01.17.2013

Fitness

Beach Bum Workout

Track Workout

Musical Workout

Reward Yourself…Without Food!

The Couple’s Workout

Fitness Apps we Love

Commercial Workout

Stairs 

Christmas Calorie Burner

Get Fit, Get Inspired

Treadmill Workout + Fitness Challenge

Lower Body Exercises for Runners (or anyone else)

Home Gym Essentials 

Stadium Work-Out

Las Vegas (or anywhere) Workout 

Pasadena Hike 

San Diego Day of Fitness #4

San Diego Day of Fitness #3

San Diego Day of Fitness #2

San Diego Day of Fitness #1

Beach Workout

Mix it Up

Run for the Hills

Vacation Workout: Beach

Bikini Butt

13.1

Soothing Baths

Stretch it Out: #2

Stretch it Out: #1

Half Marathon Training Schedule

Core Series #4:

Core Series #3:

Welcome to core series #3! If you missed the first two click here and here. I’ve put together 5 core moves, that when done together, will have you feeling stronger and ready for summer!! You’ll need a medicine ball (inflated better than mine… I couldn’t find my pump!), a yoga mat, and a smile…. come on, it’s not THAT bad!!

Move 1:

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{Balance yourself on the medicine ball in plank position and hold for 30 seconds to 1 minute. Your ultimate goal should be a minute}

Move 2:

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{Begin in plank position on the medicine ball}

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{Then do 30 mountain climbers. Try to get your knees as close to the ball as possible without losing form.}

Move 3:

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{Start in side plank on either side. Make sure you smile! It tricks your brain into thinking you are having fun!}

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{In a smooth and controlled movement take the top leg and kick it out in front of you. Take your arm that is in the  air down to meet your foot. It should look as if you are forming a triangle with your arm, leg, and torso. Do 30 on your right and left sides.}

Move 4:

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{Start in side plank again}

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{Then, lower your hips so they come about 1-2 inches off the ground and then return to starting plank position. Do 30 sets on your right and left side.}

Move #5:

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{Start on your back, engage your core, lift legs, arms, and neck off the floor}

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{Alternate raising each leg up and down. I have exaggerated the motion for purposes of this picture, but try to make your “flutter kicks” smaller. Do for 30 seconds.}

Hope you enjoy! Thanks for reading!

<3, Shannon

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Core Series #2: Towel Workout:

Endless crunches are SO boring. And they aren’t even that effective! If you want to try something totally different and way more effective-all you need is two towels! Check out these moves that will rip up your core without doing a single crunch!

1. Start in a plank position for all of these moves, one foot on one towel. Bring one knee up at a time to the corresponding elbow, alternating just like a mountain climber. Do 15 with each leg.IMG_3192
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2. Towel pike: start in plank, engage core, and pull feet in to your chest, keeping knees straight. Then slowly return to plank. Repeat 15-20 times.

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3. Knees to chest: Similar to the last one, start in plank, engage core, and bring knees to chest up the center. This time, keep knees bent. Hold in the center for 3 seconds, then slide legs back to plank. Repeat 15-20 times.

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4. Oblique Crunch: Start in plank, then bring left leg out to your side, touching your left knee to your left elbow, crunching your obliques. Slide leg back to starting position, and repeat on other leg. Repeat 20 times.

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5. This last one is killer! Start in plank, then bring knees through the center into your chest, then circle both legs out in a circle, bringing them back into plank. Repeat this motion 10 times, then circle legs in the opposite motion 10 times.

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Hope you’re feeling those abdominal muscles workin hard! I know I was after taking these pictures!

-Allison

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Core Series #1:

As the Spring/Summer months approach we decided to start a series on core exercises. I mean, who doesn’t want that amazing mid-section for the beach and pool? So, I’ll admit, I over indulged this past weekend. I don’t regret a minute of it, but come Sunday morning it was definitely time to detox. When this happens, I will typically engage in some form of cardio and then, at the end, do a core series. For our first post on core workouts, I’ve included 4 different poses that, when held for one minute each, will have your core burning and your stomach feeling tighter. Just a tip, when doing the core exercises it’s important to keep your core engaged (this typically feels like you are flexing your stomach).

