The Other Night I Was Putting My 2.5 Year Old, Layna To Bed And It Was The Sweetest Moment 🙂

She hugged me, super tight and I didn’t want to let go.

She kissed me on the lips and I told her, I love you.

She repeated back, “I love you too“, in a whispery voice.

Then she started rubbing the sides of my face every so gently and went on to say:
Your face is so, so wrinkly.

It’s dark so you couldn’t see the shock on my face and she continued rubbing my face and said:
You’ve got a wrinkly face mom.

Oh that sweet moment suddenly turned into Layna being a little stinker. She is cute, but she is a handful!

I was also trying not to laugh, after all she seemed calm and it’s bedtime. I didn’t want her to get all ornery and start jumping on the bed.

She really is a sweetheart and I love every minute with her…the good and the challenging times too- even is she’s reminding me I am getting some wrinkles 😉


While I know that I am getting older, after all I turned 40 this year and I get constant calls and mail from AARP and Medical Alerts, aging is inevitable too.

But age is just a number.

How you look and feel might not reflect your chronological years.

I would like to think I am aging gracefully. How about you?

Do you ever see former classmates that look like they’ve aged an extra 10 years?

When It Comes To Ageing Gracefully, That’s Where Exercise And Nutrition Come In.

What you eat and how you take care of your body is reflected in your hair, skin, nails, posture, activities, and more.

How you have taken care of yourself, is how you live.

The flip side can be for former athletes who beat their body up for years and are now paying the price with a bad back and weight gain due to depression and lack of activity.

For many it’s one extreme or the other – either they over exercise and beat their body up and it’s going to get angry back …….. or they sit around eating and drinking too much setting the stage for heart attacks and Type II Diabetes..

It’s that American all or nothing mentality;)

I’ve been on both ends of the spectrum. If you recall I am a retired Pro athlete and I retired 10 years ago because I knew I would pay for it later, if I kept going at that pace. I do have days now that my joints remind me of my past flips and tricks. Some days I can start to feel my “age” too.

I have also been a fluffy size 12 eating too much fast food and spending time on the couch. Even over the past 5 years I went through bouts of inactivity.

Then I Got Smarter.

Today, I know I have a balanced food and fitness regimen and it’s what I teach my clients too.

You don’t have to spend hours in the gym or follow restrictive diets.

My most successful clients only exercise 10-30 minutes a day and enjoy their favorite foods. There’s no crazy 100 reps of heavy lifts meant for trained pros, hours running on a hamster wheel, or calorie counting and starvation diets. Just realistic lifestyle habits to for your chaotic life and make sure you fit in your jeans;)

After all, it’s our small daily habits that make us. So if I have some wrinkles on my face from smiling too much, I am okay with that and you should be too!

We are all going to get older, so we hope, but we can age gracefully and enjoy the precious moments in life without spending hours in the gym or sulking on the couch.

The wrinkles will come too, but maybe a little less than our friends because we are nourishing and caring for our body, rather than abusing or neglecting it. I know many people who take better care of their pets, than they do of themselves.

I will embrace my wrinkles, each one at a time, and enjoy all the precious moments in life…..for a long time to come and I hope you do too!

If you’d like to combat aging, improve your mood, and enjoy a healthy life, I’d love to help you too.

Just contact me and let’s come up with a plan that fits your life and your goals:)

Committed to helping you live a healthier & happier lifestyle,
-Coach Summer Montabone, CSCS

PS- It doesn’t matter where you are located, my wrinkles and I can coach you virtually too:) If you are already enrolled in one of my programs, then you are good to go, but feel free to email me if you need any extra help!

How Often Should You Change It Up

How Often Should You Change It Up

%image_alt%Plateaus are discouraging, but they provide valuable information. If you’ve been doing the same exercise routine forever, it’s time to change it up and try something new. The body is amazing. It adapts to the heavy work load we put on it and learns to be more efficient, using fewer calories and less effort to do the tasks we ask of it repeatedly. That’s why doing the same routine, without ramping it up or making changes, won’t get the same results after a while.

If you’re doing the same routine each day, consider making a change every six to eight weeks.

