5 Ways You can “Shave” Time and Money – while getting fit

Hi There!
It’s workout Wednesday! I was inspired to share my ideas on “shaving” time and money in my fitness routine by the Dollar Shave Club.  In case you don’t know who they are, the Dollar Shave Club is a company that provides great quality razors for as low as $1 each month! Since my husband has beastly facial hair, I knew I could easily appreciate working with Dollar Shave Club on this post!

Today I’d like to share with you some ways that I can shave time and money in my fitness routine. There are a lot of ways I do this, but I thought I’d share with you my top 5.

1. I work out at home. My primary job is as a fitness contractor, meaning that I often times drive to work sites to teach fitness classes. Also meaning that by the end of the day, I don’t want to drive to a separate facility (and spend more gas money) to go work out for only 30-45 minutes and then drive home, losing more time that I need to plan other things, like this post. Hehehe… I write my own workouts.  (Oh the joys of being a fitness instructor!) Or, I do my Piyo home dvd’s, Mash-Up Conditioning, or 21 Day Fix, or Body Beast, which I’m getting ready to start next week. (I can’t wait!) Where we live, it’s just not practical for me to pay for a gym membership, and then drive 25 minutes each way…um, yeah. Micah and I workout together a lot, and that makes for great family time. Don’t get me wrong, I like the gym, it’s just not practical for me.

2. I prep my meals in advance on Sunday. This is fitness-related because it’s important for me to get proper nutrition in order to get results. I often-times roast a whole chicken in a crock pot and use it throughout the week to make soups and stews, and chicken salad. I  also make my own protein bars, which saves me money, by cutting the cost from $1.50 a bar to less than $.50 a bar.

3. I shop craiglist for fitness equipment. We don’t have many good sporting goods stores where I, only one actually, so I shop for steals on used weights…hey, a weight is a weight, right? Safety tip, I’ve never had a problem with Craigslist, but I always take Micah with me when picking up items. I love to shop at Marshall’s and TJ Maxx and Ross for resistance bands and exercise balls.

4. I do HIIT workouts. I take a couple of active rest days a week, but most days, my workouts are 30 minutes or less. I love to do tabatas when I have absolutely no time because they only take 4 minutes. Stressing less is worth working out for 4 minutes. I love my jump rope. I also use exercises that are compound movements, like kettlebell swings, and sneak in my cardio and strength training at the same time.

5. I don’t waste food. We only buy what we will eat. Portion control and a variety of foods is key here. You’d be suprised how much food goes to waste. Keep a close eye on those perishables. Make a big salad. You never know, you might just invent a fabulous new family favorite!

There, now you know my favorite 5 ways to “Shave” time and money in my fitness routine. Thank you to the Dollar Shave Club for inspiring me to write this post! To see their fabulous razor blades, check out this link: https://www.dollarshaveclub.com/our-blades Hey, they’d make excellent stocking stuffers!

Start “Shaving”
– Julie

Workout Wednesday: Plyo-what-rics? and last week’s giveaway winner!

Hi and Happy Wednesday!

Today’s post is going to be about a word that I first learned in my strength and conditioning programming class in college – plyometrics! Plyometrics often get a bad boy reputation, because so many people think that in order to do plyometrics, one must jump 30 feet off the ground…That is not the only way to do  plyo… the term “plyometrics” simply means, “an explosive movement, or a powerful movement” Technically, One could simply jump rope and receive an excellent plyometric workout. Jumping lunges and jump squats are popular plyometric exercises, but one needs to learn and practice proper form with regular lunges and jump squats before moving on to the plyometric versions of these exercises. You see, the body  has golgi tendon organs which have the job of gauging how far your muscles can stretch. In order to get more out of a high-impact plyometric workout, the nervous system must be wide awake first – think of a short low-impact warm-up as a cup of coffee for your nervous system. You’ll be taxing out your fast-twitch muscle fibers, which spikes your metabolism. So warm-up with some knee lifts or marching in place for a couple of minutes before starting any plyometric workout, the same goes for shoulders. If you’re doing plyometric push-ups, the you could start with some regular push-ups and arm circles as a warm up. Don’t forget to land with your knees slightly bent. The more spring-like your legs, the safer your landing.

