Thursday, September 6, 2007

Web Fitness: Staying Motivated

This was a good week for fitness on the web, and I've got some really interesting and informative links for you.

Biggest Diet and Exercise Mistake You Can Make
I'm going to ruin the surprise for you and tell you what that mistake is: demanding perfection to the point you can't accept setbacks.
”You can have a "perfect" record for months, but if you're not learning how to cope with the imperfect days, the first few that come along can derail you completely.”

The most difficult times I've ever had in the gym were coming back after being gone for a few months. Once I was sick for two months straight. Another time I moved and couldn't afford a new gym membership for awhile. Both times, the first week back in the gym was horrible. I thrive on and preach progress. I was struggling to move weight I had long surpassed and I felt ashamed. But I stuck with it, and the next week was much better, as regaining muscle is quicker than getting it the first time.

This blog is funny and smart, and I've subscribed to it. The author has a voice very similar to the late blog of the great Ms. Snark, NYC Literary agent, especially in the humorous way she refers to herself in the third person.

20 Ways to Stick to Your Workout
”A recent study by the National Center for Health Statistics found that only 19 percent of the population regularly engages in "high levels of physical activity." (That's defined as three intense 20-minute workouts per week.)
Another 63 percent—about the same percentage as that of Americans who are overweight—believe that exercising would make them healthier, leaner, and less stressed, but they don't do it. At the root of this problem is motivation, or the lack thereof. “

The single most important part of fitness is consistency. Like Woody Allen said, “Seventy percent of success in life is showing up.” But sometimes you have to trick yourself into it. Usually, my compulsive nature leaves me feeling so guilty and anxious if I don't work out that there's no benefit to not doing so. I can't enjoy sleeping in or sitting on the couch. (I also have an immaculate filing system, another OCD benefit.) But when I don't feel like exercising, I'll tell myself I'm just going to do half a workout. By the time I get to that point, I remember that I actually enjoy exercise and am pumped enough to continue. This article provides some inventive strategies to motivate yourself in those lazy moments.

Stronger Where It Matters Most
This is a good core workout routine, and with the exception of cable activities which can be easily replaced, can be done at home on the day you just don't feel like dragging yourself to the gym (ahhh, another motivational strategy: floating core day for your lazy morning).

These are all exercises I work in and out of my core routine. Don't do hundreds of crunches. If you wanted big strong legs, you wouldn't run a marathon, you'd do 10 or fewer reps of squats or step-ups. If you want a core strong enough to support you during those times when you need it, work intensely.

I can't say if this is fitness related, as I don't know if the woman was intentionally losing weight or was losing weight from illness. A son kills his mother for losing weight too fast.
"I was not going to watch my mother starve to death. ... I thought that murdering her was the right thing to do. I feel terrible about it, but I knew my mom was suffering," he wrote.

Be sure to check back next week. I have some great articles written for Monday and Wednesday.

1 comment:

Crabby McSlacker said...

Thank you so much for saying such nice things about Cranky Fitness, that was really kind of you! (And I'm afraid I probably have a better chance of marrying George Clooney than ever coming close to the wit of the great Miss Snark).

So in reading some of your posts I can't help noticing you seem to know a heck of a lot about this stuff. And I'm realizing I need to pay way more attention to form while at the gym! I'm rather fond of my rotator cuffs and would like them to remain intact, so thanks for the tips.