Monday, October 14, 2013

Don’t Have Time for the Gym Today? How About 5 Minutes?

We all want to stay dedicated to our workout schedule but then something always comes up – an extra long work day, a child gets sick, a business trip ect. Sometimes you simply won’t have time to drive to the gym and do an hour-long workout. 

A Five-Minute Solution
So what can you do make sure you keep moving forward with your fitness goals? I suggest that you dedicate five minutes every day to exercise. No matter how time-strapped your are, you can always do a five-minute routine.

A Five-Minute Workout You Can Do Anywhere
20 push-ups
20 dumbbell bent over rows
20 crunches
20 squats

What About My Gym Workout?
You should still go to the gym. The five-minute workout is designed to compliment your gym routine, not replace it. It's simply a great way to stay active everyday.

Can Five Minutes Really Help?
Yes, five minutes a day can really make a difference. Just think, by the end of the week you will have done an extra 140 push-ups, bent over rows, crunches, and squats. And you have to admit, it is a lot better than skipping your workout all together! By staying active even on days you can’t go to the gym, you will find it easier to get back on track when time allows. 

Give it a Try!
I challenge you to try the five-minute workout! After a few weeks of sticking to it, let me know what you think.

Gage Livingston
ACE Certified Personal Trainer
Milwaukee, WI

Saturday, August 24, 2013

5 Keys to Successful Weight Loss

Are you struggling to lose weight? You're not alone. The concepts to losing weight are simple – eat less and move more. However, doing those seemingly simple things can be quite difficult. Here are 5 keys to help you achieve weight loss success.

Keep a Food Journal
Food journals keep you honest with yourself and hold you accountable. Research has shown that people who record the food they eat tend to have greater success losing weight.

Eat Slowly
The brain needs about 20 minutes to receive the signal that you’re full. It doesn’t matter how much you eat in those 20 minutes, the satiety signal doesn’t move any faster. You can save a tremendous amount of calories by slowing down.

Eat Your Favorite Foods
Denying yourself all of your favorite foods will likely to lead to a binge. If you give yourself small portions of your favorite foods, you will be less likely to lose control.

Avoid Temptation
Avoiding temptation is key to weight loss success. If your break-room at work always has donuts and cake, don’t go in. At the grocery store, avoid the snack aisle. At home, don't hang out in the kitchen.

Schedule Appointments to Exercise
Schedule appointments to exercise just like you would schedule a doctors’ appointment. Find activities that you enjoy and make them a priority.

I hope these tips help you achieve your weight loss goals. Feel free to leave comments or questions. If you would like personal assistance and live in the Milwaukee area, please contact me.

Gage Livingston
ACE Certified Personal Trainer
Milwaukee, WI

Source: Nancy Clark’s Sports Nutrition Guidebook

Friday, August 23, 2013

Does Eating at Night Make You Fat?

Many people believe eating “after 8PM” will lead to weight gain. This is not necessarily true. Weight gain is based on caloric intake and caloric expenditure. If you consume more calories than you burn, you will gain weight. It doesn’t matter whether the calories came from eating breakfast, lunch, or a late-night snack.

The most important factor is not when you eat, but what and how much. People often eat more calorie-dense foods at night. If your late-night snack is a bag of chips, you might be in trouble. On the other hand, if you eat a cup of Greek yogurt and blueberries, you’re on the right track to maintaining a healthy weight.

The bottom line is you should eat whenever you are truly hungry – just go for lighter, more nutrient-dense foods.

Gage Livingston
ACE Certified Personal Trainer
Milwaukee, WI

Does Eating at Night Make You Fat?

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Eat 5-6 Small Meals Each Day for Weight Loss and Health

You have probably heard the concept of eating smaller meals more frequently. I am personally an advocate of the practice. It is a great way to promote weight loss, increase lean mass, and feel more energized.

Most of us have grown up in a culture that promotes eating 3 large meals a day and avoiding between meal snacking. This kind of eating makes you feel bloated from overeating at each meal, tired and hungry between meals, and starving at night.  Eating 5-6 small meals (about every 3 hours) will help you control your appetite, regulate your blood sugar level, and stay alert all day.

When your blood sugar drops, you will often eat the first thing you can get your hands on. When you maintain your blood sugar level by eating frequently throughout the day, you consistently feel satisfied and will be more likely to eat healthier foods.

Perhaps eating 6 times a day doesn't seem practical. However, each meal is not a large sit-down affair. Some of the meals are going to be quick snacks that require almost no preparation (ex. Greek yogurt and an apple) . 

People who try to lose weight by not eating deprive their bodies of nutrients. They may look healthy but they actually have high percentage of fat and very little muscle. Moreover, this type of diet leads to dangerous blood profiles. By eating healthy small meals, you body receives all the nutrients it needs. You will look great on the outside and inside!

Here is what a 6 meal day might look like:

Meal 1
Kashi cereal
Skim milk

Meal 2
Toast with peanut butter

Meal 3
Grilled chicken sandwich (whole wheat bread, lettuce, tomato, mustard)
Carrots sticks and hummus

Meal 4
Whey Protein mixed with orange juice

Meal 5
Sweet Potato
Spinach salad with all the vegetables you want

Meal 6
Greek yogurt

When switching to this kind of eating plan, it will be a little challenging for about the first 2 weeks. There will probably be times when you feel hungry initially. However, after your body adapts, you will feel great and begin experiencing all of the benefits of eating smaller portions more often.
Milwaukee Personal Trainer

Source: Core Performance by Mark Verstegen

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Nutrients that Slow the Aging Process

You know Antioxidants are good but what are they?  Antioxidants are compounds that protect your body from free radical damage.  Free radicals are oxygen molecules that cause damage to tissues and can lead to health problems including cancer, atherosclerosis, and cataracts.  Moreover, they contribute to the aging process. 

Nutrients with Antioxidant Properties

The five nutrients that have been identified as having antioxidant properties are beta carotene, vitamin C. vitamin E, and the minerals sulfur and selenium.  Out of the five antioxidant nutrients, vitamin E seems to be the most promising.  Vitamin E  appears to prevent LDL cholesterol from becoming oxidized by free radicals, thus preventing the build up of plaque in the veins and arteries.  Foods with significant Vitamin E include broccoli, sunflower seeds, almonds, peanut butter, olive oil, spinach, and kiwi fruit. 

Key Recommendation
Eat foods rich in the following nutrients:
  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin C
  • Beta Carotene
  • Sulfur
  • Selenium
For more information on antioxidants, check out the infographic below:
Provided by

Gage Livingston
Milwaukee Personal Trainer

ACE Personal Training Manual P. 136

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Sleep: A Key Component for Weight Loss

Are you sleep deprived right now? Sleep is an often forgotten and critical component to good health. In this blog, I want to briefly share with you the benefits of sleep and why it is critical for weight loss.

Benefits of Sleep

  • Slows the aging process

  • Increases energy levels

  • Improves overall health

  • Reduces risk of premature death

  • Enhances your immune system

  • Makes you more mentally alert

  • Improves physical and mental performance

Critical for Weight Loss

When you are tired, your brain doesn't know if it is sleep deprived or in need of glucose. Therefore, you will naturally crave sugar when you are tired. Haven't you felt that way before? I know whenever I don't get a good night's rest, I feel the craving to eat more than I normally would. Also, when you are tired, you don't usually feel like being active and working out. Thus, sleep deprivation is a recipe for weight loss failure!


Get 7-9 hours of sleep each night!


Gage Livingston
ACE Certified Personal Trainer
Milwaukee, WI

Source: Core Performance Endurance by Mark Verstegen p. 52-53