CategoriesBlog Live Fit. Move.

Improve Performance and Reduce Fatigue



Most people have a favorite form of exercise such as barre, yoga, cardio, strength training, or HIIT. These workouts are what makes trips to the gym rewarding and motivating. Each form of exercise provides a unique benefit that can’t be achieved anywhere else. For example, Yoga and barre focus on isometric strength and developing flexibility and mobility. Strength training builds up your strength, physique, and bone density. Cycle classes intensify your cardio routine. The unique qualities of these types of workouts are their greatest strengths. However, with that strength comes their greatest weakness. Every form of exercise comes with a weak spot, an essential part of fitness that cannot be achieved. You cannot gain flexibility through strength training or increase your cardiovascular endurance with yoga. No one form of exercise covers the basics of fitness that will allow you to feel, look, and act your best. So, how can we ensure we are as healthy and fit as possible? Cross training!  


Cross-training is a style of a weekly workout split where you engage in multiple types of training in a single week. Cross-training is a tool that allows you to optimize your workout split. It focuses on your primary goals and will enable you to recover optimally. Cross-training provides for the reduction of weak spots in your training split by having you incorporate multiple types of exercises into your routine. To apply cross-training, you must incorporate two or more exercise styles into your weekly split. For example, doing yoga and cycling. Whether your split is two days or seven days a week, cross training is essential to support a balanced physique, improve your fitness skills, and allow for healthy recovery work. 


Many people start their journey with specific physique goals in mind. These goals can be strong motivators and help people find their place in the fitness world. However training for physique can lead to an unbalanced fitness routine. We have all seen people overwork a portion of their body, leading to an imbalanced composition. Many like to point out the “chicken legs” of upper body-focused exercisers. While an imbalanced physique can keep you from looking your best, what may be less noticeable is an imbalance in fitness skills. Many people who hyper-focus on strength training ignore their cardiovascular health and flexibility, leading to an imbalance of strength seen in their inability to have full mobility or proper cardio endurance. On the other hand, those who hyperfocus on flexibility and cardio can find themselves feeling weak. Both hyper focuses can lead to severe and chronic injuries that take away from your training. Overall, you cannot expect to feel your best when you are ignoring essential training types. This hyperfocus can also lead to excessive fatigue due to improper recovery.  


Doing only one form of exercise can quickly cause your body to fatigue, and no matter how much you may love that type of exercise, you can become bored with your split. For those who have the time and desire to do some form of exercise every day, cross-training is necessary to maintain this practice. Having no form of a rest day for any kind of exercise will quickly lead to an overworked body. Rest is when our body takes the hard work from our exercises and applies it to improvements in our body. Many dread the idea of doing nothing for the sake of proper rest. However, cross-training allows us to circumvent this issue. If you train your body differently, you can still benefit from rest while maintaining your routine. Doing Yoga the day after a weightlifting session or cardio the day after barre will allow your body to recover from the previous day while still getting a beneficial workout.


I hope I have thoroughly convinced you of the value of cross-training. If you want to use this fantastic split tool but don’t know where to start, I have created some examples of 3-day flow class-supported workout splits based on your focus!


Example Exercise Splits


The Cheat Code to Easy Cross Training: Flow Fit Classes! By attending one of each type of class a week you will hit all your essential fitness categories: Strength, Cardio, Balance, Mobility, and Flexibility!

Day 1: Endurance Fit Class

Day 2: Power Fit Class

Day 3: Resistance Fit Class


 Strength And Cardio 

Day 1: Lower Body Lift

Day 2: Flow Cycle Class

Day 3: Upper Body Lift


Strength, Balance, And Flexibility

Day 1: Full Body Lift

Day 2: Flow Power Yoga

Day 3: Flow Candlelight Yoga 


Cardio, Strength, And Balance

Day 1: Full Body Lift

Day 1: Flow FIT Class

Day 3: FlowBarre Class 


Cardio, Balance, And Flexibility

Day 1: FlowBarre Class 

Day 2: FlowCycle Class

Day 3: Flow Yoga Class

CategoriesBlog Live Fit. Move. Nourish.

