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Since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic and especially with cases now on the rise, we have all had to adapt to a “new normal” in some way, shape, or form. Many of these adaptations involve the transition to performing certain tasks from home.

A large number of people are now working from home, students are attending school online, we are conducting doctor visits from home, families are ordering more food delivery, and more people are practicing workout routines at home rather than go to a gym. However, with so many potential distractions at home, it can be difficult to establish and maintain an effective exercise and overall wellness routine.

It can be easy to spend hours at home sitting, especially if you are working from home as well. That is why it is so important to establish an at-home workout routine that is practical for you and is easy to stick to.

exercising woman on mat Photo by Jonathan Borba on Unsplash

Here are some helpful strategies and tips that can help you maintain an efficient and consistent at-home workout:

• Put your workouts on the calendar, so you follow a consistent routine and can establish boundaries between your workday and the time you work out. Many of us tend to depend on our calendars a great deal in order to efficiently mange our time throughout each day. Making that physical time separation, including reminder notifications, can help to promote a proper exercise cycle.

• Invest in a few basic gym essentials in order to make your workout more efficient without taking up a lot of space: resistance bands, yoga mat, kettlebells, or adjustable dumbbells. You do not have to go out and purchase the newest high-tech equipment in order to get an effective workout. Some basic equipment with the right instruction can make a tremendous impact.

• Hire a coach to help you establish the right program you need to match your fitness goals and also to hold you accountable. You can train with a real live coach either virtually in real-time or have them come to you and train you from your home. Having a coach not only provides that push and extra motivation, but it also ensures that you are conducting your exercises safely and properly to get the most out of each movement.

• Keep your workouts short, but effective, so you stick with it long enough to see results. To accomplish this, exercise selection is crucial: focus on choosing full body and compound movements. These give you more bang for your buck.

• Create a designated workout space in your home and be sure to include your favorite workout playlist. Have a simple space with plenty of room for you to move and include any equipment. No matter what your style of music, the right playlist will not only help you stay pumped throughout your workout, but it also makes it more fun.

The co-founder of Leading Edge Personal Trainers LLC, Noelle McKenzie, says, “Working out is hard enough, so it is important to have a unique workout plan that is tailored to you and your needs. In addition to an effective workout, a mindful health and wellness routine can only enrich your daily life.” She adds, “So many people also suffer from chronic pain, but there are specific exercises that can help them relieve that pain and live their best quality of life.”

Leading Edge Personal Trainers is a black-owned NYC based family business that was launched back in 2008 by Kern Alexander and Noelle McKenzie. They provide three uniquely tailored program options: private in-home personal training in NYC, private virtual personal training sessions, and individual online coaching through their customized fitness app. Leading Edge Personal Trainers also provide personalized nutritional support with all of their programs. They do not believe in a one size fits all approach, but that every individual client has their own unique needs.

topless man in black shorts holding cooked food topless man in black shorts holding cooked food Photo by Mike Von on Unsplash

Ms. McKenzie offers some additional wellness tips:

• Focus on form first by assessing your posture and starting with mobility and corrective exercise - both are beneficial for improving how well you feel and enabling you to move pain free.

• Plan out your meals for the week and use this to do a big grocery haul at the top of the week, so you have meals easily accessible when your days get busy. This way you can avoid skipping meals and help ensure healthy eating habits.

• Start your day with water and keep a water bottle next to you at all times to make sure you're staying hydrated.

• Take time out for yourself each week to decompress and recharge.

• Practice cutting back on screen time before bed. Try reading a book or meditating instead to help get your body ready for sleep.

• Make sure you schedule out a lunch break on your work calendar, so you do not work through lunch.

Everyone is different and unique, so your workout routine should be tailored to your needs. Whether it is physical limitations, scheduling issues, or lack of exercise knowledge, there are still customized workout and wellness routines that will work for you. Also, finding a helpful and qualified trainer or exercise coach can provide that needed guidance.

About Leading Edge Personal Trainers

Leading Edge Personal Trainers is a Black-owned NYC based family business which was launched in 2008 by Kern and Noelle McKenzie Alexander. Leading Edge provides 3 uniquely tailored program options: private in-home personal training in NYC, private virtual personal training sessions and individual online coaching through their customized fitness app.They also provide personalized nutritional support with all of their programs. They do not believe in a one size fits all approach but that every individual client has their own unique needs.

