Exercise shouldn’t be boring. It should be something that keeps you moving, works your muscles, pumps your heart rate up, and gets you a little sweaty. Unfortunately, we tend to get ourselves in a rut doing the same ol’ thing day after day. Do you find yourself doing that? I do and I HATE dreading a good workout! Why?
Because I feel so good after doing it!
So here’s what I’ve decided to do: I’m making a list. Everything that I like to do to kick up my heart rate and work up a sweat is going on it and then I’m going to switch things up. A lot. No more “do this on Monday” or “run 3.5 miles every day”. I think that by loosening up on the regiment and listening to my body, I’ll end up looking forward to my daily workout instead of stressing about what I really SHOULD be doing and feeling guilty. What about you? Are you ready to make your list?
Here are my favorite ways to get active:
- Run. I love to get out there and see the world (okay, neighborhood) and push myself with how far I can go. Unfortunately, weak knees have been affecting how much I can do this and now that we homeschool, I have a smaller window to run on my own since the kids are with me much more. And Thing #2’s little legs just can’t keep up for a family run yet.
- Kettle bells. My husband turned me on to the kettle bell routine. The problem was that I got really bored doing the same old swing exercise for half an hour. When I found a routine on womenshealthmag.com especially for women, I fell in love with kettle bells all over again! Interested? Scroll down to see the exercises.
- Yoga. The P90X yoga video is a great challenge and I’ve yet to have completed the whole 90 minutes! Even doing 30 minutes of yoga can work your muscles and give you a fantastic workout.
- Basic 15 Minute Weekly Routine. These are filled with crunches, Russian Twists, lunges, jumping jacks, etc. Although there’s a different workout for each day of the week, I don’t do these every day. (It would get too monotonous!) I use these as an easy, quick workout when I’m crunched for time. Scroll down to see the routine.
- Zumba. This is one I try to do when I’m completely alone. Although I love to dance, I’m a little self conscious doing this in front of my guys. If you don’t want to splurge for the DVD set, there are lots of great videos on youtube like this one.
- Family Walks. This is a great way to get everyone out and active. When the boys opt to ride their bikes or scooters, its a much faster pace for us and is a fun way to get some exercise.
- Bike Rides. This is pretty similar to the one above. We try to all get out and ride around the neighborhood. I feel that exercising outside is more invigorating than always staying indoors.
- Yard Work. There’s nothing like crossing off two chores with one activity! If I’ve got to do some major yard work or gardening, I don’t stress about getting in an additional exercise.
- Dancing. Fun and a great cardio workout!
- Sex. Okay, so I’m totally blushing while I write this but sex can be a fantastic way to get some exercise! ‘Nuff said.
- VersaClimber. This is a new one for me. I love it as much as I hate it. (Hate doing the work but love the results!) It’s a full-body workout that uses a climbing motion. Fly Guy bought a used one to help with his race training but many gyms have one too. Try it out next time you’re at the gym, it’s one of the best cardio workouts I’ve ever done.
Instead of feeling chained to one or two exercises that can get old really fast, I just go with what I feel more like doing each day. If I’m feeling like a power workout, I go for the P90X, kettle bells, VersaClimber, or run. If I want to get the kids involved, we head outside for a ride, walk or even yard work. If I’m crunched for time, I’ll go to my little 15 Minute Routine and call it good for the day. Since I’m trying to cut out stress this year, I’m determined not to feel guilty. If I need a day off, that’s just fine. I’m mainly trying to make these workouts part of a healthy lifestyle instead of some drudgery I stress about getting done every day.
15 Minute Weekly Workout
Weekly Workout Plan – do as little or as much as you can on these. On the days with lots of jumping jacks, I split them into more manageable groups of 50 and do them at the beginning, middle, and/or end. If you’re not sure what some of the exercises are, just google them and you should be able to figure them out pretty easily. Each workout should only take you between 10-20 minutes.
Kettle Bells for Women
Unfortunately, when I went to find the link for the kettle bell routine that I love on Women’s Health Mag, I saw that the article was no longer available. They do, however, still have each kettle bell move listed so I’ll compile them all here for you: P.S. I like to use a 15lb kettle bell for these exercises. Use smaller or heavier to tailor to your needs!