FitRec is going to increase the frequency of our “Trainer Tidbits” releases as we work to supply our members and online visitors with more content to get them through these days of working and living from our homes.  We hope that it will prove useful to you as we move forward together.  Our dedicated personal trainers will provide this page with useful tips, exercises, recipes and other information to help you and your loved ones stay healthy while staying at home.

April 24, 2020

Two-Ingredient Chocolate Cake Recipe

This Trainer Tidbit installment is brought to you by FitRec personal trainer Joshua Szopinski and meant to lift everyone’s spirits with a super-easy 2-ingredient chocolate cake. Because who really doesn’t need a little chocolate during this time!?

Looking for something  sweet but  do not have a lot of ingredients?  Check out this easy chocolate cake recipe that can help lift your spirits! My family came across this when we we’re looking for gluten-free options for desserts. There are a lot of different versions of this recipe, this one happens to be our favorite! It’s really easy to make and you most likely have everything already! Remember a little chocolate can be beneficial.  Recipe is available HERE


for 6 servings

  • 4 eggs, whites and yolks separated
  • 9 oz semi sweet chocolate
  • powdered sugar, to serve
  • vanilla ice cream, to serve
  • seasonal fruit, to serve
  1. Preheat the oven to 325˚F (170˚C).
  2. Place the chocolate in a microwave-safe bowl and melt completely, about 1 minute.
  3. Separate the egg yolks and egg whites. Using a hand mixer, whisk the whites until soft peaks form.
  4. Add the yolks, one by one, into the bowl of chocolate, whisking to combine.
  5. Using a rubber spatula, gently fold ⅓ of the whipped egg whites into the yolk and chocolate mixture. Repeat with the remaining egg whites, adding ⅓ at a time.
  6. Pour the batter in a greased 6-inch (15 cm) cake mold.
  7. Bake for 30 minutes.
  8. Once the cake is cool to the touch, gently invert it onto a plate.
  9. Optional: Sprinkle with powdered sugar, slice and serve top with ice cream. Serve with seasonal fruit.
  10. Enjoy!

April 21, 2020

The Benefits of Foam Rolling

10 minutes a day! THAT’S IT! It’s time set aside just for you…which seems to be easy on some of these long days at home and much harder on other days. Here is the thing… easy or hard… IT’S WORTH IT! What is it? Foam Rolling!

Foam rolling is a self-myofascial release (SMR) technique. It can help relieve muscle tightness, soreness, and inflammation, and increase your joint range of motion. Foam rolling can be an effective tool to add to your warm-up or cool down, before and after exercise! I’m going to share with you some of my favorite exercises to do on the foam roller!

If you found them to be beneficial, that’s awesome! I encourage you to follow the link at the end to check out the full article, I found that it goes into a little more depth about the topic and provides a lot of exercises!  ~Anna-Marie Forbes – FitRec Personal Trainer

Directions: Roll over each body part with the foam roller about 5 to 10 times. If you feel a spot that is kinda intense, try this: Start below that area, and slowly work up to it. While you’re at it gently hold for a few seconds the intensity should lighten up!

Start with the foam roller underneath the left ankle, make sure you’re seated with your right ankle crossed over left. Arms are supporting you from behind. Lift up your hips to roll up and down the calf slowly.

Rotate your left leg slightly to the left and right 5-10 times with the roller below the middle of your calf. Repeat on the right leg.

Shin (Tibialis Anterior)
Start on all fours, wrists below shoulders, and knees below hips with the roller placed below the left knee. Roll up and down left shin 5 – 10 times by slightly pulsing off the other foot. Then slightly pivot your hips to the right and left while rolling at the same time. Repeat on the right leg.

IT Band (Iliotibial Band)
Lie on your left side with the roller placed alongside the outer left thigh. Cross your right leg over the left leg. Support your upper body with your left forearm. Roll 5-10 times. Move up and down on the outer part of the thigh and alongside the hip and knee. Shake out your leg and repeat on the other leg.

Hamstrings (Biceps Femoris)
While seated, place your arms behind you so they support you during this exercise. Position the foam roller just under the left glute and roll up and down over the upper portion of the hamstring 5-10 times. Repeat on the right leg.

