Pumpkin Smasher Workout

Pumpkin SmasherHere is one of the MANY GPP workouts I do to help keep me in shape through-out the year while bouncing between Rugby and Kettlebell BOLT Competitions.

Be sure to get a good warm-up in before attempting this workout.  The goal would be to perform the entire complex without setting the kettlebells down while using a “challenging” weight.  For the record, it gets pretty rough around round 4 (ouch, my fitness hurts…).

There are obviously lighter (and heavier) versions, but with the color of our comp bells and Halloween right around the corner…I just couldn’t help myself.


Are you working out hard enough?

Ask yourself this question (and answer it honestly!) How hard are you really pushing yourself while you workout?

Do you workout enthusiastically, feeling the burn with a smile, pushing yourself to the limit? Or would you describe your exercise time more like an even trot? Coasting along, breaking a respectable sweat, doing the same old thing.

Since you take the time to exercise and desire to have your body change into a slimmer, more toned version of yourself, then use the following tips to get more out of your exercise time.

Focus your mental energy. It sounds simple, but often isn’t. If you’re lifting weights, focus on that specific muscle group. Researchers saw a significant increase in muscle activity when people focused on what they were doing, compared to thinking about unrelated topics.

Have an audience. Researchers saw a significant increase in strength and endurance in people who had an audience, compared to those training on their own.

Get a caffeine boost. Caffeine has been shown to help burn fat and increase your endurance. The most effective amount seems to be around 300mg one hour prior to working out. Of course check with your doctor first.

Pump up the volume. Listen to upbeat music while you exercise. Researchers found that personal music motivated weightlifters to complete two more repetitions on average than those who were not listening to music.

Keep things fresh. Alter your routine often. This will help you to avoid plateaus and will continue to challenge your body. Try new exercises, new intensities and new environments.

Stay nourished and hydrated. Pay attention to your food and your hydration levels. You’d be amazed how much being dehydrated can affect your performance even away from the gym.

Find your magic time. Work out when your body is at its best. If you’re not a morning person, do not force the issue on your body.

Wear clothes that you love. Not only will you be happy to put them on and show them off, but you will be able to focus completely on the task at hand, rather than stressing that your pants will split whenever you squat.

Make sure the shoe fits. Can you imagine a tap dancer performing without tap shoes? Your shoes are just as important! With correctly fitted shoes for your workout or sport, you’ll keep your feet, ankles, knees, and back protected and healthy.

Don’t Miss Out on These Reasons to Workout

Are chronic excuses keeping you from the rewards of a regular, challenging exercise routine? If so then you’re missing out on much more than you realize.

Here are the Top 7 Reasons to Exercise…don’t miss out on these 🙁

Reason #1: To Melt Fat Away

The most coveted side effect of exercise is, of course, fat burn. The combination of a challenging exercise routine and a balanced meal plan is the best known way to lose fat. Here’s what losing fat feels like:

  • Your pants become loose
  • People around you begin to say that you look great
  • A glance at yourself in the mirror makes you smile
  • Your energy levels soar
  • You feel amazing

Reason #2: To Alleviate Pain

Regular exercise is a great way to alleviate chronic muscle and joint pain. Persistent back pain can be lessened by strengthening your core, and you’ll protect yourself against injury. It amazes people when the chronic pain that they’ve lived with for years begins to fade after starting a regular exercise program.

Reason #3: To Increase Lean Tissue

More muscle is good for many reasons. You see, muscle uses many more calories each day than fatty tissue. In fact, one pound of muscle burns 30-50 calories each day at rest—compared to a measly 9 calories per pound of fat.

When you exercise your body composition will change to contain more lean tissue, thus resulting in extra calories burned while you sleep. What could be better than that?

Reason #4: To Stay Young

Tim D. Spector, a professor of genetic epidemiology at King’s College in London, led a study on the effects of exercise on aging. The results were astounding. They found that exercise appears to slow the shriveling of the protective tips on bundles of genes inside cells (called telomeres), which means a slowing of the aging process.

Here’s the study in a nutshell:

  • Telomeres cap the ends of chromosomes and every time a cell divides, the telomeres get shorter.
  • Once a telomere gets too short, that cell can no longer divide.
  • Aging occurs as more and more cells reach the end of their telomeres and die. This results in weakened muscles, skin wrinkles, loss of eyesight and hearing, organ failure and slowed mental functioning.
  • The study analyzed the telomeres from the white bloods cells of twins over a 10-year period. Telomere length was used as a marker for the rate of biological aging.
  • It was found that the length of telomeres was directly related to that twin’s activity level. “There was a gradient,” Spector said. “As the amount of exercise increased, the telomere length increased.”
  • People who did 100 minutes of weekly exercise had telomeres that looked like those from someone about 5-6 years younger than those who did 16 minutes of exercise each week.
  • People who did 3 hours of vigorous exercise each week had telomeres that looked like those from someone about 9 years younger.

