Monday, June 29, 2009


Wrist pain plagues most new mothers. It can start during your pregnancy due to general pregnancy swelling and continue into motherhood. Wrist or forearm pain can also start during motherhood. Caring for a baby can put a lot of strain on your wrist joint and get you using small muscle in your hands that you are not used to using (doing up sleepers). For many mothers the problem can eventually translate into elbow pain as well, especially as your baby gains weight. I have made a short video with suggestions and exercises to prevent and/or manage wrist and elbow pain from forearm muscle strain.

Don't let wrist pain get in the way of your personal fitness goals. Try these suggestions, especially the night splint, and you will be on your way to push ups again.

Monday, June 22, 2009


That's right, boost your metabolism. But How? One way is to perform your total body exercise through a full range of motion. Working in a gym I see the majority of people exercising (about 80-90%) performing this functional exercise in a limited range. Can you guess what it is? The squat. I see many people go to half of their range and return to standing. Let this video help you with your best metabolic booster yet.

WHY, why would you do this. If you perform a full squat in it's entire range you will be performing one of the greatest metabolic boosting exercises EVER!! All major muscles are firing, blood is pumping and it is an extremely functional (used in daily life) exercise. Stopping half way through your range leaves your knee joint at it's weakest point (that's right with knees to 90 degrees) muscles are not in there optimal length to strength ratio and ligaments are left subject to lifting the full load. BAD IDEA.

Ok, so now you know to perform a full squat, but what if you cannot due to ankle mobility issues, or lumbo-pelvic weakness and mid back tightness. I have made a little video to help with the most common issue that prevents people from perform a full squat exercise, mid back tightness. By releasing your mid back you will be able to strengthen your core more efficiently and help with the FULL SQUAT. As for issues with ankle mobility- roll and stretch your calves. It may take some time but it will come. Another tip is to use a counter weight held out in front of your belly button during your squat to help you get into full range.

Sunday, June 21, 2009


Happy fathers day to all the dads out there. Moms hopefully you and your children are making this a special day for dad. I am sure there is a lot of bad cooking going on right now and spilled breakfast in bed. My baby is napping right now and Kasia has taken Mike to his favourite store "Canadian Tire" to get some dad things like a pressure washer.

It has been a long week, taking a weeks holiday to visit relatives puts a wrench in the family schedule. The girls are just adjusting back to the time change. Kasia graduated pre school on Friday and her school had a party in the park afterwards. For moms with toddlers it is about to get a whole lot busier.

The children are out for summer holiday, the days are longer and schedules are changing. For you MOM, this means your schedule will be disrupted as well. Try and plan when you will perform your own workouts. I know nothing is guaranteed with children and your routine is always the one that waits for all others, but just try. Don't let others throw you off your personal goals, with a bit of planning you can maintain your exercise routine. If you are taking your children to the park, exercise there. Ya people stare, so what. One if the simplest workouts that you can perform is doing 5-10x a 50 metre sprint. That's it. Your toddler can do this with you and your baby can watch you from the stroller. This is one easy busy mom fat loss workout that can fit into any ones schedule.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Eating With Children

I have shot a little video of me eating lunch with my daughter. After some research I realized many mothers are eating what their children eat for lunch, and given a choice children will eat chicken nuggets, hot dogs, kraft dinner and generally imbalanced meals. Moms get so caught up in "serving" their family that they often forget about themselves. Well I am sorry to be the bearer of bad news but nibbles of toddler food doesn't cut it for a normal active adult woman, especially ione trying to burn baby fat. You need meals that will keep your hormones in balance, sugars in balance, foods that feed your brain and body, and stimulate meal enjoyment. A few easy tips this videos high lights to help take care of mom and family. Mom's need to eat healthy, you set the standard for the house.

