BodyRock “Fusion” Workout Review 6

Fitness Multitasking = Feeling Fierce

I’ve been doing the Daily Hiit Catching Fire 30 Day Challenge, alongside the 31-day Pushup Challenge, and haven’t had much time to delve into new and interesting workouts. BUT I have tried to incorporate interesting things in with these challenges! In doing so, I created this “fusion” between BodyRock workout, pushups/squats, and abs that’ll surely leave you sore tomorrow! I sure was. 🙂

“Catching Fire: Day 18” Workout

Target Areas: Legs, Arms, Abs

Regimen Style: Tabata, 10 sec. rest, 30 sec. work

Gym Equipment: Optional. We were at the gym and just used a bench. No need for an “equalizer” if you have chairs, couches, or picnic benches. 🙂

Please watch the video. If you like this one, try out the “Catching Fire” 30 day challenge. (Or you can click here to go to the Daily Hiit website and choose from a list of different challenges to try!)  Each new workout is sent to your email address or is available on Pinterest, and I promise it’s worth it. And totally free! Can’t beat that. 😉 Listed below the video are my notes of each exercise. If that’s not helpful to you, you can feel free to skip the breakdown and jump straight to the other two exercise routines. As always, feel free to leave me a comment if you’ve tried this exercise, or if you have any suggestions for me. Thank you!!

Set your timer for 18 rounds of 10 sec. rest/30 sec. work. You’ll do this whole round three times.

  1. Bulgarian Squat (right leg) – a.k.a. “split squat,” a.k.a “leg elevated lunge.” Don’t rush these; take your time or you’ll fall off balance more than you will actually do the motion.
  2. Core Knee-in – a.k.a. “elevated Spiderman crunch.” Make sure your back isn’t bent over. Keep your core tight and you WILL feel this!
  3. Bulgarian Squat (left leg)
  4. Tricep Dips – I did these with my legs out and tried to keep my arms at 90 degrees the whole time. Modify as you need to.
  5. Mountain Climbers – These are elevated, much like the Core Knee-in, so keep the core the same.
  6. Hip Thrusts – Squeeze your butt and you’ll elevate yourself pretty far. Don’t rely too much on your arms, if you can help it.

Pushups and Squats

It was day 18 for me on this challenge, which meant meant that I did 3 rounds of 24 squats and 15 pushups. Everything was so sore! But I definitely felt strong afterwards. 🙂 I took a 10 minute break before proceeding to the next exercise.

Stability Ball Ab Routine

I found this workout on Pinterest. While the site calls it a “2-week belly flattening routine,” I’m just calling it the Stability Ball Ab Routine. It’s definitely worth a shot if you want to try it out in full! Anyway, enough talking and to the routine!

Do 12-15 reps of each exercise, holding the contracting positions for a second or so. Do total workout once to begin, twice when you’re more advanced.

  1. Reverse Crunch – start video at :40.
    Lie face up with calves resting on the ball, keeping arms at sides. Squeeze the ball between your calves and thighs, and LIFT YOUR HIPS. As the video indicates, you can make it easier by just lifting your butt. But I promise that this easier option will not work your lower abs quite as well.
  2. Rock and Roll – start video at :30.
    Start on your knees, legs about hip-width apart. Make fists and place them on the ball in front of you. Keep your body in line, abs tight, and lean forward to roll onto your forearms. (Don’t do her “make it easier” thing because that’s not going to help you at all. Either start on your knees and roll out as far as you can, or get in your plank position and be a boss.)
  3. Ball Curl – start video at :30.
    I know lots of us have done this before. Basically do your crunch on the ball, with your back at the curve of the ball. This focuses on extending the ab muscles past what you would normally do on the floor.
  4. Skier – start video at :30.
    This takes a bit of arm strength to keep your position tight. Tighten your core, have your thighs on the top of the ball, and roll to one side so that the ball is under one thigh. Return to start position, and repeat other side. Watch the video if this totally didn’t make sense. 😉
  5. Pike – start video at :30
    Okay, this is tricky. Just watch the video. In essence, you’ll do the same thing as the skier but get yourself into a pike/almost handstand position. O_o

 

Easy Chicken Stir-fry

I got this recipe from one of my all-time favorite Paleo cookbooks: Practical Paleo: a customized approach to health and a whole-foods lifestyle. I strongly suggest getting a book like this that tells you more than just delicious recipes. Diane Sanfilippo does a fantastic job of delving into your nutrition and diet in a life-changing way. I’m sharing this recipe but subbing the original steak for chicken. Use whatever you’d like! 🙂 Her original recipe is found on p. 286. Anything I added is in italics.

