Sunday, July 23, 2017

ProCoach with Alaina Wood Fitness-Powered by Precision Nutrition

I have incredibly exciting news! This is especially poignant for those of you who live a little further away. I am now offering online nutrition coaching and training! This is unlike anything you have ever experienced before. This highly personalized, year-long program will guide you to not only reach, but to also maintain your health and wellness goals!
This is not another yo-yo diet. This is not a get fit quick scheme. This is a total lifestyle and life-long makeover.
As if this was not enough, this program has been proven to work by three peer-reviewed studies.

Get and stay healthy so that you can do more of what you love!

As a Precision Nutrition certified coach I have the training and knowledge to guide you through this incredible journey of discovering the best possible version of yourself.

More questions? What this inspirational video!

Below is a list of program options for you!

Here is the nitty gritty for all you lovers of details.

ProCoach is powered by Precision Nutrition. As a certified PN coach, I will be your guide/coach on this year-long journey. Each day you will receive an email from ProCoach. This email will inform you of your habit (each habit lasts two weeks) and give you lots of details as to why this habit is so important. You will have an opportunity each day to check in and mark if you have completed your habit or not. Talk about accountability!
If you choose the program that includes workouts you will also receive a daily workout. This workout will come in three options: Full Workout, Short Workout (for when you're short on time,) and At-Home Workout. The program is designed to match your specific needs, and the workouts are tailored to you. No matter what your goals are, Alaina Wood Fitness and ProCoach can help!

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Using Exercise to Manage Stress and Maintain Mental Health

Using Exercise to Manage Stress and Maintain Mental Health

 It seems like the world never slows down, especially when we are at our most busy or stressed.  As a result, mental illness and anxiety disorders are on the rise. (*You may be surprised to know that Utah is the state with the highest reports of mental illness with 22.3% of the adult population reporting some form of mental illness) 

How can we manage our stress and keep mental illness at bay? You may be surprised to learn that one of the answers is exercise.  Research shows that exercise not only keeps your body healthy, but can also help to keep your mind healthy and functioning at a higher level longer.

Cardiovascular exercise such as jogging, dancing, biking, gardening, and walking have been shown to reduce anxiety and depression. This is believed to be because of the increased blood flow to the brain.

Movement is also suggested to have an influence on hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, which controls our reaction to stress and many other body processes, such as digestion, motivation, mood, and sex drive. Exercise has also been found to alleviate symptoms of low self-esteem and social withdrawal.

Physical activity can also affect the number of new nerve cells we grow in a region of the hippocampus - an area of the brain involved in learning and memory.

So how do you apply this to your life?

  • Move more to reduce stress
    If you've had a rough day at the office or at home, hop on your bike or take an evening walk to find stress relief. Doing so boosts your body's ability to deal with existing mental tension.

  • Move more to find happiness
    Exercise releases endorphins, which create feelings of happiness and euphoria. Studies have shown that exercise can even alleviate symptoms among the clinically depressed and may be as effective as antidepressant medications. Talk with your physician about incorporating exercise into your mental health care plan.

  • Move more to remember more
    While exercise and a healthy diet can't "cure" Alzheimer's, they can help protect the brain against cognitive decline that begins after age 45. Moving more on a regular basis boosts the chemicals in the brain that support and prevent degeneration of the hippocampus, an important part of the brain for memory and learning.

  • Move more to boost your smarts
    Research shows that cardiovascular exercise can create new brain cells (neurogenesis) and improve overall brain performance. A challenging workout increases levels of a brain-derived protein (BDNF) in the body, believed to help with decision making and learning.

  • Move more to manage addiction
    The brain releases dopamine (referred to as the reward chemical) in response to any form of pleasure. Unfortunately, some people become addicted to dopamine and depend on the substances that produce it, like drugs or alcohol. But short exercise sessions can distract drug or alcohol addicts, making them de-prioritize cravings, at least in the short term. 

If you feel like you are at your mental breaking point just reach for your jogging shoes to help improve your mood and your mental health!


Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Fall Fitness Challenge

Are you looking to get back into shape, or want to maintain your summer body during the holidays? 

During this three month competition you will learn the skills you need to get into and maintain the best shape of your life!

What's Included:
  • Unlimited small group training (Classes will include weight training, TRX, Kettlebells, and Yoga)
  • Customized nutrition coaching geared to your body type
  • Spiral bound fitness and nutrition handbook 
  • Testing of REAL fitness metrics
    • Heart health
    • Muscle endurance
    • Strength
    • Body composition - just for fun :)
Cost: $125/month (total of $375)
Pay for all three months and save $5/month for a total of $360
Discount available for employees of Profire Energy

All training will take place at ProFire Energy in Lindon (unless otherwise specified)

Dates: October 3rd through December 20th, 2016

Prizes: The following prizes will be awarded to the top three finishers:

1st place finisher will win the grand prize of one free month of training (up to 3 sessions per week) with Alaina Wood Fitness (valued at $440)

2nd place finisher will win one free month of training (up to 2 sessions per week) with Alaina Wood Fitness (valued at $330).

