OK, so I don’t have a lesbian fitness club but I’m certainly considering it.
Anyway, back to blogging. Last night a good friend of mine, Rachel, came over to to workout and learn a little more about fat-busting exercise ideas. Have to admit that it was good to be working out with someone again and very good that Rachel is a keen learner.
Rachel has good overall fitness due to her regular (mostly cardio) exercise but really
Back extension exercise. Works the lower back and glutes.
needs to up the intensity with some low-rest high-intensity resistance workouts. The target areas are her lower back and her legs, both areas that will respond well to the right emphasis exercises.
So we went through my standard workout along with 2 sets of leg exercises (dumbbell squats and lunge walking) and also 2 exercises designed to target the lower back (exercise ball back extensions (see the image right) and the plank).
We took it easy as I watched her form and explained what we were doing and why it was important. By the end of the session Rachel had enjoyed the session (not sure how much she’ll enjoy it later today though).
So next week, when Rachel comes back we’ll do whole thing again with nearly no rest. This way she’ll really get the best out of the workout since she’ll have a clearer of what we’re doing and can just get on with it.
Big well done to Rachel for making the effort and just as an encouragement remember this: “It doesn’t matter how little exercise you do, you’re still working harder than anyone sitting on a couch”.
Your commitment to exercise is the most essential part of any fitness goal, here’s why:
Well it’s been a couple of months since the last post and Rachael is working hard towards her fitness goals. One of which is to get rid of some wobbly bits before Christmas (we’re working on cutting out the crap in her eating habits to help with this).
But she’s made some superb progress. In 3 months she’s now able to comfortably do press-ups (she could barely do 1 when she started). She can do the plank for well over a minute at the end of each circuit and her upper body is looking so much better. Her legs are looking a bit more toned too and when she last played rugby she was less exhausted during the game because her fitness has improved too.
And she’s taken on the mantle of exercising without me being around or having to push her to get it done. Which is a major step towards any kind of accomplishment.
And that’s a very important part of getting into the habit of regular exercise: when you’ve done it so often for a prolonged period it’ll engrained in you and you’ll feel odd when you don’t do anything for a few days.
So if you’re looking to get fit, tone up and/or lose some weight you need to focus on your commitment to doing it. Don’t fall into the trap of thinking that ‘just because it doesn’t happen in a week, it’ll never happen’. When it comes to getting fit you’ll never accomplish anything without that ‘commitment to exercise’.
Think slightly longer term and you’ll achieve so much more. And that applies to many things in your life, not just health and fitness.
Rachael and son came over for their Tueaday workout earlier and, due to the persistent rain, we had to workout indoors. Unfortunately this means that my dining room now smells like a badly ventilated gym.
However it was a good session. Rachael has been working on this for nearly three weeks and it’s time for me to start thinking about adjusting the workout.
We’re still going to have around half of the workout focused on the legs (since the legs are the furnace of the body’s metabolism) but after just 3 weeks the body will start to become used to any exercise, even if it still feels like hard work. In effect, the muscles still work but the routine becomes accepted as part of the muscular routine (for want of an adequate metaphor).
So by now, Rachael is no longer feeling the affects of the hard work the day after the workouts. This is an indicator that her body is getting the hang of the work.
I think that we’ll start to introduce a slightly more focused approach, which is bound to make Rachael ache, hehe.
Well, huge credit to Rachael, she has worked out three times a week since we started and is just about to begin week three.
Her ability to complete the workout, which hasn’t changed, is much improved even after this short time. I’m not saying that she is getting used to the workout to the point of it being easy, but in just a couple of weeks her body is adjusting to the additional work being imposed.
What many people don’t realise is that the body is a working organism. Its natural state is to work and not just to sit and do nothing, it’s the reason we actually have muscles. So if you were thinking of beginning an exercise regime, getting used to the exercise will only take a few weeks. Even better is that it can take as few as four or five weeks to develop the new habit of exercise and fitness.
squat with nice straight back
Rachael has even been bringing her son along to the workouts and he seems to be enjoying it too. We’ve had to work on his technique but now that he’s getting the hang of the circuit his work rate will improve immensely and his risk of injury (due to poor form) will drop substantially.
In the photo you can see his nice flat back while doing a prisoner squat. This is a huge improvement from where he started with a bent back and less than upright posture.
