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The Super Mario Brothers of Fitness Programs

I invite you to think of the Better Body Challenge as an Accelerator towards achieving sustainable change–and, in turn, your better body–every single day.  Do I want you to only do my workouts while you’re a Challenger?  Only if that’s what you want!  Do you have a favorite dance, yoga, zumba, bodypump, kettlebell, jillian michaels, fitness blender class that you LOVE?  DO IT.  Do you want me to prescribe your workout schedule every day?  No problem.  It works either way; The whole point of this program is to eliminate obstacles in the way of your fitness goals.  There are so many ways to get there, so we’re going to find out what works and is fun for you.

 

Let’s talk about this in N64 terms.  You’re Mario.

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You are a) ADORABLE b) eager to change.  Fortunately, with Captain Kat’s Better Body Challenge (henceforth referred to as “CKBBC”) you have ample tools in your arsenal.

First, you have your “why.”  On day 1 of the Challenge, I invite my challengers to post a selfie introducing themselves to the group and sharing their “why.”  To watch a very smart man explain the psychology of “why,” click this.  Otherwise, take my word for it and read on.  “Wanting to be healthy” or “wanting to be skinny” ARE NOT SPECIFIC WHYS.  When you are tired, sore, and lacking enthusiasm to workout before work in the AM, these whys will not pull you through.  “I want to make my ex pissed at how fabulous I look,”  “I want to have arms like Michelle Obama,” and “I want visible abs in a bikini” are excellent “whys.”

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Remember these fierce little dudes?  These are your power ups.  When you’ve powered up and a baddie knocks you down, you stay up because you had extra powers.  That’s what your “why” does.

 

Secondly, you have a map.

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Some days you don’t want to go to yoga class.  Some days you walk into the gym and think “I don’t even know where to begin.  Treadmill, I guess..?”  Some days you want to work out at home.  CKBBC eliminates the excuses and–even better–the wasted time so that you can maximize your workout time.  Thanks to a daily workout schedule (that you can move around as needed), workout videos to explain each movement, and constant access to Captain Kat, you don’t ever need to feel lost or bored at the gym.

Speaking of the Captain–she is/I serve as THIS:

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Ask a question, tell me your troubles, stress out to me about foods, celebrate your suggestions, AND I GIVE YOU COINS!!!

…just kidding.  I don’t give you coins. But I do give you knowledge bombs, a high five, a kick in the pants when necessary.  I give you a daily pep talk every morning at 7am eastern time to start your day with some body mindfulness and positivity.  I share recipes, workout hacks, and my favorite athletic wear.  I’ve been known to give challengers quest bars just for their feedback on the program.  I am your biggest cheerleader.  I want you to succeed.  Sure–it’s my business.  When you succeed, it means the service works.  But more importantly, I legitimately care about your experience.  Fun fact: I’m still in the phase of this business where I am losing money and a TON of time to run it.  I’m not doing this for the big bucks; It’s a passion project.  Let’s achieve the body of your dreams–okurr?

TOOL #4: THE COMMUNITY

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You know that pal who will, you know, occasionally take class or go to the gym with you?  And some day you’ll feel kinda inspired to go but you bail when your buddy doesn’t join you.  BYE FELICIA.  CKBBC has a whole GANG of ladies ready to support you.  Post that stress on the facebook page and you’ll get likes, comments, AND BETTER YET real live people caring about your success.  I cannot impress the importance of this factor of the program enough.  The private facebook community is GIANT.

REALISM: SMALL SUCCESSES ACHIEVE BIG WINS

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You have to achieve levels to win the world.  There’s a lot of flag-jumping to be done before you get the big wins.  This is real life.  You know what isn’t real life?  Violently restricting your diet for a small period of time, dehydrating yourself, hurting your joints overdoing it at the gym.  We want sustainable change.  We want something you will be excited to do.  We want to see accelerated, real, sustainable results.  We want ALL da flags and ALL da castles.

BOTTOM LINE:  This program makes it as easy as humanly possible to commit to your health.  Obstacles are removed, rewards are in store.  Don’t stand in the way of yourself, and I guarantee you will find success and results in the Challenge.

