Posts In: exercise

Smell that Spring air?  Getting that urge to fire up your exercise again?  Me too!  Yup, it’s about that time when the weather transitions out of the doldrums of winter and sparks the desire to get outside and get active.  As your activity increased, your body will begin to talk to you and give you important information about how it is responding.  So listen to your body, train with your brain, and heed the messages it is sending you to maximize your effort and stay safe.  Pay special attention to these two messages.

Signal 1:  Ouch!

Probably the most educational message your body will send you, “Ouch!” should never be ignored since doing so can lead to chronic or even permanent damage.  Explore “ouch” as soon as it happens.

  • If “ouch” is immediate and during exercise, then STOP, and resume at a much lower intensity to see if comes on again. If so, then stop and find another exercise or quit for the day.  It’s better to stop now and collect some info than push through and make it your last workout for a while.
  • If “ouch” comes on slowly with exercise and subsides when exercise ceases, and is a “burning” sensation within the muscles, then this is normal and indicates your body is out of its comfort zone and working hard. This kind of “ouch” is constructive, but monitor its intensity level – especially if you are just getting back into exercise.
  • If “ouch” shows up in the next day or two after exercise as mild soreness and/or stiffness in the muscles and joints, then be encouraged. Your body is telling you that your activity was challenging and it’s healing nicely.  Compliment your hard work with rest and recovery resources such as light exercise to loosen up, good hydration to replenish body fluids, and quality protein and veggies for joint and muscle repair and improvement.  Nice work!

Signal 2:  Yay!

This signal is the reason we exercise in the first place.  “Yay!” usually shows up at the beginning of a workout as you get going,  but then disappears in the middle during the tough parts when things aren’t so fun but the work is getting done.  Then, “yay” reappears at the end when your work is done, and is attached to the satisfaction of hard work accomplished, and lingers in the form of improved physical condition.  Booyah! Let’s do it again!

So strap on your fitness shoes, opt for those shorter sleeves, and get your body moving this spring, but make sure to train smart and listen to your body signals.  Balance your desire to be active with sensibility and wisdom to stay safe, improve your condition, and keep moving forward with no set-backs.  Enjoy your spring!

Intermittent fasting (IF) isn’t classified as a diet. It is considered a pattern of eating. With IF, you schedule your meals so that you get the most out of them. Unlike a diet, it doesn’t restrict what you eat but instead when you are eating them. IF works by tapping into your fat stores while in a fasting state. Your body enters into a fasting state, on average, 8-12 hours after your last meal. While in this fasting state, bodies take the nutrients that are stored as fat and break them down into sugar.

Typically IF is done by eating in an 8-hour time span, then being in a fasted state for 16 hours. It doesn’t matter when you schedule this time span into your day. If you start eating at noon, you will end at 8 pm. If you eat at 8 am you finish at 4 pm. The start time isn’t important as long as you stay in the 8-hour time frame.

If you choose to workout while you are in your “fasting” state, you should listen to what your body is telling you. You can be susceptible to lightheadedness or dizziness. I have been doing IF for nine years and I have found it’s best to schedule my own workouts after I have my first meal. If that is not possible with your schedule you can eat something light 30 minutes before a workout so you have something in your system to combat side effects.

I have exercised while in the fasting state, and while normally I have no issues, there have been times I have felt dizzy or light-headed while doing very high-intensity workouts. If that happens, I make sure to stop the workout and eat something or drink something to help get my blood sugar back up.

There are three kinds of IF : Daily, Weekly, and Alternating Days.

Daily- You fast every day during the week, staying consistent.

Weekly- This is an excellent way to start off; you only fast one time during the week. It doesn’t matter what day, and on all the other days you maintain a regular eating pattern.

Alternating days- You fast every other day. On off days you eat on a regular schedule.

Written by
Adam Woods
Personal Trainer

Experiment with timing and find a schedule that works best for you. Your body will tell you what you need, so listen to it.  Then watch the results! IF can be a great way to lose weight or maintain weight.

As with any nutrition plan you should consult your doctor before beginning.

