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Tag Archives: gym time

Leg Week?

10 Aug

Is leg week a thing? I feel it should be a thing, I can’t be the only person who has done this…granted I did it by accident, but still, I’m not the only one, right?

leg day 1

Last Friday night (it is currently the next Friday) I had leg day at the gym. I hadn’t had one in a while due to scheduling and life and laziness so it was nice to get back to routine. I pushed myself, because what is the point of working out if you don’t push yourself? By the end of the workout I could tell I was going to be feeling the results of that workout for days.

I love that feeling. πŸ™‚

Saturday there was pain, there was using my arms to push me up from a chair, and using arms to take the weight off my legs when I would go to sit, and there was the knowledge I would probably suck at running if I had to run that day. But all that is good, because it is good pain, and it means I worked the muscles hard, the pain will fade, the results will stay.Β  Saturday is my rest day due to how my work schedule is so I didn’t do anything to really work the legs beyond normal day-to-day things.

Sunday I went for a hike after work, it occurred to me that might suck since my legs still had a noticeable amount of muscle pain but I went anyways. During the hike I noticed my legs started to feel better, stronger, they were benefiting from being worked again, even though I was still feeling the Friday night workout. I think, and I could be wrong, but I think the hike helped clear out some of the built up lactic acid and helped them stretch and basically just helped the muscles in their recovery. Yay for a good hike! The trail has a lot of ups and downs and uneven surfaces so not only did the larger muscles get worked but so did the smaller ones used for stabilizing etc. Also, part way in to the hike I noticed my stride was lengthening, I have a decent stride length but started the hike with a shorter stride due to discomfort, as the pain cleared my stride got longer, and I felt better.

Monday evening I did the Coquitlam Crunch which is like a less evil version of the Grouse Grind…which means nothing to you if you don’t live in Vancouver BC or the surrounding areas lol Basically it is a steep urban trail, with an elevation of 244 meters, that gives you a great and fast workout. So far my best time is one hour and two minutes round trip. My goal is to get that under an hour.

Then Tuesday evening I did a long walk with a friend after work. Which brings us to Wednesday where I did the Coquitlam Crunch with the same friend I walked with Tuesday. I had intended to go to Lynn Valley and hike the trails but that will wait for another day.

So, I inadvertently had, what is that, 5 leg workouts in 6 days? Um, oops? Sorry for neglecting you upper body, I swear I still love ya! lol

Normally I do a much better job of working out all my muscle groups, and its not like I have some driving desire to only work on my legs, they just somehow got all my attention this week.

I think the flaw in my workouts is that it is summer, and that means hiking, and trails, and all those lovely outdoor workouts can be done at any time of day, on any day, without worry about weather cancelling your outing, so I tend to go out on a trail instead of inside to the gym. I mean c’mon, if given the choice wouldn’t you go out on a trail, get some fresh air, see some pretty sights, maybe spot a deer or bear or some other fuzzy critter, rather than be inside the gym where yes, you get a good workout but all you really look at is equipment and yourself in the mirror?

The hiking gives me a chance to either ruminate on something that is bothering me, or clear my mind and enjoy the quiet for a while, whichever I need. I can be alone, with nature, infusing myself with the peace that comes from being surrounded by trees (seriously, what is it with trees that they are so soothing?) or I can go with a friend and enjoy a lovely chat while getting in a workout.

The gym, I love the gym, but to me it is more like work, or an expectation, or I dunno, a thing I schedule. I don’t mind any of that, I really don’t, but sometimes I like the idea of being out on a trail more. I know it isn’t as good of a workout as my gym time, and my muscle definition suffers every summer because of that, but I can’t give up my trail time, I enjoy it too much.

However, my enjoying of my trail time this week has resulted in a lot of leg workouts, and no upper body workouts, until Thursday that is when I was at dragon boat practice.

I’ve really got to take care to balance things a bit better because while Leg Day is a thing, a good thing, a thing to be done often, Leg Week is a teeny bit of over kill and maybe shouldn’t be repeated anytime soon…don’t want my back and arms and shoulders to think I don’t care about them after all! πŸ˜‰

 

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Forgot My Plan

7 Jul

Don’t forget your plan when you go to the gym, or in my case, to make a plan. sigh.

Usually when I go to the gym I have a plan of what I want to accomplish. It isn’t some set in stone can’t be adjusted in the moment kind of thing, but it at least covers how long I want to be doing cardio for and what muscle groups I plan to focus on when lifting weights. Within the muscle groups I know what moves I will do, but even those can be changed once I am at the gym.

The changes are usually because of not being able to access the equipment I need / want. So, say I wanted to run for 30 minutes but all the treadmills are in use, then I’ll go to the elliptical. Or say I want to do Wood Choppers using the pulley system but the proper attachment is nowhere to be found, then I’ll do them using a free weight or medicine ball, or maybe I won’t do them at all, maybe I’ll do Russian Twists instead.

