Wednesday Workout: 3 Set Lower Body Burnout

Good morning! I hope you’re having a good week. Today I am sharing a workout I threw together on Monday that left me VERY sore yesterday. I started with a 10 minute treadmill run at a moderately fast pace and then headed downstairs to the weight room to complete this 3 set lower body focused workout.

When doing this, please think about choosing weights that are challenging (last couple of reps should be hard!), but don’t compromise your form.

3 Set Lower Body Burnout

Explanations:

  • Deadlifts– these can be trap bar deadlifts, Romanian deadlifts, or whatever else you would like to do. They’re a single exercise set so that you can lift heavy and have enough recovery between rounds/sets.
  • Step ups- choose a step height that’s challenging, yet doesn’t make you feel like you need to use momentum to get up. Also, I held 15lb Kettlebells in each hand, which wasn’t quite heavy enough, but it still did the trick.
  • Pushups- If you’re struggling with doing proper chest to ground pushups on your toes, try doing incline ones, maybe on the step you used for the step ups or even against a wall.
  • Lunge -> SLDL (single leg deadlift)- Hold a KB like you would for a goblet squat and then step your right leg back into a lunge. As you come back through center, engage your core and hinge forward at the hips coming into a single leg deadlift and changing your grip on the KB and hold it from the top of the handle and letting it hang towards the ground. As you lift back up to center, do a KB clean and step back into the lunge with a KB goblet grip. While doing this, focus on moving slow rather than rushing through the movements. Repeat on the opposite side.

The last move is definitely what killed me- I used a 25lb KB and wowzers were my hammies screaming at me yesterday!

This workout should take you about 40 minutes to complete if you do the 10 minute treadmill run- just letting you know in case you’re like me and generally on a time limit at the gym. As always, let me know if you try it!

Questions for you: When’s the last time you felt really sore after a workout?

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Weekending: Pizza, Patriots, Puppies & Babies

Good morning! I’m not sure how many of you will be checking in today as it’s a holiday and it seems as though everyone I’ve talked to has today off… except me 😦 I am WFH so I guess it’s not so bad. Did you guys have a good weekend? We did, although we didn’t get to spend much time together because of separate plans/obligations. Let’s recap!

Friday

I WFH on Friday because I had to go in the office on Monday. It was actually so nice to be home on Friday- I hadn’t slept well all week because of my cold so it was great to sleep in a bit and stay in my jammies all morning! It was my rest day so I decided to do some active rest by taking my errands on foot. I had to go to the library to pick up our new book club book- has anyone read this?

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That night, RM and I went to meet up with his family at Charcoal Guido’s for a going away dinner for his sister. She moved down to Atlanta on Saturday to be with her boyfriend. The food and company were both great, but the Nutella pizza at the end kind of stole the show.

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We weren’t ready to go home after the dinner so I suggested swinging by Branch Line for another drink. It was crazy how busy it was there for 9:45pm! I always like seeing that with new restaurants.

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Saturday

On Saturday, I headed out in the rain to go teach. The January crowds are back and I love it! My class worked so hard- it was awesome.

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I was supposed to go visit my friends Christy and Kia since they both had baby girls a few weeks ago, but the weather was apparently bad up there so I ended up postponing it. With a free day ahead of me I decided treat myself to a Starbucks Chai Tea Latte (thanks for the gift card, Dana!!) and headed into the city to start our registry at Macy’s. I’d love to say that went great, but after an hour I walked out with a mere 5 things on it. Oops!

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Once I reached my limit of shopping, I headed to my sister’s apartment to hang with her and some of her friends and to watch the game. Her friend brought the cutest puppy ever and for some reason he loved me so I got lots of puppy snuggles!

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I had a blast hanging out with her and her friends- I hadn’t seen any of them in forever! the food was also great. I made some delicious pizza, there were meatballs, healthy buffalo chicken, veggies, pigs in a blanket, cheese puff pastries… I never do things for the game so I totally loved getting to check out what people do for “game day food”.

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Sunday

We got up and I offered to make us- you guessed it- pancakes! These were probably my best yet, so I wish I would’ve measured things so I could recreate them!

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After breakfast I hit the road to visit Christy and then Kia. I didn’t get any photos because I was busy snuggling the cutest little baby girls! It was nice to hang out with each of them for a bit- very relaxing!