As we approach the end of this time in quarantine from the spread of the Covid-19 virus, it’s very easy to look back and think what an inconvenient time that was for us. Stuck in our homes, not seeing friends, not going out, and watching Moana for the 3rd time in one day because that’s all your 2.5year and 18month old will watch(just me?). We just want things to be back to normal and we want our livelihood to be restored as soon as possible

With that, I personally can say that there have been events from this time that have proven to be helpful to my personal health. Time away from the everyday grind has allowed me to reset, restore, and give convictions towards my mental and emotional health moving forward. Below I have 3 things that this time has allowed me to focus on while being at home, and I will continue to apply as life returns to normal:

Take time to do something you enjoy. Mental health – This is an easy one for all of us. We tend to move towards activities that fill our tank and give us energy and restore us mentally. During this time, taking walks in my neighborhood while listening to podcasts have done just that for me. I took 30 minutes to myself to think about something else other than work or other daily tasks. Topics included sports talk radio, educational talks, or something about my hobbies proved to be a great way to reset my mind.

Application: find an activity that gives you more energy, and provides you an opportunity to disconnect from your daily work and activities.

Connect with your family/spouse Emotional health -One activity my wife and I did while at home was spend time watching a Netflix TV series; we watched all 7 seasons of ‘Mad Men’. This show has a simple story line, but especially well known for its focus on character development. This provided us an easy route to talk and connect. We naturally discussed the plot, characters from the story and how we connected to them personally, and naturally asked questions to each other to further understand. This led us to better understand each other, and also understand ourselves and our own tendencies.

Application: find a simple activity that brings you and spouse together. Anything that can get you to talk and connect. See how it impacts not only your relationship, but how you feel both mentally and emotionally.

Get a coach! Physical health – Before the lockdown forced us all to stay in our homes, I was able to secure some workout equipment for my home. My coach(yes, even personal trainers get coaches), was able to make a regiment that kept me on the right path for my goals, despite not having access to the majority of the equipment I am used to. This secured my thoughts that I always plan to have a coach that can focus on me and my goals, even during hard times like the one we have experienced.

Application: Now more than ever, we need to be proactive towards addressing our physical health. Find a coach that can not only write you workouts, but also coach you and keep you accountable towards your physical goals!

Written by
Landon Whitaker
Personal Trainer

It can be easy to get down and look back on the negative of our time in quarantine. I hope this helps you find some positive moments to look back on and capture for your lifestyle moving forward.

It’s no surprise that our society is finding it harder and harder to get a healthy amount of physical activity in our lives. Sometimes even exercising three times per week isn’t enough to counteract the other ten hours per day that we spend sitting down at work, in the car, on the couch, etc.  Have you heard that sitting is the new smoking?

Every year I make a list with my family of the active-ities that we’d like to do that year.  When we do them, we cross them off the list until we’ve done them all. These lists are always perfect for when we “get bored” or “can’t think of anything to do.”  Here are just a few ideas for activities in and around Carmel, Zionsville, and Indianapolis that you can use for yourself, add to or take away from, then pin on the refrigerator to ensure that you and your family have an active summer:


Cool Creek in Carmel
  • Hike or bike on the Monon
  • Visit the Coxhall Gardens
  • Hangout at Flowing Well Park
  • Explore Cool Creek Park
  • Bike on the Carmel Access Bikeway paths
  • Throw a ball or frisbee in Central Park


Hill at Mulberry Fields in Zionsville
  • Walk or bike the Rail Trail
  • Hike through Starkey Park or Turkey Foot Nature Park
  • Run/Walk the hill at Mulberry Fields or Elm Street Green
  • Utilize the fitness trail at Creekside Nature Park
  • Take advantage of the space at Jennings field for throwing a frisbee or playing a game of flag football.
  • Pull together a game of kickball or Home Run Derby at Lion’s Park


Indianapolis Canal
  • Canoe/kayak/paddleboat on the canal downtown
  • Hike at Fort Benjamin Harrison State Park
  • Walk around White River State Park
  • Throw a ball or frisbee in Military Park
  • Walk the Indianapolis Cultural Trail
  • Fishing/hiking/swimming at Eagle Creek Park
  • Go for a run on the Central Canal Towpath
Written by
Rollen Dice
Personal Trainer

These lists are only a small number of things to do around the area, and it only took me ten minutes of brainstorming to come up with these ideas.  Take some, leave some, but make your list your own and have some fun in 2020! Send this to anyone you know that may need some summer activity in their life!

