It’s easy to say you can’t get in shape because you don’t have the time or cash to go to an expensive gym.
But thanks to YouTube fitness experts like Cassey Ho, neither of those excuses is valid anymore.
Ho is the creator of Pop Pilates, who coaches her 2.5 million YouTube followers and the visitors of her website, Blogilates, in the art of getting fit and staying healthy. She also made headlines earlier this year for a viral video she created about body shaming and made the cut for our Social 50 list of the best people to follow on the internet right now.
She approaches diet and fitness from every angle, offering tons of great advice for people who want to slim down or tone up the healthy way. Here are eight of the best pieces of advice from her website and YouTube videos.
Tying all of your fitness goals to a number on the scale can be frustrating, Ho points out. In a blog post, she suggests the following three goals as examples:
'I will work out for 30 minutes at least three times a week.'
'I will eat vegetables with EVERY meal this week.'
'I will do at least one Blogilates video, even if it's the short three-minute one, every day this week.'
Ho wants her followers to 'concentrate on the action of getting there... not what happens when you get there. You will be so much happier and so much less stressed.'
2. Instead of paying high prices at a specialty health food store, try a membership delivery service for health food.
In addition to workout videos, Ho loves to give diet and fitness tips. She's a big advocate of 'eating clean,' staying away from processed foods, and promoting a healthy diet.
Eating healthy can get expensive, so Ho advocates using a discount health food delivery service. To that end she has a partnership with one service called THRIVE Market.
But of course, you can also just go to your local grocery store and find plenty of clean food options to stay away from processed foods there.
Ho releases a workout calendar every month for her followers, outlining which Blogilates videos they should do each day as well as which days they should rest.
For her August 2015 calendar, she pointed out that each workout day would 'start with a type of cardio to keep your heart (rate) up! This will help burn more calories throughout the workout.'
Fitness researchers have found that doing cardio before strength training does boost energy consumption, and while specific training programs may call for different strategies, adding some cardio to any workout can help you burn some additional calories.
Many people think the best way to lose weight is to burn as many calories as possible through cardio. But Ho says that if you're exclusively doing cardio and not doing strength training, too, you can plateau and stop seeing results.
Strength training 'not only sculpts lean muscles, but also boosts your metabolism so you keep burning calories longer throughout the day,' she writes.
Ho's workouts are more upbeat and fun than classical Pilates -- but that doesn't mean form doesn't matter. In fact, according to Ho, improper form can make a workout much less effective.
Ho released a video in August to get back to basics and remind her followers that the proper form is important with any type of Pilates.
Ho doesn't advocate deprivation or extreme low-calorie diets since she says they can affect metabolism. Also, she points out that feeling deprived can lead to bingeing.
'Restricting (food) tends to cause a continuous cycle of under- and over-eating, which just isn't healthy,' she writes. 'Instead, eat nourishing meals and snacks spaced out during the day. Give your body what it needs to continue to make progress.'
Click here for her video on 'beauty bowls,' deconstructed smoothies that can aid digestion and improve your skin.
Ho maintains an incredibly healthy lifestyle full of exercise and eating right, but even she admits that when she doesn't sleep enough, she not only feels tired, but also stops seeing results from her workouts.
'You cannot go go go 24/7 and think you're going to accomplish more,' she writes. 'In fact, you will accomplish less.'
That's why she wrote a whole blog post for her followers explaining all the scientifically-backed risks that go along with skipping a good night's sleep.
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