Category: Fitness

How to Hire a Personal Trainer

How to Hire a Personal Trainer - Marissa Elman


Getting in shape by yourself can be daunting, but just as overwhelming can be trying to find the best personal trainer for you and your own situation. There are some excellent personal trainers out there, but there are also ones that are just plain terrible. Before you shell out hundreds of dollars on someone to help you get in shape, follow these steps to make sure you’re getting the most for your dollar.


  1. Set Your Goals First

Make sure you have a clear understanding of what you’re hoping to gain from your time with your personal trainer. Are you already in shape but hoping to advance your muscle mass, or do you need help losing a significant amount of weight? Think about your own skill and experience level too and how many times per week you would like to participate in a workout routine with the trainer.


  1. Meet with Several Trainers

Once you have a clear goal, it’s time to start seeking out trainers in your local area. If you live in a large city, you’ll likely have many options to choose from compared to a small town. Make sure you look for places that will work well with your own schedule each week and are close to your work or home. It’s often most beneficial to find a gym between work and home so it’s easier for you to get to. Narrow down your choices by reading reviews, asking coworkers and friends, and checking out the facility, then go in and meet with the trainer you’ll be partnered with.


During the consultation, make sure you define your goals and articulate what it is you’re hoping to gain from your time together. The trainer should come up with a realistic schedule and regimen that fits within these goals and exercise level. Make sure they are aware of any injuries you may have had in the past or limitations so that they don’t ask you to do something that may hurt you.


  1. Know the signs of a bad trainer

A great trainer should be excited to get started with your workout schedule because they sincerely want to help you. It’s also worth it to ask about their certifications and success stories of the past. Having certifications doesn’t necessarily equal excellence in personal training, but it can be an indicator that they take their work seriously and are dedicated to building their level of knowledge of personal training. Bad trainers will make unrealistic promises, guaranteeing results in a relatively short amount of time.

4 Yoga Poses Everyone Should Do

Whether you have been regularly attending yoga classes for years or have never set foot on a yoga mat in your life, it is always a good idea to perform several poses to stretch your muscles and combat the effects of poor posture — especially after a long day of sitting due to work or travel. Here are some poses you should definitely add to your arsenal:


Garland (Malasana)

This pose is a simple yet effective way to open your hips and lengthen your spine — a necessity for Americans, as we spend a majority of our time with our hips at a 90 degree angle. In order to perform this pose, start with your feet wider than hip-length apart, turning your toes out just slightly. From there, keep your gaze forward and your spine straight as you lower your hips as you would if you were moving to sit in a chair. Move your hands into the prayer position and push your elbows against your knees, helping you open your hips further. The point of this pose is to bring your hips as low as possible without bending your spine or lifting your heels off the floor.



The cat-cow is the perfect way to stretch the spine and surrounding muscles, especially when performed after just waking up or returning home from work. In order to do the cat-cow pose, start on your hands and knees. From there, you should arch your back and look at your thighs. After taking a deep breath or two, release the pose and let your belly drop as you look up toward the ceiling. In order to feel loose and refreshed, repeat this process four times.


Forward Bend

The forward bend is a great way to counteract the effects of sitting all day. Simply stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and bend forward at the hips, going as far as your hamstrings will allow you to stretch. Make sure to keep your knees slightly bent as you try to at least brush the floor with your hands. For beginners, hold this pose for 30 seconds then release. Remember to keep your breathing even and slow.


Seated Spinal Twist (Marichi’s Pose)

These twists not only release any muscle tension you may feel in your back, but help to realign your spine as well. In order to reap the maximum benefits from this exercise, start by sitting on the floor or a yoga mat with your legs extended in front of you. From there, bend your right knee and place your right foot on the mat, just a few inches from your left leg. Bring the palm of your right palm to the mat just behind your right glute, keeping your fingers facing your body. Place your left elbow on the outside of your right knee and breathe deeply. With each breath, extend your neck so it feels like the crown of your head is moving toward the ceiling. Inhale again, then switch sides.

