Oh my goodness you guys… I can’t believe I haven’t written a blog post in almost 2 weeks!! As most of you know, I started a new job last week, which is always a little exhausting as you get used to your new routine, coworkers, responsibilities, etc. Now that I’m officially trained in and have a pretty good feel for what I’m doing, I’m going to do my best to blog at least every other day, if not every day. Thank you to everyone who has continued to follow and support me, I really appreciate it, and I promise there’s lots of good stuff to come.
Even though I haven’t been at my laptop much lately, I’ve had lots of time to think and I have a TON of stuff I want to blog about as well as ways I’m planning to expand my coaching business and outreach in the near future. So please keep your eyes open for some exciting new developments!!
(Note: I’m actively looking for an apartment, which means once I sign the lease I will be quite busy again for a short while when I move and get settled into my new place. Please don’t think I’ve dropped off the face of the earth – I’ll be back, I promise. And who knows, maybe I’ll be able to keep up with blogging despite the craziness of moving, but I can’t guarantee that 😉 )
So last time I blogged I talked about wanting to improve my deadlift PR, core strength, and flexibility. Since I’ve been kinda short on time (not to mention energy), I haven’t been able to do 4 lifting sessions per week. Instead I’ve been doing CrossFit WODs and FitnessBlender HIIT routines (I did this crazy 1000 calorie workout last Friday) to burn off all the junk I ate over Easter weekend as well as test my endurance and maintain strength. I was pleasantly surprised when I did that 1000 calorie workout. Normally, I would need to pause it several times for extra rest and water breaks, but I was able to keep up with Kelli just fine and didn’t need any extra rest at all. I love it when I get to keep proving over and over again that you don’t have to do cardio to build up good endurance and cardiovascular strength. I’ve done mostly lifting over the past several months and I have more cardiovascular endurance than ever.
I can safely say I’ve successfully incorporated a lot more core work into my routines, so that’s one goal that I have reached within my goal time period. I’ll keep working at it though as core strength can always be improved.
With my new schedule, I’ve developed a new workout plan that I think will be really good for my needs/goals. Here’s a brief overview, with more details below:
Monday & Thursday: Ballet Beautiful
Tuesday & Friday: Lifting
Wednesday & Saturday (optional): FitnessBlender HIIT
So to break the above plan down, I’m going to be doing Ballet Beautiful twice a week to improve my mobility, as well as to strengthen the tiny muscles other types of workouts don’t work. I’ve done Mary Helen Bowers‘ workouts before and despite the fact that they look easy, they are incredibly challenging. But that’s not to say you have to be an advanced athlete to do them – anyone can, you just might have a smaller range of motion and need more rest breaks, which is totally fine.
A couple of weeks ago I decided to stop using yoga poses in my stretching routine (I’ll be doing an in depth post on that soon), so I’ve been searching like crazy for some alternative stretching techniques besides the traditional “touch your toes” type stretches. Ballet is an amazing form of exercise that is known for how it lengthens muscles and improves range of motion. In fact, that’s why ballerinas have such a long, thin appearance – they train and lengthen the tiny muscles that don’t “bulk” (as in other forms of exercise) which makes the muscles toned, but thin. Never underestimate the strength of a ballet dancer – they are crazy strong, just in a different way than you would normally think of. So anyways I’ll be using barre work to strengthen the small, supporting muscles around my joints, as well as to improve my posture and range of motion.
I will also still be lifting at least twice a week, which of course is my favorite form of exercise. I’ll be using my standard, 5 sets of 5 reps model for the lifts I’ve found most effective for me – push presses, shoulder press, deadlifts, step-ups, and lunges, to name a few.
I also have been enjoying the occasional HIIT workout as an extra burn and to work up a good sweat, so I’ll be doing those once or twice a week as well. FitnessBlender is my go-to source for cardio/interval training workouts. They are so down to earth, informative, and effective it’s hard for me to choose any other trainer for HIIT routines.
So there ya go! That’s what I’ll be doing, and I’ll be sure to document my progress here on my blog as I go. Have you ever done a Ballet Beautiful or barre style workout? If so, what did you love/hate about it? Do you think it’s weird for a woman who loves to lift to break the “tough girl” mold and also enjoy ballet style workouts? Why or why not? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below 🙂