Wednesday Workout: 15 Minute Bodyweight Cardio Blast

Short workouts have been my jam lately. With a busy work schedule, training a coworker during lunch, and teaching, finding time to get in a long workout for myself just hasn’t been in the cards. I’ve also been cutting back on running because my hip has been bothering me, although now I’m not sure it’s actually a result from running or something else (going to see a PT soon). That said, last Friday I was working from home and wanted to get in a quick workout at the end of the day before we went out to dinner. I didn’t have a lot of time and it was pouring out so I was forced to do another at-home workout. Luckily I love working out at home and have most of the basics necessary in order to get a decent workout in.

I was craving cardio because I was sore from strength workouts during the week, but I didn’t want to do steady state cardio in the form of riding my spin bike so I put together a quickie bodyweight cardio blast using some of my favorite heart-pumping exercises.

These are all fairly common moves that are on B2B, but since I did share them on my Insta story, I thought I’d upload to YouTube so you could watch if you wanted a refresher.

If you find yourself traveling this summer, or just short on time, consider knocking this workout out! It doesn’t take long, but you’ll find yourself sweaty and tired by the end!

Questions for you: What’s your favorite cardio exercise? What gives you the most bang for your buck?

What College Really Taught Me

Over the weekend, we went up to Saint Michael’s College to celebrate my 10 year reunion. Even though the weekend has already come and gone, I’m still processing the fact that it’s been 10 years since we have been in college! How?!

Going into college, I had no idea what to expect. Would I like being away from home? Would I make friends? Would I do well in my classes? Looking back, I can honestly say that there was no need to worry about any of these things. I didn’t mind being away from home, I did well in my classes and I made the most incredible friendships.

As we were partying on campus on Saturday night, I couldn’t help but think about how crazy it was that so little has changed between my group of friends. Granted, between jobs, where we live, relationship status’, hobbies, etc. there have obviously been changes in terms of how much we see each other, what our conversations are centered around, etc., but at the end of the day, when you put us all together, it really is like nothing has changed. We laugh, we dance, we talk about serious things, we joke around… and even if it’s been months since we last saw each other, you’d never know. We always pick up right where we left off, and I’m so grateful for that.

Even though college taught me valuable lessons regarding my major, it really taught me what true friendship is. I feel so fortunate that not only did these ladies make my college experience a million times better, but also that they have made my post college life a million times better. It’s crazy that we are all still so close – even after 10 years and at times living in many different states from one another. We’ve gone through loves, breakups, good days, bad days, new jobs, new homes, marriages, babies, and more. No matter what my news is, I know that I have the most supportive group of friends and I am so thankful for that.

I may not do anything in the field I majored/graduated in, and I may have school loans I feel like I’ll never pay off, but the friendships I made at SMC make it all worth it. Thanks, ladies- you’re the best friends a girl could ask for! xo

oh yeah, and thanks for teaching me how to saber a champagne bottle open!!

“Why Don’t You Just Sit There & Relax?”

This week has been a bit different from my normal weeks. I realize it’s only Monday, but stick with me – normally my weeks are planned out to a T. I leave for work at 6:30am work, take a lunch break to go to the gym to workout or train someone, leave work and go teach or go to a class (usually the former, though). It leaves very little room for anything but those things, which is totally fine because I LOVE my side gig of teaching fitness and training, but sometimes it’s nice to have an unexpected night off.

I’m graced with TWO unexpected nights off this week, and although I’m totally bummed about it because I absolutely love teaching my Seaport Sweat classes (and I haven’t been able to kick off my classes yet because this is the first full week!), with upcoming travel again this weekend, extra nights off mean I can get more sh*t done throughout the week and make things a little easier on myself.

That said, last night I took advantage of my unexpected night off by going to get a manicure and pedicure since I’m going away this weekend. As I was getting my pedicure, one of the nail technicians came over to start taking off my shellac from 2 weeks ago. If you’re not familiar with this process, it requires you to let your nails soak with acetone with aluminum foil wrapped around it to hold it there. In other words, you can’t do anything with your hands during this time. Normally when I get a pedicure I’m on my phone, reading a magazine or reading a book. The guy laughed at me as I tried to read a magazine and then move my phone and said ย “Why don’t you just sit there & relax with nothing?”

You mean, sit there with nothing to occupy myself? To sit there completely still, relaxed and focused on just that, rather than the never ending social media posts to catch up on, tv to watch and trashy magazines to read? What a concept!