I’m so gosh darn excited to start February I could burst.  Today is the LAST day to register, so if you’ve been waiting–this is the final opportunity.

LET THE GAMES BEGIN!!!!!!

xoxo,

Captain Kat

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The Beauty of Taking Class: When Others Know Best

Yesterday was a doozy of a day. For a control freak hellbent on success, optimism, and achievement, I’m at a temporary (I hope) phase of life where there is more-than-normal outside of my control.  So I have buried myself in my work on Captain Kat–which has brought me genuine joy along with some equally genuine stress–and thoughts of the future.

 

And I’ve completely forgotten how to live in the now.

 

My boyfriend is kind of a genius.  Beyond the fact that he’s about to officially publish his first book (and has others on the way), he puts his phone on airplane mode when we’re together.  And it’s not just when we’re doing long distance.  And it’s not just when we’re on a date.  Unless we’re having a specific “work date” where we simultaneously work on our projects in the same space and allow phones, he doesn’t even look at his.  Which–for a 26 year old in 2016–is pretty amazing.  I’m certainly not as diligent as he is about this, but I’ve improved. And in turn: we’ve improved.

Right now I’m so concerned with what is next–and frankly a bit dissatisfied with where I am now–that I’m escaping into every mobile/web device/youtube vortex/work escape imaginable before I allow a minute to take inventory of my mental state, my physical state, and just be calm.

 

So, today I landed at the gym pretty tired and slightly uninspired to workout.  I worked out twice yesterday because frustration, because eating naughty things that gave me energy that I needed to burn, because cabin fever, and today: I am unsurprisingly tired.  So I put my stuff in the locker and wandered into the sauna for some glorious, sweat drippy magic, and walked into the gym and found myself in a BodyFlow class.

 

I’m kind of a class snob.  I’ve taken a lot of classes all over the nation–heck, all over the world–and you know what I’ve learned?  Much like the inexplicably entertaining astronomy class you had to take for a science credit with a particularly charismatic professor or the should-have-been-awesome theater class taught by a lazy professor–the teacher makes or breaks the class.  Corinna at Gold’s Gym Fredericksburg is a total boss.  First of all: she’s ripped.  Second of all: she’s a smart lady who teaches a killer class.

 

BodyFlow, as it turns out, is a combo of Yoga/Pilates/Tai Chi–just what the doctor ordered today.  The whole class is set to music, involves a super groovy tai-chi based warmup (that is a true warmup–in that it settles you in for the class, gives you a nice thorough stretch, and eases your muscles into activity) and then 7-8 tracks of music taking you through sun salutations, balance activity, strength activity, and stretching.  And then: stillness.  My favorite least favorite.  As one who struggles to rest on vacation, it takes someone else instructing me to be still before I’ll actually do it.  And it is such a practice.

 

My favorite things about class in general:

  1. It’s disciplined.  It’s a practice.  There’s measurable improvement–or not.
  2. You have no choice but to be present.  You’ll fall over if you aren’t.
  3. It’s a physical-mental pairing.  It’s the two working in tandem, when so often I find mine work in opposition of one another.
  4. It’s give and take.  It’s allowing someone to teach you.  It’s being vulnerable.  It’s putting forth effort.
  5. If it’s a good one: there’s almost a story to it.  There’s rising action, climax, denoument, and a coda for stillness.

 

At any rate, if you come across an opportunity to take a BodyFlow class, I highly recommend it.  It’s such a gift of a presence check-in.  Get into it.

 

As always, be good to you today, challengers.

 

xoxo,

Captain Kat

 

 

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Captain Kat is a personal trainer based in New York City and the founder of the Better Body Challenge.  LesMills didn’t pay for or ask Captain Kat to review BodyFlow–she just loved the class so much that she had to write about it!  The beauty of Captain Kat Fitness and the Better Body Challenge is that they can work in tandem with just about any fitness class or product.  The whole point is simply to be active and eliminate obstacles in the way of daily achieving a better body!  Want Kat to try out your class or product?  Shoot her a line at kat@kinektfitness.com

What’s New In the February Challenge?!

FEBRUARY is fast approaching!

