Monday, January 23, 2012
In November, I wrote about the importance of getting a fitness game plan in place before the holidays hit. Maybe you did and maybe you didn’t.
As January is a month of renewal, let’s consider it a second chance of sorts and revisit the issue.
One of the most common excuses for avoiding a workout involves time, or the lack thereof. And while I fully understand that, after awhile this excuse develops into a crutch. We can’t make more time, but we certainly can try and restructure the time that we do have, and incorporate exercise and movement into our lives.
To many people, devoting one full hour of time to a workout is a lot. Let’s be honest. Most of the time it’s way over an hour, once you factor in drive time to the gym and showering. Some days this is possible and others it’s not.
But consistency is key to achieving a workout goal, so you need to be able to compensate for the days when you have a packed schedule. And if that is every single day, then so be it.
Instead of focusing on the time that you don’t have, focus on the time that you do. Break up that hour into manageable segments throughout your day, and you absolutely can get your workout in. It may not be conventional, but you can make it count. Focus on the fact that you are actively doing something instead of zeroing in on the things that you have yet to do.
If you are out of shape, that certainly didn’t happen overnight. So accept the fact that you will not wake up 30 pounds lighter and with rock-hard abs tomorrow. Be willing to suck it up and get to work. It’s for you, after all.
Incorporating change into your workout will force your body to work in different ways and will help keep you from getting bored.
It goes without saying that if you are trying to lose weight, you are going to have to work hard. There really are no new “rules” here. Be mindful of what you eat, cut out the empty calories and junk food, and move more. These are just a few basics that we all have heard a few thousand times. There is a reason they have staying power.
In my previous column I promised some new moves, and I hope that you will give them a try. All can be easily modified to accommodate different levels of fitness, so challenge yourself. And let me know how you are doing. We all can use a little motivation and inspiration, after all.
“Fit It In” Express Workout
Mix up these moves “as you see fit” throughout your day. Do be aware of the length of time per exercise and the repetitions so that you can keep track of your progress. Shoot for 2 sets of each move.
- 10-20 minutes of cardio: Options may include a quick power walk or jog, climbing the stairs (yes, even the ones in your house count!), jumping jacks, mountain climbers, chasing small children as they run amok, etc.
- Overhead Squat with Ball: Works chest, arms, shoulders, back, abs, glutes and quads. Stand with legs slightly wider than shoulder length apart and raise stability ball over your head, with arms close to your ears. Squat, hold for one count, and return to start. Arms remain lifted throughout the set. 12-15 reps.
- Bicep Curl with Resistance Band: Stand on the band with both feet, shoulder width apart. Grip the bands palm up, lock elbows to side and raise or curl your hands up to your chest. Hold for one second and return to starting position, resisting band. 12-15 reps.
- Two- Arm Row: Works upper and mid back. Holding 5- to 8-pound weights in each hand, stand with feet together and knees slightly bent. Hinge forward at waist so that weights are at knee level. Keep back straight and pull weights to chest until upper arms are parallel to spine. 12-15 reps.