Minute Core Boot Camp

Before you start this routine, make sure your body is warmed up for exercise. This routine works best after a cardio session. If you choose to skip cardio, be sure to do a dynamic warm-up with stretches for at least five minutes. Once you’re warm, you can tackle my core boot camp.

Complete these moves for the time listed. When you reach the end of your first circuit, repeat two more times to complete your routine. You’ll need an exercise ball and an exercise mat.

  1. Forearm Plank (60 seconds)
    Place your forearms on your exercise mat in line with your shoulders. Plant your toes into the ground, so that you are using your core strength to hold your forearm plank. Take deep breaths and be sure not to put too much pressure on your neck or back. Your abs should be working to hold you up.
  2. Pike Roll with an Exercise Ball (30 seconds)
    Start by holding a push-up position, only this time place your feet on an exercise ball. You can adjust the difficulty of this exercise by placing the ball closer to your abs. The closer to your feet, the more challenging it will be. Keeping your abs tight, press your hips up towards the ceiling. Then come back to your original straight position. Keep your back flat throughout this exercise.
  3. Bicycle Abs (30 seconds)
    Lie flat with your back on the floor, press your lower back to the ground. Place your hands on either side of your head, but be sure not to strain your neck during this exercise. Gently lift up so that you are in a crunch position, and lift your feet off the ground so that your lower legs are parallel to the floor. Simultaneously, do a bicycle motion with your legs as if you were riding a bicycle. Bring your opposite elbow and opposite knee close together, and then switch sides. Continue for 30 seconds.
  4. V-Sit Hold (60 seconds)
    Begin in a seated position with legs straight out in front of you. Lift your legs up to a 45-degree angle, and lean back to a 45-degree angle, but keep your back flat and core tight. Reach your arms straight out in front of you, and hold this ‘V’ position for 60 seconds.
  5. Crunches (30 seconds)
    Go back to lying on the floor, with lower back pressing towards the ground. Your knees should be bent, and feet flat on the floor. Place your hands on either side of your head, but don’t strain your neck in any way. Lift up so that your upper back comes up off the floor. Your abs should be doing all the work to lift, no cheating! Lower back down and repeat.
  6. Reverse Crunches (30 seconds)
    Lie on the floor, knees bent and feet off the floor so that your lower legs are parallel to the ground. Your legs should create a 90-degree angle. Keep your arms stationary by your sides. Lift your hips up and move your legs towards your torso. Go back to starting position and repeat.
  7. Full body crunch (30 seconds)
    Now it’s time to combine the last two exercises. You’ll combine a traditional ab crunch with a reverse crunch. Lie on the floor with knees bent at a 90 degree angle and feet off the floor. Place your hands on either side of your head. Lift up to bring your upper back off the floor and at the same time, pull your knees towards your chest to work your lower abdominal muscles.
  8. Recover (30 seconds)
    Give your abs a quick break after working hard for the last four and a half minutes! Now’s your time to hydrate and get ready for the next round.***Remember to couple your fitness plan with good nutrition. You can work as hard as possible on fitness, but you can’t exercise away a bad diet.I know today’s ab workout was challenging. I hope you got enough out of it to share this core boot camp routine so that you can exercise with your friends.

Get a Ripped Sixer by Summer

Everyone wants ripped, defined abs. Putting in the hard work to achieve them, however? That part doesn’t excite too many of us.

Blame it on the excruciating muscle burn that builds up when training our midsection, leaving us curled in a sweaty, fetal ball of agony after an especially long set. Or maybe the fact that, after a bout of interesting exercises focusing on bodyparts like back, chest, shoulders, legs or arms, we often tend to tack on a few sets of (boring, monotonous, tedious) crunches at the end of our workouts to give our abs a nudge.

To that second hurdle at least, we have an answer. To help you ditch the halfhearted crunch sesh, we’ve recruited an expert to devise not just one but two workouts, each aimed at a critical goal: one core strength and the other maximum definition.

Oh, and our expert? She knows a thing or two about elite, powerful, athletic abs. Samantha Clayton is a former Olympic runner, having competed for Great Britain at the 2000 Sydney Games in the 200-meter and 4×100 meter relay events. After retiring from competition, the mother of four became an in-demand personal trainer and group exercise instructor — in 2017, she was spotted training soccer phenom Cristiano Ronaldo, causing a stir in the U.K. media — and joined Herbalife as a vice president.

“We are all born with six-pack abs, but for the majority of us, they’re hidden behind a layer of abdominal fat,” Clayton points out. “Working your core muscles with specific exercises — like the ones I show you here — will help make them stronger and more defined. Meanwhile, you should continue with a comprehensive workout and cardio routine for your whole body while remembering this: Six-packs are made in the kitchen. Good nutrition is essential.”

That said, here is Clayton’s two-pronged approach to ab-solute perfection.

Lying Bent-Leg Raise

While the bent-leg raise doesn’t “isolate” your abdominals, that’s not the point here — what it does is target a key muscle that contributes to overall core strength. “The hip flexor muscle, called the psoas major, is used for all activities that involve moving your legs,” Clayton explains. “This is my favorite exercise for working that particular muscle.”

How-To: Place a mat on the floor and lie faceup, knees bent about 90 degrees and feet elevated a few inches. Place your hands under your glutes to stabilize your pelvis. Without letting your lower back lift up off the floor, pull your legs toward your chest, maintaining the same angle in your knees throughout, and then return to the starting position.

How Many: Start out doing 10 raises, three sets. “If your back starts to lift, stop because you’ll be engaging the incorrect muscles,” Clayton warns.

Make It Harder: To increase the resistance, try the exercise with straight legs.

 

Side Plank

“The quadratus lumborum is a muscle that connects the upper and lower body,” Clayton says. “It helps stabilize the hips and the spine, and it also plays a role with the diaphragm for deep breathing.” The side plank engages it, along with the other muscles of the abdominal wall and lower back.