Deep Hip (Piriformis)
(This looks similar to the previous exercise but we are at an angle on this one) Sit on the foam roller with weight shifted to the left. Arms are again behind you to support you. Roll the left glute, by aiming just under your hip bone 5-10 times, then draw your left knee to your chest and extend it about 5-10 times. Repeat on the right hip.

How did that feel? If you do this frequently you will start to notice the benefits of foam rolling! It can be hard at first but if you continue to use the foam roller I know you’ll start to like it too!

Check out this link to learn a little more about foam rolling. Click here for a printable PDF with illustrations for each area of the body.

April 17, 2020

Mobility for the Spine!

Mobility of the thoracic spine is an important part of human movement. It is important to strengthen the muscles that influence the movement of the spine and by doing so can help prevent injuries as well. Believe it or not, both athletic and everyday activities involve movement and strength from the thoracic region. These exercises from ACE can be done at home and safely increase mobility of the spine. Keep checking in with our Trainer Tidbit series for other exercises, recipes, and more! ~ FitRec Personal Trainer Jay Guerrero

For the following exercises, you can do this as repetitions (10-12 reps on each side) or you can use time (20-30 seconds on each side). You may choose to focus on one side at a time (Completing all the exercises on one side than restarting on the other) or you can also alternate, switching sides after each set!  For a printable PDF of these exercises with illustrations, click HERE

  • STANDING REACH AND PULLS – Take your right foot and step behind you, make sure you are standing on the ball of the right foot. Bend the right elbow at 90-degrees and keep the left arm straight, fingers pointing to the floor. Bring the right arm overhead while tilting the spine toward the left side, feel the stretch on the right side of the body. Continue these steps when switching to the left side.
  • STANDING ROTATION – Take your right foot and step behind you, make sure you are standing on the ball of the right foot. Bring the right arm towards the ceiling (keeping a soft bend at the elbow) and lengthen the left arm down so that your fingers point toward the floor. Rotate towards the left inner thigh and extend your arms — pretend that your fingertips are trying to reach higher and lower with each repetition. As the right arm reaches, you may notice a slight stretch in the spine. Return to starting position and start again.
  • RUNNER’S LUNGE WITH ROTATION – Get into a runner’s lunge position, with the right leg behind you, and the left ankle is under your knee. Place your hands on each side of the front foot.(If you would like to make this a little bit easier try bringing your right knee down the floor) Bring the left arm overhead while rotating your chest towards the left inner thigh. Repeat on the opposite side.
  • SIDE LUNGE WITH TORSO ROTATION – Stand tall and step with the left leg into a side lunge position. Take your right hand and bring it towards the left calf and rotate your torso slightly toward the inner thigh. Step back to the starting position and continue the same steps on the left leg.
  • STANDING ROTATION (Advanced) – Take a step with the right foot behind and remain on the ball of the right foot. Bend the right elbow about 90 degrees and bring the hand in front of the chest, making sure the palm is facing the floor. Bend the left elbow at 90-degrees with the fingers facing upward and palm facing forward. Rotate towards the left inner thigh while at the same time extending both arms (the right arm reaches across the body and the left arm lifts overhead). The rotation and arm movement cause slight lateral flexion toward the right. Return to the center and continue this motion. Repeat on the opposite side.
  • QUADRUPED ROTATION – Start on all fours, with knees about hip-distance apart and the hands about shoulder-width apart. Place the right hand on the back of the head, with the arm and chest facing the floor. Rotate away from the body as the elbow reaches towards the ceiling. Return to the starting position. Continue this motion and then switch sides.

April 14, 2020

FitRec Personal Trainer Andrea Grimes just made this chili the other day and she absolutely loved it, so she decided to share the recipe as a “Trainer Tidbit!” It is a meatless chili and it makes a lot, so it could feed the whole family! Prepping this chili is also super easy and all the ingredients are healthy! It’s a win-win!  Hope you enjoy it!  For a printable version of this recipe, please click HERE.

