Weekend Workout | Strength Training Workout

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Fitness motivation

Each circuit is 5 minutes with each exercise being 30 secs. The strength circuits are repeated twice, while the cardio circuits are repeated 5 times. Remember to warm-up and cool down.

30 Minute Circuit

Strength Circuit #1: Shoulders
Shoulder Press w/Squat
Front Raise
Lateral Raise w/backward lunge (alt. legs)
Bent Over Raise
Deadlift w/Upright Row

Cardio Circuit #1:
Hi Knees
Wide Leg Hi Knees

Strength Circuit #2: Chest
Walking Pushing Ups (move left, pushup, move right push up)
Dumbell Fly
In and out Push Ups (hands together, pushup, hands wide, push up)
Bench Press
Clap Push Ups (complete on knees if it’s too hard)

Cardio Circuit #2:
Ab Twist Hops
Jumping Jacks

Strength Circuit #3: Triceps
Curl w/forward lunge (alt. legs)
Tricep Dips
Hammer Curl w/side to side lunge
Tricep Press w/sumo squat
Close-Up Grip Bench Press

Cardio Circuit #3: 
180 degree Burpees
Plie Jumps


*Everyone, especially pregnant women, should consult a physician before beginning any fitness activity. Not all exercise plans are suitable for everyone. Please discontinue any exercise that causes you pain or severe discomfort and consult a medical expert. Any liability and/or damage in connection with the use of this workout, including but not limited to any liability loss or damage resulting in the performance of the exercise demonstrated or the advice and information given within this blog is expressly disclaimed.*

Leftover Celery: Pear and Celery Salad

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Celery

The holiday means one thing for me: leftover celery. I only use it in stuffing, but I always buy too much and have a few stalks leftover. Sometimes I use it to make a soup, but soup is almost always labor intensive for me (just for the sheer fact that I go all out and have to make the most complicated soup ever). Other times, I try to eat it with hummus, but I am not really fond of eating a stalk of celery regardless of how delicious the hummus because of its stringy texture. So, most times, it just goes bad, and I am left with the guilt of throwing out food. But hopefully, all of that will change since I had the bright idea of throwing it in my salad.

Over the weekend, while grocery shopping, I had bought some romaine lettuce, pears, and craisins to make a salad with no intention of using the leftover celery I had from the week before. It wasn't until I was putting my groceries in the refrigerator that I thought to use celery, and just cut it up in small pieces to make the stringy texture indistinguishable in the salad. I tried the salad today, and I am happy to say that it was quite delicious. While this salad is pretty plain, you can add your own touch to it by adding ingredients like Gorgonzola or chicken.

Pear and Celery Salad
Ingredients:
1 pear, chopped
1 celery stalk, diced
1.5 cups of romaine lettuce
Small handful of craisins
Juice from half lemon
Salad dressing of your choice, balsamic or raspberry vinaigrette pairs well with this light salad

Directions:
1. Combine pear and celery together in a bowl. Pour juice from lemon juice and toss to prevent browning.
2. Add lettuce and salad dressing. Enjoy!

Workout of the Week: Cardio AMRAP (As Many Reps As Possible)

Monday, November 18, 2013

Fitness Motivation

Each week, I will provide you with a workout that you can do every day for the entire week. Each workout is no more than 20 minutes and will vary between cardio, weight lifting, and stretching. Remember to warm-up before the workout and stretch after the workout.

15 minute AMRAP
2 min. High Knees or Jump Rope
1 min. Crunches
2 min. High Knees or Jump Rope
1 min. Burpees
2 min. High Knees or Jump Rope
1 min. Clap Push-Ups (can be done on knees if too difficult)
2 min. High Knees or Jump Rope
1 min. Around the World Squats
2 min. High Knees or Jump Rope
1 min. Mountain Climbers

*Everyone, especially pregnant women, should consult a physician before beginning any fitness activity. Not all exercise plans are suitable for everyone. Please discontinue any exercise that causes you pain or severe discomfort and consult a medical expert. Any liability and/or damage in connection with the use of this workout, including but not limited to any liability loss or damage resulting in the performance of the exercise demonstrated or the advice and information given within this blog is expressly disclaimed.*

The Best Hair Day Ever: A Flexi Rod Set on Natural Hair (and follow me on Twitter!)

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Flexi Rod Set on Natural Hair

On Wednesday, I had the best hair day to date. Unfortunately, no one saw it since my attempt to take the metro to work ended up with me going back to my apartment an hour later (*sigh* oh Metro, why do you suck?). Anyway, as of late, I have been wearing my natural hair very stretched since it seems to be very happy in this state. Not only do I retain more length, but the nighttime and morning maintenance is no more than five minutes, and I am able to show my length. It really has made my life a bit easier, so I have no complaints about the change. 

