Sunday, December 30, 2012

16 Minute Full Body Home Workout: Real Time

Hi Everyone,

This was my workout last night. I filmed the workout, and the tutorial separately. If you are unsure of any of the exercises check out the tutorial video.

This round of exercises will work your entire body, and can be repeated. There are 4 exercises each for arms, legs, core, and cardio. Also, the interval style of the workout increases the intensity and fat burning. 

Go for maximum reps during each 50 second interval. I was moving a little bit slowly last night. I worked out late, so normally I am in bed already by that time, and my body was tired. Also, I still have the sinus infection that has been plaguing me for a few weeks now. I finally broke down and accepted antibiotics from my doctor. Typically, I try not to take antibiotics unless they are necessary.

I hope you enjoy the workout. There will be a new one today, plus I am planning on going for a run outside with Jesse. If you run outside be very careful. I slipped on black ice on my way into work on Friday morning, and banged up my knee and hip. The roads and sidewalks appear to be much clearer today, but if it's too icy I will do a run on the treadmill. 

Have fun today!

All Levels: Max reps during each 50 second interval, 10 seconds of rest between exercises
Repeat 1-3X

1. Walking Pushups or Walking Spiderman Pushups
2. Tricep Dips
3. Dive Bombers
4. Static Reverse Plank (on forearms)
5. Ball Pull
6. 1 Leg Squat Extension (right)
7. 1 Leg Squat Extension (left)
8. Wall Sit
9. V-Up/Hip Lift
10. Side Plank Knee Lift (right)
11. Side Plank Knee Lift (left)
12. Superman
13. Burpees
14. High Knees
15. 3 Way Frogger
16. Surfer Jumps

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Post Holiday Calorie Cutter Workout

Hi Everyone!

Today's workout is posted below. It felt great to be back to working out! It can be really tough to fit exercise in during the holidays. That is why I put together the blog post: 6 Workouts That Take 15 Minutes or Less

Today I did an interval workout. One round takes 12 minutes to complete. This workout can be repeated up to 3 times. It's great for fat burning, and all over toning. 

Jesse and I also did a 3.5 mile run outside. It was really tough running uphill in the snow. None of the snow was packed down yet, so the run was more difficult. 

I hope you all have a wonderful evening, and enjoy the workout! See you tomorrow with a new one!

PS If you like the sports bra check out and like Affitnity on Facebook

All Levels: Max reps during each 50 second interval, 10 seconds of rest between exercises

Repeat: 1-3X

1. Slow Mountain Climber
2. Mountain Climber
3. Bird Dog Row (right)
4. Frogger
5. Bird Dog Rose (left)
6. High Knees
7. 1 Leg Lunge Twist (right)
8. Side Step Up (right)
9. 1 Leg Lunge Twist (left)
10. Side Step Up (left)
11. Prone Heel Tap
12. Ninja Jump

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

6 Workouts That Take 15 Minutes or Less

Hi Everyone,

This holiday season fitting in workouts has been a major challenge for me. Add in the fact that four of my favorite people have birthday's this month, and I have been super busy, and eating a lot of foods that I don't typically eat. 

I have found myself falling into the trap of "not enough time to workout." 

Sometimes I need to remind myself that a short workout is far better than no workout. In fact, doing short intense workouts are great for your metabolism, and keep you burning fat for hours afterward. So here are six workouts that can be completed in 15 minutes or less. If you feel super motivated you can repeat any of these workouts, or mix and match them. 

