The Lockdown Lowdown: Killer abs, goal setting, and comfort food

April 28, 2020

Spring cleaning isn't just reserved for cleaning out pantries or purging closets. It can be the perfect time to look inward and take inventory of what your mind and body need for a renewed sense of self. In this week's edition of TIBCO-Silicon Valley Bank's Lockdown Lowdown, we share ideas on how to do just that. Learn how to set realistic short term goals with Sarah Gigante, Kristen Faulkner shows us how to use a foam roller for a killer ab workout, and Shannon Malseed's recipe for chicken soup might be the ultimate comfort food. 

A Healthy Mindset: Daily Goal Setting

I’ve always enjoyed the challenge of setting goals and striving to achieve them. One of my earliest memories of this is a vision of my eight-year-old self riding around the local netball court on my little 24-inch road bike, trying to strike up the courage and coordination to take a drink from my bidon while riding. It took me a couple of hours, but I still remember the immense pride and accomplishment I felt when I mastered the skill at last.


I certainly still enjoy chasing this feeling, and it’s what drives me to push my body and mind day in, day out. However, over the years, goals have become harder to achieve, and the time required to do so has grown. A single afternoon of riding around the local netball court long ago lost its ability to allow me to tick off a goal from my list.



However, since this self-isolation period started, I’ve made a real attempt to include some of these shorter-term goals back into my plan. Although I find motivation in imagining where I want to be in the long-term, sometimes it’s also nice to focus on where I am right now, and what small things I can work on right away. It’s helpful to have these progress goals as little stepping stones that I can tick off in the short-term. Especially in the current period, when the previous structure is lacking from our lives, and it’s hard to guess at when we will be racing again, something small, like a daily to-do list is a great way to maintain positivity, productivity, and a sense of achievement. 

I now write some goals for the next day every night, just before I go to bed. Whether it’s nailing tomorrow’s efforts, watching a university lecture, making time for a yoga session or texting a friend, there are always small things you can do to make each day a good one. And the best thing is that these days all add up. Before you know it, the small, but sure, habits you’ve created for yourself will have added up, and you’ll be well on your way to achieving some of those big, more daunting goals too! ~ Sarah Gigante

At home workout routine


Each week we will share with you an indoor training routine from one of our riders.  Our goal is to give you ideas that require minimal equipment.

This week’s workout is: "Killer Abs” by Kristen Faulkner



- Plank on foam roller (1 minute each: front, right, front, left, front)

  • Purpose: Builds stable core stabilization muscles to maintain balance on an unstable surface 

  • Technique: Engage your core muscles and keep your lower and upper back in a flat plane throughout the exercise. 

  • Keep hips up (they may try to drop to the ground as you get tired)

  • Bonus: On the front plank, roll your forearms out and back on the foam roller 

- Dead bug with block (3x10/leg)

  • Purpose: Builds core stabilization muscles and helps prevent injury in spine & lower back

  • Technique: Move slowly, keeping hips and low back still throughout the exercise. Engage your core muscles and keep your lower back pressed into the floor (there should be no air between lower back and floor)

  • Start with both knees at a 90-degree angle with shins parallel to the ground (thighs perpendicular). Keep toes pointed up the entire time

  • Extend same-side arm and leg out, and then return them to a 90-degree angle

  • Bonus: To mix it up, extend opposite arm & leg instead of same-side arm & leg

- Single-leg Bicycles with Band (3x10/leg)

  • Purpose: Builds core stabilization muscles while mimicking the 1-legged movement on a bike

  • Technique: Move slowly, keeping hips & low back still throughout the exercise. Engage your core muscles and keep your lower back pressed into the floor (there should be no air between lower back and floor)

  • Start with both knees at a 90-degree angle with shins parallel to the ground (thighs perpendicular). Keep toes pointed up the entire time

  • As you extend one leg, keep the stable leg at a 90-degree angle (resist the urge to pull the stable leg towards your chest)

  • Bonus: Use a higher-resistance band for more difficulty



Weekly healthy recipe

Chicken Soup by Shannon Malseed


1 whole chicken 
1 onion
4-5 carrots 
200-300 g pumpkin 
1 bunch bok choy 
1 corn cobb 
1-2 zucchini 
1/2 broccoli head. I use the stalk too!
2-3 stock cubes 




1. Chop up all the ingredients however you like to have them.
2. Sauté the onion in olive oil in a large pot. 
3. Add all the ingredients (except the bok choy) to the pot, and cover with boiled water (add enough water, so ingredients are almost submerged) 
4. Add stock cubes (or mix these with some of the water before adding them to the pot) 
5. Reduce heat to low and let the soup gods do their work. Leave it bubble as long as you like - the longer, the better. 


6. Add the bok choy 5 minutes before you serve, just to heat it up. 
7. You can add any type of noodle you like - tonight I used vermicelli noodles - cooked them separately and added the soup on top.




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