Homemade Vegetarian Chili

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium red onion, chopped
  • 1 large red bell pepper, chopped
  • 2 medium carrots, chopped
  • 2 ribs celery, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon salt, divided
  • 4 cloves garlic, pressed or minced
  • 2 tablespoons chili powder*
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 ½ teaspoons smoked paprika*
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 2 cups vegetable broth or water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 can (15 ounces) pinto beans, rinsed and drained
  • 2 cans (15 ounces each) black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 large can (28 ounces) or 2 small cans (15 ounces each) diced tomatoes, with their juices
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, plus more for garnishing
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar or lime juice, to taste
  • Garnishes: chopped cilantro, sliced avocado, tortilla chips, sour cream, grated cheddar cheese, etc.
  1. In a large Dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot, put over medium heat and warm the olive oil until it starts simmering. Add the chopped onion, bell pepper, carrot, celery and 1/4 teaspoon of the salt. Stir to combine and cook while stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender and the onion is translucent. It should take about 7 to 10 minutes.
  2. Add the garlic, chili powder, cumin, smoked paprika and oregano. Cook until fragrant while stirring constantly, about another minute.
  3. Add the diced tomatoes with their juices, the drained black beans and pinto beans, vegetable broth and the bay leaf. Stir to combine and let the mixture come to a simmer. Continue cooking, stirring occasionally and reducing heat as necessary to maintain a gentle simmer, do this for about 30 minutes.
  4. Remove the chili from the heat and discard the bay leaf. For the best texture and flavor, transfer 1 + 1/2 cups of the chili to a blender, making sure to get some of the liquid as well. Securely fasten the lid and blend until smooth (watch out for the steam), then pour the blended mixture back into the pot. (Or, you can blend the chili briefly with an immersion blender, or mash the chili with a potato masher until it reaches a thicker, more chili-like consistency.)
  5. Add the chopped cilantro, stir to combine, and then mix in the vinegar, to taste. Add salt to taste. Divide the mixture into individual bowls and serve with garnishes of your choice. This chili will keep well in the refrigerator for about 4 days or you can freeze it for longer-term storage.

I even enjoy eating this as leftovers. It’s so good! Recipe makes about 4 large or 6 moderate servings of chili.  Let me know what you think of this chili recipe! Also let me know if you changed anything or added something, I’m always looking at ways to change recipes! This recipe was found HERE so please take a look at the link for more wonderful recipes just like this.

April 9, 2020

This “Trainer Tidbit” is brought to you by FitRec Personal Trainer Melvin Germino.  He would like to show you some ways to be creative with your workout around the house since most gyms are closed due to the pandemic. Also, HERE is a printable PDF of some of his ideas with illustrations.

At some points in our lives, it may be difficult to workout due to a lack of equipment. There are other factors, such as traveling, limited space, injuries or a pandemic (that causes nearly all gyms to close) that should also be taken into account when your goal is to continue with your training!

However, during times like these, it is important to still keep on track with our health goals. Our fitness goals are not stopped just because the gym is closed; it just requires us to adapt and be more creative!

Of course, there is classical calisthenics (also known as bodyweight) exercises right at our disposal! Some bodyweight exercises that have stood the test of time are: pull-ups, push-ups, squats, lunges, and jumping jacks. However, some of these exercises can benefit from some variance. Below are some more ways to make these classic bodyweight exercises harder and you most likely have some of these in your own home!

Increased ROM (Range of Motion) push-ups:  No expensive equipment required! You can use your old college textbooks! The concept is to increase the range of motion by elevating you’re positioning slightly.

Also, something to consider is using items around your house as weights! An example here is using water bottles, but honestly, a lot of household items can be used. Look around and get a little creative! You might be surprised at what can be used!

If you have a home gym, something you might want to consider is buying gymnastic rings. They are very cheap and a great tool for you to use for your home workouts! These can help build strength, especially with the core! L-sit pull-ups are just a few of the many exercises you can incorporate with the gymnastic rings. If you’re just starting out with your exercise routine or a seasoned veteran to fitness, adding these can be beneficial!

Add a little more pop to your routine! Turn regular lunges into jumping lunges or do jumping jacks but jump as high as you can! Even changing up your normal exercises slightly will have a profound effect on your training!

Take a look around your home; there may be some surprising items in your kitchen or maybe even your garage that can help your workout. An example of an everyday item is using a step stool to do a step routine. Stand the step towards the side. Carefully step up and down from the stool! Add your kick if possible or even alternate your feet! Use this as a way to kick up your at-home cardio!

These are just a few ideas to get you started so you can adjust your fitness routine! All that is needed is a little creativity and you will be able to get a sufficient workout at home/on the go! Don’t forget to keep checking back to our Trainer Tidbit for more recipes, workouts, and more!

