Category Archives: Fitness

Maintain-Not-Gain this Thanksgiving

Tis’ the season of weight gain! Thanksgiving than Christmas, setting us up for New Year’s resolutions we desperately need after months of diet destruction. What do you think about getting a jumpstart on your NY resolution? Would it be nice to avoid the usual 5 to 10-pound increase? Join me in making a dedicated goal to maintain-not-gain over the holiday! Here are my tips to help you avoid the unwanted thanksgiving day weight gain!

1. Be prepared for party temptations!

  • Before a party, have a healthy fat and protein-packed snack. This will help you avoid cravings and indulging in the unhealthy plates. I recommend a handful of trail mix or apples with almond butter.
  • If asked to bring a dish to the party, prepare a healthy one. If you arrive at a house full of unhealthy items you know you can fill up on your dish. My favorite veggie dish is always brussel sprouts and you can’t beat a beautiful kale salad. Both are sure to be crowd-pleasers. Double or triple recipes if you have a big party to attend.

2. Limit alcohol consumption.

  • Watch your alcohol intake. Its loaded with extra calories and sugar. Worst of all, whatever you eat while drinking will get stored away until it processes through the alcohol. Stick to one or two alcoholic drinks with a lot of water in between.

3. Set up a workout schedule…and stick to it!

  • Make a workout schedule for the entire week, month or next couple months and stick with it. (This will get you ready for your New Year resolutions). If something comes up and gets in the way of a workout, then make up for it the next day.
  • Make exercise a priority and you might just maintain-not-gain or even better, lose fat this holiday season!

5 Ways to Have a Healthy Weekend in Los Angeles

Whether you live in L.A. or just visiting, there are endless activities to keep you moving. Here are a few of my favorites!

1. Hiking is one of the best ways to get exercise, be in nature, and see epic urban views. 

  • My favorite trail is hiking around the Griffith Park Observatory. If you start at the entrance just above the Greek Theatre you can go up above the Observatory and get 360 views.
  • For a slightly more challenging but fun hike is doing the Runyon Canyon hike. This one is gorgeous and surrounded by beautiful Hollywood Hills and views of the city. If you aren’t a fan of crowds I would skip this one! Pic of Runyon Below.
  • For a locals secret, check out Ernest Debs Park and hike to the top for views of Downtown L.A. Also, enjoy a beautiful hidden pond where you can sit and have some peace and quiet from the city noise.

2. Rent a bike in the city or head to the beach.

  • Try the metro city bikes if you are wanting to cruise around town! We took our bikes from 6th and Spring St. to the Arts District near Angel City Brewery. if you do this path you can drop the bikes off and head over to enjoy one of the many restaurants in the neighborhood.
  • If you want to head to the beach to rent bikes try Santa Monica or Venice. I’ve rented bikes from both of these places and it was an easy process. You’ll be on your way in no time. There are a few options on each beach and you can cruise along the ocean between Venice and Santa Monica and beyond!

3. Try yoga or meditation at a Buddist Temple or Yoga studio.

  • Relax your mind and distress with meditation. If you need some meditation guidance, there are a few temples around L.A. Check these out Hollywood  or Hermosa Beach.
  • If you want to try yoga check out Yoga Circle or Evoke Yoga in Downtown Los Angeles.

4. Head to a farmers market.

  • The weekend is the best time to prepare for your busy week. Get fresh produce from the many farmer’s markets around Los Angeles.
  • You can find local fresh produce, flowers, and small business goods in Larchmont, Hollywood, Arts District, Downtown, and Silverlake, every weekend! Here is a long list of places that you can find in L.A. More Farmer’s Markets    photo of Larchmont Farmer’s Market from

5. Try a fitness class.

  • There are numerous fitness centers with group classes throughout Los Angeles and there isn’t a shortage of fitness trainers so take advantage of it! Here are a few to check out.
  • YAS spinning classes in Hollywood
  • Cardio Bar in Eagle Rock
  • JustFit LA in South Pasadena – of course, I had to throw myself in there. If you are looking for something with one on one attention to target your specific goals then send me an email!

