Roll The Dice Workout!

Hi all!

Today I bring you a workout post – my WOD from this morning!

With David being in London, I was unable to attend CrossFit this morning (major bummer) so instead created my own fun tabata workout which got me pumped up and ready to face the day!

No equipment needed, with the exception of one tiny thing – a dice!

Just roll the dice and do what it tells you – do this for 10 minutes taking a 10 second rest between each (giving you enough time to roll). Then, once complete, do 1 round of burpees for a minute (sorry, got my FitFluential challenge to complete!) and then start again.

I really enjoyed this, especially not knowing how it was going to develop – who gets 4 sixes in a row – me that’s who! You could even change it up by picking different exercises.

So put on some of your favourite workout tunes and enjoy!

Roll The Dice Workout!

 

(Arm Circles = place arms horizontally, palms outwards and do 3 sets of 10 circles in the different sizes, once forward, once backwards)

 

 

Hotel Room/ At Home Workout Made Easy!

Hi all,

Happy Hump Day!

We are all planning trips away at the moment, holidays, work travel etc so today I thought I would bring you a workout post but one you could do any time and anywhere.

workout

 

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Rather than listing ready made workout plans, I thought I would break it down into different exercises so that you can adapt moves and length depending on where you are and how much time you have. This way you can pick and choose, go with what makes you smile/ where you want to focus, whether that be arms, legs, abs or a mix of all. After all, sometimes you just don’t want to do burpees! I have tried to keep things simple, focusing on some key moves that we all know (and love!?!), making it easier to pick out a workout that you will enjoy completing.

First of all work out how much time you have. If you have half an hour, you can be a bit more relaxed, take your time between moves (still go for high reps) and give yourself a proper warm up and warm down. If you only have 5 or 10 minutes, then a tabata style workout would be better (high intensity interval training – try 4 exercises for 40 seconds each, with a 10 second rest in between x 4, 1 minute rest between rounds). Always good for getting the body pumped up, especially first thing in the morning!

After that then jot down what you want to do/reps. This way you won’t forget halfway through the workout.

Just remember to keep hydrated, put on some good tunes (iPod in a fruit bowl/ mug in a hotel becomes an instant speaker) and enjoy!

hotelworkout

 

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Key Moves/ Exercises

General

Burpees                               Mountain Climbers

High Knees                         Jumping Jacks

Abs/ Core

Push Ups                             Hollow Rocks

Superman (on stomach, arms and legs raised)

V-Ups                                   Plank

Crunches                             Bicycle Crunches

Legs/ Glutes

Air Squats                            Tuck Jumps

Lunges – regular and jumping

Arms

Push Ups

Triceps Dips (on side of bed/chair)

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If all this seems too much, another option is to run or walk. If you want to get in some quick sprints, get your kit on and use the street lights as markers. Or if you want to combine exercise while checking out the local area, go for a walk. After a business meeting or a day of travel you will feel so much better for it – and may even find some hidden gems along the way.

Whatever you decide to do, I hope that this makes it a little easier to plan. After all, it should be fun!

Well, Crossfit last night was the aim…!

Hi all,

As you can see from my title, our aim last night was to head off to Crossfit as usual. Unfortunately, David had a major project that ended up taking longer than expected to complete and he couldn’t leave work at the usual time. So Crossfit was a no go. He really had hoped to make it but at the last minute he had to concede to the fact that it wasn’t going to be. I was all ready to rock for Crossfit and was ready for a workout so decided to head to the gym instead.

(Oh I don’t drive by the way, hence the reason I couldn’t go to Crossfit alone!).

It was so strange heading off to the gym in the evening, haven’t done it before. It was also absolutely freezing last night so I piled on a major amount of layers before heading out!

As expected, it was packed with people – the ‘after work’ crowd. It’s normally so quiet when I go mid-morning, I really am spoilt! Also the men in the weights section mid-morning tend to be a bit more accommodating of having women there, it tends to be about ¾ men to ¼ women (I wish more girls would see the wonder of the weights!). However this evening there wasn’t another women in sight at the weights, I got some funny looks for being in there (don’t care!).

