How’s everyone feeling? My booty is a little sore, not going to lie.
I go to the gym regularly, but nothing brings my apparent workout laziness into sharp relief like starting a new fitness regimen. Sure, I lift weights and do various exercises, but how often do I push myself to complete full sets after I am tired? Not often enough, clearly. It’s a good sore, though, the kind of sore that makes you half want to curl up and die, half take on the world because you feel yourself getting stronger. Come at me, bro! The commitment I made to you all rings in my head every time I think, “eh, I’ll just do one set.” Nope. Nope nope nope. I did my two sets five days this week, and I am quite proud of myself.
A few things to remember–
1. Proper form is important. When you are doing squats or lunges, your knees should never go over the tips of your toes. When doing push-ups or planks, it is a good idea to do them in front of a mirror since the proper form for both isn’t usually the position you get your body into naturally. You want your spine to be a straight line. When doing crunches, tighten your stomach muscles like you are pulling your belly button back to your spine. For more information and photos on proper form, Lifehacker Australia has a good guide. It is better to do fewer reps with proper form than more reps with a crappy one. Plus, you are more likely to hurt yourself, and nobody wants that.
2. Modify if you need to. I do “girl” push-ups. I have a bad shoulder and I really don’t feel like having another surgery. I partially got myself into the mess by having a “real” push-up contest with my little brother shortly after injuring myself. That little bout of sibling rivalry has cost me dearly, so push-ups and I don’t get along. I also have a hard time with the Push Up and Rotation, so I don’t do that one. Is that technically cheating? Perhaps, but again, I’m cool not being cut open anytime soon. Instead, I do the side plank twice. If there are exercises that hurt you, please don’t try to push through the pain. Find another to replace it.
3. You should feel it burn, but it shouldn’t hurt. There is sometimes a fine line between working your muscles to the point of fatigue and being in actual “holy-shit-that-fucking-hurts” pain. Listen to your body carefully. You should feel tired and it should be rough finishing up your last few reps of your sets, but you shouldn’t be in pain. If something hurts, stop and find a replacement.
Now onto the prizes! Each week we are touching base in the comments section to see how our various workouts are going. You can be doing the 7 Minute Challenge or another workout of your choice. Each person who comments on their progress* (one entry per week, not per comment), will have their name put in a hat. At the end of the month, a name will be chosen at random by my adorable office assistant, Chris, to win a $10 Jamba Juice and a $10 Peet’s or Starbucks gift card. Fun fun for everyone! Happy workouts, everybody!
*all comments from last week count, too, so if you joined up last week, you’ve already got an entry!