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Lately + 5×5 Circuit Workout

Lately + 5×5 Circuit Workout

Words can’t even begin to describe everything that’s happened since I last stopped in. A lot of good stuff. Some bad stuff. But that’s life, right?

The good . . . competing in the Army ROTC 6th Brigade Ranger Challenge competition!

Army ROTC Ranger Challenge Competition on Hungry Gator Gal

Photo by Taryn Boyer

Ruck running 30 miles in two days with added challenges along the way is, without a doubt, the most grueling thing I’ve ever done.

I’m SO grateful to have had the opportunity to compete as the only female from the University of Florida. My body literally ached from head to toe, and there were times when my mind told me to give up, but I’d do it again in a heartbeat if that meant I would work with eight of the kindest, strongest, most motivating guys around again.

Army ROTC Ranger Challenge Competition on Hungry Gator Gal

Photo by Brianna Kolota

I don’t remember running miles in the rain with gear in full combat uniform or the blisters on my feet. When I look at this patch, which I’ll wear on my uniform for the remainder of my ROTC career, I remember the laughs, the motivation, and the teamwork.

Army ROTC Ranger Challenge Competition on Hungry Gator Gal

Photo by Brianna Kolota

So what went wrong after the competition? Unfortunately, I walked, actually more like hobbled, away with a bum knee in addition to a cool patch and a t-shirt. The injury sidelined me from all high-intensity exercise for nearly all of February.

Boo injuries. ๐Ÿ™

Despite the setback, it was almost a good thing I was injured. I focused on spending time with family and friends, recovering from two back-to-back colds and catching up with schoolwork. In addition, I learned a few valuable lessons that anyone who’s serious about exercise should pay attention to.

  1. Stretch or die.
  2. Don’t ramp up your routine too much, too hard and too fast.
  3. Embrace rest.

More to come about these topics in a separate post. For now, check out this AWESOME circuit I created on the fly while at home on spring break. It’s very back-to-the-basics and hits every major muscle group, if you perform the exercises correctly.

Check out the tutorials below this image if you’re unsure about how to do a particular exercise. As always, move as quickly as you can between exercises but rest as needed. I rested for 10 seconds between exercises and 1 minute between circuits.

5x5 Circuit Workout from Hungry Gator Gal

Exercise tutorials:

Did I mention the workout can be completed at home and requires only one piece of equipment? Gotta love a good garage workout with the pull-up bar.

P.S. The +Spotify “House Workout” playlist is killer. Give it a listen while you try this workout.

Until next time,
Brianna ๐Ÿ˜‰



  1. What are your favorite at-home workouts? Links are always welcome. ๐Ÿ™‚
  2. Do you own an at-home pull-up bar?


Related HGG Posts:

150-Rep Lower Body Challenge

150-Rep Lower Body Challenge from Hungry Gator Gal

Upper Bodyย + Abs Circuit Workout

Upper Body + Abs Circuit Workout from

Holiday Circuit Workouts

150-Rep Lower Body Challenge

150-Rep Lower Body Challenge

This lower body endurance workoutย + a 6.6-mile run afterward = sore quads and hip flexors for days.

But really. I was sore to the touch for a SOLID 48 hours. I really have no idea what I was thinking. All I know is that I hobbled around the mall and Target the next day in pain. I looked like a baby giraffe learning how to walk. But it was amazing.

So if you love self-imposed pain, check out this workout. Feel free to tell me how awful and awesome it makes you feel afterward. ๐Ÿ™‚

150-Rep Lower Body Challenge from Hungry Gator Gal

Exercise videos:

P.S. This is an awesome at-home or holiday workout that requires minimal or NO equipment. No gym = no excuse. I usually complete 50 reps of one exercise and then 50 reps of the next exercise, etc. Feel free to split up the 150 reps however you choose.


  1. Do you ever complete lower body workouts and longer runs on the same day?
  2. What’s the hardest workout you’ve ever completed?


Related HGG Posts:

10 Things I’ve Learned as a New Runner

10 Things I've Learned as a New Runner from Hungry Gator Galย 

26-Minute Boredom-Busting Treadmill Workoutย 

26-Minute Boredom-Busting Treadmill Workout from Hungry Gator Galย 

5-4-3-2-1 Lower Body Blast

5-4-3-2-1 Lower Body Blast Workout from

Quick Cardio Tabata Sets

Quick Cardio Tabata Sets

I’ll be the first to tell you I’m no cardio queen (a.k.a. you’ll NEVER find me trudging away on an elliptical for an hour.)

Take a look at my weekly workout page and you’ll see I much prefer strength training. I lift at least three days per week. Sometimes I even count lifting as cardio . . .



Rather than torture myself with long runs, I stick to quick and efficient cardio workouts like HIIT or the tabata sets you’ll find below.

If I’m not doing strength training circuits that include cardio, I’ll complete a workout like this one before or afterward.

Quick Cardio Tabata Sets from Hungry Gator Gal

Video demonstrations:

Although I’m not a huge fan of aerobic exercise, I know it’s important, which is why I took the time to find types of cardio I love, including tabata sets. The variety of exercises you cram into a short period of time make tabata workouts far from boring.