So anyway, about my workout. I wanted to do something Crossfit inspired and tried to get my thinking cap on while power walking to the gym. Power walk= warm up = literal warm up, it really was bitterly cold! And this is what I ended up doing.

Crossfit Inspired Gym Workout

10 minutes on the rowing machine/ 2000m (whichever comes first) – at highest setting.

5-5-5-5 Front Squats

5-5-5-5 Strict Press

Then…

10 push ups

20 ab mat sit ups

Repeat 3 times.

Foam roller stretches and warm down.

The workout went well. I did 2011m on the rower in 10 minutes 42 seconds with a 2.39 average.

The front squats and strict presses were done with a 12.5kg bar bell as I wasn’t too sure of my usual weights (I left my Crossfit note book at home).

The push ups and ab mat sit ups were a killer! But I persevered – I don’t think I realised how much I benefit normally from coach motivating us during WOD’s!

All in all, not bad for an emergency workout but would I swap it for Crossfit – heck no! Bring on Crossfit Thursday AM!

After that I threw on my layers of clothing and power walked home! Luckily David was only 10 minutes behind me so it wasn’t long before we were chilling out to a tasty dinner. The only picture for the post but I hope you enjoy it! Dinner was delicious, only 4 ingredients and just perfect – beets, steamed broccoli, smoked mackerel and sunflower seeds. Yum!

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My Gym Workouts!

Hi all,

Happy hump day! Hope the day is going well, getting pretty dark and murky here, and quite cold too which is just making me want to snuggle under a blanket on the sofa all day and watch Nurse Jackie on Love Film. I have however resisted the urge!

Today I thought I would give you a little insight into what I do at the gym! I know I post about my Crossfit sessions and often my home workouts but have yet to detail what I do the other 3 days of the week! So I took my phone into the gym with me today to snap away at some of the things I do as part of my gym routine – sorry for the bad pics by the way, the lighting in the gym does not equate to excellent photo opportunities!

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I head off to my local gym Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday mornings (I found if I go mid morning then it’s quite quiet, always a bonus!). I tend to work out for 40 – 50 minutes each session – that includes warming down/ stretching and if I stay longer it would only be to stretch out more. Here is my general gym journey!

First up – Rowing Machine!

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I always like to start my session at the gym with some cardio. I have tried the elliptical trainer (which used to be my go-to cardio), the bike and the treadmill but find the rower really gets my heart going and gives me that all over work out I am looking for from a cardio machine. I also like the fact that it is helping me to build up upper body strength! Today I did 15 minutes on the rower (normally I do 20 but I was running a bit behind today) and I always record my time, distance and average per 500m – I do like keeping track of my progress!

After my cardio I head to the weight machines to do some strength work outs. I will eventually move on to free weights to practice some of my Crossfit lifting but until I have perfected this and really truly know I am getting every technique accurate, I will wait. Then again, I might not, it is good to change things up a bit I suppose and if the day before I have been doing heavy lifting at Crossfit, I may want a break!

The weight machines that I train on are as follows;

  • Back Extension – great for strengthening up my lower back and keeping it tight. I lift a weight of 45kg currently on this for 2 x 20 reps.

back ex

  • Leg Press – fab for tightening up the quads. I really think that my ability to squat low and for a longer period of time is due to my work on this. I push 25kg on this for 2 x 15 reps.

leg press

  • Arm Curl – a more recent addition to my work out, trying to help strengthen up those arms in addition to what I do at Crossfit. I can only currently lift 9kg on this for 2 x 15 reps but this is an increase from what I originally could do!

arm curl

  • Triceps Extension – again, another one to help me build up my arm strength. I lift 23kg on this for 2 x 15 reps but have been able to lift 27kg for one set if I push myself/ depending on how tired I am!

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  • Hip Abduction – a good one for toning up those thighs – again another one I credit with being able to squat well. I push 32kg for 2 x 15 reps.