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{Hold this first plank for 2 minutes}

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{1 minute at modified plank}

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{30 second side planks on both sides}

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{boat pose…. keep your back straight and your feet bent at a 90 degree angle with your arms extended at your side… hold for 1 minute}

{Outfit details: All from lululemon}

You’re done! Hope your core feels amazing!

<3 Shannon

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Jump Into Fitness:

This was a pretty indulgent weekend for me-I’ll admit it. It started Thursday night with a DELICIOUS, authentic, Italian dinner at Pizzeria Mozza in Newport Beach. However, delicious, authentic Italian food does not always translate into light and healthy, and this meal was certainly no exception. The rest of the weekend continued in a similar fashion, so come Monday, I’m feeling a little over-indulged. Happens to the best of us, right? However, instead of beating ourselves up for over-indulging every once in a while, it’s important to remember that we are human and we WILL over do it sometimes, and that is okay!! All it really means is that we get another chance to push the reset button and start fresh. How can you do that? Exercise of course!

I put together this workout because my bout with Plantar Faciitis in my foot has prevented me from running/training for our half marathon, meaning all of my training must come from cross-training (performing alternative activities that will provide similar conditioning and endurance/strength training as running without actually running). My most recent favorite cross-training activity: Jumping rope! Bring out your inner child and travel down memory lane while getting a great cardio AND lower body workout! Paired with these strength training exercises you’ll be done with your workout in only about 20-30 minutes!

For this workout, you’ll need:

~A jump rope-you can get one at Target for $8.

~A yoga mat

~One set of dumbbells. I use two 10’s, adjust according to your fitness level.

**Remember: Jumping rope is a great, low impact workout, but only if you do it correctly. Keep your weight on “jumps” on the balls of your feet, staying as much on your toes as possible. This takes the stress off the knees and heels. Try not to come more than an inch or two off the ground- you’ll go faster, get more jumps in, and increase your heart rate (in a good way).

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-Jump rope for 90 seconds

-Wood Chops: Start holding one of the weights in both hands between your legs in a squat position. Quickly stand up twisting your torso, raising the weight above your head to your right. Return to squat position. Contract your core the whole time, this is working your abs/obliques. Do 30 (15 on each side).

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-Military Press: Stand with one dumbbell in each hand, arms up and bent at a 90 degree angle by your head. Straighten your arms up all the way above your head, then lower back to 90 degree angle. Do 15.

-Jump rope, 30 jumps on your right foot, 30 on your left.

-Plank jacks: In plank position (forearms and toes), mimic a jumping jack motion with your legs. Start with them together, then, staying on your forearms and toes, lift them off the ground and separate them as you would in a jumping jack (minus the arms). Do 25.

-Bicep Curls– Do 20

Repeat all of this 2 times.

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-Jump Rope for 90 seconds

-Dragon push ups: These are ROUGH! They work everything though! Start in push up position. As you bend your arms and lower yourself to the ground, bring up your left knee to your left elbow, keeping your inner thigh facing the ground. You should feel the crunch in your obliques. Do 10-15.

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-V-ups: Lay face up on your back. At the same time, raise legs and torso to meet in the center. Return to starting position. Do 20.

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Jump rope for 90 seconds.

– Alternating side kicks: Squat, then kick your right leg straight out to the side, so that you feel your obliques crunch. Return to squat, repeat with left leg. Alternate legs, 20 on each leg.

-Tricep extensions: Do 15.

Repeat all of this this 2 times.

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-Jump rope for 60 seconds.

-Toe touches: lay on your back, feet raised straight up. Reach up with your hands and try to touch your shoe laces. Do 25.

-Jump squats: Do 20

Jump Rope -30 on each foot

-Plank: 1 minute

Repeat all of this 2 times.

You’re done! Combining upper body and lower body simultaneously in workouts burns more calories, and keeps your body burning more fat throughout the day-pretty good deal! Hope you enjoyed jumping your way to fitness!

