“Have A Ball” Upper Body Circuit

by tinareale on January 22, 2012

I realized something. I don’t share regularly enough with you all about my own workouts. Now that I’m training for my first full marathon, I thought it was high time I made a better habit of keeping records of my workouts. And sharing them with you all in the process. Sound good? Good! Here’s this past week’s workouts.

Sunday Jan 15 – Lower/Core + 30 min Kickbox

For Sunday’s cross training workout, I did a 30 minute Turbo Fire kickbox DVD but kept the moves lower impact for recovery. I also did a light lower and core workout inspired by some of the moves and layout in this Spartacus workout Paige recently shared. I adjusted it to make it very core and functional training focused.

Monday Jan 16 – Upper Body + Recovery Run

I started with three easy miles on the treadmill then tossed together an upper body circuit workout.


Pin It

I chose moves to hit the entire upper body that could all be done using just a stability ball and a pair of dumbbells. I completed each of the above moves using the ball in place of a bench or laying prone (stomach down) across the ball. I did each move for 10 reps before moving to the next move in the circuit. It went by really quickly and by the 4th round I was feeling the burn for a great stability upper endurance workout.

Tuesday Jan 17 – 6 speed miles on the treadmill

The weather was kind of dreary so I hit up the treadmill for my speed session. I warmed up for a mile then alternated 1/2 mile of speed work with 1/2 mile recovery. I did the speed work at 7.5 mph and the recovery at 6.5 mph for four rounds. Then cooled down the final 1.5 miles. It was brutal in an oh-so-fun way.

Wednesday Jan 18 – 3 mile recovery run on treadmill + Lower Body & Core

Once again, three easy and steady miles at 6.2 mph on the treadmill. I decided to switch things up this week doing an upper/lower body split and since my legs were feeling so good, I gave them some work.  I did a mix of the following moves as supersets.

  • step-ups and V-ups
  • plie jacks and bicycle crunches
  • barbell squats and planks

Thursday Jan 19 – OFF DAY!

I am doing something new by taking my rest day in the middle of the week. For my marathon training, I’m generally following the Hal Higdon intermediate plan, with a few of my own tweaks to personalize it a bit. The plan features two tougher weekend runs back to back and calls for a day of rest to prepare. I am actually really enjoying the plan’s layout! And the extra time on rest days to play with my special kiddos.

Friday Jan 20 – 6 miles

It was drizzly. I ran. That’s about it.

Saturday Jan 21 – 12 miles

The forecast showed a ton of bad storms expect to roll through  my area. I almost opted to save my run for this afternoon, but knew I would rather get it out of the way. Then, I considered doing my 12 miles on the treadmill, but that made me want to cry. Peter had the genius idea to do a short loop around home so I could easily come in if the rain got too bad and finish up on the treadmill. Perfect!


I dressed and set out. I ran TWELVE one-mile loops by where I live. So boring. But it worked. And it didn’t start pouring until I was merrily inside sipping coffee in a brutally cold tub of frigid water. So glad I made it work!

There’s my recap…

Happy Training!!!

What was your favorite workout or fit activity this week?


1 Katie @ Peace Love & Oats January 22, 2012 at 7:15 am

My favorite workout was my 10-mile training run! I actually did mine on the treadmill and it was fine for me! It’s more entertaining in a gym though, plenty of people watching!

2 tinareale January 22, 2012 at 3:23 pm

People watching definitely helps the time pass by. I’m a big fan of people watching too. ;)

3 Katie @ Raisins&Apples January 22, 2012 at 7:25 am

My balance is awful—so awful that I am such a chicken about using a stability ball!

