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Tag: workout

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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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.

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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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Should I workout in the morning?

Hello!  We have been enjoying some snow here in Minnesota!  Max loves it, Asher…not so much but he is still young and in the Thomas the Snowsuit phase.  Once he is able to walk a bit better in his snow gear I think he may come around 🙂 .

Today I am sharing my guidelines to getting up early and working out.  I am not a morning person (or a night person)…I like my sleep!  However, in order to be able to have the opportunity to workout or have time to get work done I have to get up early.  However, we all know that sleep is also super important so here are my three easy guidelines in either choosing to turn off my alarm or actually getting up early 🙂 .

morning workout

How much sleep did I actually get last night?  I always go to bed with the intention of trying to get at least 7 hours if not more.  In reality I maybe get 6, however, it has gotten a lot better since this time last year!  Since, for the most part, I typically feel pretty good with only 6 hours of sleep my rule for myself is that I get up and workout as long as I have gotten 6 hours of sleep.

Will I actually workout later today or tonight if I don’t workout this morning.  Some people are great at staying motivated for an evening workout.  For me, I typically prefer to get my workout done in the morning when I have more energy (and only will need to shower once).  If I am planning on running that has to be done in the morning, I hate the feeling of running on a full stomach and will almost never run if I don’t do it first thing in the morning.

Have I kept up with my workouts throughout this week so far?  If you have a goal of working out at least 3 times a week and are on your 5th day of working out that’s awesome!  However, if you are a little more tired it is probably fine, if you skip a day.  Everybody needs a break every once in awhile!  A lot of times I will take the weekends off, or take an active rest day if I have been able to fit in a workout each day throughout the week.

This is my process to deciding if I am actually going to get out of bed in the morning!

Have a wonderful day!  Typically we have Library time on Thursdays but they are on a break so we are going to need to find something else to do today.  Staying inside, at home, all day with two toddlers just really isn’t an option 🙂 .

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Cardio Ab Workout

Hello!  We have been enjoying some crazy good weather here in Minnesota!  I have been able to get out for a short (and slow!) walk with Max and Asher each afternoon which is great for a few reasons.  We get outside in the fresh air, we move a little more, and it wears them out fast 🙂 .

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I have a fun cardio abs workout to share today.  I don’t typically do a lot of focused ab work since I have very limited workout time and I feel like abs can be worked in a lot of movements that work more than just the abs.  This workout is meant to engage the abs while completing larger range of motion moves that will get the heart rate up a bit.  Complete each movement for one minute, rest one minute and then repeat the moves for a total of 15 minutes.

cardio abs

Be sure to utilize modifications or take some addition resting breaks if needed.

If you need an example of any of the moves here are some links to YouTube videos.

Standing opposite elbow to knee

Plank Jacks

V-sits

Plank hip dips

High knees

Bicycle Crunches

Mountain Climbers

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Weekend and workouts

Happy Monday!  We had a great weekend filled with food prep and buying a new mattress for Max!  We are moving him to a bed!  He hasn’t seemed interested when we asked in the past (even though he has been sleeping in a bed when we travel) however, in the past couple of weeks he has shown more of an interest so we decided to go for it 🙂 .  Unfortunately the mattress won’t be here until next week but we still went out and picked out some bedding 🙂 .  We chose to go with plain blue and brown so it will grow with him.  Now we just need to paint his room to match (and get rid of the very old fashioned wallpaper)!

ecfe

Friday started with Max and Asher going to their classes, which they both loved 🙂 .  We don’t get home on Fridays until 12:30 which means we need a quick lunch before it is nap time!  After Max and Asher woke up we went to the store to pick up a few groceries.  The store ended up being really busy and we didn’t get home until about 6:30.  Fortunately dinner was quick and easy and we still had time to have some fun before bedtime 🙂  After Max and Asher went to bed I decided to hop on the bike while watching Netflix.  By the time I was done I still hadn’t heard from David so I moved to the couch and watched more Netflix until David came home (his plane was a little delayed but not too much and he still made it home before midnight so it wasn’t super late!).  It was a very productive and intellectual evening for me 🙂 .

Over the summer we kind of fell out of the habit of prepping our meals on the weekends and making sure we have good breakfast and lunches that prepared in a way that is quick and easy make each day.  This weekend we focused on meal prep and I am excited about how much easier it is going to make our meal each night!  I also got Asher’s birthday invitations ready to be mailed.  I still can’t believe he is going to be a year old in less than a month!

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We even made time for some baking!  Pumpkin bars and chocolate chip muffins for Max and Asher!

Since I didn’t have the time this past weekend to share my workouts from last week here they are:

Monday: Kettlebell workout (40 minutes)

Tuesday: Abs and 30 minute run

Wednesday: 45 minute run

Thursday: Jillian Michael 30 day shred level 1

Friday: 40 minutes on the bike

Overall my workouts were pretty good this week.  Monday’s workout left my arms (mostly shoulders) sore for a few days and Wednesday’s 45 minute run went really well.  Overall I have been not been feeling super motivated to workout which results in me not having a plan for the day.  I’m hoping this changes in the up coming weeks as I know there are always quite a few fall fitness challenges and, while I will probably not follow once specifically, they do always offer quite a bit of new ideas and workouts!  I also still really enjoy the Suzanne Bowen online streaming and plan on trying to work those workouts in a big more next week.

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