Tag Archives: body weight

Completing My Husband’s At-Home Outdoor Bootcamp

After leaving the gym on Tuesday, I ran into a male friend of mine that commented that he loved my blog, but he thought that most of my boot camps are geared towards women. Ouch! I would like to think that most of my workouts are unisex, so I took this comment into consideration when doing my work out today. In fact, my entire workout this morning was the same workout that my husband completed yesterday (so it was designed by a man). To be transparent, there are some differences in the way that he completed the workout, and the way that I did. My husband is a former group exercise instructor, so I completely value his input when planning workouts.

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Total workout time today was somewhere between 40-50 minutes (depending on how long it takes you to push through each group of exercises). The main difference between the way that my husband and I did this workout is that he wore a 15 pound weight vest the entire time. To make up for this, I modified some of the exercises so that I was holding a weight (where his weight was the weight in his vest).

A picture of the equipment that I used.

A picture of the equipment that I used.

A picture of the equipment my husband used.

A picture of the equipment my husband used.

Warm up – Jump rope for five minutes. That’s right. When was the last time I jumped rope? I can already tell my calves will be sore. Alternate between single leg jumps, two footed jumps, alternating feet, etc. Just do it for five minutes.

Workout – The workout is broken up into “stations”. Complete each station before moving on to the next one.

Station 1 (complete each exercise 3 times sequentially) –

  • 10 Step ups (each leg) off the side of the porch. If you don’t have an elevated porch, you can do lunges here. Since I did not have a weighted vest on, I held a dumbbell with both hands.
  • 20 Dips off the side of the porch. Start with legs straight out in front. As your arms start to get tired, bend your knees, so your feet are flat on ground.
  • 10 Decline pushups – Modify by doing incline pushups or pushups on the ground.

Station 2 (complete each exercise 3 times sequentially) –

  • 10 Kettlebell side bends (each side)
  • 20 Full Sit-ups with feet elevated on steps of porch (about the height of a second step)
  • 10 Knee to elbow holding a plank position

Station 3 (complete each exercise 2 times sequentially) –

  • 50 prisoner squats
  • 25 push-ups (I did 20 here) – 15 seconds rest
  • 25 push-ups (I did 15 here)

Station 4 – Complete Station 1 just 2 times sequentially

At this point you should be right around thirty minutes. Hold a plank until you hit thirty minutes.

Station 5 – Kettlebell work (complete each exercise 3 times sequentially) –

  • 20 Swings
  • 10 Upright Rows
  • 10 Goblet Squats
  • 10 Upright Rows

Cool Down – Finish up jump roping another five minutes. Again, alternate how you jump rope. At this point, I cut my watch off. Fortunately, a friend of mine came over to do the workout with me this morning. I know that you have seen Logan in several of my pictures. It is so much easier to get up early to exercise when someone else is relying on me. Thank you Logan!

photo 1-61P.S.  I had to share this incredible photo of my family out walking on National Running Day last night.  I hope that my daughter’s enthusiasm for the sport continues well throughout her life!

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Sunday Dinner + Monday workout

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After my shopping spree at the Farmer’s Market on Saturday, we no doubt had plenty of fruits and vegetables to cook for our usual Sunday dinner.  As I have mentioned several times before, we typically go big or go home on Sunday and eat leftovers for a good part of the week.  This week we had friends over to join us.  The weather was great, so we also got the grill out.  Prior to our guests coming over, we set out a few snacks.  The hardest part about anything that we made was cutting things up.  It is so easy to chop up a few colorful raw veggies, add some pretzels or crackers, and center it all with a healthy dip like hummus.

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I mentioned that I was going to share with you my okra recipe.  Well, it is really not a recipe, but a quick way to get some flavor out of several veggies.  For our wedding, we registered for a grill basket. During the spring and summer this is one of our most used kitchen supplies. You can tell it has been well used.

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Knowing what I knew was in season (and reasonably priced), I bought the following ingredients for the mix:

  • Several handfuls of okra
  • One eggplant
  • Two green peppers
  • Two zucchini

That’s it.  Wash all of the vegetables.  You don’t even have to peel them.  Chop the ends off of everything before dicing them up into pretty chunky pieces.  Once you have everything cut up, throw all of it in a plastic bag and dump a little bit of italian dressing, salt and pepper in the bag.  Toss the bag around (entertain baby).  Throw the bag in the refrigerator until you are ready to grill.  Once you get the grill going, just throw the veggies in the grill basket.  You just need to toss the veggies several times to keep them from sticking to the side.  If you don’t have a grill basket, this can always be done in the oven.  Let me know what you think.  As the season changes, you can rotate different veggies out.

