Full-Body Dumbbell Workout with Compound Exercises

Full-Body Dumbbell Workout with Compound ExercisesCompound exercises are great because they work multiple muscle groups at once. This workout is tough as-is if you’re looking to strength train, but I’ve also included a 5-minute treadmill blast that you can do at the end of each circuit if you’re looking for some added cardio. It’s a good way to switch things up and beat gym boredom!

Full-Body Dumbbell Workout with Compound Exercises

Equipment I Used:

  • Set of lighter weights (8-15lbs) – I used 12lbs for most exercises
  • Set of heavier weights (15-25lbs) – I used 20lbs for the standing side bends
  • Exercise mat

The weight ranges above are suggestions—pick what works best for you and challenges your body. You’re going to complete the following circuit three times. You can rest between each completed round or, if you’re looking for some added cardio, you can add in 5-minute treadmill blasts (example toward the bottom of this post) after each of the three dumbbell rounds.

Beginner: Complete 8-10 reps of each exercise
Intermediate: Complete 12-15 reps of each exercise
Advanced: Complete 18-20 reps of each exercise

Full-Body Dumbbell Workout with Compound Exercises

  • Lunge with Straight-Arm Torso Twist (Right) | Start standing holding a dumbbell in both hands at chest height, arms held straight in front of you. To make sure you have proper form, roll your shoulder cage back and down before you start the exercise. From there, lunge forward, stepping your right foot in front of you as you bend both knees to opposing 90-degree angles. Holding this low lunge, twist your torso to the right, keeping arms straight as you do. You want your whole upper half moving as one unit on this—imagine your waist is a wet towel that you’re wringing out as you twist. Reverse the sequence, twisting back to center and pushing off that front right foot to return back up to standing. That’s one rep.
  • Standing Side Bend to Bicep Curl (Right) | Stand with feet hip distance apart and a heavier dumbbell in each hand (this is the exercise I used 20-lb weights for). Lean over to the right side with your torso as you lower the dumbbell towards knee height. Engaging the oblique, bring your torso back upright to starting position once you’ve gone as low as possible. When you’re back upright, do one bicep curl on that side, curling the dumbbell up towards your right shoulder. That’s one rep.
  • Squat with Overhead Thrust | Hold the dumbbells at shoulder height, feet about hip’s width apart and squat down, keeping your lower abdomen held in and sliding your bum and hips back and down. Once you reach your lowest squat, power up, driving your hips forward and engaging the glutes as you straighten your legs to stand. As you do so, press the dumbbells overhead into a shoulder press.
  • Lunge with Straight-Arm Torso Twist (Left)
  • Standing Side Bend to Bicep Curl (Left)
  • Burpees with Crossbody Mountain Climber and Renegade Rows | Start standing with weights at shoulders, elbows bent. Squat down, weight in your heels. Bring the dumbbells to the ground, shoulder width apart in front of your feet. Jump back into a plank (hands still gripping dumbbells). From this plank position, crunch your left knee across your body to touch the right elbow. Step that foot back and repeat to the other side, right knee to left elbow. Back in plank, perform one dumbbell row on each side, pulling one elbow up as you bring the weight to your armpit and then the other. Last, jump your feet back up towards your hands, bring the weights back to shoulder height, and power up from that low squat back to your starting standing position. That’s one rep.

Full-Body Dumbbell Workout with Compound Exercises Like I mentioned at the start of this post, you can rest in between each of your three sets of this circuit, or you can mix in some cardio. The following 5-minute treadmill blast is a simple way to break up each dumbbell block. 5-Minute Treadmill Blast - great to do in between sets of strength training!Full-Body Dumbbell Workout with Compound Exercises

WEARING | leggings & bra c/o Fabletics // tank c/o The North Face // sneakers c/o Puma

Happy Marathon Monday, Boston! signature


A Marathon Playlist, BioSport Headphones & Hanging Out with Me This Weekend

running-playlists-spotify-soundcloudWith the marathon right around the corner, Boston is BUZZING. I live a couple blocks from the finish line, and as cliché as it sounds, you can feel the excitement in the air. Even as a non-marathoner, it’s one of my favorite weekends in the city (a day off from work, friends, roof decks, beer—yes, please!).

Although I’m not running it, I thought it’d be fun to share some of my current favorite workout music in case any of you marathoners need some inspiration for your race-day playlist. I go back and forth between using Spotify and SoundCloud, so I’ve included both (with different music on each). I actually prefer SoundCloud because you can find crazy good remixes, but they’ve started playing ads so I can’t use it while teaching class. What a bummer!

