31 Day Fit Challenge!

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As I sat listening to my children splashing and playing in the pool it dawned on me that OMG today is the last day of July…ummm what the heck wasn’t it just the 4th of July? I started thinking I want to do something fun and special on my blog for the month of August, but what? Then it hit me…a 31 day tailored workout challenge! A little backstory:  Over the last few months I have really be struggling with staying motivated…I unfortunately had a bad experiencing with a VERY well know fitness program and its creator {but thats another story for another day…maybe} the bad experience left me with a bad taste in my mouth and a beat down unmotivated heart…sad but true. I have been feeling like I REALLY need a kick in the pants and prayed that I would feel motivated and re-start my journey…then yesterday I got a HUGE motivation when a friend hit her 1 year weightloss journey anniversary and is down more than 80lbs!! Talk about motivation right?

Hey! Lets start a journey together!

I mentioned above that this will be tailored to each person…what do I mean? We will start each week with a fitness test to see our personal fitness level! It’s actually pretty basic workout but will give results:

  • Squats
  • Push ups
  • Crunches
  • Cardio
  • Walking

Daily Cardio: This can be anything you want…Zumba, running, piyo, crossfit…etc. Just something that gets you heart pounding for 10-30 minutes.

Daily Walking: A minimum of 1 mile daily {thats really easy to get you’ll be surprised} My husband and I walk 4-6 miles every single day. If you start out walking 1 mile increase by a 1/2 mile each week until September, working towards 3+ miles.

Fitness Test: Tomorrow {and each Monday this month} will be a fitness test! What does this mean? Basically we are going to set a timer for 1 minutes {we will increase this each week} and see how many Crunches, Push ups and squats we can do!

Don’t forget to print this Fitness Log to keep track of your daily workouts!

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How the fitness test works: grab a timer and set it for one minute then do as many Crunches as you can do in that minute, reset the timer and do as many squats as you can do, then reset and do as many push ups you can do. DON’T forget to write down your scores on the Fitness Log! The numbers you record are your starting scores, each day you will try to beat the previous days score so you are competing with yourself not someone else!…you may only be able to do 3-5 more but trust me as the days go by you will be surprised how much more strength and stamina you have!

Things to do tomorrow morning:

  • Weigh in {don’t skip this because it will be motivating to see the difference between the 1st weigh in and the last.}
  • Take a full body photo {I know some of you just cringed but this will be such a great motivator throughout the month.
  • make sure you have cold water in the fridge or freezer {especially with the hot weather you NEED to stay hydrated!}

I will meet you back here tomorrow afternoon and let you know my day 1 scores and how I’m doing!

If you haven’t already subscribed please do! I want to know how you are doing throughout the month!

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Deck of Cards Kettlebell Workout!

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Grab your Kettlebell & a deck of cards and let’s get started!

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Since I know not everyone is advance with kettlebells I have two different versions of this deck of cards workout: a regular version and an advanced version!

Just a few things before we get started:

  • If you are new to Kettlebells then start out with a lighter weight {5-10 lbs} you can always go heavier once you have gotten used to the lighter bell.
  • Use the weight that is right for you. Don’t get over zealous and use a weight that is heavier that you are used to, work up to a heavier weight.

Deck of Cards Kettlebell Workout:

The beginner workout is very straight forward:

  • Shuffle cards and lay them face down
  • Flip over the top card
  • Do the workout associated to the cards symbol {Hearts, Clubs, Spades, Diamonds}

*Example: a two of Hearts equals one Kettlebell Swing

Repeat until you have flipped over all the cards in the deck…don’t forget to have water near by!

Deck of Cards Kettlebell Workout {Advanced}:

The advanced workout is a little bit different because with each card you turnover you are going to do more than the workout associated with the symbol.

  • Shuffle cards and lay them face down
  • Flip over the top card
  • Do the workout associated to the cards symbol {Hearts, Clubs, Spades, Diamonds}
  • The reps will be reflected based on the card {2=2 reps | 8=8 reps | Ace = 14 reps}

*Example: a Queen of Diamonds equals 12 Deadlift Squats

This will kick your butt guaranteed, but it is AWESOME!

Too much? No worries! Cut the deck and do the regular workout with half the deck working towards the full deck then work up to the advanced!