Do plyo moves earlier in a strength workout, when your muscles feel strongest. This will save you from sacrificing form, and thus, injuring yourself. Short plyo workouts are best. I would not do a plyo workout longer than 30 minutes. If you need some fresh moves, and modifications, I like the following 2 dvd’s: “Plyo Fix” from 21 Day Fix.(You can win an autographed copy from Autumn Calabrese this week too!) I love how Autumn clearly explains how your muscles should be engaged, and Mash-Up Conditioning’s “Tempo” dvd has plyo and and modified exercises. If you want to practice the moves without the whole gym watching, this is a great way to go! Quality is better than quantity. Remember that when you’re tempted to show off.

If you want to see a funny video of some sports-based plyo drill s check this out!

These are actually similar to the soccer conditioning drills I used to do!

Last week we had a fun giveaway on the blog, and the winner is…. the lovely Diatta Harris of http://femmefitalefitclub.com/ Check out the awesome link-up she and several other amazing ladies host:

Fired Up and Ready to Go!

Here I am writing to you now…Micah and I have really gotten fired up this weekend! My heart is full! There’s a lot of reasons, but a very big one is that our band, These City Walls, and Micah’s dad’s band are joining together to form a canned food drive for CUOC, Christians United Outreach Center, a local ministry that has fallen on tough times. Because 33% of children in Randolph County are food insecure, we felt led to do something. This post is not to make us or our band, These City Walls, hyper-spiritual sounding, but the more people that help, the better, and trust me, we can’t do this by ourselves!   James 2:15-16 says, “Suppose a brother or a sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them, “Go in peace; keep warm and well fed,” but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it?” The concert proceed, non-perishables will go toward feeding the hungry in our community! It’s not about the money, honey! Please spread the word as we prepare for this event. Times are tough, but that doesn’t mean we can’t spread hope for the broken. 
Okay, So that’s my Monday morning soapbox.  

It was great to have such a refreshing weekend, and to get to spend time with my husband, I must confess, I’ve had a few problems, with dreaming big the past couple of years, but not anymore. I don’t want to waste my life wondering what I could’ve done with it. We went swing dancing Saturday night in Winston Salem and I got to dance more last on Saturday than I have in years! So much fun! I even got to dance with one of the teachers, and he said I did great! Man, was I on cloud nine! My sweet husband knew that going swing dancing would be just the thing for us to get away and just let our hair down. I’ve got a full writing docket the next couple of weeks, but I’m super excited that I get to use this gift so much, because that’s what it is, a gift. Just like our bodies are a gift. Why waste time, tearing them down, when we can build them up? When I was dancing, I was so glad that I strength train, because we were doing Lindyhop, and let me tell you Lindyhop is no joke! So, don’t waste time procrastinating with your fitness goals!!!! Now, I love fitness, but I don’t live for fitness. I stay fit so that I can live a healthy life, and serve God and minister to others. Oh and here’s a vid of the “Shim Sham”. It’s the Cupid Shuffle of swing dance. lol!
Happy Monday!


Oh, and By the way, today is my first link-up, so share the love and help our your fellow bloggers!Oh and you can still enter to win the Mash-Up Conditioning dvd today!

Friday Five and MashUp Conditioning dvd giveaway!

Hi everyone well, today is Friday 5! This week, I’m sharing 5 new awesome opportunities, I’ve been provided with this week! Find 5 good things that have happened to you this week and comment below. There’s so many crazy things going on in the world that sometimes we need to detox our minds. Philippians 4:8 “If there is anything praiseworthy or of good report, think about such things.” So take a break from all the drama, and count your blessings!

1. I was chosen to take part in a study regarding audiobooks and exercise. 🙂
2. I just found out Monday that Kidstunes (my real job) wants to begin working on community classes in order to bring movement and music to more children! 🙂
3. I’m a Beachbody coach!
4. I’m going to be sharing my story on website, and will be guest posting on 2 blogs in the upcoming weeks!
5. My husband and I sing and play in a band that will be doing a canned good drive for CUOC (Christians United Outreach Center) in Asheboro in a couple of months! I love giving back and helping people

If you deal with a lot of stress or depression, as I have in the past. A great way to move past it is to give back to someone else!

