SCW- Boston MANIA 2013 Recap {PT 1}

As I’ve mentioned quite a few times at this point, I attended the Boston MANIA event held in Danvers last weekend. Since I was running the Fenway Spartan Sprint on Saturday, I could only attend the event on Friday and Sunday, but even with limited time there, I learned SO MUCH. As I was writing up my UXF Burn and SHRED workouts this week, I really struggled to figure out what I wanted to teach based on all of the new formats and exercises that I learned. I had to keep reminding myself that I didn’t have to include everything I learned in my classes this week… as long as I have them written down, I can always look back and quickly be reminded of everything new!


When I arrived at the hotel bright and early on Friday morning (literally early… 7am type of early), I breezed through check in and quickly bumped into Athena and Lauren. Athena and I did not talk to each other before signing up for our courses, yet we managed to sign up for all of the same courses… I guess we are really alike!


Sessions started at 7:30 and ended at 5:30. I can’t go into every detail from every class, but I give you a brief overview of my thoughts of them!

Kettle Weight Drenched

I’m always very intrigued by Kettlebells and KB workouts, so I figured it was a good time to get a better understanding of what KB’s are all about. The class wasn’t exactly what I was hoping it would be, but I did get a couple of moves from it (coincidentally, none of them involved using a KB… whoops!). One thing that I took away from the class was that only 19% of the American population works out, but, when you think about how hard working out can/should be, it’s not really surprising. We joked about how we are the crazy people who think everyone loves to work out, but that’s only because we usually surround ourselves with other crazy people who love to work out 😉 We did get to do a 45 minute KB focused workout (Tabata themed) and my plans of keeping my workouts lighter and low-impact for the day (since I was doing the Spartan race the next day and wanted fresh legs) went right out the window 2 minutes into the workout. What can I say? As soon as I start working out, I always want to give it my all… no wonder why I’ve been so sore this week!


R.I.P.P.E.D.: The One Stop Body Shock

I actually really liked this session. The instructors were SO energetic and got us up and moving really quickly. R.I.P.P.E.D stands for: Resistance (biceps, triceps, shoulders), Intervals (ramped up recovery), Power (Metabolic- chest, back, squats, legs- lots of compound movements), Endurance (Cardio- mostly kickboxing/martial arts related) and Diet and the class is set up to move from one to the next (except for the Diet part- you can access that online). Athena and I talked about how it was a little weird to start out with upper body exercises instead of legs (usually workouts start out with the bigger muscles: legs), but I actually didn’t mind it (I later found out that you don’t have to teach the class in that order… you can mix it up however you want). The class is choreographed to songs for each part of the workout, which has pros and cons: I could see myself getting bored when teaching it because you teach the same type of routines each week, but I can see how members would love it since they generally like consistency and like to know what’s coming next. I got lots of good moves from this class and had a blast jumping around. I think I would like to get a certification in R.I.P.P.E.D., but not to necessarily teach it every week because I think I’d get burned out, but to have it as another option/format to teach.


Sport Conditioning Goes Group!-

Sadly, I was not very impressed with this session. The instructor made it seem like we would be up and moving around a lot, but that didn’t prove to be the case. He showed us a video of the classes he has designed and I was hoping to learn more about that so I could take bits and pieces to add to my classes. We did do a few good core exercises (standing on a BOSU, hold a stability ball and have a partner push the stability ball around, thus causing you to tighten up your core in order to stay on the BOSU… and a neat stability ball roll out combination), but other than that I didn’t get many “take aways”.

Best of Boot Camp 2013-

This class was taught by Mindy Mylrea and after Athena told me how awesome Mindy was, I couldn’t wait for the session to begin. As soon as we walked in and Mindy got her mic on, I knew Athena was right- I was going to love Mindy. She was this little, petite lady with enough energy to fill the entire {big} room. I learned a lot about how boot camps should be set up (circuit style- no more than 60 seconds at each station, use numbers to identify the stations, use picture signs so people know what they should do and don’t have to ask you a million times) AND I was pretty much obsessed with each station that she had us do. In between stations, she had us work with partners for all sorts of various body weight exercises. I cannot wait (side note- when I re-read this post, I realized I wrote out “weight” instead of “wait”. #fitnessinstructorproblems) to do the same exact stations in my SHRED class in the next few weeks…if people thought I was crazy before, they haven’t seen anything yet 😉


