Wednesday Workout: Cardio EMOM & Upper Body AMRAP (35 min workout)

Good morning! I wasn’t sure if I’d have a post for you today, but considering I enjoyed the workout I planned and did yesterday morning before work, I thought it was only fair to share with you ūüėČ

If you’ve been following B2B for a while, you’ll probably agree that I don’t really workout in the morning very often. It’s not that I don’t like to workout in the morning, because even though my energy level isn’t nearly as high as it is after work, I absolutely love starting the day with a workout and I also love not having a workout looming over my head throughout the work day. But, seeings how I have to leave for work by 6:45am, it just makes getting up and working out at an hour of the day where I’d much rather be sleeping. That, and I tend to have teaching or workout plans after work so it’s not really necessary. ¬†It’s all good, though- I do them when I can and on the days where I can’t workout after work I go during lunch, NBD.

Since I knew I had meetings all day on Tuesday and I had something after work, I knew my only option for getting a workout in was to do it before work. I decided to go in just a little late, which made my morning wake-up call not quite so early. To help speed things along in the morning, I created my workout the night before. On top of saving time, this also gets me excited and mentally prepared to get up early to workout. Laying my workout clothes and shoes also helps! I was up at 5:45am and dressed and working out by 5:59am and done by 6:35- not too bad!

Here is the outline of the workout- I will list out the details below:

Cardio EMOM & Upper Body AMRAP

What I liked about this workout was the format. I started off with a quickie warm up (4 mins, to be exact) and then jumped right in to the cardio EMOM (Every Minute On the Minute) portion, which was burpees and mountain climbers. What this means is that I gave myself 1 minute to complete 15 burpees. However much time was left in the minute after I completed the 15 burpees was used for active rest- side bends/dips, in my case. Once that minute was up, I performed 30 mountain climbers (each leg) and again, the remaining time in the minute was spent doing side bends/dips before jumping back into burpees. This 8 minute EMOM set had me doing 4 rounds of 15 burpees and 4 rounds of 30 mountain climbers. I was successfully sweaty by the end of this.

My next set was an 8 minute AMRAP (As Many Rounds As Possible) upper body workout. My workout the night before had been legs so I knew I didn’t want to do much with them the following morning. I ended up completing 5 rounds of the upper body circuit and was really proud of myself for completing the push-ups on my toes for all of the rounds! Also, as a heads up I used a band for the seated rows and dumbbells for the other exercises.

Once that was done, I did a 4 minute EMOM of burpees and mountain climbers and then a 4 minute EMOM of 15 banded leg-lowers (do a regular leg lower, just add in the band around your feet as you would for the seated row. Extend the feet over your hips and hold the handles with your hands and keep tension on the band as you lower and lift the legs) and 8 get up, sit ups.  For my fellow BoxFIIT certification people, you know what this is. For the purposes of creating an easier to understand workout, I put regular sit-ups in the graphic.

Quick stretch and I was done-zo. It wasn’t the HARDEST workout I’ve done, but it kept my heart rate up and was exactly what I wanted/needed yesterday.¬†As long as you have a pair of dumbbells and a band, this workout can easily be done at home! let me know if you try it ūüôā

Questions for you: Do you prefer to workout in the morning, during your lunch break or after work?

Just Add Cooking: Round 2 {& exciting news!}

Good morning! I’m back with another drool-worthy (ok, they’d be more drool-worthy if the lighting and picture quality was better, but you get the idea) Just Add Cooking post. As I mentioned before, as a brand ambassador I have the chance to receive a free week of meals to try and then¬†I get to share my experience with all of you. Week 1 was pretty awesome, but week 2 surely gave it a run for its money! With an Asian-inspired theme, we were introduced to new flavors and meals we would never think to cook on our own.

Our box arrived again on Sunday, which was perfect since it allowed for us to unpack and check it out right away. While there was more packaging than the week before, it was understandable due to the types of recipes we chose for the week. And, most was able to be recycled which is great.

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On Monday night, I figured it was the perfect night to make the Hot Pot; it was cold and snowy and the thought of a warm soup sounded like a great idea. What made it even better was how easy this was to make. While it had a number of steps, none where time consuming or confusing, which made it a quick meal to throw together. The meatballs were my favorite part- they had the perfect amount of spice and flavor combinations and I didn’t even mind the hints of ginger, isn’t a flavor I tend to enjoy. My only complaint was that the dish was a bit too salty for me due to the soy sauce. I don’t tend to salt my food much and we tend to use lower-sodium soy sauce or even tamari so it was not something we/I were used to.¬†Next time I would maybe decrease the amount of soy sauce and replace with water or use a lower-sodium version. Besides that, this was another big hit!

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Tuesday night’s meal of Shrimp Pad Thai was probably my favorite. This meal was so simple, yet so flavorful and totally different from anything else we usually make. I foresee us making this a lot going forward, especially since it re-heated really well! I followed this recipe to a T besides omitting the fish sauce. This was RM’s favorite meal of the week, too.

