MAX Blog

A Season of Love

Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.
— 1 Corinthians 13:13

It is funny the things in life you can handle, and those that you never quite figure out how to manage. The holiday season can quickly become one of those things...

It all begins with a smile. Maybe it happens the first time you hear your favorite Christmas carol, or when the weather gets cooler, or as you pull out your ornaments full of memories. But, slowly it becomes more of a chore than a season of joy. You are desperately trying to find the perfect gift, frantically attending every party, social event, and Christmas pageant, cooking, decorating, wrapping, traveling... and somehow you still manage to never feel "ready" for Christmas. 

Last night, however, everything changed. A prescription of bed rest, forced me to take a break from all the chaos. There I was, on the couch, making yet another list of everything that needed to be done, when it suddenly hit me. Nothing on the list mattered. The room was lit by the glow of the Christmas tree, Hallmark holiday movies on the TV, the smell of evergreen filled the air, and most importantly, the people I loved most were there with me. 

If there was not a single present under the tree this year, I would still have the greatest gift of all. Love.

If the decorations were not perfect, there would be love. Whether we eat a 20 pound turkey or PB & J sandwiches, there would be love. Even if our loved ones are gone, serving oversees, unable to travel, or smiling down on us from above, there would still be love. 

Love is the reason for the season. God sent us the greatest gift of all. Now, it is up to us to continue spreading the love. Nothing else matters.

Merry Christmas... with love.  



"1000 Rep Fat Burn"

It may sound strange, but one of the best ways to relax is to get in a great workout. You are going to love this rep challenge! Take a moment and try it today!




Fit for the Holidays- Part 4

It's the most wonderful time of the year! Or so they say....

In actuality, this is the time of year where we rush to buy last minute presents, wake up in the middle of the night wondering if we moved that stupid elf, develop writer's cramp sending out Christmas cards, spend endless hours in the kitchen, and frantically run around from school plays to doorbuster deals to office parties to family gatherings. It is exhausting! 

When it comes to putting on weight, the only thing worse than a binge of eggnog and pecan pie is stress! You have worked so hard up to this point. Squeezed in morning workouts, used portion control, increased your water intake, and passed on the office sweets. Do not let the whirlwind pace of the holidays ruin all your efforts. 

Part 4- Relax and enjoy the season

  • De-stress- Take a moment to meditate, do yoga, or sneak in a power nap to renew and energize yourself.
  • Think positive- When a negative thought creeps in, replace it with something wonderful!
  • Turn on the tube- White Christmas, Elf, It's a Wonderful Life, there is nothing like a classic holiday film to bring a smile to your face ☺ 
  • Politely decline- It is okay to say no. Remember that.
  • Pamper yourself- Get a pedicure, take a long, hot bath, read a book by the fire and just enjoy a little time for you.
  • Find your inner child- Think back to Christmas as a child- no school, building a snowman, decorating cookies, singing carols, and opening presents. Christmas wasn't work, it was a joyous time full of memories and cheer. Keep it that way.

Remember, it is okay if you do not check everything off the list, it is okay to pass off store bought cookies as your own, and it is okay if the Christmas photos with Santa turn out to be more looks of fear than of joy. Decline (yet another) party invitation and just relax this weekend. With a little more joy and a little less stress, Christmas can once again be the most wonderful time of the year!  

Tight, sore muscles are not always the results of strenuous workouts. Sometimes, stress can cause havoc to our bodies. Our recovery workouts are great for relieving tension and pain. 

"Workout Recovery"-

"Massage Recovery"-

A Little Bit More...

What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store. What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more.
— Dr. Seuss, How the Grinch Stole Christmas!

Every year, I look forward to going home. You can not help but to smile when you walk in- the twinkling Christmas lights, the smell of homemade cookies, and mom sure knows how to decorate for the holidays. The tree is always spectacular, filled with ornaments from our past, each with their own special meaning. The Snow Village  takes you down memory lane to her time in a small Minnesota town. And as far as decorations go, well basically everything comes down and something Christmassy takes its place. Including my sister and I's homemade gifts from grade school! That pine cone tree I made nearly 30 years ago still comes out, my sister's plastic bag wreath still has a spot, and our clothespin reindeer are still hung with care. Mom truly loves those gifts because they came from our heart not from our wallets. In fact, to this day, if you ask her what she wants for Christmas, she will promptly reply, "A clean house and a happy family." I get it now, mom, I really do.