Leave a comment to add more healthy items to this list or ask me a question!!

Have a great day!


I am a personal fitness trainer in South Pasadena. If you are in the area and need any fitness guidance let me know. I would be happy to help! JustFit LA

Benefits of Exercising Outside

I love to train outside. The sound of birds chirping, fresh air and sunshine makes the workout feel like it’s exactly what we were meant to do. Which is usually unlike the way we feel when exercising inside. Research shows we might be better off exercising in the great outdoors.

Reduce Stress Levels and Clear your Mind. Breathing in fresh air can help boost positive endorphins and leave you feeling more relaxed, clear headed and invigorated.

Cleaner oxygen. You can breathe in fresh air, instead of potentially dangerous air from a gym. If your gym isn’t properly ventilated or cleaned well, you may be breathing in toxins.

Save Money. No membership is needed to explore a city park or roam your neighborhood.

Burn more calories and gain more strength. Due to various terrain (hills, steps, uneven ground) and weather (wind mostly), you may use more muscles and gain natural resistance. This can then lead to you burning more calories.

Workout length increases. When nature is surrounding you and there is no clock in front of you ticking down the minutes, your cardio workouts can reach new lengths.

What is your favorite exercise to do outside? How does it make you feel?

Let me know if you have any questions!


More Info:

Walking After Dinner – a small change for better health.

By adding a 15-20 minute walk after dinner (instead of sitting on the couch) you can expect positive changes to happen!

  • Improves blood sugar
  • Burns calories
  • Boosts metabolism
  • Improves digestion
  • Improves blood circulation
  • Helps prepare your body for sleep
  • May help with weight loss

The hardest part is getting started. Once you are a couple minutes into the walk, you will realize how good it feels to be moving.

Forward the healthy news to your friends and let me know if you have any questions!

More Info:

I am a personal fitness trainer in Downtown Los Angeles. If you are in the area and need any fitness guidance let me know. I would be happy to help! JustFit LA


Improve your Fitness Mindset

…AND Try These Small Changes that can Lead to Big Results

Committing to a healthy lifestyle takes consistency and dedication. You have to find what makes you happy in an active lifestyle and go for it with everything you’ve got. Try these steps to improve your fitness mindset.

1. Set small goals and have a game plan to get you there. For example, make a realistic weight loss goal for one month and make small changes to get there. To get you started, try switching to stevia from sugar to eliminate extra calories, and parking your car far away from the grocery store entrance to burn extra calories.

2. Pick exercises and foods that make you happy and feel great. Do you love yoga but not cross-fit, then don’t do cross-fit! Commit to your yoga practice and go regularly to reap the benefits. If you want to up the intensity try a hot yoga or power yoga class for extra toning benefits.

3. Have a family member of friend join you on the journey to a healthy lifestyle. Having someone or a team will keep you accountable.

4. Try adding supplements to your diet to improve mood and energy. Discuss with your doctor about what you may need to supplement with. Below I also attached an article to help you learn more about different vitamins and minerals.

More info regarding vitamins and minerals:

My favorite supplements:

  • Plant protein – I use this once a day for a post workout drink or add to a smoothie for a meal replacement.
  • 5HTP – improves mood and helps control appetite.
  • Vitamin D – I use a liquid form for better absorption.
  • Probiotic – gut health and digestion are important in overall health.

Check out my Instagram@sojustfit

April Discounts!

The month of April is almost here and it is bringing us wonderful spring weather. It’s also reminding us how close summer is and how we want to feel confident and ready for beach attire.

I’m offering $25 off of my intro package for clients who live in the Los Angeles area and are looking for fitness guidance.

Please check out my website to find out more about my program. Learn more




Fabletics Fitness Gear Review

Fit Gear Review- Fabletic’s

I may ramble on about this one but there is a little more to this place than meets the eye. Other than the fact that they will reel you in and you will probably spend more than you like there, Fabletic’s stuff is pretty good! The other thing is it’s affordable (if you can control yourself).