3rd place finisher will win a 50% off discount valid for a training pack of their choice for one month.

Winners will be determined based on the following fitness metrics:
  • YMCA 3 minute step test (heart health)
  • One minute squat and push up test (endurance/strength)
  • Medicine ball throw test (strength)
  • Body composition (weight/body fat %)
  • Progress photos

Fine Print: Competition runs from October 3rd through December 20th (end date is flexible based on holiday schedules). Classes will be held outside of normal work hours (morning and evening) and be based on trainer availability as well as client needs. Clients will sign up for classes for the following week at the end of the previous week. Winner will be chosen based on percentage of improvement on all fitness tests as determined by Alaina Wood Fitness. Online training options available upon request.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

All About Food Prep

One of the best ways to ensure you eat healthy throughout the day is to plan ahead. From grocery
shopping to cooking protein in advance there are many little tricks that might just save you from that
“emergency” fast food run.

It can seem overwhelming to think about prepping snacks and meals for an entire week, but once we
break it down for you, you’ll see that putting in a little extra work in the beginning will actually save you time (and unhealthy food choices) in the long run.

So, where do we start?

In the home, of course! Sit down and plan out what you’d like to eat in the next week, you can be very specific, or make general meal plans. Once you have a basic menu prepared make a shopping list. Let’s keep our shopping lists very specific to avoid too much temptation once in the grocery store. Head out to the store of your choice, it might be good to make specific lists for specific stores if you’re going to multiple locations.

Once you hit the store(s) stick to the list, don’t be tempted by a sale on your favorite ice cream (don’t
even go down the ice cream isle) or get distracted by the baked goods. Stick to the list, that’s why we
made it. Once you’re home with your grocery loot, store it appropriately until you are ready for your
actual food prep ritual.

The next step is to choose how and when you are going to do your food prep; my personal favorite is
Food Prep Sunday. Sundays are often more relaxed and we are looking forward and planning for the
week ahead, if Tuesday works better for you do it on Tuesday.

Set aside 2-3 hours and get ready to clean, chop, cook, and package your food for the week. I like to
make a large helping of at least one meal item so that I can take it to work for lunches (my current
favorite is spaghetti squash in meat/spaghetti sauce) It’s also helpful to have snack, or single serving
sized bags of an easy to eat fruit or vegetables, I keep about 20 sandwich bags of carrots in my fridge at all times.

You can also use this time to pre-cook some meat, either broil, or slow cook some boneless skinless
chicken breasts and set them aside to be used in meals later during the week. It takes about the same
amount of time to cook one chicken breast as it does to cook six.

Wash, cut and store all of your newly purchased fruits and vegetables. You can even throw a slow cooker meal in a zip lock bag and freeze it for later use. The possibilities are nearly endless.

The best part? Only doing dishes ONCE!

If you are not a bulk cooker, you can do a simplified version of this by just cleaning and cutting the
veggies and fruits to have them prepared for later, and then do the majority of your cooking each day as you eat.

However you choose to do it, I cannot stress enough how much this pays off.
Just having a plan, and healthy food in the house will more than double your chances of success! Seriously.

A quick review
1: Plan a menu for the week
2: Create a shopping list bases on your menu
3: Head to the store and stick to the list
4: Store food until ready for your food prep ritual
5: Clean, cut, cook, and package food for the coming week
6: Take it easy the rest of the week because your food is already prepared

Here are a few ideas of foods you can prepare this weekend

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Freedom For All! Holiday Fundraiser

This year we are benefitting Operation Underground Railroad. This incredible organization works closely with the Elizabeth Smart Foundation, and travels around the world (and the US) rescuing children from slavery!. To find out more about OUR follow this link.

The incredibly talented StephAnn Knots has designed these killer t-shirts, being sold here. 
All of the proceeds will be donated to OUR!

If you would like to donate without purchasing a shirt you can donate online here. 

Friday, July 10, 2015

The Half Plate Challenge

Join us for the Half Plate Challenge by filling half of your plate with vegetables and fruits! Share your pictures on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook by using #halfplate
I will be sharing recipes through out the competition.