Deck of Cards Kettlebell Workout Key:

diaDiamonds – Deadlift Squat

  • Stand up straight holding Kettlebell with both hands in front of you
  • Position your feet shoulder-width apart
  • Bend at the knees while pressing your hips backward.
  • Pause and slowly return to the starting position {don’t lock your knees}
  • That’s one rep

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heHearts – Kettlebell Swing

  • Hold Kettlebell by handle with both hands
  • Position your feet shoulder-width apart
  • Swing kettlebell between legs act like you are trying to hit yourself in the butt
  • Thrust hips forward, straighten knees, and squeeze glutes to swing kettlebell through legs and up to chest height
  • Swing weight down, hinging at hips and pressing butt back to bring kettlebell through legs
  • That’s one reps

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clClubs – Windmill

  • Hold your Kettlebell with your right hand
  • Position your feet shoulder-width apart, toes turned out
  • Bend your right elbow to raise the Kettlebell next to your right shoulder, then press it overhead.
  • Pause, look up, bend to the left, and try to touch your left toes as you slightly rotate your chest toward the ceiling.
  • Pause, then come back up, keeping your right arm extended
  • Repeat on left side
  • That’s one rep

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spSpades –  Snatch & High Pull

  • Place the kettlebell on the floor between your feet, hold handle with both hands
  • Position your feet shoulder-width apart, toes turned out
  • Stand up and lift the weight to chest height
  • Grab the sides of the handle and push the kettlebell straight overhead
  • Lower back down to your chest and reposition hands to the original grip before returning to start
  • That’s one rep

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For these workouts I use my 26 pound kettlebell, but this workout will be effective with a  5, 10, 15 or 20 pound Kettlbell {remember to use a kettlebell that is at your fitness level}!

I’m not gonna lie, this is going to kick your butt…well, you know that’s okay sometimes we need that kick in the pants don’t we?

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Crossfit Quickie

The weekend is here! Don’t lose the momentum you’ve had all week! Last week I shared a picture on social media and the emails started flooding in…”I need that” “When are you going to post the printable” and so on!

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I actually planned to post that same night so it would be in everyones inboxes the next morning…alas that was not to be.  When I printed my copy I accidentally deleted the file. This week I threw together a new printable with a newer and pretty color scheme!

CrossFitprintableDOWNLOAD NOW!!!

For this Crossfit Quick all you need is YOU and a floor that you can comfortably do a push up on!  The idea is to do each as quickly as possible {if you are a beginner or not comfortable with that, no worries! Do it at YOUR pace}

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Wanna make it more of a challenge? Here are a few ways to take it up a notch :

Use a Bosu ball for both squats and push ups

For Squats:

Using a BoSu ball with the blue {or pink side} up while doing squats will engage more muscle groups because…well you are trying not to fall! A bigger challenge would be with the blue {or pink side} down…however, I DO NOT recommend it for a beginner, the first time I used my BoSu ball this way I almost go really hurt. If you do choose to use it blue {or pink side} down I recommend having a chair or something that you can grab on to near by until you are 100% comfortable with it {you may be the first time or you may never be totally comfortable, remember there is NO shame in changing workouts to fit your comfort!}

For Push ups:

Using the BoSu ball blue {or pink side} up with either your hands or you feet balanced on the ball you defiantly take your push ups to another level! If you want a KILLER challenge then using the BoSu ball with blue {or pink side} down is what you want. Whoa, seriously this way kick my butt and my husbands butt every time! The BoSu ball has handles for you to hold on to…but in my experience that doesn’t necessarily make it easier.

I realize a lot of you might not know what a bosu ball is or may not own one {I do have a review coming later this month} Don’t worry, because there are still more ways to challenge this workout:

Change up the Squat and do:

  • Squat Kicks
  • Sumo Squats
  • Goblet Squats holding a heavy weight or kettlebell
  • or any variation of squats you like

For Push ups the best challenge {in my opinion} would be elevating your feet on a chair, this will really engage your abs and other muscle groups.

I hope you enjoy this!

CrossFitprintableDOWNLOAD NOW!!!

