#mindbodymat: day 13 + Pilates Arm Workout

MBM Upper Body Cover Image

Good morning!

Welcome to Day 13 of the #mindbodymat challenge.

We have 3 workouts left and I encourage you to finish strong. Complete your workouts, complete your Self-Care Challenges and give it all you’ve got. It’s okay if you haven’t been “perfect” over the past 3 weeks. You know this space isn’t about being perfect, it’s about doing the best you can and remembering that something is always better than nothing.

So if you fell off course, that’s okay! Today is the day to jump right back on.

If you follow me on Instagram/Facebook/Twitter, you probably know that I’ve been practicing #cellfreesundays for the past few months. It’s a discipline created to help me take break form work on the weekends. And let me tell you, it’s much harder than it sounds!


But it’s so worth it. On those days I find myself doing things I’ve been wishing I had time to do (reading, resting, organizing) rather than being sucked into social media or other work projects that I want to tackle. But most importantly, it helps me to practice presence and rest.

My daughter is growing up fast and my husband is home all day on Sundays so it’s a great opportunity for personal connection and mental rejuvenation before the week begins.

I invite you to join me this Sunday for #cellfreesundays (wouldn’t it be cool to start a worldwide practice of unplugging once a week?) but I also invite you to give a mini digital detox sometime today…

Self-Care Challenge…

Do you ever find yourself checking your phone mindlessly out of habit? There have been a lot of things written about “phone addiction” which are really eye-opening, but we’re not going to get into that today. In true Balanced Life fashion we’re just going to focus on baby steps…


Today I encourage you to take break from ALL electronic devices for a designated amount of time. Maybe it’s 30 minutes, maybe it’s all afternoon; the time frame depends on your personal schedule. Just set a goal and stick to it!

Let’s workout…

I had fun filming today’s Pilates arm workout for you. To change things up I incorporated light weights. You can either use 1-3 lb weights, water bottles, cans of soup, or wine bottles. Anything will do, just keep it light and keep it simple.

Have fun and enjoy the burn!

Today’s Check-In: show me ONE thing you’re doing to live healthier today. Get creative and be sure to tag me and use the hashtag #mindbodymat. Remember, every post counts as an entry in this week’s big giveaway!


Signature-transPS – have you entered this week’s incredible giveaway? An Athleta shopping spree could be yours. Click here for details.

PPS – are you signed up to receive The Balanced Life newsletter yet? I send out monthly updates, recipes and workout tips that I think you’d enjoy. I promise to never spam or share your email address. 🙂 Sign up here.


Ready to BUILD STRENGTH & FEEL GOOD in just 15 minutes a day?

Join the FREE 5-day Pilates Strong challenge!

  1. Yuko 7 years ago

    I could do more on these work out 🙂 Ok I am having a hard time to be consistent but I would hope to change my life style to work out before I go to work. I feel great. Thanks, Robin.

  2. Capri 7 years ago

    I loved this workout! Totally going to be coming back to it again and again.

  3. Jamie Batey 7 years ago

    Excellent! So much good work with such a small amount of weight! I was wondering about the position of your feet during the “salute.” When you come up on your toes, are your feet in parallel or in heels-together stance?

    • Robin Long 7 years ago

      Great question! Parallel, sit bone distance apart. 🙂

  4. Cara 7 years ago

    Thanks Robin. As an OT, I often recommended using cans of beans or soup for my adult clients to use when doing arm strengthening exercises. I must admit that until today, I had never tried doing exercises myself using canned goods as weights. It is really effective!!

    One more thing:-). I didn’t get to the workout yesterday and I was feeling badly about it last night. My 11 year old son said, “that’s okay mom, you can just double up tomorrow.” He was right!! I love that you can start fresh the next day and do your workout right in your own home. #mindbodymat

  5. Monica 7 years ago

    Nice change up to the workout today. I’m not really into weight either but the light weights were a good fit for me. Love the idea of unplugging from cell phone and distracting electronics. We have a rule about the iPad until the baby goes to bed. I always say we don’t want to miss anything the baby is doing and don’t want him to think our faces are iPads! Also I missed the Monday double up portion but I did 3 of your workouts yesterday and two today so tried to make up for it. 🙂

  6. Andrea 7 years ago

    I am going to miss these workouts when the challenge is up. Combining these with my reformer workouts has made a difference I can see. Today my grand kids and dog were on the mat with me. Wish I could have taken a picture

  7. morales 7 years ago

    what a wonerful view? it is very difficult to find this in down-town.

  8. Kate 7 years ago

    Ok, so this morning I did this one (one of my faces, by the way) while my daughter (18 months of energy) played on the floor. I set the computer above her on the bookshelf and half way through she stood up and looked right at you, waved and said “hi!” So cute! Glad she got to see Mommy taking care of herself today! And thanks for these workouts, I just love them.

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