Category Archives: Exercise in Real Life

Rest

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So I’m at the place in my novel where I’ve finished (whew) and I’ve put it down to let it simmer for a month before I lay ‘new’ eyes on it for revisions.  I can’t tell you how hard it’s been to STEP AWAY FROM THE BOOK, ma’am.

I’ve been gathering all of my revision materials (notes, articles, etc.) and working on my query letter in an attempt to keep my head in the story but still I’m full of anxiety.  I don’t even really know why.

I recently went on a 4-day weekend trip with my sisters to Vegas.  We worked out a few times but nothing like what I’d do at home.  On top of that, we did partake of the beverage more than I ever do.  And additionally, I left town with a blossoming cold and came back with a fully birthed sinus infection.  That created a perfect storm for my body to shut down and reject any notion of my former exercise routine.  Somehow over 4 days I’d deconditioned a depressing amount.  It took me at least a week and a half to resume my normal exercise schedule. (I know this sounds like a silly thing–4 days of easy workouts, poor me–but when you look forward to a certain level of exercise it’s actually very hard to accept anything else).

I think my anxiety about stepping away from my novel is a fear of deconditioning.  I’d developed a writing routine that allowed me to finish my fourth novel and stopping feels unnatural.  I’ve written a short story and a blog or two during this hiatus but somehow I still feel like I’m missing something every day.

I realize I’m a type A, OCD-kind-of-gal.  I don’t do well with change and I’m VERY organized and structured in my daily life.  When I change my routine it makes me anxious, period.

What’s my point?  As hard as taking a break has been I know that it’s necessary.  There’s a reason EVERYONE recommends that if you’re going to self-edit you MUST get out of the novel for a period of time.  It works.  Plain and simple.  Go back and read something you wrote over a year ago.  I promise you’ll see it as another person.  It may still be awesome (Go You!) but you’ll see something there that you didn’t see before.

As difficult as it was on my psyche to do a week of wimpy workouts so my body could build itself back up, I know it’s also good for me.  Muscles (and brains) need a break.

So, HERE’S TO TAKING A BREAK! Take some deep breaths and Enjoy! <cheers!>

Currently Reading:

The Magician’s Lie by Greer Macallister (audio edition)

The Merchant of Death (Pendragon #1) by D.J. MacHale

City of the Beasts (Eagle and Jaguar, #1) by Isabel Allende

The Field Guide (The Spiderwick Chronicles, #1) by Holly Black

Current Workout Video:

 Body Max by Cathe Friedrich- This is an old school (circa 1998…she’s wearing a headband, people!) hard ass workout!  It’s long, too–90 minutes, I think.  There’s a cardio portion (with a step) followed by a segment of short cardio bursts (on the step) paired with weighted lower body.  Finally she does upper body weights and then abs. I burn over 600 calories when I do this workout.  It’s very hard.  The choreography is not advanced but the intensity is.  Go for it!

 

 

 

 

 


Resolutions and Possibilities

New Year’s Resolutions suck.  Who on planet Earth remembers their resolutions past June?  Hell, I don’t look at them after January 2, but I thought I’d go ahead and use 6 months to make my point because of all the over-achievers who will claim to have their resolutions posted firmly at their desk as a Daily Reminder of their impending failures for 6 months or longer.  Why, people?  Who are you kidding?

Let’s review the New Year’s Resolutions for almost every living adult (in no particular order):  1)Lose Weight (see #2) 2)Exercise 3)Travel 4)Win Lottery 5)More time with family 6)Eat healthy.  You’re lying if you say that none of those were on your list. Now, if you’re a writer *throat clearing* then you’ve also got at least one resolution that has to do with revising, starting, completing, or working on a writing project.

While I do think making a list of resolutions every January 1st is setting yourself up for colossal failure (depending on how big you go, of course…lose one pound or 10? workout once all year or go to the gym twice a week?  win a million dollars or a scratch off?)  I also believe having goals is important.  The inherent problem with New Year’s Resolutions is that they’re the BIG ONES that are so often not realistic.  While daily, weekly, monthly (you get the idea) goals are generally more attainable and thus do their job, which is to give you that periodic pat on the back we’re all seeking for an awesome job completed, and what keeps our wheels spinning on towards the next goal.  Go You!

