Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Favorite Workouts, what I do & Favorite Workout Clothes--stuff like that :)

I don't know what I am anymore when it comes to blogging. Does it matter, really? I truthfully don't have any idea. Mom blog? Sure, I'm a mom. I talk about my kids. Fitness blog? Not really. But I have turned into one of those fitness-loving types. Lifestyle blogger? What is that anyway?

Well-I guess, since all the things I (tend) to talk about when I (actually) get a chance to write have to do with things in my life, I'd say. Yes. Lifestyle, that sounds good. (Unless I have no idea what I'm talking about, which, really wouldn't surprise me much to be honest.) But we'll go with this for now. Basically, this blog includes everything. A little bit o' this, a little bit o' that. Who needs a stupid category to fit in anyway.

So. Today. Exercise stuff that I've been asked and not really addressed.

What's my weekly workout routine like?

To be honest, it varies. But on a good week I'd say my Gym schedule looks mostly like this:

     1 hour Body Combat //Morning (cardio mainly/mixed with arms/leg strength & abs)
           -Ever since our Church schedule changed to evening services, it freed up this morning for me to workout, which I love! Declan stays home with the girls so I go early, and alone! Which is glorious. I usually pick one weekend day to go, mostly Sundays.

      30 Minutes Body Combat/30 Minutes Body Pump //Evening
              -Declan and I go together this night. He goes to the fitness center and gets about 5 miles of running in (he's cool with the treadmill, I am not), while I do this half/half class. The girls go to the childcare where it's normally not too busy at night.

       1 hour Bootcamp //Evening (completely varies each time, very "workout-of-the-day" style. Sometimes high cardio, sometimes more strength-based, always makes me sweat buckets and completely, 100% the hardest class I take.)
               -Declan and I normally attend this class together and the girls go to childcare. I like working out together :)

          Often a REST day//Sometimes, if I can muster up the strength after killing myself the night before at Bootcamp, I will attend 1 hour of Body Pump// Morning

        1 hour Bootcamp //Evening
                -Declan is out at his weekly bible study for Church, so I have the girls. I LOVE a week when I can get 2 bootcamps in, makes me feel extra strong. And also extra sore :)

        1 hour (more like 45 min) Body Pump class// Morning
                   -I really try to make it while Em is in school on this day, but I typically have to duck out early to make it back to pick her up, hence the 45 minute-thing.

Body Pump Weight, since some of you asked (and will probably only make sense to those who take body pump):
(keep in mind, BP is more about high reps, lower weight-so it's not lifting crazy heavy kinda thing)

warmup: large on each side.
squats: large and medium on each side, sometimes I even add a small, too when I feel like burnnnning.
chest: large on each side (but this is still challenging for me, not gonna lie!)
back: large on each side (I should probably go heavier, but my lower back is still so weak, I take it easy here to make sure I don't pull my back out and keep my core really tight.)
triceps: usually use 5-8lb hand weights for kick backs, large plate for overheads
biceps: using the bar=medium & small one each side, if using hand weights, 8lb weights.
legs/lunges: I usually drop the bar and do all body weight for these, or I'll hold a large plate in my arms when lunging/squatting.

(I've worked my way up a little bit on a lot of these. Started much lower on most. You'll know when you're ready for more!)


Many of my workouts vary from week to week. I always have at least one, but usually two rest days. Sometimes I'll duck out to the gym when Declan gets home from work and make a 5:15 class sans children. Other times, I'll add in a Saturday morning while he's home with the girls. Sometimes (rarely), I'll go up to the fitness center and do my own thing. Lift, do box jumps, do my own abs, my own deadlifts with the bar, a few machines, maybe. Come Spring I may even start running a bit again (gasp!).  [[also, taking pictures at the gym=ohmygosh I suck at it. I envy all the in-gym photos so many people get, but yea, I just can't. so, stupid face pictures it is. ha.]]

So. The answer is YES. I love group fitness. It keeps me motivated. However, with this winter, the gym schedule has been whacky (thanks SNOW) and there are times I have to home. Yes, it's no secret that it's not my favorite. But-there are some super easy ways to get a great workout at home using resources like PopSugar Fitness on YouTube (I normally pick a 40 minute workout + 10 minute arms), or Fitness Blender Workouts. You & a pair of hand weights is all you need!

or...just add a kid. They certainly make your side planking harder :)


What I Wear:

First of all, let me preface this with: I only buy inexpensive things. I am sure (actually I KNOW) there are amazingly luxurious (and holy crap expensive) workout stuff out there. Unless someone starts giving it to me for free, yea, no, I can't even speak to that since it's way out of my element. I will say, I am mostly an Old Navy & Target gal when it comes to workout clothes and it does me just fine.

training sneakers
Favorite Shoes: When I do more jumpy/cardio classes I wear my Nike Flex 2013 Run sneakers. They're bendy and flexy and comfortable for me. However, they do not work well for me in Body Pump when being stable is very necessary for say, lunges and squats. I got myself a pair of Nike Training sneakers (but in pink & black), they have a very flat bottom and actually help me out SO much with my form/keep me stable when lifting.

