Train like Jennifer Aniston

Featuring my #1 training tip every one should be doing .

Last month, I wrote a blog about a different Jennifer’s choice concerning her training as she prepped for a movie role. Do you recall? The JLo 10 day challenge! Click here to read my take on it.

While I’m not on board with the JLo quick fix method, I am totally on board with Jennifer Aniston’s training method, shared recently by her trainer, Leyon Azubike.

I was so happy to hear Leyon Azubike talk about his celebrity client, Jen Aniston’s training program and how he uses periodization to organize her fitness schedule.  Boxing, strength training, jump roping, yoga. And yes, with her schedule she may hit a few 3 am workouts. That falls under HARDCORE and dedicated. The media made such a fuss about the 3 am workouts.

Celebrities get lots of attention when they seem to be aging well. Everyone wants to have what they’re having. It takes work to look that good, people! Even with a few visits to the plastic surgeon, you need to be fit to go through any elective surgery. Cher is fit for 72, any way you look at it.

I get it, but more than that, I’m loving how Jennifer Aniston’s trainer uses periodization to get it done.

What is this magical formula that is working wonders and making 50 look so fit and fabulous? Periodization. It’s been around since 1950 and was the work of a Russian physiologist, Leo Matveyev.

Periodization is an organized approach to fitness training.

Think of it as the trending Marie Kondo Japanese Method: organization for your training program. Working out should give you results that bring joy.

Basically, it’s taking your health and fitness to the next level. It’s an action plan or blueprint to achieve your health and fitness aspirations. The energy and physique you dream of are within reach, you just need a method and a scientific approach to your long and short term goals. And like the Marie Kondo followers rave, this method will change, declutter, and transform your training, your health, your life.

Periodization involves progressive cycling of various aspects of a training program during a specific period of time. Take marathon runners. They train for months, peak, run the race, and then take a month off. A month full of active rest activities before starting another cycle. Other examples include cyclists, pro football players, hockey players, and competitive bodybuilders. All train to peak for the season or day of a chosen event or competition.

SOOO many times a client will start a training program with a goal in mind. Goals like: an up and coming wedding, a class reunion, a beach vacation. Or perhaps they got their labs back from a recent physical and need to lower some of the risk factors to improve health and decrease the occurrence of age-related diseases. And need a routine sooner than later.

There will always be carrots to dangle, but looking past the immediate is always encouraged when planning your fitness routine.

Train for a better quality of life. Make it a lifestyle choice based on discipline and habit. Life is a marathon, a journey of highs and lows, and we never stop living in this body until we leave this life.

A science-based trainer uses periodization with clients. Whether you are heading off on vacation, competition, or planned surgery, the trainer who is using periodization in the creation of your program, is giving you the best method to results. Life happens, so plan for it. I can guarantee you ALL MY CLIENTS are familiar with periodization. My 90 Day PowerFIT Program has produced amazing results. And there is an 100% continuation after the 90 Days. It turned into 365 days or more for most.

There are times when a  break in the routine is abrupt and unplanned. Even at those times, we use the periodization blocks. Build your health “bank account” and make “deposits” daily as you never know when you will need your good health. Thinking of my clients at the moment. Jenn, Stacy, and Pam just took a taper week. A work trip, vacation, surgery, and no matter what, we train hard and intense right up to the break. I guarantee you will enjoy your vacation, break, or recovery more when you are in peak condition.

Whether you are an athlete, actress, in public service, or a busy mom, you need organization. No more wondering mindless and randomly through the gym, taking random classes, hit and miss weight training and sporadic running on the weekends. Stop overdoing yoga and underdoing cardio. A reckless diet on top of that and it gets messy and frustrating. Burnout is surely on the horizon. You may have all the stuff like getting to the gym on a regular basis, eating well most of the time. All you need is organization along with a clear roadmap and plan to optimize your exercise “space” or time.

For the cost of a few lunches out you can hire a COACH to keep you on track, no matter how life happens. Start with a consultation.

Let’s break it down.

Periodization

Consists of 3 cycles or blocks of different types of stress correlating to particular goals. The three cycles are Macrocycles, Mesocycles, and Microcycles.

