Health/Fitness Links To Get You Through The Day

19 Mar

It is literally almost spring! I’m so ready for it…the next few days will be in the 50s which will be nice. Let’s just hope it stays that way?

Here are your health links for today:

  • 5 Tips For Eating Healthier (Crazy Running Girl) – These are great tips…and really, who actually eats the serving size for cereal?
  • The Fatigue Fallacy (Nia Shanks) – Great points made in her post. You should not be finishing every workout feeling exhausted. Read on to find out why.
  • How To Make A Healthy Salad (I Heart Vegetables) – If you follow these simple “rules” you will have a delicious salad! She also includes a few recipe ideas.
  • Lucky 7’s Body Weight Workout (Blonde Ponytail) – No equipment needed & 7 rounds?!? This looks like a tough, but awesome, workout.
  • 9 Everyday Stretches For A Healthy Body (The Sweet Life) – We could all really benefit from stretching more often – I know I could. Start incorporating some of these!

Is it spring already in your state? What’s the temp like?

Do you stretch every day?

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The Stair Workout

18 Mar

Here’s a new workout video for you! All you need is a set of stairs – so this one is really convenient to do right at home, or even at work if you wanted to.

The video is only 8 minutes long, but it’s tough! I was so out of breath by the end. Feel free to repeat the video 2-3 times through for a longer workout. You will definitely feel this one in your quads and glutes!

Here are the exercises this video includes:

  • Step-ups with oblique crunch
  • Tricep dips
  • Soccer drill
  • Squat-to-step
  • Push-ups
  • Box jumps with a burpee (!!)

Check it out:

Let me know if you decide to try it out & what you think! I’d love to hear your feedback.

Have you ever used your stairs for a workout?

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Introducing Tuesdays With Tina!

18 Mar

Some of you who have been following me for awhile know that I run every race with my mom (maybe with the exception of 1 or 2 in the past few years).

I wanted to tell you our story, but also introduce my mom because she will be contributing some posts from time to time. Hence this post’s name! It won’t be every Tuesday, but check back on Tuesdays to see if she has written something 😉

Our Story

When I was a senior in college, I decided to start getting active and eating healthier. I gained about 10 lbs. from junior-senior year, mainly because I was eating out a lot more, and taking advantage of the buffet style eating in the dining halls.

My mom and I decided to start doing Jillian Michaels’ 30 Day Shred, and would call each other to check in and talk about our progress.

In April of 2010, we decided to run our first 5K! I had ran cross country in high school, but this was my first organized race since that time (2006). It was my first public road race too. You can tell how much of noobs we were by this picture:

We got to the start line like, 20 minutes early because we wanted to be the first ones there. Little did we know, only the fast people go in the front! 😛

Isn’t it funny how you can look back at early race pictures and tell you were new to it based on your clothing and gear? We were wearing the race shirt, and I don’t even know what shorts and sneakers I was wearing.

We finished in around 29 minutes. After that, we started running more and more races. At this point, the thought of running a half-marathon or marathon had not even crossed our minds.

Remember Soffe shorts?

Around this time was when we got my dad more into active living too. He started running a couple races with us as well.

Then I told my mom we should run a half-marathon, and she thought I was crazy. Eventually I convinced her though, and the Long Branch Half Marathon was our first!

long branch half marathon

After that…I told my mom we should run a marathon. Then she really thought I was crazy. But I somehow convinced her to do that too. We decided to fundraise for the Christoper Reeve Foundation, and entered the New York City Marathon. Here’s my recap of our first NYC Marathon…we both couldn’t believe we did it!

nyc marathon 2011

There were a couple half-marathons in between as well. But yeah, 2011 was the year we truly fell in love with running. This past year, we ran the New York City Marathon again (<-recap), and using Hansons Marathon Method, PRed by 33 minutes! Here’s our video recap if you like those…I like to think it captures both us running, but the amazing spectators and spirit of the marathon!

What’s Next?

Currently, we haven’t really been running or training for anything. But we gotta get our butt in gear because we want to do the NYRR 9+1 program to get in for the 2015 NYC Marathon! We also have a half-marathon in July while we are away in Paraguay. I’d also like to break my 5K PR.

