3 x 3 Full Body Circuit Workout

One more day and it’s Fridaaaayyyyy!!!!!!

I’ve been loving my lunch/dinner combinations the past few days, so I thought I should share.  When I can, I try to find easy/healthy recipes that will make enough food that I don’t have to cook for the rest of the week. I’m such a good housewife, huh? On Tuesday night, I made kale salad so I would have it for lunch during the week, and for dinner I threw together a chicken stir-fry that was just as easy to make as it was tasty. For my lunch the past few days, I have paired the kale salad with plain tuna.  Usually, I would think plain tuna would be gross and boring, but the salad has enough flavor (at least I think so), that I don’t even notice.  For the stir-fry, I used two bags of a veggie mix I found in the produce section that included snow peas, broccoli, sprouts and cabbage.  I grilled it all on the stove, then mixed it together with a low-sodium soy sauce and a little General Tso’s sauce.  Normally, I would try to keep the added sauces and syrups out of my meals, but as long as you don’t over do it, it’s not the end of the world.  I know “food is fuel” (direct quote from my dad) but personally, I prefer my fuel to at least have some flavor. 😉

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Backtracking to my morning workout yesterday, I started out with 15min of light cardio, then put together this full body circuit workout.  For that little extra “kick”, add in 10 burpees or run on the treadmill for 5min in between each circuit!

3x3 Full Body Circuit

 

Exercise Details/Links

Walking Overhead Lunges– walking lunges holding a 15-25 pound plate/weight above your head, arms straight. (I used a 25 pound plate this time)

Superman Planks

Walking Planks  (Plank Push-ups…I have a variety of names for this one, apparently.) 🙂

Plank Spider Squats

Stability Ball Jack Knifes

Walking Push-ups– start standing up, bend over at the waist, place your hands on the ground and walk them forward until you are in straight arm push-up position.  Do a push-up, then walk your hands back towards your body until you are back in standing position, keeping your legs only slightly bent when walking out/back.  That is 1 rep.

 

Have a great day!

 

Burpee Bonanza & Green Protein Smoothie

Yesterday, my day started like it usually does- half awake at the gym.  I started out with 10 minutes of light intervals on the Stairmaster to get warmed up.  Then, I got to work on the ladder workout below.  Here’s how it works: Start out with 20 Burpees, 10 V-Situps, 20 Air Squats, and 10 Push-ups.  Then, 18 Burpees, 9 V-Situps, 18 Air Squats, and 9 Push-ups, and so on….basically the exercises that start with 20, you go down by 2 each time and the exercises that start with 10, you go down by 1.  I started out trying to do everything at 20 reps and down, but I quickly realized that, #1 I was going to run out of time before I needed to go home and get ready for work, and #2 I might not make it through the entire workout because my body wasn’t havin’ any of that.  I also realized early on that when you don’t do burpees for a while, your mind/body forget how hard they are; aka, your selective memory blocks them out of your mind, for obvious reasons.  I haven’t incorporated burpees into my workouts in a while because I’ve been trying to let my hamstring heal. It was starting to feel better, so I thought I would give this one a whirl.  Turns out, with this workout you end up doing 110 burpees!  Might have been a little aggressive, but I made it through…barely. You can always modify this by taking everything down to 10 reps and decrease by 1 each round.

Burpee Ladder Workout

After my workout, I made one of my breakfast staples- a Green Protein Smoothie.  I had always heard about putting greens like spinach and kale into smoothies, but never believed anyone when they said you can’t taste it. Lettuce in a smoothie? Yeah right…well, I was wrong.   I swear, you really can’t taste the spinach, and as long as it is blended thoroughly you won’t even notice it is there.  By adding spinach, you get the added bonus of the antioxidants, fiber, vitamins and other health benefits it provides.  The recipe is below, feel free to substitute whatever fruit or nut butter you prefer!

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 There you have it!  A delicious green- er, grey- smoothie…I promise it tastes better than it looks.

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Green Protein Smoothie

(makes 2 servings)

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup almond milk
  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1/2-1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1-2 tbsp peanut butter
  • 2 servings whey protein powder (I usually use chocolate, obvi)
  • 2-4 cups spinach (I don’t usually measure this, just fill the rest of the blender with spinach)

Directions:

Blend together and enjoy!