1. Sit at the table to eat, no TV and schedule a time.
2. Prepare large amounts of food in advance for the week eg- cut fruits and veggies, cook meat, shred cheese
3. Variety of calories, some carbs, proteins and fats are essential
4. Eat whole foods and organic if possible
5. Use some flavour so you do not get bored of your food (I put a spice rub on the chicken and the baby eats it too- from Webbers book of grilling)
6. Eveyone eats the same meal of your choice.

Eating With Children Video

Most of all try to enjoy your meals, do not just rush through them. For any busy mother this is the key to living healthy and getting your body back. You are the life blood of the household and set the mood. Eat well and you will be happy.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009


Today I did one of my express busy mom fat burning work outs at a commercial gym that I train at. One of the trainers indicated this is the longest he had ever seen me workout for- I was just past 20 minutes including warmup. I was just finishing with some scapular stabilization after holding the baby all last week and on a flight. As you may know holding a squirmy baby for 5 hours straight is brutal and takes a toll once again on Moms body.

My Busy Fat Burning workout today was - warmup performing 2 sets of 20x terminal knee extensions, ball hamstring curls, ball adductor bridge, foam rolling, assisted one legged squats, walking 1 legged waiters bow, pushups with scapular retraction and full squats. My circuit fat burning today I used the Tabata protocol and for my first circuit alternated between jump squats and explosive clap pushups, for my second circuit I performed jump lunges (or jump split squats) with heavy full squat exploding into an overhead dumb bell press. Grad your free Busy Mom Fat Burning Workout with Tabata protocols.

The terminal knee extension is a great exercise to keep your quads in balance, it focuses on the lower inner portion of your quad (front of leg above knee). If you suffer from IT band issues or minor knee pain this is an exercise to try. Click on the link for photos.

The whole joke of the matter is my short workouts, NOT. They are effective, I feel great afterwards, I am not completely drained and I have more time to focus on the rest of my life. My body has changed more than anyone else at that commercial gym in the past 2 years. The intensity of my workout is high and I mean business, but the jokes on them. Why would you spend 45 minutes to 1.5 hours on a workout each day if you don't have to. Even if you love working out, you will burnout from this type of volume. Would you buy the same apple for twice the cost if given a choice? Why spend twice the amount of time on your workout if you don't need to.Try one of my free workouts, if you are early post partum or a beginner grab your workout from the side of the blog. If you are past this phase and are ready for a fat burning start grab your free 4 week

Monday, June 15, 2009

HEALTHY MOMS NETWORK- recipes from an expert

Today I am very excited to host a guest blogger Cascia Talbert. Cascia runs the HEALTHY MOMS blog, please check it out. As a HEALTHY MOM, Cascia knows a few things about preparing quick healthy meals for her family. She is here to share a few of her recipes with us.

Simple Healthy Recipes Your Whole Family Will Enjoy
By Cascia Talbert

Between cleaning, taking care of our kids, running the household errands, and during these hard economic times fitting a part time job into our schedule's, moms are very busy people. No matter how busy you are it is still very important to take the time out to eat right.

Fixing healthy meals for our family often takes a lot more time to prepare than those "not-so-good-for-you" meals. To make it a lot easier I've put together a few healthy recipes that are simple and don't take a lot of time to prepare.

For breakfast try fixing your family whole wheat pancakes. Whole wheat pancake mix can be found in most grocery stores and it isn't that expensive either. Try this recipe out.

Oatmeal Pancakes with Mixed Berry Topping
Prep Time:15 min
Start to Finish:20 min
makes:6 servings (2 pancakes with 1/4 cup topping)

1 bag (10 oz) frozen berries, thawed and drained
3/4 cup real maple syrup (or you can substitute a low calorie sugar free syrup)
3/4 cup quick-cooking oats
Whole Wheat pancake mix (follow instructions on the package)
1. In 2-quart saucepan, cook topping ingredients over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until mixture just begins to simmer. Remove from heat; set aside. In medium bowl, beat pancake ingredients with wire whisk until blended.
2. Spray griddle or 10-inch skillet with extra virgin olive oil cooking spray. Heat griddle to 375̊F or heat skillet over medium heat. For each pancake, pour slightly less than 1/4 cup batter from cup or pitcher onto hot griddle.
3. Cook pancakes until puffed and dry around edges. Turn; cook other sides until golden brown. Serve with topping.