How-To: Lie on a mat on your right side, balancing yourself on the outer edge of your left foot and your left forearm, elbow bent. Your body should be straight head to heel, your hips off the floor, and your right arm can either be held straight up overhead or placed on your right side.

How Many: Hold this position for 45 to 60 seconds, and then repeat on the other side.

Make It Harder: Try to increase your total hold time to 90 seconds to two minutes.

 

Beast Kick-Through

A great exercise with a cool name, the beast will blast your core (and as a bonus, your shoulders).

How-To: Get into the “beast pose” position: You’ll be on the floor facing down in a modified tabletop position, with your hands and balls of your feet on the floor, hips up, and bent knees elevated about an inch or so from touching down. From here, twist your torso to the right, simultaneously lifting your left leg and right arm out to the right side of your body in the air. (You’ll remain balanced on your planted right leg and left hand.) Return to the start and repeat for 11 more reps, then do the same number to the left side.

How Many: Do 12 reps on each side for three sets.

Make It Easier: Practice the beast pose to master it. As you become proficient in that, you can start adding a twist of the body without kicking the leg over.

 

Burpee

“A burpee is a combination of a squat, step-back, plank, push-up and jump-up at the end,” Clayton says. “It can help enhance your coordination and strengthen almost every muscle in the body at the same time.”

How-To: Stand upright with your feet shoulder-width apart. Start by squatting down as you put your hands out in front of you, then kick your legs out behind you after your hands reach the floor, with your body now in the “up” position of a push-up. Perform a push-up and then quickly pull your feet in underneath you again. Extend at the hips and knees to return to standing, continuing through with your hands overhead into a jump. When you come back down, immediately descend into the next rep.

How Many: Perform four sets of 15 burpees with a 30- to 60-second rest in between each set.

Make It Easier: If you need to, eliminate the push-up or the jump, allowing you to practice and learn the base burpee movement.

 

Superman Hold

“This exercise works the erector spinae in your lower back, which helps to ensure you’re building a balanced core,” Clayton says. “It also engages the muscles in the whole posterior chain, including butt and hamstrings.”

How-To: Lie on the floor facedown. Extend your arms overhead and reach your legs straight behind you while maintaining a neutral spine, head and neck position. Engage your core to lift your arms and your legs just an inch or so off the floor so you’re balanced on your midsection. Hold for 15 seconds, then lower yourself back to the start.

How Many: Hold for 15 seconds four to five times total.

Make It Easier: If you need to work up to the full Superman, you can try a modified version by lifting just one arm and the opposite leg up each time, alternating which two limbs you’re lifting from hold to hold.

 

Spider Push-Up

“Push-ups are a great way to add intensity to your workout, especially when you make them a little more difficult than the standard military version,” Clayton says. “The chest and back benefit greatly from doing push-ups, but it’s considered a total-body exercise, as the core, arms and glutes are all working hard, too. The spider push-up does all that and targets your obliques.”

How-To: Assume the start of a traditional push-up. As you bend your elbows out to the sides and lower your torso toward the floor, lift your right toe up and bend your right knee to bring it forward until it touches your right elbow. Straighten your elbows to return to the start position, putting your right foot next to your left. Lower yourself again, this time touching your left knee to your left elbow.

How Many: Do three sets of 10 to

12 reps — two push-ups, one with your left knee coming up and the other with your right equals one rep.

Make It Harder: Twist to bring your left knee to your right elbow and vice versa.

 

Weighted Crunch

“Crunches are a simple yet very effective exercise that will activate the rectus abdominis, the most external of the core muscles that form the famous ‘six-pack,’” Clayton says. “Adding resistance takes the move up another level.”

How-To: Lie faceup on the floor with your knees bent, feet planted, holding a weight plate over your chest. Begin by contracting your abs to curl your shoulders toward your pelvis. Hold the max contraction for a one-count, then return under control to the start.

How Many: Do three to five sets of 15 to 20 crunches, focusing on textbook form.

Make It Harder: Instead of holding the weight to your chest, hold it over your head, elbows straight with your upper arms alongside your ears.

 

Stability-Ball Plank With Leg Lift

The stability ball adds an extra element of balance, forcing your whole abdominal wall and lower back to steady your body throughout.

How-To: Assume a modified plank position, elbows on the ball, feet on the floor,
balanced on your toes. Lift one foot off the floor 1 to 2 inches and hold for 10 seconds. Then lower that leg to the floor and repeat with your right.

How Many: Do five sets, each set consisting of a 10-second hold per leg.

Make It Harder: Extend the length of the hold to 15 to 30 seconds.

Bicycle Ab Crunch

“The muscles at the side of your waist are called the internal and external obliques,” Clayton explains. “They’re essential for stability, especially for movements that involve lateral — or sideways — movements. To activate them, you’ll need to perform exercises that involve side bending or twisting, like the bicycle ab crunch.”

How-To: Lie down with your lower back pressed to the floor. Place your hands lightly behind your head, elbows pointed out. Elevate your legs with your knees bent 90 degrees. Straighten one knee as you bend the other, all the while twisting your upper body so that you bring the right-side elbow to the left knee and vice versa.

How Many: Do 30 seconds of as many bicycle crunches you can muster, three to five times total.

Make It Harder: Increase your sets to 45 to 60 seconds.

 

Jump Rope Tabata

“Jumping rope is a great cardio-boosting exercise,” Clayton states. “Jumping is also high impact in nature, so you get the muscle- and bone-strengthening benefits at the same time as you’re burning calories.”

How-To: Start in a standing position, feet inside shoulder width, holding a handle of the rope in each hand at your sides with your elbows soft. Swing the rope over and around your body, using small, quick leaps that take you just a couple of inches off the floor as the rope passes beneath you. Throughout, land lightly on the balls of your feet and keep your torso upright.

How Many: Rotate between 20 seconds of jumping rope with 10 seconds of rest for eight sets.

Make It Easier: Substitute jumping rope for high knees.

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Benefits of Milk Protein for Athletes

Athletes know that protein – from any source – is important to build and maintain muscle mass. But milk proteins may offer a bit of an edge.

