{workout Wednesday}

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Yes, it’s Thursday. I wanted this entry to post yesterday, but I didn’t get it published. Anyway, here are two workouts I did this week. First up, a great Back and Biceps Workout. I did a warm up of hand to hand kettlebell swings, for five minutes with intervals of 20/10 {20 seconds doing the movement with a 10 second rest}. I did five super sets with this workout, so I went a little lighter in weight and really concentrated on the movement. For each super set I did three sets with reps between eight and fifteen. Just because I went down in weight does not mean that this workout was easier, FAR from it! I finished my Back & Bicep workout with some shrugs.

My leg workout yesterday was pretty simple, pretty quick, and very much a burn inducer. I started this workout with 10 minutes on the stair step machine, doing intervals of about 30 seconds medium resistance and 30 seconds high resistance. I then did two super sets and ended with a straight set of squats on the smith machine {the squat rack was in use. I’m not a huge fan of the smith machine for squats, but when need be it will do}. Before moving on to squats, I also did one set of single leg lying leg presses. Oh, and on the sissy squats {body weight with these}, I held onto the bar of the smith machine so that I could get really low and keep good form. Hopefully one day I won’t need to hold onto anything while doing sissy squats. If you haven’t done these before, don’t let the name fool you! They are HARD!

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What at have you workout this week? Let me know if you give either of these workouts a go!

Peace Out,

Nicholle

{ladies, let’s grow some muscle}

I read a good article the other day {I will share it if I can find it} and it really hit the nail on the head on how women need to change their way of thinking when it comes to building muscle. So many women have this misconception in their mind that if they build muscle they are going to get huge, manly muscles, so they use the word “toned”. “I don’t want big muscles, I just want to be toned.” What does toned even mean? Are you saying you want arms that don’t jiggle,  a nice shapely shoulder? Or maybe you want a butt that isn’t flat or doesn’t jiggle? Do you want lean {tight} legs, and maybe be able to see some abdominal definition? Guess what, to have that “toned” body you are after you have to grow some muscle! It’s your body fat percentage that is going to determine how much of your muscle is going to show. That is, if you have muscle. Go check out the get in shape girl. She wrote a blog post all about this topic. Here is a small excerpt from that post written by Kyra Williams:

First of all, we all have muscles.  Some folks have bigger muscles than others just by their genetic make up.  Some have worked hard to develop some muscles more than others.  If your goal is to have lean muscle tone, then you desire the appearance of muscle with little body fat.  If this is what you want, you must develop your muscles.

 If you have a low body fat with underdeveloped muscle tissue, you are not going to see muscle tone or definition.  Think, skinny arms, flat stomach, skinny legs, little butt, etc.  If you have low body fat with developed muscles you will see a nice round booty, a side sweep of the quad, shoulder caps, abs, etc.  But you have to develop that muscle!

She also explains a scenario of someone who has a larger number of body fat to lose, and how gaining and building muscle is very important. When you gain muscle, it speeds up your metabolism!

Normally I like to keep my blog posts short, but this one got a little longer. I practice what I preach, and here is my muscle building workout I did today, give it a try! I warmed up for 10 minutes on the elliptical in cross country setting, think hills, big hills. Total workout took me under 40 minutes!

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Now let us all embrace the word muscle!

Peace Out,

Nicholle

{weekend workout}

Too busy on the weekend to get a good workout in? Wrong!! Try this 23 minute upper body workout. Trust me, you will want to find the time to try this one!

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Warm up with 1 minute of each movement. Tap jacks: as your arms go up, your right leg goes behind your left leg with a side lunge and you tap your toe, arms go down as you bring your right leg back to start, repeat with your left leg. Side toe touch lunges are similar to skaters, same movement but bringing your opposite hand to opposite toes as you do a side lunge.
Workout is 20 seconds of work with a 10 second rest. Do each movement three times before moving onto the next movement. When you finish overhead presses, go back to the top with bicep curls and continue. Again, doing each movement three more times. Chest flys and pull overs will be done laying down.

What you will need:

  • Water
  • Interval timer
  • Dumbbells or plates {go heavy enough that it is hard to go that full 20 seconds, if it’s easy after 20 seconds you need to go up in weight!!}
  • A mat {optional}

No excuses, get a workout in this weekend!!

