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Fitness: what works for you?


What's the one thing you eat, drink or do that helps keep you in shape?

Do you LOVE or HATE going to the gym?  What do you love or hate about it?  What keeps you going?

What makes you get up and go workout on lazy days?  What keeps you away from unhealthy food when you're craving it?

Sep 27, 2011 @ 01:43 pm

15 Replies



I truly have a love-hate relationship with working out/the gym lol Some days, it's so easy for me to go. And by that I mean the days that have been pretty low key, I'm feeling energetic and not too busy. But on days where I'm busy with classes and school, housework, already feeling tired, etc. I have to force myself to go. And sometimes on those days, I tell myself it's ok to power walk half my run. Then I still get a work out and burn some calories without dropping dead when I go back home!

My motivation is just knowing how great I'll feel after it's all done and also that I'm improving my health. When I exercise routinely I sleep better and feel better. The biggest issue for me is getting into my workout clothes! lol It's getting the motivation to change and get going. Once I have my workout clothes on, I'm usually pretty good to go and can end up working harder than I thought I had energy for.

If all else fails, I go for a walk after dinner with my husband. At least then I'm moving instead of sitting. And I do an ab workout every second day, whether I went for a run or not. I switch it up with the P90X ab workout and one I read about on The Knot. It really works and I find even after a week of this routine my stomach is flatter and more toned.

I'm STILL learing self control in terms of eating unhealthy foods! I'm a total sucker for cake, cheesecake, ice cream, lemon squares, and cheeseburgers! But everything in moderation :)

Sep 27, 2011 @ 02:46 pm

Lifestyle Change more than Diet or Exercise Kick!

I am the worst with doing exercise, getting into routines or just eating healthily. I do walk quite a lot and I really try to eat junk in moderation but I just hate the gym!!! I cannot stand going- I hate running especially.

I don't belong to a gym now- sometimes I think if I belonged then I would go more often, but then I know myself and I know that if I paid for it, I would probably end up skipping it anyways.

I am also a huge foodie- so I love to eat and I wouldn't be able to handle any sort of diet that restricted my choices. Also, if I have a craving, I always satisfy it.

My father was a really big guy- when I was growing up he weighed over 200, maybe close to 300 lbs, when I was about 14 he started walking, biking and eating less junk, a year later he weighed about 180, then over the course of the next year he lost about another 50. He is smaller than I am, now he weighs around 130. I kid you not. I have pictures somewhere, he doesn't even look like to same man! What it came down to for him was changing his life style and basic math- if you burn more than you consume, you lose weight.

Sep 27, 2011 @ 03:59 pm

need a gym bud

I'm super unmotivated unless someone else drags me to the gym, once im there i'm good but I sure do lack commitment with the getting there part lol.

I prefer swimming over running on a treadmill. Works the entire body and I don't feel hot and sweaty! I do my best to keep healthy with what I eat which i think is vital to staying in shape no matter how much or little you excerise.
Sep 27, 2011 @ 04:15 pm

What I do

I workout about three days a week. I would like to go to the gym more, but my schedule at the moment is pretty crazy. I don't love working out, but because I've made it a part of my routine, I feel like I have to do it, and if I don't, I feel guilty.

I totally agree with beachbabe that after going to the gym, you really do feel good about yourself, and I think that is one of my main motivations in going in the first place. I try to switch up the exercise and on lazy days I'll attend a yoga class.

I will admit that I am not a healthy eater. I do not eat fast food but I do not eat enough fruits and veggies. However what I love to eat that is suppose to keep me in shape are food that contains fibre-especially bran, and multigrains

I believe the key to keeping fit is by doing physical activities that you love/like doing, and sometimes it takes a bit of exploration but it's worth it in the end.
Oct 05, 2011 @ 11:14 pm

Find what you love to do

I think the key to long term fitness is to find one or two exercise options that you truly truly enjoy doing.

For me, that would be cross country running, cycling, and rollerblading, but that's outdoor. In an indoor environment I love aerobics classes (I like being told what to do!) and circuit training.

Others go for racquet sports or city league "for fun" team sports. The point is, find what you love to do anyway and then it won't feel like a chore. The best part about team sports is that you can't ditch or delay going. Your teammates will keep you accountable! Scheduled classes are like that too - you know you have to be at the studio at a certain time or you'll miss.

I am working out a little less these days because I'm running around with my kids' extracurricular activities. People might accuse me of making excuses, but it is truly nearly impossible to find the time between my day job, my family obligations, and a little something I like to call "sleeping". Yes - crazy me for not wanting to go to the YMCA at 11pm (and anyway, it's closed at that hour). My hubby works long hours too, so it's tough to find time to go.

In this time, I'm trying to workout more at home with videos and Wii Fit, as well as playing more energetically with my kids. For example, they love to have daily pillow fights and chase each other around the house screaming. I can either get very irritated or join in. Being a bit of a natural goofball, I join in.

As for eating habits, that's tougher. I have found logging my foods in an online diary that calculates calorie and fat intake (I'm currently using MyFitnessPal which is free) keeps me a little more honest. It's taught me about what my caloric, fat and carb goals need to be to stay on track with my plan, and when I see that my lunch has come in "under budget", I feel okay about having an extra cookie at snack time. Going cold turkey on brownies, apple pie, rich pasta, and gorgeously marbled steaks just ain't gonna happen, so learning how much of each I can eat and still stay on track feels like just enough indulgence to enjoy life without going overboard.

