As we all navigate COVID-19, here ten health and fitness tips to help you during this high-stress, high-risk situation.
10. Switch to a maintenance mode mindset. Until these uncertain times diminish, focus on simply maintaining weight and not losing weight.
9. Keep your same workout schedule. If you were not working out, start. This is not the time to stop working out. If anything, you want to workout more. Working out releases endorphins which helps alleviate and reduce stress.
8. Modify what you do for your workouts. Do not stop working out because your gym is closed. You can have effective and efficient workouts using limited equipment such as: bodyweight, exercise balls, resistance bands, and light dumbbells. If you need a workout you can do at home, contact us.
7. Perform cardio using bodyweight exercises. If you do not have a bike, treadmill, elliptical, etc. at home, then perform exercises such as: jumping jacks, mountain climbers, high knees, and glute kickers for your cardio.
6. Eat clean. With more idle time, make a conscious effort to have great nutrition 95 percent of the time.
5. Increase your water intake. Carry a water bottle everywhere you go to sip water throughout the day. If you do not like water add pizzazz by adding in a lemon, strawberries, oranges, etc.
4. Focus on getting 7-8 hours of sleep per night. Adequate sleep will help reduce your stress levels.
3. Meditate at least 10 minutes a day. There is beauty in stillness. Visualize yourself navigating and conquering this time while not gaining weight.
2. Stay positive and keep your head up. Keep the glass is half-full and not half-empty mentality.
1. Enjoy the extra time with your loved ones. Find ways to create precious memories because time is our most precious asset.
My journey to becoming a professional figure competitor was as equally challenging emotionally as it was physically. I experienced the thrill of victory, the agony of defeat, and everything in between. If I had to do it all again, I would. Not only was every moment worth it, I am all the better for it.
Whether your goal is to train for a bodybuilding competition, attend your high school reunion, compete in a racquetball tournament, or fulfill your life dream of hiking Machu Picchu, you are going to experience emotional highs and lows. A lot of people do not realize all that it takes to accomplish a major goal. For instance, people saw me on stage competing but never thought about the hours, days, and months of sacrifice it took for me to step on stage. The process was not always fun or exciting but my love to meet my goals propelled me on days I wanted to give up. You too can overcome the many obstacles that you will face striving to achieve your goals. I hope my transparency and story provides you with insight and encouragement to keep pushing when you feel you want to give up.
Most people assume I have always been into fitness, but I have not. However, I have always been an athlete. Growing up, my best friend was male, and I was the only female my age in the neighborhood. Therefore, I spent much of my time playing sports with the boys. I never touched weights until my college roommate taught me how to lift. But it was not until 2005 that my passion for fitness sparked.
I saw my first bodybuilding show in April 2004; I was there to support a friend. While there, I had an opportunity to see some of the women competing in figure. At that moment, I thought to myself, I can do this. A sport I had never heard of amazed me because growing up, I was the kid that wanted to do everything. To me, this was a sport I had not tried, let alone conquered. When I set my mind to something, it is all about conquering that goal. At that time, it was all about conquering being on stage, like the women I saw. I wanted to see if I could transform my physique to new levels. In 2005, I decided to give the sport a try. The following year, I won my professional card and then competed at the professional level until September of 2018. Back in 2005, I never imagined I would fall in love with the sport, but I did, and the rest is now history.
Despite being highly driven, it can be quite challenging – even for me, to ignore instant gratification and focus on long-term results. Those who know me well know I love ice cream, cookies, pies, pizza, and Mexican food. I indulged and took part in the good life, but my overall goal was to eat clean 90% of the time during my off-season. I knew if I stuck with this, I would maintain my overall physique until it was time for me to begin training for my next competition. To be a top performer, your long-term goals must outweigh your short-term desires.
Like many people, I struggled with balancing everything in life and having a good off-season. On many occasions I was not able to make it to the gym more than a few times a week. What kept me going was:
1. Knowing that I am and must be a walking talking billboard for clients;2. Listening to my body. When I am fatigued, I rest (aiming for 7-8 hours a day);3. Exercising early in the morning before my day gets started; and,4. Utilizing a season training model like the one I teach my clients.
Your body cannot stay in a high-intense training mode year-round. I trained according to my goals. My regimen when in-season for competing was completely different from when I was more relaxed in the off-season.
Human nature leads us to be our own worst critics. This can quickly foster self-doubt, especially when success does not come immediately. In my first show, I did not even come close to placing. My horrible placement caused me to train fervently during my entire off-season the following year. All my arduous work and sacrifice paid off; I won my professional card during my second show. However, I learned that pro-level competing was a monster all on its own. Between 2006 and 2009, I never placed in a show. I endured four long years of disappointments and setbacks. I began to question whether I could compete at that level. Despite my moments of self-doubt, I pushed forward. Finally, in 2010, I began placing.