April 6, 2020

Get Moving!

Instead of skipping exercise altogether, take just 10 minutes of your day to do an effective workout! Truth is you can get a great workout in a short amount of time! Try this 10-minute workout that requires no equipment! Also, stay tuned for other upcoming Trainer Tidbits!  ~ Compliments of Viviana Gamboa – FitRec Personal Trainer

Start your timer and try to complete as many rounds on your circuit as possible without resting! If you would like a printable PDF of the workout below with illustrations, click HERE.

Reverse lunges – 5 reps per side – Reverse lunges help strengthen your thighs and hips they’re simple and target legs for balance and stability.

Directions: Stand with feet hip-width apart. Take a long step back and bend your knee to the floor, while softening the knee in front, you should have a 90° bend in both legs. Pull yourself back up with your forward leg while pushing off of the back leg.

Push-ups – 10 reps – This is a great exercise for your upper body! It works on a lot of areas such as the chest, shoulders, arms, and abs! This helps make them all stronger!

Directions: Get in a push-up position with hands about shoulder-width apart. Keep your lower back flat and don’t let your hips sag! Lower yourself and keep elbows close to your body as you descend. The chest should hover just above the floor! You can also modify this by letting your knees touch the floor to make it a little easier!

Hip Bridge – 10 reps – This is a simple and great way to strengthen your glutes!

Directions: Lie on the floor with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Drive through your heels and squeeze your glutes, trying to push your hips up. Do not use your lower back to push yourself up. Hold for a second and return to the starting position by lowering yourself back to the floor.

Mountain climbers – 30 seconds – Spike your heart rate! Burn some extra calories with this great cardio exercise!

Directions: Get into a push-up position, making sure your knees are in line with your hip and back. Run as fast as you can by driving one knee up to your chest, lower and switch so that you are constantly alternating between the two sides. Watch to make sure your hips don’t rise! Keep them at the same height you started at! Make sure to keep breathing during this exercise! You can also substitute for jogging in place or jumping jacks!

Did you finish and have time left? Start the routine over again!

April 2, 2020


Check out these awesome and easy recipes for dressings from FitRec Personal Trainer Anna-Marie Forbes.  Add some color to your dishes in a healthy way with one of the three dressings that she provides the recipes for below.  Click HERE for a printable version of all three recipes with illustrations.

Simple ingredients come together to create yummy dressings! Pour generously over greens or protein of choice! Drizzle over soup or just about anything on your plate! Grab a spoon or small cup and you just might find yourself drinking these saucy sauces! I found these recipes and they became a hit with my family! Let me know which one is your favorite!

Simple Asian Salad Dressing

  • 1/2 cup of oil (peanut, canola or vegetable)
  • 1/4 cup of soy sauce
  • 1/3 cup of rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp of sesame oil
  • 1-2 tbsp fresh ginger (I don’t always have fresh on hand, so regular works too!)
  • 1 tsp of garlic (I used minced garlic cloves about 2-3)
  • 1 tbsp of sesame seeds (lightly toasted)

Directions: Mix Together! (Seriously it is that easy!)

Simple Italian Dressing

  • 3/4 cup of oil (olive, extra virgin, vegetable, or canola)
  • 1/4 vinegar (red wine, white wine, apple cider, balsamic)
  • 1 tsp of dried or fresh garlic (Again I use minced garlic cloves)
  • 1 tsp of dried oregano – 1 tsp of dried basil
  • Seasoning to taste (red pepper, onion powder, salt, pepper, etc.)

Directions: Mix together! Note: If the ingredients used do not need to be refrigerated, you can keep the dressing on the counter for a few weeks.

Basic Balsamic Dressing

  • 1/2 cup of olive oil (regular or extra-virgin)
  • 1/2 cup of balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp dried or fresh garlic
  • 1 tsp of mustard (dried, Dijon, honey, or regular)
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Directions: Mix all ingredients together! Note: You can puree fresh strawberries or raspberries and add it to this on your next salad!

March 30, 2020

Looking to get a good stretch in after your workout? Try these exercises out from FitRec personal trainer Joshua Szopinski. They give a deep stretch and just make your body overall happy to go through a full range of motion! All you need is a yoga strap or even a belt! It’s really that easy! You can even do this with the kids! Perform each exercise 2-3 times and hold each stretch between 15-30 seconds!

