summer bod: holy circuits batman!

we’re on the home stretch here people!  and with 3 (yes, THREE) weeks until we’re in the full swing of summer, i would recommend channeling that anxious energy into getting killer workouts rather than stressing about those looming thoughts of baring all.  truth is: confidence is what’s beautiful and nothing builds confidence like pushing your body to extremes.  enter: more killer circiut workouts this week!  why circuits you might ask?  well – the whole purpose of these last 4 weeks is to lean out and we spent the first part of the program developing endurance, building strength, and now we want to lean out and burn fat.  circuits are perfect for that.  in fact, circuit training burns up to 30% more calories than just cardio or strength training alone.  by combining strength training with little bursts of intense cardio, we tap into those fat stores and incinerate those lil’ suckers.  so bear with me…you thought last week was tough?  buck up buddy-o because it’s only gonna get harder.  what i love about this workout program?  you can do like i did yesterday and workout in your garage or even backyard!  all you need is a jump rope and a resistance band ($20 tops for both).  you can modify every workout to be a completely gym-free workout which means there are NO excuses for skipping workouts.  oh trust me, i have plenty of them, but like the fitbook says in week #10: “lose the excuses – they won’t get you any closer to your goals.”  short on time? plan ahead.  go to target this weekend, get a jump rope and resistance band, and any day you’re feeling crunched for time, wake up and get your circuit workout in or if it’s a cardio only day, lace up your tennies and hit the road!   ha - try and give me an excuse NOW! 

the 2nd and very vital part of snapping your body into shape is your nutrition. and the tricky thing about that is often times the nutrition part is the hardest!  yes we all know pretty much how to eat right and what we should/shouldn’t eat, but when emotions, stress, cravings, and just plain ‘ol life come into play it’s not so easy.  it’s actually a little bit of a vicious cycle because unless you learn to really connect your mind and body, often time stress triggers eating, which then triggers guilt, which leads to more eating!  agh – STOP!  that’s why i recently picked up a copy of the new bestseller that oprah blessed called “women, food and god” (roth), which is all about really getting to the root of why we eat the way we do and how our mind, body and spiritual self are all connected.  DEEP!  stay tuned as i plan to write a lil’ ol book review on it soon.  anyway – point being that we need to stay focused on our goals.  my thinking is that how beautiful i feel is a direct correlation to how i’m taking care of myself.  eating healthy and making good choices coupled with my kicking my booty in the gym are a killer combo – meaning i can strut my stuff with my head held high, regardless of a number on the scale or a silly size on my jean tag.  [ok = i'm hopping off my soap box now]

now that you’re pumped – grab your fitbook and jot down  your workouts this weekend, prep that food, and gear up for a stellar week!

weekly fitness challenge: LONGER circuits + even MORE cardio
same split schedule as last week (3 days circuits + 3 days cardio) but 1 ) the exercises get even tougher, 2) you go even longer and 3) we’re changing up the cardio a bit!   again – you should be doubled over at the end of the circuit workout.  so plug in your little ipod, crank up the music, and go go go!  move fast between sets – don’t chat – jog to + fro between machines and only grab a quick drink in between circuits…but quickly! 

monday: circuit #7
tuesday: cardio intervals (35-45m)
wednesday: circuit #8
thursday: steady-state cardio (50-60m)
friday: circuit #9
saturday: cardio intervals (35-45m)
sunday: active rest day (beach volleyball, swim, bike, hike, walk, dance…play!!)

circuit notes: perform exercises #1-10 as a circuit for the 45 minutes, repeating as necessary for the entire time. then do ab exercises #11-12 and cool-down. so for example, you should be able to get through the circuit 4 times in 45m…then do abs for a total workout of about 55m.  lift moderate weight – you’ve gotta be able to push through for 40m and it’s tough!

circuit #7:

  1. clean & press squat thrust (15)
  2. jumping jack (15)
  3. lateral push-up (15) [seriously - i need to get some videos on youtube...couldn't find these!  start in push-up position then walk your hands to the right and do a push-up, then walk hand back to the left and do a push-up, so go side-to-side working each side of your chest]
  4. jump rope (80s)
  5. jumping jack lunge (15)
  6. bentover dumbbell raise (15)
  7. clean & press squat thrust (15)
  8. dumbbell tricep kickback (15)
  9. jumping jack (15)
  10. lateral bench hop-overs (15) jump back & forth quickly!
  11. crunches on ab ball (3 sets of 25)
  12. side crunches on ab ball (3 sets of 25)

circuit #8:

  1. jump rope (80s)
  2. dumbbell bench press (10)
  3. dumbbell deadlift (10)
  4. squat (10)
  5. barbell curl (10)
  6. jump rope (80s)
  7. lying triceps extension (10)
  8. dumbbell side raise (10)
  9. single leg lunge on bench (10/leg)
  10. dumbbell deadlift (10)
  11. plank (3 times, 60s each)
  12. side plank (3 times, 60s each side)

circuit #9:

  1. jump rope (80s)
  2. squat (15)
  3. lying triceps pullover(15)
  4. jumping jack (15)
  5. lateral push-up (15)
  6. jump rope (80s)
  7. lateral bench hop-overs (15) 
  8. jumping jack lunge (15)
  9. jump rope (80s)
  10. dumbbell kickback (15)
  11. crunches on ab ball (3 sets of 20)
  12. side crunches on ab ball (3 sets of 20)

[again - kudos to celebrity trainer t.r. goodman for designing this killer circuit program i found a long time ago in men's fitness!]

weekly nutrition challenge: plan it out + jot it down
rarely do i plan meals out in advance, meal by meal, but when it’s crunch time and i want to just be able to follow an eating plan without thinking or letting emotions or stress dictate  my nutrition, i will bite the bullet and plan it out.  painful as it may be, try it for one week.  sit down and make a grocery list of all your clean eats for the week and plan out your meals.  it’s actually fairly easy because you can always make extra when you cook at night so lunches and dinners can often be leftovers.  the key here is plan every morsel…breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks and treats.  then follow it to a tee. do it for one week and see how you feel.  were you hungry?  do you often snack if you’re not hungry?  what are your trigger foods that you should avoid?  really take time this week to connect with what foods work for you and those that don’t.  i’m all about enjoying all things in moderation, but if i know that i cannot cohabitate with a pint of ice cream in my fridge without it haunting me day and night, why torture myself?  i treat myself once a week to a single-serving size of golden spoon, and then go about my week without sabbotaging myself!  set yourself for success and aim to eat clean about 90% of the time.  what do i mean by clean? check out last weekstay tuned next week for my inside scoop on the best pre- and post-workout meals to fuel those workouts and feed your muscles.

alrighty peeps – i’m off to enjoy a sunny weekend!  rest up and get some shut-eye this weekend so you’re fully recovered and ready to hit it hard next week.  just think: those visions of bikinis and speedos that are dancing (or lurking) in your head are only a mere 3 weeks away.  and if you want to know my NUMBER ONE tip for having a killer bod in a bikini: exude happiness.  that alone has more impact on how you look and feel than anything in the world. 

with that…i’m off to sport my bikini and hit the pool for some laps!
live life fit…

p.s.  questions or comments – talk to me people, i’m getting lonely!

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