Simple Drills, 10 Minutes, Every Day. 

Some days, we are just too busy to get everything done. Maybe, we just don’t feel like doing a full workout. Or, we want something extra to do on our off days. One thing is for certain, we can dedicate 10 minutes to anything, regardless of schedule or preference. 

Below is a list of drills that can be done in a short amount of time. Each list covers a different aspect of fitness. They don’t require any equipment and can be easily modified based on strength and confidence level. 

Here’s the rules:

  1. Set a timer for 10 minutes. When the time is up, you’re done!
  2. Keep Moving, transition quickly between exercises
  3. Keep your rest little, only to catch your breath (it’s only 10 minutes)
  • Cardio: Fast Walk
    1. This is easy. Find a path or a sidewalk near your house. Put on some motivating music. Hit the trail hard until time is up.
      1. Pro Tip: Put a Hip Circle or Mini Band around your legs by your knees. This will challenge your glutes more while you walk!
  • Core: Plank/Bear Crawl/Carry
    1. 30 second Plank
    2. 10 Yard Bear Crawl. Video demo HERE
    3. 1 minute of Carry
      1. Pick Up a heavy backpack, hug it, and walk. 
    4. Repeat until time is up. 
  • Strength: Push Up/Row/Lunge
    1. 10 Push ups.
      1. can be modified doing elevated or on your knees. 
    2. 15 Bodyweight Rows- Demo HERE
    3. 20 Walking Lunges(10/leg)
    4. Repeat until time is up
  • Mobility: Total Body
    1. 1 Minute Deep Squat Hold- Demo HERE
      1. Use a furniture piece if needed
    2. 1 Minute/side Hip Flexor Stretch- Demo HERE
    3. 1 Minute Thoracic Prayer Mobility- Demo HERE
    4. Repeat for 2 Round
    5. Finish- 2 Minutes Feet Up, Belly Breathing- Demo HERE
Written by
Landon Whitaker
Personal Trainer

If you want to talk more about fitness, Personal Training or Virtual Training reach out today! I offer a variety of options and can discuss the best way to meet your goals and budget.

Virtual training is personalized to your needs, the equipment you have, and to help you meet your goals. LIVE sessions and template workouts with supporting videos are available.

It’s no joke that having a balanced fitness regime can be complicated.  Most of us know how to perform cardiovascular exercise and/or execute a strength training program to some degree. What is often overlooked is flexibility.  Flexibility training, mobility work, stretching, etc.  

Why should you stretch?
Our muscles are responsible for our ability to remain upright. Without them, our skeleton would collapse to the ground.  When we talk about “perfect posture”, what we are really talking about is an optimal length-tension relationship between opposing muscles in our body. This relationship is important for muscles of the trunk that are responsible for a tall, upright spine as well as for our extremities so that we are able to move our arms and legs through a full range of motion.  If these relationships become imbalanced, we are at higher risk for strains and joint damage. Imbalances in these relationships ALWAYS lead to chronic pain if uncared for.

Strength training alters the length-tension relationship of muscles in our body. 

When should you stretch?
There are two types of stretching that most people are familiar with, dynamic stretching and static stretching.  Each has its place in a well-rounded fitness routine.  

Dynamic Stretching:  active movements that take a joint through its full range of motion. This type of stretching should be completed prior to a workout and performed with specificity, mimicking movements that will be completed later in the workout.  Dynamic stretches should be performed on areas that are deemed “tight” to help optimize the length-tension relationship between muscles before they take on loaded movements. 

For example, perform stationary high kicks as a way to dynamically stretch the hamstrings through a full range of motion before performing heavy barbell squats later in a workout, a movement that requires a significant range of motion in the hamstrings. 

Static Stretching: movements that extend a muscle to its end range of motion and are held for up to 30 seconds. The focus of static stretching should be to relax the stretched muscle as much as possible when holding the extended position. This type of stretching is good for increasing overall range of motion in targeted muscles/joints and is optimally done post-workout.  At the end of a strength training bout, the muscles that were trained will return to their resting state in a shortened or tightened position which is a suboptimal length-tension relationship. Static stretching helps the worked muscles return to a resting state with a more favorable length-tension relationship. 

