07.19.2017

Wellness Wednesday || 5 Ways I Stay Motivated

I feel as if I often cycle in and out of periods of motivation…. whether it’s for working out, eating clean, or actually doing my hair… in the same way that we often cycle through life’s ups and downs. I typically recognize that I am in a rut, and often try to tweak a few things here or there to fall back in a rhythm. A question that I’ve been receiving lately is how I keep myself motivated. So today, I thought I’d share the top ways that I keep myself going, when all I feel like doing is stopping (or hitting snooze 800 times)….

1. Re-Evaluate My Reasons: I think this one is always key for me. I often find myself in a rut when I’ve veered too far from the initial reason for starting. In my health and fitness journey, this often happens the most when I become too focused on the outward gains, as opposed to the internal gains. When I remind myself of all the other benefits of working out…. healthy insides, sharp mind, confidence, lower anxiety…. not just to simply look good, I find a new drive and motivation. Sometimes I can easily reflect on this, other times it takes a little journaling and re-evaluating goals.

2. New Work-Out Pieces: When possible, this is always a sure fire way to get me feeling motivated again. There’s something about new leggings, or a cute top, or even super comfy running shoes that motivates me so much. I remember when I was training for my first half marathon. I was mid training and felt my motivation waning. All it took was a new pair of running shoes (and some ultra padded socks) to get me back on track and excited for the next long run. Just this week I was feeling tired and sluggish. So, I pulled out these new favorite blush high waisted capris and super soft blush tank for my morning workout and hit one of my fastest paces ever. I snagged both at the Anniversary sale, and combined they are under $60…. and let me tell you, the leggings hug in all the right places. A few other pieces I purchased included this super cute mauve mesh pullover (a great option with shorts now and leggings in the cooler months), perforated zip-up (great for post-workout mimosa brunch), cozy grey zip-up, and this comfy pullover. I also love these coated leggings (wear them working out or to happy hour), poncho hoodie, distressed racerback tank, and this mauve sports bra. Oh, and these new kicks are like walking on clouds.

3. Try A New Work-Out: This one always works for me… it’s pretty much how I got started doing some of the Tone It Up videos. I remember feeling so un-motivated one morning, so I decided to try one of their free HIIT workouts and I was hooked. Other variations have included adding in a stairs workout, using different equipment such as resistance bands and ankle weights, or running a different path. If those tricks don’t work, sometimes I just do a low-key workout, like a yoga video, to give myself a break and re-center.

4. Try A New Recipe: I love food, but sometimes I get in a rut and feel like I’m eating some of the same things. Slight variations are super easy though. For instance, we’ve been having shrimp Mexican style for the past few weeks, but Monday evening we made it using this coconut curry shrimp recipe and oh.my.gosh we fell in love. Sometimes a new booch flavor, smoothie recipe (my new favorite), or snack bar is enough to spark my zest for clean eating. If you’re looking for a new dinner recipe to pull you out of a food rut, I suggest Skinny Taste and Pinch Of Yum for some delicious and healthy recipes.

5. A New Playlist: I can listen to the same song over and over again…. but when it comes to my workouts, new tunes are one of the best ways to get me re-motivated. I typically have TJ create my playlists because he is way more into music than I am… and he comes up with some pretty good mixes. One of my favorite songs for getting me moving is “8 Mile” by Eminem.
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(Outfit Details || Leggings | Tank | Sports Bra | Shoes | Sunglasses | Bag c/o)

06.15.2017

Summer Style || Top 15 Items Under $100

With summer being less than a week away, I can’t help but get excited to move my favorite warm weather staples to the front of my closet (well, that statement would assume there is some organization to my closet… which there isn’t….). At the beginning of each season, I find it easy to want to purchase every cute item out there… simply because it’s new, different, and “I don’t have anything like it… (another lie, I probably have 10 things like it….).” So today, I’m sharing with you my top 15 items that will be getting me through the next several warm weather months. Of course, there will be new pieces sprinkled in, but, if you’re looking to create a staple wardrobe for this summer season, then I have you covered. Oh, they’re all (with the exception of 4 really great items) under $100. Hope it helps!!