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  • Hip Adduction – very similar to the one above, just done the other way and focusing on the muscles inside the legs rather than the outside. Another squat winner – pushing 32kg for 2 x 15 reps.

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And they are my weight machines. Our gym has many more, some I have tried, others I haven’t but I find that for now, these ones are perfect. If I find I need work in another area, then I know I have more options.

Occasionally, I will head on over to the mat and do some crunches, squats or planks but more often than not I move on to below.

To finish, I grab a foam roller and do some work with that/ some of the stretches I have been taught at Crossfit. These are never much fun but I always feel better for doing them.

foam roller

And to complete it off – I do my general stretches. I’m sure we all have our own individual preferences for what we like, what needs to be stretched out and how we wind down. I always finish with a deep breath in…reach to the sky with my arms… and blow out, releasing my arms in a swing. Then I have a big smile on my face, and me and my endorphins, with a spring in our step, head on home.

The all over versatile workout!

Hi all,

I wanted to share a great workout with you that I put together when I was under the weather a few weeks back. I wanted a workout that covered all bases and worked most of the core areas. I have tried it out a few times now (David too) and just love its versatility. If you want it to be a fast paced, high intensity workout, set yourself a time to do it in – I managed to complete it in just under 20 minutes. If you want to add in a few rests along the way or maybe focus a bit more on technique, it can be done in 30 minutes. The first time I did the workout however was when I was recovering from the flu, but still wanted to do some exercise. So I took my time, did it at a steady pace and did a longer warm up/ stretch down – that took me just over 40 minutes.

You could also pick and choose different elements, say, if you had only 10 minutes to workout and just wanted something quick that got straight to work!

(Also if you want to break up some of the high reps with some of the other moves, that’s always fun – for example, 25 crunches, 15 lunges, then back for the other 25 crunches and 15 lunges).

Enjoy!

The all over versatile workout!

* Planks

–          1 minute elbow plank

–          20 side planks left

–          1 minute straight arm plank

–          20 side planks right

* 40 Mountain Climbers

* Dumbbells

–          10 vertical mid arm raise x 3

–          10 side arm raise x 3

–          10 overhead shoulder raise x 3

* 1 minute ‘hold’ squat

* 30 Squats

* 25 Triceps Dips

* 50 V Crunches

* 30 Lunges

* 20 under leg passes with dumbbell (or kettlebell if you have) x 2

* Warm  down

( a wee picture download below if you want to save a copy!)

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Crossfit – And my first injury!

wods and all

Hi all,

Hope you are all well and having a good ‘hump day’ – not a phrase we tend to use here in the UK but I love it! So will therefore start spreading it around…!

Gosh it seems like such a long time since I have written a Crossfit post. I had my week in London and then last week I was unwell with the flu, so avoided Crossfit – that would not be a good combination!

But feeling a lot better this week – tested myself out with a few home workouts first, then a gentle gym session and then my usual gym session. Once I could do that I knew I was ok to go back to Crossfit. (I must admit here I have been terrible in the past for going back to training before I was ready after an illness, but through educating myself more I have realised that your body can only cope with so much stress. Exercise is a stress on the body and so is illness, it can only deal with one at a time.)

I was a bit nervous, ok, a lot nervous about going back to Crossfit after a 2 week absence. My strength is getting there but I know it is going to take a lot of time and I was worried that through having this break, plus being ill, it was going to put me back.

It was difficult to push through the nerves but I did it, I knew I had to go back and face the music! So David and I fuelled up and headed to our box.

WOD2

We did our usual warm up, David and the others ran and I spent some time on the skipping rope. I just tried to get my heart rate going, rather than practicing double unders, as I knew I just needed to warm up. We then went inside and did some stretches, they were beasts but I knew they were working on areas that needed some movement – focussing on our hips which will help us with our squats. I certainly noticed a difference after doing them; hope we do some more of those in later sessions.

I then paired up with David to do the following –

8 rounds of 4

–          Back squats 80% of your max one rep weight

–          Followed by 6 box jumps after each set.

