Vigor Vida Fit-Blog

Welcome to Vigor Vida's Fit-Blog, where you can find casual fitness and health related experiences and tips! 

Identifying and defeating a plateau

posted Jan 23, 2018, 11:47 AM by Megan Niño

What is an exercise plateau?

A state of little or no change in your routine. This could affect how much weight you lift or your weight not changing.

How do I overcome a plateau?

Re-adjust your volume and intensity.

These terms are commonly used when discussing periodization. Volume is the product of sets times repetitions. The intensity is measured by your maximum repetition or difficulty of an exercise. People like to call this “tricking” your muscles. In reality your muscles do not think. By re-adjusting your volume and intensity, your body will identify unfamiliar patterns allowing it to break out of its normal routine. An example of re-adjusting your workout could be lowering the weights and doing higher repetition, or increasing the weights and doing less repetitions.

Take a week off.

When you rest, your muscles begin to rebuild and your joints and connective tissues have time to recuperate from the impact. There is a misconception that rest will make you lose your results. This is false! Even your favorite athletes rest strategically. Keep in mind a rest period doesn’t mean you should slack off. You need to continue your eating regimen and instead of exercising, implement stretching or a different mode of exercise like cardio versus resistance training or vice versa. When you go back to your routine, your body will be ready!

For more information on Progressions and Plateaus, click here

Thanksgiving Tips

posted Nov 24, 2016, 10:37 AM by Megan Niño

Happy Thanksgiving everyone! While some people are excited for the ultimate cheat day, others may be a little worried about over eating. These tips may not apply to everyone, but they will help those who have this concern at for forefront of their mind. Here are 3 ways to keep you from from possibly regretting your decisions tomorrow:

1. Grab a small plate so that you can limit your portion size. 
2. Don't allow your eyes to be bigger than your mouth. We have the habit of treating Thanksgiving like a buffet and although it may be, grab your food with the hopes of having seconds. If you do or don't is on you. You will notice you will eat less and won't waste as much food.
3. Eat slowly and drink water to help with digestion and to prevent over eating

On a side note, I feel it is important that you enjoy your time with family and friends today and make a decision to be grateful everyday of your life. When you do, see how much your life will be different moving forward. Best!

What Should I Eat?

posted Sep 3, 2016, 7:42 AM by Megan Niño   [ updated Sep 3, 2016, 7:54 AM ]

Image result for food

"What Should I Eat?"  By. Megan Nino

    The biggest question people ask me is how they should eat to lose weight or gain muscle. I typically translate it as "How should I eat to be healthier and reach my goals?" Because everyone is different, this isn't a cookie cutter type of "diet." It's all about learning to include variety, eat nutrient filled foods, and learning what portion sizes are right for you and your lifestyle. My goal is to teach people to moderate their eating and to implement healthier foods into their eating habit. Here is an easy breakdown of what a sample meal may look like. 

Daily Calorie Expectation: ~10cal/ lb in body weight and on active days add ~200-300 calories coming from a post workout snack

3 portioned sized meals per day and 2 small snacks
Intermittent fasting: i.e if you eat breakfast at 7am, you cannot eat after 7pm

Breakfast: Protein with fruit or a light carb and your usual coffee with less sugar and cream

Snack: fruit or veggie (You can eat your veggies with a healthy dip such as hummus 2 tbs)

Lunch: Protein, carb (preferably complex carb, but  a grain or flatbread is acceptable), and veggie or salad

Snack: Fruit, veggie, or shake

Dinner: Protein and veggies or full salad. (Be cautious of dressings) You can also add a complex carb like quinoa or sweet potatoes

Post workout: Protein shake or a light portion of protein source and veggies/complex carb

BEWARE of cheat days. Cheat days can contradict any progress made in a given week. Instead have 1 cheat meal of a moderate portion size a week. Also avoid frying your food.

Once you get into the groove of the changes, it'll be easier and you can get more creative. Meal prepping does not have to be boring. Let me know if you have any questions.


