body shred, body tone, tone up, fat loss, lose fluff, body blast, soma fitness, summer white, ifbb bikini pro, bikini diet, nutrition, weight loss secrets

One Week Body Shred and Tone

Youtube video blog click here!

Just because I'm a vegetarian and watch my sugar intake, doesn't mean I don't get a little fluff every now and then! I celebrated my birthday by noshing on artichoke parmesan salads, tempura'ed amazu ponzu tofu, and dry miso flaked avocados at Nobu Malibu... Ok, I had a few serrano spiced acai martinis as well. That was all on Thursday, June 18th, but then Saturday June 20th, I splurged again with a brunch at Cliff's Edge Cafe in Silverlake!  There I had an egg white omelette with morel mushroom cream and goat cheese, truffle fries, and a glass (or two) of prosecco.

body shred, body tone, tone up, fat loss, lose fluff, body blast, soma fitness, summer white, ifbb bikini pro, bikini diet, nutrition, weight loss secrets
Day 1 - 132 lbs

Oh the dining was divine, and I savored each morsel like it was my last, but there's no way I can eat, and drink, like that and not gain a little.  It's mostly water and a little inflammation in my gut, however I don't feel like myself and it's time to clean things up. I like to do these one to two week flushes every now and then, and it never ceases to amaze me how quick I can get relatively shredded by eating a whole, unprocessed, unrefined, low sugar, low sodium, high fiber, alkaline diet.

So I decided to do a video blog to share with the world my one week body shred, and also to hold me accountable.  I will be posting my daily videos on my youtube Soma Fitness channel, and I'd love your support! Besides, I'm practically giving away bikini pro shredding secrets! Click the link here to watch the videos!

body shred, body tone, tone up, fat loss, lose fluff, body blast, soma fitness, summer white, ifbb bikini pro, bikini diet, nutrition, weight loss secrets
Day 1 - 132 lbs and a little fluffy for my liking

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC8yMOuBeUF8cMnq9hW8eEzQ


best la hike, echo mountain, altadena, ifbb pro, summer white, birthday hike, hikers, dog friendly hike, mt lowe, la view, la skyline

Birthday Adventure Hike at Echo Mountain

This past week on June 17th, I turned 33. Not much of a milestone birthday, so very fitting that it fell on a Wednesday.  The weekend before, June 13th and 14th, happened to be the Weho gay pride festival, and many of my friends had conflicts so that date was out for my celebration. I decided any group plans should therefore come on June 20th, 3 days after my birthday (so should I have called it my 33+3rd day birthday party?!). It's funny how you have to be so calculated with get togethers as an adult! Back in my early adolescence, if you received a birthday invite, no matter the day or date, there would be no question about attendance because nobody had responsibilities or conflicts!

As my circle of friends, and social networks already know, I live and breathe the fit life. I traded in my club card for an IFBB bikini pro card, my party shoes for Nikes, libations for Sun Warrior shakes, and sleeping in till noon for early morning workouts.  I used to have the black list of the best clubs in Los Angeles for each day of the week, and know the promoters and security guards by name, invaluable information that would go for big bucks... but those days are long gone. Now, my weekend place to be is most likely a city's best view and dopest hikes!  I scour yelp for A list trails, and obviously difficulty rarely phases me. I suppose park entrance gates are my new velvet ropes!

So this year, being firmly set in this lifestyle, I decided to celebrate ME with a hike.  I had heard about Echo Mountain and the Sam Merrill trail from a member of my Los Angeles Spartan Race Training meetup group.  It sounded like an adult playground of sorts, complete with abandoned railroad tracks and gears, foundations and plaques of a fairytale resort that had burned to the ground, a megaphone made of steel that echoes messages through the canyons, and picturesque views of Los Angeles and beyond.  I had been so anxious to check it out! So I invited 40+ friends to join me on the experience.

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For the love of hiking!

The weather was forecasted to be in the upper 80s by mid afternoon so I wanted to get an early start. The drive from my house would be 30 minutes, and I'd need to have my morning matcha and some time in the bathroom, so I woke at 6:45 am for an 8 am arrival at the trailhead.  Parking was easy on East Loma Alta Drive near Lake Ave, and I enjoyed the plentiful evergreens and their shade while I waited for all my friends to arrive.

