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random musings


Lifestyle: Le Fitness

   I'm what you would call a quasi-gym rat. I like to do a variety of fitness activities, from running to kickboxing, to step aerobics and weight-lifting. I started running about 4 years ago and have since completed 3 half-marathons at progressively better times, a couple 10Ks, and a slew of 5Ks. I try to go to the gym a few times a week, but I also have a huge lazy streak, and on days where I just don't feel like going to the gym, I like to do home workouts. They're typically shorter (30ish minutes versus an hour-long class at the gym) but I choose workouts that have lots of tabata-style exercises and I like the HIIT (high-intensity interval training) format to maximize calorie burn and to keep those calories a-burnin' even after the workout is done. HIIT also builds speed and endurance and burns lots of fat.

Considering I ate leftover pizza and breadsticks before the workout, I need all the help I can get.

You can go on Pinterest and find a crap-ton of home workouts, but I do better when I have someone barking orders at me. So videos are better for me. I've exhausted my personal supply of fitness videos (Hip Hop Abs, anyone?) so I like YouTube to find new and challenging videos.

Enter FitnessBlender. They are a husband and wife team who built a fitness channel and have loads of great videos. They're differing lengths, different workouts, focused on different parts of the body - something to ensure that you never get bored. And they are TOUGH; as I said, I've been working out steadily for the past 4 years and have great cardio stamina, but these workouts are a challenge for me! Even if I only do 30-35 mins of the longer videos (which is typically all of the cardio segment) I still feel spent. 

The workout screen-shotted above is one of their full-body 1,000-calorie workouts. Now, I can't say that everyone will burn 1,000 calories; that's a LOT. However, I will safely say that during the cardio portion you can plan on burning at least 300 calories. I can personally burn 500-600 calories doing the workout in its entirety. And that is not bad at all! For a truly accurate calorie count I would suggest investing in a heart rate monitor. You strap it on around your chest under your clothes and it will give you a much more accurate number of what you burn in a workout.

If you're looking for some good at-home workouts to get started in your fitness journey or you merely want to supplement your current regimen with some extra calorie-burning or body-sculpting exercises, give FitnessBlender a try. Leave a comment below if you've tried them out, and what you think! 

Good luck, and happy sweating!