Circuit Training with a Kick!

Circuit Training with a Kick!

I hope everyone enjoyed a wonderful Thanksgiving with family and friends! Today is a new day! Let’s start it off right! Here’s a great circuit training workout with a kick (or should I say HIIT?)! Circuit training is the best because you can work every muscle group in one session. It creates muscle confusion so you never use one muscle over and over again like a traditional “back and biceps” or “shoulders and triceps” strength workout. It also creates more muscle endurance! Props to circuit training! Game on!

For this workout, you’ll do 12-14 reps, 3 sets for each exercise. All of your muscles are going to be working!  In between, do the HIIT section for a minute to rev up that heart rate.

  1. Sumo squat with an overhead press (inner thigh, glutes, shoulders, biceps, triceps, core)
    1. Legs shoulder width apart. Toes facing the corners. Make sure feet don’t go over your toes and your arms don’t drop below 90 degrees with the overhead press.
  2. Dead lift with hammer curls (biceps, shoulders, core, glutes, hamstrings)
    1. Legs just slightly bent, hip width. Palms face inwards. Dead lift then curl up. ** The difference between a traditional biceps curl and a hammer curl is your hand/wrist position. For a traditional curl, your palms face forward as well as the vein-side of your forearm. On a hammer curl, your palms face inward and pinky side of your wrists face front.
  3. Triceps kickback (right and left sides) (triceps, core)
    1. Keep back and arm parallel to the floor to avoid any back strain and to really target the triceps.


HIIT: run up and down the stairs as many times as you can in one minute. If you don’t have stairs, put a towel on the floor and jump over it side to side as if it were a jump rope for a minute.


  1. Back leg lifts with biceps curl (right and left leg) (glues, biceps, hamstrings)
    1. Squeeze your glute at the top of the back lift at the same time you hit the top of your curl. Your legs and arms make the same motion.
  2. Curtsy lunges with an overhead press. (glutes, outer hip, shoulders, core)
    1. Start right leg front, cross left foot behind diagonally (like the position you’d be in if you had just thrown a bowling ball down the alley). All of your weight is on your front leg.
    2. Push your butt towards the back corner of the room to target the glutes and outer thighs
    3. As you rise up, to an overhead press with the right arm.
    4. Repeat on left side.      **it looks like this picture in the link, but there are two slight differences from my exercise. 1. Stay in the lunge position with one foot back for the whole exercise. Don’t step up after each lunge. 2. Stick your butt out towards the back corner of the room. Since you have the weight in the same hand as the direction your butt is moving back, it acts as a counterbalance. It also adds weight resistance for more muscle activation.
  1. X push-ups ( back and biceps, shoulders, core)
    1. Standard push up, but your back legs are shoulder width apart (your body is in an X shape!). Keep core tight, body should be parallel to the floor.


HIIT: Mountain climbers or wall runs (doing mountain climbers against the wall instead of the floor)


  1. Bicycle crunches (20) and reverse crunches (20) (obliques, core (transverse abdominis)),,20412214,00.html
  1. Chest press with leg lifts on the floor (chest, biceps, triceps, core, legs)
    1. Lie on your back on the floor, feet straight out, arms out to the sides holding the weights, palms facing up.
    2. At the same time, bring weights up to touch at the top (chest press) and lift legs up until your toes point to the ceiling. Arms will be slightly bent.
    3. Lower arms back out to the sides and lower legs at the same time. Keep your arms and feet about 6 inches off the floor. Repeat. This should be a fluid movement.
  2. Supermans (glutes, core, lower back, shoulders)
    1. Lay on your stomach. Arms and legs are out so your body makes an X on the floor. At the same time, lift arms and legs up, keeping them straight, as high as you can and pulse at the top. Lower back down. Repeat.


HIIT: pick a spot high on the wall. Go into a low squat and jump up to touch that spot on the wall. Jump as high as you can, fully extended. Repeat 10 times. Then do 10 burpees. Repeat these two exercises for a minute.


  1. Triceps dips (triceps, shoulders, core)
  2. Fire hydrant leg pulses. (abductor muscles (outside of hip), glutes, legs)
    1. Go onto hands and knees. Lift right leg, keeping it at a 90 degree angle, up until parallel to the floor. Pulse twice at the top. Return to start. Repeat on left side.
  3.  Twisting oblique jackknife (shoulders, core, obliques, glutes)
    1. Start in plank position. Keep core tight, don’t let hips drop down or lift up. Body should be straight at all times.
    2. Starting with the right leg, bend the leg and pull it towards the left arm. As you pull, twist the torso. Your knee should disappear below your arm. If it doesn’t, twist a little more. Remember to keep as straight in that plank position as possible, even as you twist. Don’t let your butt go up in the air! Go straight into the left side. Alternate sides 20 times.

Hope you had an amazing workout! You worked it ALL! 🙂 Awesome job!!

Here’s a great research article about the benefits of circuit training. It’s why I love them, and I hope you will too!

Oil or cream??….. Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Oil or cream??..... Happy Thanksgiving everyone!

