Listening To Your Body

So for those of you who don’t know… I am about 5.5 months pregnant at this point!  Since I am pregnant, I have really had to modify my workout routines.  This for me is very difficult to do since I feel like if I don’t workout hard, then I won’t keep my weight off.  (I know this isn’t true though because it is 80% nutrition and 20% working out!)

I have had to make this shift, and I am learning how to really listen to my body.  I modify my workouts already, but am worried sometimes I might be pushing myself too hard.  That is why I am finding it very important to listen to my body even more.

Disclaimer:  You don’t have to be pregnant to listen to your body!! You should be listening to your body all the time.

This is something that I don’t think fitness professionals speak about as much as they should.  Everybody’s bodies are different and can do different things.  What might be easy for me, might not be easy for you!  We should also be listening to what our bodies are telling us and not push ourselves to the point of injury!

There have been a couple of times that I have had a workout routine planned, but because of how I felt during the workout I had to modify what I was going to do.  If you are feeling too sore after a day of lifting, then maybe skip the weights that day and do some cardio work.

It does not make you weak or a bad person if you do this.  It means you are smart and are taking care of your body like you should.  Like I said, this has been a very hard thing for me to learn because if I don’t workout to a certain level I feel lazy.  You aren’t lazy though, and this is one mindset that we need to get rid of!

Listen to your body… you will be glad you did!


25 Reasons to Exercise!

We all can think of reasons to not exercise, but here are some great reasons why you should!  If you have ever lacked motivation to workout, then this is a great read.  Print it out and keep it handy as a reference for those days you just can’t find the determination!

These help me to stay focused and remind me why I am working out and exercising.  It isn’t all about looking a certain way:)

1. It gives you more energy.

2. It speeds up your metabolism.

3. It helps to burn fat.

4. It helps reduce your risk for diseases.

5. It helps you to stay thin and lean.

6. It helps curb your appetite.

7. It helps you focus better.

8. It enhances your immune system.

9. It helps regulate your sleep due to regulation of hormones.

10. It gives you more confidence.

11. It gives you more endurance.

12. It helps you prevent injuries and strengthens your muscles.

13. It helps you become more flexible.

14. It helps to relieve stress.

15. It helps with depression.

16. It helps you to develop healthy habits.

17. It helps you get stronger.

18. It helps you feel accomplished.

19. It helps you have a better attitude on life.

20. It helps you be a good role model for those around you.

21. It inspires other people to workout and get healthy as well.

22. It helps reduce your back pain.

23. It helps you stand taller.

24. It helps reduce your risk for cancer.

25. It helps you to look as good as you feel!

I hope this helps us to overcome our fears/anxiety and anything else stopping us from starting to exercise!  I know I want to be around for the people I love, and to be the best version of myself possible every single day.  Exercising (as you can see) helps us achieve that!

Is there another reason you exercise that I haven’t listed?


Fitness With Your Dog!

If you are an animal lover, like myself, then you probably have some sort of animal living under your roof.  I personally have 2 dogs and love them to pieces!  The best part is when I incorporate them into my workout routine for the day!  Not only does it give me some company during my workouts, but it also gives them some exercise that is good for them as well.

fitness by faith

Since the weather here in Ohio is getting warmer, I wanted to give you some ideas on how you can enjoy man’s best friend and working out at the same time!  Here are just some ways I have incorporated my dogs into my workouts:


Walking on a nature trail



Sprinting (Since my dogs need to be on leashes outside, I hook them up first to their leashes.  Then I sprint away from them and come right back.  When I come back, I make sure to pet them and show some love before going for my next sprint.)

– Doing walk out planks to where they are laying, and coming back up

– Doing squats holding them (This mostly can only be done with small to medium sized dogs)

My dogs (especially Zoey) love when I take them with me on my walks, runs, or sprints.  Like humans, they need exercise too, so it is nice to know they are getting healthier with me!


What are some ways you workout with your pet?


Strength Training and Weight Loss!


My favorite 8 lb weights:)

When I first started exercising to lose weight, I focused on cardio machines at the gym or running in my neighborhood.  I did not want to bulk up like some of the body builders I had seen.  At the time, I associated strength training to bulky muscles that I just didn’t want.  I wanted to focus on losing as much weight as possible and fitting into a pant size that I hadn’t since high school.  Little did I know that strength training is very important when trying to lose weight and get toned.

It wasn’t until I started a “max energy” fitness class at my local YMCA that I realized this important aspect to my workout routine that I was missing.  I had lost some weight before trying this class, but it wasn’t coming off as quickly as I wanted it to.  I thought I was doing enough since I was doing core exercises along with my cardio routine.

Our instructor started using weights every class.  I didn’t like it at first because I thought I would bulk up, but to my surprise I started losing inches off my waist and started to tone up.  I saw results faster than I ever did just doing my cardio.  I did not lose a lot of weight like I wanted too, but that was because I was building muscle.  I was excited when I would see a drop on the scale because not only did that mean I was losing weight, but that I was also losing it despite all the muscle I was gaining.

I absolutely LOVED the class.  If you haven’t taken any group exercise classes, I highly recommend you find one in your area that you like.  Not only do you get a great workout in, but you meet people who have goals that are similar to yours.  This was very important to me since not many of my family or friends understood my need to get healthier and workout.

The longer I took the class, the more I got to know the instructor.  She informed us that strength training was so good for your weight loss goals.  I thought it was crazy when she told us that after doing a session of strength training your body continues to burn calories for hours afterwards.  Now that sounds like a deal to me!  One hour of strength training = hours of calories burned.  It is definitely worth it.  Not only that, but the more muscle you have in your body, the more calories you burn everyday.  It is just too good to be true.

I know I talked about the Insanity workout before, but that is one of the reasons why it worked so well for me.  Not only is it high intensity cardio intervals, but he also incorporates strength training into the routine.  This makes for your body to become a calorie burning machine!  It definitely delivers results.  Just make sure to check with your physician before you try any new workout program.

If you haven’t already, please try to start adding some strength training into your workout routine.  Try not to focus on the same muscle groups on consecutive days though, and mix it up.  For example, one day you can focus on shoulder exercises and arm exercises.  The next day you can focus on lower back exercises and glute exercises.

Have fun and enjoy your strength exercises.  If they get difficult, just remember how many calories you are burning. Not only in that moment, but for many moments to come!

Here’s to lifting those weights!


Some of my favorite workout DVD’s that incorporate strength training:

Personal Training With Jackie: Xtreme Timesaver Training

Personal Training with Jackie: Power Circuit Training

INSANITY DVD Workout – Base Kit

P90X DVD Workout – Base Kit