Don’t you just love a good workout? One that leaves you sweaty, sore and tired? Not the I-need-a-minute-to-rest kind of tired. I’m talking about the I-can-barely-walk or the I-can’t-lift-my-arms kind of tired. The good stuff.
OK, so maybe I’m a little nutty, but I really do love how I feel after a tough workout—strong, accomplished and ready to kick ass! Right now my training is preparing me for my first half-marathon, but my long runs don’t really give me the hurts-so-good feeling I love. I still get a great workout in, of course, but my runs are more about clearing my head and relaxing a bit.
The burn I’m talking about only comes from one kind of workout: a killer strength routine.
I will say, strength training has not been my focus for the past few months. Last summer, I started working with an awesome personal trainer who whipped me into shape, and I loved every second of it. During the fall, my schedule filled up a bit and my training had to slow down a bit. By December, I was way too busy for the gym and slacked off on my strength training for three months (yikes!).
I finally put my gym hiatus to an end last night with a personal training session—woo hoo! I even scheduled one per week (because that’s all I have time for right now) through the end of April. That’ll hold me accountable and make sure I keep getting my booty to the gym!
Yesterday’s session focused on my upper body, which was fine by me—I wasn’t trying to kill my legs before today’s speed workout, anyway! The session started with chest presses and decline push-ups, and I could tell I was going to be sore today about five minutes into the routine. In fact, when I was in the locker room after I finished, I had a tough time lifting my arms to change my shirt! Needless to say, I’m feeling a bit sore, but in an oh-so-good kind of way.
I used to feel silly strength training in a gym filled with overly muscular guys and would spend too much time worrying about what I looked like and not enough time focusing on my workout. I also thought lifting weights would make me “bulk up,” which was a big no-no when my primary goal in life was to be as skinny as possible. In other words, the elliptical was my BFF.
Today, however, things are completely different. Instead of worrying about being laughed at, I just get in there and do my thang! After all, I’m not at the gym for anyone but myself, so who cares what anyone else thinks? I’m way beyond freaking out over having some muscle, too. In fact, I welcome it!
If there’s one thing I’ve learned since embracing strength training, it’s that I’d rather be able to kick some ass than squeeze into a pair of skinny jeans any day—so bring on the soreness, baby!
How do you incorporate strength training into your exercise routine?