Tag Archives: strength training

This is the Gym: Do You Read? Edition

As documented before I am a cardio queen, loathe to do strength training. However at this stage of the game, I’m thinking about doing more. They say (the doctors) that strength training, especially as you age, is good for strengthening bones and what not and may help prevent osteoporosis. I do what they say sometimes and grudgingly hit the weights, mostly at home, but occasionally at the gym. One of my fave workouts is the PF 30 at Planet Fitness. You hit all the body parts and get in a little cardio in 30 minutes. Of course I do additional cardio after that but when I hit that PF 30 circuit I’m focused, completing the circuit in the order it was created, sometimes. Why sometimes? Because PEOPLE! Lord Jesus be a fence between me and these mugs in the circuit room lifting all Willy Nilly.

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I walk in, alone, put my ear buds in, start my house music (all soulful house mixes welcome) and start the circuit. Then here comes Stretch Armstrong. He’s here to use the step to stretch before his workout. Not a problem, he’s at the last station and will be long gone before I get there. I’m cool until the entrance of the Wonder Twins. They are here to do chest and shoulders and that’s it, oh and talk to each other a lot and take too long and cause me to skip those two stations and come back. They finally leave, I double back and get back on track until I see Old Time Rock and Roll enter the room. He’s a 50 something like me and is going hard on one step, no other equipment. He has that grit on his face like he’s straining for a marathon. I’m like bruh it’s not that deep, please move.  By the time I get to his station I’m good, he’s finished the marathon.

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Believing I have left all interlopers behind me I proceed to move through the last 5 stations and wouldn’t you know, Abs of Steel shows up for the ab machine. She does, I don’t know how many sets and how many reps, and I throw in the towel. I finish my abs separately which I needed to do more than that station anyway. But, that doesn’t negate the fact that mugs came into the express room and did everything but the express circuit @$*%^+>#(%

Look I’m all about mugs going hard for their workouts. I’m happy to see people working out especially those of us who are a certain age or older but, I need y’all, use the equipment for its assigned/posted purpose and keep it moving. However, judging from this experience, some of y’all don’t read,  at least not gym signs anyway.

Until next time see you at the gym, where I hope to find you adhering to all posted signage.

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Photos: MsThorns

 

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Cleared for Take-off

airplaneIt was one month to the day from my last run at Rabbit Hill Park. I entered the physical therapy facility on August 14th and completed all exercises, evidently with flying colors. As of now I can participate in all my prior activities with the exception of kettlebell training and running and I’m okay with that. I’m much too skittish about running right now anyway, especially since I’m not completely free of this radicular pain situation. The time off has been good because I learned a few things.

  • It doesn’t take long for my body to get squishy. I stayed begging the therapist to lift because I was already behind the eight ball in my weight training having been focused on Peachtree training since may. A month off from nearly everything and I’m now close to marshmallow material.
  • When my back is up against the wall, compliance is a non-issue. Everything that I was doing or not doing wasn’t working to improve my condition. As it stands with my back in the condition it is in all I can do is what the professionals tell me in order to maintain a good quality of life.
  • I don’t miss the little bit of ego that I did have at all. Though I wasn’t laid up, though I didn’t miss any days of work, I was limited in what I could do. The piece of ego I used to have that said quitting is for whimps is gone. Quitting at least for a while was the best thing I could have done.
  • I never thought I’d miss yoga so much. Having started a 30 day yoga challenge around the time of that last run. I was really looking for to the practice everyday and was making some strides in terms of flexibility and in my overall life outlook. When the therapist sat me down I was like noooooooooooooo!!!

Finally, let me say that I’m thankful that I still have a body that tells me when things are going wrong and to keep the going wrong to a minimum I need to listen to my body AND the professionals to stay healthy.

Until next time, see you at the gym, the yoga mat and even the trail, where you’ll find me WALKING with a purpose.

pinckneyville bb

 

Photos: MsThorns

Listen Up Hard Heads

I will be heading back to Kaiser for the 3rd time in as many weeks tomorrow.  Some of these trips could have been avoided.  A look at my behavior over the last year or so tells the story.

  • In the last year there’s been at least three times when physicians have said stop running , heal completely, then return at a slow pace. What I did? Stop running until I felt good and went right back to full steam ahead.
  • There have been at least two physicians that have said lose 10 pounds. I would lose 5 get some good labs and start eating whatever I wanted to again accompanied by wine of course.
  • Two times physicians have instructed me to perform stretching and strengthening exercises for the back, legs and feet. Again once the pain was gone I resumed my usual level of activity which involves pounding the treadmill and pavement and making the move from the Barbie weights to the big girl weights the prescribed exercises are filed away in a folder.
Back in the day my mom and all the old folks use to say “a hard head makes for a soft a**”. Well they were right, I have spasming butt cheek to prove it.

I can’t afford to be hard-headed anymore. I’m older, diabetic and in  perimenopause. I have learned, the hard way I suppose that the body will always tell you when something is wrong. Even though society says push through it, grind it out or at this one gym I used to go to, “go ahead and throw up” this is something I can no longer do. Listen, comply and modify is my new mantra. It’s what I have to do to maintain a decent quality of life as I age.  As of this writing I am forbidden to perform:

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I have stuck to what the doctors ordered, pending additional instructions from my visit tomorrow and follow up with sports medicine.

