Workouts of Late

This week, I am down 1.8 pounds.

I’ve collected quite a few sweaty selfies of late thanks to my fitness Instagram- Stronger with Caitlin. Here’s a few of them, along with what I’ve been doing for my workouts lately.

Lots of running.

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Summer into fall is my absolute favorite time to run and I always pick up my pace and length once the weather cools down just a bit. Of course, I try to run outside in the winter, but it’s never for as long. I also detest the treadmill and cannot go for miles unless I’m somehow in a trance-like state.

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I’m excited to see how fast and far I can go now that I’m dropping a few extra pounds. I’ve been listening to a lot of podcasts, ranging from True Crime to Disney World themed, during my workouts, although I’ll always return to my favorite playlists and upbeat musicals when I just want to cruise.

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I’ve also been a sweaty mess during my strength training workouts, which I do three times a week. I try to add 15-20 minutes of faster cardio to the end or throughout. My cardio of choice on these days has been jump roping. It’s such a great workout that you don’t have to suffer through for an extended amount of time. I like to do a set of jumps 50-100 after each set of exercises to get the heart rate UP.

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In conclusion, I aim for six days a week of challenging workouts. 3 running days and 3 strength training days. Thus far, I’ve been enjoying the results.

Stay-tuned for the fall when I’ll be mixing things up!

Arm Day

I kicked off a new workout routine and it’s been killer. While I love a good total body workout, there’s something to be said about the effectiveness of the split routine.

For this training schedule, I opted to break things up as follows:

Day One: Biceps, Triceps, Shoulders

Day Two: Quads and Glutes

Day Three: Chest and Back

Day Four: Hamstrings and Ab/Adductors

Day Five: Total Body

For each day, I always include core and some form of cardio. The breakdown is roughly 30x10x20—30 minutes strength training, 10 minutes core, 20 minutes cardio.

On arm day, I break each segment up by muscle group and perform three exercises each. One at the most heaviest with 4 sets of 8 reps, the second with medium weight at 4 sets of 10 reps, and the third at the lightest weight at 4 sets of 12 reps.

Take a look:

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After three core exercises- incline oblique lean downs, plank walkouts, bicycle crunches- I hope on the bike to spin it out for around 20+ minutes.

Give it a try! Check back next week for the next portion.

Workout Shake-Up

These next three weeks of workouts include total body compound movements that have consistently left me sore. I took a week off when I went home for a few days and my body paid for the absence. Though it was a struggle some days to move, it was the good kind of pain — I realize I probably sound crazy.

For this cycle, I’m strength training three times a week with a few minutes on the bike, as well as running and (in theory) working through some yoga sequences three days a week. While my morning workouts continue to be consistent, I find it difficult to wake up with enough time to fit in my yoga and just end up running. Yay for cardio, but also, I could use the yoga. Awake and alert me understands this. Sleepy Caitlin does not.

I’ve returned to circuit training, performing three moves consecutively, four sets of twelve reps, four total circuits. In between sets, I rest for about 45 seconds and a minute between circuits. Such exercises include squats with lateral raises, curtsy lunge step-ups, skull crusher chest flies, jumping squat chest throws, and more. In total, these workouts take about 45-60 minutes. I’m quite proud of myself on this routine because I hit each muscle group multiple times a workout.

Maybe because I’m organized or perhaps because I’m enthusiastic about exercise planning, but I’ve already written out my next two three-week cycles of workouts, which I’ll be sure to share. Next week, I’ll share Day One of my strength training routine for the week. Consider this a teaser.

Get moving!

faster, stronger

I’m growing more nervous because – if you’ll remember yesterday’s blurb about the fly in my room – it appears that it might be stalking me. Why would I assume such a thing? As I was driving home from work today a fly flew into my eye and I’m certain it was the same one (I’m not certain at all). I might’ve killed it, it probably lived, but we’ll know in time.

Thus far, I’ve only completed two days of my new workout plan, but this picture sums it up:

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The plan follows the exercise sequences I’ve been doing for the past few weeks, except instead of numbered sets, I’m doing timed. This is more exhausting than I anticipated and my muscles have been burning in the best way possible.

