Tag Archives: fitness

My Workouts Lately + Foot Injury Update

Hi there!

It’s been 6 weeks since I shared with you guys about my foot injury, so today seemed like a good time for an update post + to chat about my workouts lately! I’ve been kicking my exercise routine up a bit in the last few weeks since taking it easier for a solid two months after getting my foot injury diagnosis. Some recent workout highlights lately include:

Calavera Lake

My first (baby) hike in months! When my cousin was in town last week, we went to my favorite nearby park for an hour-long walk. I’ve been taking my pup there and just doing the trail around the lake and skipping the little mountainous climb, but this time we went for it. Even though it was just an itty bitty hike, it felt great! I miss hiking so much and it just makes my soul happy.

Mountain Biking-May 16

Getting back on the bike. Not only did my hubby and I go for my (only) second mountain biking excursion of the year a few weekends ago (and I had no weird foot/calf pain afterwards!), this week I hooked up my bike to my indoor trainer to test out short cycling workouts again. I had given pretty much all cardio a rest while trying to heal my broken foot bones, and now I’m trying out 20-30 minute rides to see how they feel. We shall see how it goes!

tennis session-May 16

Tennis. Since I’m testing out bringing back some cardio, I’ve played tennis twice in the last couple of weeks. It’s more casual tennis in that I don’t full-blown run since I’m still trying to minimize jumping around, but it’s been fun! Just a few nights ago, my hubby and I had an impromptu short tennis session before it got dark out. I learned that casually volleying back and forth is a good stress reliever and positive way to end the day!

Dog Beach May 16-Wheel Pose

Ommmmm. I’ve been doing a lot of yoga lately – mostly on my own for fast-paced at-home sessions. It’s such a nice way to start my mornings and focus my energy.

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The Quickie Do-It-Anywhere Low-Impact Workout

When I travel, I always try to stay active and incorporate movement into my day just like when I’m home. I prefer to exercise outdoors or do something adventurous in the area I’m in. But sometimes, the thing that works out best is just waking up in my hotel room, busting out a quick workout to get my endorphins flowing, and moving on with my day’s agenda.

Vegas rooftop yoga

A yoga session this week on the rooftop of my Vegas hotel

This is most definitely the case when I travel for work. Although I’ve walked a ton on the convention center floor in Las Vegas this week, I’ve also been fitting in morning exercise a couple of days this week. One morning I even made it to the gym for a strength training session, then taught my co-worker some yoga on the rooftop of our hotel. Another morning I did today’s workout: a quickie, 10-exercise circuit that requires no equipment at all…. because body weight training is easy & effective, especially when I’m on the road!

It’s perfect to do in a hotel room, and I actually made the workout up when I was in my hotel room in San Francisco last month. It takes around 20 minutes to complete, which is the perfect amount of time for me to do, then add in some yoga & stretching for a nice little workout. It’s also low-impact since I can’t do any jump training at the moment because of my foot injury.

Quickie Low Impact Workout

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The Work-Off-Those-Holiday-Treats Cardio Workout

‘Tis the season to be jolly… and to be faced with many options of sweets and treats to enjoy! I’m all for indulging in moderation, but to avoid weight gain and feeling low-energy during the holidays, I try to offset those extra drinks, desserts, and heavier food than I usually eat by making sure to fit my workouts in. In the spirit of active living throughout the holidays, today I’m sharing a workout that you can do whenever, wherever – no equipment required.

balance quote

I laughed a little when I titled today’s workout, because I don’t really like when the instructors at this barre studio I take classes at from time to time make comments about ‘working off that drink/dessert/bread you had last night.’ I workout because it makes me feel strong, healthy, and happy, and that’s what I like my focus to be on during exercise – not equaling out a glass of wine that I enjoyed a few hours earlier.

When I Move-quote

However, while it’s not healthy to obsessively focus on canceling out a particular indulgence with a workout, the fact is that exercising does give you the ability to offset some of those excess calories. I’d much rather enjoy my holiday favorites like red wine and chocolate cream puffs and make sure to squeeze in workouts, rather than deprive myself.

So without further adieu, here is a holiday workout that focuses on basic cardio moves and some core work. It can be done anywhere, and I’m bound to do this workout at my parents’, father-in-law’s or mother-in-law’s houses while I’m back in Jersey for Christmas!

Holiday 2015 workout-2

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What Makes You Fit?

“Are you fit?” 

“Did you say that you workout?” 

These were the questions our tour guide was shouting to me as I struggled to keep up with him and my husband biking through the hills of Austria. We had booked a bike tour in hopes of seeing more of the beautiful Austria countryside and getting some leisurely exercise in during our vacation there, but I wasn’t so prepared to be huffing and puffing with my heart rate at a sky-high level.

