[Fabulous Fitness Post] – Are you putting the “WORK” in workout?
As bikini weather is approaching, you may have just started going to the gym again or been watching what you eat which are both fabulous lifestyle choices. However, I want to put an emphasis on the working out aspect for achieving those fitness goals because they are within your reach, depending how hard you are willing to WORK for it!
Remember, there is a reason why the word “WORK” is in workout. For me, a good WORKout is where I’m not only breaking a sweat but also pushing my limits. If I did the same thing all the time, it would be too easy. I’m not at the gym to “take it easy.” If that’s what I’m looking to do, I can easily do that in the comfort of my own home or go to a spa to relax.
You may be asking yourself, “How do I push my limits? How do I take my WORKouts to the next level?” Everyone is at a different personal fitness level, so I cannot give you a direct answer, but at the very least, I can definitely motivate you and share with you what works for me. For starters, you will absolutely NEED to make a CONSCIOUS choice to push your limits and this will require strong efforts on your part.
A good start is to really focus on what your personal fitness/health goals are. If nothing comes to mind, then maybe this is not the article for you (and there’s nothing wrong with that…this after all is a fashion/beauty blog with some health/fitness blogs thrown into the mix, so if you prefer to stick with those areas of interest, I won’t hold it against you ;))…Back to goals: I am a firm believer in goal setting in all aspects of life and health/fitness is no different. You will need to set specific goals. Going to the gym and losing weight are NOT concrete goals. Everyone’s goals are very personal, so I am not going to write goals for you. This is where you need to ask yourself what you are ultimately looking to achieve along with attaching a deadline (or else you may never reach it).
Things I Do to Push Myself…
- For one, I find time to work out everyday. Even if it’s as little as 10 minutes. ”Not having enough time” in the day is not a legit excuse because if it’s truly that important, you will somehow make the time and incorporate it into your lifestyle. I’m not saying you have to work out everyday, a lot of health professionals actually recommend taking a day (or two) off a week. Personally, I listen to my body. If I wake up feeling like my body needs to day a off, I have no problem taking a day off. However, most of the time, my body is full of energy and actually craves a good workout. I guess not everyone is built this way, but it is never too late to start making conscious choices to make fitness a part of your daily regime. My point is, there will need to be some consistency with how often you work out. Working out four days in a row and then skipping the gym for three weeks is just not going to cut it. If this is the case, then you are not in the right state of mind where you are willing to WORK. When you’re ready to work again, then we can talk ;)…
- I truly strive to switch up my workouts everyday. As I’m driving to the gym, I try to mentally prepare the different moves I’m going to do that day, but sometimes I just go in spontaneously and figure it out when I get there. With my personal workout routines, no workout is exactly the same.
- On cardio machines: I do NOT stick to one type of cardio! You got to switch it up! Starting in the new year, I have incorporated jumping rope and tackling the Stair Master. I used to HATE the Stair Master. Why? Because it’s totally kicks my —! In other words, it’s incredibly physically challenging and often times I find myself breathing heavily and swimming in a pool of sweat by the end. (It may not be the most enjoyable activity in the world, but hey, at least at the end of the day, I have something to show for it ;). Prior to the new year, I only stepped foot on a Stair Master maybe twice in my entire lifetime. Now, I try to do it at least twice a week, never on consecutive days. I also love the cardio rowing machine and the treadmill. Actually, in all honestly, I’d prefer to run outside any day but with a treadmill, I can really push myself to run a lot harder than I ever would outside because I can manipulate the speed and inclines. As much as I love running, I really dread the treadmill sometimes, but I do it for discipline.
* Also, on cardio machines, besides varying the speed and inclines, try to switch up the type of workout settings. Many cardio machines have different settings such as: “fat burning,” “interval training,” “manual,” etc. It’s really good to change these each time you use it. This way, you’re keeping your body guessing at all times. (You don’t want it to ever get too comfortable or else you will hit a plateau).
- With free weights (or weight machines): In order to continue building strength, I gradually increase the weights. I try to increase the weights after a full two weeks because by then, I feel like my body has adapted and it’s ready for the next challenge. Sometimes I increase the weights and find I can barely complete any reps. I am okay with this because I know in time, I will eventually be able to complete more reps. Generally, I try to complete 10 reps in a set. (If I can do more than that with ease, then I know I’m not working my body to its full potential). When lifting weights, really try to concentrate on good form (this can be a challenge, also for myself at times…but again, CHALLENGE is a good thing ;)), even if you cannot complete as many reps. Keep in mind, quality over quantity!
[A Final Note: Often times, people ask me how I stay so motivated. Honestly, it comes from within. It also comes with the mindset and quote by Lucille Ball: "Love yourself first and everything else falls into line." I actually have always said this, but recently discovered an actual quote that states what I've always said. Remember, if you TRULY love yourself, you are naturally only going to want to do what's best for you.]
[What are your fitness goals?]