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Switchbacks on the Sam Merrill trail

The friends that made it to the mountain were no strangers to hiking trails; more than half the group had done a Spartan Race together in the past, and all had trained and competed in a variety of competitive sports at some point of their lives.  We kept a fairly quick walking pace during our hike, and if we didn't have two small dogs, we probably would've opted for running.  At times the incline was a bit steep, but overall it was quite easy compared to hikes like Mt Baldy or even some of the Griffith Park trails.

The hike up to the old Mt Lowe Railroad and "White City" resort is a little over 2.5 miles (about 5.2 miles roundtrip), and I read about a picnic area at the top. I hit up Whole Foods the night before for some organic peaches and bananas, dark chocolate covered almonds, organic raisins, raw nuts, and a Steaz raspberry green tea sweetened with stevia. The snacks weren't necessary, but they were fun to have at the top after our many photoshoots!


Brussels Sprout Walnut Salad

Brussels Sprouts Walnut SaladI love going to restaurants because I get so much inspiration for my own culinary creations. Half the time I eat out I have to substitute most of the ingredients, so when I'm in my kitchen and the recipe is under my control... fireworks happen!  I absolutely love the food I prepare, and variety will always keep you sane if you're on any sort of restrictive diet.

As many of you know, I've returned to a strictly vegetarian diet, consuming only egg whites a few times per week, if at all; along with tons of vegetables, healthy fats, occasional tofu and tempeh, and fruit... yes, Summer White said fruit!!!  After 4 years a pollo-pescatarian - eating chicken, turkey, and fish several times a day, and having issues breaking down my proteins (due to naturally low stomach acid), I was forced to adopt a new lifestyle.

I eat mostly raw vegetables and fruits because they are rich with enzymes that help my digestive system work properly.  Back in the day, I used to consume foods that didn't work well with my body which resulted in irritable bowel syndrome, bloating, gas, acid reflux, etc. I lacked the proper digestive enzymes to break these foods down.  It seems I was always having to take laxative teas or capsules, having to get a colonic, or just sitting around suffering and thinking, "is this normal?"  So I eliminated the foods from my body, did coffee enemas and several other cleanses (liver, parasite, candida, and heavy metal), and ate a really basic vegetarian diet to reset.

I can't explain how I began to feel! I wasn't back to normal, because I never knew what normal was!!  My stomach was flat, after eating a meal for the first time ever, and I learned what it was like to be regular in the bathroom! Since this post is about food, I'll save the rest of that info for a later post!

Here is a truly healing and divinely delicious, fully raw salad that will satisfy under any circumstance.

Brussels Sprout Walnut Salad

INGREDIENTS:
Serves 1

1 tbsp tahini sauce (Trader Joes)
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
splash Braggs apple cider vinegar
squeeze 1/2 fresh lemon
Himalayan crystal salt and black peppercorn, to taste
1 cup raw Brussels Sprouts, shaved thin
3 walnut halves, crushed

Directions:Tahini Dressing

Mix first 5 ingredients in a medium sized bowl until combined. Add the raw Brussels Sprouts and toss to coat with tahini sauce. Place on plate with serving spoon and top with crushed walnuts. Enjoy!


Soma Fitness Party After Glow!

Last weekend we hosted our first Soma Fitness party. It was AWESOME. If you didn't make it, you'll want to be there next time! It was a beautiful day in Los Angeles as we sipped blueberry lemonade and white wine, and snacked on cucumber-tuna bites from the rooftop of the historic Hollywood Towers. The view is amazing, and everyone snapped plenty of photos with the famous Hollywood Sign in the background. Here's a few snapshots from the fete.


The 411 on the Top 5 Diets!

