Monthly Archives: November 2015

5 Ways to Sneak in a Holiday Workout (As Seen on Fox 32)

Health and Fitness Expert and Weight Loss Coach Stephanie Mansour stopped by Fox 32 to share five great ways to sneak in a holiday workout. If you have presents to wrap, veggies to cut, and holiday parties to attend these workouts are for you!

These no-excuse workouts will help you feel positive about your weight loss goals even if you don’t have time to hit the gym. My clients in my weight loss programs for women often get in a cycle of guilt for not maintaining their fitness routines during the holidays, which then makes them feel badly about themselves, which then just makes them binge eat more!

Here’s how to break the cycle and step up your holiday fitness with five easy ways to sneak in a workout. (Psst, there is a BONUS sixth workout!)

Present Wrapping Workouts
Do calf raises while wrapping presents! With your abs in tight, come up and down and up and down on your tip toes.

After the gift is wrapped, spread your hands wide on the counter and do 10 table top push-ups. Repeat with every gift.

Kitchen Prep Workouts
For every vegetable you chop, do a lat pull down. Hold your arms high above your head like you have dumbbells in them, then squeeze your shoulder blades together and use your lats to pull your arms down into a cactus position at your side. Raise and lower ten times.

Next, open the arms out away from you in a ‘T’, palms facing back, and squeeze your shoulder blades pulsing your arms back and forth.

Both of these workouts improve your posture and alignment to help you feel amazing in your party dresses!

Cocktail Party Workouts
Workout while at a holiday party? You bet!

Grab your cocktail and while you mingle with your friends, pulse your abs in and out! This is a great core workout and no one will even know you’re doing it!

BONUS:
Tone your tush while mingling at parties! Tighten your butt cheeks while you walk around to help tone your glutes. When standing still and chatting, continue to squeeze them together for a sneaky (and effective!) booty workout!

If you want more tips on how you can lose weight and keep it off, make sure you join my FREE 21 day challenge at stepitupchallenge.com.

How to Beat the Airplane Bloat (As Seen on Fox 32)

There’s nothing worse than finding you’ve gained inches on your waistline after a day of travel! Health & Fitness Expert Stephanie Mansour dropped by Fox 32 to share five ways to beat airplane bloat this holiday season.

Many of my private weight loss clients are consultants and they travel a lot for work—even more so at the holidays to visit family! As a weight loss coach, I also travel a lot for speaking engagements so there’s no way I can walk into a meeting bloated and be taken seriously!

Here’s how I walk my talk and how you too can learn to eliminate bloating and discomfort during travel.

5 Ways to Beat Bloating During Travel

1. Avoid Certain Veggies
Cruciferous vegetables, like cabbage and broccoli, should be avoided at all costs before and during travel. They are the hardest to digest and increase gas and bloating. Vegetables like these are great for weight loss, but if you’re just starting to increase your veggie intake hold off until after the busy travel season to let your body adjust.

Instead, if you’re looking for immediate flattening and debloating eat cooked vegetables as they are easier to digest. Go for sautéed leafy greens like spinach and avoid raw veggies and salad.

2. Drink Plenty of Water
Water helps decrease bloating because it flushes you out. The goal is to go to the restroom at least once for every hour you’re on an airplane. When the flight attendants come by to offer you drinks, ask for two glasses of water instead of one and you’ll be sure to stay hydrated!

3. Travel with Protein
Eat foods low in salt to prevent bloating. Protein bars or protein packets are easy to pack and open for a quick snack (I love this plant-based, low sugar protein mix!).

Protein speeds up your metabolism, helps you burn fat, and regulates your blood sugar levels so you won’t crave those salty foods and sugary airplane snacks attendants hand out!

4. Take Probiotics and Digestive Enzymes
Always keep a digestive enzyme on hand when traveling and be sure to take a probiotic regularly. Both flush everything out and get things moving so you don’t have to worry about the pain, discomfort, and embarrassment of a bloated tummy.

5. Do the Twist
Sitting for hours in a terminal, on the plane, and in a shuttle or cab can wreak havoc on your digestive system. To help keep things moving along, get up every once in a while and twist from the hips.

If you want more tips on how you can lose weight and keep it off, make sure you join my FREE 21 day challenge at stepitupchallenge.com.

Activate Your Core: Double Plank Partner Workout with Jenny Milkowksi

Ready to step up your core workout? Weight Loss Coach and Fitness Expert Stephanie Mansour teams up with TV Personality Jenny Milkowski to bring you a challenging double plank partner workout.