The fact that athletes favor protein in their diet is hardly big news. Simple logic suggests that if muscles are made of protein, you need plenty of protein in your diet in order to build muscle mass (coupled with exercise, of course). So, most athletes make a point of ensuring that they meet their daily needs.

And while it’s true that protein can be obtained from a wide range of both plant and animal sources, it’s important to provide your body with a steady dose of complete protein – that is, the right balance of all the essential amino acids (building blocks) that your body can’t manufacture on its own.

All animal sources of protein are naturally complete, and even vegans can obtain the right amino acid balance by carefully combining plant-based protein sources (such as beans and grains) over the course of the day. But milk-based proteins are concentrated sources of certain amino acids that may offer advantages over other proteins when it comes to muscle repair and growth.

Here’s why. The two primary proteins in milk are whey and casein. Whey protein is considered a “fast” protein because it is readily digested, only taking about 15 minutes before its amino acids are detectable in your bloodstream. Casein, on the other hand, takes longer to digest. But its “slow” nature means that casein provides a more sustained release of amino acids into your system.

This is important, because your body is constantly building up and breaking down protein all day long. These two opposing processes are generally kept in balance, though. Whenever you eat protein, it stimulates protein synthesis for a few hours afterwards, and as long as your body has a sustained source of available amino acids, the natural process of protein breakdown is kept in check.

And that’s why the combination of whey and casein is considered a “one-two punch” when it comes to muscle building: the fast-acting whey protein helps stimulate muscle protein buildup, while the sustained action of casein helps inhibit the breakdown process.

But there’s an additional twist to this story, and it has to do with the unique nature of whey protein.

Whey is one of the richest sources of a group of amino acids called branched-chain amino acids (or BCAAs, in reference to their chemical structure). One feature of BCAAs is that they are the only amino acids that muscles can utilize directly for energy. And one BCAA in particular – leucine – does even more. Leucine behaves almost like a hormone in your body by stimulating certain metabolic pathways that lead to muscle protein synthesis. And whey protein contains more than twice the leucine of any other animal sources of protein.

The timing of protein intake is important too. Since muscle protein synthesis is stimulated every time you eat protein, it’s best to spread your protein intake throughout the day over all your meals and snacks.

Before exercise, a light, easy to digest meal that contains both whey protein and carbohydrates (like a protein shake) can help in a couple of ways. Carbohydrates provide quick available energy, while whey protein helps protect muscle protein breakdown. And keep in mind that protein synthesis occurs around the clock. Giving your body a hit of dairy protein before bed can help tip you into positive protein balance – even when you’re sleeping.

Yogurt and Probiotics Promote Digestive Health

While the idea of consuming bacteria in the diet may not sound appealing, probiotic bacteria found in yogurt and other fermented dairy products can promote digestive health.

Probiotics are beneficial bacteria that help maintain the proper balance of the microorganisms (called flora) that live in your digestive tract. Your digestive system is home to hundreds of types of probiotics, and these helpful bacteria keep the growth of other, potentially harmful, bacteria at bay—thus promoting healthy digestion.

The bacteria in your system also help to break down foods that are resistant to normal digestion, allowing you to obtain more nutrients from your foods. In the process, gas is produced. But we have other gas-guzzling bacteria that keep its production in check. So, a healthy balance of these various intestinal ‘bugs’ is key to a well-functioning digestive tract.

One of the most common strains of probiotic bacteria that reside in your intestines is Lactobacillus acidophilus, which is found in yogurt. When you eat yogurt that has ‘active, live cultures’ (the label will tell you), you can be assured that you are consuming this healthy probiotic. You can buy it here on my site

Do Gluten-Free, Sugar-Free, or Low-Carb Diets Actually Work?

When it comes to food, Americans often bounce between extremes: We go all in on the Thanksgiving stuffing, then cut out entire food groups in an attempt to “compensate.” It’s unsurprising that gluten-, dairy-, and sugar-free diets, which were intended for people with legitimate health concerns, have gone mainstream. Their proponents say they improve the complexion, improve alertness and mood, and “detox” the body (spoiler alert: our bodies naturally do that for us).

Many restrictive plans require intense commitment, which, in a strange twist, might be part of their draw: “Avoiding a food group altogether can seem easier than trying to eat it in moderation,” says Lisa Young, an adjunct professor of nutrition at New York University and the author of The Portion Teller Plan.

But austerity isn’t the only reason eliminating foods has gained traction in recent years. Many devotees are attracted by celebrity enthusiasm: Stars including Jessica Alba and Kim Kardashian have praised gluten-free eating, for example, with Kardashian once tweeting, “Gluten free is the way to be.” So when is the effort to adhere to a gluten-, sugar-, or dairy-free diet worth it? And how about the paleo diet, which shuns grains, dairy, and refined sugar (not to mention legumes and processed foods)? We asked the experts — read on for their take on each of these eating approaches.

1. Gluten-free

The scoop: Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye. Translation: It’s in tons of stuff, including bread, pasta, cereal, crackers, beer, and many salad dressings, soups, and soy sauces. Gluten-free eaters learn to love alternative grains like amaranth, buckwheat, quinoa, and rice, but only those with a wheat allergy or, more seriously, ­celiac disease, must strictly comply. When people with celiac disease eat gluten, it sets off an immune reaction that damages the lining of the small intestine, causing diarrhea, gas, bloating, and other symptoms like irritability, muscle cramps, skin rashes, anemia. (A blood test and an intestinal biopsy can confirm a celiac diagnosis; Keri Gans, a registered dietitian and the author of The Small Change Diet, advises against eliminating gluten from your diet before being tested in order to avoid a false negative.)

Celiac disease affects about three million people in the U.S., but far more — as many as 20 million — are estimated to have non-celiac gluten sensitivity. That means eating foods like bread or pasta leaves them bloated, foggy, depressed, and headache-y. “Some people eat gluten safely for 20, 30, or 40 years, then suddenly develop a problem,” says Alessio Fasano, director of the Center for Celiac Research and Treatment at MassGeneral Hospital for Children. Since no reliable sensitivity test is yet available, the only way to determine whether your malaise is gluten-related is to try the diet and see if you feel better, which should be apparent within a few days.

