I Love Legs Workout

12 Apr

Bring it!   My workouts are never JUST for the Ladies….they’re tough and nails and are for the Men too, so don’t you forget it mister!

I personally LOVE legs.  I love when I see a man who has a strong upper body and balanced legs and when a woman has strong legs.  You know they work hard for them.  It’s challenging to get any muscle group to “pop” but for some reason I like training my legs and glutes best:)

I suppose that is why I was so unbalanced in my upper half a year ago!  Be careful not to neglect upper body vs. lower or vice versa.  You want a Balance of all your muscle groups.  There will be some muscles that respond more than others to what you do, but then you’ll have to work on those muscles more.  For me, that is my Shoulders.  I do shoulders twice a week and they’ve grown tremendously.



DISCLAIMER:  Please don’t think you are going to get massive legs by doing one leg workout.  It takes a lot of heavy weight and major consistency and patience to start to see muscle growth.  The below workout will help with endurance, long and lean legs.

This Workout is for creating long, toned legs and works to create endurance by using higher reps and little rest.  There are still heavy weights and it is still challenging as all get-out.  Fear it not, just do the damn thing!

PERFORM EXERCISES BACK TO BACK WITH NO REST UNLESS YOU NEED A DRINK OF WATER.

(In parenthesis are the weight and reps I did, you can obviously switch this up.  The exercises are great ones!)

~Stiff Legged Deadlift with Barbell  (45 pound and added 5 to each side—55lb 12 reps)

~Bench hops in and out (15)  Straddle a bench with bench between legs and jump up with both legs on bench then hop immediately back down.

~Plate pullbacks (25lb. plate 20 reps/leg)  Lying on matte on back, put a 25 lb. plate or 10lb. plate on ground on top of a towel.  Your butt will be down at end of matte and bend left knee, then put right heel in center of plate (usually a little hole there) and lift your glutes so you are in a “Bridge” and pull your right leg back so it bends towards you.  You are pulling the plate towards your glutes and then push it back out.

~Single Leg Stiff Legged Deadlift (25lb. barbell 10/side)

~Single Leg Presses on Leg Press Machine (just weight of machine, this will get hard! 20/leg then straight into 30 calf presses with toes on bottom of leg press plate)

~Band Walks/Monster Walks *see picture below (20 steps to the left, 20 to right, repeat one more time)  *make sure on these you are keeping tension on the band the entire time.  Do not drag your other foot that is following leading foot.  Sit low and be in squat position to work more glutes and legs.  This should hit your medial glute HARD!   I did them and couldn’t help at the end of no rest/20 walks, my mouth just opened in pain.  :)I got a glute pump from this, unheard of!

Photo of Ashley, my Client

~In and Out Hops (30) *get in plank on ground, hop both your legs out to each side so your legs are then far apart from one another then hop them back in.  So you’re scissoring your legs.  Out and in is 1 rep.

REPEAT ENTIRE CIRCUIT 2 MORE TIMES FOR TOTAL OF 3 TIMES!  WHAT?  YES I SAID 3 TIMES TOTAL.   DO IT.

STAIRMILL 15 MINUTE INTERVALS.

Set stairmill to 15 minutes and Interval Setting.  Setting:  hard!  I did setting 8 and it got fast, just be mindful because you just did weights and your legs should be tired….so you don’t need to set it to highest setting and honestly think you’re going to pull it off;)   On the easier interval, skip a stair while walking up.  When it gets harder, then just single stair steps.

CONGRATULATIONS, YOU HAVE COMPLETED YOUR WORKOUT.  YOUR LEGS WILL THANK YOU BY TELLING YOU TOMORROW THAT THEY HAVE WORKED HARD.  THIS IS A GOOD THING IF YOU FEEL SORENESS THE NEXT DAY.  ALWAYS.

FOR MORE OF MY WORKOUTS, GO here.

