Lizzy Lives in L.A.

Living Healthy and Fit in L.A.


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Holidays, Exciting News, and Wisdom Teeth

Hey all! I hope everyone had a safe and happy new year’s! Mine was really low-key and I’m totally fine with that. I’m battling a nagging wisdom tooth today and doing whatever I can to try to relieve some of this pain!

Holiday Recap

This holiday season had me in Kansas with my boyfriend and his family. It was also pretty low-key and while we did do a bit of shopping and running around, there was also a lot of down time as well. We spent time with his family, shopped, cooked, baked, played games, went to a Chief’s game (in 9 degree weather!!!!!) and relaxed. With two full time jobs that have me running around Los Angeles every day, it was a real nice change of pace. It snowed for a day or two, but after that the weather was pretty clear.

I enjoyed the break and am finding it difficult to motivate myself to get back into the swing of things. Eek! This is a problem considering all of my pending projects that I’d like to accomplish in the coming months!

chiefs game

Exciting News

I wanted to share some exciting news with you guys!! While in Kansas, I only had a access to a gym for one day. The rest of the time, I was able to create some super-effective workouts that were done in the living room with NO equipment. I even got the rest of the family to join in for some of them. I can tell you that they were some really TOUGH workouts, but they were easily scalable and took anywhere from 15-45 minutes. I am also happy to report that I actually LOST a pound while on vacation. Of course, the scale doesn’t mean much to me, but I do use it from time to time just to know where I’m hanging out. It truly is JUST a number and not a true representation of anything, but it can be a guide to see where your body tends to stay and what makes it fluctuate most.

Anyways, with that said, I couldn’t help but think that I’m not the only person to go on a vacation and not have access to a gym. It can be awkward to ask to borrow a family member or friend’s car to go to the gym, and the day passes can be costly. While this has been in the making for quite some time, I finally decided to put together an e-book called TravelFit that will include workouts you can do ANYWHERE with NO equipment required along with some healthy snacking/meal tips for when you’re on vacation or out of your normal routine. It should be available towards the end of January and I cannot WAIT to share it with you all!

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The e-book will include: 

-15 different workouts that can be done ANYWHERE with NO equipment required

-Healthy Snacking/Meal Tips for when you’re out of your normal routine

-Ways to scale any workout to make it easier and/or harder, as well as to accommodate any weaknesses

Weeee!!! I hope you guys and others will enjoy this! It’s something I’ve been putting a lot of effort into over the past few months and finally putting it together has been really fun for me!

Thanks for a great year! While I didn’t post quite as much as I’d hoped, one of my goals for 2014 is to change that. I’m focusing on making some changes in my life in the near future and blogging regularly will be a part of that change.

Did you travel anywhere for the holidays?

How do you keep your fitness goals in sight when you’re on vacation? 

xmas photo


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My Top 5 Exercises

Hey friends!

It’s been a whirlwind of a week over here. I definitely wore myself out both physically, and mentally. Work has been pretty crazy and all over the place, and I’ve been kicking butt in the fitness department. Between running, rock climbing, hiking, plyometrics, HIIT, and heavy lifting, I’ve literally  been doing it all. Next week I am even planning on taking an adult gymnastics class, so stay tuned for a recap of that! For now, I’m battling a little cold, but hoping I will heal myself by creating cocktails like this:

sickness cocktail

and drinking lots of fluids.

The Core 5 Exercises 

With all of the different types of exercises out there, things can get pretty confusing. There are so many different movements and ways to perform those movements, that sometimes it can make your head spin. Of course, you can target your muscles in many different ways, but there are some basics that I believe are what build your foundation. Not only are they functional exercises, but they are strength building and work your entire body simultaneously. If you master these, consider yourself a master of strength. 😀

1. Push Ups

We all know what a push up is, but are you doing them properly? When done correctly, the pushup will work your pecs (chest), deltoids (shoulders), abs, and triceps, but even your legs, glutes, and lats must work as stabilizers in order to do a push up correctly.

Modification: Start from your knees until you build up strength to do a proper push-up. The same flat-back form and movement should be kept.

