Spring Clean Your Workout Routine

Spring Clean Your Workout Routine Have you ever felt like you were in a workout routine rut?  I know I have.  Just like spring cleaning your house (which I need to do badly) I think it is important to spring clean our workout routines as well.   Being a group fitness instructor for the past 20 years, I know the importance of changing up routines.  To keep my participants engaged and coming back to my class I am always looking for new ideas and ways to change things up. However, we can get stuck in a rut.  We get accustomed to certain things and just stick to our day-to-day routines and never change.  Here are some signs that you may need to spring clean your workout routine.

  1. You hit a plateau or stop getting desired results.
  2. You are bored with your current workouts.
  3. You keep getting injuries or are always sore.
  4. Working out becomes a chore and not as enjoyable as it has been in the past.
  5. Your workout is not longer challenging.

If you feel like you need to change things up, here are a few tips and suggestions to start fresh this spring and change-up your workout routine.

  1. Set a goal like a 5k or a new race.  In the past I have done a triathlon to change things up and it was a fun and new challenge.  I am currently starting to train for a Spartan which is going to be a lot of fun as  well.
  2. Find a personal trainer or a workout partner who can motivate and push you.
  3. Try a new fitness class.  Recently I have been trying out Orangetheory and Hot Yoga.  So much fun and challenging.
  4. Get outside!  If you have been logging tons of miles on the treadmill or indoor cycling, move your workout outdoors.
  5. Re-evaluate your goals.  I feel that setting goals can help you stay focused and motivated.
  6. Create a new playlist! For my classes I change my music each day.  Getting some new music or even adding music to your workout can really be motivating.  Nothing gets me going like a little Salt N Peppa during my run!
  7. When strength training.  Remember to change your sets, reps, and/or weights if you have been using the same size weights and the same reps for more than a month you are due for a change.

One of my favorite poster quotes on my classroom walls is this:

If you always do what you’ve always done you’ll always get what you’ve always gotten!

 

 

A Fun Filled Run Filled Weekend

 

IMG_0625Hi Guys, so our weekend started out with races and ended with races.  Those are my kind of weekends!  First off my older daughter Chloe had her final track meet for the season.  I am so proud of her!  She has improved her time with each meet and got a PR for several of her races at the last meet.  She made it to district track so I am a very proud mom.  She has worked really hard.  Saturday the hubby and I met up with our friIMG_0638ends Matt and Amy for a morning date.  It consisted of a lovely hill run followed by an amazing cup of coffee and some chatting.  These two crazy friends talked us into a Spartan race.  I am a bit scared of that!  On Sunday the whole family, including my mom and one of my good friends Rachel got together to support an amazing cause and do a fun 5k race.  The race is called Boise’s Got Faith (http://www.robiesgotfaith.org/) and it is a race that supports children’s cancer.  Each year the race directors select two children who are fightiIMG_0641ng cancer and help them emotionally and financially.  It was so awesome to see all the people out supporting this cause and all the kids out there running too.    My younger daughter Addy ran the kids 1 mile run and the 5k.  She is a little crazy like her mom.  It was a lot of fun.  Running with family and friends is awesome.  My hubby, daughters, mom and really good friend ran it all together.  My friend Rachel also hit a PR for her 5k and hit 150 miles for the year.  I am proud of her.  She just started running and I think she is addicted!IMG_0628

Orange Theory Inspired Workout

Hi Guys, for the past few months I have been trying to change-up my workouts especially my running.  Sometimes I get in a rut and need to switch things up a bit.  So for the past few months my hubby and I have been going to Orangetheory Fitness.  It opened up at the about 2 months ago and I had heard about it from friends and I had to try it out.  If you are not familiar with Orangetheory Fitness it is a heart rate based interval training workout.  Workouts incorporate the treadmill, rowing machine, and weight training to give you a full body workout and get your heart pumping.  It is a group atmosphere so you can be pushed by a friend, inspired by a neighbor or just have the support you need from the other members around you.  As a group fitness instructor myself I often find that I need to be inspired and pushed by others as well, so that is why I decided to give OT a try.