-Allison

Playing Outdoors:

This past weekend we were  blessed with another another stunning Saturday in Southern California. For most in Southern California, that often translates into shorts, t-shirts, flip-flops, and a drive down to the beach! For the hubby and me, it made for a perfect Saturday morning hike in Laguna Canyon. We’ve done this hike many times and it never gets old. It’s challenging, yet not too challenging that you are huffing and puffing the entire way (believe me, we did that in Yosemite… not too “rejuvenating.”). There are several different trails, all provide a different variation of difficulty and scenery. We chose our tried and true trail: up Bommer Ridge Trail and then down Boat Trail for fabulous views of Catalina and the Pacific Coast! It’s about 9 miles round trip, so make sure you stock up with enough water, bananas, and oat bars (great recipe here) to stay fueled and hydrated. Oh, and I also highly recommend sun-screen so you don’t look like a tomato in the middle of Winter (just a suggestion).

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{Just an FYI- the first 1.5 miles is all up hill. You can get through it!}

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{Take this trail to the LEFT!}

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IMG_3378{From Bommer Ridge you can only take Boat trail to the right…. I don’t really recommend going to the left… since it appears to be a cliff….}

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{I couldn’t resist this instagram picture!}

IMG_3389{The view alone is worth the achy and tired feet! We usually stop at the top, take a breather, and fuel up/re-hydrate! It’s peaceful at the top, so take a couple minutes to soak it up.}

IMG_3386{So happy to be at the top! Such a feeling of accomplishment.}

{Outfit details: All clothing lulu lemon}

Just a couple of tidbits of information (all research based) about being outside and the positive effects:

being outdoor increases fitness levels and healthy bodies

raises levels of vitamin D which helps prevent bone problems and  heart disease (to name a few)

spending time in nature makes you nicer, which increases your social interactions

I’ll end this post with a saying the hubby and I use frequently “The couple that plays together, stays together!”

So get out there and play!

Thanks for reading!

<3 Shannon

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Exercise to Reduce Stress and Anxiety:

Anxiety and Stress. There are not great words. They conjure up all types of different feelings for me. Think back to a time where you had a lot on your plate…. lots to worry about and not sure how to resolve all those worries. Now, think about how your body felt. I wouldn’t be shocked if your body felt terrible…. your body was likely telling you that it couldn’t handle the stress anymore. A study from the Mayo Clinic found that anxiety/stress can effect your body in the following ways: headache, stomach ache, chest pain, and fatigue.

On top of the physical ailments, they can cause overeating, angry outbursts, and social withdrawal (just to name a few). I don’t know about you, but I’m not sure that’s how I want to feel! So, we are starting a four part series on the top four ways to combat anxiety/stress (It’s probably a good idea to put my disclaimer here: If you are experiencing clinical anxiety, worries beyond the daily stressors (or chronic anxiety), it would be best to contact a therapist to discuss concerns further.). The series will run through the next four weeks! So stay tuned! The first one we will start with is EXERCISE!

Dozens of studies have been done on the positive effects exercise can have on anxiety (i.e. Mayo Clinic, Harvard Health… just to name a few). In a nut-shell they have found that regular exercise can reduce the body’s stress hormone level and stimulate the production of “feel good chemicals” (i.e. endorphins). Another added benefit, the shrinking waist line, will lead to an increase in confidence and feelings of accomplishment (which lead to better job performance and success in other life tasks). In addition, (as if I need to give another reason) it can increase your sociability level and contact with positive others.

So this past weekend the hubby and I set out on a bike ride to enjoy the wonderful weather, time together, and the positive feelings we get when we accomplish what we set our minds to! We set a goal before the ride (we aimed for 30ish miles… we have been working up to this distance for the past year), listened to the way we felt throughout (which is essential to prevent injury), and when we finished, felt a sense of pride and togetherness…. we encouraged each other the whole way and could celebrate the success together. No room for anxiety here!!

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{The helmet is so not fashionable but, safety first! I really wanted to make it to date night that evening!}

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{Taking a break and eating our snacks! Must keep the body energized!}

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{Outfit details: lululemon/ topsports bra, jacket (sold out, but similar) Nordstrom: pants (on sale!) shoes (color sold out but similar here)}

So, get out and work out! Push that anxiety out of your body! You’ll feel better on so many different levels!

AND… don’t forget about our giveaway!

DETAILS:

To be eligible you must:

1. Be an “itsybitsyindulgences” follower (you can do this by clicking the “follow” button on our page and entering you e-mail address). FYI- you must confirm through an e-mail that will be sent to your entered e-mail address.

