The Basics of a Home Gym

Home Gym Basics, Weights, Dumbbells, Workout, Fitness

When I lived on the island, all I had to workout with was a treadmill. But after a couple of months of just using that and random DVD my mother had lying around, I discovered some online videos using weights. Being so new to using weight again (I used them back in high school, but only at school), I started slow and with a manageable weight. 5-lbs to be exact. Dumbbells are the easiest to find and low cost to help build your home gym. Another piece of affordable strength training equipment: the kettle-bell.

Some other handy equipment to have around, especially if you have the room, a jump-rope. Excellent way for some good cardio. You might want to get a step-bench to do some high intensity plyometric exercises like high-knee step ups or side lunges. I don’t have one since I use my old college trunk instead. It provides the same kind of height and sturdiness but without me having to buy a bench. Also, it doubles as my coffee table at the moment.

My EZ-Bar and plates I found at a garage sale. It was a great find. I think I got them all for under $25. That’s 4 10-lb plates, 2 5-lb plates, and the bar. I can do a lot of different workouts with them. Along with some of my favorite DVD likes Jillian Michaels Kickbox FastFix and Boh Harber’s Ultimate Cardio Body, working out at home is a hard as working out at the gym!

Check out this article by Northwest Pharmacy about How to Build a Budget-Friendly Home Gym!


Full-Body Circuit


My new gym is really great! I love that I am to use all the equipment they have to offer and everyone is polite. One of my favorite full body workouts I got from watching an old Nikki Blackketter video. I think it’s an older one… or one that was made early this year. I did have to adjust it to my level by splitting it into three circuit splits rather than two: Dumbbell Circuit, Barbell Circuit & Full Body Circuit. I do about 5 to 6 sets with 12-15 reps each at a reasonably heavy weight, which currently for me is 15-20 lb on the DB & 30 on the Barbell.

Dumbbell Circuit

  • Underhand Row
  • Stiff Leg Deadlift
  • Alternating Bicep Curls

Barbell Circuit

  • Front Squats
  • Shoulder Press
  • Curtsey Lunge

Full-Body Circuit

  • Box Jumps
  • Burpees & Squat
  • Leg Lifts

This is what Saturdays workouts are made for! Afterward I try to muster enough engergy to do about 20 minutes of cardio. And once I get home & eat something, I’m drained and need a nap.

Simple Meal Prep on Sundays


Sundays are my meal prep and cleaning day. I typically wake up still pretty early, around 5:30ish. Though I spend a good hour or two reading before I start really getting hungry and make myself some breakfast. Right afterward I head over to Safeway and Fred Meyers to do a bit of grocery shopping. Since I prep most of my lunch for the week I always get the same things: chicken, frozen veggies (typically broccoli), egg whites, fruit (whatever is in season) and things I’ve ran out of.

My lunch for the week are pretty simple: baked chicken, brown rice and steamed or roasted broccoli. I season the chicken with some Mrs. Dash Onion & Herb seasoning and garlic powder. I also use a bit of the Mrs. Dash seasoning on the broccoli with a bit of black pepper & salt.

Nutrients wise (using MyFitnessPal App):

  • 125 grams of cooked chicken breast meat : 206 (cals) – 0 carbs – 4 fat (grams) – 39 protein (grams)
  • ½ cup cooked Brown Rice: 140 (cals) – 29 carbs – 1 fat – 3 protein
  • 1 cup steamed broccoli: 54 (cals) – 6 carbs – 0 fat – 4 protein

Total Calories for Lunch (including 8 ounce or so of water to drink): 400 Calories with 35 grams of carbs, 5 grams of fat and 46 grams of protein

Meal prep only take an hour or two including cooling for me. While the food is cooking I try to clean my place as much as possible and not get distracted by the tv or computer. Or, if I remember, work on the blog.

