Last night I survived 7 miles on a treadmill. It actually flew by because I spent most of the run doing step-up interval sprints (the sprint speed increases a little each time). Treadmills can be very boring so I like to keep myself busy by setting sprint goals. It makes the miles go by faster than just plodding along at a steady rate.
Of course, you don’t have to do 7 miles to get an effective workout. You don’t even have to sprint if you aren’t in great running shape. You could simply walk at a 4mph pace and alternate between a low and high incline to keep your heart rate up and your body guessing. However, intervals are a great way to get in better shape because they really challenge you and they also increase your cardiovascular fitness. For the short periods of time you are working very hard, your body is compensating by taking in more oxygen and learning to adapt to more stimulating exercise. Therefore, a 3 mile interval workout can do more for your fitness level than a 3 mile steady rate jog. If you can manage, doing even 20 minutes of interval cardio (this works on the elliptical and stationary bike as well) after a strength routine will torch calories, help you lose more weight, and keep your metabolism revved for a longer period of time after your actual workout is over. It’s a win-win workout!
This morning I woke up for a strength training session. In an effort not to wake up at the complete buttcrack of dawn, I’m splitting my workout up today. Strength this morning and my run tonight. I don’t know why, but 5:45am just seems way more impossible than 6:15am.
Do the following sets 2-3 times
- Tic-toc lunges (one forward lunge, one reverse lunge same leg) – 30 each leg
- Chest presses (12lbs) – 20
- Sumo squats holding 20lb weight – 25
- Hammer curls (20lbs) – 12 each arm
- Leg extensions (on ground) – 30 each leg
- Tricep dips – 30
- Pilates leg lifts (inner and outer) 20 each way, each leg
- Downdog pushups – 20
- Plank – 60sec
- Side plank w/ reach unders – 60sec each side
- Flutter kicks – 60 sec
- Side lifts w. 20lb weight – 20 each side
- Crunches on stability ball – 60 sec
- Superman (to work back ) – 5 for 5sec each
I love the way strength training makes me feel. Not only do I really feel strong, but I also feel in control of my body and I really enjoy when my entire body is tighter and firmer (who wouldn’t enjoy a tighter body?). Running is great, but for me it just doesn’t give me the complete feeling of fitness. After my workout I downed an interesting green juice: kale stems, romaine, cilantro, zucchini, carrots, cucumber, orange, and pear. I followed that up with a protein shake similar to the dessert recovery smoothie…gotta love chocolate in the morning! I won’t pretend that being gung-ho about exercise is always easy for me; in fact, at the beginning of the week I was really struggling with focus and motivation. So tomorrow it’s time to talk about EXCUSES and how to beat them!
What are some of your most common excuses for avoiding exercise and healthy eating?