I’ll be honest when I say it was a little hard at first. I think others will agree that we are all so accustomed to doing something at all times… and oftentimes it’s multiple things at once. We are scrolling through our phones while out to eat, while chatting with our friends/spouse/etc., while watching tv, maybe even in the midst of reading a magazine. And if we aren’t multi-tasking with our phone, we might be occupied by watching tv or reading a book.

How often do we sit and do absolutely nothing besides be present and enjoy that stillness? I don’t do it nearly enough and last night was a good reminder of that. As I sit here, I’m chuckling realizing that I’m doing the exact opposite of that- I’m blogging, deciding on new couch options with RM and watching TV!

Just a little food for thought on this dreary Tuesday. I challenge you to think about how you’re spending your time- do you constantly move from one thing to the next, often multi-tasting, rarely just sitting in the moment and embracing that? If you can relate, I would suggest taking some time each day to just be. To focus on one thing. To take some deep breaths. To not have every minute planned out and accounted for.ย 

Oh, and don’t forget to mark your calendars for Seaport Sweat next week- Monday at 6pm and Tuesday at 6:30pm!

Fitness Isn’t A Linear Progression

I was at the gym last week and after my run, I decided to see how my chin-ups felt. I don’t work on these nearly enough- it’s more of a “let me see what I can do today” type of thing. I think the reason WHY I don’t practice them or other exercises to assist in building up the necessary strength required to execute them in multiples is because I generally have very little time to workout. It’s usually a quickie 30-35 minutes including warm up & cool down, which, don’t get me wrong, is plenty of time for a good workout, but if I want to spend time working on various skills, it’s definitely not enough time. And right now, I care more about getting in quickie workouts than I do about working strictly on pull-ups/chin-ups, so it’s just the way it is!

But, that doesn’t mean that I don’t want to continue to do them when I can! In fact, we just bought a pull-up bar because I want it to be easier to practice the craft.

Last week’s chin-up experience got me thinking about fitness progressions & growth. I put this on Instagram and it got some good traction so I thought it was worthy of sharing with you guys:

Two days ago, I struggled through a #fitin15 (@the_fueled_physique) upper body workout and I had no idea why. I wasn't using heavier weights, I wasn't Doing anything new and I wasn't tired or sore. . . Yesterday, I did a quick 1.5 mile run on the treadmill (felt easy!) and then busted out 5 chin-ups with relative ease. I haven't done these in months, yet they didn't pose nearly as big of a challenge for me as the previous day's workout. And, yes, chin-ups are a hard exercise, certainly not downplaying that! . . But it was a good reminder: fitness is not a linear progression. We don't just keep moving up and forward Day after day. Just because we can do chin-ups on day with ease doesn't mean they'll be easy the next time we try them. Just because we run 5 miles one day with ease doesn't mean the next run will be equally as good or easy. . . . With that said, I encourage you to focus on where you are TODAY. not yesterday, not where you'll be tomorrow. Focus on the now and appreciate what you can do. Be kind to yourself and know that if you keep working hard, you'll get to your goal. #realtalk #fitness #progression #progressionisntlinear #keepworking #appreciatethenow #embraceitall #acceptance #reminder #focusontoday

A post shared by Monique Gagnon (@burpeestobubbly) on

 

My experience with chin-ups just yesterday couldn’t have come at a better time because it backed up what I shared above.

Last week, chin-ups were, dare I say it, EASY. Yesterday? So far the opposite from easy. Every bit of it was a struggle, as clearly shown in the video above. For good measure, I tried some this morning (dress & heels and all!) and they were definitely much easier than they were yesterday.

All this means is that we should focus on where we are TODAY. Not yesterday, and not where we are tomorrow. Fitness isn’t a linear progression. Just because we could do something so well yesterday or last week, doesn’t mean that we will pick up right where we left off when we try it next. Unfortunately, it just doesn’t work like that because there are so many factors that go into our physical strengths on any particular day: how much sleep we got, how rested we feel, whether we are stressed, what time of the ย month it is, what we are focused on, etc. All of these things play a role in how we are able to move on any particular day.

So, next time you’re feeling down because you weren’t able to run as far, run as fast, swim as long, lift as heavy, knock out as many pull-ups, just remember that it doesn’t mean you’ve lost strength or that you’re weak or that you need to work harder, longer, etc. at getting better. Sure, practice does always help, but all the practice in the world does not mean that your fitness experience and growth will be a linear progression. Instead of getting beat down because today you can’t do what you did last week, focus on where you are today, appreciate that and keep working on the skill. Maybe take a second to think about what outside factors are going on that could contribute to less energy or strength in your workout, because that could bring some clarity to it.

