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Cutting Edge Personal TrainingMarch 23, 2020

Does the Lockdown Have You Relapsing?

Is this you? Has the effects of coronavirus have you relapsing into your old unhealthy habits?

The sad truth is that nearly everyone who started off 2020 with strong fitness goals is now about throw in the towel. I sincerely hope that this is not you.

Here is the cycle that happens when you relapse into your old unhealthy habits. Plus how to pick yourself back up.

1) First You Fall

Your fall off the wagon could take place in a single moment, or it could be the result of a drawn out process. Even if there was no coronavirus, you could easily fall out of exercise slowly as a result of other health problems or other various life issues that spring up and monopolize your time.

Illness, vacation, holidays, changes at work or any other change in your schedule are all things that’ll get you off the wagon. Once you’re off, the real damage begins. And all of us are getting taken out of our normal schedule right now.

Boredom-Eating.jpg2) Second You Surrender

There comes a point after you fall off the wagon that you simply throw your hands up in the air and give in. It may be a dramatic moment when you decide to eat anything you want, or when you begin to use food for comfort and to ease stress (how many of you are doing this right now?).

Surrender is the most destructive part of the cycle. You remove all expectations from yourself and as a result you plummet into an unhealthy realm. The progress that you’ve made toward your goals is lost and even more weight is gained.

3) Then You Hit Bottom

Inevitably there comes the moment when you hit bottom. Your body shows the new weight gain and you feel awful about it. This is a sobering moment when you see what you’ve allowed yourself to become, and you don’t like it one bit. Negative, defeated thoughts run through your mind. While hitting bottom is never a fun experience, for many of you it may be a necessary one. The pain must become great enough for you to turn it around and take the control back.

sweat-yell.jpg4) Finally You Take Control

Now comes the good part. When you hit bottom, you were out of control. Now you’re ready to once again grab the reigns. You’re ready to put yourself back onto your priority list. Set healthy guidelines for your diet and get back into a regular schedule of working out. Set specific goals for yourself that are realistic and within a set timeframe. Now get to work, reclaiming your body, your freedom and your life.

Has the events in the last couple of weeks caused you to fall off your priority list...and in turn, fall off the exercise wagon?

There is no reason why, during this troubled time, that you can't put yourself back on that priority list. Decide that you are worth it. Not later. Not when it's all over. Now. 

I’m here to help you do just that. All of my clients are getting in-home workouts to execute. A combination of strength training days and metabolic conditioning days with three different versions to choose from: 1) Those who only have access to bodyweight, 2) Those who have some dumbbells and/or bands, and 3) Those who have a pretty good home gym set-up. 

Remember, life will always give you an excuse to stop working towards your goals – it’s up to you to fight back for what you truly want.

Order Small

In an effort to support the local restaurants and eateries, some of us are ordering some take-out/delivery meals. 

Portion-Control-2.jpgWhen you order out, make it a habit to order the smallest portion available. We are programmed to eat whatever is in front of us, even though we’d feel just as full on less. And since portions have grown in recent years, the smallest size isn’t very small at all.

This is good advice to take with you well beyond the current situation. When we get back to some normalcy, restaurants re-open, and we start venturing out more....don't treat it as carte blanche to be a glutton. 

Real Food Mac and Cheese

Here’s a healthy take on Mac and Cheese that you and your whole family will love. 

What makes it healthy? It’s dairy-free, made with chickpea noodles and contains chunks of real butternut squash. This turns a meal that is traditionally full of simple carbs and fat into one that has plenty of protein and fiber to help support your fitness and fat loss goals. Enjoy!

Courtesy of

What you need
Servings: 8

1 cup raw cashews
1 (8oz) box Banza Cavatappi (made from chickpeas)
2 cups Butternut Squash, peeled, seeded and cubed
1 teaspoon coconut oil​
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon coconut flour​
1½ cups almond milk (or other nondairy milk)
½ cup nutritional yeast​
½ teaspoon sweet paprika​
1½ teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon lemon juice


1.Place the cashews in a bowl and fill with hot water. Cover and set aside for 10 minutes.

2. Bring 8 cups of salted water to a rolling boil. Add the pasta and butternut squash cubes and stir immediately. Cook for 10 minutes, until the desired firmness has been reached in both the pasta and the butternut squash. Strain and rinse with water. Set aside.

3. Heat the coconut oil in a medium-sized saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion and sauté for 5 minutes, until soft. Add the coconut flour and sauté until golden.

4. Put the onion mixture, the drained cashews, and the remaining ingredients in a food processor and blend until smooth.

5. Pour the sauce back into the saucepan and cook over low heat, stirring frequently, until warmed and thickened. Add the drained, cooked pasta and butternut squash to the pan, stir well and serve. Enjoy!

One serving equals: 274 calories, 15g fat, 32g carbohydrate, 9g fiber, 6g sugar and 16g protein.

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Nashville Personal Trainer, Jim Cipriani
James Cipriani - CPT
  • Master Level Personal Trainer
  • Leader in the Fitness Industry for over 20 Years
  • Over 30,000 Personal Training Sessions Completed
  • Countless Success Stories, and
  • YOUR Fitness and Nutrition Coach in Nashville, TN!

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Jim's Cutting Edge Exercise Success Guidelines...Are YOU Meeting Them?
If you're not meeting your weight loss goals, of course how you eat is one of the first fixes you should be looking at. of the EASIEST things to change is your exercise variable.

Specifically...Frequency AND Consistency.

In a week, at a MINIMUM, EVERYONE should be getting in 4 Days combined of Resistance Training and/or Interval Cardio Work.

That means, if you work with me...

1 x Week, you should be adding:
- 1 more Resistance Training day on your own plus 2 Interval Cardio Sessions. OR...
- 2 more Resistance Days on your own plus 1 Interval Cardio Sessions.

2 x Week, you should be adding:
- 2 Interval Cardio Sessions. OR...
- 1 More Resistance Training Day done on your own PLUS 1 Interval Cardio Day.

3 x Week, you should be adding:
- 1 Interval Cardio Day.

On top of this, as an added BONUS, EVERYONE would benefit from adding 1-2 Steady-State Cardio Sessions in a week. Go for a walk. A jog. Hop on a bike. Whatever you choose, just get moving at a steady pace and do it for 40-60 minutes. Of course, this will be depending on the time availability in your personal schedule AND your desire to get results.

Are you meeting the Cutting Edge Exercise Guidelines?