2. Pull Ups

I have a love/hate relationship with pull ups. They are such a GREAT exercise, but take a lot of work to become good at. There is really only one way to get better (and do more) pull ups, and that is to…wait for it…DO PULL UPS. But you may ask, how do I work on pull ups if I can’t do a single one?! Well, there are several modifications that help you practice the movement until your strength is built up enough to do pull ups on your own. Here are a few options:

Options #1: Band Pull Ups – both legs

band pull upOption #2: Band Pull Ups – one knee in (same as above, but using only 1 knee in the band)

Option #3: Band Pull Ups – one foot in, straight leg (instead of your knee on the band, you put your foot on it. Both legs stay straight)

3. Back Squats

The back squat is definitely an important exercise for everyone to learn and practice. I always tell people the best ab exercises I know of are squats and deadlifts. Like the push up, this is a full body exercise. Your glutes, hamstrings, quads, and abs are all working very hard during this exercise. Your back is used as a stabilizer as well. The proper back squat involves a nice athletic stance, with your chest out, shoulders back, flat back, and abs pulled in through your belly button. Here is a video by my good friend (and my first trainer! He taught me all of these moves back in 2007) Bret Contreras. The video talks about proper form, problems, and corrections. It is well worth watching!

4. Deadlifts

Probably my favorite exercise of all time. There are several different types of deadlifts, but for our purposes, I am speaking of the Conventional Deadlift. Unlike the squat, the deadlift is a hinge at the hips. This exercise works your glutes, hamstrings, lower back, upper back, and abs. It is another exercise that requires a lot of attention to form, as not to injure yourself. Learning your form on this exercise is the first priority before adding weight. Once again, I’ll let Bret take this one:

5. The Hip Thrust

Back in 2007, I learned about the hip thrust first hand from, of course, Bret Contreras. In his small Scottsdale gym that I trained with him at, I was introduced to this move and forever fell in love. With the exercise, not Bret. The hip thrust is absolutely the best glute exercise out there. It is a power movement that uses SO many muscles and truly targets the glutes in a way that squats and deadlifts just don’t do (not to take away from them, just a different reaction from the muscles). I am posting another one of Bret’s videos, as he is one of the first people to spread the word and research this amazing exercise in depth.

Side note: Bret is now selling the Hip Thruster machine! (you better believe I’m talking my gym into getting one.)

So there you have it folks. I can guarantee that if you master and practice these 5 moves, you truly need nothing else. Of course, you can always supplement with other exercises and focus on speed, power, or strength (which will all give you a different way to use these moves), but these are staples. Learn them, practice them, and watch your fitness level take strides.

– What is your favorite exercise?

– Do you practice any of these exercises regularly? If so, which is your favorite/least favorite?


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Winner, Workout, & Food…

Winner

Wooo! What a weekend it was…..which means I never got to announce the winner of the Polaroid Sunglasses Giveaway!!!

Congratulations Katie L.!!! Please e-mail me at fitlizzio(at)gmail(dot)com with your full address so I can send your brand new sunglasses to you!!!

For the non-winners, until next time folks…and there will be a next time!

Website

On to a shameless plug….

My brand new website is LAUNCHED!!! I’d be delighted for you all to check it out! It was a long time in the making and I am so excited to finally be “on-line!” My Part Time Manager is OFFICIAL! 🙂

Lizzy Slider

Eats

While I’ll likely never be the type of blogger that documents everything I eat, here are a few tidbits from today!

My never fail Summer Breakfast Smoothie (made with kale, strawberries, blueberries, 1/2 banana, greek yogurt, protein powder, and stevia). It is SO delicious and the perfect pre-workout breakfast that doesn’t make me too full and doesn’t send me to the gym on an empty stomach!!!

breakfast smoothie

After my cardio session (just a 30 minute sesh on the treadmill today) I grabbed a NuGo Protein Bar so I could shower and get ready without chewing my arm off. Real sea salt crystals on the bar. Pretzels inside. Chocolate. Yum.

nugo protein bar

On my way to job #2, I grabbed my favorite $10 salad from Beverliz Cafe in Beverly Hills. It is so fresh, summery, and delicious. The Strawberry Chicken Salad comes with lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, chicken, strawberries (durr), and feta cheese. The balsamic vinaigrette is to die for. I didn’t snap a picture today because I think I had eaten it all before I even thought of it.

Other random eats throughout the day: Plain strawberries (have I mentioned I love strawberries?), an apple, crystallized ginger (my weird obsession), and an Ezekiel, egg white, chicken sausage sandwich (yum in my tum).

And now for a doozy of a workout….I did this last night and I am feeling it today for sure….

Workout

1 minute rest between supersets…adjust weight to what you’re comfortable with! As always, always ask a doctor before starting any new exercise program.

