Tag Archives: Weight loss

The Secrets in Obstacle Course Racing

12 Sep

So many people think I’ve turned into an Obstacle Course Racing addict because I am doing a race practically every weekend, but I am having so much fun! Just take a look at the pictures and you might just want to join me sometime. Let me tell you why I’m having so much fun and then I’ll share with you all my secrets.

I have raced in 3 Spartan races in the last month and the teams I have raced on have been so much fun that I’d hang out with these people anytime. Training for these races has even been more fun because the coaches are so cool and the people I am training with make me smile. It has enabled me to meet so many different people and develop great friendships. Each race I am getting more confident and my times are also improving. I am getting better on the obstacles and making a lot of progress.

Here are my secrets for having fun and making progress.

I train with a Spartan Pro, David Magida, who happens to be on the elite team for Spartan and the person behind a new gym that will be opening in the DC area, Elevate Interval Fitness. Unlike many gym programs, David trains us by simulating race conditions. He’s trained our team on the proper technique for carrying a 65 pound bucket, throwing a spear, he’s made us run hills till we had enough, run up hills with sandbags, and do so many burpees, that we’d rather run. One class he had us do a bunch of rolling as if we were rolling under barbed wire. I hated it while I was doing it, but I was happy I did it before the race because it helped me shave off time and protect my knees in the NJ Super Spartan. Our training crew is so fun that I have been getting substitutes for my own classes to train with them. You can find out more about his training at http://www.elevateintervalfitness.com

In the Spartan races unlike others, you have to successfully complete an obstacle or do 30 burpees, so it’s worth trying to do each obstacle. To ensure success for challenging obstacles like climbing the rope and throwing the Spear, you must understand the technique. I learned the proper rope climbing technique called the J hook whcih is mostly lower body at the Great Falls Obstacle Course. Doing so enabled me to successfully complete the rope climb at both the Wintergreen Super Spartan and the NJ Super Spartan. I highly recommend spending a day there to learn the technique for tackling common obstacles. Tim heads up the training which is Sunday mornings. To find out more, check out the Great Falls Obstacle Course on Facebook, or email Tim at getresultstrainers@gmail.com

CrossFit North Vienna is where I spend an hour Monday-Friday working on my strength. I had a much easier time on this last Super Spartan because I am getting stronger. The pullups and various olympic moves helped me pass many guys on the course in addition to making me leaner. If you’d like my special rate at CrossFit North Vienna, send me an email at madelinedolente@gmail.com. Every Saturday they a class for people who have never done CrossFit before.

Trail runs with the DC Capital Striders have helped me run faster because all of the Spartan races I have completed have pretty challenging trails. It’s a great group of people with various levels of experience. We run every Wednesday at 6pm. You can join our trail run by going to http://www.meetup.com/dccapitalstriders-NOVA/events/206628782/

I have changed by diet and make sure by food is with me so I don’t pick up junk on the road. These meals have been key to helping my muscles recover and ensure I have energy for intense workouts. More importantly, they also help me burn body fat instead of muscle. Most people forget that if they are not getting the proper nutrition, they can actually start to cannabolize muscle which results in a lower metabolic rate. I use http://www.customfitmeals.com and my discount code is MD10.They taste great and the bars are awesome too. If your diet isn’t where it should be, give it a shot.

Bring Gu and electrolyte tabs to your races. Electrolyte tabs are important for very hot and humid days and I try to take a Gu every hour. My favorite is vanilla with caffeine. It can make a big difference when you are feeling weak.

Dress smart and make it fun. I also wear my Reebok OCR shoes because they are great on trails and in the mud and a high pair of socks to protect my shins. I wish I could get away with knee pads because my knees always wind up scratched and bruised, but knee pads would totally ruin my outfit and is not the image I’m going for. My next outfit may very well be a Superhero. Stay posted. If you are looking for shoes or clothing options, I listed my favorites on http://www.Reebok.com/madfitness

Also if you are looking for a local VA race, RunningDirty.com is this Saturday and you can get a discount with RA44. I’m off to run the Civilian Miltary Combine (CMC) this weekend! The first picture shows me with the CMC founder, Sean Rodgers and TV Star, Kenny Santucchi, my racing buddies for the NJ Super Spartan last weekend. I am gathering up teams for upcoming races so if you are interested, send me an email at Madeline@madfitness.com and don’t forget to watch the Spartan Race on NBC Sports 2pm Sunday!

