While it doesn’t apply to everything, when it comes to exercise mats, sometimes the old saying is true: bigger IS better. :)
At 5ft 2in, you wouldn’t think I’d need a larger mat than the standard 6-footer. But when you like to move as much as I do, the more room you have, the better your workout. At times, I feel confined by my regular mats and larger mats give me more options for bad ass fitness at home.
For a long time, I used to set up my mats side by side, which was both awesome and a little dangerous. While staying on one mat is fairly easy, if you’re moving laterally between two, things tend to slip. I have other floor mats which were ‘okay’, but weren’t as comfortable or user friendly as yoga mats (they tended to roll up into themselves: I’d have to keep dumbbells on each corner to keep it from curling up while I moved). Until recently, there weren’t many floor mat options that had the same texture & cushioning as my yoga mats. But there are now! :)
WHY Big Yoga Mats Rock So Much
Large mats are popping up everywhere (probably NOT in your overcrowded class, but everywhere else), so there are more options available than ever before. The one pictured above is Square36 - The Oversize Yoga Mat, which I like a LOT. It’s thick, 36 square feet (fits in most living rooms), durable and made of non-toxic materials. Because I use my mats for almost everything (weight work, stretching, cardio etc), it seems to fit my fitness a little better than other models. You can also search online for different big mat models that suit your budget.
Another option, though it’s not as large, is the round yoga mat. It offers many of the same benefits in terms of range of motion and is ideal for yoga, pilates & stretching. Round Yoga Pilates Mat.
The round mat is also slightly less expensive than other models (even less expensive than some regular mats). Plus, the design is really unique. Great way to stand out during outdoor yoga!
Sometimes, size does matter!
Do you have a large mat at home? How do you like it?
As you know, I don’t always color in the lines with my workouts. I prefer them fresh, fun and hilarious (though it helps that I think burpees are fun, lol).
Did the Dirty Dozen workout for 4 rounds, then got a little bored (though 4 rounds was certainly a decent workout, it was just shy of 18 minutes). I decided to freestyle the rest, and wrote down what I did. I wanted to show you guys how you can build your own workout, using just a few exercises, while still having fun. There was plenty of dancing, and lots of sweat too.
Today’s workout used my playlist from this morning, and went a little something like this.
Boys Wanna Be Her - Peaches
Dance party. Full on jumping and flailing about. Happy as a clam.
Pop, Drop & Roll - Chonique Sneed and Lisette Bustamante
Repeated the following combo til the end of the song- 4 Jumping Jacks, 4 Front Kicks, 2 Burpees with 3 Plank Jacks each.
How Could The Hear Us - Fatboy Slim
10 Cleans with shoulder press, 10 Squat with bicep curl, 10 Triple Pulse Squats, 10 pushups with side crunches. Repeat x 2. Jump rope.
I Am Not Drunk - Benny Benassi
25 Burpees with pushup, followed by massive solo dance party.
Arcade Robot - Boyz Noise
Plank Hold 30 seconds, 30 seconds mountain climbers (x4). Rest.
Girl You Chew My Mind Up - The Presets
Dancing again! Love this song!
Like A Boy - Ciara
20 single leg deadlifts per leg, with dumbbells. Squats til end of song.
Justify My Love (Hip Hop Mix) - Madonna
Core work! Side plank with reaches (20 per side), Toe Touches x 20, Bicycles x 40, Russian Twists x 40, Plank hold til end of song.
Let The Drummer Kick - Citizen Cope
Koop Island Blues - Koop
Stretching… and a wee bit of dancing. :)
Feel free to play! It’s great to have structure, but sometimes allowing yourself to freestyle and feel the movement with the music can keep you motivated when your brain’s having a tough time. I certainly had a wicked workout, kept my heart rate up, and didn’t notice the time fly by at all.
You don’t need an extensive workout vocabulary: pick 6-10 ‘moves’ that you already know and use uncomplicated equipment. When you feel like you’re done with one exercise, move on to the next and use exercises like jump rope, plank holds and squats to fill up the time in between when you need to think or take a ‘break’. Or dance, should the mood strike. :)
Train hard AND have fun!
Before you throw out that pumpkin… try these fun moves instead!
All you need is one large 5- to 10-lb. pumpkin and a ghoulish amount of guts to get this monstrous workout started! Check out our top four pumpkin workout moves:
Jack-o’-Lantern Jumps: Start standing with feet about 6 inches apart. Bend knees and kneel down to a 90-degree angle. Lift the pumpkin overhead. With a power jump, leap up and take a giant hop forward. Keep pumpkin straight overhead as you jump to the front, to the sides and to the back. Try to do 4 sets of 4.
Creepy Crunches: Lie on your back with hands holding a pumpkin over your chest. Keep your feet about 2 feet apart, flat on the floor, knees bent. To start the exercise, lift your legs vertically, toes pointing toward the ceiling. Next, holding the pumpkin, lift your shoulder blades off the ground and extend pumpkin vertically toward toes. Try to do 3 sets of 20.
Lurking Lunges: Stand in split stance, right leg in front, left leg in back. Holding a pumpkin, extend your arms in front of you. Bend both knees and lower into a lunge, keeping front knee behind the toes, and knees no lower than 90-degree angles. Once lowered, rotate core 90 degrees to the right and then repeat to the left. Try to do 3 sets of 20.
Tombstone Twist: Stand with your feet shoulder width apart and pumpkin in your hands, extend your arms out and hold the pumpkin in front of you. Rotate your arms and upper body from side to side, pivoting your opposite foot for more range of motion. Try to do 3 sets of 20.
Just posted about a Dumbbell alarm clock, but didn’t have a link to the manufacturer. Received a few questions about where to pick one up. Looked into it, but unfortunately, the company who makes that model is no longer producing them. Couldn’t find them on Amazon or Ebay either. Sad face.
But hold on! What I DID find was a similar, less expensive version, which is still available on Amazon. Neewer Shape Up 30 Times Everyday Dumbbell Alarm Clock comes in pink, black and white, and has the same basic idea: do 30 reps before the alarm will turn off.
Now this isn’t so much a ‘fitness’ item as it is a more efficient alarm clock. By engaging you in movement, even for a short time, you’re more likely to roll out of bed and ‘wake up’: something that could be beneficial to wannabe morning exercisers. If you get a ‘set’ you can do both arms at the same time. Each weight is about 1.5lbs.
There ya go! Pretty cool gift idea for your fellow fittie friends… I want. :)
Plenty of ways to get your fit on this Halloween! Here are some great ideas if you’re still stuck for a costume.
What are you going as this year? Any plans?