Once I got back home I went food shopping and then we thought about going out to have a drink and catch up since we didn’t get to spend any of the weekend together, but we opted to stay in the house which actually worked out well because we were able to get lots of food prep done: sweet potatoes & brussels sprouts, kale, spicy broccoli and beans. I had taken a meatloaf out of the freezer earlier in the day so dinner was easy to throw together.

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This week is a busy week due to a few social engagements after work, so I’m happy we were able to get ahead of meal prep yesterday!

Questions for you: Did you watch the Patriots game? Do you have a favorite “game day” food to have at parties or bring to parties? What was the best part of your weekend? How is your week looking? Anything fun planned?

Wednesday Workout: 2 Part (or partner) Stations Workout

Good morning! These days I don’t tend to share workouts that I’ve taught, mostly because I teach a Burn class with a standard format that isn’t supposed to change week to week so that would get pretty boring 😉 A few months ago, I subbed for Athena’s 6am Total Body class and I was reminded of how fun it is to create different workouts and formats every week. There are so many options between how you want to set up the class, what equipment you want to use, etc. Totally loved it!

I wanted to share this workout with you because there are two ways you can complete it: solo or with a partner. I had the class partner up so that each partner did both moves at each station, but you could certainly do it on your own if you didn’t have a partner or workout buddy handy. You’ll be at each station for two minutes- 1 minute per move. Halfway through the circuit and at the end of the circuit you’ll complete a lovely little cardio blast- doesn’t get much better than that!

2 part or partner stations workout

Here are some explanations and/or demos of the exercises:

  1. TRX Row/Burpees– For the rows, you can make them easier by putting your feet closer to your body so that you’re at less of an angle. To make it harder, walk your feet out further away from you. Engage your core and pull your elbows back and squeeze your shoulder blades together. Remember to keep your shoulders pulled down away from your ears. Check out this video for a TRX row demo. For the burpees- you can either jump your feet back, walk them back, drop your chest to the ground, do a pushup… whatever version of the burpee you want to do- rock it!
  2. KB Goblet Squat/Jump squats- Here’s a video for Goblet Squats. For the jump squats, you can either go for depth and make sure to touch your hands to the ground each time or you can go for speed and do rapid fire baby jumps.
  3. Squat hold/Battle ropes- If you have a partner, one partner will get into a squat hold while holding the rope, acting as the anchor. Make sure to brace your core and position because it gets challenging to hold this as your partner does the ropes. Check out this video where I demo the battle ropes. If you don’t have a partner hopefully you have access to the standard rope setup!
  4. Dynamax ball Russian twists/cross body mountain climbers-With a Dynamax ball you’ll perform the standard Russian twist exercise (in a seated position, with your feet either in the air and bent at 90* or on the ground and moving a weight/ball from one side of your body to the next). For the mountain climbers, instead of bringing your knees straight forward to your chest, you’ll bring your right knee to your left elbow and your left knee to your right elbow. Go as fast or slow as you want/need.
  5. Forward lunge & twist/jumping lunges– As you step forward into a lunge on your right leg, lift your arms and extend a weight out in front of you. In your low position of the lunge, twist through your core and move the weight over to the right over your right knee. Repeat on the left & alternate right & left for the 60 seconds. Jumping lunges should be pretty standard 😉
  6. Push-up w/frogger stamp/in & out plank jumps- Perform a  push-up (either on your knees or toes) and then jump your feet up to the outsides of your hands and then back to your high plank/push-up position. If you’re doing the push-ups on your knees, just drop down to your knees after you jump back. For the in & out plank jumps you’ll start in a high plank position (shoulders, elbows & wrists in line, neutral spine, shoulders pulled on your back, core engaged) and jump your feet straight up to your hands (not to the outsides like the first exercise) and then jump back into a high plank and jump your feet out like you would for a plank jack. repeat.
  7. Stability ball pass/Skier jumps– For the first move, check out this video– make sure you’re keeping your core tight and your back flat against the ground. If this is too hard, ditch the ball and either keep your legs bent, lower them not so far or do one leg at a time. This video demos the ski jumps well.
  8. Side lunge w/center press/TRX Push-ups- For the side lunge/center press, you’re going to hold a weight in both hands at chest height. You’ll step out to the right and do a side lunge (sitting your butt way back, keeping your knee in line with your toes on the lunging leg and keeping the other leg straight) and then when you come through center, press the weight overhead. Repeat to the other side. TRX push-ups are almost the opposite of the rows discussed earlier, except instead of pulling your weight up towards the straps, you’ll be pushing your weight away from the straps as you extend. Again, the closer your feet are to you, the easier it is; stepping your feet back away from you & making your body more parallel to the ground will make it harder

I think that should do it! I hope you give this a shot- everyone seemed to like it and my sister said she was a little sore the next day!