Benefits: Those with celiac or pronounced gluten sensitivity will see the most improvement. “Brain fog, bloating, and headaches should go away immediately,” says Fasano. “Many people feel remarkably better.” Since gluten sensitivity can trigger an inflammatory response that leads to acne, rosacea, or eczema, omitting it from your diet could help clear up your skin, as cosmetic dermatologist Fredric Brandt told Allure in 2013. But if you don’t have a true gluten sensitivity, you’re not likely to notice any changes in your mood, skin, or gut.

Drawbacks: You may end up eating more calories than your body needs. Thanks to the gluten-free trend, there is now a glut of G-free muffins, pies, cakes, and pizzas with relatively little nutritional merit. Some of these substitutes are more caloric than their standard counterparts because manufacturers use corn or potato starch to add texture, explains Susan Bowerman, Director of Nutrition Training at Herbalife, International.

Some experts also believe that avoiding gluten could potentially set you up for a vitamin deficiency: Wheat is rich in thiamine and other B vitamins, says Cynthia Kupper, executive director of the Gluten Intolerance Group of North America, and B vitamins “are important for the health of your hair, skin, brain, and nerves.” If you’re not eating wheat, it’s important to get those vitamins from other places. (What’s more, gluten-free foods can cost two or three times as much as conventional ones.)

Bottom line: People who can’t eat gluten now have a greater variety of appealing choices than ever. Everyone else can skip the gluten-free diet and count their blessings.

2. Dairy-free

The scoop: Swearing off dairy entirely is harder than it sounds. It means avoiding not only milk, cheese, and yogurt (did we mention cheese?) but many other foods, including energy bars, sausage, and baked goods. More than 50 million Americans are lactose intolerant: They lack sufficient enzymes to help digest lactose, the sugar in dairy products, and so the lactose stays in the belly. There, bacteria devour it with unpleasant results, like diarrhea, gas, and cramping.

Still, most people don’t need to go totally dairy-free, according to Andrea Giancoli, a registered dietitian. Even people who have trouble with lactose “often can tolerate a little dairy, and many can eat hard cheeses because they have less liquid whey, and, as a result, lower lactose. Yogurt is often OK, too, because the bacteria predigest some of the sugar.” If you suspect you have lactose intolerance, your doctor can confirm with one of a few tests. (Gans notes that a milk allergy can be life-threatening, so it’s smart to opt for testing under the supervision of a doctor.)

The recent championing of dairy-free diets is driven by more than lactose intolerance, though: Concerns about animal welfare and even a desire to save money influence people’s decisions to give up dairy (skipping your daily latte seems like an easy way to cut back on spending, for example). After food journalist Mark Bittman wrote about his experience with dairy consumption and chronic heartburn for the New York Times, he shared that he received hundreds of comments from readers claiming that eating no dairy had alleviated everything from migraines to nasal congestion. “Those effects aren’t rooted in science, but there is some ­anecdotal evidence,” says Young.

Benefits: If you have lactose intolerance, you’re naturally going to feel a whole lot better when you cut out lactose out. You’ll notice a decrease in bloating and gas, heartburn, and headaches — and your skin might clear up too, Brandt told us in 2013: “Hormones in milk increase the level of androgens in your body, and that triggers the production of oils that clog pores.” Moreover, the sugar in dairy products causes the body to release insulin-like growth factor, which triggers inflammation and breaks down collagen and elastin.

Drawbacks: Calcium and vitamin D are crucial for maintaining bone health as you age. It’s not guaranteed that milk alternatives like almond and coconut will contain levels of these nutrients on par with their dairy counterparts, so keep reading labels and get informed about how to make up for any nutritional shortfalls elsewhere. “If you remove dairy from your diet, you need to eat plenty of leafy greens and possibly take a [vitamin] D supplement to make up for it,” Bowerman says.

Bottom line: Those who can’t tolerate lactose or don’t want to consume animal products can easily do without dairy. If you don’t have a diagnosable problem but find that you feel better without the stuff, you’re safe disavowing dairy, too.

 

3. Sugar-free

The scoop: Eliminating sugar from your diet is a little like getting pollen out of your air supply. It’s everywhere: in ketchup, barbecue sauce, granola, cereal, flavored yogurt, sports drinks, instant oatmeal, energy bars, and more. But if you limit obvious sources — for example, soda, ­candy, and baked goods — along with most processed foods, you can go a long way toward reducing the 77 pounds of the stuff each of us consumes on average per year.

Although friends who want to split the crème brûlée might object, no nutritionist will. Some scientists actually go so far as to call added sugar “poison,” an idea that has gained widespread popularity among health experts and physicians in recent years. “They may not be that far off,” admits Jana Klauer, a New York City physician and the author of The Park Avenue Nutritionist’s Plan. “Sugar can contribute to mood swings, weight gain, and, over time, insulin resistance, and there’s almost certainly an addictive quality for some people. They have one bite and it opens the floodgates; all they want is more.”

Benefits: Cutting out sugar can stabilize your mood: That’s because sugar causes glucose — and energy — to spike, then plummet. Eliminating the stuff can also reduce stress on your body and skin: “Glucose can trigger enzymes that break down tissues, including the collagen and elastin in your skin,” says Jessica Wu, a Los Angeles dermatologist and the author of Feed Your Face.

Drawbacks: There’s a caveat to the “sugar is bad” conclusion: Gans says not all sugar is created equal and points to the example of the naturally occurring sugar in whole fruits, which are a healthy source of essential nutrients including vitamin C, potassium, and folate.

Bottom line: Choosing to go sugar-free is likely to help boost your mood and increase energy, and if you can’t bear to take it that far, merely cutting back can be good medicine. For those with a sweet tooth, Gans says that all foods can fit into a healthy, well-balanced diet, even sugar.

