• girl in white shirt and black pants lying on blue exercise ball
    Exercises,  Full Body,  Lifestyle

    Kids and Exercise During the Pandemic

    As I write this, I am sitting in my apartment in Brussels, Belgium, a week into a 6-week lock down.  Until recently, schools were open and in session full time.  Now, Belgium extended the fall break in an effort to reduce COVID-19 exposures, and some schools are going back to virtual.  In the United States, schools have largely remained virtual, with parents juggling work obligations while helping their kids re-adjust to a virtual learning environment.   This is hard stuff.  When the first wave of lock downs started in March, spring and then summer allowed us to spend time outdoors.  Kids could play in backyards.  Families could go for neighborhood walks…

  • healthy woman summer girl
    Cool Down,  Exercises,  Full Body,  SF30,  Warm Up

    SF30 Day 19 — HIIT Cardio (35 minutes)

    Time to bump up that heart rate with one of my favorite high intensity interval  training (HIIT) workouts.  What’s HIIT, you ask?  It’s a version of interval training where you alternate short bursts of intense exercise with less intensive recovery periods.  In this way, you can get a challenging cardiovascular workout in a shorter period of time.  Today’s routine is part of an 8-week challenge from LIVESTRONG, led by former pro soccer player and celebrity trainer Nicky Holender.  These days, Nick focuses on training celebrities and athletes, but in this 2014 STRONGER series, LIVESTRONG became an early leader in offering free, full length workouts on YouTube.  I’ve been a fan…

  • photo of woman sitting while holding dumbbells
    Arms,  Exercises,  SF30

    SF30 Day 17 — Arms (27 minutes)

    Today, I’m introducing one of my new fitness favorites, Caroline Girvan, for one of my favorite workout days, ARMS (!!).  Caroline is a northern Ireland-based fitness trainer, mom of two, and ultra-marathoner. And, she is not afraid to lift heavy.  Some say that, if you want to learn how to be skinny, watch a skinny person.   Well, if you want to have a ripped physique, watch a Caroline Girvan workout.  This woman is not afraid of a set of weights, and she has the guns to show for it.   I like Caroline’s workouts because she starts with an introduction on proper form, which is helpful guidance.  This workout is comprised…

  • Glute and Thighs,  Legs,  SF30

    SF30 Day 3 — Butt and Thigh Workout (10-minutes, no equipment)

    Legs day!  We’re going to start off (relatively) light with a 10-minute butt and thigh workout from Pop Sugar Fitness.  This video is a strength workout that doesn’t require equipment and has minimal jumping.  Make no mistake, though, you’ll definitely feel it — even with just 10 minutes.  I started following Pop Sugar Fitness about a decade ago, when I was trolling the internet looking for free online exercise content.   Pop Sugar Fitness is hosted by fitness expert Anna Renderer.  Anna reminds me of that cool mom in your neighborhood who holds sweat sessions in her bonus room.  Pop Sugar’s videos are usually 10-15 minutes and can easy to fit…

  • Arms,  SF30,  Shoulders,  Upper Body

    SF30 Day 2 — Arms (10 minutes, no equipment)

    Okay readers, today is arms day!  For those who read my August blog post, Vacation-Friendly Upper Body Workouts (No Equipment), you know that it doesn’t take weights to work out your arms, shoulders, chest and back.  And you’re also not relegated to endless push-ups (though I certainly encourage you to master a solid push-up regime).   Here’s another great workout that you can do anywhere, anytime, no weights, and no push-ups.  And it will surprise you.  It hurts (in a good way), and it works.  Emily Mclaughlin is a relatively new online trainer for me.  She’s based in Berlin, Germany (though she sounds North American), and bills herself as a “content…

  • Interviews

    Is the Fitness World Moving Online for Good?  Not So Fast, Says Yoga Pilates Instructor Orsi Nagyistok

    Orsolya (Orsi) Nagyistok started the year fresh in 2020.  She left a personal training job at Aspria, a posh Brussels Spa, at the end of 2019 to open her own yoga and Pilates studio.  She dreamed of having a startup company.  And after ten years in the fitness industry, she was ready.  She even found a local hotel to collaborate with her, allowing for expansion plans.  “The idea was that in March, I would move the studio into [the hotel location], and we were going to co-create something.”   Everything was falling into place.  Then COVID-19 happened.  Like so many start-up business owners, Orsi had to find ways to adapt and…

  • confident fit ethnic woman training with other sportswomen in modern fitness studio
    Arms,  Back,  Exercises,  Shoulders,  Upper Body

    Vacation-Friendly Upper Body Workouts (No Equipment)

    Nothing makes me feel stronger and more confident than looking down and seeing the little bump in my bicep from the (what feels like) 9000 bicep curls I’ve done over a lifetime.  I absolutely LOVE to strength train more than any other type of fitness.  But with vacation season upon us (for those who can travel), it’s not always possible to have weights on hand.  I’m sharing my top 5 upper body – no equipment – strength videos, all of which are effective and completely FREE.  These range from 5 minutes to 30 minutes, leaving you with no excuse for skipping arms day.  No need to lose those guns just…