Tabata (pronounced tuh-bot-uh) holds a warm place in my heart because my friends introduced me to it while we were in Thailand, the six of us filling up our hostel’s outdoor space and sweating profusely in Southeast Asia’s infamous heat. We also combined a few rounds of tabata with a beach run in Costa Rica and were sore for days.
It’s now one of my favorite ways to squeeze in a (difficult) workout just about anywhere. With the weather changing and indoor workouts becoming more of my go-to, I wanted to share all about my favorite full-body workout and why you should try it out. But first – what the hell is it? : )
Tabata is defined as a HIIT (high intensity interval training) workout, discovered by scientists in Japan that tested longer, more moderate workouts against shorter, more intense workouts. Guess which one had more impact on the aerobic and anaerobic systems? HIIT!
Tabata, in particular, works like this:
○ Exercise for 20 seconds ○ Rest for 10 seconds ○ Complete 8 rounds, for a total of 4 minutes ○ Rest for 1 minute, then move on to next set
WHY YOU SHOULD DO IT:
1. Quick yet effective workouts, great for people in a time crunch 2. Equipment-free with the option to add hand weights, med balls, etc. 3. Can be done anywhere with a little open space 4. Helps with your “mental” game since you are holding yourself accountable 5. All workouts can be easily swapped or modified to your preference
Some people do one exercise per 4-minute set, but I prefer to include two exercises in each set. For example, in Tabata 1, below, I would do:
○ 20 sec of mountain climber push-ups ○ 10 sec rest ○ 20 sec of side step hops ○ 10 sec rest ○ Continue until 4 min is complete ○ Rest for 1 minute, move on to next set
Have you ever tried tabata? If so, are you unable to walk for many days after like I am? For all my deathly workouts in one place, follow my “Sweat” Pinterest board here.
I would say about… 4 days out of 5 (work days, of course) I come home feeling too lazy to cook. After a long day, it’s just about the last thing I want to do. But because eating out is a) expensive and b) often unhealthy, I have faced my adversity and mastered the art of cooking healthy and easy meals.
Now, quick disclaimer here: I am not a recipe person. The measuring spoons and cups hardly ever come out of my drawers. That being said, you’re probably wondering why I’m here posting “recipes” that aren’t really recipes, and here’s my reasoning.
1) This teaches you to learn your preferences. When I say salt and pepper and garlic to taste, I encourage you to actually start with a little and work your way up. See what you like a lot of and what only needs a little. If I told you how much garlic I put in recipes (at LEAST 4 cloves), you would all run away. So you’re welcome. 2) It gives you more freedom to make it what you want. I don’t want people to follow these recipes to a T. I have no idea what I’m doing, this is just how I make it and what I like 🙂 So add what you want and play around with it. JUST HAVE FUN! (haha. kidding. kind of.) 3) Cooking is faster when you don’t have to measure things. And that’s what our goal is here, right? So we can get to our books/Netflix/endless streams of work we have to do??
Glad we are IN AGREEMENT. Without further ado, my five QUICK, EASY, and HEALTHY dinners for when you’re just not feeling it. Let’s go.
Stir fry is the ULTIMATE nutritious and actually satisfying meal. While I know I’m especially particular to Asian food, stir fry is made in my home probably once a week. This is a flexible meal that involves any veggies/protein in your fridge, and if you have pre-cooked or meal-prepped rice/quinoa/etc., it’s the easiest thing to cook on a time crunch.
Cauliflower Fried Rice
If you’re a frozen food lover, this one’s for you since 90% of the meal comes from a frozen bag. Trader Joe’s has a pre-made version if you’re feeling EXTRA lazy, but they also offer all the fixings if you want to try a little. This is a veggie-packed dish that requires minimal ingredients and almost 0 prep. Incredible!
The first rule is to not listen to the back of Trader Joe’s package or you will end up with mushy, slimy gnocchi. YUCK! The second rule is to go where your heart takes you on this one. I prefer mine a little crispy with nutritional yeast, but I’ve seen it made with marinara, pesto, a garlic sauce… the world is your oyster. They’re quick and good with a small side salad.
Banana Bowl / Smoothie
While I think I might dedicate an entire blog post to making the perfect banana bowl (read Earthy Andy’s recipes for now), this is one my go-to quick meals so I had to include it here. And yes, I’ll eat this sh** for dinner. In the winter. It’s just that good. Also, if you make a smoothie, try and incorporate some veggies. It’s too easy not to.
Indian Yellow Tadka Dahl
This post SHOULD be sponsored by Trader Joe’s but it’s fine. A packet of this bad boy costs $1.99. Heat it up, serve with cauliflower/regular rice and a side of pita if you’re feeling crazy, and you’re done. It’s delicious and spicy and perfect.
What’s your go-to meal when you’re feeling lazy? Thanks for reading, and happy eating 🙂
Burlington, Vermont was just the city I wanted it to be. It was small — about the same size population as my hometown. It was charming — I’ll let the pictures do the talking. And everyone was as eco-friendly and tree-hugging as I’d heard. Burlington was the first stop on our Northeast Road Trip Extravaganza, (blog post coming shortly), so there was a lot of pressure to start the trip on a high note, and despite the cold and rainy weather, it really did. Here’s what we squeezed in our (less than) 24 hours in Burlington, Vermont.
Note: If you’re just here for the cold, hard facts, scroll down to the bottom for the overview and additional recommendations.
We started our trip from Boston, driving in what appeared to be the Northeast’s first snow storm of the season. Making the best of the 4+ cars we saw in ditches, we blasted some Christmas music and got on our JOLLY WAY.
This was on my list of must-do’s — the $4 tour price tag and the simple prospect of ice cream had me sold. While the tour itself was only okay, the story of the ~birth of Ben & Jerry’s was interesting and inspiring. These were just two hippie guys trying to make chunky ice cream, and now here they are in every Target freezer in America! On a more serious note, Ben & Jerry’s had a nice little political plugs and sustainability comments in the tour that didn’t go unnoticed (in a good way). Very on-brand Vermont.
These tours run every half-hour at the factory in Waterbury, Vermont.
Second Stop: Freshen up and head to dinner.
After unpacking and freshening up from a long day of travel, we headed to Burlington’s main area near Church St. After a few recommendations, we chose American Flatbread for dinner, and I highly recommend. The restaurant has a great beer list from Zero Gravity Brewery (get the Forty Thieves Double IPA if you like hoppy beers), an eclectic menu, and a cozy atmosphere complete with wood-fire grill. I got the veggie special flatbread and loved every bite.
After Dinner, Grab Drinks
Not everyone loves hoppy beers (ugh) so we ended the night at Citizen Cider. Whether you’re a cider person or not, this place is definitely worth visiting. I spent $7 for a flight of five samples that included fun cider flavors, like ginger and basil — my two favorite. If you simply cannot give up an ounce of your masculinity, Vermont Pub & Brewery is convenient and close to many restaurants in Burlington. Now get some rest!
In the Morning…
Remind yourself you’re in beautiful Vermont upon waking, and then promptly grab breakfast. We opted for something simple and got bagels and coffee at Feldman’s Bagels. This is a great option for those who want something quicker, want to keep costs low (why is brunch so expensive?), or just like eating really good bagels. We like eating really good bagels.
Time to Explore
We spent our first few daylight hours roaming around Church Street– to me, this is quintessential Burlington. There are shops and cafes lining the street, a VERY photogenic church at the end, and tree lights lit during the daytime. This was my favorite part of Vermont, even in our rainy weather.
Conversely, if you happen to visit during the summertime, there are a ton of activities to do on and around Lake Champlain. This is probably (definitely) the most photogenic part of Burlington, and while we’re sad we missed it, it’s just another reason for us to go back.
Vermont was one of the few New England states I had yet to see, and it was not a disappointment. If you ever find yourself in the area — make the trip. It’s well worth it. Sparknotes below : – )