Shifting Fitness Goals

Howdy, y’all!

Don’t ask me why I decided to go all cowgirl on you, but the urge to say that was just building up inside as I started to write this post. Anyway, talking about other things besides how I greeted you…

Exactly a week ago, I expressed my decision to slow down my workouts a bit for now. That means I’m not doing my dear burpees or circuit workouts, and most exercises I’m doing now are focused on bodyweight resistance, flexibility, and static strengthening (like yoga). At first, I thought, Wow, after all the improvement I’ve made this past year, it’s like I’m taking three steps back now. I won’t have much to work towards. Yeah, yeah, Alison, it’s your self-pity party and you can cry if I want to. Yes, I will definitely be missing my high intensity workouts and the incomparable rush of endorphins they give me, but I also realized that:

a) I am thankful for the body God gave me, so I want to make sure I take proper care of it.

b) I’m still dancing.

c) There are other fitness goals I can work toward that don’t involve me lying in puddles of sweat at the end of my workout.

Something that I’ve learned especially in this past year (ya know, reading healthy living blogs err-day) is that fit, healthy people come in many shapes and sizes with many different skills up their sleeves. A yogi and a marathon runner may not be able to accomplish the same things, but that doesn’t make either any less fit than the other. And that my friends, is the beauty of fitness. You can find something that you enjoy or that works for your body right now to stay fit, without having to do a million different forms of exercise. Now, I still think cross-training and trying different kinds of exercise can be super beneficial for gaining strength in different aspects. You just don’t have to be a Crossfitting yogi that bikes up mountains and swims laps every week.

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[From this summer]

So I’ve actually gotten myself pumped to work on some new things that I haven’t paid much attention to in the past. These are some skills I’ve been particularly interested in lately:

  • handstands (I’ve been using the instruction from this great tutorial)
  • pistol squats— YO. So hard, even with just bodyweight. I’ve been doing them to a low stool/box too!
  • assisted pull-ups (a real pull-up is a long ways away..)
  • wall sits
  • planks
  • yoga poses
  • ab exercises
  • power walking/incline walking (do not underestimate the power of the incline on your beeeehind)

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As you can see, there are plenty of things to work toward, and I’m excited about them! I do realize that exercises like pistol squats and pull-ups can get pretty intensive, but I don’t go too crazy and I’ll only work on them once a week if at all.

I used to have the mentality that if I wasn’t sore or just plain wiped out after a workout, then I didn’t have a good workout. Like, what?! My brain and SENSE aren’t always in check with each other. I can already tell that my body is much happier (i.e. less exhausted, more energetic when I go to exercise again) now that I’m not constantly pushing it to its limit. Hallelujah, Alison!

Thank you all again for your loving support through this journey of mine. I deeply appreciate it. ❤

So tell me: What are some of your fitness goals right now? What kinds of exercise do you enjoy the most?

 

 

10-15-20 Workout {MIMM #4}

Well hello there, Monday! I see you have brought me school today…

Yep, today is my last first day of high school. Wahoo! I’m kind of excited. I mean, I could complain about the whole shebang, but let’s find some marvelous in our Monday, eh? Head on over to Katie’s blog to stuff your hearts with more marvelousness!

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Marvelous is…

The first day of teaching Sunday school this year! I’ve been a third grade teacher of religious education at my church for the past two years, and it has been a learning experience for all. I honestly learn as much from my students as they do from me. The first day wen quite smoothly! This year I have TWENTY-TWO students! Gahhh. It’s gonna be interesting. Thankfully, I have a wonderful assistant, and together we’re gonna make the class super duper fantabulous. With God’s help of course. 🙂

Marvelous is…

Not having rabid Chobani. Sorry to those who were less fortunate, like Katie. Foaming yogurt–yummay.

I bought five new-to-me flavors of Chobani not too soon before some of their products were recalled, but I’ve finished all five (delicious) cups, and I am alive.

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Marvelous is…

The #slowdownchallenge. It is really awesome. Recap to come!