Leading Edge understands that working out is hard enough, so they bring the flexibility and convenience of being able to customize your program design to your specific needs. If you live in NYC they bring a hand-picked fitness professional right to you so you never have to leave your home to workout again! For more information, visit:






How to talk about transgender issues

So how do we talk about transgender issues (even if you're not transgender)? There are three main things to remember when discussing transgender issues today, so before getting into the meat and potatoes of it all, let's keep these things in mind:

  1. It is not a political discussion, it is a human rights discussion.
  2. There is a rich history rooted in transgender rights that must be considered when discussing these issues.
  3. Humanization should always be at the forefront of the conversation.

Before going into any conversation, no matter who it's with, try to keep these things in mind before you say something that may be inappropriate, misguided, or just plain wrong. Even those with the best intentions can mess up; remember that it is always ok to admit when you do not know something or when you are wrong. That being said, let's get into it.

sign with a 'friendly for all genders' image showing a person in a wheelchair, and a person with half a dress and pants on.

Transgender bathroom bills


So whether you choose to become a transgender activist or if you just want to be a better ally, this easy talking point will generally keep you in line and on the safe side of conversations while still putting forth the effort to encourage and better represent transgender rights.

Easy, all-around approach: This will work for almost all transgender issues and expand on the previous three rules; firstly, trans issues are not a debate. When discussing with someone, do not indulge in hypotheticals and always remember that transgender people are the exact same as anyone else, with the exact same feelings. Keeping this in mind, let's use the bathroom bill as an example. When discussing this issue, one should humanize, de-politicize, and normalize the conversation. How does one employ this, though? Here is an example of how the conversation may go.

Person 1: I don't want men in the women's restroom, they will rape my daughters.

So this statement is clearly based on reactionary conversation perpetuated by anti-transgender ideals. This means that the person probably has a misconception of the history and oppression of transgender people. They also show concern for their family, which is a step towards humanization, despite the misconception. Here would be an appropriate response that helps to humanize, de-politicize, and normalize the conversation.

Person 2: I don't want men in the women's restroom, either, which is why we need to make sure people who identify as women are using the women's restroom. There has never been a documented case where a transgender person has raped either a man or woman in a public restroom. And by forcing people to use a restroom that does not match their gender identity, it is promoting violence, as there is a strong history of physical violence against transgender people.

By only saying about three sentences, you are able to do the previous steps while discussing the issue in a civil manner without opening it up to debate. The key to this is to keep it short and sweet, stating both the truth and an ally's stance to support the transgender community. It's critical to make sure that what you say is backed with confidence, though, which is why this second approach is more encouraged as it gives the person speaking more confidence in their opinion.

gif of a man in a suit talking about number 1. Number 1 GIF by PragerU Giphy

The second approach: backed by facts and history, is the exact same as before, but this approach leaves the other person with more questions about their stance and gives them something to consider. Before going into this approach, however, it is important to keep in mind that you are not debating the existence of trans people, nor are you trying to change someone's mind. That is not the goal; the goal is simply to get your opinion across in a way that honors both the trans community and their ideas. Let's take the same example as before but add the new sentiments.

Person 1: I don't want men in the women's restrooms, they will rape my daughters.

Person 2: There has never been a documented case of a transgender person raping anyone in a public restroom, and the only published cases of such were proven to be false. Further, when people say things like this, they are perpetuating violence against transgender people, which has historically (and still does) oppressed and insight further physical violence against them. And honestly, the most common reason there is this stance is because the person typically does not know a trans person and may not even know a person who does know a trans person. But the truth is, they probably do. The probability is more likely that the transgender people around them are just not comfortable enough in the environment to come out and speak up about their gender identity. And yes, everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but it is quite sad that some people's opinion does not invite civil discussion but instead incites violence.

This approach is more confrontational, which requires more confidence when using it in a conversation, but it still holds true to all of the previous rules and sentiments. It adds truth based on history, which is an important aspect of trans rights as it reminds people of where we were/ where we are currently with human rights. These ideas can be transferred to most all trans issues and will honor the transgender movement and your allyship. The last thing to keep in mind is the person or reason you are standing up for/with trans rights. The passion -the compassion will shine through in conversation if you keep your reasoning close to heart. Whether it is because of a transgender friend, family member, or just because of your moral values, if you put your emotions into your reasoning, it will create more compelling statements, especially if the statement is well versed with the facts.

Tips to Remember When Discussing Transgender Issues

  1. Transgender issues are not political, they are human rights issues
  2. There is a rich history behind transgender issues
  3. Humanize transgender people through our words and ideas and don't forget to include:
    • 3(b). The facts
    • 3(c).The confidence
    • 3(d). The inspiration behind the support for transgender rights

Transgender Sign in Pride Parade

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