-7 Minute Full Body Workout: Go through the video one time for a 7 minute workout. 
Three-pete Full Body Workout

-Intense 8 Minute Cardio Fat Stripper:
8 Minute Cardio Fat Stripper

-Intense 8 Minute Ab Workout
8 Minute Ab Workout

-10 Minute Bombshell Fat Burn
Bombshell Body Fat Burn

-15 Minute High Intensity Cardio Interval Workout
Cardio 15 Minute High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT)

-HIIT 15 Minute Cardio Cutup
Cardio Cut Up: 15 Minutes

Saturday, December 22, 2012

In the Mood: Home Workout

Beginner: 10 reps
Intermediate: 15 reps
Advanced: 20 reps

Optional Equipment: 15 lb dumbbell, 15 lb kettle-bell  

1. 1 Leg Tripod Hop
2. Side Lunge Twist (right)
3. Side Lunge Twist (left)
4. Flex and Tap (right)
5. Flex and Tap (left)
6. Mountain Steppers
7. Chair Twist 
8. V-Up Bridge
9. Ab Wringer
10. Heel Tap Hip Lift

Repeat 1-3X (My rounds, and workout information is below)

Hi Everyone,

I had so much fun with this workout! I incorporated some new moves that I really enjoyed, and switched up some of my regular moves to change the challenge. When I got home from work yesterday I talked Jesse into going for a nice run in the cold with me. We said "hello" to someone we passed, and he told us we were crazy for running in the cold! We ran 3.5 miles. 

I went through two rounds of today's workout. I felt really great, and motivated. I was "In the Mood." It helped that the song "In the Mood" by Brian Setzer Orchestra was playing in my head. I went to my best friend from high school's birthday party, and we got to swing dance to this song on Thursday. It's been almost 12 years since the last time we did any swing dancing, and it was a lot of fun!

I am still loving my Affitnity sports bra and pants. Be sure to like their facebook page for the latest updates on sales and new products:

I hope you enjoy the workout, and have as much fun as I did! Have a great day!

Chair Pose Twist with 15 lb Kettlebell: Chest stays lifted, butt reaches backward, knees stay behind your toes. Gently twist to tap the waist to either side of your hips in a slow controlled motion. 

Ab Wringer: Shoulder blades lift from the floor, legs bend at a 90 degree angle. As knees drop to the left, arms reach right. Keep your abs engaged the entire time as you slowly rotate your body from side to side. 

Ab Wringer: Shoulder blades lift from the floor, legs bend at a 90 degree angle. As knees drop to the left, arms reach right. Keep your abs engaged the entire time as you slowly rotate your body from side to side.

Heel Tap Hip Lift: Extend your arms over your head, shoulder blades lifted from the floor. Heels come together and toes point out. Tap your heels together as you raise your legs until they are directly above your hips and your body forms an L. Using your lower abs lift your hips from the floor. Tap your heels back down until you return to the starting position. 
1 Leg Tripod Jump: Alternating legs, jump one leg up as you would for a handstand. Keep the standing leg slightly bent. Return to start position and switch legs. 

Side Lunge Twist: Hold Weight above your shoulder. Start standing with your feet together, and take a large step out to the side. Keep your chest lifted, and butt pushing toward the wall behind you. In a slow controlled motion rotate your upper body until you are facing the side. Return to starting position and repeat. 

Side Lunge Twist: Hold Weight above your shoulder. Start standing with your feet together, and take a large step out to the side. Keep your chest lifted, and butt pushing toward the wall behind you. In a slow controlled motion rotate your upper body until you are facing the side. Return to starting position and repeat.

Flex and Tap: Stand with one foot pointed behind you. Bend at the knee to bring your heel toward your butt. Return to starting position, and then bend at the waist, keeping your back straight, as you extend your leg behind you.
Flex and Tap: Stand with one foot pointed behind you. Bend at the knee to bring your heel toward your butt. Return to starting position, and then bend at the waist, keeping your back straight, as you extend your leg behind you.

Have Fun with your Workout!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Dynamic Yoga Flow

Hi Everyone!

This was my workout last night. It's different than my typical workout. It's a combination of yoga poses, and strength training movements. I followed it up by running one mile on the treadmill. 

My sinus infection/cold hasn't quite left me yet, so I have been exhausted for the past week. I was planning a new workout tonight, but I think my body needs some extra sleep to recover. I will definitely be doing a new workout tomorrow. 