It’s all about getting in the workout I want while making minor changes based on equipment availability and comfort level around the people that I am sharing the gym with.

By comfort level I mean some days the free weight section is crowded with jacked up guys who are doing super sets and moving from one exercise to another and they are taking up a lot of room with their little stations that they created. Or a bunch of guys are working out together and they kinda take over the space so some of them are working out while the others are hanging on equipment next to the guy who is working out while they all chat. I get it, they want to be social, but it sure can be annoying for the rest of us sometimes. *rolls eyes*

This was not meant to be a rant! Oops!

What I was trying to get to is that I always have a flexible plan when I go work out, ensuring I come away from my work out feeling like I have accomplished something and got in a solid session.

Until the other night.

I knew I was going to do my cardio, but hadn’t committed to which machine I wanted to use for it, in fact I kind of didn’t care what I did for my cardio. I ended up using the elliptical for 30 minutes, which is fine, but I could have done better.

Then I took a look at the free weight section and didn’t want to deal with navigating all the guys that were there so I went to a different room, it is a bit smaller but is a good space for free weight work. There were some guys in there but usually I’ll go in even if it is partially occupied cause, well, I can. But since I didn’t have a plan for which muscle groups I wanted to work on, and no real motivation to be there, I didn’t go in the room, instead I went to the stretching area, had a cool down, and went home.

I have never had such a short workout. And I can’t believe I let myself leave without getting some weight work done.

It was like, once there, with all the equipment, I was overwhelmed and didn’t know what I wanted to do, or what I should do, and I couldn’t make a decision, so I left.

Maybe it was because it was at the end of a long day and I was tired and my brain just couldn’t make any more decisions. Maybe for whatever reason I had less motivation that day and I used that lack of motivation as a reason to leave after doing only cardio. Maybe I am just a lazy person at heart and I wanted to go home and be cozy in my pajamas while watching Netflix. πŸ˜›

Whatever the reason, it wasn’t a great workout, and I think a big part of that is my going in to that gym without a plan.

The plan doesn’t have to be some big great detailed thing. Some days it is as simple as:

  • 30 mins cardio
  • weight work for arms, shoulders, and back
  • some core work
  • stretch

That’s it! That is all it takes to make a plan! Who knew something so simple could be the difference between getting a good work out in and only getting 30 minutes of cardio in? Not me, that’s for sure!

Lesson learned, plan, even just a bit, and my workout will be way better.

 

Driven To Eat

13 Jan

I am not a huge alcohol drinker. I’m not that person who has a glass of wine every evening, or who when out for dinner automatically orders a highball and I’m definitely not that person who when stressed/irritated makes the comment “I need a drink!”

I completely understand the urge to reach for something to take the edge off though. What do I reach for?

Chocolate! πŸ˜€

Yes, that’s right, when I am done dealing with a super stressful/annoying situation I think (though rarely say) “I need chocolate!” and heaven help me if there is any nearby *rolls eyes*

I used to reach for fast food, so I suppose reaching for chocolate is a bit of an improvement?…ok fine, I know it’s not but let me have my illusion k? πŸ˜‰

Today I had to deal with this one resident who tests my patience like nobody else on the planet. She tests everybody’s patience so don’t go judging me and thinking I’m the only one who has an issue here lol She’s a nice lady, just…shrug, high maintenance? Something that should take less than 5 minutes to sort easily takes 30 minutes cause of how she does things. If it is quiet then it’s fine but today I had line ups at the desk, every phone line ringing and she was being super high maintenance, as in suuuuuuper high maintenance! As in omg I want to hit my head against a wall to get out of this situation because that would be less painful!

After I was done helping her I actually sat at my desk, head in my hands, exhausted from the ordeal. I also actively had the thought “I need chocolate. Desperately need chocolate.” Fortunately, or unfortunately (depending how you want to look at it) we had some lovely Purdy’s chocolates at work and oh boy did I snack! Three! I ate three amazingly delish chocolates, they are two layers of chocolate with a layer of mint in between, it was my first time having them and I can easily say they are ranking up there as a new fave. Mmm!

Mmm! Chocolate and mint, one of the best combos ev-ah!

Mmm! Chocolate and mint, one of the best combos ev-ah!

I know it isn’t good to have food as a release valve when stressed, just like it isn’t good to use food as a reward or a way to celebrate something or provide comfort for something going badly…and yet! lol

I don’t use food for any of those reasons as much as I used to, or at least I don’t think I do, but I can definitely remember a number of times when I used food for those reasons. I remember after a photo shoot a couple years ago, it ended around 9pm and I hadn’t eaten since breakfast so I was starving, as a way to celebrate an awesome shoot I bought pizza and dessert breadsticks on the way home from Panago. I justified the meal because (1) I hadn’t eaten in a freakish long time and (2) celebrating a great shoot. Ridiculous right? I’ve had other similar situations and it’s, sigh, it’s just a dumb way to use food. I try to get my thinking to change to “food is fuel” but it’s hard. So many people socialize around food, or celebrate around food, or mourn around food, food is used in so many situations that I guess it’s a natural progression to food becoming a source of comfort, a stress reliever, a way to celebrate.