1. Cut-Offs: I seriously live in mine. As in, I don’t know if I’ve ever washed them (probably shouldn’t admit that though….). They go with everything, and are so easy to toss on and head out the door. My favorite pair are these high waisted shorts (they fit like a dream, and aren’t too short), but I also own and love these. For those who are looking for a longer inseam, I recommend these and these, with a 3″ inseam, from LOFT (they’re currently 40% off).

2. Basic Tops + Tanks: I recommend having a few of these on hand. They’re a perfect layering option for work (toss on under a blazer), or an easy front tie with high waisted jeans and shorts for everyday living. My all time favorites are from Madewell, $22, and come in several colors. I own them in white, grey, and a pretty mauve color… and thinking a black would round out the collection. This tank is still one of my favorites (bought it last year and still wear it tons). My sister owns this lace up grommet tee and I love borrowing it. Another favorite basic tee that I’ve owned since last year includes this oversized option (I own in black and grey)…. and this graphic tee. J. Crew has one of my favorite basic tees too, and it comes in so many different color options. Style tip… if you want to front knot it, simply order up a size.

3. Wide Brimmed Hat:  Perfect for those sunny days spent outside… or to cover up hair that hasn’t been washed in several days (that’s really why I wear mine so much….). My favorite is currently on sale (!!), and I wear this one all the time too (comes in several color options). Both are priced well, good quality, and neutral…. which means they go with anything.

4. Little White Dress: Always a great option for a dressier occassion! I shared my favorite in this post, and the cute little number is currently on sale (under $80!). I love this flow-y maxi dress and this popover midi dress (cutest tie at the shoulders). This little white swing dress is super cute too, and at a great price point.

5. Ruffle Top: Ruffles add a feminine and romantic touch to any outfit, which I think is perfect for the summer. I love the soft tee featured above (I’m wearing it backwards, comes in two other colors too). I also love my white ruffle one shoulder top, and this stripe gauze ruffle top is too cute. This little linen top comes in so many gorgeous color options as well… and looks really lightweight and perfect for summer.

6. Summer Skirt: Last year I purchased a denim midi skirt from Madewell and wore it so much. I was nursing, so it was an easy way for me to wear something close to a dress, while still being nursing friendly. This summer, I decided that a little skirt is perfect for a lunch, brunch, or date night. You can easily front knot a basic tank with it and toss on a wide brimmed hat and neutral side for a casual daytime look. I recently purchased this one from J.Crew and can’t wait for it to arrive (I am debating between the white and hibiscus). I also love this color-block maxi skirt (on sale) with a front knotted tank.

7. Neutral Flat Slide: Find the right pair and you’ll wear them daily. I do. These are my favorite. They’re incredibly padded and I can wear them all day in comfort. I own them in the blush color and they go with everything… yet they come in so many great options.

8. Neutral Sandal: Or, a heel that you can wear easily. I don’t wear a lot of elevated options these days, so when I do, they’re good. My favorite block heel sandal is this studded pair, which comes in cognac, black, and tan. I kinda wish I owned them in all the colors. I wear them with jeans, skirts, cut-offs for a dressy date night look, and dresses. These are my favorite espadrilles (two seasons in a row, over $100), and I also love this pair that I borrow from my sister all the time.

9. Embroidery: I chatted about my embroidery favorites in Tuesday’s post, but it’s a must have for your summer wardrobe. My favorite investment is this maxi dress (one more over $100), but also think this top and this chambray flutter sleeve embroidered top are super cute (my mom just bought it and I can’t wait to borrow….).