I hope you all enjoy the workout, and are having a great holiday season. :)

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Plank It Out (10-Minute Body Burn): Home Workout

All Levels: Max reps during each 50 second interval, 10 seconds of rest between exercises. 

1. 1 Leg Frogger (right)
2. 1 Leg Frogger (left)
3. Bird Dog (right)
4. Bird Dog (left)
5. Up Dog Knee Drop Plank
6. Speed Skater
7. Crunch Plank
8. Ball Bridge
9. Side Plank Knee (right)
10. Side Plank Knee (left)

Repeat 1-3X

Hi Everyone!

I went through this workout two times today, and I followed it up with a run outside. The weather was much warmer today, and I wanted to take advantage of it. I got in 3.5 miles, which took a little over 30 minutes. 

I still sound a little bit raspy, but I am actually feeling a lot better after working out then I did before hand. I am a firm believer in listening to the signals your body is giving you so I took yesterday off to rest and heal. I took a nap and got some extra sleep. I felt better today, and even though I am not 100% I felt ready to get back to working out. I am also taking my vitamins, and making sure I get healthy meals to help get my body back on track. 

Today's workout uses movements that will work and challenge your entire body. It's interval style, so your heart rate should stay high throughout. Interval workouts help you to achieve optimal fat burning, and rev your metabolism for hours post workout. 

If planking is difficult on your wrists, you may want to invest in pushup bars, which help maintain your wrists in a neutral position during planks and pushups. This can decrease the pressure on the carpal tunnel, and ease any discomfort you might feel. 

I hope you guys enjoy the workout! See you tomorrow with a new one! 

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Lean Lower Body Workout

Beginner: 10 reps
Intermediate: 15 reps
Advanced: 20 reps

Repeat 1-4X

1. Curtsy Lunge Kick (right)
2. Curtsy Lunge Kick (left)
3. Lift and Pulse Leg Extension (right)
4. Lift and Pulse Leg Extension (left)
5. Reverse Plank Step Out
6. Roll and Lift Situp
7. Crossed Plank Downdog
8. Lunge Hop (right)
9. Lunge Hop (left)
10. Butt lift
11. Romanian Deadlift Pulse (right)
12. Romanian Deadlift Pulse (left)

Hi Everyone!

This was my workout last night. I followed it up with 2 miles on the treadmill, which took me 14 minutes, and 30 seconds to complete. I did the first mile at a 7.5 min/mile pace, and then sped up the second mile. It felt great to do a short, but quick run. It was also a good reminder to me that getting in some cardio doesn't have to take a long time. Jump Roping, or running can be a quick addition of cardio to any workout. 

When I first started running I focused on time instead of mileage. My first goal was to be able to run for 20 minutes without stopping to walk. If you have never run before it's a good way to build, and it also let's you track your progress, as you get closer and closer to your goal. 

This workout is focused on toning, and shaping the lower body. There are plenty of exercises focused on strengthening your calves, thighs, and butt incorporated into this routine. These moves help sculpt the lower body. Increasing strength in your knees, ankles, and hips can improve your stability and decrease your risk of falls or joint injuries later in life. 

It is important to maintain balance in your body, and strengthen all of your muscles. Often, people will train one "problem" muscle group to the exclusion of others. It is far more effective to train your entire body, as the increased muscle and strength will improve your metabolism, fat burning, and the overall look of your body. Focus on your overall fitness and the aesthetic results will follow. I feel strongly that your body shouldn't just look good, it should be strong, capable, and functional. 

Enjoy the workout, and have a great day. I will see you later with today's workout. :)

Thursday, December 13, 2012

5-Minute Energy Booster: Home Workout

All Levels: Max Reps during each 50 second interval, 10 seconds of rest between exercises. 

Repeat 1-5X

1. Burpee
2. Heel Tap Abs
3. Surfer Jump
4. 3 Way Frogger
5. Cheek to Cheek Plank

Hi Everyone,

Tonight's workout is a quickie. It can be done in as little as 5 minutes (if you only go through it one). It will give you a quick, but challenging full body workout, and a great energy boost. 