Jennifer Hudson’s clothing line, Fabletics is designed for you to wear stylish fitness clothing and be able to do it affordably. To get the VIP perks and the discounted rates you have to become a member. Along with that you have to keep an eye on your account. Every month on the fifth they take $50 from your account and you can choose to save it, skip a month or use that credit. You can buy other stuff separately but most likely you will end up spending that 50 every month and maybe then some.

Just a heads if you decide this isn’t for you  and go to cancel, be ready to stand your ground. They will offer you points and MAKE you want to stay. Believe me, it took three times of me calling to lock in my cancellation. If you love the clothes though and 50 dollars a month on fitness clothing isn’t a problem than you found your spot. For me I wanted the freedom to shop everywhere and I felt like I could only shop at Fabletics since I was already spending money there. Anyway here is what I can tell you about a few of their fitness attire items I’ve tried:

Vaasa Sports Bra: Mulberry Color. The color is not what it appears on the screen but its still pretty:) Just more of a darker pink like fuscia. This is a very light support bra and I love it for when I am training clients or . But running and jumping is out of question.

Nadi Legging: Camo color. This has been an amazing purchase. I love the way they hug my legs. Even when I’ve worn them awhile they keep there shape. The camo is fun and stylish and I get compliments on them every time I wear them.

Twist back top: I purchased a long sleeve shirt thats reversible and twists in either the front or back depending on mood. Last I checked it was out of stock or discontinued. I really like the look of this shirt. It’s sexy and light-weight. I can wear it with sports clothes or with jeans. Bad news is every time I wash it, it changes shape slightly (like most cotton items:)

All in all Fabletics is worth trying and I hope this helps with your next Fitness Gear Purchase!!

Peace out,


P.S: I thought this would be a helpful topic for people shopping for fitness clothes and gear since I pretty much live in it. I am a personal trainer and when I’m not training I am most likely exercising on my own. I thought I might be the right person to share my opinions on all the different fitness gear, clothing, equipment etc that I’ve tried. Stay tuned to here more about other brands and products I’ve used.

Yoga and Yoga Therapy Health Benefits

Yoga and yoga therapy health benefits are unending, but I’ll share the most important reasons why its attracting people of all ages and all health ranges.

What is Yoga?

Yoga is a spiritual and asctetic discipline, focused on breath control, simple meditation and body postures. All used for health benefits and relaxation of the mind and body.

What is Yoga Therapy?

Yoga Therapy is an instructional based Yoga practice and teaching that is used to prevent, reduce or alleviate structural, physiological, emotional and spiritual pain, suffering or limitations. Usually this is taught one-on-one for the specific conditions and purpose of individuals by specially trained yoga teachers or therapists.

What are some of the health benefits of yoga and yoga therapy?

  • Safe guided asanas/movements (yoga therapy)
  • Proper spinal alignment (yoga therapy)
  • Muscle strengthening
  • Flexibility improvement
  • Mental awareness and clarity through meditation
  • One-on-one instructor guidance (in most yoga therapy sessions)
  • Lung strength through focused breath-work

Yoga isn’t as intimidating as you think.

Yoga class doesn’t always mean intense stretches, pretzel body positions and headstands. Everyone has different fitness capabilities and this is why yoga is a wonderful place to start. Most yoga classes accommodate all fitness levels but yoga therapy can assure a safer program for each individual. Its a way to improve an individuals specific needs through a safe guided practice meant for them alone. Yoga is a wonderful experience and doctors are now referring their patients to take yoga classes or yoga therapy lessens. I thought that was note-worthy news!

If you are a beginner or have injuries and decide to take a yoga class discuss with the teacher before-hand, so he/she can offer you regressions or modifications to poses that the class will be doing. Trust your gut when it comes to pushing yourself, go slow and listen to your body.

Take a look and try one of my favorite poses:

Balasana: Childs pose

I wish you all the best on your yoga journey!

I really want to know what my readers are doing and thinking!!

  • Do you think yoga or yoga therapy could be for you?
  • What type of yoga do you like to practice?
  • Do you use yoga for weight loss, muscle development or for mental exercise?