Ingredients

  • 1 lb skirt steak OR 2 lb. chicken breast, cut into smaller cubes and marinated in a gluten-free teriyaki sauce of your choice
  • 2 tbsp. coconut oil
  • 1 c. red onion, julienned
  • 1 c. broccoli, chopped
  • 1 c. string beans, ends trimmed
  • 1 c. sweet peppers, julienned (original calls for bell peppers)
  • 1 bunch asparagus, end trimmed, cut in half
  • 2 large carrots, cut in half and sliced thin
    • You may use 4 cups of whatever veggies you choose!
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds, raw or toasted (I serve this on the side)
  • 2 tbsp. green onions/scallions, chopped (opted not to do this one)
  • 1/4 c. water chestnuts, sliced (I serve this on the side–hubs doesn’t like them)

Stir-fry Sauce Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp. coconut aminos
  • 2 tbsp. warm water
  • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped or grated
  • 1/4 – 1/2 tsp. ginger, finely chopped or grated (sorry; I totally used powder)

The fresher the ingredients, the better the outcome. I will say that this works wonders as a “leftover” dish, in which you’ve got a bunch of vegetables and need to figure out what to do with them.

DSC_5186

Check out that color wheel!

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 Get it nice and stir-fried.

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Stir the veggies in the heated coconut oil. I leave it alone for about 8 minutes and come back to find it a little browned on the edges. You can also opt to cover the pan to steam if you like.
DSC_5211

 

I did this out of order. The book says to cook the meat and then the veggies so that you can stir in the meat at the end. But we needed a little more time to marinate the chicken in the teriyaki sauce.

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That right there’s the stovetop of a gal who cooks a lot. :[

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 Hey there, dinner.

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Directions

  1. Choose a gluten-free teriyaki sauce and marinate your chicken in that sauce for no less than 30 minutes. If doing steak, spread the skirt steak across a large cutting board, and cut into sections that are approximately 4 inches long, cutting with the grain of the meat. Cut against the grain to slice each section into 1/4 inch strips.
  2. Melt coconut oil over medium-high heat in a large skillet. Place steak (or chicken) in the skillet and allow to brown on both sides. Remove from skillet and set aside.
  3. Place chosen vegetables in the pan, adding a little more coconut oil if you find that the vegetables are a little dry going in. You also might find that oops, you have too many veggies! Split up your veggies and continue with the directions. Cook for about 5 minutes or until fork tender.
  4. While the vegetables cook, combine sauce ingredients and mix well.
  5. Add the meat of choice back to the pan, followed by the sauce, and heat through for about 2 minutes, or until desired look is achieved.
  6. Plate the stir-fry and top with sesame seeds, green onions, and/or water chestnuts. Also just tasty with a little sriracha sauce!

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Super Spicy Salsa

Salsa time

 

Ingredients:

  • 28 oz can whole, peeled tomatoes (you’ll use the juice later if needed)
  • Optional: 1 can hot Rotel, drained
  • 4 Serrano peppers or 4-5 large jalapenos
  • 5 habenero peppers
  • 1/2 small yellow onion
  • 3-4 garlic cloves (we used minced garlic in a jar, about 3-4 tbsp)
  • small handful cilantro
  • salt to taste

Directions:

  1. Take out all of the tomatoes from the can by hand and place them in a blender. Yes, you’ll get a little messy, but you get a better sense of how much/little juice you need. Set can with juice aside. Pour in hot Rotel, if desired, at this point.
  2. Cut stems off the Serrano/jalapeno/habenero peppers and throw them into the blender. Add the onion, garlic cloves, cilantro, and salt (roughly estimating how salty you like your salsa).
  3. Blend ingredients for about 5 seconds, or until chunks of larger items have blended nicely.
  4. Taste your salsa. If it’s way too spicy, add a little of the tomato juice from the can. You can always add more habaneros for heat. Add onions and garlic if your salsa still needs a little more flavor.
  5. This salsa is intended to be spicy, as my mom was “angry” a lot of the time when she made it. I’ve adapted her version and hope you enjoy it!

