I am a big advocator of listening to your body…. of course there are certain times when you can push past your limits ie.. when you’re running a marathon or you are moving apartment and need to use every bit of strength to lift, push, and keep going…. then its different. But in general, listen to your body. Eat when you are hungry and LEARNING to stop when you are full… because that is the problem people have, they eat even if they arent hungry and that is what can lead to weight gain. ( THough of course, we all have times i.e RESTDAYS when we eat out of boredom :)) but in general, listening to your bodies signals.
And that is exactly what i did today (and every day :)). I wanted to strength train and i wanted to do cardio but i didnt feel like just running or doing chest, shoulders, legs, bicep/triceps etc so i ended up doing 10 minutes HIIT on 16-18km/hr and 20 minutes core exercises.
I never workout my stomach so i am actually quite weak there… when i do deadlifts and pushups and other exercises i have to keep my stomach pulled in which works my core, but otherwise its not so mcuh just core exercises. But im going to try get better at that because a strong core will help alot!!!
The 30 minutes exercise was exactly what i needed… i didnt need to push extra much or do X minutes or keep going. No, i was satisfied with what i did 🙂
Listening to your body isnt always easy, but once you learn to do it you will thank yourself 🙂
Deadlifts and squats are 2 of the best exercises as they work so many muscles and actually lead to better strength (which you can find useful in everyday life… i.e being able to lift heavy from the ground is very useful – maybe not squatting heavy things so much, but squats still work so many muscles!). However they also require ALOT of technique and proper technique, otherwise you can hurt yourself and can lead to back problems which take months to heal.
So hopefully the below gifs will help you 🙂 And remember FORM OVER WEIGHT – ALWAYS.
After breakfast i headed to the gym for a short but intense shoulder workout… i wasnt sure if i was going to go to the gym or not, but i felt i really wanted to!! So i headed there for 50 minutes and did a killer shoulder workout, afterwards my shoulders were aching so badly!! hahah, they will feel sore tomorrow 🙂
I know alot of people have requested i write out my workouts so i will try do that. But i never plan or write down my workouts, i barely count reps or sets either… and dont always know the name of the exercise id o as i find new ones which i try and love. So i cant promise ill write out every workout i do, as i prefer to just do what i feel like and enjoy my workouts than to think about numbers, reps, weights, sets etc 🙂
After my workout it was lunch and an hours studying followed by an hours nap… and then my afternoon snack: My favourite combo right now: quark, nuts & raisins. And now lots of packing and cleaning!!
P.s the pictures were taken this morning.. so they dont show how i look or feel right now, hahaha.
Recently ive gotten my running motivation back and it feels like all i want to do is to run…. But because of my busy weekday schedule its hard to find time. But its about making time for the things you love. So i woke up a little earlier than usual on a weekend and drank some coffee and BCAAs and ate an apple and some raisins and then i went out for a run, I wasnt sure how far i would run…. a 5km, 10km, 7km etc… but i just kept running (with a break half way to do some stair intervals i.e run up really fast, jog down and then repeat how many times i like). My run finished at 6.6km and feeling energised and tired at the same time! My stomach was rumbling for a proper breakfast 🙂
Today my breakfast was: chocolate egg cake & raspberries, quark, nuts, raspberries, an egg and my favourite celsius!!
My favourite combination right now: chocolate egg cake, quark, raspberries, nuts, an egg and a celsius 🙂
Today im going to pack, clean and study as i have lots of tests coming up in the next 2 weeks and also….im moving house on Monday (and not to mention, its my birthday tomorrow!!!!) 🙂
Best weight training for a beginner? 🙂
It depends what your goals are? And how often you are going to do it… But maybe start with 3 days a week (with 1-2 days inbetween the workouts) where you do 3 full body workouts – i.e legs&but, arms & back, stomach. Or you do one leg workout, one upper body workout and one full body workout per week.
This site: http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/beginner_weight_training.htm can help you as well 🙂 This site as well: http://www.bodybuilding.com/fun/wotw57.htm
Think about what your goals are – muscle gain, strength, endurance etc and then decide the sets, weights, reps etc depending on that. And decide whether you are going to use weights, machines, body weight or resistance bands… all are good 🙂
Ill start with the basics:
Running form and basic tips-
My suggestion is to run outdoors… because it is more challenging that on a treadmill but also it can get so boring on a treadmill that after 5 minutes you want to give up. There is no motivation pushing you forward and you just sort of stay on the same speed.
But also remember, if you want to run races, they will be outdoors. Its so much more motivating to see others running or to feel yourself running past a walker or just to see how far you are coming…. and to notice progress in a few weeks time when you realise that the route you ran 3 weeks ago you now run 3 minutes faster!!!