I have done the very-expensive-running-shoe thing before. Since I'm not just running, I prefer to have two types of less expensive sneakers I go between depending on the workout I'm doing that day. It works for me.

old navy adjustable strap bra
Favorite Bras: I'm not super picky about this and I will say I'm not exactly....well endowed these days. I really like and prefer stretchy-hold-me-in bras, and I don't care for them to be padded since they're often paired with tops with 'built in bras' anyway. My favorite are the Old Navy Adjustable Strap sports bras and I get them when they go on sale for $10 a pop. I own 3 colors. I wear size small & they're nice and tight but not uncomfortable.

Favorite Pants: Hands down, the Old Navy Compression Capris (or full pants) are my favorite. I used to say I could NOT wear full length pants, but since I had to drag my tush to the gym on the most frigid days, I just couldn't handle it anymore. I caved, and I'm glad I did. Weirdly enough, if they are made of black material, I'm a size small. If they are made of the grey, I'm more comfortable in a medium (although I do own some small). It just runs a little smaller in grey. Also, I always feel 'held-in' and don't ever feel like I'm hiking my pants up (that annoys me to no end). Highly recommended.

Favorite Tops: I am not a picky workout tank girl. I love any and all of them. I'll find them at Marshalls, Target, Old Navy, wherever. I actually have preferences of which tops to wear to which classes. I wear a few of the compression tanks with the flowy bottoms like this one (size small) but I find they annoy me in classes like Bootcamp where we're doing a lot of planking, or hand-stands, or mountain climbers, because then they fly up. I prefer a more fitted top for a class like that. I also love a fun phrased tank, and probably need more of them in my life.

(tank from here) I am so not condoning the turquoise leg warmer look, however, that's what happens when you don't own full length compression pants :) (now I do)
Calorie/Heart rate Watch: I love my Polar FT4 and that's no secret. Part of the reason I love it so much is because it totally pushes me in the gym, and it's really fun to feel like you can measure your workouts. I like knowing which workouts (and exercises in particular, hello burpees) really get my heart rate up there, and knowing a better idea of the calories I'm burning. You pair the watch with a little heart rate band that goes around your chest (under your boobs) and that's it! easy. It's really fun. So for about $64 on amazon, you cannot beat it. You'll use it all the time so get one.

and no it's not uncomfortable at all.

I have really come a long way in this last year in the working out department. I mean, other than running a little bit here and there, I was basically a couch potato. Now? I LOVE it. I've seen unbelievable changes in my body and most of all, mentally, I feel really good. It's amazing what it does for me to just sweat, and how (weirdly) happy it makes me to put my workout clothes on. I used to side-eye the oddballs who said that, and now I'm one of them.

(left: right before I joined the gym & started working out more---right, a few weeks ago. small differences, but hopefully you can see them.)

Sorry this post was so long. If you have any other more specific questions, I'd be happy to answer you back in the comments or email, whichever ;)

Go get your sweat on, friends.

**just so you know, I wasn't paid by anyone to toot their products--I get nothing free from old navy (i wish!), there are a few amazon affiliate links, but that's about it. just my honest thoughts about stuff I like and wear :)**


  1. Great post!! I am a group exercise fan myself. And totally adore old navy and target for work out clothes!

  2. A little bit if everything on your blog us just perfect.. Love you for your truthfulness
    I need the sports bra like yours..
    Plank with your little girl on.. Perfect
    Don't forget to enter my $80 Jollychic Giveaway
    Have a nice day

  3. Great post! I've just started working out again and I'm loving it! Right now I'm taking Zumba classes and starting to lift weights and learn all the machines. I ready feel great and can see some changes. I can't wait till others notice! I also take advocare products which I freaking love! I did the 24 day challenge in January and that jump started it all for me. Down 9 lbs and 9.5 inches in just 24 days and now even more lost. :) Happy mommy here!! Thanks for posting about work out clothes because I'm in the market to get son new stuff. But like you, I don't want to spend a fortune on something I'm just going to sweat in. I'll def be checking out Old Navy now.

  4. Great post Katie!! I love how you show your journey, the befores and afters. You have come a long way, and you look fabulous. There are more than small changes, there are HUGE changes. The two pics at the end...HUGE changes. It is all about balance, a healthy lifestyle, but not giving things you have said in previous posts. You still enjoy things you like, just in moderation or 1 or 2 times a week and NOT an all day thing LOL
    You are an inspiration to people. Two little girls who have you running wild ;) and you are proving that you can still gym or at home. :)

  5. So I totally commented and now it's gone...or is it?!? LOL I don't know if I saw the approval from author thing. ugh!! So let's ty this again...

