True story: when I was young (just a wee health- and fitness-crazed bairn. Well, not so wee, probably 12 or 13), I used to watch workout shows on ESPN and ESPN2 for fun and personal edification in the mornings before school. I mean, you know, the way some people would watch the news*. I’m sure my family members really enjoyed having to sit through numerous half-hour programs detailing cardio routines and weight exercises for specific body parts**. The thing is, though, I learned a lot from those shows. I just didn’t end up applying any of it, as demonstrated by my seeming inability to get into a consistent weight-lifting routine. I also can’t remember the names of these shows, which means, sadly, that I can’t embed a clip. Oh well.
The thing I learned from this show that stuck most was the following nugget of wisdom: “You are only as strong as your weakest link.” So true! And yet even though that sentence clearly had a profound effect on me, I think my links are pretty weak. Case in point: last week, I read this article on FitSugar and I was like “Oh. Oops.” Reading this article didn’t teach me anything new, but it did remind me of how much room there is for improvement, and I see that as a good thing. Let’s review, though, shall we? Here are my workout mistakes:
- Fitsugar says: “Running is your only form of cardio”; I say: “Yes, guilty, but only kind of these days because while I do run more than anything else (other things just don’t seem worth it), I have gotten better since starting my triathlon training, and I think that even once the triathlon is ancient history, I will still make an effort to mix things up with some cycling and swimming, because I’m learning that I actually enjoy those things!
- Fitsugar says: “You skip the warmup”; I say: “That’s right, I do! And I have no excuse. I know better than this. So…boy are my cheeks red!”
- Fitsugar says: “You don’t stretch”; I say: “Yes, I do. Sometimes. I will not deny that I could definitely stand to stretch much, much more than I do. And probably incorporate more yoga, since I haven’t done much of that lately, which makes me pretty sad.”
- Fitsugar says: “Your weights are too light”; I say: “Haha! Got you there–my weights can’t be too light if I don’t use them! Oh…wait…”
- Fitsugar says: “You do the same weight routine every time”; I say: “Um, see above?”
- Fitsugar says: “You only do crunches to whittle your middle”; I say: “Yeah, about that…”
I always sort of knew what I was and wasn’t doing, but when I actually sat down and thought about it, it ended up being sort of embarrassing. So while I’m not going to make this official and call it a thirty-day challenge (I’m still working on getting going on the weight lifting, after all, and that will happen), I am going to start making a concerted effort to do a better job of balancing my fitness routine a little bit. I think if I can incorporate a few small changes every week (stretch a little bit longer, do a few ab exercises, lift weights at all regardless of their weight/the routine, etc) I’ll feel better in the long run.
Anyone else with me? How does your routine measure up to the workout mistakes listed above?
*Once I grew out of this phase (or they changed the programming schedule), I started watching performance of the Who in the morning. That was a fun way to start a day. Great music and smashed instruments. Good times! And I have to say, in all honesty, that as I sit here typing and listening to “Shakin’ All Over” from Live at Leeds, je ne regrette rien, even though the morning news probably would have made me a better-informed person.
**Please, family members, refrain from stating just how much you appreciated this habit in the comments.