6 Fun Workout Videos You Can Do Indoors

There’s nothing quite like getting pumped up and feeling those endorphins cruise through your body as you work out. But we know sometimes it’s hard to find the motivation to go to a gym, especially if you’re have a full-time job and a family to take care of. Luckily, there is no shortage of great and effective workout videos online! Today, we’re sharing with you our favorite videos to work out to.

We advise erring on the side of caution when it comes to working out: make sure to not push yourself past your limit, drink water, and take breaks when you need to. Most importantly, have fun!

Blogilates

Certified fitness instructor Cassey Ho of Blogilates shares her full length POP Pilates and fun Bootcamp Sculpting workouts to Top 40 Hits! We love her videos, and how cheerful of an instructor she is.

1. Lana Del Ray- Summertime Sadness

We love Blogilates’ choreography to this song: you’ll sure to work up a sweat, and tone up your legs.

2. Cassey Ho’s tough workout is great for your obliques and shoulders! We like doing this video once a week.

 

RefitRev

RefitRev creates body-rocking workouts to positive and upbeat songs. We discovered them on Youtube a few years ago, and adored their simple yet effective dance moves! There’s nothing we like more than working out via cardio dance.

3. The Wanted- Glad You Came

We personally do this every morning as our warmup video: who can resist a great choreographed routine and The Wanted?

4. Taylor Swift’s Shake It Off- This is a super fun video that gets your heartbeat up as you groove along to this catchy song.

 

Yoga Journal

Yoga Journal is the #1 authority on all things yoga since 1975: we loved learning from them via our computer screen!

5. This upper body toner is a doozy, so make sure to go slowly and take breaks when necessary.

6. This 3 minute workout is great for quick breaks!

Do you have any favorite workout videos? Be sure to tell us in the comments below!

6 Best Ways of Keeping Fit During the Winter

6 Indoor WorkoutsAs the weather becomes colder, we know we’re looking for reasons to stay in and watch Netflix with a hot cup of organic tea. To stay healthy, we’ve compiled our favorite list of getting your endorphins indoors. Read on for great ideas that you can do at home!

Youtube Channel workouts: There’s no shortage of great videos on Youtube. We’ve been grooving to ReFitRev for the last year, and love it. Their channel has fun and easy dance moves to songs like Taylor Swift’s Shake It Off. Currently, we’ve been on the lookout for their holiday tune workouts like Santa Baby and Jingle Bell Rock. Guilty pleasure: their routine to Justin Bieber’s version of Santa Claus is Coming to Town.

Another channel we love to follow is Cassey Ho of Blogilates. Her channel has great workout videos targeting troublesome body parts using Pilates and specialized moves. We love her Cardio Ballet and Alive Krewella videos: they’re incredibly difficult! As a bonus, she also includes Cheap Clean Eats, which are simple and inexpensive recipes to cook after working out.

Equipment: Looking to strengthen your arms and upper back? Use weights or water bottles for curls to add to your lifting routines. If you invest in an Elliptical, that may mean that you don’t have to purchase a gym membership to use!

P90X: Looking for exercise that is extremely challenging? Tony Horton’s P90X workout is best done with friends! Back in college, we would work out in a group, and motivate each. It’s available on Amazon here with free shipping, and will arrive in 2 days if you have Amazon Prime.

Cardio Dance: Love to dance? Create your favorite playlist, and rock your heart out in your room or apartment. Our current favorites: Selena Gomez’s Slow Down Smash Mode Remix, any holiday music,  and Ed Sheeran’s Thinking Out Loud. Apologies if you have neighbors, this is best in the early mornings.

Yoga: Love free classes? Be sure to look up community classes near you, as they are often free! Granted, this one isn’t located in your home, but it’s a great alternative to a gym. For online yoga classes, Lululemon has two great videos here.

Workout image courtesy of www.rippednfit.com

Workout image courtesy of www.rippednfit.com

Wake up! & make it happen workout: We found this fantastic workout, courtesy of rippednfit.com. It’s got all of our favorites: burpees, planks, mountain climbers, and pushups! Are you a beginner? Start out with one set, then slowly increase the number of sets.

As with all exercise, be sure to stretch, begin moderately, and stop immediately if you feel pain in any part of your body.

