4 reasons why I had successful trip with toddlers + workouts while on vacation

August 29, 2016

Good morning! It’s Monday and I have one more day on “vacation.” Even though I’m back home, I appreciate having an extra day to just catch up on stuff. I have tons of emails to sort through and little errands to run. It’s back to reality for me now!


If you tuned into my blog last week then you know my trip to Surfside, SC went better than expected. In fact, my family and I agreed it was one of our best trips yet. I traveled with my twin three-year-old girls and the car ride down (3.5 hours each way) and the entire week went really well. Prior to leaving town, I was super nervous about travelling with the girls. Our past experiences with them have not gone that well and given that Matt was not coming along I was even more worried that I would be out of my element as the only parent present.


But things worked out and we had a great time! Looking back on the trip I have a few thoughts as to why it went smoothly this time around.


4 reasons why I had a successful trip with my toddlers


1. I had help. Tons. Of. Help. My dad, sister, and brother-in-law were right there and stepped in often to help me with the girls. It was so nice to have extra hands around so that if I needed time to shower, workout, or just take time to clean up, someone was always willing to watch the girls. It really made me appreciate having family around.


2.  The kid factor. Oh my gosh! How did I not think about this before? My sister has four kids and it definitely helped to have some little ones around for the girls to play with. The girls had a lot of fun playing with their cousins and it was great to see everyone getting along. One night I just sat on the deck and watched the kids play with beach balls and bubbles on the lawn. I don’t know why this made me so happy, but it was the best feeling to watch the kids playing and laughing.


3.  We kept the kids active. Like really active. We made sure to get them out of the house every day. Whether it was the water park, beach, zoo, pool, or children’s museum, we kept them moving, moving, moving. Other than meals and nap time (and one fun trip to the movies!), we really didn’t do any sitting around. This meant we had tired kiddos at the end of the day. And there really is nothing better than that.

A Fit Mess

4.  I broke the rules. I was much more lenient with the girls on the trip than normal. I let them snack on chips, popsicles, and other goodies. Of course, I made sure everything was gluten and dairy free, but I let them enjoy themselves. I said “yes” a lot. I let them stay up past their bedtimes, too. Most nights they went to bed around 8:30/9:00 pm, but we got solid two hour naps every day and they slept through the night for the entire week. I’m sure they loved staying up late with the big kids and getting to watch movies in bed with mom. 🙂


Yes, there were meltdowns and crying. Occasionally the girls fought with each other. And we had more than one accident in our clothing. But overall the trip was a win! The girls keep saying they miss their cousins and want to go back to Papa’s beach house. Sweet. 🙂


Last week’s workouts (on vacation)


Burpee / v-up challenge (this workout was sent to me by a friend): complete descending set of burpees and v-ups starting from 10 and working your way down to 1. So, complete 10 burpees and 10 v-ups, then 9 burpees and 9 v-ups and so on.

Later that day I did my TRX workout (see my previous post for the full workout).

Then, I completed a 20 minute Tabata with my sister!



  • Run 1 mile then complete 1 round of a 25/50 bodyweight workout (I honestly can’t remember what I did!)
  • Run 0.5 mile then round 2 of the same workout
  • Later on: walked 1.5 miles at the zoo








REST (drive home from the beach)



Orangetheory Fitness —> good to be back, but I definitely felt like I was paying for my vacation



  • Run 1.0 mile
  • Round 1 of my arm + ab burner workout
  • Run 0.75 mile
  • Round 2 of arm + ab burner
  • Run 0.50 mile
  • Round 3 of arm + ab burner
  • Run 0.25 mile…done!


Love or hate travel with toddlers? Any tips for having a successful trip?

Do you like to workout on vacation or take the time off from training?

Weekend highlights: spin bike, workouts, + zoo

Hiiii! How’s it going? I hope you all had a great weekend. It definitely seems like summer here. Our neighborhood pool has opened, everyone is outside, and it just feels like we should all be on vacation forever and ever.

We had a great weekend and I wanted to share a few highlights from ours. I would love to hear what you did, too!

Getting a spin bike!

Isn’t she purdy? This was in Matt’s studio for years (previously owned by friends) and it made it’s way to our home in order to make room for more equipment at the training studio. Friday afternoon I took my first “ride” and was tortured trained by Matt for part of the workout. He wanted me to try “windgates” and those are crazy hard!

A Fit Mess

Saturday morning workout at OTF. The class was filled with so much rowing I was stumble-shaking back to my car after.


Errands with these two cuties. I mean seriously…when they hold hands it makes my heart melt (twin love!).


Saturday afternoon work meeting with my sister-in-law at Market Street Coffee.

My SIL recently started her own business building homes and designing living spaces (she is incredible!) and needed some guidance on getting her website up. I offered to help her get it started. We’re using Squarespace and it’s not as user-friendly as I thought. Anyone have any tips to share?


A little one on one time with this girl (not napping has its perks).

We have been getting groceries on Sunday now so that means come Saturday our cupboards are bare. I emptied the fridge for snacks and poured some wine.


Sunday family zoo trip! Bringing our wagon was a smart move. We had a blast!


The girls had a lot of fun seeing the polar bears and alligators. There was also a kids play zone and playground on site that they really enjoyed.



