Nike ReUSE-A-Shoe Program

June 12, 2012

Got Shoes?

Nike ReUSE a Shoe Program

For those of you who are avid walkers or runners, I’m sure you go through your shoes quickly, like I do. The salesperson at my local running store says that I should get around 300-500 miles a pair, depending on several different factors. I’m usually on asphalt and going up and down hills, so if I average around 80 miles a month, I usually need a new pair in about six months.

I keep my old shoes for gardening or walking on the beach but I noticed recently that I have a few too many pair just hanging out in the garage that could probably be put to better use. I’d been trying to figure out the best place to donate all these old shoes when I ran across the Nike ReUSE-A-Shoe Program. Over 25,249,000 pairs of shoes have been collected globally through this program since 1990.

Here’s the scoop; straight from the Nike ReUse-A-Shoe website on how they put three high-quality Nike Grind materials to good use.

And there’s no need to worry about shipping cost; Nike has made this super easy! You can drop off up to ten pairs of used athletic shoes at your local Nike ReUSE a Shoe drop off  location. This recycling program is only for used athletic shoes; they don’t accept sandals, flip-flops, boots, dress shoes, or any shoes with metal cleats or spikes.

I put in my zip code and found out that I have a drop off location just 8 miles from my house. Now that I’m ready to say goodbye to some favorites that I’ve hung on to for long enough, I’m super happy to know that they will be put to good use. :-)

~LilSis

Yoga is my Stress Buster.

January 27, 2011

Bound Pigeon Pose
photo credit: stephcarter

A HUGE kudos to BigSis for completing that first round of P90X, for all the great advice on what to expect from this program, and for the terrific tips on how to stick to it. And since round one didn’t kill her, she’s actually moving on to round 2! :-)

I hope her testimonial will encourage some of you to try the P90X Extreme Home Fitness Workout Program. I know she was extremely happy with the results from round one! I wish that I could commit to trying P90X, but at this particular point in my life, I know it would be “almost” impossible for me and I don’t want to set myself up to fail.

In my household, it’s very rare that I find an hour a day to myself without interruptions. Right now, I’ve got a hubby that works from home half the day, who requires a lot of admin support from me and a 17 year old with an unique schedule that keeps him running in and out of the house at odd times during the day.

There’s never a dull moment in our house!

I do manage to get to the gym twice a week for weight training and I go on my six mile walk four times a week, no matter what, but I haven’t been able to get the yoga back into my routine.

Almost a year and a half ago, I started back to my yoga classes three times a week after being out with a foot injury. After getting back into my routine, I don’t why, but somewhere along the way, I let the demands of my job and various other pressures interfere with my yoga practice. Gradually, I was only attending two classes a week, then one, and then none!

2010 was a very stressful year for us, “professionally” and it has definitely taken a toll on my body. When I needed it the most, I put other things first instead of listening to my body and realizing how much stress was affecting me. We all know our bodies and know what we need to do to feel our very best. For me, yoga is the only thing that helps me feel better when I’ve got too much stress.

Stress affects different people in different ways, but these are my worst symptoms:

  • Stomach problems
  • Knots in my back
  • Stiff neck
  • Intense anxiety
  • Worry
  • Chronic insomnia

And we all know what stress does to cortisol levels and how that plays a factor in weight gain, especially “belly fat!” Yep, I’ve got that, too! :-(

This article from Mayo Clinic on stress management confirms that stress symptoms can be affecting your health, even if you don’t realize it. In the same article, Mayo Clinic lists the five top ways to help manage stress as:

  • Physical activity
  • Relaxation techniques
  • Meditation
  • Yoga
  • tai chi

For my health and my sanity, I have to get back to my yoga practice. For those that may want to give yoga a try for the first time, this is a good Yoga 101 article from Lululemon Athletica. I love this poster with stories and inspirations from their community.

Yoga Inspirations

Even though I’ve been trying the past three weeks to get myself to class on Mondays and Fridays, something has gotten in the way every single time! I’ve even been tearing the daily practice pages out of my Yoga Journal magazines each month and putting them in sheet protectors in a cute three ring binder to try to motivate me. But, I STILL have not been able to make myself find the time to do it at home.

Just last week, I made a little time to sit down and read my February issue of Yoga Journal and that’s where I learned about this 21 Day Challenge from Yoga Journal. There’s also an excellent article in this issue called Get Back on the Mat, that’s worth the read, if you’re like me and have gotten away from your practice.