This salsa is intended to be very spicy. It was actually a little difficult for me to share ingredients, as I basically approach this with the “Eh, it needs more ___” mentality. See my Instagram photo on the left panel for ideas on what to pair it with. Family recipe, tweaked a little.

Let me know if you could handle it, or what you had to do to get it just right! 🙂

BodyRock and Hard Abs Workout 5 Review

BodyRock-hard Abs? Mmm yes.

If you’re following along with the Squat/Pushup Challenge I posted on 6/1, congrats! You earned a rest day today! Your back should start feeling stronger already. 🙂

This workout is compiled of two separate workouts: BodyRock’s “Catching Fire” Challenge–Day 1, and an ab workout I found on Pinterest. These will get your abs feeling tight almost immediately, and your arms and legs will be on fire. Link this workout with one of the days when you’re doing the squat/push-ups that I previously posted, and you won’t be sorry the next day (though you will be totally sore).

“Catching Fire: Day 1” Workout

Target Areas: Abs, Legs, Arms (static holding)

Regimen style: Tabata [10 sec. active rest (plank), 5o sec. work], 3 rounds

Gym equipment: Optional. She uses a weighted sandbag in the video and I ended up using a 30 lb. barbell, but I think the exercise in and of itself is pretty challenging. You can use a heavy backpack if you want, or just your own body weight. Make sure you listen to your body and stop doing something if you feel pain in your joints or back! Please use your GymBoss Interval Timer.

Please watch the video. If you like this one, try out the “Catching Fire” 30 day challenge. (Or you can click here to go to the Daily Hiit website and choose from a list of different challenges to try!)  Each new workout is sent to your email address, and I promise it’s worth it. And totally free! Can’t beat that. 😉 Listed below the video are my notes of each exercise. If that’s not helpful to you, you can feel free to skip the breakdown and jump straight to the arms routine I followed (no video). As always, feel free to leave me a comment if you’ve tried this exercise, or if you have any suggestions for me. Thank you!!

Set your timer for 12 rounds of 10 sec. plank/50 sec. work. This plank (active rest) is going to make all the difference in this workout–trust me.

  1. Spiderman Kick-throughs – this takes a lot of coordination! I had it down by the second round. The modification is to do your pushup and spiderman from your knees; when you’ve done your spiderman, set your foot down so your knee is at a 90 degree angle right beside you and power your other leg up from being in the kneeling pushup position. Just as tricky; you’ll feel this everywhere.
  2. Forward Backward Lunge -Left leg.  I did this with a 30 lb. barbell and it killed. Make sure you can maintain proper form under your weight of choice.
  3. Forward Backward Lunge – Right leg (OW)
  4. Rope pulls – OW AGAIN. Your legs will be on fire after round 1, so by round 3 you’ll want to stop. Just keep telling yourself: this is only 12 minutes. Only 12 minutes.

Phew! That’s done. Now on to what makes this whole thing that much more intense:

“Rock Hard Abs” Workout

The planks will intensify what you just finished. You’ll feel so strong tomorrow!

Found on Pinterest.

Found on Pinterest.

Challenge for June 2014: Pushups and Squats

I love challenges! Well, I love challenges when I actually follow through with them. 🙂 One of my goals is to be able to do a couple pull-ups unassisted by the end of the summer! In order to do that, I really need to focus on my core, back, and arm muscles. I also love squats, so this challenge was right up my alley! Let me know if you’d like to do this with me and see where we are in a month. I’ll be starting June 1st and will promise not to quit!