So what was the point of this post? I wanted to share with you all how special running is for me and my mom. We have gone through it all with running, and it’s amazing to have someone to motivate you, as well as someone to listen to you talk about running all the time 😉

I also wanted to introduce you guys to my mom. She has played an instrumental role in my fitness life, and I know she will have some great things to share with you as well.

So without further ado…say hello to my mom! Please leave a comment with any questions that you may have for her! She’s a mom, runner, lifter…she may be able to provide some insight and experience that I cant. The next post will be her words and not mine!

Do you exercise with loved ones?

If you’re a runner, when was your first race?

Did you ever wear soffe shorts? 😛

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Working Out At A Gym Vs. Working Out At Home

17 Mar

So you decide that you want to lead a healthier lifestyle and start exercising. Great! But should you sign up for a commercial gym? Or try working out at home?

workoutatgymvshome

I decided to lay out some pros and cons to each. For the purpose of this particular post, I’m going to focus on signing up for a commercial gym as opposed to small boutiques or personal training studies. Also, when I talk about working out at home, I mean doing exercise videos or using dumbbells/other small equipment (as opposed to building your own home gym).

Working Out At A Gym

Since I work out at my local YMCA, it was easy for me to think of a lot of the benefits of this. However, there could be some “cons” that may deter you from joining a gym.

Pros

  • A lot of different equipment, so it’s easy to switch up workouts.
  • Options to take classes
  • Personal trainers and wellness coaches to help you and give you tips.
  • Seeing other people working out may motivate you.
  • You’re changing your setting so you get out of the house.

Cons

  • The thought of having to drive to the gym could mean skipping a workout more often.
  • A lot of different equipment could be confusing and overwhelming.
  • Gym can get packed which could be annoying if you need specific machines or equipment.
  • Gym membership could be expensive.
  • It may be intimidating to workout around others.

Tips:

  • Take a gym tour of equipment before starting.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask a trainer to show you correct form or spot you.
  • On days you don’t feel like working out, take a class instead. The group atmosphere helps a lot.
  • If possible, go at off peak times so you can use the equipment you need. Going during times that are less busy will also help if you’re intimidated of the weight room.

Working Out At Home

Working out at home has a lot of its own benefits. When I first started exercising in college, I did a lot of workout DVDs in my room. I loved Jillian Michaels! This is what inspired my recent post where I listed out my top workout videos on YouTube.

Pros

  • It’s convenient.
  • Even when you have no energy you really have no excuse, since you don’t have to go anywhere to work out.
  • You can multitask (workout while waiting for dinner to be ready).
  • You can vary your workouts by doing different workout videos and DVDs.
  • Less intimidating because you’re working out alone.
  • Great way to get family members in your house involved in fitness.

Cons

  • Unless you have a home gym, you may not have a lot of equipment to use.
  • You may not be as motivated because you’re working out alone.
  • Family could be a distraction/interrupt your workout.

Tips

  • Set up a time that you WILL do your workout. Think of it as a meeting that you can’t skip.
  • Let your family know about your time, so that way no one will distract you.
  • Make a YouTube playlist of workout videos, so you always have a selection ready.
  • Just as you would have a gym workout schedule, make an at-home workout schedule with what videos you will do each day
  • Try a new DVD each month to switch things up.
  • Get a friend or two to come over and workout with you!

So as you can see, there are great things about both options! Some days I’d rather workout at home with my mom or dad than go to the gym. It’s just more convenient and after a long day of work, I just don’t feel like getting ready and driving another 15 minutes to the gym!

There are some great fitness channels on YouTube like SarahFit and Blogilates…and myself ;)…just do some research and find workouts that best fit your needs.

What pros & cons did I forget about?

Which do you prefer? Working out at a gym or working out at home?

Do you have a personal trainer?

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Motivational Monday!

17 Mar

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! Who had some St. Paddy’s related fun this weekend? Anyone run races? I’d love to hear about it!

Here’s today’s motivational quote 🙂

be happy

It’s a great way to view things. Sometimes we stew about things or get worked up, and in the end, it turns out it wasn’t AS big of a deal as we made it out to be. Stress can have a lot of health impacts (perhaps another post?), so instead focus on letting go of anger or stress, and try to focus on the good in your life instead!

What stress coping mechanisms do you use? I usually try to tell myself that there is nothing I can do to change a certain situation, so I should stop worrying about it and letting it affect me. How about you?

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Fitness Friday – 10 minute workout!

