Archive for September, 2014

The best way to stick to your fitness routine is by achieving your goals. There is nothing more motivating than being able to see all the good your fitness routine is doing. However, it can be hard to get the results that we want, especially right away and trying to figure out what is wrong can be even harder. Is it the goal itself, our fitness routine or just us having unrealistic ideas? It can get extremely confusing to us. That is why we have compiled a few tips to help get you started down the right path to achieving your goals.

  1. Have a detailed plan. You need to have a set way to go about achieving your goals. You need to know how you are going to go about achieving it, if you will need the help of others, where to go to find any information you will need and how to overcome any obstacles or setbacks along the way because face it they are going to happen.

  2. Ease into your goals. Do not expect results overnight. Most of us become discouraged when we do not see results immediately, and this is why we have to start out with smaller and more specific goals. You could try working out for 15 minutes every other day or drinking at least eight glasses of water per day. These smaller goals will give you a sense of accomplishment and help give your confidence a boost, which will help you achieve all of your goals.

  3. Do not expect perfection. No one is perfect, not even you, and we have to accept that. There will be bumps along the way. We will experience those days when we want to throw in the towel and walk away from our fitness routines and our goals, but we have to stay the course. We started this fitness routine to achieve something, and we should never let any setbacks stand in our way. So, have a plan ready for those days and use it. It is time to dust yourself off and get back out there.

  4. Track everything. You need to keep a written record of everything. How else are you going to know if you are improving? Write down what you eat and drink, how often and how long you exercise, how much you can lift or how far you can run and of course, all those little measurements (weight and inches) of your body. This will help you see how much all of your hard work is paying off and encourage you to keep going, especially on the days you are feeling down.

  5. Ask for help. There is no shame in needing help to achieve your goals. Many of us need that extra push from others to help us achieve our goals. We may need someone to show us how to perform the best exercises or have them in the corner cheering us on. It could be as simple as someone going to the gym with us and holding us accountable to help us be successful. It can never hurt to have people around you that support you. They can always lift you up when you are feeling down, so you should never be afraid to ask for help when you need it.

Starting a fitness routine can be confusing, and you do not want to make it harder by setting the wrong goals or by going about achieving your goals the wrong way. You need to see positive results in order to make sticking to our fitness routine easier, so try a few of our tips and see how much more you can achieve.

– See more at:


How to Improve Your Core

Posted: September 29, 2014 in Fitness, Goals
Tags: , ,

We all want a strong core, and we know that it is important to work on building our core. Core exercises should be an important part of our everyday fitness routine, but how do we know if our core strengthening exercises are working? It may be difficult to tell if you are using these muscles in your fitness routine, and it may take a while to notice your improvements, especially since your core muscles stabilize and help improve other movements but are not necessarily a primary component of these movements. Here we will take a look at what exactly makes up your core muscles and how to appropriately and effectively workout these muscles.

What makes up your core

Your core is basically the muscles in your midsection that support and stabilize your body. It is not just your abs. There is so much more involved in your core than just your abs. It includes all your muscles besides those found in your arms and legs, and they are incorporated in almost every movement of your body. They can stabilize movements, transfer movements and even, at certain times, start these movements. When used properly your core muscles will help maintain your posture and form and can help to lessen any aches and pains in your body. However, the real problem with working out these muscles is ensuring that we are actively using them in our workout, which can be difficult because most of the time they are not the muscles primarily responsible for our movements.

How to effectively workout your core

When we think of core exercises, we immediately go to crunches. However, this type of exercise is only working out one section of your core. Crunches would not be enough on its own, so if you are looking for a way to strengthen your core in only one exercise, this would not be a good choice. Instead you want to look for exercises that make your core hold your body stable, while also working out different areas of your body. There are many options out there. You could incorporate different types of planking into your fitness routine such as the front plank and side planks. You could also opt for the all encompassing burpee that has most of us cheering at its name, or mountain climbers would be another great exercise to strengthen your core. As long as the exercise you are doing is relying on your core muscles to properly perform it, then you are engaging and strengthening those muscles.

Remember, you can have all the strong core muscles in the world, but if you want to be able to SEE them, you have to eat right and eat right consistently! Abs are made in the kitchen!

