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Tag Archives: Cardio

Friday Ants in my Pants

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It’s Friday the 13th!

Any spooky plans on the agenda today??  None for me, however, my day is off to a great start, and I just know that it is going to continue to be great.

 

Breakfast

I started out the morning with a delicious and creamy bowl of overnight oats topped with some blueberries and peanut butter.  Yum in the tum.

Workout

I then completed a super sweaty, intense, high intensity elliptical circuit that completely beats the boredom that can occur while using a cardio machine…trust me, I’ve been there.

And now, I am headed  to work….with the Friday ants in my pants.  I swear that it is almost impossible to sit still and focus for me on Fridays…don’t tell my boss that!!  I am so excited for AFTER work, because I have a special surprise date night planned for Brian and I.  He has no idea what I have up my sleeves!! 🙂

What are your Friday night plans??

 

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Bounce the Ball Workout

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I was so excited when last night I realized that the peanut butter jar was practically empty….

because that meant that it was time for a batch of overnight oats in a jar.  Seriously, this little breakfast of champions is to die for (if you love nut butter and oats of course!) and will never get old for me.

This morning, I was off to an early start to teach my cardio intervals class.  I always try to switch up the routine to keep things interesting.  This week, we incorporated the beloved EXERCISE BALL.  I feel like so many people have an exercise ball, but they never use this fun and versatile piece of equipment.  

Today’s exercise uses the exercise ball in every single move.  It is fun, effective, and I promise that you will be sweating within the first 8 minutes 😉

Of Possible Interest:

Pre-Cardio Interval Snack

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Good Morning!

Today is day number 2 on the job, and I am really looking forward to it.  The hotel offers complimentary breakfast to our guests, and one of my supervisors suggested that I eat breakfast there today.  It should be fun!  At least I know they have fruit, oatmeal, and coffee.

Before heading to the gym this morning, I made myself a pre-workout snack to tide me over until my hotel breakfast.

It was like a mini smoothie!  In the mix was: 1/3 frozen banana, 1/2 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt, 1/2 cup almond coconut unsweetened milk, 2 tsp peanut butter, stevia, and vanilla extract.  It was smooth, creamy, and the perfect pre-workout fuel.

Cardio Intervals

Thursday mornings, I teach Cardio Intervals.  I am really enjoying this class because it gets pretty intense and sweaty, and the group I teach is simply amazing!

Here is a look at the super sweaty cardio and strength training workout we did today:

Now, I am off to work!

After work plans:  attend and study Body Pump (it is one of our instructor’s last class!), make a delicious treat to bring into work on Friday…that is the best part of the job, someone to eat all of my treats 😉

Happy Thursday!

I Found My Inspiration

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Last night after Body Pump, I was parched, but I could not find my water bottle anywhere…luckily I have a backup.  When I got in the car to head to the gym to teach this morning, I figured out where I left my bottle…

I would rather be safe than sorry, thank goodness for double water bottles.

We then had an amazingly sweaty workout session.  Seriously, this workout was hard, but it felt good.  It was the kind of hard where you have to talk yourself into finishing, and at the end you are so glad you did.  Literally, I was drenched by the end.

Here is what we did in our second round of Cardio Intervals:

Running Inspiration

As soon as I got home, I switched my top (yeah, I was that sweaty), and headed out for my 7 mile run.  Yes it was the first time this week that I went for a run, but I was feeling good.

The run started out pretty slow.  I decided to go downtown and run through the city, so there was a lot of stopping at stop lights, going up and down streets trying to avoid stop lights, and basically I wasn’t really pushing myself.  At the beginning of the run, I honestly thought to myself

“Just log the miles…”

Then I saw her.  My running inspiration.  She didn’t look over the top fit, she didn’t have amazingly long legs, but she was taking long strides, she looked confidant and like she was enjoying every step that she took.

In that instant, I changed my mindset of “trying to log the miles” into “I want to challenge myself, and enjoy this run!”  My short, quick steps turned into (what felt like) long, luxurious strides.  I sang along with my ipod, looked around the people walking through the city, and the next thing I knew, my run was finished.  I felt great, accomplished, even more sweaty than when I started, and satisfied.

Sometimes it is easy to forget why we do what we do.  No one MADE me go on that run at 8:30 this morning, I wanted to go, so why shouldn’t I enjoy every second of it?  I am so glad that I found my inspiration.

Today’s run:  7 miles with an 8:53 pace.  16 seconds per minute quicker than last time.

After stretching, I then made myself a delicious Pineapple Banana Smoothie, and I drank it as Brian and I layed by the pool 😉

Pineapple Banana Smoothie:

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 banana
  • 3/4 cup frozen pineapple
  • 1/2 cup Almond Breeze unsweetened almond coconut milk
  • 1/2 scoop protein powder
  • 1/4 cup nonfat Chobani plain Greek Yogurt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 packet of stevia
  • ice cubes and water to desired consistency

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in blender and blend until smooth.  Pour into your favorite cup and enjoy!

Nutrition:

Calories:   246.3  Fat:   2.9g  Carbs:   38.6g  Protein:   20.6g

The protein powder and the Greek yogurt give this smoothie a protein punch to aid in muscle recovery after a hard workout.

Brian and I relaxing in the morning sun

I hope you all have a great Thursday in preparation for the long weekend, and basically the first weekend of summer!

