Feb 022016
 

Not all workouts need to be an hour long. Sometimes you just don’t have the time. Sometimes life gets crazy and you don’t have time to drive to the gym, change your clothes, get in the pool and swim…but you want to do SOMETHING. There are definitely ways to get in a workout without having to sacrifice a ton of time.

This post is about a few things you can do when you only have 30 minutes to get your sweat on!

Kettlebells

Kettlebells are by far the #1 option when you need a good work out with a giant calorie burn in a very short period of time. If you don’t want to pay for a gym membership, or won’t have the opportunity to GO to a gym, owning a few kettlebells of various weights can make getting fit at home easy. Trust me! Michael has invested in about 6 different kettlebells and his workouts at home are either running, kettlebells or biking to work. He’s been working really hard the last few months preparing for our little guy’s arrival by getting fit and his kettlebell workouts rarely last longer than 30 minutes. It’s doable.

I definitely miss going to the Warrior Room. It was a cool community and a fantastic workout. I am looking forward to returning after the baby is here! Here are a few posts that included some kettlebell workouts you can try:

Warrior Room Part 2

Two Classes

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I definitely recommend taking a class or two somewhere, or hiring a personal trainer, to teach you the proper form. There’s a bit of a learning curve but once you get the form down, you can do it on your own and you don’t need a class. You can find videos online for different routines and it’s easy to do it at home by yourself.

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Using kettlebells is pretty easy and it’s such a good calorie burn! Trust me when I say you’ll burn those calories in 30 minutes.

Battle Ropes

Battle Ropes are FUN and hard. So hard. Your shoulders will burn. You will burn so many calories. You’ll be drenched in sweat and it really doesn’t take more than a few minutes to get to that point! What I love about doing this exercise is that it’s fun and different.

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There’s a podcast I listen to that was pretty eye-opening when it came to fitness. Joe Rogan’s podcast is really diverse–he talks about everything. Psychedelics, politics, feminism, sports, comedy, history…But fitness is a big part of it. I remember one episode where he described something called “functional strength” and he said he preferred that kind of workout to your typical weight lifting routine. Basically, doing something “functional” like flipping giant tires, pulling and pushing heavy loads, and doing things like the Battle Ropes made him stronger in a more functional way. Instead of being a big meat head with no neck, his muscles WORKED for him, instead of being “pretty.”

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An article I read, Getting Outside the Box: The Definition of Functional Strength, says:

Functional strength is the strength that gets us through life and daily survival. Manual labor typically involved walking, running, pushing, pulling, and grasping.”

I really liked the idea of that and then I got the exposure when I was going to the Warrior Room. They had battle ropes and giant tires and it was SO hard and challenging but I noticed immediate differences in my strength levels and core strength after only a few weeks of doing functional exercises like this! I am a big fan! And these types of workouts don’t take a big chunk of your time.

 

Body Weight Exercises

Similar to the above functional exercises you can do. These don’t require equipment. These are simple things that can get your heart pumping, burn a lot of calories and you can do them in your living room if you need to!

Squat Jumps

We did squat jumps a lot at the Warrior Room and they ALWAYS got me. I loved doing them because I saw results, but dang I’d be sore. It didn’t take much to get my heart pounding. This is a great thing to do when you are short on time.

 

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Burpees and Mountain Climbers 

Like many of you, I have a love-hate relationship with burpees. They are efficient and effective but damn they kind of suck! 🙂 burpee

Mountain Climbers:

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An example:

Sometimes if I had limited time and needed to get in and get out in terms of the gym, I would do something like this:

quick warm up

jumping jacks

push-ups

squat jumps

squats

burpees

mountain climbers

Effective calorie burn without taking a long time.

Running

Running is a really efficient way to burn a lot of calories in a short amount of time. Obviously you should have a base of some running before just going outside and doing an epic 5 miles. That would hurt. So if you are already a runner, or a sometimes runner, running is a GREAT way to get in a workout when you only have 3o minutes.

When I used to run at lunch time at work I had 1 hour. That meant I had to change, run, then take a quickie shower, get dressed and be back at my desk within that hour. It was definitely a challenge, but a good one. One of the things I miss most about doing that was having my evenings free. Instead of my work day being really long and not getting home until after 7pm because of gym time, I got off work and had my evening free to do things with friends, go out for happy hour, basically enjoy some downtime! Plus, it got me out of the office, improved my mood and broke up the long day.

Repost: Why I Run the Waterfront

What a Great Workout!

Finding a Workout Buddy

I got pretty good at running during my lunch hour. I got good at changing quickly, then I’d run for about 40-45 minutes, and it would take me 10 minutes to shower and get dressed, grab my food and be back at my desk.