Try doing jump squat after jump squat for thirty seconds, three times with minimal rest, and let me know if you weren’t a tired, sweaty mess after.

To spice things up, I’m also performing all four exercises per muscle group before moving on, which meant that my triceps were crying before I even started chest. I thought I was okay on Tuesday until I tried to take off my jacket. And, although leg day used to be my most dreaded day, I solved that problem by breaking it up like I would the upper body – something I’ve mentioned before – and I feel like I’m making drastic improvements. Of course, in the end, the body is all connected anyway.

Three days a week I do split training and mix it up with brief, but hard-hitting total body strength workouts twice a week, which I pair with running. On non-running days, I bike (indoor and outdoor), jump rope, or hike to get my cardio fix.

Running outside has improved my endurance, something that I despise on the treadmill. While it’s good to mix things up with intervals, I have a love/hate relationship with long(er) distance running and being able to do that is a point of pride.

On that note, we’re all caught up with my exercise news of late. Enjoy Wednesday!

Where The Celebs At?

Happy Wednesday, party people! I’ve officially been in LaLaLand for one whole week and I’ve yet to see one celebrity. Say wha-at? I don’t even want to consider the number of celebrities that might have passed me by and I missed because I wasn’t observant enough. I was fairly certain I was going to be super famous and best friends with all of them by now… No? Well, at least I thought I’d be married to Chris Evans.

Maybe it’s because I’m spending so much time cooped up in the library getting some work done. Throughout college, I worked at a library, so it’s one of my happy places and never fails to make me productive.

Recap of yesterday:

Tuesday morning, I rolled out of bed for some cheesy eggs, an English muffin, and raspberries. Not a bad way to start the day at all.

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After getting some work done at home, I drove into Hollywood, which, weird!, to meet my cousin for lunch. It’s all about friendly faces these days, let me tell you. I’m still not used to looking up and seeing palm trees or the Hollywood sign in the distance on my commute.

It would be nice to insert a picture here, but alas, driving and snapping pictures is frowned upon.

When in doubt (or stress or anything), gym time never fails me and I crushed it with a strength training line-up of biceps, back, legs, and core before finishing up with a quick interval ride on the bike. For strength, I worked through four sets of fifteen reps, two exercises for biceps, five for back, and five for legs- those bad boys were shaking (in a good way). My core workout included three exercises and I meant to do three sets of twenty, but ended up doing four sets, so a good ‘oops’ I guess.

Let’s take a look at that workout:

Biceps- Cross-Body Curls, High Bicep Curls

Back- Single-Arm Rows, Weighted Supermans, Back Extensions, High Pulls, Standing Rows

Legs- Front Squats, Lunges, Deadlifts, Kneeling Side Leg Raises, Kettlebell Swings

Core- Flutter Kicks, V Ups, Side Plank Dips

Once I finished on the bike, I was good and sweaty and ready for a snack and a cup of coffee at home!

Greek yogurt will never be the same for me after I had the homemade version at a local Greek pantry back at home, but I made do with good ol’ Chobani, mixing up the strawberry flavor with a handful of blueberries and some almonds.

To the library it was, but first, I got a phone call from an old friend/advisor that was very much appreciated. I can’t express how grateful I am to get calls and texts from family and friends in general, never mind that I’m in a new state, following my dreams, and pretty much by my lonesome.

As I mentioned, I do love the library, so I pretty much closed it up and headed home to make dinner. If it works one night, why not make it again the second? Whole grains, check. Protein, check. Veggies, check. Fat, check. Yum factor, check!

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The rest of the night consisted of some reading and writing quality time. I must still be on East Coast time because as I’m typing, I’m longing to go to bed, but it’s only 9:40 here. Soon!

Here’s a selfie shot I had to take because my hair was on point and it would have been a waste for no one to have seen it.