Click HERE for a printable PDF of each stretch with illustrations.

Click HERE for a printable PDF of the Workout Quickie for these stretches.

Shoulder Mobility (Also stretches the chest):
By holding your yoga strap or belt with both hands. Bring the strap to about chest height with your arms directly in front of you. Slowly raise your arms over your head and start to slowly bring them behind you. (adjust your arms accordingly)

Finish: While your arms are moving towards your back, try to go as far as letting the strap touch the back of your hip. Slowly bring the strap forward returning to the starting position. Breath throughout the whole stretch. NOTE: if you feel extreme tightness try to release some tension in the strap. If that doesn’t help, hold at the position where you feel the most discomfort (for a few seconds) and then slowly bring the strap back forward. Try again but this time try to get a little bit deeper into the stretch!

Tricep Stretch:
Hold the yoga strap with your right hand, rolling it up to adjust it to the desired length. Left-hand reaches behind your back to hang on to the opposite end of the strap. For more te

Finish: With the left hand gently pull down on the strap so that the right arm feels some tension in the tricep area. Your right elbow should be bent and the hand should be behind your head slightly. Hold for a few seconds and continue to take deep breaths. Release the strap with the left hand and let the right arm rise. Switch sides.

Lateral Stretch/Half-Moon Pose:
Holding the strap with both hands, lift your hands above your head, and bend from the arms (Almost like a half-circle). Stand up straight and engage your core. Take a breath and slowly tilt to the left side maintaining the bend in the arms. With the left hand slightly pull down on the strap giving the right side a deeper stretch. Hold for a moment.

Finish: Slowly lift yourself back into standing position, maintain the bend in the arms. Once you reach the top, take another breathe and start to tilt to the right side. Repeat the process.

Big Toe Pose:
Either lying on the floor or on a bed/ bench, put the yoga strap on the arch of your right foot. Slowly lower yourself down so that you can press your back into the floor/bed/ bench. Holding onto the straps with both hands slowly pull on up, moving your foot so it is around the hip level or to a comfortable level. Move your hands accordingly on the strap to apply tension. Hold for about 15-30 seconds and while taking breathes as you hold.

Finish: Slowly lower your foot down to the floor. Take the strap off of the right foot and switch sides. Repeat the process. Note: Your head should be on the floor when you are lifting your foot up. This is to make sure there is no pain in the back or neck.

Full Spinal Twist with Yoga Strap:
Start: Begin by lying on a flat surface (floor or bed). Bring the yoga strap onto the arch of your foot. Slowly raise the foot up to hip level while lowering your upper body to the floor. Hold both ends of the strap with the opposite hand of the foot the strap is on. (ex: left foot = right-hand holds the yoga strap).

Finish: Slowly and comfortably lower your foot to the side that is hanging onto the yoga strap, attempting to bring your foot to the floor or until you feel a slight discomfort. With the arm that is free, reach out behind you. This adds a little stretch to the back as well as the hips. Take a few deeps breaths while holding for 15-30 seconds. When finished slowly bring your foot back to the starting position and jump to the Hip Openers below!

Hip Openers/Abduction Stretch:
While the yoga strap is still on the arch of the foot and at hip level, keep your chest towards the ceiling for this stretch. Hold both ends of the strap with the hand closest to the raised foot. Slowly lower yourself towards the side, bringing the foot closer to the floor. Stop when you feel slight discomfort or when you are able to touch the floor. hold for 15-30 seconds taking deep breathes as you go.

Finish: With the hand holding onto the yoga straps, slowly lift your foot back into the starting position. Switch feet and repeat, starting back to the Full Spinal Twist with Yoga Strap.

Remember to keep breathing when you are doing these stretches as it will help your body relax, helping you get a deeper stretch! Keep in touch with our social media for all the latest tidbits!  ~ Joshua Szopinski – FitRec Personal Trainer

March 25, 2020

FitRec Personal Trainer Andrea Grimes has a quick workout for you to try to help you work on your lower body.  Incorporate this workout once or twice into your weekly routine and it will help improve your overall fitness and boost your metabolism.  Use the PDF links below to print out the workout for easy reference.  Good luck! 

Dread Leg Day No More!

Working on your lower body will help you develop and maintain strong quads, glutes, hamstrings, and calves – some of the biggest muscles in the body! It’s recommended to dedicate 1-2 days a week to strengthen your lower body.  Here is a printable PDF listing the benefits of these exercises below.

