Stories of 2019 #50: Week in Workouts 3

This week has been a great week for working out! They have been hard, sweaty and I definitely can tell that I have been pushing myself that bit further. I must admit, I do go a little easier in fear I cannot do it. But something has changed in me. I am on it! Feeling strong and have kept on track with the food side of things also, which is mainly what I struggle with.

Lets get to it then.

Monday

PM – The shake off the weekend cardio class. This workout only really would work in a group as you each do one thing and carry on the other moves until the whole group has each done that move.

Round 1 / each person in the group does 20 burpees / whilst each person takes turns to do their burpees the rest of the group do 10 wall balls / 10 star jumps / 10 lunges

Round 2 / same concept with only 15 burpees / 10 kettlebell swings / 10 jump squats / 10 tuck jumps

Round 3 / 10 burpees / 10 kettlebell snatch / 10 tricep dips / 10 push ups

Tuesday

AM – I actually had a personal training session on Tuesday, which was fun, with Sam from Renegade gym, as I just feel like I need some extra guidance on how to achieve my goals.

Barbell strict overhead press 5 x 10 (30kg) / Cable overhead press 21, 18, 15, 12 with a-frame press ups in between each rep for 10 / Cable overhead press dropset for as many reps as possible x 3 / Lateral raise 3 x 12 (5kg)

Wednesday

AM – Burn baby, burn! And, did this burn. I still have an achey neck now from the amount of wall balls…

Bench chest press 5 x 5 (42.5kg) / 150 calorie row taking turns in pairs (if doing workout on your own, you could just do 75 calories) / 150 wall balls (6kg ball I used) and then every time you pause or put the ball on the floor you have to do a 200 meter run (!!)

I managed 75 wall balls in a row, which left me feeling very dizzy lol. Then did the rest in 2 goes. So, overall, I ran three times.

Thursday

PM – Again this class was based on a group but you could just use this as a circuit. Similar layout to Mondays class with the time it takes for one person to do their exercise, you keep going with your exercise until they are done.

300 meter row (timer for rest of group) / butterfly sit-ups / kettlebell USA swings (overhead) / dumbbell thrusters / do this circuit three times

120 calories row race / we did this between four people.

Friday

PM – In all honesty, lacking motivation on this day, this was not my best workout of the week.

Barbell bent over rows 12/10/6/3 (increasing weight, 45kg for me) / hammer curls 12 x 3 (7kg) / banded bicep curls 3 x 20 (me and sammy basically did half of these…)

Saturday

AM – My favourite class of the week – squat Saturdays. I love this class because George, who runs it, is also pushing you to try that little bit harder and it is jam packed full of exercises. Safe to say, my legs hurt today!

Wall balls followed by jump squats 12 x 3 / barbell back squats 10/8/6/3/1 (I hit a PB and managed 105kg 1 rep max) / back squat drop set 12/18 (I did 80kg then 60kg) / leg extension 3 x 15 with goblet squats (20kg) 3 x 15 / leg press 3 x 6-10 (however, me and Heather, tried 2 reps are 300kg! And smashed it) / weighted walking lunges 2 x 2 lengths with still leg deadlifts 2 x 12 (dead by this point, I did 6kg with the lunges and 40kg with the deadlifts)

Sunday

Finally, giving myself a rest day!

Totally have the gym bug at the moment and I am absolutely loving each and every workout. Even when I am not really putting 110% into my workouts (aka, Friday), I still went and felt so much better for going and at least putting in 80% effort!

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Stories of 2019 #47: Week in Workouts 2

My week in workouts! I am thinking of making this a regular Sunday blog post and trying to incorporate more health and fitness into Stories of Adventure, as it is a big passion of mine and something, at the moment, I am doing regularly. Let me know what you think or whether you prefer to see more travel related posts?

This week I have worked out 6 times. Six times a week tends to be what I am doing at the moment, however, I did do a double session on Monday. So, I have technically only been to the gym 5 times, which has been quiet nice to have 2 days off.

It has been a tough week of workouts and I am starting to see more definition in my abdominal muscles but over the next 6 weeks I am really trying to lean out, as I do feel I have put on some extra fat in certain areas, ready to go to Seville in April. I am calling it #6weekstoseville – my new mini series – and I am planning to show/track my workouts, how I feel and food!