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Quinoa Three Ways

At least Monday’s bringing some sunshine! It was a dreary weekend after a dreary kind of week weather-wise. Friday night included some curling up on the couch time watching the Red Sox lose to the Yankees, which was disappointing. Saturday was a full-work day that was followed up by a long run on the treadmill, not friendly for these hips, and more time curled up on the couch watching the Red Sox lose to the Yankees, even more disappointing. I was up early again on Sunday for a softball game, followed by Mother’s Day celebrations. I ended Sunday with a massive load of laundry, which always feels so productive, while watching the Red Sox beat the Yankees, far more satisfying!

This morning, we jumped right into some food prep for the week! I haven’t made quinoa in forever, so I decided to get a little fanciful. Quinoa three ways!

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First up’s quinoa with chopped walnuts, dried cranberries, and feta!

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Next we find quinoa with cilantro and lime, a little knock-off from Chipotle’s cilantro lime rice.

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Finally, we have caprece quinoa with fresh tomato, mozzarella, and balsamic vinagerette! I’ll enjoy this one for dinner tonight as it won’t last as long as the others in the fridge.

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To go along with my delicious quinoa concoctions, I made a batch of Tasty’s garlic parmesan chicken tenders, which are amazing!

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Fret not, I didn’t forget my greens! This zucchini and spinach dish (mixed with a little garlic and olive oil) will have to be replenished a few times over to meet my needs for the week, but it’s a start!

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I’ve got meals to keep me fueled and workouts planned to keep me strong. Starting off on the right foot!

I would be remiss not to flash a picture of my breakfast this morning. This time, I went with the peanut butter Kodiak Cake waffle mix, and I was not disappointed. And look at those berries! (Butter is difficult to spread).

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You Can’t Face Swap With Your Dog

Hello party people, it’s Friday! The weekend forecast isn’t looking too promising come Sunday, but I am determined to be positive and have a great weekend.

I have some weird stories and pictures to share with you all today, so I hope you cherish the ridiculous. First, I woke up later than I wanted to on Wednesday as I was covering for someone at work and had to eat breakfast on the go. This is all well and fine, except, I was hankering for waffles and thought they could be portable if I ate it more like a piece of toast than cut up in usual waffle-style. I’ve actually done this before, so I was feeling good until I must have over maple syruped the waffles and the maple syrup dripped everywhere! My steering wheel may never be the same, nor will the inside of my jacket sleeves. I also smelled like maple syrup the rest of the day. Yay, me! *I could have smelled a lot worse!

A couple of nights ago, I finally realized how to use the face swap filter on Snapchat and it did not disappoint- except that I’ve been trying to face swap with my dog and it won’t work. Here’s option one between my mom and me.

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Kinda spooky, not at all flattering, but overall hilarious.

Second option, I can’t even preface:

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I kept some of my childhood dolls over the years and decided to have some fun yesterday morning to see if it would work. It did, except, as you can see, my face maintained that weird, creepy smile so everything just went bananas. I disturbed myself with this photo. I’m sorry if you have nightmares tonight!

Now onto a workout recap! This week was 3 sets of 15 reps for each exercise with lower weight and it kicked butt! I used the same workout plans I did the past two weeks, six exercises for each body part, so the breakdown looked like this:

Monday- Biceps, Shoulders, and Core

Tuesday- Rest

Wednesday- Triceps, Chest, and Core

Thursday- Back, Legs, and Core

Friday- Total Body

For today’s workout, I incorporated a ton of moves with kettlebells and plyometrics, which means I really got that heart rate moving! I will be sharing that with you soon! On Wednesday, I also ran and will be heading out for another one tomorrow before the weather gets bad.

Next week’s reps and sets will be pyramid-focused so I’ll start at my highest amount of reps with lowest weight, decreasing the reps and increasing the weight as I go until I’m lifting my heaviest for 2 reps. I like to mix up the reps and sets to keep from plateauing and working my muscles in different ways. For instance, lower weight and longer reps works endurance, heavier weight and lower reps is what builds that strength and power.  Already feeling a little scared, but also excited.

Get moving this weekend and make sure you spend a lot of time with the people you love!