Monday workout – The baby was up early again, but went back to bed.  I had too much on my mind to go back to bed (hence why this post is early and I also got a workout in).  Minimal equipment today.  I did use a kettle bell for some stuff, BUT I didn’t picture it here because I wanted you to know you don’t need to use a kettle bell.  You also don’t need to use a Bosu ball (see modifications below).

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I realized last week that i need to do more glute work.  This workout was tough, but still in the 25-30 minute range.  I started my watch when I started my warmup.  I proceeded to move from one exercise to the next, completing the mini circuit three times.

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Warm up – As usual, I started with a slow walk in place, gradually increasing the range of motion in my legs and arms.  Once I got to a slow jog in place, I did 30 second of high knees.  This got my heart rate up a little.  I stopped and did some side step toe touches, 20 jumping jacks, and 20 deep body weight squats before I went straight into the circuit.

1. Kettlebell Squats with step out– I started with a moderate weight to make sure that I was warmed up enough. For the second and third time through the circuit I went up in weight. Feet together, hold kettle bell with both hands at hip level.  Step your right leg out to the right side. While lowering into squat, take weight towards floor. Squeeze glutes to push back up to standing position with both feet together.  As you are coming back to starting position raise the kettle bell with both hands in front of you to shoulder height (it is a swinging motion). Repeat on left side.  Really focus on keeping your back flat. Do 12-15 each side, alternating sides.

Modification – Use a dumbbell, medicine ball, or body weight.

2.  Bicep curls – Good old fashioned, non-technical bicep curls. My heart rate was still up from the previous motion, so I didn’t want to do anything risky here. Standing, feet together, hold one dumbbell with each hand down the side of your body, palms facing each other. Raise dumbbells and slowly lower back after a short pause. No jerking. Control. 10-15 total.

3.  Sprinter Sit up – I wanted to do a core exercise here that didn’t utilize equipment. Start laying flat on your back, legs straight, and arms by your side with your elbows bent at 90 degrees. In a powerful quick motion, sit up, twist your upper body to the right and bring your right knee toward your left elbow. That’s 1. Do 20 each side. Think quick and powerful. Who knew that you could get out of breath doing sit ups?

4.  Alternate Mountain Climber on Bosu with Bosu Burpee – This exercise was a circuit in itself (and HARD).  Honestly, I tried to switch the order for one set to see if it would be easier, but it’s not.

  • 20 mountain climbers (with the flat side of the Bosu facing up)
  • 10 Bosu burpees (flat side of Bosu facing up) – Bring your body down into a squat while grabbing both side of Bosu. Kick legs and feet out behind you to plank position. I did a pushup here. Return your feet to original squat position. From this position, jump up, extend arms over your head.
  • Repeat the two exercises above before moving to the number five.

Modification – Remove the Bosu from both exercises if you don’t have one. Both can be done on the floor. If you don’t like burpees, do something that will get your heart rate up (high knees, run in place, tuck jumps) and follow with your push ups.

5.   Weighted Kick back/fire hydrant – Start in an all-fours position. Place dumbbell behind your leg where your knee bends (you should be able to hold the dumbbell in place when you perform both exercises). First part of exercise, flex the foot that is holding the weight and kick your heel back and up. Don’t extend the leg. Keep it bent. Do 10. Next up, fire hydrant. Bring your leg back to starting position. Keeping knee fixed at a right angle, raise your leg out to the side. Do 10. Repeat on opposite leg.

Modification – These can definitely be done without a weight.

6 – Side Pushups (triceps) – Lie on right side with left hand flat on floor in front of shoulder, elbow bent. Wrap right arm around rib cage. Using left arm, push your torso up until arms is straight. Lower upper body until should is about an inch from the floor.  Do 10 each side.

 

Wednesday “Get After It” Workout

I have included in the title “Get After It” because this is the hardest day of the week for me to get up early.  Let’s face it, we are motivated at the beginning of the week because of what we did or didn’t do over the weekend and we are motivated at the end of the week based on our anticipation of what we might do or not do.