"Have you heard about this New diet?"
"What diet are You on?"
"Can you eat this on Your diet?"
"Aren't you sick of Always dieting?"
I don't know about you, but sometimes I get tired of the word diet, and the negative connotation people tie to it! Most people begin to assume dieting involves restricting ourselves to small amounts of food or only certain foods in order to loose weight. I think of my diet as the kind of food I habitually eat - it has nothing to do with weight. Food, and your diet, should simply provide energy and nourishment to the body.  So if it does the first but not the second or is highly processed with many chemical additives, I wouldn't consider it a food! Sometimes weight loss or gain may be a side effect when changing eating habits; but, let's face it - if we have to consume food for the rest of our lives, do we really want it to be restricted? I love real, whole, nourishing food, so I know I don't!
Now, there are some ways of habitually eating that have become quite popular lately, and definitely coincide with a health conscious lifestyle. Fad or not, it's important to fully understand them if you decide to follow one of these diets. With health and nutrition in mind, here's your overview of some common diets (aka foods we habitually eat!):
  1. Paleo - Excludes: grains (oats, wheat, corn, rice, etc), legumes (peas, beans, soy nuts and peanuts), vegetable and seed oils (olive, sesame, canola, etc), and dairy. Can have: lean proteins (including seafood, meat and eggs), fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and healthy fats (coconut oil and ghee are preferred for cooking). Avoid all forms of added sugar.
  2. Vegan -  Diet excludes: meat, fish, poultry, and other animal products and by-products such as eggs, dairy products and honey.  Lifestyle excludes leather, fur, silk, wool, cosmetics, and soaps derived from animal products.  Can have: fruits, vegetables, plenty of leafy greens, spirulina, seaweed, whole grain products, nuts, seeds, and legumes.
  3. Dash Diet - The #1 diet ranking by US News & World Report. Allows sweets (5 or fewer). Excludes: high salt and trans fat processed foods.  Emphasizes: fruits (4-5 servings/day), vegetables (4-5 servings/day), low fat or nonfat dairy (2-3 servings/day). It also includes moderate amounts of whole grains (6-8 servings/day); lean meats (6 or fewer), fish and poultry; nuts and beans (4-5 servings/week). It is high fiber and low to moderate in fat. It is a plan that follows US guidelines for sodium content (1500-2000 mg max per day), along with vitamins and minerals (foods high in potassium, magnesium, and calcium).
  4. Grain/Gluten Free - Gluten is found in many grains and processed foods and has become very allergenic due to genetic modifications and pesticide use. Excludes grains such as: wheat, oats (unless certified GF), barley, rye, bulgar, couscous, semolina, spelt. Excludes many additives: ketchup, soy sauce, egg substitute, most processed and packages foods including vegan meats like seitan (vegan), syrups, sauces, ice creams, cheeses, etc. Grain free also excludes: corn (gluten-free), rice (gluten-free), millet (gluten-free), sorghum (gluten-free). Can have: unprocessed proteins, raw vegetables, natural dairy products, most seeds and nuts, uncanned beans.
  5. Vegetarian - Excludes: all red meat and pork.  All vegetarians choose from these basic food groups: grains, fruits, veggies, legumes, nuts and seeds. Can have alternate protein sources such as: tofu, tempeh (a fermented textured meat replacement from beans like soybean or black bean), seitan (a thick, textured meat replacement made from wheat gluten), quinoa or amaranth. Types of vegetarians include:

    Pesco-vegetarians – include seafood and fish
    Lacto-vegetarians – include dairy (milk, cheese and yogurt)
    Ovo-vegetarians – include eggs
    Ovo-lacto-vegetarians – include eggs and dairy

 

It's best to follow the guidelines of your primary health care provider or certified nutrition coach, like mysel; especially if your diet does involve eliminating certain foods. You want to ensure you aren't excluding vital minerals and vitamins when removing food groups from your daily diet. Email me at soma@somafitness.com if you need help designing your own custom meal plan.
On a side-note: Tamara and I along with some of our Soma Superheroes Spartan training team will be taking part in the Spartan Race this weekend! Wish us luck and stay tuned for updates on our race, as well as ways you can participate in a Spartan Race near you!
xoxo,
Summer

Chinese Takeout When You Know You Shouldn't...