 

Now, if you don’t have an OT studio in your area, have no fear I have an OT inspired workout you can give a try at the gym or at home.  This is inspired by some of the workouts I have done at the studio and then done at the gym when I don’t have time to get to an OT class.  I hope you enjoy the workout.  It’s a good one!

The Warm Up (repeat as many times as you can for 5 minutes)

  • Body Weight Squats
  • Push Ups
  • Full Sit Ups
  • Jumping Jacks

Strength Training Section (15 Minutes)  Focus on using a lighter weight for more reps.

  • Squats
  • Bicep Curls
  • 1 Push Ups with Alternating Reaches (Bird Dog)

Treadmill Workout (15 Minutes)

  • Jog 2 Minutes at a comfortable pace
  • Run 2 Minutes at a harder pace (about 1-2mph faster than easy pace)
  • Jog 1 Minute to recover
  • Run 2.5 Minutes at a harder pace
  • Jog 1 Minute to recover
  • Run 3 Minutes at a harder pace
  • Jog 30 Seconds to recover
  • Sprint 1 Minute (this should be a difficult pace, faster than your hard pace)
  • Recover 2 Minutes at a Jog or Fast Walk

Rowing Section (if you don’t have access to a rower, you can bike or do the elliptical for time).  You will need a weight for this section.  Keep it near your machine.

Do as many rounds as you can for 15 minutes.

  • Row 400 Meters
  • Sumo Squat (hold weight between your legs, wide stance)
  • Deadlift
  • Row 600 Meters
  • Sumo Squat
  • Deadlift
  • Row 800 Meters
  • Sumo Squat
  • Deadlift
  • Row 1000 Meters

Cool Down and Stretch

Orange Theory Inspired Workout

Tank Top Arm Strength and Run Workout

This morning my friend Rachel and I changed our run up a bit.  We usually just meet and go for a longer run or do hill repeats.  We wanted to incorporate and arm workout while still getting a few miles in.  This was a great workout.  I will definitely be feeling my arms tomorrow.

Start off with a 1 mile warm up run.  Then complete the strength exercises using heavy weights.  Weights should be heavy and you should have a hard time getting in all of the reps.  You may need to go to a lower weight to finish.  First set complete 12 reps, second set 10 reps and final set 8 reps.  Between each set do the running workout.

Tank Top Arms

Pre-Run Warm Up

Hi Everyone!  I got the opportunity on Saturday to do the pre-race warm ups for the  Cause and Event Race series.  There are three runs.  A kid’s fun run and a 5k run and 10k.  So here is my question for the runners out there.  Do you have a pre-race warm up routine?  If not, you should.  I am just as guilty as the next person, sometimes I get caught up in the excitement of the race that I forget to do my pre-race warm up ritual.  I can totally tell a difference when I do it.  There are so many benefits to warming up, but here are just  a few that I find very beneficial.  First, it will lead to a successful race.  I have proof of this in some of my race times and how I feel.  It can prepare your body both physically and mentally.  For me, it just makes me feel better during my run because I don’t feel so stiff and tense.  Your pre-race warm up doesn’t have to be long.  It can be a short jog, a few strides, or you can do a warm up like I did for the run.  One suggestion I have is not do static  stretching before your race.  Save this for after the race when you really need it

One more tip, show up to the race early so you have time to warm up!  Sometimes I am running to the start line pinning on me bib number.  NOT GOOD!

Complete the following exercises for 8-10 reps or 30 seconds each before moving on to the next.  Your warm up should be approximately 3-5 minutes.

  • Arm Circles
  • Jog in Place
  • High Knees
  • Hi Skips In Place
  • Butt Kickers
  • Grapevine/Karaoke (if you have room)
  • Gate Swing or Squat In and Out
  • Side Lunges (be sure to do each side)
  • Lunges:  Pulse each leg
  • Side Stretches
  • Reach Down Toe Touches
  • Frankenstein/Toy Soldier
  • Leg Swings (both legs)

This may seem like a lot but it goes by pretty fast.  Feel free to shorten it or take out a few exercises if you need to .