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I realized that some of the circuits that I was posting required equipment that is difficult to find on the road or at home.  Therefore, today’s circuit utilized body weight and dumbbells (Yep, thats it!)

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Instead of counting reps today, I also did each exercise based on time.  Clearly, if you don’t have a stop watch you can count reps.  I thought this might switch things up a little bit though.

Warm up – Like usual, I started just by walking in place.  I took a few seconds to wake up and take a few deep breaths.  I transitioned from a fast paced walk to a jog in place.  From there, I did 20 body weight squats (slow and deep), 20 jumping jacks and 20 body weight forward lunges.

Workout – I ended my warm up with body weight forward lunges, because i knew that I was going to transition directly into explosive lunges.  I moved from exercise to exercise, completing three full rounds (no rest in between).

1 – Explosive Lunges (1 minute) – Start standing with feet together.  Lunge your right leg forward.  Jump up, switch legs, and land with your left leg in forward lunge.  Continue explosive lunges, alternating sides.  Your front knee should always be bent at a 90 degree angle.

Modification – If the jumping is too much for you or you start to fatigue before 1 minute is over, you can take the jump out.  Do the forward lunge and step back into the standing position.  These will get your heart rate up.

2 – Pushup Position Hammer Curl (1 minute) – In a pushup position, hold a dumbbell in each hand (hands facing each other).  Curl weight in your left hand toward your left shoulder.  Lower and repeat with right side. Continue alternating sides.

Modification – Drop to your knees and make sure that your weight is not too heavy.  If this exercise is too advanced, do standing hammer curls.

3 – Side Pushups (triceps) (1 minute – 30 seconds each side) – Lie on right side with left hand flat on floor in front of shoulder, elbow bent.  Wrap right arm around rib cage.  Using left arm, push your torso up until arms is straight.  Lower upper body until should is about an inch from the floor.

4 – Burpees (1 minute) – Substitute 10 mountain climbers with a pushup, three times (so total 30 mountain climbers, 3 pushups each round through the circuit).

5 – Clam Dig with Rotation (1 minute each side) – Lie on your right side, head cradled in your right hand.  Bend your knees in front of you at a 45 degree angle.  Hold a dumbbell in your left hand and keep your left elbow on your left side.  Lift both your left leg and left arm up to the ceiling.  Left arm will form a 90 degree angle with forearm perpendicular to floor (elbow is pressed into side).  Left leg should be a a 90 angle (keeping hips stacked without rocking backwards).

6 – Side Balance Crunch (1 minute each side) – Balance yourself so that your right hand is on the floor, arm is straight, and your right leg is extended straight (with foot on floor).  Hips should be raised such that your body forms a straight line from your shoulders to your feet.  In this position, pull your left knee toward your torso and left elbow toward your knee.  Straighten arm and leg.  Repeat on opposite side.

Modification – Drop the knee that is closest to the ground.  This will provided extra stability.

SO glad that I woke up and pushed through.  It was such a beautiful day that I had to take some pictures on the way out of work.  I love that the city of Charlotte and the businesses uptown have made the extra effort to make my city so beautiful and clean.

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I have a surprise for blog readers tomorrow.  Looking forward to sharing!

 

Wednesday (Mid-Week “Get After it”) workout

The dreaded hump day.  It seems like the gym is always slower on Wednesday.

My daughter was up for at least two hours last night (we think she is teething, but we have thought that for weeks now), so I was feeling the pain of not wanting to get up to workout this morning.  My motivation truly was that this was going to be the only time to myself all day, so I wanted to take advantage of it.

I ran through another circuit this morning.  I had planned this one out the night before with my husband.  I love to shoot ideas off of him because he has done a lot of work gathering exercises over the years from Men’s Health magazines.

photo 5-1I was serious when I said years.  He has three binders full of workouts.  You better believe I will be sharing some of these ideas with you.  I wanted this workout to really focus on some specific areas:  Legs (glutes, hamstrings, quads) and core.

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Stopwatch doesn’t lie.  It took me right at 28 minutes to cycle through this circuit 3 times.  I will offer modifications for each exercise, mainly because I was tired today, so I needed to modify exercises for myself as I got further into the workout.  Not much equipment today!

