January Workout Time Better than Expected

JanuaryIf you read my last post about my 2014 exercise time goal, you know that I need to exercise at least 968 minutes per month, every month, to reach my goal. Well, in January I exceeded that goal by exercising 1,313 minutes. If I can keep up this momentum I may exceed my end of year goal by as much as 3,000 minutes. But since my classes didn’t start-up again until 2 weeks ago, that is unlikely. I doubt I will be able to keep my monthly times at 1,300 minutes plus. I’ll keep you apprised of my monthly times. February is the shortest month, so I’m not going to beat myself up if I don’t clear 1000 minutes by the 28th.

As far as my actual exercises go, I have done Calisthenics & Abs workout 3 times a week, Walking at least four times a week, Resistance bands twice a week, Broomstick workout twice a week and I have still not gotten around to creating a dumbbell workout. I need to work on that. In fact, I will make that my true goal for the end of February: Create Dumbbell workout.

I’ll let you know how that goes.

Fitness Summary for 2013 and Goal for 2014

FitnessgoalQuote003In 2013, I managed to get more than 11,509 minutes of exercise. Keep in mind that I only time exercises that are time-able.

I know I haven’t posted in months, but I have been very busy and preoccupied with big and little issues/dramas here and there over the past few months, but I have exercised regularly (though not as regularly as before) in spite of this. I have succeeded in working my way from 2 sets of 10 horizontal scissors, vertical scissors and reverse crunches to 2 sets of 20. I’ve been doing 20 for at least the past two weeks.  I’m hoping to be able to do 2 sets of 30 by Summer. *fingers crosses*

I also intend to go back to using dumbbells. I was supposed to in 2013, but I never got around to it, because I felt the resistance bands were enough for me. I was wrong. I learned this when I was considering exchanging my butterfly crunches for planks and discovered that I am far too weak in my upper body to do planks. It was a sad and embarrassing discovery. Maybe the dumbbells will get my arms strong enough to do a few planks. Maybe not. I have always been extremely weak in my upper body, o it’s possible that I still won’t be able to do planks, but dumbbells are good for the triceps and delts, so I’m eager to create a routine for dumbbells this year. I’ll post when I do.

NEW GOAL

My goal for 2014 is to exceed the 11,509 minutes of timed exercises by at least 100 minutes. This may not seem like a lot, but with everything going on in my life right now and expectations for the near future, if I can reach this new goal by December 31, 2014 it will feel like a really big deal to me. I have already greatly exceeded my total exercise time in 2013 over 2012 – where I only exercised for 4,274 minutes,  that’s about 364 minutes per month; compared to 959 minutes per month in 2013.  Nearly 1000 minutes of timed exercises per month. I’m proud of that! Especially in comparison to the year before. That is a dramatic difference!

If any of you have a fitness goal for the new year please share.

Happy New Year! :)

 

Calisthenics & Abs Workout Music

I turned this new list into a music CD and it’s been really energizing. I seem to get through my workout a little faster when I listen to this playlist. Not sure if that’s good or bad, but I’m enjoying it. It’s a mix of old favorites and new songs that I’ve fallen in love with. I made the list slightly longer than necessary – just like the old Calisthenics & Abs playlist, because I intend to add more exercises later on and I dislike feeling rushed. Enjoy!

1) Sail – Alwolnation

2) Howlin’ For You – the Black Keys

3) Tightrope – Janelle Monae

4) Get Into Something – The Isley Brothers

5) Extreme Ways – Moby

6) The Rubberman Man – The Spinners

7) Give Your Heart a Break – Demi Lovato

8) Dirty Laundry – Don Henley

9) Carnival – Natalie Merchant

10) Say It Right – Nelly furtado

11) Safe and Sound – Taylor Swift ft. The Civil Wars

 

BTW, you can find all of these songs dirt cheap at Soundike.com.

(And no, they didn’t ask me to promote them, but they are my favorite place to buy mp3s. 15 cents each!!)

I’m Finally Doing It ALL! Updated Updated Workout

Last week, I changed the order of the floor exercises somewhat, putting vertical and horizontal scissors at the start, followed by reverse crunches and then the rest, and I have been able to consistently get through the entire routine! I could not do the scissors at all when I put them last. I’ve learned a valuable lesson: Do the hard stuff first!  I’m pleased that I can now do my entire routine without struggle. It’s still challenging, more challenging than before, but doable.