In addition to the pace, this 16-minute workout and most tabata sets don’t require ANY equipment. In other words, you could wake up, hop out of bed and do this workout in your pajamas. You’ll be DONE with cardio for the day before you’re even awake.

Sounds like a good deal to me. Let me know if you give it a try! ๐Ÿ™‚

P.S. I’m linking up with Katie of “Katie Did What” for Healthy Habits this week. Learn how other bloggers lead healthy lifestyles by visiting this post on Katie’s blog.


  1. Which do you prefer: strength training or cardio?
  2. What is your favorite type of cardio? <— I also like cycle/spin classes!
  3. How many cardio sessions do you typically complete in a week?

Related HGG Posts:

Best Treadmill Workouts for Killer Legs

Get sweaty! Walk The Hills Workout via @Annette Perkins-FitnessPerks
Best Indoor Cycle/Spin Workouts

Best At-Home Total Body Workouts for the Holidays

Best At-Home Total Body Workouts for the Holidays

Let’s be real. Sticking to a workout plan during the holiday season can be tough, even for the dedicated fitness fanatic.

Shopping, holiday parties (the food!) and travel seem to consume everyone’s lives at this time of year. If you’re in school like I am, final exams and projects are probably stressing you out too, which makes finding time to exercise even harder.

I’ve been working on a research paper and project for the past few days while spending time at home with my family. Although I don’t have access to a gym, I’ve managed to squeeze in a few at-home total body workouts, which you’ll find below.

I used my brother’s set of free weights for exercises like lunges, squats and rows. If you have adjustable weights or free weights, you’re good-to-go. If you don’t have weights, simply perform the exercise with body weight or see the modifications I listed below each workout.

Just because the workouts are completed at home doesn’t mean they’re easy. Have fun, and get ready to SWEAT! ๐Ÿ™‚

Super Sweaty Tabata Supersets from Fit Fab Cities super sweaty tabata supersets 

Note: Use body weight. Also, do tricep dips using a chair instead of dumbbell rows if you don’t have weights.

20-Minute Hotel Room Workout from Peanut Butter Fingers 

20-Minute Hotel Room Workout

Note: Use free weights or body weight for squats and lunges. Also, you can do three rounds for 30 minutes total.

Pyramid Bootcamp Workout from Fit Fab Cities

pyramid bootcamp workout

Note: Use free weights for the lunges, if possible. Use body weight for the remaining exercises.

Ultimate Body Weight Circuit from Enjoy Your Healthy Life

Ultimate Body Weight Workout -can be done anywhere. #NoExcuses via @Annette Perkins-FitnessPerks 


What are some of your favorite at-home and/or body weight workouts?

Related HGG Posts:

Burnin’ Arms and Legs Circuit Workout

burnin' arms and legs circuit workout

Girl Crush + Best Upper Body Workouts

cameron diaz arm workout

Weekly Workout Plan + Best Ab Workouts

10 Minutes Or Less Ab Workout!

Work-It-Out Wednesday: New Posts and Page

Work-It-Out Wednesday: New Posts and Page

I’m excited to announce a new addition to HGG – fitness posts and a new page!

Before I tell you what the posts and page will include, let me explain why I’ve expanded HGG’s focus to include both food and fitness.

When I started blogging in February 2012, I simply wanted to try, create and healthy recipes with the world. However, fitness has since become a larger part of my life, and I’ve realized food and fitness go hand in hand.

I now see food as more than recipes and working out as more than exercise. Food fuels my body. Exercise should be something that is both fun and helps me to grow stronger.

I plan to share one fitness post per week that will include a workout plan and other fun fitness-related ideas. The fitness page on HGG will serve as a workout log or “history” of past weeks.

Just so you get an idea, I typically exercise five times per week and try to incorporate both cardio and strength training into each workout. With that being said, I’m not a personal trainer, group fitness instructor or health professional. The exercise ideas and workouts I will share are simply suggestions. Please talk with a professional to ensure the exercises are safe for you. Also, please modify workouts, if necessary, to meet your goals.

I have a lot on my plate this fall, but writing these workout posts will help me create a schedule amid the chaos of senior year. However, most importantly, the posts and page will help you discover new workouts, set new goals and make the connection between food and fitness.

I apologize for the long-winded post. Here’s a look at my workout plans for the upcoming week. Enjoy! ๐Ÿ™‚

Today:  Leg Workout + Booty-Burning Walking Workout

Thursday: My 21st Birthday!!! (Off )

Friday:  10-to-6 Workout (Note: I’ll be substituting dead lifts for the kettle bell swings.) + 20-Minute, In-and-Out Treadmill Workout

Saturday:  Off

Sunday: Triangle Workout + 20 Minutes of Steady-State Cardio (a.k.a. pick a pace and incline that you can maintain)

Monday:  Super-Sweaty Ab Circuit + Intense Incline Treadmill Walking Workout

Tuesday:  Awesome Arms and Abs + 2, 4, 6, 8, 10 Treadmill Workout

Circuits, interval training and incline workouts have been my go-to exercises this summer while at home. However, look for the addition of group fitness classes and new equipment to the routine in the next few weeks when I return to school.

P.S. Check out my fitness board on Pinterest for more inspiration and my article on the peerFit blog for easy pre-workout snack ideas.