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Workout Wednesday! Stairmill & Yoga

11 Apr

Today I did the Stairmill (some people call it a Stairclimber, I’ve always called it a Stairmill) for 40 minutes, while mixing my foot positioning up.   I kept the workout “type” (options on Stairmill to choose from) on “Aerobic,” as today I was focusing on lower intensity since I will also being doing yoga tonight.  I focused my positioning on the muscles I was trying to it, whether quads, glutes, middle glutes, outer hips, etc.  *biggest thing, do not hold onto the top of the handles and take away from your lower body working.  You are not there to nap or rest on it while dripping sweat on top of the buttons;)  I’ve seen it all!

Here is what I did:

~Feet forward

~Turned body and feet, angled my step left

~Turned body right, angled stepping right

~Forward, skipping stairs

~Crossing feet over one another hitting my outer hips & middle glutes

For more information on the benefits of using a Stairmill, go here.


I will also be doing one hour of Gentle Yoga in 3 hours!

I do Yoga so I can be like her!

Tell me what you are doing today by commenting below! 

‘Be, Present’ Active and Casual Wear GIVEAWAY

6 Apr

You know I have been drawn to practicing more Yoga lately.  I knew this would help me reach a more Balanced Physicality and State of Mind.

I began to follow some Yoga Pages on Facebook and loved one in particular:  Be, Present.

This isn’t just Yoga wear, it is also Active and Casual Wear, with a focus on Organic and Eco-friendly clothing to move easily in.

Their name says it all.

Be, Present

verb
*to exist in the current moment
*to be inspired by life
“Always be present.” – Amy Lopatin Dobrin, founder/designer

I could just write that down and read it every day.  Maybe even look to it in times of stress, anxiety or frustration. . . I think it has a lot of different purposes it could serve!

So in the spirit of ‘Being Present,’ I am giving away this

1. super comfy

2. Ganesh Inspired *Ganesh is the remover of obstacles and the lord of beginnings

3.  long sleeved

4.  eco-friendly

French Terry Raglan Sweatshirt.

It’s warm, soft and allows you enough room to stretch, move around and even meditate in.

Long sleeves that work to keep your paws warm, as they have an extra long arm span.  One of my favorite features!  Back of shirt says, Be, Present.

The value of this Giveaway is $73!  Thank you to Maggie & Be, Present for giving this away to my Army of Fierce Fighters!

One lucky winner will receive this top, all you have to do is

~”like” Be, Present’s Facebook Page

~Follow my Blog if you haven’t already *top right of Blog

~Comment below what you are doing today to “Be, Present”

CONTEST WILL END SUNDAY APRIL 8TH AT MIDNIGHT, EST.

THE WINNER WILL BE CHOSEN USING RANDOM.ORG AND I WILL ANNOUNCE WHO WILL BE FIERCELY SPORTING THIS GANESH TOP IN THE NEAR FUTURE!

Here’s to BEING PRESENT and being grateful for this moment in time we are able to be experiencing.

Ash

Putting Yourself first, because you have to.

4 Apr

I had been getting hints here and there for the past few months that I have not been putting myself first.

You just have this feeling like something is off, something is out of balance with where you truly want to be.

I have chosen the Tough Mudder as my current goal.  I was super psyched (talking about past tense for time being) and really stoked to have a different type of goal, one that would require lots of hard training and some added cardio, the thing I had been avoiding for some time.  I’m not completely sure why I was avoiding it, but thought that I could get to my goal without doing all the sacrificing, dieting, two a days, extreme cardio, etc.

It’s been a while since I’ve done a “Me” update.  I think it’s very important, for me, to always be open to sharing my health goals and even my struggles with you because we’re all human and I’m just striving everyday to move forward, just like everyone else.

So it had been some time like I mentioned above that I did cardio and I finally hit a breaking point where I was not seeing progress in my body.  None like I used to see.  So I stopped and thought about what I was doing when I was seeing progress, aside from the dieting period in between the start and now.  I took myself back to my first year I dropped all the weight and realized I had been doing mostly cardio, (lots of stairmill) some weights and eating healthy but balanced, not crazy strict.  And in 8 months I had cuts in my obliques.  I truly believe if I would never have done my first competition, I would have kept moving forward in the right direction, but at the same time, this competition is what catapulted me to “want more” out of myself in this Industry and really, to realize my potential strength of character and that opportunities are MADE, created and worked for, not handed to.