How To Have A Happier And Healthier Holiday Season

The holiday season is full of guilty pleasures.  However over indulgence can ruin your holidays by making you susceptible to disease, causing or exacerbating health issues and damaging your mental health.  For many it’s far from the most wonderful time of the year.  Here are some tips on how you can be healthier and happier this holiday season! 

  1. Exercise regularly.  Regular exercise will keep your metabolism going and also has been proven to lower your appetite. 
  2. Don’t use food or drink as motivation for exercise.  Getting a workout in so you can eat or drink more is one of the worst things you can do.  Exercise should be part of your normal routine and not used as a reason to overindulge.
  3. Keep regular eating habits. Skipping a meal so you eat and drink more a holiday event will only lead to overindulging.  Keep your regular eating habits and consider having a filling snack before your event.  Focus on foods high in protein, or healthy fats or carbohydrates such as fruit, protein shakes or a small handful of nuts that will help curb your appetite and prevent overeating.
  4. Make a Rainbow. When making a plate, focus on adding items of various colors which will help ensure you include healthy, nutritious food items.
  5. Eat until you 80% full. This concept was originally developed in Japan and is an easy way to reduce calories and avoid that gross feeling of being overstuffed.
  6. Choose drinks wisely. Avoid drinks high in sugar and they are often higher in calories than the alcohol.  Focus on low calorie mixers (get seltzer not tonic), use fruit for flavor and if you feel the need for flavor ask for a “splash”. A way to ensure moderation is always have a glass of water between drinks.
  7. Take a walk after dinner. Studies show that talking a walk after meals can significantly lower blood sugar levels, help with digestion and even elevate your mood.
CategoriesBlog Live Fit. Move.

How Strength Training Can Help You Lose Weight and Keep It Off

Being in the fitness business, we get frustrated seeing fitness misconceptions all over the internet. The most common myth we see is spot-reducing fat (which isn’t really possible), but there are plenty of others too, mostly centered around weight loss. While we’d love to throw away everyone’s scales, we understand the importance of it to many. The facts around weight loss have become muddled by stigmas, stereotypes, and other misinformation. (Anyone ever try to “work off” that extra donut?) But here at Flow, if we’re going to discuss weight loss, we’re going to use actual science to break things down. 

Before we start wading into the details, we need to clarify a few things about weight loss itself. Weight loss is lowering a number on a scale, however, it is not indicative of overall health or body shape/size.  Most people don’t want weight loss, they want to improve their body image, health, energy and self-confidence.   It’s important that we distinguish the difference when people say they want to lose weight, most want the later which this article will focus on. 

Next, we need to become aware of our misconceptions around weight loss and throw them out. It’s easy to keep a stigma because it’s what you learned at an early age. For example, growing up, every time someone would cough or sneeze, people would break out the vitamin C and take more than the daily recommended amount. We now know this doesn’t actually help, but we still pour a fizzy orange drink when we think we are getting sick. 

The same thing happens with cardio and weight loss. When people want to lose weight, they often try to do as much steady state cardio (e.g. running or biking) as possible. Cardio is absolutely proven to help lose weight, but it should always come second to diet, and is best when combined with other forms of exercise, especially strength training. 

Cardio does burn the most calories per minute out of any type of exercise, but it does a poor job of building muscle, and can even lead to muscle loss. A cardio program without proper strength training included can actually slow down your metabolism (due to muscle loss), leading to plateaus. This doesn’t mean cardio should be avoided and still provides significant benefits, such as improving aerobic conditioning and the efficiency of the heart and lungs, but it shouldn’t be your sole form of exercise. 

Strength training provides benefits that are often underappreciated. It builds and maintains muscle, improves bone density and posture, and  reduces the risk of injury. People who strength train are also more likely to recover quickly from injury.  You may not lose as much weight strength training program because muscle is denser than fat,  but it will help you achieve a leaner physique, lose fat and keep it off through a higher metabolism. The muscular development that comes with strength training won’t make you “bulky” either. There are specific ways to train and diet for bulking and it takes a lot of time and effort that most people don’t have.  So don’t be worried that it might happen to you. It’s like getting in a pool for the first time and being worried that you’ll become an Olympic swimmer. 

