Legs Quickie, 5/29/2012

Yesterday, Ella, Doha and I did a quick little leg day.  All three of us needed to get in and out of the gym quickly, so here’s the workout I put together.  It was still pretty good!  Too bad I didn’t notice my heartrate monitor hadn’t picked up my pulse until long after the workout ended.  POOP!

Circuit 1 (three times)

  • Hack squats on machine, added 60 lbs (x10)
  • A situp that takes you only up to a modified boat pose, then 3 arm pulses to tap your knees, staying leaned back.  Lay back down, vertebra-by-vertebra, then come up for the next rep (x10)
stay leaned back like this awesome hippie chick, for the full effect.
  • 20 jumping lunges

Circuit 2 (three times)

  • sumo squats with 20-lb kettlebell (x15), then hold the squat but up on your toes for an additional 15 seconds
  • cable deadlifts (x15)
  • plank with leglift, holding each leg up for 15 sec, then switch legs (x2 each leg)

Circuit 3 (three times)

  • reverse plank (30 sec, rest 5 sec, 30 sec again)

  • clam diggers (x15 each side)
  • Turkish getups with 10-lb kettlebell (x4)

See? I told you it was quick.  There wasn’t a ton of cardio, but I still got sweaty.  The whole thing took about 45 minutes.  If you’re new to circuit training or weightlifting, this might be a good workout to start with.  =)

-Amanda

Full Body Day, 5/23/2012

Well there’s been a lot of softballin’, but not as much  lifting, lately.  Still, I am getting in a good about of physical activity.  Not as much as I’d like, but I can feel my muscles coming back, and the fat leaving.  I’ve been working on this cabinet refinishing project at home lately, and I’ve gotta say: sanding is pretty decent exercise.  With a sander, or by hand, it can be a lot of work!  I should wear my heartrate monitor the next time I’m working on the cabinet!  😉

Speaking of heartrate monitors, yesterday I burned 696 calories playing softball.  That was over the course of two hours, so really my burn wasn’t crazy, just higher than normal.  I’ll take it!  I would bet that Monday’s game was a little higher, since I was playing outfield for that one.

Ok, so today it’s Doha, Ella, and I for a full body day.  I’m really missing Kara lately, but she’s off adventuring in Europe.  We’ll work out together when she’s back.

Circuit 1 (four times)

  • IYTW’s: hold each position for 5 seconds, before moving to the next one.  Don’t put your arms down between positions. Body weight, or up to 5-lb dumbbells.  (x3)

  • split squats off of bench, two 10-lb dumbbells (x10 each side)
  • obliques on body ball (x10 each side)

Circuit 2 (four times)

  • overhead squats, 40 lbs (x10)
  • pushups (x15)
  • bicep curls with 25-lb bar (x10-15)
  • hip adduction machine (x10 + 10-second hold at the end)

Circuit 3 (four times)

  • On body ball, dumbbell flyes with abdominal crunch, two 8-lb dumbbells (x10)
  • static lunge, right leg forward, with overhead tricep presses,  two 10-lb dumbbells (x10)
  • static lunge, left leg forward, with overhead tricep presses,  two 10-lb dumbbells (x10)
  • side lunges with paper bag, picking up and putting down a 10-lb dumbbell (x10 each side)

 

-Amanda

 

TurboFire: HIIT15 & Abs10

Wednesday night, to keep up a decent exercise routine, I did a quick TurboFire session before heading out to dinner with friends.  I did HIIT 15, and Abs 10.  It was an awesome workout!

HIIT stands for high-intensity interval training.  So this was basically a quick 15-minute anaerobic cardio blast.  This is NO JOKE.  Seriously, it was freakin’ hard.  The workout consists of three drills, done three times each.  I think each drill is about 30-45 seconds, and then you get a 30 second break before the next round.  I. was. dying.  But I will say that I far prefer these jumping/lunging/squatting drills to running, biking, or other longer-duration types of cardio.  I guess psychologically, it’s just easier for me knowing that I only have to push really freakin’ hard for 30 seconds, and then I get a break.  I’d much rather be at a 9-10 for 30 seconds, than a 5-6 for 5 minutes.  Plus, there are many benefits to high intensity interval training, as opposed to traditional long aerobic workouts.  So, for me at least, it’s a win-win.

The 10-minute abdominal video was great too.  Honestly, I didn’t 100% keep up.  Of course, if you know me, you know this pisses me off.  So you can bet I will be working in this particular video until I feel I’ve matched the intensity and strength of the athletes in Chalene’s (the TurboFire Instructor) class.

The two best things about this DVD set, so far (I’ve tried Fire 30, Fire 45, HIIT 15, and Abs 10) :

1. The instructor, Chalene.  She knows just what to say to keep me from wussing out.  She is not cheesy.  She is intense.

2. The music.  Especially on the HIIT video I just did, it’s great.  On some of the more intense moves, there are explosion kinds of sounds edited into the music, and it really makes you feel like working hard and making your moves, well… explosive.  I won’t lie, I totally smiled during these parts.  I felt powerful! (What a dork.)

Has anyone else tried TurboFire?  What did you think?

-Amanda

P.S.  I am not being paid by TurboFire to share my opinion with you.  This is all me.  =)

Leg Day, 5/11/12

What’s this?  Two weight-lifting workouts in one week?!  Yes, I am back on track, people.  Here comes a leg day.  Since today is a Friday, we not only have access to the free-weights section of our gym at work, but the group classroom is also empty.  So this means I will usually work in some of the exercises that can only be done with a lot of space to move around.