Question of the Morning:

  • What was your workout today?

Group Fitness and It Tastes Like a Frappe!!

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I started out this morning teaching a Cardio Intervals group fitness class.

When it comes to creating a group fitness routine, at first, it can seem a bit overwhelming because there are literally endless possibilities of what the class can do.  I find that things work best when I keep the routine simple but effective and think about what I like to achieve while I am in a group fitness class.

What I look for in a group fitness class:

  • An all-inclusive workout, I don’t want to feel that I barely broke a sweat and I need to hop on the elliptical or lift weights after the class…Believe me, I have been there.
  • Fun and motivating atmosphere.  I like to truly feel like a team when I am in a group fitness class, and that we are all working together to complete the same challenge.
  • Guidance, if I am not sure of a move, if I feel a different muscle working than the one that is described to me, or if I have a question I want to feel comfortable asking my instructor a question.

Today’s workout really challenged the participants.  They were sweating by the second round, but we were all able to power through and finish the workout together.  What a great way to start the morning 🙂

Breakfast

While driving home, I decided that I really wanted something cold and creamy…kind of like a frappuccino. But instead of pulling into the nearest coffee chop and paying a million dollars for it, I got creative in the kitchen and made a homemade healthier version.

A couple of years ago, Starbucks had a coconut mocha frappuccino.  I think it was probably my favorite, but of course it was a limited time only flavor…luckily I figured out how to make it myself!

Healthified Coconut Mocha “Frappe” Swap

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup cooled coffee
  • 1/4 unsweetened almond coconut Almond Breeze
  • 1 tsp raw cacao powder
  • 1/2 scoop vanilla protein powder
  • 1 packet of stevia
  • 1/3 frozen banana
  • 4 ice cubes
  • water until it is the desired consistency (you may not need to add any!)
  • 1 Tbsp unsweetened shredded coconut

Directions:

Combine all ingredients in the blender and blend away!  Enjoy  in a cup or a bowl 🙂

Nutrition:

Calories:  159.9  Fat:  5.9g  Carbs:  12.8g  Protein:  16.5g

I thought that it had the perfect amount of coconutty flavor, and the actual shredded pieces of coconut gave it a nice texture.  I will definitely be making this treat again.

I enjoyed my “frappe” along side some egg whites and salsa.

I hope you all have an amazing and productive Thursday!

Of Possible Interest:

 

Fancy Fennel

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Last night, I taught my cycle 45 spinning class and we did this workout:

Warm Up 5 minutes

Sprints 7 min:

  • 4×15 moderate
  • 4×15 sprint
  • 2×30 sprint
  • 45 sec sprint
  • 15 sec recovery

Hills and Jumps 10:

  • 2 min at race pace
  • Hills (30 sec each 5, 6, 7, 8 stand at the top)
  • Hill down (30 sec 8, 7, 6, 5)
  • 1 min Stay at moderate race pace
  • 2 min Jumps 8 up 8 down
  • 1 min Jumps 4 up 4 down

Combination 10.5:

  • 1 min standing run
  • 30 sec sprint
  • 1 min Jumps 4 up 4 down
  • 1 min moderate pace
  • Repeat 2x

Standing:

  • 45 seconds standing
  • 30 seconds seated race pace
  • 15 seconds sprint
  • 60 seconds standing
  • 30 seconds seated
  • 15 seconds sprint
  • Repeat 1x

The one thing I don’t like about teaching classes in the evening, is that I am literally starving by the time I am done and I cannot wait to get home to eat dinner.

I bought a bulb of fennel while I was grocery shopping and had yet to use it.  Last night was the night.  Fennel can be intimidating, but it is really easy to use!

I started out by cutting off the top green part so that I just had a round bulb at the end.  I then cut the bulb into smaller pieces that ended up looking kind of like celery.  Fennel has a very licoricy smell and taste to it when raw.  I would always hear Giada on the food network talk about the “licoricy” smell of fennel, and now I know what she was talking about!

Giada de Laurentiis

I then sprayed a pan with nonstick cooking spray and tossed the Fennel with some spud spice and sauteed it until tender.  To complete my meal I added shrimp to the fennel to cook for a couple of minutes, and prepared quinoa on the side.

The meal took a total of about 25 minutes including prep, and had a slightly “fancy” feel to it!  Brian said this meal was a keeper.

After dinner, Brian and I spent much of the night working on wedding plans, and we will be spending much of today on wedding plans too!  For wedding planning fuel, I made myself a super green smoothie:

  • 3/4 Frozen Banana
  • 1/2 Cup Almond Milk
  • Splash Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Tbsp Honey
  • Pinch Xanthum Gum
  • Large Handful of Spinach

It's not easy being green

I was also able to fit in a quick workout that I saw on Julie’s blog.  And I added in 8 minute abs at the end!

Each exercise should be performed for one minute, and then one minute rest before moving on to the next exercise.

  • Body weight squat
  • Jumping Jacks
  • Plank
  • Alternate leg lunge
  • Hip lift (lie on your back, knees bent, press your hips up, drop back down at a controlled pace).
  • Side plank (30 seconds each side)
  • High knee jog on the spot
  • Basic crunch
  • Mountain climbers
Hope everyone has a great Friday and is ready for the weekend, I know that I sure am!