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Lastly, I made the Beef Teriyaki on Thursday night when I got home from teaching. It was awesome that in 30 minutes we had a whole meal ready for us. We don’t tend to buy or cook a lot of red meat, so it was a nice change to bring a dish like this into our weekly eats. Again, this meal was not fancy, but the flavors were on point! My only complaint here, similar to the Hot Pot, is that it was a bit too salty, again I’m assuming this is because of the soy sauce. This was rectified the next day by adding some broccoli to the mix- beef & broccoli- such a delicious combo!

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I don’t normally like to cook full meals during the week due to my busy schedule that generally doesn’t have me getting home until 7:30-8pm, but these meals were so quick and easy to¬†assemble and serve so¬†it was a very doable activity.

I can’t wait until our next delivery, particularly because we were notified that¬†Chef Jeremy Seawall of Island Creek Oyster Bar, Lineage & Row 34 is partnering with Just¬†Add Cooking¬†to showcase recipes from his new cookbook, The New England Kitchen.

Chef Jeremy Seawall has spent his career working with the farm-to-table movement,¬†focusing on¬†fresh, local foods. This pairs so well with Just Add Cooking because, as you know, they have an entirely local approach to their meal kit programs so working with someone who understands and values that, too, is perfect. And, don’t be intimidated- Just Add Cooking has assured us that Chef Seawall’s recipes will still be fun and relatively easy for weeknight cooking.

We love all of those restaurants so getting to try our hand at cooking some of his recipes is pretty cool! His recipes will be available to subscribers for the 4/24 deliveries (which means you have to order by 4/20). While we didn’t get a chance to check them out this month, you can guarantee we will be picking some of his recipes for next month- I can’t wait!

Don’t forget, if you like the sounds of Just Add Cooking, just use the code BUBBLY¬†when you sign up and¬†you can get your first Just Add Cooking box for just $39. Which, btw, is 3 meals- one hell of a deal if you ask me! Click here to sign up for a free account and to pick your recipes.

Questions for you: What cuisine is your favorite? Do you like your food salty or not? Have you eaten at any of the restaurants that Chef Seawall is affiliated with?

Disclaimer: I was not compensated for this post but I was provided with a free week of meals in response for my review. As always, all thoughts and opinions in this post are my own- I really, truly think this is a wonderful company and I’m so excited that I get to work with them! As an affiliate, I do receive a credit when you sign up for the service using my code. Thanks for your support!

Weekending: Frank Pepe’s Pizza, Boxing, Brunching & More

And just like that- the weekend is over in the blink of an eye! Don’t get me wrong- we certainly made the most of the weekend, but it doesn’t mean it makes it any easier when it’s over.

Friday

After work on Friday I did some shopping for shoes to wear to various wedding-related events. I ended up finding a few pairs at Off Saks, including these fun pink heels. What do you think?

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They’ve got a snake skin-ish type of¬†material, too. Once we both got home, we headed over to Chestnut Hill to check out Frank Pepe’s Pizzeria. While there was a long line, we ended up getting seated in just about 35 minutes which wasn’t bad. We opted for their famous clam pizza and a traditional cheese pizza. Both of us were “meh” about the clam pizza but totally loved the cheese pizza. It was light and thin so you could eat multiple slices without feeling too weighed down. Definitely worth a trip if you’ve been thinking about checking it out.

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Conveniently next door was a little Gelateria, so obviously we had to stop and get one. I opted for the baby sized Biscoff and Hazelnut and both were amazingly good. I haven’t had gelato that good since Italy!

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Saturday

Saturday morning started with an awesome Bags & Body class at The Club, followed by mitt practice with Nicole. I have never done that so it was really humbling, but it felt good to be out of my comfort zone and learning something new. The best part? Nicole sent me home with some awesome fighters swag so I can be outfitted for my first class (more details soon!).

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After class I met up with a few friends to celebrate Jessi’s engagement. We went to Worden Hall in Southie which was another place on my “want to try” list. We got a bottle of bubbly and I got spinach and goat cheese omelet which was really tasty.

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I love girls luncheon dates! Jess had to leave after lunch but my sister stopped in so she, Jessi and I had another drink at Stephi’s in Southie before heading home. On my way home I offered to pick up food at Whole Foods for dinner so I opted to get food shopping for the week out of the way, too. The rest of the night was spent hanging out, making wings, eating left over pizza and watching House of Cards.

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I love Saturday night’s where I’m in bed by 10:30… yes, I’m 30 going on 75 ūüėČ

Sunday

After breakfast, I went to church¬†and then came home and worked on my taxes. While spending 2 hours on that sucked, I’m getting a good chunk of money back which will come in very handy for the wedding! Once I was done, we went for a quick walk and then I finished off with a quickie 5K since it was so gorgeous out. I needed Vitamin D in a bad way!

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We finished off the day with the most delicious eggplant parm and chicken cutlets at RM’s mother’s house. I opted to not do any real meal prep this week since it’s my birthday week which was a nice change.

Although my Sunday was not nearly as productive as I wanted to, it was perfect. I had wanted to get to the gym to film a few BoxFIIT videos and work on that certification, but I decided that I wanted to go for a walk and a run MORE, so that took precedent over that. Sometimes you just have to pick and choose what’s important to you on a particular day… and sometimes that’s not in line with what you “should” do or what’s on your to-do list…. and that is totally fine.