But i also find that its easy to set upsmall goals while running outside like… reach that rock and then you can stop, and then i pick a new object and run twards that.
Though that trick doesnt always work, instead…. my favourite running tip for when you want to give up is: Imagine your friends and family are ahead of you, stnading there cheering you on…. and then i get that extra motivation and keep running, just imagining all my friends and family on the sides cheering 🙂
But also good music is very motivating!
So there you have the motivational tips for when you are running and the basics.
How to get your self to run? Well ask yourself WHY you want to run…. if you want to improve and get better at running, then the only way is to do it!
And i suggest mixing it up with HIIT intervals, and steady pace running and if you live near a hill or somewhere, try doing some hill runs/intervals!! All good and will help your running. Doing HIIT on the treadmill can be easier than outside, but either way works 🙂
While running, dont forget about your breathing and your foot work. You shouldnt slam your foot down ,it shouldnt feel like you’re lifting concrete blocks. And dont forget about how you breathe.
Also know that its ok to stop and walk, just try to keep moving forward. You can find that once you stop, its harder to start running again… so even if you just slow down to a slow jog thats ok, just one foot infront of the other 🙂
Running with others can be a motivation as well, but if you run with someone who is alot faster than you, then its just demotivating… according to me!: )
Remember the more you practise, the easier it gets 🙂 And if you dont practise… then youll never get better!
Also know your shoes are THE MOST IMPORTANT. I cant stress this enough. If you dont have the proper shoes you can injure your knees, hips, calves, feet, back…. So before you begin training more seriously with running, then make sure you have proper shoes. They are an investment for the future you and your body 🙂
Also having comfortable running clothes – i recommend Dry fit!
And another thing i cant stress enough ENJOY RUNNING. Some might read this and think… are you kidding me. But if you dont get some sort of enjoyment out of it.. not even afterwards. Then skip running, why are you doing it? Find another sport to do. But running is something amazing and i love it. Even when my legs are heavy and i feel like my lungs are going to explode, i still get this sense of I love running! I never want to stop.
Also… when you run a race, its alot easier (according to me) as you get motivated by all the other people running 🙂
Here are some other helpful running schedules:
If you have any questions or want any more advice you can just ask 🙂
HIIT stands for High intensity interval training and research has found that it is one of the best training forms. It is a set of intervals which you do to increase your heart rate and a 20 minute HIIT session is eqivalent to c.a 40-60 minutes running at a normal pace.
HIIT also has an afterburn affect meaning that even after your workout your metabolism is sped up and burns extra calories 🙂 As the workouts are so intense usually 20-30 minutes is all you have energy for. Generally my HIIT sessions are no more than 15 minutes with a 5 minute warm up.
You can do HIIT in many different forms and intervals. Usually i do on the treadmill or when i do boxing, but you can also do it on the stationary bike, while out walking, on the stair master or cross trainer 🙂 You can even do it with body weight exercises.
The type of intervals and lengths all depends on what you are up for. My personal favourite is tabata style which is 20 seconds sprinting, 10 seconds rest.
But then somedays like yesterday when i had energy but not energy to run at 17km/hr then i did 2 minutes running at 11/12km/hr incline and 1 minute walking at an incline. This got my hear tbeat racing!!
So try different intervals and times and see what works for you… some like 30/30, some like running, jogging and walking, some do 1 minute on, 1 minute off etc
But remember that when you are doing your ‘fast’ interval… give it your all. The reason you only need 15 minutes or so is because you work so hard in the short period that you do and then you get a certain period of rest. If you just jog and walk, its not having the same affect as if you were to sprint and walk 🙂
Im now trying to do HIIT 2-3 times a week and ive already noticed that i have more energy, im faster and looking leaner 🙂
I often get told by people who are recovering that they want to get fit (again)… that they want to exercise to get fit. Which is great…. but the question is, what is their definition of fit?
Because it feels like many peoples only definition and view of fit is having a low body fat procent, and visible muscles to some degree.
You see someone who is very lean, has sort of visible abs and posts a picture flexing and you think Wow, that person is sooo fit. I want to look like him/her. But the truth is, that person might just have been on a diet to lose fat and genetically have more visible muscles… but not be able to run more than 2km or lift anything heavy… they just look a certain way.
I am not bashing that look at all, but fitness is not a body shape. You can be super fit and healthy but be more curvy or on the bigger side. You DONT need to lose weight to be fit (unless you are very overweight/obese.. then logically its hard to be fit and be able to run, lift heavy things, flexible etc etc ). You can be any shape or size… of course you can be underweight and fit i.e be able to carry out certain tasks. But you arent phsyically healthy/fit if you are underweight or over weight… making you not actually fit. Just strong/fast/flexible etc
The definition of fitness according to the dictionary is: 1) the condition of being physically fit and healthy. 2)the quality of being suitable to fulfil a particular role or task.