It is important to build your core in order to give your body a proper and effective support system. This means that you should ensure that you are actively working out your core during each and every one of your fitness routines. It is best to use different types of exercises to get some variations on your movements and give your core the ability to work different ways and to incorporate different muscles within your core. Remember it is not just those abs that need an effective workout.

– See more at:

It is easy to say that we are going on a diet, but it may be a little harder to stick to it. We usually find ourselves starting our diets with great intentions and giving it everything we got. However, as time goes by, we usually seem to put in less and less effort. It seems as if our energy slowly fades away, and we may find ourselves at a turning point in our weight loss journey. We can easily fall prey to the challenges we seem to face throughout our diet, but there is no need to worry. If you are looking for some helpful tips on overcoming these diet destroying mistakes, you have come to the right place. Here are just a few ways you can overcome the obstacles everyday life may throw into your diet.

  • I just can’t find the time to cook today. A lot of us fall victim to not having enough time to cook something healthy; however, if we plan ahead, we can put an end to this excuse. You should plan your weekly meals ahead of time and do your shopping accordingly. It may also be helpful to prepare meals on the weekends and warm them up throughout your work week. You can also prepare extra with each meal this way there is always some leftover for you to take to work the next day and to save on time you could even pack your lunch the night before. Using a crockpot can be super helpful as well. Don’t aim to make every meal a gourmet experience. Be kind to yourself and keep it simple.

  • I just can’t stick to the proper portions. It can be hard sticking to the proper portion control. However, you have to know the proper portions before you can stick to them. This means you have to read the labels carefully and keep track of what you eat. If you have any questions, you should consult a nutrition expert. And, you need to remember that on those special occasions when you go out to eat, you have to especially careful. Most restaurants serve large meal portions. Therefore, you should probably only eat half of your meal (or even less as some restaurants!) and take the other half home for later . Furthermore, you should try to stay away from the all you can eat buffets. They are just too tempting for some of us. Pick lean proteins, a salad or another veggie and one whole grain carb, provided it’s not laden with extra fat (biscuits are probably not the best choice.) You will feel a slight discomfort at first when learning portion control, but, when you get used to it, you end up feeling light and energetic after every meal, rather than lethargic and stuffed!

  • I already ate, but I still want seconds. It is hard for some of us to realize when we are full and when we just want to eat more. It is very easy to overeat in today’s world. Everything tastes so good and is so high in fat and calories. We are just setting ourselves up for failure. It can also take some time for our bodies to digest our food, so our best bet would be to wait at least twenty minutes before we attempt to refill our plates. It can give your body the chance to let you know that you are full and on the verge of overeating and getting a stomach ache. Be sure and consume 16 oz of water with each meal as well.

  • I can’t eat breakfast. For a lot of us we are just in too much of a hurry to eat breakfast in the morning. However, you could prepare your breakfast ahead of time just like your other meals if you feel short on time. You really do want to aim to eat within 30 minutes of waking up, so pick a balanced smoothie for easy digestion. Or, lean towards things that don’t have to be cooked if time is your issue, such as greek yogurt with fruit and nuts. It is important to eat a healthy breakfast in order to get your metabolism off to a great start.

Sticking to our diets can be a difficult time for all of us. We may need that little extra push to get us through our day, and these tips may be that little something that gets you through your day.

– See more at:

It can be difficult to find a workout routine you can easily stick with. You can find a number of reasons to go to the gym, but you really only need one excuse to skip it. So, with all the temptations out there to keep you from the gym, how can you ensure that you will find a workout that you can stick with? Here we have gathered a few tips that you can use to help tackle a lot of the more common excuses many of us find to avoid the gym. So, take a look and see if you would benefit from trying a few of these tips in your daily routine.

  1. Always have a packed and ready gym bag. One of the most common excuses to skip the gym is not having enough time, and it can take a while to pack your gym bag if you wait until the last second. However, if you already have a packed and ready gym bag, all you have to do is grab it and run out the door. This can save many of us some crucial time and allow us to fit in that otherwise impossible workout.

  2. Pick a gym close to you. This can also help with the not enough time excuse. If you live near your gym or pass it on your daily commute, then you are more likely to find a way to squeeze in a quick workout, and it is a lot less likely that you can easily ignore the gym if you pass by it everyday. So, location can be a key factor in sticking to your fitness routine.