If you can do a plank on your own on the floor for a minute, try taking your core workout to the next level. This double plank is intense and so amazing for building strong abs, strong back muscles, and strong shoulders and wrists. You can’t go wrong with this fun and challenging partner workout.

Watch the video to learn the technique then grab your bestie for a fun fitness challenge. I’m always coaching my clients in my private weight loss programs for women to rethink health and fitness to make it more fun.

The best way to lose weight and make it last is to switch up your workouts and find creative ways to challenge yourself and keep healthy habits at the front of your mind all day long.

If you want more tips on how you can lose weight and keep it off, make sure you join my FREE 21 day challenge at stepitupchallenge.com.

7 Ways to Hack Holiday Meals and Maintain Your Weight (As Seen on Fox 32)

Worried about gaining weight this holiday? Weight Loss Coach and Lifestyle Expert Stephanie Mansour dropped by Fox 32 to share a new take on weight gain. Learn seven real time tips to stop yourself in your tracks before going overboard on the holiday treats.

This holiday, learn to stop the downward spiral of guilt when you get too close to the dessert table! Here’s how to prepare for rather than fight against the potential weight gain.

During the holidays, we all make some unhealthy food choices and that’s OK. Read on to learn how to enjoy the season without going overboard.

7 Holiday Meal Hacks

1. Focus on maintaining your weight instead of losing weight. Start to consider what your New Year’s Resolution will be after all the holiday partying. What will be most important to you in regard to health and fitness?

2. Don’t step on the scale every day. The scale is your inaccurate worst enemy! I always have my private weight loss clients “measure” weight by how well their clothes fit. If your favorite pair of jeans feels looser, that’s a better gauge than a scale!

Also, use a tape measure instead of worrying about the number on the scale because muscle weighs more than fat. For example, one of the clients in my weight loss program for women lost “only” ten pounds, but dropped four dress sizes! That’s huge!

3. Plan a little affirmation escape! We’ve all been there. You’re at a holiday party and someone says something to you meant to be a compliment, but it’s really a dig. No problem, just keep a stack of positive affirmations in your purse. Pull them out in the bathroom, look yourself in the eyes, and say, “I’m awesome, I’m beautiful, I rock at life!”

4. Get in a five-minute workout. If you feel too busy to workout, don’t fret. Five minutes is 500% better than 0 minutes! Check out my Step it Up with Steph DVD for tons of great five minute weight loss workouts!

5. Change your palate, change your life! If you find yourself overdoing it at the dessert table, the first thing to do is change your taste buds. For example, go for some snap peas. They are so bland and boring compared to all the sugar on the dessert table! Change up your palate to get another taste going and stop the sugar cravings.

6. Go ahead and take a cookie! I mean it. I’m obsessed with the cookie platter. Don’t just stand there eating cookie after cookie though. Take your plate, put one cookie on it, and walk away! Enjoy it! And if you still really want a second one, go back for it.

7. Mix it up when drinking cocktails. After drinking a plain, non-sparkling wine, if you want to call it quits and not overindulge, then dose your mouth with a sparkling water. On the flip side, if you’ve been drinking bubbly win or prosecco, drink a bit of juice. This will change your mouth feel and palate and help stop the urge to go for just one more drink.

If you want more tips on how you can lose weight and keep it off, make sure you join my FREE 21 day challenge at stepitupchallenge.com.

Awesome Triceps Dip Partner Workout with Jenny Milkowski

Step up your workouts with the help of a partner! Health & Fitness Expert and Weight Loss Coach Stephanie Mansour and TV Personality Jenny Milkowski show you how to spice up a basic triceps dip.

Lose weight with the help of your best friend. Easy partner workouts make gym time way more fun, and even more efficient! Check out the video to learn the proper technique for this partner triceps dip.

This exercise works the core and lower body of the partner who sits in a squat against the wall, and it works the upper body of the partner doing the triceps dips.

Try ten reps each and then switch! Dip only as far as you feel strong enough to be able to come back up ten times. As you build strength, you can challenge yourself to go deeper into the triceps dip.

Remember to breathe and don’t forget to smile!

Clients in my weight loss programs for women find great success with the support and accountability of a workout partner. You can watch even more partner workout tutorials on my YouTube Channel Step it Up With Steph.

If you want more tips on how you can lose weight and keep it off, make sure you join my FREE 21 day challenge at Step It Up With Steph.

Get Fit with These Present Wrapping Hacks (As Seen on Fox 32)

Health & Fitness Expert Stephanie Mansour brings present wrapping hacks to Fox 32 for a healthier holiday season. Learn how to turn the most common holiday task into a fun and fit workout!

