Category Archives: Exercises

Jump Roping = Mega Calorie Burn

Jump roping is no longer for elementary school. Jump roping can be extremely beneficial and a great workout for your body. Not only are jump ropes cheap, but you can don’t have to go to the gym to exercise. You can do it right at home!  Jump rope can help increase muscle tone in your legs, arms, improve cardiovascular function, as well as promote weight loss. Research has shown that jump roping can be just as effective as running. So for those of you who don’t like to run or are tired of it, then I would suggest getting your jump rope out and start jumping!

There are several things you can do to maximize your workout with a jump rope. You can buy a weighted rope, change feet position, and or speed. I have listed 15 different moves you can do with your jump rope to change up and maximize your workout.

Try these moves in your jump rope work out to help increase intensity and calorie burn! Depending on the intensity of your workout, you can burn up to 130 calories in 10 minutes of jumping.

Jump Rope

1. Forward & Back: While jumping, imagine a line and jump back and forth from it.

2. Crossed Arms: While jumping, cross your arms and jump through the loop you made (I am pretty sure we all did this in the 3rd grade).

3. Double Jump: While jumping, jump high enough to where you can turn the rope twice under your one jump.

4. Boxer Jump: When jumping, put one heel out in front of you and then switch.

5. Side to Side: Just like the ski down exercise move, “ski down” (side to side) with each jump.

6. Squat Jacks: Try squatting with each jump to help maximize your quads and glutes.

7. Single Leg Hop: Jumping on one leg and alternate feet every few jumps.

8. Half Turn: While jumping, try turning 180 degrees a few times during the routine.

9. Arms Out: To help increase lean muscle in your arms, try holding your arms further out from your body while jumping.

10. High Knees: While jumping, bring each knee (one at a time) up at a 90 degree angle toward your chest.

11. Heel to Toe: While jumping land on your heels and then your toes on the next jump.

12. Running: Act as if you are running in place while jumping.

13. Scissors: Do the scissor move while jumping (Scissor Run).

14. Butt Kicks: With each jump, kick your feet back towards your rear.

15. On foot Side to Side: On one foot, jump side to side (alternate feet).

15 Minute Workouts for Traveling

We have all been there when we travel. We go down to the hotel gym to workout and every cardio and weight machine is being used. Or, you decide to sleep in a bit but then feel guilty you didn’t get up. So what do you do? You don’t have time to come back, you can’t wait for a machine, and you don’t have an extra hour in the day to workout. You do an effective hotel room workout. In other words, a short high intense circuit workout.

The beauty about these 15 minute circuit workouts are that you don’t even have to leave your room. Put those sneakers on and get to sweating. These workouts don’t need a lot of equipment and if they do, it is already in your room. Score!

While I was reading my Oxygen workout magazine, this specific issue highlighted some effective short workouts. I have incorporated some of their exercises with my own. If you are unclear what the move is, just click on the exercise and a demo video will open-forgive my husbands fingers and my dog in some of them. 😉

So next time you sleep in, can’t find a machine to workout on, don’t have time to workout later on your hotel stay, then I encourage you to try one of these 15 minute exercises. If you happen to get a treadmill at the hotel and want to do a HIIT then check out this post here.

I have listed three different workouts. Which means, you can do a different workout three different days. The rules are, you have to preform each exercise for 30-45 seconds (no breaks unless you absolutely need one). After you finish with all the exercises in that workout, take a 30 second break and repeat the same set you just did. You will want to do a total of three sets.

P.S. I actually had my twin sister do this while we stayed in a hotel back in Feb and it kicked her rear. She almost threw up. SO YOU CAN DO IT!!!! 🙂


Workout #1

Squat Jacks

Towel Jump

In and Out

Hip Dips

Tricep Dips

Mountain Climbers

Squat Kicks


Workout #2

Jump Lunges

Ski Downs


Scissor Run

Plyo Jumps

One Leg Tricep Dip remember to switch legs!

Side Plank Under and Over remember to switch sides!


Workout # 3

Prisoner Squat

Side lunges – No video here, just lunge to the left and then right.

Push Ups- No video here. You can also do these on your knees as well.

Side In & Outs


Basketball Jumps

One Leg Tricep Dip remember to switch legs!


Good Luck and get your workout on!


Fitness Apps for Your Phone

We use our phones for everything. We make lists, videos, take pictures, post status updates, communicate, and much more. Your phone can also help you lose weight and stay on track with your health and fitness goals. There are several apps available to you whether it is for tracking calories, lifting weights, or going out for a run.