Yoga Journal 21 Day Challenge

Even though the challenge officially started on January 10th, you can start at any time. I signed up yesterday and received my Day One email this morning. So, after helping hubby with some computer stuff for about three hours this morning; once he finally left, I got my mat out of my car, took my laptop to my room upstairs, locked the door, lit a lavender incense, and did Day One of this challenge. Ahhhhhh…

I didn’t know what to expect since I’d never watched any of their yoga videos, but I was pleasantly surprised! Day One was a 45-minute Fun Flow vinyasa sequence taught by Elise Lorimer.

Extended Side Angle Pose

Extended Side Angle Pose (Photo Credit: Yoga Journal)

This sequence was fun and also happened to contain a couple of my favorite poses, like Bound Side Angle. (To modify and bind this Side Angle pose, you just slip the one arm off the foot, wrap under your bent knee and wrap the other arm around behind your back and clasp hands together.) This pose always helps take the tension out of my back, as does extended triangle, which I added at the end of the video.

Extended Triangle

Extended Triangle (Photo credit: Yoga Journal)

With this Challenge, you’ll receive a daily email which has a link to each day’s instructional video; a tip to help your practice; and a delicious, healthy recipe. You’ll also find a link to the Challenge website, where you can listen to meditation and pranayama (yogic breathing) exercises, plus lessons on yoga philosophy. There’s also a community chat page.

Another thing that’s nice about this Challenge is that you can pick and choose which sequence you want to do, if for some reason you don’t have time to do the one for that day. There are 15 minute, 20 minute, and 30 minute sequences to choose from, depending on how much time you have. The key is to do something EVERY DAY, even if it’s just for 10-15 minutes.

While on the mat, I added a couple more of my favorite poses.

Camel

Camel Pose

Camel Pose (Photo Credit: Yoga Journal)

and Plow.

Plow Pose

Plow Pose (Photo Credit: Yoga Journal)

And, after just an hour, I feel noticeably better so I’m glad that I finally “Got Back on the Mat”!

I think this is just what I needed to kick my fanny into gear! I’m hoping that this Challenge kick starts me into doing a daily yoga practice even if there are days when I only have 15 minutes instead of an hour. Just a few poses and some deep breathing can do wonders for stress.

~LilSis

P90X for Women: Expectations, Tips…and Results!

January 24, 2011

P90X

I’m not your average P90X devotee…young and male.  I’m a 52 year old, vegan, menopausal woman, and I finished one round of P90X AND lived to tell about it.  In fact, I’m about to start my second round.

If I can do it, you can do it!

I definitely learned a bunch of things during the intense 13 weeks of P90X and I’d love to share them with you!  I want to tell you what you can expect from P90X as a woman, and what you shouldn’t expect.  I also have some tips for you, and some ideas on the results you might get.  Let’s go!

Get Ripped in 90 Days

EXPECTATIONS…

  • Expect to build muscle, and to increase your flexibility, strength, and endurance.
  • Expect to start seeing results as quickly as 2 weeks.  Expect to be proud of yourself and to be motivated by the results that you see.
  • Don’t expect to immediately lose a lot of weight, especially in the first 30 days or even up to 60 days.  You’re going to be building a lot of muscle and losing some fat too, but you may be building muscle at a faster rate than you’re losing fat.  Make sense?  We also know that muscle is heavier than fat, so the net effect may be zero weight loss for a while.  In fact, you might even gain a pound or more, but you just have to be patient.  Don’t freak out!  If you stick with the exercise program and eat properly, then you will build muscle and lose fat, but don’t expect to see an automatic gigantic weight loss immediately.
  • Expect to be sore, even weeks and weeks into the workout.  You may even be sore after every new workout.  That’s a good thing…your muscles are telling you that something is happening.  What they’re saying is that they’re confused and they’re changing!
  • Expect for this workout to be extremely tough; maybe the hardest thing you have ever done.  Tony Horton says P90X isn’t some “silly little class”, so expect it to kick your butt, because it will!
  • Expect for it to be difficult to push “PLAY on some days.  We all have days when we’re low on energy and/or low on motivation; that’s just part of being human.  Don’t let those days control you though.  Even if you don’t feel up to a super-duper tough workout, just start it.  Just start!  Chances are, you’ll pick up momentum as you go along, and you’ll get through the whole darn thing before you even have time to whine about it.
  • Expect to modify some of the exercises, especially if you have knee or back problems.  Side lunges, for example, are terrible for my knees, so I either do them very carefully or I skip them altogether if my knees are grumpy that day.  I also know that the yoga chair pose is something I can’t do at all because it kills my back.  Another modification I made is that I didn’t use the pull-up bar in my first round of P90X, but it wasn’t rest time for me when the folks in the video were doing pull-ups or chin-ups.  I did another upper body move that I felt worked those same muscles, so I still got a workout on that body part.
P90X Chinup Bar
Photo credit: aJ GAZMEN ? GucciBeaR’s flickr photostream