Myofascial Compression Techniques: Trigger Point Performance Therapy

I originally signed up for Cardiopump Fusion, but by 4pm, after having taught Wednesday and a double Thursday and working out in all the other classes, I was absolutely beat and decided it was better to skip out on more cardio. There was a lot of scientific/muscle type of talk that mostly went over my head, but I thought the class was really interesting (and I kind of developed a crush on the instructor… whoops!). A few summers ago I had to go to physical therapy for a knee injury and I remember finding the whole background behind why injuries happen and what affects what to be SO interesting. Here are some of the most interesting points I took away:

  • It’s important to stay hydrated: when you’re dehydrated, your body starts to grow together (internally… I think he dumbed the process down for us when explaining it…) and adhesions start. Hence why we tend to be “achy” and sore when we first wake up. Ever notice that before? And then do you notice how everything loosens up once you start moving and drinking water? That’s because you’re getting hydrated again!
  • Most of our stress lies in our shoulders, but the tension lies in our legs/Achilles. Removing tension there will help relax your shoulders.
  • You should always foam roll before you workout: it acts like a warm up in that it helps to get the blood flowing
  • Hamstrings are stabilizers and in order to loosen up tight hamstrings, you need to release the quad.
  • Fascia is connected tissue throughout the body and it wraps around everything. Muscle is inseparable from fascia. Fascia responds to everything and adapts to help us do what we want to do (running, lifting, squatting, etc.). When we are seated or sedentary for a long time, our fascia adapts to that, so when we start to workout (after not doing it for a while), we are generally not prepared (because we are used to being sedentary) and therefore get injured.

Phew! How’s that?? We used these fun toys and worked through our entire right side of the body and wow could I feel a difference between my left and right side after that. It was incredible! If only I had someone to walk me through that painful, painful process every day… I’d feel amazing!


I was going to recap Sunday’s classes in this post, too, but this post is getting quite lengthy so I’ll save those for next week as part of my “This Week” post.

I think you can tell, though, that MANIA was quite the awesome event… especially for fitness enthusiasts like myself! I was in heaven being surrounded by so many passionate instructors- it really made me want to be a better instructor and I felt myself using a lot of what I learned this week. And not just with the new exercises I taught, but HOW I taught them. I have a long way to go to be the instructor I know I can and want to be, but I am getting there! Already looking forward to next year 🙂

Questions for you: Instructor friends- have you ever been to a fitness conference like MANIA before? Anyone ever been to a R.I.P.P.E.D. class?

Weekly Workouts: Outdoor Boot Camp

Hey there! Phew! What a weekend 🙂 I had my “housewarming” party on Saturday and it was an absolute blast! I’m very thankful for all of my friends and family who came.

Let’s talk workouts, though. Last week was an awesome week of workouts! I had my full teaching schedule (UXF Burn, SHRED and 2 Kickboxing classes) and got in some good workouts on my own, too.

Last Week’s Workouts

  • Monday- I worked from home on Monday so I was able to start my workout earlier than normal (always a nice treat!). I went for a 3.5 mile run and then went to the East Boston YMCA and did an upper body superset workout. I picked two variations of exercises for the following muscle groups: biceps, triceps, back, shoulders and chest. I did 15 reps and 3 rounds of each superset before moving on to the next. It was a great workout!


  • Tuesday- I had errands to run after work so I got up early and did an at-home, no equipment cardio and core workout that I shared with you here. It wasn’t anything crazy hard, but it was perfect for what I wanted.

No weights, no problem workout

  • Wednesday- I did 22 minutes on the elliptical before teaching UXF Burn (22 because I didn’t have time to do any more!). The UXF Burn workout was hard, but I loved all the moves I chose!
  • Thursday- I taught the same Tabata workout in my SHRED class as I did the week before when I subbed Kate’s class. And again, it left me incredibly sore! Love that. It’s funny, though, because when I teach Tabata I think everyone hates it and is bored (it’s a lot of repetition), but after class I had multiple people tell me how much they enjoyed it. Weird. After SHRED I amped up my cardio and taught Cardio Kickboxing.
  • Friday- I rested 🙂 Well, I rested in terms of not working out, but I was very busy party-prepping!
  • Saturday- I taught kickboxing at the Oak Square YMCA. Athena came, which is always a fun treat!
  • Sunday- Athena sent out an invite to some gym friends seeing if anyone wanted to go to a free, outdoor boot camp sponsored by City Sports. Obviously, I was all about that, as were a few other gym friends, so we did that yesterday morning. There was a great crowd and the instructor was hilarious. We ran about 3/4-1 mile to a park and from there, we did a circuit style workout consisting of a minute at each station with a cardio burst between stations. We did lunges with a bicep curl using bands, push ups, squats and “anything abs” (a core station where we could pick whatever core exercise we wanted). It wasn’t as hard as I was expecting, but it was still really fun to try something new and workout with friends (and not be the instructor). I contemplated buying new sneakers at City Sports after, but I was good and restrained.