So here I was the past 6 months, trying to recover from my string of dieting and lifting heavy and not performing any cardio!  I’m not quite sure what I was thinking except that I put myself on the back burner while I put my focus into my work.  I’m sure many people can relate to this, as it’s not uncommon.  It is, however, hard to grasp the fact that you have to begin a new Journey, one that puts emphasis on YOU, and will be taking some time away from other things.

In a nutshell, I’ve been struggling with losing weight and getting to where I want to get.  I have been in the frame of mind that results should be seen soon and then I’d try something new when one thing wasn’t working.  You know it’s funny because I’m so adament with my clients and students to ‘be patient’ and here I am, not taking my own advice, as if it doesn’t apply to me!  The truth is, I don’t treat myself like a student, and that’s the problem.  Lately, I’ve been really great at being resourceful, making connections, making things move forward with my business but honestly, have put myself and my own personal goals on the back burner, which ultimately go hand in hand with my business goals and really, only help strengthen other areas of my life, if I am happy in that area.  One of the biggest things I preach is about persistence and patience…..and well well well, lil me forgot to take my own advice!  They say teachers teach what they themselves need to learn.   Below I’ll tell you what my new path entails and what I’ve learned from this hiccup.

The past two years after the initial transformation stage, I developed some new practices…..not good or healthy, but things that came with the package and the move of competing and dieting.  But from these things, I found clarity and an understanding as to how I must move forward.

1.  Did I develop body image issues?   Yes.

2.  Did I tamper with my metabolism in a harmful way by dieting for too long?  Hell Yes!

3.  Did I create food allergies by eating chicken, egg whites, asparagus and tilapia way too much?  Yes.

4.  Did I ever want to give up?  Too many times to count on my hands.

5.  Did I ever give up?  Not once.

6.  Will I persevere forward and make it past this struggle?  Absolutely.

7.  Is it just a matter of working on my mindset and sticking to one thing and being patient?  110% YES.  This is all it comes down to people…..keeping it simple, eating fresh, healthy whole foods your body uses and desires for energy, putting the work in in the gym and building a strong character that will move you forward towards whatever you want in this life.

I BELIEVE IN SIGNS and I was running on the treadmill the other day, picked up a “Yoga Journal” and began reading to pass the arduous feeling of lifting my muscular legs and repeating thousands of times.  lol   I’m totally open here, running is my nemesis, but I’m open and working on making it mi amigo!

I found an interesting article that really moved me to realize what I need to begin practicing, day by day, in my move forward on this new path.  Here they are laid out:

1.  Solid Ground

    Whenever you undertake anything new, recognize that there is going to be some effort involved  (ding ding ding).  Realizing that what you are undertaking cannot be perfected overnight, that you have to commit over time to get lasting results you are happy with.

2.  It’s All About the Attitude

   An attitude of friendliness toward those who are happy, compassion toward those who are suffering, pleasure and delight at those who are doing good deeds in the world, and an attitude of non judgmental watchfulness toward those who do harmful deeds will help us to attain a peaceful and balanced mind.

3.  Core Strength

   We must cultivate self confidence and conviction to help us maintain our persistence and strength, and to remember our direction so that we may attain our goal of a focused mind and clear perception.

*I really connect with this one because I began to just Feel out of balance and out of align with how I knew I should be feeling.  and honestly, I forgot my direction.

4.  Make the Connection

  Knowing the Self, and finding a greater peace and ease through that connection.  Come to a place of independence from the agitations of the mind, and to a deeper connection with your own inner compass (ie…*feeling something isn’t right or isn’t in the place it’s supposed to be)  When you are connected to this inner compass, you are better able to handle the twists and turns of life.

“WITHIN YOU IS THE STRENGTH THAT CAN CARRY YOU THROUGH THE HARDEST OF TIMES.”