  • Expect to struggle with push-ups. Don’t be surprised if you have to do “girl push-ups”, even all the way through.  There’s no shame in that!  As long as you’re doing your best, you’re going to see progress in what you can do and you will get results.  I personally have a really hard time with push-ups, and I pretty much hate the nasty little buggers, but I love what they do for my upper body so I keep pushing through!
  • Expect to be blown away by what some of the people can do on the DVDs. These folks are not all professionals, but they are SUPER FIT people!  You should not expect to be able to do everything they do!  Please hear me…do not expect to do everything they can do! It’s something to strive for, but don’t think you should quit if you can’t keep up with them.  You just do the best that you can each and every workout, and you’ll see improvement each time you do that workout. Their performance is something to work toward and not something to be discouraged about.
  • Don’t expect to be able to do exactly what the men do.  Men are built differently from women.  No matter how fit you are, it’s not going to be hormonally natural for you to build muscle as quickly as men do, or to be able to do all of the things that they do, especially when it involves upper body strength.  Don’t expect to be able to do all of the variations of push-ups, for example, and don’t beat yourself up if you can’t do the chin-ups and pull-ups.

P90X4

  • Expect to be amazed at what YOU can actually do.  If you do more every day and keep pushing “PLAY”, you will be stunned at the results that you’ll get, and those results will start soon!  You’ll be proud of yourself, and will want to tell everyone you know about your program.
  • Expect to love some programs and to hate others, and to feel just ambivalent about many of them.  For me, the one that I absolutely hate is the favorite of lots of people, and that’s Kenpo.  For some reason, I just hate it, so I skip the Kenpo workout and substitute another on that day.  I might do cardio or yoga or legs and back, depending on what I feel like.  I don’t make the Kenpo day a rest day, I just do something else that I enjoy more.  I don’t think exercising has to be all rainbows and butterflies, but I also don’t think it has to be torture.  Be kind to yourself and make an adjustment if you need to.
  • Expect to want to quit. At some point, you may decide it’s just too hard.  This is absolutely the hardest workout that I have ever done.  I’ve done aerobic workouts, step workouts, Tao Bo, Jane Fonda, ballet workouts, Jillian Michaels, weight workouts; you name it and I’ve done it over the last 25 years, and this is by far the most challenging program that I have ever done.  Tony Horton makes Jillian Michaels look like a Girl Scout, and I thought her DVDs were pretty tough before I attempted P90X! So expect to want to quit.  It’s normal! But don’t give in to the temptation!

Once you get to that frustration point, I think that one motivational strategy is to concentrate on the body part that is your favorite and that people always compliment you on.  Realize that that you’re just making it better and fitter.  If that doesn’t spur you on, maybe negative psychology is more effective for you, as it is me.  I think about the body part that I am least happy with, and the fact that if I don’t work out today, that body part is going to look WORSE.  For me, legs are always my battle…trying to keep fat from accumulating on the stems. If I’m tempted to skip a workout I just think, guess what, your legs are going to look even worse than they already do if you wimp out.  It sounds negative – and it is – but it works for me.

  • Expect that you will want to talk with others about what you’re going through, what you’re experiencing, what your questions are, what your problems are, what your successes are.  There are lots of ways to do that:  the message boards on Beachbody.com, plus Twitter, and Facebook.
  • Expect to want to continue at the end of the 90 days; whether you want to do another round of P90X or to go on to do something else:  Insanity, TurboFire, P90X Plus, Brazil Butt Lift, whatever.  You’re going to want to do more once you see how strong you are, how good you feel, how much better your endurance is, how high your energy is, and how pumped up your confidence is about your body image!  There’s no way you’re going to want to sacrifice all of that and just go back to whatever your routine was before (or no routine at all).  So expect to continue!

