Monthly Archives: September 2016

5 Ways to Keep Fitness on the Front Burner

Has your fitness regimen taken a backseat to your new hectic fall schedule? It can happen easily when kids go back to school, the weather turns and the holiday hustle creeps up. If you’re struggling to fit in quality workouts now that summer is over, no worries! I recently stopped by Channel 5 WNEM to share tips on how you can reboot your fitness workouts this fall.

Tip #1: Find a Workout Buddy

It’s all about that accountability factor! Find a friend or family member that you can go to the gym or a workout class together with. Coming up with a schedule to workout together a few days a week. This will really help you stick to your commitment!

Tip #2: Track Your Commitment

Track how good you have been sticking to your commitment by logging it on a calendar. Go ahead and print out a calendar. Put a star on the days that you workout, and leave the days that you don’t get a workout in blank. This is an awesome visual reminder of how successful you’ve been every week and can be a great motivator to step it up!

Tip #3: Always Bring a Snack

If you’ve ever fallen into the “I’m too hungry to workout” excuse trap, this tip will eliminate it! Toss a healthy snack in your purse or gym bag so something is always there to save you making the choice not to workout.

Tip #4: Get Active on Social Media

For those times that you’re relaxing on the couch and our phone is nearby,  pick it up and follow 10 fitness professionals or workout gurus on Facebook or Instagram. Seeing inspiring posts from these professionals will help keep you motivated and committed to your goals! Interested in following Step It Up With Steph? You can find us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Tip #5: Confidence-Boosting Exercises

Staying confident and committed is a vital part of your success when it comes to working out and leading a healthy lifestyle. The 30 day workbook I created is here to help you stay committed and feel confident in yourself so that you can reach your fitness goals!

Steph-30-Days-Workbook-1

There you have it. No need to throw in the towel now that summer is over. Take these five tips and implement them into your new fall schedule. They’ll help you feel great all year long!

How To Maintain Your Beach Body Through Fall

Now that summer is coming to a close, it’s a good time to talk about maintaining your beach body through the fall. I recently stopped by the WNEM station to share four tips that will do just that!

Tip #1: Eat Seasonal Vegetables

Load up on veggies by heading to your local market to purchase some zucchini, squash, pumpkin and any other seasonal produce you like. There are so many wonderful ways to prepare veggies, including sautéing, baking, roasting and steaming. Veggies never get boring! So now that summer is over, it’s time to change up your menu and seasonal produce is a great way to do that.

Tip #2: Create an Indoor Workout Plan

Just like seasons change, so can workout routines! As the evening walks come to an end, it’s time to find a new workout plan that works for you. The cool weather may have you forgoing your outdoor workouts, but that doesn’t mean the workouts need to stop all together. This is why I have the 30 minute workout DVD, for people that don’t want to leave their house but still want to have a workout routine. They key here is, get something that works for you. Whether it’s a workout DVD or a membership to a gym, there is a plan that can replace your outdoor summer workout routine.

steph-workoutdvd-121415-2

Tip #3: Drink Plenty of Water

Drinking water is a key to good fitness and health. Make sure you are drinking at least ½ your bodyweight in ounces of water per day. Add some lemon slices to kick up the taste! This is also great for detoxifying your body.

Tip #4: Dress in Layers

Take an extra few minutes every morning to layer up. This will help you stay warm and help your immune system protect itself. If the office gets too hot, you can always take off the extra sweater or jacket. Nobody enjoys being sick, so take extra precautions to help your body maintain good health.

As seasons change, you still want to feel confident about your body. Don’t let the cool weather fill you with excuses to stop your healthy lifestyle. You’ll look and feel so much better if you stick to these simple tips!

Wishing you good health and happiness!

-Steph

4 Tips for Keeping Kids Fit All Year Long

Are your kids spending too much time sitting around playing video games? It’s a common struggle in American households. I recently stopped by to chat with the anchors at WNEM TV to share my four tips on how to combat inactivity in children. I hope parents will find these four tips helpful and easy to implement. Because, when implemented they can help your kids stay fit all year long! 

Tip #1: Set TV Hours

Kids need (and want!) structure. Setting up house rules will set them up for success. Whether it is one show per day, or one hour per day, make sure your kids know what you expect from them when it comes to screen time.

Tip #2: Spend at least 30 Minutes Outdoors

Encourage at least five days per week of outdoor activity, for at least 30 minutes each time. You can make it a fun game by giving your children a calendar and every day they go outside and play for at least 30 minutes they are given a sticker to put on their calendar. Make them feel that you are on their team by explaining why it is so important that they are out and being active. Getting outside to play and explore in the fresh air is good for the body and mind…for adults and kids!

Tip #3: Reward Them

Once the children have reached their five days of outdoor activity for at least 30 minutes each time, give them a reward! Give them something that will make them feel good. By feel good, I don’t mean give them candy or more video game/tv time. Make the reward something that they can have fun with and enjoy outside. How about a trip to the store for a new soccer ball or hula hoop? Organize a family game or contest with their new reward and enjoy some time being active together!

Parents, are you interested in learning more about how rewards can lead to healthier lifestyles? My 30-day workbook helps people reconnect with how they view rewards for themselves.

Steph-30-Days-Workbook-1

Tip #4: Lead By Example

Stay prepared! Parents- keep your tennis shoes by the door so you’re always ready to tie up the laces and head out for a game of tag or baseball with your kids. It’s true what they say. Teamwork makes the dream work. Having fun by being active together can lead to a foundation of health for your children for years to come.