I suppose a list of smaller resolutions would be missing the point.  After all, they are called New YEAR’S Resolutions for a reason, as they’re meant to be worked on over the course of the year, not achieved overnight.  Maybe if we tweaked it a little bit it could still be fun to make the list (like it is for my 8-year-old, who put Clean My Room and Be Nice to My Brother, on her resolutions).  Maybe I should call my resolutions: Fun Possibilities for the New Year.  I mean, if you throw the word ‘Fun’ in there it changes everything, right?  Fun Taxes, Fun Science Fair Projects, Fun Ironing.  Trying on bathing suits fun. Fun is a magical word.

So, here’s my list of Fun Possibilities for the New Year: 1)Write another YA novel and/or find an agent and get a novel published 2)Be nice. (Even when things suck.)  3)Continue current exercise regimen but listen to my body when I need a day off (this is the actual hard part of this one) 4)Put more money in savings..enough said 5)Relax! (Haven’t since 1993…the year my first child was born) 6)Tell my family that I love them more 7)Give more hugs (if you knew me, you’d know that #6 & #7 are really hard) 8)Remember what’s important.  And gradually this list has taken an emotional turn so I’ll just stop there.

What about you?  Did you make any resolutions?

A new part of my posts for 2015 will be my Currently Reading and Current Favorite Workout Video blurbs.  Go Me!

Currently Reading:

House of Thunder by Dean Koontz (audio edition)

The Merchant of Death (Pendragon #1) by D.J. MacHale

Stones from the River by Ursula Hegi

Killing the Beasts by Chris Simms (Kindle)

The Walled City by Ryan Graudin

Current Workout Video:

Cathe Friedrich’s XTrain Series: Super Cuts…I’ve been doing the extreme pre-mix (60 min) and I always use the same weights as Cathe.  I’m pretty sore.  The ab/pushup challenge at the end is awesome.  I’ve pulled it off a few times now:-) *Go Me (my new catchphrase, apparently)!  I’m averaging about 400 cals each workout.

Go Exercise & Keep on Writing!


Time for a Workout

Have you seen the new Shaun T workout, Insanity Max 30?  Check it out on beachbody.com.

I love me some Shaun T but I won’t be buying this one…just yet.

If you’ve ever read my blog you know that I don’t go to a gym.  I’m an avid home exerciser and over the years I’ve compiled a vast library of workout videos (started back with the original Buns of Steel…oh yeah. That guy is awesome).  I almost cried when collagevideo.com closed!

I’m one of those people who happily discovered the compact workout craze.  My days are crazy busy and busier all the time but I. Have. To. Exercise.  I can’t function properly without a workout.  I was thrilled to discover the market flooded over the last few years with shorter, uber intense (and fun!)  workout choices that gave me the same sense of accomplishment.  I continued to workout daily mostly using videos that were 30-45 minutes long.  But about a year ago I realized I’d started to gain weight (insert blob music).

About 10 months ago I decided for the first time in my life I was going to actually diet.  I downloaded fitness pal, bought a heart rate monitor and changed up my workouts to at least an hour.  I broke up with Shaun T, Tony Horton and Chalean (I should have stock in beachbody) and started going steady with Cathe Friedrich.  Cathe is an intense mix of the other three but her workouts tend to be longer (although she does have shorter ones as well).

It took a while but I lost 15 lbs.  If you have a heart rate monitor you’ll quickly realize that no matter how intense you workout for 25 or 30 minutes, you can’t burn as many calories as you do in an hour.  Now, I’m not talking to people that went from NEVER excercising to doing a 30 minute workout and lost a ton of weight (duh, of course you did!  Bravo, btw).  I’ve worked out obsessively for a looooonnnnggg time (decades, people) and I realized that 30 minutes may not be long enough (for me).

So, my current workout routine is a minimum of 55 minutes (with an emphasis most days on cardio to get the calorie burn I’m looking for).  Because of my new norm I’d have to do more than one of Shaun T’s workouts at a time and I don’t know about you but once I hear the cool down/stretch music I find it very hard to talk myself into another workout.

I don’t doubt the pendulum will eventually swing back to some shorter workouts mixed in during the week (welcome back Shaun T) but I’m not there yet.

What about you?  Long or short workout sessions?

Find what works for you and DO IT!

Happy Exercising:-)