love to Boston + the workout sandwich

Hi friends. My heart is still really heavy today after yesterday’s tragic events in Boston. This post was originally supposed to publish around 3pm yesterday, but at the time felt so silly and inappropriate to post, I put it queue for this morning and enjoyed the evening with my family. Even though we had a great dinner together (for the record, according to Liv, Sweet Tomatoes is the best restaurant ever because they have all of her favorite foods in one place), I felt extremely sad. It was magnified because Jeni had just left, and I couldn’t help but think of the families whose babies wouldn’t come home or were badly injured. Even if they’re grown up babies, they’re still someone’s child. Someone’s sister. Someone’s dad. Someone’s best friend. Family. With how sad I was, I didn’t cry until later last night while reading this article.

When disaster strikes, I try to remember the Fred Rogers quote and think of the helpers. Events like this magnify my faith in humanity because the good far outweighs the very few, very nasty bad apples. The helpers are true heroes – the ones who run TOWARDS the danger to help the victims.

Look for the helpers1


When things like this happen, it makes me not want to blog at all. It makes me want to do nothing but cuddle my baby and mourn what happened. While it’s necessary, I realize that you eventually have to get back into the swing of things, and keep on keeping’ on, because that’s what those who were affected would likely want. The rest of my original post is below, but I wanted to say that Boston is on my mind. Love and prayers to everyone affected… I hope that you and your family are safe <3


It’s been a beautiful long weekend… I’m not ready for it to officially end.

Dogs  1 of 1 9

(Fur sisters say “Hi”)

All weekends are like that, but you know what I mean 😉

I’ve spent so much time with my girlfriends and all of the babies, and we’ve had a blast at night going out and enjoying time together. Jeni lives in Vegas now and Michelle is in Texas, so to have two of my closet friends in Tucson at the same time has been amaaaazzzing.

Cocktails  1 of 1

This morning, we all met up for bagels/coffee, then went to shop and walk around at La Encantada.

Me and livi

The perfect strategy: take the little ones to the toy store first so they’re tired enough to hang out in their strollers while we shop 🙂

After last night’s Zumba class, it feels good to have a day off from the gym. I originally thought I’d to pump some iron today, but squeezed in a 20 minute sesh yesterday morning while everyone was getting ready for the day.


I thought I’d share two strategies I’ve been using with my personal workouts lately that I love.

Behold, the workout sandwich:

Workout sandwich

The every minute on the minute (EMOM) is something I picked up from my very limited CrossFit knowledge, but love to use in my own workouts. The idea is that you do the same amount of reps of an exercise each minute on the minute for the same number for minutes. It sounds confusing, but here’s an example:

7 burpees

7 minutes total

7 burpees x 7 rounds = 49 burpees total (holy burpees!)

You begin each round on the minute. So if you finish your 7 burpees and it’s only been 42 seconds of that minute, you get to rest for 18 seconds before starting again. Finishing quickly can be a blessing and a curse; you get it over with faster with more time to rest, but you have to work harder. I use the Tabata Pro app on my phone for this, and set it for 5 rounds of 1 minutes (usually). I love doing the 5 bear complex EMOM. It gets my heart rate up FAST, so when I start the “meat” of my workout (cardio or strength circuit) I’m ready to kill it.

4-minute plank:

1 minute regular plank (if I get bored or want to quit, I’ll do any of these plank variations)

1 minute side plank or variation

1 minute regular plank or reverse plank

1 minute side plank on the other side

It’s an awesome exclamation point to finish the workout and I can feel it working my entire body. If you just want to use plank for core strength, hold it for a maximum of 10 seconds, rest for 3 and repeat for 5-6 rounds. If you hold it longer, you start to engage and work your entire body.

Have you tried any new workout techniques lately? 

Have an wonderful day <3



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  1. Lisa on April 16, 2013 at 10:55 am

    I know what you’re saying, it’s just tragic these thing occur and I honestly can’t comprehend how awful it is. The best we can do is think and pray and do things for those affected by the incident.
    Hug our loved ones even more today.

    On another note, I love the burpee sandwich! This sounds like a great workout to throw in for some added cardio and plyo moves.

  2. Emily on April 16, 2013 at 11:10 am

    I love this idea for planks! I get bored and distracted so easily that I quit when I know I could keep going.

    Also, being from Pittsburgh, that Mr. Rogers quote has been floating around on all my friends Facebook pages and twitter accounts. I found it super comforting today and hope others do too <3

  3. Heidi on April 16, 2013 at 11:15 am

    I totally agree- they were someone’s baby…so so sad. I cannot imagine something so heart wrenching happening to my family. I am praying for all the people involved and praying that God’s love and the goodness of humanity will rise above this awful situation.

