I Finished My All-Levels Bowflex Max Trainer Challenge, and My Calorie Burns are Shocking!

November 20, 2017

I designed a cardio challenge last month, using my Bowflex M5 Max Trainer. You can read all the details here, but basically, I wanted to see if I could complete the Max Interval program at every level of resistance, starting at level 5, all the way up to level 16. The Max Interval program is only 14 minutes, but man oh man, it’s tough!

I recently finished the challenge, and the results were downright stunning!
Read the rest of this entry »

A Cardio Challenge Three Years in the Making

October 16, 2017

Three years ago this month my Bowflex Max Trainer M5 showed up at my door. I’ve blogged about many times, and it really is a remarkable, challenging machine. It’s kinda like if an elliptical and stepmill had a baby… that was much better than both of its parents.

The Max Trainer is the cornerstone of my at-home workouts, and I’ve used it every week since I got it. So, in honor of the anniversary, I’ve come up with a challenge designed to see how far I’ve come on this machine, and then push me further. Read the rest of this entry »

Final Preparations Before the Big Race… AGAIN.

November 15, 2013

On Saturday I’m competing in the CF Climb, a race up the stairwell of the Figueroa at Wilshire tower in downtown Los Angeles. It’s a charity event for the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, and it’s the first stair climb race where I’ve given myself a very specific and challenging time-based goal.

Holy hell, I’m experiencing deja vu while writing this! It’s because Read the rest of this entry »

My New Goal: Racing 3,000+ Steps!

October 14, 2013

It’s been 2.5 weeks since I completed my last fitness challenge: racing up the 75-story US Bank Tower in downtown Los Angeles. Around the same time, I reached a big goal I’d been working on since June, my 274-mile CARDIO TO VEGAS challenge. So… I’m due for some new challenges!

And I found some doozies!

I’ve signed up for TWO new races, both of which I’ve never done before. They’re both Read the rest of this entry »

CARDIO TO VEGAS Update: The Middle of Nowhere

August 29, 2013

I’m so flippin’ excited to write this post! It’s been about 2.5 weeks since I’ve updated you on my CARDIO TO VEGAS fitness challenge, and that’s a long drought. But I’m here now, and I have a big update. A SUPER big update. A SUPER big, SUPER nerdy update. I don’t wanna waste any more time – let’s get to it!

CARDIO TO VEGAS is my current fitness challenge, where I’m logging the miles I complete during my cardio workouts, and plotting them on a map. My goal is to reach 274 miles, the equivalent of running from Los Angeles to Las Vegas. Along the way, I’m putting my nerd hat on and researching fun facts and stories about the places I pass. This post will show that you can find the most incredible, fascinating stories no matter where you look, even if you’re looking in the middle of nowhere. Seriously, keep reading.

Learn more about CARDIO TO VEGAS, and check out the archive, by clicking here.

OK, here we go. When I last left off, I had Read the rest of this entry »

How Do You Add 14 Flights of Your Workout? PLUS: Create Your Own Cardio Map Challenge!

August 21, 2013

The answer to the question in the title is: BE FORGETFUL! That’s what happened today.

I was on my fifth day of working out after recovering from my sprained foot. I was scheduled to have my first session in three weeks with Mo, the personal trainer, so I headed off to Crunch in Burbank (which, unlike the West Hollywood Crunch, never had any salacious displays of showering customers). The Burbank Crunch is located on the top floor of a shopping center that also includes a Barnes & Noble, an AMC multiplex, and a couple restaurants. It’s served by a giant parking garage that also handles parking for the Ikea across the street. I can easily park on the roof of the garage and walk a few feet to get inside Crunch, but I never do that, because A) I’d have to wind my way up through the levels of the garage, which takes time, and B) I prefer the lower levels, as they’re covered, which keeps my car out of the hot sun.

The parking garage has a back entrance that leads directly to one of the lowest floors, and that floor is nearly always empty, so I park there. Which means I then have to take the stairs to get to Crunch (there’s also escalators and an elevator, but I always take the stairs). First there’s these:


Then there’s these: Read the rest of this entry »

CARDIO TO VEGAS Update: Beyond Barstow

August 12, 2013

READY TO NERD OUT WITH ME? It’s time for a CARDIO TO VEGAS Update! This is my fourth Cardio To Vegas post, and it’s a long time coming. I started writing it about two weeks ago, before spraining my foot, which sidelined my exercise. I actually accumulated more miles after starting this research, but I don’t want this research to go to waste, so I’ll save those for my next update.

I’m getting ahead of myself. What’s CARDIO TO VEGAS, you ask? It’s my current fitness challenge that has me virtually running to Vegas. Here’s how it works: I’m logging all the miles I complete during my cardio workouts, whether it’s on a bike, elliptical, or out on a run. I add these miles up, and my goal is to reach 274 – the number of miles between Los Angeles and Las Vegas. I’m plotting my progress on a map, and writing about the places that I ‘visit’ along the way. It’s as nerdy as it sounds, and I love it!

Check out the kick-off post that started the challenge, and read the other updates here and here.

Where am I now? Let’s find out! When I last left off, I had gone 97.8 miles. To that, I can add: Read the rest of this entry »

CARDIO TO VEGAS Update: Welcome to Phelan!

July 11, 2013

I’m in full-on nerd mode right now, which means this is gonna be a really good post. The last time I was nerding out to this degree, I ended up introducing my new workout goal, which is called Cardio to Vegas. Simply put, I’m logging all the miles I complete during any sort of cardio workout, with the goal of getting myself, hypothetically, from Los Angeles to Las Vegas. You can read more about the challenge right here.

Time for my first update! Las Vegas is 274 miles away, and I had already gone 57.85 miles. Let’s see how many new miles I’ve gone since then! Read the rest of this entry »

The Double-D Workout Challenge!

May 7, 2013


A great big hello to any new readers out there. I got a ton of traffic yesterday because the Everyday Health column about me was featured on the AOL Homepage – what a wonderful surprise to wake up to! So… I welcome any new readers that are sticking around (and I hope you do!) – and don’t forgot to follow me on Facebook and Twitter!

Last week, during my weigh-in post, I mentioned that I’ve been communicating with my two sisters in an ongoing text message stream as a way to stay accountable and check in about how we’re doing. I find it very helpful and fun, but it’s just one of two things that I’ve started in the past couple weeks to help with accountability. The other is…

…The Double-D Workout Challenge!

Read the rest of this entry »