Muscular growth offers a wide range of benefits when it comes to weight loss. It creates longer-lasting calorie burn because muscle is metabolically active. This increases calories burned throughout the day and builds a better metabolism. You can further your efforts to lose weight by strength training to maximize burning calories. This can be done by moving faster between exercises, increasing reps and sets, shortening rest times, and choosing heavier weights. High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) exercises are a great way to do this, like in our Flow FIT classes. HIIT is still a strength training method, but it keeps your heart rate high, challenges your lung capacity, and burns lots of calories while building muscle at the same time. 

At the end of the day, both cardio and strength training are important and when combined can optimize weight loss.  So if you are trying to lose weight, be sure to incorporate strength training in addition to cardio. If you’re unsure of how to incorporate strength training into your routine, the good news is that you’re a member of a gym with a staff of knowledgeable trainers and instructors, ready to help you achieve your fitness goals. 

CategoriesBlog Live Fit. Move.

Conquering Strenuous Exercise in a Mask

As many fitness lovers have experienced during the pandemic, exercise in a mask is possible.  Enjoyable?  Not exactly, but it’s do-able and becomes more tolerable with every workout.

Yoga, Pilates, Barre and some Strength Training workouts seem to be the mask-wearer’s preference as for the most part, the participant’s heart rate stays within manageable ranges.  But what about more intense cardio?

As Flow Fitness’s Cycle Program Director, my biggest challenge has been convincing people that they’re going to be just fine participating in my classes while wearing a mask.

Earlier in the pandemic, not a lot was known about exercising in a mask.  However, as more studies were conducted, it has been concluded that even intense exercise in a mask is not dangerous as long as the participant listens to their body. The body’s Oxygen and CO2 levels in a mask are at similar levels to those working out without masks.

We know it is safe, but how can we make it FEEL better?

The short answer is repetition (i.e. building up a tolerance to it).  The more we practice something, the more it becomes routine.  I’ll also share some of my own personal tips and tricks from teaching and taking Cycle and H.I.I.T in a mask for a few months:

Bring more than one mask!

Bring even more than two if you tend to sweat a lot.  I wear a pre and post class mask that I do not wear during the actual workout.  That way when class is over, I can switch back to my dry mask and chat with members without feeling gross.  Those who bring multiple masks are less likely to rush off and can socialize with other members and the instructor when the hard work has concluded!  Some people even bring two masks for the workout and switch halfway through to a fresh mask.  I know this sounds like a lot of masks, but it can be a game changer in making the class more enjoyable!

Own a mask that is actually made for exercising.

Not all masks are created equal when it comes to strenuous workouts.  Many established fitness apparel brands have taken the time to design masks for people who want to enjoy workouts in a gym during Covid restrictions.  Take advantage!  You would not join a class without proper equipment.  The same goes for your mask.

Ease into it

When I’m participating in a high intensity class, I push hard but I know my limits.  If it becomes hard to breathe with your mask on, simply back off.  If you’re in Cycle class, turn the resistance down.  If you’re in Team Conditioning and doing a tough cardio finisher, pace yourself if needed.  With a mask on, I’m not always achieving the power levels that I would normally maintain in Cycle and I’m okay with that.  It is important to remember that while there are restrictions, we still have a safe place to move our bodies and become stronger.

It may not be for everyone.

There are other physical barriers that may prevent some people from tolerating intense exercise in a mask, such as asthma or other chronic respiratory conditions.  If you have any concerns regarding exercising in a mask, you should absolutely consult your doctor before participating in a high intensity class.

Pacing yourself, staying consistent, and having the right mask(s) will set you up for success in conquering tough workouts during Covid restrictions!  As always, Flow trainers and instructors will be there every step of the way to encourage you and support you.

McDonalds Drink Size ComparisonCategoriesBlog Live Fit. Move. Nourish. Uncategorized

What we can learn from the Japanese about health

Japan is widely considered one of the healthiest countries in the world, with one of the highest life expectancy rates (84 years, versus 78 in the U.S.). And while their older population should make them more vulnerable, Japan also has the fewest deaths, by far, due to Covid-19 when compared to other G7 countries: only 18 deaths per million (compared to over 1,000 per million in the U.S.).

