Friday, March 25, 2016

Changing Seasons: From Indoor to Outdoor

Spring is the perfect time to step up your game and start changing your workout routine.

Maybe you can simply change from indoors to outdoors. 

And if you aren't currently working out, the season of change is the perfect time to start.  

So let's get it in. 

Here are a few outdoor workout ideas.




- Yoga on the lawn

- run or walk up and down and up and down the steps

- a walk or jog around the neighborhood school track 

- bike riding on the waterfront bike path 

- leave your car parked and walk instead 

- flashback in realtime to the past and jump a rope outside in the park


It's springtime. Let's get the changing of ourselves in and have fun doing it. I mean if it feels like a drag then what's the point. But if it is a drag to do something that is beneficial to you then your gut will be the point, pointing outwards. But no point in complaining for your own intent and purpose. 

By the way, thanks for pointing your mouse on my link and clicking to read my post. 

Happy spring! 

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Walk!

The groundhog was right. Spring has arrived early. 

How joyous it is to be in such warm weather in the early days of March. Just don't let these days slip you by. 

Get out there and walk!


If great heart health is achieved by doing 30 minutes of cardio vascular exercise, then you should know that in just 30 minutes, you would have walked a mile and a half. 

Ditch the car and use your legs as wheels to get you around. Fast from public transportation for a day, put on your sneakers and let your legs get you there.

It's worth the heart pumping experience and watch your body thank you later.

Nothing link meditating to the sound of the wind and your feet hitting the pavement! Nothing like the one on ones with God. Nothing like loving your own heart and taking care of it! I mean, who better than you? Or rather, if not you, than who? 

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

T is for Take a Bite into a Run

A Need to Run

I'll never forget! I was in the 4th grade and every day after school, my friends and I would get on the bus to head home. 

That day was no different. School ended and we walked towards the bus, got on for the brief ride until our stop where we got off to walk the rest of the way to our destination. The only difference with that day was the loose dog that was standing at the corner.

I had always been afraid of dogs and I guess dogs can usually sense fear on a person because it came and started sniffing me. That was when my running days began.



I never ran so far and long before until that day.  It was luck that my best friend's brother was at the front of their building because if he hadn't been holding the door open, I probably would have gotten bitten by the dog. 

Recently, I started on this running journey again; but only indoors and on a treadmill without the encouragement of a mean, barking dog running after me. It started out as intervals of walking, jogging and running and now I have gained stamina to run 41 minutes straight. I think that is pretty good considering, I am not your average runner and have yet to try a long distance run that is all terrain. But I will!


Take A Bite Into Running

So here are some things to think about when running . . . 

1. Running requires your arms to be moving as well so if you are on a treadmill holding on to the bars and running, you are not doing the cardio workout correctly
2. 4.0 on a treadmill is fast paced walking, not running.
3. Warmup before and stretch after. You might feel achiness in your knees when you are done. So make sure to stretch them out or strengthen by stationary bike riding with good resistance. 
4. Good sneakers made for your feet are important. Make sure they have good traction. You will know you need new sneakers when the foot support is not the same and you start feeling cramps in your feet or ankles.
5. Running is a great exercise to shed belly fat. So if you are trying to lose your stomach; run. 
6. You can experience a bit of what all terrain running is indoors by adding incline to your treadmill run; the natural earth has incline. But, the best way to experience it is to challenge yourself, change your environment and get outside. 
7. You can burn over 500 calories with just 45 minutes of running. Your heart will be thanking you for each end every second of it. 

Running  Idea

By the way! 

I am no longer afraid of dogs. I am strong enough to put my fear aside and to not let even the biggest bark to send me running. 



What I failed to realize back then is the power I have in my stance. So much power that I could've thrown that loose pet harder than a pitch by Ventura of the Kansas City Royals and left it feeling the dog days. Now how does that bark bite? Lol! 