I believe everyone has his own time of being ready to tackle something.  Sometimes it’s a matter of realizing you’re ready, or a matter of having learned what you need to learn to be ready, and sometimes it is just a moment you have that you realize you HAVE to be ready otherwise you’ll be continuing moving backwards.

I don’t believe falling or something not going the way you thought it Should go if failing.  I don’t believe in failure unless you just give up altogether and surrender.  I believe you learn from things and to each in his own time.  When the time comes that that person is ready, it’s game on and you just know it.   What I have learned the most from my experience is that wavering back and forth and not making up your mind to choose one direction….you will feel “in the middle.”  You must choose one way.  You have to choose your path, stand in it and then pour concrete over it.  Don’t leave it, stick with it and when things get tough, hold on.  Sure, sometimes you lose your way but time goes by and when you realize that way is missing, you go back to it and try again and now you have even more behind you because you carry a lesson with you!  There is no wrong way.

 

Never Hide.

28 Mar

I have gotten a lot of questions lately about how I stay motivated.  I Found this in my Notes that I wrote a while back.  Since I wrote this, even more has changed with myself, Fierce Forward and Fierce Forward evolving as a business.  The best advice I can give other than tell you of my journey and how I created the opportunities I did, would be to say, “Believe in yourself even if you have to fake it til you make it(it takes time to gain confidence, but putting yourself in that vision and believing it even if you don’t totally yet, will help you see it)….never give up and persist til you get what you want!”

Before I start my story I wrote in August of 2011…..I finally got the Ray Bans I had been wanting for a very long time!

Rewind 3 years, I was in a totally different place.  If I never would have changed that place, I would be in a completely worse place than I ever was.  The thing about moving forward or backwards is that usually your momentum takes you farther in the direction you are going.  If you are moving backwards, and unhappy with your situation, you probably just won’t stay that same degree of “unhappy,” you’ll most likely keep worsening your feelings for that unhappiness, because you aren’t truly living the life you want to live.  Isn’t that what unhappiness is?  When you don’t feel a sense of fulfillment in an important area(s) of your life.

On the other hand, when you’re moving forward, you continue to build on that feeling of accomplishment and want more and more of it.

When you’re out of balance and something isn’t right in your life, you feel it on all levels.  I find that the way I was living before, I had known that I was moving backwards but the best analogy I can come up with is, I was a cat chasing my own tail.  It was hard to get out of.  I knew it would take time, but I wanted to feel good instantly to motivate me to keep going forward.  My mind and confidence were at an all time low and it took something really big, a moment of complete desperation, for me to decide that there was no other way but to commit and push through what I knew would be a road of challenges, struggles, self questioning, tons of hard work and SACRIFICE.

In 3 years, I have been through the most challenging, yet rewarding years of my life.

Here is what I have gained in my life:

Love and Respect for Myself

A healthy relationship based on Love, not need

Certified Personal Trainer

2 Figure/Bikini Competitions, 1 NPC Qualifed

Transformation of the Week, Bodybuilding.com & Muscle&Strength.com

Asked to be a part of National Ad Campaign, Lift Life, Bodybuilding.com 2011

Athlete Team Bodybuilding.com

Spokesmodel Bodybuilding.com

Fitness Model International scholarship

In 2009, a year after my hard work, I went to the Arnold and met Tosca Reno and Steve Poynter from BB.com and remember walking by the BB.com booth (I was/am an avid BodySpacer) and thinking, wow, they’re so lucky and little did I know later that year I would be asked to be a part of that the next year.  (one of the coolest things that’s happened:) )in reflection and so many other things.  Most importantly, I did it.  I do it every day and nothing will ever change in me again.  I will never go back there.  It will always be a part of me and my story, but it keeps me in check, remembering how far I have come and grey vs. color.

I ever so often post notes like this to hopefully reach out to someone who is on the fence.  If you are reading this and want to start living the life you know you want to live but don’t know how to start.  All you have to do is reflect on what you want, write it down and commit.  One day.  One day is all it takes.  Get your mind and your heart into it and make it your life.  This isn’t a diet, there is no magic pill, no one else is going to do it for you…..it’s all you.

