MY FITNESS ROUTINE: cardio & strength training

“It’s about time I get my ass in shape.”

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HEYOOOO – interested in toning up? I suppose it is about that time as you know they all say, “bikini bods are made in the winter,” LMAO. I know, it’s spring, chill.

Okay so bikini bodies can also be made in the spring. Don’t freak out. And as a disclaimer: ALL BODIES ARE BIKINI BODIES. CAPICHE? Ain’t nobody who should be hiding behind a one-piece or a cover-up. OWN IT – you are built the way you are and you don’t need to change that.

However, with that being said, I’ve been on a bit of a fitness journey since the start of 2019 (hello, New Year’s resolution that’s actually stuck). Along with this fitness journey I’ve tried to clean up my eating and TONE TF UP. I’m tired of wasting my 20s feeling sluggish with bad exercise habits.

Next time I’m at the doctor and they ask, “How often do you exercise?” I wanna say “3-5 times a week, mothafuckaaaa.” LMAO JK – obviously I won’t respond like that. But maybe.

Okay okay, on with the routine.

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Since starting my fitness journey, I’ve made it a habit to exercise weekly. I’ve picked up fitness classes at the gym as well as outdoor running (weather permitting). I’ve started to incorporate strength training and not just cardio.

Two important pieces here:

  1. Notice I used the word habit. Same as building a routine. If you push yourself to just get up and DO IT, it will become a routine. If it’s a routine, it will feel more natural and like less of a “ah fuck, I have to go workout again?” Trust me. Put in the work for 2 weeks and see how you feel.
  2. Incorporate strength training! It’s so important! Sure, you can practice cardio 2-3 times a week to slim down or maintain your weight, but you’re missing out on toning your muscles. Me personally, I want to feel STRONG, and not just workout to maintain my body weight.

HERE’S HOW MY ROUTINE GOES:

Monday – some sort of cardio/strength/yoga. Depending on how I start my week here is how I base the rest of it. Recently, I’ve been attending a yoga class or doing some at-home strength training.
at-home video: Kalyn Nicholson strength training

Tuesday – OPPOSITE of yesterday. I’ve made it a habit of attending HIIT Cardio classes at my gym on Tuesday’s right after work.
*Not to mention I have a workout buddy and it’s SO HELPFUL. Holy shit. If there’s anything I can recommend – find a friend and drag their ass to the gym with you! There is power in numbers.
at-home video: 30 min full body HIIT

Wednesdaytake a rest day. You don’t need to be moving every day of the week and you gotta give your muscles a day to recover. Don’t waste all that hard work you’re putting in by throwing your body into overdrive.

Thursday – I’ll usually repeat what I did on Monday.

Fridayget some cardio in and go for a run. Take in the fresh air, get your blood pumping. It feels so good to work up a longer running distance week to week. Push yourself .5 miles further than your previous run.

Saturday & Sunday – these are sort of toss-up days. If for some reason I ran on a Thurs, I’ll get up early Saturday and run a few miles. It’s so nice to be up (not hungover) and enjoying the crisp morning air. Sometimes I’ll attend a yoga class on Sunday nights to clear my head for the week to come.
at-home video: Yoga with Adriene for anxiety & stress

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KEY TAKE-AWAY’S:

  • Switch it up! Don’t repeat the same exercise 4x a week. It’s important to work new muscles so your body doesn’t get used to the same routine. It’s easier to make progress when you incorporate new exercises.
  • Grab a buddy! Having someone there to attend a gym class or hit the running path with not only holds you accountable but pushes you to perform better.
  • Make it a routine! Don’t give up on yourself, this is the one body you have. Put energy in, get the results out. Push yourself to commit to a routine for 2 weeks and see if at the end of it, you feel compelled to continue.

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I hope this was helpful or at the very least, you enjoyed reading J it’s been so motivating to see results since starting this and I wanted to share the joy! Do you have a workout routine? If not, are you planning to start?

cardio & strength routine

Xoxo,
KS Loves red lips isolated in white

I love to meet new people!
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Wanderlust Wednesday: My First Half Marathon

“I can’t promise I’ll ever do this again, but it was so worth it.”

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Official time: 2:20:44

Prior to November 19th, 2016, I had never ran more than 10 miles. Two weeks before the race, I had never ran more than 7, and a week before that no more than 5. If you do the math, that means in the last three weeks leading up to my race I went from 5 miles to 10.

This is where I want you to stop doubting you would ever be able to do this, and reread my first paragraph if you’re having second thoughts.

I played soccer in high school and ran track as well (though only short distances). Throughout college I went on leisurely runs by myself or with friends, maxing out at about 3 miles each time. Running any longer than 30 minutes bored me, and quite frankly it hurt. Because after 30 minutes I am tired, and want to stop.

At the persuasion of my boyfriend, I was encouraged to sign up for this half marathon. The race was in November, and I signed up/started training in May. Training over the summer months sucks, but it does wonders. It felt like my body was used to working in overdrive as I sweat and gasped in the relentless heat. As fall approached, and the temperature dropped, the running became easier. The four mile run with a break in the middle turned into six miles without stopping.

I had a 50/50 mix of training by myself and with others, and that is exactly what I’d recommend. Running alone gives you the opportunity to find your pace and rhythm, while running with someone gives you energy and motivation to keep going when your feet are begging you to stop.

The night before the race, a group of us went to Maggiano’s in the city for a pre-race carb overload. The pasta was incredible, and offered the perfect boost of energy. I went to bed around 9:30 that night and was up the next morning at 5:30, ready to rock n’ roll.

The beginning of the race wasn’t bad, as I knew in my mind I had to run the full 13.1 miles. I started to get tired around 6 miles, which is where I lost track of my boyfriend. I RAN THE REMAINING 7 MILES BY MYSELF and will always be so proud of that! I finished in 2 hours and 20 minutes (10 mins behind the bf), which is roughly a 10:45/minute mile pace. My parents and close friends were signed up for text alerts, so even my rents knew three hours away when I made it halfway and finished. The congratulatory texts and calls poured in, and the finish line was the most amazing sight of 2016.

After the race you have to keep moving. Stretch your legs, drink water, walk around, squat and stretch some more. It’s necessary. Then get your ass to a brunch spot and hog out on stuffed French toast like I did!

So that’s my story and how I conquered 13.1 miles. It was not easy, but it was not the hardest thing I’ve done in my life. I may have taken the subsequent month and a half off, but I’m itching to start running again and getting back into shape.

Please share below in the comments if you have a similar story about running your first race! It’s a worthy accomplishment, and you can do it.

Xoxo,
KS red lips isolated in white