By the way, I'm now just 3 pounds away from my goal - yippee!
Oct 06, 2011 @ 10:33 am

Bodies and Exercise

I was just reading this article on how our bodies determine how much we exercise. It is an interesting read and concept- basically it's the idea that we all have a body type, set weight that's innate and very challenging to change.

I kind of agree with this, though, that may just be my lazy butt talking.

Oct 19, 2011 @ 01:06 pm

Motivation is the key

I completely agree that motivation is the key when it comes to exercising, eating healthier foods or living a healthier lifestyle in general. Previously, I hated any form of physical activity but a bus strike during my second year of University forced me to walk to class every single day for 3 months (walk was between 20-35min). Once the strike ended, I still ended up walking to class because I got too impatient waiting for the bus. The same goes for elevators now too. I get impatient waiting for the elevator so I end up taking the stairs.

I had a friend who went to the gym regularly and I decided to join her. Exercise is definitely easier if you're doing it with a friend. We even went shopping for workout clothes the week before which made going to the gym less dreadful. All students had free access to the gym so I decided to take advantage of it. The gym was located close to where I had majority of my classes so it was convenient for me to schedule trips to the gym after class. We came up with a set schedule (i.e. Cardio on Monday, Yoga on Tuesday, etc) and at the end of the week we would reward ourselves (i.e. go to the movies, go shopping, go out to dinner). Getting started is the hardest part but once you settle into a schedule you're comfortable with, it becomes easier and before you know it regular exercise will be part of your lifestyle. P.S. an iPod full of upbeat songs also makes the experience of going to the gym less dreadful.

Eating healthier was a greater challenge for me specially since I had very little time to cook and with classes that can run from 9am to 9pm, it's just easier to grab something from fast-food restaurants on campus. We had a campus nutritionist and I met up with her and she was able to give me some advice re: how to read the nutrition labels, eating smaller portions, eating a balanced meal and how to incorporate different food groups and the servings you should be eating, and healthier food options on campus. Because I had very little time to cook, she recommended that I cook a week's worth of food during the weekends. Eating in moderation is the key. You don't have to give up chocolate or ice cream all together, you just don't eat as much and you look for the healthier options.

Staying fit does not just involve being physically active, it's also about your emotional and mental well-being. It's good to just have a day during the week to de-stress and relax. Usually I spend it reading a book, watching DVDs, or playing the piano. Yoga also helps.

Nov 12, 2011 @ 08:21 pm


The only thing - and I mean THE ONLY thing - that has ever worked for me is complete consistency at the gym. That means hitting the gym (or having some sort of workout) a minimum of 4-5 times a week.

That being said, I think it's a total package - healthy diet exercise proper sleep being happy = wellness

As soon as I fall off the wagon of being consistent in any regard .... I'm not balanced. And then when I'm not balanced I end up feeling miserable.

And no one wants a miserable Chick Advisor.
Nov 12, 2011 @ 09:20 pm

don't feel so left out now! :-)

Wow I'm so surprised that I agree with everything all of you said! I also don't like working out, but I love the happiness and all around well being I get post workout. Also, if I fall off the wagon (whether with food or exercise), it not only skews my perilous balance, I also find I have to start all over again with motivating myself and getting back in the game.

I face the same challenges you all described: lack of time in a busy schedule and lack of time to cook. What with junk food being cheaper and more available, I tend to eat that more often than not.

Food is my crack. Unfortunately for me, I need to quit cold turkey to be healthy, because like any addict, a little taste of it makes me crave it all the more. What they say is true, I can't have just one :(

I'm trying to think up a way to organize my meals over the weekend so I just have to grab and go in the weekdays. I'm not much of a cook either, any ideas on that?
Nov 14, 2011 @ 10:07 am

meal planning & bulk cooking

What works really well for me is cooking large quantities a few times per week, then packaging up the leftovers into complete meals using Tupperware containers.

So for example, if I slow-cook a London broil one night, I'll make double the quantity of potatoes or brown rice that we'd need for that night's dinner. (I don't like reheated veggies, so I usually just make the quantity for that evening).

Then in my meal-sized Tupperware containers, I'll dish a portion of the pot roast with a portion of the potatoes/rice. As I grab a container the next day for on the go, I add half an apple, a baggie of raw baby carrots, and/or a lowfat yogurt cup to round out the meal - filling, healthy, and home cookin'!

Second, when I'm making a lasagna (and mine uses whole wheat pasta, spinach, and other goodies), I right away make a double or even triple batch. I bake the pan I need for that day, and freeze 1 or 2 unbaked pans in the freezer for an easy family meal later in the month. That way, I'm not scrambling for meals all the time and resorting to Dominos carryout (though shamefully, I'll admit that it does happen... but I fill up on salad first so that makes it allllll better).

Interesting what @AlexJC said about a body's resistance to change once you've reached a certain size. I fully agree with the notion that everyone has an ideal size/shape. Now, you can probably kick your butt hard enough and deny yourself food-wise enough to force it down past that level, but I think you'd find it difficult to maintain.

Bottom line is, you need to find that healthy level where your energy, immune system, inner health (think cholesterol, blood pressure, glucose, etc) are in the best possible balance. If that means you're 20 pounds above your idea of what you should be weighing, then maybe it's time to adjust your expectations. We all recognize that many in the media only look the way they do because of constant professional help (trainers, nutritionists) and maybe even surgery.

If you are healthy, your skin glows, your hair shines, and you are more resistant to colds and other issues. You wouldn't want your dog to be skinny - that would frighten you and you'd immediately try to fatten him up a little. We need to stop thinking that ribs poking out is healthy. For 99.9% of us, it is NOT.
Nov 14, 2011 @ 11:29 am

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