The best thing I ever did regarding my health was signing up for a health program offered by my employer. The program is Virgin Healthmiles and provides participants with a pedometer to keep track of their daily steps, as well as reward levels that allow participants to earn money. To top it off, they have monthly prize drawings for cash, from $50 to $500. The more sessions (7,000 steps per day) you get in, the more entries you will have into the drawing. Getting fit and earning money while doing it! It definitely keeps me motivated to reach goals and push myself in my workouts.
I have been working out consistently since November 2009. I decided to start my New Year’s resolution early to motivate me through the holidays. Grant it, my days at the gym were few and far between during the week of Christmas and New Year’s. But after all the holidays had passed, I was back at again at least twice a week. Since then, I have increased my visits to the gym to four to five times a week. I have found that working out is a wonderful stress reliever and generally just makes you feel better. Plus, it makes me feel like I’m accomplishing something, and that’s always a good feeling.
I will preface this work out and tell you that I am a teeny person. I’m 5’1″ and approximately 105 pounds. I honestly had no chance in the height category with a mom that’s 5′ and a dad that’s 5’7″. That being said, I have shaped this workout to my needs and lift weight that I am able to lift with straining or pulling something. You should do the same for your workout! Push yourself, but not so hard you will hurt yourself seriously. Remember, any progress is good!
The main focus of my workout is on cardio activities. Cardio exercises are going to get your overall body in shape and burn those calories. I walk/run a minimum of two miles every time I go to the gym. I will walk for two minutes and then run for two minutes then repeat. I have recently started switching between walking and running and have found that I have been able to increase my running time with each workout. For the first six months, I walked my miles on the treadmill and built up some strength, as it had been a blue moon since I had worked out. Definitely go at a pace that is comfortable to you. Push yourself when you feel your body is ready.
I also spend some time lifting weights while at the gym. My focuses in weight lifting are the abdominals, the legs, and the arms. For abs, I use a crunch machine that allows you to add weight. I started with no weight, moved to five pounds, and now am currently using ten pounds of weight resistance. I do three sets of twenty-five crunches during every visit. I also do side crunches with ten pound weights. I use an angled pad at the gym and complete an abdominal crunch to the left or right side with a weight in my corresponding hand. I do three sets of twenty-five on each side.
For legs, I have recently started using the leg press. I put forty-five pounds on each side of the machine and complete five sets of ten. I also do the leg extension machine with thirty pounds. With this exercise, I do three sets of twenty-five. I also utilize the abductor and adductor machines. These are the machines that work the inside and outside of your thighs. I use fifty pounds on the abductor and complete three sets of twenty-five. For the adductor machine, I use forty pounds and again do three sets of twenty-five.
Lastly, to work my arms, my favorite machine is the one that allows you to work your triceps on one side of the machine and your biceps on the other. I do three sets of twenty-five on both sides. My triceps are a little stronger so I’m able to do fifty pounds with those. I use forty pounds on the biceps, however.
Remember, have fun exercising and getting in shape. Grab a partner that will hold you accountable on going to the gym and will support your efforts. Happy exercising!!!