You have to wrap presents, so why not workout at the same time? It might sound silly to exercise while cutting and taping up gifts, but it will help you maintain your weight loss goals (and have a bit of fun while you’re at it!).

Clients in my weight loss programs for women often tell me how much they struggle to maintain their weight and fitness goals throughout the holidays. It’s such a busy time and working out is often the first thing to go.

Try these four present wrapping hacks to work up a sweat and feel great throughout the holidays!

Step 1: Cutting the Paper
Stand on your tip toes while cutting the paper for the present. This works your calves and lower legs.

Step 2: Wrapping the Present
Hold a squat while you wrap the gift (abs in tight!). This works your core, legs, and glutes.

Step 3: To the Tree
Take the present to the tree, but first do 10 alternate lunges per leg. This is good cardio and strength building!

Step 4: Stacking the Gifts
After the lunges, you’re close to the floor, so go ahead and sit down for this next workout!

Roll back into a half roll, abs in tight, take the present and do side crosses. Do 20 and then place the gift under the Christmas tree and start the whole workout routine over again. Woohoo!

As a weight loss coach, I know it’s vital for health to take every day chores and tasks and make them more fun and active! With a little creativity, you can pursue your best health and still check everything off your to-do list!

If you want more tips on how you can lose weight and keep it off, make sure you join my FREE 21 day challenge at stepitupchallenge.com.

Exercise Ball and Partner Core Workout with Jenny Milkowski

A strong core is the foundation for a fit life. Weight Loss Coach Stephanie Mansour and TV Personality Jenny Milkowski partner up to bring you this simple core workout using an exercise ball.

Try this easy ab workout with a partner and feel the burn!

Great Core Workout to do With a Partner

1. Grab an exercise ball and come down onto your forearms across from your partner.
2. Pull abs in tight.
3. Stay here and balance for 30 to 60 seconds.
4. Or, for even more of a challenge alternate lifting your legs up in the air then placing them down.

There are so many health and fitness benefits to building a strong and stable core. It improves posture and balance, and is connected to everything you do in life.

With the help of a workout buddy you can meet your weight loss goals together with challenging but fun partner workouts. Clients in my weight loss programs for women swear by the power of accountability!

So if you’re struggling to get to the gym, just call up a friend and hit up a playground with both of your kids or even your living room floor for some quick and easy workouts that will leave you feeling pumped and strong!

If you want more tips on how you can lose weight and keep it off, make sure you join my FREE 21 day challenge at stepitupchallenge.com.

Three Must-Know Dessert Table Hacks for the Holidays (As Seen on Fox 32)

Want to enjoy holiday treats without going overboard? Health and Fitness Expert Stephanie Mansour dropped by Fox 32 to share how to navigate the dessert table with success. Feel both satisfied and on-track with your weight loss goals this holiday season!

There are so many tasty goodies at the holidays! Is it really possible to turn down the sugar cravings without missing out? There is! All the clients in my weight loss programs for women feel super confident at the holidays because they follow these three simple weight loss tricks.

Don’t ever be intimidated by the dessert table again! Learn how to lose weight, feel great, and make it last with these easy weight loss hacks.

Protein is Going to Save You

Sugar cravings during the holidays are very normal. This is because more sweets are readily available and every time we eat one our blood sugar spikes. When it drops, the craving starts again. It’s a vicious cycle. So where to begin?

Start by keeping a food schedule. This will reduce cravings by making sure you’re eating well throughout the day. Set an alarm on your phone to go off every few hours to remind you to eat some protein.

If weight loss or weight maintenance is your goal, protein is your best friend and will save you from overdoing it on the sweets! Try an omelet and smoothie in the morning instead of pastries and breads!

A Sugar Craving in Disguise

Did you know we often mistake being thirsty as a sugar craving or need to eat? It’s a sneaky side effect of dehydration.

Stay hydrated this holiday season to reduce cravings. If you do feel an intense urge to snack on sugary goodness, try drinking a glass of water first.

Try Everything, Eat Nothing

This is your motto for the holidays! As a weight loss coach, I firmly believe in sampling foods that bring you joy and taste great! If you say no over and over again, eventually you will cave and gorge on way more sweets and calories than you would have normally if you indulged just a bit to begin with.

The reality is, no one is that strong in the face of tempting desserts during festive holiday parties! Give yourself permission to either have one whole piece of your very favorite dessert, or to try just a bite of multiple dessert options.

