Readers' Workouts (Lite Logo)Welcome to Readers’ Workouts, our weekly gathering of bookish folks doing active things. How was exercise for you in the past week? What are your plans for the coming week? Link your post below or tell your story in the comments. Don’t forget to visit the links to offer encouragement and support to other participants!

I’ve been pleased with how I’m doing with Jillian Michaels’ 30 Day Shred. When I first started incorporating strength training in my workout, about three years ago, I was extremely cautious. Every time I’ve attempted anything with weights in the past, I’ve managed to pull a muscle or wrench a joint and quit before I really began. But the experts say there are many benefits from strength-training, especially for boosted metabolism and bone development to prevent osteoporosis. Mostly, though, I just wanted to quit getting injured while doing yard work.

10 Minute Solution: Target Toning for BeginnersI started with 10-Minute Solution: Target Toning for Beginners. It’s available through Netflix streaming or, currently, less than 6 bucks from Amazon. At first, I used 1-pound weights — cute little pink ones. I bought the purple 2-pound weights at the same time and graduated to them a few weeks later.

Over the years, I’ve added a few other DVDs with a strength-training element including Slim in 6 and 30 Day Shred. Slim in 6 uses a resistance band and that helped me make a leap forward in my strength-training. So, when I tried 30 Day Shred this month, I combined the 1 and 2-pound weights for 3 pounds (I have big hands). That worked for everything but the shoulder presses and anterior raises — for those, part way through, I dropped the 1-pound weight and did them with 2 pounds. For the last three workouts, though, I’ve been able to do all reps with 3 pounds. I’m thrilled!

The next challenge: Level 2 of 30 Day Shred.

I’m on track for exercising 1600 minutes this month and for doing 30 Day Shred 15 times. How is your exercise going?




Readers’ Workouts — November 13 — 12 Comments

  1. Joy, it’s a delight stumbling across your blog for reader workouts. As a novelist, I’ve long been concerned about the sedentary lifestyle led by many readers and writers alike. When I attend writer’s conferences I always come away depressed–it seems with each new accolade or well-selling novel, the writer in question has gained yet another five or ten pounds.

    I began writing fiction while doing the single mom + four kids thing, which kept me focused on setting a good example for my children. I’d write for several hours then break to visit the gym. Now, at the grand old age of 53, those habits are ingrained. Six days a week, I spend an hour at the gym walking/jogging the treadmill and working out with weights. I keep veggie snacks handy throughout the day–there’s something about the creative process that urges one towards sugar–and I try to encourage other writers to cherish their bodies as much as their books. It’s a tough sell.

    Joy, keep up the good work. Here’s hoping you’ll get bibliophiles everywhere to put down that cherished book long enough for a quick workout. Because, truth, is, our minds need our bodies to work beautifully at full capacity.

  2. Hey Joy, glad we met on #GenFab (now with a TM) LOL! I am the opposite of you – I am an active folk doing bookish things. As someone who taught fitness for 15 years, doing this writing thing where I sit for most of the day is almost killing me. Thank goodness for my workouts. See, we all have our problems 😉 It’s just about finding that balance. And you are doing a great service by encouraging your readers to stay fit!

    So keep shredding. P.S. Don’t be afraid to push up into those higher weights. Women almost always underestimate their strength. Ciao for now.

  3. Good for you, Joy! Good luck with Level 2!

    I managed to stay on track last week in spite of a looming cold. Same plan this week: 1-hour gym on Monday/Wednesday/Friday. Gym workout is 20 min. cardio, 15 min. ballet barre, 15-20 min. strength training, 5-10 min. stretching.

    • Cool that you can do a ballet barre workout at your gym. I find myself borrowing moves from my long-time-ago ballet class once in awhile because nothing else quite hits the spot I want.

  4. Great work, Joy! So glad to see you picking up the strength training habit again. It’s so good for you–I do it several times a week myself, including a kick ass TRX class.

    I had a good week–412 minutes of workouts. Felt good to be back up to full speed after the hurricane slowed down my routine.

    As for reading, I am reading Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina. Talk about a workout! LOL!

  5. I have some kettlebells now so I hope I will be getting stronger to. I have heard that improving your core strength reduces the risk of injury and helps you run better. Plus being stronger, as you say, is just more useful!

    Feeling lazy this week though… no running today as I had book group so should take myself out tomorrow but maybe I will just swing my kettlebells instead.

  6. With the weather changing, my active habits are slumping a bit. I usually play tennis 3-4 times a week but it’s getting too cold and fall is fairly typically rainy here (and all courts are outdoors). I was running until I boogered up my knee too. So now I need to find something to keep me busy since my two preferred things are out. And I’ve long heard about the importance of weight training but haven’t taken the plunge myself. I really should!

    • We’d love to have you join us, Kristen! Readers’ Workouts is a fun way to explore new exercises and track progress.

  7. I’m feeling like quite a slug after reading this. My workouts are typically race-walking my dogs (a pit/pointer and a black lab/shepherd). It’s been so cold this past week that I’ve not walked them, resorted to chasing them around the family room so they can burn off some energy. Not good, considering all the holiday treats to come next week.

    Wanted to stop by to say hello and thank you for commenting on my “cool grandma” post. 😀

  8. Joy, your spreadsheet idea was very inspirational for me. A long time ago, when we owned a franchise restaurant, our consultant said, “If you don’t measure it, it doesn’t matter.” Those eight simple words have been a huge help to me, personally and professionally. I’ve applied them now to exercise, and am happy to see that I’ve been clocking 150 – 180 minutes a week walking my neighbor’s border collie. It’s great fun, since she’s energetic and loves to herd me into a faster pace.

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