Squat and Pushup

 

UPDATE: I must shamefully admit that I stopped at day 22! 😦 I’ll continue to add in the remaining days’ squats and pushups into my workouts; however, I need to be honest about what happened. Distractions, soreness from my Catching Fire 30 Day challenge, and roadtrips made completing this difficult. I’ll update when I have finished it! How did you do?? Remember, your body does NOT know what day it is, so don’t feel like you have to wait for a Sunday to start making changes. 🙂

Sean Vigue Killer Core Workout 4 Review

Time flies when you’re kicking butt!

This workout is about 27 minutes long, but I promise it goes by quicker than that! This is a sequel to another workout I’ve done of his, but you don’t need to see the first video to be caught up. 🙂 I only had time to do this one workout (this was Tuesday night–late posting today!), but boy do I still feel it in my core! Check it out!

Target ares: Total core engaged, Legs, Back

Regimen style: Pilates and Calisthenics

Gym equipment: None

Please watch the video. Listed below the video are my notes of each exercise. If that’s not helpful to you, you can feel free to just use the video. As always, please leave a comment if you’ve tried this workout, or if you have any suggestions for me. Thanks! 

Breakdown of routine: (I did this real time)

  1. Knee Ups – about 20-30 reps
  2. Lunges with Torso Twist – 20 reps total
  3. Easy Burpees – 10 reps
  4. Flutter Kicks – 20 reps
  5. Ceiling Walk – 20 reps (OMG MY LEGS)
  6. Pendulum Swing – 10 reps
  7. Double Straight Leg Stretch -12 reps (No but seriously my legs were burning. Legs and abs. Oh my.)
  8. Crunching Frogs – 20 reps
  9. Superman military presses – 20 reps
  10. Swim (opposite arm/leg) – 10 seconds
  11. Turtle Pose – 20 reps
  12. Full Walk-outs – 10 reps (you will feel your core tighten in the full plank)
  13. “Swimming in a Circle” – 20 reps
  14. Wolf Pose – 10 reps per leg, 20 reps total
  15. Cross Over Half Boat – 10 reps
  16. Wolf with Add-on Hop – 10 reps per leg, 20 reps total. Be careful with this one and listen to your body. Don’t throw your back out!
  17. Cowboy Crunch – 20 reps
  18. The Wiggler – 20 reps (This works so well!)
  19. Bicycle Crunches – 30 reps
  20. Crunch with Optional Roll Over – 10 reps per leg. Just watch the video at 18:50 for how to do it. I didn’t do the roll over.
  21. Superman to Boat – 10 reps. Hold last boat pose for 10 seconds. O_o
  22. 2 Minute Plank – Modify on your knees, but keep going! I could only do one minute before I had to modify. Butt is DOWN. I suggest doing this with him because what he says about a plank is really helpful. (23:10)
  23. BONUS: Revised Turtle Pose – Suspend yourself! This is crazy and you will hurt. But it feels wonderful. 🙂

 

Paleo Crispy Stuffed Zucchini Boats

We’re doing something experimental today! I saw this recipe on Pinterest and had the following feelings:

  1. But I like cheese! 😦
  2. Hey, this is kind of a mix between stuffed bell peppers and those zucchini fries I like to make…
  3. OMG I CAN USE PORK RINDS FOR THE BREADCRUMBS…
  4. I’m going to eat this.

To clarify: pork rinds that only contain “pork skins” or “pork rinds” are what you’d want to look for. I first discovered the use of pork rinds from 500 Paleo Recipes by Dana Carpender, regarding a delicious burger recipe with onions dipped in these paleo rind crumbs. Here’s her note (emphasis added):

“Pork rinds, far from being the nutritional anathema many folks assume, are the most nutritious thing in the snack aisle. Among other things, pork rinds are a terrific source of gelatin, which is wonderful for your joints, will do good things for your nails and hair, and is anti-inflammatory. So much for pork rinds being bad for you. Read the label; you want them to contain nothing but ‘pork skins’ or ‘pork rinds.’ Especially avoid any rinds fried in soy or canola oils, or other vegetable oils.” (Carpender, p. 30)

3 oz of pork rinds = 1 c. pork rind bread crumbs. So take that.