TIPS…

  • Listen to what your body is telling youP90X is a serious workout.  If you’re trying to do something and your body says you’re hurting it, not just exerting it, then you need to stop and make sure that you don’t do that exercise again without evaluating what’s going on.
  • Know your body and what your limitations are.  If you’ve been working out for very long then you know the difference between STRAIN from a muscle that’s being worked really hard, and PAIN from an injury that is about to occur.  Don’t feel like you have to be SuperWoman, otherwise you’ll end up with an injury that may sideline you for weeks.  If you get hurt, you’ll be set back and you’ll be mad that you tried to be tough and push through when you should have stopped the moment your body warned you.
  • Start out with light weights, and don’t worry about being a wimp.  P90X Pink WeightsI started out using 3 pounds for triceps and 5 for biceps, and then just worked up from that.  I finished at 10 pounds for biceps and 8 for triceps, but occasionally I’d back off a bit on shoulders if I felt a little strain.  I’m at the age where I know people who are getting rotator cuff surgeries and I don’t want to be the next one on the operating table!  That’s another example of listening to your body.  Don’t feel like you have to do heavy weights, especially as a woman.  You’ll get the muscle growth and the toning you want without heavy weights. If the guys are doing 50 pounds, don’t feel bad if you’re only lifting 5!  This is not a competition!  It’s about getting fit and healthy; not winning!
  • Wear good shoes in every workout (except for the yoga, of course).  MizunoYou’ll need the support for the jumping and jogging, and for the weight workouts, good shoes give you a sturdy foundation.  You also need a really good cushy mat for the 90 minute yoga workout, and for warm-ups, cool-downs, and some floor exercises.  My favorite shoes are made by Mizuno.
  • Try your own music if you don’t enjoy the music on the videos.  I don’t care for the music on the yoga video, and it makes the 90 minutes feel even longer.  So I choose the option for the voice cues only with music off, and I just play other music I like in the background.  Just keep your music level low enough so that you can still hear Tony’s cues.
  • Take your measurements and photos before you start.  I was a bad bad girl and didn’t do it, and now I wish that I had.  You can get a feel for how things are going by the way your clothes fit, but it’s just really helpful to be able to look back at where you began.


Get Ripped in 90 Days

RESULTS…

I finished my first round and am about to start my second.  After week 9, I had to take a 6 week break from working out after I smashed my ribs in a fall while on vacation, and then it took me 2 weeks to ease back into working out.  Even so, I still got tremendous results and once I was recuperated, I started right back where I left off.

Before the fall in week 9, I felt incredibly strong.  I was close to being in the best shape of my life, even compared to my 20s when I worked out every day and was obsessed with being fit.  I’m now 52, 16 years vegetarian, 1 year vegan AND menopausal. The fact that I got the results that I did really speaks to the power of the program.

Being vegan, I have to use my common sense and eat in a very intentional manner, since I also do a cardio workout at the gym during my lunch hour every day.  I need to make sure that I get enough protein, and that my food is giving me fuel.  I don’t want to be slowed down or weighed down with empty calories that I’m going to have to burn off.   By the way, my favorite book on vegan sports nutrition is Thrive: The Vegan Nutrition Guide to Optimal Performance in Sports and Life by Brendan Brazier.

So what kind of results did I get?  By week 9 before I got sidelined, I built a lot of muscle, and lost about 5 pounds.  I’m 5’7″ and started out at 131 pounds.  After 9 weeks, I weighed 126 pounds, but I had lots more muscle. During the 6 week injury break, I lost muscle mass and got down to 123 because of it.

My arms and back both built muscle, my ever-grumpy lower back was stronger, I was more flexible from all the yoga, and had a lot of endurance.  For women it’s really important to have your butt lifted up, and this program does that.  Between all the cardio and leg routine and yoga, your butt definitely goes back up to where you want it to be, in spite of gravity and aging!

I also I noticed my quads were more defined than they have ever been, even in my 20s, which isn’t to say I don’t still have some fat, because I do.  I think it’s pretty much impossible for women to expect they can see a day with zero fat and zero cellulite – #1 because we’re our own worst critic, but #2, I just don’t think our bodies work that way.  I’ve accepted the fact that I’m going to have SOME fat that I’m not happy with, but even so, my quads were really defined from all the different exercises but they didn’t get bulky.