One reason the gyms that just put you on the trail of machines often don’t get the same results is that it’s the same workout day after day. You go from the leg machine to the arm machine, etc. Anyone that hasn’t worked out before will see dramatic changes initially. That’s the body adapting the muscles and hormones to learn the new exercise pattern. This takes about six weeks and then you’ll see amazing changes. However, between six to eight weeks, the body has made an adaptation to that style of training and the changes don’t continue. That’s when it’s time to look to something new.

Vary your routine for overall fitness.

If you’re only doing strength exercises, you aren’t doing your body a favor. The same is true for isolated cardio workouts and flexibility training. You need all types of exercises to have a healthy body. Strength training without flexibility training is the recipe for injury. For overall functional fitness, make sure you exercise all muscle groups and in all potential ways. Varying your routine also allows the muscles to rest between workouts, while other muscle groups get their fair share of exercise.

Take the boredom out of the routine and have fun again.

Yup, when you’re doing the same old thing, it start to look like a day at work. Learning something new forces you to focus on the task, rather than doing it by rote and is also a lot of fun. Whether you’re switching from a regular cardio to kickboxing (so much fun!) or calming down your inner being while improving your range of motion with yoga, you’ll start to enjoy and look forward to the workout.

Working out with a group at a boot camp adds socialization to the mix. You’ll make a lot of new friends and that makes it easier to face the grunt and grind of a good session.

Staying active is the most important part of the process, but so is making sure you give muscle groups a rest. That’s one reason people who just focus on a specific exercise often have injuries.

You’ll see weight drop off rapidly when you’re varying your workout. That’s because the body doesn’t have time to become efficient and burns more calories trying.

You’ll be giving your brain a workout, too, when you switch up your workout. Learning new movements starts to get the neurons firing and builds more connections.

Portions Matter

Portions Matter

Portions Matter

Weight loss is tough and portions matter if you’re serious about trying to lose weight. While eating raw vegetables probably won’t require you to have portion control, since the amount of fiber in them will fill you up before you add enough calories to make a difference. At one time it was thought that too much fruit had a negative effect, but since, most studies show that again, the fiber content will fill you up before you can eat too much to fill you out. Both of these types of whole foods should be eaten frequently throughout the day. However, for all other foods, portion control counts.

Drinking water before a meal will help with portion control.

Sometimes, the urge to eat doesn’t come from hunger, but dehydration. If you drink plenty of water throughout the day, you’ll probably find you’re less hungry. Also drinking a large glass of water before you eat can make you feel fuller so you want to eat less. Remember to use plain water, or water with a tad of lemon in it, rather than other types of drinks. Soft drinks are filled with extra calories and even diet soda has a negative effect causing weight gain. Stick with a large glass of water before meals and portion control will be easy.

Consider using smaller plates.

It almost seems to simple, but it’s true. Using smaller plates will visually trick you into thinking you ate more than you did. One study showed that people who used larger bowls compared to those given smaller bowls, served themselves 33 percent more food (In the case of the study, it was ice cream). The study also used two different sizes of scoops. Those who had larger scoops served themselves 14% more ice cream. The color of the dishware mattered too. The higher the contrast of the plate to the food, the less was eaten. If you’re eating pasta, don’t use a white plate, but opt for a brightly colored one. For salads and lower calorie foods, blend in with a green plate.

It doesn’t matter whether it says diet, you can’t eat the whole box!

Not only are there plenty of other reasons not to eat special “low calorie diet” foods, one of them is portion control. Just because the box of cookies says it’s lower in calories, it doesn’t mean you can eat the entire box…or maybe two….in one setting. While some natural sugar substitutes, such as Xylitol have some benefits, However, even artificial sweeteners can create that craving for more sugar and make dieting more difficult.

You can eat the same portion of a food if you add more bulk with vegetables. Consider a plate of pasta, now add broccoli, cauliflower or other veggies to it in a 50/50 ratio. When you eat the same portion, you’ll be adding fewer calories while still satisfying your hunger.

Let your clothing be your guide. If you’re wearing sweats to every meal, the chances of overeating are greater than if you’re eating food in form fitting pants. When you feel that snugness from the pants, you’ll have automatic portion control.

Eat slower. The slower you eat, the more time you give your body a chance to signal your brain that you’ve had enough.