10. Summer Sweater/Sweatshirt: My logic behind this one is I need something to wear while I sit al fresco and drink my rosé…. but seriously, nights can cool down, and I love nothing more than sitting outside around a fire pit. If you love an open knit, I highly recommend this lace-up sweater, mauve open cardigan (so gorgeous, great price), and this open knit pullover (one of my favorites). If you’re more of a sweatshirt gal, I am obsessed with this new lace up in a pink-ish color, warm up hoodie I wear nightly, as well as this floral sweatshirt.

11. Gold Accessory: always toss on a few gold accessories with any outfit I wear. My favorite is this necklace, and I’m loving this gold cuff. I have my eye on this layered crescent necklace as well.

12. Statement Piece: As much as I love my everyday gold pieces, a fun statement piece is always great to have on hand. It can easily dress up any of the above items instantly. I’m a huge fan of these fun earrings.

13. T-shirt Dress: Another excellent throw on and go option that’s not as basic as cut-offs and a tee. Also a great choice to wear as a cover-up over a swimsuit. My three favorites include this cold shoulder dress (styled in this post), mauve option (I ordered it and am waiting for it to arrive), and this ruffle sleeve dress (last one over $100).

14. Straw Tote: Quintessentially summer, the straw tote is a must have. My favorite is sold out everywhere, but this one from Etsy is such a great option… just toss on this pom pom to dress it up a little.

15. Pretty White Top: My last must-have piece is a little white top. Nothing says summer more than a white top (and a little white dress…)…. pair it with cut-offs for a casual look….  jeans and a heeled sandal, along with a statement piece for a date night…. or with a skirt for an even fancier look. My favorites include this open back eyelet top, feminine crochet detail top, and this flutter sleeve eyelet top.

05.10.2017

Wellness Wednesday || Protein Smoothie, Benefits Of Protein

Over the past several weeks, I’ve chatted a lot about my experience with Tone It Up… and when we were in Cabo, I actually started to notice some decent definition in my arms (!!). While I credit this to my incorporation of strength training in my workout regime, I also believe it has everything to do with my increased intake of protein as well. After I complete my morning workouts, I try to consume a decent amount of protein for breakfast….

You see, for me, when I eat a breakfast that is protein dense, I find that I stay full longer, and have more energy throughout the morning (and let me tell you, chasing after little miss requires all the energy I have…. she’s non-stop…). Yet, I also like to moderate my intake of meat….. and by that, I mean not having it with every meal of the day. So, I started researching ways that I could get my protein intake without the need to eat meat all day (that tends to bother my digestive system…. TMI???). I came across the benefits of incorporating plant based proteins in my morning smoothies…. or even mixed in with an açai bowl or oatmeal. I was sold, and decided to start using OLLY Super Foods Smoothie powder. Each smoothie made with the powder, gives me a full serving of super veggies + fruit, a rainbow of nutrient-rich super foods, along with phytonutrients which are plant compounds with antioxidant activity to help protect the body from free radicals. All the blends (there are several different options….) are plant protein based and provide 5 grams of fiber. With a busy schedule, tossing it in a smoothie is the easiest way to ensure everyone in the family is getting the nutrients they need (and little miss loves hers too….).

While I’ve been incorporating it in various ways, the most recent concoction I created when we returned from Cabo is this Beet Smoothie…. it was thick, delicious, and nutritious. I also started giving Harper a chocolate peanut-butter banana smoothie (using OLLY Kid’s Smoothie) when we’re on the go in the afternoons. It’s been replacing the typical snack of her favorite crackers. She loves it, and I know she’s getting a snack that will give her energy and fuel until dinner.  It’s a win-win for the both of us…..

Annnnd, if you’re still not sold on the benefits of incorporating protein into your daily diet, I thought I’d share a few of the reasons I do:

1. Protein is an important macronutrient that is required for proper cell functioning. Proper cell functioning is always good….
2. Since protein isn’t stored in the body, it has to be consumed daily in order to replenish the body’s supply. When the body has a sufficient amount of protein, cells and tissues can build and repair (which is why it’s so important to consume after a workout).  It’s recommended that women consume between 15-23 grams of protein, post-workout, to achieve all the benefits (which is what I’ve been trying to do recently….).
3. Protein metabolizes in the body slower than carbohydrates and fat, which makes it an effective way to control appetite. Having protein in the morning is an excellent way to help with appetite control throughout the rest of the day.
4. Plant protein is a good alternative to “animal” proteins because it is considered “clean:” free of hormones and antibiotics.

