Reasons to get out of bed…

Posts tagged ‘Physical exercise’

Fitness Idea

One thing I’ve been thinking about a lot lately is how hard it is to motivate yourself to exercise when you don’t feel comfortable about your body, especially when you have to exercise around other people. It’s so easy to worry if others will judge us as harshly as we judge ourselves.

Also, I was talking with some friends about a friend of ours who is struggling. This friend is extremely overweight (I’m guessing she weighs about 400 lbs) and struggles to take weight off because her knees hurt so much. It’s a vicious cycle: her knees hurt because she’s so overweight and she remains so overweight because her knees hurt. Which made me start thinking, isn’t it terribly sad that swimming, the activity that grants the greatest amount of buoyancy (and less joint strain) is also the activity that requires the least about of clothing and the most amount of skin showing?! So in order to exercise in that environment, one also has to overcome the greatest amount of self-esteem issues?

It really got me thinking. I wish that a chain gym would pop up to address that issue. I feel like Curves (and all of the other gyms in that vein) popped up to address the issue that lots of women feel uncomfortable working out in front of men. I wonder if a pool that encouraged people to wear shorts and t-shirts instead of speedos would be well received?

I know I would love that right now! Especially if I didn’t have to buy a swim cap and goggles. I’m not a serious swimmer but would enjoy having somewhere to comfortably swim right now… without any judgment.

Additionally, it would be great if I didn’t have to get over my issues to just BUY an outfit, let alone use it. Granted, I’m pregnant, so my issues of size may pale in comparison, but I least I can sympathize with the issue.

Good luck to anyone else feeling this way! And have you ever heard of a pool like this? (if so, I hope it’s in Massachusetts!)

Saturday Morning Motivation – Strength

Today, I’m running the Diva Dash, which is a women-only obstacle 5k. I know I can do the 5k, no problem. It’s the 11 obstacles that I’m not so sure about. Yes, I’ve been doing more strength training at the gym for the past month, but I would still say that my upper body strength is laughable. Hmmm…

Well, here’s to trying new things and to believing in one’s untested abilities!

Good luck this weekend with whatever you’re up to!

Music as Motivation

I’ve mentioned before that I’m a huge fan when it comes to listening to music while working out. I really think it helps me to keep going and to shut down the negative voices in my head. And I discovered a website/app that I’d like to share with you in case you’re also a fan of running to music.

Jog.fm!

Jog.fm matches your desired pace with songs that have an appropriate beats per minute. What a fun way to find new motivational music! I hope you enjoy! It’s also available for your iPhone, but I’m not finding it on the Android platform (bummer!).

Plus, you may enjoy this study about increasing lung function and working out with music.

I also find it funny that the Jog.fm site reminds people:

The phrasing cracks me up, but that’s because I hear my mother’s voice from my childhood telling me not to run into traffic… However, I do agree with jog.fm: be careful where you choose to run with music. Personally, I run on the treadmill or on a running path in an urban environment (lots of people – so less of a chance of being attacked, I hope – and if a car is going to hit me, it’s going to have to first crash through a grocery store or an apartment building for the most part…) I think I’m pretty safe with my music, but please be safe with yours!

What do you think?

Running Disaster, Crosstraining Convert!

I am a running disaster… seriously, I have hurt myself TWICE with my ipod! Lame! The first time was a few months ago, before the Run to Home Base, where I scraped my hip like crazy just on my ipod case! So my mother bought me a new case that was more running friendly. What did I do? I managed to get an inch long scratch on the soft patch on my upper arm from the velcro! That’s right, I didn’t line the velcro pieces up well so it scratched my arm for about 6 miles. The end result – an inch long (but luckily very shallow) slice on the tender part of my arm.

If that’s not pathetic, I don’t know what is!

That happened on Wednesday night, last week. I was planning to go running again on Thursday but between my lameness and the demotivating heat, I called it a night and melted into my couch. But I wouldn’t let myself get away with completely skipping the workout. I decided that on Friday, I would use the stairmaster at work. I would have run on the treadmill at work, but during lunch breaks it always makes me feel like I’m being weak. If I run on my lunch break, I can really only get in about 35 minutes of working out between time wasted getting into my gym clothes, and then stretching, showering, changing, and getting back to work. I can really only get in about a 1/4 mile warm up, about a 2 mile run, and a 1/4 mile cool down. I feel like I’m leaving so much still in the tank. So why not cross train instead?

I went down to the gym to use the stairmaster… funny thing about that though… the gym in my office building doesn’t have a stairmaster. Wow! Clearly, I have never paid attention to what anything in there is besides the treadmills! Oops! So I used the elliptical instead. I have only been on an elliptical once before, at the gym-I-actually-pay-for-but-never-go-to. That gym is one of those giant warehouse gyms with hundreds of people at any given time (think Planet Fitness… but I think mine is just a more local version with only a few locations). So, if one doesn’t know how to use a particular machine, there are a ton of witnesses to one’s mishaps. And I know that “no one is judging your workout and even if they are, who really cares?!” But I don’t like to look awkward and confused in front of so many attractive people.

Side note, why was everyone on the elliptical at my real gym always looking flawless (full makeup, hair down and styled, matching velour sweatsuit) and never breaking a sweat!? Seriously? Annoying! Meanwhile, the people on the treadmills were always more normal: a variety of weights from thin to overweight and moving at a full range of speeds. And even the thin walkers were sweating a storm! Ok… rant over… but that’s why it was easier to feel at home with the runners.

While I tried that elliptical, I used it on “manual” and it wouldn’t register my movement on the screen unless I was sprinting, there didn’t seem to be a walking-equivalent, and I never went back to one of those machines.

Until last week… at my office gym where I was literally the only person in the entire room. No one could judge and I could figure it out without any pressure. Since I failed on that other machine with “manual,” I figured I would try the “cardio” setting at the office gym. It was great! Honestly, I wasn’t awesome at the rhythm of the machine and I was either stubbing my toe on the front of the foot holder or falling off the back, but I had a nice time and my quads were so feeling it! I’m really going to try to do that at least once a week.

And it left me feeling worn out but with enough time to also use the upper body machine. My arm muscles were on fire the next day, which is a feeling I totally love.

So maybe that stupid velcro scratch did me some good after all.

And now I’m off to run the Finish on the 50 10k! And after completing the 10k (which I will hopefully rock, aka run the entire time even if I’m lamely slow)  and running on the field at Patriot’s Stadium, they have picture opps with Jerod Mayo! Would I prefer to take a picture with the awesome linebacker while I’m done up and looking nice and he’s sweaty from running on the field, instead of the other way around, heck yes! But I’ll take what I can get and I AM super excited!

Oh! And one more thing to be excited about? They have an “Inspiration Station” to entertain the non-runners where they can make signs for their loved ones! I hope I (aka my wonderful boyfriend or mother with their cameras) can find some good ones for Jill’s Best Race Signs!

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