Less of me rambling and on to the week in workouts…

Monday

AM – upper body / pull-ups 3 x AMRAP / barbell bent over rows 4 x 10 / cable lateral pull 4 x 12 / rows / 4 x 12 / lateral raises 4 x 8 (heavy I use 6kg) drop set straight away and do 4 x 15 (light weight I used 4kg) / bicep curls 3 x 15 / tricep dips 3 x 15

PM – cardio / 5 x 10 calorie watt bike (horrific, actually thought I was going to throw up) / 200 meter run followed by kettle swings 30 reps x 5 (together)

Tuesday

PM – Iron class / pull-ups 5 x 5 / handstand push-up 5 x 5 (amazed I could actually do these against the wall) / floor chest press 4 x 8 / deficit push-up 4 x 12 / renegade rows 3 x 10

Wednesday

AM – Blitz class / round 1 x 3 / 400 meter row / 15 deadlift (40kg) / 15 burpees / 15 push-ups / round 2 x 3 / 15 calorie watt bike / 15 overhead press (20kg) / 15 jump squats / 15 wall balls (6kg)

Thursday – rest day!

Friday

PM – Did my own upper-body work out inspired by NaturallyStephanie / cable chest press 3 x 15 / incline dumbbell flies 3 x 15 (6kg) / incline chest press 3 x 15 (12.5kg) / round 1 x 5 / 10 overhead press / 20 kettlebell squats / 20 upright row / 15 press up / round 2 x 3 / 8 hanging leg raises / 10 cable oblique twists / 10 cable chest press

Saturday

AM – Squat Saturdays (my favourite class of the week) / wall balls 3 x 15 (in pairs, whilst partner doing wall balls you do body weight squats) / squats 5, 5, 3, 1 (increasing weight – I hit another PB of 100kg!!) / 20 x 3 cable goblet squats / 12 x 3 leg press / 12 x 3 split leg squat (12.5kg each side) / 12 x 3 leg extension… legs are sore today!

Sunday – Rest day! Not planned but we had been out Saturday night and I missed the 9am class… oops. I did go for a walk though and battling the gale force winds was a workout within itself!

Squat Saturday Class // 09.03.2019

Stories of adventure #42: My Valentines

The 14th Feb. The day all about love! Now, traditionally it is all about showing love to your partner, but for me, I do not have one, so I am going to tell the other three loves of my life, which are year-round, day in, day out…

Travel

I can’t express my love for travel. Being able to experience and learn from different cultures is just such an amazing feeling. I am extremely lucky to have travelled where I have been and how often I have been away. From one side of the world in USA to the other side in Australia and many places in between, I have had so many brilliant experiences. The fact that you wander aimlessly around streets you have never seen before, eating food you never thought existed and meeting people from all over the world, these are a few of the things I love about travelling.

Fitness

I know this is a bit lame to put, basically exercise as one of my life’s love but I can’t genuinely imagine my day to day life without it (lol). I like to see what my body can do, whether that is seeing how much weight I can lift at the gym or seeing what weird stretches I can get into at yoga or whether I can hike to the top of that peak, I am there, loving it. I am not the type of person to spend hours at the gym, I only go for an hour a day but most days of the week. Not only is it good for my body (I defo have a big booty to show for it) but for my mind, it is also amazing.

Family

The simple 5 (and the dogs). I would not be anywhere without them! We are all on the count down to the ‘booze cruise’ in May 2019 for our holiday together. These simpletons do not need many words to show my love for them.

But I have so many more loves… shopping, cooking, food, drink, reading, learning, movies – the list is endless.

What do you love?

Stories of 2019 #26: Week in Workouts 1

For those needing a new workout or fancy shaking their gym routine up a little bit here is what I did in workouts this week…

P.S. some of these are an absolute KILLER!

Monday (cardio – do this workout with a partner and whilst they are running, you do the other exercise until they are finished)

400 meter run x mountain climbers / 400 meter run x burpees / 400 meter run x wall balls (I did 6kg) / 400 meter run x leg raises / 400 meter run x russion twists (I used an 8kg kettlebell)

1 minute plank x 10 push ups – repeat 3 times

Tuesday (Iron class, focusing on heavy weights)

Barbell chest press on floor 5 x 10 / body weight rows 5 x 12 (super set so do one after the other with no pause)

Kettle bell push press 3 x 8 per arm / kettle bell single-arm row 3 x 8 per arm (super set this again)

Plated push ups 3 x 10 (weighted plate on your back)

Wednesday (Rest day. Woooo!)

