Hello, and welcome back to my blog! It's been a while. If you remember my last post, it was on quite the profound subject matter.
This time, we are going to switch gears. If you keep up with me on social media (which I'm assuming if you've found yourself here), then you know that I spend most of my time getting sweaty working at lululemon athletica and Flywheel Sports.
Working in the fitness industry has been one of the best things that has ever happened to me.
I will share more about that journey and how I got there in a post later this month, but let me tell you, I could have never pictured myself here. I would have laughed your face off one little year ago if you'd told me that I'd be where I am now.
As someone with serious body image and self esteem issues, I would have never thought that having almost daily encounters with fitness models, photographing in-shape personal trainers, and wearing form-fitting yoga pants would kick-start my journey into a practice of achieving peace with myself and my body. (again, more on that later — assuming you're interested.)
# t h e s w e a t l i f e C H I
The sweat life is the hashtag of the lululemon brand. They localize it depending on where you are, so #thesweatlifechi is what we're all about here. This community that I have found myself in has lead me to the most incredible and inspirational people.
They have taught me that working out is way beyond just looking good naked (although, that can be a perk.) I am slowly learning that working out becomes a lot more enjoyable when it makes you feel good.
THATis what lead me to wanting to share my favorite treadmill workout, because it is something that leaves me feeling
B E T T E R
F A S T E R
S T R O N G E R
A C C O M P L I S H E D.
If I can help one other person feel that way on any given day, I'll take it. So here it is:
Inspired by #GlobalRunningDay, this one goes out to all the non-runners. I personally don't enjoy distance running or running outdoors. I much prefer the air conditioned privacy of my apartment gym, and I much prefer interval running over distance.
Interval running also allows me to push further into my specific fitness goals, which just don't call for any sort of marathon training or 10k races — just not my jam.
This interval based treadmill workout can be whatever you want it to be. I use it as a quick, 20 minute warm up before I lift weights, a 30 minute burn-out when I don't have time for anything else, or a way to keep training legs even on the off days.
l e t ' s g e t i t
Incline: 10 (yes, 10. 1-0.)
15 seconds on, 15 seconds off x 20
Part one of this two-part workout is interval sprints. Everyone's sprint is different. My sprint is most other people's jog, and that's okay. I usually land my sprint at around 8 on the treadmill. You just want your sprint to be at least a whole point above your run pace. You gotta be pushing it.
By the end of part one, I always have a sweat drip (or seven) down the side of my face. Your legs should feel a little bit like jell-o, and you should be out of breath.
**On your "off" times, just jump your feet to the sides of the treadmill that aren't moving**
If you aren't feeling the quick on and off, try doing one minute on and then one minute off, but only repeat that ten times. If that's not accessible, do 30 seconds on, 30 off.
B a c k i t u p
2 minutes on, 15 seconds off
YES, you can do that. You are coordinated enough. It's okay to wobble at first.
Lower your speed to a jog. This started at 3.5 for me, and then as I got used to it/got faster, I am now at a 4. Whatever works for you, as long as you feel it in your legs. Trot backwards for two minutes, and then take jump to the sides for a 15 second rest, then two minutes on, 15 seconds off. Repeat this five times.
s i d e t o s i d e
One minute on each side, 15 second rest
These side shuffles are good to throw into your jog to get different muscles in your leg. Alternate between these shuffles and your backwards trot, just be sure to even it out and do both sides.
All together, still repeat this five times. (example: two minute backwards trot, rest, one minute side shuffle, rest, other side one minute shuffle, rest, backwards trot for two minutes, rest, one side shuffle for one minute, rest, other side for one minute, rest, backwards trot for two minutes, rest, backwards trot for two minutes. That was two minutes, five times.)
I n s u m m a r y
this should be used as a warm up before a workout: 15 to 20 minutes
run/jog/shake it out for a few minutes
Crank that incline to TEN and bring your speed to a sprint for 15 seconds on, 15 seconds off x 20
Bring your speed down to a jog and that incline to a ZERO. Turn yourself around and trot backwards for two minutes on, 15 seconds off x 5. Throw in some side shuffles for one minute on each side, 15 seconds off.
B o n u s
When it comes to working out, consistency is really key. In that case, any workout is better than no workout, right?
If you don't have time to do this is as your warm up, and you want to make it your entire workout, do it!
or if you have extra time at the gym and want to make it longer, then do that as well! I found myself in that situation the other day, so here's what I did:
incline: 3 or 4
speed: run (for me, that's 6.5/7)
time: five minutes
speed: jog (that 3.5/4 again)
alternate backwards trots with side shuffles
time: 1 to 2 minute intervals for five minutes
Repeat 3x = 30 minutes
[just make sure you even out your sides.]
Then, get after the weight room for the next 30 minutes. You will be nice and warmed up and sweaty.
N o g y m ?
N o p r o b l e m .
So there it is, my favorite treadmill warm up. It's way more fun than just hopping on at one pace for 30 minutes, it works more muscles in your legs, and intervals are great for fat burning. You'll feel this one.
Now briefly, as promised, my go-to workout with little-to-no space or little-to-no equipment.
This one is perfect for your living room/bedroom, or in my case, your studio apartment.
I'll assume you have at least two pieces of gear: a jump rope and a set of dumbbells. If not, no worries, just scroll down a bit to adapt it.
choose what body part you are wanting to work out, grab a piece of paper, and set your phone timer for 25-30 minutes (or longer, if you have the time, but who does?)
You will choose 4 to 6 dumbbell exercises and complete three sets of 8 to 10 reps each. In between each set you will jump rope for one minute. (or 30 seconds, depending on how much time you have).
a l l o w m e .
I t ' s s i m p l e .
I'll demonstrate using my favorite body part to work out —shoulders:
Here's what I would write down in notes on my phone/on a piece of paper/mental note —
jump rope 1 minute
shoulder press + arnold press 8-10 reps
** DO NOT drop your elbows. Keep them parallel to the ground. Thanks, Derick ;) **
jump rope 1 minute
upright row 8 - 10 reps
jump rope 1 minute
lateral fly + front fly 8 - 10 reps
Normally with shoulders I will workout triceps or legs, and there would be one to three more workouts with one minute jump ropes in between, make sense? So you just choose 4 to 6 workouts, 8 to 10 reps, 3 sets of each, with a one minute jump rope in between. For four exercises, I set a 25 minute timer. If I have extra time, I'll do 6 exercises for 45 minutes. If I find myself with 2 extra minutes after I'm finished, I'll hold a plank for a nice burn out.
Want to work your back and biceps?
Swap out the shoulder exercises for curls, crescents, rows, etc. Adapt this for any body part.
Don't have dumbbells?
Swap out the dumbbell exercises for bodyweight exercises like squats, push ups, tricep dips, etc.
Don't have a jump rope?
Swap out the one minute jump rope for 30 seconds to a minute of high knees, but kicks, mountain climbers, or jump squats, etc — some kind of cardio.
Questions about your form/different dumbbell exercises?
jump on google or YouTube — this is 2017.
n o e x c u s e s .
25 minutes - 45 minutes of cardio and strength training with little-to-no gear.
so there it is! get after it. Let me know if you try one, and as always, let me know you're thoughts!
I hope if you try this workout, that you enter or leave that day feeling better, stronger, and more confident.