You read all of the Soma Fitness emails. You know the difference between protein, fat and carbs. You know that thirty minutes of exercise will significantly reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke and other illnesses. Yet you just can't seem to follow through and lose the weight you want. Time and time again, you ask yourself - what is wrong with me?

 

A new book, video or diet isn’t going to magically get you off your butt and into the gym. You see the problem isn't that you need more information. We live in the information age. One quick Google search can provide enough to get you started with any goal that you imagine.

 

The problem is work, your commute, the kids, your bad knee or (fill in the blank) are getting in the way. You know what to do, you just can’t seem to do it. Then you get down on yourself because you "just aren't disciplined enough." Sound familiar?

 

When we are stressed out, tired, or anxious it is too easy to turn on Netflix, grab a bottle of wine and order some Chinese takeout. We know this is sabotaging our goals but we do it anyway. But why? What is the psychology behind this?

 

Work, romantic relationships, children and finances are just a few of the things that can cause stress in our lives. Everyone has stressors in their lives, even highly successful people. The answer lies in the way we manage and process stress and emotional discomfort. Most of us never learned healthy ways to deal with this so when we feel discomfort we immediately want to cover it up and make it go away. Many of us numb ourselves with a cocktail, or reach for fatty, fried foods or sugar in hopes of comforting ourselves.

 

So what can we do different the next time these feelings come up? How can we prepare for the stress, and the anxiety? And they will come... maybe even today.

 

The first step is to know your pattern and your triggers and then create new healthy, coping behaviors.

 

Food prep is a great example of this. If you know that your weekdays are crazy, and you are prone to rushing around all day without food, then out of desperation and starvation binging on a double-meat pepperoni pizza at the end of the day - why not prep your food on Sundays when you have some extra time?

 

Stock your house with bananas, raw almonds, Quest bars, Sun Warrior protein, grilled chicken and other healthy food you can reach for quickly. Empty the cupboards of the Doritos and other quick fix junk food. Don't have time to cook? Toss your chicken in a Crockpot and let it do the work while you relax. Then pack a lunch and bring this to work with you. A little extra planning can go a long way.

 

Is work hectic and filled with deadlines and conference calls? Even the busiest executive can take five minutes every few hours to stretch their legs and take a break. Leave your phone at your desk, and stroll down the block. Reach down and touch your toes! Take some deep breaths and rebalance yourself. It may not seem like a big deal but even a few short walking breaks can keep you from getting overwhelmed enough to reach for that mid-afternoon chocolate bar.

 

Is wine one of your favorite treats to help you unwind when you get home? Try reaching for a Kevita drink instead. Kevita is sweet, yet low sugar and has plenty of healthy probiotics.  I like to pour my Kevita into a wine glass for a little extra luxury. Then I grab a heating pad and drape it over my neck and shoulders for extra pampering, while catching up on my favorite TV show at the end of the day. I still get the relaxation without the next day dehydration or extra calories.

 

Have a terrible day and you're mad at the world? I have them too. Instead, of drowning my sorrows in a bowl of macaroni and cheese I go sit in the steam room at the gym for fifteen minutes. On these days I don't put pressure on myself to workout. If I feel like it - great. If not then I'll just stretch and head home to get some rest.

 

Can't find someone to watch your kids so you can go workout? That's okay. Make working out a family activity when you turn on a fitness DVD. (We like Beach Body's Bum Bum Rapido!)

 

Stop right now, and take a few minutes to draft your own "stress scenario" alternatives. Life is tough and we are all faced with daily stress and anxiety. The question is, are you prepared to conquer your goals despite these challenges?

 

One of the benefits of having a coach is having someone who can provide these type of helpful hints, keep you on track and super motivated when the going gets rough.

 

If you are ready to make those changes and create the body you deserve, send us an email at soma@somafitness.com

 

Tamara & Summer


Temecula Spartan Sprint!!!

Yesterday, Team Soma ran the Spartan Sprint in Temecula, California. The race was 4.5 miles of hills, flats, muddy bogs and off trail challenges with 25 obstacles including walls, rope climbs, and water jumps.