Eat more foods that make you work. It’s harder to eat too many pecans when they’re in the shell, requiring you to crack them first.

Positive Thinking

Positive Thinking

Positive Thinking

No matter what your workout entails, it needs one important ingredient and that’s positive thinking. What you believe, you CAN achieve. Now that belief may be that you can look fantastic and achieve new heights in fitness or that you’ll never shed a single pound. No matter what it is, you’ll achieve it. That’s why working with a trainer is so important if you’re having a problem with self-belief.

We can help motivate you and make you believe in yourself.

Family is wonderful and so are friends, but often they’re not as supportive as you think and may even sabotage your attempts to lose weight and get fitter. That’s not meant to be mean on their parts, but a subconscious desire to avoid any change that might affect the relationship. That’s why having a trainer help you achieve your goals is important. We aren’t successful at our jobs until we help you successfully achieve your goals. We believe in the process enough that the belief is contagious.

We’ll create a program designed especially for your needs.

You won’t be doing a cookie cutter approach to fitness. In fact, our trainers take the time to assess your overall fitness, even identifying weaker muscle groups, listening to your goals and any special needs you may have. Only then is a personalized program designed that has a workout that will be tough, but still within your capabilities. You’ll also learn how to eat healthier.

You’ll be more enthusiastic with each passing week.

Every time you workout, you’re helping your body reach a new level. While that improvement may be small, your body is in better shape than it was the previous day. As you start to see the dramatic changes in your overall fitness, endurance, strength and weight loss, your belief in the program grows too. That can help you achieve even more success.

Sometimes it’s tough to believe when you’re not sure you’re doing a workout correctly or whether it’s the right workout. When you come here, you know the program was created by professionals and they show you the proper form.

You’ll learn how to eat healthier from our fitness coaches. Our trainers don’t give you a diet, but show you ways to eat healthier that also save calories. You’ll be making smarter choices when it comes to food.

You’ll feel fantastic after a workout. You’ll be burning off the hormones from stress that can cause you to have negative feelings and replacing them with ones that make you feel good.

You’ll sleep better at night. A good night’s sleep can give you more energy and the confidence to continue. It helps improve your ability to achieve positive thinking.

Achieve Your Personal Best

Achieve Your Personal Best

%image_alt%When you want to achieve your personal best, finding the best possible help can be what you need. I pride myself on working closely with people to help them achieve their goals. It doesn’t matter whether the goal is to become fitter, shed weight or have more energy, my staff and I can help. We assess your overall fitness level, listen to your goals and learn of any special needs before designing a program that will get you to your goal faster than you thought possible. You’ll be working hard, but it also will be fun and within your capabilities.

You can work with a trainer one-to-one or workout in a group.

You’ll get the same expert advice in both cases. When you work in a group, it’s led by a trained professional who adjusts your workout to your fitness level. You’ll get important nutritional advice, too. While you’ll be sharing the trainer’s time, you’ll also be sharing the cost, making a group workout far less expensive. It’s also a blast and provides a great deal of comradery and group encouragement.

Your personal best changes every day.

It doesn’t matter where your starting point is, every day that starting point will be different. While you won’t go from breathing heavily from a five minute cardio workout to running at top speed for 20 minutes overnight, you will see a great deal of improvement, perhaps being able to do that same five minute cardio with ease after just a few weeks. You’ll also see pounds seem to drop off as you build more muscle tissue and learn healthier eating habits.

We won’t give you a diet.

Diets do not work!!! That’s because they always end, either in success or with a dozen donuts. Then you go back to old eating habits that put on weight in the first place. Instead of a diet, we’ll show you how to make smarter choices when it comes to food. Sometimes the calorie savings is small, such as eating whole grain rice rather than white rice, but each small change adds up to big savings. Sometimes it involves learning to cook differently and passing up fried foods for a meal of whole, steamed, grilled or baked foods. While we might give you sample meals until you learn healthier eating, you won’t be left feeling deprived or hungry.

When you combine healthy eating with regular exercise, you watch fat disappear fast. Exercise not only burns calories, it builds muscle tissue and muscle tissue requires more calories than fat tissue does.

We track your progress, which can help you see just how far you’ve come. Since the changes are small each day, sometimes its hard to remember what it was like before you became fitter. Seeing the difference on paper will remind you.