Just because it is a natural progression doesn’t mean it isn’t stupid though. πŸ˜›

Speaking of stupid…I was supposed to go to the gym today after work. It was to be my first time back since being sick and then the hip injury. I had my whole workout plan figured out, was actually pretty psyched to be going back and what happened? I ended up napping when I got home, then taking forever to properly wake up, then taking forever to figure out what to make for dinner and making it and eating it, then I got wrapped up in watching the new episode of Law & Order SVU and then it became now and it is too late to go. Crap. I know it’s my fault I didn’t go, I should have gone right after work, or forced myself to get up from that nap, or something but I didn’t and now I have yet one more day under my belt of not hitting up the gym…and what makes it worse is that one more day under my belt involves three Purdy’s chocolates! *groan*

Don’t Borrow Your Calories!

19 Apr

For the love of all that tastes good Don’t Borrow Your Freakin Calories!!!!! Now don’t take offence, I’m not snapping at you, I’m snapping at myself because I have borrowed my calories at least 4 times in the past 2 weeks and it’s pissing me off, grr! *mean eyes*

What do I mean by “borrowing calories” you wonder…lemme explain! πŸ™‚

Borrowing calories is when you have a thought process that goes something like this:

hmm, should I eat that waffle? yeah, it’s ok, I’ll eat it because I am going on a 15km hike same day so it’ll balance out.

it could also go like this:

do I splurge and share the appetizer with my friend at dinner? yeah go for it! you’re going running tomorrow morning then to dragon boat practice tomorrow evening so you’ll burn it off no problem-o.

Now, you might not think there is a huge problem with those thoughts, I mean sure, I shouldn’t have the waffle at breakfast or split the appetizer at dinner but a little treat every now and then isn’t gonna kill me (immediately…lol), the problem is when the planned activity doesn’t happen. In those above instances the hike got cancelled due to being called in to work and the running and dragon boating got cancelled because of sleeping in (ok, fine, my bad!) and such an extreme wind storm the club cancelled boating practice. sigh.

The end result was I ate calories I wouldn’t of normally eaten because I was oh so sure I was going to be doing enough physical activity to counteract the calories but then ended up not doing anything to counteract the food I stuffed in my face, double sigh.

It isn’t so bad if it happens once in a blue moon, I mean, if it had only been the time my hike got cancelled cause of last minute being called in to work then hey, not so bad, I wouldn’t be upset about it. But this has happened one too many times for my comfort level lately, ya know?

Must. Be. More. Careful.

I’ve been trying to figure out how to better prepare for possibilities like this but really, how do you prepare for the unexpected? I think the only action to take is to be more diligent with the food I eat and be less lenient with treats and splurges. Also, I have to break the idea of eating something and then planning to exercise it off later. Instead it should be reversed. If I want to have a treat of some kind, I need to earn it by exercising first and enjoying the treat later.

Basically, bribe myself to work out lol πŸ˜›

I’ll have a more structured work out schedule for the rest of dragon boat season because I am now paddling with two teams, yah! So I have practice Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights and Saturday morning. The Saturday morning practice may kill me…8:30am is a tad early for exercising in my world but whatcha gonna do? *raised eyebrow* Tuesday and Thursday mornings I usually go hiking or to the gym (depends on weather and my mood) and the other days of the week are all in flux. I don’t have them scheduled yet but I’ll sort something out. I usually hike either Sunday or Monday after work…hmm, lemme put this down in some kind of order:

Monday: usually hike after work, or gym, or biking with KL

Tuesday: gym or hike in morning, dragon boat practice in evening

Wednesday: dragon boat practice in evening

Thursday: gym or hike in morning, dragon boat practice in evening

Friday: not gonna lie, usually nothing, I sleep in before going to work lol

Saturday: dragon boat practice early morning

Sunday: usually hike after work, or gym

Sooooo, that is one day I for sure do nothing (Fridays) and two days of possibly nothing if I flake cause the activities are not planned (Sundays, Mondays). All the other days I am for sure doing something…that’s not soooo bad. Not the guaranteed 6 days of intense physical activity I was doing last summer but I’m working up to that, sorta…I don’t know why it’s so much harder to get my ass in gear this year, sigh, but I’ve gotta come up with something to provide extra motivation and I don’t think bribing myself with a potential waffle is the way to go! lol πŸ˜›

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