Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner

I think when I was creating last night’s Bootcamp workout, I was wishing I was in Vegas. The last time I was there when in November for the Rock n Roll Half Marathon which in my book is too long! Anyways, different subject for a different day. Last night’s goal during class was plain and simple – get as many points as possible, however you can within each round. For each round, I put 10 minutes on the clock and let the students go at it. I was a very proud instructor when almost every student started with burpees! Competition definitely creeped in with my students (I can’t blame them as that’s one of my worst traits) but they all commented how much they liked tonight’s game after class. This will definitely make an appearance again soon.

Winner Winner Workout

The other day I used this playlist in cycle class which resulted in many people saying “I love this song” during class. Just as I like compliments on my classes, I love compliments on my playlists. It helps me to know what goes over well in classes and what doesn’t. This one has a good mix of songs on the radio now and some hits from months, even years ago!

Mix It Up Playlist

Here are the songs from the playlist:

Go Big or Go Home – American Authors
Somebody – Natalie La Rose
Magic – B.O.B
Dance, Dance – Fall Out Boy
Sweet Nothing – Calvin Harris / Florence Welsh
Weight of Living, Pt. 11 – Bastille
Evacuate The Dancefloor – Cascada
Somebody Told Me  – The Killers
Fun – Pitbull / Chris Brown
Shut Up and Dance – Walk the moon
Sandstorm – Darude
All Night – Icona Pop
Marchin On – One Republic
Bright – Echosmith
Landslide – Dixie Chicks

Tell me: Do you like group or individual workouts?

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Another Weekend of Fun & Workouts

Welcome back! Hope everyone had a wonderful weekend. Friday night was a relaxing evening in. I finally got what I have been longing for which was a completely low-key evening. Thursday night concluded my 10th class in 8 days. I rested by enjoying a movie night on the couch which was the perfect start to the weekend.

After I taught my cycle class on Saturday, my husband and I drove out to Malibu where we enjoyed a delicious meal at Malibu Cafe. As posted on Instagram, we started with fried mac-n-cheese balls. I had their Huckleberry Lemonade with a grilled chicken salad for my entree. While the food was amazing, the atmosphere was even better. The cafe has games on the lawn (next to a small lake) including Jenga and ping pong.

Weekend Recap Malibu Cafe 2    Weekend Recap Malibu Cafe 3

After our picturesque lunch, we headed to Escondido Falls right off Pacific Coast Highway. The first mile into the hike is through residential mansions until you hit the start of the trail. You can see the beach off the trail before you headed into the woods for a 4 mile round trip hike. The hike was fairly shaded leading to a waterfall that was surprisingly green for the drought California is in. We were able to enjoy the beautiful blue skies and cloud free day.

Weekend Recap Escondido Falls 2   Weekend Recap Escondido Falls 3 Weekend Recap Escondido Falls 4   Weekend Recap Escondido Falls

After dealing with the horrible California traffic, we made our way to Mother Moo’s Creamery. I love their organic dairy free ice cream including one of my favorite flavors- salted butterscotch. A creamy ice cream was the perfect way to end the day. We sat outside soaking up the weather before we finally headed home to call it a night.

Weekend Recap Mother Moos 2

Sunday started with another cycle class before we spent our day doing errands like grocery shopping and cleaning. Although a bit more mellow weekend than most, it was exactly what I wanted. It was another weekend filled with just enough relaxing, good food, wonderful company and workouts. With that, lets recap this week’s workouts. Although it was another very heavy cardio week, I was subbing many classes this week which led to more cycle classes than I usually do in a week. Luckily, this week is back to my regular schedule which will allow me more personal workouts.

Weekly Workouts

Weekly Workouts Recap:

Monday – Taught two one-hour Cycle classes

Tuesday – Taught a one-hour Bootcamp class; Taught a one-hour Cycle class

Wednesday – Taught a one-hour Cycle class, Strength Training Arm session

Thursday – Taught a one-hour Cycle class

Friday – Rest Day

Saturday – Taught a one-hour Cycle class, 4 mile hike

Sunday – Taught a one-hour Cycle class, Strength Training Arm session

Tell me: Where is your favorite spot to hike? Do you prefer the beach or the desert?

Fun Family Weekend & Weekly Workouts

My weekend was filled with family, food, fun and fitness- just how I like it! The weekend started off on Friday night with my first acupuncture and chiropractic appointment for my back. I have two more sessions this week so I will be updating more next week. After the appointment, the husband and I grabbed sushi at a revolving sushi bar before we headed to the movies. We saw Spy which I absolutely loved! Add in the fact that I was actually able to avoid eating buckets of popcorn and I left the theaters a very happy girl.