As far as my arms go, they of course didn’t get as large as a man’s would, but they buffed up quite a bit and I saw definition in my triceps, biceps, shoulder and forearms.  That’s pretty much the whole arm, wouldn’t you say?  I did the Lean Program with lower weights at 12 to 15 reps, and my arms still got plenty big for me.  I like for my upper body to build up a little bit, because I think it gives nice balance to the pear shape that many of us women have.  For me the Lean Program was the perfect amount of upper body growth and lower body toning, so I’ll choose it again.

P90X AbsMan or woman; we all want toned abs, right?  Well, step right up, ladies and gentlemen, and get your abs right here.  P90X will absolutely tone your core and build your abdominal muscles.  I hadn’t built a 6-pack when I finished round 1, but I saw definition and was beginning to see that vertical line of defined muscle that kind of hints that a 6-pack could be in your future.  Did it hurt?  Well, yes, of course it did.  Ab work is always uncomfortable, but I think visible progress happens pretty quickly in the midsection, as long as you’re not carrying a lot of extra weight there.

I already mentioned that I’m going through menopause, which translates into weight gain for lots of us girls. I’ve been on a mission to NOT gain 50 pounds and have so far been successful, but without P90X I think I would have a much bigger struggle on my hands (and on other body parts)!

The results are truly amazing and I’m looking forward to doing the whole 13 weeks without a break – God willing.  Long term, I probably will rotate different workouts on different days after round 2.  P90X is not a program that you do for one period of time; I think it’s something you integrate into your life for the rest of your life.

ONE LAST THING…

I heard in the media that some female celebrities have done P90X with fabulous results (Pink, Demi Moore, and Sheryl Crow, for example) but I never really considered attempting P90X myself.  When my nephew told me I could do it though, I was intrigued and challenged and decided to try it.

I also heard that if you want to do P90X, you have to want it.  You have to want it bad.  This isn’t a program you can toy with or play with and then poof, presto, you get great results.  You have to want it because you’re going to have to work for every single ounce of fat that you lose and every single ounce of muscle that you build.  If you want it, you’re going to have to work for it, but it’s going to be worth it.

Push yourself through this program!  If it was easy, everyone would do it.  When you reach your goal, you’re going to be immensely proud of yourself.

One last piece of advice?  Bring It!


The Supermodels' Secret to a Perfect Butt

~BigSis

Get Your Fit on with Facebook

January 16, 2011

Are you following BigSisLilSis on Facebook?  If not, you’ve already missed 2 weeks of health and fitness tips to get your New Year off to a great start!  Do you know which cellulite cures work and which don’t work?  Do you need some ideas for quick guilt-free lunches?  Are you looking for a new workout?

If you’ve been following our tips, you’d have those answers, and more!  It’s not too late though.  We have 2 more weeks of daily tips for you, so come check us out!  We can always learn something new from each other and we’d love to hear your tips and tricks!

photo credit: petname

~BigSis

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Got New Year’s Resolution?

January 3, 2011

Happy new year!  Have you made a resolution, or turned over a new leaf, or decided to get serious, or determined that this is THE year?  Chances are that you want to get in shape and get healthy this year, like most of us do, right?

We would love to help you with your health and fitness goals!  LilSis and I are not experts or professionals; we’re just 40-plus women who have worked out for most of our lives and are always striving to be more fit and healthier.  And because we’re both in that very challenging menopausal stage of our lives as women, we’ve had to kick things up a notch and go way beyond what used to work for us.  The battle is getting tougher, but we’re not giving up.  We’re getting more determined!

We don’t know everything, but we want to share what we DO know to be true.  So, for the month of January, we’ll put up a new health or fitness tip on our BigSisLilSis Facebook page every day.  We’ll share little tidbits on working out, healthy eating, motivation, inspiration; anything that we think might help you meet your goals in 2011.

Have you visited us on our BigSisLilSis Facebook page?  If not, please come check us out and make sure to “like” us so you’ll get our tips without missing a thing!

We’d love to have your input, and to learn from you as we share our thoughts.  If we put our heads together, maybe the road to health in 2011 for all of us will be a little tiny bit smoother!

~BigSis

The Best Cardio Song Ever: Animal by Neon Trees!

October 6, 2010

I just found the best cardio workout song EVER! On the tired backside of my walk today, I replayed this song 4 or 5 times and it propelled me home!

It’s called “Animal” and it’s from Neon Trees. Check it out:

Just for fun, here’s a groovy acoustic version:

So what do you think? Am I right? Or am I right?