Shante (Peace) and love,


If you have further questions about yoga/yoga therapy or if you are in the Los Angeles area and are looking to start a fitness program with guidance let me know at

I also provided a link to more on this growing yoga topic. It’s a wonderful article I found and wanted to share with you! Please come back to nutritious gossip and let me know what you think.

Yoga Therapy article! Please read!

Yoga Therapy Definition Site and Info: 


Keeping your Fitness Resolution

Whether it’s the start of February or middle of summer if you are working on a resolution or healthy lifestyle change don’t give up today or ever! Life tries to get in the way and often times (lets be honest) WE LET IT! I and many others are guilty of little lies and excuses to talk ourselves out of a wonderful routine that can save our lives. Start doing these tricks to maintain your routine and focus on keeping your Fitness Resolution!

Jot it Down – Go buy a inexpensive yet eye appealing journal to open multiple times per day. Write down the following, to create awareness of habits and accountability to yourself.

  • Every little thing you eat from the stevia you put in your coffee to the second glass of wine you had at dinner.
  • Log whatever exercise and movement you did for the day. Such as the walk around your office building to your trip to the gym (and what you did at the gym).
  • Emotions and feelings are important to log. You may look back and realize wow I always felt great after my morning swim. Keep doing that! Or I always felt tired after I ate the bowl of white rice. Stop doing that!

Add in Weight Training- Results are hard to come by when you aren’t doing some type of weight or resistance training. I know this is typical news coming from a personal training but there are reasons behind that!

  • Weight loss and Toning- By building muscle through resistance or weight training your body has to work over-time to keep the muscles repairing and growing. Which means more calories and fat being burned. Enough said… lets hit the weight room!!
  • Weight or Muscle gain- Lets say you are one of the types that just can’t put on weight or you want to see some muscles on that scrawny body. Well you aren’t going to get there by just eating thousands of calories. In that case, you will just add fat to your body or nothing at all. You must weight train to build layers of muscle tissue along with eating the proper amount of calories for weight gain. See below.

**Below I posted a link for both sections (whether you are losing weight and toning or Weight and muscle gain) with a calculator to help you figure out calorie amounts along with protein, fat and carb needs.

Join a Club or Team- This could mean a variety of options.

  • Grab your best friend to be your buddy system. I’m sure he or she would love to exercise with you!
  • Join a running, swimming, tennis or yoga club. There are so many groups to join that could create a fun environment of fitness while making healthy friends along the way.
  • Join a gym to gain access to quality equipment, a lively environment and advice all in once spot.
  • Ask a trainer for help. Yes again, coming from a personal trainer! It’s true though. . . how do you plan to be successful if you don’t have the right tools or specific knowledge on how to get there. Test a couple trainers out and find the one thats right for you!

Be the person you want to be and make it happen this year. You know if you give up this year you will have to start all over next year and who knows you may be further behind. Remember that YES It is hard! BUT it is hard for Everyone! Pushing through the rough spots will make you stronger and soon you will have developed a lifelong habit. Happy and healthy will soon be part of your very nature!

Thanks for reading my tips! Stay in touch and let me know how your journey is going.


My Training Information:

Calculator Tool:

Lunge Demonstration

Stretches for Runners

Tight hips and hip flexors are a struggle most runners will eventually deal with without proper stretching. Try these stretches for runners to do below at the end of every run to prevent injury and tight muscles.

  • Basic runners lunge – The first photo is more concentrated on the hip flexors and is great for any level of flexibility. Focus on standing tall, engaging your abdominals and pressing your hips forward until you can feel a stretch down the middle of your quad and up through the front of your hips.
  • Deep runners lunge – The second photo shows a deep version of the stretch which is really great for opening the hips and best for those who are already a little flexible. Lunge forward as far you can while holding on to support as needed. Lean your upper body forward until you feel a stretch on the front of your hip on the back leg. You will also feel a stretch on the back of the front leg.

Hold each stretch for 20-30 seconds each leg.

This stretch is great for anyone, not only runners. Take a quick break from your desk job or errands and try out the runners lunge stretch. You will return to your day rejuvenated.

In addition to the above stretches, I recommend you use the following hamstring and quad stretches for your post workout routine.

Source: Hamstring Exercises, Quad Stretch