Get Stronger With These Quarantine Workouts

Time to work off all those free chicken nuggets McDonald’s has been giving health care workers.

When I first moved to Vermont, the two most important things I needed in life here were Trader Joe’s and a Pure Barre studio. Yes, call me a basic bitch, that’s fine. I did Pure Barre off and on for about 3-4 years in MA and VT. After my last Pure Barre membership expired in November ’19, I decided to use up my remaining classes at Core Studio, a local barre/pilates studio. After that, I thought my body really needed more cardio. I hate cardio because I don’t like sweating but it was time. After hearing recommendations from a high school friend who went to Orangetheory Fitness (OTF) in San Francisco whose trainer had transferred to my local OTF, and from two local friends who were current members, I tried it out.

Orangetheory Fitness At Home

I loved and hated my first free OTF class because I sweat. I was pretty sore for the following few days. I signed up for the 8 classes/month package since I tend to find classes convenient to my varying schedule about 2 days per week.

Anyway, about a month later the quarantine shut things down. I was so glad I had the heart rate monitor for my home workouts with OTF. The heart rate monitor lets you know when you are in the optimal zone, the orange zone.

Per OTF,  the “Orange Zone (84-91% Maximum Heart Rate) – This is where the magic happens and where you achieve “EPOC” (Excess Post-Exercise Oxygen Consumption) – what we call the “Orange Effect / Afterburn.” The goal is to accumulate 12 minutes or more in this zone within a 60-minute period to achieve the maximum caloric burn for up to 36 hours AFTER your workout is completed.”

OTF has been posting a daily workout pretty much throughout the quarantine which has been a lifesaver. I would’ve felt like a blob without them. I definitely tend to do certain posted videos more often than others because of their focus on specific areas. After 2-3 workouts per week over maybe 6 weeks, my arms are much more toned and my biceps are huge (in my eyes at least). RAWR! BEAST MODE!

^ This is my favorite workout thus far. It really pushed me. I don’t have bands so I manage without them because it’s still a solid workout.

My home OTF studio may be opening in 4 weeks but I’d rather wait longer to go back to ensure it’s safe and the curve is still trending downwards.

Chloe Ting

On top of OTF, I also stumbled upon a killer ab workout by Chloe Ting on Youtube. Ugh, I’m seeing lines form on my stomach…or maybe I’m just imagining things. Either way, I’m quite excited about it.

I reallllyyyy enjoy this. The Russian twists and Spiderman plank are *mwah* bellissimo! The morning after a workout, I wake up and run to my bedroom mirror and flash myself and try to find any changes. Then I run to the bigger mirror in my spare bedroom and look in that mirror…because I have to look again in different lighting?? Not sure, but I do it. Hubby just committed to doing this with me 3-4 times a week. We’re gonna walk out of this quarantine with 6-packs…although the quarantine is possibly almost over so too late?!


As a former garba dancer, some of these choreographed dances really put me on cloud 9. BollyX is for all the aunties, like myself, who miss their good old dance days in college and before.  I bought the lifetime membership to BollyX about 6 months ago. I will use it off and on when I’m in the dancing mood. It definitely is the fix I need at times. Youtube does have a few of their videos for free but their website allows you to build a workout playlist that incorporates a warmup, dance routines and a cool down.


I used to do Blogilates workouts but I feel like many of her newer videos I am just incapable of doing. I tend to resort to her older uploads because of this. I haven’t done many of these in the last few months but she’s come up with some weeklong challenges that look rather interesting:

What have you been doing for your home workouts? Leave a comment below!


A Doctor’s Spouse’s Life: Residency Year Two

(Residency Year One post is here: A Doctor’s Spouse’s Life: Residency Year One)

I know my blog is called Relatable Roni and that’s because I enjoy finding common ground with others. At most times, I feel like the average person, but this topic is probably only relatable to a few. 

In most other medical and surgical residencies, intern year (first year) of residency is the most difficult. In neurosurgery, it’s year two and seven (yes, neurosurgery is a 7 year-long residency). During first year, my husband and I went to the movies with two of his co-residents. They said, “He will be the busiest person in the whole hospital next year.” I just smiled. Later, I said to him, “What did they mean?” I didn’t know it could get worse! And I didn’t believe it could get worse until it actually happened *gasp*.

Intern year (first year) I did at least see him because I was unemployed and he was consistently off on Tuesdays. Each of the neurosurgical residents have 4 days off per month compared to the 8 days off “normal” people have. Now that I’m actually employed and his schedule is inconsistent and even worse, I’ve counted the hours we’ve seen each other in a particular week: 14 hours. Spouses tend to see each other for 14 hours in a single day on the weekend. This was our total for a whole week including any days off. It doesn’t help that in my field, I work varying shifts including on the weekends. There are days when I am leaving the house at 7am and he is leaving work to come home at 7am. There are days when he comes home at 12:30 pm and I have to leave for work at 1:30pm. He showers and we eat lunch and that’s it. If he has an extended amount of free time, it is well spent catching up on some much-needed sleep (See examples below).

Sleeping in an Uber in Washington, D.C.
Sleeping in an Uber in Montreal, Quebec

If we don’t communicate effectively or even have the time to communicate, I’ve neglected to request weekends off so they may coincide with one another. Communication has been so difficult I’ve resorted to emailing my husband to finish conversations we’ve started. And of course, I’m always the one that has to work around his schedule since his is inflexible. But you know what feels great?! Seeing him understand what I’ve been dealing with.

What do I mean by “dealing with?” Well, I spend a lot of time at home by myself waiting for him to come home. I’m essentially waiting for no reason. Eventually and hopefully, I decide to stop waiting, get off the couch, and fill those hours with cleaning, cooking, grocery shopping, workouts, gaining a social life and just being productive. So this past weekend, I ended up working and he was off. In other words, the roles were reversed, and he finally experienced being the one home alone for a whole weekend. What did he think about it? He was bummed, just as I can get at times. We want to spend our free time together, not apart. Residency life is hard and it’s no one’s fault. It’s the nature of the field.

How we attend weddings together. “Raj on a stick” has been to 5 weddings this year. Real Raj has been to 1.

Because of our lack of time with one another, we are looking forward to a nice and quiet Christmas break at our home in Vermont. No packing. No traveling. No rushing around. Just going to take it all in (TWSS) and try to enjoy each other’s company. Let’s hope we still like each other by the end of it.

^ What I do when he’s asleep by 7pm. I can’t believe that dinosaur walking all over him didn’t wake him up!