At We Sell Mats™, we’re on a mission to help you achieve the happiest and healthiest version of yourself that you can be; and we’re not the only ones. We may provide you with high-quality fitness mats to help make your workouts a little more comfortable, but Jay Johnson of Team MLP, a Charlotte N.C.-based fitness company, brings the results-driven fitness routines that make your workout routine more welcoming and maintainable.
BEHIND THE BRAND: WHO IS JAY JOHNSON?
MLP founder Jay Johnson is an award-winning fitness trainer and nutrition coach who, alongside sports industry professionals like Cam Newton and Webb Simpson, was named one of Elevate Lifestyle Magazine’s Top 30 under 30 in Charlotte. With years of experience and multiple awards under his belt, Jay Johnson is a trusted name in fitness and a proud We Sell Mats™ affiliate.
While you can find some of Jay’s fitness articles on trusted fitness websites like bodybuilding.com and Robert Irvine Magazine, we’ve got an exclusive list of answers from Jay himself to help athletes of all ages start or continue on a path towards a stronger, meaner, leaner body utilizing Jay’s “time under tension” methodology. Join us as we ask Jay burning questions about how busybodies, working moms, and those living in small spaces can successfully stick to fitness routines that actually work. Then, be sure to check out We Sell Mats™ line of home gym mats and portable floor tiles to make your new fitness routine even easier (on the joints and muscles, that is).
Without further ado, Jay Johnson.
WE SELL MATS™ & JAY JOHNSON: Q&A
WHAT IS A GOOD FALL WORK OUT ROUTINE NOW THAT SCHOOL IS BACK?
A good way to rock your results this time of year is to enjoy the outdoors (and cooler temperatures) with a good run or hike that pushes you to be stronger than last week.
A great time-saver that can be simply added is staggered sets of a move of your choice, such as air squats, push-ups, crunches, or jumping jacks during your run. Do 25 reps of your chosen move every half-mile you travel on your outdoor exercise session.
HOW CAN PEOPLE FIND TIME TO WORK OUT?
The easiest way to find time to work out is to realize that you don’t need much of it in the first place. I’ve noticed that many people think that they need a 30-60+ minute window to really kill a workout when it can be done in as little as 5 minutes! Don’t have 5 minutes here and there? Choose a move like I mentioned above and stagger them throughout your day or during that TV commercial break each time! A yoga mat can make on-the-go workouts even more enjoyable.
HOW TO FIND TIME TO WORK OUT AS A WORKING MOM?
Finding time in this situation can be tough, but my best advice is to choose a window before or after work to get a good 30-minute power walk in (with the stroller, of course!).
If your child is old enough to walk and move efficiently, then congratulations, you just found your new workout buddy. Choose 3-4 simple bodyweight moves you both can do 3-4 sets of 15-20 reps of each. If your new workout buddy isn't into doing quite that much, then you can stagger the rest of yours throughout the day or engage in a fun game like hide and seek or tag to get the blood flowing.
WHAT IS THE BEST 30-MINUTE WORK OUT? AND IS A 30 MINUTE WORK OUT ENOUGH?
Thirty minutes is plenty of time to work out, and the best way to spend this time depends on the person. I’m a huge fan of power walking since it really hits the heart rate as well as the muscles (as long as you SQUEEZE!), all while saving your joints! You can, of course, bicycle, row, or run in moderation, but power walking, to me, is the most effective equipment-free option that is great for any fitness level.
WHAT ARE THE BEST HOME WORK OUTS FOR SMALL SPACES?
Working out in small spaces and with little equipment can be tough, but bodyweight moves such as air squats, crunches, or push-ups are great since there’s no lateral movement involved; you’re just moving straight up and down. I have many clients that train virtually in tight spaces, and the workouts are still very effective. And since I send a free equipment package to all virtual clients upon signing up, buying equipment isn’t an issue.
WHAT ARE SOME GREAT INDOOR WORK OUT IDEAS THAT PEOPLE CAN DO?