Thursday (Cardio class again. This one was especially hard so good luck ha ha. I struggled!)

400 meter run / 50 (yes, I repeat 50) jump squats – have 8 minutes to complete twice

400 meter run / 15 burpees / 300 meter row – have 10 minutes to complete twice

800 meter run / 10 pull-ups – have 12 minutes to complete twice

Friday (Weighted, Olympic lifting session)

Floor to overhead press with barbell 5 x 5

Hanging clean and press 4 x 4

EMOM (each minute, on the minute)… minute 1: 10 kettlebell swings on left arm / minute 2: 10 kettle bell catches on left / minute 3: kettle bell swings on right arm / minute 4: 10 kettle bell snatches on right / minute 5: rest / REPEAT TWICE

Saturday (My fav – squat Saturday)

Wall balls (6kg ball) 3 x 15 / back squats (I went up to 95kg, my personal best) increase weight as descrease reps for 10,10,3,3,3 / barbell hip thrusters 3 x 10 / leg extensions 3 x 12 / leg press 3 x 20 (10 wide, 10 narrow)

Sunday… I was going to go but a late night at work meant I did not make the class. But, oh well, I am off to the airport so no time now to try and get my bikini bod!

Stories of 2019 #23: Off Running

On Instagram, I follow and see these amazing women running outside and they look like they are just feeling amazing. And I know, Instagram can sometimes just be someone putting up their best selves and I know that it is only a snippet of someone on a random day but I have been following these women for a long time and I listen to plenty of podcasts about how running makes you feel mentally, amazing.

I used to run two summers ago and I remember doing it often but struggling. I had to keep stopping and I was huffing and puffing but I was out there doing it. When I was doing my Master’s degree, I also signed up to do a 10k in London and even in the cold mornings of February I was doing Park Run around Forest Fields in Nottingham. So, it is not like I have no experience with running but for some reason I was petrified of going back outside and doing it.

Running is simple. One foot in front of the other. It does not matter how fast you are going or if you have to stop and walk or if you even only run for five minutes then turn back. You are out there, running and building strength, doing something good for yourself! I wanted to be that person. But something was holding me back. I even kept Googling, ‘How to start running?’ Like I did not know it was as simple as going out and doing it. I just feared people would look at me funny or I would not be able to manage the route I had planned. However, with over 5 billion results, it looks like I am not the only one. I wonder why running, outside in particular, feels us with such lack of confidence and fear?

But on Monday, 21st January, I made the decision today I was going to run and I set the run time at 10am.

9:50am… The thoughts start to go around in my head… Doubts that I should not go.

10:05am… Still at my house.

10:15am… I stepped out the door, headphones on and the Nike Running Club man motivating me in my ears just to go! If you have not tried this app, it is so good. It is full of guided runs from one minute to a 75 minute run to runs on the treadmill. It is free and I found very helpful when I was out.

10:30am… I was doing it! I was running, OUTSIDE! I was already smiling at the fact I was out and actually running, let alone how far I was running. I did the route I used to do two summers ago and I did not stop once. An achievement I never thought I would be able to do. And, I felt like my favourite Instagram stars, Food Fitness Flora and Adrienne and Bryony Gordon.

When I got home I was beaming so proud that I had done it. I did not even notice the cars going past funnily enough. I was as simple as going out there and putting one foot in front of the other. It was only a short run 3.5k but it was a run and I will be doing it again.

21st January 2019 // My first run

So, if you are nervous to start running my advice is, instead of being like me and Googling how to’s – just do it. In the wise words of Nike! Even if it is to the end of the road. Trust me you will feel great just because you went.

Stories of 2019 #22: Week in Workouts

Exercise is a big part of my life. It always has been. From a teenager I was in a competitive gymnastics squad and then at this time I started to go to the gym. More for fun with my friends Jessamyn and Mollie but nevertheless we still went. Since then I have always gone to the gym. The only time I did not go to the gym was the time between finishing my A-Levels and starting university (probably because I found alcohol and going-out far too much fun). From university to now I have been a consistent gym goer (which is good for seeing results… as the saying goes consistency is key) but I have also tried my hand at running, yoga and now boxing.

