Workout Monday, 2/1

Happy February! As we enter in to this cold and exceptionally busy month for academics in New England, I would love for you all to think about making a goal of CONSISTENCY!

This might mean something a little different for each of you. Perhaps it means getting to every lunch time fitness workout each week. Maybe it means getting outside for a long run on the weekend. Or perhaps it means making sureyou do some stretching and mobility after every workout to keep your body healthy. Whatever it is, set an intention for the month, share it with an accountability partner, and remind yourself of it each and every day!

stick with it

Our workout today is divided in to three parts: 10 minute metcons

Warm up 5-10 minutes on cardio machine of choice

10 minutes of
even minutes: reverse fly
odd minutes burpees

rest 1 minute

10 minutes of
even minutes: squat to press
odd minutes: Russian twists

rest 1 minute

10 minutes of
even minutes: kettlebell swing
odd minutes lunge with twist

Weekend 1/30-1/31

The semester is off to a great start, and I have loved seeing the excitement around fitness classes so far!

You all worked hard this week, and it is time to rest, recover, and play outside!

Spend one day this weekend enjoying the unseasonably warm weather with a walk, hike or bike.


We like to hop on our bikes when the weather hits 50 or above!

Spend another day preparing for the week, whether that involves lesson planning, cooking, pre-cutting vegetables or pre-packing lunches. This will set you up for success and ensure you will have those precious 45-60 minutes of time each day to get your workout in in the midst of the weekday bustle.

kitchen kitties

Pokey, Pouncer and Monkey are really helpful in the kitchen!

Also, enjoy this nutrition tip of the week to help you prepare for hectic mornings! Try these Grab n’ Go breakfasts to start your busy weekdays!

Friday 1/29

Today is Indoor Cycling Day!  We will do a hill workout on the spin bikes.  If you choose to run or do another cardio activity on Friday, I encourage you to find an incline (or make yourself one on the treadmill or some stairs) and follow along with the time and interval sequence outlined below.  Click here for some information on the benefits of hill training (hint….those Holyoke hills are pretty unforgiving, aspiring St. Patty’s Day 10k runners)!


Warmup 10 minutes

Hill Workout:

10 rounds of 2 minutes hill/1 minute easy.  On the spin bikes we will do 1 minute of each hill seated, and the second minute standing.  If you are running on a treadmill, you might want to increase the pace or the grade for that second minute!

Cooldown 5 minutes

We will follow up this workout with a core routine


Workout Thursday 1/28

Today is Tabata Day!  To read a little background about tabata training, click here!

Warm up 10 minutes on any cardio machine

5 reps of each: Kettlebell swings, 1 arm kettlebell cleans, goblet squats, 1 arm kettlebell chest press, kettlebell russian twists

Tabata training workout: 8 rounds of 20 seconds max effort 10 seconds rest of:

  1. kettlebell swings (rest 1 minute)
  2. 1 arm kettlebell cleans (rest 1 minute)
  3. goblet squats (rest 1 minute)
  4. pushups or 1 arm kettlebell chest press (rest 1 minute)
  5. kettlebell russian twists

We will finish off with some recovery stretches! 9e2be330145076afd009b2bc505a61e1


Tuesday and Wednesday 1/26+1/27

Tuesday 1/26

On Tuesdays, Patti Mantia will lead a weight room workout at noon.  Join her at the Bartley Center for some weights and cardio!

If you have to miss Tuesday’s workout, or are very sore from Monday, try this yoga flow sequence to stretch out your body and get your heart rate up a bit while you recover from yesterday’s hard session:

Yoga Flow


Wednesday 1/27

Wednesdays are cardio interval days!  For those of you who feel like this about winter…

I will lead a 3 mile loop and 5-7 mile loop (option of 8-10 miles total) starting at 11:30am. Bundle up!


For those of you who feel a little more like this about my suggestion to run outside in the winter…..

download (1)

Here is a different option for the treadmill!

  1. warm up to a comfortable pace over 10 minutes.
  2. For the next 20-30 minutes, alternate 1 minute “hard”/1 minute “comfortable”.  For this week, just go by effort.  “Hard” should feel like the pace you could hold for 10-15 minutes if you were in a race situation.  “Easy” should feel like a slow jog.  For instance, if you run a 10k race at 10 minute miles (6mph), your “hard” minutes might be around 7-7.5mph and your “easy” minutes might be closer to 5mph.  Check out this article from the American College of Sports Medicine if you are interested in learning WHY interval training is an important part of your fitness plan!


Workout Monday 1/25

Happy Monday!  Today we will be doing some metabolic conditioning.  Thursday 1/21, we did a long metcon.  Today, we will do a series of short ones with some rest in between.  This is a great opportunity to work on your form!

We will also start a “habit of the week”.  This week’s habit is to MAKE TIME FOR RECOVERY!  Take a moment today to plan 5 minutes each day for recovery.  Monday through Friday, it is built in to our workouts.  However, if you miss a day, make sure to take 5 minutes on Saturday or Sunday to do the stability or posture routines, take some time to stretch, or do the foam roll and lacrosse ball routine below!

foam roll

(Monkey loves to foam roll with me at the end of a long day!)