I know I’m not the only hard head out here. I’d love to hear your hard head stories, what made you stop being hard headed and the results of the change.  If you care to share please do so in the comments, on  Google+ or Twitter.

To all those who have read my lamentations and given suggestions on how to get better, thank you!

Photos: MsThorns

Powered by Soul Spotlight: Lamont Doss

DossHulkThose with lesser stamina will be left in his dust gasping for air.  He doesn’t just take leisurely jaunts accross town, he can ride to another state with only his legs!  Introducing the Iron Man, Lamont Doss in his own words.

Vitals
My name is Lamont and I’m transitioning my residence from San Antonio, TX to Charlotte, NC. I’m 38 years old and employed as a Network Engineer.

Tell us about your fitness routine including type, days per week, location, preferences etc.
Because of my work schedule, I only work out on Sundays, Mondays, and Tuesdays. I have an alternating three day routine of Back/Chest, Legs, Shoulders/Arms. In the Spring and Summer months, I participate in a number of cycling events, so I’m trying to focus more on my legs during the off season.

Do you follow a particular nutrition plan?
This is an area where I really struggle. While I would love to verbosely describe my healthy eating habits, this is not my current reality. My nutrition plans are still a work in progress.

How long have you been active/following your nutrition plan/playing sports etc.?
I really got serious about having an active lifestyle about three years ago. I used to frequent the gym after work, and later, a colleague offered to teach me to play golf. From there, a couple of colleagues invited me to join them on a couple of 18 mile cycling rides, which grew into 25, 45, 60, then 100 mile events.

Do you have a success story/testimony relating to fitness, nutrition or your overall health?
Though my cholesterol levels are great, I still have issues with high blood pressure. That’s my next challenge, and necessary before I can claim success. In the interim, I can proudly say I’m physically stronger than I’ve ever been in life.

What motivates you to do what you do in terms of fitness and nutrition?
Stress, but mostly the release of it. Going through a divorce while taking on a new job was a bit of a load, so I used weightlifting as a way to purge frustration, stress, and anger. The redirection of bad energy helped me maintain my focus. Though I don’t have to deal with many of the aforementioned challenges anymore, I continue to find peace in my workout.

Do you have a personal motto/philosophy you’d wish to share?
Plan, achieve, and then excel.

Powered by Soul thanks Lamont for sharing the challenges and the triumphs of his fitness life.  Hopefully this writer will be left in his dust in a road race this spring 🙂

If you or someone you know would like to be featured in the Powered by Soul Spotlight, please let me know in the comments, contact me on Twitter or Google+.  Until next time see you at the gym.

Powered By Soul Spotlight: Ant Pruitt

Ant-Pruitt-Aug2012Common interests (fitness and photography) is how the first Spotlight individual entered my orbit.  A good guy, a smart guy, a fit guy and an unabashed supporter of a certain college football team, introducing Ant Pruitt in his own words.

Vitals

Ant(hony) Pruitt from Charlotte, North Carolina.  30 something, I think 36, I quit counting. I’m an IT Support Manager.

Talk about your fitness routine including type, days per week, location, preferences etc.

I workout a minimum of two days per week, but shoot for four either at the office fitness facility or Gold’s Gym. Heavy weeks and light weeks are mixed throughout the month with all muscle groups worked each week. A typical month may go something like: week 1 light, week 2 heavier, week 3 super heavy, week 4 light.  I also have some “musts” in the routine. “Upper body musts” = bench press, pull ups, bicep curls, lat pulls or rows. “Lower body musts” = Squats, dead lifts, calf raises. I also incorporate yoga once a week if possible.

Do you follow a particular nutrition plan?

It depends on how I feel and goals. Currently I’m on a higher protein diet with minimal carbs. If I’m dragging, I increase carbs. I also do periodic 48 hour fasts and fasts from particular foods, for example no beef all week or only fish all week. I fast to clear my mind and cleanse the GI tract.

How long have you been active/following your nutrition plan/playing sports etc.?

I’ve been exercising in some form 20+ years. My father used to FORCE ME to do push-ups every night as a kid. I’m also a former 3 -sport athlete. Only got conscious about higher protein since October 2012, but I used to just eat whatever and burn it. No less than 4000 calories a day.

Do you have a success story/testimony relating to fitness, nutrition or your overall health?

At my current age, I’m pushing more weight in the gym now than when I was in my “prime” in college almost 15 years ago. I can’t run as fast due to a replaced hip, but I’m just a hair above my “playing weight” by 10 lbs.
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What motivates you to do what you do in terms of fitness and nutrition?

Endorphins. I don’t have a real reason to be stronger or more flexible, but I feel better mentally and emotionally by doing so. Plus I don’t want to look like my classmates. I’m always told I don’t look any different or I look better. I’m proud of that.

Do you have a personal motto/philosophy you’d wish to share?

Burn more than what you eat. Stop looking for people to always be your motivation. Help yourself. THEN others may help you.

Powered by Soul thanks Ant Pruitt for sharing his story with the readers.  To find out more about Ant be sure to check him out here.

Photos: Ant Pruitt