For the first time in our lives, Steve and I can honestly say we do not need or even want anything this Christmas. Sure, we wish for love, safety, world peace, but nothing you can physically wrap and tie with a bow. We are content with what is in our closets, Steve does not want any new video games, while new fitness equipment is cool, I prefer my old dumbbells, and our new home is finally complete. We really can not think of one blessed thing....and it has changed our perspective. Now, instead of rushing to the stores after work, I take my time driving home, turning down different neighborhoods and seeing the lights. Steve is not frantically searching the internet in hopes of topping last year's gift, instead he is working on his garden and rebuilding a reindeer he made in shop class many years ago. 

Christmas is about family, making memories, traditions, spending time with loved ones, being blessed, our hearts filled with joy, and experiencing true happiness. No expensive gift under the tree can give you that feeling, at least not forever. Christmas doesn't come from a store. Christmas, perhaps, is a little bit more...

"Upper Body Supersets"

This is a great workout for all fitness levels. Build muscle, lose fat, tone up, and slim down with supersets! Please watch the video for the workout demonstration by MAX Trainer, Steve. 

Fit for the Holidays- Part 3

December is here! Let the parties begin! 


Congratulations! You fought off the candy corn and mini snickers to make it through Halloween. You stuck to one helping of Thanksgiving dinner and you worked off the pumpkin pie. Next step- surviving the Christmas party.



Part 3- The no-guilt party!

#1- Don't skip the warm up-  What you do prior to the party is just as important as the actual event. Eat a healthy breakfast packed with protein, load up on water, and squeeze in a quick workout session. 

#2- BYOG- Bring your own goodies! If your office party is stocked with store-bought cookies and canned fruit punch, skip the sheet cake and upgrade to something worth the calories. If you must indulge, bring some homemade gingerbread men or your favorite Christmas bark. Then, limit yourself to just one. 

#3- Choose wisely- Does your party's buffet rival that of Las Vegas with endless options of yummy goodness await your approving bite? Before you grab a plate and dive in, take a moment to peruse the tables. Finding what you really want avoids you piling up your plate with calories you could do without. 

#4- Satisfying small bites- If you can't decide between the variety of potato salads or choose from the vast selection of desserts, just grab some nibbles of your favorites. You can indulge without the guilt!

#5- Get chatty- Slow down your chow down by engaging in some small talk. There is more to a party than food, so get out there and mingle! 

 #6- Sip and enjoy- Christmas is a time for celebrating! But, too many alcoholic beverages not only packs on the calories, but also leads to nasty hangovers and deep regrets. Limit yourself to a drink or two. Your dignity and your waistline will thank you. 

"Strength & Sprint Circuit"

Sprinting is the ultimate exercise. Incorporating sprints into your workouts helps you lose weight, build muscle, and develop speed and power. In this workout, try to push as hard as you can for the required time, then allow yourself a complete recovery. You GET what you GIVE!

The True Meaning of Giving Thanks

Not what we say about our blessings, but how we use them, is the true measure of our thanksgiving.
— W.T. Purkiser

As we bless the food on our table, may we feed those that go hungry.

As we give thanks for the family that surrounds us, may we spend time with those that are alone.

As we express gratitude for our health, may we encourage healthy habits to our young ones.

As we praise the Lord for our freedom, may we take care of our veterans and active military personnel. 

As we appreciate our good fortune- a roof over our heads, employment, and friends, may we help those who are down on their luck. 

As we say our blessings, may we go out and truly live them.


Happy Thanksgiving to our MAX Training family. Thank you for your continued support, you are a blessing to us!  

Love- Steve and Rebecca Hayes

Tomorrow is one of our favorite MAX traditions- "Turkey Torture!" Get your family and friends together and get ready to burn off all that turkey!

