Confessions of A Fitness Addict: Bench Press, Bicep Curls, and 1001 Sit-Ups

It is easy to want and focus on 6 pack abs, how much you can bench, or even curl.  In the process one easily loses sight of the true end product – the overall self.  I found that out for myself, recently. Here’s my story.

I am a fit person.  I do a few exercises when I get up every morning, and take regular breaks from sitting at my desk while at work.  I have six small meals throughout the day, lots of veggies, some meat, lots of organic food, drink lots of fluids, juice, eat out maybe once/twice a month, socially dance a couple times a week, cycle, go jogging, hike quite a bit in the summer and increase my dancing to compensate for the cold in the winter, have weights that I use at home, do Tai Chi….You get the picture?

Yet my legs are tight from years earlier of lots of running as a kid without investing in stretching/flexibility, when I didn’t know any better.  And using machines for weights have built asymmetries in strength.  Nothing that I think that the average person can notice, and while I knew about these things I did not think it made a big deal.  After all it is normal for a person to favor the dominant hand, to have one side a little stronger.  And if I was tight I thought I was working on it…

Then this year I invested in one on one personal training. I told the people coaching me that I wanted to make sure that I had a strong symmetrical foundation.  Here’s one example. When I did the dumb bell row just minutely changing changing my form with the left row – not allowing my non-dominant left shoulder to drop a fraction of a cm – engaged my back to the same extent as my dominant right.  Nothing that any of my gym buddies ever noticed, or even I myself, for that matter.  However, having someone focusing on my form, correcting and showing me visually the small differences has had a significant impact. No cheating allowed!  Oh, and for the time being I no longer participate or even have time to include the standards of the average Joe, such as bench press, bicep curls, and sit-ups.

Having one-on-one attention makes a significant difference no matter what you do for fitness whether it be yoga, or resistance training.  It is definitely better to do something, rather then nothing, but consider a little one-on-one attention in some way shape or form and see the difference that it can make today.

A quick shameless plug.  If you are interested in partner dance, which is a great way to get fitter while socializing, I teach partner dance.  You can contact me @ Alegria Dance.

It is not just about counting calories

In the great modern game of not being overweight and losing the pounds “health” plays second fiddle.  Growing up most of us quickly learn that “what you put in is what you get out” and “you are what you eat”.  This reduces to the calorie count game: we spend more calories then we consume to lose weight.  Yet, nothing in life is that simple.

It helps if we just don’t talk about calories, but see what they look like, and what they contain/do.  Watch this 3 min video clip by asap science and share.

You know, sometimes I think it may be best to go back to the good ‘ole days. The thought crossed my mind when I saw this facebook post sharing a 1917 US Food Administration poster advising people what to eat.