yoga sculpt

Fitness Classes I Teach

Happy Friday kids!  I can’t believe we are already looking at the end of July.  Next week is my LAST WEEK of Yoga Teacher Training!  Time sure has flown.

Now that I’ve truly gotten my feet wet in this new career of mine, I thought it would be nice to give a little insight into the classes I teach and how I prepare for them.

HIIT Core + Core Strength

This is the first class I taught, and it is definitely fun.  The ladies I get in the class so far are “regulars” and are super sweet!

Typically, I run this class like so:

  • Warm up- about 10 minutes, starting with cardio and working into abs
  • Abs section- either a timed HIIT set/tabata, or a more traditional strength set for about 10-15 minutes
  • Cardio/full body section- timed intervals for about 10 minutes
  • Cool down- yoga-inspired stretching for a little less than 10 minutes

Ashtanga Intermediate

Photo Credit: Mel Koossy, Shala Plus

Photo Credit: Mel Koossy, Shala Plus

The Ashtanga system is the focus of my Yoga Teacher Training.  My instructor is great, and she has a lot of faith in me.  I started teaching this class in my first week of training!

I follow the Ashtanga primary sequence for this class, but I skip some postures based on the group I get that evening and time constraints.  It is fun in a totally different way from HIIT, as it is much more quiet and mellow, but I find it extremely rewarding.

Yoga Sculpt


Earlier this week (or maybe it was over the weekend?  It’s all starting to blend together these days), I shared some ideas for fusing yoga and strength training.  This is really the focus of this class.  I take traditional yoga poses and modify them to include weights or a little more intense strengthening moves.

For last week’s class, I followed the Ashtanga sequence but modified postures.  This week, I am working with some of my own designs of flows.  Here is one that I put together today:

  • Samisthiti
  • Arms up
  • Fold forward
  • Look up and lengthen deadlift
  • Chataranga hold
  • Up Dog
  • Down Dog
  • High lunge, torso forward, grab weights
    • Lateral raise x5
    • Front raise x5
    • Rows x5
    • Bent-arm lateral raise x5
  • Up into full high/crescent lunge, tricep kickbacks x10
  • Windmill down to pushup, drop weights, hold chataranga
  • Up Dog
  • Down Dog
  • Repeat High Lunge with other leg
  • Jump through to stand
  • Look up and lengthen deadlift
  • Fold forward
  • All the way up, hands to sky
  • Samisthiti

Looked nearly identical to this yesterday…

Virtual high-five to the person who can guess which one in the Ashtanga photo is me!  (Little sisters need not guess, haha)

What is your favorite fitness class?




How to Fuse Yoga and Strength

To start, let me clarify that yoga is strength, if you really focus on your form.  However, some people like to have more weight training in their workouts, so a yoga-strength fusion can be great.

Over the weekend, I started teaching a Yoga Sculpt class.  To teach it, I went through the Ashtanga poses I’ve been learning and added strength training elements to them.  I thought it was a fun workout, so I thought I’d share some of them with you.

Yoga Sculpt Poses

Down-dog Pulse

Go through a sun salutation (reach up, fold forward, look up and lengthen, jump back to yoga push-up, up-dog, then down-dog).

Please excuse the hair chunk, dog crate, and dog bed.  :)

Please excuse the hair chunk, dog crate, and dog bed. 🙂

Hold in your down-dog for 5 breaths.  Then, lift your right leg into the air, so it is about parallel to the ground.

Pulse your straight leg into the air with your foot flexed about 15-20 times.  Repeat with the left leg.

Padangustasana Deadlift

At the top of your mat with feet hip with apart and parallel to each other, fold forward to take a hold of your big toes.


Let go of your toes and take hold of some dumbbells.  Slowly come back up to standing, using your glutes to pull you up.  Make sure to keep a straight back and nearly straight legs (a microbend in your knee is helpful).

Side Angle Shoulder Sculptor

Start at the top of your mat.  Jump out to the right.  Bend your right knee, and place your right hand flat on the ground outside of your right foot.  Sweep your left hand up to make your body take a 45-degree angle to the floor.


After holding here for a bit, take hold of a dumbbell and rotate your arm up to the same position.  Pulse the back of your hand up toward the ceiling 10 times.  You will probably end up making an EEK face like me, haha.


Put down your weight, come up to standing, reverse your footing, and repeat on the left side.

Play around with adding some of these poses to your workout, and let me know what you think.  I hope these poses help you have a marvelous Monday!

As always, thanks to Katie for hosting the link-up!

Which do you prefer, yoga or traditional strength training?  Why?