Questions for you: Do you  like partner workouts? Do you like using TRX straps or battle ropes?

Weekending: Friendsgiving, SoulCycle, sweetgreens & Taco Night

Good morning! Well, here we are- Thanksgiving is on THURSDAY. Can you believe it?! I have Wednesday-Friday off so last night barely felt like a Sunday night knowing I only had 2 days of work before an extra long weekend 🙂 We had a really great weekend, so let’s get to recapping it!

Friday

I went food shopping on my way home after work on Friday- how exciting, right?! Once I got home and unpacked, RM and I enjoyed a glass of wine while catching up and throwing around options for dinner. We ended up walking to Bertucci’s, but sadly our meal was just OK- the pizza was just not nearly as good as I remembered it being. I hate that!

Saturday

We had a lazy start to our Saturday until it was time for me to go teach at the Y. It was a really fun class and for some reason my energy was off the charts so I hope I didn’t scare any new members away 😉

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After teaching, I showered and headed to Queen Bee Nails to get my nails done. I had a free manicure coupon and decided to upgrade and get a shellac since I wanted nice nails for Friendsgiving, Thanksgiving and dress shopping. I thought this color was very festive for this time of year.

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Once I got home, I got busy in the kitchen. I agreed to bring Brussels sprouts, sweet potatoes and homemade cranberry sauce so I had lots of things to make! For the Brussels sprouts I just sautéed them in EVOO and added salt, pepper and 1 clove of chopped garlic. I also added pancetta which adds a great salty & crunchy combination to the dish. Athena left a suggestion on my Five on Friday post for a homemade cranberry sauce, so I checked it out and decided to make it. I loved that it was so easy to throw together! The only things I changed were adding more water, I put all of the orange peels in it and added a little bit of regular and coconut sugar because it was still a bit too tart for my liking (I think I had more cranberries than her recipe called for). It was super tasty!

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In the early afternoon, RM and I got gussied up and headed into the South End to meet up with all of my friends.

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Saturday night out is always more fun with leather pants on 😉

My friend Amy’s brother has an incredible pent house apartment above Boston Chops and graciously let us host our gathering there (he plays hockey in Canada so he wasn’t there anyway).

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We had a blast chatting and drinking wine and eating. The food was incredible- everyone did a really great job with the dishes they were assigned!

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I feel so blessed to have so many wonderful friends in my life- these ladies are the best of the best!

Sunday

Needless to say, I woke up with a bit of a wine headache on Sunday so I had breakfast and then snuggled up on the couch with our new book club book for a while before I went to spin.

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Has anyone read this? I’m only about 100 pages in, but I’m enjoying it so far!

SoulCycle often sends out emails to take complimentary classes, I assume to help boost numbers for some of their lower attendance classes, but generally I can’t take part in them because they’re usually on really off times. This time, though, they had a Sunday 4pm class on the list, but when I called it was already full so they let me take the 11:45am class instead, which actually worked out better. I felt bad for the people next to me as I likely sweat out pure wine 😉 The class was really fun and the instructor, Jeff, had lots of energy! Per usual, I didn’t think the class itself was that hard- I don’t know what it is about the classes there, but I never think they are as hard as they are at other studios. Where I think they do step it up is the party atmosphere, which is what makes the classes so fun!

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After class I went next door to have lunch at sweet green- a little Sunday treat 🙂

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I did a make your own salad with kale, cucumber, broccoli, carrots and spicy quinoa and a side of their butternut squash which was not great- it was so thin and watery! The salad was fantastic, though.

When I got home, RM was snuggled up watching American Sniper so I decided to join him. It was a cold, rainy afternoon so it was a perfect thing to do! After the movie we went to Whole Foods to pick up a few additional staples for the week and for our taco dinner. We had a piece of steak in the freezer so RM took it out and suggested we slice it and put it in tacos. He’s full of good ideas sometimes 😉 To go along with it, I made a super easy salsa (red pepper, tomato, red onion, pineapple, lime juice- everything chopped really small and then throw half of it into a food processor to give it more of a salsa consistency.