 

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My Asics Gel-Fit Sana Shoes {Review}

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Since becoming a FitFluential Ambassador I have been given so many awesome opportunities, Like recently when I was given a chance to try out the new Asics Gel-Fit Sana shoes. I was really excited about the shoes because they are a crosstraining shoe and the last pair of shoes I bought were running shoes. I do a lot of different training drills such as jumping and sprinting so I was really excited to see how the Gel-Fit Sana was going to perform!

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When unboxing the Asics Gel-Fit Sana I immediately notice that these are very trim and snug shoes, very similar to a water shoe {which I love because in the past I’ve had a problem of shoes being too loose from my toes to my heel and I’ve always liked the feel of a water shoe but generally you can’t really do any running or training in those}

flexIn addition to their snug feel they are also very light weight it feels like you’re walking on clouds or memory foam {you know that stuff that we have mattresses and mattress pads made out of?} Because of the cushy soles the shoes also have a springy bounce to them… That’s probably why they’re perfect for agility training 😉 They are also extremely flexible! Honestly, wearing these is just like being barefoot!

The shoes are also extremely breathable because they are made out of a wonderful mesh that not only keeps your feet and ankles snug and in place but also allows your feet to breathe. Ok, so I know this is really gross but my feet get really hot and sweaty and this can cause some serious discomfort, but that has not been the case at all with the Asics Gel-Fit Sana‘s are amazing…even in the winter!

These shoes grip like you wouldn’t believe. So I don’t know about you but I hate when my shoes have minimal traction, I like knowing my feet are going to stay where I plant them! The Asics Gel-Fit Sana does just that! Recently we actually got some real winter weather here in the Pacific Northwest and I was so excited to see how my Asics would do in snow and ice. Yeah, they did {and are doing} AWESOME. Every night my husband and I do a 2 mile walk in our neighborhood. shoes6Last week we had gotten a pretty nasty ice/rain storm then the temperatures plummeted resulting in our neighborhood becoming a ice skating rink!
My hubby and weren’t about to let something like silly ice stop us! Let me tell you the Asiscs did AMAZING!!! I was able to keep my feet planted with very minimal slipping! Oh and remember how I told you that they are mesh…yeah that pretty awesome because by the time we got home my feel were soaked yet not cold and they dried in about an hour upon returning home…Oh I love that!

The Gel-Fit Sana shoes come in a bunch of beautiful colors but I could not stray from my love of pink and purple so of course those are the ones that I selected but check out different color selections:

asicsOnto the testing…
So how do I go about testing training shoes? Well, I have been wearing them every single day for the last few weeks and I’ve got to tell you I am in love with the shoes! I wore my Asics Gel-Fit Sana‘s hiking, walking, CrossFit, agility and shopping {psst these shoes are awesome for Circuit training}

Performance wise I absolutely love how they stay snug on my foot without feeling too tight, they breathe awesome so if I’m doing a long circuit they are keeping my feet nice and cool and I’m not feeling fatigue and my feet because they’re hot or tight. These for sure make an awesome every day shoe, I can’t even tell you how many compliments I gotten on them while shopping and taking the kids doctors appointments {yeah cold and flu season}

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Another thing that I absolutely love about the Asics Gel-Fit Sana shoes is something that you may not think about or consider…I didn’t.  Remember that fantastic mash that I’ve been mentioning? Well, because of it these shoes are extremely easy to clean! There’s a little story I’d like to tell you…

shoes2The day after my shoes arrived there was a sad incident at my mom’s house. As I walked in her front door one of her dogs {she rescues large breed dogs} went running out the door the same time I was walking in and slammed right into my hip {I don’t know if I’ve mentioned before but I’m only 5 foot tall so it really knocked me off-balance} I didn’t fall…thank you Asics for the sticky soles but sadly I did drop my entire vente starbucks all over my pants and my shoes. To say I was bummed would be an absolute understatement, I was so upset “thinking great I just got these brand-new shoes and now they are covered in coffee” Well, let me tell you, not only did they get totally clean but all I did was rinse and light wipe with a wet cloth…after the coffee dried.  No scrubbing! After I wiped them I set them in front of the heater and they dried in a about an hour! Ok, so for a mom of three kids who are always spilled this experience sealed the deal in being my favorite shoe!