Since this post is a fitness post, I will be only talking about the workout apps today. If you would like to find more health and fitness apps, then I would check them out here. This website has a list of some of the greatest health and fitness apps out there. You should take a look! Most of them are free! All of my information comes from the website (listed above). I have some of these apps and I love them. If you are interested in learning more about the app, just click on the name or picture and it will take you to the website.

NTCNike Training Club The Nike Training Club app lets you pick your goal and fitness level. It will then choose over 100 workouts for you to choose from. Workouts range from 15, 30, 45 minutes. Cost: Free. Available for iOS and Android.

NRNike+ Running This app tracks your distance, time, calories, and pace while jogging/running. This app also allows you to connect and share your success through social media sites. Cost: Free. Available for iOS and Android.


C25KCouch to 5k This app is used by several of my friends. It is an app that is made for those who want to run a 5K but don’t know where to start or for those wanting to get back into running. It gives you workouts to preform each week to get you ready for a 5K in three months! Cost: Free. Available for iOS and Android.

RKRunKeeper RunKeeper tracks the duration, calories burned, length when you are walking, running, jogging, or doing any outside activity. Cost: Free. Available for iOS and Android



Runtastic is a personal tracking app for running, biking, and other fitness activities that allows users to analyze and share data. Cost: Free. Available for iOS and Android.


MMF MapMyFitness Craig and I actually have this app and we both love it. It has a GPS in it to track our workout. You can walk, jog, or run and it will keep track of your pace, distance, length, speed, and calories burned. It will log your route as well, which is helpful! Cost: Free. Avaialble for iOS, Android, and Blackberry.

SWSworkit This app is a circuit training app and you can either make your own circuit or let the app choose it for you. It also shows you how to do the exercises. There are several exercises to choose from so you can do anything from strength training to cardio. Cost: Free. Available for iOS and Android

MovesMoves This app is like a pedometer. It tracks all your moves throughout the day and then will compile them into miles walked. In order for it to work though, you need to have your phone with you while walking. Cost: Free. Available for iOS.


As I said before, you phone can do a lot of things so why don’t you let it help you reach your goals? I only listed the fitness apps today, but if you have more that are not listed above, please feel free to comment what app it is and why you like it.

Now download some apps and check them out! These apps are there to help you reach your fitness and health goals. Let me know what you think and happy exercising!


Resistance Training isn’t just for Big Muscles

When most people hear about resistance or weight training, they think of the big body builders and “bulking” up. However, there is much more to resistance training then gaining big muscles. Resistance training helps break down muscle fibers and when the muscles begin rebuilding, they are more firmed, toned, and stronger. Several people use resistance training to increase lean muscle mass and become toned…not everyone wants big muscles.

Resistance training is recommended for all men and women. It offers several health benefits such as: building muscle strength, increasing your metabolism, lowering blood pressure, reducing body fat, making everyday activities a little easier, help prevent osteoporosis, increasing stability and balance, and much more. Adding resistance training into your exercise regimen is extremely beneficial for you and your body.

Weights are not the only equipment used for resistance training. Your body weight and resistance bands can be used as well. Therefore, if you have bands but do not have weights, its okay! You can still get an effective workout with bands. Your own body is a great tool as well; there are several exercises you can do with just using your body which are effective.

To get started, it is extremely important you have permission from your doctor. Sometimes doctors will not allow clients to participate in resistance training due to medical conditions. If you have the clear, then your first step is to know what exercises to do. There are several tools online, tv, videos, and apps which help you with resistance exercises. If you only want to incorporate a small amount of resistance training then that is fine, just make sure you know how to properly do the exercise and watch your form and technique. When you preform an exercise incorrectly, you are putting yourself at risk for injury as well as not receiving maximum results.

Strength training does not only consist of workout out your chest, shoulders, and arms, but it includes your back, core, and legs as well. You want your exercises to range from upper to lower body. You should be doing shoulder fly’s all the way to leg squats. Include your entire body into resistance training.

Resistance training is recommended two times a week until you can work yourself up to three times a week. Reps may vary between 8-10 (muscle growth), 12-15 (lean muscle). You also want to pick weights that are not too heavy. You want your last three repetitions of the set to burn, almost to where you can barely do the exercise without compromising form. If you are not feeling the burn, then most likely you need to increase the weight or use a thicker resistance band. Resistance training should not be painful, if you are experiencing pain, then you need to stop immediately.

