Updated: Jun 27
Happy New Year! We’re kicking off a new decade and I personally feel like that means BIG things should be going down in 2020. Everyone knows that the start of the new year is when resolutions are made and working out and making better food choices are high priorities. I want to share my favorite things with you that I consider to be essential to this process. These are all things that I personally use myself and recommend to all my clients. I want to set you up for maximum success and the ability to reach all your goals. So here you go!
#1 Cobra Grips for Women
I consider these absolutely essential to maximize gains – especially for lat pulldowns, pull ups, deadlifts, and rows. When I started using these, my weight went up at least 15 additional pounds on all these lifts! Before I started using them my grip would fail before my muscles would, and therefore I would have to stop lifting and take a break. Don’t let your gains be sacrificed! I also recommend them for anyone with carpal tunnel or issues with their wrists.
#2 Sweet Sweat Waist Trimmer Belt
I wear this for every cardio session and sometimes also for weightlifting sessions. The belt is made of neoprene and does not provide support for your back in the way a weight training belt would. It simply amplifies the sweat factor during exercise by increasing your core temperature and improving thermogenic activity. You will definitely notice a huge difference in how much sweat you produce when using this! No, it's not a magic solution to a six-pack, but when used in combination with consistent training and solid nutrition program you will notice a difference in the appearance of your skin and abdominal muscles as you reduce your body fat.
#3 Sweet Sweat Workout Enhancer Roll-On Stick
Used in combination with the Sweet Sweat belt, it really increases the sweat factor! Sweat harder and sweat sooner in your workouts. You have to try it for yourself!
PS-It has a clean fresh scent.
It also comes in a delicious smelling coconut version!
Same great sweat factor.
#4 Dre Beats Solo Pro Wireless Noise-Cancelling Headphones
I love these headphones for the ability to turn on the noise cancelling option (which actively blocks external noise) or the transparency option (which allows environmental and ambient noise to be filtered in so you are able to be more aware of your surroundings). In certain situations that is extremely helpful!
Fast Fuel provides 3 hours of playback from a 10-minute charge when battery is low - which is amazing! The absolute worst thing is discovering your headphones are dead once you get to the gym!
And of course, you get the superior sound typical of all Dre Beats headphones. I love loud music & bass in the gym to help motivate me during workouts, and these do the trick!
#5 Barbell Pad
A MUST if you don't have a Nautilaus glute drive machine and need to do hip thrusts using a smith machine or squat bar. It will be so much easier to go up in weight if you don’t have a hard bar bruising your hipbones! And we all know to grow the glutes you need to maximally stimulate the muscles with heavy weight!
This one is preferred because of the thickness and density, the notch for your neck (if you're using it for squats), and the velcro straps that keep it from moving or spinning while you're using it. Give it a try and don't be afraid to GO HEAVY!
Another plus is not having to use the old gross ones you usually have to scavenge for at gyms!
#6 Booty Builder Adjustable Hip Band
I love hip bands for their ability to provide an awesome glute workout. Especially while travelling, these can come in really handy! I always include them in my clients' travel workout programming.
Fabric bands provide much more resistance than latex bands and do not slip or roll. As an added bonus this one is adjustable, so you can increase or decrease the difficulty as needed. It's well worth the slightly higher price for this feature! I use mine several times a week for glute hip bridges, single leg bridges, hip thrusts, donkey kicks, lateral band walks, and hip abduction. Here's a tip: Try using it for dumbbell stiff legged deadlifts or romanian deadlifts to increase glute activation!
#7 Booty Builder Exercise Bands
🍑There is a difference in rubber quality and not all exercise bands are created equally! Beware of cheaper bands that will roll up and stretch out over time - thus losing their resistance and becoming ineffective. Booty Builder bands are used in commercial gym classes and use only the best rubber that wont lose its resistance or rollover on itself after minimal use. That's why I love them!
🍑Different strength levels: You can pick the color most suited to your strength level! YELLOW is EXTRA-LIGHT, PINK is LIGHT, PURPLE is MEDIUM, and GREEN is HEAVY. Find your perfect match so you can focus on what matters - making the most of every workout! Progress from yellow to green as you get stronger!
🍑Resistance levels: YELLOW = 15.5-20lbs / PINK = 24-28.5lbs / PURPLE = 33-37.5lbs / GREEN = 40-44lbs
#8 Foam Roller & Rumble Roller
Foam rolling is great for SORENESS & PAIN RELIEF.
Myofascial release helps to increase blood circulation and reduce muscle soreness for faster recovery after training.
Foam rollers come in varying degrees of density. If you are new to foam rolling you may want to start with one that isn’t as dense (usually blue is a beginner level). I have worked myself up to using the most dense one which is black.
Firm pressure releases painful trigger points like back, calves, legs, glutes. I chose this one because the sturdy, high density foam holds its shape for long-term use and effective deep-tissue massage and comes in four versatile sizes - 12x6, 18x6, 24x6, 36x6 for your various needs. This one also has a lifetime warranty!
I also have a RumbleRoller that I use when I want a more intense session. Owning a RumbleRoller is like having your very own massage therapist on call 24-7. It massages more deeply than any other foam roller, to help you build flexibility, mobility, and strength with its sturdy, textured pattern of bumps. These specially-designed nodules are firm but flexible, making them remarkably similar to a massage therapist's thumbs. You’ll feel the difference immediately, trust me! When used correctly, the RumbleRoller’s foam rolling gently stretches sore muscle tissue in multiple directions, eroding trigger points and relieving discomfort. This is what I use for my piriformis especially - because no other foam roller will be able to get deep enough for relief. The deep massage of the RumbleRoller not only relieves sore muscles, it digs into connective tissue and fascia to help circulate blood and oxygen for pain relief and faster muscle recovery. You’ll not only feel physically stronger and more healthy, but you’ll also feel more relaxed and stress free - there’s no other foam rolling experience like it!
Enhance your performance in any activity by releasing muscle tightness, easing connective tissue tension, and increasing general flexibility with the RumbleRoller. Use it before a workout or competition to loosen muscles, prevent injury and improve mobility. Then use it afterwards, to reduce muscle soreness speed your recovery! RumbleRoller is the brand used by athletes and trainers because of its reliable performance and unwavering quality. The RumbleRoller foam muscle roller is built from durable materials designed to outlast any other foam roller, and is backed by a three-year warranty.
#9 Lacrosse ball
Another one of my trusty go-to devices that I always have in my gym bag and travel with. You can use this handy little ball for myofascial release to help break up adhesions, reduce pain, and increase range of motion.
I have used it for plantar fascitis, posterior shoulder release, upper traps and scalenes (this is my godsend for this area - especially since I have a neck injury and live in pain almost daily), and piriformis. If you'd like more info on any of this be sure to leave a comment!
#10 Massage Gun
This is my absolute FAVORITE thing ever! I use this everyday. My motto is "Work hard, Recover harder" and that's exactly what this helps me do!
Especially after leg day - using this on my quads, hamstrings, and calves really helps reduce muscle soreness and stiffness, and allows me to recover faster. It comes with 4 interchangeable head attachments depending which body parts you need to work on. I have the silver one and now they just came out with this super cute pink & red camo version that I love! Trust me on this, you will wonder how you ever lived without it!
If you'd like any additional info or have any questions please be sure to leave a comment! Let's work hard and recover harder in 2020. Bring on the gains!