 

4. Paleo

The scoop: The paleo diet consists of foods that can be hunted, fished, or gathered. Think meat, fish, eggs, fruits, veggies, nuts, seeds, herbs, spices, fats, oils…and that’s about it. Eating paleo means cutting out grains, dairy, and refined sugar, as well as legumes (such as beans, chickpeas, lentils, soy, and peanuts) and processed foods.

Benefits: Lisa Sasson, clinical associate professor of nutrition and food studies at New York University, says that one of the benefits of making sure you get enough protein is that you feel fuller longer: Protein generally takes longer to digest than carbohydrates or fats. The focus that paleo puts on whole fruits and vegetables, meanwhile, means you’re more likely to get plenty of the vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber they contain, she adds; cutting out processed foods high in sodium, sugar, and preservatives is a good move for your health, too. (That said, as Gans has told Allure, it’s worth getting specific about what it means when we say a food is “processed.” For example, even “raw ” almonds go through pasteurization, a form of processing, before we eat them, and they’re still a much healthier snack than Fritos.)

Drawbacks: It’s possible for you to miss out on key nutrients while adhering to a paleo diet, Sasson says, including calcium and vitamin D from dairy and B vitamins from grains, as described above. What’s more, she points out that if you’re getting your protein primarily from red meat, you run the risk of consuming too much cholesterol and saturated fat, which is a heart-healthy risk. Finally — and this is an important one — you could miss out on foods that you genuinely like and that are also safe for you to eat. Feeling deprived isn’t a sustainable way to live.

Bottom line: Focusing on whole foods is always a good idea, but cutting out entire food groups paleo-style may make it more difficult for you to get the nutrients you need and the enjoyment that makes a diet last. Still, at the end of the day, everyone is different: Listening to your body and working with your health care provider will help you figure out the best ways to nourish yourself.

Eat More but Stay Slim? Foods With Water and Fiber

You really can eat more food and take in fewer calories. Foods that contain lots of water and fiber can fill you up without filling you out. Today, I’m talking about how you can eat more and still make your diet work for you.

“Just eat less.” If you’re trying to lose weight, you’ve probably heard this suggestion more times than you can count. Every time you hear it, you probably think, “But if I eat less, I’m just going to be really hungry!” Sure, cutting back on the amount you eat is one way to trim your calorie intake, but it won’t work very well if you don’t change what you eat. I know it may sound too good to be true, but you can eat more food and take in fewer calories. You just need to know how to “pump up the volume.”

Want to feel full but eat less? Try this proven diet trick

There are a couple of reasons why simply cutting your portion sizes without changing what you eat doesn’t work very well on its own. For one thing, if your diet is lousy to start with, you’ll just end up eating half of a lousy diet instead of a whole one. Yes, you’ll take in fewer calories, but chances are good your body won’t be getting all the nutrients it needs.

There’s another reason that cutting portions without changing anything else often backfires. If you cut your portions down, you are taking in less food which means you’re going to be less full. And it stands to reason that you are probably going to be a lot more hungry.

Most of us are used to a certain feeling of fullness that results when we’ve eaten a certain amount of food. After all, it takes up a certain amount of space in our stomachs. In fact, the amount of food that each of us eats at mealtimes is surprisingly consistent: we eat pretty much the same volume of food each time. So, how can you eat more and get full without busting your calorie budget?

The answer is fairly simple. You can pump up the volume of the food with water and fiber—all of which can help fill you up without filling you out. In other words, you want to increase the volume of food that you eat but take in as few calories as you can in the process.

This sounds fairly obvious. After all, it’s one of the main reasons we suggest that people eat more fruits and vegetables. They’re more than 80% water and the remaining 20% is nutrient-packed and fiber-rich. But when you actually run the numbers, you can see how small changes can make a huge difference in your calorie intake.

How to Eat More Food for Fewer Calories

Consider the difference between a fresh grape which has loads of water and dried raisin which has very little. One grape and one raisin have the same number of calories (about 5). So, if you ate 20 grapes or 20 raisins, you’d eat about 100 calories either way.

But 20 grapes would have about four times the volume of 20 raisins, and take up more room in your stomach than 100 calories of raisins. For the same number of calories, the watery grapes are going to be a lot more filling than the dried raisins.

Here’s another example… What happens if you put a stack of lettuce leaves or cucumber slices on a sandwich instead of cheese? An entire head of watery lettuce has only 25 calories, and an entire cucumber has only 10. But a single slice of Swiss cheese will cost you 100 calories. So, by piling up the veggies on your sandwich, you can pump up volume without adding very many calories. This is also why salads make such good meal starters: they take up plenty of room in your stomach at a relatively low calorie cost, as long as they’re not drenched in dressing.

Most soups are another great meal starter for the same reason. A small bowl of low-fat, brothy vegetable soup will take up a fair amount of room in your stomach. But because it’s full of water and high-fiber veggies, it will only set you back about 100 calories or so. By the time your entrée arrives, you’ve already started to fill up. That means you can probably cut back on your dinner portions and save some calories.

This is also why I often suggest that you double up on vegetables and skip starchy sides at meals if you’re trying to cut calories. For the 200 calories you’d spend on a serving of steamed white rice, you could eat ten times the volume of roasted cauliflower.

Actually, sneaking vegetables into anything is one of the best ways to add volume to a meal with very few calories. So, add chopped or grated vegetables (carrots and zucchini work especially well) to dishes like soups, stews, meat loaf, casseroles, grain dishes and pasta sauces. Try folding plenty of steamed spinach into an egg-white omelet, or adding cooked butternut squash to your protein shake.

If watery, high fiber foods are the ones you want to turn to when you want to eat more and spend fewer calories. You’ll want to turn away from fats and oils. Since they have no water or fiber in them at all, fats and oils contribute the most calories to your diet in smallest volume of food. Think about this: a teaspoon of oil has the same number of calories as a whole fresh tangerine—but which one would fill you up more?

