Illness & The Exercise Itch {12/3/12 Workout}

Sometimes I simply cannot sit and look at one more post, pin, blog… I just get the itch to move! For the last week or so, I’ve been fighting a bug and I’m trying to find balance between exercise and rest, between not having an appetite yet still eating enough, between lethargy one minute and restlessness the next. Does this make sense? Illness messes with my head…

I had a workout planned with my cousin today, but it was interrupted by my mom’s arrival into town to help me pack (thanks Mom!). I thought I’d just workout at home when I got a free minute, but then I thought maybe not due to my fatigue. Even though I was tired, I had to help pack because my mom drove all that way; once I put on real clothes and makeup and started packing, I got a little spurt of energy.

I really haven’t had an appetite with this sore throat — so why eat much, right? Wrong! My mom took me out to dinner, and after eating I really felt my energy surge! So here I am right now having a leisurely ride on the spin bike after a kickass arm & shoulder workout. My restless got the best of me and propelled me to the gym… and also the fact that I really didn’t want to write an excuse-for-not-working-out post. Right now I feel the best I have all day! 🙂

Arm & Shoulder Workout:

20 minutes incline walking warm-up

3 x 12-15 of the following:

Dumbbell bicep curls
Dumbbell overhead tricep press

Lateral raise
Front raise

Bent over lateral raise
Military press

Narrow grip barbell curl
Overhead tricep cable press

Dumbbell hammer curl
Tricep pressdown

1 x 25:

Bent-over barbell curl burnout

25 minutes of spinning & counting! {ended up to be 40 minutes}


Caffeine, Friend or Foe? {12/2/12 Workout}

I hear people all the time say “I really should quit drinking coffee. I know it’s bad for me.”

But is it really? For me, sometimes a little lot of caffeine in the form of a skinny mocha or crystal lite energy is the only think that gets me out of bed and to class in the morning and then to the gym in the afternoon. I don’t think going to class and the gym is bad for me; in fact, I think not going would be very bad for me. In my opinion, anything that can help me get to class, get to the gym, and complete anything else on my to-do list is not only good, but awesome!

And hey, coffee even has lots of antioxidants! Just don’t pour on the sugar and cream. And yes, more than 3-4 cups is probably bad, especially if you’re prone to high blood pressure. And yes, its a diuretic, so you have to compensate with even more water. And no, I’m not a doctor — so obviously take their advice first. But for me at least, caffeine (in moderation) is my friend!

On that note, I got up this morning and downed a few crystal lite energy packets in several tall glasses of water in addition to a couple of glasses of plain water. And voila! Presto! My energy is back!

What do you think? Is caffeine your friend or foe?

My workout:

  • 35 minutes on StairMaster (~170 floors)
  • 25 minutes on Cybex elliptical
  • Hot tub relaxation with my cousin and workout partner!


My First iPhone {11/29/12 Workout}

I have finally joined the modern world and purchased an iPhone 4s (my first smartphone).

New iPhone! ❤

Merry Christmas, Happy Anniversary, and Happy Birthday to me! It was waiting for me on my doorstep when I got home from school, and all of my winter dreariness was replaced with Holiday joy. I spent 2 hours laying in bed setting it up and updating it. My Otterbox won’t be here for another week, so I took that baby to the gym with me in a wool sock. When I set it down in between sets, I found myself watching it like a hawk… which made me think: if I am this protective of an iPhone, what will I be like when I have my first baby someday?  Scary thought.

I am excited to try out the Track My Run and ifitness apps. Any recommendations for other must-have apps?

My muscles appreciated a day-off from exercise yesterday, and they also appreciated a hard workout today. Yesterday, I did spend a lot of time packing… so maybe I should have today off? I like this idea very much, but my anal-retentive side will probably compusively clean/pack anyways. I’m at least going to pretend for awhile that I’m going to spend the rest of the night relaxing and playing on my new toy. 🙂

Today’s Leg Workout:

  • 10 minute warm-up on Cybex elliptical
  • Side lunge with lift holding 10 lb – 3 x 12
  • Sumo squat with heel raise and jump holding 10 lb – 3 x 12
  • Stationary lunge with lift holding 10 lb – 3 x 12
  • Squats – 3 x 15
  • Leg press followed by calf pulse – 3 x 15
  • Leg extension – 3 x 15
  • Leg curl – 3 x 12
  • Single-leg deadlift – 3 x 15
  • Bulgarian split squat – 3 x 15
  • 30 minutes on StairMaster
  • 20 minutes on Cybex elliptical

Workout Log 11/13/12

Today was LEG DAY. I love leg day. When I work these big muscle groups, I really feel like I’m gettin’ somethin’ done.

Only two leg workouts ago, I started incorporating squats on the Smith machine into my

This just slips over the barbell and velcros shut.

routine. I used to always shy away from them because the barbell hurts my neck and our gym doesn’t seem to have barbell pads. I decided to get tough, though, and try them again. And after two workouts, I was again reminded of my neck pain. So I ordered this thingamagiggy on Amazon and I love it. Its like night and day. Instead of focusing on my crushed neck and shoulders, I can focus on form and really engaging my muscles. If your gym doesn’t have these and you are avoiding squats like me or you are just suffering through it, I highly recommend this!

Without further ado, here is today’s leg workout:

5 minute spinning warmup

Lower Body 

None: Two bullets together indicate a superset. I did three sets of each exercise, using enough weight that I was working nearly to failure at the 12-15 rep range.

  • Box jumps
  • Leg lift on exercise ball
  • Squat on smith machine
  • Jumping split squat
  • Sumo squat on smith machine
  • Leg press with calf raise finish
  • Weighted bulgarian split squat
  • Weighted single-leg deadlift
  • Leg extension – drop sets
  • Leg curl
  • ThighMaster (This is really the ab/adduction machine, but my cousin and I named it the ThighMaster for the magic it works in that area)

Cardio – Treadmill

  • 5 min warmup at 3.5 mph @ 5% incline
  • Repeat the following 7X:
  • 5 min – 3.0 mph @ 10% incline
  • 2 min – 4.0 mph @ 15% incline
  • 6 min cooldown at 3.0 mph at 5% incline to round out the hour

Side-note: I also walk about 4 miles/weekday just for daily life getting to and from campus and the gym. I don’t consider this a “workout,” because it doesn’t elevate my heart rate and it is something that I do more for enjoyment. I get very antsy and even depressed in the wintertime if I don’t get daily fresh air and sunshine.

Lifting took a little over an hour. As you can see, my routine right now consists entirely of superset training. I do this for the added cardio effect – and boy will this workout make you sweat! It’s harder for me to lean out that it is for me to gain muscle, so I like to burn extra calories whenever I can!

My actual cardio workout wasn’t very challenging today — more of a recovery after yesterday’s brutality. I kept my heart rate between 70-80% of my theoretical max heart rate of 220-age (although I know this “max” isn’t true because yesterday my heart rate soared over 200 bpm during peak intervals). I passed the time catching up on The Office on my iPod and laughing so loud that I got some funny looks. Oh well. Life is short! 🙂

I’d love to hear what you did for exercise today! Train hard!