June’s Fitness Hauls

IMG_456715653Had planned on working on post this weekend, which I still plan on doing, but since I have a slight headache and skip my evening cardio. Still, trying to do anything but stare at my TV screen seems to be a struggle right now. And I’m so tempted to just eat peanut butter out of the jar…

I think I mention this, but I never buy any of my fitness gear for full price. And I never stick to one brand with the exception of my running shoes. My two new clothing items are from TJ Maxx and Ross. I found the hooded sleeveless top in the junior section of Ross, California Dreams from Purple Snow. I really like using this on squat days so the bar doesn’t sit directly on my back. I got the Layer 8 Legging at TJ Maxx. I had been eyeing it for a long time. Pretty much since the end of May. So happy they still had one left in my size!


I think my greatest find this month are my new Nike trainers I got for $27 at Ross. They were hidden in the lowest shelf of the size 6 area. I love them! They really are good that the gym for keeping me balance while strength training. Best find ever! The is pretty much all I got from Ross. The sports bra by Marika Tek, another bottle shaker, SmartShaker, and Saucony socks are from TJ Maxx. I love the new shaker since I can make my pre-workout and drink that on the way to the gym and have my amino powder in the little container on the bottom really for me to mix when I’m ready!

So that’s my fitness haul from June. July is almost here and I’m so excited for the 4th of July since I am heading to visit my sister and see my niece! Also, post will be sporadic since I am on a plan where I lift in the morning and run/cardio for 30 minutes in the evening for 5 days, one full-body workout day, and then an active rest day. It’s sounds a bit intense, but I’m focus on getting fitter.

Rock’N’Roll Marathon

Running, Half-Marathon, Rock'N'Roll Marathon, Seattle, Runner, Run, Fitlife

This last Saturday I spent much of my morning running the streets of Seattle in the Rock’N’Roll Marathon, rather I ran the half. I did pretty good, 2 hours 30 minutes which is my average for a 13.1 mile run. It started and ended at the Seattle Center right under the Space Needle. There was about 17,000 runners doing either the 8k, the half or the full marathon. I’ve never seen so many people grouping together to pee. OMG, it was hilarious! So here are a couple photos I was able to take!

Running, Half-Marathon, Rock'N'Roll Marathon, Seattle, Runner, Run, Fitlife

Running, Half-Marathon, Rock'N'Roll Marathon, Seattle, Runner, Run, Fitlife






Workout with Kettlebell

Deadlift, workout, kettlebell, lifting, gym, fitness, fitfam, fitlife

One of my favorite workout equipment at the gym and at home is the kettlebell. They are awesome for cardio and strength training and can be easily put away after use. I have a 10 lb kettlebell at home, which also came with a beginners DVD workout. Kettlebell two-arm swings, one-arm swings, rows, etc. One of my favorite new set using the kettlebell combines two basic moves: squat and deadlift into a superset.

I use 30-40 lb weights at the gym to do this, but use whatever weight you’re comfortable with. The combined moves work the legs, glutes, arms, back & abs. I love working this as part of my leg day routine or full-body workouts. If you start hitting the floor like I’m starting to do with the deadlifts, I seen people use two step-up platforms or benchs to increase the distance and if you don’t have a kettlebell, one dumbbell works just the same!

Deadlift, workout, kettlebell, lifting, gym, fitness, fitfam, fitlife

So what are you favorite ways to use the kettlebell? Or bells? I want to learn more ways to use them!!

Happy National Running Day

#nationalrunningday, running, run, fitness, treadmill, runner

It’s national running day and hope you all got (or will be) getting a good run in! It was raining this morning, so my run was done indoors, but if you can handle it, go outside!!

But if you have to get your run inside like me here’s a good 40-minute. Start off with a 5-minute warm up, increase your speed into a comfortable pace. Then run a 1 or 2 minute sprint, then back down to your comfortable pace or walk. Repeat for 30-minutes increasing your sprint speed by half. Then cool down for 5. It’s a great way to celebrate national running day!