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

S is for Strength

You do all this work trying to bust your ass just to get the pounds off. You shed the pounds but then you see skin hanging that needs to be trimmed. That's when I realized; cardio is great but so is strength training.



Sure we can lift our own selves up to carry our own weight. Well barely! How many times have you gone up a flight of steps and been left huffing and puffing as if you just ran a marathon? Sure you could lift yourself out of bed in the morning to face the rising sun, but could you lift your own body from the  ground if you fell? God forbid the movie "2012" was our reality and our only option to survive was to carry our entire world on our backs while racing to China towards the spaceship. Would we have the strength to carry on? 

Pull-up


Recently, I attended the Circle of Sisters Festival at the Jacob Javits Center in New York and the Marines were there. They were recruiting and giving out information and one of the things a person must be able to do to be a part is a pull-up. And so I tried it. 




I could barely pull my own weight up. Knowing that it is hard, made me consider my little 8lbs and 10lbs weights that I do strength training workouts with. 

Married to the Weight

Today, I made an adjustment. 



I married new weights; fifteens for the first time.

My something new; New resistance! Borrowed strength from God to lift them through each rep and I got the blues because of my sore shoulders. But I can't complain. I want them toned arms and the strength and I am doing it!!! :))) 

And when it comes time to get into that race for my spot on that spaceship in China, nobody will be able to stop me. I've become a pro at doing superwomans. I can thrust forward with swiftness. I have the strength!!! 

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

R is for Ready, Set, Yoga

I just love Autumn. The things I love most about this season are the beautiful weather, the colors, the outdoor energy (fairs, outdoor musical events), the fashion and the workout opportunities. Autumn is a perfect time to fall back into fitness. So let's make sure to get that heart pumping and keeping our minds and bodies healthy.

Wherever You Are

The gym may not be for everyone. It might seem too tight and confined for some who find joy working out in other places.

Running or weight lifting may not be for everyday.  It is good to do, but maybe adding different types of exercises to your lifestyle that also affect different muscles in your body, might not only enhance the experience, but keep your mind geared toward continuing on your fitness journey.

So how about taking your workouts outside!


Ready, Set, Yoga

Have you ever tried yoga?  It is a great exercise that can stretch every muscle in your body and also make you more flexible.  What I found to be great about yoga is that it teaches you how to breathe effectively so that when you are doing harder cardio workouts, you find the breathing process to be much easier.

Yes, yoga is meditational and yes it can bring you peace of mind. No, not all forms of yoga will put you to sleep and yes, your body can actually benefit from it. And it is a great exercise to do anyplace and at anytime.



Some questions you might be wondering is, how many downward dogs do I have to do for it to be considered yoga? Can I snap my neck doing head or shoulder stands?  Do I actually need a mat to do yoga? Following an instructor is best at the beginner stage. Guidance is helpful to get a hang of different yoga positions; but once you get a hang of it, anytime and anyplace a yogi sees fit.

I took it outside to Canarsie Pier and in the midst of my time there, I realize I did not really need a mat at all.  Through this experience, I have now found a name for my car: YOGAMAT.


 
This post was inspired by MAMAKAT's writing prompt on the five things I love most about fall. The top love would be working out though there is not really a season that is dedicated to it; it is an everyday passion.  This post was also inspired by National Name Your Car Day which falls on October 2, 2014 this year. Fun idea to use these  images to come up with a name for my vehicle.  (Photos are courtesy of EJ Haughton Photography)

Sunday, September 14, 2014

Q is for Quantum Zumba

It doesn't take much to get a quick workout in. I found out how true that idea is this past Saturday at the Apollo Harlem Healthy Soul Fair that took place on W 126th Street between Adam Clayton Powell Blvd and Frederick Douglass. 





A stage was setup where Zumba and fitness classes were being held by Shakeup NYC, the New York Knicks Dancers and more; and all passers by could take part. In 20 minutes, not only did we work up a sweat shimmying and doing the quick foot among other dances, but we each burned over 100 calories. Can I say, ENERGY!!! Not bad for a quick workout that was also fun! 