  6. I love posts like this since I'm sort of at the beginning of my fitness journey.

    I had no idea the y offers a lot of late classes. I definitely would love to do group classes someday. Right now I have a small window of gym time (4:45-5:30) so I'm trying to make the most of that. Which even that much time makes a big difference!

    How do you fuel your body for a hard class? Do you stock up on protein a little before? Do you make sure you don't eat close to class?

    You look amazing! I'm sure Lucy loves when you work out with her!

    1. Hmm. For a night class (6:30pm usually) we eat dinner at by 4:45-5pm. We have the flexibility to eat early. Our dinners are very healthy so that helps I guess? But I also do the classes in the mornings at times too and do that just off breakfast (usually eggs, a banana, coffee, etc) beforehand.

  7. Totally inspiring and YES we can see the difference in those two pics, are you kidding me! Mostly the legs, skinny legs! I know you are hard on yourself about that area but seriously! They look great! I can't wait for the day I show off my abs like you, girl! You killed it!

  8. Hello abs! I've been following your journey here and on instagram and I must say you look awesome! I agree, Old Navy has great workout clothes and when they are on clearance I like them even more!

  9. I want to ask the most crazy/maybe slightly gross question, but since I know we feel similarly on the topic of showers (that they are a pain in the butt), I'll just ask---how often do you shower during the week when you are working out this often? Do you shower after every workout? Because I feel like I "should", but man alive, I have a hard time convincing myself to shower after an evening workout when I know I'm just going to work out again in the AM.

    Also? Looking AWESOME. Especially your arms/abs!

  10. Great post!! You are in amazing shape :-)

  11. I love the variety on your blog. I like reading about different things and I'm encouraged by your work out posts. You inspire me long ago with Weight Watchers and I've been doing paleo for 2 months now-a month longer than the whole 30 I intended. I'm hoping to get my life back in gear one month at a time by making small goals. This month was supposed to be exercise, but I'm so frustrated with the crazy schedule at the Y, I can't decide if I want to join there or not. There is no regularity with the class schedule, always something going on, but no consistency from week to week. And, some of the best classes-like boot camp-are an extra charge. I can actually take free classes through work, but no child care and my husband can't participate, which you've made me think might be kind of fun. Looks like that goal is going to move to March :)

    Quick question-is your headboard the gray or tan color? I had been thinking about ordering one off Amazon for a while, so was excited to see they're cheaper at walmart. Some pictures make the gray look really dark, but others give it kind of a tan feel. I know that the darkest color is way too dark, but if it's a lighter gray, then I might lean that way. Thanks!

  12. Ooh, thanks for sharing! I am also a cheap workout clothes girl. Why would I spend $30 on a tank top?? I'm too cheap for that.
    You look amazing. I kind of want to pin a picture of you on my wall for inspiration, but I won't, because that's creepy. Ha.
    I will do the group fitness thing one day. I'm determined. I like working out at home right now. It's convienent.
    Great post girl!

  13. Great post, thanks for sharing! You look so healthy and strong. I am also a Target/ON workout clothes girl too! (who am I kidding, practically my whole wardrobe) Your abs are insane!!! I've been reading your blog for almost 6 years (wow that's a longer relationship than my husband and I haha) so I've had the gift of watching your fitness journey from the beginning and although your body looks AMAZING, I'm more impressed/proud/envious etc etc with the mental change, which is 1,000x more difficult in my opinion. You are such an inspiration and I really look up to you.

  14. Get it! You go girl :) great post

  15. Great post! I love reading about how and what people do to work out. I think it's so much more inspiring and helpful to others on the journey than just before/after pictures! I'm right there with you with the Old Navy workout clothes! No need to spend more since they work great, and you're just sweating in them:) I have never been a group class girl. I'm just way to embarrassed! But that's awesome that it works for you!!

  16. I was talking myself out of the gym all day, but this post motivated me. I appreciate the time and effort you take to write!
    Keep these "lifestyle" post comming ;-)

  17. So motivational! I need to get back in the gym, but ever since I had my daughter I've struggled with "mom guilt" about doing anything alone or for myself. I work full time, and the thought of losing more time with her just tears me apart. My health is important too, and I want her to grow up seeing that as well. Mommy issues. :)

  18. You look awesome!! I love your abs and it reminds me that despite two kiddos there is hope. Thank you for sharing!

  19. I enjoy the variety of posts on your blog- a little of everything for everyone! Would love to see a Paleo diet update soon :)

  20. love it - thanks for sharing! and yea, you look awesome!!

  21. Great post. I'm with ya, bootcamp is amazing and is so sweaty! my legs need more toning so when the weather gets nicer (warmer!) I'm back to running for sure.

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