Product Review: Lift Like A Girl Program by Nia Shanks
Nia Shanks is a fitness model and professional bodybuilder from New York City. She was born in 1983 and grew up in Brooklyn, NY. Her first job was working at McDonald’s where she worked until she graduated high school. At the age of 16, she started modeling for various magazines including Maxim and Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition (SIWA). After her modeling career, she began competing in bodybuilding shows.
She won the Mr. Universe title three times and the Ms. America title once before retiring from competition due to injury in 2005.
In 2006, she decided to focus on becoming a personal trainer after having been inspired by Arnold Schwarzenegger’s success with his own training methods. She opened her own gym called “The Beast” in 2009. 
In 2010, she appeared on the reality show Fit Body Fat Show alongside other models such as Kate Upton and Candice Swanepoel. 
On August 30th, 2015, it was announced that Nia had been diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer. On October 9th, 2016, she died of her illness. She was 32 years old.
Nia’s home gym has a large collection of dumbbells, barbells, weight plates, medicine ball, bench press, treadmill, and other basic fitness equipment. She has a number of exercise routines but favors high rep weight lifting routines that target smaller muscles groups and increase endurance in addition to strength. She prefers to perform these workouts 2-3x/week.
Because her gym is in her house, she has no home gym.
Tone It Up
Duck Face Challenge
2. Deck of Cards (50.1 kg) Workout
The mirror workout uses a large floor length mirror to do various exercises and is designed to tone and strengthen the muscles of the torso, as well as improving one’s balance and flexibility.
Perform each move shown in the picture for 30 seconds unless specified otherwise. Perform this routine 3x/week on non-consecutive days.
| Cardio warm up (5 minutes)
Duck Face: Place your feet shoulder width apart and bend over, placing your hands on your knees. Slowly bend at the waist and slide one hand up your leg while kicking your foot out behind you as far as it will go. Alternate between your right leg and left leg.
Twisted V: Place one hand on the back of your head. Slowly turn your body to the right, keeping your legs in place, then return to center. Return to the starting position, then twist your body to the left.
Hip Extension: Raise one leg out to the side as far as you can. Lower your leg back down then raise it out to the other side.
Torso Rotation: Extend your arms out to the side and turn your torso from side to side.
Crab Walk: Get down on all fours then walk forward while keeping your back flat like a crab. Alternate between going forward and going backward.
Bridge Hold: Get into the top of a push up position then bend your arms so that your body is at a forty five degree angle. Hold this position for as long as possible.
1. Low Impact Cardio (20 minutes)
Walking: Warm up for 5 minutes then begin walking at an easy pace for 10 minutes. Increase your pace slightly for the last 5 minutes.
Side Note: When you’re working out, wear loose clothing so that you don’t restrict blood flow to your muscles, and always listen to your body. If a particular exercise or workout is causing pain, toeing the line of pain or actually causing injury, stop the exercise immediately. Also, make sure you’re properly hydrated before, during and after you work out.
2. Warm up & Stretching (5 minutes)
Cat/Cow: Get on all fours and arch your back upward like a cat arched its back then let out a loud purr. Reverse the motion and push your back downward, rounding it like a cow batting its head. Repeat this motion several times.
Arm Swings: Raise your arms over your head and let them swing side to side. Continue swinging your arms for a few minutes.
Hip Rotations: Rotate your hips left and right.
Heel Touchers: Sit on the floor with your legs out in front of you and stretch your arms out to the side. Touch the bottom of your feet with your fingers then stretch your arms over your head.
3. Stretch & Strengthen (35 minutes)
Note: Watch your form in a mirror or have a friend watch you to make sure that you’re not causing any pain or putting unnecessary stress on your body. If something starts to hurt, stop and take a rest before continuing.
Neck: Rotate your head in a complete circle, then rotate it in the other direction. Do this ten times in each direction.
Shoulders: Raise your arms up over your head and put your hand over your head. Move your arms in a circular motion. Do twenty times forward and backward.
Back: Extend your arms out to the side and make big circles with your arms, gradually moving them closer to your body. Slowly move your arm circles smaller until your hands are in front of you then raise your arms straight up over your head. Repeat this process ten times.
Sources & references used in this article: