HIIT IT- Memorial Day Style

Who’s got big Memorial Day Weekend plans? Many of you I’m sure. Who wants to get their sweat on before or after (or both) they attend all their parties, etc?!

No fear, I’ve got your back.

Test this MDW (Memorial Day Weekend) workout on for size:

-8 exercises X 8 reps each (AND EACH SIDE) X 8 rounds and DONE!

All you need is ONE weight

Exercises:

Snatch burpee

Side lunge high pull

Double jack

Ground to ceiling squat press

Lunge to curl

Around the world

Plank drag rows

Alternating v-ups

 

You are racing against the clock – let me know how you do! Or stop by BodyByBuehler on Instagram and comment there!

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Less Is More

How many of you have wanted quick progress in the gym or push past a plateau? How many of you adopted the mentality that in order to do that, then more was MORE? In other words, the more I workout, the quicker I will get to my goals, because afterall a calorie deficit is what I’m aiming for right? You’ve worked yourself day in and day out, not missing a workout, restricting your calories, and so on. And you get to a point where you are now just so fatigued all the time that you don’t even want to work out, but you do it anyway because that is what is pushing you towards your goals? Maybe you’re not even sure if you’re exercising right – you’re working the same muscle groups each day, you’re always sore, but you don’t know if its right or wrong, but it doesn’t matter because your FitBit tells you that you just burned 800 calories in 2 hours – SCORE! So you develop this relationship with the gym that is nothing short of an obsession.

I’m sure some of you have been there, I have.

But what if I told you that less is more? That you don’t have to workout 7 days a week, sometimes 2 times a day, and restrict your calories and feel so fatigued you could fall of the treadmill? Maybe you’re not quite that obsessed with the gym, but you still can’t go a day without skipping the gym without feeling guilty. But what if LESS was MORE?

Let’s start here. Do you know what happens to your body, specifically your muscles when you workout? Let me tell you what most people say to this answer – my body is getting stronger! I’m building my muscles! WRONG. When you exercise you are literally tearing your muscle fibers apart. The growth happens in the rest period. So no, you aren’t getting stronger when you are working out, when you’re curling 50’s and squatting 200’s. No, you are setting your muscles up to get stronger while you are resting. The workout is like the pre-game. The fun stuff, the magic happens AFTER you leave the gym.

When it comes to muscle fiber repair, one of two things can happen leading up to this.

A) You aren’t overloading your muscles enough to break down the muscle fibers enough to a point where they have to be repaired during the rest before. Thus starting a repeating cycle of working your muscles to an almost pointless effort. If you’re not setting them up to repair and get stronger, you are essential wasting your time (Cue encouraging words to start lifting HEAVIER! You will NOT get bulky)

B) You overload too much to a point where your muscles can’t sufficiently repair themselves in the rest period. This can happen from lifting too much weight, but it likely going to be cause from lifting too much weight too frequently (Cue talk on overtraining).

The phenomenon of OverTraining. 

Overtraining occurs when you push your body too hard and pass the point that your body is able to recover from. To improve you must overload the muscles and then allow adequate time for recovery and growth by resting. Overtraining occurs when either the overload is too high, or the rest period (recovery time) is too low.

Overtraining in the form of too much intensity on a constant basis, in the form of working out for hours on end, in the form of not challenging your muscles enough but still working them too much, in the form of over exercising and under eating will all hinder your results.

Let me show you a real life example.

At the beginning of my fitness journey I would work out for HOURS upon HOURS and be so freaking happy that I burned 700 calories on a total of 3 different cardio machines combined. I didn’t bother to try to educate myself on proper nutrition, I didn’t really care, because I was working out. I mean at this point, I was an 18 year old who just graduated high school – I was naive. BUT this exercise obsession continued into college, trying to beat the Freshman 15. And here, in college, I discovered that 2-a-days were a thing. UM HELL YEAH sign me up?! More exercise, yes please!

So I exercised, and exercised, and exercised. I was doing too much. I thought I was working at high intensities, but now seeing what I CAN do, I realize that it was definitely only moderate intensities – I couldn’t muster up energy for more!

I became “skinny fat”. Where I would hold on to extra body fat, primarily around my stomach, because my body was screaminggggg for proper nutrition and less exericse, but I didn’t know. My arms and legs looked relatively skinny, but my mid section didn’t exactly match up. My body fat was at a solid 23%, which was in normal range so I was happy with it. And so I kept going- working out 7 days a week for probably, oh 10 hours in total or more.

BUT what happened was I started to get educated. I mean I was now in school for Exercise Science & Health Promotion. And I learned the right way to do things, I actually began to love researching articles on those topics in my free time. I was like WOAH.

(Over-exercising -left VS. Getting it right -right)

So now? Now I exercise 5 days a week and eat more than what I used to – but my body needs it! I’ve figured out how to truly work at my highest intensities. BUT THATS OKAY! Because now I take 2 rest days and I kid you not, I only exercise for a total of 5 hours a week – MAX. Most of my workouts are now between 45 – 55 minutes and IT. IS. GLORIOUS.

And what has happened to my body composition? 8% lower body fat, more muscle, and more personal records. My body is thriving. And it’s because I stopped digging it into a hole I couldn’t get it out of.

(Too much cardio, not enough strength VS. getting it right)

My point is not to brag about what I’ve done, but rather show you that LESS IS MORE when it comes to your exercise, and WHY that is true.

Is it tempting to want to exercise more, to hit the gym after a night of rough eating, even though it isn’t supposed to be on the schedule? Absolutely. Do I sometimes do extra? Sometimes, yes. But I make sure that if I’m doing an extra workout it’s because I want to not because I’m trying to punish myself.

Working out less and eating more [of the right things and right proportions] are the hardest thing to wrap my clients minds around. But it WORKS. Results will 110% not come over night. Hell, you won’t have your “dream body” (whatever the hell that means) in one month. Nope, it’s a marathon, not a sprint. And the patience needed for that is something that is LONG GONE in this day in age where we all have access to instant gratification.

But do yourself a favor. Love yourself enough to do things the right way. Eat right, exercise right, and give yourself a solid 6 MONTHS to start seeing the progress you want. Hell, it has taken me FIVE YEARS.

Let that sink in.

One Year, NC <3

One year. 12 months. 365 days.

That’s how long I’ve had with you so far, North Carolina.

1 engagement.

10 months of wedding planning.

1 new house.

2 “buffer” jobs.

1 real job.

3 volunteer organizations.

1 fashion show.

1 photo shoot.

3 trips to the beach.

2 trips to the mountains.

Numerous new friends.

A whole family at Orangetheory.

And memories that are just the beginning.

 

That is what you’ve given me so far, North Carolina.

 

Moving is a big deal. It’s full of the unknowns. And when, not given a lot of time (3 weeks) to prepare yourself for the move, it becomes something that is hard & scary & frustrating & emotion draining. Sometimes I still feel like I’m dealing with the emotional strain of the move, of being so far away from family and friends. That might not ever go away. In fact, I hope it doesn’t. Because the moment I forget about those feelings, when I go weeks without missing my roots, becomes the moment that I have become complacent. Missing the Midwest and reflecting on the good times there keeps me grounded. It reminds me that life is an adventure, and it reminds me to be constantly looking for adventure where I am. I don’t need to search the country anymore to find new adventure, I don’t need to move again, I can branch out here with new opportunities. Because frankly, there are already too many people here that would give me the same heart breaking feelings of loss if I had to move away today.

 

If you were to look back at my post 6 months ago (“Six Months Southern”), I may have sounded confident. I may have sounded optimistic on our life here and everything that came with it. But if you read close enough you might be able to tell that I was still sad. Sad about missing my family, my friends, and everything that I knew. I was not comfortable yet. I was still figuring the city out. I was still feeling left out. Even with the friends I had made at that time, I still didn’t feel like I could call this place home.

In fact, that lasted 3 more months. I remember, lying in bed one night at about 10pm, when I finally realized that I like this place. I didn’t just uproot my life for a boy, I uprooted my life for adventure. It was then, on that night, where I said for the first time “I like it here”.

 

And I do.

 

The past 3 months have done something serious to my feelings towards this place. I like it. In fact, I love it.