14 Mar

TGIF! Who’s ready for the weekend? I’ll be spending today at the Blogging Concentrated 1-day workshop/conference in NYC, but I couldn’t leave you without a workout to kick off the weekend 😉

This is a 10 minute workout! Yes, it will only take you 10 minutes to complete. If you’re short on time or just don’t feel like spending an hour at the gym, then try this workout out.

There are a few ways you could do it. You could solely do the 10 minute workout (after a proper warm-up of course). Or, you could go for a run or do whatever you want first, then end with this. Or if you want to make it longer, simply do it for as many rounds as possible in 15 or 20 minutes. Challenge yourself!

This is also a bodyweight workout – which means no equipment! So…no excuses 🙂

10 minute workout!

We’re hitting legs, chest, arms, abs…burpees for cardio…this workout has got it all!

I’ll be heading to my Maryland tomorrow for my brother’s soccer tournament, so should be a fun weekend. I think we plan on visiting Baltimore for dinner or something. Hope everyone has a great weekend!

What are your plans for the weekend?

Out of the exercises in this workout (squat, push-ups, dips, bicycle crunches and burpees) which is your least favorite?

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My Top Workout Videos

13 Mar

I thought of this post because I recently tweeted about a video I did yesterday (that will be included below) that has me all kinds of sore today. I’m already sore from yesterday’s leg day, but then I did abs and it’s just total body soreness.

Sometimes, we may not have time to go to the gym to get a workout in, which is where these workout videos come into play. YouTube can be a great place to find exercise videos when you’re tight on time, or just want to do an at-home workout.

Top YouTube Workout Videos

Here are some of my favorite YouTube videos, which are also saved in a playlist on my YouTube channel if you’re interested. Please subscribe to my channel for updates on workout videos that I upload! 🙂

Jackie Warner 20 Min. Core Workout

This is the video I did yesterday after legs, and my entire core is sore. Abs…lower back…everything. It also includes cardio intervals that are abs-focused. I love doing this video because I hate doing abs, so following along with a video makes the time go by faster.

Jillian Michaels’ 6 Week 6 Pack Abs

Love that level 1 is available on YouTube. This one is an abs video too though there are other body parts worked as well. For example, she does a reverse lunge with overhead reach, squat twists, and other stuff. There are cardio intervals as well. I’d say this is a total body workout, and not 100% focused on abs like Jackie’s video…but it’s still a good one! You go through the sequence 2 times.

Jillian Michaels’ Yoga Meltdown

Does anyone remember ExerciseTV? I used to do this video all the time when I first started working out. I remember it being tough, especially because I was not as flexible as I am now. This is a great total body workout which uses yoga moves as its foundation. If you want a traditional yoga video, then this isn’t what you are looking for.

Yoga For The Hips

I love Chaz of Yogamazing. This is a quick video that I like to do after runs and workouts. You should check out his other stuff too! We all probably need more hip openers, so that is why I suggest trying this out.

Power Yoga For Weight Loss

I found Bryan and Rob’s channel only a few weeks ago, but I love this video. It is pretty challenging, and I realized that my balance is awful. I plan on doing this video more often to work on that. Trust me, you will be sweating during this! This video is 30 minutes, but they have other power yoga videos on their channel that are 45-60 minutes long.

Bootcamp Calorie Burn

No joke, this is one of the first workout videos I ever did! I made the effort to work out more senior year of college, and I would do this video in my room. This was also on ExerciseTV, so I’d also do it when I was home for break, along with Jillian’s 30 Day Shred. I miss ExerciseTV! They had some great videos. This is basically all cardio, but it will definitely get your heart rate up! The only annoying part about it is the girls in the back who are whooping and hollering the whole time. Watch and you’ll understand what I mean.

40 Min. Full Body Workout – POPSugar

This is another video I only recently found but it is a great total body workout. There is cardio, strength, and abs. What more could you ask for? You do need some dumbbells for this one. The POPSugar Fitness channel has a bunch of other workout videos as well.

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So there you have it. My favorite workout videos at the moment. Whether you want full body, abs, or yoga, there should be something on this list for you! And (shameless plug) I make workout videos regularly on my YouTube fitness channel too if you want to check it out 😉

Which of these videos do you want to try?

Do you have favorite workout videos? Please share in the comments!

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