Monday, March 06, 2017

Being Healthy

Since turning the big 3-0 in November, I've been focusing on trying to look and feel younger. I mean, I don't want to be one of those ladies that holds onto their youth in an inelegant way; I don't want to walk around wearing Forever 21 when I'm 45 thinking that I'm hot shit. However, I do want to look as fresh-faced as possible but more importantly, I want to feel youthful.

I despise working out because I don't find it enjoyable. I love hiking and snorkeling and biking and swimming, but these are not necessarily easily accessible activities on a day-to-day basis, especially considering the winters in the northeast are rather brutal and there's also the obvious point that there are no coral reefs around here. I did work out quite a bit in college and for a while after I graduated but when I started traveling for work and life got busier, I lost all motivation.
I've been feeling extra sluggish this past year and a little bit uncomfortable in my own body (which is what happens when your clothes are just a bit too tight). So when work announced that in 2017 we would be reimbursed for gym memberships (instead of a free membership to a gym local to our main office, which is what the previous program was) I decided that it was a sign. This was the motivator I needed to get my ass into gear and start a proper exercise regimen again. I found a gym within biking distance of my house and signed up in early January (to take advantage of the discounts and special offers) and I've been going regularly ever since.

My workout schedule lately has been as follows:
  • Monday bunday - 25 minutes on the treadmill which includes a 2 minute warm up, 20 minutes of intervals between running and walking on a steep incline, and a 3 minute cool down. After cardio, get on the mat and do some booty workouts, which include donkey kicks, donkey kicks on elbows, kickbacks, glute bridges, single leg glute bridges, lunges, and squats. I like to do 4 to 6 sets, 10 reps of each motion. [Monday's playlist includes: Anaconda - Nicki Minaj, Back That Azz Up - Juvenile, Get Ur Freak On - Missy Elliot, Slow Jamz - Twista, Lolli Lolli - Three 6 Mafia]
  • tummy Tuesday - 25 minutes on the elliptical which includes a 2 minute warm up, 20 minutes of intervals at various stride lengths and resistances (and a few minutes going backwards), and a 3 minute cool down. After cardio, get on the mat and do some ab workouts, which include crunches on the bosu, side oblique crunches, supermans, swimming kicks, leg lifts, and planks. I like to do 5 to 6 sets, 10 reps of each motion. [Tuesday's playlist includes: No Diggity - Blackstreet, Look At Me Now - Chris Brown, Formation - Beyonce, Walk It Out - Unk, Remember the Name - Fort Minor]
  • thorough Thursday - 25 minutes on the lateral elliptical which includes a 2 minute warm up, 20 minutes of intervals at various stride lengths and resistances (varying the motions in both directions), and a 3 minute cool down. After cardio, get on some weight machines and work on arms and legs, which includes the bicep curl machine (25 lbs), the tricep push machine (40 lbs), and the leg press (50 lbs). I like to do 3 sets, 10 reps of each motion. After that, I'll work on my core with downward dog crunches, inchworms, and body crawls. I like to do 3 sets, 10 reps of each motion. [Thursday's playlist includes: Run The World - Beyonce, 212 - Azealia Banks, Truffle Butter - Nicki Minaj, All I Do Is Win - DJ Khaled, Lose Control - Missy Elliot]
  • On Wednesdays, I have a pottery wheel class so I skip the gym. Fridays, I give myself a little break. And on weekends (weather permitting) I'm pretty active outdoors. My sister and I have been going on bike rides (which I'll share more about soon) and when the weather gets nicer, we'll be hitting up Ramapo Reservation a lot more.
  • Oh, and during cardio, I like to listen to On Off - Cirez D (Sebastien Leger Remix). It's repetitive, but it has a good beat and helps me keep a consistent pace.
I'm constantly on Pinterest looking for ways to mix it up so that I don't feel bored, and so I don't eventually plateau. There are a lot of machines in the gym that I'm intimidated by but I think I'll slowly start to explore them more.

I'm not really interested in tracking my weight, although, I am keeping a casual food and fitness diary just to make sure that 'calories in' are never more than 'calories out.' Instead, I'll be measuring my progress with how I feel, how my clothes fit, and how I look. And perhaps if I'm really brave, I'll share some before and after photographs eventually, if there's a noteworthy difference.

I wanted to put together this post as an accountability measure; if I announce it on the internet, I have to stick to it, right?

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