As both David and I don’t have a max one rep weight yet we had a few rounds of trialling out some weights. Our coach was keen to see us push ourselves a bit harder, not to the max but just to encourage us to be a bit braver! It was good to have a few rounds of trialling and by the end I was very pleased to see how far I had come. I was able to back squat 20kg for 4 reps! Progress!

The main WOD then followed

20 minute AMRAP

5 push presses

10 hand raise push ups

15 pull ups

To begin with I went for a weight of 12.5kg but only managed half the WOD with this weight, and took it down to 7.5kg. A bit disappointed with this but it was for the best, I was struggling with the weight and it was my coach’s advice to drop the weight down, so I obviously wasn’t lifting properly either.

The push ups were push ups, never much fun and it didn’t help that for the first 2 rounds I did 20 rather than 10 of them! Felt so stupid when I realised what I had done!

The pull ups, for me, were gym ring rows, from an elevated position. I did want to do them from the ground but my arms were just not giving me the strength I needed to do it. It was however, during one of my rows, that I received my first Crossfit injury! I leant back to start my row, at the same time another Crossfitter was lowering her bar from the push press and –thump- hut me straight on the head! It was sore, yes but I felt ok to continue. No one was to blame; we were both just in our WOD mental zones. A lesson learnt though; take a look around you before you move on to your next piece of equipment!

So apart from a bump to the head and having to lower my weight on the bar, I was quite pleased with my performance. I managed 7 rounds, plus 1 push up and it was a tough WOD. I was also just so pleased to have put in a good performance with this being my first WOD after being ill.

I also lost that nervous feeling, thank goodness! The good vibes at the box really does put you at ease. Back to the box on Thursday!

 

 

My Holiday Workouts!

My holiday workouts

Hi all,

Hope you have all had a fab week and are looking forward to a fun packed weekend!

Today marks the last of my holiday posts, hope you have enjoyed them! This post will focus on the workouts I did while I was on my holiday – I love exercise and even when David and I are away we want to take some time out to get a workout done. You are supposed to do the things you love on holiday, right?!

We fitted in 3 workouts while we were away and did them in the morning before breakfast – nothing like a boost of endorphins in the morning to get you going. The amount of walking we did around London on a daily basis when we were away made up for the rest of our exercise for the week – I wish I had taken a pedometer with me just to see exactly how far we walked! But I love walking so to pound the streets of London was just fantastic!

As a runner, David decided to continue with this for his workouts. We were staying with my Grandma who lives literally on Epsom Downs Racecourse – a beautiful, amazing place with fantastic views over London. David was eager to take the opportunity of an early morning run on the Downs, so peaceful and quiet.

I decided to go with an indoor workout for my first two, going for a high intensity power workout.

My first workout was a 15 minute AMRAP (as many rounds as possible). I didn’t have any workout materials with me (just my kit!), so this workout would be perfect if you were away at a hotel or on holiday somewhere where you didn’t have access to a gym (or didn’t want to leave your room!).  I also warmed up and warmed down before and after this workout.

Holiday Workout One!

15 AMRAP

10 squats

10 crunches

10 lunges

10 triceps dips

30 second plank

My second workout a few days later was quite similar, but I did mix things up a bit. I felt like the 15 AMRAP was working for me and got me pumped up and ready for the day so stuck with that, but went for a different configuration. Note – with a warm up and warm down, in total these workouts lasted approximately half an hour.

Holiday Workout Two!

15 AMRAP

30 second elbow plank

20 mountain climbers

10 lunges

30 second straight arm plank

20 crunches

10 squats

By the time we got to the end of our holiday, I was getting a bit envious of David and his morning views, so I decided to go out and do my workout on the Downs. A few years back, due to lack of muscle on my left knee, my Doctor advised me that running was something I should never do as it would lead to more wastage on my knee. I have however, spend the last 5 years trying to build up this muscle and make my knee strong, so I decided to finally take the plunge and test it out. Now I am not going to start training for a marathon or anything but just ease my knee into running now and again, in short intervals and see how I go. The workout below was tough, mostly because I haven’t ran before but my knee felt fine during and after the workout. So maybe a bit of gentle running, now and again, might be ok – yay!