I have been fighting off a cold/sinus infection that has left me feeling really tired all week. I wanted to do a workout that would help bring up my energy. Also, this one will come in handy because I can pair it with any of my other quick interval workouts, like: Interval Exercise Challenge16 Minute Ab Fat Shredder, or 15 Minute Cardio Cut Up. There are plenty of other workouts this one could be paired with. :)

I also posted a recipe for a post-workout Raspberry Vanilla Protein Smoothie

I hope you all have a wonderful evening. I am going to get some sleep, and get over this cold!


Raspberry Protein Post Workout Smoothie

Hi Everyone,

The other day I made a delicious post-workout smoothie. This would also be great as a delicious high protein breakfast or snack. I made mine a little bit thicker, so it was more like a frozen yogurt type consistency. 

Having protein after your workout can promote lean muscle building and speed up muscle recovery. You should aim for about 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight throughout the day. Some research has shown that 20 grams of protein within 30 minutes of your workout maximizes the muscle building, and recovery process. 

I hope you guys enjoy!

-1 scoop Vanilla (or chocolate) Protein Powder (I use Nutracore Lean Active 7 from Total Nutrition)
- 1/2 to 1 cup water (use less for thicker consistency, more if you like your smoothie thinner)
-1 cup unsweetened coconut milk
-1 cup frozen raspberries (or fruit of choice)
-1 tablespoon natural creamy peanut butter (optional)

Put all ingredients in your blender, and blend until you reach desired consistency. Pour into a glass and drink. This recipe makes two servings. 

I am about to film my workout for tonight, and afterwards I will be making this recipe with either frozen peaches or pineapple to try a new flavor. 


PS I have also substituted my vanilla protein powder and 1 cup of water for the Greek yogurt in my Green Smoothie Recipe, when I ran out of Greek yogurt. The result was delicious! Normally I have to add vanilla yogurt to Jesse's green smoothie to make it sweeter for him, but with the protein powder he loved the flavor. 

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Exercise Tummy Tuck (No Surgery Required)

Beginner: 10 reps
Intermediate: 15 reps
Advanced: 20 reps

Repeat 1-3X

1. Mountain Climber
2. Side Plank Getup (right)
3. Side Plank Getup (left)
4. Lift, Tap, Reach Situp
5. High Knees
6. Table Heel Rock
7. Reverse Bicycle
8. Decline Mountain Climber
9. Side Crunch Reach (right)
10. Side Crunch Reach (left)
11. Row the Boat

Hi Everyone!

This was my workout for tonight. I was planning on repeating the workout, but I ran into a bit of a time crunch so I went through it once, and ran 3.1 miles on the treadmill. I hadn't run since last week, and I have missed it. It felt great to get going. It took me 23 minutes, and 24 seconds to finish the run and it felt like a comfortable pace.

I got to wear another new workout outfit from Affitnity, and I am still in love with their products. I gave it the double test to see how it held up to a workout and a run, and I was comfortable the entire time! I saw the shorts on the cover of Fitness Magazine, and fell in love with the bright colors and cut. 

Tomorrow I will be sharing a recipe for a post-workout smoothie. It's delicious and high in protein. 

Also, thank you to everyone who has been sharing their personal progress stories with me. It is such a huge motivation to me, and each story brings such a huge smile to my face. I truly love it! 

I hope you guys enjoy the workout!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Full Body Rejuvenation Workout

Hi Everyone!

Jesse and I went away this weekend, so I have been MIA for a few days. We planned on filming while we were away, but it didn't end up happening. I am back with a new workout today though. It is posted below. 

I have to admit it was a little bit tough to get back in the groove. When we got home I was tired, and we had a big meal at a Chinese restaurant shortly before my workout. The food was delicious, but I definitely felt the sodium in my body. Mentally I knew that I wanted to get my workout in, but it was hard to get motivated. 