Peace Out,
Nicholle

{workout wednesday}

One of my favorite ways to set my gymboss timer for a HIIT workout is to 20/10, also know as Tabata. {here is a good article that quickly explains high intensity interval training} That’s 20 seconds you are doing the movement as hard as you can, with a 10 second rest until you either start up that same movement or switch to a different movement. A few reasons why I like this 20/10 format, first the mindset. Anyone can do something for 20 seconds, right?? {until you get to the end of your workout and 20 seconds feels like 2 minutes, just remember “anyone can work for 20 seconds”. Repeat it in your head, repeat it out loud, whatever you need to do to go that full 20 seconds!!} Second, this time format is an ideal fat burner! In a 20/10 workout, my heartrate rarely gets below 165 and I can easily burn 100 calories every 10 minutes. Last, you can do this ANYWHERE! Tabata workouts are great with just doing bodyweight movements! Trust me, the bodyweight movements are always the hardest!! If you don’t have a gymboss timer, I highly recommend it! If you have  a smart phone, there is probably an app interval timer. If there isn’t, someone should get on that, but it won’t be me. I’m technologically not smart!

For a “true” Tabata workout, you will keep that timer set to 20/10 and you will do two movements per set. How many times you do each set is up to you, usually about 4 minutes is a good time to switch it up. That means after 4 rounds of the first two movements, you will go into two different movements for another 4 minutes. Got it?? Anywhere from 10-30 minutes is going to get you sweaty! I will warm up before I lift with 10 minutes or so of Tabata, or I will make it my entire workout and go the full 30 minutes. There are so many ways to format this type of workout, that although you are still using a 20/10 interval, it won’t get boring!

Here is an example of a great Butt Lifting Tabata Workout that I did last week, give it a try. Your glutes will thank you!

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Have a happy hump day!
Peace Out,
Nicholle

{motivation monday}

What helps motivate you when it’s time to workout? You know that thing that makes you want to go to the gym ASAP and gets you excited about working out. Yes, I said excited about working out, you read correctly! I have a few things that really pump me up, one being new workout gear! Yep, for some reason a new shirt, or tights, or shorts, even a new sports bra, gets me excited to workout! It may be silly, but if it works, I say go with it!

A good little boost to help me reach my fitness goals is to reward with a new item of fitness apparel. My problem with this is picking what that item will be! Here are some of the things I’m currently drooling over that I found on Pinterest!
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What should I pick??!! What motivates you? Do you use a reward system for reaching goals?
Peace Out~
Nicholle

{work it out}

latter I did this workout today, let’s just say if you don’t want to sweat…don’t try this workout! Started with a warm up of 20 seconds on with a 10 second break doing hand to hand swings, four times total. Then set the timer to 30 minutes and got to work on the latter. This is a go at your own pace workout. You can go heavier and slower or lighter and faster, being able to make the workout to your liking! I was able to get two rounds of the latter in within 30 minutes and burned over 330 calories! Thursday I did a quick chest and back workout, and then did a kettlebell workout. If I get a chance I will post them tonight!

Is Friday your rest day? Or do you hit it hard before the weekend? I tend to do a combination of both, just depends on the week and how I am feeling!
Peace Out~
Nicholle

{oh my quad}

I slept in yesterday morning, meaning I did not get my morning workout done. This meant I was going to have to hit up the gym late, after all the boys were in bed and my better half got home. Come 9:30 pm I am getting up and getting ready to go to the gym {that might not sound late to most, but for this mom of 4 consider it midnight!}. I wanted to work legs hard and had my workout all planned, that is until that better half convinced me to just stay home and workout. I was reluctant, I just really wanted to go to the gym {that’s my “me” time}. He convinced me by saying he hadn’t seen me all day and wanted to spend some time together, but mostly because he said he would do it with me! I think he regrets agreeing to this today, but it was good for him! I then had to get my head out of gym mode and come up with something that I could do at home, but would still really get that burn going. Umm, yeah, this did that. My quads were on fire, just screaming at me!

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I got my gymboss timer out and set it to 00:30, 00:20. We did 30 seconds for each movement with a 20 second rest in between movements. After the first six movements we finished the round with a 1 minute wall sit. Just got nice and cozy up against a wall and let our quads SCREAM! Then we had a 40 second rest in between rounds. We did six rounds all together, and then finished up with a few rounds of different abdominal movements. I slept in this morning again, i might need to set a double alarm! Now I need to figure out what kind of workout I want to do today and the even bigger unknown for me is when I will get a chance to do it.

No excuses, if you want it bad enough, you will figure out a way to get it!
Peace Out~
Nicholle