Date: July 13th-August 9th  

Rules: Whole foods only

Serving Size: Portions will vary from person to person
One serving is equivalent to the size of one fist, with the exception of leafy greens; one serving of leafy greens is equal to the size of two fists.

No Supplements such as greens plus or greens to go or any other fruit or vegetable based supplement, powders, or additives. Bars, fruit leather, fruit snacks, and other such processed foods will also not count.

Vegetable and Fruit juices are not eligible. However you can drink vegetable and/or fruit smoothies.  Juices are defined as liquid based drinks extracted from fruits and vegetables and exclude the peel and or seeds. An example would be V8 juice, Bolthouse, or any other variation made at home with a juicer.

Smoothies on the other hand include the peel and/or seeds and are generally made in a blender, and can be counted as fruit and vegetable servings.
Chips, fries, and potatoes in any form will not count as a vegetable serving.

The USDA's Dietary Guidelines recommend adults eat anywhere from 5 to 13 servings of fruits and vegetables per day depending on age, gender, physical activity, and overall health.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Quick Cardio Workout

It's winter, and I am beyond tired of the treadmill! I've started doing more of my cardio at my house, it's like a dream come true to not have to leave to comfort of my living room. I like to do a combination of strength and cardio to combine for fun intervals!  
Here is one of my most recent!
You will need a timer, or stop watch.

30 Seconds of Exercise, with only 3 seconds to transition. Repeat 3 times through!

Follow the links to the video and get your sweat on!

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Setting New Year's Resolutions that You Will Actually Keep

The New Year is upon us! Did you set any New Year’s resolutions? How about last year, did you set, and keep your New Year’s resolutions? We see it every year, the “resolutioners” in the gym, and at the health food stores excited about reaching their goals, “This is the year!” they say.  Then a month or two later they are gone.

Why is it so hard to reach our goals? Are we not motivated, or talented enough? Would we be able to reach our goals if we just worked a little harder, maybe if we just wanted it a little more?  Maybe we are not the problem, maybe it’s our goals.

We are going to talk about setting SMART goals, goals that we can actually reach.  Here are some basic steps. 

1:  “S” is for Specific.

Who? What? Where? When? Why?

We often set goals that are very vague. “I want to lose some weight”

Our goals need to be more specific, we should be able to answer the “W” questions, “Who, what, when, where, why” Instead of saying “I’d like to lose some weight” our goal can be  “I’m going to sign up for weight training classes at the local gym, and go three times a week to help build muscle and lose fat”   

This goal helps us reach the ultimate goal of “losing some weight” but is specific enough that we have an action plan.


2. “M” is for measurable

How will I measure progress? How many? How much?

Another problem with vague goals is that we have no bar set to know if we have met the goal. In our example above “lose some weight” there is no way to know if we have met or fell short of the goal, and therefore will never reach it. In the goal of going to weight training classes three time a week it is very easy to measure if we went three times in a week.

Setting shorter term deadlines can be very helpful in keeping goals. Going to the gym three times per week is much easier to track than going to the gym 156 times in the year, even though they balance out to the same amount of gym sessions. 

Remember, for a goal to be measured you will need numbers, days per week, pounds lost, dollars saved, etc.


3. “A” is for attainable

Can this really happen? Is it attainable with enough effort? What steps are involved?

Our goals should be realistic, setting a goal that is impossible to reach, or out of our control is setting us up for failure.  Goals such as winning the lottery, or growing six inches, are goals that are (for the most part) out of our control and unattainable.

When we set goals for ourselves we also need to be aware of our current status. If you’ve never exercised before it’s unlikely that you will be able to run an Iron man race by the end of the current month, it is however possible to train up to such a goal.

Set a goal that is realistic, and that you are willing to put in the effort to reach.

4. “R” is for relevant

How and why is this goal important to you? Does the goal reflect your values?

What is it that you really want in life, and does this goal help you get there?  If you want to be able to play with your grandkids, or walk up the stairs without being out a breath, then a fitness goal is in line with your ultimate goal.

 When we set goals that don’t line up with our values, or we don’t have any emotional investment in, there is very little chance that we will have the motivation to reach them.

5. “T” is for timely

 Can I set fixed deadlines? What are the deadlines?

We need to have a specific deadline for our goals. The original goal of going to the gym three times a week gives us the deadline of the end of the week. Having a short term deadline can help keep us from veering too far off course. For example if I miss one entire week, I now have the new week to re-set and get back on track, as opposed to missing a few months before I realize how far off track I am.

Setting a deadline is crucial for any goal; it helps keep us on track, and motivates us to push through when the going gets tough.


Specific:   Who? What? Where? When? Why?

Measurable:   How will I measure progress? How many? How much?