Microcycle

The introduction to training with preparatory work. It is the shortest training cycle, typically lasting a week or more. Exercise selection, sets, reps, loads, pre-existing conditions, fatigue measurement, improve key physiological abilities and lactate threshold are compiled.

Mesocycle

This cycle can last two weeks to a few months but is typically three or four weeks in length. It is classified into preparation, competition, peaking, and transition phases. Three or four microcycles are tied together to form a mesocycle.

Macrocycle

Includes all stages of the periodization training program. Endurance, intensity, competition, and recovery. It is the longest of the 3 cycles and recommended to last a minimum of 90 days, or preferably one year when starting with new clients. Long term planning produces lasting lifestyle habits and joy.

WHY:

13 out of 15 studies show how periodization improves results.

When you use a form of periodization the benefits include:

  • A rapid increase in both strength and muscle mass
  • A clear outline or blueprint of what you should be doing every day, every week and every month with your fitness
  • Increased recovery potential and energy levels
  • Maximized muscle gains in minimum time
  • Prevents under and overtraining and burnout
  • Combines goals of strength, endurance, and hypotrophy all-in-one
  • Training both fast-twitch and slow-twitch muscle fibers
  • Weight training with any form of periodization slows aging

The art of training is to know when and how to vary your routine. Remember: too little and/or too much will kill your results and stop your body from progressing setting you up for weight gain and accelerated aging. Modeling your fitness liken to a sport with seasons and variables will bring out the athlete mindset and soon you will be eating and training like an athlete.  The next time you are at that long-awaited wedding celebration enjoying cocktails and cake, you will feel great knowing you are in offseason and will start a new block soon. Because you planned for it.

So take a minute and ask yourself: What are my goals?

What’s my main goal?

  • Fat loss, strength, energy, and/or function.
  • A preventive program for aging, disease, and degeneration of the body and brain.

What type of training program is best for this goal?

What type of nutrition plan supports this type of training?

Your training and diet should reflect your goals. Your nutrition choices and your workouts choices need to work synergistically. Use periodization to help you reach your goals. Many people are lacking the tools to make it happen. Fill your space with the tools and keep your space organized.

Conclusion:

When you look at your health and fitness WHAT SPARKS JOY?

How do I get organized and start a program to include periodization?

#1 Start small. Take a step. What is the one thing with your health and fitness that stands out as a first priority? Is it just doing it on a regular basis? Start there. Show up.

#2 Respect where you are and where you are starting from, get real. Thank your body, mind, and spirit for getting you this far.

Hey, listen if you made it through getting a college degree, raising kids, building a business, you can apply that same commitment to your fitness goals.

#3 Get rid of the old and in with the new. Let go of the nostalgia of your past exercise history. What worked in your 20’s won’t work in your 30’s, 40’s, and 50’s. What worked in the past needs to be updated. You are not the same body you were in your 20’s. You are not the same person nor do you have the same life as you did back then. Embrace whatever decade you are in. Stop using the excuse of not having time. Make time.

Periodization training will give you maximum results in minimum time. Start using a proven progressive method of training. Stop under training. Stop overtraining. And keep training even when your motivation is low. Showing up is half the work. Start a notebook today. And fill the notebook with only what you need to succeed. Give it your best and forget the rest.

Kathy Dolan, ACE Fitness Pro, Health Coach, Personal Trainer, Yoga Instructor, is a self-employed business owner. Kathy Dolan is a master trainer with years of experience with the secrets to real results! You will find her teaching and training on the Class It Up Virtual Studio and writing health and fitness programs for clients of all ages. She enjoys spending time with her three kids whether it’s in the mountains or on the seashore. 

Doing the Holidays Healthy

Doing the Holidays Healthy by Kathy Dolan

You have heard it many times: Most people gain 7-10 pounds over the holiday season.

It doesn’t have to be this way! You can enjoy all the holiday foods, goodies, parties and come out feeling amazing. Doing the holidays healthy doesn’t mean you don’t get to indulge!

Keeping the healthy balance starts with your mindset. So many have the all-or-nothing mindset which just sets you up for a lifetime of the yo-yo effect (aka ups and downs on the scale),  fluctuating body fat levels, and moods! Why torture yourself?