Hohenwerfen Castle

Austria’s Hohenwerfen Castle

Our guide was a little man in his 60s, originally from somewhere in Asia, who seemed to be in good shape for his age and told us he exercised daily. While I already knew that my husband was stronger and faster on a bike than I was from our bike date workouts through the hills of California, I wasn’t really expecting our guide to be as hardcore of a cyclist as he turned out to be.

Austrian Bike Tour Guide

Our tour guide

I grew increasingly annoyed at both him questioning me about my level of fitness, and his refusal to slow down a bit for one of two people on his bike tour. It’s something my hubby and I jokingly say to each other nowadays, saying, “Well are you fit?” if one of us is panting during a hike or complaining about post-workout muscle soreness.

Austrian bike excursion

The day of the discussed bike excursion in Austria

Looking back on that day – which was a great experience despite my bike pace apparently slowing the group down – I later realized the reason why our tour guide was aggravating me. He was questioning if I was in good shape. He was making me feel inferior, and touching on a subject that feels very personal to me.

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Weekly Workout Recap: No Excuses in Making Exercise a Priority

Hi friends!

I had such an awesome time on vacation last week, but I missed you guys! Even though I had access to my computer some of the time, I really stayed away and just enjoyed visiting my family and friends in Jersey. Between my full-time work, blog/freelance work, and personal email, I get a ridiculous amount of emails, and it felt kind of nice to ignore them for an entire 9 days. Now I’m just trying to catch up and decompress from the craziness that was last week!

The sunset view from my parents' NJ beach house

The sunset view from my parents’ NJ beach house

My hubby flew back to San Diego yesterday, while I’m staying with my parents in Jersey and working from here for the next few weeks to get more quality time in with my loved ones. I decided that since this is a long trip, I’m going to post weekly workout recaps while I’m away from my home. It can be tough to keep up with workouts when I’m not on a normal routine and in my own house, but I’ve been finding ways to keep nice and active.

Side planking along the Navesink River

Side planking along the Navesink River

This week’s workout theme? No excuses! There are nearly always reasons you can come up with for why you should skip exercise, and on the flip side, there are nearly always ways that you can fit it in with some effort and a bit of planning ahead.

low lunge-front yard

So let’s go ahead and recap my workouts since I’ve been home! To exemplify how I make it work and have no excuses when it comes to an active lifestyle, I’m also going to share with you what I was up to that day – because I’ve been all over the place and crazy busy since flying to the east coast!

Backing it up to last weekend when we arrived, last Saturday I was at my parents’ beach house. Some of my family – I think there was around 40 of us! – got together for fun in the sun and lots of good food and drinks. My hubby’s birthday was the day before, and my cousin and I had our birthdays coming up in a few days, so everyone celebrated with us.

My hubby, cousin and I are all Leos born with a week of each other

My hubby, cousin and I are all Leos born within a week of each other

It was an awesome first full day home! Since I knew the afternoon and evening would be hectic, I woke up and got a workout in: a 15 minute walk with my parents’ dog + 45 minutes of kickboxing & conditioning exercises + 15 minutes of yoga and stretching. A and I also wound up canoeing for 30 minutes in the early afternoon, which was fun! 

canoeing-2We enjoyed canoeing so much on Saturday, we did it again on Sunday morning. A 45-minute canoe ride was the perfect low-key movement to cure a bit of jet lag and tiredness from partying on Saturday, before we made the 2-hour drive south to visit A’s dad, who threw us a surprise family birthday party on Sunday evening. We were spoiled with birthday celebrations this year!

Relaxing in my father-in-law's backyard & playing with his black lab

Relaxing in my father-in-law’s backyard & playing with his black lab

Monday was a rest day, as our day was jam-packed with getting up early to take A’s dad’s boat out on a nice ride to Chesapeake City, Maryland. We walked around and checked out all of the neat little antique shops and had lunch there before driving to Philly to take his dad to the airport for a work trip, and heading back to his house to get ready for dinner at A’s grandparents’ place.

Chesapeake City

Chesapeake City, Maryland

 

Mary's Palette - Chesapeake City

I had wanted to workout that night following dinner, but we didn’t wind up getting back to his dad’s to go to sleep until 11:30 pm, so….Tuesday I woke up bright and early to get a quick workout in. I did a 30-minute treadmill interval workout, followed by 10 minutes of squats, sit-ups and pushups. Not surprisingly, I hated every minute of it! I’m still not a treadmill fan.