Now, onto the recipes….

Beet Smoothie: 

10 oz coconut water
2 scoops OLLY Superfoods Smoothie
1 cup of frozen riced cauliflower
1 cooked beet
1 cup of frozen mixed berries
dash of cinnamon
1 cup of ice

Toss in blender. If this is for breakfast, I like tossing on a little bit of granola.

Little Miss’ Smoothie: 

10 oz coconut water
2 scoops OLLY Kid’s Smoothie
1/2 frozen banana
1 cup frozen riced cauliflower
1 tbsp almond butter
handful of spinach

Toss in blender.

What are some of your tips for adding more protein to your diet? Have you tried OLLY Smoothies before?

Thank you to OLLY  for sponsoring this post and allowing me to create delicious and healthy recipes. As always, all opinions expressed are my own. 

04.12.2017

Wellness Wednesday || 4 Tips To Incorporate Fitness With The Family

Before Harper was born, TJ and I were always looking for ways to ramp up our fitness routines. We’d train for half marathons together, often waking up early on Saturday mornings and heading out for long runs at the beach (only to be followed up by a delicious mimosa brunch). Or, we’d set the goal of doing a mini triathlon on our own: we’d run 3 miles, bike 20 miles, and swim 0.5 miles. As crazy as that sounds to some, it’s something that we always felt made us closer. Setting a goal, encouraging each other through it, and finishing, was a bonding experience for us; something we truly enjoyed and looked forward to.

All that to say, when we talked about what we wanted as a family, and the values we wanted to instill within Little Miss, fitness and self care were amongst them. We had a multitude of thoughts as to how that would look, and when she arrived all those thoughts -while well intended- seemed slightly grandiose (I mean, what toddler wants to tag along on their parent’s 2-hour training run???). Through a lot of trial and error, we found a groove that has ultimately allowed us to make fitness and self care, a key part of our family: through appropriate activities, the right equipment, and a good mindset, we are able to get our fitness on and spend quality time together as a family. Today, I’m sharing the 4 ways that we have been able to make fitness a regular part of our family routine.

1. Time Of Day: Figuring out which time works best for your family is key. We’ve found that the morning works well for our little family. Right after Harper has had breakfast, we typically head out and complete our workout. Finishing it first thing in the morning assures we don’t get derailed by whatever may come the rest of the day (because, you know something is going to come up with a toddler!). The temperatures are usually pleasant and cool, and Little Miss is typically in a fantastic mood.

2. The Right Equipment: Over the years, I’ve come to realize that nice jewelry + working out do not mix. I’ve had a history of either leaving my wedding band (and engagement ring) behind in a SoulCycle locker room (luckily, honest people have returned it) or somehow damaging it to the point that it needed repair (i.e. a loose diamond falling out, or TJ’s ring scratching from lifting weights). I recently stumbled across QALO, a brand that makes functional silicone wedding rings to match your lifestyle… they’re great for women and men, come in multiple color options, and are stylish and functional (always key for me). TJ opted for the men’s flat ring in black, and I chose the new stackable styles in all white. We can easily workout, play with chase around Little Miss (without worrying about scratching her), and then head out to a delicious brunch, all while wearing them – and not having to worry about damaging our wedding bands (or, in my #MomBrain case, forgetting it….).

We’ve also found that bringing toys for Little Miss that resemble those we are using helps as well (like a ball and a yoga mat). It gets her in on the action too, since she loves mimicking what we are doing. If we’re going on a hike, we are sure to use the baby carrier, lather on sunscreen (well, we always do that), and bring along our hats. A long run requires a few novel toys to keep her occupied in the running stroller.