While many experts believe cultural factors such as a homogenous society; no handshaking or hugs; and pre-existing use of masks have contributed to Japanese success against COVID-19, their population’s extraordinary health is also an important factor. As the Economist reports:

“Although the population of Japan is disproportionally elderly, and therefore potentially more vulnerable to Covid-19, it is also very healthy. Only 4.2% of Japanese adults are obese, a condition known to make the disease more lethal. That is the lowest rate in the OECD and one-tenth of America’s.”

Gyms aren’t as common in Japan as they are in the U.S., and the Japanese smoke and drink more than Americans. So how do they stay so healthy? I had the opportunity to live in Japan years ago, and can point to several cultural norms that we can learn from the Japanese to improve our health.

Focus on Health

In Japanese, the equivalent of “How are you?” is the phrase “Genki desuka?” This translates to “Are you healthy?” Imagine if you were asked about your health numerous times a day; wouldn’t that keep it top-of-mind?

For those of you old enough, you might remember the movie “Gung Ho” with Michael Keaton, where a U.S. car plant is acquired by a Japanese company. In the movie, the new Japanese owners unsuccessfully attempt to implement a morning exercise routine that they do in Japan. Japanese companies still value exercise and give their employees exercise breaks throughout the day.

Key Takeaway: Make health part of your daily discussion. Ask others about their health and what you can do to support them. And think about ways that you can implement healthy practices in your workplace or community.

Value Quality, Not Quantity

The Japanese are infamous for having high quality standards, and this includes their food. It’s virtually impossible to find low-quality food in Japan, even at McDonalds! The “bento” is a traditional Japanese meal that epitomizes the focus on quality over quantity. With high quality standards comes increased prices, as fresh fruit, vegetables and meats are notoriously expensive in Japan; however, high prices helps limit consumption and waste.

Key Takeaway: Resist the urge to “super-size” and focus on smaller quantities of higher-quality foods. Don’t be afraid to indulge in foods high in fat and protein, such as meats, cheese, nuts and avocados, which will help you feel “full” and avoid overeating.

Pro-tip: Eat at local restaurants that use local ingredients, and avoid fast-food and chain restaurants.

Eat Fresh Foods

While you can find a variety of pre-packaged foods in Japan, the Japanese emphasize home-cooked meals and fresh foods. It was typical for me to eat a salad at breakfast. Below is a picture of a traditional Japanese breakfast which typically includes fish, rice, miso soup, eggs and vegetables. This looks a lot healthier than a stack of pancakes covered with syrup and a side of bacon, right?

Key Takeaway: Focus on whole foods. You should have a serving of fresh fruit and/or vegetables at each meal. Even if you don’t have time to cook, make sure you always have some fresh fruit and vegetables on hand to supplement.

Pro-tip: Become a Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) member or get a weekly fruit and vegetable subscription to ensure you always have fresh fruit and vegetables on hand.

Walk and Bike More

Walking, biking and public transportation are the main forms of transportation in Japan, and they have one of the best public transportation systems in the world. (It helps when owning a car, parking and taxis are incredibly expensive.) Even if you are taking public transportation in Japan, you typically have a decent walk to and from your destinations, along with any transfers.

Key Takeaway: Before calling Uber or driving, see if walking, biking or public transportation is a feasible option. Not only will it improve your health, but you’ll save some money and the environment.

Portion Control

The Japanese have a phrase “hara hachi bun me,” which translates to “eat to you are 80% full.” This term originated in Okinawa and has been credited with the extraordinary health of Okinawans. Portions in Japan are much smaller than in the U.S., and we Americans constantly felt “hungry” when eating out. Perhaps it was not that the portions were too small, but rather, that our portions are too big! High food prices in Japan also help them to limit portion sizes.

Key Takeaway: Eating until you are 80% full is a simple yet highly effective way to control calories and lose weight. No calorie-counting or dieting is needed. Try it for a week, and you’ll notice a huge difference in the amount you consume and how you feel.

Pro-tip: Try using smaller dishes, which will help you limit portion sizes. When eating out, considering sharing your food.
McDonalds Drink Comparison

In American, our health is deteriorating; we reached an all-time high in obesity rates in 2020 at over 42%. Not only does this make us more susceptible to illness, such as heart disease and COVID-19, but it also takes a significant toll on our economy, as healthcare costs continue to rise. To improve our health, we need cultural changes that emphasize regular exercise and healthy eating habits. This can only happen with support from the government, businesses and communities.