Here’s another trick: Add a little “air” to your protein shake. Next time you make your shake in the blender, try whipping it up for a while to pump up the volume. Making your shake bigger won’t boost the calories one bit—but it just might fill you up a whole lot more.

Weight-loss Shakes

Follow these easy steps when making your Formula 1 shake:

 

For a water-based healthy meal: (24 g protein/200 calories)

• Pour 8 oz. of water into a blender or shaker bottle

• Add 2 scoops of your favorite flavor of Formula 1

• Add 2 scoops of your favorite flavor of Protein Drink Mix

• If desired, add 4-5 ice cubes

• Shake or blend to mix well

• Enjoy!

 

For a milk-based healthy meal: (17 g protein/170 calories)

• Pour 8 oz. of nonfat milk or soy milk into a blender or shaker bottle

• Add 2 scoops of your favorite Formula 1 flavor

• If desired, add 4-5 ice cubes

• Shake or blend to mix well

• Enjoy!

 

Want a thicker shake? Try blending at low speed.

Want a thinner or on-the-go shake? Use a shaker cup instead of a blender.

 

Remember: To be considered a healthy meal, a shake should provide at least 17 g of protein and 170 calories.

 

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Fitness motivation: 12 reasons to work out today!

Are you struggling to find some fitness motivation this week? Is the idea of squeezing into that outfit or adjusting your belt buckle to a smaller hole not giving you the motivational push you need? If you’re looking for some reasons to get in shape, then here are 12 reasons to get you motivated today!

With the holiday season upon us, we may all need a little bit of extra fitness motivation to help us stay focused with our health goals. I talk a lot about the internal health benefits associated with leading a healthy and active lifestyle. Improved health is the primary reason we need to exercise and consume a nutritious diet. We are often easily motivated by our external appearance, but it’s always changing—especially as we age. It feels like we have to work twice as hard and be twice as disciplined to get the same results that came so easily when we were younger. Change is something we all have to accept. Your body may be continually changing both internally and externally, but your desire to be healthy should never change.

12 reasons to work out today

1: Heart health: Engaging in cardiovascular activity is good for your heart. Your heart is a muscle, and pushing it to work hard a few days each week may help to improve your cardiac output. If you engage in cardiovascular activity on a regular basis, you may lower your overall resting heart rate, which is good for your health long term.

2: Glowing skin: When you exercise, you increase the blood flow around your body. Your post-workout glow may not last all day, but you may look more radiant right after your session. If you’re lucky, the healthy glow will make you look and feel great.

3: Improved posture: Exercising on a regular basis may make you become more aware of your posture. As you gain body confidence and movement awareness, you become more conscious of what feels right for your body. Slouching may become a bad habit of the past. As an extra bonus, good posture makes you look taller.

4: Fewer aches and pains: If you have sore and stiff joints that are caused from sitting down all day, moving more often will help to alleviate that stiffness. Joints that are immobile tend to get sore. Once you’re moving on a regular basis, you improve the range of motion, and movements of everyday living become easier to perform.

5: Improved body composition: When you make exercise a part of your lifestyle, you will start to notice changes in how you look and feel. You may lose excess body fat and gain lean muscle mass—which is not only great for your appearance, but it also helps your body to become more efficient at burning calories. A body with a high percentage of lean muscle mass requires more calories just to sustain itself than a person of the same weight who has a higher percentage of body fat.

6: Feel happier: Performing physical exercise can make you feel happier in your daily life. One of the reasons for this is that your body releases an increased amount of endorphins when you’re active. Endorphins are your body’s natural happy hormone. You may also feel happier because you’re taking good care of your body. This sense of accomplishment can often make you have a greater sense of well-being.

7: Control your weight: Exercise can help prevent excess weight gain and help maintain weight loss. When you engage in physical activity, you burn calories. The more intense the activity, the more calories you burn.

8: More energy: Regular physical activity can improve your muscle strength and boost your endurance. When you exercise, your body must deliver oxygen and nutrients to your tissues to help your cardiovascular system work more efficiently. When your heart and lungs work more efficiently, you have more energy to go about your daily tasks.

9: Boost brain power: Working out on a regular basis may help to improve your brain function. Various studies have shown that cardiovascular exercise can create new brain cells (neurogenesis) and improve overall brain performance. Studies suggest that a tough workout may also increase levels of a brain-derived protein (known as BDNF) in the body. BDNF is believed to help with decision-making and higher learning.

10: Less stress: Exercise may act as a temporary diversion to daily stress. When you’re exercising or having fun doing activities, you’re generally not thinking about the things in your life that are difficult. Taking time out of your busy day to focus on yourself can reduce the feeling of stress. Less stress can also help with weight loss, because many people eat unhealthy foods to combat stress.

11: Meet new people: Exercise provides an opportunity for social interaction that may otherwise be lacking in your life. Starting a new activity can help you find a new circle of friends or provide you with a healthier opportunity to reconnect with old ones. So often we go out to eat to socialize, but doing an activity is much better for your waistline!

12: Better sleep: Being active can help to improve your sleep habits for several reasons. Exercising raises your body’s core temperature. As it cools back down to normal, it can help you to feel relaxed and ready to sleep. Because activity can help reduce your stress levels, drifting off at night may become easier.

There you have it—my top 12 fitness motivation reasons.

Meal Plan

HERBALIFE® MEAL PLANS

Our meal plans are simple and easy! The calorie counts are built into the plans, and the plans are designed to provide you with the right amount of protein your body needs every day to function at its best.

All you need to do is:

• Select the plan that fits your needs

• Create daily menus that include Herbalife® Formula 1 shakes, healthy balanced meals, and protein-rich snacks

Choose your Herbalife® shakes, choose your colorful meals and choose your protein-rich snacks – it’s that simple!

STEP 1 – MEAL PLAN SELECTION TOOL

Download Step 1

No two people are alike and everyone’s protein and calorie needs vary. So how do you know which meal plan is right for you? You’ll start with Step 1: the Meal Plan Selection Tools for Women and Men. The charts will help you quickly determine the suggested meal plan for you, and your plan is designed to match your individual needs for protein and calories.