Benefits of Training Your Lower Body:

• You will improve your overall fitness. Most sports rely on power generated by your lower body.
• You will run better:  lower body strength can help you run longer and faster.
• You can boost your metabolism: Lower body training requires your body to work harder, which revs up your metabolism. This is even more effective than any cardiovascular exercising.
• Improve bone health: Bone joints, particularly in your legs, start to deteriorate as we get older. Regular strength training will help maintain strong bones and aid in preventing conditions such as arthritis and osteoporosis. Leg presses, calf raises and deadlifts are all great for building bone strength.

These exercises are easy to modify with the weight you have around your house! Take a look at the following steps for the exercises and you can also print out the last page to get the workout quickie!

Workout Quickie:

Do 3 sets of each exercise. 12-15 reps (tip: if you can’t do 12 reps, you’re lifting too heavy, if you can do more than 20, you’re lifting too light). The weight for these exercises can be modified with anything you have around the house. Grab a water bottle, bag of flour, some old school textbooks, etc. Get creative, so you can stay active!

  • Sumo Squat
  • Walking Lunges
  • Romanian Deadlift
  • Bulgarian Split Squat

It’s recommended to dedicate 1-2 days a week to strengthen your lower body! Want to kick it up a notch? Add 30 seconds of cardio in between each set. This can be jogging/walking in place, jumping jacks, etc. This will get your heart pumping even more! Keep checking in with our social media for more workouts, recipes and other health information!

This printable PDF will give you a quick checklist of all the exercises in this tidbit! Stay healthy and let me know what you think of this workout!

~ Andrea Grimes – Fitrec Personal Trainer
P.S. Don’t forget to stretch after your lower body workout!

March 20, 2020

This installment comes from FitRec Personal Trainer Jay Guerrero.  Jay wants to pass along a couple of his favorite recipes for adding some color and health value to a dish.  Try this at home and enjoy!

Looking to add an abundance of colorful vegetables to a dish? This is a favorite dish that I came across one day. The lemon tahini sauce really boosts the flavor of the dish and the rice makes it a hearty meal. As a bonus, this doesn’t take a long time to make and uses many everyday ingredients. There might be a few ingredients that are not familiar to you, but they can add some extra zing to your dishes. Give it a try! – Jay Guerrero

Here is a printable PDF with both recipes below.

Yellow Rice Bowls With Broccoli and Kale

A Nutritious recipe with colorful vegetables and plenty of flavor!

  • 1 cup short grain brown rice* (try using our Instant Pot method)
  • 1 ½ teaspoons Simply Organic turmeric
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • Best Lemon Tahini Sauce
  • 3 carrots
  • 4 cups broccoli florets
  • 4 green onions
  • 1/2 bunch kale (3 large leaves)
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 15-ounce can chickpeas
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  1. In a medium saucepan, stir together the short grain brown rice, 2 cups water, turmeric and kosher salt bring to a boil. Cover and reduce heat to a low simmer; cook for 45 minutes. Remove from heat and keep covered to steam for 10 minutes. (After boiling, the yellow rice can leave a residue on the inside of the saucepan. Simply wash your pan in hot water and rub it with a rag, and the residue will come right off.)
  2. Make the Best Lemon Tahini Sauce. (Shared Below)
  3. Peel and slice the carrots. Cut broccoli into florets. Thinly slice the green onions; reserve 2 for a garnish. Chop the kale. Peel the garlic. Drain and rinse the chickpeas.
  4. In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil with the whole cloves garlic. Add the carrots and saute for 3 minutes, stirring often, then add broccoli and 2 green onions and saute for 3 minutes. Add the kale and ¼ cup water and saute for 2 minutes, stirring, until bright green and wilted. Add 1 pinch kosher salt, chickpeas and 2 tablespoons soy sauce and cook for 2 minutes more, stirring frequently. Remove from the heat and remove the garlic cloves.
  5. To serve, place vegetables and rice in a bowl and top with green onions and lemon tahini sauce.

