With Emily Alvers, MS, CPT, CSN
Looking the Fittest
Emily Alvers lives and breathes fitness. Sickness in her family inspired her to be a healthy lifestyle advocate. Since people look to her as a fitness guide, Alvers strives to always look her fittest. Alvers has a lot of experience under her belt. She is a personal trainer, sports nutritionist, conducts fitness seminars and is in the process of conducting a 12-week fitness challenge for corporate businesses as well as a healthy cookbook for children.
Do you have someone who looks up to you? Follow Alver’s example. Make your priorities, be a positive influence and others can’t help but take notice.
What inspires you to stay fit?
I think that I’m different than a lot of fitness experts because, for me, it’s never been about having six pack abs or looking a certain way. I lost both of my parents to cancer, and a lot of people in my family are not healthy. I don’t want to go through everything they went through.
My husband and I just returned from Yosemite National Park. I am able to hike North America’s tallest waterfall and just enjoy life with my husband. I don’t have to worry about how I look in a pair of shorts, or if I’m uncomfortable or if I can fit into an airplane seat. When I have kids, I want to be someone that they can look up to and set an example. That’s really what inspires me. I don’t ever want to feel like I can’t do something because of my health. That’s just crazy to me — to be held back by something you have control over. I have a lot of people looking to me as an example, which definitely motivates me. It’s not fun to pass up the bread bowl or dessert at dinner, but just knowing that other people are looking to me for inspiration automatically motivates me.
Being the Fittest
Bulgarian Split Squat + Overhead Press
This move starts as a Bulgarian Split Squat. Keep one foot planted steadily on the floor and the other on a bench. Keep your back leg straight and hold dumbbells parallel to your shoulders.
In the same stance, lower your body towards the ground. Make sure that the front knee does not travel forward past your toes. Focus on stabilizing your core and keep your weight centered through the heel on the floor.
As you push your body back up to starting position, raise both dumbbells together overhead to achieve an overhead press. Return dumbbells parallel to shoulders and repeat steps for 12-15 repetitions on each leg.
Plank on the Bench
After your squats, use the same bench and free weights and get into plank position. If this move is too advanced, try it without the bench. Use your feet for balance but focus your weight towards your arms and shoulders. Do a few reps of push-ups.
This is a great test of leg strength and balance. Keep your elbows high and back straight. Focusing on movement helps you keep balance. To add more cardio and make it a tough workout, add a hop on one leg when you get back to the top.
Feet in TRX Bands (Atomic Push-Up)
Place your feet into the cradles. Apply downward pressure with the tops of your feet. Lie flat on your stomach and keep your hands flat on the ground, shoulder-width apart.
Press yourself upward until your elbows are extended. Stiffen your torso by contracting your abs, glutes and thighs. Keep your back straight and knees extended.
While maintaining a rigid torso, pull your knees to your chin, and release the crunch back to push-up position. Contract your glutes and quadriceps if you are unstable — TRX constantly challenges stability.
Feeling Like One of the Fittest
Alvers says that nutrition and exercise are equally important factors. So if exercise gives you energy, and nutrition contributes how you feel, wouldn’t you want both factors working in harmony for your greater good?
“The things you put in your mouth absolutely control your mood, energy and willingness to try new things,” she says. “It’s a whole mind-body connection. It’s all so interrelated.”
Other than physical activity and nutrition, it’s just as valuable to have an outlet that provides mental clarity. Everyone needs a healthy dose of inspiration. While on the road, Alvers likes to read sports biographies to keep her on a positive path.
“I always like hearing about others who have overcome obstacles, or found inspiration in unlikely avenues in life,” she says.
Feeling fit is the heart of this triad, and it provides the ultimate payoff. If you feel great, then nothing can hold you back. Alvers believes the word “fit” encompasses the whole triad: looking, being and feeling. When you wake up with energy and a positive outlook, nothing is standing between you and your dreams.
Special Thanks to Rae Cosmetics!