What changes can you make to create a healthier society?

CategoriesBlog Live Fit. Move.

If you believe in wearing masks, you should also exercise regularly

Regular exercise can boost your immune system

You’ve probably heard that exercise can boost your immune system, but maybe you’re wondering how significant this is, and how much exercise you need to reap the benefits. Studies have consistently shown that regular exercise can not only significantly reduce your risk of infection, but also the severity of symptoms if you are infected. Exercise is more important than ever as the coronavirus pandemic continues, and in this post, we’ll explain how exercise can help keep you healthy.

How Exercise Affects Your Immune System?

You first need to understand how exercise effects your immune system. While scientists have yet to identify the exact reason why, there are several theories about why exercise boosts immunity, which is likely a combination of several factors:

  • Physical activity may help flush bacteria out of the lungs and airways.
  • Exercise increases the amount of white blood cells and their circulation within your body, so they can find pathogens and wipe them out.
  • The brief rise in body temperature during and right after exercise may prevent bacteria from growing and may help the body fight infection better (similar to what happens when you have a fever).
  • Exercise slows down the release of stress hormones, which can compromise your immune system.
  • Exercise can improve sleep. Research has shown that sleep improves the efficiency of T-cells (a type of white blood cell) ,which help fight off pathogens like viruses and bacteria.
  • Regular exercise can reduce sources of inflammation in your body that impair your immune system.

How Much Does Exercise Matter?

A 2019 scientific review in the Journal of Sport and Health Science found that exercise can improve your immune response, lower illness risk and reduce inflammation — but by how much?  Studies show the impact can be quite significant:

  • 2018 study of 1,413 people in China found that those who reported exercising at least three times a week reduced their likelihood of getting a cold by 26%.
  • Another 2018 study of 390 people found that those who were trained with an eight-week regimen of moderate exercise reduced their risk of acute respiratory illness by 14% and their number of sick days by 23%, compared with people who did not receive the exercise training.
  • A study published in 2011 in the British Journal of Sports Medicine found those who did aerobic exercise five or more days of the week lowered the number of upper respiratory tract infections (such as the common cold) over a 12-week period by more than 40%.

How to Get the Most Out of Your Fitness Routine

Now that you know how impactful exercise can be, here’s how to maximize the benefits:

Exercise regularly. Long runs on the weekends alone won’t cut it. The benefits of exercise on the immune system are temporary, so you need to do it often to see the gains.  You should emphasize frequency over intensity and duration, setting a goal of five or more times per week.

Moderate exercise is best.  Most studies looked at aerobic activity, such as walking, running or cycling. There is less research on HIIT or strength training, but most experts believe they provide similar benefits.

Whatever you do, the key is to get your heart rate going, but to keep activity to a moderate level of intensity. If you’re doing a walk, make sure it is a brisk pace — but don’t push it too hard. In fact, experts warn against extremely strenuous exercise, such as training for a marathon or doing power lifting. Very intense and prolonged exercise can actually put more stress on your body, competing for resources and potentially compromising your immune system. This shouldn’t be a concern for the majority of exercisers, but just be mindful that higher intensities won’t necessarily provide additional benefits.

The Bottom Line: Exercise Works

Exercise should not be considered a replacement for masks, good hygiene or social distancing — but when used in conjunction, exercise can be an additional layer of defense against pathogens and infection. In addition, exercise provides other benefits, such as improved mental health and decreased stress levels, that can help during this strenuous time.

If you are new to exercise, we suggest starting at a level you are comfortable with doing but frequently, even if it means short walks. You should then start gradually increasing the intensity and duration until you reach a moderate level of intensity. If you need help creating a workout program, setting fitness goals or just need some accountability, our team of certified personal trainers are here to help. We offer trial training packages, both in-person and virtual. Visit us at

CategoriesBlog Live Fit. Move. Nourish.

We’re staying home, but are we staying healthy?

