Sunday, November 21, 2010

Sunday Smash

Sundays are probably my favorite day of the week, they make me want to eat pancakes and nap..but there's no time for naps today! booo. Since sunday naps have apparantly been outlawed, I chomped up a banana with some almond butter and headed to the gym for some upper body lovin' before I settled into my daily homework coma.

Sunday Stetch of the Day!

Ideally you'd be doing this in a doorway/on a wall.

(I'll be posting new stretches on here every so often, to keep things fresh, so here's the first one.)

This is an awesome way to stretch your pectorals  (chest) and it's even better if you do it on the side of your fridge... ;)
Stand up straight, place your arm out at shoulder height with your fist on a wall and pivot in the opposite direction.  Be sure to do both sides and remember stretches should never hurt!

Workout; upper body.
I did 3 sets of each of these:

  • Dumbell Rows- 1 set of 10 @ 30lbs/arm; 2 sets of 8 @ 35lbs/arm.
  • Chest Presses with dumbbells - 12 @ 50lbs. Time to up the weight!
  • Lying Chest Flys - 10@ 30lbs.
  • Standing Shoulder Presses- 2 sets of 6 @ 50lbs, then I got wobbly, 1 set of 8 at 40lbs.
  • Pull-ups, assisted - 12 @ 80lbs.
  • Dips, assisted - 12 @ 70lbs.
  • Upward Rows- 10 @ 50lbs.

Since I wrote about car stuff yesterday, today I decided to switch it over to strictly gymrat business today and give ya some insight on why you're not getting results.
(Unless you are, then you can skip right over this to the recipe :) )

You underestimating yourself.
Frankly, don’t be a wuss! Push your body to its limit and you’ll be really surprised at what you’re capable of doing. Once your body gets comfortable with your routine, shock it! Preventing your body from adapting to any particular routine is key. Tell whatever fear that’s holding you back to piss off and really challenge yourself. I promise you’ll feel like a million bucks afterwards. A hot, sweaty million bucks.

You're guilty of overtraining.
REST. This is your most important tool. You‘re going to get absolutely nowhere without it. Your rest days are when most of your progress is being made and your muscles are busy at work repairing themselves from your previous workout. So, don’t work the same muscle groups two days in a row. Your muscles and nervous system need adequate time to recuperate after you’ve beat the crap out of them.

You’re inconsistent.
“It’s the start that stops people.“ On the flip side of the previous reason, you lack focus and drive. You want results but you can’t get your butt into gear. You always make excuses. Well, you can't complain about yourself if you make no effort to better yourself! Get a buddy or a trainer or someone to hold you accountable. Start small if you have to and do what you can. Make sure your goals are realistic and make a plan that's easy to stick to.  Remember, building things takes time, the Great Wall of China wasn’t built over night was it?

You’re still hitting the drive-thru.
Diet and exercise is like a science and they go hand in hand with eachother. If you’re slacking in the kitchen, then forget about it. You’re not going to get that six pack by slurping down a Coke every chance you get. Logging and tracking your food is your other most important tool for getting the best results. It’s also very important to make sure you’re eating enough. Your body is like an engine and you’re in big trouble if it runs out of fuel. Plus, you can’t expect to build muscle if there’s nothing there to build it out of.

You’re clueless.
Yeah, we’ve all been there, it’s okay! Start by building up base strength with compound (multi-joint) movements (standing presses, deadlifts, squats). These will effectively work a combination of muscle groups and force your body to work extra hard, providing the best results. Look at it this way: with a bench press you’re working your pecs, deltoids, triceps and biceps, versus doing a tricep kickback where you’re isolating and only working your triceps. You’re getting more bang for your buck with compound movements and saving time. It’s okay to do isolation exercises, just make sure your main focus and most energy is spent on compound exercises.

I wrote that with a focus on weight training, but it can be relevent to any fitness routine.  Just don't be too hard on yourself.  I mean, go hard, but stay in check. If you can't complete your last set, big whoop, if you miss one workout because you're too tired, big whoop. Try again next time and don't deprive yourself, keep everything in moderation.  Life goes on.

Speaking of not depriving yourself, check this baby out!

Where's the other half?
Guilt-Free Pumpkin Smash

One 15-oz. can pumpkin
¾ cup egg whites
¾ cup of milk
1-2tbsp. Agave nectar (or sweetener of choice)
Pumpkin pie spice or nutmeg, ground cloves and ginger.

Preheat oven to 350.
Mix ingredients together in a bowl
Spray a baking dish (8x8 works best) with nonstick spray and pour in the mixture.
Bake for 45 minutes.
Store in the fridge to allow it to solidify for a bit.

Serving Suggestions:
Go ahead and eat the whole thing if ya want, it's only about 360 calories and a little over 20g of protein.
Or have a piece with some peanut butter and or vanilla frozen yogurt. 
It might be a little bland depending on how you sweeten it,
adding a little shot of agave to your piece after baking will fix that.

I adapted this recipe from HungryGirl and I switched it up by using regular milk instead of evaporated and by leaving out the ¾ cup of splenda since I’m not a fan of artificial sweeteners (or any of the other fat free, sugar free, "diet" products she uses a lot. It works for some people, but I'd rather real food!)

Ok, well Happy Sundaying! Please feel free to leave comments and give me ideas on what to write about!

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