Good Proteins:
Chicken Breast
Lean Ground Turkey
Lean Ground Beef 

Good Fats:
Olive Oil 
Coconut Oil
Raw Nuts

Good Carbs:
Sweet Potatoes
Beans (be mindful of the extra sodium in canned beans)


i.e Person A weighs 185lbs. His essential calorie intake is 1850 Cal/day. If he eats 3 meals/ day each of those meals should be around 600 calories/day. On days he exercises, his protein shake should cover the extra nutrients needed. As he builds more muscle, his caloric intake will increase because of a spiked metabolism.

Sample meal: 
1 chicken breast (calories ~282) 
1/5th Avocado (~50 Calories)
1 cup of Quinoa (~222 Calories)
1 cup of Brocolli (~31 Calories)

If he eats 5 meals/day then the meals are just cut in half. So instead of a full breast per meal, he will eat half a breast, and etc.

I hope this helps! If you have any questions, please email me at 

Here is a quick video of a client of mine made in response to one of my blog posts. She followed this diet rubric and her exercise prescription exactly as it was written and consulted with me regularly. It took her a while to adjust her eating habits and figure out how to cook, but when she did she got great results. 

©2016 Vigor Vida, All Rights Reserved.

Sizzlin' Summer Fun

posted Aug 13, 2016, 12:51 PM by Megan Niño   [ updated Aug 28, 2016, 10:33 AM ]

Between all the bbq-ing, traveling, and day long happy hours. I know how difficult it could be to maintain the physique you've been training to have. Don't let all the weekend meal-prepping sessions go to waste! Here are 5 ways to stay focused and still have fun during these blissful months:

1. Stay active
Staying active can be challenging if you are traveling a lot or are always out and about. Make a commitment of exercising a minimum of 30 minutes a day. If you do not have access to weights, explore a new style of exercise to peak your interest such as calisthetics, plyometrics, cardio with a moderate/high intensity or traditional body weight exercises. If you do have access to a gym, don't be afraid! 30 minutes of active time won't take away from your daily activities.  You can also take a jog along the shore, attach the bands you bought in January onto a palm tree, or go explore a new town by foot. The options and possibilities are endless! 

2. Drink plenty of water
Not only is it important to stay hydrated during these heated months, but drinking water can help you control your hunger pains. 

3. Eat
All of us can agree that food is amazing! There is no need to take out certain foods from your diet especially if you are traveling and wanting to try new things. Plan ahead! Maybe one day you will have a light breakfast and a larger lunch or vice versa. 

4. Find a like-minded friend
We all have those friends who motivate us. A little competition isn't bad. Hold each other accountable to reach your goal of hotness or find that one person on Instagram and follow them to keep you motivated daily. Plan a day where you and your friends run a trail and do tri-set every quarter of a mile. 

5. Read a book with purpose
Are you trying to improve your attitude or outlook in life? Find a good self-help book that will maximize your growth. Remember they are only good if they are implemented! Everyone loves a good attitude. Don't be the debby-downer. 

Spring Time Blues: Weight Loss vs Fat Loss

posted Apr 26, 2016, 5:17 PM by Megan Niño   [ updated May 1, 2016, 6:55 PM ]

Summer is right around the corner and everywhere you look you will find advertisements on weight loss products or the best workouts to "melt the belly fat away." Weight loss is a phrase that can be thrown around or misunderstood. As a kinesiologist and personal trainer, I get many people asking me for the best way to lose weight. I always have to ask whether the person is trying to lose weight or lose fat. Your overall weight includes: bones, organs, fluids, muscle, and fat. Therefore, weight loss can include loss of muscle, fat, fluids, and even a decrease in bone density. Fat loss on the other hand is when you cut down on your body fat percentage, which doesn't necessarily mean you are going to lose weight. It means that your body will begin to "tighten up" or "slim down" because of the fat loss. Keep in mind that muscle is denser than fat. The photo below displays replicas of 5 lbs of fat and 5lbs of muscle.
Although it is possible to cut both fat percentage and weight in pounds, most people wish to lose body fat, but are not sure how. It really depends on the physique you are looking to build. Below are steps to plan before beginning the fat loss process.