I have a heavy hand in animal rescue organizations and am only looking for ways to help more animals. And that makes me happy.

I am THAT girl that is obsessed with her gym. Orangetheory has given me nearly all of my friends here (get your laughs in now Val), and there isn’t a day where I walk into that gym and don’t have a meaningful conversation with someone. Orangetheory has not only changed my physique, it has changed my life. It is one of the things that I contribute to finally being able to call North Carolina home, and for that, I am thankful.

I have gotten to walk in a fashion show & do a photo shoot. I have another fashion show coming up in 4 weeks. Someone go ahead and tell me where I could have been introduced to opportunities like that in Iowa. I’ll wait.

I’ve launched an online business. It is doing so well in fact that I have had to put a hold on taking new clients (except for my Pump It For Paws program. Hollaaaa for helping dogs in need). This business I am 110% confident wouldn’t exist if I were still in Iowa. It wouldn’t exist because the clients who inspired me to start it were my clients in Iowa (S/O Amber & Jeremiah). And if i were still training them in person, what purpose would an online platform serve?

Our dogs have had more experiences out here too. Dog dates, trips with us to the bar arcade, trips with us to Pig Pounder Brewery where they are now known by name 😉

We can travel 3.5 hours to the East and be on the beach. And we can travel 3.5 hours to the West and be in the mountains. That sure as hell beats 24 hour trips to the beach that we have taken in the past!

 

12 months with you North Carolina. And for the first time, I have a different response to people when they ask “How long do you think you’ll be here?”. 5 years used to be my optimistic view. I would tell myself that I could hold on for 5 years out here, and then pack up back to the midwest.

But now. Now when people ask i don’t have an answer. I tell them that I am happy. I am flourishing out here. How did you do it North Carolina? How did you convince me to stay in just 1 short year? Okay, maybe the trips home to 12 inches of snow only to return to NC in 70 degree weather helps. But my love for this state goes beyond the weather.

And to the Midwest & all of my family and friends there. I still love you, i’ll always miss you. But change is good. Trying new things is good. And if I’ve learned anything in this past year, i’ve learned that a year flies by way too quickly. If you don’t take chances, if you don’t make jumps now, then you never will. Branch out, try something new. I promise, you won’t regret it.

One year. 12 months. 365 days of the biggest emotional roller coaster of my life. The ups & the downs this year have been immeasurable to other years. The emotional year goes way beyond getting comfortable with the move. It goes with feelings of finding myself. Going through family issues from afar. Finding solace in friends here. Learning new things, about life, about friends, about me.

One year. 12 months. 365 days of the biggest emotional roller coaster of my life. But I feel that because of you, North Carolina and the people you brought to me, that I was able to tackle that year. Overcome. Rise above.

“& When I need something to remind me of who I am, Carolina Can”

-Chase Rice

Cross-Fit Inspired Weights Workout

I bet you can’t get through this without breaking a sweat.

Why would you want to leave the gym fresh anyway?

Set 1: 7 sets

  • Deadlifts X6,4,3,3,3,4,6 reps
    • Increasing weight with decreasing reps. Try to match the same weight you did the first time when you get back to the reps of 4 & 6
    • Last 3 sets: compound with pull ups to failure

Set 2: 3 sets

  • Dumbbell stiff leg deadlift X10
  • Single arm dumbbell alternating snatch X10 total
  • Bodyweight squats X15

Set 3: 3 sets

  • Single arm dumbbell thrusters X8 each
  • Dumbbell or kettlebell swings X8

Set 4: 2 set burnout

  • Heavy med ball over the shoulder tosses to failure
  • TRX pistol squats X8 each

Try it out and throw your results in the comments!

For more workouts follow me on instagram @bodybybuehler

Dynamic Vs. Static Stretching

When it comes to exercise, you’re supposed to stretch right? Did you know that there are proper forms of stretching and right times to do them?

Dynamic Vs. Static Stretching – or Warm up Vs. Cool down

Dynamic:

adj. (of a process or system) characterized by constant change, activity, or progress.