You’ll feel more energetic and want to be more active. That not only improves your social life, it also burns extra calories.

You’ll start to feel better about yourself and as you conquer each battle, have renewed self-assurance you can achieve any goal.

Take Your Workout On Vacation

Take Your Workout On Vacation

Workout on Vacation

It’s time for Summer fun. Yes, I do mean not only fun in the summer sun, but also some of my own brand of fun that will help you workout on vacation. Taking a vacation doesn’t mean you’re taking a vacation from exercise or healthy eating, although that’s what some people do. Unfortunately, getting back on track takes weeks to make up for the eating indiscretions and lack of exercise time. Don’t throw away all the progress you made.

Use an exercise program specifically made for your travel time.

I love helping people stay fit, so it’s never a problem for me to create a special exercise program they can do in small spaces, such as a motel room. However, if you have all the stops planned ahead and know there’s a workout room, I can also create a program that maximizes its use. Many motels and hotels often have pools and a water workout might be just what you need after a long day of travel.

Use your surroundings as the perfect form of exercise.

If you’re traveling to a national park, Disney World or other place where you’ll be hiking or walking all day, use that as your cardio exercise for the day. Even in the city, walking city block after block at a good stride will bring you excellent cardio benefits, saving you cab fare in the process. Take stairs instead of elevators and build your endurance. If this is an adults only vacation, make sure you take an evening to dance the night away. Fast dancing is a great workout.

Eat healthy, no matter where you go.

Take a few minutes of extra planning to make sure you have healthy snacks on the journey. Just as you would at home, plan to be hungry between meals and take along healthy snacks. Whether getting your dinner from a fast food drive-through or five star restaurant, choose it wisely. The burger and fries might be tempting, but opt for the salad instead. Ask for dressing on the side in the restaurant and choose the wild rice over the white rice. See if there’s a local produce market near by and look for some tasty treats to stock the refrigerator in your room. The key is to be prepared, otherwise you’ll be tempted to eat the snacks in the hotel that are both high calorie and high priced.

Don’t feel like you have to give up sampling great cuisine. If your vacation includes going to a favorite restaurant that’s only available at that locale or one that’s been on your bucket list forever, don’t give up the opportunity to enjoy it. Eat slowly and savor each bite. You’re eating healthier, not dieting.

Fill up on salads and fresh fruits and vegetables rather than rolls.

Take along plenty of water and stay hydrated. Whether you’re working out or walking the city streets, keeping water ready to refresh you is far better than stopping for a soft drink.

Limit your alcohol consumption. Make sure you stick to water, particularly if it’s hot. Alcohol can cause dehydration, not to mention the empty calories it also has.

Don't Let Company Travel Keep You From A Great Body

Don’t Let Company Travel Keep You From A Great Body

Don't Let Company Travel Keep You from a Great Body

Everyone wants to have a great body, but some people find that it’s extra hard because their job requires travel. You don’t have to choose between your career and having a healthy fit body when you use the services of a personal trainer. As a trainer, I not only assess your fitness level, I learn your goals and find out if you have any special needs. While most people automatically think of physical limitations when they hear special needs, they can be lifestyle limitations, such as constant travel for the job.

Learn to eat healthier no matter where you are.

Unlike many weight loss programs that require you to eat specific foods you buy from their company, when you learn to make wiser food selections. You don’t have to give up everything you love. In fact, you still can eat even higher calorie foods, but in moderation and far less frequently than you do now. You’ll learn simple changes you can make, such as substituting Greek yogurt for sour cream or eating wild rice instead of white rice. Even those these changes may seem small, they all add up to huge calories savings and a healthier diet. You’ll never be hungry. One thing I always emphasize is to plan ahead. Take fruit along on your trips and snack on it rather than wait until you’re starved and gobble up some other high calorie dish.

I’ll create a workout you can do anywhere.

You don’t need fancy machines and a lot of space to get the exercise you need to stay fit. I can create a workout program for you that you can do in a hotel room that will give you a total body workout in very little space. It may use body weight exercises or easy-to-carry exercise equipment, such as fitness bands. Most hotels have a workout room. If you know ahead of time that it does, I’ll create a program that maximizes the use of the equipment. If the hotel has a pool, there’s nothing better than using it as a workout facility.