It’s the month of love, baby, and you know I’m all about prioritizing your health and happiness!!!  The mantra for February is: build the body you’ll want this summer NOW.  So often I feel completely blindsided by warm weather and I forget annually that you can’t build a bikini body in a week!  It takes 3 weeks for you to see your own results, 5 weeks for close friends, and 8 for strangers.  And if weight loss is your goal, we’re going to want to be losing 1-2 lbs a week.  If you’re looking to lose 10+ lbs by summer, we’d better get crackin’.

What’s new next month?
+ improved recipe guide for Californians
+ improved New Yorker plan complete with guide on following macros
+ workout quick-thru videos
+ website updates making it easier and more functional to use
+ continued endless affection for my challengers
+ steps challenge and giveaway!!!, for those of us who track via iPhone, fitbit, etc.Challenge a buddy to join you next month!  The bigger we are, the better this can be.  Full steam ahead.xoxo,
Captain Kat

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When is it okay to CHEAT?

A challenger messaged me such a beautiful question today. Where do CHEAT DAYS come into play here?

Storytime. You all know my day-gig is acting. Well, yesterday we had a rather rocky tech rehearsal that stretched super late at night. I came home to the hotel and some folks wanted to hang. I was *ravenous* and instead of my typical late night go to–a protein brownie (because it’s immediate, so tasty, and filling, and…protein!!)–I told myself I could curtail my snack eating(their snacks) whilst hanging with my cast. I 100% failed. I absolutely overate, and to make things worse, I ate things I absolutely *Never* eat–chips on chips on chips. I don’t even LIKE chips that much!!! This is an example of a TERRIBLE cheat. It wasn’t worth the calories or pain, it wasn’t mindful or planned, and it gave me a rough night of sleep and a giant bellyache.

Challenger Jillian (unaware of this) messaged me this morning and shared that she had some ice cream (at the Ben and Jerry’s factory, no less!) and another treat and was nervous about any damage this had done. Eating Ben and Jerrys AT the Ben and Jerry’s factory? YES YES YES perfect reason to have a cheat. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: my mantra is *SUSTAINABLE CHANGE.* I do not want you or expect you to give up ice cream for the rest of your life!! This is not a 6 week starve yourself and yo-yo back to your weight afterwards diet. This is not a juice “cleanse” ie sugar overload. This is not dehydrating you to make you feel skinnier. This is meant to create sustainable habits that you can realistically carry throughout your life but that will BETTER your health and 100% lead to physical results in the meantime.

Make sense?

You’re all rockstars. Everyone hanging in there? Fill me in. And don’t eat the chips.

xoxo,
Captain Kat

Accepting Pants and Choosing Happiness #30daysofhappy

I am highly susceptible to the winter doldrums.  As a native Texan, I’m allergic to cold weather/snow/ice/pants.  It’s important for me to be wearing shorts/a dress/leggings 100% of the time.  I’m a product of gradeschool uniforms, and having grown up in school skirts, pants feel like leg-prison.  They are such a hindrance.  I’m only half kidding.

At any rate–I usually hit a point–late January/February, typically–where I am the most unbearable grouch.  The buzzworthy Oscar films have already been released, there isn’t a sunny music single in sight, and being outside can physically hurt at times. Waking up is more of a challenge.  Basic tasks become more difficult.  And listen: I am well aware that these are not real problems.  All I’m saying is that seasonal affective disorder is a real thing and this Texan girl needs sunshine.  Which is why a) I’m going to Orlando next month–for 36 hours–just to get some sun #airfareflashsale and b) I’m doing a happiness challenge.  #30daysofhappy is ubiquitous on Instagram and while the endless posts of latte cups and selfies and the sun aren’t exactly original, if they’re genuinely improving one person’s day–and serving as a real reminder that things aren’t so bad and there’s great stuff going on even in winter–then live your lives.

Today is day 2.  What’s making me happy?  I’m glad you asked.  I’m living out of a hotel for the next couple of months and I spent 16 precious dollars on a 4 quart Hamilton Beach slow cooker.  And I am making CHILI.

YES! CHILI!