Saturday morning kicked off early with another wonderful cycle class. I never thought I would say this but I look forward to waking up early Saturday mornings for my class. The women make the class so much fun that I look forward to getting in the gym early to knock my workout out. After class, I met my sister and her kids at the mall to grab lunch and get our makeup done for our concert that night. I was so happy I got to see my sister, niece and nephew as I only had to wait 4 days from the last time I saw them.

As I mentioned on Friday, my sister and I had tickets to see Lady Antebellum, Hunter Hayes and Sam Hunt in concert. Not only did we have pit tickets with VIP passes but we had won a meet and greet with Lady Antebellum. In addition, my sister applied for a contest to be filmed as a “super fan” during the concert. When she found out they had picked her, we were ecstatic because we have been Lady A fans since day one. When we got to the concert, we were mic’d up and followed around by cameramen to the VIP tent where there was some of the best food I have ever had (I am still dreaming of the toffee cookies). Lady A and Hunter Hayes did an acoustic set with a Q&A before we were taken backstage for the meet and greet. The whole experience was so amazing and unique however you will not be seeing me on reality TV anytime in the near future. Being followed  by a camera did not feel natural at all so thank goodness we loved hanging out with our camera crew.

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After the meet and greet, we made our way to the pit for the concert. I have been to many concerts but this was by far the best one. Both opening acts were energetic and fun. Hunter Hayes blew me away with his flawless performance and guitar skills. Lady Antebellum just killed their performance from start to finish. My favorite part of the concert? Lady A, Sam Hunt and Hunter Hayes singing “Walk This Way.” Their voices went so well together and got the crowd on their feet. Being in the pit, directly in front of the stage, we had the best view and I got to touch every one of the singer’s hands (which made the hours of standing all worth it)! The concert ended around 11pm and we finished our final interview about our experience. I got home at 1:30am (which is getting way harder in my late 20s) on a happiness high from the concert.

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After teaching Sunday morning (5 hours of horrible sleep was pretty brutal) I came home, showered and changed to meet up with my sister and the kids to see Inside Out. It was the best kids movie I have seen Frozen! After the movie, we said goodbye to my sister and the kids before we headed to my old apartment to do one last storage trip before I turn in the keys! After getting home and loving on Emma (because I have to do that every time I come home), I showered for dinner. We finished the night off with a delicious dinner at Paul Martin’s with the husband’s cousin. We shared a spinach dip appetizer and I had the salmon salad. We left the restaurant extremely full and not looking forward to going to work tomorrow.

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All in all, although very busy, this was one of the best weekends! I could not ask for more. However, on the same note if there is one thing I could wish for, it would be to have a no plan weekend. The last few weekends have been very action packed, while in general our weekends have busy since New York in February. With the holiday this weekend I am actually really hoping for at least one day where I can be as lazy as humanly possible. We will see if that actually happens as I say that every weekend but it never happens.

Weekly Workouts

My workouts pretty much looked the same as last week but I definitely improved my strength training like I wanted. I still have room for improvement and need to mix up my workouts more. My goal is to get a least two strength training sessions this week as well as one yoga class.

Weekly Workouts Recap:

Monday – Taught a one-hour Cycle class

Tuesday – Taught a one-hour Bootcamp class; Rest Day

Wednesday – 20 min cardio, 30 min arm workout

Thursday – Taught a one-hour Cycle class

Friday – Rest Day

Saturday – Taught a one-hour Cycle class

Sunday – Taught a one-hour Cycle class, 15 min arm workout

Tell me: Have you seen any good movies lately?

Weekend Update & Workout Recap

Happy Tuesday! I was MIA yesterday but living it up in Pismo Beach. My day consisted of delicious food, family and the beach. That is my idea of the perfect kind of quick getaway! I will have a full recap of Pismo Beach on Thursday for Travel Thursday but first let’s rewind a bit to Friday night.

After work, the husband and I decided we wanted to grab some food out. I am the world’s most impatient person (Type A all the way) which makes waiting seem like torture. I agreed to go out if there was no wait wherever he decided! Thank goodness, the restaurant he had in mind had no wait at all. We went to Luna’s Modern Mexican Kitchen for my first visit. We started off with chips and salsa (which always results in spoiling my appetite) and delicious margaritas!

Weekend Recap Lunas Mexican Food         Weekend Recap Lunas Mexican

For an appetizer, we had their table side guacamole which was fresh and inhaled by both of us! By the time our food came out, I was not hungry but I managed to find a spot in my stomach for the unique dish I ordered. Their food is Mexican with a twist. The waiter explained that their dishes are Mexican food items with a European or South American flair. I had their chicken dish that included plantain rice, fresh veggies and a cheese spinach stuffed pollo. It was such a weird concept because the dish tasted like a Mexican cordon bleu! I left the restaurant knowing we would be back very soon to try other items. We finished the night by picking up Emma to walk to Baskin Robbins for ice cream. Emma loved the attention from people sitting outside the shop. She kept begging her daddy for some of his ice cream. What can I say, she loves food like her mom.