  3. Workout on the way home. For many of us, a morning workout is just not happening. An alternative method is to go straight to the gym after work. The key to this method is, going straight there. Don’t run any errands or go home because the likelihood of making it to the gym gets less and less likely the more distracted you get! Eat a healthy snack about 30 minutes before leaving work so that you aren’t empty of energy and hit that workout hard. Then you can go home and know you’ve done what you needed to for yourself. Then, eat a healthy dinner, and you’ll be a better spouse, parent or just a better person because of all your hard work!

  4. Reward yourself. A simple reward can help keep you motivated. Reward yourself for achieving a preset goal or staying consistent with your workouts. You can find something you are looking forward to and reward yourself with it when you think you have reached a victory in your workouts. It can be as simple as two hours alone at the bookstore to a new pair of shoes, but avoid using “cheat” foods as a reward because this ends up making your work back at the gym that much harder!

  5. Do not be afraid of new technology. Wearable technology is trending now more than ever! This new technology can give many of us that extra push we may need to stick to our workouts by helping us track our workouts and giving us some sort of accountability with an online community. It can also make you more aware of all the successes you have accomplished through your workouts making you more excited about going to your daily workouts. Many 9Round locations now have heart rate technology called MyZone that gives you immediate feedback during your workout. This is so crucial at that moment when you want to stop, but you look up at the screen and see that you need to keep pushing just a little bit more at that exact moment! Nothing is more motivating! If your 9Round has MyZone, you deserve to buy yourself one today! For more info on what MyZone is click here:

There are so many little extras that can help put you on the right track to working out consistently. All you need to do is find what works for you. If you do discover that it is becoming a little harder each day to get going with your workout, then maybe it is time to try a few of these tips and see what works for you.

– See more at:

We have all been there. We look into the mirror and see exactly what we don’t want to see. Look at the flab right there or that extra little pooch on my stomach. How did I let myself go? Then we come to that dreaded decision. Oh, how we must go on a diet right now to lose all this extra fat. However. As most of us will soon find out a diet may not be the simple solution we are looking for. It may end up being just another way to look down on ourselves and berate ourselves for gaining weight in the first place. So, how do all of those successful dieters do it? They make it look so easy and simple. They lose weight and tone their bodies, while we gain weight and punish ourselves. Well, we are here to help. Below you will find some of the best habits many successful dieters follow to a tee.

  1. Throw out the word diet. The word itself has such a derogatory meaning. You do not want to go on a diet. No one looks forward to starving themselves and denying themselves their favorite foods. Your best option is to still clear of diets altogether and try to eat healthier, as a whole. This means no going on and off your diet but trying to eat a more well rounded diet with less calories and fat. This way your weight will not yo yo up and down as you go on and off your diets.

  2. Do not FOCUS on denying yourself. Dieting may cause you to stay away from some of your favorite foods, and this will have you hating anything associated with dieting. Also, following a diet that swears if you cut out carbs, or fat, is extremely misleading. Our bodies need carbs and fat to survive. In the end these types of diets will only cause you and your body more harm than good, so I would steer clear of any diets that offer results by eliminating certain types of food.

  3. Don’t starve yourself! Many people assume that if we just eat less then the weight will magically fall off. This could not be any further from the truth. You need sustenance to live. You can not expect your body to function on nothing. You have to eat a certain number of calories a day to fuel your body, and your body needs the vitamins and minerals necessary to remain healthy. Also, if you decide to starve yourself, your body will go into survival mode, and you will end up storing fat, which in turn will make it harder for you to turn fat into muscle and lose the excess weight.

  4. Do not live and die by the scale. A lot of dieters become overly focused on the scale and miss all the good that a healthy diet is doing for them. They may feel healthier, have better complexions and more energy but miss it because they are too focused on that number on the scale. Remember it is okay to look at the scale every now and then, but if you are hopping on it every fifteen minutes, then you may be weighing yourself too much. This can also hurt your confidence because you are surely not going to see a big drop in weight if you are weighing yourself multiple times a day.

