The survivors of Core Fusion Bootcamp at Exhale Spa in Downtown Miami

The survivors of Core Fusion Bootcamp at Exhale Spa in Downtown Miami…I’m second from the right.

Earlier this week, I met up with these blogger babes, media mavens, and journalists for a Core Fusion Boot Camp & a Nutrition Workshop at Exhale Spa in the Epic Hotel in Downtown Miami, thanks to Shayne Benowitz. As you might remember, I was recently inspired to get active again. (I seem to have taken a sabbatical from that in 2014.) So, I was psyched to be invited to Exhale Spa Miami and RSVPed immediately for this event. Clearly, I didn’t know this was about to be Survival of the Fittest. I was even warned by several people to “be prepared, this class is no joke.” That should’ve been my cue to run for the hills. But, the heavenly smell in Exhale Spa was addicting (seriously, I need to pump that scent through my house) and these adorable crop tops, smartly placed front and center at the entrance, gave this fashion girl serious motivation.

Cute crop tops = instant core fusion motivation to this fashion girl

Cute crop tops = instant core fusion motivation to this fashion girl

Besides, the studio looked so peaceful to me…

The calm before the storm in the Exhale Spa Miami Studio before Core Fusion Boot Camp.

The calm before the storm in the Exhale Spa Miami Studio before Core Fusion Boot Camp.

Ready for Core Fusion Boot Camp…or so I think.

Ready for Core Fusion Boot Camp…or so I think.

Ha! Wrong. This was a killer class. And by killer, I mean burpees & pushups & leaps in the air with medicine balls, never-ending running planks, power yoga, and belly burning ab work…all at warp speed…for 60 minutes. Somehow, I powered through it and even felt amazing afterwards, not to mention, damn proud of myself for not crawling into the fetal position on my mat 5 minutes in. I’m pretty sure our petite instructor, Alexandra, had a lot to do with that. She was high-energy the entire hour, took the time to help everyone perfect each pose, and wisely reminded us that the body is stronger than the mind thinks it is. And thank god for that. Hands down, the best workout I’ve gotten in…okay, well I can’t actually remember when. But it’s now 5 days later, there are still parts of my body that ache, and I want to go back for more.

Post-workout fuel from Jugo Fresh. I LOVED the Summer Chia.

Post-workout fuel from Jugo Fresh. I LOVED the Summer Chia.

After class, our instructor, Alexandra, sat us down (thank god) for a Nutrition Workshop over juice & “sprouted sandwiches” (wrapped in collard greens) from Jugo Fresh. She gave us the low down on foods that are great (and not so great) for getting and maintaining a flat bikini-ready belly. Here are a few tips which you may have heard already, but a reminder never hurt anyone.

Belly Nutrition Tips & Suggestions

  • Cut out carbs & sugars…they’re your worst enemy. Too bad they taste so good.
  • Sugar is like a drug…the more you have, the more you want/need. Try and avoid it as much as possible.
  • Drink green tea instead of coffee…it’s the sugar you’re putting in it that’s so bad for you. Goodbye, salted caramel mocha frappacino.
  • Use 2 tablespoons of coconut oil a day for cooking…it’s much healthier than soy oil or any of the others and helps reduce belly fat.
  • 8 cups of water is not the suggested daily amount anymore…divide your body weight in half and that’s the amount of ounces you should be drinking each day….and drink all day, especially before meals.
  • When at all possible, swap out rice or pasta for extra veggies whether at home or in a restaurant.
  • Eat more green leafy veggies, cherries (powerful antioxidants), & avocado (helps with weight management & the body’s absorption of nutrients)
  • A healthy snacks is celery or apples with almond butter
  • Plantain chips instead of potato chips
  • Use collard greens or lettuce instead of bread for wraps and burgers
  • Full fat, grass fed dairy is the best dairy for you
  • Milk has lots of sugar! Try to switch to almond milk.
  • Try not to eat breads for breakfast…think proteins…eggs, bacon, sausage.
  • Fruit & Veggie Juices will give you the same nutrients as eating the raw food but you won’t get the fiber
  • Watch your yogurt labels (preferably before you eat). They tend to have TONS of sugar…especially the greek honey yogurt I just shoved down. Oops.
  • Be a food detective and read ALL your labels for carbs and sugar quantities.
  • Eat at home more…you’ll know exactly what you’re eating. Most restaurants only care about the first part of that saying, “A moment on the lips…”
  • For dessert, because you know you’ll never cut that out completely, opt for a piece of dark chocolate or the panacotta over the cakes and cookies.
Exhale Spa's Snacks…you had me at chocolate.

Exhale Spa’s Healthy Snacks…you had me at dark chocolate.

Hope these smart belly nutrition tips help you as much as they’ve helped me. Five days later, I’ve passed on a bagel, I’ve purchased green tea (though I have yet to really give up that coffee), and I’m, at least, thinking about the amount of carbs in cheese fries before I order them. Full diet transition may take this foodie a while. But, as for being active, I’ve already recruited friends to sign up for Core Fusion Boot Camp classes with me. Clearly, Exhale Spa Miami has motivated me to get it together in 2015 with both diet and exercise. After all, life truly is survival of the fittest, right?

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