Oh man! I am so glad I started a post-baby workout routine before asking Alex to guest post. Ah...about that, as I transition back to working full time, a few of my favorites will be here to
pick up my slack brighten your day.
Warning, Alex is about to vitrually kick your butt, make you sweat, and hopefully motivate you to get out and enjoy some beautiful weather this week. Here's to wishing we all lived in Boston and could run along the Charles or do yoga on the Commons with the glorious Alexandria!
First, I just want to thank the wonderful and lovely Shannon for having me on her blog! I'm Alex from over here at The Saga of a Twenty-Something. This is my first guest post ever (gasp!), and I was having a hard time figuring out what to say. And then while I was at the gym, it hit me: fitness. I do it a lot. But, beyond yoga, I haven't really written about it.
I try to exercise at least five days a week, shuffling between cardio, weight training and yoga. It's important for a healthy mind, body and spirit to make sure you're getting at least some exercise in every week. But here are some good pointers for getting your fitness on:
One of the biggest things I have learned is that cardio is extremely important. Be it running, jogging, cycling, swimming or walking, it's important to get your heart rate up. I can't even begin to tell you the awesome benefits of a good, 30-minute cardio session. Your legs will thank you. Your bum will thank you. Your abs will thank you. It also lowers the risk of developing heart disease, certain types of cancer and can also prevent weight gain. It's suggested that you do 30-minutes worth of cardio 3-4 days a week.
Don't like running solo? Make a fun, upbeat playlist, or enlist the help of a friend to run with you. You'll be more accountable if you exercise with a partner. Don't like cycling by yourself? Find a spin class. It'll kick your tushy the first time around, but they're incredibly upbeat and I always leave feeling incredibly refreshed. And sweaty.
I've found that lots of women shy away from weight training. They don't want to bulk up and end up looking like some meathead. But in order to look your best all-around, it's important to work on all parts of your beautiful bod-ay. Start with lighter weights, between 5 and 8 pounds, and just do a few different reps. Here's one of my favorites, because it works both your arms and your tush, all at once :)
Also make sure you're doing different ab exercises. Switching up how you exercise your abs will keep your body working hard. So maybe one day, focus on your upper abs, another day your lower, another day your sides...you get the picture.
Ok, I know yoga isn't for everyone. So if you've already tried it and decided it's not for you, then you can just skip over this. But I believe yoga is a good practice to quiet the mind and bring your focus onto your body. You'll be amazed at what your body can do when you practice yoga.
If you're looking for a challenge with your exercise routine, sign up for a road race. Find one that's just a little bit outside of your comfort zone, and push yourself to get to that distance. Try something you've wanted to try that you haven't before, like a kettleball class or a zumba class. Don't belong to a gym? Try finding a hillier route to run or bike. Drink lots of water during the day. Not only does it keep you hydrated during workouts, but it gives you better skin complexion and drinking water actually makes you less tired throughout the day.
Make working out fun for you by incorporating fitness into your life. Don't make it a chore, make it fun :) Your health is important, and fitness will help keep you healthy.