An Interview with Fit Chicks: Summer Fitness Tipsby caroline
Today I'm super-excited to feature an interview with Laura Jackson and Amanda Quinn, co-founders of Canadian-based Fit Chicks, a one-stop-shop for women looking to get fit inside and out. These gals run bootcamps, workshops and retreats across the country and have trained thousands of of people. Laura (left) is a certified personal trainer, and nutrition and wellness specialist with Canfit Pro as well as a Level 1 Kickboxing Instructor. She is also a regular contributor and fitness blogger at www.fitchicksblog.com. Amanda (right) is also a certified personal trainer with Canfit Pro, in addition to being a certified Ashtanga Yoga teacher with The Yoga Alliance and a Level 1 Fitness Kickboxing Instructor with Fitness Kickboxing Canada Inc.
Together, they're here to tell us a bit about summer fitness and the best steps to take in order to ensure our workouts are efficient and safe.
1.) Why is it important for people to realize that summer gear is a necessity to a successful workout? In other words, why is it not the best option for me to just toss on any ol' thing and go for a run?
1. Overheating: First of all, the workout clothing you wear is essential to making sure you don't overheat during your workouts. We recommend that our chicks wear loose, breathable clothes that wick sweat away and a hat during our outdoor bootcamp classes. This will allow your body to breathe, let air in to cool you down and help evaporate sweat. We also recommend choosing lighter colors like white or pastels as it reflects the sun and will keep you cooler than dark colors which attract the heat.
2. Functionality: To get the best results, you have to be able to move freely during each exercise. Without the proper summer gear, you may be limited with your movements thus not getting all the benefits from your workout. (Let's just say jean shorts and lunges are not the best combo!) Choose clothing that works with you body's natural motions and has elements of stretch to it so you can really get full range of motion.
3. Confidence: The better you feel about yourself, the better your workouts are! If you wear clothes that stress you out, then you won't have a good workout. This is especially true for working out outdoors. [For example.] if you're more concerned with your clothes staying on or your 'muffin top' showing than how many calories you are burning, then those are not the clothes for you. The key is feeling good outside and in, and also feeling prepared. For some, the feeling that they've got the right running shoes, the right shirt, and a cute pair of flattering yoga pants, takes their workout to another level. You will be surprised how much better workouts get when you're in the best frame of mind. Dressing the part certainly helps get you there.
2.) What is one of the top mistakes people make when taking their workouts from the winter season to summer season (many of them are from indoors to outdoors)?
1. Hydration: If you are going from an air conditioned gym to sweating up a storm outside in hot summer days, then you will probably need to re-adjust your water intake. If you are dying of thirst during your workouts, then it usually means you are already dehydrated. On days of bootcamp or intense exercise, you should be downing some extra water during the day leading up to workout time so you are super hydrated when it comes to sweat time. This also helps to prevent muscle cramping and aid with recovery.
2. Improper Footwear: When moving from indoors to outdoors, you are suddenly dealing with new terrain, elements, traction and weather. You need to make sure your shoes are up to the challenge we always recommend to do a shoe review. Go and talk to someone at your local running shoe store and let them know your new workout plans. They are usually more than happy to help ensure you have the right gear!
3. Not preparing correctly. We are creatures of habit and we think that our we can just take the same workout from indoor to outdoor – wrong! This can be mentally frustrating and physically ineffective. Always use the first couple of workouts outdoors to gauge how you feel (eg. Am I tired? Am I sore? How fast can I go? How much water did I drink today?), so you can start to know how your body reacts in different climates/elements and then prepare accordingly. Always challenge yourself, but make sure to honor your body at the same time.
3.) How does the right preparation (e.g. strength moves, stretching, hydration, etc.) contribute to a successful summer workout program?
If you fail to plan, you plan to fail! Preparation is key to a successful summer workout program. As the weather gets hotter, the humidity increases and elements of your workouts change, you need to ensure you are prepared mentally and physically. This will help you stay on track and get the most out of your program. Be sure to:
1. Plan your workout times in advance. With the sun being at the hottest during 12pm and 2pm, try and schedule your workouts during cooler periods like early morning or late evening. This will also help you from skipping workouts or getting "re-routed" to a patio instead.
2. Hydrate: Being dehydrated will wipe you out especially during the summer. By having a "hydration plan" of daily water intake you will help keep your body running tip top during the summer months. One of the tricks we use is to put six rubber bands around a 500ml bottle. Remove one every time you drink and refill. Voila, you have just drank 3 L of water! Make sure you are replenishing your electrolytes as well. (All natural coconut water is a favourite of ours!)
3. Sleep: It is is the most underestimated of all "preparation" tactics! We need our rest to get the most out of workouts, mentally and physically, and it is harder to get it in during the summer months with longer daylight hours. Buy some dark shades or a cute sleep mask to help.