Luckily when I arrived home I had a package waiting for me. That package contained a couple of FABULOUS new workout outfits from Affitnity. I have to admit a big part of my workout motivation tonight was getting to wear my new workout clothes. They are ridiculously comfortable, the fabric is supportive but soft and stretchy so I could move in any direction without feeling like anything was digging into me. Jesse was a big fan of this outfit. He couldn't stop talking about it while he was filming me. :) 

So, if you like the outfit you can check out: and Affitnity Facebook or you can follow the fabulous designer, Zeudy Mars on Twitter

I hope you guys enjoy the workout! See you tomorrow. 

Beginner: 10 reps
Intermediate: 15 reps
Advanced: 20 reps

Repeat 1-3X

1. Jump Lunge
2. Elevator Ab Plank (right)
3. Elevator Ab Plank (left)
4. 90 Degree Leg Lift (right)
5. 90 Degree Leg Lift (left)
6. Single Leg Plank Knee to Updog (right)
7. Single Leg Plank Knee to Updog (left)
8. Jump Kick (right)
9. Jump Kick (left)
10. Hold and Roll
11. Weighted Heel Press (right)
12. Weighted Heel Press (left)
13. Hip Tap Abs

Friday, December 7, 2012

Sculpt and Shape: Home Workout, No Equipment

Hi Everyone!

This was my workout from last night. It was fun, and tough. I tried out some new moves, and I definitely felt it in my core. This is a full body workout, but there is some emphasis on toning and tightening the midsection. 

When I work my core I am sure to work my muscles from every angle, so that I am recruiting all of the muscles in my workout. 

I hope you enjoy this one!

Beginner: 10 reps
Intermediate: 15 reps
Advanced: 20 reps

1. Triangle Tap Plank
2. Temple Tap Abs
3. Break Dance Burpee
4. Sumo Squat
5. Side Plank Reach and Drop (right)
6. Side Plank Reach and Drop (left)
7. Lunge Kick (right)
8. Lunge Kick (left)
9. Right Extended Situp
10. Left Extended Situp

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Endurance Building Fat Blaster Workout

Hi Everyone,

This is the workout that I did last night. It took a while to upload so I wasn't able to post it before I went to bed last night. (Remember, getting enough rest is just as important as your workouts!) So here it is now. As soon as I am done posting this, I will be filming my workout tonight. 

If you follow my facebook page you may already know my big news! I won Fitness Magazine's Reader's Choice Award! It was announced today, and I can't express how excited I am about this! I am now a finalist for the grand prize!

I wish that I could put into words what this means to me. The support I received in entering this contest was amazing and humbling. People went out of their way to vote, and share the link for other's to vote. Being in Fitness Magazine would be such a dream come true to me. I started this blog because I love fitness and health. I think it's the best gift you can give someone. The chance to share that is something amazing. So thank you. :)

Enjoy this workout. I will be posting a new one shortly! This workout incorporates cardio, before, after, and throughout. It will help optimize fat burning, while sculpting and toning all over. It's a full body workout. I really enjoyed it, and I repeated it twice. 


Beginner: 10 reps
Intermediate: 15 reps
Advanced: 20 reps

Repeat 1-2X

Cardio: 1 mile, or 7-10 minutes of alternate cardio, such as jumping rope

1. Leg Series Right (with or without ball)
    30 seconds cardio
2. Leg Series Left
   30 seconds cardio
3. Ball Pull Abs or Frogger
   30 seconds cardio
4. Back Extension
   30 seconds cardio
5. Bulgarian Split Squat (right)
   30 seconds cardio
6. Bulgarian Split Squat (left)
   30 seconds cardio
7. Leg Raise Abs
   30 seconds cardio
8. 1 Leg Hip Thrust (right)
   30 seconds cardio
9. 1 Leg Hip Thrust (left)
   30 seconds cardio
10. Kettle Bell Swing
   30 seconds cardio

Cardio: 1 mile or 7-10 minutes of cardio of choice. 

Monday, December 3, 2012

Full Body Burn: Home Workout

Hi Everyone!