What’s your favorite exercise to do during the winter? Let us know in the comments below!

 

 

Train it Tuesdays: Big C hike and Berkeley/SF

Train it Tuesdays: Big C hike and Berkeley/SF

sather-gate-berkeleyI hope that everyone had an enjoyable Memorial Day weekend!  Sometimes exercise doesn’t have to be a continuous cardio event– it encompasses an entire weekend instead.

Today, I’ll be going over a brief recap of our trip to Berkeley and SF. While visiting the familiar areas of UC Berkeley, a wave of nostalgia wafted over me– here were the benches I spent so much time with my friends, Sather Gate, home to many acapella performances, Memorial Glade, the Campanile standing majestically. Since finals were over, many students had already gone home: this meant that Berkeley was a much quieter place than the usual hubbub of crowds.

memorial-glade-berkeley

The weather was incredible: sun, a few clouds, and a beautiful blue sky. Visiting College Avenue meant walks around the cute and cozy Elmwood district. Of course, we had to stop by Ici: the flavors and tasty, handmade cones with chocolate at the bottom. Up on the foodie list was Great China, Corso Trattoria, Cafe Milano, and more.

 

 

 

To work up a sweat and enjoy a gorgeous view, we headed up to hike up to the Big C. It was a simple hike, about 15 big-c-berkeleyminutes– if we hadn’t gotten lost on the way there from the Foothill parking lot. Instead, we accidentally walked up the stairs and headed up to the Berkeley Laboratory. Luckily, the security guard was nice enough to point us in the right direction. That just meant more exercise, since the day seemed to be getting hot around 5 pm. After finally making it to the top (lots of cardio here and aching calves from the steep hills), we couldn’t help but gawk at this amazing view.

We heard that there were animals like dear that would come up to the big C, but the surprise was seeing a family of turkeys. They’re actually quite thin when you see them, but will puff themselves up if they feel threatened by creatures. After gazing at the turkeys for awhile, we headed back down the hill to safety. big-c-berkeley-turkey

After saying goodbye to Berkeley, we ended up at the Ferry Building in SF. I had only been there once before, so it was fun getting to sample the fantastic food that the stores had to offer. Walking around SF meant beautiful views of the city that I love.

To cap off the weekend, we walked around Ghirardelli Square, where samples from the chocolate factory were plentiful, and cute artisan shops of olive oil and wine were flowing with people. Traipsing along the water was the perfect end to the trip.

 

Tips: ferry-building-sf

  • Bring comfortable shoes for non-stop weekend walking
  • Wear sunglasses and hats
  • Wear long-sleeved but comfy clothes to shield the sun
  • Slather on sunscreen
  • Stay away from wild animals

How did everyone enjoy the weekend? Let us know in the comments below!

 

Train it Tuesdays: Jiu Jitsu Interview with Biti Nguyen

Train it Tuesdays: Jiu Jitsu Interview with Biti Nguyen

jiujitsu2Where do you begin with exercise when there’s so many types out there? Do you go for yoga, Pilates, running, brisk walks, rock climbing, kickboxing, dance? I’m inspired by people who have passion for any forms of getting their sweat on.

Today, I’m excited to present to you an interview with Biti Nguyen about her experience with Jiu Jitsu over the past few years. [Biti and I met in Accounting class in the South Bay, where we became good friends through working on a project involving balance sheets and income statements]

She started kickboxing for fitness, and dabbled in a class that incorporated grappling. To her surprise, she found that she was able to pick it up quickly. Biti is currently a Blue Belt with her first stripe.

Ally: What started your interest with Jiu Jitsu?

Biti: I’ve been interested in sports since I was a kid, especially martial arts. The adrenaline rush in Chinese movies looked amazing.

Ally: That’s awesome. How and when did you find the gyms you currently train at now?

Biti: I found both my gyms through Yelp, when I was 18.

Ally: Got to love the internet. How’s the cost, for people who may be interested in starting?

Biti: Martial arts gyms tend to run anywhere between $100-200. Usually, there’s a sign-up fee of $100 as well.

Ally: Yikes, it seems mildly expensive. But I’m sure it’s worth it for people who love the sport.

