Back a few years ago, good workouts was not doing one. I was perfectly happy sitting on the couch. I thought I looked great but I didn’t know how bad I really felt and I didn’t realize I was headed toward heavy meds and an early grave. If you want to know how you really look, strip down to your underwear and take some pictures. But, I thought it was all good. Then, one day I found P90X and started working out and, being honest, I felt miserable. I was sore and cranky the first couple of weeks. Every day I got up and worked out at 5:30 AM and every day I didn’t look forward to it. It took about 2 weeks to really start feeling good and look forward to working out. I still wasn’t excited about doing Yoga X, but I did it. It was the program that showed me exactly how much I needed to improve in my weak areas. So, it was not fun or exciting for a very long time. Then, after awhile, it got to be much better. I had to learn that good workouts aren’t always fun. They aren’t always exciting. Good Workouts challenge you and make you improve. There are good workouts and there are also good workout programs. They have to have different elements to them. If you do the same thing over and over every day, you’re going to get bored and your muscles and your fitness will plateau. Much has been said about cross training and keeping things fresh to prevent fitness plateaus, but what is involved in good workouts?
Three things needed for Good Workouts
I guess you could say Attitude, Water and a Towel, and that would be correct. For Insanity, that’s really all you need along with gravity and a floor. But for Good Workouts, I was thinking more about what should be involved. You want to avoid boredom, frustration and keep things fresh and exciting. So for a good workout program, you really need cardio, flexibility and resistance. This should be second nature and it will be once you start working out seriously. For the people who go to the gym and hit the elliptical or the treadmill or take an occasional class here and there, they are missing out on not only good workouts but what their body needs. Staying young really is a matter of incorporating three things into your workouts.
Cardio strengthens the heart and the lungs and releases endorphins into the system. It is great for stamina and endurance and improves sleep as well. It is a good calorie burn and if done correctly with high intensity interval training, it can have an “afterburn” effect burning calories long after it is over.
Flexibility and balance is needed for joints and staying young. Yoga is incredible for flexibility and strength. It is called “the fountain of youth”. When you think of an older person, you typically don’t think flexible and pliable, you typically think of rigidity and aches and pains. How many times have you heard of an older person falling and breaking bones or hips and going downhill fast after that? Flexibilty and balance are key to staying young, but it is hard to make yourself just do it unless you are incorporating it into your workout schedule.
Resistance isn’t just about lifting heavy weights. You can incorporate resistance by doing pushups (from your knees or leaning against a wall), chair dips, squats, lunges, anything that makes your muscles move and grow. It certainly CAN be lifting weights but pushups, pullups, burpees, any of that counts. Muscles burn fat and increases metabolism just sitting there. Metabolism slows as you get older just because of getting older, but most people miss out on the fact that they are losing muscle mass and that is a big reason why they get fatter, and slower, and age much more quickly.
Finding Good Workouts
You can certainly join a gym and get a trainer and get in some good workouts. If you watch The Biggest Loser, you will see them doing everything I just told you. They have resistance, cardio and flexibility/balance in their workouts. They show a lot of running on treadmills or rowing on the machines because that is where a lot of the dialogue happens, but you also see them doing burpees, pulling ropes, lifting weights, pullups, situps, etc. Beachbody has a LOT of great programs that incorporate all of what I’m telling you. The program most people have heard about is P90X. For instance, on Day 1, it is all pushups and pullups for resistance (modified as necessary of course), Day 2 is Plyometrics for cardio, Day 3 is Shoulders and Arms for resistance, Day 4 is Yoga for flexibility and balance, Day 5 is Legs and Back for resitance, Day 6 is Kenpo for all three and Day 7 is X Stretch which is flexibility and balance. THAT is why P90X is so effective as a workout. We also have other good workouts that you can get into that will help you with your overall fitness. I would love to help you find your “soul mate” workout. Contact me and I’ll help you figure it out and help hold you accountable as your Beachbody Coach. I’m here for you. Let’s do this together!!