3. Location, Location, Location: When we’re incorporating Little Miss into our workout routine, we always choose a park. She can easily and safely play, and we can keep a close eye on her as well. We choose parks that have grassy areas, and are big enough to allow us to workout without impacting anyone around us.

4. Flexibility: This is typically my number one piece of advice for anything baby/toddler/child related. In reality, 9 times out of 10 things aren’t going to go exactly as planned, and you just have to roll with it. Example? Just last Sunday I was in the middle of a HIIT routine, and Harper came over wanting to take my hand and show me something. Instead of seeing it as an interruption, I simply took her hand and did walking lunges as she guided me around the park (I’m sure I looked silly, but, oh well… it worked). There have been times where TJ has put her on his shoulders and done squats (great resistance for him, and she loves the up and down motion). We’ve found that being open let’s us have more fun and get in a better workout.

I’d love to know the ways that your family spends active time together, whether that’s a brisk morning walk or a bike ride with a little trailer behind it for the little one. Simply comment below on how you incorporate fitness into your family’s life and you will be entered to win a QALO prize package. See below for sweepstake rules + details.

(Post Details || My Ring | TJ’s Ring | Tank | Joggers | Sneakers | Sunglasses | TJ’s Joggers | TJ’s Sneakers | TJ’s Tee | TJ’s Sunglasses)

Entry Instructions:

No duplicate comments.

You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

1. Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post

2. Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#Sweeps” and “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post

3. Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post

This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older (or nineteen (19) years of age or older in Alabama and Nebraska). Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. The notification email will come directly from SheKnows via sweeps@sheknows.com. You will have 2 business days to respond; otherwise a new winner will be selected.

The Official Rules are available here.

This sweepstakes runs from 4/10/17- 6/30/17

Be sure to visit the brand page on sheknowsmedia.com where you can read other bloggers’ posts!

Thank you to QALO for sponsoring this post. As always, all opinions expressed are my own. 

03.29.2017

Wellness Wednesday || Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Pancakes + A Core Torcher Workout

Cravings hit me all the time. Not the insatiable “I-must-have-now” kind… more like the, “I saw a picture of that on Instagram (or Pinterest) and now it sounds amazing.” Which is exactly what happened before our family run Saturday morning. Someone posted an image of decadent pancakes, and it was pretty much all I could think of the entire time (#Motivation). When we got back, I looked through the ingredients we had, and decide to wing it with simple ingredients, but adding protein to build and repair the muscles (right after a workout muscles begin the repair process). I’m never sure how something is going to taste when I just toss things together, so I put everything past my two taste testers: TJ + Harper. Both wildly approved (and TJ added some bacon and eggs to his….). We had several leftover so I saved them in the hopes that they would be good the next day…. and they were. I heated one up in the microwave for Harper and she devoured it. I’d call it a tasty, healthy, nutritious, success……

Chocolate Peanut Butter Protein Pancakes:
1 medium ripe banana
1 cups of gluten free oats (I prefer Trader Joe’s)
1 cup nut milk (I used cashew milk)
1 egg
1 scoop of chocolate vital collagen protein powder
2 tbsp nut butter (I used this kind)
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp vanilla
dash of salt
dash of cinnamon
(makes 8-9, easily doubled)

Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. Heat a skillet over medium heat (be sure to spray with a non-stick spray) and then pour a 1/4 cup of the pancake mixture onto the skillet. Cooking times vary, so just watch and flip halfway through. We topped ours with honey + sliced bananas… but you can use blueberries, strawberries… anything you want really!

**Scroll down for the Core Workout Video

Again, last weekend, we did a few different workouts. A family run on Saturday morning, and an outdoor HIIT workout on Sunday. Both were great ways to get outside and switch things up a bit… and increase the intensity. I did this 2 1/2 minute core sequence following my 6 mile run, and it was a great way to end the workout. I really try to incorporate as much core as possible into my daily workouts and recently have been trying to incorporate weights. For this workout, you’ll need a set of dumbbells (I used 5 lbs and ankle weights… although, you don’t have to use the ankle weights). You can see the last core workout I shared here.