A good indoor workout can actually come from taking advantage of your environment: your countertops or walls can work great for assisted push-ups, that chair at the table is great for bench dips, and have you ever tried crunches on a cushioned surface like a sofa or bed? It’s a greater burn due to the cushion giving underneath, which causes a tighter crunch on each rep.
HOW TO STAY MOTIVATED TO WORK OUT IN THE WINTER?
A good way to stay motivated during the colder months is to be active by playing fun family indoor games requiring activity or to perform sets of some of the moves mentioned above. I don’t know about you guys, but I’m so cold getting out of bed first thing in the morning, so I do a set of push-ups to warm up. A small habit being created like this is sure to turn into a greater activity level throughout the day over time!
HOW TO STAY FIT DURING THE HOLIDAYS?
Staying fit during the holidays is not only continuing your workout habits but also trying some dietary tricks. Drinking a glass of water before every meal will help to cut hunger and aid with portion control.
If you’re going out to eat, a good trick is to ask for a to-go box with your meal and put half in the box as soon as you get your food to help with portions. At holiday parties, there tends to be a lot of tempting finger foods and sugary drinks, so eat a healthy meal before you even go to the party. As for the drinks, the lighter in color, the better for you. None of them are great for you, but when choosing your drinks, try to keep them clear.
WHAT IS VIRTUAL TRAINING AND HOW DO YOU DO IT?
The way Team MLP Virtual Training sessions are executed is in a live video meeting via Zoom. The sessions are 30 or 60 minutes 1-on-1; you are in your workout environment, and I’m in my training studio. Every session features a musical backdrop of your choice to ensure that you are pumped up to YOUR favorite music.
Also included with your Virtual Training package is a free Team MLP equipment package which includes: 5 resistance bands (light-very heavy), door anchors, handles and a carrying bag for your bands, a dumbbell, and a KettlyGryp, which clips around your dumbbell to turn it into a kettlebell when needed. This entire package is shipped directly to your doorstep once you sign up with us. Complete your workout space with We Sell Mats™ interlocking floor tiles, or keep a yoga mat with you for a more supportive, gripping surface to perform your movements on.
WHAT ARE SOME FUN GROUP WORK OUT IDEAS?
Group workouts are great for accountability, and a couple of cool ways to achieve this is first with a big circle (5-6 people). You choose one bodyweight move, and each performs 25 reps of that move. Depending on the group size, you can do 4-5 rounds of 2-3 moves this way in as little as 30 minutes.
A more challenging version of this is to have everyone not doing the move hold the bottom position of the move you’re doing. For example, I’m doing air squats, so everyone else in the circle is holding a squat at the bottom of the rep, and as people get too tired to hold it, they must leave the circle. Do this until you have a winner. The rest of the group can chip in and buy their healthy post-workout meal.
WHAT EQUIPMENT ESSENTIALS WOULD YOU RECOMMEND FOR WORKING OUT AT HOME?
My favorite equipment options for home workouts are space-friendly, fairly light, and can be used in conjunction with one another. This is what inspired me to put together the free Team MLP equipment package! These tools can create light resistance or heavy resistance despite their light weight, and the entire package is extremely portable and travel-friendly for hotel room workouts, etc. There are also plenty of space-saving fitness mats and floor tiles ideal for setting up a dedicated workout space in your home or office, which can help motivate you to keep up with your exercise routine.
CREATE A HEALTHIER YOU WITH WE SELL MATS™ & TEAM MLP
Whether you’re looking to improve your health and wellness with Jay in CLT, virtually via Zoom, or you simply count on his motivational attitude to help you reach or maintain your fitness goals, We Sell Mats™ has the home and office mats to help you create a customized workout space anywhere you like to (or need to) get your sweat on.
Shop We Sell Mats™ today to find the right mats to make your healthy lifestyle a little more comfortable, and be sure to follow Jay Johnson and Team MLP on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram to stay in the loop on the latest and greatest fitness gains happening all across the country with the help of Team MLP.