Biti: Definitely! jiujitsu1

Ally: What’s a typical day of Jiu Jitsu at the gym?

Biti: BJJ follows the rules or traditional Judo. You sign in as you would with any gym, then you put on your gi (the uniform) and bow to the mat before you step on it out of respect. You then line up by rank in front of the instructor, and both the students and the instructor bow to each other before the warm ups. Warm ups can consist of anything depending on the gym. We run and drill some moves like hip escapes or roll down the mat. Then we proceed to drill for about 45 minutes. The last 15 minutes, we would use what we learn when we go live or “spar.” There’s classes back to back, so I tend to do this for two hours.

Ally: It sounds like a fantastic form of exercise!

Biti: For some people, absolutely. I don’t do Jiu Jitsu for fitness. I have to train for it: I run, lift, and work on anaerobic cardio with boxing. Some people lost a lot of weight through Jiu Jitsu, but [I find that I] need something more intense for a workout.

Ally: What made you stay at your two gyms? Was it the energy and the people?

Biti: My manager at USH, Jane Estioko has become like my second mother. It’s a very, very tight knit place there. And at Guerrilla, they had a very professional website that intrigued me to join. The owner, Matt Darcy, has been very helpful in my journey. They have a huge kids program, and it’s great training there. In fact, Mark Heinzer is responsible for my entire Jiu Jitsu development.

Ally: Is there a lot of competition between the gyms?

Biti: Actually, the great thing is that members from USH and Guerrilla train with each other all the time. The MMA community is small, so we all know each other.

Ally: Communities are important, that’s for sure. And last but not least…what’s your favorite part about the Wonderland Organics blog?

Biti: I like the layout. In terms of content, it’s very easy to relate to. Basically, for the same reason that Youtube became a movement: it’s easier to trust words from real people.

Thanks so much for Biti’s endless passion and knowledge of Jiu Jitsu! For more information on Biti’s gyms, check out USH Martial Arts and Guerrilla Jiu Jitsu.

Readers, there will be more fun interviews coming up: stay tuned to the blog! What’s your favorite form of exercise? Has anyone tried Jiu Jitsu?

 

Train it Tuesdays: Hiking at Fremont Older

Train it Tuesdays: Hiking at Fremont Older

huntersptTrain it Tuesdays is one of my favorite categories, since I love exercising. Hiking is all-encompassing: it’s fun, provides great views, and is free for the most part. I’ve been to Fremont Older, located in Saratoga, quite a few times. It has different levels, including a semi-novice hike, which is fantastic for family (and tail-wagging dog) treks.

Robust hiking boots are a must to keep from slipping on the 35 degree, knee-buckling climb at the end of Hunter’s Point. But once you get to the top, the breathtaking beauty of the view will make it all worthwhile. (See photo on the right- captured during New Year’s Day of 2014!) For those of you who like more vigorous workouts, Maisie’s Peak and Nob Hill are quite awesome.

A few tips about Fremont Older:

  • Parking can be hard to find- it’s best to go earlier in the morning
  • Slather on sunblock
  • Wear long-sleeved clothing
  • Bring hats and water bottles
  • Watch out for horse poo on the trails

Be sure to tune in next week for a special interview with a practitioner of Jiu-Jitsu!

Train it Tuesdays: Simple Exercise Tips

Train it Tuesdays: Simple Exercise Tips

exercisezoneToday is about ways to integrate exercise into your days. I know it’s difficult, with only 24 hours in a day (and sometimes it feels like we have about 10 hours to do it all). I’m one of those people who love to work out: it makes me feel more alert, and happier as the day progresses. But for those of you who aren’t quite as gung-ho as I am, here’s a few simple tips to add it seamlessly:

  • Use the stairs instead of the escalator/elevator
  • Take a brief walk around the office when you need a break (or around the house for those of us working from home)
  • Aim to work out in the AM after you wake up: get your heart & those endorphins pumped up
  • Purchase cheap membership to a gym, or buy weights to lift at home (even 20 minutes will do)

Easy Cardio Tips:

  • Jumping Jacks or Jump Rope for 5 minutes
  • Rock out to your favorite song (or two!) for 10 minutes

Have any thoughts on simple exercises? Post in the comments below!