Reason #5: To Prevent or Control Type 2 Diabetes

Regular exercise helps to stabilize blood sugar levels. This is something that people with type 2 diabetes, or at risk for type 2 diabetes, gain substantial benefits from. Exercise improves the body’s use of insulin, and the related weight loss improves insulin sensitivity. Of course patients with type 2 diabetes need to follow guidelines from their doctor before starting an exercise program.

Reason #6: To Lower Blood Pressure and Cholesterol Levels

Exercise has shown to lower blood pressure and cholesterol levels for these two reasons:

  • Weak Heart Muscles pump little blood with lots of effort. By exercising you strengthen your heart muscles and train them to pump more blood with less effort. The stronger your heart is the less pressure will be exerted on your arteries.
  • Exercise Increases HDL levels in some people—this means a decrease in your risk for heart disease. Other heart disease risk factors such as weight, diabetes and high blood pressure all show improvement with regular exercise.

Reason #7: To Feel Great

The first thing that clients tell me after starting an exercise program is how much better they feel. Most didn’t even realize how bad they felt. It is easy to get used to feeling sluggish, achy and unmotivated. Exercise boosts your energy levels and makes you feel amazing.

Movie Theme Workout: “Zombieland”

If you’ve never watched “Zombieland” you are MISSING OUT!  If you knew anything about me you’d understand my appreciation for a humorous creature feature.  Blood, gore, action, humor, romance, epic one-liners, and a RULE BOOK ON HOW TO SURVIVE…  I gotta be honest, I was close to picking “Shaun of the Dead” but the “Survival Rules” won me over.

Now…I’m not here to type a movie review.  I’m writing this blog to give you a quick overview of what to expect when you do the Movie Theme Workout:  “Zombieland”.

The entire workout is made up of “Rules for Surviving Zombieland”.

Rule #1: Cardio

Gotta have good cardio to survive!  Run from cone to cone spaced about 15 yards apart and perform 10 jumping jacks at each cone.  Continue for 5 minutes as a base warm-up.

Rule #18: Limber up

You don’t want to pull anything.  Perform 5 minutes of a dynamic warm-up before engaging in any strenuous activity.

Rule #8: Get a KICKASS partner

Pretty self-explanatory…  Pick a partner and make sure they are KICKASS!

Rule #4: SeatbeltsIMG_2750

Wear’em!  Switch-off wearing a tow strap and running 20yds “resist and release” drills with your KICKASS partner for 10 minutes.

Rule #32: Enjoy the little things

Rest…briefly.  It’s a WORKOUT not a HANGOUT.  Take a knee, grab a sip of water, and lets get back to it!

Rule #3: Beware of bathrooms

IMG_2778The park bathrooms are next to the benches, tables, slides, and swing sets.  Perform the following within 5 minutes:

10 Touchdown Squat Jumps

10 Feet-Up Push-Ups

10 Burpees

10 Dips

10 Seated Knee Tucks

2 Rounds

Rule #32:  Enjoy the little things (again, a quick breather)

Rule #20: It’s a marathon, not a sprint…unless it’s a sprint, then sprint!

Be ready to sprint at ALL times. Practice your “get-up and go” for 50yds on :30 for 12 reps.

Rule #32: Enjoy the little things…

ZOMBIE KILL OF THE WEEK!!  To survive your enemy you need to know your enemy…

IMG_278310yds Zombie Komodo Crawl

10yds Side Sit (left)

10yds Side Sit (right)

10yds Zombie Crawl

10yds Seated Reverse Slide

Rule #2: Double tap

Haha!  Do the
“Zombie Kill of the Week” AGAIN and make sure you’re DEAD, dead.

Rule #32: … … (sheesh)

Rule #5: No attachment

No getting too close to your partner.  Time to break up and be on your own.  Every man (or woman) for themself.

Rule #22: When in doubt, know your way out

IMG_2812Plan your escape route before entering the dangerous zombie infected area… Play “Zombie Tag” with all the other survivors until you have nothing left.

Rule #17:  Don’t Be a hero

Congratulations!  You have survived Zombieland, saved the day, and got the girl (or guy).

If you haven’t seen the move yet…WATCH IT!  “But i don’t like scary movies…”  It’s not a scary movie.  Watch it. appreciate it.  Learn the rules.  Come out this week and LIVE IT, it’ll be fun!