Doin’ it at home….

I haven’t written, but I have been plugging away at my fitness pursuits, but I hit some roadblocks. First was a cold, then two days after getting better there was another one…. Then the stomach flu. Those things over such a short period pretty much drained my motivation. I was holding on by a thread and just didn’t have it in me to write about health and fitness when I was feeling anything but healthy. I hate to sit (write?) and complain, so I just kept silent.

But there were a lot of bright spots: I found a decent gym! 20 minute drive away, friendly staff, beautiful new equipment, not too crowded. Exactly what I’ve been looking for. Except for 20 minutes is a little far when you add in rush hour, which doubles the drive, hence pretty much making the evening and weekends the only good time to work out. I want to make sure that working out isn’t a chore and make it as easy as possible…. So I found another solution.

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My own gym!

I’ve pushed all my furniture to one side, hung a mirror (my old living room mirror haha) and moved everything around to make some extra space.

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I can’t tell you how absolutely wonderful it is having weights in my basement. I’ve said it before, TRX is a great workout but it just doesn’t make my heart sing. When I lift weights, I feel like this:

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TRX makes me feel more like this:

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Given that weight lifting truly makes me happy, I’m feeling a little stupid for not doing this earlier. Cost wise, I’ve spent about 6 months membership fees to the gym that I found, so I feel like I’m ahead of the game.

I’d still like to purchase an adjustable bench (I’m using a stability ball in place of a bench now, but it is tough when lifting really heavy to put weights down without dropping them or wiggling to sit up, but maybe I just need more practice?), an Olympic barbell, some more weights and maybe a medicine ball. Honestly though, I can do pretty much everything with what I have now. My current inventory includes a variety of resistance bands, stability ball, TRX, dumbbells (2×12, 2×15, 2×20, 2×25 and 2×30), mats, foam roller, an Olympic EZ curl bar, some weights for it, jump rope and fast rope, and coming soon a box jump.

What have you done to make working out fool proof in your life?

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A fun workout

This week I’m still on vacation but it is more of a stay-cation consisting of pool time, home organization and some back to school shopping for the step-kidlets. With my wide-open schedule has come GYM TIME!!!! Yay! No TRX in the basement but real fluorescent-lit-humid-from-other people’s-sweat-all-the-equipment-I-love GYM TIME!

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I’ve said before, there isn’t a gym close-by that is convenient besides the Crossfit one, but I do actually have two gym memberships. One to Goodlife, which doesn’t have any locations in my new home town, and another to the base gym where hunky husband works.

I wouldn’t normally shell out for two memberships, but I paid in full of the Goodlife one before I found out I’d be moving, and the base gym costs peanuts, so I keep renewing it for the times when I have time to make the 35 min drive.

This week, I’ve had nothing but time:)

Yesterday’s workout was a doozie, and today I can feel it in every muscle of my body. Since the gym is a luxury that I haven’t had much lately, I trained my favourite parts: biceps and triceps. Usually when I workout, I follow a plan, but since I’ve been TRXing, I don’t have a current weight lifting plan so I made it up on the fly.

My workout consisted of 3 sets of 10 reps for each section outlined below. I choose a weight that was tough to complete the last two reps of each set.

Superset
– barbell curls
– seated tricep press

 

Superset
– DB hammer curls
mountain climbers

Superset
– decline seated bicep curls
hippity hops (otherwise know as lateral bench hops, but I call them hippity hops. Get a sturdy bench, stand alongside it with one foot planted on the bench and the other on the ground, power-up with an explosive movement, landing with your bench foot on the ground on the opposite side and your floor-foot now resting on the bench) one of my favourite plyo moves because it is really FUN

Superset
skull crushers
– pulsing squat jumps (pulse for 5, explosive jump up)

Superset
– cable tricep pull down
– box jumps onto a bench

Roman chair raises
(I was too tired to superset this)

Arms are my favourite part to work. In fact, I’m kind of like this guy on the inside, even though I know better and wouldn’t actually do this, I’d still like to.

Anyway, I am still feeling this workout in every part of my body. All of my plyometrics kept my heart rate up and had the added benefit of working my legs and behind. Today I did a similar workout, intersecting HIIT intervals into a chest/back workout.

What is your favourite body part to work?

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Body Image

A friend posted a quote by Maya Angelou from her poem Phenomenal Woman the other day. This is a poem that I’m familiar with and the lines always stuck with me. Fortunately for me, she posted it just when I needed the reminder.

Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I’m not cute or built to suit a fashion model’s size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I’m telling lies.
I say,
It’s in the reach of my arms,
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I’m a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman, that’s me.
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I’ve talked about how the change in my lifestyle has made me look different, but honestly the change is mostly internal. I still thought I looked pretty good, but I didn’t feel good.  When I’m not working out and eating well I don’t feel in control. I don’t feel as strong.

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I enjoy the look of a strong woman – I’ll admit it, if you’re a female friend of mine and have nice biceps or defined shoulders, I’ve totally checked them out.
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So, yes, I enjoy how look when I’m fitter and more muscular. But honestly, mostly I love how I feel.  You know how I mentioned the other day that I worked out and then immediately felt 10 feet tall and bullet proof? It’s that feeling that I love about being fit. That feeling that I can put my mind to something and conquer it. I can work harder and lift heavier weights, I can do more pushups the next time. Its a constant contest with yourself, and most days your winning. I love it.
I love the feeling I get when I know that I am doing the things that I need for my health- eating well, exercising, getting enough sleep, taking my vitamins, drinking lots of water. When I manage to balance this perfect storm of things I feel great. And that’s what 21 Days is really about.
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