Holiday Workout Three!

5 min power walk (to warm up)

2 min run

2 min of lunges

2 min run

1 min hold squat then 1 min of squats

2 min run

2 min lunge then twist from side to side

2 min run

Warm down

I really enjoyed that workout and being out in the fresh air – wow running does really clear your head! I also loved mixing up the running with other exercises. Oh and I got to see a few horses too, which is always lovely.

But, by far my favourite ‘workout’ whilst I was on holiday was blackberry picking! An hour and a half, in fresh country air, bending, stretching and reaching for the best berries, what more could you ask for in terms of exercise. Although I did eat my fair share of them too! But hey, nothing wrong with a delicious snack, straight from the bushes!

20130912 - Berry Picking-3

My Favourite Eats from the Past Week

Hi all,

Hope you are all well and have had a good weekend so far.

Just a wee recap of my favourite eats from the past week, not too many this week as a lot of them were repeats!

Monday Dinner – Savoy Cabbage, Mushroom and Tomato Scramble.

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–          Simple, just those 3 veggies, mixed through eggs is honestly food bliss! The flavours work so well together, it’s David and I’s favourite way of scramble and filled up our tummies with goodness after Crossfit. Served with a spinach salad (as you can probably tell, our leaf of choice at the moment), it really provides us with everything we need.

Tuesday Dinner – Jen’s Winning Combo’s

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–          Part of the ‘Jen’s Winning Combo’ series where I pretty much do that, take a selection of bits I think will work together into a combo and see how it goes! This one, another winner – tuna, cabbage, red onion and baby corn sautéed in a pan then mixed with my own ‘mustard sauce’. The sauce is made with 1 tablespoon of light Philadelphia, 3 tablespoons of almond milk and 1 heaped teaspoon of whole grain mustard. Mix and allow the cream cheese to melt. Then mix with tuna and veggies – delicious!

Our developing chilli!

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–          A wee picture of a chilli that David’s mum gave to us when she came up last week, from her chilli plant at home. When it first arrived it was bright green, then it turned to yellow, then orange then bright red as you can see! We had it in a lunch scramble later on in the week and it was really fresh with just a little zing.

Saturday Breakfast

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–          We were down in David’s home town of Darlington this weekend (north eastern England, about 3 hours from Glasgow). So we woke up bright and early on Saturday and started the day with an AMRAP workout

20 minute AMRAP

10 push ups

10 V crunches

10 jumping jacks

10 triceps dips

10 mountain climbers

So similar to last week with a few swaps but it was a perfect start to the day which left us very hungry! Cue oats and banana scramble! I had a wee bowl of oats, plain which I love (don’t ask me why I love plain oats, just do!) and then a tasty banana and pumpkin scramble with almond butter on top. Our bodies were just so happy to have these 2 bowls of awesome nutrition after our workout and a perfect start to the day!

After this we headed to a family BBQ in honour of David’s Uncle Paddy’s 50th birthday! I forgot to take a photo of my plate but here is a photo instead of David’s cousin Joe, tending to 2 of my favourite things I ate, pork and pepper skewers and halloumi, aubergine and tomato skewers.

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And to finish off, a great picture of David and I at the BBQ, having a great time and catching up with much loved family.

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My favourite eats from the week!

Hi all,

Hope you are all having a fab weekend! Just a quick post to let you know about my favourite eats for the week! A few that you will start to recognise as David and Jen staples and some new ones too. Enjoy!

Monday night dinner – Sweet potatoes and Cottage Cheese with salad

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–          A winner for both lunch and dinner, dinner on a larger scale of course! We find that this is the perfect meal after a workout, in this case Crossfit. A protein packed, tasty, filling dinner that, most importantly, is easy to make when you are shattered after training!

Tuesday night dinner – Huevos Rancheros – Jen style!