Weekend Recap

On Saturday, I woke up to teach my 8am Cycle class which was a packed, energetic class. We were drenched in sweat 2 songs in and left feeling so accomplished to finish my workout before 9am. I stopped to get Starbucks on the way home since I knew the husband and I would need the caffeine for the full day of moving ahead. We packed, moved and stored 90% of my old apartment. At the end of the day, I checked my Fitbit and had walked 20,000 steps (twice my daily goal). By the end of the night, we relaxed after our extremely tiring day. Lifting heavy boxes and walking up and down stairs is a great workout!

Weekend Recap Starbucks

Sunday started with my 9am Cycle class. I did some errands and stopped to see my Dad on Father’s Day before heading up to Pismo Beach. Unfortunately the drive took forever with traffic but it was worth it once I made it up there! I will recap all the amazing food & fun this week but needless to say I ate my weight in delicious food as seen on Instagram.

Pismo Beach Surfside Donuts

This week’s workouts included an additional Rest Day since I have been busy with moving. Since I have been struggling to get strength training in, I found an arm & ab challenge on Pinterest that I am going to start next week with my sister. Hopefully having the move out of the way will also result in more strength workouts this coming week.

Weekly Workouts

Weekly Workouts Recap:

Monday – Taught a one-hour Cycle class

Tuesday – Taught a one-hour Bootcamp class

Wednesday – Rest Day

Thursday – Taught a one-hour Cycle class

Friday – Rest Day

Saturday – Taught a one-hour Cycle class & TONS of strength training while moving

Sunday – Taught a one-hour Cycle class

Talk to you tomorrow with my latest Stitch Fix recap!

Tell me: How was your weekend? Do you mind waiting in lines or for a table at a restaurant?

Wednesday Workout & Playlist

Yesterday afternoon I had my (hopefully) last back procedure in an effort to control my pain. I am very hopeful that running and I will get back together very shortly. Unfortunately after the procedure, I still had my Tuesday night Bootcamp class. I needed to have a workout that would require me to simply monitor the exercises, not participate. I used a student as my model for exercises and was able to still attend. Shhh… don’t tell but I think we know who my favorite class is. 😉

Dec of Cards Workout

I love workouts that make working out seem fun and not so tedious. Working out in the form of a game, makes it a bit more fun as the time passes much faster. Last night’s workout is great because you can do in a group fitness class but you can also complete it by yourself. All you need is a deck of cards, a set of weights and a mat. The # of reps = the # of your card + 10. (J,Q,K and A are 10) The max reps you would do is 20 reps. Complete each round once. Last night we did 10 mins of each round for a total of 30 minutes. Here are the exercises for each round:

Round 1:

Spades :  Burpees  Clubs :  Push-ups
Hearts :  Crunches  Diamonds :  Bicep Curl- Shoulder Press

Round 2:

Spades :  Mountain Climbers  Clubs :  Squats
Hearts :  Side Crunches  Diamonds :  Bent Row w/ Kickback

Round 3:

Spades :  Plank Jacks  Clubs : Walking Lunges
Hearts :  Reverse Crunches  Diamonds :  Throw w/ Chest Fly

I have mentioned before that my ideal playlist is a mix of oldies and current songs you hear on the radio. On Monday I used a playlist at Cycle that went over very well as students commented that they liked the mix of music. When a playlist includes pop, country, 80’s and more, everyone is bound to like a song or two. Although I used this for Cycle, it is a great playlist for your workout. Listen to it while you complete the Deck of Cards workout!

Spin Playlist

Tell me: Do you like your workouts to be fun? Or are you all about being serious and  straight forward?

Confessions of a Group Fitness Instructor

Hope everyone had a great weekend! Besides teaching two great cycle classes, I was able to spend time at the pool, packing and getting plenty of errands done. Although it will be another busy week, I am ready to tackle the week head on. Before I take on the week, I wanted to share a little incident that happened last week before one of my classes.

Last week I got out of work late which resulted in me racing home to take care of Emma, changing my clothes and speeding way above the limit to get to the gym. I hit some horrible traffic that resulted in me muttering many curse words and calling my gym to tell them I would definitely be 10 minutes late. When I finally made it to the gym, I walked into class with a huge smile, apologized to the class and let them know I would make up the 10 minutes at the end of class. After class I realized not a single one of my students knew how the drive over was for me because I went in to “instructor mode” the second I walked in that room. So I thought I would share some of the other thoughts I have had as a group fitness instructor that may or may not surprise you.

