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Your Workout Rhythm: Keeping Steady
The summer before my college freshman year, a recent grad shared with me a piece of wisdom that I've never forgotten. "You'll soon find," he said, "that getting in here isn't hard. The tough part is staying." As the years went by I found this principle applied to my workout routines as well. In fact, BodyPump is the first - and only - routine I've ever stuck with for more than a month. There's nothing magical about BodyPump - it just happened to be my latest workout routine when I had the epiphany.

Let me explain: Every time I started a new workout routine, it soon became an internal competition. I always felt compelled to increase the workout intensity and, if it was a class, I just had to move more weights than anyone else in the room. Within a month, whatever routine I was doing left me exhausted and sore. I even ended up with a hernia once. As any fitness professional will tell you, discouragement is the primary reason people don't stick with a routine. So, while it seemed like my schedule always managed to derail my routines, it was actually my mind making everything else a priority over those increasingly painful workout sessions.

One night I was watching BodyPump training videos with Tami. (I wasn't an instructor - in fact, she was just going through the training herself). What really blew me away - and here comes the epiphany, folks - was that they were moving less weight than I. A lot less. The form of the trainers on this video was so exquisite, even artistic, that I just sat there and watched the whole thing from start to finish. The next day I went into class and cut all my weights in half. And, for the first time ever, I focused solely executing each motion as perfectly as possible. Most importantly, my workouts became one of the highlights of my week - an opportunity to shut out the rest of the world and focus on doing something to the very best of my ability. In less than two months I began to see the results that had eluded me for so many years.

If you're committed to developing a steady workout rhythm, the most important thing you can do is make certain your workouts are something you look forward to. For me, that meant dropping the weights and focusing on my form. When you leave a Pump class - or any class, for that matter - you should feel energized and rejuvenated inside. If you're completely spent, if you've constantly got a backache, can't climb a set of stairs the next day, or find yourself hardly able to complete each workout set, chances are good your workout rhythm won't last long. Whether it's dropping the weights, switching timeslots, classes, workout partners, or anything else - do whatever it takes to make your workout one of the very best times of your life. Because the most effective routine - the one guaranteed to bring you results - is the one you stick with week in and week out.
(Next Post: Your Workout Rhythm: How To Reboot)
1 Comment(s):
On 08 February, 2006, Blogger Tim said...

Craig this is a great series of articles, something to think about in each one - thanks.

You are right about the workout being the highlight of the day.

For me it is the people in the class that make it so.

For instance, this weekend one of our regulars is getting married, and this morning was his last pump class before the big day. So some of us wore all white gym gear, complete with veils, others came in suits, the instructor wore a wedding dress and baked cookies, someone put a ring of flower petals around his step, someone joked that his hip flexor stretches were the same as his proposal - etc etc etc!

Even without a "theme day", there is never a class without a joke and a smile. Credit to the instructors for fostering such a fun atmosphere at our gym.

Cheers,
Tim

 

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