As with any setback in life you must be resilient. That is what drove me to keep going year after year. At the end of the day, I was able to accomplish my goals, and retire with content. As Gandhi said, Glory lies in the attempt to achieve one’s goal and not in attaining it. Both peaks and valleys filled my journey. Overcoming those valleys brought me the most joy. Enjoy your journey and congratulations on taking the steps to conquer your dreams. ~Candice
In fitness, like life, you face many obstacles. None of the obstacles you face will ever prove more challenging than when you face yourself. How many times have you seen your fitness journey through to the end? If you have not, what’s stopping you? If you answered “me”, you are correct. Most people sabotage their efforts before they really get started. Here are some helpful tips help you overcome self-sabotage and finally achieve your fitness goals.
Reprogram your thinking. There is a popular saying, “You can’t build a positive life from a negative mind.” The same is true for fitness. Eliminate limiting beliefs and thoughts. Eliminate the words “I can’t” and replace them with “I am”. Do not focus on what you may not be able to do. Instead, focus on what you are capable of performing. For those things you may not be advanced enough to perform, it is not a matter of “I can’t”, but rather, “I can’t right now.” Your perspective is everything when it comes to achieving what you want.
Stop comparing yourself to others. While it is perfectly normal to aspire to reach a level someone you look up to has already achieved, do not make the mistake of comparing yourself to that individual. Comparing your start to their middle or end is a sure way to derail your fitness goals. Remember, you are not competing against anyone other than yourself. Focus on becoming your best version of you. Maintain a photo journal to see where you started and how far you have come. It’s only you versus you.
Manage your outcome expectations. Be realistic in your expected outcomes. If you have never run a day in your life, do not expect to run a 3K in one week. Fitness, like anything else worthwhile, takes time. Take your large fitness picture and break it into smaller, manageable parts. Rather than attempting to sprint to the finish line, pace yourself for the full length of the race.
Putting these three tips into practice will yield incredible returns on your fitness goals. All change begins with self. In order to do better, we must commit to being better. Change your mind and you can most certainly change your life.
Do you have questions for Candice? Submit them to, email@example.com
Personal training is a highly rewarding field for clients and coaches. Clients receive the tools and expert insight necessary to help them achieve their personal fitness goals. Coaches witness the transformations of their clients, feeling privileged to be a part of the success. This week, we spoke with Karena T., one of Candice’s clients. We asked her to share her insight from a client’s perspective regarding the benefits and value add of having a personal trainer. Here is what she shared regarding her experience, things learned, and working with Candice.
Since beginning your fitness journey, what accomplishment are you most proud of and why?
I started my weight loss Journey in 2011. I am most proud that I have lost the weight I wanted to lose and kept it off, and with Candice’s help I am now in process of toning my body.
What are the top 3 things you do to maintain your progress, and do you have any tricks you utilize to stay fit?
I go to bed early, stay motivated to go to the gym, and I try to get outside to do activities.
How do you overcome the days you do not feel like working out or eating clean?
I remind myself that I do not want to go back to the weight I started at.
For someone who is on the fence about making a healthy lifestyle change, what words of encouragement would you tell them?
Once you start eating better and working out, you will feel so much better about yourself.
Describe your experience working with Candice McField Fitness.
It has been fantastic! I love the workouts that are sent to me, most of them I have never done before and I like trying new things.
Do you have questions for Candice? Submit them to, firstname.lastname@example.org.
You’ve been consistent throughout your exercise routine and have the progress to prove it. Nutrition, exercise, and rest have all served you well. Then, something happens that requires you to take time away from your routine. Should you be worried that you missed a week? Not at all. However, if your week turned into one month or more, you should be aware that your performance level will be lowered.
Most people believe they can return to their regularly scheduled workouts as if they never missed a day. This is not the case. Depending on how long it’s been since you’ve fallen out of your routine, you definitely want to modify your activity to make it less rigorous when you pick up again. Don’t expect to walk into the free weight area with the same strength you had over a month ago.
While this may be a little discouraging, there is good news. The body is an amazing vessel. While it will take you some time to return to the level of fitness you achieved before, you have the advantage of muscle memory. That means the body remembers all those hours spent performing movements to build strength and endurance. It gives you an advantage because it allows you to return to where you were fairly quickly (certainly more quickly than if you have never done anything at all).
Returning to your original Beast Mode requires you start slowly. Opt for a lighter load the first two weeks, choosing resistance that challenges your current level. Don’t get caught up in how much weight you were able to move before. Instead, view these first two weeks as a re introduction. How quickly you respond is unique to you. The key is to start slowly, get over the two-week hurdle, and remain consistent; you’ll be back to your former fitness level before you know it.