Superset #1: 4 sets

Snatch(45lb BB) – 10 reps

Push-Up Plank (10lb DB’s) – 8 reps

Superset #2: 3 sets

DB Bench Press(25lb DB’s) – 12 reps

Step-Up Hops(bodyweight) – 12 reps per leg

Superset #3: 3 sets

Pull-Ups with a Resistance Band(green band) – 10 reps

Squat Jumps(bodyweight) – 15 reps

Superset #4: 3 sets

Windmills(15lb DB) – 8 reps per side

Good Mornings(45lb BB) – 15 reps

What is your favorite exercise? 

I love Snatches (gosh that sounds awful but seriously there is no other way to say that…). They are really tough, you have to really work for them, your form has to be spot on, your entire body is involved, and you feel so strong doing them!!! Kapow!!! Your turn!


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Make a Workout Date!

fun gym 3

One of my favorite ways to stay accountable for a workout is to make a date with a friend. I try to do this a few times a week for two reasons:

1) I get to catch up with my friends while getting my fitness on! We’re all pretty busy, so this is a great excuse to catch up while we sweat.

2) Another person to push you. I don’t know about you, but nobody is ever allowed to beat me. And if they do, I’ll die trying to catch up.

Today, I made two dates with two different friends. It is also Tuesday, which means it’s hip hop cardio day. Needless to say, it was quite the active day!

Workout #1: The morning workout consisted of pushups, pull ups, snatches, burpees, box jumps, leg press, and a 15 minute elliptical session. I did this in between work (I work at the gym, which makes it easy for me).

Workout #2: today was hip hop cardio. I love this class so much because I’m NOT a dancer. Yes, you heard that right. Most people get excited because they were a dancer as a child, or they love to dance and are good at it. I’m a metal head. This is so different from what I’m used to and I have an absolute blast. I’m not the best dancer, but I have fun and sweat my booty off, so I win!

Workout #3: Finally, my friend met me at the gym this evening for Date #2. Don’t hate the player, hate the game. 😉 I found the workout below on instagram and we decided to do it. We did two full rounds of it and finished off with some freestyle dancing and shenanigans as always.

kb workout

The moral of the story? Making a date with a friend will greatly improve the chances of you showing up AND will likely push you to work harder. I don’t recommend making 3 dates in the SAME DAY, however, so learn from my mistakes. Somehow I think getting out of bed tomorrow is going to hurt….

sword fight

The next time you’re feeling less than thrilled to workout, grab a friend and enjoy some friendly competition and catch-up time!

Do you make workout dates with your friends? What is your favorite thing about them?


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Survey and Goals

I always forget how much I love writing/blogging until I start doing it again. I decided today is as good a day as any!

It’s a lazy Sunday, and I’ve put in a tough week of workouts including, but not limited to: hiking, tabata, strength training, running, plyometrics, hip hop, and kettle bells. Now that I write that out, I really hit a rainbow of workouts this week! It’s always fun to mix things up and do different things. I actually didn’t do any steady-state cardio on a machine this week, and still feel like I kicked.my.booty.

Goals of This Blog

Healthy Eating: I’ll document some of the healthy foods I incorporate in my life. It’s taken me a long time to find my health-shui if you will and now that I’ve got it, I think it’d be nice to share it with the world. My quick outlook: Make the healthiest choices you can that still make you happy. That is, if you just want to have the fries, but don’t really care to have cheese or a bun on your burger, then by all means do it. Make the changes that you don’t notice as much, and keep the foods you enjoy in your life in moderation. And sometimes? You just go get frozen yogurt because your boyfriend wants it. 🙂

Exercise and Fitness: I’ll document my workouts, give some workout suggestions, and share my thoughts on exercise. I am a certified personal trainer and a 6 year test dummy with fitness. I’ve tried it all from bodybuilding to power lifting, to crossfit, etc. In addition, while, yes, I work at Iron Gym in Santa Monica, I’ve also really enjoyed the new group fitness program we’ve implemented called Momentum. I’m going to start highlighting the different classes we offer there because having these classes available to me have helped me to try new things that I never would have otherwise. Maybe you will find some inspiration as well!

Since it’s been a while, and my life is constantly changing, I thought a little “about me” survey would be in order. As I type this, I’m enjoying TJ’s Spicy Ranchero Egg White Salad and baby carrots dipped in TJ’s Spinach and Kale Greek Yogurt Dip. Holy yum.

Spinach and Kale dip front tjseggwhite

Here we go….