Now, I gravitate to things that push me.  When I’m afraid of it, I’ve developed the mindset to chase after what I fear and get over it.  Life is too short to Hide.

There’s this sunglass (Ray Ban) Campaign I always find myself gravitating towards, that says it all….Never Hide.

THE FOLLOWING IMAGES ARE TOO COOL FOR SCHOOL.

Sport Your Fierce Attitude!

18 Mar

The day I got my Fierce Attire in was a big day for me that I’ll remember forever. It’s taken me 3 years to build Fierce Forward to what it is now. Alot of time, thought and care goes into what I do, and it’s my passion. You all are what makes Fierce Forward continue moving forward, with all of your support.

I hope to see many of you wearing a Fierce Forward Hat or shirt to spread the Fierce Attitude and remind you the fire you have inside.

The link to the Fierce Shop is linked to all the pictures:


The Fierce Trucker Hat. Army Green with a creme mesh back. Velcros in back to adjust. Bright red, fiery Logo on front.


Unisex Tie Dyed American Apparel Tshirt. This shirt is super soft and once gone, they will not be back.


Ladies Bella Fitted Tshirt. This shirt is heather gray with Logo on front in White and logo on top back neck. This shirt is smaller than average sizing, so go up a size.


My favorite Tshirt of the bunch: American Apparel Unique Creme Flowered Print on White Scoop neck.


Ladies Muscle Tee in Light Purple and Black! The pretty much rock.

Here are some pictures of Fierce Fighters in Fierce Attire.
Vanessa sporting the Black Muscle Tee and Fierce Trucker Hat.

Dorian sporting the Fitted Bella Top.

Tips From Your Trainer: Water

16 Mar

Photography by Cockdiesel Photography, circa 2011

*Water, we are made up of 60 to 70% water.
*Blood is mostly water and your lungs, muscles and brain all contain water.
*Water regulates body temperature.
*Water provides the means for nutrients to travel to your tissues and organs. Think of your skin.
*Water transports oxygen to your cells, removes waste, and protects your joints and organs.
*Water consumption takes away bloat. If you are dehydrated or not drinking enough, your body will preserve the water you have by holding onto it in the cells, often the fat cells, giving you that bloated feeling.

MY TIPS:
1. When I first began drinking water, I had a desk job. I purchased a gallon jug from Meijer that had a handle and spicket on it. I had my favorite E.T. glass from my childhood at my desk, would fill it up and drink it like it was my job. When the glass was empty, I was pouring more water in to drink. It actually gave me my first taste of what it was like to set “Mini Goals,” something I use To This Day. Mini goals add up over time and before you know it, you’re easily drinking water like it’s a habit, and a healthy one!

You can find these water bottles at Meijer.

2. Find a water bottle that speaks to you. I love these from Lululemon.com because they Inspire & Motivate me.

3. “Drink water like it’s your Job,” is the thought I always had in my mind when approaching my day. It works.

4. How much water do you drink per day? I recommend shooting for a goal of 8 glasses (8 ounce glasses), so 64 ounces per day. If you don’t drink water at all, cut back on what you do drink by one glass/cup (ie, coffee, pop, juice) and add in one glass of water to replace that. Then, every week, add another glass of water, and so on.

TO KICK OFF MY NEW SERIES, ‘TIPS FROM YOUR TRAINER,’ I’M HAVING TWO GIVEAWAYS!

One lucky winner will receive a Fierce Forward Hat and another will win a Fierce Forward Tee.

Follow the details below on how to enter!

1.  Subscribe to my Blog (if you haven’t already!)  It’s the button on my Blog that says, Follow My Blog.  Follow me on Facebook @Fierce Forward.

2. Let’s help my friends at NUX, USA hit 2,000 fans by Liking them on Facebook and Posting ON THEIR WALL, “Ash of Fierce Forward sent me…..then say what product of theirs you love!” *be sure to tag me in the post

3. Leave a comment telling me which product you would like to win!!!

Two lucky winners will be chosen at random tonight. Good luck!

Watch for my weekly Tips From Your Trainer.