Haute Sweat: Gym Circuit with Mizzfit Bianca Jade


photo credit Michelle Thomas



It’s a sweat and be seen dynamic in the fitness world these days. People head to boutique fitness studios in droves instead of their local gyms. Stylized express-fitness classes are all the rage and everybody wants a spot. Group fitness has become more social, fashionable and desirable to both men and women. People don’t just show up to class…they show up wearing designer sportswear and the latest in tracking accessories. As a fitness trend expert, I’m thrilled to see this movement thrive, but I go crazy when I can’t sign up for my favorite classes because they’re completely SOLD OUT!

I can’t blame the boutique fitness studios. It’s great that business is booming for them! By keeping classes more exclusive and limited to 20 to 30 people, there’s an appeal that keeps clients coming back for more. But what about ME? I need to work out and I don’t do waitlists! What’s a fit girl to do?

The answer is to go back to basics and rediscover the GYM. It sounds crazy but so many of us have abandoned the tried and true gym for studios that charge up to $40 a class. I’m certainly guilty of it. It’s so easy to walk into a studio and let someone tell you what to do for an hour while the best playlist you’ve ever heard is pounding on ceiling speakers, turning the room into a club and drowning out your inhibitions.

But that’s where returning to the gym gets interesting because without the whole “show” there’s a lot more work and soul searching involved. I missed that individualized feeling but it didn’t strike me until I spent a morning at Red Fitness Lounge in my hometown of St. Louis, Missouri creating my own circuit training routine. Wearing some of my favorite back to basics style Lucy pieces, I put together these 7 calorie burning and core conditioning moves to help tone strong muscles without the bulk.

photo credit Michelle Thomas


Haute Sweat Gym Circuit Move #1: Jumping Rope

Get your heart rate up by grabbing a jump rope and doing 10 two-minute rounds of jumping. You don’t have to be a pro jumper, just keep your jumps small and controlled because the higher you jump the quicker you’ll tire yourself out.

Try to softly jump up and down on the balls on your feet. Your heels should never touch the ground. For beginners, take a break every 2 minutes. For the more advanced, try to do 2 rounds of 10 minutes.

photo credit Michelle Thomas


Haute Sweat Gym Circuit Move #2: Alternating Side Plank to Push-Up

Catch your breath, ditch the rope and hit the floor for this core move. Start by doing a tricep push-up and then rotating to the right for a side plank with extended arm.

photo credit Michelle Thomas


Raise your hips as high as you can to activate abdominals. Beginners might want to stagger both feet on the floor for more balance while holding the side plank. If you’re advanced, stack your feet for more of a challenge. Go back to your push-up and switch sides. Do 10 on each side.

Haute Sweat Gym Circuit Move #3: Ugi Ball Squat Toss

Look for an Ugi Ball at the gym. It’s a soft ‘n cushy weighted ball that varies in weight and usually comes in bright colors. Find the one that’s right for you and hold it with extended arms as you squat with it and then quickly rise up tossing it high in the air.

photo credit Michelle Thomas


Promptly catch the Ugi as you lower back into a squat and repeat the move. Make sure to get low in your squat and when you rise up, do it with a burst. With this move you’re working your booty, arms and back. Challenge yourself to complete 20 squat tosses. Good luck ‘cause these are hard!

Haute Sweat Gym Circuit Move #4: Ugi Ball Side Leg Lifts

Don’t let that Ugi go! I love this move because it works the saddlebag area. Get into a side lunge formation with your left knee bent at a 90 degree angle and right foot resting lightly on the Ugi.

photo credit Michelle Thomas


Try to equalize your body weight without leaning too much to the left and lift that right foot up off the Ugi to hip height and then back down again to lightly tap it. Do 25 slow and controlled reps and then switch legs.

Haute Sweat Gym Circuit Move #5: Ugi Ball Pike Up Rollout

Your last move Ugi move is designed to tone the tummy. I recommend going shoeless for this one to have a better grip on the Ugi ball. Get into a plank formation and place both feet on top of the Ugi. Activate and pull up on your abs to slowly walk the Ugi forward towards your hands and pike up your body into a V-shape.

photo credit Michelle Thomas


Slowly return to plank by walking your feet back out with the Ugi and then repeat the move. Try to keep your hands planted firm and still. Do 12 reps.

Haute Sweat Gym Circuit Move #6: TRX Mountain Climbers

Look for hanging TRX bands at the gym or have someone help you set one up. This move pretty much works everything! You’re going to do a suspended mountain climber by gripping the TRX handles (at a comfortable height that should be no more than an arm’s height from the floor) and finding your balance on them.


photo credit Michelle Thomas


Keep your elbows slightly bent and then begin to kick your knees up to chest level as if you’re trying to run up a mountain. Start off slow to get used to the suspension and then find your zone. I recommend 10 quick sets of 30 seconds each.

Haute Sweat Gym Circuit Move #7: Raised Arm & Leg Planks on Physio Ball

Believe it or not, this is your cool down. Grab a half physio ball (it looks like a halved stability ball with a flat side that’s usually black in color).  Set it down on the flat side and assume the plank position with both hands centered on top of the ball. Take 20 seconds to get comfortable in your plank and then slowly lift your right arm and left leg simultaneously. As you lift reach out, lengthen as much as possible and point your toes.


photo credit Michelle Thomas


Maintaining your balance is going to be difficult on this move but it’s really great for toning your core. Just take it slow and breathe through the motion as you lower your limbs and lift the opposite pair. Take your time on these to avoid a spill and don’t worry if you flop a little. This move is designed to throw you off.  Do 10 lifts on each side.

And that’s a wrap! Your heart rate should have come down a little with that last move, but give yourself a few minutes to walk it out and stretch.


photo credit Michelle Thomas


It’s refreshing to design your own workout, especially when you know what your body needs. Use these moves as a starting point and get inspired to do the same the next time you find yourself waitlisted or feeling like you need a break from the class-scene. It’s always good to change things up and redefine your exercise regimen…even if means being a little ‘ol school.

Get the look: Bianca’s Haute Sweat Outfit

1. Studio Racerback Cami

2. Strong and Sexy Jacket

3. On the Move Legging


All Mizzfit photos credit Michelle Thomas

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