Here in eastern Virginia we’re expecting well over a foot of snow tomorrow and Saturday, and that certainly merits some chili-making.  I braved the zoo that was the grocery store (the state of Virginia is prepping for the kind of snow the state rarely sees), picked up the ingredients for my uncle’s famous chili, and my turkey has just finished browning as I type this.  I am so excited!  I truly feel joyful–nay, happy! about it.

So here’s to 28 more days of begrudgingly sporting pants and enthusiastically sporting a positive attitude.

xoxo,

Captain Kat

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Building Your Dreams Is No Cakewalk: A Check-In from the Captain

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My quarter life crisis hit me hard.  I’m not an especially patient person in general, but the necessity for me to stop living singularly off of the high from applause and a few hundred dollars a week…or worse yet: being an out of work actor trapped in the concrete-jungle-that-is-Manhattan feeling worthless, untalented, oftentimes cold, and exhausted helping stay-at-home mothers in Manhattan raise their children…hit me like brazen, crazy Miley Cyrus astride her giant wrecking ball:

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So I decided to do something about it.  Towards the end of tour, I signed up for an Entrepreneurship class at the New School in New York and I registered to study for my personal training cert.  Well, fast forward five months and a lot of cramming, and I got my certification.

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And I took my Entrepreneurship course.  I had a truly inspiring professor and a sizable fire under my you-know-what and I built a beautiful app for my project. I wrote the business model/business plan/financial projections/wireframes/design guide/slide deck pitch. I learned a ton.  I pitched it to ex Google techies and the program manager for the Harvard School of Business Angel Investor Network.  They told me they thought it was a great idea and would sell and scale beautifully.

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But then my cofounder (of the app) bailed on me because, well, entrepreneurship is decidedly unglamorous and freaking hard at the start, and so I was left alone with a gorgeous idea and a ton of hard work and no means of building the app myself.  Until I find my business partner–a technical cofounder with whom I’d entrust my intellectual property, business, and a stupid amount of time–I’m a lone wolf, baby.  The plan is to fund the development of the app myself (outsource the initial development…then hopefully early adopters would use it, give me feedback, and I could either pivot and build version 2 or pitch it to some fancy investors or attempt to get into an accelerator program…and in the meantime locate my cofounder.  See how foolishly complicated this is?)  So until I have the capital to fund my app (hint: it won’t be for awhile), Kinekt is on hold and I must forge on with other dreams.

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Remember when I got that personal training certification?  Well, with Kinekt on temporary hold, I determined it was time to put that certification to use. I travel often, I’ve taken a zillion fitness classes all over New York–heck, all over the nation–and I love teaching.  And I’m certified! So, I thought: build a program that can be followed online by clients the world over!  Make it affordable!  Make it something you would want to do!  Make it something that is a joy and therefore does not feel like work!

And so I did.  I mean, you’re here on the Captain Kat Fitness website, aren’t you?

That lightbulb moment materialized in late October.  50+ women participated in the 2 beta/trial rounds of the Better Body Challenge and the amount I’ve learned about running this thing and shaping it into the program I want is stupendous.  January has been my first paid challenge and I have 10 clients–a perfectly respectable start.  And it’s joy, but it is work.  Boy, is it work.  And I’ve had theater gigs and “day jobs” throughout all of this.  So in a typical day: wake up early, breakfast, gym, rehearse/play pretend from 10-6(ish), come home, blast through as much of the podcasts/online classes/social media marketing/website issues/tending to clients/creating content/updating workouts/fixing membership issues/prepping for the coming month as possible, pass out.  Repeat.

IT IS EXHILARATING!!!!! IT IS CREATIVELY FULFILLING!  IT FEEDS MY SOUL!  MY CLIENTS ARE AMAZING!  IT’S LIKE 10 DREAM JOBS IN ONE! I ENJOY THE WORK!

It is also exhausting. And unless I build faster and get more clients, it–and I–will drown.