Eagles training camp

We then drove 45-minutes to A’s mom’s house, then headed down to Philly to see the Eagles training camp open practice. We had fun watching all of the players practice with 20,000 other fans, and I’m getting excited for football season to start…. though let’s be clear, I’m still a Giants fan myself! 😉

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My Yoga Practice Lately {July Recap}

Greetings from the northeast!

My sunrise view this morning

My sunrise view this morning

My red eye arrived bright and early this morning. Between seeing my family, my hubby’s family, my girlfriends, and my friend’s wedding that I’m in next weekend, there is a lot of fun to be had on this trip. Today is also my hubby’s birthday! I’m sure I’ll be filling you guys in on all of the excitement going on here, but today I want to talk about my life lately when it comes to yoga.

DCIM100GOPRO

My yoga practice is always an interesting journey. Some months I slack off a bit on practicing as much, and then some months I really get into frequent and heart opening yoga sessions.

Side Bend stretch

July was a case of the latter. I went to a few yoga classes on the beach and at my favorite studio in my town, but mostly I practiced at home. Sometimes I get into following a lot of videos, but for the past month, I mostly put on my latest yoga playlist, started moving, and let my practice take me wherever it wanted to go.

Inverted Twist pose

Sometimes I get more into the spiritual aspects of yoga, and other times what brings me to my mat is just some achy muscles that want to be stretched out, the hope of increasing my flexibility, and the desire to get a gentle workout in. But I always leave the mat feeling more centered and calm.

Wild Thing pose

Some days I would do a more gentle flow, other days I would incorporate light hand weights into my yoga. Some days I would practice headstands and balancing poses, other days I stayed away from any inversions. Thanks to an Instagram yoga challenge that I took part in, many of my poses this month focused on heart opening postures….   Warrior I

…and of course, the month entailed some dog photobomb yoga pictures: Camel Pose

When you have a crazy dingo who hates actually looking at the camera but loves just getting in the way during photos, it’s inevitable!

The Instagram challenge I took part in was called Back to Backbends, and was designed to incorporate a lot of poses that strengthened your backbend practice.

Low Lunge pose

While sometimes during a yoga challenge, it’s a pain to get a photo each and every day posted on social media, I thoroughly enjoy them as a way to try new poses. The challenges also bring about a fun sense of community with yogis on Instagram.

Reverse Plank

Here are some yoga poses that I’ve been working on:

Compass Pose

Compass pose. Stretching my arm over my head and grabbing my foot is not an easy task! This is a pose I definitely practice only once I’m warmed up. Otherwise my body does not want to bend this way!

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The Ultimate Leg & Booty HIIT Workout

Happy Friday friends!

Do you have anything awesome planned for the weekend? I’m very much looking forward to spending it with my hubby, and we have something special planned for tomorrow. More on that to come!

As usual, I’m sure that I’ll fit a workout or two into my weekend… and speaking of workouts, I have a good one to share with you guys today! In honor of me breaking my muscle tweak streak and not having any muscle spasms or serious aches in the last few weeks, today I’m sharing a leg & booty HIIT workout that’ll definitely make you sweat.

HIIT Workout Collage

I created this routine months ago and have done it a bunch of times, but for some reason I’m just getting to sharing it now. Perhaps it’s because I wanted to snap some shots of me doing the moves for some visual explanation, and that took forever for me to do for some odd reason. I finally got to photographing the exercises this week, and wound up burning the bottoms of my feet on my fake grass. Ouch. I’m not sure how my dog can lay out there for long periods of time when the sun is so strong!

This workout combines strength training and cardio, and includes some moves from one of my favorite types of workouts – kickboxing. It takes me roughly 35 minutes to complete, and I typically burn between 300-350 calories doing it. All you need is a pair of dumbbells. I use 10-lb weights, but use whatever feels best for your strength level.

Leg & Booty HIIT Workout

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20 Interesting Health Magazine Stats

Hello, hello!

Hiking at Elfin Forest-June 15

Scene’s from last weekend’s hike

Hope that you had a great weekend. Mine was a nice & low-key few workless days in SoCal, which was just what I needed. My hubby had Marine Corps training, so I had a lot of “me” time: hiking with Harley, recipe testing, running errands and cleaning, and hanging by my pool enjoying yesterday’s perfect weather.

pooltime June 2015

yesterday’s relaxing afternoon scene

First thing’s first: I’m sending out my first health coaching newsletter tomorrow, so if you haven’t subscribed yet and you’d like to receive my monthly e-blast, sign up below! It’s going to include workout and recipe ideas, healthy living tidbits, health coaching discounts and more.