Attainable:   Can this really happen? Attainable with enough effort? What steps are involved?

Relevant:   How and why is this goal important to you? Does goal reflect your values?

Timely:   Can I set fixed deadlines? What are the deadlines?



Thursday, December 11, 2014

Tis the Season of Giving Update

Thank you for everybody who has donated already, and to those who are planning on donating. I have more information about the family and their needs, for those of you who are planning on donating gifts! We will be accepting new and gently used toys and clothes for the family, and any money donations will be given 100% to the family!

Family Needs (General):
  1.  Lamps, they have no lighting in their living room
  2. Grocery store gift cards (Smith's Wal-Mart, etc..)
  3. Size 2 Diapers for baby girl
  4. Bedding For Toddler Beds
  • Shirt Size XL
  • Loves board games
  • Shirt Size XL
  • Loves Board Games
3 Year Old Boy
  • Size 3T
  • Loves Action Figures, Legos, Plains, Trains, all things boy
  • Could use warm clothes for winter
2 Year Old Boy
  • Size 3T
  • Loves Action Figures, Legos, Plains, Trains, all things boy
  • Could use warm clothes for winter
Baby Girl
  • Size 6-9 months
  • Needs warm clothes for winter
  • Binkies (Soothie Brand)

Monday, December 8, 2014

Tis the Season of Giving

Thank you so much for all of your nominations. We recognize that there are many families in need, and wish we could do more to help all of them. While our Secret Santa will only go to one family we will be making a donation to ALL families nominated! 
Now we need your help to make Christmas extra special for a family in need.

I have great news! Another organization picked up this family for their Christmas fundraiser, so that opens us up to help another family!
 Aren't the holidays the best?!
The new family we will be helping is also in great need. The dad was laid off from his job, and has been searching for work. He was finally able to secure a job, but it does not cover the needs of his little family. They have three kids, ages listed below.
3 yr old boy
2 yr old boy
3 month old girl 
This is a family trying their best just to get by. Any donation will help, and 100% of donations will go to the family! 

We will be accepting unwrapped gifts as well as money donations. To donate money click on the link on the blog, or give it to me in person, to donate gifts you can give them to me personally, or at The Pit Elevated.

Please let me know if you have any questions! 

Thank you in advance for helping this wonderful family in need. 

 If you would like to donate to this family please specify on your donation.

This is a large family Mom, Dad, and SEVEN kids! Both parents are struggling to find employment, and working hard to keep food on the table and a roof over their heads. 
Since this is going to be a SECRET Santa style fundraiser I won't give too many details about the family, but here is some info. The kids, in order...

14 yr old girl
13 yr old boy
12 yr old girl 
10 yr old girl
9 yr old girl
1 yr old boy and girl 


50 Ways to Stay on Track this Holiday Season


Here are 50 tips to keep you on track during the holiday season from our friends over at Precision Nutrition
1. Keep your holiday meals to 1 plate of food instead of multiple plates of food....

2. Drink mostly water.

3. Make a small resolution every day, that I am 95% certain I can do.

4. Deeply enjoy your pumpkin pie! Don't feel guilty!! The whole guilt thing crushes people.

5. At your holiday party, try your best to strike up your conversations in the rooms with no food. Out of sight, out of mind. (And try to still find time to eat to 80% fullness )

6. Instead of buying more "stuff" for Christmas, invest in items or activities that will motivate you to continue to live a healthy lifestyle and involve your entire family.

7. Walk away from the buffet! Don't talk next to it, which encourages mindless grazing.

8. Note and name holiday stress.

9. I will strategically move inefficiently. No more trying to carry in 17 grocery bags with one trip. No more balancing 15 ingredients from refrigerator to countertop. I'm going to purposely force myself just to increase my general movement. This can also include things like intentionally parking further away.

10. Remember that people love me for me... not what I make, give, or do.

11. Across the holidays, I am going to pick one exercise I would like to master: wide grip pull-ups! I will do them as a challenge at home, or in the gym, or in a park, weather permitting on goalposts, depending on circumstance.

12. During the holiday I will talk to anyone that will listen to me, about my Precision Nutrition Coaching journey! Yep I will be that annoying guy who wont stop banging on about how great it is - it is for their own good, don't you know?!

13. Do some type of exercise 5 days a week, even if that is just chasing my kids!

14. I dedicate to at least go to and walk through my gym, even if I only intend to stay for 5 minutes.

15. Don't get out of your workout habits - get in a good workout the day of your feast.

16. Sing like no one can hear me, dance like no one can see me, and love like there is no tomorrow.

17. Remember food isn't the way to happiness.

18. Say grace to remind myself how blessed we are with food, farmers, grocery stores, chefs, and nutritionists. We are blessed to have such provision.