It's another day, so that means a brand new workout. :) I found the third exercise in this workout (pop ups) to be very challenging, and I share a modified version in the video below.  I also used some light weights in the video, but this workout can easily be done without the weights. I liked the additional challenge. 

This workout is very dynamic, and challenges your balance and muscles to optimize the results of the workout. Anytime you add a balance aspect to a workout it requires your muscles to do extra work to hold your body in the desired position. 

This routine definitely has some fun new challenges! As always the video and breakdown are below. Enjoy!

Beginner: 10 reps
Intermediate: 15 reps
Advanced: 20 reps

Repeat 1-3X

1. High Knees (60 seconds)
2. Lunge Twist
3. Pop-up
4. Warrior 3 Row (right)
5. Warrior 3 Ros (left)
6. Plow Tap
7. Roll Up
8. Plank Step Up (right)
9. Plank Step Up (left)
10. Back Squat

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Strong Body Challenge

Hi Everyone!

This was my workout last night. I tried out some fun new moves, and it was definitely a challenge! This workout will help tone and burn fat all over your body. It also helps to increase your flexibility. 

Be sure to warm up before starting this workout. I did about 5 minutes of jump roping to warm up, and about 15 half burpees (a burpee without the pushup). Also, if you decide to try out any of these moves be sure that you are focusing on form. 

Today is the last day to vote for me in Fitness Magazine's Reader's Choice Award Finals: Vote Here! You can vote from facebook on a laptop or desktop computer. Mobile devices don't work. If I win this round I am automatically one of five finalist for the grand prize, which is to be featured in Fitness Magazine, and win a car! So if you have a second please vote! :) Being in Fitness Magazine would be a dream come true. 
I hope you guys enjoy the workout. We are ringing in December strong! Let's all join together and keep the holiday weight gain at bay this year. Keep the workouts strong, stay focused, and enjoy yourself. 
Have a great day!

Beginner: 10 reps
Intermediate: 15 reps
Advanced: 20 reps

Or complete this workout interval style, 50 seconds of work at max reps, 10 seconds of rest between exercises. 

Repeat 1-3X

1. Burpee
2. Hip Lift Tap
3. Rocking Oblique V-Up
4. Crunch Plank
5. Starfish
6. The Matrix
7. 1 Leg Squat Twist
8. Camel Twist


Thursday, November 29, 2012

12 Minute Body Weight Interval Fat Burn

Hi Everyone!

Today's workout is quick and easy to fit into your schedule. I repeated it, but another option would be to fit it in a couple different times during the day (surely you can find 12 minutes somewhere!)

It's an interval workout and utilizes cardio bursts in between each exercise. For round 1 I jump roped, for round 2 I did high knees. 

Interval workouts are a great way to get your heart rate up, and optimize your fat burn. This style of workout actually leads to increased fat/calorie burn for hours after your workout. 

The breakdown is below the video. :) Have a great night! Also, if you're on facebook please vote for me in Fitness Magazine's Face of Fitness contest. I am one of 10 finalists for the Reader's Choice Award, and the winner is automatically one of 5 grand prize finalists. Vote Here and be sure to like my facebook page while you're at it! Melissa Bender Fitness


All Levels: max reps during each 50 second interval, 10 seconds of rest. 
*I am writing jump rope, but you can also choose to march in place, do high knees, or even mountain climbers. 

1. Jump Rope/High Knees/March in Place (depending on current level of fitness)
2. Side Lunge Jump
3. Jump Rope
4. Mountain Jumper
5. Jump Rope
6. Squat Jump
7. Jump Rope
8. Prone Heel Lift
9. Jump Rope
10. Low V-Up
11. Jump Rope
12. Plie Pulse

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

5 by 5 Workout

Beginner: 10 reps
Intermediate: 15 reps
Advanced: 20 reps

Repeat 1-5X

1. Burpee V-Up
2. Warrior 3 Squat
3. Scissor Reach
4. Squat, Reach, Twist
5. Temple Tap Abs

Hi Everyone!

