Sleek and toned.

IMG_0527I talk about this all the time, you need to mix up your workout if you want to amp up your results. Classes are a great way to do this, but if you’re like me you’re not that big of a fan. Admittedly this comes from the virgo / control freak side of my personality. Plus, having been exercising and interested in all forms of the practice starting at a young age, I have developed a fairly good arsenal of workouts I do on a regular basis.

If you don’t have this, classes and trainers are surely beneficial. But you can also go on-line and view lots of different cardio and strength training routines that will help you as well. For example, I love spin but I don’t care for an hour-long class. I don’t want to spend all my time on a bike. I want to get my cardio in along with strength training almost every time I go to the gym. This is the only way you will get that sleek, toned physique you are looking for, by combining cardio and strength.

Back to my original story, so I love spin, don’t want to spend an hour doing it so I do a routine that I found on YouTube that I love. It’s a 25 minute interval training class and perfect for what I’m looking for. It gets me sweating and my heart rate up, I really feel like I worked hard at the end. Then I can squeeze in 10-20 minutes of toning. That’s all it takes!! Don’t get discouraged when I tell you to combine both, now you will be in the gym for almost an hour (if not more) but it flies by when you are combining different workouts and always mixing things up. Having a diverse routine is not only better for your attention span and keeping you interested, but makes a tremendous difference in how many physical “gains” you make as a result of your workouts.

I’ll post the spin class I did on my Facebook page later today.

What’s your favorite form of interval training?

xo,

Hil

Mid-Summer Shape Up

Group of women working out in fitness studio

It’s hard to stay motivated so let’s challenge ourselves to stay on track!

It’s already the middle of the summer and I have to admit it’s getting hard to stay motivated to be active and healthy. Between work, trying to keep the kids fed, active and entertained; I’m exhausted at all times. I love spending most of my time with my children and my job as a stylist is pretty great, but it’s both hard and exhausting to squeeze in workout time and stay healthy. And with all the treats that are constantly in my midst I’ve been indulging a little too much in the sweeter  things.

I need some motivation and a challenge to keep me going. I’m going to think of a fitness and diet challenge every week in August to inspire me to stay on track. I want you to do the same, I’ll check in with ya’ll on Instagram and Facebook every morning to let you know that I’m on track and you should do the same. This weeks challenge: no ice cream and complete an 8 minute Tabata every day.

If you’re not familiar with Tabata it’s a form of high intensity interval training that is performed in a 20/10 format for 4 minutes and then resting for 1 minute. You can perform almost any move in this format but if you need some suggestions Greatist has a list of 9 over to help get you started.

xo,

Hil

This weeks High Intensity Interval Workout.

I’ve been posting a HIIT (high intensity interval training) every Monday on my YouTube channel. This week I’m posting the HIIT here because I won’t be able to get to filming.

I also wanted to take a moment to talk a little about how to get fit and stay fit. Many people I encounter ask me what I do to stay in shape especially after having 3 kids.  Here’s my answer: If you want to know what I do to get and stay in shape, follow my blog and do my weekly workouts. If you’re not willing to do the work, like the HIIT and strength training exercises I post every Monday, Wednesday and Friday, you’re not going to get in better shape. So get up, get pumped and do it!

With that, here’s your HIIT for the week. Perform this at least twice but preferably 3 or 4 times this week. Message me with any questions about this workout (including if you need modifications) or anything else at ugobabyfitness@gmail.com.

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Taking your workout to the next level.

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Intermittent high intensity exercise , like sprints, are the perfect way to challenge yourself and create lean muscle mass. 

Yesterday I posted the HIIT for this week (you can view it here) and talked a little about the benefits of interval training and how to take your workout to the next level. In today’s post I wanted to touch a little more on that subject.

Steady state cardio is awesome and irreplaceable. Getting in 20 to 30 minutes of walking, running, ellipticizing (is that even a word?), biking etc… four or five times a week is essential to getting and keeping fit and healthy. But, if you want to amp up your workout, take it to the next level and really see a change in how you look and feel you need to include some interval training in your workouts.

What is intereval training?

Interval training is a type of training that involves a series of low- to high-intensity exercise workouts interspersed with rest or relief periods. – Wikipedia

For example, if you’re preferred form of cardio is jogging, you can get some intereval training in by including some sprints in your normal jog. This means sprinting for a short bit, say 20 to 50 seconds, then taking it back down to a light jog or walk for a brief rest of 10 to 30 seconds and repeating this format for 10, 20, 30 minutes… or however long you can do it comfortably while still pushing yourself. It’s very intense exercise so even just 10 minutes will give you great benefits.