Key Points

  • Shelter in place orders have created the unintended consequence of people living unhealthier lives
  • An unhealthy lifestyle compromises your immune system and can lead to higher risk of catching COVID-19 or increasing the severity of its symptoms
  • Social distancing will likely end before a vaccine is available. Until then, your best protection to COVID-19 is to have a strong immune system through a healthy lifestyle

As the COVID-19 crisis continues, cities and states around the world have enacted “shelter in place” regulations, encouraging citizens to “stay home and stay healthy” to slow the spread of the virus. But while we’re doing a great job staying home — we aren’t doing a good job of staying healthy.

Recent studies since many states enacted shelter in place acts show:

Health is more than simply whether you have COVID-19. While local governments have restricted movement and forced fitness centers to close, they’ve classified alcohol as “essential,” loosened rules around its sale and encouraged us to eat takeout food to support our local businesses: a dangerous combination. It’s in our nature to turn to alcohol and comfort foods during times of stress, but this is the opposite of what we should be doing during a health pandemic.

Our leaders and the media have focused their attention on social distancing and sanitation as the best ways to mitigate the damage of the coronavirus, but they are missing a  key piece of the puzzle. To truly protect our bodies from COVID-19 and the severity of its infection, we need to strengthen our bodies’ natural defenses by focusing on comprehensive, personal health.

Here’s how we can do that:

Boost your immune system. Research shows you can strengthen your immune system through lifestyle changes such as regular exercise, eating a healthy diet full of fruits and vegetables, managing stress and getting enough sleep. These steps can help prevent illness by strengthening your body’s ability to defend itself from disease-causing microorganisms.

Maintain a healthy weight. Obesity may be one of the most important predictors of severe coronavirus illness, especially among younger people, studies show.  In fact, the chance of hospitalization due to COVID-19 for those under age 60 doubles if you are obese; obesity may also increase the risk of dying from the virus.

Limit alcohol consumption. Many believe drinking alcohol can help kill the virus; this is false. The World Health Organization recently issued a warning that alcohol consumption can actually increase the risk of catching COVID-19, as well as the severity if you do get it.

Exercise regularly. Recent studies show  that not only can exercise strengthen your immune system, but regular exercise may also help prevent one of the major causes of COVID-19-related hospitalization and death: acute respiratory distress syndrome.

Until there is a vaccine, there will always be a risk of exposure to COVID-19, even with social distancing. By making these changes to our lifestyles and keeping our bodies as healthy as possible,  you will not only reduce the likelihood of catching COVID-19 and the severity of its impact but you will also help society by reducing the spread and the number of hospitalizations from COVID-19.

Our training staff at Flow Fitness can provide you the guidance and accountability you need to help you reach your goals of living a healthier life.  Email if you would like to speak to someone about how we can help you.

CategoriesBlog Move.

Seven Habits That Will Transform Your Life

Many of us set health and fitness goals to change the way we look — but transforming your health and fitness habits can also change every aspect of your life. Not only will you look better, but you’ll also feel and think better.

Follow these seven highly effective habits to become the best version of yourself:    

Habit #1 If you are not assessing, you are guessing. 

When it comes to health and fitness, ignorance isn’t bliss: It’s important to constantly assess and monitor your nutrition. In order to make a change, you need to know your starting point — which means tracking your nutritional habits. While counting calories may not be a long-term solution, it will give you your strongest weapon in any successful transformation: awareness.    

Pro tip:  If you are not assessing, you are guessing. 

When tracking calories, do keep in mind that too much restriction can lead to failure.  This is normal, and it’s why adopting a flexible approach is essentialA general rule of thumb is to eat healthy 80 percent of the time, while treating yourself the remaining 20 percent. By accounting for the occasional indulgence, you’ll be able to quickly get back on track.   

Habit #2 Follow the six-month rule. 

Create habits that are sustainable for at least six months. While shortterm fixes can lead to quick results, they are often unsustainable — and you’ll soon end up back at square one. When you are developing your nutrition or fitness plan, ask yourself: “Can I do this for half a year?” If not, it’s time to reassess.   

Pro tip: The best training program is one you enjoy and able to stick to in the long term while making consistent, measurable progress. 

Habit # 3 Eat mostly whole and minimally processed foods.

The saying “You can’t out train a poor diet” is 100percent true.  It doesn’t matter if you’re busting your butt in the gym: If you are eating poorly, it will be difficult to lose body fat. Focus on eating minimally processed, whole foods. 