The Meal Plan Selection Tool will guide you to the recommended Meal Plan based on your gender, weight and height. Once you know which plan is recommended for you, you’ll go to Step 2 to see your suggested plan.

STEP 2 – MEAL PLANS A, B, C, D

Download Step 2

Once you know which plan to follow, you’ll notice that each plan has three options: Daily Nutrition, Weight Loss and Weight Gain. Choose the option within the plan that best suits your personal goals.

This Meal Plan chart shows you what a typical day will look like. You can clearly see the recommended Formula 1 shakes, meals and snacks you will choose each day, depending on your plan.

Personalized daily Meal Plans are created by choosing items from the following categories:

• Herbalife® Formula 1 Shakes (20-30 grams protein, 250-300 calories, depending on your plan)

• Balanced Meals (25-40 grams protein, 400-600 calories, depending on your plan)

• Protein Snacks (10-30 grams protein, 150-300 calories, depending on your plan)

• If your goal is to maintain your weight, follow the Daily Nutrition option of your recommended Meal Plan. This option will deliver the recommended amount of protein and calories to help you maintain your weight, when coupled with an appropriate exercise program. This option replaces one meal per day (typically breakfast) with an Herbalife®Formula 1 shake.

• If you desire weight loss, follow the Weight Loss option of your recommended meal plan. The Weight Loss option will deliver the recommended amount of protein, but with fewer calories, to promote weight and fat loss, when coupled with an appropriate exercise program. This option replaces two meals per day (typically lunch and dinner) with an Herbalife® Formula 1 shake.

• If your goal is to gain weight, follow the Weight Gain option of your recommended meal plan. The Weight Gain option will deliver more protein and calories which, when coupled with an appropriate exercise program, will help you to gain healthy weight (as lean body mass). In the Weight Gain option, you will supplement the Daily Nutrition plan with additional Herbalife® Formula 1 shakes, up to a total of three shakes per day.

MEAL BUILDER TOOL

Download Meal Builder Tool

The Meal Builder tool is a simple step-by-step approach to putting together healthy meals.

Meals are made up of foods from five categories: Protein, Vegetables, Healthy Carbohydrates, Healthy Fats and Seasonings.

Depending on your Meal Plan, you will create meals that have either:

• Approximately 25 grams of protein and 400 calories

• Approximately 40 grams of protein and 600 calories

Using the Meal Builder, you can easily select the right amount of protein, vegetables, healthy carbohydrates and healthy fats, which you will use to create your healthy meals.

First, choose the column that corresponds to the meal you are going to build. Then, select the amounts of food that are listed in each food group and combine items in a variety of ways to create healthy, balanced meals.

Here are some ideas to get you started!

• Large mixed green salad tossed with grilled fish, cooked beans, and olive oil and lemon dressing

• Chicken wrap sandwich: Fill a whole wheat flour tortilla with mixture of chopped veggies, grilled chicken, avocado and salsa

• Grilled top sirloin steak with steak sauce, roasted asparagus with garlic, tossed green salad with vinaigrette dressing, brown rice

Three Tips to Help You Squeeze in a Workout

Here’s how to stop using excuses and finally squeeze in a workout.

When it comes to finding motivation to get up off the couch and improve your fitness level, sometimes it takes more than willpower alone to make it happen.

‘I’m too busy and I can’t find the time.

And this ‘I’m too busy’ excuse sounds so much better and less embarrassing than the truth: ‘I’m just too tired and I don’t have the motivation.’

The reality is that we can all make time to add activity into our life. All we need to do is realize that excuses will only hurt us in the long term. Sometimes it takes a health scare or an embarrassing moment to force us to address the issue. But why wait for that to happen before improving your life?

Three ways to squeeze in a workout into your day:

1. Set your alarm 30 minutes earlier.

This may seem like an obvious tip, but it definitely takes motivation not to hit the snooze button and lie back down.

• My next piece of advice may seem crazy but it worked for me. For the first few weeks wear a loose fitting workout kit to bed or place your workout outfit with your tennis shoes right next to your bed. When the alarm starts buzzing, put on your socks and shoes and get to it.

• Working out at home or close to home is the best way to start out, because it removes any excuses about joining a gym or having to travel anywhere. Sure, jogging along a beach at dawn may sound nice, but in reality, you probably need to get your workout done and dusted as quickly as possible.

• As your body gets used to the time adjustment, add an extra 10 minutes so that you can actually comb your hair and brush your teeth before you go.

2. Pack your workout clothes and take them to work.

If you’re not a morning person, then it’s time for Plan B: the lunchtime power-walk. Schedule it in like you would a dentist or your hair salon appointment. It’s funny that we wouldn’t dream of not getting our hair cut, but taking care of our health often gets overlooked or sidelined.

• Asking a co-worker to join you will give you the extra motivation not to skip a session.

3. Split your workout into smaller segments.

If finding a full 30 minutes is too difficult, then try to do three or more mini workouts. It’s fine to accumulate your workout throughout your day.

• This tip works especially well for stay-at-home-moms with young children, because minding a child for 10 minutes while you jump around and squeeze in a workout is a realistic goal.

• If you work in an office and sit down all day, try taking a brief 10 minutes to stretch out or walk around the office. It may improve your energy level and boost your concentration.

Making an activity part of your lifestyle instead of a chore makes results easier to achieve.

Once I decided to ditch my excuses and made time in my day to exercise, I was able to quickly progress to a regular spinning class, and being active became something I just did rather than something I had to think about. People even started complementing me on all the extra energy I seemed to have.

So, no excuses––everybody can find time to exercise.

Five Ways to Eliminate Treadmill Boredom

Think about running on a treadmill. Are you filled with warm thoughts about competing against yourself or even catching up on a show as you jog? Or does your blood run cold as you imagine time slowing down and your run begins to feel like self-inflicted punishment?