First up, some jams for all you SoundCloud users:

Next up, some jams for all my Spotify peeps:


Intel x SMS Audio BioSport Headphones

intel-sms-audioSpeaking of music, I’m working with Intel and SMS Audio on a fun project for their new BioSport headphones (spoiler alert: I get to give away a couple sets to you guys!). These headphones, which have an in-ear heart rate monitor, are the lovechild of Intel’s technology and SMS Audio’s studio-quality sound.

For all you techies: They use a built-in optical sensor that continuously and accurately measures your heart rate while simultaneously removing noise signals caused by your body’s motion during your workout. The earbud shape allows it to sit deeper in the ear canal for consistent data collection, and the headphones are sweat and water-resistant.

The headphones also have a self-charging system (it’ll draw power from your smartphone) so no batteries are required. It won’t drain the battery life though—it uses the same amount of power as any set of headphones with a built-in mic.

For all the rest of us: 50 Cent—or as I like to call him, Fiddy—is the CEO of SMS Audio. So yeah, if the man who made the soundtrack to my high school years stands behind these headphones, count me in, too. (Anyone else jam out to Hate It or Love It at high school parties??) :)

runkeeper-biosport-headphonesThe in-ear heart rate monitor wires directly to your smartphone and syncs with the RunKeeper app. I’ve been playing around with it the last couple days, and it’s pretty cool!

Also, it’s worth noting that I’m super picky about earbuds (usually I don’t like having something stuffed in my ear), but the part that goes inside is actually pretty narrow on these. I think they’re comfortable–and that’s saying a lot! I’ll be giving away two sets of these headphones (they retail at $150 so it’s a pretty kickass prize!) in the coming weeks on the blog.

Come Hang Out with Me This Weekend!

marathon-playlistAs part of this project, I’ll be at the SMS Audio booth at the Boston Marathon Sports & Fitness Expo this weekend. If you’re local or will be in town to run, I’d love for you to swing by and say hi! I’ll be there Saturday from 3 to 3:30PM. The expo is open to the public, so you don’t have to be running the marathon to check out all the exhibits. It’s at Hynes Convention Center and you can check out a full list of the exhibitors/where their booths are located HERE. I’ll be at booth #2735 and hope to see some of you there!

Are you running Boston this year? Let me know if you’ll be by the expo!

What workout songs are currently on repeat for you? Side note: You can enter to win a pair of the BioSport headphones by sharing your top workout songs on Instagram or Twitter using the hashtag #IntelxBioSport. The contest is open until April 19th so hop on it! Terms and conditions

Enjoy your weekend! signature

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Intel. Although I was compensated, all opinions—as always!—are my own.

“Ups” Pyramid Workout with Cardio Intervals

"Ups" Pyramid Workout with Cardio Intervals on the Treadmill (Push Ups, V Ups & Pull Ups--that's it!)Chin ups, sit ups, push ups. We’re keeping things super simple with today’s workout. Pull ups and chin ups are something I can’t yet do unassisted (I’m working on it!), so I tie a resistance band around the bar and place one of my feet through it. It helps so much! The lower the resistance of the band, the harder the pull ups will be; if you need more support, go for a band with a heavier resistance. How to Modify Pull Ups with a Resistance Band

“Ups” Pyramid Workout with Cardio Intervals

Equipment I Used:

  • Pull up bar (with a resistance band tied around it for assistance)
  • Treadmill
  • Exercise mat

You’ll go back and forth between a set of the “ups” and the treadmill. Every time you switch, the number of reps gets reduced by one and the distance you run gets reduced by .05 miles. So round one = 10 push ups, 10 v ups, 10 chin ups, .5 mile run. Round two = 9 push ups, 9 v ups, 9 chin ups, .45 mile run. By the end, you will have run a little under 3 miles and done 55 reps of each exercise. The rounds are quick! You’re running as fast as you can and getting through the “ups” taking as few breaks as possible. I know push ups and chin ups are familiar to most people, but if you’re unsure of what a v up crunch is:

  • V-UP CRUNCH | Start on your back with arms stretched overhead and legs hovering just slightly above the ground. Pull your abs in tight and press your low back to the ground. You’ll then crunch up, bringing your hands towards your toes (keeping legs and arms straight). When done correctly, your body will make a “v” shape as you crunch; this means you’re not just reaching your arms up, your chest needs to move towards your knees. Lower back down to starting position. If possible, your feet should never touch the ground between reps.

"Ups" Pyramid Workout with Cardio Intervals on the Treadmill (Push Ups, V Ups & Chin Ups--that's it!)

WEARING | tank: Lorna Jane // leggings: Lululemon (out of stock, but similar ones here and here) // sneakers: Asics c/o Millet Sports