Nutrition to Weights Featuring Physiques By Monique//Shape Up Spring Challenge

The countdown to Summer is officially here my babes. Oh em geee...who is ready for that new swimmer?!

NOT ME!

April and May tend to spark people to start getting in shape so that we feel our best when it comes time for that poolside party or beach vacay during summer. And, with May being wedding month, finding fun and new ways to shape up for the big day is a hot topic, to say the least. I know 6 people that are having weddings this year!

So ....drum roll, please!

I have some fabulous news.....

This summer, I will be kicking off an exciting new FITNESS category to my blog and I am so stoked about this! I am dedicated to turning my own life around through nutrition and fitness and have gotten such a great response from you all that this is something you would like to see more of...soooo darlings, your wish is my command. Go French Yourself would not exist without the readers and I so want to give you all what you want!

 I will be kicking off a new exciting series of workout and nutrition posts with my favorite trainers, instructors, chefs, and nutrition experts. I will be getting pretty intimate with you all on the things I have been doing lately to finally achieve the results I have been long awaiting for on this journey of mine. (like getting a DNA test so see what foods and workouts your body responds best to...that will be coming soon)  I am turning 40 in three years and have made a promise to myself that I will be in the best shape of my life...physically and mentally. And trust me, there are hard days. There are days I want to just give up. There are weeks the scale shows no change in the numbers...the clothing stays snug around the abdomen...and I literally cry and throw everything on my closet onto the floor when trying to get ready for a dinner party. There are days I want a cookie so bad as I walk through Whole Foods and there are days I sometimes eat the cookie in my car and don't tell a single soul about it. There are days when I look in the mirror and do not feel beautiful because I start comparing myself to "skinny" friends of mine. So trust me..I get it you guys. And I am right here with and for you! I threw a tantrum in Whole Foods today with Lin because I was so frustrated and exhausted with how hard I am working yet I gained a pound....and he cheats on his diet and loses a pound....... It was a serious melt down with tears and people staring at us. I don't even regret it. Yeah..having a moment in Whole Foods...sorry. It's life. Mind your own biz and carry on eating that delicious mac and cheese...UGH! (poor Lin)

 So I really hope you find the new content inspiring and uplifting and most importantly relatable. 

So I need to show some local love to my saving grace right now---Physiques by Monique. I started indoor cycling here and took a bit of a break and just recently returned about three weeks ago. I really missed so much about this particular  boutique studio ( I am not a gym girl) ..but mainly I missed the clients that go there. I missed the "family" bond that Monique and Joy PBM owners and life partners)  have done such an amazing job creating.  I make a new friend every class and everyone is so damn encouraging. I missed that. I am so over the pretentious attitudes of people or the "salty" looks people give if you don't have on the latest Lululemon gear and a full face of makeup. Um...newsflash...you are about to sweat that all off...

And I personally wear the same clothes every single time because guess what?? I am not buying new workout apparel until I drop a size so there. I have money to buy new things, I am just not doing it. 

At Physiques by Monique, you literally have people want to loan you a pair of spin shoes if you forgot yours, they will get off their bike to give you the towel you lost, and the list just goes on and on. Your vibe attracts your tribe and I have been wanting to surround myself with people who lift me up and encourage me. It's also pretty cool when you look around the room in a class and you are surrounded by some major Tulsa Tough athletes(for non local loves just google Tulsa Tough) ,some bad ass stay at home moms, entrepreneurs and working people, and women and men who are in their 70's ...and yet we are all in it together doing the same sprints, the same climbs, the same tap backs, and just trying the best we fucking can. (pardon my French but seriously you guys....) 

Anyhow I love indoor cycling so much ! I have really hit some major accomplishments on the bike this week and I have started strength training again. Weights are becoming my new best friend. 

So I am soooo excited for an upcoming workshop happening at Physiques by Monique this Saturday the 15th from noon to 1 p.m. called Nutrition to Weights. With 6 weeks to the official Summer season.. this is exactly what we need! 

Their newest Physiques by Monique team member, Natasha Paz is a registered dietitian and she will be in the house to help you learn how to maximize your weight loss goals! Their team of 4 personal trainers will also be there to talk to you about importance of weight training! I really encourage you local loves to take the challenge with me. For the next 6 weeks, we will be keeping each other accountable--cutting out sugar, adding protein, and weekly weigh in's!

Sign up here! 

I always hear so much negative talk about weights too so I decided to interview some people in my life who have rockin' bodies who got the results they wanted after they incorporated some weight training to their workout's! I must admit I have always been a little intimidated with weights myself. But it turns out they are critical for weight loss. Weightlifting is a type of strength-training exercise that burns calories and fat and tones and builds muscle. While you can lose weight by lifting weights, this type of exercise tends to build muscle, which, depending on how much muscle mass you accumulate, can weigh more than fat.

I asked the same three questions to these amazing fit men and women....

1. How long have you lifted weights and what differences did you notice in your workout and body when you did it?

2. One of your fave weight workout sequence? 

3. Advice to the woman afraid to start incorporating weights into their workout?

And here is what they had to say!!

Kim is in sales and is an avid cycle rider. She just completed one of her longest rides which was a goal of hers. 

Kim is in sales and is an avid cycle rider. She just completed one of her longest rides which was a goal of hers. 