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–          My take on the classic! I start with an iceberg lettuce bowl, then fill it with the ingredients. Ground beef, browned with garlic, red onions and cumin, fill the bottom of the bowl. Then a layer of salsa, hotter the better in our house. A generous helping of sliced avocado then follows, topped with a sunny side up egg! A quick grind of pepper on top and you have perfection in a meal! The crispness of the lettuce goes so well with the intense flavour of the beef, with the zing of the salsa, cool creaminess of the avocado. And then you break that yolk… heaven!

Thursday post Crossfit smoothie

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–          Ok, so I know this doesn’t look that great or appetising but you have got to trust me, it was divine! 1 frozen banana, blitzed with ¾ cup of almond milk. Simple but delicious and such a good pre workout energy booster that didn’t sit heavy. David had the same with one alteration, the addition of 1 tablespoon of peanut butter. It was really tasty too, might try that next time.

Thursday night dinner – Scramble

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–          Another favourite of ours for both lunch and dinner but it really is perfect for after Crossfit, again a protein and nutrient puncher.  This scramble was with baby corn, mange tout and mushrooms with a green jalapenos salsa, served with a spinach and iceberg lettuce salad. Very good!

Saturday lunch – The Mussel Inn, Glasgow

20130824 - Mum and Clare in Glasgow

–          Now I won’t speak too much about this as my next post will be all about my weekend adventures but I just had to include this meal in this post as it truly was the best meal I had all week! Local mussels freshly caught from the Isle of Mull, steamed in their natural juices with chillies, garlic, ginger, coriander (cilantro) and cumin and served with a side salad. Truly the best mussels I have ever had!

How do you like your Huevos Rancheros? Do you put a spin on it?

Happy Monday!

Hi all,

Happy Monday, hope you all had a good weekend!

Mine was a productive one, with the car shopping a success and a new car picked out! Will blog about it early next week when we go to pick it up but I can certainly testify that we shopped long and hard on Saturday and managed to find one that was perfect for what we needed. Our poor old car just isn’t moving and grooving anymore and as sad as I am to see it go (it’s amazing how many memories a car can bring), I am excited about the new memories this car can bring. So, I now have a week to think about a name…?

After the car shop we went to pick up a few bits from Costco that we needed. Costco is another place that I love, and if you search around, there are a few wee hidden gems including some grass fed beef jerky that we managed to pick up! I never thought I would find grass fed jerky in the UK without going down the specialist stores/ online route. One happy Jen!

When we came home we decided to try out a recipe for some dried peas. I had read on another blog about the idea of them and with a batch of British freshly podded peas in the freezer, it seemed like the perfect way to cook them. We went for a blend of Thai spices – cumin, coriander, garlic, paprika and some cayenne pepper for a kick. They came out pretty well! Will pop the recipe on soon.

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Sunday was another productive day. We had our breakfast with cartoons, as usual and then decided on a tabata workout. Here we go…

  • 1 minute of burpees
  • 1 minute of weighted squats
  • 1 minute of crunches
  • 1 minute of kettle bell, through the leg, bend swings
  • 30 seconds rest, and then repeat.

We then did the plank workout from last week (see birthday post).

After our workout we then went for a long walk around our local park, Kelvingrove. It is so beautiful and I feel so lucky to have it on my doorstep. Sometimes when walking around you forget you are in the middle of the city, it is so peaceful. The best thing about it though is that people who live here take advantage of it and actually use it! I love seeing people outdoors, playing sports, running around having fun, walking dogs, sunbathing, having picnics and just enjoying outdoor life. That really is something that makes me smile.

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On the way back from the park we popped into our local organic greengrocer for a wee look to see if they had anything that looked good. Well, as soon as I saw freshly cut pieces of watermelon I had to grab it! Watermelon is my favourite fruit and really hard to find in the UK. We got home and straight away chopped a chunk off the end and sunk our teeth into the juicy flesh… mmmmm… amazing!

Behold my wheel of watermelon! I know it won’t last long in our house…!

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Oh, big day in the Fotheringham household today, David and I are starting Crossfit! Wish us luck! Will let you know how it goes!

J x

Do you name your cars?

What is your favourite fruit?