 

Also, if you haven’t already, click the link below or the button on the right side of the page, to follow my blog with Bloglovin, along with all of your favorites.  It’s a great site that allows you to see all of the blogs you follow in one place, and you can also get a daily email letting you know of new posts from those blogs.

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Friday Fab 50 Workout

I hope everyone had a great 4th of July!  If it was anything like mine, it was probably full of friends, fireworks and FOOD!  Calories don’t count on holidays, right?  Yup, that’s what I just keep telling myself….

On that note, it’s time for a Friday Fab 50!  I’ve seen a ton of “Filthy 50” and “Fiesty 50” workouts out there, so I decided I would come up with a FAB 50 workout, because after all, we put ourselves through all of this in hopes of looking even more fabulous, right?!

I paired this with 20 minutes of light cardio, but it can also be done on its own.  I have to admit, as I was going through this workout, I didn’t think it was too bad….then came the burpees.  I thought I was doing myself a favor by leaving them until the end.  Not so much. I apologize in advance. 🙂

Fab 50 Workout

Time for Tabata!

Yep, that’s right, it’s time for a Tabata workout!  I have a love-hate relationship with Tabata workouts.  They can be rough, but it’s always worth it in the end.  Here’s how it works- for each of the Tabata moves, you go 20 seconds on, followed by 10 secconds of rest, then immediately to the next exercise for 20 seconds on, 10 seconds of rest, then repeat for the total time allotted.  Now, these 20 seconds are not meant to be spent leisurely going through the motions.  Nope, it’s time to go big or go home!  The good thing about Tabata workouts is that, when you think about it, 20 seconds really isn’t that much time, so I think it’s easier to push through and give it my all.  I usually do more cardio-based exercises with the Tabata sections of my workout, then pair that with strength exercises so I end up with a good mix.

As I was writing this post, it just so happened that I came across this article from fitsugar.com.  It explains the benefits of and science behind Tabata training.  Fun fact: Tabata training can burn up to 13.5 calories a minute AND double your metabolic rate for 30min afterwards!  On that note, let’s get to it! 🙂

Tabata and Strength

Step By Step:

Burpees

Step 1: Place your palms on the ground

Step 2: Jump your legs back and touch chest to the ground (other option is to do a full push up)

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Step 3: Jump your legs back to starting position

Step 4: Jump, with arms in the air

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Mountain Climbers

Step 1: Start in straight arm plank position

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Step 2: Bring one knee in towards your elbow, switch legs continuously until your time/reps are over. (You can either bring knee to same elbow, or opposite elbow)

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 Elvis Squats

Step 1: Squat with your feet and knees turned out, holding a bar behind shoulders.

(You will have to imagine me with a bar over my shoulders…apparently I need to invest in a little more exercise equipment)

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I am a believer that you can’t take yourself too seriously, hence the dorky smile. 🙂

Step 2: Turn your body to one side, in lunge position

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Step 3: Turn back to starting position and turn to opposite side, then return to starting position again.

DSC00911 DSC00912 DSC00913  Done!

Plank Jumping Jacks

Step 1:  Start in plank position, feet close together

Step 2:  Jump both feet wide and then jump back to starting position

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Single Leg Squat w/ Leg Lift

(again, with the imagination here…the leg you are not lifting can be on a step or box and you hold a bar behind your shoulders)

With one leg on a box or step, sqaut, stand up so you are standing on the box with one foot and simultaneously lift your opposite leg. Repeat on the other side.

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 Kettlebell Swings

Step 1: Holding a kettlebell or dumbbell, squat, bringing the weight behind your body

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Step 2: Swing the weight up to either eye level or above your head, depending on how much weight you have, using your hips (This is important! It will feel like you are doing a pelvic thrust of some sort 🙂 )

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V Sit-Ups

Step 1: Lie on your back with arms over head.

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Step 2: Using your core muscles, keep your legs straight and bring your hands towards your toes.

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Full Body Circuit Workout

For those of you who don’t know me, I thoroughly despise going to the gym in the evenings, and would MUCH prefer getting my butt out of bed at 5am, if only to beat the after-work crowd.  Plus, I like the feeling of starting my day with a workout.  I feel more refreshed and it’s nice to get it over with, because usually the last thing I want to do when I leave work is go to the gym.  Couch and my DVR, yes please!