  4. Tori on April 16, 2013 at 11:15 am

    Yesterday I tried Holly’s new workout from and it was a strength workout (full body) which incorporated some treadmill sprints between sets, I loved it! My heart rate was high the entire time and I loved the addition of cardio between weights instead of before or after only.

  5. April on April 16, 2013 at 11:45 am

    Thank you for this post Gina, we are trying to find the ‘light’ in Boston today…but so proud of our City, SO many selfless people showing the world we are helpers.

    • Brittany on April 16, 2013 at 12:34 pm

      I hear ya April. We love this city and to know that this happened here in our home is so hard! But we will get back to normal. We have so many people willing to help. It’s amazing. Did you hear Matty in the morning today? Right after they played Carry On by Fun. It brought tears to my eyes. The song will now have a special meaning for us Bostonians. I will never listen to it the same way again. Hope you and your family stayed safe.

  6. maria on April 16, 2013 at 12:16 pm

    EMOM is killer! Just a heads up, for every minute on the minute, the number of reps does not have to be the same as the number of minutes. My gym’s WOD yesterday was 3 hang squat snatches EMOM for 10 minutes.

    Just don’t want people get the wrong info 🙂

  7. Sarah @ Yogi in Action on April 16, 2013 at 1:12 pm

    I’m so with you about Boston- I can’t stop reading news articles about it, and the more I read, the more my heart breaks for all those people.

  8. Ashley @ Life and Fitness on April 16, 2013 at 1:20 pm

    I’ve never tried crossfit, but EMOM sounds like a fun way to beat gym boredom.

  9. Michelle @ A Healthy Mrs on April 16, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    Beautiful thoughts on such a sad & tragic event. Sending love & positivity to all those affected.

  10. Brittany on April 16, 2013 at 1:24 pm

    Thank you everyone for your kind words. I never thought something like this could happen in my home. While I’m glad my family and friends are safe there are so many people who can’t say the same. Love to my fellow Bostonians. It may take a while but we will be ok.

  11. Paige on April 16, 2013 at 1:47 pm

    I have been reading your blog for quite some time (and going back through the archives for fun), but this is my first comment! From past posts, I knew you would have a comment about the tragedy in Boston (where I am from but I live in Tucson now) and I thank you for continuing to keep the tradition of pulling away from the daily grind and recognizing when these things happen. On another note, I love the idea of EMOM workouts… I will definitely have to try this when I am in a bind for time and need to get my heartrate up fast!

    Have a wonderful day!

  12. Kim on April 16, 2013 at 1:58 pm

    I like the idea of picking an exercise and a set # of reps and minutes – might have to turn it into one of my challenges.

  13. Alexandra on April 16, 2013 at 2:20 pm

    Thanks Gina for linking to the article about people doing extraordinary things even in the face of danger. That really helped me. I ran Boston in 2009 and was planning on running it again, though I do have several friends that are running it this year. A short time after the blast, one of my friends sent me a video that he shot that was very graphic of people with missing limbs. I felt sick to my stomach all day because running means so much to me and the people that I have met through marathons are my friends and my family all rolled into one. I am amazed by the outpouring of love and support that has been shown though. Humanity really does have the power to ignite love over evil.

  14. lucie on April 16, 2013 at 2:20 pm

    Thank you Gina, for this. It’s such an important ray of light when we see that the good ones outweigh the bad.

    I love EMOM. It is such a great variety and since you need to concentrate on the time it goes by so fast!

  15. lucie on April 16, 2013 at 2:21 pm

    Thank you Gina, for this. It’s such an important ray of light when we see that the good ones outweigh the bad.

    I love EMOM. It is such a great variety, challenging and since you need to concentrate on the time it goes by so fast!

  16. Tracy on April 16, 2013 at 2:33 pm

    Question: What is the “5 bear complex EMOM”?

  17. Victoria @ Reluctantly Skinny on April 16, 2013 at 3:42 pm

    I read the article you posted this morning at work and it brought tears to my eyes – in happy and sad ways. In tragic situations, it’s always a ray of light to see humanity come together and prove it still has a lot of good.

  18. Linda on April 16, 2013 at 4:25 pm

    Donate blood today. The best way to help the victims of Boston and in your area.

    • Fitnessista on April 16, 2013 at 10:44 pm

      the red cross was tweeting yesterday that they don’t need blood and are turning people away. i wish there were more ways to help.

  19. Jay on April 16, 2013 at 5:02 pm

    Thanks for the inspiring quote – it’s easy to focus on the ugly and the negative in a time like this.

  20. Miranda @ Miranda Runs on April 16, 2013 at 7:54 pm

    I love the Fred Rogers quote. It’s so true!

  21. Chelsea @ One Healthy Munchkin on April 17, 2013 at 7:29 am

    I’ve been seeing that quote a lot in relation to Boston – I’d actually never heard it before, but I love it. It has been so inspiring to hear stories about all the people helping out!

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