1. How do you measure your body fat? There are four ways to measure body fat: OMRON, Skinfolds, hydrostatic Weighing, and DEXA. The most accurate are hydrostatic weighing and DEXA with Skinfolds coming in third place. These three modes of measurement do need a trained technician. The easiest, and fastest way to measure body fat is using a handheld OMRON machine. The OMRON sends a an electrical signal, which you do not feel, through your body and will calculate your fat percentage and body mass index (BMI) according to gender, age, and body type. OMRON does have some error, but it is a great way to track your progress. 

2. What exactly does your diet consist of? You may have heard the phrase, "Abs are made in the kitchen." To a large extent it is true. For a week, record exactly what you are eating and estimate your portion sizes. This first step creates awareness of your daily habits. Remember what you eat and how much will affect your body. Now that you know your daily eating habits, you may have noticed certain things that could be improved. Calculate how many calories you are eating and adjust it by consuming approximately 10 calories per lb in body weight. Depending on your energy expenditure, you can increase that total by 200-500.  Make sure that your diet consists of food groups and seasonings that you like. Reduce your sweets, fast food, and processed foods. Overtime eliminate them or use them as a weekly/bi-weekly incentive. (These are rough estimates that vary per person, if you have specific questions please email me or contact your health professional). Remember everyone is different. Listen to your body, feed it what it needs, and avoid feeding what your visceral fat is screaming for. 

3. What will your regimen look like? Depending on what your goals are, the style of training will vary. The more muscle you build, the higher your metabolism will be. For a slim physique, endurance training (high repetition) with occasional heavier lifting and cardio will help. If you want a more athletic physique, then your exercise regimen will be a combination of strength training that is about 60-70% effort, power training, and some cardio. Keep a fitness journal to plan your workouts and track your progress.

4. What will hold you accountable? Changing your daily habits aren't easy, but they are do-able. Hire a fitness professional to help you develop a plan and some realistic goals. If a personal trainer is outside your budget, find a buddy to work out with.

5. Get Started!

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Copyright ©2016, Vigor Vida, All rights reserved.

What's the Big Hype About Protein?

posted Sep 28, 2015, 1:30 PM by Megan Niño   [ updated Apr 26, 2016, 5:18 PM ]

What is protein?

Protein are large molecules made up of amino acids, which our body/cells need to function.

Why is protein important? 

There are about 20 amino acids (such as glutamine, alanine, luesine, etc). These amino acids are the building blocks of protein and can be arranged for specific functions. These functions include: growth/repair, making hormones, muscle contractions, making enzymes, transporting stuff such as hemoglobin, cellular responses, and etc. 20% of our body weight is made of protein.

When should I consume protein?

Taking protein within an hour of training or working out helps with muscle recovery and development. 

What's the difference between Veggie proteins and Whey Protein?
Veggie Protein, usually made of soy or peas, are usually vegetarian and vegan friendly. The properties can be different from whey, but it is not anything significant. Whey protein is not vegetarian friendly. Many whey proteins are made of whey isolates, which are smaller, more efficient sources that can be absorbed at a faster rate.

What should I look for when buying protein?

1. Is the product organic?
2. Is it concentrated (has no fillers)? Concentrated products = better quality and more for your buck
3. Does the brand know where it's nutrients came from? Do they have control over the agricultural process?
4. What other nutrients or properties are added? (Antioxidants, CLA, Caffeine, Creatine, Valerian, etc) 

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Copyright ©2015, Vigor Vida, All rights reserved.