Confessions of a Group Fitness Instructor

1. I HATE Burpees– No matter how many times I talk up their calorie burning potential and/or put them in workouts, I despise them. I think they are the worst exercise to do yet I know they are the best to add into bootcamp. So sadly for my students they are here to stay.

2. I worry someone will actually take me up on my offer to add their favorite song to a playlist– I worry more about someone asking for a song that I cannot make work in a class or a song that I hate. I have only had 2 students ever ask for a song request and luckily they just asked for a specific artist. I am very open when it comes to music but I am sorry, you just cannot spin to “My Heart Will Go On” by Celine Dion.

3. I love getting to boss people around– My husband and mother would not be shocked by this confession at all. Bossy should be my middle name and getting paid to boss people around with fitness? Even better.

4. I have favorites– Although I make sure to never play on my feelings, I definitely have favorite classes and favorite people in classes. Usually it is with students who  regularly attend classes. If I see a student attend a class at least two times I will start mentally remembering the weight they are lifting/speed they are performing at/what exercises they struggle with so I can help them improve as much as possible.

5. Although I have favorites, I have only ever had one person in my class I did not like– This person was rude, made obnoxious comments to me and yelled at other students during class. I tried for weeks to try to ignore the student’s behavior. Then I reminded myself for teaching 5 classes a week, not liking one student can slide.

6. I love when people holler, yell, sing along to the music, cheer or react to class– Especially when I ask a question to the class. As an instructor it pains me when I ask questions to my students and hear crickets. It makes me thinks that my students are either dead or hate the class. I would rather a grunt to know you are out there and working hard then get no reaction. I tell my classes they can roll their eyes at me or talk back.. it is better than no reaction!

7. I pride myself on being a tough instructor- I would rather have students say the class was too hard then too easy. I always give modifications to make an exercise easier and harder. My philosophy is “It is a called a workout which means there is work involved.” If I see students are not breaking a sweat within the first 15 minutes of class, I will add extra resistance to every exercise planned for class. This does go the opposite way in that I will tone down the resistance if I see students really struggling in the start of class.

8. When I receive positive feedback for a class, new move or playlist, my day is made– When a student or my boss give me praise, I smile and say thank you. Inside I am beaming and run home to tell my husband. Yep. Every single time. (poor guy) If you liked a class or an instructor, make sure you tell them on your way out. I am sure you will make their day.

9. I have only attended a handful of group fitness classes since I started teaching- I got certified to be a group fitness instructor because I loved the classes and instructors I took myself. Since I have started teaching, I find my own workouts being on my own. Maybe it is because I am in the group fitness room 5 days a week or maybe it is because my gym time is with my husband now. Whatever the reason, it is definitely something I want to improve on.

10. Sometimes I am just not in the mood– Just like everyone, I have days where I am not in the mood, had a bad day, work sucked or am just plain tired. I do know that if I am feeling this way before a class I need to get my endorphins going. My go to method is to run a few laps around the gym with one of Power Songs. This allows works to get my heart rate up and ready to do the same for my students.

Of course, everything I mention here are just my thoughts and opinions. I love what I do and am very lucky I get to share my love of fitness with some amazing students. As an instructor all I want is for my students to excel as I truly care about their success in fitness. This week remember to thank an instructor whose class you have enjoyed or helped you in some way. It will be very appreciated by the group fitness instructor. At least give them a holler back in class 😉

Tell me in the comments: Do you usually tell an instructor if you liked or did not like their class?

Workout: Salty Sweaty Session & Tri Update

A day late with Wednesday Workout but I had to celebrate National Running Day yesterday. Although it was running day, I was all about my cycling yesterday. With starting of triathlon training and getting my new bike, I finally broke down to  get a new pair of cycle shoes. I currently have a pair of cycle shoes that have SPD-SL cleats. However, both gyms I teach at use standard SPD cleats. Unfortunately my first pair only fit the SL so it was time to get another pair. I  am looking forward to not only using these in class but training with some new shoes!

Cycle Triathlon Shoes

This workout however was yesterday’s Wednesday Workout. I love workout sessions that leave me drenched in sweat and the feeling of a high intensity workout where you feel that salty sweaty dripping in your eye. This workout will result in a super sweaty session. Rounding out the abs, arms and legs workout, the final workout is all about cardio.

Salty Sweaty Session Cardio Workout

To complete this workout, finish each exercise for 30 seconds. Repeat the round for a total of 2x. The exercises are: Mountain Climbers, Ice Skaters, Burpees, Jumping Jacks, Jump Squats, High Knees, Jumping Rope, Plank Jacks

Happy Wednesday Workout! Enjoy!13:)