Sunday, April 6, 2014

WEEK 2--10-Weeks to a Slimmer Summer

by Rebecca J. Clark
NSCA and ISSA certified personal fitness trainer

Welcome to the second week of my summer slimdown. If you’re just joining us now, be sure to read Week 1 first.

This challenge is adapted from my new book, The Checklist Diet, available at most ebookstores now.

This week, you’ll continue with the healthy eating habit you started last week (track your food) and add another step.

Eat a healthy, balanced breakfast within an hour of waking up.

When you’ve been fasting all night, your metabolism and digestion slow down so you can sleep. Think of a car engine that’s idling: it’s still on, but it’s not doing much. When you wake up, you want to fire up that engine as soon as you can in order to start burning more calories—you want to break the fast. The best way to do that is to eat breakfast.

You don’t like to eat breakfast because you’re starving a couple of hours later? Yay! That’s a good thing. Getting hungry again just means your metabolism is working as it should.

What constitutes a “healthy, balanced breakfast”?

Start with a lean protein (meat, dairy such as yogurt, soy product, or eggs) and add a fruit and/or starchy carb (like cereal or toast). If you love vegetables, breakfast time is a great place for them.

Here are some ideas:

· Whole grain cereal with milk*; half a sliced banana or berries on top

· Oatmeal with skim milk*, a tbsp chopped pecans, 3 chopped frozen cherries

· Whole grain toast with light peanut butter and an apple

· Scrambled eggs with salsa wrapped inside a whole grain tortilla

· Fruit & protein smoothie (1 cup milk, 1 cup of fruit, 1 scoop protein powder or 6 oz. plain Greek yogurt, squirt of honey)

· Poached egg on toast with just a smidge of butter; ½ cup of berries on the side

*When I say “milk”, I mean any milk-like product: dairy milk, soy milk, rice milk, almond milk, etc.

If the thought of eating breakfast makes you sick to your stomach, then try having just a few bites of something. Like three slices of apple dipped in peanut butter. Half a piece of toast with light nut butter. Something other than just your morning coffee
After a few days of doing this, you’ll wake up hungry. I promise.


You’re going to continue with the exercises from last week, but I’m going to make them a bit harder and add one strength move.

CARDIO: Five days this week, choose one of the following cardio workouts. Feel free to mix and match, or do the same one each day:

Walk out your door. Walk for 7 minutes. Turn around and come back. For 2 of those minutes, pick up the pace until you’re a bit winded.

Get on a cardio machine of choice (treadmill, elliptical, bike, etc). Go slow for two minutes. Pick up the pace a bit for 10 minutes. Cool down at a slow pace for 2 minutes.

Pick four of your favorite fast-paced songs (for a total of about 15 minutes). Crank the speakers. Dance around your house until the songs are over.

STRENGTH-TRAINING: Two days this week, do the following strength moves (can be done on the same day as the above workouts)

15 Pushups (against a wall, counter, or on the floor)
15 Sit and stands from a chair or bench
20 seconds of elbow planks (lie on the floor on your belly, propped on elbows. Lift your body up until you’re balancing on your elbows and toes. Hold.)
10 Supermans (lie on your stomach, arms overhead like Superman. Lift and lower arms and legs at the same time)
Repeat those exercises 

Have a great week. Let me know if you have any questions. If you are enjoying this program, please tell your friends!


  1. The Planks are killer (for me!) Hanging in on all the rest. Week 2 is rolling along!

  2. Excellent job! Planks are very hard, but you'll be pleasantly surprised at how quickly you progress and get stronger.

  3. I agree planks are difficult and I find I do a lot better if I do them consistently. Becky does shoveling and hauling wheel barrel loads of dirt count?