September Fit-Letter

posted Sep 8, 2015, 8:24 AM by Megan Niño   [ updated Sep 8, 2015, 8:24 AM ]

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Keep your Children focused in school with these lunch packaging tips
  • Have your child choose from healthy food options. Remember to always give your child a balanced meal. They are growing and need the right amounts of protein, fats, and carbs. 
  • Cut/Slice fruits and veggies for easy consumption
  • Try to avoid pre-packaged meals and sugary drinks, which includes sports drinks. Instead try packing fruit infused water or freshly squeezed juice. 
  • Try a healthy fruit/veggie shake that your child likes. Children love "milkshakes!"
  • Team up to create wacky and fun names for your child's lunch!
Trying to schedule your gym time into your busy day?
  • Create 3 categories labeled: high priorities, medium priorities, and low priorities.
  • Start listing your high priorities. Work, kids events, school etc
  • Do the same with your medium and low priorities. Medium priorities are things you want to start doing. Low priorities like catching your favorite show on T.V can be compromised.
  • On your calendar. Begin marking your high priorities (consider getting ready, eating, and commute time) And then go onto medium priorities and low.
This type of calendar planning will require discipline, but it will give you the opportunity to see how much time you really have. People always make time for things that matter to them.
September 23rd is the beginning of Fall Prevention Week! We shouldn't have to wait for a special week to do what matters. Learn how to protect yourself and your loved ones! Read More
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My First Video!

posted Aug 19, 2015, 4:58 PM by Megan Niño   [ updated Aug 19, 2015, 5:05 PM ]

Vigor Vida Teaser!

Thank you for the awesome experience! 

No Excuses!

posted Aug 15, 2015, 3:08 PM by Megan Niño   [ updated Aug 15, 2015, 3:09 PM ]

Yesterday my car broke down, which resulted in me not having a car today. I could have easily stayed home to do my work and I could have cancelled my entire schedule due to my "emergency." Instead I walked about 6 miles one way to get to my destination. Did I like it? No. However, I did look at the positive side of things. I got a workout and I overcame a personal limitation, which is making excuses because it is easy. In turn I got a lot of work done and I feel great. The question to all of you is: how bad do you want to accomplish your goals? If you are trying to lose weight for example, what is it going to take for you to lose weight? Are you willing to wake up early or stay out late after work to workout? Are you willing to discipline your eating habits? Are you willing to meal prep? Are you ready to change? It is so easy to stay home, but change only happens when you put yourself in an uncomfortable, productive position. Weight loss, for example, does not happen by wishing and it does not happen with minimal effort. What is it going to take? When you feel like you don't want to is the right moment to keep going. Get up and go! 

August Fit-Letter

posted Aug 10, 2015, 4:40 PM by Megan Niño   [ updated Aug 10, 2015, 4:40 PM ]

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Stay Slim at the Shore
1. Exercise at the beach
  • Did you know that jogging or walking on the sand is a lot more effective than running on a flat surface?
  • Team up with your trainer and ask for a personalized program or hire them to train you at the beach!
2. Play a game of volleyball or ultimate frisbee with family or friends
3. Bring healthy snacks
  • Fruit Salads and Veggies
4.Bring your own lunch and drinks

Don't forget to wear your UVA/UVB sunscreen!
Exercise of the Month:
30 Minute "Do it yourself" Exercise

Warm-Up: (30 seconds per warmup)
High Knees
Butt kicks
Arm Circles
Round: (30 seconds per workout)
Burpee: Knee tuck to vertical jump
Lunge with twist
Lateral Slides 
One-legged Romanian deadlift
Tricep dips
Bear Crawl
Russian Twist
Repeat x3
Don't forget to stretch!


“I want to enjoy my family and keep up with my grandchildren.” - Rosa

As a person ages, their bodies change. Their bone density, coordination, reaction time, metabolism and musculature usually decrease. Risk factors become more relevant and illnesses/diseases can begin to surface. It is common today to hear about the benefits of exercise, but how will exercise improve your daily livelihood?... Read More

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