Oh and here’s the giveaway you’ve all been waiting for! Girls Gone Sporty provided me with this opportunity to review a fitness dvd from Mash-Up Conditioning. I loved working out with the Tempo dvd! Each of the 7 workouts contains 5 minute of strength, 5 minutes HIIT, and 5 minutes of mind/body exercise…Micah and I were huffing and puffing after the 1st 5 minutes! I teach hour long tabata classes that are intense, but this was intense and showed modifications for all fitness levels. Stacey and Jamie have some pretty impressive credentials, and the workouts are fun easy to follow, and best of all, you’ll be breaking a sweat in no time! I love the exercises they used, there are fresh and challenging exercise combos, and for those of you plyo people, this is a great dvd for you! The more advanced modifications include plyo, but the beginner variations are suitable for healthy pregnant women! There’s something for everyone!

Here’s the giveaway information!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Have a wonderful Weekend!  

Workout Wednesday: Pilates Core Tightener

 Ok, so you’ve been hearing about this announcement that I’m making…Well, I’ve decided to become a beach body coach! This was a big decision for me, and it will allow me to maintain my clients from other facilities that I’ve worked for in the past. I’ve been really blessed with the opportunity to participate and lead a challenge group for 21 Day Fix, beachbody’s newest program, and I have to tell you that as a personal trainer, this is legit. It deals with portion control, and daily habits. I’m very excited and can’t wait to take part in this!!!! Beachbody also has an online meal planner that you can use with any program, not just their programs, with lots of healthy recipes. This will free me up to do more motivational things with clients and classes! But this blog is not going to turn into just a plug for Beachbody. It’s about my journey, and while I love following programs. I want to share my story. There will be a separate page on the blog for 21 Day Fix (Along with before and after pics of me!) But I will still post my own material and recipes and thoughts to share with you about fitness in general. The purpose of this blog is to educate and inspire you, whatever fitness path you choose! 

Oh, and there’s going to be a blog giveaway on Friday! It’s a fitness dvd by Mash-Up Conditioning. Girls Gone Sporty provided the opportunity for me to work with the owners of this brand! They’re super cool and sent me a dvd to review, and let me tell you, it’s good stuff! 15 minute workouts…I mean come on! who doesn’t have time for a 15 minute workout, with minimal equipment involved? The workouts are beastly to, but also shown with modifications for every fitness level! This will be happening on Friday so keep your eyes peeled on the Facebook page! 
Here’s a sneak peek! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c2uuDyVKQxU

Today, I’d like to provide a relaxing, yet challenging pilates routine, that will improve your flexibility in your hips and core. The point of this workout is not to be sweaty…It is to reconnect your mind with your muscles and aquaint you with how your body works. Your mind is very important to your workouts, and a study from the University of South Carolina Upstate (in my hometown!) states that participants experienced up to 26 % more muscle growth when they thought about the muscle they were using in a given strength exercise. These are some of my favorite pilates exercises, and you will definitely feel this workout. Remember to exhale forcefully on the exhertion of each repetition!

Curl-Ups: Pull your navel to your spine as you lie faceup with feet flat on the floor. Slowly roll one vertebrae at a time until just your shoulders are lifted. Hands are behind head with tension between your hands and head to support your neck. Roll backward slowly. Repeat.

Bridges:Lie face up with feet on the floor, navel towards spine. Squeeze glutes and press into heels to lift hips off of the floor. Hold for 5 counts at the top then slowly lower. For Leg touch downs: Keep hips lifted extend leg and lift into the air with leg extended lower down towards floor and lift. Repeat. Do this exercise slowly, and avoid if you have a weak back. 

Tabletop: Sitting on the mat, place hands on the floor just behind you and feet on the floor just in front of you.
Press through hands and feet and lift hips toward the ceiling. Hold for 30 seconds. 

Mod. Side Plank with leg lifts: Prop onto your elbow, or a Swiss ball for more challenge. Keep your knee below your bottom hip, like a camera tripod. Maintaining this position, lift and lower top leg slowly.

Swimming: Lie on your stomach, navel drawn in. Arms in front of you, legs behind you. Exhale, and lift arms and legs, then inhale as you slowly lower arms and legs. Look below, not in front.  To make it easier, only lift arms, and prop a pillow under your hips. DO not hyperextend.

I love workouts like this to give my muscles and my mind a break, so put on some relaxing music, and go for it! The graphic’s below! have a wonderful Wednesday! 🙂