(Leggings | Tank)… and a few other favorite workout pieces below…..

With pool and beach days right around the corner, this momma has been kicking it into high gear. And, as always, a little extra motivation comes with a few new workout pieces. I’ve always been a fan of the Spiritual Gangster line and love this sports bra. Zella always has great items too, and at great prices. I think these performance white perforated shorts are great for longer runs and I love this twist front top (I personally own) for weight lifting and post-workout activities. This open back tie top is a great option too for a yoga or spin class. Lululemon has had some great basics too…. like this crop top (love it with high waisted leggings) and this crew neck sweatshirt is great for early morning workout temperatures.

03.08.2017

Wellness Wednesday || 3 Ways I Up My Fitness Routine In Spring + Favorite Spring Activewear

Spring has always been my favorite time for upping my level of intensity in the fitness realm. There is just something about the warming temperatures, sunnier days (…. and longer soon, with daylight savings time this weekend….), and the thought of bathing suit season being right around the corner….. that makes me want to kick my booty in gear just a little bit more. So, today I’m sharing the three ways I up my intensity level, stay motivated, and work on feeling challenged and confident……

1. Extra Weight: When I really want to increase my strength and build muscle, I try to incorporate heavier weights into my routine…. nothing too crazy, but you’d be amazed what adding 3-5 pounds will do! I’ve recently started wearing ankle weights in some of my HIIT routines, and have increased my dumbbells from 3 to 5 pounds (for lighter weights) and 8 to 10 pounds (for heavier weights). Sometimes I’ll start heavy and then, when my form starts to go, I’ll decrease the amount of weight. It’s a great way to challenge myself and ensure I’m still doing everything right.

2. New Gear: I’m always more motivated when I can add a few new pieces to my closet…. it really helps to motivate me when my alarm goes off at 5:30am…. or when I’d rather head straight to brunch on the weekends instead of logging some miles in my running shoes. I always try to find pieces that help me feel confident, and can easily transition from workout to post-sweat activities (whether that’s brunch, errands, or the park with Harper….). Nordstrom always has the greatest selection of apparel…. with so many different brands in one place, it makes picking out pieces so simple (maybe too easy….). I recently purchased this zip-up hoodie (in oatmeal) and love tossing it on after a morning run or spin class. This crop sports bra is the perfect length to wear with my all time favorite high waisted leggings (they seriously look good on everyone…. my girlfriend and I swear they have countering in them!). I also couldn’t resist this blush hoodie (it comes in 3 other color options too) as the perfect top layer…. I love the motto detailing, and the color is so soft for spring. A few other options that will pair great with about any fitness item you already own in your closet include this wrap front top, open back pullover (#obsessed), this twist front tee, and these mesh crops. I also think a great tote is a necessity, and this tote is my new favorite (this one is great too!). In my tote I always carry a water bottle, favorite cap, and lip balm.

3. HIIT: Whenever I’m feeling like I need to add a little push to my routine, I work in a HIIT routine. I typically make one up, or find one on youtube. Recently, I’ve been working sprints into my treadmill workout (since it’s been too dark, and a little too cold, to run outside that early….). If you’re looking to try something different on the treadmill, I’ve shared it with you below:

Warm-up: 4.0 speed/5 minutes
Jog: 6.0 speed/3 minutes
Sprint: 7.0 speed/1 minute
Jog: 6.0 speed/3 minutes
Run: 6.5 speed/3 minutes
Sprint: 7.0-7.5 speed/1 minute
Jog: 6.0 speed/1 minute
Sprint: 7.5 speed/1 minute
Jog: 6.0 speed/1 minute
Sprint: 8.0 speed/1 minute
Recovery: 4.0 speed/5 minutes
Repeat 2xs, second time skip the warm up

Other ways I like to add in interval training include jumping rope, weighted burpees, and jump switch lunges. They get my heart rate up quickly, and help me break a sweat!…. and with bathing suit season right around the corner it’s just what my booty needs!
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(Outfit Details || Leggings (I’m wearing the grey/black color) | Hoodie (comes in 4 color options, wearing a S) | Sneakers (size down), also love these | Sports Bra | Tote | Sunglasses)

Thank you to Nordstrom for sponsoring this post. As always, all opinions expressed are my own. 

