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Thursday, August 28, 2014

The One Dumbbell Workout - 6 amazing exercises you can do with just one dumbbell

Think you need a lot of equipment for a killer workout?

So there I was in the gym the other day - I was looking for some 40 pound dumbbells - and could only find one (ever been there before?!). I remember thinking to myself - "Who only uses one 40-pound dumbbell?!" But then that got me to really thinking - "what kind of workout could I do using only one dumbbell?" Come to find out - I could put together a pretty amazing routine with just this one simple piece of equipment! Of course I couldn't wait to share it with all of you! With no further ado, I give you Tone and Tighten's "One Dumbbell Workout"!!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Fitness Motivation - Keep Calm and Lift On Poster - What's Your Passion?

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Sometimes – you just gotta go throw it.

I have always loved to exercise. As long as I can remember I have taken part in some sort of activity – be it soccer, little league, football, golf, mountain biking, etc. I love the "natural high" that comes with these activities and miss this feeling if I haven't done them for a while.

Of all the activities that I participate in regularly, however, weightlifting has always been my go-to. I love throwing around heavy things! I love being sore 1–2 days after a good workout. I love the feeling of getting stronger and improving my time/weight/performance of exercises. Weightlifting has always been a great way for me to relieve stress. It's a great way to start the day. It's a great way to end the day. It's my go-to for taking out frustrations, beating boredom, and even combating the munchies (try doing 20 push-ups instead of reaching for a snack – you either stop reaching for snacks or get really strong!!). I love the feeling when your clothes start to fit a little bit differently and when going to the beach doesn't seem so terrifying. Chances are pretty good that if I'm not at home or at work, you can find me in the weight room. And if you do – come say hi! However, I might hit you up for a spot!

So tell me about you – what is your activity of choice? What's your favorite method of exercise and why? Leave me a comment below – hoping to get some good discussion from the best readers in the world!

Keep reading for some of my favorite inspirational fitness posts!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

10 minute EMOM workout - Shred it at home with no equipment required!

Weekly highlights, new giveaways, and BONUS workouts!
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What's an EMOM, anyway?!

EMOM is an acronym in used in the workout world for "Every Minute On The Minute" (I know - shouldn't that be EMOTM? It just doesn't roll off the tongue the same!) If you've never done and EMOM workout you have to try it! It's a great way to get in a ton of reps in a short amount of time while constantly pushing yourself to be better. The real beauty of an EMOM comes in the last 2-3 minutes when you're dead tired but still have to do the same # of reps as you did in the first minute. Sounds simple, right? Tell me what you think after the workout...

Monday, August 25, 2014

Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Protein Smoothie Recipe (Fitness Ridge Copycat Recipe)

As I have mentioned before, I recently spent some time at Fitness Ridge in St. George, UT (you can read about my experience here). At breakfast, they offered a couple of different options and all of them were packed with protein. I love this recipe because it's loaded with protein without using any protein powders, plus it tastes absolutely amazing (pretty much like a milkshake). At only 346 calories and with 19 grams of protein, this will leave you feeling full all morning.

At Fitness Ridge, one of my favorite breakfasts was their Chocolate PB Banana Protein Smoothie. This isn't exactly their recipe (I'm pretty sure that they use PB2 in their recipes, which is a powdered peanut butter, but you can use whatever works best for you). 

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Best dorm room workouts - Weekly Workout Plan - At home bodyweight exercises to get you through the week!

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Hey everyone, and welcome to yet another week here on Tone-and-Tighten.com!! For many here in Utah this marks the first week of a brand new school year! I've actually received quite a few emails from college students asking for some workout advice and how they can fit exercise into an otherwise busy schedule of classes, studying, working, and (most importantly) socializing! Well fear no more, my poor-and-starving-yet-intelligent-and-longing-for-fitness friends! I've got you covered! This week's Weekly Workout Plan is all about a week of dorm-room exercise! Small space? No problem! No equipment? No big deal! All you need is a little time, a little conviction, and a huge desire to beat any college weight gain. We totally got this! Get your workout on... then get to class!!

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Running pyramid workout - Burn an hour's worth of calories in less than 30 minutes!

I almost died... and I COULDN'T WAIT to share it with you!!!

If you've been following T&T for any period of time you know that I'm a huge fan of Pyramid Workouts. I've got them on the site for Total Body, Legs, Abs, and Arms. As I was running the other day, I started doing a few intervals and thought "hey - this could be a really cool pyramid!" So I experimented with it and tried it out. Going up the pyramid was trumped in difficulty only by coming down. When I got to the bottom I was pretty pleased to A) still be breathing and B) have something new and exciting to share with all of you! It's with that lovely intro that I give you Tone and Tighten's "Running Pyramid Workout". Try it out the next time you're out running! Trust me - it's awesome... :)

How to Eat Healthy on a Budget (plus 25 inexpensive recipes that are good for you!)

Sometimes when you talk about healthy eating, people will comment that they can't afford to eat healthy. It's true- fresh fruits and vegetables will probably cost more than a box of macaroni and cheese or ramen noodles. However, your body needs proper nutrition to live, so the real question is: how can you afford NOT to eat healthy?