The verdict when it was all said and done? I LOVE them! These are my all time favorite training shoes and I think I’ going to have to pick up another pair because these are definitely going to be my go to shoes for not and in the summer especially when we hit those really really hot days and I need to do some training but just don’t want to wear shoes, I think that these are going to be the best shoes for that!

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I absolutely recommend these to you if you are a cross trainer or somebody that just wants a really great lightweight shoe you NEED these! The best part? You won’t break the bank they are a great price of $80!

Big shout out to Asics and FitFluential for letting me review these fantastic shoes!

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This post is sponsored by FitFluential on behalf of ASICS.

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31 Days of Kettlebell Toning & Healthy Living {Day 27: DemonBells Sugarskull Kettlebell Review}

This post is Sponsored by DemonBells! See my full disclosure policy.

DBs
unnamed-2It only seems fitting that during my 31 Days of Kettlebells, I would share all about my most favorite kettlebell! My Kettlebell comes from an AWESOME company called DemonBells – that specializes in unique kettlebells men & women {and apparel} DemonBells was founded by Ryan Williams who is a former Navy SEAL with experience in CrossFit, SEALFit, MMA, Westside Powerlifting, Tactical Athlete Program (TAP), Athlete’s Performance Institute (API), National Strength and Conditioning Association (NSCA), MovNat and others…this dude is AWESOME!

Ryan wants the absolute best:

  • DemonBells Kettlebells are 100% made in the USA by American hands!
  • They are Created, designed and ergonomically shaped by hand in San Diego, California.
  • They are made from High quality, satin black, corrosion and chip resistant powder coat. Above industry standard.

From the moment I ripped open the package I knew that I found a company that I loved! Not only is the kettlebell gorgeous, but the quality is FANTASIC! {by the way, yes I did rip it opened, before the UPS guy was even back to his truck!}

Let me introduce you to my beautiful little lady!

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This particular Kettlebell is called SugarSkull “Demonbelle” and she obviously geared towards women.

For months I kept seeing DemonBells and this SugarSkull Kettlebell everywhere…pinterest…there it was…instagram…yep! From the first time I saw the SugarSkull “Demonbelle I wanted it! I loved the fact that it was a SugarSkull {I’ve always loved the history behind the Day of the Dead  – where beautifully painted skulls honor a family member or friend who has passed away.} DemonBells offers more than just this lovely…

DemonBells has Two Different Lines of Kettlebells:
The Performance Line: The main line of kettlebells with ergonomic features that reduces forearm impact. The Performance Line ranges in weights from 8 k {18lbs} – 32 k {72lbs}
DBPL_72-2
The Warrior Line: These are Kettlebells with “faces.” These are awesomely unique!  They also provide the same ergonomic features as the performance line. The Warrior Line ranges in weight  from 7 k {16lbs} – 32 k {72lbs}

DemonBells 2014 website main pic tire

There are many different “faces” to choose from:

 SugarSkull {7k, 12k,16k} there are

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Pink SugarSkull {7k, 12k,16k}

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Hannya {16k}

2-2T

Daimon {24k}

3-2T

Spartan Warrior {24k} I really want to get this bad boy for my hubby!

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The Big Boi {32k}

4-2T

My husband and I had so much fun working out together with my  SugarSkull “Demonbelle”  {12k – 26lb} Before my SugarSkull, I had been using a 15lb plastic coated kettlebell…WOW big difference! Not only was the weight almost doubled but the DemonBell was easier to grip and hold on to, My husband loved the shape of the Kettlebell as well! To be honest I was a little nervous increasing the weight I was used to but once I started using my SugarSkull I didn’t even notice the weight difference. Whereas I wasn’t feeling challenged with my 15pounder even if I increased the reps. I was defiantly challenged {still am} with the SugarSkull! In addition the DemonBell has increased my stamina HUGLY! The first time I did kettlebell swings, high pulls and figure 8’s I could was fatigued and tired after 20 or so reps, now, my reps have increased 2x and 3x that! Now, don’t get me it is a KILLER workout, but I have built up so much more strength! My husband loved it as well, but I think he would probably prefer a 24k + over a 12k 🙂

IMG_5735

 

Some of our favorite Kettlebell Workouts:

  • Two Armed & One Armed Kettlebell Swings
  • Halo {PLEASE do not do this move unless you are in control of the weight and it isn’t too heavy…no injuries please!}
  • Figure 8’s
  • Deadlift Squat
  • Sumo Squat with High Pull
  • Two Armed & One Armed High Pulls
  • Windmill
  • Single Arm Row

IMG_5740I’m dying to get another 26lb SugarSkull {in pink of course} so that I can do double Kettlebell workouts, like squats and rows

DemonBell kettlebells are shaped and formed with the ergonomic features to:

  • Reduces impact forces on your forearms by 90%
  • Reduction possible injury during strenuous workouts
  • Help reduce fatigue
  • Reduces your risk of losing your balance
On thing that I want to address is the weight issue. A lot of women are afraid of using more than 3, 5, 8 pound weights for fear of becoming “bulky” or too musclier…I obviously do not feel that way. You do not need to be afraid of lifting heavier weights. Keep in mind that the men and women who are career body builders have made it into a career. These men and women are devoting day after day to lifting &  eating a particular diet…it’s their career.
So don’t be afraid of heavier weight! In fact, there are some pretty fantastic perks to lifting heavier, including but not limited to:
  • You will Torch Body Fat
  • You’ll Burn More Calories
  • You have More Defined Muscles
  • You’ll Build up Strength and Stamina Faster
  • You will lose Belly Fat
  • You will feel SO good

DemonBells recently introduced the beautiful Pink SugarSkull! Yes! I am in love and I think my hubby needs to get this for me {Abe are you reading this} This Kettlebell is more than just a pretty face, she represents something bigger – the Fight Against Breast Cancer. During the month of October DemonBells will be donating $20 for ever Pink SugarSkull sold to Breast Cancer Research! PLEASE, if you are wanting to purchase your very first Kettlebell or add to you gym, consider getting one of the beautiful Belles that support something most of us have been effected or touched by!

927734_367427120048944_1584548119_aPlease share the above image on your favorite social media!

I want to give a shout out the Ryan! I have had the amazing honor to work with a number of companies over the years and I have to tell you Ryan and DemonBells has been on of the most fantastic I have EVER worked with! Thank you for kindness during my difficult time!

Get Connected with DemonBells

Website |  Facebook |  Twitter |  YouTube

{Kettlebell images from Demonbells}
Check out how DemonBells are made! Enjoy!

Buy DemonBells HERE!

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31 Days of Kettlebell Toning & Healthy Living {Day 23: Kettlebell WOD}

KB31

Today I wanted to share a bit of encouragement along with a Kettlebell WOD {workout of the day}

Last night, as I was scrolling through pinterest I stumbled across something perfectly encouraging! I had been feeling a little or a lot discouraged after taking some much needed time off. I have been struggling with beating up self up about that time off, feeling overwhelmed like I’ve taken 1000 steps backwards. Then I saw this…

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Awesome huh! No matter what yesterday was like, today is a new day to start fresh and workout hard!

Now on to the workout!

Just a few things before we get started:

  • If you are new to Kettlebells then start out with a lighter weight {5-10 lbs} you can always go heavier once you have gotten used to the lighter bell.
  • Use the weight that is right for you. Don’t get over zealous and use a weight that is heavier that you are used to, work up to a heavier weight.

Like most of my workouts this can be done pretty much anywhere! Its a fairly quick yet butt kicking WOD!

KB WOD | thelifeinbloom.com

Happy Sweating!

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31 Days of Kettlebell Toning & Healthy Living {Day 22: Crossfit Mini Workout}

KB31

Got a busy week and don’t have a ton of time to workout? No worries, I’ve got a sweat enducing, butt kicking, hurts so good Crossfit Mini workout for you! Best of all it will take less than 20 minutes!!

Just a few things before we get started:

  • If you are new to Crossfit/HIIT then do what is comfortable for you. You might only be able to do 2 rounds…that’s ok, work up to the full 5 rounds!
  • If you are new to Kettlebells then start out with a lighter weight {5-10 lbs} you can always go heavier once you have gotten used to the lighter bell.
  • Use the weight that is right for you. Don’t get over zealous and use a weight that is heavier that you are used to, work up to a heavier weight.

Ready to sweat and torch some fat? Yeah, me too!

crossfitmini

Want to really feel the burn? Do this bad boy once in the morning and once in the evening…burn baby burn!

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