CROSSFIT DIARIES: AN INTRO TO AMRAP

This workout was originally posted on the Finish Line Blog as part of the CrossFit Diaries series I did for them this spring.

Fifteen minutes. It’s not even long enough to catch up on your favorite TV show, drive to the gym, or do a load of dishes, especially if you’re my husband. But if you want to make the same 15 minutes feel like an eternity? Try an AMRAP workout. 

AMRAP stands for As Many Rounds As Possible, and is a common workout used at CrossFit gyms throughout the world. I’m a fan, because it’s a great way to challenge yourself and get a killer workout in about the same time it takes you to check your e-mail.

They are perfect workouts for CrossFit beginners and longtime enthusiasts alike, because they work for every level; as your fitness increases, so will your speed and your ability to get in a few extra reps. They are also a fun and easy method for measuring your progress. I recommend doing this workout once, writing down your totals, and then repeating it in a few weeks to see how you improved.

AMRAP Collage

1. The workout begins with Goblet Squats, which are a variation of the classic squat using a kettlebell or dumbbell. Hold the kettlebell on either side of the handle in front of your chest below your chin throughout the movement. This not only works your bottom half, but also your biceps and arms from holding the weight static during the squat.

2. Snatches can also be done with either a kettlebell or dumbbell, beginning with the weight in one hand hanging down between your knees. The goal is to bring the weight up your body and over your head in one fluid movement.

3. Push Ups are great for both upper body conditioning and core strength. If you are not able to do a standard push up yet, don’t worry, there are plenty of variations to choose from until you are ready. I recommend trying push ups performed on the knees and even push ups on an incline. Do you have the opposite problem and standard push ups are too easy for you? Try doing them on a decline with your feet up on a block to increase the difficulty and really break a sweat!

4. Lateral Mountain Climbers seem easy, but I promise you’ll feel them the next day. Start with your hands in a push up position with your right leg extended and left knee bent in. Next, kick your left leg out to the extended position, bringing your right leg in to a bent position. Repeat until you get to 30.

5. Lunges basically work your entire bottom half — your Glutes, Calves, Quadriceps, and Hamstrings — so you know it will kick your butt (literally) into gear for the summer! Alternate lunging forward with your right and then left leg, making sure that your front knee does not extend past your ankle to avoid injury. 

* Remember, always consult with your doctor before beginning a workout regimen, especially when pregnant.

Photos: @SportsAngle

This entry was posted in Fitness.

Fit Pregnancy Gear: For Two Fitness® Ultimate Maternity Workout Pants

Ultimate Maternity Micro-Plush Workout PantsSince officially taking a step back from the legal world to focus on our growing family, I have been incredibly lucky to have more time to focus on my fitness!  (Unfortunately, like most busy mothers-to-be, working out just didn’t happen as much as it should after putting in my 12-hour days.)  So now that I have some more free time on my hands, I have made getting active a priority.

For me, that means variety, variety, and more variety so I don’t get bored.  For example, last week I mixed in some yoga, CrossFit, and lots of walking, making sure to do at least one thing a day, even if that meant just walking around the block a few times with my husband and puppy.  Just having the time to do this has been great motivation, but what really gets me excited to break a sweat has always been some new workout gear.  I don’t know about you, but whenever I get a new tank or pair of leggings I’m just itching to break them in and see what they can do!

As you know, I’m super excited to be a For Two Fitness® Ambassador, and recently had the opportunity to partner with them to check out a pair of their Maternity Micro-Plush Fitness Pants.

I was a size 8 before I got pregnant so I opted for a size medium, which was a perfect fit except for the length, although that had much more to do with me being 5’3″ than anything else.  You could have them hemmed – but, seriously, who has time for that?!? – so I just cuff them at the bottom during my workouts and it’s an easy fix!  The size medium is snug, but not too tight, which is my preference for workout gear.

Let’s face it, when you’re pregnant (and especially in the third trimester) you are uncomfortable enough – your gym clothes shouldn’t make it worse.  So, the first test when I put anything on lately is comfort.  If I can’t see myself wearing it for hours then it comes off; it’s just that simple.

But, besides feeling great for lounging – I’ve paired them with a tank top and jean jacket for a movie date, and have been wearing them around the house non-stop – I was curious how they would work for an actual workout.  What better way to test the performance than a CrossFit workout in the dead of summer?  After a particularly hard workout I appreciated their moisture wicking fabric on the inside, which feels like a super soft sweatshirt, and the high performance exterior.  You would think that the plush inside might make you overheat, but it just kept me cool and comfortable the entire time.

Ultimate Maternity Micro-Plush Workout PantsA surprising bonus to these pants was the adjustable three-way belly band.  I tend to like my maternity pants to sit below my bump, which is how I choose to wear these pants for yoga or lounging.  However, with some of the CrossFit movements I’m assigned, the bump can (there’s no other way to say it) jiggle, and that just is uncomfortable, so in the middle of my workout I was able to adjust my For Two Fitness® pants to an over-the-bump style effectively fixing that problem.  It was snug enough to make me feel locked-in, but not too tight.  Here is a short video of me doing some skaters, which really put this to the test!

