New blog, same content

We have MOVED!  Since we completed some rearranging on how we are currently structured with the roll out of our brand new website, we have a new blog and everything from the Northern Grrrls blog has been moved over to the new site.  We VALUE our blog followers and if you want to keep receiving information from Northern Grrrls, spin playlists, and boot camp workouts… head on over to and follow us!  Thank you!


Oh and our new fancy schmancy website can be found at!


Hearts on Fire Event a HUGE Success


Participants and instructors from the Hearts on Fire event show their love!

On Sunday I celebrated Valentine’s Day and showed my love of fitness by hosting a fundraiser for the Chequamegon Health & Fitness Center. A few other AMAZING instructors donated their time and energy to the Hearts on Fire fundraiser which included Zumba, Intro to CrossFit, Spinning, and a Kickboxing Circuit. The event was designed to not only raise funds for the gym, but also to expose women to fitness options other than the standard treadmill and elliptical. We rotated the group through the various workouts and it was a huge success as 24 women participated in 120 minutes of frantic fitness FUN!  I ran the kickboxing circuit portion of the evening and even though the physical space and available equipment limited the possible stations, we had a great time! The ladies loved being able to punch and kick their way through the evening!  Below is the workout, which you will see had adaptations for plyo and conditioning stations as well so that we could accommodate the number of people who participated!

Hearts on Fire Kickboxing Circuit:   = 24 minutes plus instruction and cool down…= 30 min

1 minute at each station – use tabata timer

Station 1: Heavy Bag (N) Round Jab Cross Combo (rounds 1 & 3) Hooks on round 2
Station 1a: Jump Rope
Station 2: Heavy Bag (S) Roundhouse rapid fire kicks (1 minute each leg, or 30 seconds x 2)** on these kicks work on power and exhale with every kick making sure to pivot and rotate your hips for full contact.
Station 2a: Burpees
Station 3: Speedbag Speedbag play – slow and steady and increasing as coordination improves
Station 3a: Push ups
Station 4: Maize/ heavy bag Rapid Fire Uppercuts (round 1 & 3)
Station 4a: Alternating punches in a sitting/horse stance

Can also add in a jumping jack station, bicep curls, squat bar, shoulder press, weighted v-sits,

Double the Fun! A Great Paired /Team Boot Camp Workout!

I typically try to alternate between individual and group games each boot camp session.  I have found that the group games foster a positive and encouraging environment for new boot campers, while the individual challenges allow each participant to focus on tackling individual challenges on their own.  The women empower each other and support each other making this a great pair game!

My favorite (and the group’s favorite) partner activity is our Double the Fun activity.  This game is the most fun in the Spring and Summer months when we are able to be outside and run the “stairs”.  The Double the Fun workout is as follows”

Equipment:  Dumbbells (various weights or bands will work, have students bring their yoga mats)

Ask boot campers to partner up! One member of each pair will run the stairs

The dreaded STAIRS!

while the other does the exercise and then they will switch.  When we run the stairs – up and down counts for 1x- as my participants’ fitness ability increased – we went from 1x on the stairs to 2x.

*note that the exercises listed below are just examples.  I switch out different exercises all the time!

Round ONE:

Sumo Squats ———> other person runs the stairs 2x then switches w/ partner
V-Sits ———> other person runs the stairs 2x then switches w/ partner
Bicep Curl ———> other person runs the stairs 2x then switches w/ partner
Speed Ladder ———> other person runs the stairs 2x then switches w/ partner

Round TWO:

Russian Twist ———> other person runs the stairs 2x then switches w/ partner
Plank Ups ———> other person runs the stairs 2x then switches w/ partner
Tricep Dips ———> other person runs the stairs 2x then switches w/ partner
Globe Jumps ———> other person runs the stairs 2x then switches w/ partner

Round THREE:

Right Leg Lunge ———> other person runs the stairs 2x then switches w/ partner
Left Leg Lunges ———> other person runs the stairs 2x then switches w/ partner
Bicycles ———> other person runs the stairs 2x then switches w/ partner
Burpees ———> other person runs the stairs 2x then switches w/ partner

By the time this workout is completed, each participant will have run the stairs 24 times.  A feat that amazes the ladies every time we do it!  The most rewarding aspect of this activity is how excited and proud each grrrl is when they realize how much they accomplished and how great they feel!

Jump Around Paired Workout

Required equipment: jump ropes!

Split participants up into pairs. For this boot camp one member of each pair will be jump-roping until their partner completes the number of reps after each exercise in parentheses! When the partner completes the required number of reps for each exercise then the pair switches! If its nice where you live you should do this outside, but this can be done inside too!

Whether you call it Skipping, Rope Skipping, Jump Roping or Rope Jumping…it is a great activity to help fight Heart Disease, Obesity, Type II Diabetes, and Osteoporosis while improving strength and fitness.

Round 1:
#1: Mountain Climbers (25)
#2: Fire hydrants (30 each side)
#3: Push up jacks or reg push ups (25)

Round 2:
#4: Bicycles (50 single count)
#5: Tricep dips (25)
#6: Squats (40)

Round 3:
#7: Crunches (50)
#8: Burpees (25)
#9: Jumping Jacks (50)

Round 4:
#10: Tuck Jumps (20)
#11: Diamond push ups (20)
#12: Side plank raises (30 / side)

Boot Camp: Ball Sprint!

I have found that adding games and group activities into Boot Camp makes it a more enjoyable workout! The latest game is adapted from a number of examples I came across on the web. All I needed was a cheap bag of balls and some imagination.

The game goes like this…First take the balls you have and divide them by color. Then randomly mark the ball of each color with one, two, or three dots and an X. You should then have a bunch of balls with various numbers of dots within each color group.

For this game you are going to want a green space about the size of a basketball court. Divide the group into two or four teams depending on how many participants are there that day. If you are using two teams place each team in opposite corners (marked with cones). If you have four teams place each team in a corner. Place about 40 balls (two teams) or 80 balls (fours teams) in the center of the “court” equidistant from each team. Be sure to make certain that corners are equidistant from center where balls are!

Each team lines up in a line behind a corner. One player at time sprints to the center to get a ball, returns to their corner, tags the next teammate and that player runs to retrieve another ball. Play continues until all balls are gone. The more balls you have to pick up, the more they run! Team with most wins.

And the game isn’t over YET! Each color ball has an exercise associated with it. (ie. red = burpees, orange = squat 180 jumps, yellow = pushups). The number of dots on the bottom of the ball will indicate how many reps they must do of each (1 dot =8, 2 dots= 10, 3 dots= 12). As a team, they line up all the balls and must complete the exercises together. (My groups usually choose to start with burpees to get them out of the way 🙂 ). Depending on how much time you have you can have the teams put the balls back into the center and start it all over again with new exercises.


(credit to Jess Griffin)

  • Make sure you don’t show exercise list before they get balls or nobody will pick the burpee ball.
  • If you repeat this game change the color exercises so they cannot cherry pick their favorites or avoid their least favorite.

Variation: Instead of sprinting to get balls you can make them shuffle, backwards jog, walking lunge, bear crawl, high knees, etc. I call out various moves as the game is going on and they have to switch instantly. So they might be lunging to center and then have to flip over and crabwalk for the rest of the way. How do they crabwalk and hold the ball? They manage! (and makes it more fun)! If its a rainy day it’s possible to make this work inside! Just shorten the relay and have the grab more balls!