With that, here’s to a good week! It’ll be a busy one for me due to birthday celebrations, but it’s all fun things so I can’t wait!

Questions for you: How was your weekend? Have you ever been to Pepe’s Pizza? Did you get in any good workouts? Did you go out to eat at all? Did you get out to enjoy the sunshine throughout the weekend? What’s going on this week?

Five on Friday {4.8.16}

Good morning! TGIF, right?! This week has really dragged on for me- no idea why, but it makes me especially happy that it’s Friday (FriYAY, right?!)! Here are some of the topics going on in my head these days:

  • Personalized Cornhole Bags- Etsy is my new best friend these days, which is exactly where I found these adorable cornhole bags. I opted to go with cream and navy with gold lettering since those are roughly the colors we are kind of going with. I also ordered the boards from someone else off of Etsy so once RM paints those I’ll show them. So excited to bring these up to NH for our wedding!

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  • Wedding Invitation Frustrations- Speaking of our wedding- which, btw, is less than 3 months away!!- invitations have been a bit of a frustration so far. I designed them on the PaperSource website and then went into the store in Lynnfield to have them help me with a few things. They timed everything out and said I would see the proofs in 3-5 business days, however, I did not see a proof until 8 business days!!! Seeing how the 23 business days they quoted me to get the final product already put us at the end of April (need to get these babies out by early May), I was stressing big time! I called the store probably 5 times and emailed with them, but I will say that I love the final proof and can’t wait to get them in. Anyone else have any wedding-related issues out of your control that caused you stress?
  • Shrimp Pad Tai- We had another week of Just Add Cooking meals and it was another week of winning meals! The Shrimp Pad Tai was so easy to make and SO delicious that I have a feeling it will become a regular meal we rotate in.

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  • House of Cards- We started watching House of Cards the other night. So far, even though it’s a little slow I’m enjoying it- no violence, which is a nice change of pace from Breaking Bad ūüėČ Anyone else watch this? Will we love it?
  • BoxFIIT Certification Update- Ahh! I’m getting there! I have only a handful of videos left to film before I’m done and I’m SO excited. I’ve been focusing on taking more classes to get comfortable with the format and bags and things like that. Eliza’s Tuesday night Bags and Body/Beats is such a fun class- something I could totally see myself teaching. If you’re interested in learning more about this certification, let me know- happy to provide more information!

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And that does it for me! As for weekend plans, RM suggested checking out Pepe’s pizza in Chestnut Hill… and I’m not one to turn down a pizza offer so I think we are doing that tonight. Tomorrow I am going to Nicole’s Bags & Body class at The Club in the morning and then doing some mitt practice before meeting up with a few friends to celebrate my bestie’s recent engagement! Whatever you have on the agenda for the weekend, I hope you take time for YOU!

Questions for you: Wedding planning tips for how to stay sane and not stressed? PLEASE SHARE! Did you cook any good meals this week? What are you up to this weekend? Any good workouts?

 

Wednesday Workout: Cardio Sandwich Circuits

I hope that title didn’t make you hungry ūüėČ This workout was created as a way to keep me inside the house during the snowstorm on Monday. Literally, the only time I stepped out of the house was to bring the trash out… and I’m not even mad about it. Soon enough we’ll have beautiful weather so I took advantage of a nasty, wintery (yet spring) day and virtually didn’t leave the house.¬†It was actually very nice, especially since this workout ended up being kind of a butt-kicker ūüėČ

Going into the workout, I knew I wanted a mix of cardio and strength training. My weights at home aren’t big enough to really give me the kind of challenging workout I want for a lifting session, so I generally incorporate cardio and weights for any at-home workout. With that said, between the cardio sandwich and strength exercises in this workout, I was huffing and puffing throughout the whole thing… especially when I had to do 12 burpees followed by 12 burpees… that was killer¬†ūüėČ

Cardio Sandwich Circuits

I think the directions are pretty clear- all you have to do is complete each round 3 times before moving on to the next. Your reps will decrease from 12 to 10 to 8 as you complete rounds 1-3. If you’re running short on time, feel free to pick just 1 or 2 of these and put all your energy into that.

Here are some notes/explanations for the exercises- I wanted to do short video’s for some of them, but I’ve been filming so many videos for my BoxFIIT certification that I just couldn’t do any more!

  • Squats & squat hold w/side taps- perform the designated # of straight squats first and then come down into a squat hold and tap each leg out to the side for that number of reps as well. Hopefully you’ll feel that extra burn!
  • Shoulder press-> chest squeeze- for this one, you’ll hold a weight in each hand and perform a shoulder press. When your elbows come back to shoulder height, pull your weights together so that they end up in front of your face with your palms facing you. Engage all of those chest muscles as you’re pulling your elbows and weights to touch in front of your face.
  • Lunge & tap- Lunge back on one leg and then push off the foot that stepped back to bring that foot to tap right next to the stationary leg. I did an isometric bicep curl hold while lunging.

I think everything else is pretty self-explanatory, but if you have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask me!

My legs felt pretty beat after this- I hope you give it a try!