Add something different to your workout daily so that it doesn't start to wear off its effectiveness, become redundant and boring or make you lose interest.  Zumba fitness adds that type of energy for me; different songs each time, a variety of dance moves and zumba's enjoyable nature.

Did you know that Emblem Health offers free fitness classes that is open to the public? You do not need to be enrolled in an expensive gym to workout. If you are interested in achieving a better lifestyle, visit http://www.ehnc.com for a full calendar of free health and fitness related events. Also, there are many free workout classes you can find on-line by accessing youtube. You'd be surprise at the quality of fitness classes offered that are full-length and very good. 

It doesn't take much to get your fitness on. The key to it is just doing it! 

Saturday, August 16, 2014

P is for Push

There is no time or place designed that is designed as the only time and place to push. Push wherever you are and whenever you feel like you are ready and you need a little push in your life.



Who?


Anybody who desires to workout and are equipped with the willpower, the success will be yours.


What?


Achieving quality health and fitness is not an easy thing. It requires work and dedication. It requires belief in yourself and faith in God's power to enable you to make it happen. So push! Know that you can do it and never allow any comment, thought of failure, impatience over seeing other progressing faster than you or anything, make you lose your ground. You set your parameters and you fellow your own path and accomplish your fitness goals, your way.  But just know, it takes time. So be patient, stick with it and see results.


Where?


At your desk?  You get tired of sitting, stand up and stretch your legs for a minute and let your muscles work a little beyond the fingers that are typing on the keyboard.  Take the stairs instead of the elevator.  If you work on the second floor, it is just a few steps down to the first.  Are we being lazy or is it really necessary to let the electronics of man do the work that the legs God created for you can do more efficiently?  Go out and take a walk during your lunch break. Or maybe go for a quick workout at the nearby gym.  30 minutes may not seem like much of a workout but,  30 minutes a day of cardiovascular exercise increases your heart health tremendously.

At home? You do not need a gym to workout. Grab two of your heaviest bottles of hair conditioning treatments or corona bottles and use them as weights while you are watching television.  Do a few bicep curls with them, some tricep extensions and maybe some shoulder twists. Pretend you have a rope in your hand and just jump like you would skip rope.  During each television commercial break while watching the evening news or your favorite television show, do squats through the duration of one commercial, lunges through the next one, pushups or tricep dips during the next one and maybe some torso twists through the next one until the show you are watching comes back from the commercial break.

When?


In the morning?  I find that working out gives me energy like coffee does. So in the morning is not so bad for me to go for a morning walk or jog through the park, to do some Nintendo Wii Zumba or Just Dance dancing, or to get on to the elliptical machine at the gym. But if you are not such a morning person, maybe during midday is not so bad.  Working out before you eat is the best thing because after you work up an appetite, you are giving yourself a great treat. However if you eat immediately before, you are setting yourself up for getting those cramps on the side of your stomach that some people call stitches, while you work out.  But maybe you are not the type who likes to workout and then continue the hustle and bustle of the day. How about right after work? Try walking home from wherever you are on purpose. Most people will volunteer to walk the five miles for a benefit walkathon. How about using this walk to benefit your own heart and health?  You'll be surprised how you can shed and tighten your belly by just regularly walking a mile or two. But maybe you have a lot to do at home and you want to rush.  How about right before bed?  So you are tired and you lay down but not tired enough to close your eyes and fall asleep at a decent hour.  Work out and make yourself so tired that you have not option but to honor your body.  There is always a time so make time because nobody else can spend their time on bettering your own expensive health for you. Only you can.

 

Why?


Because it is your health. Because your body is God's temple. Because you want to achieve better  heart health. Because you do not want to be pre- or borderline any diseases caused by your own eating habits. Because you can. Because you want to.

How?