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Category: Fitness

Back to school fit tips

Happy Monday!  Back to school is right around the corner for a lot of us and between busy work schedules, back to school shopping, getting back on a school schedule, and starting up all the other activities such as sports this is a really busy time of year for most families!  I grew up with two parents working in the education field and now I also happen to work in education.  Although none of us are actually teachers, August is still a really busy time (I think it is for a lot of families!), especially when your work load significantly increases!  I know I have been finding myself running out of time to fit in exercise and plan meals so I thought I would share a few fit tips we do as a family to try to keep up with fitness and eating healthy during back to school.

Plan everything!  Meal plan, plan your workouts, organize your family calendar, even plan your clothing for the week.  Find quick, easy, healthy meals.  I love searching online for new recipes but also keep a book full of our favorite recipes.  This makes it easy for me to plan meals I know we will like.  I also make sure to maintain our pantry and freezer supply so our weekly grocery shopping is kept to a minimum.  This is for another post but, we do one big shopping trip a month and then just pick up perishable items each week.  This saves so much time!

Know your limits.  When you are super busy don’t stress yourself out with scheduling even more.  This will just make it more difficult to make healthy meals at home and create less time to spend as a family stress free.

Stay active as a family.   Instead of sitting and watching your kids play in the yard go for a walk or run together.  Play a game, go swimming, just move!  This will also help combat the extra sitting you are doing with working longer hours 🙂 .

Participate in a workout challenge or program.  This will not only create accountability but also provide you with a plan each day so you don’t even have to think about what you are doing.  There are quite a few workout plans out there for you to choose from and while I love a lot of them my most recent favorite is PIIT 28 created Casey Ho!  She is also the creator of Blogilates which I have mentioned quite a few times in the past.  I have been following her and her workouts for a long time.  I will admit, when I first looked at the workouts I thought they would be too easy.  Not the case.  Of course they could be, but, if you push yourself, it is an awesome workout in only 30 minutes.

PIIT 28

PIIT 28 is a mix of Pilates and cardio moves to help you strengthen, tone, and build your endurance in a short and efficient workout.  The workouts are done in intervals of 45 seconds on with 10 seconds of rest.  The time flies during this workout and leaves you nice and sweaty!

Here’s what PIIT28 will do for you:

  • Cut your workout time in half
  • Melt all-over body fat fast
  • Increase your resting metabolism
  • Build lean muscle with no equipment
  • Sculpt the strongest Pilates abs ever
  • Improve your posture so that you’ll look taller
  • Increase your confidence and happiness levels
  • Find new friends and make real relationships with like-minded people

Sounds fun right?  You can either follow along with the videos on the website or follow the written and visual instructions in the ebook.  Either way the workouts are fun, effective, and are less than 30 minutes.  Perfect for those of us who are crazy busy 🙂 .

Get your PIIT 28 Power Pack here.  $89(The workout program along with the 28 day reset nutritional guide$- saves you $19!)

Get your PIIT 28 Workout Program here.  $39

28 day Reset here.  $69

The 28 Day Reset is the perfect companion to PIIT 28 as it provides detailed meal plans and even grocery lists (a fantastic time saver!)

Here’s what you will receive when you get The Blogilates 28 Day Reset:

  • The Blogilates 28 Day Reset Nutrition Guide E-book (Instant download!)
  • The 28 Day Reset Meal Plan (4 weeks)
  • The 28 Day Reset Grocery Lists (4 weeks)
  • Over 150+ unique clean-eating Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner and Snack recipes to create your own unique mix ‘n match meal plans based on your body’s needs for the next 8 weeks and beyond
  • 8 fill-in Meal Planning Calendars
  • 8 fill-in Grocery Lists
  • Mix ‘n Match Protein, Fat and Carb Chart (for recipe substitutions)
  • 100+ pages of full color, taste bud tantalizing food photography
  • Lifetime Membership to The 28 Day Reset Foodie Forum
  • Vegan plan is also available!