  5. Do not forget to incorporate a consistent fitness routine into your regular schedule. You can not expect to lose weight by only dieting. If you do, you will surely be disappointed. You have to have some sort of physical activity to go along with your diet in order to get the results that you want. Through exercise you will be able to shape and tone your body as you are losing weight and feeling healthier through your new well-rounded diet.

Dieting can cause many of us to cringe; however, if you can take the negativity away from the word diet, you may be able to find a nice middle ground that allows you to eat better and achieve a better body.

– See more at:

3 Cardio Myths Debunked

Posted: September 23, 2014 in Fitness, Goals, Weight loss
Tags: , ,

You can feel as if you have really accomplished a great workout after walking on the treadmill, pedaling away on a stationary bike or hopping on an elliptical for an hour. However, are you really getting all you can out of your workout by using these machines? I know that most of us like to rely on cardio to achieve our weight loss goals. It is one of the best ways to burn calories and shed those excess pounds. Cardio can get your heart pumping and your dress size shrinking if you do it right. There are a lot of cardio myths out there that many of us take for truths. The things that we swear by may be causing us harm and slowing our results. Here are three cardio myths that many of us have fallen victim to.

  1. Cardio is the fastest way to lose weight and burn fat. Most of us know that cardio burns a lot of calories, and we need to burn those excess calories to lose those extra inches. However, did you ever stop to think what kind of weight you are burning? If it was just fat, then you would be doing a lot of good. However, cardio burns fat and muscle. This means that you could lose muscle mass unless you incorporate some type of strength training into your routine. You can build muscle, burn fat and lose weight, especially if you try metabolic weight training or weight training done at a high pace. You can use kettlebells and free weights for this.

  2. You can burn more calories by performing on an empty stomach. Many think that if your belly is empty, you will have to use stored fat to fuel your workout, which will cause you to burn more fat. However, your body needs energy to perform your routine, so I would not suggest skipping a meal before your workout. This could also lead to negative effects on your body in the form of losing muscle mass. The best option is to choose a healthy pre-workout snack that will fuel your workout.

  3. Harder is always better. This one is a little more complicated than it seems. You will actually burn a greater percentage of your calories from fat if you stay in the “fat burning zone.” However, you will be exercising at a lower intensity and keeping a lower heart rate, which means you will burn less calories. But, you’ll be saving your muscle! This is key. Keep it lower the majority of the time and you’ll be right on point!

Cardio can be a fun and simple way to reach your weight loss goals. You just need to do your research first in order to ensure that you are making the best choices for your workout routine. Weight loss can be a difficult journey for most of us, and we do not need to make it any more difficult by committing some easily avoidable mistakes. So, if you have any questions about your routine, I would seek out the advice of a professional like a doctor or fitness instructor.

– See more at:

Dieting is a stressful time for most of us. While we may see others achieving the results that they want and want to feel glad for them, many of us are secretly hating them. How can they achieve so much and we only seem to be gaining weight? Sometimes the world just seems unfair. We go through all the trials and tribulations of dieting but can’t seem to lose a pound. Well, there may be hope for us yet. We have gathered a four of the most common diet mistakes and ways to overcome them. So, take a look at some of these mistakes and make sure that you are not guilty of committing some of them.

  1. Having unrealistic weight loss goals. A lot of us go into a diet expecting to lose large amounts of weight in no time. This is not going to happen, and if it does, it is not healthy for you or your body. The first thing you need to do is to set realistic goals. You can safely expect to lose half a pound to two pounds a week, which may be nowhere near the twenty pounds a week you want to lose. However, if you look at the recent studies, you will see that people who quickly lose a lot of weight only end up gaining it back. So, remember take your time and have patience.

  2. Thinking weight loss is consistent. Most of us believe that if we lost two pounds the first week, then we should lose two pounds the next week. This is not going to happen. We may experience ups and downs along our weight loss journey. There will be weeks when we just can’t seem to lose any weight and weeks when we just seem to stop shedding those pounds. We have to expect that some weeks will be harder than others and celebrate the weeks where we seem to be unstoppable. The most important thing is to never give up on the weeks when we are feeling that everything is going wrong. Pick yourself up and move on to the next week.