Summer conquered the course in 1:26:42. She placed 14th in the Women's 30-34 age group, Top 4 percent of women, and Top 10 percent overall! Teammate Oscar Romero finished along with Summer. Finishing third for the Soma team was Aaron Rosenberg with a time of 1:31.

somateam

We're especially proud of Jessica Lewis and Tamara White who finished together with a time of 2:24:16, and in the top 60 percent of all women finishers! A year ago, Jessica (click here to see her story) was just beginning her fitness journey and Tamara was struggling with low thyroid function. Finishing the race was a huge accomplishment for both of them!

jesstam

Check out the video below for more photos!


Winter's Coming... Guide to Preparing for Battle

guide
/ɡīd/
To lead or influence someone, particularly when they are in a state of vulnerability or in need of help.

Straight from the mouth of Merriam-Webster! Here in La, we've been seeing weather below 60!!! I'd call that a state of vulnerability. haha

Our newsletter list is nearing 1000 strong as we close this chapter of 2014! 1000 people that are empowering their lives by arming themselves with an artillery of tools to help them achieve personal greatness!!

At times, the information may not relate to an issue you're experiencing, but think about your social circle, your family members, and coworkers. We all experience challenges, fall off, or get confused, and a friendly guide can always help steer you back in the right direction! I aim to create these guides because I really just love to help! I'm a personal trainer by trade, so naturally I live to see people improve their lives.

Winter is when people usually let themselves go a little...or a lot; but, this year is going to be different, Superstars! I've armed you with the Eating Out Guide, the handy dandy Thanksgiving (or any holiday) Guide, and now you will be furnished with a super useful Winter Workout Guide. Prepare for the temptation to stay in your cozy bed all weekend long, drinking brandy hot totties, and noshing on peppermint bark. No excuses for packing on pointless pounds now - we're going to stay bikini-ready and healthy all year long!

*Gym Time:

-Who doesn't love fresh air, sun beaming on your face outdoor runs and hiking trails?! Now the cold and rain combined with less hours of natural daylight can only mean one thing - PACKED GYMS! We haven't even mentioned the New Year Resolution people that will soon join the mix in January! But don't let a crowded gym kill your vibe, my friends!

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If possible, avoid peak hours; of course, everyone goes after work! Maybe this is when you try getting into the habit of going before work. Many gyms are pretty sparse until 8am. Perfect time to get in your Fasted Cardio and watch the gorgeous sun rise!

-Don't neglect your cardio, especially on the days when you've had some of Santa's holiday cookies and spiked eggnog! If you're bulking, you don't need to be doing massive amounts of plyo and hiit cardio, so stay in the grrove and spice it up a little with a fun dance, spinning, or Zumba class. Most studios offer a discount or free first class for newbies.

-Busy with holiday mall shopping? Take the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator, and park your car a little further away when safe to do so. The extra steps during the day will add up.
*Food Time:

-Bulk up. It's always best to eat seasonal, local food because there is an abundance of the crop, making it less expensive. Also, produce that is shipped often gets zapped with bursts of radiation to kill germs, and treated with waxes to protect it during travel, this can affect flavor and nutrient quality. Winter foods include pomegranates and persimmons, collard greens and brussels sprouts, rutabagas, and squash like acorn, spaghetti, and pumpkin. These hearty choices have a little extra sugar and starch, but not to fret they are perfect pre- and pos- workout choices. Winter is a great time to increase your muscle mass before you lean out in the Spring so hit that weight room and don't be afraid to lift heavy. It will make your summer body DY-NO-MITE!

-Holiday parties and office treats have the potential to foil your healthy eating habits. No reason to be depressed and left out, just follow these suggestions:
-Remember when I encouraged you all to track your meals using the MyFitnessPal app? Well if you haven't gotten into that habit, try again now! Good or bad, tracking what you're eating is a sure fire way to monitor your consumption.  If you are feeling pressured by your boss to try one of his/her daughter's famous jelly rolls, cut off a small piece and calculate the carbs into your diet. Just skip out on your lunch toast so you don't go over your alloted carb macros for the day.
-Pack your meals for work every day. If you have healthy baby carrots and tahini dip, or a hard boiled egg whites, avocado, tomato sandwhich to reach for, you'll be less inclined to grab a gingerbread cookie your coworker baked.
-Office party? Here's a yummy recipe you can bring, and folks wont even know it's healthy!