Yesterday’s spin class was a pretty good one, but I really enjoyed my lower body circuit from last Sunday

4 Tessa @ Amazing Asset January 22, 2012 at 7:35 am

Great job this week on the workouts Tina! I just pinned the Spartacus workout from Paige’s blog and also this upper body one… thank you for the ideas :)
Awesome 12 miles too… I might have died of boredom from the same loop though haha, although better than the treadmill!
My best workout was a run in the snow yesterday morning, I was not going fast or working too hard and it was rather peaceful

5 tinareale January 22, 2012 at 3:25 pm

That’s what I kept telling myself. “Better than the treadmill”. Haha!

6 Lauren @ What Lauren Likes January 22, 2012 at 8:08 am

My best workout was a new group class I tried out! It’s called flirty girl fitness, and is so much fun :)

7 tinareale January 22, 2012 at 3:25 pm

That does sound fun!

8 Gina @ Running to the Kitchen January 22, 2012 at 8:11 am

Awesome week of workouts! This makes me feel like a total slacker for only getting 2 days of workouts in this week before I got sidelined with a cold. Hoping to get back to it today!

9 chelsey @ clean eating chelsey January 22, 2012 at 8:23 am

NICE hat!!! I haven’t tested mine out yet – I think I will now that you’ve reminded me.

You’re basically a rock star – great job on the workouts this week!

10 jobo January 22, 2012 at 8:46 am

Wow, that’s genius re: 12 mile loop around your house! SO boring but less boring than a treadmill by far!! I actually considered that too in my complex, a 1/2 mile loop around it, but can you imagine that in 12 miles? 24 times around? No thanks, but would work for a shorter distance if it’s snowy on the sidewalks but the complex is clear, right?? I love that you shared your own workouts!! I love seeing what you do personally.

11 Rebecca January 22, 2012 at 8:52 am

My favorite workout was Psycho Cycle followed by a 2000 meter row. The PC class has you get off the bike in the middle of the hour and run laps around the track, do burpees, plyo moves etc. Once we did 5 minutes of burpees with no rest for the psycho set. Brutal! It is SO hard but I love that my legs feel like jelly at the end.

Do you think you could recap your workouts every week (especially weights)? I really like seeing what you’ve done and getting ideas!

12 tinareale January 22, 2012 at 3:26 pm

I plan to start recapping every week on Sundays! :)

And holy cow that PC class sounds brutally tough. But just my style!

13 Ashley @ My Food 'N' Fitness Diaries January 22, 2012 at 9:08 am

i love the looks of that upper body circuit workout! stability balls are awesome – i love how they challenge your core while working other muscles too! i’m going to plan on this one for my upper body workout tomorrow… thanks! :)

14 tinareale January 22, 2012 at 3:27 pm

Hope you like it! It really goes by so fast and starts off feeling easy…but sneaks up on ya. :)

15 Lindsay @ In Sweetness and In Health January 22, 2012 at 9:15 am

Wow, you are hardcore :) . I LOVE decline push-ups. I never thought I would be able to do them and then when I tried I was pleasantly surprised hehe…I guess I wasn’t giving myself enough credit! My favorite workout this week was Courtney’s “Build your own bootcamp” workout! That was challenging.

16 Lee January 22, 2012 at 9:54 am

12 one mile loops?? Crazy girl! I guess it’s not as boring as the treadmill though, you’re right. I skipped my run altogether yesterday because of the rain.

17 Katie January 22, 2012 at 10:13 am

I had probably the best spin class on my life on Monday. I can’t wait to go back tomorrow! But I do need new ideas for strength training, so I definitely pinned that Have a Ball circuit!

18 Heather @ Get Healthy with Heather January 22, 2012 at 10:48 am

Way to get your long run in! Sometimes a contact loop can be boring… I would have definitely needed some music!

Thanks for sharing your workout, looks like a great one! Love decline pushups :)

19 Laura @ Sprint 2 the Table January 22, 2012 at 10:57 am

You are hard core taking an ice bath today! It’s not terribly cold but just looking outside at the dreary rain makes me shiver. Killer week of workouts!