Within the next few weeks I’ll be posting some videos of the kinds of exercises that Rachael is doing during her workout. We’ll still be doing whole-body circuits but in less than two weeks we will have to adjust because Rachael ‘s body will have become used to the workout. Again, this may surprise many in that it only takes a few weeks for your body to start taking a new workout regime for granted. You just need to be willing to commit to doing the work as often as prescribed, no matter what.
Well Rachael finally got around (after only 5 months of prevarication) to coming over and working out with yours truly , the Midlands premier lesbian fitness guru.
We had a good discussion about metabolism and how to increase it, a chat about eating habits and making sure that she surrounds herself with healthy snacks. And I also emphasised the importance of a healthy breakfast (she’s about right on that one anyway).
And then we got down to work.
To be fair to Rachael she is in reasonable shape and the first circuit of our workout wasn’t too taxing. In fact I think she had doubts about whether the workout was going to be enough to really get results.
When we got to the second circuit she began to realise that it’s not as easy as she’d first thought and by the third she was definitely feeling like she’d worked out (I think her grimace speaks volumes).
In fact when it came to the gentle jog to warm down she was quite jelly-legged.
We did three identical whole-body circuits (with no rest during each) using bodyweight and light dumb-bells. The whole thing took less than half an hour. That might not sound like much but in just over 24 hours she’ll be feeling the effects, especially in the thighs.
The point of doing workouts with no rest is that the intensity is kept high and this forces the body’s metabolism to increase. It’s also an ideal way of starting to strip fat from the body. But spending ages on a treadmill isn’t a very efficient way of burning calories, boosting metabolism or stripping body fat. Shorter, high intensity exercise is much better.
So, big well-done to Rachael for volunteering to take part and being willing to commit to getting fitter and more toned.
Next workout in two days.
After a lay-off of about 2 weeks because we were both busy Michelle just completed her upgraded workout twice without stopping. So she’s worked out for 35 minutes with only about 90 seconds rest.
This might not sound like much to some people but when Michelle started she was struggling to complete the warm-up, let alone the actual workout.
So, the key is this: Tenacity Works!
And Michelle has certainly worked hard at sticking with this program despite lapsing into unhealthy eating over the last week.
The next step is for Michelle to do this workout at home, just once. Again, not much for some, but for Michelle it’s a big first step towards self discipline with respect to exercise.
Well done Michelle, you’re doing great!
p.s. the Tellytubbie reference is because Michelle said she felt like a Tellytubbie during the warm-up.
Michelle’s workout was a little shorter than usual because it was a little late in the day.
From a metabolic point of view it doesn’t really matter what time you exercise. However, working out late does stop some people from sleeping since your body’s metabolism will still be firing away.
One thing we did introduce for Michelle was leg lifts and air cycling. The key is to start targeting the lower abs and also hip flexors. This will also help to provide increased functional strength which will, in time, boost Michelle’s overall health.
So Rachael turned up in boots and jeans, which was a bit of a surprise since I thought she wanted to workout.
No problem though, we had a good discussion and wrote up a workout (a high intensity circuit which she will do a minimum twice a week) and also a good chat about eating healthier.
So, she starts on Wednesday with the workout and is going to take a ‘before photo’ to compare with her shape in one month’s time.
Well my Rachael didn’t turn up yesterday, she sent me a text to say she had to work late so she’s coming round on Monday evening. She even promised to be here. So we’ll see.
Michelle, on the other hand didn’t ache at all apparently. Obviously my efforts to step up her workout intensity failed. Not necessarily a bad thing because it shows that Michelle is quickly getting fitter (and losing weight too). So we’ll reappraise the approach when she’s here for her next workout.
In about 20 minutes Michelle is coming round for her revised workout. For the last month we’ve worked on a whole body workout to get her into good technique, which is absolutely vital to avoid injury.
Michelle’s routine has been a series of body weight exercises such as lunges and prisoner squats aimed at working every major muscle group. With the right emphasis is should take between three and four weeks to get used to a routine, at which point it needs changing to keep the body progressing.
Today we’re going to start doing much the same but with a few things added. The additions are going to be around working her core a lot harder. She’s been doing the bridge at the end of each series of sets but now it’s time to up the ante.