What do we mean by “whole foods”? Follow these guidelines when eating: 

  • Stick to foods your grandparents would recognize. 
  • Shop the perimeter of the grocery store; for example, choose the produce section over the cereal aisle or the snack foods. 
  • Eat one serving of fruits or veggies (the size of your fist) with each meal, and eat a variety of colors when doing so. 
  • Replace calorie-dense and artificially sweetened drinks with water. 

Habit #4 Eat enough protein. 

Proteins are essential for repairing and building muscle, so make sure to eat one or two servings with every meal. It’s also the most important of the macronutrients; if you are going to overeat one of them, make it protein.  

Other benefits of eating protein include: 

It prevents muscle wasting: Muscle tissues are the most metabolically active tissues. Along with resistance training, consistently hitting your protein intake helps you retain your muscle while carving away fats — which will ultimately show off your muscle definition.  

It keeps you full:  When caloric intake is low and you have those cravings for carbohydrates, protein is your BFF.

It burns more calories during the digestion process:  Protein has been proven to be up to 30 percent more metabolically expensive than carbs or fats. This means that if you have 100 grams of protein, then your body will burn 30 calories simply by breaking the protein down into usable amino acids.  

Habit #5 Focus on building muscle 

any still believe that building muscle is only for bodybuilders. Strength training is for everyone, and has proven to help people be more active, keep fat at bay, live longer and improve self-confidence. 

The most efficient way to build strength and muscle is to focus on the main compound lifts. These lifts use multiple muscles in one movement, giving you more bang for your buck.  

Most of your compound lifts should include the following movements:  

  • Squat 
  • Hinge 
  • Push 
  • Pull 
  • Lunge 
  • Carry   

To build muscle, you also need to emphasize progressive overloadlifting heavy weights while properly executing each rep. Progressive overload also means you’ll need to challenge yourself by constantly adding weight. However, you should always emphasize form and technique over the amount of weight you’re lifting; piling on the weight with poor technique will do more harm than good. 

Habit #6 Drink plenty of water and/or calorie-free drinks. 

Proper hydration can have a significant impact on your health, performance and weight. Most of us know we aren’t drinking enough water, but we may not be aware of the potential problems that can arise from dehydration. 

The main reasons dehydration has as adverse affect on exercise and overall health are that it: 

  • Decreases blood volume and blood flow 
  • Decreases heat dissipation and removal of wastes from exercise 
  • Decreases metabolism  
  • Decreases body temperature 
  • Increases organ stress 

The general rule of thumb is to drink half your bodyweight (in pounds) in ounces of water. That means a 150-pound person should drink at least 75 ounces of water — about nine standard glasses — each day. Carry a water bottle, drink it up and refill it every two hours or when empty. 

Habit #7 Sleep like a baby again

Sleep is often the forgotten component of health. In fact, it’s equally important to your workouts and nutrition. As many as 30 percent of adults sleep less than six hours per night: the minimum amount necessary for proper health. If you think you can make do with less than six hours, think again.   

Pro tip: Both sleep quantity and quality are incredibly important for optimal health and fitness and for regulating our circadian rhythm. 

  Need more reasons?  A lack of sleep can negatively impact: 

  • Cognitive ability 
  • Recovery from exercise and injury 
  • Sex life  
  • Mood and dietary decisions 
  • Workouts 

Get six to eight hours of quality sleep every night. Without proper sleep, it’s difficult to see significant improvements in general health and/or fitness — and your body, your workouts and your performance will suffer. 

By sticking to these seven habits, you’ll transform your health and your life with results that really last. Come to Flow Fitness today to get started on your journey.   

CategoriesBlog Move.

Single Leg Exercise to Run Stronger

By Christian Garcia, CSCS

With so many running routes next to beautiful lakes, trails, and the Puget Sound here in Seattle, running is a popular exercise of choice for Seattleites. But running with weak leg muscles/bad form will only cause injuries down the line. If you are a runner (no matter what stage of experience you are in), you need to increase your single leg strength. When you are running, you generally only have one leg in contact with the ground. You have to be able to absorb impact and then launch yourself, from on foot to the other. When we walk there is a period of support from both legs, but in running there is a drive/flight phase and it is all done on one leg.