A – Age: 25..a quarter of a century! (gulp)
B – Bed size: Queen
C – Chore you hate: i know this is weird, but dying my hair. I get gray hair because I’m 25 going on 92, and paying to get it done every 3 weeks is just insanity, so I do it myself. It sucks, but it’s cheap 🙂
D – Dog’s name: My dog in AZ is Knuckles. Here in LA, I don’t have one yet…..but I’m working on convincing the boyfriend that we NEED one now. A boxer would be just dandy 🙂
E – Essential start your day item: Workout and caffeine. In any order.
F – Favorite color: black and gray. I’m dark 🙂
G – Gold or Silver: Silver
H – Height: 5’7.5…that .5 counts ok!
I – I am: very strange, a hard worker, and somewhat frustrating. But I’m funny, so that cancels everything else out. 😀
J – Job: You mean jobS. I’m a manager at a gym, a part time office manager for a celebrity, a sound engineer, a personal assistant/office manager for an executive, and the owner of MyPartTimeManager. I work a lot 🙂
K – Kids: Just my boyfriend.
L – Living arrangements: I live in a 2 bedroom apartment with a roommate and my boyfriend.
M – Mom’s name: Caryle
N – Nicknames: Lizard, Lizzio, Gizmo, Giz, Zeedee, Lizzandra
O – Overnight hospital stay other than birth: Thankfully, never.
P – Pet Peeve: I have so many. People tend to annoy me in general. I definitely hate when people leave you waiting, rather than just giving you an answer. I also can’t stand stupid people and incompetence. Oddly enough though, I get along with pretty much everyone.
Q – Quote from a movie:? I have always said if you could have a career in quoting movies, I’d do that. But alas, I am asked this question with nothing coming to mind.
R – Right or left handed: Both!
S – Siblings: Sister (32), Brother (30), Brother (21)… although looking at that there is no way my baby brother is that old!!!!!! He is still 10 in my head. 😀
T – Time you wake up: 8 or 9ish usually.
U- Underwear: I wear it, yes.
V – Vegetable you dislike: I LOVE vegetables. But peas? No thank you.
W – Ways you run late: Left, right, center.
X – X-rays you’ve had: dental, elbow, shoulder, etc. I’m an athlete. While I’ve had no major injuries, I’ve definitely had minor ones.
Y – Yummy food you make: I make weird things. I get on a kick and that is what I eat for weeks straight. Right now an egg white sandwich with ezekiel bread (toasted), egg whites and TJ’s Spicy Jalapeno Sausage cooked together and topped with a little bit of colby jack cheese. Yummmmmm.
Z – Zoo favorite: I went to the San Diego Zoo last year for the first time since being a kid. It was the most depressing thing ever and I’ll never go back.

Your turn!


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Healthy Snacks

There are two types of people in this world. Those who eat 2 or 3 solid meals per day, and those who graze. I am a total grazer. I like to snack and would rather eat 5-6 small meals a day than only a few big meals. Basically I’m like a cow with less spots. And no utters. I hope.

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Snacking can be really dangerous if you’re not careful because many snacks don’t really fill you up, leading you to just keep, well, snacking on them! I’ve compiled a list of my favorite healthy snacks that both allow me to munch on them throughout the day and give me some great health benefits.

Scandinavian Crisp Bread w/ Whipped Cream Cheese
-Fiber city meets Fat town. It tastes good and is good for the gut too. I find the crisp bread in the kosher aisle at Ralph’s (or Kroger, or Fry’s depending on where you live)

(I’m likely going to get a lot of flack for this one because cream cheese is dairy and has fat in it, oh no!!! But I’m not afraid of fats and full fat cream cheese is delicious. Depending on how much criticism I get for this, I may dedicate an entire post to why I include it in my diet as a HEALTHY food.)

Baby carrots w/ Guacamole
Trader Joe’s chunky guacamole is by far my favorite, but Wholly Guacamole is a close second. Their portion control packs are awesome. 100 calories of delicious avocado goodness.

Strawberries and Greek Yogurt
-It’s like dessert. Oh, so delicious and filling. Perfect blend of protein and carbs too! You can use 0% fat greek yogurt, or get crazy, sexy, cool and buy full fat. Whatever you’d like!

Almonds w/ stevia and cinnamon
-Like candied almonds without all of the sugar!

Coconut Oil + Cocoa Powder + Stevia
Emily Zaler taught me this one. Mix equal parts coconut oil and cocoa powder with stevia to taste. Mix it up and freeze it for 10 minutes. When it melts in your mouth, you can come thank me (or Emily). 🙂

What are some of YOUR favorite healthy snacks? Add to this list!