  3. Comparing your weight loss to others. EveryBODY is different. We all lose weight differently. Some can quickly lose weight in the first few weeks, but the norm is to lose weight slowly, especially in the beginning. It can be frustrating watching others achieve their weight loss goals when you are struggling, but you should never give up. There are many other things you can look for besides weight loss such as feeling healthier, improving your flexibility and stamina and releasing some stress. Diet and exercise help you do so much more than just lose weight, so do not get too hard on yourself if it takes a while to see the results you want.

  1. Cutting carbs is the trick. While this may seem to increase weight loss in the beginning, what usually is happening is that you are simply losing water weight, not FAT loss. Your energy will also become lower with a low carb diet, which can make exercising even harder. It’s a vicious cycle, and then, if you even LOOK at a carb, you blow up like a balloon and gain all of it back, and usually MORE. Nothing can be more discouraging! 9Round Nutrition teaches you the right way to eat carbs for weight loss and it’s included in every 9Round membership!

Dieting can be hard, and most of us only make it harder on ourselves. However, with the help of these tips, you can hopefully be successful in your weight loss journey and make it a little easier on yourself. So, do not give up. Remember it may not be easy, but all your hard work will be worth it in the long run.

– See more at:

Most of us know how good exercising is for our health and try to get in some sort of physical activity each day. However, just because you are putting in all the time and effort needed for a successful fitness routine, does not necessarily transfer into getting the results that we need or want. There are many factors that come into play when trying to provide ourselves with the best fitness routine and how we manipulate these factors can be extremely important. It can mean the difference between getting results we want fast or stalling in our fitness routine. Here we will take a look at some of the factors that can affect our fitness routines and discover ways to overcome them.

  1. Not increasing your workout intensity. If you have been performing the same fitness routine over and over for months on end, you have probably noticed your results slowing. Once your body has gotten use to your workout, you just mindlessly go through the steps without thinking, and you do not have to work as hard to get through your fitness routine. This causes your results to slow. If you want to get back on track, you need to find a way to step it up. You can workout more often or longer, pick up the pace or add more weight to your routine. Anything that will keep you engaged and get you working harder.

  2. Increasing your workout intensity too quickly. In today’s fitness world, it is all about pushing yourself harder and through the pain to get the results that you want. However, there has to be a line somewhere that tells us to slow down, do not push yourself too far and take a rest every now and then. If you do workout too hard, you will find that your muscles begin to break down and your body is unable to repair itself. You may notice soreness, muscle aches and headaches, insomnia or not being able to perform your workouts all the way through. So, take some time off to allow your body to recuperate and then slowly ease back into your fitness routine.

  3. Your eating habits are the same. You can’t expect to lose weight by exercising alone. You need a healthy, well-rounded diet to reinforce the good you are doing at the gym. Your body needs the proper fuel to power through your workouts and repair itself at the end of the day. You have to eat enough to get you through your workout, but you also have to watch how much you eat because it is a lot easier to overeat excess calories and fat than it is to burn them. So, you may never be able to do enough exercises to burn them all. Many people find it necessary to keep a food journal to keep track of what they eat and ensure that they do not eat too much or too little.

  4. You reward yourself with food. As stated earlier, you have to watch what you eat no matter how much you exercise and rewarding yourself with food is a slippery slope. It is fine to indulge in a treat every now and then, but if you find yourself at a drive-through every time you leave the gym, then you are doing more harm than good. You can try to correct this by using the food journal method above and tracking everything you eat or finding something better to reward yourself with like new workout clothes, a nice dress, some workout equipment or a movie night with your spouse. Something that will keep you away from fattening foods will work out perfectly.

  5. Not getting enough sleep. We all have hectic schedules these days, but that is no excuse to trade your sleep time for your workout time. You have to find a way to schedule in the proper amount of sleep each and every night. Our bodies need this down time to repair itself and relax. Also, our bodies release the chemicals that cause and hinder food cravings at night, and when we do not get enough sleep these chemicals will become imbalanced and cause us to overeat or not eat at all. Therefore, it is important to schedule both our workouts and the proper amount of time to sleep. We have to treat both of them as a priority, as they will not be able to work alone.

It can be hard trying to find the balance in our fitness routine, and if you are not seeing the results that you want, it may be time to look back over your fitness routine and see if some of the above factors could be affecting your workouts.