For example:  After doing a heavy bench press workout it is optimal to stretch the chest muscles so that they return to a resting state with a favorable length-tension relationship.  Have you ever heard jokes that very large and muscular men can’t scratch their backs?  This is in part because of tight, shortened chest muscles, and weak lengthened back muscles.  The length-tension relationship is suboptimal.

Written by
Rollen Dice
Personal Trainer

Send this article to everyone you know that could use some more stretching in their life!

If you would like to talk more about stretching, fitness, or to learn about virtual training opportunities, reach out to me today.

Virtual training is personalized to your needs, the equipment you have, and to help you meet your goals. LIVE sessions and template workouts with supporting videos are available.

Self-care is the practice of taking action to preserve or improve one’s own health. Self-care can take many forms from physical, mental, and spiritual health and wellness.

This all can be achieved from doing various activities even as simple as drinking enough water. Some other examples would be exercising, that could be weight training, walking, running, jogging, yoga, or really anything that gets you moving.

Also making sure you are eating and drinking that right foods and liquids that provide the right energy that your body needs. Another would be spiritual meditation.

Whatever that looks like for you make sure you take the time. But mainly take your “me” time. Take time to self reflect, if work or the quarantine is making you stressed take 10, 20, 30 minutes or however long to do something you truly enjoy doing. This time can be difficult for all of us. Make sure you’re taking care of yourself as you are taking care of others.”

Written by
Adam Woods
Personal Trainer

If you are looking for strength training and exercise options for your self-care, reach out for information on in-studio sessions or virtual training. I have options that can work for you.

Virtual training is personalized to your needs, the equipment you have, and to help you meet your goals. LIVE sessions and template workouts with supporting videos are available.

It is much easier to get and maintain mobility than it is to lose it and get it back. That alone is the main factor that keeps me performing mobility drills on a daily basis.  Mobility helps me stay strong and safe not only in the gym but in everyday activities as well.   

The term “mobility” refers to the range of motion that you have access to on a given exercise/movement.  Control of that range of motion is what mobility is all about. You may have the flexibility to get into certain positions, but if you don’t have the muscular strength/stability to control your body through these ranges, then we don’t have mobility. Be sure not to mistake joint “laxity” as mobility.  Having too much laxity can cause instability at the joint, thus causing compensation or pain somewhere throughout the system.   

Soft tissue work (ie…foam rolling or lacrosse ball) can help reduce stiffness to the targeted area.  It’s a great way to warm up for a workout, finish a workout for muscle recovery but can be done anytime.

Breathing is very important as well!  If you can breathe through ranges of motion then you “own” that position.  Breathing can reduce bad stiffness and establish good stiffness. Slow down, take sufficient time when performing mobility exercises and be sure to breathe through the positions. 

You don’t need much time, space or equipment to perform a good mobility routine.  I set aside about 10 minutes each day to execute some mobility drills.  The only pieces of equipment that I use are a lacrosse ball and a resistance band.  If you don’t have access to any equipment then no worries, you can get a great mobility routine accomplished with just your body.  Spend a little more time on the areas that need it the most.  It can be easy to get lazy and only perform exercises that feel the best or that you’re good at. 

Watch the video below as I walk you through some simple mobility exercises that would be appropriate for any level.

Written by
Kirk Tidler
Personal Trainer

Do you know what areas you need to work on? Do you know what techniques to use? If the answer to either of these is no then reach out to me for a consultation. We can meet virtually to assess your needs. After your assessment, I can provide you with virtual training to get you started.

Virtual training is personalized to your needs, the equipment you have, and to help you meet your goals. LIVE sessions and template workouts with supporting videos are available.

How are your home workouts going? If you are anything like me “distracted” is a word that comes to mind with my first couple of weeks at home. That’s okay, too, but in my heart, I knew I could be doing better so I buckled down and found that these things made my “gym” time more efficient and effective!