If you have anymore questions email me at amidwestlife@gmail.com .  I would love to chat more about PIIT 28, Pilates, or anything for that matter!

How do you keep motivated to eat healthy and maintain regular workouts when you are super busy?

*I am a PIIT 28 Amdassador. 

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MedCity Marathon Recap

Hello!  How about a quick marathon recap?  It fortunately isn’t too late, only 8 days later thanks to a busy week with David traveling again and a certain toddler deciding to boycott bedtime all week 🙂 .  Last Sunday, (May 29th) I ran the MedCity Marathon in Rochester, MN!

MedCity Marathon Finish

 

My official finish time was 3:43:49 with an average pace of 8:33 per mile.  I actually finished 9th woman overall and 3rd in my age group!

Overall I loved the race and had a great time.  It was well organized and big, but not overwhelmingly large or congested.  Everybody was super friendly, both the volunteers and the spectators.  I didn’t really know what to expect or what my goals should be going in to the race but I had kind of set a goal of finishing in under 4 hours and keep a relatively easy pace throughout the race.

The race starts in Byron and the first six miles went by really quite fast and were also the hilliest so it worked out great!  I personally think the Rochester area is really pretty so I didn’t mind the hills and they really aren’t bad, they are more like little rolling hills than anything else.  Once we got into Rochester there were more spectators and over all I never really got bored with the course (am I the only one with this problem?).  There were water stops about every 2 miles so I didn’t need to stop at each one even though it was by far warmer on Sunday than it was during any of my training runs!  I trained in 30-40 degree weather and it was 60-70 Sunday morning, definitely a temperature range I’m not used to running in yet, especially with the humidity 🙂 .

MedCity Marathon

The week before the race I ended up getting the flu and then having a huge allergy flair up so while I wasn’t feeling 100% I was still hoping to meet my goals.  My training went really well.  I completed all my runs (running 4-5 times a week) except for my 20 miler!  I ended up not feeling well the week I was supposed to run 20 miles and never completed it!  Mentally, this was more nerve-wracking than anything else.  Just in case this happens to anyone else, don’t let it concern you!

I also started having trouble with my foot just a couple of days before the race.  It has been bothering me on and off for the past couple of years and when it started to feel a little sore I cut out speed work which seemed to help up until the last week.  My doctor had said to keep it stretched and ice it and that it was fine to continue running as long as the pain didn’t worsen throughout training and it really wasn’t horrible until the last week.  Obviously I wasn’t about to not run having just finished all of the training and my x-rays looked good (no stress fracture) so I just iced and stretched a lot before Sunday.  While the icing and stretching may have helped it still hurt quite a bit by the end of the race and I am still not running yet.  I went to the doctor on Monday and was told to take a week off but I will have to play it by ear since, while it is significantly better it still isn’t great (it is a tendon issue and the marathon really aggravated it).

Overall I had a great time and hope to be able to run this race again someday, both the half marathon and marathon if all goes well!  I don’t have any current race plans for the rest of summer as I am waiting to see how my foot heels but I hope to run a 5k in late summer/fall!

Do you have any summer running plans?

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TKO Running Belt Review

I was provided the TKO belt in return of a honest review.

Happy Friday!  My favorite day of the work week 🙂 .  It seems as though the day always goes faster than the rest, Max, Asher, and I have a few things to do each Friday that keep us busy and David rarely works late on Fridays which is great!

Today I have a fun review for you.  A couple of weeks ago I was sent a TKO running belt to try out.  Of course I was excited to try out a new piece of running gear!