Although you can do interval training within steady state cardio exercise, I highly recommend including some exercises that will challenge all the muscles in your body and create “muscle confusion”. This will amp up your workout even more so your body is really kicked into high gear. This is the type of interval training I post on my YouTube channel, cleverly named U Go Baby Fitness, every Monday. These include exercises like burpees (I know you love those), high knees, jump squats, skaters, and even some floor work like planks and mountain climbers. It really can be almost any exercise that you perform at your max intenisty for 20 seconds with a 10 second break in between for a total of 10 minutes. This is called Tabata intervals and have been proven to give the maximum benefit as far as interval training goes. Just performing 10 minutes of tabata style HIIT twice a week will help boost your metabolism and create lean muscle mass.

I’ll leave you with this, CrossFit is one of the most popular workouts right now and I’m sure you know people who do it and look amazing. Well, CrossFit is glorified interval training. Follow me and I’ll get you there for free.

Any questions? What’s your favorite exercise to do in intervals?

XO,

Hil

Benefits of HIIT (high intensity interval training)

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Yesterday I posted a link to my weekly HIIT workout which you can see here. I’m trying to come up with a method to the madness in terms of what I post and when. Every Monday I will post a HIIT workout and Wednesdays I will post some more concentrated strength training exercises.

Today I want to talk a little about the benefits of interval training. I personally love it because I can easily do it at home and my kids sometimes even join in. Here’s a list of some of the other great advantages.

  1. Burns the most calories in the least amount of time. The Tabata format in particular (this is working at your maximum capacity for 20 seconds then taking a 10 second break for a total of 4 minutes per set) has been proven to torch calories and continue burning calories at a high rate for up to 30 minutes post workout.
  2. Mixes up your workout so you never get bored. I love that this type of workout entails doing different exercises. I tend to get bored with repetitive cardio and this solves that problem by changing up what I’m doing every 30 to 60 seconds.
  3. Challenges muscle memory. HIIT creates muscle confusion so your muscles do not get bored and are always working hard.
  4. Gives you a full body workout. If you get the right combination of exercises together you will get a full body workout in the process of calorie blasting. Mix it up with some calorie burning running, butt boosting squats, bicycle crunches and planks and you’ve covered all of your body parts. I recommend mixing in strength training with your HIIT, but it’s not necessary since you are already doing strength exercise with this workout.

What’s your favorite workout to do in high intensity intervals?

Thanks for reading!

XO,

Hil

Bootcamp Benefits.

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I did a bootcamp class this morning at Commit 2b Fit in Quincy, MA. I love bootcamp style classes! Basically this involves HIIT (high intensity interval training) combined with weight training and muscle toning. I always preach about the importance of mixing up your workout and this is the perfect way to do it.

Here  are some benefits of bootcamp style classes:

  1. Torch calories with internal training. It’s been proven that interval training even just a couple of times a week torches calories and helps you lose weight.
  2. Works all your muscle groups. The variety of exercises in this style class usually involves working your entire body so its like one stop shopping for your workout.
  3. Team atmosphere is very motivating! Especially if you go to the same classes and really get to know the instructor and people who generally attend. It so encouraging being in a class with people you are comfortable with and once you know the class, it’s format and people you will be more excited and invigorated to get to class.
  4. Learning new moves to incorporate into your personal workout. For example I learned this great squat move. I often incorporate squat jumps into my HIIT workout but this is a good way to amp it up! Perform a basic squat then jump and pulse a few times before jumping again. I’ll show a demonstration of this on my Instagram and Facebook pages so make sure you are following me there: U Go Baby Fitness on FB ; U Go Baby Fitness on Insta.

xo,

Hil

Today’s HIIT.

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I love high intensity interval training (HIIT). This type of exercise can take on many forms. I like the tabata format, this effort ratio torches calories and you only need to do it for 10 minutes to see results.

Here’s how it works: pick an exercise that you can perform at high intensity  for 20 seconds and then walk it out for 10 seconds. Do this for 4 minutes then rest for one minute. Then another 4 minutes and rest. I usually mix in some strength training in between, but for today just focus on doing the HIIT as many times as you can comfortably.

Fo these exercises in the 20/10 format.

1) High Knees.

2) Skaters.

3) Jumping lunge.

4) Burpees.

Comment below and let me know how you did and how many sets you were able to do. Don’t over do it! I don’t want you to hurt yourself and he too sore tomorrow. Do what feels comfortable while still challenging yourself!

xo,

Hilary