It’s Self Improvement Month and SV Branches always likes to help its followers be the best they can be. Self Improvement Month is a great time to look for ways to make yourself the best YOU possible, mentally and physically.
This month I am spotlighting Brianne Norberg, a weight loss coach and personal trainer. I met Brianne at a bootcamp operated by Kyle Robles of Robles Fitness Gym in Sacramento. I could not help but notice Brianne’s bubbly personality and awesome body. We instantly hit it off and I began following Brianne and all of her good work on Facebook.
I figured I could get to know Brianne a little better and introduce my followers to Brianne by interviewing her for the blog. I am sure you will find Brianne to be motivating, focused and concerned about others and their quest for a healthy life. Enjoy!
Shawn Branch: How did you become so interested in weight training?
Brianne Norberg: When my fitness journey first began, I was focused so much on what other women looked like. I wanted flat abs, thin legs, and a big butt (let’s be honest). I was never overweight or “heavy” throughout my life. But growing up, I was always very self-conscious in every way possible. I found so many things about myself that I could pick apart and criticize that I eventually had to go into counseling. I was so concerned about others’ opinions, and what other people wanted. I tried eating healthy, participated in numerous x-bike and kick boxing classes, and even tried running! Mind you, I was NEVER athletic growing up and I even remember taking a weight training class in high school where my teacher hated me and I complained on a daily basis. PHEW, if my teacher could see me now!! I picked up the weights a couple years ago. At first, I only focused on my legs because I wanted that “bubble butt” every woman and man loved. When I started utilizing my other body parts (i.e. shoulders, arms, back, etc.) into my workouts, I noticed such an incredible change. I started seeing definition in my arms. My shoulders were growing, and I started to see “cuts” in my legs. It was such an empowering feeling! My body was under construction, and the weights were my tools. Every time I am in the gym, I feel stronger and more motivated.
SB: What makes Leaner Healthier Today (LHT) different from any other weight loss center?
BN: I started working with LHT Revolution a couple months ago. It has been such a blessing in my life! The founder, Cynthia Besson, and the co-owner, Jimmy Badra (former Mr. World), are the most wonderful people I have had the pleasure I working with. Cynthia has been a weight loss industry executive for giants such as Nutri System & LA Weight Loss, so she was able to take the best out of those and create her own program! We have the best accountability program, and I believe our one-on-one counseling makes the difference. We don’t put you on a cookie cutter “diet.” Heck, we don’t even use the word diet! It’s important to understand that becoming healthy is a lifestyle, not a diet. We teach you how to live a healthier life, and give you the tools to incorporate our recommendations in your daily life!
SB: Tell me about your meal plan and how it can help the average person.
BN: I offer meal plans to all of my clients. Eating healthy is the number one factor in getting healthy. What we put into our bodies should be important to every person! I really customize my meal plans so that no one is restricted in what they eat to avoid binging and cravings. I focus on the macronutrient requirement of each individual and create a plan that is customized based on his or her goals.
SB: How do you stay motivated?
BN: Ah, what a great question. I struggle finding motivation on a daily basis. Sometimes, when I wake up I hit the snooze button instead of going to the gym, or I go out to eat sushi instead of my workout. But at the end of the day, when I look at myself in the mirror, the only person I am cheating is myself. No one is going to force me to do the workouts. No one is going to make me eat healthy. I am the only one who can hold myself accountable. I am my motivation. My goals for the future motivate me. Becoming stronger motivates me. God motivates me. Knowing that one-day, I won’t be able to do this any longer. That motivates me.
SB: What are the most common mistakes people make when trying to lose weight?
BN: Here’s where everyone has it wrong when trying to lose weight: people bite off more than they can chew…. figuratively and literally. They set these crazy, unattainable goals that will set any one up for failure. They say, “I’m going to work out for six days a week, run a mile a day, and eat only a thousand calories a day.” They go from being completely sedentary, to over working their bodies to the point of exhaustion. Of course that is going to put a bad taste in your mouth. Then, a week goes by, you are exhausted, haven’t lost weight, and decide to quit. Health isn’t a fad! It’s not a seasonal obsession. It’s a lifestyle that will allow you to live your life longer. I always say, “It’s a marathon, not a sprint.” Focus on the long-term goals. Don’t go balls to the wall. Be realistic with your goals so you don’t fail.
