Category Archives: abs

Morning workouts have returned!

Thanks to Exercise TV and my dear friend Namaste Mari, I have successfully been able to incorporate some sort of exercise in when I get up in the morning.

I’ve even had a partner working out with me for support!

014

But Jillian’s “Boost Your Metabolism” proved to be too much for Suzie, so she rested while I finished the workout. She was out of breath!

016

“Boost Your Metabolism” (the abbreviated 25 minute version anyway) was the first workout I did on Exercise TV in a long time but I actually did not do it in the morning, it was 4 in the afternoon!

015

But it was quite challenging still, so I felt the need to mention it on the blog. The next morning, I did Jillian’s “Yoga Meltdown” which wasn’t very calming or reflective the way Yoga tends to be but it was definitely challenging for my muscles; I was even sore later that day!

This morning, I did Cheryl Burke’s “Disco Abs” which was a lot of FUN but I did not feel it in my abs at all. Still, dancing at 5:30 in the morning was enough to wake me up and get me going for the day. I’m so glad morning workouts are back in my life!

Do you work out first thing in the morning? What do you do?

I wanted to start running but now that summer is coming to a close, sunrise is getting later and later. I’m way too chicken to run in the dark…by myself at least!

Getting back on the wagon

It has been a struggle for me to work out lately. I haven’t been motivated at all and I’m starting to think me and the gal who runs half marathons are two different people!

But, we all go through peaks and valleys in life, right? One thing I have going for me is that I’ve been reading this book:

The only time I seem to be able to completely focus on reading is on the bike or elliptical trainer at the gym. At home, I get distracted by so many other things that I usually end up reading the same paragraph four times before giving up.

So I’ve gotten a few sessions in the past couple of weeks. I was on the elliptical for 60 minutes on Tuesday (keep up with my weekly workouts here)! Plus, it’s a really good book so far. When I finish, it will be the first book I’ve read all the way through in a very, very long time.

Another thing that has helped me get back on the fitness wagon is my friend Farrah.

I haven’t seen her in a while because we’ve both been busy. But today we got to workout for the first time in a long time and she kicked my behind (she’s a trainer, haha)! We walked outside for 3 miles and then came back in to do weights and abs. I know I will be sore tomorrow for sure!

And yes, that is an older picture, ha ha. It’s hard to imagine wearing sweaters right now as it’s been over 100 degrees here recently! But I shall not complain, I am no fan of winter.

Anyway, if you have been struggling with exercise (or lack thereof) try enlisting a really inspiring and active friend to get you moving or start diving into a new book while you sweat it out at the gym. Whatever it takes to get you moving so you can feel good again 🙂

I feel better already! Let’s hope this continues.

Let's talk about abs

I had quite a revelation about abs yesterday. As some of you may know, they are my least favorite muscles to work on. Mostly because I hate interrupting an awesome weight training workout to lay on the floor and attempt to whittle this middle.

That’s not me, by the way, ha ha…

It should come as no surprise to me that since they are my least favorite muscles to work on that they are my biggest “trouble spot” if you will. I have some other issues going on in this area too, like extra skin as a result of a 70 lb weight loss.

But, I think I’m over being vain for the time being. I really just want a stronger and more stable core to help me run, have better posture and to prevent any future back problems. So it’s time to focus on these abs!

On Sunday, I did a really quick 15 minute ab program on Exercise TV. The best part of this was that the entire routine was STANDING. It included a lot of movements with the hips and legs, but I felt more during this workout than I have on the floor in a long time.

Then on Monday I took a yoga class and the instructor said something that really resonated with me. As we went through our asanas, he mentioned how crunches are not ideal for the core because it’s not based on the purpose of those muscles.

“Our cores are not meant to crunch us better,” he said. They are meant to stabilize us. So that is the most effective way to work them out.

One example he gave was the plank. Holding steady in that position requires a strong core (and thus develops a stronger one) because without it, the back would arch and your form would be incorrect and you could hurt yourself. We also did bridge pose a few times, which really made my back feel good.

And I got to do this!

Photo from Eternal Health Yoga Facebook page

I’ve never been able to do full wheel on my own before and having support from another person really made it seem so much easier! And I also got to be a support person and see what that felt like from the other side. It was a really neat experience.

Anyway, the point of this is that I am done doing exercises I don’t like that aren’t really going to help me anyway. And I hope this new revelation about abs (the entire core, really) will help me figure out a way to work them into my workouts more often!

Do you like doing ab work? What do you do?

This week's workouts

I feel really good about how my workouts went this week. It’s been a long time since I can remember saying that!

I am really grateful for this new gym membership, it’s really motivating me to “fit it in” on the busier days! 🙂

Here’s how the week went down:

  • Monday -Long walk with Suzie
  • Tuesday -Ran 1.87 miles outside, abs, Body Pump class
  • Wednesday – 30 minutes on the elliptical
  • Thursday -Ran 1.87 miles outside, abs, Body Pump class
  • Friday – Ran 3 miles on the treadmill
  • Saturday – 15 minutes on stair master, Weight training, abs + Walk with a friend and lots of shopping!

I’m not sure what I’m going to do tomorrow, but my goal for the next week is to increase my running distance, since I have a 5 mile race coming up soon! I’m also hoping to get myself to a yoga class. 🙂

How did your workouts go this week?

Movin' on up (again)

I am so glad I took my time, working my way back up to running a more mileage.

While I probably didn’t need to, I think it made it easier on me, both physically and mentally, and definitely made yesterday’s run feel absolutely glorious! It was pretty hot and sunny outside, so I took it to the treadmill, but for some reason, I didn’t mind that at all this time.

  • Distance: 3 miles
  • Time: 31:40
  • Avg. pace: 10:33/mile


Image Source

Woo hoo, 3 miles! I am so happy to have reached this milestone. It’s weird to say that when I think that just a month ago, I ran a 10 mile race and then a few weeks ago ran/walked a mini marathon!

But all of that was overwhelming towards the end, so it feels good to just be running for fun now 🙂

I warmed up walking for 5 minutes, then started out jogging at 5.0. Then I went up a little bit in speed each 0.25 mile lap. It looked something like this:

  • Mile 1 – 5.0, 5.3, 5.6, 5.9
  • Mile 2 – 5.3, 5.6, 5.9, 6.2
  • Mile 3 – 5.6, 5.9, 6.2, 6.5-7.5 (I sprinted at the end!)

Then I cooled down for another 5 minutes and drank A TON of water. I was pouring in sweat when I was done but it felt so good! I went into the other room and stretched myself out for a good 15 minutes. I cannot stress the importance of stretching. It not only prevents soreness and promotes flexibility, it just helps me calm down and really focus on the amazing things I’m doing for my body, which makes me feel good.

I also did another quickie ab routine: 35 sit ups holding 4 lb medicine ball, and 70 (35 each side) side-to-side twists holding 4 lb medicine ball. I’m kind of obsessed with abs right now! 🙂

Image Source

I have to keep reminding myself that I am doing a 5k on Saturday! I’m so excited though, it is going to be a blast.

There is something so relaxing and not intimidating about this race, I guess because it is the first time I’ve ever done this particular one and it is my first race back since the mini marathon. Plus the weather is going to be great. I can’t wait to report back to you guys! 🙂