Category Archives: Weight Training

The Workout Day That Made Me Ready to Blog Again

I am finally done being pulled down by injuries and am working hard to get back to where I was pre-accident, especially when it comes to running speed. This, combined with an awesome workout in nature on Wednesday, has made me ready to come back to this blog.

So what was so great about Wednesday’s workout?

While visiting a friend in Ohio, I headed to Caesar Creek State Park with 2 competitive bike riders for a fun day on the trails. We ran a trail loop and started some active stretching, comparing favorite moves and discussing dynamic vs. static stretching (side bar: my opinion is strongly for dynamic before working out and static after). We showed off different kinds of push ups. Then we headed to tackle some hill sprints… Actually hill sounds so weak compared to the long, steep, grassy slope before us.20121020-122422.jpg

After just one hill sprint of death each, it was back to the trails for a fast 3 mile run.

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Still not worn out, we grabbed my new weight vest and the fun really started: stairs, burpees, pistols (one-legged squats) and anything else we could come up with.

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We rounded the day out with another mile in the trails — me wearing the weighted vest — and some static stretching.20121020-122500.jpg

It was a gorgeous day. The weather was perfect, the scenery amazing and the company motivational. It was the kind of day worth writing about!

 

 

 

 

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Filed under Equipment and Gear, General Fitness, Running, Weight Training

You Want Me to Pay How Much for a Gym Membership?

I don’t pay for gym memberships. I work at them and attend classes for free, or I buy cheap deals from Web sites such as Groupon. I thought it was because I am cheap and often broke, but apparently it was because no one gym had yet to present me with a reason why I, a fitness professional, should give them my money. Until now.

There are many reasons why I choose to spend over $100 a month at CrossFit 215, but I know you don’t want to read paragraph after paragraph about the awesome, strong female friends that I have made there; the welcoming, family environment; or the fun, creative, results-creating workouts. So instead, I’ll just tell you what happened today at class.

Still recovering from car accident-related injuries that were on fire this week after I pushed them through a half marathon on Sunday, I wasn’t able to fully push myself today. Go to your neighborhood sales-driven gym and you’re lucky if anyone notices. Go to CrossFit 215 and not only will someone notice, but they will take time out to help. The coach today noticed that I was sub-par and took me aside to show me some exercises that I should be doing to release the tension in my hip.

I challenge you to find another gym that will do the same! … though Amrita Yoga and Wellness is coming pretty close. So far I am still attending classes using my bargain-bought 10-class card, but if the finances align you might see me paying two exercise facilities a month!

 

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Filed under General Fitness, Weight Training

MUST DO EXERCISE: Interval Training

To take you even more in depth with my tips about weight loss, I want to talk to you about intervals. Because if you aren’t doing any intervals, you won’t be losing weight. Even if your goal is not to lose weight but just to get healthy or maintain your fitness level, intervals should still be an important part of your workout routine.

Interval training involves bursts of high-intensity exercise alternated with low activity “rest” periods to get your heart rate up and then let it come back down.

Think about it this way: is it easier for you to start working out or to keep working out once you get going? Or apply that to anything you do in life — knitting, cleaning, writing. Now take it back to intervals: it’s easier for your heart and lungs to maintain than to stop and go. Going back and forth between high intensity and rest strengthens your heart and lungs and increases your metabolism.

Here are 3 ideas for an interval-based workout:

1. Sprints and Hills

Alternate running as fast as you can on flat ground with speed walking or jogging up an incline. If you can find a good place out side to do this, go for it. But this will be easy to accomplish on the treadmill, too. Set a time or a distance for each section. Start by trying a 30/60 split, meaning you would sprint for 30 seconds then hike it up the hill for 60 seconds then repeat. See how long you can do it. If you finish 3 sets your first time out, try getting to 4 next time.

2. Stick to the Hill

No need to get fancy really: if you have a hill, you have an interval. Run up it, walk down it and repeat. You can do the same on any set of steps, from the ones in your house to the bleachers at the track.

3. Cardio and Strength Combo

Alternate any cardio – biking, jogging, jumping jacks, etc. – with any strength move – bicep curls, overhead press, lunges, etc. Go back and forth for a minute each and feel free to switch up the activity. Bike for a minute, squat for a minute; run for a minute, curl for a minute, and on.

NEXT UP: 7 more fat-killing cardio-boosting interval workout ideas!

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Filed under Beginner Exercise, Biking, General Fitness, Running, Weight Loss, Weight Training