Top Ten Reasons Why I Don’t Work Out

I’m making this list for two reasons: by naming what keeps me from the gym I hope I can figure out how to overcome it; top ten lists tend to fare well as blog posts.

8. I have a ridiculously over-demanding job (negative) and I have a dog to come home to (positive). (Sissy)
7. Watching someone else workout on TV from the comfort of my couch is so much easier (Katie)
6. I’ve over-scheduled my live. (Frank)
5. I didn’t sleep well last night.
4. It’s cardio day. I think I’ll skip.
3. I sometimes have to cook dinner, and I think I have to serve it at 6:00.
2. I put the needs of others before my need to go.
1. I don’t go to the gym straight from work.

That’s only five reasons. That makes for a lame top-ten list, but it leaves some spaces for you. Why don’t you work out?

Swiss Ball Workout Is Kicking My Butt

I started a new workout from Men’s Health on Friday. The workout is called The Better Way to Bigger Biceps. The twist is, there are no bicep curls or exercises that specifically target the biceps. After just three sets of 8-10 reps of dead lifts, I spend almost all of the remaining hour-long workout lying on top of a Swiss ball and lifting dumbbells every way imaginable.

I’m not using very much weight—just 8 lbs—but spending so much time balancing on the Swiss ball works to “…shore up your weak spots, by strengthening the muscles that surround your joints. After 4 weeks of working your muscles from all angles, you’ll find that you’re stronger in nearly every upper-body exercise, including the bicep curl….”

So far the workout is kicking my butt. I’ll let you know what I think about it after having done it three times a week for a month.

Lifting Dumbbells on the Swiss Ball

Kicking the Habit

Can of Timberwolf Smokeless TobaccoFor over twenty years, I was a tobacco user. I quit in February 2008. Quitting ranks among the top-three hardest things I’ve ever done.

I started during my freshman year in college. It was then that a girl introduced me to my first dip of smokeless tobacco in the tv room of the Wesley Foundation. And thus, an addiction was born.

In the beginning, I used tobacco because it relaxed me, gave me a buzz, and made me feel butch. I don’t know when it happened, but at some point the pinch between my cheek and gum lost its effectiveness. Tobacco no longer did anything for me, but I felt anxious and cranky if I went without it for too long. “To long” became shorter and shorter. I used a little bit almost constantly. I learned to hide it, using just a little at a time and always carrying a travel coffee mug around with me to spit in. Of course, I wasn’t hiding anything. People knew. They were only gracious enough, or embarrassed enough, not to say anything.

Continue reading

Share Your Playlist

I’m always looking for music for my workouts. I subscribe to Rhapsody through Verizon Wireless, and that gives me unlimited subscription access to music. So why do I wind up listening to the same three albums over and over?

Here’s a playlist I cobbled together from some favorite one-hit wonders from the 80s. If I put my player on shuffle, it should do me for awhile, but I want your ideas. Post your workout playlist as a comment.  > Playlist Central  > Playlist

80s One-Hit Wonders


Listen to Playlist: Playlist     Play/Add All
Play/Add Track Artist Share
Listen to Track: I Melt With You 1. I Melt With You
Listen to Track: 99 Luftballons 2. 99 Luftballons
Listen to Track: Walking On Sunshine 3. Walking On Sunshine
Listen to Track: The Promise 4. The Promise
Listen to Track: Mickey 5. Mickey
Listen to Track: Breakout 6. Breakout
Listen to Track: Send Me An Angel '89 (Edit) 7. Send Me An Angel ’89 (Edit)
Listen to Track: Life In A Northern Town 8. Life In A Northern Town
Listen to Track: Der Kommissar 9. Der Kommissar
Listen to Track: Always Something There To Remind Me 10. Always Something There To Remind Me
Listen to Track: Genius Of Love 11. Genius Of Love
Listen to Track: Fade To Grey 12. Fade To Grey
Listen to Track: Come On Eileen 13. Come On Eileen
Listen to Track: Video Killed The Radio Star 14. Video Killed The Radio Star
Listen to Track: Voices Carry 15. Voices Carry
Listen to Track: You Spin Me Round (Like A Record) 16. You Spin Me Round (Like A Record)
Listen to Track: Cars 17. Cars
Listen to Track: I Want Candy 18. I Want Candy
Listen to Track: One Night In Bangkok (from "Chess") - Murray Head 19. One Night In Bangkok (from “Chess”) -…
Listen to Track: Too Shy 20. Too Shy
Listen to Track: On The Dark Side 21. On The Dark Side
Listen to Track: 867-5309/Jenny 22. 867-5309/Jenny
Listen to Track: I Know What Boys Like 23. I Know What Boys Like

First Biking Incident

I’m an amateur biker. For a little over a year now I have biked for exercise and as part of my commute to work. Yesterday after work, I took a short ride near my home and I experienced my first biking incident. Someone riding shotgun in a red car intentionally threw a full cup of ice-cold beverage at me. It hit my hip. The car, which had slowed to match my pace, sped away before I could think to look for the license number. You’d think after all those episodes of CSI I would have a better reaction time.

Aside from getting a little wet, I’m fine. I’m pleased that I stayed the course and didn’t run off the road and into the ditch. I called the city’s non-emergency police line and reported the incident, just in case my new friends where on some drinking-binge tear.

It’s Been Two Days Since My Last Workout

My Arm after a WorkoutIt’s been two days since my last workout. Now that may not sound like such a big deal, but working out has become increasingly important to me. I get a little anxious if I don’t carve out the hour or so it takes to hit the gym and run through my cardio or weight routine. I’ve been working out regularly for five years now. I’ve come to see it as a necessary part of my day.

The fact that I do it at all still amazes me. I have started and stopped at various times throughout my life. Never overweight (really kind of skinny), I never stuck with a program long enough to feel the benefits.

How did I finally get into a fitness routine? It took hooking up with a personal trainer. My partner and I and another couple split the cost of scheduling time with a trainer. Eventually working with the trainer got too expensive because the couple dropped out of the picture. However, I stayed with it long enough to begin to understand the basics and to overcome feeling intimidated at the gym.

After I left the trainer, I joined the local YMCA where I followed the Body for Life program. I stayed with the Y for three years, and now I’m a member of a gym hosted by a local church. It’s an incredible facility that costs me in a year what I was paying for a monthly family membership at the Y.

Continue reading