Nutritional Information
1 Serving: Calories 310 (Calories from Fat 60); Total Fat 7g (Saturated Fat 1g, Trans Fat 0g); Cholesterol 35mg; Sodium 290mg; Total Carbohydrate 55g (Dietary Fiber 4g, Sugars 32g); Protein 6g

You can also make pancakes and freeze them. After freezing your children can heat them up in the microwave for a couple of minutes. Try topping pancakes with plain low fat or fat free organic yogurt and fresh fruit, or chopped nuts and raisins, or all natural organic applesauce and cinnamon.
For lunch serve a salad with fresh fruit or healthy wrap sandwiches. These recipes can be prepared in less than a half an hour.

Layered Shrimp, Corn and Pea Salad


1?4 cup olive oil
1 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice
3?4 tsp salt
1?4 tsp pepper
11?2 lb ripe tomatoes (we used red cut in wedges and yellow cherry tomatoes cut in half)
1 ripe avocado, peeled and cut in small chunks
2 cups frozen corn kernels
2 cups green peas, thawed
1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced
6 cups salad greens
1 lb peeled, cooked shrimp
1?2 cup chopped fresh cilantro, basil or parsley


1. Whisk oil, vinegar, juice, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add tomatoes and avocado; toss to mix and coat. Let stand about 20 minutes to deveIop flavors.2. Mix corn, peas and bell pepper in a 4-qt serving bowl; spread in a layer. Top with 1?2 the salad greens, all the shrimp, then remaining greens. Spoon tomato mixture over the top; sprinkle with cilantro. Toss to mix or spoon through the layers.This is especially attractive when brought to the table in a clear glass bowl, preferably one with plain sides so all the layers are visible.

Nutritional Information
Yield 4 servings, Calories 508, Total fat 24g, Saturated fat 4g, Cholesterol 221mg, Sodium 815 mg, Total Carbohydrates 44g, Dietary Fiber 9g, protein 34g.
(source: Women's Day)

Bean and Veggie Wraps
Prep Time:10 min
Start to Finish:15 min
makes:4 servings
4 fat-free flour tortillas (6 to 8 inch)
2 cups sliced fresh mushrooms (5 oz)
1 medium onion, cut lengthwise in half, then cut crosswise into thin slices
1 can (15 oz) black beans, drained, rinsed
4 cups fresh spinach leaves
1/2 cup shredded reduced-fat Cheddar cheese (2 oz)
1. Heat tortillas as directed on package.
2. Meanwhile, spray 10-inch skillet with cooking spray; heat over medium heat. Cook mushrooms and onion in skillet about 4 minutes, stirring frequently, until onion is crisp-tender. Stir in beans; heat through. Stir in spinach; remove from heat.
3. Divide bean mixture among tortillas. Sprinkle with cheese. Fold one end of each tortilla up about 1 inch over filling; fold right and left sides over folded end, overlapping. Fold remaining end down.

Nutritional Information
1 Serving: Calories 270 (Calories from Fat 30); Total Fat 3 1/2g (Saturated Fat 1g, Trans Fat 0g); Cholesterol 0mg; Sodium 280mg; Total Carbohydrate 43g (Dietary Fiber 8g, Sugars 5g); Protein 16g % Daily Value*: Vitamin A 60%; Vitamin C 10%; Calcium 25%; Iron 25% Exchanges: 2 Starch; 0 Other Carbohydrate; 2 Vegetable; 1 Lean Meat Carbohydrate Choices: 3 MyPyramid Servings: 1/2 c Dairy, 1 oz-equivalents Grains, 2 oz-equivalents Meat & Beans, 1 3/4 c Vegetables
*% Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet.