In Health and Happiness,


spartan blog pics

Memorial Day Body

21 May

With Memorial Day just around the corner, pools opening, and the weather getting warmer, I am receiving tons of questions about toning up, so today I am going to give you the 411 for getting in the best shape this summer.

1.  Sweat to burn calories and fat.  Row, run, cycle, walk, box, jump rope, whatever you do,  go hard enough to get your heart rate up so you sweat.

2.  Workout 45 minutes every day.  Find some way to be active whether you are touring the capital, running a 10k or gardening, get moving!

3.  Eat lighter later.  Eat the majority of your complex carbs in the earlier part of the day to fuel your activities and eat protein and carbs containing fiber later in the day such as beans.

4.  Lift something heavy such as weights or your own body weight.  Try a class that includes weights at a local health club or fitness studio.  Many gyms over trial passes for new members.

5.  Include your friends.  By inviting your friends to work out with you, you will be more accountable and it can make the experience very enjoyable.

6.  Be consistent.  Working out once a week and eating healthy some of the time will not create lasting effects.  Try to do something active and eat healthy at least 5 days a week and don’t sabotage your efforts on the other 2 days.

7.  Downsize.  Instead of having a sandwich, chips, and a cookie for lunch, have half the sandwich or nix the cookie.

8.  Tell everyone what you are doing so people around you will keep you accountable.  If you tell everyone you are doing a race on Saturday, your friends and coworkers are likely to ask you about it on Monday.

9.  Think about how good you will feel when you are done.  Certain days it can be hard to get motivated, but if you focus on the end result, you are sure to be a winner!

10.  Have fun!  Life is too short to be serious all of the time.  Find activities you enjoy, involve your friends, and be positive!  You may surprise yourself with what you can do and how fun it can be.

Special request song of the day:  Coolio Gangstas Paradise, E-Ross remix

Free download:  http://www6.zippyshare.com/v/55241331/file.html

In Health and Happiness,

Madeline Dolente


Wedding Weight Loss

1 May

Yesterday I was at one of my good friend’s bridal showers and a few of the bridesmaids asked me how to lose 5  pounds in a week.  The bridesmaids dresses we will be wearing on Saturday are very form fitting so any extra baggage will be completely obvious.  That being said, 5 pounds more or under can make a pretty significant difference for someone weighing 125 pounds.

I usually recommend losing 1-2 pounds a week for people looking for long term weight loss.  If someone loses 5 or more pounds in a week and is of a normal weight, they are most likely losing water and very likely to gain the weight back.  That being said, if you are desperate to lose a few pounds before a big event, here are my wedding weight crasher secrets.

My Weight Loss Coach

1.  Don’t eat carbs after 7pm.

2.  Avoid sugar like a plague.

3.  Forfeit bread, pasta, cookies, and any other starchy carbs.

4.  Drink a gallon of water a day.

5.  Fill up on veggies and protein.

6.  Eat salads with vinegar.  Forgo fatty dressings, cheese, and croutons.

7.  Avoid soup.  It’s loaded with sodium which will cause you to retain water and appear puffy.

8.  Avoid carbonated drinks, gum, and broccoli.  This will cause you to be gassy and bloated.

9.  Exercise an hour a day.  Sweat it out with intervals.

10.  Record everything for the week and review each day to keep you motivated.

Song of the day: Burning Up by Ne-Yo

Free download: http://mp3skull.com/mp3/burning_up_ne_yo.

In Health and Happiness,

Madeline Dolente


Weight Loss Tips

20 Apr

On Monday the New York Times had an article about brides using a feeding tube diet to lose weight. The May issue of Glamour, had an article about women so desperate to lose weight that they getting an operation called POSE, which is a surgery similiar to Gastric Bypass surgery, just to lose 25 pounds!  These surgeries cost anywhere from $1000 to $12,000 and are not even FDA approved.  No one knows what the long term effects will be.  I have personally seen women with chunky patches or lumps on their legs and thighs from liposuction.  Those are just the visible signs, but what about the patients I have trained who have had gastric bypass?  There are numerous health complications from that as well.