TKO running beltsource

In the past I have typically used a Flip Belt so the TKO belt felt quite a bit different for me at first.  I wasn’t so sure I would like it but it is actually very comfortable.  It adjustable as well as stretchy to ensure a tight, but not too tight, fit around your waist.

running belt

It also has to very stretchy pockets.  One large pocket and one smaller pocket, both with zippers.  I was surprised at how big the pockets were when I first tried it!  I was able to fit my IPhone 6s plus in the big pocket!  It was a (very) tight fit but it is also a huge phone and I was not expecting it to fit at all so it was a huge bonus!  I definitely would not be able to take the phone in and out of the pocket while running since the fit was so tight but it is nice to know that it at least fits.

The belt also has reflective bands and is water resistant!  Important for those sweaty summer runs 🙂 .  The zippers are also pretty easy to open and close, although, when running I did find that I slowed down a bit to do so.  I haven’t done any long enough runs with the belt to need fuel however my fuel fits pretty well in the small pocket if I were also wanting to bring my phone.

You can check out the TKO running belt and get your own here.  At only $12.99 the price is fantastic and it comes in four colors!

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Winter 5K run

Hello!  I have been super busy this past week and probably will continue to be busy until my children go to school 🙂 .  Really, however, we seem to have been hit with a small cold running throughout our house so hopefully it will subside soon 🙂 .

Today I am sharing a quick 5K workout I love to do when running outside.  I find on the treadmill it is easy for me to change my pace all the time and even sprint.  Outside, however, sprints are not as easy for me since I tend to not push myself as hard.  This workout goes fast and, for the winter especially, I find the 5K is a great distance.

winter 5k run

Nice and easy for a quick winter run!  I hope that those of you who have the holiday off are have a great day!

 

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Winter Running

Hello!  How has the first week of 2016 been so far?  Mine has certainly flew by!  Now that we have some snow Max and Asher have been enjoying playing outside and I have been counting down the days until summer 🙂 .

While I don’t run outside all year long any longer before I was married I almost always ran outside.  Looking back I’m not sure why I chose to run outside so much since I had access to a few gyms and even an indoor track while in college but it I did and it really wasn’t too bad.  After years of running outside I have discovered a few tips that can allow you to run outdoors even in the dead of winter.

run

Running in Bemidji last year.

Invest in some quality running clothes.  I love running tights that are super thick and even lined lightly. Especially if it is windy the extra thickness really helps! If it is really cold I layer a second pair of workout pants over the top of the tights.  For tops I am big on layering.  I like to be able to move easily so I typically wear a sleeveless running top and then layer a running jacket over the top.  Again, if it is really cold I will also add a long sleeved running shirt.

Keep you hands warm, but not too warm.  Even in the winter I tend to get warm when running.  I don’t own a pair of smart gloves or any type of fancy gloves, although I think they are probably quite nice!  I typically just wear an inexpensive pair that can be purchased anywhere and they do the trick for me.  I also don’t wear a winter hat, just my regular running hat with a headband covering my ears.

Warm up before you leave.  I find it is easier to warm up inside rather than waiting until I am outside to warm up.  Once I am outside I just want to get my run done!  I do just a quick warm up since I am already dressed to be running out in the cold and don’t want to get too warm.

Watch out for ice!  Ice is hands down the worst part of running in the winter.  Snow is actually not too bad, until it starts melting and becomes a mess 🙂 .  I try to find routes that are well traveled and cleared off well so the chance of ice in less likely.

Be ok with shorter runs and changing your plans.  Winter running requires a lot more flexibility than in the summer.  The day light hours are significantly shorter, the weather is more unpredictable, and there are simply a lot more variables that you don’t have control over.  Your route may be too icy, travel may take longer leaving less time for a run, it may end up snowing way more than predicted.  Staying flexible and realizing you may need to change things up is important.

Enjoy yourself!  Mindset plays a huge role in running outside in the cold for me.  If I start my run thinking about the cold and how it is going to be miserable then the run isn’t going to be fun.  If I start with a mindset that I am getting some fresh air and that it really isn’t that cold, my run usually goes pretty well.

I am off to go play with two little monsters 🙂 .  Have a wonderful day!

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