Schedule your time with me to fit your needs.

Everyone loves a consistent schedule, but I know it’s not always possible. That’s why I’m flexible with my clients, particularly those that travel. We can work around your schedule and even stay in touch while you’re on the road. I want to help you achieve your goal anyway I can.

You’ll find travel won’t be as stressful when you workout after you arrive. You’ll burn off the road stress and feel refreshed when you include

You can sneak a bit of exercise into your daily routine. It might mean taking the stairs instead of the elevator—which I don’t recommend if you have a super important meeting on the 30th floor, but maybe take the stairs to leave.

You’ll have more presence the more fit you are. That’s a huge benefit no matter what your job.

You’ll have more energy the longer you stick to your program of healthy eating and regular exercise. That energy can translate into fun or even more income.

Summer Is Here!

Summer Is Here!

%image_alt%Summer is here! That’s my favorite line when the weather is warm and I enter a room. Having the name Summer makes me partial to the warm weather, but I’d love it just as much even if it weren’t my name. While we don’t get all the snow and cold that our Northern friends experience, winter can be quite chilling and unmotivating when it comes to fitness. I’m always glad to see the first signs of spring and summer. I find most of my clients are more motivated during these months, some by the prospects of wearing skimpier clothing and others by the warm weather and sunshine.

Get a jump start on a healthy diet.

Eating healthier doesn’t have to cost a fortune and when you factor in the money you save on health care because of it, it’s a huge bargain. It’s the time to start shopping smarter. You’ll be able to start eating healthier when the first produce of the season makes its way to the grocery shelves. Asparagus and strawberries drop in price significantly in the spring, so buy a lot and freeze the extra for later use. Start your own garden for even fresher produce this summer. You don’t have to have a lot of space to grow a few veggies or herbs in a container. You’ll know they’re fresh when you pick the tomatoes off the vine.

Start a workout program if you don’t have one already.

You need all the energy you can get for more fun in the summer sun. Working out on a regular basis is also one of the biggest boosts to your health available. In fact, for every one minute you exercise, you’ll reap a minimum of seven minutes of extra life. You’ll also be healthier those extra years and enjoy life more.

Don’t deny yourself the enjoyment of activities because you still need to shed a few pounds.

Some people hide in the shadows because they feel uncomfortable with their body and their weight. That’s nonsense. While you don’t have to want to stay overweight or out of shape, that shouldn’t stop you from enjoying all the activities that summer has to offer. The more you do, the more weight you’ll lose too, so there are extra benefits. Love yourself where you’re at today and look forward to meeting the new person you’ll become.

Use the warm weather to walk more. If you live close to work, walk there rather than drive. Park in the first spot you see in a parking lot and walk further to the door. Both save gas and build your fitness.

Try something new this summer. If you’ve never rock climbed, hiked or camped, it might be time to try. Take swimming lessons if you’re a non swimmer or even try hang-gliding. Look for active adventures everywhere and enjoy every minute of each new activity.

Buy a summer outfit a bit too small. Don’t make the outfit four sizes too small, but make it small enough to fit uncomfortably. You can use it as your measure for success. When it fits perfectly, you’ll know you’ve made huge progress toward your fitness goal.

Learn new recipes that involve healthier foods. Whether you’re making fresh fruit pops, fruit slushies or a fresh vegetable dish, serving new healthier dishes each meal can be an enjoyable challenge that will benefit your health and your family’s health.

Summer Dos And Don'ts

Summer Dos And Don’ts

Summer Dos and Don'ts

If you want to maximize your warm weather enjoyment and outside time, look over these summer dos and don’ts that can make your summer safer, healthier and a lot more fun. The warm weather is a great time to start enjoying the outside and workout a bit in the sun, but it does have its hazards. When you workout in a gym, you may sweat, but there’s air conditioning to help keep your temperature lower. Water is just a few steps away. Outside, particularly if you go for a run, that’s not the case. Make sure you take ample water along on your run and rehydrate frequently, at least a cup of water (8oz.) about every 10 to 15 minutes on hot days. (Don’t forget, you lose fluid swimming, too.)

Acclimate your body to the out of doors.

