Tag Archives: Sports

10 Rounds X 10 Reps Challenge

3 Oct

It’s workout Wednesday!

I hope you all enjoyed the post last week about healthy eating on campus. There really are tons of better-for-you options, you just need to do your homework, plan, weigh options, and most importantly, not deprive your body of what it needs!

I completed this workout last week and was sore for at least 4 days. That’s when you really know you worked hard :).

In the Rec center, it sometimes can be more challenging to find a space to do plyometrics than the workout itself, especially if you come at prime time. With the exception of the stretching area (although it has no mirrors (for form purposes, not vanity!)), your next best option is outside in the common area. You can use the reflection from the group fitness room as a mirror and space isn’t an issue. Your options:

  • by the staircase
  • near the ping-pong tables (watch for flying balls)
  • outside the activity center
  • down the hallway near the courts and cycling studio

This workout combines plyometrics and toning exercises; you’ll complete 10 repetitions of each exercise for 10 rounds. Try to limit your rest periods! A Men’s Fitness article in the October 2012 issue says that research shows resting for only 30 seconds can increase the rate at which you burn calories by up to 50% compared to taking a full 3-minute rest period.

10 Rounds X 10 Reps


Overhead Shoulder Press

Jump Lunges


*If you’re a beginner and not used to plyometrics, complete the burpee without the jump (step back into plank instead) and alternate lunges. Remember, proper form and safety all the time! As you get further into the workout, you’ll fatigue more every round; don’t sacrifice form for a good workout.

The 10X10 workout works wonders on its own, but if you’re looking for extra total body conditioning, here ya go!

  • 20 squats
  • 20 reverse crunches
  • 20 triceps dips
  • 20 alternating lunges
  • 20 leg raises (laying down)
  • 20 biceps curls
  • 20 squat jumps
  • 20 v-sits
  • 20 lateral raises


Looking for another way to track your diets and workouts? Stay tuned for SlimKicker; a website that tracks your exercise and movements (the more you move, the more points you’ll accumulate). First, you’ll upload a picture of something you want to be rewarded with later (an outfit, accessory, electronic, etc.). When you’ve reached your points, they’ll remind you to reward yourself! There’s a lot more perks to this tracker than just rewards but that’s always the most fun :).

They hope to release it between March and April of next year; it’ll be a compact version of FitBit and in motivating colors (red, black, blue). I was contacted about trying SlimKicker and writing a review on it- what better motivation to get in shape for Spring Break! Who knows..maybe a giveaway is in store… :-D.

Bench Press is NO JOKE!

30 Oct

This past weekend, NC State URec hosted its first annual bench press competition. The turn out was great! All of the time slots were filled and spectators came and watched the event. Although the bench press competition was male dominant, there were 3 females who participated..myself being one of them. Thinking I didn’t need to practice weeks in advance (I workout-I got this!), I quickly found out how hard it was and realized there is so much more to the bench press than what meets the eye..the boys make it look too easy..

For a competition, there are certain rules that the lifter must follow in order for his/her rep to count. The most important and hardest rule I found was the what-seemed-like-60 seconds“hold” at the bottom of the press. This not only depletes the lifter’s momentum, but also makes him/her regain the strength to press it back up. Easier said than done my friends. Think about the factors involved in a lift like this: breathing, body alignment, hand placement, total body strength and mindset. Needless to say I didn’t win(details people details) but it was still a fun experience and a learning one as well! Assuming that because I exercise regularly, I don’t need to practice is something I will take from this experience (along with achy pecs) and change the way I think and prepare myself in the future.

“Success always comes when preparation meets opportunity.” ~Henry Hartman

All-in-all, the event was a success and tons of fun to be a part of and work with an awesome team, watch the participants push themselves (safely) and be a part of something that will hopefully happen annually!

^Some members of Team Fitnasty!

P.S. The overall male winner benched 505lbs!! Is that not insane!?


Total Body Tabata

25 Oct

HIIT is a huge trend in training this year and if you haven’t tried it-today’s your day! This weeks featured workout is a total body tabata routine. A typical tabata workout alternates 20 seconds of max intensity, followed by 10 seconds of rest for 8 rounds, totalling 4 minutes of pure hellbliss! You can use this format with both strength and endurance workouts.

Why is HIIT so popular? It’s considered by many to be one of the best training formats where you’re burning fat, not your own muscle tissue. This is because HIIT utilizes more fast twitch muscle fibers (type 2) which helps maintain lean muscle during cardio workouts.

Here’s a tabata workout that uses equipment: 20 seconds at a challenging weight choice -10 seconds of rest, 8x=4 minutes (each exercise)! Obviously, taper each exercise to meet your fitness needs! As always, proper form and safety cues! *This is quite lengthy-feel free to couple exercises together if you’re in a time crunch!