Circuit 1 (four times)

  • overhead squats, just the big bar, but get that butt lowwww, girrrrl (x10)

again, please replace with back squats or front squats if you’ve never been coached on good OHS form. 

  • frog jumps – aim for distance on each jump, not height (x10)
  • abs – leg lifts with Bosu Ball between your legs (x10)

Circuit 2 (four times)

  • stairmaster, challenging resistance (~10-15), 2 minutes
  • tricep presses in Warrior 3, two 8-lbs dumbbells (x10 on each leg)
  • split squat, holding two 10-lb dumbbells, (x10 each leg)
From Fitnessista

Circuit 3 (AMRAP 10 minutes!)

  • 5 push presses, 55lbs
  • side plank with inner thigh raise, right side (x5)
  • side plank with inner thigh raise, left side (x5)
  • 15 star jumps

Pushing a bit harder than last time, and aiming for some more intense cardio.  I’m glad I packed my HR monitor —  can’t wait to see what my “score” is.

Post-workout update:  whew, that was a doozie!  Doha and I got a GREAT workout. I looked like Elmo afterward: I was wearing a red tank top and my face is still red now.  The workout took almost exactly one hour, and I burned 564 calories by the end.  However, I left my HR monitor on afterward, while running errands, and just one more hour later, I’m already at 980 calories — my heartrate stayed elevated for a long time.  I’m so happy to be back in the game.  🙂

Something to remember: You can’t pick where your body chooses to burn fat.  Working your legs does not guarantee skinny legs. Doing ab workouts does not get rid of a flabby belly.  However, lean muscle consumes fat.  The more muscle you have, the more fat you will burn, all over.

-Amanda

Hotel Work Out

Hi Everyone,

Agreeing with Amanda, life has been super crazy.  My whole life is flip-flopped because I am now working midnights for almost two weeks.  I’ve basically turned into this nocturnal, unsocial hermit who wakes only to go to work at night.  😛  Safe to say that work outs have gotten pushed to the side.

The up side is that I am looking forward to a nice, long vacation in a few weeks.  In preparation for that, I’ve put together a few moves to mix and match for hotel room work outs.   I’ll keep the circuit style Amanda and I love, but probably up the reps since the weight will be low or just using body weight.  Using moves from each group, I’ll create a full body day that can ideally be performed in under 45 minutes and in a hotel room.  I figure all this prep now will make it that much easier for me to get in a decent work out on the road!

Legs
Wood chops
Around the clock lunges
Jump squats
Curtsey lunges
Sumo squats
Calf raises
Butt kicks

Arms
Tricep dips on Chairs
Push ups

Abs
Mountain climbers
Plank hold
Ab twists
Leg raises
Reverse sit ups
Bicycle abs
Window wipers

Anyone have idea for hotel room weights?  Right now, I’m thinking of using water bottles or any heavier books I find in the rooms.  Having some decent weights in hand would open up a lot more moves, but I think what I have above will work out well.  The key here will be to keep the workouts fairly quick, but effective.  I won’t have too much time to workout, but I don’t want to be total mush when I come back!

Kara.

Full Body Day, 05/08/2012

Holy crap, life is nuts sometimes.  Remember my graph from last time?  Yeah, that first dip is a lot longer than I’d anticipated.  The reason:  my boyfriend had ACL reconstructive surgery last Tuesday, and since then, I’ve pretty much been holed up in the apartment taking care of the poor guy.  Not much time to hit the gym.  The good news is, since we were both stuck at home, we (I) made all of our own meals, which means we’ve been eating REALLY HEALTHY.

Well, all of our own meals, except for the casserole that Kara put together for us to take home.  She’s so sweet!  But even that was healthy: kind of a Turkey Tetrazini, I guess?  Kara, you should post a recipe!  Whatever, it had mushrooms.  I’m sold.

So, what’s been happening is that I’m maintaining my weight, but I’m losing tons of muscle.  The number on the scale stays the same, but my belly/thighs/arms are getting soft, yo!  I hate that feeling.  It’s all about jumping back on the bandwagon, though, so I look forward to replacing the fat (yet again) with lean muscle.  Let’s do this. I’m gonna keep it on the easy side today (ugh, again!) because I don’t want to shock my muscles too much.  I’ll get to that NEXT week, muahahahahaha!

Circuit 1 (four times)

  • squat chop (x10 each side)

    squat chop, as described by Women’s Health
  • bicycle abs on Bosu Ball (x20)  – really extend your spine (arch a bit) to get the full range of motion from your abs
  • real pushups (x10) – or do as many real ones as you can before going to your knees.  Push yourself!

Circuit 2 (four times)

  • static lunge with bicep curls, 10-lb dumbbells (stay in a low lunge on the left, and do 10 reps with BOTH arms, then do the same for a lunge on the right, so you’re actually doing 20 curls each time through the circuit)
  • hamstring curls on machine (x15)
  • cable push-pulls (x10 each side)

Circuit 3 (four times)

  • assisted pull-ups (x10)
  • criss-cross medicine ball abs on decline bench (x40, so 20 each side)

like this, except on a decline bench

  • squat machine, add 50 lbs (x10)
  • calf raises on same machine (x15)

-Amanda