.Guest Post: Lucy from Craftberry Bush.

Happy Saturday to you all! 
I hope you will enjoy this Memorial Day Weekend and remember to lift the many men and women who fight for our country up in your prayers.

Today Lucy from Craftberry Bush is back with her second post here on Little Things Bring Smiles. This week is all about getting "physical, physical let's get physical!" (I couldn't resist throwing that song in here..thanks for putting up with me everyone!)

 Hello again, I hope you have been keeping well. I am glad to know that you are ready to get healthy

This week I will be highlighting some of the most efficient exercises for a beginning exercise plan. Please remember that if you have never had an exercise program you will need to consult with your doctor prior to starting. 

It is a well known fact that exercising does not only benefit in weight loss but also in maintaining a long and healthy life. Exercise can literally cure diseases like some forms of heart disease, prevent and reverse depression and has even been documented in assisting in the recovery of cancer. The list of benefits is ongoing. 
The key to exercise is to keep moving and make it part of your life. It is easy to say that you want to exercise and even start a program, only to give it up a week or two after the initial excitement. I can tell you from experience that if you stick to the program for at least three weeks you will see results and you will be hooked. It takes approximately 21 days to form a habit and this is a habit worth forming. 
Here are some tips to get you started and ‘hooked’ to exercising:

-Choose a time where you are most likely to exercise and stick to that time. I.e. if you are too tired at the end of the day you are less likely to go for a walk or hit the gym, so exercise first thing in the morning; you’ll get it over with and you will have more energy for the rest of the day. 
-Choose exercises suitable to your fitness level. Even the gorgeous 20 something year girl on the treadmill had to start at the beginning. It’s ok to feel intimidated at first but you will do more harm than good if you try to keep up with the 20 something. It will only lead to injury or becoming unmotivated.

-Choose compound exercises- these are exercises that use more than one muscle group at a time such as squats or pushups. The more muscles you us the more calories you will burn.

-Don’t be scared to lift like a man. It is a myth that a woman will develop manly looking muscles. This is only possible if you are taking performance enhancing drugs. The female muscle composition is not able to develop huge muscles naturally. 
-Take it easy on the cardio-(kind of) many women think that the more cardiovascular exercise they do, the more weight loss. This is somewhat true, however, the more muscle your body has the faster your metabolism becomes and therefore you will have more caloric expenditure. YOU NEED TO PRACTICE STRENGTH TRAINING IN ORDER TO HAVE A COMPLETE LEVEL OF FITNESS.
-Don’t get into a rut and keep yourself challenged. The body is an amazing machine, which has the ability to adjust to any situation in a matter of seconds. What this means is that if you repeat the same exercise over and over again, after a while there will be no apparent benefit. This is what we call a ‘plateau’ in the industry. We see it all the time, people who are eager and willing to exercise but do the same routine day after day and then complain that they cannot lose those last ten pounds. You need to change your workout routine every 3-4 weeks max.

The following is a beginner’s exercise program. Do this program every other day to allow your body to recover (your body needs the recovery in order to build new muscle cells) Here is a link to My Fit, it has a complete list of exercises and how to videos. http://www.myfit.ca/exercisedatabase/exercise.asp
3-4 weeks 
Days 1,3,5 - You can perform the exercises as a circuit of 5 
          exercises done three times or complete each set required
          per body part .i.e. Circuit- Lat pulldown 10-12, chest 
          press 10-12, leg press 10-12, hamstrings 10-12, floor 
          crunches 15-20. Start over from Lat pulldown (keep the 
          same recovery in between)

  • Warm up 5-10 minutes of low to moderate intensity
  • Lat pull down - 3 sets of 10-12 repetitions (30 -40 seconds recovery time)
  • Chest press – 3 sets of 10-12 reps (30-40 secs recovery)
  • Leg Press – 3 sets of 10-12 reps (30-40 secs recovery)
  • Hamstring curl – 3 sets of 10-12 reps ( 30 - 40 secs recovery)
  • Floor crunches – 3 sets 15-20 ( 30 secs recovery)
  • Stretch – 10-15 minutes (muscles should always be stretched AFTER a workout, not prior.) It is a common mistake for people to stretch prior to a workout. I often tell my clients to think of their muscles as a fresh piece of gum – it is easy to break in half. Once the gum has been chewed or in this case warmed up it is more flexible and it yields lots of flexibility.
Days 4,2,6- 25-30 minutes of moderate intensity cardio 
         activity. Remember that these are basic exercises, if they
         are too easy perform, more sets and higher repetitions or
         higher weight. If you are fit in the cardiovascular
         department, increase time and intensity. 
Thank you so much for reading along, next week I will be discussing Nutritional facts and providing you with some useful tips to stick to a healthy eating plan. If you have any questions please feel free to leave a comment and I will gladly address them through Katie. Have a great workout! 

Much Love, Lucy 

Lucy, thank you for this post. My husband and I learned so many excellent tips and facts we had no idea about! We are both excited to begin incorporating strength training in our work outs following your guide. Cannot wait to hear about the Nutritional facts next week!


  1. thanks so much for stopping by & for your sweet words over at my porch swing makeover ~ i really appreciate it!

    ps ~ congratulations on your new house ~ the master bedroom looks amazing!!

  2. Great information, thanks!

  3. Thanks Katie and Lucy