  1. push-ups (start on toes, then drop to your knees like i did..)
  2. squat jumps *body weight or light medicine ball
  3. b.o. rows *dumbbells or barbel
  4. jumping alternating lunges *body weight
  5. overhead triceps extensions
  6. stability ball hamstring curls (during the 10 seconds, try a hip press)
  7. stability ball biceps curls
  8. lateral/anterior raises
  9. v-ups

You willshould be sore the day after after this workout! I only do this so you’ll think of me :). Cheers!

Rookie Running Q&A

22 Oct

Anticipating our trail race, my friend Jessica had some very good questions about what to wear, eat, and basically do prior to, during, and after the race.

Here are a list of questions and answers that I feel a rookie runner will appreciate!

  1. What should I eat the night before the race? You’ve probably heard of pasta parties the race organization holds the night before-right? Right Katie..”carbo loading” the night before properly will store the needed glycogen (the body’s most accessible energy source) in your muscles and liver, preventing you from “hitting the wall” during the race.
  2.  Okay..then what do I eat before the race? First, never try something new on race-day..this could cause GI distress and the lines are always waaay long for The John… Eat a meal that can be quickly absorbed and digested; peanut butter toast with fruit is a perfect breakfast for an early morning race!
  3. Where’s the best place to put my bib number? Place your bib number on the front side and only attach it to your top layer of clothing. This is important for 2 reasons;1) if your chip timer is on the bottom of your bib, the person ripping it off at the finish line can do so easily, and 2) if you get hot easilyand glisten a lot, you can take off your top layer without disturbing your bib.
  4. We’re only on mile 2-it feels like we’ve been running forever! What do you think about? Don’t think of the total miles as a whole; take each mile as an accomplishment towards your goal! For instance, instead of saying “only 7 more miles”, think “3 miles down-bring on the 4th!” Think of different ways to take your mind off of running-play I-spy, sing songs, make fun of other runnersnotice how other runners are acting-it’s amazing how time will fly :).
  5. How do I grab the water without it spilling down my arm? Based on personal experienceTry this technique: hold the arm that you’re grabbing the cup with. Grab it. Let your arm holding the cup lag behind you slightly (instead of bringing it straight to your mouth=soaked arm and water up your nostril(s)). Bend your elbow and bring it to your  mouth. Success! Or you could just slow down..
  6. I see the finish line! How should I stop? As your approaching the finish line, look past where you’ll actually stop and slowly come to a walk. This will prevent blood pooling. HUH? As your running, your heart is pumping oxygen and nutrient-rich blood to large muscle groups (lower body). Once the oxygen and nutrients are used up, the contracting muscles return the blood back to the heart to replenish. However, when you suddenly stop running, so does the force that returns the blood to the heart. Waste products like lactic acid then stay in the muscles, causing swelling and pain. Ease your pace to a slower jog, then to a walk.
  7. How will I know what place I came in? And can I really take all this free food? Based on your chip time and when you crossed both the start and finish lines, the race organization will post the results after all runners have finished a couple of days preceding the race. And yes..you really can take as much food as you want! The sponsors of the race encourage you to try all of the bars, drinks and goos in hopes that you’ll like it and actually buy it. Be greedy 🙂


All runners have their own preferences prior to, during, and preceding the race. Practice makes perfect-the more you participate in races, the more you’ll find what best works for you. Ultimately, all runners have the same goal- to finish and to finish strong!

Tobacco Trail 10 Miler

22 Oct

Today was a very productive day! My friend Jessica told me a while back that she wanted to train for a half-marathon in the Spring, so I recommended she get some practice and sign-up for some races now (to get the feel for how these things go). When she told me she registered for the Tobacco Trail 10 Mile race, I was nervous that a trail race might be too much for a new runner, but I promised her that I’d be right there with her!

Turns out, the Tobacco trail was a flat, out and back course that was a great first race for any runner! I guess when Jessica said “trail”, I was thinking more of like an obstacle-type race.

We finished (together!) in 1:35 minutes! Jessica pushed herself through the entire 10 miles and didn’t even walk once; it was a great experience for both of us; Jess’s first race accomplishment and me being her motivator and running beside hertalking her ear off..


Sign up with a friend for a race instead of going at it alone! It’s less intimidating when you know someone who’s going through the same experience as you are. Partner training/racing can be motivating, supporting, and a much-deserved social hour at Starbucks for a pumpkin spice latte following the race 🙂

8 Minutes in Heaven

19 Oct

Get your mind out of the gutter..I was talking with an instructor and a previous student of mine, Melissa, and she explained a new class format that I’ve never heard of before! It’s called 8 minutes in heaven and basically, it’s 8 different exercises performed for a minute each.

“I start with a lower body exercise, then an upper body exercise and end with a core movement; hold each exercise for 1 minute and rest 30 seconds before moving onto the next,” explained Melissa. “In between sets, complete 2-3 minutes of cardio (jumping jacks, high knees, etc.).”

Melissa uses this format with her Smart Bells class and changes up the exercises weekly.