02.24.2017

At Home, 28 Minute HIIT Workout

A few weeks ago, TJ was out of town for work, and I needed to get creative with my workouts. So, I created this calorie torching HIIT workout. You don’t need any fancy gym equipment, and I completed it in our small living room (with the help of my two little friends… as you will see….) …. I got my heart rate up, worked up a sweat, and felt challenged throughout the entire workout. If you’re looking for a quick, and challenging, workout this weekend try it out!…. get your significant other, or bestie, in on the action, and then head out for a delicious brunch/lunch….. a pretty great way to start the weekend if you ask me….

I’m heading up to LA tomorrow morning with my girlfriend, and we’re planning on doing just that…. a sweat inducing spin class, immediately followed by a delicious meal….

For this workout, you’ll need ankle weights (I used 2.5 pounds), heavier dumbbells (I used 10 pounds), lighter dumbbells (I used 5 pounds), and a yoga mat.

You’ll repeat the entire workout 4 times, and give yourself a 1 minute break after each completion. I’ve included the written workout below in case it’s hard to tell from the video:

1st Circuit:
1 minute jog in place (wearing ankle weights)
10 leg raises to the side, and then to the back (total of 20 on each side wearing weights

2nd Circuit:
1 minute jumping jacks (wearing ankle weights)
10 bridges with leg raised (10 with right leg raised, 10 with left leg raised, wearing ankle weights)

3rd Circuit:
10 weighted burpees (I’ve done them with and without weights… your choice based on level)
15 Cross Body Oblique Crunches (weight in one hand)

4th Circuit:
4 mountain climbers + 1 push-up, repeat x5
10 rows + 10 tricep kickbacks

Rest 1 minute, Repeat 4xs (or 3 for a 21 minute workout)
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I’ve also been on the hunt for a few new activewear pieces and have my eye on a some pieces. Always a fan of a good hoodie, this zip up, black pullover (love the open back details), and this blush half zip hoodie have somehow ended up in my shopping cart. I also love this open back long sleeve top (runs small, size up for looser fit, multiple colors) and wrap front top too.  This muscle tank is the cutest and I also like this tunic white top (love the branding on it), and these perforated leggings. I’m also obsessed with his sports bra! Oh, and I’m wearing these leggings, which I LOVE (stone color).

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend! See you on Monday!

01.18.2017

Wellness Wednesday: Torch The Core Workout Video

I’ve always loved ending my workouts with at least 5 minutes of core exercises…. this started several years ago, when I realized that regular old crunches weren’t really doing much for my midsection. So, I decided to incorporate a few core moves, at the end of my cardio, and see if the results were noticeable. They were. Very much so. Given that, I never stopped (I mean, why would I, right?)….

I’ve done so much research on the benefits of a strong core…. when I was pregnant I read that a strong core (and continuing safe planks) resulted in an easier birth experience (if there is such a thing) and a quicker recovery postpartum. Postpartum I did even more research into the benefits, and everything I read said that, post doctor clearance, to start focusing on the area immediately. So I did, and continue to do so….

I can often fall victim to the same routine…. and I know that does nothing for challenging my muscles. Lately I’ve changed up the routine and added a few new moves (my plank is always there though) and thought that I would share them with you today. It’s about 4.5 minutes, and easy to do anywhere…. no equipment required. Add it to the end of any workout, or just move through the moves faster and repeat a few times to get your heart rate up (although, I can’t say I’ve actually tried that last option). Either way, your abs will be burning!

