Tag Archives: exercise ideas

Why I Don’t Run

I don’t run for exercise. Sometimes I wish I could, or would, because you burn so many calories so quickly, but it doesn’t work for me. I blame my boobs and my brain.

I know, all women have boobs, but my tatas are too big for running. (Note: I am not complaining, I am stating a fact. My boobs are wonderful; they’re just not built for running.) I have yet to meet a bra that can hold the Ladies in such a way that effectively fights the counter-bounce of gravity. To be comfortable, I have to tuck my elbows into my sides and make a shelf for my boobs with my forearms. Couple that with my gasping for air and I look like an asthmatic Tyrannosaurus Rex lumbering along.Trex run

My husband runs almost every day. I tried once. When I complained that I couldn’t breathe, he helpfully advised me to count to four as I breathe in and to four again as I breathe out. I tried it and it worked very well: I could breathe and running was easier, but I kept having flashbacks of Lamaze breathing during labor. Also, after two minutes of counting, my brain was bored. Me + bored + sweaty T-Rex = not a happy runner. I prefer to power walk while reading a book.

The only time I like to run is when I play soccer or some other competitive field sport. There’s something about chasing down my prey and stealing the ball that thrills me. It’s how T-Rexes like to run.

 

Therefore I do not run like someone running aimlessly; I do not fight like a boxer beating the air. (1 Corinthians 9:26)

 

Why I Don’t Run

I don’t run for exercise. Sometimes I wish I could, or would, because you burn so many calories so quickly, but it doesn’t work for me. I blame my boobs and my brain.

I know, all women have boobs, but my tatas are too big for running. (Note: I am not complaining, I am stating a fact. My boobs are wonderful; they’re just not built for running.) I have yet to meet a bra that can hold the Ladies in such a way that effectively fights the counter-bounce of gravity. To be comfortable, I have to tuck my elbows into my sides and make a shelf for my boobs with my forearms. Couple that with my gasping for air and I look like an asthmatic Tyrannosaurus Rex lumbering along.Trex run

My husband runs almost every day. I tried once. When I complained that I couldn’t breathe, he helpfully advised me to count to four as I breathe in and to four again as I breathe out. I tried it and it worked very well: I could breathe and running was easier, but I kept having flashbacks of Lamaze breathing during labor. Also, after two minutes of counting, my brain was bored. Me + bored + sweaty T-Rex = not a happy runner. I prefer to power walk while reading a book.

The only time I like to run is when I play soccer or some other competitive field sport. There’s something about chasing down my prey and stealing the ball that thrills me. It’s how T-Rexes like to run.

 

Is TRX For Me?

TRX groupI tried a TRX demo class this week and I’m tempted to sign up for the real thing. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons.

I arrived two minutes early and stood in front of a strap attached to the wall, surrounded by people in spandex. I, of course, was wearing a baggy old t-shirt because I’m not going to spend $20 on a shirt I’m only going to sweat in. (I’m looking for sales, though. I’d spend $4.) I passed my first TRX challenge, which was to NOT run out the door. Whenever I enter a group exercise class, I have this illogical fear that I’ll be found out: someone will walk up to me and say “Hey, you’re not athletic! What are you doing here?” That didn’t happen. (Whew! Fooled ‘em again!)

trx plankPRO #1: The instructors were welcoming and helpful.

It took us 15 minutes to do our “5 minute” warm up because we had to learn how to use the straps. Lengthen them, shorten them, hands in the handles, feet in the handles, face the wall, face the center of the room, put your left leg in and you shake it all about.

trx jumpPRO #2 This could be the closest I ever come to being a trapeze artist.

It was a good workout. We worked our arms and legs, sucked in our bellies, and tightened our buttocks. When asked how I felt at the end of class, I answered honestly: “Shaky”. I congratulated a fellow classmate when we managed to walk up a flight of stairs after class without collapsing.

trx liftPRO #3 This kind of intense workout will never happen if I don’t have an instructor “making” me do it. I could end up with visible muscles.

When the instructor described the goal for the class (about 3x the work we did in this demo class), I was scared. I’d have to learn how to plank. I’d have to do pushups and sit ups. I would sweat. I would be sore (and as a stay at home mom who bends, lifts, and moves all day long, that makes for a very long day).

CON #1 No chance to wimp out and be lazy.

This is exactly the type of exercise I don’t go for. But for some reason, I think I’m willing to try. And it just might, maybe, sorta kinda have something to do with bathing suit season being only six weeks away. Trapeze artist, here I come!

“For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come.” 1 Timothy 4:8

Images courtesy of www.trueconditioning.com (group), greenleafmovement.com (jumping guy), consistentfitness.blogspot.com (plank), www.golffloridemag.com (butt lift)

Why I Love Swimming At The YMCA

P1000582There are many excellent forms of exercise to choose from, but swimming laps is my favorite by far. Let me tell you why swimming at my local YMCA is so great.

1. No sweat! I like to hike, walk, bike, and so forth, but I don’t like to sweat. Ever. I avoid it whenever I can. When I swim, I feel cool and fresh the whole time. I’m going to invent a bike bubble that allows you to pedal down the street surrounded by cold water up to your waist.

2. Feel young and slender! I go to the Y mid-morning when the building is frequented by young moms and retirees. 95% of the young moms are on the elliptical machines or in the aerobics classes, which means that most days I can boast of having the sexiest body in the swimming pool!

P10005833. Hope for the future! There are some days when the best body in the pool award goes to a swimmer in his or her seventies or eighties. While this is humbling, it proves to me that swimming is something I can keep doing for the rest of my life.

