‘Living my best life’, ‘self-care is not selfish’, and ‘YOLO’ are a few catchphrases for mindfulness. We see them in memes; they are plastered all over social media, quoted by our favorite host, and reiterated by our woke-est of friends. But what does mindfulness mean? How does one become mindful? I can tell you that mindfulness is more than having a venti Pumpkin Spice Chai Latte somewhere in Central Park.

Photo by Josh Couch on Unsplash

The American Psychological Association recognize mindfulness as a Buddhist concept adopted by psychotherapist; it is a state of awareness that promotes emotional intelligence etc. Mindfulness is not just a power phrase thrown around in job interviews for progressive companies; it is a state of being. Axelrod (2012) believes, in psychoanalysis and executive coaching, emotional awareness was an important factor in facilitating change or growth. Managers, therapists, coaches, friends, and partners, etc. all possess the ability to influence your mindfulness. In the state of awareness that is mindfulness lies an opportunity for growth. This is where we focus less on ‘what’ and focus on the ‘why’, we seek understanding before judgment.

Continue reading “Mindfulness”




Instructions: The following post should be made daily in the support group. Each week’s assignment will cross over into the following week in addition to that week’s assignment. Participation in the support group is not required to participate in the challenge; however, you will be ineligible to receive prizes without participation.


Week 1: Positive body image

What is one of your favorite assets and what would you like to improve about the body you’re learning to love?

  1. Identify 2 assets

e.g. I like my eyes and butt

  1. Identify 1 area of improvement and how you’ll improve it

e.g. I would like to lose body fat; I will make healthy food choices

  1. Share assets and area of improvement each day in the support group
  2. Respond to 1 or more group member


Week 2: Positivity Journal + Positive body image

Let’s create an attitude of gratitude. Before bed journal 3 things that you are thankful for; the following day share one of those things with the group. This is in addition to your positive body image post.

  1. 3 things I am thankful for
  2. Share 1 of your positives with the group
  3. Respond to 1 or more group member


Week 3: Goal setting + Positivity Journal + Positive body image

What are your fitness goals? Choose one goal and identify the steps required to reach it. Use SMART goals to complete 1 step of your goal each day.

S.M.A.R.T goals – Specific (when where how) Measurable (point of reference/ how often how many times) Attainable (are you in a position to do it) Reliable (can you replicate this activity) Timely (your window of opportunity)

  1. Choose a goal
  2. Create smart goals for the goal
  3. Each day choose 1 step within the goal to accomplish
  4. Share step with the group


Grand prize

8-week Custom exercise program

Exclusive support group

Fitness by ben apparel


In order to qualify for the prizes participants must complete the following:

  • Log weekly check-ins on Sunday or Monday
  • Complete 3 full check-ins
  • Log 18 days of meals minimum in MyFitnessPal
  • Log and complete 3-5 work out sessions in the app weekly
  • Participate daily in the support group by checking in and responding to one person in the support group
  • Lose 5 – 10 pounds within 21 days
  • Lose 10 – 20 inches overall

Check-in Requirements:

  1. Progress pictures
  • A full body photo taken from 3 planes of reference (front, side, and back) (Figure 1). Form-fitting clothing or bathing suits are encouraged.


progress pic.pngFigure 1. Example of Required Progress Pictures.

  1. Measurements
  • Tracking the circumference or girth of multiple sites or limbs on the body, these measurements are completed in inches. These measurements should be logged in the app (Figure 2).

Figure 2. App interface where you will log your measurements.

  1. Weigh in
  • Measure your body weight in pounds or kg on a scale in connection with an athletic contest


  1. Post your progress in the app. It will not count towards the challenge if I do not see it. Please do not text or email me your progress pictures; upload them to the app.

The Patience of Programing

We have all heard of the dreaded wall, maybe you have hit it at one time or another during your fitness journey. In the middle of those early morning gym sessions, lunchtime cardio, and late night carrot and peanut butter snacks it’s easy to become stagnant and plateau. This can be a source of frustration and demoralization. As any of my clients can attest, my favorite thing to say is ‘someone built the pyramids’. UntitledAny stress we place on the body i.e. strength or cardiovascular training the body will adjust. There is few that we can not do. It is a matter of patience and knowledge. The key to avoid plateauing is managing the variables of fitness.Assuming genetics, sleep, stress, and nutrition are accounted for, we are going to focus on the importance of program design.

