Hello! My name is Shannon Taylor. I'm a long-time writer and editor from Minnesota surprised to find myself on an island in the Pacific Northwest with my husband, three younger children (the oldest is attending college in Chicago), and two dogs.

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Be aware of wonder. Live a balanced life—learn some and think some and draw and paint and sing and dance and play and work every day some.
+ Robert Fulghum

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Winter Fun

Olympic Fever / My Favorite QUICK Workout

Do you have Olympic Fever at your house? We definitely do. I’m seeing Olympic rings everywhere, even in the craft tape Lily got for her birthday!

When you watch the athletes perform their amazing feats are you inspired to get moving, to push yourself harder?

The thing is, most of us don’t have hours to spend working out even if we wanted to. But I’ve learned that you can get a great workout in a short amount of time if you get a little organized about it.

So. Let’s start with strength training. Does anyone still need convincing that strength training is an important part of overall fitness? Just in case, here are some of the benefits of strength training:

  • Reduced body fat
  • Stronger bones
  • Increased joint flexibility
  • Weight control (muscle burns calories more efficiently than fat)
  • Reduced age-related muscle loss
  • Reduced risk of injury
  • Better balance
  • Reduced symptoms of chronic conditions like arthritis, back pain, depression, and diabetes
  • Increased energy

If you’re struggling to find time to work out, I really encourage you to look into programs like Holly Rigsby’s Club FYM that are designed for busy people who are willing to work hard. If you do the strength training and intervals correctly, you will be dripping with sweat and 15 minutes will seem like more than enough!

The workout below is one of my favorites. It takes about 15 minutes and works everything. All you need are a mat and some weights. Challenge yourself to use weights that are at least 5-lbs. No pink Barbie weights! I’ve included links in case you’re not familiar with the exercises. So go put on some good music, channel your favorite Olympian, and give this all you’ve got.

Superset 1

Dumbbell Squat and Press (10‒15 reps)
Deadlift (10‒15 reps)
Repeat set three times

Superset 2

Push-up (10‒15 reps); you can start on your knees or against the wall, but try to work up to full push-ups!
Dumbbell Row (10‒15 reps)
Repeat set three times

Superset 3

Belly Blaster (10‒15 reps) or Plank Hold (30 seconds)
Mountain Climber (15 each side)
Repeat set three times

Next up: Intervals! (And the one workout that keeps popping up in interviews with amazing female Olympians!)

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