Weight Lifting: The Next Generation

Since I rededicated myself to weight lifting a few weeks ago, I've noticed many changes.

First, my confidence in the "boy" area of the gym has grown by leaps and bounds.  I'm not embarrassed to be there anymore, and I don't feel out of place.  This was one of the major hurdles that I had to jump before I was even able to get myself back into lifting weights.  It's amazing how fast my confidence can wane when I don't stay on top of my game.

Second, I stopped doing Weight Watchers.  I know that my post about hating the Weight Watchers PointsPlus plan caused some controversy for those who are faithful followers of Weight Watchers.  I just want to stress the fact that, although I don't feel like Weight Watchers is for me, some people are successful on the plan in terms of weight loss.  For me, there are a lot of other factors besides weight loss that come into play for it to feel like "success".  I think that if anyone reads that post from start to finish, and also considers my history of disordered eating, they will be able to identify a little better with the reasons why I hate Weight Watchers.  It's important to remember that not every plan towards healthiness works for every person.

Isn't individuality wonderful?

Next, since I started lifting weights again, I have to say that I'm not feeling so 'fragile' when I run.  Maybe it's mental.  Or maybe I'm mental.

The most obvious thing that I've noticed is that WOW, I'M SORE a lot.  I forgot about that weird satisfaction that comes from the delayed pain of a great workout.  For instance, this morning, I could barely move enough to hit "snooze" on my alarm, and I cracked up laughing.  It's strange, that whole 'self-savagery' thing.

I've been maintaining a pretty serious workout schedule over the past 2 weeks: 3 days of running (so that I'll be ready for the Virginia Beach 1/2 next week), 2 days of weight training, 1-60 minute cycling class, and 1-90 minute FitCamp (minimal rest weight training + cardio combined).  I realize that adds up to 7 workouts, but I'm usually doing my weight training during lunch on the days that I run, and running in the evening.  So, it really ends up being 5 or 6 days on with one or two days off.

After the Virginia Beach 1/2, I'll be getting into a more serious weight training schedule.  I bought two books that I've had my eye on for a few months, and I plan to dive into those now so that I'll be prepared after my races are over.

The Natural Way: The Holistic Guide to Total Mind-body Health & Fitness, which was written by my favorite fitness model/competitor/GLADIATOR of all time, Beth Horn [I love her, have for many many years], and The New Rules of Lifting for Women: Lift Like a Man, Look Like a Goddess [because don't we all want to look like our own version of 'Goddess'?]   

The most exciting part about this new phase in my journey is...

I'm going to be working with Robert on an 8-week kettlebell plan, and we're going to videotape my kettlebell workouts so that I can share them here on the blog with everyone!

Kettlebells can be a little intimidating, especially for women, so I want to help everyone feel confident enough to pick up their own kettlebell and give it a try.  They're a lot of fun, and they give you an amazing workout.  I'm not a professional by any means, so you can watch me screw up and learn as I go!

I've also decided to begin sharing my workouts.  This is kind of for you, but also for me, because I've realized how much easier it is to write down workouts that felt good to me so that I can refer back to them later.  I don't like doing the same workouts over and over, but I also hate trying to remember them on the fly.

My workout posts will include not only the exercises, but also links to websites where you can see the exercise demonstrated, and you can click through to print the workout.  I've read a lot of uncertainty lately from other female bloggers who are trying to incorporate weight lifting into their life, so hopefully this will help.

So, here's my first workout, which I did yesterday.  This is a good, quick workout for when you're short on time.  I'm super sore today, so I know it worked.

Shoulders/Back/Abs (40 Minutes)  print this workout

Shoulders: 10-12 (Reps) x 3 (Sets) Shoulder Press (Dumbbell or Machine) 10-12 x 3 Lateral Raises (Dumbbell or Machine) 10-12 x 3 Seated Arnold Press (Dumbbell)

Back: 10-12 x 3 Lat Pull Down (Machine) 10-12 x 3 Seated Cable Row (Machine) or Bent Over Row (Barbell) 10-12 x 3 Back Hyperextension (Machine)

Abs: 30 x 3 Figure Eights with Medicine Ball (Example) 30 x 3 Seated Crunch (Example) 2 minutes x 3 Planks (Example)

Rather than feeling kind of sad about my transition from running so much, I'm really feeling empowered about starting this new adventure.  I hope that you guys will come along for the ride on this one--I think it's going to be fun!

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