What is the “doing the holidays healthy?” For you, maybe it’s getting through the holidays without giving up on all your health and fitness gains! Maybe it’s feeling your best with energy and good health all season. Maybe it’s looking gorgeous in your little black dress for the company Christmas party or sparkling with good health celebrating New’s Year’s Eve with your kids.

What makes my clients succeed with year-round health and fitness training is the very same thing you need to do to maintain your healthy habits through your jolliness.

What is that one thing? Accountability!

Now, you are thinking you have to journal your food or track your calories? Nope. Train 4 times a week with me? Nope. Miles of cardio? Nope.

Accountability means setting a few loose rules or boundaries. Keep it real and honest. Heading into the holidays with a plan in place. Focus on how you want to feel during the holidays. Thoughts and feelings are our superpowers, so charge them up.

During Thanksgiving dinner, we can easily consume 3000 to 5000 calories so extra exercise is a must!

Here are a few tips:

Accountability

  1. Sign up for a Turkey Trot or a Turkey Burner Class
  2. Set a time to meet and walk the trail with your neighbor, sister, or friend.
  3. Book a few extra sessions with your trainer.
  4. Sign up for a contest like Doing the Holidays Healthy”  #Hashtag us and win free stuff!

Meal Planning

1) Plan on eating treats and sweets, but pick only the best foods that you don’t get all year. Don’t waste your calories on store bought cupcakes or the cheese and cracker platter. Savor your mom’s dressing, homemade cinnamon rolls, or dad’s prime rib. The foods that say holiday!

2) Portion Control.  Here’s my big tip: Eat a little of everything and a lot of nothing. ELF BITES. Elves are little wee creatures. LITTLE WEE BITES.

3) Eat small meals to avoid binging. Graze. There is always another gathering around the corner. Pace yourself.

4) Hydrate! For every adult beverage, match it with a glass of water. You will be so glad you did.

Watch the coffee beverages as they are as many calories as a meal. Stick to healthier drinks like vodka soda, bloody mary, or champagne to avoid the excess sugar of the season!

Move It (and dancing counts)

Every single chance you get to MOVE, MOVE. When you park at Costco, park out as far as you possibly can. Do 10 Minutes of cardio before you shower. Work the 10-minute abs while dinner is cooking. Sign up for early morning sessions with your trainer and get the heavy lifting done early. Put on your favorite playlist and dance like Richard Simmons, walk like Kathy Smith or run like Deena Kastor, even if it’s for 5 minutes. Set a timer and get up from your desk every hour and do 50 squats or pushups.

Focus on Family and Friends:  

The non-caloric soul food being served! It is said you hear the most when you are listening. So enjoy catching up with your friends and family. Enjoy these occasions and being around the people you love, not the food and drinks.

Here is The Instagram Hashtag Challenge:

Hashtag EVERYTHING that you do that is positive and healthy each day!

Start the train rolling with good vibes. The more you tag, the better you will feel! Look for health every single day and post a selfie of you working out, eating healthy, or setting an alarm clock to wake up and go to the gym!

The opportunities are endless. Get creative, not only will you inspire others with your healthy choices, you will get inspiration from others in the Doing the Holidays Healthy movement!

Have some fun! You CAN fill your newsfeed with MOTIVATION.  Choose Healthily!

Here are a few ideas to get you started and keep adding!

★Every day you got 8 hours of sleep

★Did a 10-minute workout

★Had a salad

★Intermittent Fasted

★Meditated

★Did Yoga

★Worked out

★Walked the dog

★Flossed

★Skipped the seconds at the buffet

★Did an act of gratitude

★Took a power nap

★Did a HIIT workout

★Parked in the furthest parking spot

★Focused on the family, not the food.

★Talked/chatted/called a friend

★Had a massage

★Had a healthy snack today

★Upped your workouts! Upped your intensity!

★Did an extra 5 minutes on the run

★Played charades at your next gathering

★Stayed hydrated

★Drank a protein shake after working out

★Had an extra serving of salmon

★Passed on the office donuts

★Had an ELF BITE OF ______ (Donut, See’s Candy, Cookies, Pie)

★Had an ELF size cocktail (1 glass instead of 3)

★Drank a glass of water between cocktails