fitness tips

Fall 2016 fitness routine and outfit ideas

fall fitness outfit ideas routine

Indoor and outdoor fitness outfit ideas from top left: cobalt blue fleece / blue and purple print workout leggings / black and white fitness tank top / black and white capri leggings / blue Nike running shoes (my favorite running shoes!) / Nike ID running shoes

The fall season is here. For me, this means my kids are back in school, and I have a full schedule surrounding their activities; as well as homeschooling my fifth grade daughter. My challenge during the fall season? Fitting in my workout routine!

My fall fitness routine is not as robust as I would like it to be. During the summer I was able to workout five days per week at the gym. This enabled me to stick to me goal of 1200 calories per day, and lose the ten pounds I wanted to shed over the summer months. Yay for being ten pounds lighter! The fall challenge? Keeping the weight off, and possibly losing more!

I have another fifteen pounds I would like to shed. If I can lose fifteen more pounds, I will be back to where I was in 2013. I really liked my weight back then, and I would like to return to it! My challenge is fitting in workouts when I homeschool one child. I do not have free time to go to the gym, so my only gym time is on Saturday mornings. This means I need to get creative the rest of the week in order to at least maintain my current weight, and possibly lose more if I am lucky.

I know there are other Mom’s out there who are struggling with schedules, work, and attempting to fit in a workout. This is how I have been fitting in my workouts during the week, and maintaining my end-of-summer weight.

Monday: Rest (super sore from the weekend workouts!)

Tuesday: Walk/Run around the neighborhood 25 minutes, abs and push ups at home 10 minutes

Wednesday: Just Dance on the Wii with my daughter, 30 minutes. Squats and Lunges, 30 each side/leg

Thursday: Walk/Run around the neighborhood 25 minutes, abs and push ups at home 10 minutes

Friday: TGIF rest!

Saturday: BodyPump followed by Advanced Step. (This burns over 900 calories and incorporates weights and cardio, I die a little inside when I miss this workout)

Sunday: BodyCombat (I rush home after church, change into workout clothes, and dash off to the gym!)

This is my ideal fall fitness routine. I have not been diligent about sticking to it this season. My son is playing Pop Warner football and his schedule is quite full. This means I cannot always make it to my weekend workout sessions. My daughters have activities during the week, and my son has football practice, this can interfere with my weekday fitness goals. While I struggle to get in five workouts per week, I try really hard, and hopefully I can maintain my current weight without gaining back what I worked off over the summer.

As far as calories are concerned, I am still trying to stick to 1200 per day. I use MyFitnessPal to keep track of my workouts, and caloric intake. I love this app, if you have not downloaded it yet, please do. You will love it!

Since my workouts are not as intense this fall as they were over the summer, I am not burning as many calories. This means sticking to 1200 calories a day is quite a challenge! As long as I don’t go over 1600 calories in one day, I can maintain my summer weight. Fingers crossed this works through the fall season!

Now, about all that Halloween candy entering the house this month. . .hmmmm

How are you sticking to your fitness routine this autumn season?

Indoor and outdoor fitness outfit items on my wish list:

Summer fitness: staying on track

From left: top / pants / coverup / shoes

Summer is here! The wonderful thing about summer vacation is my schedule. The kids are out of school, and enrolled in camps, as well as activities. These camps and activities are much easier to handle then the schedule we maintain during the school year. This means I can make it to the gym six days per week! Love that!

My goal over summer break is to not only workout six days per week, but to also lose ten pounds. As I write this, I am already down three pounds, so things are looking good! In order to ensure I stick to my fitness, and nutrition, goals this summer vacation, I have a set workout schedule which I put into my iPhone calendar for the entire break until school starts. I also use an app to count my calories and track what I am eating.

If you are trying to lose one pound per week, this might be a good sample schedule for your own personal fitness routine. This is my summer fitness routine:

Monday: 60 minutes LifeFitness Course. I set the treadmill to 3.7 and 6% incline. The incline moves between 11% and 4% throughout the hour as the course takes me through hills, trails, and flatlands. If your gym has a LifeFitness Treadmill, I highly recommend trying the courses. They are a lot of fun! After I finish my routine, I do 15 minutes of weights, then I do 15 push-ups, followed by 15 minutes of ab work. When I am done, I stretch for ten minutes. This workout burns over 500 calories and is low impact; easy on the joints.

Tuesday: 60 minute Spin class. This is always fun and burns almost 400 calories.

Wednesday: Tennis or swimming. My schedule changes every Wednesday, so depending on when I can get to the gym, I either schedule tennis with my friends, or hop in the pool for a workout. I usually burn just over 400 calories.

Thursday: 45 minute Spin class. This burns roughly 350 calories, The teacher is more intense then the one on Tuesday, so I always burn calories faster.

Friday: BodyCombat. I burn roughly 700 calories in this intense, cardio kickboxing class. Always a blast!

Saturday: BodyPump followed by Adv. Step. This burns almost 1000 calories. Super fun to get both cardio work and strength work in to kick off the weekend.

To summarize, Monday, Friday, and Saturday I do cardio. Tuesday and Thursday I do interval training. Wednesday is a combination of interval and cardio due to the starting and stopping nature of the sports. I get my strength training in on Mondays and Saturdays.

In order to lose one pound per week, I try to keep my daily caloric intake to 1200 calories. I use MyFitnessPal app, which you can find in the app store, to track my caloric intake and my daily fitness routines. The app gives you credit for your workouts, so if you burn 400 calories, you can eat 1200+400=1600 calories that day. It works! This app is the best way, in my opinion, to track my calories, and stay on track to lose one pound per week.