Cheers to a great week of outdoor fun for the family!

How to Avoid Gaining the Freshman 15 + Healthy Back to School Tips

Have you heard of the Freshman 15? It’s a real phenomenon. I know from personal experience. Moving away to college is usually a teenagers first experience with total freedom. When you mix in freedom, late night study sessions (or parties) and a cafeteria full of processed food…an extra few pounds (or 15) can happen quickly.

I gained more than fifteen pounds my freshman year at the University of Michigan- so I am very familiar with this type of weight gain. Now that I’m ten years post college graduation, I also know what healthy measures one must take to drop those unwanted pounds (and keep them off!).

I recently joined the anchors on Fox Chicago to discuss some of my top three tips on avoiding the Freshman 15!

Tip #1: Exercise in your dorm room!

College kids are busy and often times bogged down with homework. If they live on campus, they might not have a car or a way to get to a gym to workout. A little creativity can go a long way in this scenario!

What about using your laundry detergent bottles as weights? Turn on your favorite music and do some bicep and tricep reps with the detergent bottles.

Sure, you’re roommate might roll their eyes, but you can even get a friendly competition going. These were some of my favorite memories in college. I even started an aerobics TV show from my dorm room!

Tip #2: Pay attention to what you eat.

College cafeterias are full of chips, cookies and soda machines. However, there are also plentiful options like fresh fruit, protein options and greens from the salad bar. The key here? Choose wisely. Load up on spinach and chicken breasts from the salad bar, not croutons drenched in cheese and ranch dressing.

One trick I wish I had practiced in the cafeteria is to avoid white colored foods (i.e. bland starches or calorie empty breads) and make sure there is a variety of color on your plate. It’s ok to indulge, but watch your portion size when treating yourself to the soft serve ice cream.

My 30 Days to Love Your Body & Your Life workbook teaches you how to practice mental exercises that will help you value your body.

Steph-30-Days-Workbook-1

Tip #3: Parents- stay involved even though you might be geographically far away.

It doesn’t matter if your child is going to college in your hometown or has moved all the way across the country for school. You can still help them in various ways avoid that dreaded Freshman 15 and carry on healthy habits you instilled in them at home.

Sending healthy care packages is one way parents can help their college students. If they are in town, drop off a bag of healthy groceries. If they are out-of-state, mail them a big box of non-perishable snacks. Some ideas to get you inspired are Vega Bars, almond butter with honey, Wild Garden snack packs, and Safe Catch Tuna. Do you have a tea lover or aspiring chef at college? Frontier Coop has a great assortment of herbs, teas and spices you could include in your care package.

A healthy care package in lieu of one chock full of candy and junk food will definitely help your son or daughter avoid the freshman 15. Healthy food can also help to boost their energy so they can focus on their studies!

College is such an exciting time and it’s not realistic (or healthy) for students to restrict their food intake because they are worried about putting on weight. This isn’t a good tactic for anyone! Instead, students should use their brain to make smart, educated decisions. And never forget to listen to your body! It’ll tell you exactly what it likes and needs!

Looking for more healthy living tips? Tune into Step It Up With Steph and sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Ready. Set. Stress-Free Travel.

Whether you’re reading this post already poolside on your last summer get-a-way, or you’re leaving today for an overnight adventure, I have the traveling tips you need to make sure your Labor Day weekend is stress-free and healthy! I recently joined the team at abc7 Chicago to talk travel tactics! 

If your trip includes plans to unwind by indulging in a few cocktails, make sure you also stay hydrated with healthy fluids. In addition to water, there are drinks that will replenish your electrolytes to keep you feeling great. One that I recommend is  WTRMLN WTR. This drink has no sugar additives and is made up of only three ingredients. As an added bonus- WTRMLN WTR contains six times the electrolytes of competitor sports drinks! My favorite way to enjoy it? In a white wine spritzer for a little watermelon infused twist!

Traveling can be exhausting (especially if you’re traveling with kids!), so in order to keep your natural energy flow, I recommend avoiding extra coffee and energy drinks during travel days. Instead, do some stretching during your road trip pit stops or while standing in line at the airport. Stretching helps you regain your energy in a natural way.

If you’re anything like me and suffer from motion sickness, you need to include some extra planning before you jet off. Ginger is a natural form of nausea relief, so packing things like ginger candy, Gingerade Kombucha, and ginger ale can really help! If you don’t suffer from motion sickness, but suffer from travel stress or anxiety, how about packing a stress ball in your carryon? Take a few squeezes to get some relief!

Now, what about healthy food options while traveling? You can’t avoid eating (nor should you), but in order to feel good, you have to make good choices. Look for chips or crackers that have some health benefits. I really like popchips because they have ½ the fat of regular potato chips. If you’re looking for a healthy snack bar that won’t melt in the heat of the car or bottom of a purse, try Evo hemp bars. They come in many flavors and are packed with hunger satisfying protein.

Lastly, if you’re looking to maximize upgrades on your trip, there are a few things you can do to enhance your probability of getting upgraded. Think outside the box and offer to write a review for a hotel, front desk manager or gate agent at the airport. Aside from increasing your probability of an upgrade, you will also make their day! Holiday weekends are very stressful for people in the travel and hospitality industry. So, you really can’t go wrong with this tactic.

Wherever your holiday weekend takes you, I hope it’s stress-free, healthy, safe and FUN! Interested in more health and fitness tips? Tune in to Step It Up With Steph here.

Interested in learning more about my private weight loss programs for women? Click here to learn more and apply for a complimentary Signature Slimdown Session.