“Health and Fitness means much more to me than looking good in a bikini,” said Melissa Bender, health and fitness enthusiast and work out instructor.
For women approaching the menopause, getting fit is a challenge. But as Melissa said, we should not think of achieving fitness so that we could look good in bikinis or in a tight dress. Rather, there is so much more to aim for health and fitness, and one of the reasons is to maintain our body’s balance and wellness today until the future. And then everything follows.
Meet Melissa and know more about her workouts, boot camps, fitness tips, and ways how she achieved a healthy living. Who knows? She might be your new inspiration to wellness!
Who is Melissa Bender?
Aside from being an enthusiast of health, Melissa has also achieved a Master’s degree in Occupational Therapy, a certified Yoga instructor, a coach in a high school Cross Country Team, and gained titles to several-body building competitions.
It was in 2008 when Melissa realized her passion for fitness. Before that she was a captain of a dance team, but when she became a flight attendant in 2007 she began focusing on work and stopped dancing. That was when her body went out of shape. When she first engaged in running in 2008, she knew how screwed her body was that led her to her passion for fitness and health.
After striving hard for her body to become better, Melissa from barely able to jog for three blocks without walk breaks, she’s now able to run for 13 miles continuously and still with reserved energy. Her refusal to fail gave her the will to become better each day. And now she claims she feels better than ever: more defined and physically stronger.
According to Melissa, she became a devotee of health and fitness because she knew its impact to life. She said people who pursue fitness could easily recover from illnesses and accidents; with fitness, it could uplift our physical, mental and emotional health; and fitness “teaches you to set goals, to celebrate victories, and to never give up”.
Melissa has managed to create her own blog site that she calls, “Benderfitness“. What's best about her site is she doesn't only provide tips to attain a fitter body but do also offer tons and tons of different work out programs and exercises that you can do at home, without using any equipments, and in a variety that depends on what you want to improve. What's more fascinating is she does all of these for free! A superb advantage for busy people who don't have time to visit the gym while also spending a lot lesser, too. Melissa could be the personal trainer at home you have been searching for. If you do appreciate and enjoy all of Melissa's classes and work out programs you could always “buy her a coffee!”.
Melissa’s Tips for Fitness
Prior to working out and doing a lot of sweating, a fit and well-balance body is achieved by providing our body the right nutrition. We all know that. However, the term called, “clean-eating” initiated arguments between people, especially nutrition conscious individuals, because clean eating is differently defined based on the person’s need. An example given by Melissa is a fruit based diet that body builders do not consider clean because it has high levels of sugar in it.
However, Melissa believes that clean eating means consuming foods that are “minimally processed, and as close to it’s natural state as possible”. She sticks to a diet that includes whole foods like vegetables, meat, nuts and fruits. And that keeps her feel good, and lets her see the effect of it in her body.
Some of Melissa’s guides to achieving success in clean eating are mentioned below:
Create Your Food
It is easier to maintain your diet if you also get to manage what you put inside the tummy. Also if you create your own meals, you are sure what ingredients are included in your dishes. This way you could avoid guilt because you know your following your plan of clean eating.
Prepare in bulk
According to Melissa, during Sundays she usually cooks chunks of meat and vegetables in a huge dish. This way during the weekday if she needs to grab a fast snack, she could instantly prepare a salad, sandwich or pasta without long hours of preparation of food; of which very beneficial for busy people like us.
Choose Your Foods Wisely
Frankly, you need to exert a little effort if you plan to engage in clean eating. First, you have to learn to be picky especially when choosing snacks because many of the quick-fix foods are low in nutrition. Second, you have to keep a bag of healthy snacks in your cabinet such as almonds and Greek yogurts. Always bring portions of your munchies anywhere you go to avoid drive-thrus of fast food restaurants.
Right food portions still matter even though you know you have already engaged in clean eating. Some of Melissa’s tips on right amount of food consumption can be measured using only the hand: The meat/protein that you can eat every meal is the size of your palm; a serving of cheese should be the size of your thumb; and the amount of greens should two cupped hands or fill up half of your plate.
Quick Peek for Labels
The nutrition facts part of the label shows all what you have to see. The amount of salt and sugar is the ingredients to look up to. As from Melissa if the sugar has the most amount, the product is already red flagged to her. Dried fruits are the best example that has too much sugar in it. As fruits already contain natural sugar and manufacturers add a lot more of it as part of its preserving process. So always be aware!
Keep the Fundamentals of Food
Never forget to consume the right proportions of nutrition. The balance of carbs, protein, good fats and right rehydration is your key to achieve the ultimate wellness. Reduce carbs and add protein if you want to shred weight. The body also needs good fats which can be consumed from olive oil, coconut oil and avocado.
Melissa has prepared tons of body challenges in her blog site. And one of them is the 30-day workout challenge that includes day-to-day exercises. From the easiest drills to the point of impossible-like challenges, you will be surprised how much weight you’ll lose at the end of her workouts, and how much improvement your body has gained.
Check out Melissa's 1st day challenge to warm you up!
Melissa Bender also has a spot at bodyrock.tv, an online channel where you can find a lot of various exercises. She once prepared a 10-week boot camp, set of exercises, how to do, per week for 7 days straight! Her first week is already challenging, but certainly rewarding. At the end of the boot camp it would surely result to you having a good state of mind, body and spirit.
Or you could jump to Melissa's 13-minute Video of Week 1 Boot Camp