Talk with your friends, coworkers, supervisors, etc. about different formats they use in their respective classes! It’s a great way to learn a new technique and/or incorporate new formats into your class.  This doesn’t just apply to fitness instructing; sharing ideas in any field is a terrific way to keep things fresh and exciting!


Portion Distortion Quiz Answers

30 Sep

How do you think you did on the portion distortion quiz? Here are the maybeSHOCKING answers and reasons to the questions:

  1. B) hockey puck. Many bagels, muffins, pastries etc. are actually 2 or 3 servings. If this is the case, split it in half and save the rest for later.
  2. C) tennis ball. All veggies should equal the size and volume of a tennis ball. Aim for 3+ servings daily!
  3. B) half of a tennis ball. Picture a halved-tennis ball (domed side up) when eating whole grains like rice or pasta.
  4. A) golf ball. this one shocked me! you’d think since it’s still fruit, you could eat more-wrong! Dried fruits tend to be higher in sugar, so visualize the size of a golf ball when eating them.
  5. C) tennis ball. The same goes with whole fruits, they should equal the size and volume of a tennis ball. When faced between whole fruit and juice, pick the whole fruit. Juice lacks  fiber, vitamins, minerals and you’ll hungry soon after because your body doesn’t recognize fluids like it does solids.
  6. A) shot glass. yes, shot glasses can be used for more than one thing :p. Before spreading, imagine filling a shot glass (no packing!) and that’s the correct portion for all nut butters. Reduced fat or full? Your preference, but the reduced fat kinds have added sugar to make up for the missing fat. Fat=our friend!
  7. A) shot glass. It’s a small serving, but it’s easy to overeat nuts so portion out about a shot glass full and save the rest of the bag for later. The fat in nuts can help suppress your appetite and signal your brain that you’re full=a great snack!
  8. A) 4 dice. Choosing part-skim or 2% cheeses provides the same amount of calcium and protein in full fat versions!
  9. A) a thumb tip. Monounsaturated fats are a staple in a healthy diet.


Using common objects as visual aids for your meals is a foolproof way to ensure you’re eating the appropriate portions. Control your portion sizes-don’t let them control you!

Thank you Prevention for this eye-opening quiz!

Portion Distortion Quiz!

28 Sep

Quiz time! Today’s post will require you to use your noggin. Portion control is a HUGE issue, especially if you’ve hit a plateau and are trying to find what’s the culprit.

This quiz is solely on serving sizes. Keep a tally of your answers and see how well you did at the end! Good Luck!

  1. What object shows the best serving of a bagel? A) golf ball B) hockey puck C) stack of CDs
  2. What object  shows the best serving of baby carrots? A) golf ball B) half of a tennis ball C) tennis ball
  3. What object shows the best serving of rice/pasta? A) 4 dice B) half of a tennis ball C) tennis ball
  4. What object shows the best serving of DRIED fruit? A) golf ball B) half of a tennis ball C) tennis ball
  5. What object shows the best serving of orange juice (use your imagination) A) golf ball B) half of a tennis ball C) tennis ball
  6. What object shows the best serving of a nut butter? A) shot glass B) half of a tennis ball C) tennis ball (please be correct!)
  7. What object shows the best serving of mixed nuts? A) shot glass B) half of a tennis ball C) tennis ball
  8. What object shows the best serving of cheese? A) 4 dice B) half of a tennis ball C) tennis ball
  9. What object shows the best serving of oil? A) thumb tip B) 4 dice C) shot glass
Stay tuned for the answers!

Hurricane Irene Sesh

27 Aug

Today’s workout was dedicated to miss Irene. that’s all I got..

Treadmill intervals! I wanted to do something quick but worthwhile and tough. Pyramid-style workouts are just that! Starting at a set base and working up, then back down really gets your heart rate up-keeps it there-then slowly brings it down (when you’re done).

The deets:

  • warm-up
  • 1-2 min. @ 6.5
  • 2-3 min. @ 7.0
  • 3-4 min. @ 8.0
  • 4-5 min. @ 9.0
  • 5-6 min. @ 8.0
  • 6-7 min. @ 7.0
  • 7-8 min. @ 6.5
  • 8-7 min. @  7.0
  • 7-8 min. @ 8.0
  • 8-9 min. @ 9.0
  • 9-10 min. @ 5.0 (recover)

Repeat for a 20 minute workout. (These were my numbers-yours may/not be different!) Be safe!!

Exercise of the Week- August 25

25 Aug

Kettlebell Windmills=core stability, flexibilty, and strength of your shoulder joint. Very functional exercise that will help you in other areas of your fitness regimens!

Turkish Get-ups=deceptively challenging yet fun! Starting from a supine position into a standing position, then back down again with your arm extended involves just about every muscle to work. Try the exercise with no weight, then progress. Don’t have a Kettlebell or Smartbell-don’t worry! Any piece of equipment will do.