08-12-2015

Why I Love 400 Repeats + Backyard Workout Video

On Monday I had a track workout that might have been the most challenging track workout I’ve ever done. It wasn’t so much that I felt like I was pushing myself to the max (like some workouts where you “go to the well”) but it was just a non-stop workout with minimal break…Thanks Coach Marc!

My mom and I did a 1.5 mile warmup, then 12x400s at 2:05 average per lap with only 25 seconds break in between, THEN 2 more 400s at 1:50ish but with a longer break, then 1 mile cooldown. We were supposed to do 4 total of the 1:50 laps but we only did 2 because I was so beat I couldn’t hold the pace any longer.

Running those 400s at 2:05 was hard I knew I wasn’t running 100% effort. The hard part was that as soon as you finished, you only had 25 seconds before you had to go off again. My sister went to be our official timer :)

I started the first few closer to 2:10, just to get a feel. I have never done 12 400s in a row…let alone with such little break…so I was kind of nervous.

This was the exact workout I needed though after a few iffy weeks of training where I just felt slow and off. I wanted this as a confidence booster. I love 400 repeats and they always make me feel fast and strong. Here are a few reasons you should incorporate them into your training too:

  • Even if you’re marathon training, 400s (or any track workout) will benefit you greatly. It will help improve your speed, strength and leg turnover. With shorter breaks like I did, you’ll challenge yourself to hold a faster than marathon pace pace (did that make sense?) so that your usual marathon pace will then feel “easier” come race day.
  • There are all sorts of variations of 400s you can do based on what you’re training for. Coach Marc is the perfect person to ask about this. You can do faster 400s with more breaks in between, slower 400s with minimal break, or a combination of both. Even many elites do combinations of paces. For example, I’ve seen videos of Brenda Martinez‘s workouts where she’ll do sets of 400s or 800s, then finish with a “tag” aka a 400 at 100% effort. Like I said, it all comes down to what you’re training for.

I slept like a baby Monday night AND last night because this workout really tired me out. No joke, I could have gone to sleep at 8 pm last night if I didn’t have stuff to do.

Anyway, I also put out a new workout video on my YouTube channel today! It’s a workout you can do right in your backyard, and it targets your lower body (with some cardio thrown in). Check it out:

Make sure to make it higher quality on YouTube by clicking 780 or 1080P :)

Let me know if you try it out!

Do you love or hate track workouts? What’s your favorite distance?

If you’re on YouTube, please subscribe to my channel! Will be adding many new videos :)

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12-03-2014

Cardio Acceleration Workout

Yesterday I was going to run on the treadmill then do a strength workout. Well, as I’m driving to the gym I realize I forgot a sports bra. The worst! There’s no way I can run without one, so while my mom ran 2 miles as her warm-up I just foam rolled and did some stretching. I decided to add cardio into my strength workout, and came up with this workout below:

cardio-strength-workout
I wanted to mainly focus on legs, but did some upper body as well with the presses focusing on shoulders and the rows on my back. I’ve never added in cardio while lifting – I typically just like to lift and do cardio separately…boy, was this killer! I was dripping in sweat. 

Doing intervals of cardio in between lifts is called “cardio accelerations.” According to Men’s Fit Club:

A study done at UCLA (University of California) showed that cardio acceleration delivers better blood flow and gives you a much better pump and also has shown to increase the rate of recovery because of the addition nutrients and oxygen pumped into the muscles. 

Cardio acceleration intervals also create that afterburn everyone always talks about. If you’re not keen on doing treadmill intervals or hill sprints as “HIIT,” then this type of workout is perfect for you!

The step-ups were done on a bench with no added weight – just do them as fast as you can. Harder than it sounds! For the last round, where I wrote cardio of your choice, I did stair sprints. 

I think I am going to start doing this type of workout more often, since I think it will have a benefit for me as a runner as well. Not only will I be burning extra calories, I’ll be doing plyometric/explosive type movements as cardio, which will make me a stronger runner.

Have you added in cardio intervals to your strength workouts? What’s your favorite way? I hate mountain climbers!!

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01-02-2014

Upper Body HIIT Workout

For those of you who follow me on Instagram, you may have seen this workout a week or so ago.

Once a week, my brother and I are doing a high intensity interval workout that also incorporates strength. We are currently following a strength training program, but I will talk about that in another post!

This workout focuses on upper body muscle groups, but you will definitely still feel it in your legs during the cardio portions.

Directions:

Perform the first set of 3 exercises 2-3 times through. For each exercises, time yourself for 1 minute and count your reps. In between each exercises take a 45-60 minute break. Once you’re done with the first batch, move onto the second. Your break will be however long it takes you to set up for the second set of exercises – just don’t take too long ;)

My brother and I did each set of exercises 2 times through, and it took a total of 21 minutes. We were huffing and puffing by the end. It’s a short workout, but intense! For a longer workout, just add sets.

The reason you will count your reps is so that the next time you do this workout you can compare your numbers.

One last thing, make sure you focus on form. Yes, you’re trying to get as many reps as possible in 1 minute, but only with good form. For example, I went way slower on squat to curl than I did on barbell rows, because I wanted to get in good squats. Don’t sacrifice form for numbers.