Now I am home in Hertfordshire and settled back in, I have gone back to the gym and really enjoying it. The gym I am signed up to (Renegade) is probably the best gym I have been too. The classes are mixed and really push you. We run, lift weights, row and do pull-ups – stuff I would not do if I was on my own.

I really enjoying exercising so I tend to aim to between 4-5 times a week but I also listen to my body and if I have little energy or I feel my body cannot work-out or more importantly I am off out with friends or family instead, I will include another rest day.

Anyway, here is a typical week of work outs!

Monday // Cardio (6-7pm). Start the week off with a burn to blow away the cobwebs of the weekend. This class is a mix. Sometimes it will be a non-stop circuit with bodyweight or sometimes it will be heavier weights with cardio included. For example a class we did last week…

10 barbell deadlifts / 10 burpees / 500 meter run outside – x 5

20 seconds kettle bell swings / 10 seconds off / 20 seconds push-ups – x6

Tuesday // Weights (6-6:45pm). Build them muscles! Adding weights into your work-out routine has many benefits. And if you fear the ‘bulk’, weight training really will not make you bulky. It adds such a different element to a work-out and also is a great way to burn fat also and you will begin to develop muscle tone. The weight classes at Renegade at short, often consisting of only 4-5 exercises but you always wake up the next day feeling it! An example weight class is…

Strict overhead press 5 x 5 / 12 twisting lateral raises x 4 / 12 a-frame push ups x 4 / 1 minute straight arm plank x 4

Wednesday // Rest day. Just as important as getting a work-out in!

Thursday // Cardio (6-7pm). Same as Mondays class. Another example of the cardio class is…

200 meter run / 20 bodyweight squats / 10 push-ups – x 4

400 meter run / 10 calorie row – x 3

800 meter run / 30 kettle bell swings / 20 kettle bell snatches / 10 goblet squats – x 2

Friday // Weights (5:45-6:30pm). Again, same as a Tuesday class. More weights to finish off the working week. However, sometimes I do go to the morning class, depending what I am doing in the evening, and that is a cardio class but more often than not I am at the evening session. An example work-out includes…

12 chest press / 12 push ups / 20 tricep dips – x 4

24 bicep curls 6 half, 6 half, 6 full – x 4

Saturday // Squat Saturday (8:30-9:30). A bright and breezy 8:30am class! When my alarm goes at 7am, it is often a battle in my head as to whether to go or not. But once I am up and out, it is fine. I must admit I am excited for lighter mornings. As the class goes, it is in the name. It is based around squats and focused on your legs and glutes. We normally start off with barbell back squats, starting of with lighter weights and increased reps then as you build the weight, you decrease the rep. This is followed by lunges, step-ups, leg press, goblet squats and many more leg burning moves! You are normally left leaving with jelly legs. Example squat Saturday…

20, 15, 10, 5, 3 Barbell back squats / 12 step-ups x 3 / 10 leg extensions x 3 holding last rep for as long as possible / 12 leg press machines x 3 on last set drop set and do 20 reps / 15 wall balls x 2 / x 2 wall sits

Sunday // Boxing (10-11:30am). For two weeks now I have been going to the ladies boxing class at my gym. I am really enjoying it so far! The class starts off with some running and stretching to warm up, followed by a conditioning circuit to help build our muscles to help build our skills. The rest of the session is practicing on the bags (my favourite part) and then sparring in the ring. Daunting but we only do 1 minute at a time (thank god for me at the moment). Boxing is so different to something I have done before and does not even feel like I am doing a work-out.

I have also upped my cardio by trying my hand at outdoors running again. I did my first run yesterday and while it was only a small 20 minute run, I loved it! So keep your eyes out for any running updates.

If you want to know more about what I do health and fitness wise, comment below!

Stories of #18,19 and 20…oops: January Photo Diary

I am rounding off this week, with a week in pictures. I have been snap happy lately, especially when I am out walking. The blue skies and winter sunshine just makes for the perfect photo. So, from everything from the food I have eaten, selfies with dogs and a day in London – here is my week in pictures.