And to be quite honest, I have sorta fallen off the #100challenge wagon…I do different exercises at different times of the day, and I’m just really inefficient at counting the reps. I still do about 50-100 of the squats and pushups, but for some reason the situps (butterfly-style) just take more time for me so I don’t end up doing as many. Ahh well… Maybe I should just take one challenge at a time.

Marvelous is…

Chatting Obsessing about pumpkin recipes with my girl Lilly.

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Marvelous is…

Sunday Food Prep inspired by Lindsay at the Lean Green Bean and all the bloggers that share their preparations! I will definitely need to be doing this every weekend from here on out so that I don’t go crazy during the week trying to make lunch and snacks in a pinch.

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Turkey, cheese, herb, spinach sandwiches and caprese salad.

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Banana muffins adapted from 100 Days of Real Food’s recipe!

Marvelous is…

Sweating it out!

On Saturday I did Lori and Michelle’s quick 16 minute workout at home, and on Sunday I went to the gym for 20 minutes on the elliptical and Julie’s 30 minute circuit workout. They were both great workouts, despite their difference in length and type!

On Friday, I made up my own circuit workout that incorporates strength and cardio exercises back to back. This is by far my favorite way to workout! It was challenging and I was dripping in sweat by the end.

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A lot of these exercises may not sound so familiar, so here are the demos:

Burpee with tuck jump

Triple pulse squats (pulse three times and then come up for 1 rep)

Med ball pulls 

Lunge hops (try not to lean forward quite as much as the demonstrator)

Skaters

T Squat Thrusts

Spiderman planks

Split jack lunges

Plank jack pushups

Strict mountain climbers (right+left= 1 rep)

180 squat jumps

This took me about 35 minutes to complete. I had to take some breaks with those T squat thrusts. Burnin’ quads and lungs. Have fun (hardy har har), and let me know if you try it out!

Happy Monday, and have a fantastic school year everyone!

So tell me: What did you do this weekend? Is your Chobani foaming? Are you excited for pumpkin?! (<–I didn’t even need to ask that.)

Sweat and De-Stress

Good afternoon!

I just finished a very tasty lunch, but I’ll save the pictures and description for WIAW tomorrow!

Moves

Before I dug into lunch, I was fortunate enough to get in a great workout at the gym. Ever since my sleepless night on Sunday, I’ve been having a little bit of anxiety and restlessness even during the day. I was thinking of trying to take a nap before lunch, but my heart was beating really fast, and it didn’t seem like I was going to be relaxing any time soon. So despite my mild sleepiness, I decided to take advantage of my racing heart and headed to the gym. I started with 20 minutes on the elliptical, during which my anxiety was still present, and it was sort of unpleasant to have an extra fast heart rate, but I tried not to think about it.

Then I hopped off and completed another one of Michelle’s intense workouts (You can get a better view of the exercises if you click on the picture):

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She doesn’t call it a challenge for nothing! I love workouts that incorporate both strength and cardio because it gets my heart rate up quickly and keeps things interesting. For this workout, I followed the weight suggestions for the most part, but I added/increased weights for some exercises and omitted/decreased weights for others. For instance, weighted leg lifts?? Humorous. I’m sure somebody was laughing at my attempt to do that. Leg lifts are hard enough for me as is!

And uh, I’m convinced Michelle is insanely hard core because I don’t know how I’m supposed to finish this twice through in 30 minutes. I barely took rests and I completed one round in almost 30 minutes!  Or you can just call me slow. Same with this workout of hers that I did a week ago–3 rounds would be death.

Anyway, I’m feeling quite a bit better after sweatin’ it out!

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This may not apply to everyone, every day, but it applied to my anxious self today!

I’m very thankful that God has given me the opportunity and ability to move and get some endorphins flowing. For anyone who struggles with insomnia or anxiety, or any moms and dads who are sleep deprived, I’ve been thinking about you these past few days. Not being able to sleep or relax is not fun at all. I’m praying for you! ❤

Have a nice rest of the day!

So tell me: Does exercise ever help you deal with stress or anxiety? What is your favorite type of exercise (strength, cardio, circuits, dance, etc.)?