No Equipment Workout

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As someone who used to be a “cardio queen” I have realized over the years just how important strength training is for my health and well-being. While I am not in weight-loss mode, I am trying to ensure that I make a safe return to fitness post-baby and one of the keys that many people have recommended is to take things slow and prioritize strength training.

While we were in Vermont I turned to body-weight workouts since I did not have any weights and the gorgeous weather made me want to spend all my time outside, not in a gym. The below workout allowed me to accomplish two things at one time: strength and jogging. I am slowly beginning to build my jogging base following pregnancy and per the recommendation of many, am taking an interval approach. This week I am only jogging 60-90 seconds at a time and therefore thought that would make a perfect cardio portion for this quick, do-anywhere workout.

Depending on your fitness level, you make this workout easier or more challenging by adjusting the jog to a walk, power walk or sprint. The strength portions of the circuit can also be modified easily, depending on your ability. I did this 27-minute circuit three times while we were in Vermont and really enjoyed it. The focus on time versus reps allowed me to push myself a bit more than I would have otherwise and also allowed me to see improvements each time I did the workout. This workout is perfect for people of all abilities since it’s based on time and bodyweight, not number of repetitions or a certain pound weight. Quality over quantity, like many things in life, is most important for this workout.

No Equipment Workout

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Fresh Air And Relaxation

 

Sometimes you just need to get away from everything and enjoy some fresh air, relaxation and quality time with family.

As Bo’s second week of paternity leave approached, we debated how best to use the time. While we originally planned to do a staycation in Brooklyn, we eventually realized we’d rather spend our time in our two favorite places – Manchester, Vermont and Savannah, Georgia. In addition, traveling to visit family is a perfect way to learn our way through traveling with an infant. While we love visiting and discovering new places, this trip has proven to be exactly what we both needed.

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Since arriving in Vermont Friday, we’ve been blessed with wonderful weather. In fact, this may be the nicest weather I’ve enjoyed over the fourteen years that I’ve been visiting Manchester, Vermont. During the days the temperature is in the mid-70’s with plenty of sun and in the evenings the temperatures dip into the 40s.

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We made a concerted effort not to plan much for our time in Vermont. A perpetual list maker and someone who has a hard time disconnecting and relaxing, Bo and I both knew that in order to feel truly refreshed and recharged we needed to focus on avoiding over-packing our days.

On Friday, when we arrived we met my aunt at the Red Rooster for an al fresco lunch before meandering through town and picking up ingredients for the weekend from the Vermont Butcher Shop and Dutton’s Farm.   After that we spent the rest of the evening introducing Katie to Vermont’s fresh air, rocking on the back porch and enjoying dinner together with my aunt and uncle.  We were lucky to borrow a friends BabyBjorn Lightweight Travel Crib which worked perfectly for the trip. Katie adjusted quickly to the new location and bed situation and thankfully has slept and napped well since we arrived.

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After a leisurely Saturday morning sipping coffee and enjoying lots of tummy time and giggles with Katie, who continues to be a morning baby, we headed to Mount Equionx Skyline Drive to enjoy the scenic views and take Katie on her first hike. We used our Ergobaby 360 carrier for the hike and based on her cuddles and sleep, I’d say Katie loved it. After the hike we headed back into town to our favorite sandwich spot, Zoey’s Deli. Since their sandwiches are so large Bo and I split the daily special. Katie loved hanging out on their front deck while we ate, mesmerized by her car seat activity spiral. 21077422_10208303210892707_2879684319780166006_n

We spent the rest of the afternoon reading on the back porch and relaxing in the hot tub while Katie napped. After bath time and putting Katie down for the night, we cooked a delicious dinner after she went down for the night. The seared scallop and shrimp risotto that Bo whipped up was delicious, as always, and even more impressive since it was his first time making risotto.

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Yesterday we spent all day on the porch between outdoor workouts, grilling lunch, tummy time, rocking and reading. It was exactly the Sunday we both wanted and an absolutely perfect way to relax and enjoy the gorgeous weather. I finished my book, The Sunshine Sisters, which I thoroughly enjoyed and am not starting my next read, either Fortune’s Children or A Hundred Summers. 21150304_10208303208732653_4004355831920674972_n 21034582_10208303209132663_6957178779480012664_n21105495_10208303208652651_6661773880474996210_n21078715_10208303207612625_6563349698788750948_n

We took a break from cooking last night and enjoyed takeout burgers and onion rings on the back porch with a cold beer before staying up late chatting with my aunt and uncle.