Anyway, I decided to accompany Matt to the gym after work the other day.  The ONE bonus of breaking my routine is that at least I get in a little more face time with my husband. 🙂  After a 10min warm-up on the stair climber, I completed the workout below.  Enjoy!

Full Body Dumbbell Circuit Workout

Man Maker

Step 1:  With weights in hand, squat down and jump legs back to plank position

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Step 2:  Row one arm at a time

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Step 3:  Jump legs back in and up to squat position, weights on shoulders

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Step 4:  Thrust weights above head

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Leg Lifts

Step 1:  Lay flat on the ground, abs pulled in and back flat against the floor.  You can place your hands under your hips for additional control.

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Step 2:  Keeping your back against the floor, use your core to bring your legs up, perpendicular to the floor

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Single Leg Squats

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Upper Russian Twist

Step 1:  Start with shoulder blades on stability ball, arms straight above your body

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Step 2:  Keeping your hips level, rotate your upper body to one side, then the other

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Sumo Squat to High Pull

(I usually use a kettlebell for this exercise, but since I didn’t have one handy, I used a dumbbell)

Step 1:  Start with your feet wider than your hips, toes turned out

Step 2: Squat and bring the weight up to chest level as you stand

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180 Burpees

Step 1:  Start in a squat position

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Step 2:  Jump and do a 180 degree turn, landing again in a squat position

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Step 3:  Place your hands on the floor and jump your legs back into a straight arm plank position

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Step 4:  Come back up to a squat position, then repeat

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Up Down Planks (Plank Push-Ups)

Step 1:  Start on your elbows in plank position

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Step 2:  Push up, one hand at a time, until you are in straight arm plank position

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Step 3: Return to starting position, one arm at a time

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Hand Release Push Ups

Standard push-up, but bring chest all the way to the ground, bring hands off the ground and then push up to starting position

 

Arms/Abs Circuit

Last spring, I over-did it a little in the running category, and ended up with a strained hamstring in my left leg.  NOT ideal for someone like me, who likes to get to the gym and get her sweat on at least 5 times a week.  Plus, it was around the time Rams tryouts were starting, so that added to the stress level even more!  I tried resisting doctor’s orders, but eventually gave in and started the process of nursing my leg back to health.  I couldn’t run for a couple of months, and had to stick to the bike and arms/abs exercises.  Let me tell you, that got old REALLY fast!  Eventually, I graduated to the elliptical, and then back to running.  Now, 1 year later, I found myself in almost the same situation, but this time, in my right leg!  Ohhhh the frustration!  Luckily this time around, I recognized the signs before it got too bad, took it easy for several weeks, and now feel like I am finally close to back to normal. 🙂  I wanted to share one of the workouts I did, while I was still trying to preserve as much of my legs as possible.  Enjoy!

Monday Workout

 

Here are the descriptions for a few of the not-so-common exercises.

V-Ups

Step 1: Lie on your back with arms over head.

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Step 2: Using your core muscles, keep your legs straight and bring your hands towards your toes.

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Up Down Planks

Step 1:  Start on your elbows in plank position

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Step 2:  Push up, one hand at a time, until you are in straight arm plank position

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Step 3: Return to starting position, one arm at a time

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Mountain Climbers

Step 1:  Start in straight arm plank position

Step 2: Bring one knee in towards your chest, switch legs continuously until your time/reps are over

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Sumo Squat to High Pull

(I usually use a kettlebell for this exercise, but since I didn’t have one handy, I used a dumbbell)

Step 1:  Start with your feet wider than your hips, toes turned out

Step 2: Squat and bring the weight up to chest level as you come up

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Plank Jumping Jacks

Step 1:  Start in plank position, feet close together

Step 2:  Jump both feet wide and then jump back to starting position

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Squat with Front Arm Raise

Step 1:  Start with feet slightly wider than shoulder width apart

Step 2:  As you squat, bring both arms in front of you to shoulder level

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Plank Ball Roll-Outs

Step 1:  Start with your knees on the ground, elbows bent and forearms on the stability ball

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Step 2:  Keeping your weight on your arms and abs pulled in tight, roll out until your body is in a straight line (or as close to it as possible)

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