Fit for the Holidays- Part 2

Let's be honest. When we think of Thanksgiving traditions we probably bypass the pilgrims, skip over the football, and go straight to the turkey! Some of us like to bake it, others prefer to fry it, some stuff it, while others don't, some of us choose the dark meat, and others like the light meat, but one thing is for certain- we ALL love to eat it! Thanksgiving dinner is a special meal full of food favorites from pumpkin pie to green bean casserole, and of course, lots of gravy! Not exactly diet-friendly. Have no fear. We have a sure-fire plan to get you through the holidays while still indulging in your favorite family traditions.

Part 2- Surviving Turkey Day

#1- Get your sweat on- Now is not the time to get lazy on your fitness routine, if anything, you should pick up the pace! Try these MAX Training workouts to keep the pounds off:

#2- Drink up- Sorry, I am not talking about martinis, but water. Aim for half your body weight in ounces. So if you are 140 pounds, you should drink at least 70 ounces or about 4 bottles of water. With all the high fat, high calorie food coming your way, you body needs to be hydrated to keep things moving!

#3- Rise and shine (and eat)- Do not skip breakfast in order to cut back on calories. Doing so will only lead to pigging out later. Instead, have a nutritious breakfast that is packed with protein and includes a serving of fruits and vegetables. 

#4- Out of sight, out of mind- Fill your Thanksgiving table with centerpieces, not food. While a beautiful bird is the highlight of the meal, it is better to keep it out of reach. If you insist on serving the food at the table, bring it to the kitchen after everyone has filled their plates. You will have to make a conscious decision to get up from the table for seconds.  

#5- Enjoy the company- I miss sharing the piano bench with my cousin, I miss Grandma's Swedish prayers, and I miss my family who has gone to be with the Lord. You can always eat food, but time spent with family and friends is priceless. Savor the moments. 

#6- Nibble, nibble, nibble- Grandma's pecan pie, your Aunt's fudge brownies, and Mom's Christmas cookies are not to be missed! Rather than stuffing your face until you are too ill to continue, get a tiny slice or bite of each and enjoy them all without the guilt! 

#7- Choose leftovers over seconds- Turkey sandwiches are the best! You don't have to finish up the casserole dish at the table. Saving some for later will keep you from overeating in one sitting and allow you to continue the food festivities later on. Or even better, send the leftovers home with your guests. 

#8- Start a new tradition- Before everyone goes into a turkey coma in front of the TV, get outside for a football game of your own! If sports aren't your thing, go for a walk, try a game of corn hole, or if the weather permits, build a snowman! 

Fit for the Holidays

November is here! Bring on the colder weather, pumpkin pie, bonfires, yoga pants, hot cocoa, and holiday cheer! It is that time of year where the food is rich and the celebrations are plentiful! Sadly, it is also that time where our waistlines tend to suffer. Well, not this year, not this time! 

During my sport days, it always seemed there was a huge event scheduled right after the holidays. Go figure. I somehow had to stay in tip-top shape and even sometimes had to LOSE weight to make a lower weight class. But, this being my favorite time of the year, I refused to ever sacrifice the joys and pleasures of the season. With a few adjustments, I successfully stayed on weight while still delighting in casseroles, Christmas cookies, and pumpkin spice lattes! 

All that is good and wonderful about the holidays can surely lead to a few extra pounds. But, no worries. We have a fool proof plan to keep off the weight gain while still enjoying the indulgences of the season! In addition, you will develop a health and fitness regimen that will take you into the New Year!  Join us for the next few weeks as we get Fit for the Holidays!

Bad knees? Mobility issues? Want to do something different? Our first workout of the holiday season is a tough lower body workout without any squats or jumping!

 "Bottom Burner"

Watch the video for exercise demonstrations, as well as, beginner and advanced modifications.

Part 1- 

  • 50 Side Leg Raises
  • 25 Leg Circles (each way)
  • 50 Inner Thigh Leg Raises

Switch Sides and Repeat

Part 2-

  • 25 Glute Raises
  • 25 Diagonal Glute Raises
  • 25 Side Glute Raises

Switch Sides and Repeat

Part 3- 

  • 50 Swimmers
  • 50 Flutter Kicks

Part 4- 

  • 25 Hip Raises
  • 25 Single Leg Hip Raises (each side)