I’m also sharing a few new workout favorites I’m loving below……
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{Outfit Details || Leggings (have had for years, incredibly well made) | Tank (same as leggings) | Crop Top

I still think these cut out leggings are pretty amazing, especially when paired with this blush jacket (toss on post-workout, or I imagine it would work just as well during a run)….. this hoodie, paired with these color blocked high waisted leggings would be the perfect combo for any workout….. this side split tank and sports bra combo are both excellent options for a sweat session… maybe a power yoga class.

12.21.2016

Wellness Wednesday: Post Christmas Circuit Workout For The Bum

My Christmas Day menu looks something like this: Cinnamon rolls, bacon, and an egg casserole (with some hot coco) for breakfast….. delicious appetizers midday….. and then champagne, wine, prime rib, stuffing, rolls, some kind of veggies, more starch… then pie for dessert. Indulgent? Um, yes. Worth it? Totally…. it’s Christmas… I wait 365 days for this holiday, I’m going to enjoy it one bite at a time. Then, the next day, I’m planning on putting my new favorite stretchy pants on and completing this 28 minute circuit workout…. to get my bum back on track.

This workout is one of my recent favorites. It only requires a chair (or step… I used a bench since I was at the gym filming this), weights (I used 5 pounds during this workout), and a little bit of space. You can do it at home, at the gym, or outside. No excuses for this one. Trust me, you’ll thank me when you’re done (or hate me….).

There are two separate circuits to complete, with both videos below. Do each move in the circuit as many times as you can in 7 minutes, then move onto the next circuit. Repeat it twice, and you have a killer 28 minute workout. Annnnd, in case you’re looking for the outfit details from this post, or some last minute gift ideas for the fitness fanatic in your life, see below (and items ordered this morning should arrive by 12/24).


{Outfit Details || High Waisted Leggings (wearing XS) | Tank (wearing XS) | Shoes}

So, if you have someone who just loves going to spin, boot camp, yoga, pilates, or for a long run then I have just the items for them! A few accessories that I added to my list include this amazing gym bag, gold water bottleperforated baseball cap (actually snagged this for myself last weekend… for those no-wash hair days), and this yoga mat, which has such a fab design.

 

If you’re looking to give (or invest in a few pieces yourself) some apparel, I love these mesh leggings, sleeveless hoodie (perfect to transition from workout to lunch…), mixed media cropped leggings, and this incredibly cozy sweater jacket (I personally own this one).

And, if none of those seem right, I suggest an experience… maybe a set of classes at someone’s favorite yoga or spin studio. Or, possibly sponsoring someone to run a half marathon (or even a full!). Either way you go, you’re sure to give them something they’ll love!

11.02.2016

Wellness Wednesday: Working Out With Bébé + A Full Body Circuit

Today’s post was actually born by accident. I was hanging out with Harper one morning, and while she was doing some exploring around the room (and by exploring, I mean pulling everything out of the shelves…), I decided to finish my workout from the morning. I had gone on an early morning run, but hadn’t yet completed my strength training component. As I pulled out my weights and started to squat (as in, doing my squats….), little miss decided she wanted in on the action too by crawling up my leg. I quickly realized that if I was going to finish my circuit, I was going to need to wear her. So I pulled out my baby carrier, plopped her in, and started the routine. I thought that maybe she would tolerate it and I’d get in a few moves. To my surprise, she was giggling and smiling the entire time…. and so this workout was born.

Over the past few months I’ve realized that the name of the game is flexibility in parenting, and that applies to my workouts as well. While I would love to spend a leisurely hour at the gym, that just isn’t always possible. What is possible, is a morning cardio session, followed up by some strength training at home. Wearing little miss is an added bonus too…. think extra resistance… a whole 18 extra pounds of it!

You can watch the video below for the entire circuit. Complete it 4xs, with a 2 minute rest in between, and I guarantee your heart rate will be up and your legs will be begging you to stop. Oh, and if you don’t have a little one to wear, this workout is just as effective… simply use heavier weights.
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{Post Details || Leggings | Sweater | Baby Carrier | Weights}