Static: 

adj. lacking in movement, action, or change

Think of dynamic as constantly moving and static as not moving at all. Perform a dynamic warm up, like the one seen in the video below is beneficial to warm up your muscles while also lengthening them. Performing static stretches before exercise puts your muscles at risk for injury. It is a lot harder, and a lot less safe to stretch a cool muscle. Muscles stretch best when they are warm, allowing them to lengthen to their maximum ability, and also allow them to recover after the stretch.

For your next workout, try these basic dynamic (warm up) and static (cool down) stretches!

 

Six Months Southern

It has officially been 6 months since Alex and I packed up our lives & moved across country with 3 animals in tow, 1,007 miles to be exact. To say that it hasn’t been an absolute whirlwind of emotions and events would be a drastic understatement.

But first, why move? Why pick up and leave everything and everyone we knew for the previous 4.5 years behind? Why move far enough away that the only realistic trip back to the parents house goes from being a car ride to expensive flights that may or may not get you there on time? We were comfortable, and we also felt stuck. We both had this urge to do something more, expand in our careers, to see new places. So when it came time to job hunt, we decided that it was more reasonable for Alex to be the one to hunt for jobs to move us. Being in the fitness industry, it is a lot easier to just “find a job”, Alex’s field however- not so much. Do I think that had I been the other one to look for the job to uproot us that we would have ended up in Greensboro, NC? No, definitely not, but I don’t think that was the way all of this was supposed to roll out.

So what has Six Months Southern been like?

Well it’s warmer, that’s for sure. And the rain and the sun are like jealous twin siblings that are fighting for the spotlight. Within a one mile stretch of driving I could drive 30 seconds in downpour, the next 30 seconds in brilliant sunshine, and then the next mile could see just a brief shower that is pretty much guranteed not to last long. No, we do not see any vicious thunderstorms with threatening tornados like we did in Iowa – and because of that it is infrequent to find houses with basements (a real bummer if you ask me).

The people? They’re the same. Iowans are definitely friendly and we were happy to find that Greensboro-ians are equally as friendly. No steps backwards there (insert thumbs up here)

Let’s talk about the size of this city. Now I am reminded by those who are from here, or from much bigger cities that Greensboro is not that big and rush hour is not that bad. Put it up against Cedar Falls, IA and it is! Holy moly planning time to hang out with friends is like a full detailed process. “Hey you wanna come over?” turns into well, you live 30 minutes away, so after my 30 minute commute home I’d already be home this late and factoring in the 60 minute round trip to hang would give us approx. 5 minutes of chill time. It’s crazy.

But what has life being Six Months Southern and six months away from family and friends been like?

Well if I said that I don’t think about and miss the midwest every single day, I’d be lying. Because I do. But stepping outside of comfort zones sometimes has a pretty hefty adjustment period attached to it. And the adjustment period is hard at times. I didn’t realize how much I took for granted being able to hop in the car to drive home for the weekend because I was just in need of a little home time. Or how much I would miss calling up Lauren to come over some night, only to drink too much wine and have her stay over, but hey that’s okay because she would keep the dogs company while we went to work early. Or how awesome our friends truly were. Not only do I miss the 4-some friendship we had with Chelsea and Clint, I am 110% sure that our dogs miss the friendship they had with Melvin and Wilson (their fur-babies).

However, I’m not sure if I miss Iowa and the Midwest or if I miss the relationships and memories we had there. Cedar Falls gave me the best 4.5 years of my life, but I feel that many people get that nostalgic feeling when they think about their college town. And when we sit down and think about it, did we want to live in our college town forever?

As we grow older, Sharky’s and Social House have turned into causal Friday wine nights. And those causal Friday wine nights will someday turn into chaotic Friday nights chasing kids around only to sneak out a bottle of wine when they’ve been put to sleep. We are aging, and I don’t think our college town is where we were supposed to age at. I’d much rather look back on it and always have that nostalgic feeling of the town that gave me the most memorable, crazy, spontaneous years of my life. Plus, it will always be the town where I can tell our future kids “this is where I met your dad at” and that would be a cool visit to have.

Maybe the hardest thing is realizing that adulthood has hit us full speed ahead, it crept up slowly but I chose to ignore it before now.

But hey, on the flip side I like looking at all of the GREAT things that the East Coast has given us. I mean pretty much the biggest milestones of our lives beside graduating college have happened out here.

