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BIANCA: Fitness Tips for the Holidays

Hi, Jets fans, Bianca here! A huge part of being on the Flight Crew is staying in tip-top shape and being as fit as we can possibly be. Yes, even through the holidays! As a personal trainer, fitness and health is an integral part of my everyday life. I work to stay as fit and healthy as I can, and work very hard to push my clients to make the best choices necessary to guide them down a road to self betterment when it comes to their bodies, minds and spirits.

I have always had a deep passion for fitness. It was inspired by my love for dance and the human body. I have several certifications, a bachelor's degree in exercise physiology, I am at the moment acquiring my graduate degree in exercise physiology, and am currently working at an Equinox fitness club. I love every minute of what I do, which I think it so important.

It's sometimes hard to stay on track with one's fitness goals, especially as the holidays roll around. Here are some tips to help boost some motivation. I hope they are helpful. See you on the field! GO JETS!!

■ Although cardio workouts are great, hit the weights! Not only will it up your caloric burn, you will be building lean muscle. More lean mass on your body will increase your metabolism at rest, which means you will burn more calories even when you're doing absolutely nothing!

■ Switch up your cardio routine. Your body becomes efficient in how it burns fat when you do the same old thing all the time. Try some intervals. Play with speeds and inclines. You will see double the results in half the time.

■ Instead of resting between sets, jump rope. Run up and down on a step. Do jumping jacks. Keep your body moving!

■ Find exercises you enjoy. Maybe it's a class. Maybe it's a certain piece of equipment. Don't like cardio? Walk the dog, take a dance class, ride your bike instead of driving. Working out should be fun, not a chore. Also, finding the perfect time of day that works for you is key as well.

■ As far as your diet goes, don't aim for perfection and enjoy the imperfections, especially during the holidays. Everything in moderation. Try to maintain a healthy diet of three meals a day plus small snacks full of whole grains, lean protein, mono- and polyunsaturated fats, fruits and vegetables. If you indulge, don't punish yourself. Enjoy a small amount and agree to yourself to get back on track.

■ Drink plenty of water. Not only is it responsible for a myriad of necessary bodily functions, it can also satiate your appetite, as thirst is often mistaken for hunger.

■ Don't set unrealistic goals for yourself. Start with short-term goals and eventually you will chip away at the big ones.

■ Don't skip breakfast. Not only does it kick-start your metabolism but it helps manage your hunger and food intake throughout the day.

■ There is no such thing as spot-specific fat loss. A million crunches won't help you lose belly fat. Proper cardio training and a total-body strength-training routine will more likely get you the results you are looking for.

■ No time is too short! Only have 15 minutes? Maximize your intensity and you could easily burn a good 150 calories.

■ Hold a plank every night before bed. Keep track of your time and try to beat it each time.

■ When eating out, if you're trying to stick to a healthy diet, plan ahead. Look up the menu online so you know what you're in for and try to decide ahead of time what it is you're going to order. If you decide there and choose something heavy, no need to eat the whole thing. Order half of it to go.

■ Try not to restrict your diet. The deprivation will only lead you to eat more after so long and you will put weight on twice as fast.

■ Try new things! Never touched a kettlebell? Ask a trainer to show you how to use one. Keeping your routine innovative and fresh will reduce the likelihood that you'll fall off the wagon.

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