image

-Libations on the holiday party menu? Avoid the empty calories if you can, or stick to clear liquors like tequila, gin, and vodka and mix with low cal or calorie free options like stevia soda water with muddled mint and lime (healthy mojito), or even stevia and fresh lime juice (healthy margarita). A small glass of champagne for your NYE Toast is okay, just pass on the bread!
*Health Time: In the wise words of Elle Woods, "Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don't shoot their husbands; they just don't." It really is true that maintaining an active lifestyle keeps you healthy and happy; but none of us are immune robots and no one is as happy when they're under the weather. Colds, the flu, allergies - winter is prime time for icky little bugs.

-It's common sense but, wash your hands often. Be sure to wipe down your machines at the gym before and after your use them.
-If you take any vitamins or supplements, remain consistent this time of year so your immune system stays strong. Food is your friend here as well - peppers (chili and bell), kale, strawberries, kiwi, and Brussels sprouts all have more Vitamin C than oranges!
-One of my all time favorite immune boosters when I feel a respiratory cold coming on is an herbal supplement called Kick Ass Immune by Wish Garden. It is loaded with the powerful elderflower, yarrow, and echinacea plants which aid in circulation, are anti-inflammatory, anti-parastic, antibiotic and much much more.

 


Lesson Learned... Don't Compare!

Hard to believe that in less than 3 weeks, it'll be 2015. Where did the year go?! Feels like just yesterday Tamara and I were ringing in 2014! I was in the jungle of Tulum, Mexico, and Tam was hanging with frosty elms in NYC. A new year always gets me reflecting on the past and planning my future. Like most of you, I have fitness and health goals I want to accomplish in 2015 (come on vegetarian muscles, grow!!) . This is also the time of year when most people start to ask me, "Summer, how do I lose 20 pounds?", or "How do I make this the last year I set a New Year's resolution to get in shape?".
2010 was the year I decided revolutionize my health and life path.  I never imagined it would lead me to where I am now; an IFBB Pro bikini athlete who lives by being of service to all of those that come to me wanting to dramatically transform their own health and life through the vehicle of diet and training!  As many of you are at various stages of revolutionizing your own lives, here are some important lessons I learned while becoming a Pro Athlete that will help on your own journeys:
1) Don't compare yourself to anyone. Quit trolling other people's Instagram or Facebook pages! It often leads to self-doubt, anger at your own progress, overtraining, judgement, etc.
2) Trust the process and enjoy the ride! Progress may not come as quickly as you want it but this isn't Burger King - you can't have it your way, right away! It's a lifestyle change you want, not instant gratification. I encourage you to take progress pictures and measurements because sometimes your own eyes can't see small changes.
3) Enjoy new information and stay fluid. Constant diet changes or macro manipulation can be overwhelming but it's like watching a new movie and anxiously waiting for each ending. Just roll with it!
4) Branding is a key element to success. Posting on social media helped me build a following of supporters, but they began to hold me accountable and regard me as someone that could represent the IFBB Pro reputation. Stay consistent with your message. Even when I'm down, my brand is about strength and finding strength through all situations. Don't forget - 2015 could be the year you inspire, motivate, or encourage someone else...the year they're asking you for support and advice...the year you're sharing your own lessons learned! Define your own personal brand and what you want to stand for.
Now I know it's not even Christmas or Hanukkah yet, but it doesn't hurt to start thinking of who you ARE in 2015.  I say who you are, and not who you will be because now is the time! Live like you're already a pro, already an inspiration, and are abundant! The beauty of these lessons is that they can apply to all aspects of your life - professional careers, hobbies, relationships.  Hopefully these lessons I've shared will help you think about and plan your 2015 goals!
xoxo,

Summer


Get Ready for Soma Fitness Black Friday Specials!!!

Soma Fitness' Black Friday Weekend Specials! Only available Friday, Saturday and Sunday!!! No contract neccessary. Pay month to month!

 

BlackFriday