Onto today’s topic, since I’ve been traveling a lot lately, I’ve been doing a lot of magazine reading. I used to be a member with a readership company that sent me tons and tons of magazines, some of which I still haven’t read, and when I travel, it’s my chance to catch up on some health & fitness media reading.

Since I find a lot of interesting tidbits in magazines like Fitness, Islands, Self & Women’s Health, I thought it’d be fun to share some of the stats I’ve read lately. Without further adieu, here are 20 intriguing health facts!

#1 – British researchers have found that people who did yoga just once a week for six weeks reported significantly more energy – as well we clear-mindedness, composure and confidence – than non posers. One theory is that by decreasing levels of the stress hormone cortisol, yoga helps reduce fatigue and elevate mood. (Fitness, January ’15)

Just more reason to get your Om on!

#2 – 

Metabolizing a Meal-stat

 #3 – There are 2,780 CALORIES in the Cheesecake Factory’s Bruleed French Toast, one of the nine unhealthiest menu items in America. (Fitness, January ’15)

Can you say GROSS?!!

#4 – According to research by Jamba Juice, 28% of people are scared of green juice. (Fitness, June ’14)

I totally get it, green juice can be intimidating. I used to be scared of them too, but now I’m a regular green juice drinker! I dare you to try out my pear, apple & cinnamon cleansing green juice or pineapple sunrise green monster. 🙂

#5 – 

obese women exercise stat

#6 – Once thought to lessen soreness and prevent injury, research now shows that static stretching before exercise can actually decreases performance and make your muscles feel sluggish. (Self, October ’14)

Instead of doing static stretching pre-workout, aim for an active warmup, then do static stretches for your post-workout cool down.

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My Current Favorite San Diego Studio Workouts

Hello, hello!

Today we’re talking about the local workouts that I’ve been loving! Recently I mentioned that I collaborated on a new project with ClassPass, which means that I’ve been a ClassPass workout crazy person. I think I’m sort of on a mission to try all of the awesome workouts that my health-conscious city of San Diego has to offer, and ClassPass is a great way to explore tons of studios in the area.

Core40 Reformer-2

Last week my friend Trish and I attended a ClassPass event at Core40 in Little Italy. You may recall me talking about Core40 in Solana Beach before because it’s a total butt kicking workout, and this was the first time that I visited their downtown location.

Downtown SD

Since I live in the northern part of San Diego County, I haven’t spent much time downtown lately. The class was at night, but I journeyed down there in the afternoon, walked around a bit and soaked up the city vibes, and worked at Panera Bread for awhile.

My favorite Panera meal recently: edamame soba noodle broth bowl

My favorite Panera meal recently: edamame soba noodle broth bowl

The event was a combo class – which means that for 25 minutes you spin, and for the remaining 25 minutes, the class gets put to work on Core40’s Superformer machines.

Core40 Superformers

After doing a few of their combo classes, I’ve come to the conclusion that they just don’t work well for my body due to the fact that I already feel fatigued by the time I get to the strength portion, then I proceed to shake like a leaf and feel weak throughout the rest of class (It’s a little crazy!)… but nevertheless, it was an awesome workout that had me working my hardest for sure!

Core40 ClassPass Event

Trish and me

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20 Minute Cardio Blast Workout

Hi friends, and greetings from Las Vegas!

I traveled to Vegas over the weekend for a work trip and will be here for most of the week. Before the “work” of my work trip really started, yesterday my co-workers and I had some fun outside of the Vegas strip, but more on that later, because today I’ve got a quickie workout to share!

Lake Mead

My view of Lake Mead earlier today

Even when traveling I still like to get some exercise in. If I’m on vacation, I usually find a place for that exercise outdoors in the form of hiking or biking, or just even just walking a ton being a tourist, but with work trips like this, I find myself mostly indoors in a convention center. I do walk an awful lot within the convention center – my poor feet always die wearing heels and other uncomfortable fancy shoes, and I think I was made to be barefoot, or even to just wear sneakers and sandals! – but I still like to fit in some actual sweat time.

The hotel I’m staying at has a pretty nice gym, so this week I’ll be popping in there probably once or twice for quick workouts, and will also do a few online workouts in my hotel room when I can squeeze them in. Here’s a 20 minute cardio blast that’s exactly my type of style for a travel workout: quick and cardio efficient!

*All you need is a set of 3, 5 or 8 pound dumbbells depending on your strength level. You can also forgo the weights if you don’t have them handy. Run through all of the exercises in 30-second intervals, do the whole set 3x, get a quick stretch and cool down in, and you’re done!*

20 Minute Cardio Blast

Tell me… are you more of a quick workout person, or do you take your time and more enjoy longer exercise sessions?