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Sometimes, all it takes is a change of schedule...

Ok so if you've read some of the blog, or at least checked my "Bucket List" you might have seen that sport is a recurring issue for me. I have never been into sport, I have always preferred to stay in my comfort zone and whenever I ventured out of it, it was so painful! Some of you might relate...

Getting into Cardio - Ordinary Brussels

Be it cardio, HIT training, lifting, fitness...It all felt so difficult to get into, especially schedule wise. When you work from 9 AM to 5:30 PM, are home by 6 PM - 6:30 PM, going to the gym isn't a priority since you still need to tidy up your place, eat, shower, chill a bit...When I get home after hours at the office, I want to take some time for myself and to rest. I don't like the idea of having to go to the gym to sweat for 1h30 and to then do everything that needs to be done home. It makes days seem so endless and tiring.

I have tried to stick to this kind of schedule and it didn't work for me. Either I had other plans for the evening or just got tired of it. At some point I even felt like I was forcing myself to go... As a result, every year I failed my resolution to get fit/to start moving.

And then it hit me! If I want my evenings at home, a solution is to go to the gym during lunch hours. I then have only 1h or so but that's still better than giving up on the long run. I have tried this new "schedule" over several weeks and, if at the beginning it was difficult to work after a session at the gym (I was tired), it eventually got better and I am now able to do sport regularly.

Going to the gym at lunch has a bunch of advantages:

  • The gym is almost empty during lunch hour;

  • Only the real fit people go in the morning or during lunch, you always see the same faces;

  • You can use all the machines and weights that you want (nobody monopolizes a machine while taking selfies);

  • Changing rooms are empty and so are the showers (so you can take your time);

  • You have 1 hour so make it count and check your progresses!

  • You use your time in a meaningful way;

So a week of training turned into another and now it feels almost natural to spend lunch time at the gym working out. The challenge is huge since my cardio was really bad and so was my strength. However, in just a few weeks I managed to improve some of my performances:

  • I used to feel sick after 8 min on the cross wave, now I can do 45 min;

  • I used to only be able to use the machines with small weights, I am now at 32 kg (leg press) and going strong;

  • I used to be in pain for 7 days after one session, now I am sore but it's bearable;

My current goal is to work on my form while I do my exercises, to add weight and to keep on improving my cardio. I still can't run for more than 10-15 min without feeling a side pain but I have more or less mastered other cardio machines > rowing, cycling, cross trainer, cross wave. I struggle still with the stairs which are a complete nightmare but it's not as bad as running ^^'

I am so motivated by my progression that I have got some resistance bands to start adding new exercises and I've asked a friend (who happens to be a personal trainer) to check on my form to see if I don't do too many stupid things. She corrected my postured at the leg press and confirmed that my squats were really badly performed. Now I am working on this at home.

Workout wise, I am starting to schedule my weeks but this is just a test. I am still figuring this out:

  1. On Mondays, I try to work on my cardio and to keep my heart rate in check (I should be between 125 - 155) . I know that right now I am still challenging too much my heart (I am over 170) so I have to lower the intensity to really develop some healthy endurance.

  2. On Tuesdays, I work on my legs through some warm up exercises and weights. I also try to work a bit my butt when I have the time.

  3. On Wednesdays, I work on my arms and back which are among the weakest muscles I have together with the chest ^^' These are also the ones where I notice the biggest differences between what my left and right sides can do...

  4. On Thursdays, I work on cardio again. I am trying to have 2 full sessions dedicated to cardio per week.

  5. On Fridays, I try to do an overall body workout targeting my weaker muscles and my baby abs.

  6. On weekends, I struggle a lot more to do any sport because I am usually occupied and not motivated. However I do try to stretch and to walk my 10k steps every day and to move around as much as possible.

At the moment, I take any tips and advice that will help me progress :) If you have any, feel free to share!



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