Mixing It Up – Swapping Workouts with Suzanne @WorkoutNirvana

5 Nov

This is very exciting because Suzanne (@workoutnirvana) are swapping workouts! She’s a weight lifter (www.workoutnirvana.com) & I’m a light weight, high rep girl. Suzanne and I hit it off immediately in the twitterverse — I was totally drawn to her because she’s strong, confident, smart, and passionate about fitness. (Seriously, her site is filled with great pieces about workouts, health, and motivation.) And the more I read, the more I see how connected our stories are….  

Enter “My” Kind of Workout

My gift to Suzanne is a Sonjia-inspired workout that revolves around full body, functional, high rep moves with little rest. (Of course, listen to your body and rest if you need to so you won’t have a  syncope episode like me.)

I love these moves because they work 3 & 4 body parts at once – efficient, eh? There is enough resistance and intensity to strengthen our muscles and heart.  I am SO much stronger as a result of doing a couple of these types of workouts every week. (I can do 3×5 pull ups, 180 pushups & a 2 minute plank, thank you very much. My endurance is better and I’ve lost MANY inches.)

Suzanne is granting me the gift of a Weight Routine – I’m gonna LIFT and I can’t wait!

Wish us luck!

What You’ll Need

  • Bench or Chair
  • Medicine Ball
  • Wall (hehehe – I’ll explain that later)
  • Kettlebell (If you don’t have one, or aren’t interested, let me know. We can swap the exercise.)
  • Some step risers (or a sturdy box/platform)
  • Some space (If you don’t have space, no worries…. You can do this workout in the space of a mat if necessary.)
  • Timer or Clock
  • 45 Minutes

Warm Up

  • 5 minutes on the rowing machine (great full body warm up)

Part 1 – A Circuit of 5 Exercises for Time

There are 2 squat based moves, 2 lunge based moves, and 1 straight core move in this circuit (although note that each exercise requires engaging the core).  Plus, these compound moves incorporate both upper and lower body, so the back, arms, shoulders, and chest are engaged. Also, a minute is a long time (in my opinion) so feel free to go light on the resistance part 😉 If you’re an animal, do the exercises for 2 minutes and only do 1 or 2 sets.

For each set, complete each exercise for 1 minute with no rest between exercises. Rest for 30-60 seconds between sets. Do 3 sets total.

  1. Side lunge with medicine ball (See Demo – note, I do this holding a medicine ball close to my chest – but you can do it without the ball)
  2. Wall ball (or squat + shoulder press with medicine ball if a wall or ball isn’t handy LOL) (See Wall Ball Video Demo)
  3. Plank (I do these resting on my forearms – for some reason I like that better.)
  4. Walking lunges holding weight above head (See Demo Without the Weight)  These require some space, if you don’t have space, just do them in place.  I use a plate or a medicine ball, holding it up with 2 hands nearly vertical (arms just in front of the ears). This adds resistance and intensity, works the shoulders, and forces the body to stay in an upright position. You can also do this without any weight.
  5. Kettlebell swings (View Demo) (Note: I started with a 15 pound KB on this; I do more now, but I would definitely start lighter to ensure proper form keeping the back, core & chest strong, and to get used to the momentum of the swing.)

Part 2 – Exercises for Reps

Do 3 sets of these exercises. The 1st set is 21 reps, 2nd set is 15, and 3rd set is 9 reps (that’s 45 reps total). Do each exercise without resting in between, and enjoy a short rest between sets.

  1. Tricep Dips (See Demo)
  2. Pushups to Side Plank (alternating sides – 1 rep is to 1 side) – Sorry, I can’t find a demo for this! Do a pushup, rotate the body to the side lifting one arm towards the ceiling to create a side plank position. Return to a pushup and rotate body and arm to the other side.
  3. Box Jumps (See Demo) (Note: This guy is jumping high! You can totally adjust your height based on your fitness, strength, and comfort level. When using step risers, I think I jump on to 3 or 4. This can also be done on regular stairs — I do them to my second step in my yard. And for me, I try and think of jumping “quietly” and “softly”.)

Part 3 – The Tabata Closer

Tabata is an interval approach which involves 20 seconds of fast/sprint movement + 10 seconds rest. This is repeated 8 times (for 4 minutes total). The idea is to go as fast and hard as you can for the 20 seconds while maintaining good form. Warning: 10 seconds isn’t long enough to get a drink of water….

  • Tabata of the Day? Body Weight Squats (Yes, that’s right… no weights… but remember, you’re “sprinting”! It’s one of those “harder than it looks” types of intervals.)

Part 4 – Cool Down, Water & Shower

Not to put a downer on this FUN stuff, but here’s my disclaimer. I’m not a pro. I am an enthusiast. I have worked out with my trainer for over a year and have been taught proper technique for all these moves. I was not doing this workout 1 year ago – believe me! I know that Suzanne is strong and fit and invited a different kind of workout, and I know that she will approach this from a safe and healthy perspective. Know and listen to your body, get professional advice, and if you want to give this a try, modify it however you need to for safety and health.

Are you gonna give it a try? Join Suzanne and I as we enhance our digital connection with some real life workouts!

Follow our progress:

18 Responses to “Mixing It Up – Swapping Workouts with Suzanne @WorkoutNirvana”

  1. gretablau November 5, 2010 at 8:15 am #

    yes!! i want to join!!!

  2. mercade November 5, 2010 at 6:22 pm #

    This looks great! I’m going to add it to my list! I’m starting 2 months of Insanity on Monday. I may squeak it in on my rest day (after I see how well I recover from each week of Insanity) or I’ll save it for after!

    • Kris O'Connor @Krazy_Kris November 5, 2010 at 6:36 pm #

      That’s awesome! Insanity? Yikes! They don’t call me Krazy_Kris for nothing – but I’m not sure how I’d do with those workouts! Oh dear – your idea of rest is different than mine. Let us know how it goes – Suzanne and I are super excited about swapping workouts – I think we might be on to something! Thanks so much for stopping by!

  3. deb roby November 5, 2010 at 7:30 pm #

    Here ya go: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t3fwteD72i4

    Pushup to side plank.

    There are several -I’m not completely fond of the form in any of them.

    Interesting – these two workouts are similar to my own- I do heavy weights one day and a body work workout the next.

    • Kris O'Connor @Krazy_Kris November 5, 2010 at 8:18 pm #

      That’s great Deb – I thought you were a straight weight girl. More will be revealed, eh? Thanks for the link to the demo – it’s funny, cuz I didn’t find any that I “loved” either – but I’m not a pro. I gotta say its one of those “harder than it looks” moves – proud to say I got my boyfriend with those one night (after he mocked me and said, “What’s that do?”) **giggles** Thanks for stopping by Deb!

  4. Ryan @NoMoreBacon November 6, 2010 at 8:03 am #

    This looks like a great workout routine. Lots of variation and gross movements which I love. Definitely a circuit workout I’ll give a try when I can lift weights again in a couple of weeks.

    • Kris O'Connor @Krazy_Kris November 6, 2010 at 12:19 pm #

      Thanks Ryan – we had soooo much fun swapping routines – we did that today. It was so much fun to do something different – we were actually giddy LOL. Hmm- rest before weights? I’m new to this circle, are you injured? Take care & have a great weekend ~

  5. Yum Yucky December 30, 2010 at 1:07 pm #

    Whoa. I got tired just reading this. You b!tches are amazing. (uhh, that’s a compliment)


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