19. Give some really good food away this year to someone who needs it. Splurge for someone else in a lavish way.

20. Help my partner prepare the meals to insure the healthy items are a part of it!

21. Remember the clean slate rule. These are no "all or nothing" choices. Every day (or bite) is another opportunity to get back on track.

22. Find a recipe for one healthy dessert to make and bring to a party.

23. I am going to take some time out to reflect on the year that has gone by, the strides I have made, my Precision Nutrition Coaching journey. I will celebrate this success, and think about next year.

24. Across the holiday period, I will stay in touch with my support network. Often times holidays can involve breaking off communication/interaction and this may have led to poor decisions in the past.

25. Take an "accountability buddy" to food- or alcohol-oriented gatherings.

26. I will use visualization ahead of any gathering/situation that may involve temptation. This will help me plan ahead, prepare, and stop me from self sabotaging.

27. Expand your healthy culinary arsenal. Book a cooking class for a healthy cuisine that you like to eat but may not be the best at preparing.

28. Instead of making a bunch of holiday treats to give to friends and neighbors, which will fill your house full of stuff that likely won't contribute to your nutrition goals, do good deeds and acts of service instead as your Christmas gifts. Involve your children.

29. Invite friends or neighbors over for a holiday meal and prepare something that is healthy.

30. Have a healthy snack, Supershake or just some water before you even leave the house. Among other things, it'll also help you to focus on the people instead of the food.

31. I try to enjoy my holiday meals, I eat all the foods I always ate but I follow the key habits I've learned in PN Coaching. Eat to 80%, eat slowly and most importantly enjoy it and get back on track the next day. Oh and don't feel guilty.

32. Weather permitting, get outside for some fresh air. Exercise with a family member or friend, even if it is a casual walk around the neighborhood. It may even peak their interest in living a healthier lifestyle.

33. Do 5 minutes deep breathing, mind-body scan or meditation before sitting down to eat, leaving the house, etc...

34. Walk more. Skip the elevator, take the stairs. When you are out holiday shopping, walk to that next store on your list, you don't need to drive your car from one end of the parking lot to the other.

35. Remember those who don't have enough to eat. Intermittently throughout the holidays, buy some healthy food and bring it to your local food bank, soup kitchen, house of worship, etc. where the food will be distributed to those who need it. Keep this in mind when you are eating - not to feel guilty that you may have plenty when others don't, but to feel gratitude for knowing that even though you have plenty, you can eat purposely and mindfully.

36. Commit to 90% consistency. Stay in bounds for 90% of your meals and then relax for the other 10% (that's 3-5 meals per week for most of us).

37. Celebrate Old Years Resolutions! It was circa 1 year ago that I signed up for Precision Nutrition Coaching. This was a New years resolution at the time. It has been a huge success personally.

38. There are bound to be several desserts. Eat something else (non sweet) between tastes of each.

39. Ride your bike, jog or walk to the store. Plan accordingly, so you combine your errands with some exercise.

40. If it's not possible to get to a gym, I will move every day - go for a walk, run, etc. Just move around.

41. Schedule a few strict days into the calendar where you're super consistent with your nutrition.

42. Keep alcohol in check. Sub-optimal choices usually follow if you don't.

43. Learn what deeply motivates you and keep going back to that source. If you forget the "whys" the "hows" become lifeless.

44. In the same light, use various methods to provide and stay connected to your motivations: movies, music, images, quotes, people.

45. Expect setbacks, expect failure, expect disappointments, and formula a way to troubleshoot the problem, instead of responding emotionally. I ask: what is the problem? What is the solution? Who can help me find the solution?

46. Unhealthy comparison vs healthy comparison : I find that I compare myself and my results with other people. It can be very unmotivating. Instead I ask: what about that person can make me improve or inspire me?

47. Find ways to de-stress and renew without eating is huge for me. I put them in my schedule often!

48. Assume positive intent. Many people look forward to this time of year and more than one person at an event will see you not enjoying all of the food that will be on offer and try persuade you eat more. It could be that perhaps to them, gorging themselves on food is one of their measures of enjoyment. So don't judge them, shrug it off and just tell them you are genuinely having a great time without feeling the need to overindulge.

49. Snow shoveling! [enough said]

50. For me to indulge in a dessert, it has to be a 9 or a 10. A small portion, eaten slowly and mindfully, is a perfect balance for me.

ProCoach with Alaina Wood Fitness-Powered by Precision Nutrition

I have incredibly exciting news! This is especially poignant for those of you who live a little further away. I am now offering online ...