20 tinareale January 22, 2012 at 3:28 pm

It’s torture. Especially the one last week after running in 24 degrees!!! GAH! But my legs tell me big time when I dont take one so I force myself.

21 Lindsay @ The Lean Green Bean January 22, 2012 at 12:03 pm

great workouts! love the one on the stability ball. i always have a harder time coming up with upper body workouts.

22 Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers January 22, 2012 at 12:15 pm


I’m new to your blog and I am great inspired by your workouts. I saw you use Turbo Fire kickbox DVD, I just checked it out on Amazon. Do you have the box set? Do you like all the workouts? I exercise to DVD’s like Jackie Warner, Jillian Michaels and Chris Freyteg. I was just curious if I should invest in the box set, it’s $149, eck!!

23 Sue @ Sue In Training January 22, 2012 at 2:23 pm

My favorite workout last week was an easy but freezing four mile run on tuesday. Zumba class on wednesday is a close second, though.

24 Jess January 22, 2012 at 3:27 pm

I love reading about your workouts for the week – it’s fun to see how others plan their workouts, when they rest, why they rest on the days that they do, etc. Maybe I ought to work that back into my blogging regime now and then – I did it regularly during the 60-day challenge but sort of stopped doing it for awhile. Good way to stay accountable too, right? :)

PS NICE job on the 12 1-mile loop, ha!

25 Tamara January 22, 2012 at 4:28 pm

I love stability ball workouts. Bosu is great too!
My fav workout this week was a spin and abs class that I taught. We slowly increased the tension for the entire duration of the class and mixed in sprints/runs/jogs in at each resistance level. Workout is posted as a note on my FB page (Fitknitchick).
Happy Sunday!

26 Paige @ Running Around Normal January 22, 2012 at 8:40 pm

Thanks for the shoutout, Tina :)
Doing the new release at spin class was my fitness highlight of the week!

27 Pure2raw twins January 22, 2012 at 9:08 pm

love the name of your workout – have a ball!!

28 Rebecca @ Miss Magnolia Munches & Moves January 22, 2012 at 9:24 pm

I have an 8 loop max! 12 must have been brutal, but I agree that it was the lesser of 2 evils when running the treadmill was the alternative. Kudos to you for getting out there and getting it done!

29 Cheryl @ eatplayluvblog January 22, 2012 at 10:20 pm

12 one mile loops outside sounds far less monotonous than 12 miles on a treadmill, at least! I’m uber jealous, praying that my injury gets better ASAP, and loving the “have a ball” cutesy title. :)

I did a BUTTLOAD of swimming this weekend (it’s about the only cardio I’ve been able to do)! My best workout though it wasn’t really a “workout” was the yang/yin yoga class I did. Holding poses for four minutes is more of a mental workout than anything, but a much needed one!

30 Julie January 23, 2012 at 11:18 am

I love your blog and read it often as we are both in the same phase of life with two little ones and making time to stay in shape. I was wondering since I am fairly new to weightlifting if you could do a post or explain some of the weightlifting moves you do. Like I have no idea what a “dumbbell pullover” or a ” prone dumbbell front shoulder raise” is. I would love to incorporate your workout suggestions in my own routine, but sometimes I just don’t know what you are talking about! ;) It helps when you link videos, but a short description would be awesome too! (As if you need more “things to do”)

31 tinareale January 23, 2012 at 1:51 pm

I will definitely try to link up to exercises more in future posts. :)

32 Carol @ Lucky Zucca January 23, 2012 at 4:08 pm

I’ve done the loop around the house a few times thing before, but only for three miles! I can’t imagine 12! Great job!

33 Liz (Little Bitty Bakes) January 23, 2012 at 10:21 pm

Oof, I’ve been there before – doing >10 1-mile loops. Mental toughness!

I’m trying the same sort of running pattern right now for the half marathon I’m training for! I do a tough tempo run the day before my long run. Makes for an even more challenging long run, and I love it!

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