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Warm up – 

My warm up this morning was very similar to Monday, however, I did change up a few things knowing what muscle groups I was going to be working.  I started my stopwatch when I started my warm up.  I walked in place, gradually increasing the range of motion in my arms and legs, until I was jogging in place.  I did this for about a minute. I finished off my warm up with some body weight hamstring curls and body weight squats.

Workout – 

Single leg butt lift – I used the rounded side of a Bosu for this exercise. Lying on your back, start with heel of one foot placed on top of the Bosu and the other leg raised in the air towards the ceiling.  Hands are by your side. Press your body up through your heel, squeezing your glute at the top.  Ideally, at the height of the movement, your body should be in a straight line from shoulders to knees.  Do 10-12 each leg.

Modification- Instead of using a Bosu, use a medicine ball.  If you don’t have either or you would like to use something more stable lay in front of your stairs and put one foot on the first step.

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No excuse not to do it! You can use stairs just like these.

Tricep Push up with single arm row – Start in a pushup position (hands under shoulders), holding a weight in both hands.  Do a complete push up keeping elbows close to body to engage the triceps. After the pushup (back in the plank position), lift your right elbow towards ceiling.  Repeat with left arm. The push up and row on both sides is one rep.  Complete 10.

Modification – I started to notice by the end of the second set that my back was starting to bow on the way up.  Not good. I dropped to my knees on the pushups and broke up the exercise (pushups first, then back in a plank position the rows).  For the third set, I used a lighter weight.  If you already have a Bosu ball and you want a more advanced move, balance your feet on the Bosu while performing your pushups and rows.

Front lunge with twist and press – Start in a standing position, feet together, holding the medicine ball in both hands at chest level.  Lunge forward with your right foot, making sure that your knee is at 90 degree angle with the floor.  In this position, press the medicine ball out at chest level (straightening your arms) and twist to the right side.  Return to starting position.  From starting position, press medicine ball up towards ceiling. Repeat on the opposite side. Do 10 each side, alternating sides.

Modification – I used an 8 pound medicine ball for this and by rep 5, I could feel the fatigue in my arms on the upward press.  You can sub a dumbbell for the medicine ball (hold each side of the dumbbell such that it is parallel with the floor).  You can also break this exercise into two parts OR do this exercise WITHOUT a weight.  What? Believe me; you can still feel the effects of this movement without weight.

High knees/Running in place –:30 each, so 1:00 of something to get that heart rate going.

Bicep curls – Good old fashioned, non-technical bicep curls. My heart rate was still up from the previous motion, so I didn’t want to do anything risky here. Standing, feet together, hold one dumbbell with each hand down the side of your body, palms facing each other. Raise dumbbells and slowly lower back after a short pause. No jerking. Control. 10-15 total.

Deadlift to upright row – So many people do deadlifts wrong (and they can cause serious back injury if not done right).  For that reason, I’m going to explain the exercise and give some tips as well. Stand with feet hip width apart and a slight bend in your knees.  Hold a dumbbell in each hand in front of thighs, palms facing body. Hinge hips forward, lowering torso until it’s almost parallel with the ground.  Squeezing glutes return to standing, lifting dumbbells to chest height while keeping elbows pointed to out to the side. Complete 10-12.

Tips – There should never be an arch in your back (if you start to notice your back rounding you probably have too much weight).  When you are lowering your torso keep weights super close to your legs (so much so you almost skim them all the way down and back up). If you are doing this right you will really feel it in the back of your legs (think hamstrings). It won’t take much weight to feel sore.

Sprinter Sit up – For any readers who were once sprinters, do you remember the saying “feed the face”?  Let’s do that while lying down.  Start laying flat on your back, legs straight, and arms by your side with your elbows bent at 90 degrees. In a powerful quick motion, sit up, twist your upper body to the right and bring your right knee toward your left elbow.  That’s 1. Do 20 each side. Think quick and powerful. Who knew that you could get out of breath doing sit ups?

I am so happy that I got up and pushed through this circuit this morning.  I had lunch with a former coworker today at one of my favorite lunch spots uptown – Mortimers. Located in the Epicentre, this place has really nailed it when it comes to the lunch and happy hour work crowds.  It is the perfect place to compromise for groups in which some people want something  healthy and the others want to splurge.  It is also super casual and relatively cheap!

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Chicken Gyro – sauce on side with a side of hummus and pita wedges