In February Alex started an awesome, long-term full time job with Volvo.

In April we got engaged (eek!)

In May we went under contract for a house

In June we closed on that house

In July we moved into that house

And in August I started my first, legit full-time job with all the works.

Responsibility is here but I am actually really enjoying it now.

We have a house we are making a home. Our dogs have a fence that allows them 1000X more play time than they used to have. We both have secure jobs that will long-term give us financial freedom for numerous beach trips and more. And we are slowly making friends.

I have to remind myself that I miss Iowa because I miss all of the good memories about it. But those memories were 4.5 years in the making, I can’t expect to have those kind of memories in the first 6 months here. Although we have a pretty good start. Who knows what the future holds, who knows what tomorrow holds, but I’ve convinced myself to enjoy the ride. This state, this weather, this home is too beautiful to not enjoy every moment of it.

Iowa, I miss you. Illinois, I miss you. Kansas, Missouri, and Wisconsin, I miss you too even. But hey, North Carolina is holding it’s ground to you guys. So friends and family, come visit, we have 2 spare rooms and plenty of beer to share 😉

Do More With Less. 6 Complex Exercise Workout to Give You More Bang For Your Buck

….Because who doesn’t love saving time while doing more.

Your workouts don’t have to include the fanciest, newest, or an extreme amount of exercises. If you focus on complex and compound movements you will be working more muscles in one movement than you could in a few simple movements.

What is a compound movement? An exercise that uses more than one muscle group and also moves more than one joint 

For example: A squat to press works your shoulders, glutes, quads, hamstrings, and core while working with the shoulder, hip, elbow, and knee joints. W0ah that’s a lot of action in one movement!

If you want to dig deeper than that we can look into the different planes of movements to add a whole new level of intensity!

Sagittal plane: divides the body into left and right halves.

  • Movements done in this plane is the squat because it does not break the plane by moving side to side. Another, more simple exercise in this plane is a bicep curl, again because it does not break the center plane and only moves up and down rather than side to side

Frontal plane: divides the body into front and back halves

  • Movements done in this plane are shoulder presses because the work up and down but not forward and back (unlike the bicep curl) therefore they do not break the plane

Transverse plane: divides the body into top and bottom halves

  • Movement done in this plane is a horizontal woodchop because the movement works across the body and up (breaking both the frontal and sagittal planes) but does not work below the waist therefore not breaking the up and down plane.

All talk of planes can be kind of confusing, but don’t worry I have you covered! The following exercises work in multiple joints, multiple planes and with multiple muscle groups – talk about a full body workout!

So how about you take these 6 exercises for a spin. Attach 8-10 reps per exercise and put a time limit on (15,20,30 minutes) and go to work! The goal is to work efficiently, work hard on the exercise you are working on, take minimal breaks between exercises and save your rest periods for in between rounds and see how many rounds you can do! (Otherwise known as ARMAP).

Video exercises (in order)

Burpee pull up

  • Muscles: chest, triceps, core, lats, traps, shoulders, biceps
  • Joints: shoulder, hips, knees, elbow
  • Planes: transverse, sagittal, frontal

Squat to press:

  • Muscles: shoulders, glutes, quads, hamstrings, core
  • Joint: shoulder, elbow, hip, knee
  • Planes: sagittal and frontal

Chest fly to skullcrusher:

  • Muscles: chest, triceps, shoulders
  • Joints: shoulder, elbow
  • Planes: frontal, sagittal

Double bent over row to deadlift

  • Muscles: traps, lats, biceps, shoulders, low back, glutes, quads, hamstrings
  • Joints: shoulder, elbow, hip, knee
  • Planes: sagittal, frontal, transverse (a mixture really)

TRX lunge to chest fly

  • Muscles: chest, tricep, shoulder, core, quads, glutes
  • Joints: shoulder, hip, knee
  • Planes: transverse, sagittal, frontal

GHD sit up

  • Muscles: core, quads
  • Joints, hip, knee
  • Planes: sagittal, transverse

My Go-To Breakfast For Sustained Energy and Well Rounded Macros

I used to be one to eat something different for breakfast everyday because, why not switch it up? But then I concocted my protein peanut butter oatmeal mix and I have generally been having that every day for like 6 months. It is just TOO good.