2. Re-post this post on your Facebook page

For an extra entry:

1. Leave a comment saying what your favorite form of exercise is!

Giveaway closes on 2.25.13 and the winner will be drawn at random

~Shannon <3

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Runner’s Tools:

As we mentioned in our very first post, we are training for a half marathon in May (Santa Ynez 1/2 Marathon). This will be my fourth run and I am so excited! Running is a gift that was given to me from my mom, who I can remember waking up early every morning, when I was young, to get in her runs. When I say gift, I mean that running has given to me in many ways over the years. It has been a stress reliever during difficult times, a socializing agent with friends, a relationship enhancer with the hubby (when we train together), and a sense of accomplishment with every extra mile I push myself to complete. Running has always challenged me to set fitness goals…. and in the end I wind up feeling accomplished and proud of myself. I encourage all my friends to run! I try to drag people into running races with me (you all know who you are)…. I believe in it that much! So for those of you just starting out I’ve put together a runner’s tool to get you started!

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{The appropriate attire. I like close fitting clothes… anything baggy tends to weigh me down. I run in the mornings, and right now it’s quite cold, so I need mittens and something to keep my ears warm. Outfit details: pants/shirt/sports bra: lulu lemon  Vest: Nordstrom}

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{An accurate app to track your progress. My favorite is this Nike running app which will track my pace, time, location, and calories. It also will alert you of your progress while you are running… definitely worth checking out.}

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{A  motivating playlist! I’ll give you my top 13 songs for 13.1 miles: I NEED YOUR LOVE- Ellie Goulding, SWEET NOTHING- Calvin Harris, GIRL ON FIRE- Alicia Keys, EUPHORIA- Usher, DAYLIGHT- Maroon 5, SCREAM & SHOUT- will.i.am, FOREVER NOW-Ne-Yo, SIMPLY AMAZING- Trey Songz, FEEL THIS MOMENT- Pitbull, SURVIVOR, BOOTYLICIOUS, & INDEPENDENT WOMEN- Destiny’s Child, & NOBODY’S BUSINESS- Rhianna}

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{Sturdy running shoes. I have always preferred Nike. Check out Road Runner Sports. They can provide you with a run analysis and fit you with the right shoe for your feet.}

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{A running buddy! Someone for safety, encouragement, and company! I promise you that the bags under the eyes don’t come with the runs…. the chilly morning air will zap those pretty quickly… and if not, stay tuned for a later blog post with my favorite beauty products}

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{A yoga mat to complete your post-run stretches! These are crucial to prevent injury.}

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{A nutritious post-run breakfast with the perfect balance of carbohydrates and protein. I prefer rolled oats with a Pure Protein shake… this was also in our very first post!}

There is a certain sense of accomplishment at rolling out of bed, when everyone else is sleeping, and finishing what you set your mind to! I encourage you to try it…. you won’t be sorry!

Happy Running!!

~Shannon <3

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The Lazy Man’s Workout (that isn’t lazy at all):

I have mixed feelings about the rain. It’s so good for our plants which need the hydration so badly. And who doesn’t love a lazy rainy day? However, the rain prevents me from exercising outside, and makes me extremely unmotivated to get in my car and drive ANYWHERE (including the gym)! So, for those of us who want to be able to exercise without having to leave the dryness of our comfy homes, I have created a 30-40 minute circuit workout, and all you need is a pair of dumbbells! Enjoy!

Circuit One:

Wall sit with bicep curl: Sit against the wall in a chair position with legs at a 90 degree angle. Hold this position while holding two dumbells at chest level, keeping your elbows against the wall. Slowly lower weights down, out to your sides, straightening your arms fully. Then slowly lift the weights up, stopping when your elbows make a 45 degree angle (not higher, this keeps the resistance constant). Repeat for 12-15 reps. Remember to keep that wall sit position!

Bicycle kicks: On your back, raise shoulder blades off the ground, as well as  both legs 1 foot off the ground. Bring right knee to chest, while twisting left elbow to touch that right knee. Then straighten right leg while bringing up left knee and twisting torso so that your right elbow touches that left knee. This is working your obliques. Do this for 30 seconds

Mountain climbers: Start in push up position. Begin a “running” motion with your knees, quickly bringing them up to chest one at a time, alternating as fast as possible. This works just about every part of your body, and is a great cardio interval, which is so important in getting your hear rate up and burning fat and calories!

Repeat this circuit 2-3 times.