Programing is a crucial part of avoiding the dreaded wall. The key to over coming the hump is periodization. It is the systematic planning of an exercise program to elevate performance and meet goals. Exercise programs should be changed or altered every 8 to 12 weeks. The National Academy of Sports Medicine identifies 5 phases of periodization within program design. The OPT model phases are divided into stabilization, strength endurance, hypertrophy, maximal strength, and power. The stabilization phase ranges from 3 or more sets and repetitions ranging from 12 to 20. Adversely, power phase’s ranges from 3 to 5 repetitions. Consistency facilitates adaptation and growth and change stimulates progression.

No one will ever know your body more than you do. you have been living in it for decades. With that said, you do not need to throw away your trusted exercise routine every 8 to 12 weeks. Instead, make adjustments; small changes such as grip, angle, and TUT every few weeks can change the way a isolated muscle group is activated and developed.pexels-photo-295774.jpeg Periodically adjusting the resistance on exercises is another great way of adjusting a routine to avoid plateauing. Try raising the weight for upper body exercises 2.5 to 5lb per week and 5 to 10lb for lower body; of course if the increase  is too heavy keep the weight the same then try again the following week.

Program design can be complicated and intricate depending on the desired goal and time frame. Fitnessbyben.com offers an online training service which includes program design, videos, suggested nutrition plan, and a weekly service call to help reach your fitness and health goals. The certified trainer provides flexible scheduling to help support our clients’ programs regardless of the demands of daily life.

Contact us schedule a consultation or to learn more about Online Training or program design.

House to Home gym

$20 and 20 minutes

I know what you must be thinking; this has to be sham! How on earth do I get a home gym with $20? where did I dig up this well kept secret? Experiences of course. I have been involved in health and wellness for almost 10 years now. I started as a college athlete in at a tiny division II School in Rockland County, NY. A master’s degree, 5 certifications, and a spur of the moment move to Las Vegas later, taught me a few things along the way.  There has been a constant building theme I noticed over the years. Here it is! Do a lot with a little. Fitness as a life style choice for most people should be fun, quick, and convenient. handle-1108594__480

What does a dumbbell, machine, and medicine ball all have in common? You guessed it right, resistance! If we place a muscle under tension or stress for x amount time, repetitions, and sets (along with appropriate nutrition & rest) our muscles will grow. I have trained dozens of clients with various goals, starting points, and body types. By no means am I suggesting that you should cancel your gym membership nor am I stating that you can only achieve health and wellness from home with a trainer. I am merely educating you on what I know and I have proven; knowledge is the key to success. Knowing what to do and how to do it makes the difference.

Here’s what $20 gets you:
An interchangeable 5 band set on amazon.com, with free 2 day shipping if you are a prime member. The resistance of these bands ranges from 2lb to 30lb and can produce as much as 75lb of resistance when combined. Using resistance bands with clients in the home I have been able to do the following exercises: chest press, pec fly, upright row, squats, leg extensions, glute kick backs, bicep curls, triceps over head extensions, low row, face pulls, lat pull downs, and a few others that didn’t make the list. I have also utilized water bottles, towels, and pots into some of my own workouts at home.

So next time the weather sucks, you’re on vacation, your kids are home sick, or you just moved into a new place and you can’t drag yourself into the gym; remember you can have an entire home gym at your disposal for $20.

Interested in a custom home work out? With our 6 or 12 week online training package you get a custom exercise program for the home & gym and a custom nutrition program. For more info on fitness services visit fitnessbyben.com

Macros Matter!