Also, if you want to really step up your dessert table game—avoid the fluffy, pastry-type sweets with lots of calories. Go for something light but delicious like a meringue. Even better, load up on fruits and dark chocolate first. The sugar in fruit will change your palate and satisfy some of the overwhelming sugar cravings.

If you want more tips on how you can lose weight and keep it off, make sure you join my FREE 21 day challenge at stepitupchallenge.com.

How to Avoid the Belly Bloat During the Holidays (As Seen on ABC 7)

Health and Fitness Expert Stephanie Mansour swung by ABC 7 to share easy ways to ease bloating and help nausea during the holidays. Get health tips to aid digestion and soothe your stomach during the season you need it most and all year long.

Click here to watch How to Avoid the Belly Bloat During the Holidays.

Before I make diet recommendations to the clients in my weight loss programs, I first encourage them to start by tuning in to their own body.

Take a moment to tune into your own body and take an internal compass of where you’re at. Ask yourself these questions:

Do I look at my health as a whole? Am I ready to make holistic changes?
Am I always bloated and uncomfortable? Or, just after eating certain foods?
Am I ready to finally make choices that help me feel good all the time?

There is no right answer. Just know where you fall and then read on.

How to Get Regular
Sometimes it’s super hard to tell if your IBS symptoms are the real deal or just the discomfort from another issue (like a dairy sensitivity or unable to process certain carbohydrates). Consider eating foods from a low FODMAP diet (like these Happy Bars) or taking a lactose enzyme supplement before diving headfirst into a cheese platter.

The easiest place to start, no matter if you are diagnosed with IBS or not, is to incorporate a probiotic into your daily regimen. Get on a schedule and when you’re rushing around, keep protein bars on hand so you don’t go for greasy or fried foods when hunger pains start in.

The Short of It
Talking to your doctor, taking a probiotic, considering low FODMAP diets—all these support long-term health. So what do you do in the moment of a painful bloating or nausea episode?

Drink plenty of water—half your body weight in ounces each day. (Remember, don’t drink water 20 minutes before or after a meal or that will increase digestive discomfort!).

Eat leafy green vegetables like spinach, kale, and swiss chard.

Use a heating pad and take deep breaths.

Sweat it out! Working out is proven to help decrease bloating and ease discomfort. Try the five-minute fat blasting workouts in my Step It Up With Steph DVD.

Knockout Nausea
Ginger or mint tea is very easy on the digestive system and helps eliminate nausea fast! If you are prone to motion sickness, bring some ginger chews or ginger supplements along on your holiday road trips for relief (or use as natural and effective hangover remedies!)

Keep a journal to track what foods make you feel nauseated and/or bloated. This will help with your long-term health goals as you learn to identify foods that trigger digestive discomfort.

If you want more tips on how you can lose weight and keep it off, make sure you join my FREE 21 day challenge at stepitupchallenge.com.

 

Best Fitness Trackers, Best Dry Shampoo, and Best Sports Bra for Any Workout (As Seen on Today.com)

I recently wrote three new articles for Today.com about the best workout products for women! I love being able to share my tips because, as a personal trainer for women, I get asked about my favorite products all the time!

I love wearing workout clothes and my clients in my weight loss programs are always looking for the best of the best! You can trust that my love of these products comes with tried and true experience.

Read the articles to check out my favorite dry shampoos, bras and fitness trackers that are time-tested and fitness approved!

5 Best Dry Shampoos for Any Workout
Read the full article about how “This dry shampoo makes me feel like I just got a blowout,” to find the perfect dry shampoo for you!

In the article, I feature my top five favorite dry shampoos which include these amazing hair product brands:
Dry Bar
Oribe
Not Your Mother’s
Sexy Hair
Amika

Best Sports Bra for Any Workout
Next up, the best sports bras are hard to find. I recommend sports bras for my clients who are working out intensely, and I wear them myself for all my workouts. A sports bra is important to hold you in place and also avoid pain to your breasts (there is such a thing!). My favorites are featured in the article and are from the stores below.

Read “After years of searching, I finally found the perfect sports bra!” to learn which of the featured bras is my absolute fave and THE best!

Featured Sports Bras:
Nordstrom
Under Armour
New Balance
Liv
Syrokan

Best Fitness Trackers for Any Workout
Finally, many of my private weight loss clients ask me about my favorite fitness trackers. I divulge the best fitness trackers in the Today.com article, “Find the perfect fitness tracker for all your fitness needs.”

Some of my favorites are:
FitBit Zip
Jawbone UP3

If you want more tips on how you can lose weight and keep it off, make sure you join my FREE 21 day challenge at stepitupchallenge.com.