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But I’m determined not to let that happen. To my beautiful friends with side projects and entrepreneurial endeavors, to those working their way out of a 9 to 5 or trying to afford the actor life, I genuinely wish you the best of luck.  The last nine months have been some of the most trying, frustrating, exhilarating, rewarding of my life so far.  I hope what I’m building will succeed.  I need it, I believe in it, and I love it.  So I’ll keep on keepin’ on, hustle until I can’t hustle anymore, and try to keep my foolishly optimistic big-dreamer mindset screwed on until these dreams–or some semblance of them–become a reality.

xoxo,

Captain Kat

Sinfully Chocolatey Microwave Protein Brownie Recipe!

I am the proudest of you already.

Everyone keeps yelling at me about how sore they are and I LOVE IT.  You’re crushing it, beautiful challengers.  Keep up the excellent work.

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CAPTAIN KAT’S EASY AND DELICIOUS PROTEIN BROWNIE-IN-A-MUG:
1. Mix the following in a mug:
– 1 rounded scoop of chocolate protein powder (Syntha 6 Chocolate Milkshake is best tasting, in my opinion)
– Optional PB2 or “Just Great Stuff” (Powdered Peanut Butter)
– Tiny bit of water until reaches brownie batter consistency

2. Microwave for 30 seconds
3. Put a dab of coconut oil on top and maybe some extra PB2
Voila!  Delicious, decadent tasting, and perfectly wonderful for your macro intake.

Enjoy your rest day!  Rest is 100% as important as working out your muscles–they need time to heal, so make sure you give them a break! They’ve been working hard!

xoxo,
Captain Kat

Don’t Become a Passenger in Your Own Life

What do you want out of this week?

Particularly at this cold time of year, motivation is a fickle mistress.  It’s easy to let life just happen instead of you happening to your life.  Does that make sense?  Don’t be a passenger in your own life.  Unhappy with a situation?  Change it.  Can’t change it?  Ask yourself if it will still be a problem in 6 months.  If it isn’t, remind yourself it’s temporary.  If it will still be a problem, start taking actionable steps to fix it, if you can.

Sometimes things happen that are 100% out of control, and that’s just life.  But oftentimes, we become victims to our own lives when we should be come the heroes.

Get out there and do it, challengers.

xoxo,
Captain Kat

15 Ways to Motivate Hump Day!

15 ways to kick start your hump-day!

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  1. Close your eyes, and visualize yourself reaching your goals.
  2. Try something new today.
  3. Take a walk in a park, and let nature reset your mind.
  4. Make a to-do list. You’ll feel encouraged as you cross off items.
  5. Get more sleep. Sleep deprivation could be making you less motivated.
  6. Eat right. Treating your body well will put you in a better place mentally.
  7. Fake it till you make it. Act like you’re motivated, and it’ll become a reality in time.
  8. Start exercising, and you’ll feel like yourself
  9. Take a small step. You don’t have to immediately immerse yourself in the project and see it until completion right away. Just make baby steps, and take it one day at a time.
  10. Wake yourself up from your slump with a cold shower.
  11. Have a reward system, so you’ll have something to look forward to.
  12. Get the hard stuff done first thing in the morning. Once you’re done with the most challenging projects, you’ll be able to tackle the others with ease.
  13. Prepare early so you’re not in a rush. When you’re late all the time or feel rushed, this may stress you out and kill your motivation.
  14. Push yourself. Realize that getting things done means giving yourself a little push sometimes.
  15. Make motivating yourself into a habit. Read The Power of Habit to help you learn how to form habits. **guys, this book is so empowering and I recommend it to all of you.

Get to it, beautiful humans.

xoxo,
Captain Kat


source: PopSugar Smart Living

Are Rest Days That Important?

Rest days are every bit as important as workout days.

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If your muscles are exhausted all the time, you will not perform your best and you will therefore not get your desired results.  Depending on your personal goals, I advocate for 1-2 days of rest.  My favorite (what we’re doing this month in the BBC) is one day of active recovery–so, you’re not just sitting around, but you’re still giving your muscles a break–and one day of full rest.  If you skipped a workout day, you can fill it in here or do a bit of work.  If you’ve been sticking to the schedule, give yourself the day.  Maybe treat yourself to a new recipe!  Cooking, I’ve found, can really be therapeutic and strangely artistically satisfying.

I hope you’re all having a fantastic third week.  Enjoy your day off and get psyched for arms tomorrow!

xoxo,
Captain Kat