Not only does it have a good mix of proteins, fats, and carbs, it keeps me going! And that is important on days when I am busy coaching so many classes in the morning that I really can’t eat in my every 3-4 hour window, and it turns into about 4-5 hours.

So what’s in it? For the overnight oats option I use the following ingredients:

For regular, warm cooked oatmeal in the morning I do not add the yogurt or the milk.

But basically it’s 1 serving of oats + 1/2 cup of greek yogurt + half scoop of Quest Nutrition Salted Caramel protein powder + 1 spoonful (about 1.5-2TBSP) of Natural Peanut Butter + Almond milk to desired consistency

What about the macros?

400 cals / 32g protein / 43g carb / 10g fiber / 13g fat

PS. If you’re on a ‘diet’ where you are cutting carbs, fat, etc. Alter the serving size of the oats or peanut butter you use! I suggest reducing the amount of peanut butter before reducing the amount of oats, since oats are the base in this recipe 

Give er a try for your next breakfast. Not to mention making the overnight version is a morning time saver, which we all need!

Avocado Egg Toast & How to Pick the Perfect Avocado

When choosing a snack, I try (and suggest you do the same) to pick something that is well rounded with all of the macronutrients – carbs + protein + fat. This avocado egg toast comes in at:

211 cals / 13g protein / 23g carbs / 8g fat

IMG_1383

It’s simple! Add some pepper to your liking and you’re ready to roll

Okay, so how to find the perfect avocado and when do you cut that bastard open?

The first thing I do when choosing an avocado isn’t the ‘softness’ test, I pluck off the little seed at the top of the avocado to reveal the color underneath of it. If it is the bright yellow/green color then it’s usually at the good stage of ripeness. If it’s dark green or brown, it is either not ripe yet or way past ripe.

After that I DO do the softness test. For avocados I know I will be using within a few days I find the softer ones, but not like “a baby could squeeze these and they would disintegrate soft” just a soft to the touch. For avocados that will sit in my pantry for a few days longer, I find ones that aren’t quite soft yet. Regardless, I don’t get an avocado that is hard because they are still ripening and at that point if I think “oh it’ll ripen in my pantry” it usually goes unforgotten and then I have missed my window.

Trial and error you avocado lovers, trial and error. You also will find certain grocery stores that tend to have better avocados than others

20 Minute Bodyweight HIIT Burn

Crunched on time? No time to make it to the gym? Find a spot in your home, your garage, your backyard and take this for a spin!

Need help dechiphering those exercises?

  • Burpee: Starting in a standing position, bend over placing your hands on the floor, jumping or stepping your feet back into a plank position (core is tight!) and then hop or jump your feet back to your hands to return to a standing position. Additional option: add a push up at the bottom once you hit a plank position
  • 90 degree turn squat jump: Starting in a standing position, begin your squat by pushing your hips back and down keeping the weight heavy in your heels and your knees behind your toes. On the way up from the squat begin to jump by powering through your legs BUT turning 90 degrees to the side. To initiate the turn, drive through the hips to make the 90 degree movement.
  • 3 step side shuffle plank: Think of a basketball drill here. Bend your knees slightly keeping your chest tall and begin to take 3 side step shuffles to one side. Once you do 3, drop your hands down to your feet and hop or step your feet back into a plank position, return to standing position (that is 1 rep). Side shuffle to the other side and repeat
  • Squat plank thruster: Beginning in a full plank position, using the power from your hips drive your feet (jumping or stepping) up to right outside of your hands, landing with your heels in contact with the ground and then lift your chest so you are looking forward (at this position you should feel like you are in a low squat position- remember good form for this!). Hop or walk your feet back and repeat.
  • Crab crunches: Think of elementary school PE here. Starting with your feet and hands in contact with the ground, your body is facing UP not DOWN. Pull your hips up by squeezing through your glutes (you should be in a reverse table top position here). Finding your balance with your feet about 1 foot apart, lift your right hand and left foot off the ground, reaching your right hand to touch the left knee as both limbs crunch towards each other (this is 1 rep). Return to the ground and repeat.

 

Ready, set, go!