“Twenty minutes no matter what,” my very fit friend says in response my question.
“Cardio, you’re talking,” I clarify, because I can’t imagine this man ever doing just twenty minutes of exercise. He’s confessed recently to usually getting in five to six, three-hour workouts per week–more than I usually work.
“Yep,” he says. It’s simple for him. Well, sort of.
“Even if you don’t feel well?” I venture, thinking of all the reasons I sometimes come up with for not working out.
“Well, I figure I showed up, you know? So, I just ride the bike; walk the treadmill; climb the stair-stepping machine–whatever. I make it my rule, then at the end of twenty minutes, if I’m not feeling it, I stop. Usually once I warm up, I’m more energized and getting into a groove. Most of the time I’ll knock out another twenty or more minutes of cardio, especially if there’s a good movie playing on the big screen in the cardio room, or I’ll head right into my lifting-cross-fitness routine.”
“What motivates you to get in there? To keep going?” I’ve always wondered this: Why do some of people succeed at this whole fitness-health thing, and others just don’t?
“It’s my thing. I feel fantastic as I’m doing it. I love to feel strong.” This seemed an oversimplified explanation of his fifteen to eighteen hour-a-week habit, so I asked another very fit, exercise-as-second-job, female this time.
“Is this kind of commitment/compulsion a replacement for anything?”
“You mean like alcohol or sex?” she smiles.
“Yeah, like that” I whisper. Interesting…. but kind of a side note. Or maybe not. If you’re going to be addicted to something…
Now, another co-worker power-lifts and he recommended just adding dead-lifts and squats to my routine, in this case, in order to lose weight.
So, I’ve always wanted to lose ten pounds, and as I’ve conversed with these and other male bodybuilders, they’ve all said the same thing: Muscle actually pushes out the fat. Gain a little muscle and you WILL lose weight.
I will have to say I was skeptical, but who can argue with success? My male friends do look pretty damn good. And, with that increased muscle they huck a disc (disc golf) like crazy.
So, I worked out a couple of times with that first, off-beat fitness guy, though I will have to say, I was initially intimidated: Me a cushy novice; He a ripped and seasoned hard-body.
The results: Nearly immediate! I felt stronger. Within two sessions, people were asking what I was doing. I felt stronger. I felt the possibility growing inside me, along with the muscle.
Then, I wondered: Could this improve my disc golf game? Could I ache less? Would I be more resistant to injury in yoga?
So, maybe START with twenty minutes no matter what: Then feel the strength; see the emerging curves; embrace the niggling inspiration; enjoy the pain-free joints…and who knows what’s next?
Maybe that book?
A toast beauties. I’m lifting my ten-pound barbell overhead, and imagining all that building muscle can bring us.
Love and Lettuce,