Sport Cookies

I have a major sweet tooth!  I love baked goodies, but I don’t make them or I would eat them all.  So my mom always comes up with healthy alternatives for me.  I think these are super tasty and would make a great treat or snack for your kids lunch box.  You could even eat them before your long run or a workout.  The recipe is below.  Have a great weekend!

Sport Cookies

  • 3 Ripe Bananas Mashed
  • 1 cup chopped datessport cookies
  • 3/4 cup chopped almonds
  • 2 cups oats
  • 2 TBS vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 2/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 2 TBS hemp seeds
  • 14 chopped prunes (you could sub another dried fruit)
  • 10 chopped dried apricots
  • 2 TBS melted coconut oil

Mix all ingredients together and bake at 375 degrees for 18 min.  The recipe makes 30 cookies about 2 tbs per cookie.  Approximately 98 calories per cookie (I entered the recipe in my fitness pal).

Hill Repeats

Today I started my new training plan for the Sawtooth Relay,  Idaho’s most famous race which is in the beginning of June.  I have a love-hate relationship with hills.  I love them when I am done and hate them while I am running.  Hill repeats are good to incorporate into your training schedule for a variety of different reasons.  It can improve your endurance, power, speed, and helps with your overall strength.  Since my upcoming relay is a hilly run I want to make sure I am ready for it.  Today a group of friends and I got together to run some hill repeats.  We killed it!  Running with friends makes even hills fun!

Here is what we did today:

Warm Up:  1 mile easy
Hill Repeats:  5 x (run up the hill pushing yourself and jog down or walk down).  We had a long hill.
1 Mile Run at a comfortable pace
Cool Down (walk) and Stretching

Here is a link to race information. The scenery is beautiful.  http://sawtoothrelay.com/

Below are some pictures from last years relay.

Coming Soon:  My race training plan.

Pre-Workout Eats

One of the most commonly asked questions I get by my participants in my fitness class is about what to eat before a workout, especially since my class is very early in the morning.  This has taken me a long time to figure out.  I had to do a lot of experimenting myself to figure out what worked for me.  I am not the type of person who can go to the gym in a fasted state like my hubby.  He drinks black coffee and is out the door to take my class.  I just can’t do that.  I have tried and I feel like I have more energy and perform so much better with a little something before I workout.  These are merely tips and suggestions of what works for me, but you may want to give a few of these a try.  Here are my top favorite pre-workout or pre-run foods with a recipe included.

  1. No Bake Energy Bites (recipe below)
  2. Rice Cakes with Nut Butter (optional top with sliced banana, drizzle with honey, or sprinkle raisins on top)
  3. Banana with Nut Butter
  4. 1 slice Ezekiel toast with coconut oil, sprinkled with Himalayan sea salt
  5. Oatmeal with Fruit (only when I have more time before my workout 1 hour or more)

This recipe was adapted from a lot of other recipes out there.  It was actually given to me by my mom who is also a fitness fanatic and runner.  For some reason though hers always taste better than mine (doesn’t mom’s food always taste better).  

Pre-Workout Energy Bites

  • 1 Cup Dry Quick Oats or Crispy Rice Cereal
  • 1/3 cup nut butter
  • 1/4 cup honey (can sub maple syrup or dates)
  • 1 scoop vanilla protein powder (I use Orgain Plant Based)
  • 3 TBS ground flax seeds
  • 3 TBS mini dark chocolate chips or cacao nibs
  • Optional:  Add 1/4 cup dried fruit
  • Mix together (I use my food processor) and roll into tablespoon size balls.  Refrigerate.  You may have to add a bit of water or almond milk if it is too dry.

Boot Camp Workout

Here is what we did today in our boot camp class.  It was a tough and fun workout.  I am eventually going to add videos and pictures to my workouts, but that may take me some time.  Enjoy this workout.  It can easily be done at home or the gym, or if you are lucky and have nice weather you could do this outside.  Bootcamp 30

Treadmill and Strength Workout

This is a great workout you can do at home or at the gym.  Sometimes running on the treadmill is a little boring for me.  I love incorporating running intervals into my strength training especially when I am training for a race or just trying to work on my speed.  This workout will target both speed work and hill running.  Enjoy!treadmill and strength