I love serving salmon for dinner and when I do we rarely have leftovers. Salmon is a healthy lean protein full of omega 3 fatty acids. Here are a couple easy and tasty salmon recipes. Always make sure you are serving wild Alaskan salmon.

Salmon with Pepita-Lime Butter

Lime juice, chili powder and pepitas give this salmon Mexican flair. Serve with wild rice and steamed vegetables.

Makes 4 servings

ACTIVE TIME: 20 minutes

TOTAL TIME: 20 minutes


2 tablespoons unsalted pepitas (see Tip)
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 teaspoon freshly grated lime zest
2 tablespoons lime juice
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1 pound salmon fillet, skinned (see Tip) and cut into 4 portions
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

1. Toast pepitas (see Tip). Place in a small bowl with butter, lime zest, lime juice and chili powder.
2. Generously coat a large nonstick skillet with cooking spray and place over medium heat. Sprinkle salmon with salt and pepper, add to the pan and cook until browned and just cooked through in the center, 2 to 4 minutes per side. Remove the pan from the heat. Transfer the salmon to a plate. Add the butter-lime mixture to the hot pan; stir until the butter is melted. Serve the salmon topped with the sauce.

NUTRITION INFORMATION: Per serving: 259 calories; 17 g fat (5 g sat, 5 g mono); 74 mg cholesterol; 2 g carbohydrate; 24 g protein; 0 g fiber; 360 mg sodium; 458 mg potassium.
Nutrition bonus: Excellent source of omega-3s.
0 Carbohydrate Servings
Exchanges: 3 lean meat, 1 fat

TIP: Tips: Pepitas (hulled pumpkin seeds) can be found in the bulk-foods section of natural-foods stores or Mexican groceries.

Place a salmon fillet on a clean cutting board, skin side down. Starting at the tail end, slip the blade of a long, sharp knife between the fish flesh and the skin, holding the skin down firmly with your other hand. Gently push the blade along at a 30̊ angle, separating the fillet from the skin without cutting through either.

Place pepitas in a small dry skillet and cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until fragrant and lightly browned, 2 to 4 minutes.
(source: Eating

Salmon Pinwheels

Don’t be intimidated by this fancy-looking breaded-salmon pinwheel, it’s quite easy to do. This technique works best when you use “center-cut” salmon fillet. If you don’t have a center-cut fillet or want to simplify the preparation, leave the fillet whole, spread the mayonnaise over it, top with the breadcrumb mixture and bake. To cut down on prep time, ask your fishmonger to skin the salmon for you. Serve with garlic-rosemary roasted potatoes and wilted spinach.

Makes 4 servings

ACTIVE TIME: 15 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 30 minutes


1/2 cup coarse dry breadcrumbs, preferably whole-wheat (see Tip)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard
1 tablespoon chopped shallot
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon chopped rinsed capers
1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried
1 1/4 pounds center-cut salmon fillet, skinned and cut lengthwise into 4 strips
4 teaspoons low-fat mayonnaise

1. Preheat oven to 400̊F. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
2. Mix breadcrumbs, oil, mustard, shallot, lemon juice, capers and thyme in a small bowl until combined.
3. Working with one at a time, spread 1 teaspoon mayonnaise on a salmon strip. Spread about 3 tablespoons of the breadcrumb mixture over the mayonnaise. Starting at one end, roll the salmon up tightly, tucking in any loose filling as you go. Insert a toothpick though the end to keep the pinwheel from unrolling. Place in the prepared dish. Repeat with the remaining salmon strips.
4. Bake the pinwheels until just cooked through, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove the toothpicks before serving.

