Exercise: Why I Quit Running

Sometimes you just need to make a change in your exercise program.

I grew up in the 70’s when the exercise craze just got started.  That’s when the nation changed over from mostly manual labor jobs to more tech type jobs.  The big thing at the time, was running.  There were running books, running shoes and the advent of the “jog bra”, now known as the sports bra.  When I graduated from high school, I knew I had to keep myself in shape (no more PE classes or sports) so of course I started to run.

Over the years I ran on and off, mostly off.  Here’s why:

  • I was the slowest runner ever.  My fastest mile clocked was 10 minutes.  Everyone smoked me, even couch potatoes just starting out.
  • It hurt my knees
  • My upper body was naturally scrawny.  Running does nothing for that.

After years of running and quitting, I finally decided I didn’t like it and gave it up for good.  What to do now?  I became a Curves girl.  I got cardio and weight training and I liked it a lot.  I stuck with that consistently for 2 years.  Then they moved and it wasn’t convenient for me to get there.  Now what?

I found at home workouts that I really liked through Beachbody.  I started with P90X, now I am doing ChaLean Extreme and I look forward to my workouts.  It sure beats the fight I used to have with myself to get motivated for running.  The moral of the story is this.  If you don’t like the workout you are doing, you won’t stick with it.  Find something you like.  That’s more than half the battle!

What are your favorite workouts and why?

ChaLean Extreme Review

A Review of Beachbody’s ChaLean Extreme

I have had several people ask me about the workout I am currently doing called ChaLean Extreme, so I thought I would do a quick review of it here.  Chalene Johnson has put an extreme weightlifting program together that fits in with my busy lifestyle.  I did two rounds of P90X and got into really good shape.  Then I got bored which always happens to me and I know it’s time to do something else.  If I don’t, I will quit working out (not good).  Here’s what I like about ChaLean Extreme:

  • This is a weightlifting program that encourages you to “go heavy or go home”.  Usually women don’t get that message.  They are told to do light weights and lots of reps.  You CAN go heavy.  You don’t have lots of testoterone running around in your system, so you won’t bulk up, but you will look and feel great!
  • It takes you there in steps.  Burn circuit gets you started. Push circuit helps you increase your weight and Lean circuit works  upper and lower body together to get your metabolism burning at optimum levels.
  • It doesn’t ignore the  glutes, inner thighs and outer thighs (ab and adductors).
  • It includes cardio and flexibiltiy with “Burn Intervals” “Burn it Off” and “Recharge”  It also includes two ab workouts.  I still like “Ab/Core Plus” from P90X+ so I switch it up in the abs department.
  • You get an intense workout in a reasonable amount of time.  The longest workout is 52 minutes.  All the rest run 30 to 40 minutes.
  • The program comes with a nutrition plan and a cookbook with some tasty recipes in it.
  • I love Chalene’s energy and positive attitude.  She reminds me of my spitfire college roomate, Karen.  I think they would get along famously.
  • I lost 1/4 inch from waist, 1/2 inch from hips and 1  1/2 inches from thighs during the first 90 days and that was after completing P90X and losing inches during that program.

If you are finding yourself getting a little doughy and flabby or if you are sensing that your metabolism is coming to a screeching halt, check this program out. You won’t be sorry 🙂

 

Muscular Strength

Do you want to be able to do your favorite physical activities without tiring out right after you start?  Do you want to be leaner? (more muscle/less fat) Do you want better posture? Do you want to have less chance of injury? Sure you do!  Muscular strength is defined as the amount of force a muscle can produce in a single effort.  You can improve muscular strength by getting involved in strength training exercises.  Ladies:  Strength training will not turn you into a giant walking muscle.  It will replace those flabby places you don’t like with more muscle mass.  Guys:  Strength training will bring you quick and very visual results that I’m sure you will like.

You can strength train by using free weights (dumbbells and barbells), weight machines (check out your local gym), or your own body weight (crunches, push-ups, pull-ups, leg raises etc.)  You can also use a combination of these in your training routine.

When you start a fitness program it’s so so important to work on muscular strength as well as cardiorespiratory endurance.  Two of my favorite fitness programs that incorporate strength training into an overall fitness program are Beachbody’s P90X and ChaLean Extreme.  These programs include cardio, strength training, muscular endurance and flexibility with a progressive plan to improve your fitness level.  What are some strength training programs you think are effective?