Quick! Do 3o crunches with legs up in tabletop position!

Circuit two:

Pushups: I know this sounds super trite and boring, but trust me, when you do pushups slowly and you do them right, you should be feeling it in your arms, chest and core (slowly is the key word to engaging the core here). If you’re not ready for real push ups, then try doing 12 on your knees, and the last three on your toes. Push yourself in order to see results! Do 15-20.

Spiderman crunches: In bridge position (on your forearms and toes), spread your feet behind you to slightly wider than shoulder width. Now, bring your right knee out to the side up to your right elbow, so that your inner thighs are still facing down, and you feel your obliques crunch. Alternate legs. The key here is bringing your knees out to the side, not up the middle like mountain climbers. You should really be feeling those obliques working! DO 20 total.

Burpees: These guys are kind of evil, but great for that cardio blast! Start standing up, then bend down to the ground and shoot your legs out behind you, ending in a push up position. Then, quickly bring them back in, and jump back up to standing position. Do this as fast as possible in order to get your heart rate up. Do 12 of these.

Repeat this circuit 2-3 times.

Quick! Do 50 jumping jacks!

Circuit three:

Walking lunges: Lunge with your right leg forward, dropping that back knee all the way to the ground. Without allowing your feet to meet, walk straight into a lunge with your left leg forward. Taking out that step in between keeps your legs constantly in motion, without a chance to rest, which increase muscle stamina and strength. Do these walking lunges for 1 minute (You should get in around 20-30). Want to make it harder? Hold a dumbbell in each hand at your side while doing them, increasing resistance!

Sitting flutter kicks: Lay on your back, head facing the ceiling. Form a little diamond with your hands under your butt in order to relieve tension in your lower back. Lift your legs 6 inches off the ground (not 6 feet!) They should be hovering pretty close to the ground. Now, quickly kick one foot slightly up, and one foot down (but still off the ground), in very small motions. Your feet should never come more than about 8 inches off the ground. This keeps the core engaged. If you’re feeling this in your lower back, really focus on your core and pulling it in so that you’re using your abdominal muscles for this, not your lower back. Do this for 1 minute. For the last 10 seconds, make your kicks bigger and faster. These are fantastic for those lower belly muscles that are so hard to work!

Tricep extensions: Take your dumbbell with both hands and hold it on one end behind your head. The dumbbell should be in a vertical position, with one hand on top of the other. Keeping your elbows by the side of your head, and both hands on the dumbbell, straighten your arms up toward the ceiling, then lower it back down behind your head to the starting position. Be sure to not let your elbows flare out-keep them facing forward, almost touching the side of your head. Do 15-20 reps.

Repeat this circuit 2-3 times.

Now for a 2 minute cardio blast! 

1 minute butt kicks: In a jump-like fashion, kick your legs back, so that your feet touch your butt, alternating. Do this for one minute as fast as you can.

1 minute high knees: Again in a jump-like fashion, bring those knees to chest as fast as possible for one minute.

Finish with this core cool down:

30 seconds side plank (each side)

1 minute regular plank.

Now, congratulate yourself for kicking butt (literally) without even having to leave the house or use a bunch of gym equipment! Happy sweating!

-Allison

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We’re so excited that our first post is about something we love and don’t have to feel guilty about-in fact, it’s healthy! No, we’re not kidding.

We’re training for a half marathon (Shannon’s already done 3! I’m a rookie) and went for a 8.5 mile run this morning. Naturally, we needed some protein after expelling such energy, but who wants to eat one of those super sugary/high cal power bars after working so hard? Instead, we opt for the Pure Protein® Drinks. These bad boys only have 1 gram of sugar, 1 gram of fat, and 110 calories-all while packing 23 grams of protein in its chocolatey, vanilla, cookies n’ cream, etc., goodness! There are also versions that contain 15 grams or 35 grams of protein.

There are a few ways to consume these drinks. I like to drink mine straight from the can-plain and simple. However, Shannon likes it fancy so she blends hers with one cup of ice and 1/2 a medium banana for a delicious smoothie (with an added boost of potassium)!

You can get these shakes at Target, Trade Joes, and GNC, just to name a few. If you want more info on the Pure Protein® Drinks and their other products, you can check out their website: http://www.pureprotein.net/category/DRINKS.