Friday, January 29, 2010
Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Wondering why your workouts aren't working for you anymore? It could be because you are in need of change. More than we realize, we become comfortable with our fitness routines. The day-to-day hum -drum, go to gym, participate in a class or jump on the treadmill and carry a conversation at the same time. But that's not why your paying gym fees, is it? When you find yourself looking forward to meeting Jane at the gym so you can catch up on the latest 'kidventure' then you are not working hard enough, unless of course you meet after a long, hard workout.
The #1 reason people become discouraged with their physical fitness program is due to a lack of visible results. No longer losing weight, not seeing a change, not even breaking a sweat. The best way to avoid getting bored at the gym is to change it up a bit. Here are some ideas:
1. Group Exercise: Personally, I prefer group exercise. It is the best way to stay motivated and it forces you to be accountable because the instructor and other participants get to know you and look forward to seeing you in class. Just keep in mind that we're not in the thong and leg warmer era--yikes! Yeah, people still wear those. Keep it simple and comfortable please.
2. Try a new activity...you know where I'm going with this. That's right! Try Spinning :-) Start by going to an orientation before you join the class. You want to have the time to learn how to set up your bike, how to use the controls and also the lingo and format of the class. Spinning is an excellent cardiovascular class in which you can burn up to 600 calories in a one hour class. But you have to start slowly and work your way up. Don't expect to take off on your first try, do expect to be sore the next day.
3. Weight training/Body sculpting: Lifting weights will not give you pects like a man. Unless you have an excess amount of testosterone, it is physically impossible. What you will get is a revved up metabolism, stronger muscles, lean body. More lean muscles=less fat. I can get into that.
4. Pilates: Another favorite of mine. Pilates focuses on your power house, your core. The result, stronger abs and back, lean muscle mass, improved flexibility and improved posture.
5. Want to stay in the same class?: Grab heavier weights, extra risers for the step or if you do floor aerobics, you can finish your workout with a muscle conditioning routine either in the free-weight room or with machines.
There are many reasons why people exercise and many more why they should. I exercise because I want to live a healthier, happier life, I want to be a good role model for my kids, I want to feel good about myself. Most important, I don't want high blood pressure and diabetes in my life, it's already in my family.
Why do you exercise? I want to know.
Today is the day to change it up a bit. Have an excellent workout, at the gym! Don't forget your water ;-)
Sunday, January 24, 2010
Saturday, January 23, 2010
(from the archives)
My favorite treat of all times has always been Oreo cookies and milk but my life started spinning out of control when I was about 18 years old. As I stared at my "perfect" body in the mirror my mom lovingly said with a smile, "your body is structured just like mine....you will probably be like me after you have children." She then smiled and left the room. Let me set the tone for how I felt because I can't think of a better way to describe the moments shortly after she left. My mom, at the time, weighed close to 300 pounds, compared to my 105 pound body. As a teenager I was devastated and promised that would never happen. She said, "you don't have a choice, it's in your genes." No way, the only thing in my "Jeans" is my small body along with my medium frame, no more, no less.
I contemplated never getting married or having children just to avoid inheriting my mother's voluptuous body. She's a beautiful woman and I love her but she believed she was healthy at her weight and didn't really think her health status would ever change. Hispanic people love to eat and it is considered rude if you leave any food on your plate. She was in such denial. Instead of fussing about this issue I took a trip to the nearest recruiting office after watching a catchy United States Marine Corps commercial on TV and decided I wanted to look sharp, I wanted to be tough and what the heck, I wanted to travel the world too. I joined the Marines (a little drastic, I know) and became a Jarhead, a Leatherneck! OORAAH! SemperFi! Ok, I got that out of my system!
My time in the military was short by comparison. I spent four years in the service, traveled to a few states and while stationed in Hawaii I met my best friend, my husband, Mike the toolman. Except he wasn't a toolman at the time, instead he was a body builder. Guess where we met? At the gym. Could my life be any better. Falling in love in paradise and in Hawaii too!
Since 1989 we got married, had four babies, moved ten times within the continental United States and guess what...I've been able to avoid my mother's body. It hasn't been easy, however, to keep up with my husband's military career, the kids, and my body. I am as guilty as the next person of indulging in my favorite snack (Oreo cookies and milk) or any of the foods we're supposed to avoid. I am also guilty of sitting in my couch curled up with a blanket, the TV remote and a bag of chips and salsa right after the kids go off to school and I have the house and the remote to myself. That's a rare thing but it happens then I move on.
After paying for gym fees and not attending, buying gym clothes I never used and attempting every diet on the market only to gain the weight back and then some, I decided it was time for me to join the ranks of those who kept telling me "it's easy, just watch what you eat and exercise...blah blah blah," and I became a Group Fitness Instructor, Spinning instructor and Personal Trainer.
I am still working on reshaping my body since the last baby was born three years ago. Actually, I'm working on reshaping my body since the first baby was born, 19 years ago. I will always be working on my body. Keep in mind that our bodies are a work in progress, there's no such thing as "the perfect body" and I am pretty happy with myself every step of the way. My mom has since taken much of my advice and is at a healthier weight, no blood pressure meds and her type 2 diabetes is completely under control without meds...just exercise and proper nutrition.
I want to share my experiences and expertise with the moms of the world who feel trapped at home with the kids and the chores. I hope my stories, helpful ideas about body, mind and home health will help to open the doors to a community of the hardest working people on earth...Moms. I'll be spinning my way into your home and I hope you and your family will spin your way into better health!