Photo Credit: Health Perch
It’s early March and I am so over the gym. In late December I joined LA Fitness. I wanted and needed to join a gym as the weather cooled and as outdoor tennis season came to a close. Now let me tell you about my LA Fitness… it’s SO stereotypical and it reminds me of gym parodies:
- Super swole guys always checking everybody out and looking at their muscles
- Cardio machines are never free
- Super fit gals going into depth about their carb vs protein, just shuuush
- Lots of grunting and unnecessary loud sounds
It was cool for 2 months, now- I am OVER IT ALL. I started thinking about my days in grad school and why I loved my workouts. I played tennis & basketball, climbed, did yoga, ran and more. Now, I go to the gym to lift and take a step class..dats it. That’s dry and it’s no fun.
I gotta change it. What do I do?
This is what I’m thinking: Take an introductory climbing class and look into memberships at climbing gyms (Philly has a few & I really miss climbing.) Start playing tennis when the weather warms up- hopefully I can play twice a week. I really have no goals when it comes to lifting, so I can cut my days at the gym back to like 1, maybe 2. Annnnd, I can start hitting the hills and art museum steps again!
My goals for my workouts are simple- get healthier by eating better (reduce gluten and dairy, increase H20) and maintain my fitness levels. I love where I am physically and I am quite content with who I am and how I look. I know there are a plethora of reasons why people become stagnant and disillusioned with their fitness journey. People don’t realize this happens because you need to switch up what you do. This inforgraphic to my right explore this. Take a look at it and then take a few minutes to re-evaluate what you’re doing and not doing. As the season changes, it is a perfect opportunity to add some variety in your workouts to reach your goals.
Around the Park/ After dark. . .
*The blog post title is from Jill Scott’s song A Long Walk. Check the song out, Check the album out, and then continue to binge listen to her for a few hours.*
Today we are talking about walking. Walking? Yes, WALKING!
Walking has been the topic of many conversations, conference calls & convention workshops in my life over the last 12 months. In September 2015, the Surgeon General released his Call to Action which focused on Walking and Walkability. Active Living Research, The CDC, The National Physical Activity Plan, National Coalition for Promoting Physical Activity and many other organizations have followed suit and provided infographics, assistance and other information about walking and starting walking programs.
I run hills. I lift. I climb. I play tennis. Everybody knows this, but all these activities can be hard on the body. Walking, on the other hand, provides a multitude of benefits (which I’ll list below) and it is low impact. When I had a full schedule of clients for personal training, walking was always included in the warm up for clients with chronic conditions.
The World Health Organization, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and American Heart Foundation recommend a minimum 10,000 steps per day to improve health and reduce risks of chronic disease. (source)
Benefits of Walking
Why is walking such a hot topic these days?
- Walking is inexpensive. You don’t need any specialized equipment or clothing.
- Lower risk of injury because walking isn’t vigorous and has a low intensity level
- It is highly inclusive [for many disabled individuals] with the assistance of a walking aid or another person.
- For individuals who are sedentary and inactive, walking is a great way to introduce physical activity.
- Walking is physical activity and there are numerous health benefits that are associated with being physically active.
I am sharing these great training tips from PowerBar Team Elite athlete and American long distance Josh Cox. Josh Cox is a 4-time Olympic Trials Qualifier, 3-time National Team Member and the American Record Holder in the 50k. In 2009 and 2011 his 50k were the fastest in the world.
Additionally, I have a complementary video and some brief tips about nutrition after your workout. Remember these four things when deciding what to eat:
- Your goals and the type of workout you do matters. If you want to lose weight vs gaining muscle vs maintaining. Strength vs endurance vs volume training vs cardio.
- The building blocks of muscles are protein.
- Carbs are the main source of fuel/energy.
- Check the nutritional content, beware of high sugar!
Below are the tips. I like and agree with these. Consider these tips when you go outdoors for a workout!
A glimpse of the app
If you haven’t read in previous posts, I am not a huge user of apps when it comes to fitness and health. But SworkIt, yo… Sworkit really might have me change my mind. (Simply Work it…. how catchy.)
My mom has been using it for over a year and she loves it. Well, today after work we both needed to get a workout in but
- We were short on time (both had to leave about 90 mins after we got in.)
- It was Pouring (no hill sprints at Kelly Drive)
- Traffic was HORRIBLE (no driving out to the gym)
I got down about 7 minutes before her and did a little work, then she came down and turned SWORKIT on and I did it with her (my first time.) It was only 10 minutes, but it was so great. I added some intensity on my own when necessary (for instance, I doing push-ups instead of the suggested wall push-ups)
With Sworkit, you can customize your workouts. They provide cardio, strength, yoga & stretching. You can adjust your time… so she wants to increase from 10 minutes to 15 minutes, and it goes above 30 minutes. You can check out your progress, they have a HUGE list of exercises and accompanying videos for the exercises. The app can track your calories and you have the ability to customize your own workout. I totally love this jawn!
…it’s going dooown .
Hey Guys!! Remember a few posts ago when I explained why I needed to start doing sprint/track HIIT workouts to improve my tennis game? Well I have been doing just that. Real Quick: HIIT is High Intensity Interval Training. Alexis & I did distance intervals, not timed intervals. For instance a 50 m dash, all out -then rest or a low intensity jog. The dash was our sprint interval.
I am going into my 4th week doing sprint workouts and, while in the moment I despise them and it reaffirms that I do not miss track, these workouts have helped with movement on the tennis court. That was the bigger & more important goal anyway. Alexis is an ex-trackie and hurdler who ran club track at RU and she plans all of our workouts, which are as followed:
Week 1: 8 x 100 repeats. Start at about 60 percent and increase your intensity & speed every 100 meter dash.
Gotta get low for this one!
Tennis is my favorite sport (Yall know this..right?) I love watching it. I love playing it. I love teaching it. After my boss agreed to start giving me lessons, I had to re-evaluate my workout schedule for a few reasons:
- It sucks playing tennis when you are super sore from your workout the previous day
- I needed to start doing sport specific training, which is very different than my old routine
I still write everything out
So instead of explaining everything I was doing before, I’ll just write about my updated workout. The picture is what I wrote up and what I use as the bases of my workout these days. Let me explain. Tennis is a sport that requires some endurance- if you have a long match, but most often you are in a rallying fairly quickly (I’d say between 15-30 secs of intense play depending on the skill level.) In between each point you are allowed 25 seconds rest, and on odd number games you have a changeover which is 90 secs max. In between sets the rest break is 2 mins. So my training needs to incorporate that pace…That’s where the HIIT Training comes in. It’s done on a track and it allows me to train closer to how my body would feel in a match. Now I am still keeping my 3-4 mile run once a week with BGR…I need my aerobic system to be working too, I need to be able to handle endurance.
Last week I gave you a break down of Plyo…a Plyo 101. I posted a picture which outlined what I did. Now, here is the accompanying video which shows & explains what I did! All in less than 2 minutes! !