If you only have 30 minutes to workout, go for a run. Sprints and intervals would be your best bet for maximum calorie burn, but just running works too.

I’ve given it a lot of thought and I think once I am back running after the baby is here and after maternity leave is done, I will try and go back to running during my lunch hour. I don’t foresee a ton of extra time in my future to go to the gym after work and some things are going to have to change. I think running during my lunch hour might be the best way to do that!

What are your favorite ways to workout in the shortest amount of time?

Dec 212015
 

Usually my huge family gets together for our annual Christmas party and white elephant gift exchange. There’s tons of food and drink and people and it’s a blast. For whatever reason that didn’t happen this year, so some of my cousins decided to throw our own little Cousins Christmas get-together. I’m glad they did! It was a small group of us because so many of us are scattered around the country (and world) but it was so good to see some of them!

First, I went to the gym. 40 minutes of weight lifting (a mixture of body weight exercises like squats, some free weights and then weight machines) and then 30 minutes “running” on the treadmill. Jog/walk intervals about 2-4 minutes each. I did 1.4 miles on the treadmill.

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Then Michael and went out to my aunt’s house for the festivities, Mexican food themed. Yum!

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It was nice of my aunt letting us crash her house for our party. I had cousins come from Seattle, Eugene and Salem. When we arrived my grandma was also there! That was a nice surprise I wasn’t expecting. My aunt had picked her up in Seattle and was taking her to the farm south of Portland to spend Christmas with them. It was great to be able to see my grandma (who I think turned 95 this month) for a little bit. My grandma tried to pawn off her Moscow Mule drink to me and I kind of laughed and pointed to my belly and she said she’d forgotten. Ha!  They left and it was just us cousins for the rest of the day.

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Lunch was so tasty. My cousin Di made tamales. Michael made his amazing guacamole. My cousin Anna made taco salad. I made a bean thing –four different kinds of beans, Mexican spices and Rotel cooked up. Everything was delicious. I was famished and the food hit the spot and satisfied my Mexican food craving.

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My cousin’s husband works at Sound Brewery and brought some beers. I liked the label with the frog on it. 🙂 We spent a few hours just hanging out and catching up, having fun and then called it good. The rest of them were going out to a show that evening. Michael is getting over a cold and I wasn’t feeling up to going out for a late night (as much fun as it did sound to hang out with everyone longer) so we took some pictures and said goodbye.

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LOL My aunt took that photo. Too much egg nog?? 🙂 We were laughing so hard. It took several tries but we finally got a good photo:

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It was so much fun. I’m glad we organized something and got together instead of just skipping it this year. I wish it could have been the whole family, but maybe next year.  Michael and I went home and I immediately got in my PJs, turned on the heating pad and put my aching feet up. Exciting Saturday night for us!

Sunday

Sunday morning I did 4.5 miles on the elliptical:

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And then Michael and I went to the hospital for our tour of Labor and Delivery! I was excited for the tour because I had no idea what to expect and I hate the unknowns. It’s the control freak in me. I really wanted to see what the delivery rooms looked like and the recovery rooms.

The tour started with an introduction on where to park, how to check in, etc. We walked over to Labor and Delivery and got to see where the check in is, and then see the room where you labor. It was a really big room. I’m guessing because there are often a lot of people in that room when things get going for real.

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The guide talked about what to expect and that there was a tub in the labor room, plus there were labor rooms that had big tubs like this one:

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There were a lot of things to assist with the birth. A ton of different kinds of bouncy balls, apparently there’s a squat bar that can attach to the bed for different positions.

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There was a little incubator for the baby with a heating pad under the blanket. They don’t have a “nursery” and the baby pretty much stays with you the entire time, unless you have to go to NICU. I like that. They also had a padded couch/lounger thing for the dad to sleep on if necessary.

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The guide said that they try and give the baby to mom immediately and then everyone leaves the room for about an hour to bond and stuff. Then they come back and do all the testing things they normally do for the baby. After a few hours they move you to the recovery room, where you’ll stay for a few days. That room was a lot smaller.

I’m glad we did the tour and got an idea of what to expect. I admit, I was a bit overwhelmed and anxious at the beginning of the tour but once we got to the rooms I relaxed a bit and by the end of the tour I felt ok. Of course, things don’t always go as planned but it’s nice to see what everything looks like. One weird thing — it was SUPER quiet. I didn’t hear a peep the entire time we were at the hospital. I wasn’t expecting screaming women but not even a baby crying? It was very odd.

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After the tour we turned in our pre-registration forms and then went to lunch at McMenamin’s.  Michael got the Italian salad. I got the grilled Tuna melt sandwich on rye with cajun tots. The tots are fabulous!

Overall it was a good weekend, even if it was busy busy busy. The next thing to check off our to-do list is the birthing classes! Those start in January.