Pork Rinds Those crums tho

 

Ingredients:

  • 3 medium zucchini, ends trimmed, cut in half lengthwise. I used both zucchini and Mexican squash, so that’s why you see so many options. We didn’t know what we’d like!
  • 1 large egg white
  • 2/3 c. Italian seasoned pork rind crumbs (make 1 c. of pork rind crumbs, add 1/2 tsp. dried parsley, 1/2 tsp. dried oregano, 1/4 tsp. garlic powder, and 1/4 tsp. onion powder)
  • 1 tbsp. EVOO
  • 1/2 c. finely chopped onion
  • 3 medium garlic cloves, minced
  • approx. 1 lb. hot Italian pork or chicken sausage (we like ours spicy; the recipe called for sweet)
  • 1 c. tomato-basil marinara sauce/sauce of choice (we used Del Grosso’s Fireworks Sauce because we still like it spicy)
  • 3 tbsp. chopped fresh basil
  • salt and pepper

OPTIONAL: Using cheese is not strict Paleo, but if the dairy doesn’t hurt you, feel free to use a little! I ended up eating mine with goat cheese on the side.

  • 1/2 c. Parmesan cheese
  • 1/2 c. mozzarella cheese

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Spray a 13×9-inch baking pan with nonstick spray.
  2. Use a small spoon to scrape out the insides of each zucchini half. Don’t scrape the zucchini all the way to the skin–just make a deep pocket where you’ll be able to put the stuffing. Save the pulp and chop it.Halved zucchiniPulp removed
  3. In a small bowl, beat egg white and season with salt and pepper. In a ziplock bag, place seasoned breadcrumbs and shake well.
  4. Dip zucchini “boats” into the egg white mixture with hollowed-side down and then into the bread crumb mixture, one at a time. Place breaded zucchini in baking pan and bake for roughly 10-15 minutes, or until the breadcrumbs start looking a little brown.Egg baste that zucchini
    Breading the bottom doesn't really do much, I discovered. So that explains that.

    Breading the bottom doesn’t really do much, I discovered. So that explains that.

    Breaded Boats

  5. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add zucchini pulp, onion, garlic, and sausage. Cook together until the onions are softened and the sausage is cooked through. Pour the mixture through a fine sieve to drain excess moisture. Transfer the meat mixture to a medium bowl.Sausage DONE Yum Sauce Ingredients
  6. If you choose to use cheese, mix the cheeses together at this point in a small bowl. Remove two tablespoons of the cheese and set aside. Add the rest of the cheese to the meat mixture, along with the marinara sauce and basil. Add salt and pepper, as desired.

    So spice. Much meat.

    So spice. Much meat.

  7. Divide meat mixture between hollowed out zucchini, filling and mounding into each one. Sprinkle reserved cheese on top and add a few of the breadcrumbs, as well.
  8. Bake for 30 minutes or until baked through and tender.FINAL

    I mean COME ON.

    I mean COME COME ON.

  9. Serve with cauliflower rice, brown rice (if not doing Paleo), or a small salad. I ate mine with just a little goat cheese on the side. 🙂

My husband doesn’t like stuffed bell peppers, but he does like zucchini fries. He loved this. Tastes a little like stuffed pasta shells, made a little sweet by the zucchini. The Mexican squash wasn’t much different than regular zucchini, and it was bigger. You can totally make it sweeter, or substitute flavors to make a southwestern style stuffed zucchini. Options are endless.

Enjoy, and let me know how it turned out for you!

 

BodyRock Workout 3 Review

Up for a little friendly competition?

This workout is short–only 12 minutes!–and can be a fun way to compete with a friend or spouse. I was sore for about four days after this workout, so don’t be fooled by its duration. You will get a killer workout, especially if you push yourself!

“You Make Me Feel” Workout

Target areas: Legs, Back, Arms, Glutes, Abs

Regimen style: Tabata (10 sec. rest, 50 sec. work), 3 rounds

Gym equipment: Optional. You’d only need it for the “Sandbag combo,” but like I’ve said in previous posts, you can use a full/heavy sports bag or backpack in lieu of something like a barbell. Please use your GymBoss Interval Timer!