Getting motivated to workout today was a major challenge for me. I was exhausted, and didn't feel like working out. Mentally I knew I would feel better once I got started, but getting to that point was difficult. 

My body has been adjusting to my new work schedule, which means leaving my house by 5:30 a.m. So how did I get motivated today? I mentally reminded myself how much better I would feel after I worked out, I created a "shorter" workout, I thought about how important it is to keep fitness at the forefront of my life (because I truly love it), and I had a small cup of coffee to give me a bit more energy. Oh yeah, I also brushed my teeth. Someone on facebook said that gets them energized for a workout, and interestingly enough I normally do that before working out anyway. I never really though about why before, but I thought I would share that tidbit in case it helps anyone else! 

I hope you enjoy the workout. I made sure to include plenty of full body exercises, but I also focused on twists today. Twists help detoxify your body, and if you have any food allergies or sensitivities, it can help relieve some of the symptoms. 

Tomorrow I am planning an interval workout, so be ready for a good one!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Have You Out-Run Your Running Shoes?

One of the greatest things about running, is that you don't need a lot of equipment to get started. You need your body, and a pair of shoes. If you're a female a great sports bra is another must have, but I will save the details of the best running sports bras to a future post. 

Shoes provide the foundation that you run upon, so it's very important to be able to recognize when you are running on worn out shoes. What are the signs? 

1. Mileage: If you track your mileage, you can generally expect to replace your shoes every 300-400 miles. This varies depending on body weight, and the type of terrain you are running on. If you are pounding the pavement, you will need to replace your shoes sooner than if you primarily stay on the treadmill. 
2. Aches and Pains: You're feeling new pains, aches, possibly even shin splints. It may be a sign that your shoes have lost their cushioning. If you feel more muscle fatigue than usual, or bilateral pain (pain on both sides of your body) it could be another symptom of running on shoes that are no longer providing support. 

3. Your Shoes Show Wear and Tear: I'm not just talking about dirt, that's a part of running in the great outdoors. I haven't known any runners who have managed to keep their shoes sparkling and new once they start putting mileage on their shoes. The pictures below show some different shoes, and what you can look for with your wear pattern. Recognizing your wear pattern, can actually tell you a lot about your running style, and foot strike pattern. 

-Examine the soles of your shoe to see if there is any visible wear. Is the tread still visible on your shoe, or is it visibly worn down? This is a picture of the bottom of my running shoe. They still have quite a few miles left on them. I chose a sturdy shoe that can take a lot of wear and tear, as well as withstanding many miles.  

Compare this picture to the last one, and you should instantly recognize a major difference. These shoes are worn down, and need to be replaced. The wear pattern on the forefoot is immediately obvious. You can also tell from this picture that the runner has a mid to forefoot foot strike while running. The heel shoes virtually no wear. 
The heel isn't the only place to look for wear and tear. Examine the side portion of the base of your shoe. You may notice tiny fine lines, and wrinkles in the cushion of your shoe. If there is significant wrinkling it is a sign that your shoes aren't as supportive as they once were. 

It is also helpful to examine more than one pair of your old running shoes, if you are trying to determine your individual needs in a running shoe. Someone with a heel strike has different shoe needs than someone with a mid-sole strike. Also, you may pronate or supinate when you run. If you aren't sure bring a pair of your worn down running shoes to your local shoe store and have them examine your wear pattern. They can perform a stride analysis, and recommend an appropriate shoe. You may want to stick some air fresheners in your shoe before handing them over. As a courtesy. ;) 

Monday, November 26, 2012

Quick Sexy Stomach Workout

Beginner: 10 reps, 30 seconds
Intermediate: 15 reps, 45 seconds
Advanced: 20 reps, 60 seconds

Repeat 1-3X

1. Extended Leg Cross (timed, with or without weight)
2. Russian Twist (with or without weight)
3. Crossed Leg Extension (right)
4. Crossed Leg Extension (left)
5. Windshield Wiper Tap (right)
6. Windshield Wiper Tap (left)
7. Leg/Hip Lift
8. Reverse Cheek to Cheek
9. Side Reach (right)
10. Side Reach Left

Hi Everyone! 