If I had to sum up what I love most about these pants in one word it would be their versatility!  Whether its yoga or CrossFit, lounging or breaking a sweat, below-the-bump or over-the-bump, the For Two® Maternity Micro-Plush Fitness Pants have quickly become the pair that I reach for time and time again.


For Two Fitness® Maternity Micro-Plush Fitness Pants can be found on Amazon.com here, or on the For Two® website.

 

Farmer’s Market Fun: Turnip for What

Sweet salad turnips.... turnip for what?Saturdays are quickly becoming my favorite day of the week thanks to the local farmer’s market in town!  I started volunteering this year, but even when I’m not on the schedule I like to make my way down to the lot to see what they have each week.  I always find something new and interesting to try and this last week was no exception.

Whistling Wolf FarmsAfter scooping up some cranberry scones for breakfast, I wandered over to Whistling Wolf Farm’s table, which is transitionally organic (in other words working towards their organic certification).  Helen Chandler is one of the farmers there and she is well known at our market for being awesome.  Plus she’s a fellow Rutgers grad, so you know I had to check her out!

Helen from Whistling Wolf

Helen from Whistling Wolf telling me all about the turnips!

My farmer's market haulWe got to chatting and I tried one of her sweet salad turnips that she had set out for samples.  I had heard of turnips before, but never the salad variety.  These are not your average turnips – they are sweet and crunchy and absolutely delicious raw!  I immediately snapped up a couple of bunches to bring home to use for the week.

Anniversary DinnerYesterday was my 5 year dating anniversary with my husband (yep, we still celebrate the night we finally got together), so I wanted to create a special meal for him.  I whipped up some butternut squash risotto (pictured above), and then pulled together a turnip and basil salad with a balsamic glaze.  It was amazingly easy, and B said it was quite possibly the best salad he ever had.  Here is how you make it…

Basil turnip saladIngredients:

  • Sweet Salad Turnips
  • Basil Leaves
  • Balsamic Glaze (store bought, or you can make your own with this recipe)
  • Olive Oil
  • Finishing Salt (I used a pink himalayan salt for contrast)

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Ch-Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes

Last week flowers from my husband!

Last week flowers from my husband!

Today marks the end of one stage of my life and the beginning of another…  I am taking a brief pause in my legal career and transitioning to a stay-at-home wife and (soon-to-be) mom!  It is truly remarkable how quickly the last four years have gone since I graduated from law school and started working in this field.  These last few years have been filled with daily challenges, highs and lows, and some of the most amazing people I have ever met.

But as much as I’ll miss everyone, I am even more excited to start this next chapter!  I have a long list that will keep me busy for the next few months until the Little One arrives (after which I’m pretty confident I know what my time will be spent on) but I’d love any suggestions you have!  Movies to watch, books to read, best ways to save money as a stay-at-home mom – all are extremely welcome!  And, I’ll also be sure to share what I learn along the way.

Thank you to my amazing husband for giving me this opportunity and for his endless love and support.  Without him I wouldn’t be where I am today.  So, with only 8 or 9 hours left to go until I walk out of my firm’s doors for the last time (at least until I come to visit with Little Bean), I am definitely nervous and eager, but mostly I’m just hopeful for what the future holds.

xoxo – SavvySleever

This entry was posted in Fun.

Farmer’s Market Fun

Farmer's Market VolunteerAs you guys already know, I’m a huge proponent of locally grown food!  (I’ve already talked about it here, here, and here.)  The short version of why is that locally grown produce generally has more nutrients and flavor since there is a much shorter duration from harvest to table, and I personally love that I know exactly where my food is coming from.  It is also better for the environment and you have the added benefit of supporting local farmers – not huge conglomerates.

This is my second year in our CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) program, which has again been an amazing experience, but I decided that I wanted to up my game even more this season to include some volunteer work.  So after doing research, I found out that I could volunteer for the local farmer’s market in my town – I was actually inspired by some amazing friends in Ohio that do the same – and I immediately contacted the Manager for more information.  Being excited as I usually am about these things, I actually contacted him in January to make sure that I threw my name into the mix early enough, and he assured me that come May we would start the planning process.  #EagerBeaver

My first shift as a volunteer was this weekend, and I wanted to share some of my favorite shots from the day.  It was overcast and bit drizzly at times, but even still it was amazing to see the turnout we had from those in our town and the surrounding area.  As a volunteer, I was able to make connections with some of my favorite vendors from previous years – hello, Mr. Pickle Man – and started to build a deeper connection to our community, which is incredibly important to B and I since we plan to raise our baby here.

Welcome  Sign

Already creeping on Mr. Pickle Man.

Already creeping on Mr. Pickle Man.

Olive the Farmer's Market.

Olive the Farmer’s Market.

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