Wednesday Workout: Stair Cardio Blast & Total Body Circuits

Hi there! I wanted to share a workout with you that I did last week. It left me incredibly sweaty, and even though it was likely due in part to the weather, I still think a lot of it was a result of the workout, which is a good enough reason to share, amiright?!

Even though I have some outdoor workouts on the blog, sometimes I really have to mentally force myself to do something other than just run. I don’t know what it is, but mentally I feel like that’s a better workout, although I really know steady-state cardio isn’t the best bang for your buck when it comes to high calorie burn both during and after your workout. But, that’s a whole post for another day! Today, let’s focus on the fact that I got outside and did a workout other than just running- a victory in and of itself!

I’ve always wanted to utilize the stairs and turf fields at the soccer fields near my house, so it was a perfect time to do that. These fields are awesome- they’ve got a baseball field and soccer field and a kiddie soccer area and playground area and everything is brand new! They’re usually packed at night with soccer leagues, but during the day it was just me and a few other random people, which was great because I was able to do my workout in privacy (for the most part).

What you’ll do for this workout (after your warm up) is do 4 sets of stair runs, all with 10 jumping jacks when you reach the top. If stairs don’t do it for you or aren’t available to you, feel free to do 4 cardio exercises for 30-45 seconds each (think: high knees, burpees, jumping jacks, jump squats, butt kicks, skaters, etc.). When the first stair set is complete, you’ll do the first bodyweight circuit 4 times through. Repeat the stairs and then do the next bodyweight circuit 4 times through. If you’re feeling good- go ahead and do the stairs for a 3rd time!
Continue reading

Advertisements

Wednesday Workout: San Francisco Total Body Stair Workout

Good morning! I’m popping in quickly today with a fun workout my friend Amanda and I did when we were vacationing in San Francisco last weekend. I have so much to recap for you from my trip, but this week has turned into a crazy week between having a flat tire to deal with, laundry/unpacking and so much work at work, so those recaps will have to wait until things slow down a bit.

I’ve shared before how I stay healthy while on the road, so it shouldn’t be surprised that I worked out while on vacation. I think it’s such a great way to see a city, give you energy for the day and help you stay a little bit on track. I never workout to my normal intensity and if something comes up and I don’t get to my workout, I don’t stress about it, but for me, getting in a little sweat sesh while on vacation just helps set the tone for my day because it’s something I love to do.

Luckily, my friend Amanda enjoys being active, too, so she was totally game for a workout. Because of the insane hills and a little jetlag, I opted for something other than a traditional run. We ended up at a park and when I saw the most insane set of stairs, I knew exactly what we would do: run them! We ran up, did some core/upper body/lower body exercises, then went back down. We did this 10 times and our legs were shaking by the end. And the next day? I felt like I had been walking on the highest of high heels for 4 days straight- our calves were SO incredibly sore. I’ve never felt anything like it, but can only attribute it to running up the stairs on the balls of my feet and then walking around, up and down all the hills, etc.

San Francisco Total Body Stair Workout

To change it up, Amanda and I alternated from running every step to running every other step. By the end, though, we definitely were moving a lot slower up the stairs. I mean, look at these things:

SF Stairs 2

But, the view at the top is totally worth it, right?

SF stairs

I felt so thankful for the beautiful weather, a friend who was interested in working out and soaking it up with me, and for sweating out my hangover 😉

SF Stairs 3

Of course, this workout can be done even if you aren’t in San Francisco with crazy good views, it’s just more fun when you are 🙂

Questions for you: Do you workout while on vacation? Do you like to workout outside? Do you run stairs?

Catching up {Workouts and Life}

As I read other healthy living blogs, I’m happy to see that I’m not the only one feeling like there just isn’t enough time in the day or week to accomplish everything on my to-do list. Sometimes blogging just has to take a back seat, and even though I sometimes feel guilty about it or stressed to get posts written, realizing it’s OK to take a break is so refreshing. Sarah wrote a post earlier this week that hit me hard. It was as if I was writing it myself! I’m finding myself in a recent job change, increasing love for fitness and teaching and no longer just being on my own. Being in a serious relationship and moving to that “we” thing is awesome, but it’s also a big change for someone who hasn’t had that in a longggg time. My normal blogging time and teaching time and “Monique” time is just not the same as it used to be and I wouldn’t change that for the world. As we grow up, our priorities change, right? It’s such an exciting time, but sometimes it can be a little stressful! Sarah’s post was a great reminder to not let myself get stressed out over these types of changes, but to embrace them and live life. Blogging will always be here, but random nights with the bf or friends of family won’t- it’s more important to DO those things, rather than sit at home, writing a post because it’ll “screw up my schedule” if I don’t.

