Hi guys! This time next week, I’ll be waking up in Florida. But there’s one more regular week of business to take care of before Dave and I hop on a cross-country jet-plane.
I hope you had a great weekend. I taught group fitness classes on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, went out to a nice lunch and dinner with Dave and did some much-needed relaxing.
Before we get started into workouts and fitness, which is what we typically cover over here on A Lady Goes West every Monday to get the week kicked off right, I thought I’d share my favorite photos from the weekend.
Before we went out to dinner on Saturday night, Dave and I walked up the hill to The Fairmont Hotel to check out the life-sized gingerbread house and take some photos in front of the gorgeous Christmas tree in the lobby. The tree was lovely, and boy, it spelled like a dream in that gingerbread house. I really had to hold myself back from licking the frosting. Like really had to hold myself back.
And now for the regularly scheduled programming …
Three-move total-body workout featuring the best move ever
Last week, during the dreaded power-outage and rain-storm in San Francisco, I popped down to the gym in my apartment building and put together a very short and very effective workout for you. And in the process, I discovered my new favorite weight-training move, which is the first one featured in this workout below. This little routine takes no longer than 15 minutes, will hit every major muscle group, and all you need is one heavy dumbbell.
Disclaimer: This may not be right for you. It’s just an example of something that I do in the gym. Ask your trainer or doctor before proceeding with caution! Because even though I’m a personal trainer, I’m not your personal trainer.
- Workout duration: 15 minutes
- Equipment needed: 1 heavy dumbbell, between 12-15 lbs., I used 15 lbs.
- Focus: Total body strength
The three moves explained
Here are my coaching tips for each of the moves, as well as links to picture demonstrations.
- Reverse lunge with single-arm overhead press — (My new favorite move!) This move targets the quads, glutes, hamstrings, shoulders, core, basically the whole body. It’s just so good. Start with your feet hip width apart. Chest up. Shoulders back. Hold the dumbbell in your right hand about level with your shoulder, elbow bent. Take a long step back with your right foot, dropping your right knee about one inch from the ground. When you are in the lunge position, press the dumbbell up and over your shoulder, straightening out your arm. Then return the dumbbell to the starting position. Push off your back leg and use your front leg to drive your body back up to the set position. Repeat seven times on the right leg. Then switch to the left leg, also switching the dumbbell to the left hand. Make sure to keep your front heel grounded at all times and push into the front heel to really activate your glutes. Keep your body square to the front and core tight as you press overhead, making sure your hips don’t push forward. Your torso should be perfectly upright throughout the entire move.
- Bentover single-arm row — This move targets the mid-back, biceps and shoulders. Find something to lean on, whether that is a weight-room bench, a chair or your couch. Place your right knee up in a kneeling position on that surface, and place your right hand flat on the surface, supporting your body. Hold the dumbbell in your left hand and let it hang off the side of the surface directly under your shoulder. Using your back muscles, pull your elbow back and up behind your body, brushing up against your rib cage and staying close to your side. At the top of the movement, squeeze your mid-back in and your shoulder blades back and down. Return the dumbbell to the starting position and repeat nine times on the left. Then change positions and complete 10 reps on the right. Make sure you keep your hips and shoulders square to the ground.
- Russian twist — This move targets the obliques, abs, lower back and hip flexors. Start in a seated position. Brace your core and lift your bent knees up to a 45-degree angle, which is like a modified boat pose for you yogis out there. While keeping your chest lifted, hold the dumbbell with both hands in front of your chest. Rotate from the waist and take the dumbbell to the left side of your body, then use your obliques muscles to rotate your body and take the dumbbell to the right side of your body. It’s a twisting motion, and you should feel the work coming from the sides of your abs. Make sure you keep your chest up, and try not to lead the movement with your upper body. It’s all about that waist. Go back-and-forth on each side 12 times.
You’ll definitely want to take a little rest between each set, and you should spend some time stretching after you’ve completed all four sets. If you don’t have a heavy dumbbell, you can always do more reps per exercise with your lighter weight, but I sure enjoyed the heavier weight with the overhead pressing. Overall, this workout is hard in a good way, so you should keep this one in your back pocket for a rainy day.
If you like the looks of this short workout, check out a few others I’ve recently shared:
- Four-move total-body dumbbell workout
- 20-minute total-body dumbbell workout
- 30-minute walk/run treadmill interval workout
- 20-minute bodyweight workout
Other than this workout, I did a little bit more sweating over the course of the week, so let’s take a look …
- Monday – Taught one-hour BODYATTACK class, foam rolling
- Tuesday – Taught one-hour BODYPUMP class, foam rolling
- Wednesday – Taught one-hour BODYATTACK and BODYPUMP classes, foam rolling
- Thursday – Completed 15-minute total-body dumbbell routine, 50 kettlebell swings and 10-minute Yogalosophy video at home via POPSUGAR
- Friday – Taught one-hour BODYPUMP class, foam rolling
- Saturday – Taught one-hour BODYATTACK class
- Sunday – Rest day
What was good about my week of workouts?
This was a great week for me in workouts. I pulled back the intensity a bit from last week, did an equal amount of cardio (BODYATTACK) and resistance (BODYPUMP) training and even fit in a short yoga session. I also spent a little time in the weight-room by myself, putting together the workout I shared above and also playing with a 35 lb. kettlebell. Kettlebells are absolutely awesome tools, although not exactly appropriate for a novice in the gym, because they can be tricky. (For a little bit more on kettlebells, check out my recap of getting certified by Kettlebell Athletics earlier this year.) Another good thing about this week for me in fitness is the fact that I took a full rest day on Sunday. Although I taught an outdoor bootcamp on that day, I only demoed the moves and didn’t participate in the workout. But at times I wished I was doing it, because it was pretty cold outside in the Bay Area for this Florida gal. Nonetheless, I made it through.
What could have been better about my week of workouts?
Ideally, I like to do a full-hour yoga class or session each week, but because of the crazy day of storms and closures, my yoga was abbreviated and had to be done in my living room. No big deal. I’d say I did everything I set out to do this week with workouts by teaching and also spending a little bit of time sweating outside of the group fitness room.
Okey doke, friends. I hope you have a lovely Monday. Stay calm and enjoy the holiday season. I’ll see you back here tomorrow for something not fitness-related. Oh and by the way, did you know you could receive A Lady Goes West posts by email? Just look over to the right-hand side of the screen underneath my picture and put your email in the box marked “GET POSTS BY EMAIL.”
Questions of the day?
What was the highlight of your weekend? What has been your best workout lately? Do you have any more Christmas shopping to do?