Thursday, December 8, 2011

My Fav Online Workout Video (it's free and not easy!)

I am very excited to see that SHAPE magazine recognized for their free youtube exercise videos, which as I mentioned, I steal moves from frequently because they are interesting, creative and dynamic.

Additionally, I tend to use Bodyrock in the gym. I love the concept of a home workout. Some people do not like to leave their house for a workout- be they scared of the gym equipment, worried about working out in front of others or just don't want to pay for the gym - the at home video provides a great alternative. However, there are downsides. If you don't know how to create a workout or change up your workout, you may get bored or plateau. Also, buying videos can get pricey and you may need to purchase quite a few to get a variety. This is why I love that bodyrock is free and the workouts change all the time. I also love, as SHAPE mentioned, that Zuzana provides beginner alternatives and really takes the time (and photos) to show you to make the move work for you. I will always remember the first instructor I had in they gym, and my future boss, telling the class you don't need to jump and offering levels 1, 2 and "crazy." I try very hard to provide the same alternatives in my classes. I have found that not all videos offer these varying levels and may provide too difficult for the inexperienced. I think P90X is great - if you have worked out before or have a base. My boyfriend bought the series four years ago and still has yet to do any of the workout because after watching the first one he was totally intimidated. I did a few of them and found that the workouts were very intense. He went back to working out on his bike and bike trainer set up in the apartment. Due to our space limitations I am hoping he learns to love the gym.

While I like the concept of the home workout, I can never bring myself to do it. I like going to the gym, yoga studio, pilates studio or wherever to work out and then come home and my house is a place to relax and decompress. Perhaps I feel this way because I have been working for clubs and studios for quite a few years and haven't paid for a gym membership in awhile, otherwise I imagine I would feel differently. However, I've really grown accustom to the feeling of the gym or going outside to workout.

However, I do use Bodyrock even with the gym. I used to love spending all my time at the gym. I had lots of free time and I lived by myself so aside from popping in the frozen dinner - the gym seemed like an ideal place to kill some time. I would take class after class - Saturday mornings usually meant hours at the gym. However, now with a new job that requires a commute, changing lifestyle and dinner and a house to take care of - I don't feel like being there all day or getting up before 4AM. Also, I teach the spin classes at 6AM and there's not another class that morning and I never feel like returning back to the gym at night for a class - I'd rather just get my workout all done while I am in the gym - I need something quick and fast to compliment the days I'm not spinning or add to the spin so I get some strength training.

And for those who do go to the gym at night or in the 7-8am time slot - you can't always make it to the perfect class. Sometimes even when you go to the gym, there may not be a class that's for you or you may have missed a class due to work or school and you're at a loss. You want to move quick and get the hell out but you want a high calorie burn. Do you do the elliptical for hours or lift weights without knowing what you need to do? How do you get your heart rate up for a short period of time without being a the gym all morning/evening? I think Bodyrock is a great solution. I watch the videos the night before - copy the workout down or commit it to memory and do the workout in the gym. I may look crazy doing some of the moves in the gym but I usually hit 250-300 calories in anywhere from 7-15 minutes. Sometimes I will combine a workout together if I've allotted 15 minutes for the workout.

Typically, I spend 4-5 days on cardio - 2-4 days of spin/biking and 3-4 days running (anything from an outdoor run to an interval on the treadmill). I usually add in swimming (once a week in winter and more before and during tri season) and I usually incorporate strength training, which is usually the bodyrock moves and my bootcamp class 2-3 times a week. I am not a fan of spending a ton of time lifting - I like power moves more. I remember another gym supervisor used to say "you don't need big weights (or any) for big muscle results). I am trying to also make sure I add back in some kickboxing, yoga and pilates back to my schedule, especially now that it is winter and if you're not traveling for races and taking some time off - this is a great time to try new workouts. One of the things I love about bodyrock is that they use all the basics - lots of squats, pushups, planks, burpees and other moves that either are the base moves or build on the base moves to make you stronger. I believe that any trainer/instructor wouldn't doubt the importance of a push-up or squat in your exercise diet.

Anyway, as winter sets in - if you're looking for a home workout or new moves to add to the gym check out bodyrock and give their videos a whirl. These are especially needed during X-mas cookies season!!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Burning Up: Raining Sweat!

Yesterday, we did a fabulous workout in my Tuesday morning bootcamp class. Fabulous because it left my ass sore and legs burning. When I saw one my students this morning, she let me know that the class had left her exhausted (good exhausted and good sore) and that I should do that class once a month to turn up the intensity every so often. *note taken!

The class idea was snagged from one of my favorite sites - The workout, called "It Will Rain Sweat" was a series of 10 difficult moves times 10 reps. And it did. While I've been interviewing I've spent a lot of time in the rain - miserable hot disgusting rain - and covered in sweat. Rain and sweat that have left me with a ridiculous dry cleaning bill and a newfound kinship with our cleaner. I seem to interview every time there is a mass rainstorm and also a November "heat spell." I end up sweating my ass off in a rain jacket riding in on the Path and then getting soaked while I walk over to interviews (though I am grateful for the opportunities-don't get me wrong!). I've spent a lot of time in office bathrooms under dryers or stripping on the Path train post-interview ripping off a suit jacket that was too hot under a rain jacket. And hair is not meant to be survive this weather. There's been a lot of buns.

As I mentioned, the name "raining sweat" certainly was accurate as I finished the workout totally soaked through as if I'd just left the sauna. The workout was meant to be done 10 times through; however with the task of trying to balance many different levels of fitness and defer repetition that may risk boredom from some patrons - I added my own twist and incorporated the "fit ass" workout using a high step (3 to 4 risers) instead of a chair. By the end of the workout you'll have 50 reps of fit ass and a solid 360 reps of high intensity exercises. For more on bodyrock or if you're short on time check out Bodyrock on facebook for "it will rain sweat" and "fit ass" or their website

We did our regular warm-up - 5-7 minutes.


90 second JUMP ROPE

20 reps L&R of squat step up knee drive on the step. (Turn left side to step, stand with feet wide apart, step right foot in, step left on step, drive up right knee) SWITCH.

Set of 12 exercises (this is what I used that incorporated some of the bodyrock workout and some changes)
10 burpees
10 weighted (or not) squat jumps
10 pushups (on knees, regular, or legs on step with hands on floor)
10 legs in and out (abs)
10 rows
10 tricep (french press)
10 plank jacks
10 lunge jumps
10 curl and press
10 tuck jumps
10 squats
10 roll ups



60 second jump rope

Set of 20 fit ass again

Repeat set of 12 exercises again


SET THREE (slight changes)

30 second jump rope

Set of 10 fit ass (to make 50 on each side)

Repeat set of 12 exercises again reaching total of 360

obliques - L&R
reverse crunch
repeat 2x
planks - rock side to side

Cool down

TOTAL TIME - 45 to 50 minutes