~BigSis

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Pro Surfer Jodie Nelson Gets Whale Escort

April 6, 2010

This is such a great story! I wanted to share it with you today in case you didn’t hear about it last week.

Press Release Source: The Keep A Breast Foundation On Monday March 29, 2010, 5:12 pm EDT

Pro Surfer Jodie Nelson gets whale escort

DANA POINT, CA–(Marketwire – 03/29/10) – Professional surfer and Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) ambassador Jodie Nelson became the first woman to paddle 39.8 grueling miles from the island of Catalina to Dana Point yesterday. She finished in 9 hours, one minute and 21 seconds, all in an effort to raise awareness and funds for breast cancer research and prevention.

I hope you can take a few minutes to watch this video. It’s incredible!

Jodie started her journey at 6:15 a.m. on Sunday, March 28, the only person doing a solo paddle as part of the Ohana Ocean Catalina Challenge. On the top of her paddleboard, she had printed names of loved ones close to her who were affected by breast cancer. Her mother is a breast cancer survivor, her aunt is a cancer survivor and one of her dearest friends is currently battling the disease.

“I wanted to go out there and do something big and overwhelming, something I had a good chance of failing at… I see so many people who have battled and who are beating breast cancer, they are tackling something bigger than them. They keep fighting and don’t give up. I want to motivate people to keep fighting!”

18 miles into the paddle, Jodie had a close encounter with a 30-foot minke whale, which are fairly rare for the waters but are known to be friendly and docile. She dubbed him Larry and watched as he blew bubbles beneath her, fluked, and showed her his belly. The whale stayed with Jodie for about an hour and a half. “It was the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen in my life,” she said.

According to Ray Hsieh from the Crow’s Nest Boat Center, who was driving Jodie’s support boat, “I’ve been boating and fishing all my life and have never seen anything like what I saw today. It was so strange, I actually called my friends at Sea World to ask them if it was normal, and they said, ‘It’s your lucky day! That whale is just playing. Sit back and enjoy the show.’ So I did.”

Jodie’s campaign to “Paddle With Purpose” is supported by Emergen-C Pink®, which Jodie used during training to help prepare her for the endurance mission.

Jodie’s goal is to raise $100,000, and so far she has reached about $8,000. All funds go toward The Keep A Breast Foundation and Boarding for Breast Cancer. To donate, go to http://www.paddlewithpurpose.com

Note: Video and still footage of Jodie’s journey, the gray whale and heartfelt welcome by her family and friends is available upon request or by visiting or http://tinyurl.com/yeg48tv.

~LilSis

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Maybe P90X Won’t Kill Me Now?

March 7, 2010

Thanks for the reminder about the healthy snacks, LilSis. I think it’s really smart to keep good things on hand in case of a snack attack, which is going to happen, sooner or later!

Remember me talking about P90X last weekend? I was all psyched up to start it. I did the fitness test, and was able to pass it, but the darn thing kicked my butt and made me realize how puny and weak my upper body is right now. Even though I wanted to jump in 100%, a voice of reason in my head told me I’d probably end up getting hurt, or getting so sore that I’d quit, or getting discouraged because I couldn’t do the whole workout. Those would all be bad outcomes that I don’t want.

So, for once, I decided that I should be smart and ease into the new workout.  In addition to my gym workouts five times a week, here’s what I’m doing.  If you’re chompin at the bit to whip yourself into swimsuit shape, but need to ease into a heinie-kickin’ workout like me, give these workouts a try!

  • Inhale Yoga with Steve Ross – it comes on live here on the Oxygen cable channel at 5 am and 6 am.  I record it on DVR now, so I can do them whenever I want.  This is my favorite yoga.

Amazon has the set of all three Jillian Michaels DVDs for $22.99.

After doing  a month of rotating these workouts, I think I’ll be ready to start P90X.  Yoga is great for building strength – both upper and lower body – and Jillian’s videos all incorporate excellent upper body exercises.  I’m hoping that doing a month of prep before embarking on P90X will decrease the probability that it will kill me!  What do you think?

~BigSis

Will P90X Kill a Forty-Plus Woman?

February 28, 2010

I know LilSis and lots of the other Ten in 2010 participants have started off the new year with a new motivation, increased fitness and weight loss.  Not me though, I’ve been doing good to just maintain with my 5 gym workouts a week.  Since my priority the last several weeks has been to spend as much time as possible with Bry, I wasn’t getting in any additional workouts, which is perfectly fine. My priorities were clear to me.