Today's workout is all about getting a sexy, toned, strong core/tummy. I had a lot of fun with this one, because I got to try out some new moves. I liked switching things up, so expect to see some of these moves again in future workouts!

Fitness Magazine's Face of Fitness contest voting started again today. If you are on facebook, please take a minute to vote for me. I am a finalist, and winning the Reader's Choice Award would make me eligible to win the grand prize. Vote Here. You can only vote from computers, not mobile devices. :) BIG Thank You to anyone who takes the time to vote! If you don't follow me on facebook yet you can like my page here: Melissa's Facebook

Before my workout today, I went for a run with Jesse. We did 3.5 miles at an easy pace. Even though it's cold, it's nice to get outside and run in the fresh air. Also, the varying terrain increases the challenge of the run. 

Have a great night!

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Full Body Home Fat Burn

Beginner: 10 reps
Intermediate: 15 reps
Advanced: 20 reps

Repeat 1-3X

1. Side Step Up (right)
2. Side Step Up (left)
3. Plank Jack
4. Ball Pull Abs/Floor Pull
5. Ball Pull Butt/Floor Pull
6. Criss Cross Mountain Climber
7. Lunge Kick (right)
8. Lunge Kick (left)
9. Seated Leg Lift (right)
10. Seated Leg Lift (left)
11. Knee Tap Squat Jump
12. Bicycle Abs

Hi Everyone! 

I hope you all had a fabulous Thanksgiving, and for those of you outside of the USA I hope you had a great Thursday!

If you follow me on facebook you already know that to start of Thanksgiving my sister and I did a 4.5 mile Turkey Trot run. We had a lot of fun, and I was incredibly proud of my sister. She ran that distance 5 minutes faster than she ever has before. That is a huge time drop! Afterwards, Jesse and I were blessed to be able to celebrate and have two Thanksgiving dinners. We had one with his family, and one with mine. I had a lot of delicious food. This is a picture of my (second) dinner. I had some turkey breast, my mom's special recipe for lima beans, broccoli, brussel sprouts, sweet potato, asparagus, green bean casserole, and a little bit of stuffing and mashed potatos. It was delicious! 

I hope no one is stressing out too much over the calories they consumed. If fitness is your lifestyle one day isn't going to make or break your results. Just eat healthy and return to your normal lifestyle. Today's workout is a full body fat burner. Jesse and I followed it up with a 3.5 mile run outside. I repeated the workout twice. I will go through it one more time this evening. 

I hope you enjoy the workout!
Ready for a run outside in the cold!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Tone Your Tush: Home Workout

Hi Everyone,

Tonight's workout is focused on the tush, and legs. I found the first exercise (Lunge Hops) to be especially challenging. I think I am still a bit tired from last night's workout. I was going to go for a run today as well, but I think my body would benefit more from some rest. I went through this workout twice. 

Having strong glutes is more important than just having a nice and shapely backside. Your glutes help maintain your pelvic and postural alignment. So having a toned tush benefits more than just the fit of your jeans! Your glutes are the largest and strongest muscles of your body. That means that having a muscular lower body can help increase your metabolism. It will also help you make gains in your strength and athleticism. Strong legs provide support for your knees, and ankles, increasing stability, and decreasing your risk of falls and injury as you age. Are you ready to workout your butt, and reap the benefits? Did I mention that a strong, round butt, also looks great? ;) 

The breakdown is listed below. I hope you enjoy the workout!


Beginner: 10 reps
Intermediate: 15 reps
Advanced: 20 reps

Repeat 1-3X

1. Lunge Hop (right)
2. Lunge Hop (left)
3. Squat Jump
4. Hip Thrust
5. Side Plank Hip Drop (right)
6. Side Plank Hip Drop (left)
7. Side Frog Mountain Climber
8. Leg Series (right)
9. Leg Series (left)
10. Bird Dog Heel Press