Best Lemon Tahini Sauce

  • 1/3 cup tahini
  • 1/3 cup fresh lemon juice (2 small or 1 1/2 large lemons)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon maple syrup (Can substitute with honey)
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons water
  1. In a small bowl, combine the tahini, lemon juice, olive oil, maple syrup (or substitute honey), and kosher salt and whisk to combine.
  2. Add the water and whisk until a creamy dressing forms; you may need to add a bit more depending on the consistency of your tahini.

Serve immediately or refrigerate and bring to room temperature before serving. Extra dressing keeps for about 1 month in a sealed container in the refrigerator.

March 13, 2020

The latest installment of Trainer Tidbits is brought to you by FitRec Personal Trainer, Viviana Gamboa. Viviana discusses in detail one of the most popular question she gets asked from her personal training clients.  Check out her valuable information below.

Let’s Talk!

By talk, I mean let’s talk about lower body fat, as it is a very popular question that a lot of personal trainers are asked!  How do I lose the “Belly Fat” and get abs? Truthfully, we already have abs they’re just hiding under some “fluffy stuff.” For some people, you can lose fat, but what is more important for everyone is to make sure you are building a strong core! It can start off really easy! Actively use those muscles in your movements! Stop sitting, move around more, and challenge yourself to do more!

You can do this! I know you can! Check out my tidbit below. It really is a great way to get started. But also don’t forget to sign up with a FitRec Personal Trainer today!

As a personal trainer, there are a few questions that I seem to be asked pretty frequently. One of those questions is “How do I lose the lower body fat?”. It’s a common question but also a question that has multiple answers. First, everyone’s body stores fat differently, a common area is for the body to store it in the lower belly area. But many factors can contribute to the increase in fat. Some factors you can control are things such as your lifestyle choices and your diet. Exercising and healthy eating choices can definitely help! Factors you can’t control are things such as your genetics. But also there is no such thing as what we call “Spot Treating” which is where someone only does exercises for that area. An example is doing a lot of core exercises for that “6-pack abs.”

Honestly, patience is the key! Signing up with a Personal Trainer to help you get started on your goals is a great idea! They will be able to give you information or tips that may help you on your journey! In the meantime, here are a few exercises that I recommend to my clients to help them build core strength! Let me know what you think!

Strengthening The Lower Abdominals ~ 5 simple exercises to strengthen the core!
By FitRec Personal Trainer Viviana Gamboa

There is one question that almost every single trainer is asked! There are a few things to cover first! Please note a few things while performing any of the suggested exercises! Your back should always be supported, this means sitting on your hands or arms at your side – whichever provides more support! Your glutes should continue to stay on the floor, again this is to make sure you do not hurt your back area! When performing the exercises we will be doing 3 sets of 15 reps! This will help build up the endurance in the core!

Leg Lifts:

Start: Lie flat on your back (make sure your back is pressing onto the floor) stretch your legs out in front of you. Bring your hands down flat on the floor by your side with palms facing down. Lift your legs until they are perpendicular to the floor.

Finish: Slowly lower your legs back down to the start position while also keeping your back flat against the floor.

Reverse Twists / Reverse Crunch:

Start: Either sit on your hands or bring your arms to your sides. Bring your legs up until they form a 90° angle.

Finish: Pull your knees in towards your chest maintaining that 90° bend. Hold for a moment then slowly lower to the starting position, letting your heels touch the floor.

Alternating Leg Lifts:

Start: Similar to the previous exercise. Instead, you will lift only one leg up – no further than 90°/ perpendicular to the floor. Again, make sure your back is pressed onto the floor for the duration.

Finish: Lower the raised leg slowly back down while lifting the opposite leg up. Continue switching between the two legs.


Start: Bring a bent knee directly over a hip, while the other leg is stretched forward. Bring the opposite elbow towards the knee that is bent.

Finish: Go through a bicycle motion with your legs – alternating between the legs and making sure the opposite elbow touches the knee. (right knee to left elbow and vice-versa).

Scissor Kicks:

Start: Lie on a mat and make sure your back is supported. Bring one leg up to a 45-degree angle and then slowly bring your other leg up. Bringing the legs together.

Finish: While the one leg is being raised, lower the other leg at the same time, creating a scissor-like motion between your legs. Make sure your head also stays on the floor to make sure you are not hyper-extending your back!

Workout Quickie – 3 sets of 15 repetitions

  • Reverse Twists / Reverse Crunches
  • Leg Lifts
  • Alternating Leg Lifts
  • Bicycles
  • Scissor Kicks