As a certified personal trainer, I have been asked more times than I can count to do the impossible. I have been asked to change genetics, bone structure, and body types. How have I been asked to do this? Pictures, clients have come in with pictures of fitness models and celebrities who were 6 inches taller, photoshopped, dehydrated, and naturally had an ectomorph body type (1 of 3 body types).almond-1850615__480 Any fitness professional that takes your picture and instantly says, “I can get you there!” is not being honest. This is because its completely up to you, actually its 90 percent you the client. Your results will be 10% of your exercise program, 80% will be your nutrition, and the last 10% will be habits and genetics. Accountability is key, you, the client needs to follow the exercise program to the “T”, that means not skipping out on the homework your trainer gives you!

Continue reading “Macros Matter!”

Basic Nutrition

Health Made Easy


I could pour out loads of information about macronutrients, the fuel source of the body and dictator of all your fitness desires. Macronutrients are the vitamins, minerals, proteins, fats, and carbohydrates that make up your daily caloric intake, which fuels the body. But to keep it basic, the more active you are the higher your macro intake needs to be to sustain daily bodily functions, recovery, promote muscle growth, and cell health. Your intake should reflect your lifestyle and goals.

For example, a distance runner requires a higher level of carbohydrates than a body builder, a body builder wants to increase his protein intake while monitoring the carb intake, both these athletes may need anywhere from 3,000 to 5,000 calories. However, you may only need 1,800 a fraction of their macro intake to reach your health and wellness goals.

Let’s make it simple. Let’s think back to when people were primarily hunter gathers. If we are going on a 3-day hunting expedition, what might we carry with us? It probably would have been dried meat, nuts, fruits and or vegetables. Today with our mostly sedentary lifestyles we manage to do one of two things: eat too much or not eat enough.

If you want to put science aside, and you are not ready to invest in a nutrition consultation or purchase a custom suggested meal plan template (I provide both services), here is what you should know.

Your meals should be like an upside down triangle. Have your biggest meals at the start of the day and taper down. Breakfast might be 2 boiled eggs, ½ cup of Greek yogurt, 1 cup of sliced bananas. Quick, easy, and probably meets or comes close to what your body needs. Lunch is even simpler, chicken breast, half a cup of brown rice, and a cup of broccoli. For dinner why not a chicken Caesar salad light on the dressing? We should also snack in between those meals i.e. nuts, fruits, vegetables, or a protein shake. The big secret is, wait for it!

Wwater-drinkingATER!!! The body is 65% water and our cells need hydration to function. How much do you need? For women 90 or so ounces of fluids per day and for men 125, I always suggest a gallon as a high point to shoot for. Over time an adequate water intake will aid digestion and increase the metabolism, and last but not least we lose 5 to 10% of our maximum muscular output when we are dehydrated. So if you could bench 135lb when you are dehydrated you might only be able to do 120lb.

SO! Drink lots of water, portion your meals, eat snacks, and ask about all the services provided by Fitness by Ben that you have yet to take advantage of.

Let’s Impact Lives Together

If you are reading this you probably already know about my passion for helping others. You may also know that helping people and working with the community can be thankless and incredibly fulfilling at the same time. It takes a conduit (me) AND a team (you) to make it possible. With my training, expertise and unique skill set I can bring a great deal to the table when trying to help others achieve their goals of bettering themselves.

Please take a moment to check out my GoFundMe Fundraiser page. Thank you to all of those who have supported me thus far, and to those who are supporting through sharing my fundraiser and mission with their network.

If you have found yourself wanting to be a part of something bigger, now is the time. No amount is too small. And because I appreciate your contribution so much, I would like to give you a token in return. Be a part of something bigger by contributing to a cause that will make our world better one person at a time.

Help spread the word! THANK YOU for being a part of the solution!

Please see below for giving options and please do what you can:

Lean and fit: under $50
– Fitness counseling over the phone

Athletic and built: $50.00 to $99.00
– Complimentary session in person or online

The Olympian $100.00 or more:
– Comp session and program design

New Year and New Site Launch!


Welcome and thanks for checking out my new site!

I wish everyone in the Fit By Ben team – clients, friends, and family, a very prosperous, healthy and happy 2017.

Stay tuned for new material in the coming weeks including workouts, deals and promotions, recipes and other related content.