To obtain this style, all I did was spritz my hair with a mix of water and Giovanni Direct Leave-In, seal with an oil mix (coconut, olive, castor), make about 16 two-strand twists, and set them with flexi-rods. In the morning, I just took the flexi rods out, untwisted my hair, separated each twist, and twirl the ends around my hair to encourage them to stay curled. I didn't really maintain the loose curls, but to keep my hair stretched, I spritz with my Giovanni/ water mix, made a low ponytail, twisted my hair tight to make a bun, and voila. I am ready for bed in less than 2 minutes. In the morning, I just take out the bun, and my hair is stretched to about 70% of its length (a bit longer than bra strap length, I am currently waist length).

Hopefully I will be able to recreate this style, but who knows. I am re-attempting the style tonight. Even if it isn't successful, I find that flexi-rods are great to stretch my hair and get a kinky straight look to it. 

And with that, I should mention, I am on twitter!!! Follow me @Frobunni. 

Namaste | Yoga and Tea Challenge

Tea

With the holiday season in full swing, my diet has been horrible. I have pretty much put no carbs on hold until after New Year's (especially since I currently have macaroni and cheese and stuffing in my refrigerator). With my diet going completely downhill, I have decided to start two different but similar challenges to get it back on track - yoga and tea. I used to do yoga and drink tea a lot, but for some reason, I just fell off for both of them. They really kept me balanced, and I decided to bring them back, to not only get my diet back on track, but also from a restorative perspective. I've been very stressed lately, and calming down and just letting go is something that I need to take to heart. I have a lot of great things going on in my life, and I don't need to worrying about the few bad things.

The challenge is pretty simple. For yoga, I am required to do, at least, 5 minutes of yoga and 5 minutes of meditation a day. And for tea, I am only allowed to drink tea and water, nothing else (meaning I have to say goodbye to eggnog and coffee for a bit). These are pretty small changes, but I know by the end of the week, they will make a world of difference.

Namaste

Eggnog Here, Eggnog There, Eggnog Everywhere

Wednesday, November 13, 2013


Autumn brings in two things of my favorite foods - pumpkins and eggnog. I had my pumpkin overload back in September/October and now that Thanksgiving is creeping up, eggnog is starting to make an appearance in grocery stores everywhere. This past weekend, I went to Wegman's and was happy to find that they are stocked full of the seasonal treat. I picked up a liter on Saturday and went to get a half gallon on Sunday, lol. With all of the eggnog in my refrigerator, I've been thinking of different ways to enjoy and have narrowed it down to 3.

Eggnog Cheesecake: I made Eggnog cheesecake this weekend and it is quite delicious. I need to tweak some more ingredients and the cooking time, but the recipe is pretty solid regardless

Ingredients:
2 packs of Cream cheese
1/2 cup of Eggnog
1 tablespoon of nutmeg
1/2 cup sugar
2 eggs
Graham cracker crust

Directions: Mix ingredients together in food mixer and pour into graham cracker crust. Place in oven for 45 minutes at 325 degrees. Remove and let cool, then place in refrigerator for at least 6 hours.

Eggnog Latte: I got an eggnog latte at Wegman's and it was delicious. I knew I had to make it a staple in my holiday diet. Any latte recipe will do, just replace milk with eggnog.

Eggnog Pancakes: I've had eggnog pancakes only once and they were at I.H.O.P. While they were very tasty, I know that I can't constantly eat I.H.O.P pancakes all the time (there isn't one near me nor are they healthy), so I will try to make eggnog pancakes. I've been looking at a few recipes and again, it will be the same for a latte, just replace milk with eggnog.

24 Hours in NYC: A Visit to Kru Phil Nurse

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

A few weeks ago, I went to NYC to visit one of my good friends, Max, from college who I haven't seen in almost 4 years. The point of the visit was to see Max, but since I was going to Manhattan, I figured I could also go and visit the WAT gym in Manhattan. It's not really a secret, but I have my black belt in Taekwondo, receiving it when I was 17. I have been into martial arts since then and tried a variety, including Kung Fu, Aikido, and Karate. I have known of WAT gym owner, Kru Phil Nurse, during my Taekwondo days when I was looking for motivation to train harder. I decided to create a poster of about 10 black martial artists including Kru Phil Nurse. I read their bios and watched their fights and training sessions on YouTube; I became obsessed with these people and wanted to emulate their styles and followed all of their tips. During the week day, I would get up at 5am to train and shadow spare before school. I ate, breathed, and slept Taekwondo because I wanted to be like my idols. And in June of 2006, I received my black belt.

I never kept up with Taekwondo with the level of drive that I did while in high school. College took control of my life, which meant less time and less money to devote to Taekwondo. But because I made that collage and learned about the different marital arts from my idols, I decided to take pay-as-you-go beginner classes. Fast forward 7 years and I have since taken Kung Fu, Krav Maga, Akikdo, Karate, Boxing, and Jujitsu. But, I still haven't taken Muay Thai.