Hope you all had a nice weekend and are looking forward to a great week. My prayers and thoughts are with those who are dealing with the reprecussions of Hurricane Harvey.

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Weekly Workout Recap– August 16th–23rd

Workout Recap 8.23.17

I’m thrilled to reintroduce a series that I used to feature on the blog, my weekly workout recap. Now that I have permission from my doctor to return to workouts, I’m excited to start sharing my workouts with you all on a weekly basis. Even though I had very little time to think about workouts the first two months of motherhood, I definitely missed the sweat and endorphins that follow a workout. In addition, I’ve received lots of questions from you guys about what I’m doing now that I received a clean bill of health from my OB-GYN last week.  While I’ve been cleared for all workouts, though it is recommended and only smart to ease back into things, I’m choosing to frequent post-baby or mommy and me workouts right now versus the typical, boutique fitness or group fitness workouts. Why you ask? Well, honestly, at this point in my life, it is a great way to build a commmunity and find support from other parents who are going through the same evolution that I am. In addition, since most of them include childcare or incorporate Katie into the workout, it means that I don’t have to think through the process of working out super early or late, before or after Bo goes to work. Don’t get me wrong. Once in a while I definitely want to meet friends for a workout, but these will most likely be reserved for Saturday workout and brunch dates.

So, now that we’ve covered those bases, let’s get to last week’s workouts, shall we?  In addition to the post-baby workouts I found while researching options a few weeks ago, you’ll see that I’ve discovered a few additional options due in part to the comments I received after sharing that post

  • August 16th – My friend Elizabeth convinced me to give CrossFit South Brooklyn’s Diapers & Dumbbells workout a try. I’m so glad she helped me overcome my intimidation of this workout as it is a great option for local parents! The postpartum focused Crossfit workout is designed to help new moms and partners return to exercise while inviting them to bring their children to the workout. The 1-hour class was taught by postnatal certified insturctors and included warm-up, strength and conditioning portions. My favorite exercises were the hanging lat shrugs and the sled push, two exercises that I’d never done before but each of which made me feel SO strong!  While I broke a sweat, Katie and the other children were just a few feet away being cared for by two lovely women who quickly cuddled with the kids, replaced pacifiers and played with them. Katie slept for half the class and then enjoyed some time on her blanket for the rest of the workout.
  • August 17th – Between running errands and going to visit a friend, I walked 5.8 miles throughout the course of the day.
  • August 18th – Total Body Balance workout from Gina’s Post Baby Bod ebook which included six exercises that I did in a circuit, each of which enaged the core and required a focus on balance.
  • August 19th – Bo offered to spend the morning with Katie so I could squeeze in my first post-baby Orangetheory workout. It was great to catch up with the Park Slope Orangetheory staff as they have become friends after all the workouts we took from December until June. The class was a strength class which was the perfect way to return to Orangetheory as I love the challenge of lifting heavier weights and learning new movements. As always, their head coach, Robin, did a great job providing me with a few adjustments for the ab series but otherwise I was able to do everything without modifications. For the treadmill portion I increased the incline and speed but stuck with power walking for my first week of woring out versus running or jogging.
  • August 20th – Rest Day
  • August 21st – Bo and I walked 1.5 miles to Katie’s pediatrician early Monday morning and then later that afternoon I completed the Total Body Workout from Gina’s Post Baby Bod ebook.
  • August 22nd – I met two local moms for a 3.5 mile stroller walk around Brooklyn Bridge Park. This was a nice change of scenery from my typical walking routes and will hopefully be a place that I frequent with her at least once a week. Since it requires a subway or cab ride to get there, I don’t think I can swing it too often but the cool breeze coming off the water and the city views were so nice as was meeting new moms.
  • August 23rd – This morning I was able to enjoy a 45-minute body-weight workout in Carroll Park with two other moms while Katie napped nearby. The workout, taught by Carolyn of CLT wellness, was a body-weight workout that leveraged the park benches and nearby basketball courts to help us break a sweat in a safe, efficient way. It was exactly what I needed today! The fresh air, breeze and cooler temps were great for Katie, while I benefited from the workout and comraderie after a tough night and morning with a fussy baby.
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