10 minutes steady on machine of choice followed by

3 sets of 5 burpees, 5 kettlebell swings, 5 bent over rows each arm, 5 situps


5 rounds of: 4 minutes EMOM

  1. Burpees
  2. kettlebell swings
  3. bent over row (30 sec each arm)
  4. butterfly situps

Rest 1 minute

In this workout, aim to get the same number of reps each time through!

Recovery work

Lacrosse ball/tennis ball rolling routine (there are lots of foam rolling and lax ball exercises on this link, but today we will focus on piriformis and lats)

Weekend 1/23-1/24

One day this weekend, bundle up and get outside for an hour or two of activity in the fresh air!  For those of you training for a running race, try a long slow effort.  Other activities might include: hiking, snow shoeing or cross country skiing (if we get any snow!), or a long walk with the dog.  Use this time to de-stress and relax.  Leave the watch, interval timer, and iphone at home and enjoy nature for a bit!

winter coat

(Pouncer and I are getting pumped up for a winter workout)

On your other weekend day, make sure to do some resting.  Perhaps you will spend some time prepping meals for the week, meditating, or relaxing with family!  For some meal prep tips, check out my latest video from Mass Appeal:

Mass Appeal 1 Bowl Wonders

Workout Friday 1/22

Friday is Group Indoor Cycling day!

If you are following along at home, feel free to substitute running, swimming, or any cardio machine at the gym as you follow along with the interval sequence!

10 minute warmup: easy pressure, just to warm the muscles and get the blood flowing

5 minutes of tempo effort.  This should be a moderately hard effort that you COULD hold for 30 minutes to 1 hour if you were in a race situation.  On the bike, we typically do this as a hill climb.

2 minutes easy cycling

10 rounds of 1 minute hard (this should be about 20-30 watts above tempo pace on the bike) followed by 1 minute easy cycling.

5 minutes cooldown

Recovery work: Posture Series

Workout Thursday 1/21/2016

Welcome to the first daily workout post! Each day, you will find the daily suggested workout posted as well as some suggested strength and recovery exercises.  Those of you who join for the 12:30pm class each day can expect to fit in the warmup, workout, strength and recovery in 1 hour.  If you are following along at home, you may pick and choose what part (s) of the workout work for you and your schedule!


  1. 5 minute warmup on any machine desired
  2. 3 rounds of 5 reps for each movement today (man makers, reverse flys, v-ups, reverse lunges)
  3. Workout: 30 minutes AMRAP (as many rounds as possible) of 5 manmakers, 10 reverse flys, 15 v ups, 20 reverse lunges each leg (with or without weights). Record your number of rounds
  4. Stability series (intro: 1 round each)
  5. recovery work (basic stretching routine)

I look forward to seeing you all at 12:30 at the Bartley Center!

Overview of Christoph Coaching for Spring 2016: Let’s Stay Injury Free!

I recently conducted a survey among my fitness enthusiast colleagues at Holyoke Community College and my clients in my personal business.  A few major themes stuck out:

  1. Health: To be free of injuries and sickness, and be able to perform the activities of daily living with ease.
  2. Aesthetics: To create a body that is strong and lean.
  3. Training Goals: To complete an event, such as a challenging hike, a half marathon or 10k race, or a charity bike ride or walking event.

It immediately became apparent that:

 #3 could help with #2:

The amount of running, cycling, or hiking that goes in to event preparation creates an energy deficit that supports leanness.


#3 has the potential to negatively impact #2

The amount of running, cycling, or hiking that goes in to event preparation creates an energy deficit that negates strength gains.


#3 could help with #1

The amount of running, cycling, or hiking that goes in to event preparation creates an a positive cardiovascular benefit, helping to prevent chronic disease.


#3 has the potential to negatively impact #1

Consistent movement in sagittal plane with no attention to muscles that require lateral movement could result in injury


The demands of training for an event could potentially put the immune system at a disadvantage, increasing the likelihood of cold, flu, and sinus infections during these winter months.

Therefore, our training system this semester will include the following:

  1. Well Designed Strength Program that focuses on strength, power, posture, and stability to encourage strong bodies that don’t only run, bike, or hike quickly, but also are all around FIT! Take a sneak peak here of the program we will be using!
  2. Crossfit inspired metabolic conditioning routines that get the heart pumping, while recruiting a variety of different muscle groups so running, hiking, and cycling muscles do not become overworked. See some sample workouts here.
  3. Daily recovery exercise to support injury prevention. You will need a foam roller and a lacrosse ball (for those who come to my classes, I will provide lacrosse balls for you!) for these recovery exercises.
  4. Suggested training plans that accommodate all of these extra activities and allow for time-sensitive training!  See a sample program here.

The official program begins on Thursday, 1/21/2016 at 12:30pm at the Bartley Center lobby.  For those of you who cannot make our daily workouts in person, I will provide resources on this blog to help you follow along at home!