My challenge to you would be to begin incorporating resistance training into your workout plan. If you want to only do 20-30 minutes two to three times a week, then great! Keep it up and keep going. If you are unsure about exercises, you can always use a personal trainer/me who can help you and increase your confidence with resistance training. A gym is not necessary to have an effective resistance training program. If you have the tools at home, you can do it there.  You cannot go wrong with incorporating resistance into your workout plan; you will be doing your body and yourself a favor. Good luck and if I can help, do not hesitate to email me at


Get Active with a HIIT Workout!

If you are unfamiliar with a HIIT workouts, it is a High Intensity Interval Training workout. HIITs are very popular and I am sure you have seen them advertised. So, if you are unsure what a HIIT workout is, the benefits, or if the workouts are for you; then I would encourage you to read the post.

What is a HIIT workout?

A HIIT workout is a cardiovascular workout. These exercises consist of repetitions of short, high intensity cardio intervals followed by a recovery that is usually a less intense exercise if not rest. HIITs can be cardio based, but also used with weights as well. There are several different HIIT workouts out there, so it is important to do your research and know what you are doing. These exercises usually last anywhere between 4-30 minutes. They are great workouts because they also don’t require equipment or a lot of space (which is definitely a bonus)! So, if you don’t have the time or you woke up late, then a HITT workout might work out for you. With these workouts being shorter, it is important to preform each exercise with high intensity. You have to give it all you have in order to seek results from a HIIT exercise.

What are the benefits of a HIIT workout?

HIIT workouts offer several benefits. One of the benefits mentioned above is the shorter time.  I think HIITs are wonderful workouts, but I am also a believer in getting out and walking/jogging/running, elliptical, biking, any other form of cardio, and, weight training. It is a great idea to include HIITs into your workout plan, but it may not be appropriate to only do those workouts. It is shown weight training and HIITs combined can help build/maintain muscle mass and burn the fat. However, it is recommended to do HIIT workouts only three times a week. Another benefit to a HIIT is that is can improve your cardiovascular functional capacity. According to the American College of Sports Medicine Annual Meeting, a study preformed in 2011 showed, just 2 weeks of high-intensity intervals improves your aerobic capacity as much as 6 to 8 weeks of endurance training. Not only are you improving your body’s cardiovascular capacity and strengthening your heart, but also burning more fat. HIITs are designed to burn a large amount of calories in a small amount of time, so your body is in super repair mode. Therefore, with that being said, it is shown that these workouts burn calories and fat 24 hours AFTER the workout is complete. Besides burning calories and fat after the workout, your metabolism will kick up as well! Your growth hormone, which helps with caloric burn is increased greatly after HIITs so your metabolism begins to speed up. I would say these benefits are definitely worth pushing yourself if you can. Remember, these are high intensity workouts. If you want to achieve these benefits, then you have to be willing to dedicate yourself to the workouts and push yourself.

Are HIIT workouts for you?

Not everyone likes HIIT workouts and some can’t do them because of back, knee, shoulder, feet, and/or breathing issues. It is okay. You don’t have to do a HIIT workout to have those benefits. You can successfully strengthen your heart, improve your cardiovascular system, increase metabolism, and decrease body fat by sticking to a work out plan with out HIITs. When you commit yourself to a workout plan, you can achieve all of those benefits. If you want to work up to doing a HIIT workout, then I encourage that. It is not wise to go from not exercising/barely exercising to doing a high intensity workout. Take your time. You don’t want to injury yourself. Also, as with any type of exercise, it is extremely important to consult with your doctor before engaging in ANY workouts, including HIITs.

Here are two examples of HIIT workouts. HIITs can be done on a bike, treadmill, while your running, lifting weights, or just wanting a quick and sweaty work out.

Example One: This is for beginners; if you want to increase intensity, do exercises for 60 seconds each and or add more exercises.

1. Warm Up for 5-10 minutes (walking, marching, jogging in place, stretching)

2. 45 seconds of squat jumps

3. 45 seconds of mountain climbers

4. 45 seconds of burpees

5. 45 seconds of suicides

6. Repeat this 2x for a total of 3 times and rest 30 seconds in between sets (every 3 minutes).

7. Cool down for 5-10 minutes


Example Two: This is a running HIIT. If you need to increase intensity, then you can increase your speed or your incline.

1. Warm Up for 5-10 minutes (walking, marching, jogging in place, stretching)

2. Run at 12 mph for 30 seconds to one minute (hands off!)

3. Walk easy for two minutes.

4. Repeat cycle seven more times.

5.Cool down for 5-10 minutes

Push Yourself