Workouts galore last week. Super proud of the progress I’m making in the gym. All the strength workouts were based off of programs from bodybuilding.com.

Monday – strength + cardio

3 x 8 (this means 3 sets of 8 reps) “pull ups” using the smith machine on an incline

superset 3 x 8

  • bent over barbell row
  • seated cable row

3 x 8

  • wide grip lat pull down
  • one arm DB row
  • underhand grip lat pull down
  • back extension on bosu ball

cardio: row/run for 30 minutes:

  • 10 min row
  • 5 min run
  • 10 min row
  • 5 min run

Tuesday (@ home)

  • 5 x 8 DB chest press on stability ball
  • 3 x 15 push ups
  • 3 x 10 DB lateral raise
  • 3 x 10 side to side pushups with DBs

superset 3 x 20

  • toe touches
  • leg raises

superset 3 x 10

  • bilateral low ab pull ins
  • reverse crunch

Wednesday – strength + cardio

LEGS (aka hate all the things day)

  • leg extension 2 x 15
  • wide stance barbell squat 4 x 12
  • leg press 4 x 8
  • walking barbell lunge 3 x 20 (OMG!)
  • plie DB squats 3 x 15
  • standing calf raise 3 x 20

PM: Orangetheory class

Thursday – strength + cardio

3 x 10

  • barbell curl
  • cable curls (hammer style)
  • alternating hammer curls
  • bench dips
  • skull crushers
  • seated tricep press


  • bicycle crunches 3 x 25
  • v-ups 3 x 10
  • hanging leg raises 3 x 10

cardio: run/walk 25 minutes

Friday (@ home)

3 x 10 DB press

superset 3 x 10

  • upright DB row
  • stationary DB military press

Then 3 x 10

  • DB delt raise
  • DB lateral raise
  • DB fly

cardio: sprint intervals on bike – every 5 minutes do 20 band pull-aparts and 30-45 seconds of lateral band walks


Orangetheory class


I planned on doing some upper body work, but after walking around the zoo for 4+ hours I was spent.

How was your weekend? What were your highlights? Anyone planning a trip to the zoo this summer?


Weekend highlights: date night, outdoor fun, + Mother’s Day

May 7, 2016

Good morning! I hope you all had a great weekend. If you are a mother, I hope you got a little time to relax. If you spent time recognizing the special woman (or women) in your life, I hope it was enjoyable.


Ready for our weekend highlights?


Matt and I finally got out for a date night on Friday. We haven’t been out together since January! That’s way too long. We went to Shiki Sushi for dinner. It was really good!

Whole Foods for breakfast with the girls on Saturday and then a little shopping. Tiny hands!


She loves her bacon!


Maddie was so proud of her growing sunflower that she insisted on taking it with us to the store. She showed everyone.


Later on I got a few hours to myself so I ducked into Starbucks to study and write. It was glorious!


Then I spent part of the evening on the deck with the girls.


Sunday morning – no alarm. Amazing.


Matt went shopping and I made a blueberry french toast casserole. It was sooo good.


We spent the morning at the Community Park in Chapel Hill. It was a beautiful day!



The girls weren’t interested in taking pics with mom and dad.



Last week’s workouts:

Monday – strength

3 sets of 10 @ 80% of 1 rep max

  • leg extension
  • wide stance barbell squat
  • walking barbell lunge
  • single leg dead lift using kettle bell
  • lying leg curl
  • standing calf raises

Tuesday – REST (<–unintentional, but needed)

Wednesday – strength and cardio

AM: 3 sets of 10 @ 80% of 1 rep max (@home)

  • wide push ups
  • DB press on the ball
  • DB fly on the ball
  • bench dips
  • lying DB pullover on the ball
  • DB tricep kickbacks
  • overhead tricep extension
  • cable one-arm tricep extension

PM: Orangetheory

Thursday – strength

3 sets of 10 @ 80% of 1 rep max

  • hammer strength lat pull
  • wide grip lat pull down
  • bent over DB rows
  • back extensions on bosu ball
  • DB curls
  • incline DB curls
  • alternating hammer curls

Friday – home workout

Mother’s Day HIIT workout

Mother's Day HIIT


Orangetheory – endurance day (tons of sprints and a lot of rowing)


Ate some blueberry french toast casserole and drank lotsss of coffee.


Just tuning in? Check out last week’s posts:

Weekend highlights + recent workouts

How to make the most of your Stitch Fix service (and spend wisely)

At this point in my life

7 ways to boost your metabolism

Brunch ideas: recipe roundup

What did you do this weekend? Any favorite moments? Have a great Monday!

Mother’s Day HIIT workout

May 7, 2016
Mother's Day HIIT

Hi everyone! I’m sure you all have lots of plans this weekend, but in case you wanted to sneak in a quick workout, I thought I’d share one I did recently. It takes just 30 minutes and will leave you a sweaty mess. Plus, it doesn’t require any equipment at all! Just simulate the jump rope movement. You could easily squeeze in this workout before brunch tomorrow or grab that special lady in your life and do it together.


It’s a HIIT workout which means you will complete each exercise as fast as possible for 45 seconds followed by 15 seconds of rest. Complete 5 rounds of the 6 movements and you will have done 30 minutes.



Mother's Day HIIT

You may find this and other workouts saved on my Pinterest page.