Marissa Elman Detox

How to Detox Without Trying


Living a happy and healthy life can be a lot easier said than done, but many people don’t know that there are many small steps that can be taken to incorporate a healthy lifestyle. Here are some ways to boost your health journey without trying too hard.


Adding hot tea to your diet is the perfect step to take towards a healthier lifestyle. Dating back to thousands of years ago, tea was used as a form of medicine in China. Tea has a lot of benefits for the mind and the body. For instance, one study found that drinking hot tea can prevent osteoporosis. One study found that natural chemicals that are released when tea leaves are being dried, had improved symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis and overall bone health. Tea also contains a large amount of antioxidants, which protect your cells, fight infection, and reduce cholesterol. Tea is also a great treat to have to help you wind down from long days and relax. Instead of your drinking your next cup of coffee, try adding this warm beverage to your diet, your body will thank you.


Lemons work like a magical fruit. They are great to use for cleaning and killing germs around the house, but they’re also great for flushing toxins out of your body. Lemons are very high in vitamin C which are essential to your inflammatory system and fighting off infections. Drinking warm water with a slice of lemon every morning before breakfast can help raise your energy throughout the day, while aiding in digestion.


Everyone has those moments when they feel as though they don’t have time for breathing. Adding just ten minutes of personal time can help you feel relaxed, while being more productive throughout the day. This is a time to be free from all of your surroundings, and become one with yourself through breathing. It allows you to clear your mind. There have been any studies done that showed the benefits of meditating for ten minutes during the day, including having a higher attention span and less stress throughout the day. Try waking up ten minutes early to meditate by sitting cross-legged on a mat and focus on your breathing.


Walking is also a great way to clear your mind, while gaining great physical benefits. Walking increases blood flow and burns calories. Focusing on your breathing when walking can be just as beneficial as meditating. Walks on the beach or trail walking are great for increasing blood flow and flexibility. It is said that an average person should aim to walk five miles (or 10,000) days per day, but it is really easy to hit these goals without even noticing. Try taking walks during your lunch break or parking your car far away in parking lots.

Marissa Elman: 4 Way to Exercise Without Even Noticing

4 Sneaky Ways to Exercise Without Even Noticing

It’s always easier to watch just one more episode of your favorite show than to get up and hit the gym. When you’re already busy and stressed, it can be almost impossibly hard to stay motivated when it comes to your fitness. Chances are, though, that you don’t actually mind being active when you have a goal other than exercise. Here are some great ways to get out and get moving without even noticing that you’re actually exercising! Adding a few basic changes to your usual activities can have a huge effect, and you’ll be on your way towards your fitness goals before you even realize it.

Ditch the Car

One of the best things you can do it start walking or biking to work. Pick a few of your most common destinations, like work or your favorite coffee shop, and simply make it part of your routine that you never drive there. It’ll become second nature very quickly, and you’ll always have a destination to keep you motivated. Besides, a daily dose of fresh air can truly do wonders for your mood.

Bring Your Friends

Next time you’re planning a day out with friends, suggest something fun and active. Get a group together a take a hike, or explore local parks, or visit a local rock climbing gym. Your friends will appreciate the fun new activities to switch up your usual go-tos, and you’ll be having so much fun you won’t notice that you just worked up a real sweat. Plus, if you make being active a default with your friends, they can help keep you accountable. Share your plan and goals with them and they can help remind you  next time you’re tempted to take the easy way out.

Go Dancing

This one is pretty self-explanatory. Dancing is great exercise for your entire body! Whether you’re in your living room or out for a fun night with friends, this is a fantastic way to cheat the system and get fit while having a great time!

Enlist a Four Legged Work-Out Buddy

Dogs love being active, and it’s easy to catch their enthusiasm! If you don’t have a dog of your own, ask if you can take your friend’s pup out. Go on a long walk to head to the park to play. If you really want to get serious, you can even start up a side gig walking neighborhood dogs on the weekends! It’s fun, and you’ll be responsible to other people so you can’t skip a day. Plus a little extra spending money for doing something you want to do anyway is never a bad motivator. Use it to reward yourself with a smoothie!


Pumped up and looking for even more ideas to work exercise into your daily life? Here they are!

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