– See more at:

We all know that the best way to lose weight is through a combination of eating healthy and exercising regularly. Therefore, some of us would like to believe that the more we exercise the more weight we will lose. This is not necessarily true. There is a quite sizable line between the right amount of exercise and too much exercise. You never want to take your fitness routine to the extreme. This can have adverse effects on your health and your body. If you are not sure if you have passed over the line and are working out too much, we have collected a few signs you can look out for to see if you may have overdid it on your fitness routine.

  • You feel short of energy or tired

  • Workout is becoming harder to perform even though you haven’t made any changes

  • Can not finish your workout

  • You experience “car wreck” soreness, achy muscles or headaches

  • Trouble achieving a nice and restful sleep

  • Lose your motivation and do not look forward to your workout

  • Your workout performance is not up to par

It may be normal to experience a few of these symptoms every now and then, but if you begin to notice a number of these symptoms popping up more frequently, then it is best to look back on your fitness routine and make sure that you are not pushing yourself too hard. If you are, then it is best to allow yourself some down time. Take a break for a little while and allow your body to recuperate. You should try to get plenty of sleep and eat a well-rounded diet to repair any damage you may have done to your body. After about three to five days you should be ready to slowly ease back into your fitness routine. Take your time and do not rush it. You may need to cut back on the duration and the frequency of your workout. Once you start finding your groove you can gradually increase the duration and the frequency of your workout.

Exercise is a love/hate relationship. While it is TOUGH and yes, technically “painful” at the moment, after it’s all said and done, it should make you feel energized, de-stressed and healthier. You should look forward to going to your next workout and never dread it. If you happen to feel as if your fitness routine is torture, then you need to make sure you are not overdoing it. It is easy and more common than you think to overstep the boundary between too much exercise and the right amount. So, be aware of your fitness routine and do not be afraid to change it if you think you are working out too much.

– See more at:

We all must find that special thing that will help us stay motivated. There are many reasons as to why we want to exercise, but as you will soon find out, some reasons are better than others. For most of us looking back on the reasons why we began our exercise routine in the first place is all we need to get us out of any fitness ruts we may encounter. Therefore, you need to make sure you are exercising for all the right reasons. Here we look at a few of the wrong reasons many of us may use to start a fitness routine and how we can fix our outlook on them.

  1. To eradicate the food binge you had the night before. It is common for a lot of us to binge on snack foods at night. We may like to stuff ourselves to capacity and tell ourselves we will just hit the gym a little harder tomorrow. You should not let exercise be the cure all for overeating. You will only be punishing yourself for the night before, and no one likes a punishment. Instead try looking at your fitness routine as something that makes you feel better. You can release those endorphins to make you feel less stressed and improve your health at the same time.

  2. To eat whenever and whatever you want. You can’t expect exercise to negate all the negative effects of an unhealthy diet. Sure you will be able to burn some of those excess calories, but will you be able to burn them all? Most likely, you won’t. It is far easier to overindulge in calories than it is to burn them. So, instead of trying to outsmart your unhealthy diet, try eating healthier, consistently. Your body will feel and be much healthier for it. However, just because you can’t exercise to eat whatever you want whenever you want, does not mean that you can not enjoy your favorite guilty pleasure every now and then.

  3. To become skinny. We are bombarded daily with the need to have the perfect body image. Magazines, models, ads and other media show us stick thin people and have all of us striving to be these unreal images. Most of us know that it is nothing but photoshop giving these people the appearance of having those perfect bodies; however, others just want to be them and think that if they exercise hard enough they can achieve this look. However, you could be sabotaging your fitness routine with unrealistic goals and expectations. You should want your body to be healthy and strive to be healthier. By wanting a stick thin body, you could overdo your fitness routine, quit when you think you are skinny enough or become frustrated when you do not immediately achieve your goals. So, no matter what your size, even the skinny ones, you should keep on exercising. In the end you will feel and look healthier.

Exercising for the right reasons can keep you going on days you feel down. If you are exercising for the wrong reasons then you may feel overwhelmed or frustrated and eventually quit your exercising routine. So, do yourself a favor and reevaluate the reason you started exercising in the first place and make sure that it is the best motivation for you. In the end it is what will help you stick with your exercise routine and help you become healthier.

– See more at: