How to Squat – From Ellipse Fitness

How to Squat – From Ellipse Fitness

The squat is a foundational exercise done at Ellipse Fitness, and by many for fitness in general.  Done properly, the squat builds lower body strength and cardiovascular stamina.  One of the greatest advantages of the squat is that it can be done in the comfort of your home with the only resistance being gravity (no fancy equipment)!

To perform a squat correctly, stand with your feet shoulder width apart. Extend both arms straight out from your body (parallel to the ground).  Now visualize a chair that you will be sitting on, as this is the proper depth of a squat.  With the weight of your body on your heels, your chest forward and shoulders back, inhale as you lower yourself into your imaginary chair. Pause, and then exhale rising to where you started.



You will find that when done with proper form, the squat is a challenge!  To increase the challenge, try the following:

Speed squats: See how many squats you can do in 30 seconds while keeping proper form.

Isometric squats: Once you lower yourself to the proper depth pause for 5 seconds.

Weighted squats:  Do 30 seconds of perfect form squats with a weight or kettle bell at your chest or weights in each hand by your shoulders (but not resting on your shoulders).

The squat is a powerful tool that can quickly and effectively maintain your fitness, minimize lower back pain and restore proper posture. Remember: good form is key to getting the full benefit of the exercise and avoiding any injuries.

The First Leg – Strength Training

How does a carpenter balance a 3 legged stool?

They’ve got to make sure it’s foundation is solid and the legs are evenly balanced!  When planning your weight loss/fat loss and healthy lifestyle, I suggest the same!  You’ve got to get the three things in line that will change the way you look, think and feel about your body.  Eat Right, Exercise Right and THINK Right!

Let’s talk about exercise today!

Step 1:  Increase the amount of time you spend MOVING.  The first step in getting the body you want needs to be not only finding an exercise you LIKE, but one that’s effective.  For example, if you like going for walks, that’s a great activity, BUT…it’s not the most effective and efficient way to burn fat.  You need to add some STRENGTH TRAINING to your routine!

When it comes to exercise—you have to strength train to see results.

Lift something up and put it down!  Find a trainer or a coach to guide you if you’re new to strength training, or pick up a magazine and give a new workout a try!  The first thing you try may not work for you…but keep looking, there’s a workout out there which involves some heavy lifting  that’s just right for you!

Ellipse Fitness names Rebecca Blankfield as Fitness Director


March 27, 2012

Ellipse Fitness names Rebecca Blankfield as Fitness Director

Appleton, WI. – Ellipse Fitness is please to announce the hiring of Rebecca Blankfield to the position of Fitness Director.  This position is one of the most important roles within the organization as the Fitness Director is responsible for the creation, oversight and management of the exercise programs for the company.


Ellipse classes incorporate kickboxing, strength training and boot camp style workouts. Rebecca began teaching at Ellipse Fitness in 2007, after a brief hiatus she returned in early 2012.  Rebecca holds an AFAA Group Fitness Certification and has completed courses in workout choreography, core strength, metabolism and nutrition.  In addition, to her responsibilities as Fitness Director, she will continue to teach classes at the Ellipse Fitness location in Neenah.



About Ellipse Fitness

Founded in 2002, Ellipse Fitness is a classes-only fitness and nutrition franchise specializing in providing regularly scheduled exercise classes and nutrition programs for our members.  Our proprietary workout programs are set in a group exercise format and emphasize functional movement, cardiovascular training, building core strength and adding lean muscle mass.  For information on programs and locations please visit  For information about owning an Ellipse Fitness franchise please visit



For More Information, Contact:

Todd Weiss

Ellipse Fitness

Phone: 866-934-7167


Yolkless Deviled Eggs from Ellipse Fitness

Eggs are a terrific source of lean protein!  However, 1 egg yolk has approximately 5 grams of fat!  Go yolk-less and give these delicious deviled eggs a try!


Yolkless Deviled Eggs

12    Hard-boiled Eggs

1      Cup Non-fat Cottage Cheese

1      Tbsp. Green Onion, minced

2      Tbsp. Dijon Mustard

2      Cloves Garlic, minced

1/4   Tsp. Curry Powder

Paprika to Taste

Ground Pepper to taste


Directions:  Shell eggs and cut in half lengthwise.  Discard yolks.  Puree cottage cheese, mustard, onion, garlic, and curry powder in a blender or food processor.  Spoon mixture into the egg halves.  Sprinkle with paprika & pepper.

Serves:  12

Exchanges:  1 Extra Lean Protein


A Three Legged Stool – The Beginning

Ten years ago I was a dental hygienist married to wonderful man, working part time and raising two young children. Along with living the American dream, I’d blossomed to a size 14 and couldn’t seem to get that one part of my life under control. Well, a friend told me about a class she had taken at a karate studio that was done as a group; involved some tubes and weights and kickboxing, and she’d dropped about 20 pounds.

I was hooked!

Along with the resistance training classes of tubing and body weight there were kickboxing classes to get my heart rate up and a simple food guide to follow. From Mother’s Day to Labor Day I dropped about 40 pounds!