I’d love to hear what you have to say about fitness progressions- do you find yourself being able to do something one week and the next week find it much harder? How do you handle these situations? Do you get upset or take it for what it is and just keep going/practicing/etc.? What’s something that is always a struggle for you in the gym? How do you work at it?

 

 

SoulFu3l {aka- a way to help you eat well without requiring hours in the kitchen!}

I joke (being half serious, though), to RM all the time that I wish I could pay someone to come over and do meal prep & cleanup for us. It’s not that I don’t like to meal prep, but more that sometimes I wish I could have those hours from my weekend or week to do something else. I don’t mind food shopping, but sometimes I really dread the process of washing, cutting, seasoning, cooking, watching, organizing & washing the dishes when everything is done cooking.

Can anyone relate to this?!

(I really hope I’m not the only one….)

Enter: SoulFu3l. They are a local (Boston) company who prepares healthy foods FOR YOU! While they may not actually go to your house and prepare the food in your kitchen, they still make your life a lot easier, especially if meal prepping is just not your thing.

They gave a discount to EBF trainers a few weeks ago and after seeing other trainers rave about their SoulFu3l for so long, I decided to jump on it. They have various meal plan options to choose from (just snacks, breakfast, lunch & dinner, just breakfast & dinner, etc.), but I opted for the “Sample Pack” as it included a good array of things to try:

  • 2 breakfasts
  • 2 lunches
  • 2 dinners
  • a surprise treat, which for us was their infamousย Paleo Banana Cacao Chip Muffins

As an FYI, normally a meal plan similar to the above mentioned one would cost either $97 or $112 depending on the sizing option you get (4oz or 6oz, respectively). While I realize this may seem a little pricey, I will say that the options come with A LOT of food- and when you figure what you might spend on Whole Foods hot bar, ordering out or going out to eat, it really isn’t much more than that. Plus, you have the option of picking one off’s if a meal plan/meal pack isn’t what you want. Oh yeah, and if you do meal kit delivery options from other companies, 3 meals will cost you about the same, whereas this comes with essentially 6 meals.

The way this whole thing works is you go to their menu page to see what’s on the menu for the next week. Once you decide, you go to their order page, pick what you want (you can do a sample pack and then order additional items like cookies or muffins), figure out if you want delivery (on Sundays to Boston Proper & Southie, $10 charge) or if you want to pick it up for free at Crossfit Southie on Sunday or Monday.

There are a lot of things I love about this company: they are local, it’s two women who both share a passion for health and wellness and believe in feeding our bodies through nourishing foods. The foods they make are paleo, gluten free & dairy free- and yes, they still taste amazing. My favorites from our package were the “peaches & cream” overnight oats and the paleo banana cacao chip muffins. If only I could figure out how to make one or both of these- they were seriously amazing! The other dishes were egg cups (wrapped in turkey with spices), a chicken, sweet potato & Brussels sprouts and then the last meal was a Aztec Turkey Bowl.ย It was so nice to have everything together to easily reheat!

At the end of the day, though, as much as we enjoyed trying something new and seeing how easy it can be to have nourishing, good fueling foods at your fingertips without having to do anything besides place an order, both of us like cooking for ourselves and spending time making various dishes so I don’t think we will use this service on a weekly basis. But, for those crazy busy weeks where I would like to spend my meal prepping time doing other things, I think ordering a SoulFu3l order will be especially helpful. It’s also pricier for us than it is to buy veggies & meats and do meal prep on our own, but some weeks I will pay a lot extra for the convenience factor!

However, if you are one who does not enjoy meal prepping and find yourself constantly getting Whole Foods hot bar or ordering take-out, this is a company I think you’d really benefit from checking out. They make eating good, nourishing, delicious food SO easy.

To make it even better, SoulFu3l has offered to give Burpees to Bubbly readers 10% off your first order. All you have to do is head over to their page, place your order and use the code NOURISH at checkout. If you’ve been waiting to try a meal service like this (or this one in particular!), this is your time to do it. I promise, you won’t regret it! Just as an FYI, if you want an order for next week, you need to place your order by THURSDAY!ย (also, they will keep the code open for the next few weeks since next week is a holiday and many of you may be going away)

SoulFu3l ladies- you’ve got something pretty amazing going on and I can only hope you’ll continue to work to provide this wholesome, nourishing food for years to come!

(Also, I apologize for less than stellar photos- when I originally took them I wasn’t thinking of a blog post, but I realized this stuff is too good not to share, bad photos and all ๐Ÿ™‚ )