SB: How do you maintain your great physique?
BN: Well, most people are going to hate me for this, but I was genetically blessed with a very fast metabolism. Which actually works against me most of the time. I love to build muscle, but in order to build muscle, you must feed that muscle. A lot. Especially for someone like me who has a fast metabolism. I keep my great physique because God blessed me with great genes, AND I work my BUTT off in the gym. I lift heavy a** weights every day. I eat healthy food, and sometimes unhealthy food. I live a balanced life.
SB: How often do you work out? Please share one of your workouts.
BN: I work out 4-6 times a week. At the moment, I am prepping for a show, so I won’t be incorporating cardio into my workouts for another couple of weeks. Here’s one of my favorite shoulder workouts:
- Shoulder press-4 sets 6-8 reps (heavy weight)
- Lateral raises-4 sets 10-12 reps
- Arnold Press- 4 sets 6-8 reps (heavy weight)
- Reverse flys-4 sets 10 reps
- Upright rows-4 sets 15 reps
- Front raises-4 sets 10 reps
For me, I always lift with heavy weight. My first two sets I start a little lighter, then work my way up until I can barely hit 6. That’s where the magic happens. That is when you will start seeing a significant increase in your muscle girth.
SB: What body part do most women want to change?
BN: Well, based on what I believed when I was younger, the BOOTY. Everyone wants a nice, firm, tight, toned (the list goes on) butt. No one wants a flat pancake butt. Squats, deadlifts, lunges…ladies,these are your best friends.
SB: Tell me about your education in weight training.
BN: I am a certified personal trainer through the National Academy of Sports Medicine. I also competed in the NPC figure division last year and took home 4th place. I am also a competition coach through which I take care of everything from training, meal plans, emotional support/coaching, etc.
SB: Is there one food that you definitely stay away from?
BN: Fast food. My body literally rejects it now. I used to eat Taco Bell every day for lunch in high school. If I even think of a cheesy double beef burrito now, I get stomach pains. It’s amazing how your body changes when you start being good to it. I will eat frozen yogurt, a cupcake, maybe a donut (…definitely a donut actually), but my body responds horribly to fast food. Because it is SO BAD for you.
SB: What body part of yours are you most proud of and why?
BN: I love my shoulders. No, not my butt (even though it IS really nice, haha). When I first started developing my shoulders, it was so amazing. I never saw that kind of definition on my body before. What was really awesome was the controversy about my body when I started to train. So many people in my life were opposed to it. They didn’t want me to be too muscular, or look like a man. They wanted me to be feminine and pretty. SCREW that. I am SO proud of my body. My body is strong. It’s been through a lot and every ounce of muscle I have is because of my hard work at dedication to this sport. I am proud of that.
SB: If you could offer one piece of advice to women who are trying to lose weight, what would it be?
BN: Pick up a dumbbell and don’t be afraid to lift heavy. You won’t turn into a man, I promise. Building muscle is hard! But once you have more muscle, then you will start burning more calories and you will ultimately speed up your metabolism. One pound of muscle burns 6-12 calories. One pound of fat burns 2-4 calories.
SB: What are you personal and professional goals for the next 6-12 months?
BN: I want to be the best I can possibly be. I will be running the LHT center out in Granite Bay by the end of the year and will be releasing my Meal Prep Guide as well. My goal is to build my personal training and online training clientele and start boot camps in the Sacramento area. I want to be a leader and help others reach their goals. I want a fitness family/team that I can inspire to continue pushing through the ups and downs of our lives. I want to motivate others to become the best they can possibly be.
To reach Brianne please email her at B.firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks Brianne!!