Monday, January 17, 2011

Work Out Routine

I absolutely love to work out. Scratch that...I absolutely love to take workout classes! Since I'm really petite at only 4'10" and under 100lbs, I've never "needed" to work out, but I've always, always wanted to just to stay healthy and for my own mental well-being. I feel lucky because I know for a lot of people, working out is a struggle!

Disclosure: I never have been, and never will be, a runner. And I don't like using the machines at the gym! From when I was little all the way through middle and high school, I took dance classes. In college I took two different recreation classes every semester, from dance to stretch to kickboxing. After college, it took me six months to finally join a gym. I'm now in my third year of membership at 24 Hour Fitness (thanks to the fantastic Costco deal!) and I'm addicted to the classes. I've tried a variety of classes but have settled on my favorites: Turbo Kickboxing (TKB) and BodyPump (BP). For TKB, I love the high-energy, the awesome music and the fantastic instructors. It's great for cardio but also great for toning, since you constantly have to keep your "guard" up in front of your face which works your arms. I've been taking that class since October 2008 when I got my gym membership and I go 1-2x a week.

BP is new to my workout regime as of September 2010. I knew I wanted to add weightlifting to my routine but had no idea where to begin. And the lifting area and all the machines at the gym intimidates me! I asked one of my TKB instructors one day and she suggested I take her BP class. I did...and it was EXACTLY what I was looking for! It's a barbell class (you can read about BodyPump here) that is set to music. I started with the lowest weight possible on the bar for my very first class, 5lbs total (2.5lbs per side) for all the exercises: warm-up, squats, lifts, curls, presses and abs. As I continued to take the class only 1x per week, by mid-December I had increased my warm-up weight to 10lbs, squats to 25lbs and a range of 10lbs-15lbs for everything else! That's a 5x increase for squats in 4 months. :)

I also do a bootcamp class on the weekends. I have a friend from college who is working on becoming a personal trainer so after we had seen each other frequently at the same gym, she asked if I would want to join. How can I turn down a FREE outdoor workout?! We started in July 2010 and I have been going ever since...sometimes it's just the two of us so it's like a private class! We do everything from sprints, jump rope, stairs, lunges, army crawls, jumping jacks, abs and stretching. It's amazing cross-training!

So, no matter what the cost, I will always be a member of a gym that has the classes I love. My physical and mental health thank me every day and it helps me feel so good about myself!


Anonymous January 17, 2011 at 11:06 AM  

I wouldn't describe myself as petite since I'm kind of tall, but like you, I have never really "had" to work out to maintain weight, but i certainly feel/look better when I work out.

That's great that you have a routine that works for you! I have always meant to try classes, but right now I'm too running focused and just don't have the time.

You know, i used to hate running, and now I love it. But I do understand that it isn't something for everyone!

Frugalista January 17, 2011 at 1:07 PM  

It's great that you have made working out a part of your life and something fun. Slim or not everyone needs to for the heart. You can be skinny and have high cholesterol. I myself am getting better about going. I am an elliptical junkie as of late though. The classes haven't been my thing because of timing issues and I like to get in and get out on my time.

curls-and-pearls January 17, 2011 at 8:19 PM  

I completely admire you!! I love taking classes too but sadly am not brave enough to go alone. I used to love yoga but since I moved haven't found anything I love.

ReallyPetite January 17, 2011 at 8:56 PM  

Now I feel super lazy! LOL

Thanks for sharing:)

Matt January 17, 2011 at 10:17 PM  

Taking classes are some of the best ways to make working out fun. You're pushed beyond your limits by the instructor and forced to exercise harder than you would alone.

Carolyn January 20, 2011 at 2:03 PM  

Augh I SO wish there was a BP class here!!!!!!! It seems ridiculous that there isn't!

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