NUTRITION INFORMATION: Per serving: 342 calories; 20 g fat (4 g sat, 8 g mono); 84 mg cholesterol; 9 g carbohydrate; 30 g protein; 1 g fiber; 221 mg sodium; 528 mg potassium.
Nutrition bonus: Potassium & Vitamin C (15% daily value), excellent source of omega-3s.
1/2 Carbohydrate Serving
Exchanges: 1/2 starch, 4 lean meat, 1 fat

TIP: Make your own breadcrumbs: Trim crusts from firm sandwich bread. Tear the bread into pieces and process in a food processor until coarse crumbs form. Spread the breadcrumbs on a baking sheet and bake at 250̊F until dry and crispy, about 15 minutes. One slice of bread makes about 1/3 cup dry whole-wheat breadcrumbs.

Serving healthy meals for your family does not have to be hard work or take a lot of your time. You can also include your children in the cooking process. Letting your kids help you prepare meals can teach them more about healthier eating habits and it can be a lot of fun too!

Cascia Talbert is the editor of Healthy Moms, an online publication and social network focused on health and parenting for moms.


I am back from visiting relatives this past week. I did a few small workouts just to maintain my fitness and not feel like a slug. I performed my warmup exercises 3x the past week and that was it. I did find it challenging to eat under someone elses roof for a week. The groceries products were different, I was not comfortable to make what I usually make at home and with the time difference I felt like I was hungry all the time.

As you may know I workout at home most days in a small room in my house or in my back yard. I don't need much. I have made a small video showing what is in my meager home gym. I hope this can help you get started on a space for yourself. you do not need much space, very little money and defiantly do not need any big bulky equipment. In fact one of the commercials gyms I train at has a bunch of bulky equipment at the front door. I asked the owner why he has all of that stuff, he said, "it sells memberships". There you go not because it is used or needed, it just looks fancy and the general impression is it will make me fit.

Check out my video MOMS HOME GYM

Pick up a copy of the Mother Day Fat Loss Program to complete in your own home gym, visit the link.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009


Today I was back on track with my busy mom fat loss program. I am focusing on metabolic training this week. I woke with a sore back this morning as the baby has just gained some weight, she needed 2 baths yesterday and I slept in a weird position. At the gym I had a client cancel which gave me some much needed time to use the FOAM ROLLER and roll out the knots in my gluts and back. I then stretched my hip flexors (like in your free mothers day program, my abs and then performed some plank variations to get my core firing. I had time to work on my shoulder rehab exercises as well(included pushups with protraction/retraction at the top). I spent about 20 minutes on this maintenance and I felt like a million bucks afterwards. As a mom I continually have to keep up with my stabilization exercises, foam rolling,and general body maintenance work. You can add a few of these into your day by following the furious five or even easier when cooking squeeze your shoulder blades down and back 10x today.

I trained my next client and then performed my busy mom metabolic training workout. I started with dynamics- lunges, body weight squats, leg swings, arm swings. My busy mom fat loss workout today was 3 sets of 10 jump squats, 30 full weighted barbell deadlifts, 10 jump squats. I rested 1 minute between sets and did 3 sets of this high volume circuit. Each circuit consisted of 50 lifts. My deadlifts were weighted but only about 1/3 of the weight of my 10 rep max. I struggled my way through the final 7 deadlifts on the third set, my legs were on fire. This entire intense portion probably took me about 8 minutes including the 1 minute rest periods. A full deadlift is like a full squat with the barbell held at your knees to begin with, it is slightly different from the Waiters Bow or Romanian deadlift in the free mothers day program.

Yesterday I was st home with the baby and used my HOME GYM to perform a Tabata workout. I chose 4 exercises and repeated them 2x in each interval. I did 3 sets of this program in the 20 second/ work 10 second rest ratio. Busy mom fat loss workout Burpie press up (15 lb dumb bells), abdominal wheel rollouts, modified pullups, kettle bell swings, burpie pressup, ab wheel, modified pullup, kettle bell swings. I did this 3x.
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