What was it that finally worked? Was it the fact that I’d moved away from “steady state” aerobics classes and got my heart rate and cardio level up with kickboxing—which also created a demand on larger muscles? Was it the fact that two days a week we were using resistance tubing and weights and doing push ups, something I’d rarely tried? Or was it the fact that I FINALLY had adjusted my diet to be higher in lean protein and fruits and vegetables and started limiting my access to refined carbohydrates?

I think it was this. I’d discovered the secret to fat loss! I’d created The Perfect Storm! Exercise Right, Eat Right, Mindset Right! Weight loss and Fat Loss are like a 3 legged stool. When the three legs are evenly proportioned, your life is in balance, and you’ll see the weight come off. When one of those things are “off balance”—you’re in for an uphill battle.

St. Patrick’s Day Shake – From Ellipse Fitness

Have you ever wondered, “Why am I hungrier on a day when I lift weights vs. the day when I do a cardio workout?”  Most people would think that you’d have a large appetite on the day that you do a cardio workout simply because our mindset is that the cardio workout burns more calories than a lifting workout, right???  Actually, studies prove that the after-burn effect of the weight lifting workout will typically burn more calories throughout the entire day, thus boosting your metabolism and leaving you feeling a bit hungrier!

A Great Recovery Shake!

Resistance exercise (weight lifting) is a key component of exercise recommendations for weight control because the more muscle you have on your body, the faster your body burns the calories that you put in it!  To give you an example:  1 Pound of Lean Body Mass (muscle) burns 15-50 calories daily, while 1 Pound of Fat only burns 6 calories daily!  So as you can see from this example, it is clear that the more muscle you are able to sustain on your body and/or that you build, you will likely need more calories!  WOW – more muscle = more food!  That sounds like a win!

So, we know that more muscle is going to lead to greater results, and we get there with a combination of cardio and resistance training.  But —What about hunger?  A good workout could suppress your appetite for as long as 2 hours afterward, and researchers speculate that the effect could have something to do with ghrelin, an appetite-stimulating hormone.  Exercise seems to suppress this hormone, leading to less hunger directly after a workout.  However, when we look at the example above and see that the lean muscle mass is requiring more energy throughout the day, it is a “no brainer” that you may feel hungrier after a weight lifting workout simply because your muscle is requiring more energy throughout the day!

As you know, at Ellipse we believe that exercise and nutrition go hand in hand.  You will not obtain or keep the results that you are looking for in your physique by simply exercising and continuing to fill your body with “empty” or “less than nutritious” foods.  Our Pro-Shop shelves are stocked with supplements to help you recover after your workouts and our blog is loaded with great recipes to keep you on track!  Next time you are in need of a nutritious recipe to take to a party or want a healthy recipe to cook at home, check out the blog or ask your Ellipse Coach for some suggestions!

Here is a shake recipe that will help you celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in good health!

1.5 Scoops Chocolate Mint Whey Protein Powder
1   Cup Fat-free Milk
1   Cup Crushed Ice
2   Drops of GREEN Food Coloring

Directions:  Add all ingredients in your blender and blend until smooth and creamy!  If you want to cut the sugar a bit, try Unsweetened Almond Milk in place of regular milk.

Serves:  1
Exchanges:  1 Milk, 5 Extra Lean Proteins


Planning to down some corned beef and cabbage in celebration for St. Patrick’s Day?  The average calories in one meal of corned beef and cabbage is 942 calories and 59 grams of fat!  Now add on two green beers and that adds on another 250 calories, for a whopping total of 1192 calories!  This is equivalent to the calorie burn of 2-3 Ellipse workouts!  If this is your favorite indulgence – then go for it!  But if you’d rather save your calories, give this shake recipe a try instead.  This shake recipe is the perfect treat after a workout with tons of protein to help with muscle recovery!

The Reverse Fly – From Ellipse Fitness

Do you sit at a desk, drive a car or walk long distances for a living? If you answered yes then you may have experienced a nagging pain in your upper back located between your shoulder blades.  This blog is not a lecture about keeping posture, but an important tip on how to deal with that overwhelming tenderness many of us simply tolerate on a daily basis.

As we lean forward, as many of us do throughout the day, the muscles of our upper back work overtime to keep our head up.  Hour after hour we tell them to keep going.  The pain we experience is the muscles throwing up the white flag saying “I cannot do this any longer!!!!” That is where our friend the reverse fly comes to the rescue.



With the use of a resistance band (that can easily go to work with you) you can strengthen the shoulder blade muscles; especially the rhomboids that connect the spine to the shoulder blades.

With your chest forward and shoulders back, extend both arms straight in front of your body so they are parallel with the ground or your desk.  Holding one end of the resistance band in each hand, exhale and separate your hands keeping your arms straight until your arms are straight out at your sides (making a “T” shape).  Pause and pinch your shoulder blades together, inhale while releasing to where you started.

This exercise may not take the pain away in one day, but if you incorporate it into your daily routine it will make a huge impact on your posture and how much those back muscles can tolerate throughout the day!

Ready for a challenge?

When your arms are straight out the side and your shoulder blades are pinned together, pause and hold for 5 seconds before inhaling and releasing to where you started.

You can also tighten up on the resistance band to add tension.

Remember good form will allow for maximum impact. I wish each of you luck with your reverse fly adventures!