1. Put it on your calendar at the time you plan to workout. If you’ve gotten away from this practice I suggest putting it on your work and your personal calendar. This makes it easier to stay accountable to yourself!

2. Make a space that is conducive to working out. The least amount of distractions possible the better! In order to remain efficient at your job, you are in your home office for work. Make your workout space the same! (i.e. no tv, no phone distractions between sets…) 

3. Have your equipment in one place! If you’re working live with a trainer or following a written program make sure you know what equipment you need beforehand that way mid-workout you don’t have to go searching for it.

4. Do your warm-ups and cool-downs! These two pieces are just as essential as the main body of work and the last thing you want to do is get injured! If you aren’t sure what to do, ask your trainer!

Treating your workouts as close to what they were when you were going to the gym is a great way to continue to get the most out of your home workouts. If this is something you are struggling with, reach out to your trainer. They are your #1 supporter in this time and want you to continue to have great workouts! 

Written by
Becca Brown
Personal Trainer

If you do not have a trainer and would like to get started with home workouts that are developed based on you and your goals email me today! I have a variety of virtual training options available from LIVE virtual training to LIVE virtual class sessions. Don’t let another day go by with a hum-drum workout or no workout at all, your health and fitness are much too important to do that!

Virtual training is personalized to your needs, the equipment you have, and to help you meet your goals. LIVE sessions and template workouts with supporting videos are available.

With Indiana’s shelter in place order, it’s been more difficult than usual to stay engaged with a beneficial fitness routine.  Gyms, health clubs, and personal training studios are closed so we don’t really have options to go out to a place that has the equipment that we need.  So, what are you doing with the resources at your disposal to ensure that you don’t neglect your fitness at a time when it’s so easy to make excuses?  Have you found a workout plan that works with the equipment that you’ve got?  Are you lost and wondering how to create an exercise regime that works for your situation?  If you answered “I don’t know,” “no,” and “yes” respectively to the questions above then this article is for you.

To create our own exercise routine, we first need to know all the movement patterns that are found in an effective plan.  Those movement patterns are as follows:  Vertical Push, Horizontal Push, Vertical Pull, Horizontal Pull, Lower Body Push, Lower Body Pull, Spinal Stabilization/Anti-extension, Spinal Flexion.  We could also add a Carry to this list if we wish, but I would bet that you already carry things at least a little bit in your life, am I wrong?

Next, we need to know that we want to use each of these movement patterns at least twice each, every week.  And we need to know how many times we plan to work out each week. 

Once we know these two things, we can start dividing our movement patterns into our workouts each week. And remember, each pattern should be in our routine twice.  So if you are going to work out two times per week, then you would simply want to do at least one exercise for each movement pattern during each workout. If you are going to workout 4 times per week then we could do half the movement patterns each workout, and even just do the same two workouts twice each if we wanted.  3 and 5 day splits are slightly more complicated but still doable as long as all movement patterns are used twice each week. 

A balanced workout routine is important like getting the tires aligned properly in your car is important.  If your tires aren’t aligned properly then your car will drift to the left or right.  If your routine isn’t balanced then some muscles get stronger than others and we start to develop problems w/ range of motion in certain joints or we develop chronic pain in joints with imbalanced muscles. Your posture might start favoring the muscles on your front or the muscles on your back.  We need to keep our posture in alignment. 

Here is an effective split for a 4x/wk exercise routine. In this plan you would take one rest day between day two and day three. 

Day 1Day 2
Horizontal Push
Vertical Pull
Lower Body Push
Spinal Stabilization/
Spinal Anti-extension

Vertical Push
Horizontal Pull
Lower Body Push
Spinal Flexion

Day 3Day 4
Can be the same as day one or you can divide movement patterns up differently as you wish
Can be the same as day two or if you come up with a new day 3, then day 4 needs to be complementary patterns. 

Written by:
Rollen Dice
Personal Trainer

If creating a home workout routine seems overwhelming or if you’d like to take it up a notch, consider virtual training. I offer several options that can help you develop a routine designed around your fitness level and goals. Email me today for more information or to schedule a virtual consultation.

Virtual training is personalized to your needs, the equipment you have, and to help you meet your goals. LIVE sessions and template workouts with supporting videos are available.