Fitness & Pancakes | Daily Fitness Interview With Pancake Warriors

My favorite fitness sites are the ones that have “actionable” information. I love fitness websites with tons of information that I can actually start using right away.

Today’s interview is with Samantha from PancakeWarriors.com. Her website is full of actionable information about fitness, nutrition, and healthy living. From informative beginner series to some of the best healthy eating recipes on the internet, Samantha’s website is a must read. She is an accountant, certified Group Fitness Instructor, and fitness blogger with a fresh take on women’s fitness.

Hi Samantha, thanks for visiting Daily Fitness Interview. How did you get your start in fitness?

I quit smoking, and within a year I decided that I needed to get in shape and treat my body better. I started at home with various videos and slowly made it into the gym.

When I took my first group exercise class (body pump) I was hooked.

Can you explain why you chose the name “Pancake Warriors” for your fitness website?

When we finally decided to start a blog about health, fitness, and clean eating recipes we came up with hundreds of name variations. In the end, we wanted something strange and funny, something that would stick out.

We also eat a ton of healthy, high protein pancakes. It’s a staple on the weekends, and they are delicious – you need to check out our recipes. As for Warriors, we need to be warriors in the gfitness-friday-3-motivation-wake-up-samym and in the kitchen to accomplish our goals!

In your Beginner Series | Building the Ultimate Home Gym, you mention that when you were first starting out you found the thought of going to the gym and working out in front of other people intimidating. What is a good way for people who are new to the fitness world to mitigate these feelings?

I think the intimidation comes from not being familiar or knowing what to do. Most of us only know the treadmill. I was able to find my home in group fitness classes.

The instructors are normally very passionate and will go out of their way to help you with form and feeling comfortable in class. These classes are also great because you start seeing the same people on a weekly basis, which may eventually turn into a gym friendship.

There is nothing better than having a gym buddy to workout with! Once you get the basics, it’s much easier to get out on the gym floor. Also, sign up to get that free session with the personal trainer in your gym or inquire about it.

Ask specifically for them to demonstrate the equipment and take a notebook with you to jot down any notes or tips the trainer gives you. This includes what settings to have the machines at. For example if you are shown the leg extension machine, write down exactly how to set up the machine and any tips the trainer gave you in executing the moves.

Gyms are normally empty on Saturday afternoons and Sunday evenings, so if you want some time to practice in the gym without everyone around, these are optimal times to go!

If you don’t have the option of a personal trainer or a group fitness class, or if that is still intimidating for you, then grab some online YouTube videos and practice at home.

Please listen for tfitness-friday-4-are-you-lifting-squathe cues on form and don’t pick up too much weight at first. Learning the moves and the form is key! We’ve developed a few beginner workouts in our Beginner Series for individuals that are new and want to work out in the comfort of their own home.

You offer a free eBook on your website called “10 Ways to Clean Up Your Ingredient List.” What do you believe are the top 2 ingredients / foods that people eat on a daily basis without realizing how unhealthy those foods are?

(1) Coffee Creamer/Coffee Syrup – Anything other than your basic half-and-half coffee creamer is usually packed full of chemicals.

I drink a lot of coffee and add my own cinnamon, nutmeg, and half-and-half, or they have all natural flavored Stevia which is delicious. Even your low fat creamers have high fructose corn syrup in it.

(2) Processed Cereal/oatmeal – The amount of chemicals, added food coloring, and sugar added to our cereals is kind of scary. We also lean towards oatmeal packets thinking they’re healthier for us when they’re actually not.

Stick to plain steel cut/rolled oatmeal and flavor them yourself. Mix it with cinnamon, chocolate protein powder, almonds, and top it with blueberries or raspberries.

Editor’s Note: Visit Pancake Warriors to download “10 Ways to Clean Up Your Ingredient List.”

I often have trouble getting a healthy breakfast, either because I’m just too lazy in the morning or because I don’t have enough time to prepare a meal in the morning. And sometimes I just don’t feel like eating when I wake up in the morning. Do you have any ideas for easily digestible, healthy breakfast foods or shakes?

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Simply because your body goes into fasting mode while you’re sleeping. Food (clean food) is a natural thermogenic.

Although it sounds counterproductive, you need to eat to burn calories. I am always on the run in the morning so I usually blend up a green smoothie for my drive into work.

It takes about 5 minutes and is loaded with nutrients. Almond Milk, Peanut Butter or Chia Seeds, Spinach, Mixed Berries, Protein Powder.

I also mix up overnight oats in the evening just before bed so it’s ready for me. This is usually my second breakfast in the morning at work.

Is there anything else you would like to discuss?

I could go on for days and days about the importance of a wholesome diet that is focused primarily on the principles of clean eating. You can’t out exercise an unhealthy diet. I love the motto you are what you eat – and I want to be real and healthy, not fake and overly processed!

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Lightning Round

Best exercise to exercise calf muscles?

Running or the stair machine. I hate training calf muscles in the gym – I can’t walk the next day! If I do, I find a large plate weight and do free weight standing calf raises standing on the 45 plate. I like that you use your core when performing this move to stay steady on the plate while holding weight in your hands. The trick to calves is high rep and holding them. Feel the burn!

How many meals a day do you eat?

I eat around 6, depending on the day and what I’m eating for each meal.

If you weren’t an Accountant, you would be a…

Personal Trainer or Personal Chief

Biggest pet peeve in the gym?

Only one?! Lol. Bad form. I always want to correct them, but you can’t – bad gym etiquette.

If you could only do one exercise for the rest of your life?

Squats. Or burpees. HMMMM…

Favorite YouTube channel / Fitness Personality?

Jillian Michaels

life-in-pictures-2-treeFitness Bio

While I’m an accountant by trade, fitness and food are her passion. I love making healthy and clean recipes, and being in the kitchen. I am also one of those people that gets really antsy if I don’t workout. I’m probably just chasing that endorphin high – guess it could be worse right? You can visit my website, find me on Facebook, Twitter, G+, or Pinterest.

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