Blog Archives

Waist Workout for Women

I want to share with you an exercise that I designed a few weeks ago for my clients who are looking to cinch a sexy waist for summer. The exercise is called “Spider Abs” and will directly target the oblique abdominal muscles and the waist. I have been using this exercise with both my San Diego personal training clients and my Ballet Strength clients. Add this exercise to your next workout!

Personal Training Session Length

When it comes to workouts, sometimes less is more. Most personal trainers sell only hour long personal training sessions. I have a bit of a different philosophy when it comes to session length.

Most of my San Diego personal training clients and those who come to my Del Mar personal training studio workout with me for 30 minute sessions. In fact, I don’t offer sessions that are longer than 45 minutes anymore. Why, might you ask? Through my hands on testing with clients over a three year period, the clients who train with me for shorter session times see faster and better results. They are also less likely to get injured and less likely to build-up unsightly bulky muscles while freeing up more time in their day.

My group workout clients stretching after a training session.

A great trainer should be able to incorporate a warm-up, workout and cool-down into a thirty minute time period. This trainer should also be able to “kick your butt” in this thirty minute time period. (when I say kick your butt, I mean leave you sweating and fatigued)

I have also found that sessions lasting longer than thirty minutes tend to be less aerobic which will do nothing in terms of supporting weight loss. A thirty minute session keeps the trainer on his or her toes and allows for a quick, dynamic and cardio boosting session. This is how you burn calories and ultimately lose weight. There should be nothing slow and methodical about a training session for weight loss, for example. (This isn’t Yoga or Pilates we’re talking about here…)

How many trainers have you been to who spend the first 15 minutes of your session watching you warm-up on the treadmill and waste the last 15 minutes chatting about what’s on TV? Does your trainer walk around with a clipboard? If you are purchasing sixty minute workout sessions you are wasting your time…and your money. There is absolutely no reason why you need to spend an hour with your trainer and unfortunately this has become the industry default session length. In other words, I would prefer to see someone for thirty minutes, 4-5 times per week as opposed to sixty minute sessions, only twice per week. Results come through frequency and with frequency is commitment.

Ask yourself this the next time you are working with your trainer: At what point in the workout does the workout actually start and when does it end? How much total time did I actually workout? Am I wasting my time and money?

Trainers ask yourself: Can I give my clients effective workouts in a short period of time? If not, what am I doing wrong? (*hint-walking around with a clipboard could be your problem)

Lululemon Favorites

This week I am on vacation as my Mom is in town visiting from Pittsburgh. While I feel like I’m going through a bit of workout withdrawal, I have been getting plenty of exercise through shopping. This afternoon I had a chance to visit my favorite store, Lululemon La Jolla. There are a few Lululemon stores here in San Diego but I feel that the La Jolla staff is the friendliest and most knowledgeable (the Carlsbad store is super stuck-up in my experience).

Here are the new items that I picked up today just in time for Summer!

Lululemon Speed Shorts- These shorts are so cute in pinstripe. They are perfect for running. Nice and loose in the legs, lightweight, and the perfect length.

Speed Shorts

Lululemon Define Jacket- I love the way this jacket contours to my curves in just the right places. It is also fleece lined yet breathable so it will keep you warm but also cool you off. I love the new colors they have for Summer!

Define Jacket

Lululemon Do it All Short- This is my favorite purchase of the day. In fact I bought these shorts in two colors. I love to wear loose comfortable workout clothing when I am training my San Diego personal training clients and these shorts are just right!

Do it all Short

So there you have my Lululemon purchases today! I urge you to check out your local store for more fabulous items like these!

Strawberry Spinach Salad Recipe

As the Summer approaches and the strawberries ripen we need a way to put those sweet berries to good use. What better place to put them than in a salad! Here is my recipe for a superb strawberry spinach salad;

4 cups baby spinach leafs
4 ripe strawberries sliced
4 slices of cucumber
2 tbsp blue cheese
2 oz grilled chicken breast (optional)
2 tbsp Trader Joes Raspberry Vinaigrette

Combine all ingredients over 4 cups of baby spinach in a bowl. Voila!

Personal Trainer or Friend?

Has your workout session turned into happy hour?

When you hire a personal trainer, why do you do it?

The answer for all of my San Diego personal training clients and most others I would assume is to “look their best” or to maximize their body to it’s fullest potential. My clients are looking for flat stomachs, trim thighs, jiggle free arms, and a solid cellulite free butt because my resume proves that I can do so. My job as an experienced trainer is to give them just that…and in most cases I do. (of course the clients level of commitment comes into play too, but that’s for another blog.)

My clients are also looking for the accountability and motivational factor but in the end, results are what truly speak volumes. It’s not about looking better than before. It’s about being the best that you can be. It’s about a winning attitude…anything less than that is not worth your time/money.

I received an interesting email from a trainer who says that his clients are content with the “better than before” results that they are getting in exchange for his/her great personality and attitude. I’d like to see a client write that testimonial…

While as a personal trainer my job is to be friendly with my clients, my job is not to be their paid “friend.” If I wanted to do this, I would hold sessions at the local happy hour hot-spot. Of course I would never do that because I take my job very seriously. I don’t mislead or deceive my clients and most importantly, I practice what I preach. I do not want to disappoint my clients. I don’t want them to feel better… I want them to feel the best that they’ve ever felt.

So what do you think? Personal Trainer or friend?



