Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Time to Mix It Up a Little or a Lot

So, it has been a little while between posts other than my FFS Friday posts, partly because I have been away, but also because I haven’t really had anything of value to put out there.  I don’t see the point of blogging if it is just mundane boring crap, so I don’t.

Last few weeks have been hit and miss really.  I went away with the wife and kids for a wonderful time in Bali for 10 nights.  I was very naughty and overindulged on EVERYTHING!!!!  But so what, I am living even if it meant a gain of 6kgs approx. in that time.  Some of this was fluid retention from the flight, but either way, I am not making excuses, I am owning and now doing the hard yards to lose it.  Aside from that, this post is not about me gaining weight and owning my indiscretions, this is more about me noticing a change in attitude and something that I need to rectify.

When I first started this journey to a new me I was open minded enough to try all the workouts put in front of me.  I was running, cycling, doing Michelle Bridges DVD (the kids loved to laugh at dad dancing again as they called it) and basically had a crack at everything.  This obviously worked for me as I lost 24.5kgs in 12 weeks.  Yes I had it to lose, but it only came off because I put in the hard work.  Gradually I started to work out which things I liked and those that I didn’t like.  Those I didn’t like I decided not to do.  This included the DVDs, online workouts (12WBT versions of the DVD’s), burpees, mountain climbers and even weights to a certain degree.  So what the hell was I doing then?  Well I have been doing a lot of running and cycling and have found tabata training as well.  These became pretty much my only forms of training.  This is where I went wrong I believe.  But more on this later.

My new found love of running took over for a period for 2 reasons.  I was training for a half marathon, so obviously needed to do a lot of running, but I was only doing the half because I enjoyed the running so much.  I am a firm believer that all of us need to find a type of exercise that you purely love otherwise you will never be keen to stick with it and working out will be a chore and soon something that you will give up.  For me running and cycling were those forms of exercise that I would gladly do over any other.  I would gladly get out on the bike over any other type of exercise, as would my wife.  Now doing something you love allows you to enjoy your exercise and forget about a lot of things.  Whilst out on my bike I had a strange thought on Sunday.  Coming towards me was a guy on his bike.  He was probably a bit bigger than me, which made me think, “Is that what I look like on my bike when people look at me?”  

Now I don’t really care what people think of me, but lycra is far from flattering.  The strange part is I don’t consider myself to be a fat person when I am on my bike.  I am out, moving along at a brisk pace and feeling fit and happy.  I am a cyclist.  I guess I feel like this because I am happy with what I am doing and love being on the bike.  If I was doing a Pump class or swimming in my Speedos I might feel otherwise.  Purely and simply because these are not my things and I would be self-conscious about it.  Yes I know it is a strange way to look at things, but I am the same with my running.  When I am out there, no matter how slow I am going, I am a runner.  I do long distances and I feel great.  People can’t take that away from me, nor can some of the people probably sniggering about the fat fella joffling along run as far as me.  I don’t really care either.  I love my running, I will do it at whatever pace I can at that time and stuff you whatever you think.

Now in doing this though I have probably caused myself to fall behind where I could have been.  By cutting out the diversity in my training, my body is used to the same old exercise.  Yes I can increase my distance and increase the intensity but the DOMS are not there and are not the same.  I realised this after my weekend session last weekend with my crazy group of Western Warriors in our Garage Session.

When I was trying everything I would have DOMS every day.  "Ouch" I hear you say, or "Why would you do that?" I actually enjoy the feeling of DOMS.  It proves to me that I have worked an area that hasn’t been worked for a while and that I must have pushed myself.  Now I am not saying I enjoy walking like John Wayne, or not being able to touch my toes without screaming in pain, but knowing that you have pushed yourself is a great feeling.

I have decided that whilst I have a huge schedule coming up next month with my cycling, which means I need to be on my bike a bit, I will be looking to get back to mixing up my training.  I need to just to help myself.  I have looked at the things I used to do and what I am not doing now and have worked out what I will be bringing back.  The dads will not be happening.  I just don’t like that aerobics, gym class sort of exercise.  Hell I don’t even take part in the 12WBT finale workouts anymore.  It just isn’t me.  I don’t want to skip around and do side winders or whatever those crazy arse movements are called.  In fact the last finale I just ran to the venue and watched the workout.  Yes I would rather do a run beforehand.  I did notice that I had cut out a lot of exercises that I need to bring back.  I can’t remember the last time I did a lunge of any sort.  I actually like the lunges.  I had not done a weights session in so long, so last night I did one.  I didn’t want to push myself too hard as it was the first time back, but I actually enjoyed it and had the wobbles in the arms at the end.

So in essence, whilst you need to find the form of exercise you love and one that will keep you going back and keeping active, you also need to mix it up, try different things and keep the body guessing so you can feel the DOMS.  As my wife told me once “Is DOMS is GOOD!”

I can see a few sessions of weights, lunges, burpees, squats and tabata coming up over the next couple of weeks as well as the cycling and running.

What are you going to do to mix it up?  Hit me with your training ideas, I may just be able to use them as well.


  1. Interesting you post this right as i decided i needed to mix things up a bit too. Training for my upcoming runs put all other forms of exercise on the backburner for a while and i have a new exercise schedule. Gym for weights twice a week, running twice a week and one night a week a boxing class. If i can be bothered on a weekend i will put in a third run. Now my hours at work have changed and become stable i getting my ass out of bed at stupid'o'clock and am getting my training done before work, all except boxing which is an evening class. I am also thinking once i fortnight i might change one of my gym sessions for a session with a PT.
    PS my DOMS is back after my weight session yesterday & i'm sure i'll be in a world of hurt after boxing tonight :)

    1. I have only done 1 boxing class and loved it. It is a lot of cardio as well so i think you will be fine. When are we going for a run by the way?

  2. are in my friggen head arent you!!!
    Yes mixing shit up for the dom factor!! bring it on.
    Home gym is getting set up and the weights are coming out!
    You my friend, speak volmes throught your words here!

    1. Not sure I am game enoughto be in your head Maz, but if it works for you pretending I am there knock your socks off.

  3. Hi Greg,
    I'm a try anything once unless I really hate it kind of girl, and I've yet to find anything I really hate, with the exception on the treadmill... i really do hate that anyhoo...
    I do gym classes mainly, and try to change the routine every few weeks, I've found myself swapping zumba classes in preference of rpm and attack. I do try to swim a few times a week when I'm feeling sluggish or board and that also shakes things up as the muscle groups are so different.
    Recently had a go at crossfit, and boxing.... both fantastic especially if you are in a crapola mood.
    Good luck,