Most of us have an enemy living inside our own head! (Reflect on that. Most of us walk around with a “non-friend” in our heads. We spend hours with someone being mean to us — not believing in us. That saddens me to my core. No wonder so many of us overeat, drink too much, and under exercise.) Most of us are extremely cruel to ourselves. We need to learn to be on our own side!
So far my “How to use X” blogs have covered how to use equipment — everything from the elliptical, to the treadmill, to dumbbells, to the foam roller. The basic premise is that it is one thing to own a piece of equipment, but to use it — and stay injury free — you need to know how to use it!
Today, the piece of equipment I am covering is the body itself!
When it comes to reaching any health goal, consistency is key! What is more “convenient” than your birthday suit! (And no, you don’t have to be naked!)
Plus, it is finally spring. The nice weather is here — use it as motivation to get moving! Who doesn’t love being outside?
Basically, slather on some sunscreen, grab your hat and some water, and get outside!
I recently graduated as a Level 2 Life Coach. Life coaching is an inherently awareness-building, reflection-generating experience … thus, the question that inspired this blog: “What does Kathleen the fitness professional wish the younger (and less fit) Kathleen had known?”
I get it. When you finish your workout, you just want to get on with life. It is natural to think, “Phew … done … SHOWER.” I have been there — many times. I never want to complete a full cool down. I did my workout. I want to get on with my day (and did I mention shower? I love the post-workout shower almost more than the workout). The problem is, there is a reason why a proper workout has been broken down into three main components — warm-up, main workout, cool-down.
So far in this “How to use X” series I have covered everything from what a proper warm-up is, to how to use dumbbells, to how to use various pieces of cardio equipment! All great information — if you have access to gym equipment! The question becomes, what do you do when you travel?
It is all well and good to know how to use fitness equipment, but only if you also know how to warm up prior to the actual workout. Let me tell you, an appropriate warm-up can be the difference between an awesome workout and quitting after 5 minutes. Why? The warm-up literally preps your mind and body for the work that is to come; it is not a “would like to” but rather a “must do.” If you skip the warm-up — and workout “cold” — you will most likely feel some combination of out of shape, lethargic, stiff, winded, and discouraged.
Over the past months I have been writing a series of “How to use X’ blogs, covering everything from the treadmill, to the bike, to free weights, to my personal favourite — the foam roller. Today, the elliptical! For many the elliptical offers a low-impact, joint-friendly, slightly less intimidating cardio option.
If you like the idea of convenient, time-efficient, inexpensive “do anywhere” workouts -- and don’t require one-on-one guidance -- a fitness app might be for you. Apps are excellent for those jammed for time, those with a limited budget or no gym access, those wanting to take their workouts to the next level, or those too intimidated to train with others.
I am sure you have seen the roller — a long, cylindrical foam tube. Now is the time for you to start using it! Contrary to popular belief, it is NOT just for injured runners and Pilates devotees. Everyone can — and should — use the roll! I use mine daily — both personally and professionally. It is incredibly versatile; use it to massage sore muscles, improve posture, challenge your balance and core, and even as part of a sleep routine.
Welcome to the fifth installment in my “How to use X” series of blogs. In each blog I highlight a different piece of equipment -- I outline the pros and cons, who might benefit, and how to best use it. The equipment of “the hour” is -- you guessed it -- the stability ball. My personal favourite aspect of the ball is that it helps me “find the joy,” lighten up, have some fun -- and giggle. Taking training too seriously (the ‘no pain, no gain’ philosophy, etc.) can be a deterrent.