Single leg exercises prepare the body to handle the challenges of running from one foot to the other. Cue the Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat (RFESS), Single Leg Deadlift, and the Reverse Lunge.


Rear Foot Elevated Split Squat, this movement can be extremely beneficial for beginners as it will develop balance and hip flexibility, along with strength, size and the ability to endure discomfort while training. Best results come from loading up the exercise, huge advantage in the fact that weights can increase with limited spinal compression.

2. Single Leg Deadlift

This movement increases single leg stability and strength in the hamstrings while sparing the spine (like the RFESS). This exercise can be loaded on the same side or with two dumbbells, the single dumbbell in the opposite sided hand will help you get the most out of your muscles. You will not control this movement without stability. Keep tension on your glutes, core and shoulders before you start lowering.

3. Reverse Lunge

The Reverse Lunge is great for developing an athletic lower body, perfect for any sport requiring speed and power. Balance is important to learn as the stability needed is essential to build strength and power. If you are unstable, you will not be able to add sufficient weight to improve your leg strength. Start by practicing a body weight split squat.

If you are unsure how to get started with the single leg exercises stated above, feel free to join one of our Team Conditioning classes or Strength Camp sessions here at Flow Fitness! We cover all the fundamental exercises with variations in a interval setup, meant to burn fat and build lean mass! Happy Running!

CategoriesBlog Move.

How to Increase Muscular Endurance

By Christian Garcia, CSCS

Behind on your fitness goals? Try incorporating these training styles into your workout to increase muscular endurance. 

Here is what you can do: HITT Training

        1. As Many Rounds as Possible (AMRAP) lives on the basis of time, its you against the clock, working to complete as many rounds or reps of exercises as possible. This means you’ll be performing several exercises back to back with as little rest as possible between exercises. You will have to pre-determine the number of reps for each exercise you decide to incorporate 
          1. For instance, if you include a squat, pushups, single leg deadlift and plank ups, you might perform 20 squats, 15 pushups, 10 single leg deads per leg, and 5 plank ups. Then rinse and repeat as many times as possible within the total time allotted. 
        2. Form is more important than speed, the idea is to feel the muscles you are targeting in order get the full effect, You won’t be able to continue towards the summer shred at full strength while being injured. Your body is going to get tired. If you compromise your form when you are tired, that is when injuries are most likely to occur.
        3. Rest as needed, you’re in complete control of determining when your body needs to rest. Keep any rest as short as possible so you can continue the workout and reap the rewards. 
        4. Keep exercises simple, if you decide to use more complex exercises or plyometric movements, pay attention to form and slow your pace when needed. 
        5. Record results, you are competing against yourself. There is no way to figure out if you got better the following week if no record was written down!
  • EMOM
        1. Every Minute on the Minute, where you perform a specific task at the start of every minute for a set amount of time.
        2. Pacing; the clock decides when you’ll be working and when you’ll be resting. For instance, for clients who are beginners I usually like ending training sessions every other week with 8-10 minutes of 10-15 bodyweight pushups and or squats. If it takes you 20 seconds the first minute and 50 seconds the second minute, you can clearly see you have fallen off pace. 
        3. Progression; EMOMs are a great tool for measuring progressions from week to week. 
        4. Versatility; EMOMs can be incorporated to train anything (power, aerobic & anaerobic systems, mechanics and or skills. 
        5. Record results, you are competing against yourself. No way to figure out with you got better the following week if no record was written down!
  • Team Conditioning at Flow Fitness
      1. Increase your conditioning and muscular endurance using multi-joint and multi-plane functional movements in Team Conditioning at Flow Fitness.
      2. The classes are instructed by trainers, who will lead and push you through timed blocks that incorporate TRX, Medicine Balls,Kettlebells, Dumbbells, Ropes, Sandbags, and our high intensity training equipment. 
      3. The timed blocks are set as intervals such as 30’’/30’’ for 6 rounds or 45’’/45’’ for 4 rounds, in which challenge you to keep up with the clock while performing quality repetitions of a Squat, Push, Pull, and Hinging exercise.
      4. Come try a Team Conditioning class at either location (SLU&FRE). Early morning, lunchtime and evening classes available!