Surgery is a short term fix and will not result in long term success without a lot of effort.  I will admit that looking great takes a lot of effort in today’s society.  Portion sizes are enormous, we work too much, and it can be hard to fit in exercise.  Unless you get a spot on the Biggest Loser or go away to a weight loss camp, you will have to make constant efforts to lose weight.  It’s worth it because the healthier you feel, the better your life will be.  YOU ARE WORTH IT!

Below I have listed my top 10 weight loss tools to get you started and if you incorporate them into your daily lifestyle, you can be sure to keep the weight off for good!

1.  Exercise 60 minutes every day and change it up.  Run, hike, cycle, lift weights, jump rope, row, swim, dance.  Choose activites you enjoy and enlist your friends.

2.  Eat small meals often.  Think 300 calorie meals 5 times a day for women and 500 calories at 5 times a day for men.  Men have more muscle mass so they burn more calories at rest than women.

3.  When you get hungry, drink water first.  Your body has a hard time differentiating between thirst and hunger.  If you satisfy your thirst first, you will be less likely to compensate and overeat.

4.  Go fresh.  Your body is better at digesting real foods which often has less sodium and carbohydrates than the processed versions.

5.  Aim for protein at every meal and most of your carbs during the day to give you energy.  At night, your metabolism may slow down so this is a better time to eat less carbs and more protein.

6.  Do interval training.  When you are working out, add a minute or so of high intensity, all effort pushes and then recover.  This will help you burn more calories and increase your anaerobic threshold.

7.  Avoid sugar.  Fruit is good for you during the day, but too much of any other type of sugar will lead to weight gain.  The quick bursts of energy will often leave you tired and craving more and becomes a vicious cycle.

8.  Don’t keep junk in the house or your car.  If it’s not there, you can’t eat it.  Throw the twinkies in the dumpster outside of your house.

9.  Buy small portions.  The larger the bag, the more likely you will eat more than you should.  Look at the portion sizes and put single portions in small baggies so that you eat 1 portion at a time.

10.  Journal.  Record your food intake and exercise so you can see what behaviors are helping you and where you can make some changes.

Weight loss is a process and if you are committed and willing to make some sacrifices, you will successfully reach your goals.

Discipline is the key to achieving great things!

Song of the Day:  Concrete Angel by Gareth Emery &  Christina Novelli

Free download:  http://mp3skull.com/mp3/concrete_angel.html

In Health and Happiness,

Madeline Dolente



27 Jan
English: Holiday Edition bottles of Diet Coke

Image via Wikipedia

Today during lunch I stopped to get some gas and I got that craving for something sweet and needed a little boost. Deciding that it was too early to stop at the bar for a Long Island Ice Tea, I went into to the Royal Farms for a Diet Coke.  I only wanted a sip, so as I looked through the large selection, I saw the regular 20 ounce and then a mini 12.5 ounce.  How sad is it that 12.5 ounces looked like the kids’ version to me!  What has happened with portion size in America?  I think it has truly distorted peoples’ perception of what a normal portion should look like.

In America we are fortunate to have so many opportunities and it is a society where more is often perceived as better.  More cars, more homes, more clothes, more surgeries. more jewelry, more luxuries, more food…you get the point.  However, when you travel to Europe, you will often see the opposite.  Overseas, less is often perceived as more and yes the portion sizes are often 1/2 to 2/3 less than here in America.  With smaller portion sizes and more active people, you will see less obesity.  With larger portion sizes in activity, we see more obesity.  It’s obvious what happening.  I’m not asking you to save the world, I’m asking you to save you and your family.

I got the 12.5 ounce bottle of Diet Coke and didn’t feel the need to finish it.  It’s part of my less is more kick.  My goal is to choose smaller portions, by doing so I will no longer drink a 20 ounce bottle of Diet Coke just because it is there.  Who really needs an XL soda or a large coffee???  If I feel like eating a cookie or nuts, I will get a smaller bag.  My body doesn’t need 10 cookies at one sitting nor a pound of nuts.  It needs good nutrition so I can run a strong marathon and teach a great class.  It’s about making1 change at a time for a healthier and happier life!

How will you downsize in 2012 or what change have you made that has helped you lose weight and feel great?  Let me know!

Best tune ever:

In Health and Happiness,

Madeline Dolente