If you decide to start exercising outside after the summer begins, don’t run out and spend a day in the sun right away. Not only does your skin need to be acclimated to the rays of the sun unless you’re wearing a high SPF sunblock–your body needs to acclimate to the heat. Start working out slowly when you take it outside. Don’t push yourself too hard or your body won’t be able to effectively cool itself.

Do treat yourself to some of the guilty pleasures of summer that aren’t really guilty.

If you love smoothies, you can have as many as you want without worry when you use all the fresh fruits and vegetables available in the summer. You can even make special treats for yourself and the kids by mixing a bit of yogurt with them and freezing the smoothy on a stick or just freezing the fruit drink without the yogurt. It’s a delicious way to enjoy more servings of fruits and vegetables and a healthier treat, too.

Do cool your core before you start an outside exercise regimen.

You can cool your core and stay cooler working out if you drink ice water or a frozen energy drink. The body sends its heat to the core to warm it after a slushie or other icy drink. That keeps your body cooler during the workout. It helps delay fatigue. Don’t forget, always keep fresh cool water available to replenish fluid loss and maintain body temperature.

Enjoy the summer sun, at least for a little while every day. Not only will you be boosting your vitamin D, you’ll be boosting your mood too.

Workout in the morning or the very late afternoon. Avoid working out midday when the rays of the sun are the strongest. Rule of thumb, go before ten in the morning or after four in the afternoon.

Wear lighter colored clothing. Black absorbs the heat and can dampen your efforts to exercise outside quickly.

Don’t let your extra weight stop you from enjoying outside activities. You don’t have to wait until you look perfect to start enjoying the warm weather. You look fabulous now and will even look better tomorrow.

Set Some Goals

Set Some Goals

Set Some Goals

Whether you’re going on a vacation, to the grocery or heading for work, you’ve created a destination in your mind. That destination is your goal for the trip. In order to accomplish any thing, you need to set some goals. The goals may just be mental and short term, such as getting up from your chair to feed the cats or long term, such as weight loss and fitness. Once you realize everything you do starts with a goal, whether stated, written or just mental, it will raise your awareness at how powerful conscious goal creating is and you’ll see a huge change in your life.

The more specific the goal, the better the chance you have of achieving it.

If you were traveling and decided that going west is a goal, but never identified a stopping point, you’d never know when you arrived at your destination, how far you had to drive each day, the best route to take or how much money you needed for fuel and lodging. You could be driving to Toledo, Fort Wayne Indiana, Chicago, Illinois, all the way to San Francisco, California or any stop in between. The same is true for weight loss and fitness. Saying I want to lose weight isn’t enough, you need to be specific, such as losing 60 pounds.

Don’t make the goal overwhelming.

Whether you’re building a house, traveling or losing weight, you won’t accomplish everything in one day. A big goal requires you to break it down to smaller more achievable goals. For traveling, you may break the trip down into days and break that day down to shorter intervals on the road, such as where you want to be in four hours to get lunch. Losing 60 pounds is an achievable goal, but it’s an overwhelming goal you have to break down to smaller steps, such as lose two or three pounds a week.

Create an even more specific plan.

While you may know how much you want to lose, broken down to achievable goals, you still don’t have a map of how to get there. That’s where I help clients the most, by teaching them how to eat healthier and creating workout plans that fit their present level of fitness. Just like that trip, if you’re going to California by car, you won’t arrive there in a day. The speed limit and capability of your vehicle dictate how fast you go. Unlike that trip, as you drive further, you’ll probably go at the same speed. When you workout, you’ll become fitter and be able to do more. That’s when I ramp up the program for you and have you working even harder to see results faster.

Creating a goal and all the steps toward fitness is fun. You can look forward to checking off milestones and be able to see when you’ve made progress. It’s your map to fitness.

Getting fitter is like taking an extended vacation. You don’t have to go back to where you started once you achieve your goal, you can choose a new more exciting goal.

You’ll be amazed at how achieving fitness goals helps you in other endeavors in your life. You’ll feel more confident to set goals in other areas and know how to achieve them.

While losing weight may have been your goal, you’ll get may other returns from your program of fitness. You’ll build more endurance, have higher energy levels, develop a graceful more assured walk and feel good about yourself.