My New Favorite Protein Shaker

Looking for a quick protein shake solution? When it comes to consuming protein shakes day after day lets face it, sometimes you just don’t have time to get out the blender. While I was at a supplement store with one of my San Diego personal training clients, I found the most genius shaker bottle invention ever.

It’s called the Blender Bottle. This bottle has a wire whisk to blend your ingredients smooth. If you’ve ever tried to mix protein powder in water, you know how impossible it is to get rid of the lumps. This bottle does it all for you.

You can find these at your local vitamin store.

Committed to Your Health,

Nikol Klein, San Diego’s Most Trusted Women’s Fitness Expert

My Favorite Protein Shake

Before I head out for my Del Mar Boot Camp this morning, I wanted to share with you my favorite post workout protein shake. It’s so good that you wouldn’t even know that there is a full scoop of protein in it! Here is the recipe.

Banana Orange Dream Shake
1 scoop- Max Muscle Max Pro Vanilla Protein powder
1/4 cup- Orange Juice
1/4- Banana
3/4 cup- Water
1 cup- Ice

Add liquid ingredients first in a blender. Blend all ingredients together.

Give this shake a try after your next workout to fuel your muscles!

San Diego Summer Workout Safety Tips

The summer has started and if you are like most of my San Diego personal training clients, you are looking forward to enjoying the outdoors. With the gorgeous scenery from the mountains all the way to the beach it is mighty tempting to take your exercise out of the gym and into the fresh air. It sounds exhilarating, I know, but there are also some safety precautions that you need to take if you plan on venturing out alone.

Here are a few tips for safely exercising outdoors this Summer.

1.) If you must go alone bring your phone…and some pepper spray. I know it may sound a bit over the top, but this will lessen your likelihood of becoming a victim.

2.) Go early. Try to get your workout in early in the morning during the summer as this will be the coolest time of day. The further into the afternoon you wait, the more likely you are to get heat exhaustion.

3.) Wear sunscreen. No one wants racerback tan-lines! (or worse yet, a burn!)

4.) Don’t go off the path. Stay in populated, well-marked and well-lit areas.

5.) Keep jewelry to a minimum. This will prevent muggings.

6.) Wear light or reflective color clothing.

Follow these tips for a safe San Diego summer. Always remember to stay hydrated and to dress in light-colored clothing to stay cool. Who knows, you may find yourself going for a cool off swim in the ocean!

San Diego TRX Workout for Women

About half a year ago I decided to invest in a training tool that has been quite the rage up in LA. I first saw it on The Real Housewives of Orange County and The Hills. It’s called the TRX trainer. I figured if this is the kind of tool that Audrina Patridge is using to sculpt her body to perfection, my San Diego personal training clients will love it!

With the TRX, there are unlimited possibilities as far as exercises go and the creative trainer can let their imagination go wild. I am now using it with all types of clients including those with injuries and disabilities as doing exercises with the TRX takes pressure off of the joints making for safer exercising.

I took some time out of my Sunday last week to shoot some photos and a quick TRX workout video that anyone can do. Best of all, you don’t need a gym to use the TRX!

Weight Loss De-railers

I would like to address a common issue that I often discuss with my San Diego personal training clients. Every so often I will have someone ask, “I have been training with you for __ long. How come I still can’t lose any weight?” The answer to this question and others related to it are really quite simple…but at the same time hard to grasp for the discouraged client.

The following are some of the major issues that you are not losing weight;

1.) Poor nutritional habits- Chances are, at the time of your personal training consultation, your San Diego personl trainer offered you nutritional advice. In most cases, this is an add-on service that has a separate monthly cost. A simple nutrition plan, kitchen clean-up (when I go to your home and raid your cupboards and fridge), “Sunday pre-planning,” and 100% commitment is all you need to straighten out your diet.

TIP: If you think that personal training alone will get you to lose those extra pounds, you are wrong. In fact, purchasing nutritional services along with your personal training package, while it may seem pricey, will actually save you money in the long run.

2.) Weekend Splurging- Just because you spent 3 hours with your trainer during the week doesn’t give you the right to go out and blow all of your hard work on a weekend splurge. Weekend splurges include but are not limited to; eating out, partying, binge drinking, binge eating, not exercising, not getting essential rest. This is why it is best to eliminate alcohol from your diet altogether.

3.) Week-Day Splurging- See “weekend splurging.”

4.) Trust- You should believe in your trainer 100%. This means getting information from other trainers, websites, or programs should be out of the question. It takes dedication to one program to get you results. How will you know what method works for your body if you do a la carte training? Worse yet, this sabotages the results that your personal trainer has periodized for you!

Tip- If you have questions, ask your trainer…afterall, that’s what you are paying them for!

5.) You’re Toning Up- I know you’ve heard it before but muscle weighs more than fat. So the more you tone up and gain strength in your muscles, the less fat you have!

Alert- This may cause a slight weight increase…but it’s not a bad thing! Stay on the right path and you will eventually lose weight!

6.) Laziness- You should be exercising at least 5-7 hours per week. This means that if you can only afford to work with your San Diego personal trainer for 90 minutes per week, you need to supplement the remaining hours with cardio! You need to exercise every day.

7.) Genetics- I know you are tired of hearing this one, but genetics play a huge part in your ability to lose weight. A twenty year old and forty year old for example will lose weight, gain strength, etc. at a completely different rate and through different techniques. Your San Diego personal trainer should be able to design a program based on your individual genetic qualities!

I hope that I have been able to clear up some of your questions about weight loss and ease some of your fustrations. Voice your concerns with your personal trainer and you will feel much better about continuing your weight loss journey together!