Today I wanted to share some tips on inexpensive healthy eating and some great recipes that use healthier ingredients that won't break the bank. I know that everyone has a different definition of what healthy is - these recipes are some that I would consider healthy.

Some tips for eating healthy on a budget:
1. Buy in bulk, especially when it comes to meat. 
I love to buy large bags of frozen chicken breasts because I can usually get them for half the price. I just keep them in my freezer and pull out the amount of chicken breasts that I need for each recipe.

2. Junk food is expensive. 
All the drinks, snacks, crackers, cookies, and sugar-filled treats add up. When you are craving something sweet, grab an apple or banana. You'll save yourself unnecessary calories and give your body nutrients it needs.

3. Take one hour each week and plan out your meals.
If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. After a long day of work or school, the last thing that you want to do is figure out what to make for dinner. However, if you already planned out your meals, you know exactly that you need to make and have all the ingredients on hand. It will save you a trip to the drive thru at a local fast food place, which not only saves you money, but all those calories and fat.

4. Prepare your food in bulk. 
At the beginning of each week, I will grill up a couple chicken breasts or even throw a couple in the slow cooker. That way, when I need a quick meal, I can throw the pre-cooked chicken on a salad, in a pita, in a wrap, or just eat it as is. 

5. Go grocery shopping on a full stomach. 
I know it's something that you have heard many times, but it's true- if you are hungry, you will most likely impulse buy a lot of items you don't need. Also, make a list and stick to it. Don't even go down aisles that you don't need anything from.

6. Don't worry about brand names. 
Many generic or store brands are made in the same exact plant as brand name items and just labeled differently for a fraction of the cost.

7. Buy what's in season. 
Fruits and vegetables peak at different times throughout the year and will be priced according to their availability, so stock up on what's in season. 

8. Shop local. 
If you have a farmer's market that takes place close to you, I highly recommend you visit it! You can get amazing fresh produce and food at a great price, plus you are supporting local businesses, which is always a plus!

9. Buy frozen or canned food. 
If certain fruits and veggies are out of season, buying frozen or canned varieties is a great alternative. Canned or frozen items have a much longer shelf-life than fresh, so you can buy them in bulk if they are on sale and not have to worry about them going bad. Many frozen and canned vegetables are equally as nutritious as their fresh versions. However, keep in mind that canned food usually contains more preservatives, salt and sugar than fresh fruits and vegetables. For canned items, the USDA recommends choosing fruit canned in 100 percent fruit juice, and vegetables labeled "low sodium" or "no salt added."

10. Make more and eat leftovers throughout the week. 
I love this idea because it also is such a great time saver! Double or triple your recipe, package it up in appropriate serving-size containers, and you have a quick on-the-go meal ready at your convenience!

20 Healthy Recipes that won't break your budget: 
Each of the following recipes can make about 4 servings for around $10. At about $2.50 per serving, even a kid's meal from a fast food place can't be that price!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Fitness Ridge Giveaway - One week for free at this amazing fitness resort!!!

Since starting Tone and Tighten approximately one year ago, I have been extremely lucky to be a part of some amazing giveaways here on the website. While most of these of been a lot of fun to be a part of, few you have ever been as special to me as this giveaway that starts right now!

Have you ever seen weight-loss shows such as "The Biggest Loser" or "Extreme Weight-Loss"? Have you always wondered what it would be like to be a contestant on one of the shows or longed to spend even just a day undergoing this type of transformation? Well today Tone and Tighten is making that dream a reality! I have teamed up with five other exceptional blogs to giveaway one full week at the beautiful Fitness Ridge resort in Saint George, Utah! You'll enjoy one full week of incredible hikes, delectable cuisine, trainer-guided workout sessions, and comprehensive education about diet, nutrition, exercise, and self image. This is truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and I'm stoked to be able to bring it to you! Interested? Great – keep reading for more details!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Fitness Motivation - The secret to seeing results - Exercise Inspiration

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I've got the entire key to your fitness success... right here.

Most things that are worth having in life come at the cost of some sort of sacrifice. Personal fitness is certainly no different. Being physically fit often includes sacrifices such as getting up early, staying up late, time, money, etc. The bottom line is being strong and healthy takes a significant amount of work. Lots of times, I see people getting frustrated with their lack of results and they come to me wondering why. As we delve a little deeper into their actions I'm amazed at how many people don't necessarily follow my advice or aren't willing to put in the effort to make the changes we've discussed. Everyone always comes to see me with a goal; it's fascinating that not everyone feels the same passion about working hard to achieve these goals. Simply put – people get frustrated with their lack of results despite not putting forth the recommended effort. 
So what the heck do we do about it?! I've got your whole entire key to fitness success right here. Everything that you've ever wanted to know about feeling and looking amazing is contained in the next paragraph in this blog post...

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Gym Circuit Workout - The best, most efficient way to get in a great lift in a hurry!

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Prepare to get strong... and sweaty.

If you're anything like me, you have two constants in your life. A) You love to workout and B) You never have time! It's for these reasons that whenever I go to the gym I try to hit it hard and fast. Today as part of the "What I Worked Wednesday" series I'm sharing one of my favorite gym days from this last week - a total-body circuit that will work muscles in ways that you never thought possible! Ready for it?! Here we go!