In early September, a few of my closest girlfriends and I had decided to take a weekend trip to Las Vegas. Unfortunately, some things had fell through the cracks, and before September was over, the trip was cancelled. I had already pumped myself up for finally being able to go out for Halloween (I hadn't done so since I was 13), so I was determined to go out, and I knew staying in DC would cause to me stay in. I decided to contact my Max who had been asking me to come out for some time, which I had yet to do (and I will admit, it was completely my fault - I was too lazy and didn't want to ruin my weekend routine). Well, he confirmed the date, I got a costume, and at 3:30am on Saturday, November 2, I was up to catch a 5:30am train to NYC, where I would be for only 24 hours.

FroBunni | Shrimp and Grits at Sugar Freak in NYC
(Shrimp and Grits at Sugar Freak)

I arrived in NYC a little bit before 9am, got a Dunkin' Donuts Pumpkin Latte, and waited for Max to pick me up. He finally arrived and we went to Queens so I could drop my bags off at his girlfriend's, Liz, place. We went to get some breakfast at a cute little place called Super Freak (I got the shrimp and grits, it was pretty good), and we discussed the details of visiting the WAT. I had sent an email to the WAT about 10 days earlier (I kept thinking I should send one earlier but never really got around to it) asking if it was ok for me to visit. I didn't get an answer, but I was determined nonetheless. So, all I was able to give Max was the address. We finished our meal, stopped at Liz's one more time to recharge phones, and went off into Manhattan.

FroBunni | New York City

FroBunni | New York City

FroBunni | New York City
(Scenery from the neighborhood surrounding the WAT - I really don't know exactly we were)

After about 20 minutes on the subway (of which I was completely amazed at how efficient everything was…sadly the DC metro does not compare), we arrived in Tribeca…or Midtown…or the Financial District. Ha ha, I will be honest, I do know. We were about a 10 minute walk away from the WAT, and that 10 minute walk turned into 30 because we got lost not once, not twice, but thrice. And we also couldn't find the entrance (it was partially underground).
FroBunni | The WAT schedule
(The WAT schedule. Travis was nice and took the time to circle some of the classes I would be interested)

We finally arrived at the WAT and I must admit, I got really nervous. I wasn't sure if I would be welcome (I've come across this issue at more than a few gyms). Well, I opened the door and was welcomed quite warmly, but Kru Phil Nurse wasn't there. While mildly disappointed, the man at the front desk, Travis, was very friendly and recommended that I return at a later date (but to call instead of email). He showed me a bunch of classes and even made a pitch to Max to join the gym, which he declined, lol. I decided then that I would return soon to meet Kru Phil Nurse.

FroBunni | New York City
(Some of my favorite pics from my trip: From top to bottom, left to right - Max and I with Star Wars characters, a dinosaur in the Toys R' Us in Time Square, The Chrysler and Empire State Building, Time Square, Grand Central Station, and me in front of the Seinfeld dinner)

All in all, my NYC was quite enjoyable. The weather was beautiful (I even took my coat off while we were walking in Manhattan), Manhattan and Queens were quite lovely, and the NYC bug was put back in me (I lost in some time ago when I realized NYC was very expensive - eh, I live in DC, I can live with it, right?). I am hoping to return in December to see Max and Liz again, spend more than 24 hours in NYC (it should be known that I was up for that entire 24 hour period), and visit Kru Phil Nurse.

FroBunni | Foliage in Baltimore MD
(One of my last pictures; it was just outside of Baltimore - I had a lot of fun, but I was happy to be almost home. Autumn is my favorite season so I absolutely love this pic)

Pasta Alternatives | Replacing Pasta with Vegetables

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Low-carb tips, alternatives to pasta | FroBunni

Not eating carbs during the week has been pretty hard (and I've cheated often). I am so used to eating pasta every day, but since I go carb-free Monday through Friday, I have to be pretty creative for some of my recipes. In replace of noodles, I have used vegetables as my alternatives.

Spagetti, Alfredo and Vodka Sauce
I find that spinach and broccoli work best with sauces. Personally, I like broccoli the best since it doesn't have as much water as spinach, which can water down the sauce.

Lasagnas
Meatier vegetables like sweet peppers, asparagus, and mushrooms work well as lasagna noodles. Asparagus is more expensive unless bought in season during the summer, but because it is my favorite vegetable, I will occasionally indulge in the fall and winter. Sweet peppers can also be expensive unless bought in season or during a sale. Mushrooms are probably the cheapest depending on the type of mushroom and the size of the pan.

Noodles
I got this idea from a paleo-diet blog awhile back, and it's a great idea. If you like having the noodles, consider julienning some vegetables to mimic a noodle. Carrots julienne pretty well along with many squashes (both winter and summer).

I've tried all of these options and to be honest, I actually prefer them to noodles. Along with being healthier, I feel satisfied and energized when I eat the vegetable alternatives. I definitely won't stop eating noodles, but now I just eat them for a special occasion instead of daily.