But now that he’s off on his Navy adventure, it’s time for me to recommit to getting back into fighting shape.  I never know when I might have an unexpected scuffle with an ornery chick in the parking lot before work!  Yeah, there’s a story there, but I’ll save that for another day.

The truth is, a forty-plus body wants to get fat.  You have lower metabolism, more aches and pains, less energy, and wacked out hormones.  At least, that’s the state of the union in my world.  It takes more and more work to achieve results, and it’s very easy to get stuck on plateaus.  Plus, doing the same old stuff starts to lose its effectiveness.

All of that is no excuse though, and I’m not making any.  I don’t have a ton of weight to lose, but I do want to build some more muscle and lose those ding dang blobs of fat that insist on congregating and loitering on my rear view.  You know the ones I mean.

P90XI had planned to go back to Jillian Michaels’ 30-Day Shred, since she whipped me into decent shape last year with her program.  I’d been rotating the 30-Day Shred with a couple of her other heinie-kicking DVDs, and they really did work.

Bry and his dad have been big fans of P90X though, and Bry said I should give it a try, and swears I can do it.  Really?  Ok.  If you say so, Bry.  I know you care about your old aunt and you wouldn’t tell me that if you thought it would be the death of me.

I love a challenge, and with my all-or-nothing personality, P90X is right up my alley, at least theoretically.  One of the things that intrigues me about it is the idea of “Muscle Confusion”, which is said to bring greater results to your bored muscles.  So today, I’m going to do the fitness test to see if I’m up for the P90X challenge.  If not, I’ll do the 30-Day Shred for a couple of weeks, and then test again.  If I pass the test, I’m off and running.

I just have one question before I start…will P90X kill a forty-plus woman?  Do you know of any women who have done it and survived; other than Sheryl Crow and Pink?

~BigSis

Back to Yoga!

October 11, 2009

I am so sore in such a major way today! I’m not complaining, though, I promise! Every “Owie” that I say outloud is a very good thing! Friday was my first day back to yoga in over six months. Even though I’ve been walking five miles almost every day and riding my bike for an hour on the other days, I’ve got muscles from my neck to my toes that apparently haven’t been put to the test in a LONG TIME!

I’m done talking about the boot that was on my foot most of the summer and I AM finally, finally getting back to my yoga practice.  I never realized just how much yoga helped me deal with my stress until I was away from it for six months.

My class on Friday was probably the most difficult, yet, most relaxing hour that I’ve had to myself in months. One hour! Just. One. Hour. No Internet. No cell phone. No Facebook. No Twitter. Just. Me. And. My. Practice.  I love the instructor at the gym I go to on Fridays. She likes to instruct her class in the dark, which I love. She’s calming, yet also motivating and inspiring. I knew I missed yoga but I really didn’t realize how much until after my class on Friday. Afterwards, I almost felt like me again.

We’ve had a lot of changes going on in our lives these past several months and I basically let the stress and worry of everything take over ME! There was almost no ME left. (I’m sure some of it has to do with my major roller coaster hormones, but we’ll talk about that later.) Like most women, we tend to take care of everyone else before we take care of ourselves. But, if I don’t take care of  ME,  I certainly won’t be able to take care of anyone else.

On Mondays, I’ll go to my local YMCA where there is another fantastic yoga instructor.  Unlike the corporate gym, the locally owned Y allows him to use props, blocks, straps, and even bamboo sticks, which, by the way, give some amazing results when you massage your calves with them prior to your practice. I can’t wait for tomorrow morning!

Since I go to a couple of different gyms, I’d love to be able to travel without a mat. I’ve always been a little curious to find out what it would be like to do yoga wearing a pair of these toesox.

Yoga Teacher Kathryn Budig (photo by Jasper Johal)

Yoga Teacher Kathryn Budig (photo by Jasper Johal)

Every time I look through my new issue of Yoga Journal, I’m fascinated by their ads featuring Santa Monica Yoga Instructor, Kathryn Budig.

ToeSox_YJ_ad_JanFeb09_proof

Amazing, huh? I’m really excited about getting back to my yoga routine. Maybe some day I’ll be able to do this!

yoga1I wonder if I’m too old to dream about one day becoming a certified yoga instructor?

~LilSis

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