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I also made a avocado “sauce” made up of all sorts of random things we had lying around (I didn’t have sour cream or greek yogurt so I had to get creative): 1/2 avocado, 1 scoop of hummus, 1 scoop of goat cheese, salt, pepper, garlic powder, red pepper flakes, ~2 tbsp. EVOO and 1/8-1/4 cup of vegetable broth. Surprisingly, it came out great and was perfect to top the steak with.

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RM cooked the steak in butter and with salt and pepper- so delicious!

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It was a such a yummy Sunday night dinner! We both were pleasantly surprised by how well everything came together- even with using Ezekiel wraps instead of corn tortillas.

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YUM!

And that does it for us- All in all it was a great weekend filled with good food, great friends, fun exercise and lots of relaxation!

Questions for you: What was the best part of your weekend? What did you do? Did you get in any good workouts? Hang out with friends? What are you making for Thanksgiving?

Wednesday Workout: Thanksgiving Workouts & Events To Try/Checkout

Good morning! I have a great Dynamax workout I want to share with you, but since Thanksgiving is just about a week away, today I want to provide you with some workouts and workout events happening in and around the Boston area in case you want to plan ahead and schedule your Tday workout. I love working out on Thanksgiving, not because I want to “earn my turkey” (although I used to have that mindset), but because I love my body and am thankful for all it can do for me. I feel my best when I eat well and move well, so it make sense that I’d want to do both of those on Thanksgiving 🙂

If you’re looking to do your own workout on Thanksgiving, I posted these workouts over the past couple of years:

*Turkey-Day 20 Minute AMRAP Workout

Turkey day 20 minute AMRAP workout
*The “I’m Thankful” Workout

I'm thankful workout

If you’re looking for classes or events to go to in the area, check these out:

  • The Handle Bar:
    75-Minute Endurance Ride, 8:30 am (At South Boston, Fenway and Harvard Square)- Ride with Rachel, Alexa or Allie at one of our three studios for a 75-minute ride and give thanks to your hard earned sweat. You can sign up on their Schedule Page
  • Recycle Studio has a bunch of classes between Wed-Sun- full list is here, but here are some that my friends teach:
    11/25- 6-7pm- “Pre stuff reboot buff ride” with Lindsay (hour long class!)
    11/26- 8-8:45am- “Reboot Bird Ride” with Alice, 10-11am with Lindsay
    11/27- 10:30-11:30 “Reboot Bird Ride” with Lindsay.
  • The Oak Square YMCA has a whole bunch of classes- if that’s not your gym, but you’re interested in trying one out, let me know 🙂
    Thursday, November 26
    8:30-10a Group Cycle with Kelly (60 minute option)
    8-9 Barre with Carolyn
    9-10a Zumba with Lindsay
    Friday, November 27
    8-9a Total Body with Athena
    9-10a Yoga with Ben
    9-10a Group Cycle with Emily
    10-11a Zumba with Michelle
  • Thanksgiving Day at 7:45am-8:45 for F.I.T. BootCamp at Glen Meadow Park, Lynnfield MA (weather pending!)
    ***ALL MONEY WILL BE DONATED TO MY BROTHERS TABLE, Lynn MA***
    For only $5 you can come workout, feel good and know that you’re helping others:) Bring water & towel or mat too, it gets messy! Please contact Dina (dmetrano@gmail.com) to register.

I know there are lots more, but here’s a brief roundup of some of them 🙂

Whether you decide to workout or not, I hope you make that decision as an entirely separate thing from food and your Thanksgiving Dinner. Exercising just to try and eliminate guilt as a result of a meal is not worth it. Exercise because you love it or because you know all the benefits it provides. Eat because you love it and because it tastes good and fuels you. Don’t mix the two.

For me, I’ll likely workout because I love to move and I love to start the day with a sweat. For the meal, I like to indulge on things I may not eat year-round (all the desserts, stuffing, mashed potatoes of all varietals, etc.), but I try to do it mindfully because I HATE being overly full and feeling sick from it! I’d rather eat enough to feel satisfied and then go back for more a few hours later 😉

Questions for you: Do you have a Thanksgiving workout planned? Any that you want to share with other readers?