If you are like me, and love to eat something sweet, you will love this idea! There are two ways I get my sweet kicks while I am trying to lose weight. For ice cream, I eat Skinny Cow products because they are always under 200 calories. When I don’t feel like ice cream, I will eat a cup of jello with some whip cream on top. This is always under 200 calories and super sugary! It is a great way to get my sweet fix in, so I don’t feel deprived while calorie counting. You should never deprive yourself.

For hunger between meals, I keep plenty of fruit on hand. I prefer grapes, cherries, and strawberries for between meal snacks.

Are you working on losing weight, or trying to maintain your current weight this summer? What are your fitness goals, and your workout routine? Please share in the comments below!

Thank you for stopping by




How to start swimming for fitness

hot to start swimming for fitness

Since I grew up swimming competitively, I am often asked “How do I start swimming for fitness?” So, I decided I should write an article which shows how to start swimming for fitness; especially since summer is almost here!

If you have never done laps before, or swim team as a child, it’s OK, you can still start swimming for fitness. So let’s get down to business. Here is a strategy you can use to swim for calorie burning, overall body strength, and overall fitness!

What you need to know before you start:

The first thing you need to know, before you can start swimming for fitness, is how to swim! If you cannot do one lap across a 25-yard pool, then bookmark this article, take a few lessons, and practice swimming laps. Once you can swim across the short course pool without stopping, come back here for my tips on how to start swimming for fitness.

If you already know how to swim, but have never swum for fitness before, try swimming a few laps on your own. Attempt different strokes, and make sure you can do at least one lap, non-stop, across the pool. Once you have ensured you can at least make it across the pool, you can start working on swimming for fitness!

You don’t need to know all four strokes to swim for fitness.  Although I will give you a few sample workouts over the next few weeks, and one starter workout at the end of this post, which incorporate all four strokes, you don’t actually need to know all four strokes. You can replace any stroke you want to with freestyle, or another stroke you are more comfortable swimming.

Things to remember:

When you start swimming for fitness, it might be a little difficult. Swimming can be very demanding cardiovascular-wise, so if you are not already doing other workouts on a regular basis, you might need to start swimming slowly, and work up to a great, calorie burning workout. My coaches always used to say, “if you are in shape for swimming, you are in shape for everything!”

The sample workout I have provided at the end of this article, and the workouts I will provide every Saturday for the next seven weeks, assume you know how to swim. They also assume you already have some level of fitness.

Build up to swimming for fitness if you are a beginner (never done laps or swim team-may not know all four strokes):

Here is a strategy for getting ready to get in the pool to workout. This is a sample, weekly workout you can do to elevate your fitness level, and get you ready to start swimming for fitness. A sample fitness schedule would look like this:

Monday: Swim

Tuesday: Yoga or Pilates (do a lot of stretching!)

Wednesday: High intensity aerobic workout such as spin, cardio-kickboxing, or step

Thursday: Swim

Friday: rest or take a leisurely walk around your neighborhood for half an hour (just stretch)

Saturday: Weight training, medium cardio workout such as walking on the treadmill, or a cardio dance class.

Sunday: rest or take a leisurely walk around your neighborhood for half an hour (just stretch)

On the two swim days, make sure you can do at least ten laps. You can rest between laps, but should be able to make it across the pool, without stopping in the middle of the pool.

You will need to organize your workout schedule to allow for regular cardio workouts, and swimming “build-up” time in the pool. Pick two days per week for swimming, with at least two days of rest in between. If you are not used to swimming, you will not be used to using the muscles you use for swimming, so your body will need rest!

Anytime you feel sore, tired, and the like, make sure you take a rest day. On your rest days, try to take a leisurely walk, and do some stretching to help relieve your muscle pain.

You are ready to feel the burn in the pool!

After you are comfortable swimming back and forth in the pool, it is time to start learning how to start swimming for fitness! Once a week, for the next seven weeks, I will give you a new workout you can use in the pool. Each workout will provide you with interval training, cardio, and an increase in yardage. This will make you stronger, and faster in the pool! Love that!

If you feel like the swim workouts are too hard, you don’t have to start a new one each week. Only move on to a tougher workout once you are ready.

*This workout assumes a short course pool (25 yard or 25 meter pool), if you are swimming long course (50-meter pool), cut the workout in half when you are starting to swim. Use the pace clock on the pool deck for calculating your rest intervals.

**This workout assumes you can swim across the pool without stopping, and have cardio strength from other types of workouts. Do not attempt these workouts if you have not checked with your doctor first, and if you have not been working out on a regular basis.

Week one swim workout (500 yards or meters)

Warm-up: 4 laps of freestyle, rest 30 seconds between each lap

4 laps alternating strokes in IM order (Butterfly, backstroke, breastroke, freestyle) rest 30 seconds between each lap

Try to swim two laps non-stop, if you have to stop between laps, rest 15 seconds

Kickboard: flutter kick (freestyle kick) 4 laps non-stop (if need to rest between laps, rest 15 seconds)

Try to swim two laps non-stop, if you have to stop between laps, rest 15 seconds

4 laps of freestyle, rest 30 seconds between each lap

Stretch for ten minutes, both arms and legs.

-Feel free to email me, or leave any questions you may have in the comments below. I hope you enjoy this workout, and acquire a love for swimming!

If you would like to track your workouts, and see how many calories you are burning, I highly recommend the “My FitnessPal” app. You can find it in the app store. I use this app religiously and love, love, love it! If you would like to share your workouts with me, feel free to friend me on the app, I am CathyLSG

*Stay tuned! Every Saturday I will post a new swim workout to help you increase your fitness level in swimming. You can bookmark the tag “swim workouts” to keep them all  handy. Let me know in the comment sections what you like, or don’t like, about the workouts. Happy swimming, and stay fabulous 😉