Since then, it has been hilarious chaos 🙂 I don’t think he’s stopped yet! ha ha I love family! The good news? Once the sugar crash hits, he is going to be lights out asleep, tko 🙂 So yay for my cousin!

Quinoa with Chipotle Pepper Chicken and Southwestern Vegetables~ Tasty Tuesday!

I absolutely LOVE quinoa, it’s delicious, nutritious, and you can pair it with pretty much anything! If you have never heard of it, look it up! Then go out and get some! 🙂 I created this recipe yesterday, had it today, and the verdict: delicious!! Enjoy!


– 1 package organic chicken, each piece cut in half (I’ll explain below)

– 1 packet Chipotle Pepper marinade mix plus water to mix

– 1 bag Green Giant Steamers- cauliflower, carrots, and snap peas

– 1 cup quinoa, cooked (only use about 1/3 of the quinoa per serving once it is cooked)

– low sodium chicken broth

– Grill Mates Smokehouse Maple seasoningphoto 1 (4)


1. Make Chipotle Pepper marinade as instructed on back of packet (I use 1/2 cup water and then a tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil)

2. Cut chicken breasts in half, place in plastic bag, cover with marinade, and refrigerate for a half hour.

3. While chicken is marinating, cook quinoa. I use half water and half reduced sodium chicken broth to give it a little kick of flavor. Set aside.

4. Place Steamers veggies in microwave and cook. Carefully remove.

5. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Take chicken out of marinade bag, place on glass casserole dish, and cook for about 22-24 minutes (since the pieces are cut in half.)

6. When done, cut chicken into bite-size pieces.

7. Take quinoa, veggies, and cut-up chicken and mix together. Add the Grill Mates Smokehouse Maple seasoning on top. Serve!

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Notes: The reason why I say cut the pieces of chicken breast in half before putting into the marinade is because the half is about one serving of protein. The whole piece is two! They say your portion size of meat, beef, pork, etc. should be about the same size as a deck of cards, kind of like this:

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Since when did the word “modification” turn into a curse word in the fitness world?

Ahem. I’m about to get on my soap box, just forewarning you 🙂 …..

Since when did the word “modification” turn into a curse word in the fitness world? I don’t understand why people think that modifying something means they are weak, or unable to do what every other person can do (like they are the only ones in the world that need to change something about an exercise), or that they are “below” others. I have had someone say to me that she refuses to do modifications because she will not let anyone else think she is anything but the fittest person in the gym. I said that was crazy! How can a workout be enjoyable if you are constantly consumed with thoughts about how everyone is judging you?


It’s not about perfect. It’s about effort!!! Even if you have to modify now, you won’t have to FOREVER if you STICK WITH IT!! True story: The joint in my hip socket and my knee aren’t aligned correctly. So, if I sit on the floor with both of my legs straight out in front of me, and my kneecaps face up towards the sky, but my right foot doesn’t point straight up. It actually turns out at about a 45 degree angle. Now, if I twist my leg inward so that my toes point up, my hip is twisted uncomfortably and my kneecap will face in towards my left leg. I was born this way; it’s just how I was built! Because of this, I have to modify a lot of exercises that involve alternating lunges, hip hinges, and squats. I just can’t do them the way they were designed, but I can still make them effective!

So, I’ll yell it to the world: “I MODIFY exercises!!!” So what? Does that make me weak, incapable, or out of shape? Absolutely not!! I just have to tweak some exercises so they work for me and my body. Is being stubborn and refusing to modify because of some “label” you’ve created in our head really worth getting hurt over? Not for me it isn’t. People can think what they want! Everyone has to start somewhere, including Olympic and pro athletes. It doesn’t matter where you start, what matters is where you are going, and who you are going to be when you reach that dream destination. Push yourself. Absolutely push yourself. But, don’t push yourself to the point that you are going to hurt yourself just to prove something to someone else. The only person you have to prove anything to is YOU. If you can’t hold yourself accountable, no one is going to be able to.

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(Chalkboard photo above courtesy of

A small change can make all the difference in the world….and be exactly what you need!

Usually when I get home, I throw all of my stuff on the counter in my kitchen and attempt to get something done on my long to-do list when all I really want to do is workout because it’s what I love. The stress and thoughts about all those “to do’s” makes it really hard to find the motivation to workout, even though it’s my passion! We are all human! I realized today that by having ALL of my stuff cluttered in the kitchen, it was overwhelming me and making my stress words. So, I decided to simplify. I put my work stuff in the dining room and moved all of my exercise stuff to the basement. After that small change, I felt so much relief from the pressure that just looking at all the clutter caused and I found my motivation to workout. I was in a new place, my basement, and that change made such a huge difference. It was like doing a whole new workout. So, think about what is blocking you from working out, make a small change, and see what a miraculous difference it can make when you believe it can. Being stagnant is one of the biggest barriers to motivation, so knock it down and try something new! You may just find a whole new appreciation for fitness 🙂 ~ love from Resiliency Fitness! Have a great week everyone!!

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