Exercises:

Here are some YouTube links to show you how to do some of the exercises with proper form:

Tricep Pushups

Barbell Bentover Row

Box Jumps

Let me know if you try this workout or have any questions!

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09-26-2013

Get Strong At The Track!

Here’s a Thursday track challenge for you. It’s fall…it’s perfect weather…it’s a great time to be outside! Which is why this workout is at the track and includes some strength as well. No equipment needed – just you and the track.

track workout

 

A full body workout, and if you do it 4 times through you will complete a mile. Let me know if you try this workout!

Do you workout at your local track? What kind of workouts do you like to do there?

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09-10-2013

Crush It At The Gym Today

How? With this workout I created for you!

Print it out and take it with you to the gym if you want to try something different. It’s strength and cardio, and sure to leave you in a puddle of sweat. Make sure you have good form throughout the workout, and you can take breaks when you need to in order to ensure proper form. Here’s the first printable workout I created if you want to try that out first.

cardiowkt2

Count your reps, and then next time you can see if you have improved! Here are some descriptions for each exercise:

Bosu squat jump: This is tricky to explain but here’s a link with a very detailed explanation and pics!

Push-up with shoulder tap: Do a pushup, once in the up position tap one shoulder with opposite arm, then vice versa, then drop back down into a pushup.

Hip raise on bench: Put your feet on a standard bench, butt close to the bench. Using your heels, lift up your hips and squeeze your glutes. Come back down and repeat.

Curl-to-shoulder press: Standard bicep curl, then up into a shoulder press. Keep arms in line with your ears.

Toe touches: Lie on your back with feet straight up in the air. Crunch up and touch your hands to your feet, or as close as you can get.

*Let me know if you decide to do this workout! Good luck ;)

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08-21-2013

Wednesday Workout Challenge

Looking for an at-home workout to do? Here’s one I created that is heavy on the cardio but still includes some strength moves. Below the image I will try to write descriptions of certain moves.

cradiocrusher

Lunge/Split Jumps: Step back as if going into a reverse lunge, go as low as you can, then jump up and switch legs (opposite leg now lunges back).

Skaters: Hop to the side and cross one leg behind you, then hop to the other side and cross your opposite leg behind you.

Plank Jacks: Get into plank position, and start hopping legs in and out like jumping jacks.

180 Degree Jumps: Squat, then jump and turn around simultaneously so when you land you are facing the opposite direction.

Switch kicks: I always feel like a karate master doing these. Kick one foot up as high as you can, then as you lower, jump and kick the other foot up. Do it as fast as you can.

Toe Touches: Lie on your back, legs as straight as you can, crunch up and try to touch your toes.

If my explanations aren’t good enough (I’d be a horrible teacher), just YouTube it for a visual!

Let me know if you decide to try this workout :)

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07-18-2013

Thursday Workout Challenge

Up for a challenge? Or want to escape the outdoor heat and just work out in your living room? Here is a workout for you!

Once you warm up for 5-10 minutes, complete 5 rounds of these exercises for time. Simply go down the list and then start over. If you need a break, feel free to take a break. At the end, write down your time so that the next time you do it you can compare and see your improvements.

You can add on cardio to the beginning or end of this workout too if you’re feeling up to it ;)

BWworkout

How have you been beating the heat? Let me know if you try this workout!

06-25-2013

Cardio + Strength Workouts

For the past three weeks, I have been challenging myself with cardio/strength workouts in place of running. I needed a break from running before starting marathon training next week.

I got inspiration from my friend Courtney, who does small group training every week. I have gone a few times and those workouts are hardcore!

I made three different workouts that I would do for three weeks, and track my progress. I did 2-3 sets of each exercise for 1 minute and counted how many reps I could do with good form. It was a total body workout with cardio worked in to really get my heart rate soaring.

Here’s an example of the workout I did on Mondays, and finished up yesterday. Only two more workouts to go this week then it’s back to running! As you can see, I did progress! Though other workouts have more progress, but I will post a wrap-up at the end of the week.

I also increased my weight for this past week which is why some numbers are a bit lower, but they are still close to my beginning numbers! After each workout, I was literally dripping in sweat. Loved it! Sad I will have to cut back on these once training starts.

Here is week 1 and week 2:

 

And here are yesterday’s results (week 3):

IMG_0784

I want to do a workout video with one of these workouts because those reverse lunge jumps are killer, along with other moves I’ve done as well!

Have you ever done HIIT/crossfit/cardio&strength type workouts? Do you like that or lifting heavy better?

 

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06-07-2013

Cardio Blast Workout!

I did this workout on Wednesday and it is killer! Yes, there are some upper body moves involved in my “strong legs” workout, but trust me, you will really feel the burn in your legs.

Usually, I do non-equipment workouts, but I figured I’d change it up and include one you can do at the gym. If you don’t have a pull-up machine, you can use the lat pull-down machine.

I threw in a few upper body moves to make sure you also hit those major muscle groups (back) and keep your heart rate up while giving your legs a short break.

Final words: burpees = killer

stronglegs

 

Let me know if you try this out and what your thoughts are!

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