There is no mention of weight or size in the definition. That is just something that society and media has told us… that you have to look a certain way to be fit.
But trust me there are people who are on the bigger side and run several marathons each year, they eat healthier and workout more than someone who is naturally skinny and eats lots of junk food and just happens to look like the ‘ideal’ (though i think its stupid that there is some ideal body.)
You can NOT judge someones fitness by their body shape. There are people at my gym who are super strong or super fast (or both!) but might not look like the ‘typical’ fitness person. But i have gone up to those people and complimented them, told them that they are working so hard and i am impressed. Because i truly am and i believe people do need to hear some compliments and encouragment for their work!
If you want to get fit, that is awesome. Working on your physical health and all components of exercise and fitness. However DONT mix up the two of wanting to look a certain way and wanting to improve your fitness, because the two arent the same thing.
If you want to look a certain way, your goal isnt to improve your actual health… to improve the different components of exercise. Your goal is just to build muscle/lost fat/tone up etc…
So please be aware that to be fit you dont have to lose fat or lose weight… though gaining muscle does aid in fitness, though you DONT need visible muscles and a low body fat procent to be fitness.
Fitness is NOT chicken, brocolli and quark. Fitness is NOT running 10km everyday. Fitness is NOT having a super low body fat procent and visible abs and muscles.
Fitness is the ability to complete different tasks… if you were asked to hike 10km you would be able to do it. If you had to run 5km you would be able to do it. If you had to move a car or lift a heavy box you would be able to do it….
Focus on fitness and health NOT just changing your body.
Does Your Deadlift Suck?
Tonight I realized that, in over a relatively short period of time, I had taken my broken-ass deadlift from shit… to fucking awesome. So I thought I would share some thoughts with everyone on how I got there. This list is excellent for beginners, but even if you’re an experienced lifter, you may be overlooking something.
1. Don’t be a pussy
Yeah, the deadlift sucks. But it’s a true test of your posterior chain (the muscles on your backside). If you’re serious about being big and/or strong, you had better do some deadlifts.
Study good technique. Don’t just watch YouTube gym gurus. Instead, watch professional powerlifters and bodybuilders perform all sorts of deadlifts. If they’re pros, they’re doing something right.
Have someone smart watch you. Sometimes this involves videoing your training session and posting it on Facebook and YouTube—where every asshole can post about it. But if you don’t have people keeping an eye on you, it’s very easy to slip into bad habits.
Practice makes permanent. If you practice bad technique, you will be plagued with bad technique. I will not deadlift for reps of max effort if I do not have someone smart watching it.
Technique is half the deadlift. If your technique sucks, you will get hurt and are shortchanging yourself.
3. Lighten the load
Leave your ego at the door. Sometimes (a lot of the time) you need to lighten the weight and do more reps. This follows Tip #2: if you can’t do 10 or more reps with excellent form, something might be wrong.
Deadlifting heavy is taxing on the CNS. If you go heavy too often, your gains will eventually suffer. I’ve learned this myself and so have many of my training partners. Don’t learn it the hard way.
The other half of the deadlift is explosiveness. With very few exceptions, the deadlift is a two- to three-second lift, and every second after three, your odds of locking it out decrease exponentially. So do some research on the various methods for becoming more explosive. The dynamic effort method is most widely used by power athletes but is really just another form of plyometrics. If you are not explosive, your deadlift will suffer.
5. Your core is weak
Your core isn’t just your abs. Your core consists of your abdominals, obliques, spinal erectors, hips, lats, and traps. If your deadlift is struggling, strengthening and conditioning all of these muscles will increase your lift even if they aren’t the main culprit. Having a stronger core will also make all of your other multi-joint lifts stronger and better, so just do it. (Oh, and refer to Tip #1 and remember that a six-pack does not always equal strong abs).
6. Your grip sucks
Having a strong grip is a necessity when deadlifting for a lot of reps or with heavy weight. However, sore forearms and feeling like you can’t hold on to the bar is very psychologically damaging and may hold you back. Plus, we could all use a stronger grip and it benefits every lift, so why not do it?
7. You need better conditioning
You need to have the energy to get work done. One thing I began to notice was that I was burning out by the end of my warmup. My conditioning was shit, and it was keeping my deadlift in the mud. So, sometimes it’s beneficial to lighten the load and do more reps (See Tip #3). Also, every now and then cut your rest time to really annihilate yourself. The deadlift is very taxing on your body and regardless of the intensity of the workout, you’ll probably be feeling dead after it.