Please watch the video. Click here to see the original post. Listed below the video are my notes of each exercise. If that’s not helpful to you, you can feel free to just use the video. As always, feel free to leave me a comment if you’ve tried this workout, or if you have any suggestions for me. Thank you!!

Breakdown of routine:

Set your timer for 12 rounds of 10 sec. rest/50 sec. work.

  1. Ninja Jump Tuck – Please watch Zuzana’s tutorial at the end of the video for a modified version. I’ve gotten pretty good at this one. You’ll know you have it down when you feel it everywhere.
  2. “Sandbag” Combo – (a) Deadlift (b) Squat (c) Backward Lunge and Press. Repeat. I used a 30 lb. barbell and Corbet used dumbbells.
  3. Highknees with Knee Cross Pushups – 6 high knees, 2 total knee cross pushups.
  4. Plank Jacks – Keep that butt DOWN.

Word of Caution: I thought I had injured my back after this exercise. The muscles in between my shoulder blades felt particularly tight for a while. Please make sure that you go slowly with yourself on these exercises to reduce the chance of injury. I think the knee cross pushups did it for me, as that was a move I’d never done before.

Let me know if you tried this and how you felt afterwards!

Unless it's consensual, friendly competition. Obviously.

Unless it’s consensual, friendly competition. Obviously.

Grilled Salmon with Cauliflower Mashed Potatoes

Dinner was amazing. I made a nonPaleo version for my husband which was just teriyaki grilled salmon, asparagus, and rice, but the Paleo was delicious. BUT for this, you need some great salmon. Farm raised is preferable, but we settled for wild caught.

Marinade for Salmon: (adapted from this steak recipe)

  • 1 lb. or 1 large salmon fillet
  • 1/3 c. coconut aminos
  • 1/2 c. olive oil
  • 1/3 c. fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 c. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1.5 tbsp. garlic powder
  • 3 tbsp. dried basil
  • 1.5 tbsp. dried parsley flakes
  • 1 tsp. ground white pepper
  • 1 tsp. minced garlic

Cauliflower “Mashed Potatoes” Ingredients: (adapted from this recipe)

  • 1 head of cauliflower, stem cut off, roughly chopped
  • 1 diced carrot (optional)
  • 1/2 sweet yellow onion
  • 4 cloves (roasted) garlic
  • 3 tbsp. organic butter or fat of choice (original author used chicken fat)

Directions:

  1. Acquire a pound of delicious looking salmon. If it’s a good one, it’s usually just one fillet.

    Look. At. That.

    Look. At. That.

  2. Marinate the salmon in a resealable plastic bag for at least 30 minutes.
  3. While the salmon is marinating, prepare your ingredients for the cauliflower.

    I regret the number of carrots. But it was still good!

    I regret the number of carrots. But it was still good!

  4. Steam all veggies for about 10 minutes.
  5. Put all your ingredients, with choice of fat, in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Note: I tried this with two carrots and it was a little too chunky. I had to take half out of my food processor so it would fit and be smooth.
    That steam, though.

    That steam, though.

    Processed mash

  6. Grill salmon like normal. I like my salmon with a bit of crispy darkness on the edges, but cook as you like it.
    Forgive the nighttime grilling. It was a little late.

    Forgive the nighttime grilling. It was a little late.


  7. I added grilled asparagus to the meal. Just steamed them a little first in a baggie with a little EVOO, water, garlic, salt, and pepper for about 2 minutes before placing them carefully on the grill. They get a really nice flavor that way.Asparagus

So I know it’s not terribly hard to grill salmon or asparagus, but the cauliflower mashed “potatoes” really did taste awesome with this dish! I might add a little bit of Greek yogurt next time to make it a bit creamier, but overall it was pretty fantastic. Finished 2 Finished 1 And the salmon was great for leftovers as a salad topper! Let me know if you try it and if you have any suggestions. 🙂