4. Full body workout! I love that I swim and then I’m done. Swimming laps works my arms, legs, heart, and lungs.

P10006925. Safer snorkeling! On a planet that’s 70% water, swimming is a life saving skill and it doesn’t hurt to be good at it. After I’d been swimming for six months, my husband and I had the opportunity to snorkel in the ocean off the coast of Mexico. We were fighting waves and currents as we swam and I was so proud of being able to handle myself well in that water.

I realize that not everyone likes to swim. A good friend of mine came swimming with me once, but she didn’t like it. She likes to sweat. She likes to work each part of her body separately and feel the burn. She’s crazy.

If you don’t like your current exercise, try something new and find something you enjoy. Roller skating, biking, hiking, cross country skiing, zumba, kick boxing, square dancing…find a way to move your body and love it!

 

“What is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them?

 You made them rulers over the works of your hands; the animals of the wild, the birds in the sky, and the fish in the sea, all that swim the paths of the seas.

Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!” (excerpts from Psalm 8)

March Abness Results

Tape MeasureI did it!  3100 crunches in 31 days!  And the results are in:  I lost 1 inch from my waist!

If you find it, let me know.  Har har har.  But isn’t that cool?  For those of you who’ve been wondering (myself included) if that little bit of exercise you’re doing is making a difference: IT IS.

You know those Ab machine infomercials that show flabby tummies turning into six packs in 90 days, just 3 minutes a day?  I’m beginning to suspect that ANY ab exercises for 3 minutes a day for three months will make a huge difference.  It takes me about 3 minutes to do 100 crunches; that includes a few little breathers to let my ab muscles un-clench and the pain to subside.

The Zarnecki IncursionThree minutes!  That’s all it takes.  I do them best while I watch TV.  So, if you’re watching CSI, you do crunches until they find the body.  Walking Dead?  Crunch until a body finds them.    Big Bang Theory?  Crunch while Sheldon explains something, anything, to Penny.   American Idol fan and want a real challenge?  Crunch from when they say “Up next we announce the results of last week’s voting” and keep going until they actually tell you the results.   I bet you could beat my 3100 in one show.

The point is, any little bit of exercise you do matters.  Motivating, isn’t it?

“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.”  Galatians 6:9

 

Images are from http://fitterinaballerina.wordpress.com/ and http://the-big-bang-theory.com/gallery/picture/1661/

Fun Exercise and my friend, Ox E. Moron

2013 August 106       Children are the best exercise motivators in existence because they trick you.  If you don’t believe me, go for a simple walk with a few small children.  They enthusiastically skip and talk and explore the first quarter mile and you think, “Yes, this is nice! My body feels good!”  They wait until you’re at the furthest geographical point from the house to fall apart and then you get a surprisingly good workout carrying, dragging, or threatening them all home.

A friend of mine from church – let’s call her Lean Jean – is the most creative gym teacher I’ve ever met, so I asked her for some exercise ideas.  She suggests riding bikes around the neighborhood or jogging together.  I’m not a jogger, but jogging with my kids might work; I mean, how fast can they go, right?  I hope I have enough pride to pump my legs faster when my three year old passes me!  In our family we make the kids earn their ice cream or popsicles by riding bikes around the one mile loop of our neighborhood.  (Bribery you say?  Yes, yes it is.)

10           Her next suggestion is Mailbox Races.  Start at your mailbox and race to the neighbor’s mailbox, then back to yours.  Let the kids choose a different movement each time: hopping, skipping, ski jumps, walking backwards, sashaying sideways, galloping.  “The kids love to pick silly movements. Keep it fun.”  She makes the point that you’re in front of your house the whole time, so if one kid needs a break or a bathroom, they can take a rest on the lawn.  And when Mommy lies gasping on the grass, the kids can fetch her water from the house.

I was put to the test yesterday evening.  My children drew a big wobbly race track on our driveway and wanted to run races.  SIGH.  The very thought of running made my legs and arms turn to lead.  But this week’s blog was echoing in my head and I thought, “Am I going to talk the talk only or am I going to Nike it up and Just Do It?”  The races were fun once I started!  I felt a little silly, but what are the neighbors going to do, move away?  Not in this market!

2013 August 121Some other great ideas she had are to make an obstacle course or to crank up the music and dance.  Ever dance like a toddler?  It’s all jumping and wiggles and kicks and some pretty cool hand motions.  Lots of fun, but suddenly all of the songs feel so loooooooong!  Let the kids lead the dancing and copy their moves; you’re guaranteed not to be stuck doing the awkward head bop I pull out at every wedding.

No “good” time for crunches or weights?  Do 15 pushups leaning on your vanity before your shower, says Lean Jean, and do lunges when you’re on the phone.  “Just remember that if it’s not fun, you won’t want to keep doing it. Change it up, interject it in small doses throughout your day.”

If you don’t have children readily available or you don’t feel comfortable borrowing some, I recommend you try a KISS walk, Keep It Simple Stupid.  Throw on some sneakers and go.  No special outfit, no gear, no reason to wait.  Ten minutes here, twenty minutes there; it all adds up.  How does it add up?  Let us count the ways!

2013 August 122Walking briskly for 10 minutes: 45 calories

Dancing for 10 minutes: 90 calories

Jogging (12 minute mile) for 10 minutes: 100 calories

Push ups for 10 minutes: 40 calories

Bike riding for 10 minutes: 95

House cleaning for 10 minutes: 30 calories

Carrying, dragging, or threatening children for 10 minutes: 50 calories

“The wings of the ostrich flap joyfully,
though they cannot compare
with the wings and feathers of the stork.” Job 39:13

We may not look graceful or athletic when we exercise, but we can move our bodies with joy!