So, here’s the entire workout, in its proper order:

Standing exercises:

Stretching – 5 mins

Twists – 50 (each side)

Side leg lifts – 2 sets of 30 reps, per leg (Lifting leg to hip height and back down to starting position, using only core muscles for balance)
Knee lifts – 3 sets of 30, per leg (lift to hip height)
Forward leg lifts – 2 sets of 30, per leg (lift to hip height)
*Deep squats – 3 sets of 20 (Start with legs hip length apart, shoulders back, and squat until the fingers tips of both hands can touch the floor)

Twists – 50 (each side) *Reverse crunch – 2 sets of 10 (or, as I mentioned above, all 20 at once)

Floor exercises:

*Vertical scissors – 2 sets of 10

*horizontal scissors – 2 sets of 10

*Reverse crunch – 2 sets of 10 (or, as I mentioned above, all 20 at once)

Heel touches – 2 sets of 30
Butterfly crunches – 150
Roll-ups – 30
Bridge butt lifts – 2 sets of 30 reps
Leg circles – 2 sets of 30, per leg (at this point, I am saving myself the time it takes to repeatedly change sides and simply doing all 60 at once)

Standing exercises:
Twists – 50 (each side)

*Knee to opposite elbow lifts – 50 (each leg)
Wall push-outs – 50 (usually at a 45 degree angle)
Heel to buttocks back kicks – 50 (each leg)
Arm circles – 50 forward, 50 back

Twists – 50 (each side)

 

*These are all new or altered exercises

I hope to add more new exercises in the not so distant future. But in the meantime, I hope to see a stronger, more toned, lower abs section. I have always had difficulty with strengthening my lower abs. No idea why.

If you want to see how to correctly perform the new floor exercises, watch Davey Wavey’s video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zjbFwtYXN80

I have also created a new workout sound track to go with this routine. After using the same music for so long, it’s taken time to get use to the new music and how it syncs up with the movements, but I like it. I will post that next.

My Somewhat New Calisthenic & Abs Routine

As I said in a previous post, I went back to the tried and true with a few alterations. I have since added in new exercises, but not as many as I had hoped, because I just wasn’t strong enough to do the horizontal or vertical scissors after all the other floor exercises. I am considering putting them first in the future, to see if that might work. The reverse crunches have been doable, and I am now able to complete 20 reps without stopping (on my elbows) or 2 sets of 10 with a short break in between (if lying completely flat). So, here is my calisthenics & Abs routine, from beginning to end…

Standing exercises:
Stretching – 5 mins

Twists – 50 (each side)

Side leg lifts – 2 sets of 30 reps, per leg (Lifting leg to hip height and back down to starting position, using only core muscles for balance)
Knee lifts – 3 sets of 30, per leg (lift to hip height)
Forward leg lifts – 2 sets of 30, per leg (lift to hip height)
*Deep squats – 3 sets of 20 (Start with legs hip length apart, shoulders back, and squat until the fingers tips of both hands can touch the floor)

Twists – 50 (each side)

Floor exercises:
Heel touches – 2 sets of 30
Butterfly crunches – 150
Roll-ups – 30
Bridge butt lifts – 2 sets of 30 reps
Leg circles – 2 sets of 30, per leg (at this point, I am saving myself the time it takes to repeatedly change sides and simply doing all 60 at once)
*Reverse crunch – 2 sets of 10 (or, as I mentioned above, all 20 at once)

Standing exercises:
Twists – 50 (each side)

*Knee to opposite elbow lifts – 50 (each leg)
Wall push-outs – 50 (usually at a 45 degree angle)
Heel to buttocks back kicks – 50 (each leg)
Arm circles – 50 forward, 50 back

Twists – 50 (each side)

If and when I add in the horizontal and vertical scissors I will be sure to let you know. Also, I plan to create a new playlist for this altered and enhance routine. The old list has gotten stale for me. I don’t find it as energizing as I use to. So, expect a new playlist to be posted soon. In the meantime, stay fit!

 

*These are new or altered exercises.

Switched Up Old Calisthenics & Abs Workout

I had planned to create an entirely new calisthenic routine and slowly build on it, but then I realized that it may make me weaker, so I did the old routine just to see if I could after a seven month hiatus ( I nearly died first time around), and decided to give it a few tweaks instead. So far, I have eliminated the two exercises I have always felt were not a very efficient use of my exercise time: Seated knee lifts and toe raises. I have changed the squats into DEEP squats, that require me to touch the floor. I do 3 sets of 20 for now. They are very hard to get through, but I feel their effect.

It’s strange how much easier the workout was the second time I did it. The first time I must have lost at least 2 liters of fluids in sweat, my clothes were completely soaked! The second time was challenging, but I didn’t sweat nearly as much, nor did I require a full hour of rest to function again. Still, I feel like I need more or better lower abdominal exercises, and I will be adding those as soon as I have grown more accustomed to doing the tweaked workout. It’s been less than a week, btw. I am considering three moves from this video:

The horizontal and vertical scissors and the reverse crunches. When I add them into the mix I will post again with my entire Calisthenics & Abs workout. Hopefully, by the end of the first week of October. :)

August Goals Reached!

celebrate-small-success1I reached my August goal to do the Resistance Band and Broomstick workouts 16 times each. Which I am happy about, but I am completely bored with my current exercise routine, overall. I am switching things up this September. I am going to create a new calisthenic workout and build on it, and mix things up a bit.

I will continue walking faithfully, do Resistance and Broomstick workouts whenever the mood strikes, but add the calisthenics on a schedule – whenever I find the time to create a routine. I will probably work on it this week or weekend. I’ll let you know what it is and how long it takes to complete.

I’ll post again soon. :)