And, with that, let’s catch up on some stuff!

Workouts- Last week

Last week was my last week teaching my Thursday night double, which was totally bittersweet! On top of that, RM and I headed to Chicago with some friends so my weekend workouts were a bit different than usual. Overall, though, it was a great week of workouts. We did SO MUCH WALKING when in Chicago. Our hotel was about a mile from all the action (just in the wrong part of the city), so getting to and from anywhere was at least a 2 mile walk.

    • Monday- After work, I ran 3.5 miles and then did the workout listed at the bottom of this workout post. I kinda died a little…

IMG_8165

    • Tuesday- I went to a BodyPump during work since I had a hair appointment after work. What is it about BodyPump that gets me every time?!
    • Wednesday- I ran 3.5 miles on the treadmill before teaching (and doing most of) UXF Burn. I’m not sure what we did to get so dirty?

IMG_8170

    • Thursday- Last double:( In SHRED, we did 3 rounds of stations and then we did some across the floor cardio and partner ab stuff. We had a big group and everyone seemed to enjoy it! Kickboxing had it’s biggest crowd to date and we worked super hard!

IMG_8176

    • Friday- Nothing. We had an early flight so there was definitely no morning workout for me! We did do some walking, though.
    • Saturday- I got up and ran 4 miles, although I think my mapmyrun GPS wasn’t working because it was saying I was running all sub 8 minute miles… highly doubt that! After, I did some core work at the gym and then RM wanted to go for a walk so we went on about a 45 minute loop- we were walking so fast!

IMG_8228

IMG_8225 IMG_8230

    • Sunday- We had all intentions of going to the gym at the spa before our massages, but a late lunch got in the way of that. I did walk for about an hour in the morning while getting breakfast and Architecture tour tickets.

Catching Up- Life

The past couple of weeks have been so busy!! I feel like I’m on auto-pilot going from one thing to the next. Anyone else feel this way? I have a full recap of Chicago coming soon, but besides that, here are some things going on:

  • My garden is growing so much! Over the past couple of weeks I have picked kale and green beans, and both taste so fresh!

IMG_8167 IMG_8268 IMG_8269

  • I recently started reading The One and Only by Emily Griffin for a book club that my college friends and I started. It’s really just an excuse to get together to drink wine, but we decided to throw a book in the mix, too!

IMG_8261

  • I had to buy new Tom’s when walking around in Chicago and I’m actually happy about it because I’ve been meaning to buy a new pair for a while now. Love this blue!

IMG_8259

  • I’m heading to the Cape this weekend with RM and his brother, sister-in-law and their 1 year old son. I think the weather is supposed to be crappy… why can’t it be nice when I have time to go to the beach?!
  • My parents are coming next weekend for my mom’s birthday- any good meal suggestions?

Questions for you: When’s the last time you skipped workout for sleep? Have you had any garden-fresh veggies this summer? Do you read Emily Griffin books? Are you in a book club?

Wednesday Workout: Run the stairs!

As I mentioned a little while ago, this summer I’m trying to take my workouts outside. Whether it’s just a run or a walk or a boot camp, it’s just a nice change of scenery to be outside rather than in a stuffy gym. On top of that, there are so many things that can keep your mind occupied while working out, which decreased the chances of becoming bored and quitting early 😉

These are some of my favorite parts of outdoor workouts:

  • People watching is awesome
  • You can work on your tan
  • Forces you to get creative
  • Fresh air
  • Pretty scenery
  • Hills and stairs help with training

Last week, the weather was so hot and humid that my plans for a long (for me) run went out the window shortly into the run. I did manage to do 3 miles, but they weren’t pretty. Since I still had some gas in the tank and was in a mood to push myself, I went to a nearby park and used various pieces of equipment (stairs and benches) there to help give me a butt kicking finisher workout! Note: if you don’t want to run first, I’d do the bootcamp part of the workout 3 or 4 times through for a full body workout.

IMG_8106

After doing 10 sets of these:

IMG_8105

(they’re steeper than they look!)

I felt like this:

IMG_8107

#sweatybeastmode

I’ve thought of some other creative ways to incorporate the stairs into my workout, so that makes me excited to get out there again. I did this on Monday:

  • 1 stair run, 10 burpees
  • 2 stair runs, 9 burpees
  • 3 stair runs, 8 burpees
  • etc. until you do 10 stair runs, but instead of doing 1 burpee, do 10 😉

So, the moral of this post is: go find a set of stairs and make them your b*tch! (ok, that was aggressive, but you know what I mean 😉 ).

Questions for you: Does anyone else get motivation to workout when they’re introduced to something new or figure out something new?? What’s your favorite outdoor piece of equipment?