IMG_5325 IMG_5324 IMG_5323

This Week’s Workouts

  • Monday- My plan is to rest today besides my normal walking commute. Since last week was heavy on the workout front, and I am a little sore, I feel like I should take it easy. I may try to video some workouts for a fun post I have planned 🙂
  • Tuesday- I’ll probably run after work and do another strength workout at the EB YMCA.
  • Wednesday- Cardio and then teaching UXF Burn.
  • Thursday- SHRED and Kickboxing
  • Friday- I’m not sure. Since I rested today, I may be up for a workout. We’ll see how it goes.
  • Saturday- I’m not teaching, so my thought is I’ll get up and go to BodyPump at the Wellington BSC.
  • Sunday- Not sure! If I rest again on Friday, I’ll probably be antsy for something on Sunday. My weekend is pretty open so I’ve got loads of time to workout!

Make this week awesome, friends!

Questions for you: Do you like outdoor boot camps? What was your favorite workout last week?

Weekly Workouts

Holy Moly! Monday, already?! I had an incredibly busy weekend, but let me tell you was it fun! Before I get to recapping, let’s focus on workouts and getting back on track (even though I am almost positive that today will be a rest day since yesterday was an intense day of workouts!).

Last Week’s Workouts

  • Monday- I ran 4.63 miles after I finished work and then spent about 30 minutes doing all sorts of different strength and core work using a band. So fun!


  • Tuesday- Went to a boot camp class with my favorite instructor. If you think I am tough, you should go to one of her classes. Killer. I love it.


  • Wednesday- I was pretty sore, so I just did 10 minutes on the elliptical and then taught UXF and did most of the workout with them.


  • Thursday- Double time! I taught a stations workout in SHRED and then kickboxing.
  • Friday- Rest, besides a 30 minute walk around Somerville, ending at the liquor store to get some wine. Definitely not a coincidence, but it sure was great motivation!


  • Saturday- Taught Kickboxing at the Y, which included lots of burpees 😉


  • Sunday- Wellness by the Water Retreat, which included 30 minutes of Boot Camp, Tai Chi, Barre (OMG hardest Barre class I’ve been to) and Pilates and then also a CrossFit WOD (workout of the day) and yoga. Needless to say, it was a tiring, but FUN, day!


This Week’s Workouts

  • Monday- Likely a rest day besides my normal walking commute.
  • Tuesday- Maybe another rest day since I have a photo shoot after work!
  • Wednesday- I was invited to go to a Women’s Health event at Exhale, so I am doing a Core Fusion Cardio class in the morning and then teaching UXF after work.
  • Thursday- Double time! SHRED & Kickboxing
  • Friday- Maybe a Deck of Cards workout? Running? Circuits?
  • Saturday- Teaching Kicboxing at the YMCA
  • Sunday- I’ll be in Maine for Memorial Day weekend so I will probably get my mom to do something with me 🙂

You tell me! What was your hardest workout this past week? Most fun? Anything you’re proud of?

Boot Camp and Supersets

Where did the “warm” weather go?! I guess this is what comes with the spring season.

How about a little workout for you? I did this in my total body conditioning class last week and it was a good one. The workout starts with a boot camp style and moves to a supersets & cardio style at the end, which is a nice way to break up the class if you ask me!

Boot Camp and Super Set

Obviously this can be modified up or down as you wish. Here are some possible modifications:

1. Don’t use a weight for the squat w/OH extension OR use a heavier weight

2. Step forward into a squat rather than jumping OR jump higher/further

3. Push-ups can be done on your knees OR try lifting a leg

etc., etc. If you’re looking for a more specific modification, please shoot me an email ( or leave a note in the comments section! YouTube is also a great resource to get visuals for the moves (froggers or bunny hops, for instance).

For the supersets, try challenging yourself with the weights! If you usually curl 5’s or 8’s, try going to 8’s or 10’s or 12’s… It might feel tough at first, but you’ll be amazed how quickly your muscles grow stronger when you increase the weight you’re using (I promise, you don’t get bulky! But you will get more tone and definition:) )

Let me know if you try this!

Questions for you: Do you like circuit style workouts or do you prefer workouts where you don’t have to repeat anything? I know I do circuits often, but they aren’t my favorite! They are great for causing muscle fatigue, though:)