"I started lifting weights consistently over two years ago and absolutely love it. I work out with a trainer at PBM for thirty minutes twice a week. The results have been incredible. I have never had shoulder strength or definition before and now I have both. By working biceps and triceps, I no longer have bat wing arms anymore. And my legs have more muscle than ever which has made me much stronger on the bicycle. I decided to get serious about weight training knowing I was turning 50 this year. I knew that as we age we lose muscle mass and I wanted to do something about it and you can too." --Kim Shipman

Shelly is a pastry chef and loves exercising and riding her dirt bike. 

Shelly is a pastry chef and loves exercising and riding her dirt bike. 

"Been lifting weights for 2 1/2 years. Biggest difference I noticed immediately was feeling stronger. Definitely as time went on I was able to add more weight to my routine. The changes I have seen in my upper body are amazing! Rounded shoulders and significant growth in my biceps have been a plus. My favorite workout sequence is anything upper body. Bicep curl then transition into a shoulder press using 15 lb. dumbbells. 3 sets of 12 will make you feel like a beast! For the women that are afraid to lift weights, remember the more muscle you have the more fat you will burn. Don't be afraid to push yourself by adding just a couple of pounds to your next set of exercises. A few small changes can make the biggest difference! Remember that if it was easy everyone would do it" -Shelly Hayslett Womack

Johnny is a personal trainer and just recently went vegan. 

Johnny is a personal trainer and just recently went vegan. 

"I've been working out with weights for over 20 years. When I'm consistent with my training I see an increase in lean muscle mass and decrease in body fat. I noticed that my numbers are better. My resting heart rate and better blood pressure are better as well as my cholesterol.  My body becomes firmer and I see my strength levels increasing. When training clients what I want to focus on is maximizing their time efficiency...so the time is well spent and we can expect a steady progression. So you want to make sure that there is a combination of resistance exercises along with rowing, spinning, and airbag work to make sure that you are getting that cardiovascular heart rate where it needs to be. Sometimes people have the idea that they need to run all the time... running a marathon, or a half marathon or even a 5k  but yes we need to condition the legs but your heart doesn't know the difference. Your heart knows beats per minute. So if we can educate people to keep their impact low and their heart rate high they were teaching them how to train more efficiently. To see study gains for instance we might row for one minute, squat for one minute, and do push-ups for one minute, vertical jumps for one minute, step-ups with a 28 pound bar for one minute, row for 1 minute, kettle bell swings for one minute and rRomanian deadlifts for one minute. Then we repeat that 5 times in an hour....non-stop from one exercise to another. We're always switching it up and changing things every week. I think women are afraid to lift weights because they fear bulking up. The only way to bulk up is if you eat to bulk up. Another thing often forgotten is that people do three things :we eat to maintain, we eat to grow or we eat to lose weight. So if you're working out with weights and you're eating to lose weight then you will produce lean muscle mass and actually become smaller but yet firmer and that's what most people should strive for. We never teach people to lift weights and bulk up which may increase their body fat and make them healthier, instead we always try to focus on everyone's cardiovascular fitness and try to increase their strength levels without sacrificing their health. --Johnny Price

Tawni is a bad ass stay at home mom blogger who loves working out and fashion. 

Tawni is a bad ass stay at home mom blogger who loves working out and fashion. 

"I've been lifting steadily for about nine years now. My fave sequence is heavy weights, less reps. Don't be afraid of bulk. Women don't have testosterone like men do to bulk up. Using weights revs up metabolism and is a quick fat burner!" ---Tawni Herburger

Monique is a personal trainer and an indoor cycle instuctor and the owner of Physiques by Monique who loves her wife, fur babies, and grilling outside. 

Monique is a personal trainer and an indoor cycle instuctor and the owner of Physiques by Monique who loves her wife, fur babies, and grilling outside. 

"I have lifted weights since I was in middle school and on the track team. By the time I got to high school I noticed quite a change in my physique. I often got in trouble by coaches because I would flex my muscles in the mirror more than actually picking up the weights! I personally like to do circuits when I'm weight training. It's also what I have my clients do when they train with me. Circuit training is a great way to keep your heart rate up while performing certain moves. For instance, I may use dumbbells to perform a chest press, which works the chest, the anterior part of the shoulder and triceps. Then use the cable machine to isolate my triceps and finish with push-ups which condition the chest, triceps and shoulders as well. My advice to women who are afraid to incorporate weights is simple. If you want to be lean, prevent injuries, prevent orthopedic problems, prevent the decline in your metabolism... you have to incorporate some form of muscular conditioning. Whether that is doing body weight exercises like push-ups, lunges, crunches etc. or using dumbbells or resistance bands. Women are afraid that they will "bulk up".  Sure there will be some initial swelling from breaking down the muscle tissue but after fueling the body and a proper recovery those muscle fibers rebuild to make you stronger and leaner."--Monique Washington

So many thanks to Monique and Joy for building such a wonderful studio that I am pleased to call my sanctuary. They are offering unlimited spin at $99 for a three month commitment which is a heck of a deal! And your first ride is always free! So come try it out with me.  

Check out their website here

Hope to see some familiar faces on Saturday at the event! Let's do this boys and girls!!!! 

XO
SAM