When it comes to running on a treadmill, it’s very rare that someone thinks it’s just okay. Usually, people either love it or hate it! But with cold weather upon us and the sun setting earlier, many people feel there is only two options––to get on the human hamster wheel or risk freezing outside.

The winter months are famous for making us gain holiday pounds. So, let me share with you a few tips to help you spice up your treadmill routine throughout the winter holidays, which can prevent you from hanging up your running shoes until the spring.

1. Vary your terrain by adjusting the gradient
If you are fortunate enough to be using a newer treadmill where you can adjust the gradient, then you’ll have fun creating a challenging outdoor trail run.

Whether you fancy running up a steep mountain or creating rolling hills, it’s easy to break up the monotony of a flat course by simply pressing the incline button. I love hill running and enjoy the challenge of increasing the gradient every 60 seconds. An added bonus with being in control of the gradient is that if the hill feels too steep, just take it down a notch. Now, you can’t do that when you’re running outside!

2. Plan your music in advance
Music is known for being a great motivator, especially when it comes to exercising and sports performance. The joy of modern technology is that you can create entire playlists of all of your favorites. Spend time going through your music collection and pick out songs that make you smile. Find that one song that makes you want to dance––it will be perfect motivation for you to turn up the speed and run a little faster. I have been known for putting my motivational song on repeat and running so fast that the treadmill is shaking.

3. Interval training is best to avoid treadmill boredom
This is a matter of preference, but running or walking at the exact same speed for the entire time is just not an option for me.

Interval training has so many added benefits. Not only does it stop you from getting bored, it can help you to push yourself to burn more calories in less time. A great way to interval train is to run at a 7/10 difficulty level for 45 seconds, then walk or jog at a 3/10 difficulty for 30 seconds. Training in this way for 30-45 minutes can significantly improve your cardiovascular fitness and endurance.

4. Enjoy the funky functions
If you want to do a steady state run without adjusting your gradient and speed, then take your mind off your run by playing with the treadmill functions.

Many newer treadmills are equipped with heart rate monitors and calorie burn counters, which can make it fun to set yourself up with mini challenges! Try and keep your heart rate within your target range and guess how many calories you will burn every two minutes. Or you can pick one of the programmed running plans and let your mind puzzle over one of the challenges in your life. It’s better to think through a thorny problem while running than when you’re trying to sleep.

5. Break up your run
Set a few goals before you start your run, and then don’t be afraid of breaking it up into manageable chunks. Don’t just get on the treadmill without a goal, because chances are you will step off sooner if you don’t have a plan. If your goal is to run five miles but you get bored after two miles, then make a conscious choice to take a break. That way you can keep your commitment to do all five miles––you’ll just break up your run and refocus along the way. So, get off to do some light resistance work or abdominal crunches, then get back on. The important thing is to get back on.
If you’re willing to go out and brave the winter chill, many gyms also offer classes led by an instructor that incorporate both running and weight training. The group atmosphere is fun and can help motivate you.

Stay on track
The benefit of training on a treadmill is that you can precisely monitor your distance and time without the variables of rough terrain and inclement weather slowing you down. Remember to only go at a pace that feels right for you. It’s tempting to push yourself too hard if the person next to you is really pounding out the miles, but you won’t be helping anybody if you push yourself too much. It’s always better to err on the side of caution and stay injury-free. After all, that person on the next treadmill could be an ex-professional sprinter like me!

All in all, a treadmill is a wonderful tool to help keep your health and fitness goals on track. But personally, I always think that mixing up your routine can be useful and I enjoy both indoor and outdoor running. As they say, ‘A change is as good as a break.’ So, if you experience treadmill boredom, then make a change and head outdoors. The wind in your hair and pavement under your feet might be just the thing to remind you why you love running. And feeling the winter snow, rain and wind might be the thing to reawaken your devotion to the treadmill.

Why Strong Is the New Sexy

Here are three important reasons for you to pick up some weights and make yourself stronger. It’s a fact: strong is in. A toned, muscular and functional body has become the new sexy for both men and women. The growing acceptance by the media and sportswear companies that beauty comes in many shapes and sizes is a positive step toward encouraging people to lead a healthy, active lifestyle.

Best of all, a healthy body, which may come in different shapes and sizes, will never go out of fashion. Have you heard of the term ‘skinny fat’? This is when someone may look thin, but in actuality they have an unhealthy internal body-fat ratio that is detrimental to their health. There are also many people who may look a little larger, but are actually very health internally. With any exercise plan, your main priority should be to benefit the inside of your body. But as a bonus, exercise benefits your external appearance as well.

The following are important reasons why you should add weight and strength training to your regular fitness routine.

Three Reasons to Get Stronger Now

Burn More Calories
By lifting weights and becoming strong, you’ll change every aspect of your body. People with increased muscle mass burn more calories at rest than those without. It takes more energy for your body to sustain lean muscle and, therefore, your resting metabolic rate may increase as a result of lifting weights.

Improved Bone Density
Weight-bearing exercise is very beneficial for bone health in people of all ages. The aging process is linked to a decrease in bone density and a greater risk of fractures. So, consider how you can add weights to your workout, because your bones rely on resistance training to stay healthy and strong.

Improved Performance
If your body gets used to lifting weights, imagine how much easier just lifting your own body weight will be. Improved strength means that your daily activities will become easier, and if you’re training for a sport, an increase in muscular strength can significantly improve your performance.

Becoming stronger has so many benefits, and you don’t need to be worried about looking like an out-of-proportion body builder. Unless you’re dedicating hundreds of hours to lifting heavy weights and following a very specific body-building nutrition plan, the chances of you getting bulky are slim. Adding weight training to your routine two to three times a week and eating a protein-rich diet will have you well on your way toward achieving a healthy muscular physique. Also, don’t be afraid to lift heavy weights. But do make sure that you start out with manageable, lighter weights so that you can focus on technique for 12-15 reps and slowly work your way up to heavier weights. As you increase the weight you’re using, decrease to 8-10 reps.

Your body will start adapting to weight training right away, so get started today.