September is here. People go back to work, kids go back to school and everyone gets the almost New Years-type feeling that now is the time to get serious about health and weight loss.
Sober September is a month long “detox” I am encouraging my clients to do to get them back on track after a summer of vacations, traveling and BBQ’s. It’s simple: abstain from alcohol and eat only healthy foods for the entire month of September. That’s it. Well, actually there are a few rules of Sober September. Follow them, and you will be looking and feeling your best by October 1st.
Rule #1 Talk about Sober September. You must tell the people close to you that you are doing this. Otherwise, who will hold you accountable when you are faced with a drink or a cheeseburger?
Rule #2 Measure yourself on day one of SS, which is actually Tuesday, Sept 3rd, or at the very least, within the first week of September. Take a waist and hip measurement, and weigh yourself if you have a scale. Repeat on Sept 30th. You can also go by how your clothes feel, but I like to be exact about these things.
Rule #3 No cheating. Under normal circumstances, I do recommend a moderate cheat day once a week. But this is Sober September! So for the next four weeks you must eat clean and abstain for the whole month. If you do cheat, you MUST own up to it. My clients know that they have to admit to any indiscretions. Accountability is key!
I will however, permit wine on the Jewish Holidays. My people have got to have their wine for the New Year!
Rule #4 Exercise. Make it a point to do at least two, 30 minute sessions a week of any weight bearing exercise and 150 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic activity, like brisk walking. If you like vigorous activities like running or spinning, then you only need 75 minutes. These are CDC recommendations. You can read more about them here: http://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/everyone/guidelines/adults.html
Going to give Sober September a try? I want to know about! Please leave a comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to opt in. I will check on you throughout the month.
I love the gym. But sometimes it’s just too nice outside to be indoors. Other times, I have space to fill between my clients. Then there are the occasions when I like to tack on a little mixed body training after a run. Whatever the reason, resistance training does not have to be confined to a gym. You can get a good sweat and have fun outside, without any equipment. Check out my bench workout and give it a try for a high rep, endurance boosting circuit. Repeat for at least 3 sets or as many as you can do for 30 minutes.
Place your hands a little wider than shoulder distance on the seat of the bench. Get your body into a plank position. Lower yourself towards the bench and press back up to the start position. This is perfect for a beginner as the bench modification makes a regular push-up easier to do. If you are advanced, why don’t you go ahead and do 20-25 reps.
20 reps total or 60 seconds
Place your right foot on the bench. Step up and place your left foot on the bench. Step down with your right foot, leaving your left on the seat. Repeat this process with the left and keep going. I like to add a little hop as I switch feet, which is a great idea if you are a runner, as it mimics the movement pattern of running and will enhance your training.
Sit on the bench with your hands holding on to the end with your fingers pointed forward. Lift your butt and shift your body a few inches away from the bench. Keeping your elbows tracking straight back, lower your body toward the ground. Pause when you make a 90 degree angle with your elbows. Push back up to the first position. Beginners can bend their knees to make it easier.
Plyo Jumps (See picture at the top of this post)
Box jumps, or in this case, bench jumps, help develop explosive power. But they are challenging and should not be anyone’s starter exercise. If you’ve never done anything like this, start with just a basic squat jump or even just squats. Otherwise, if you have a bit of experience with these, start in a quarter squat position, facing the bench. Using your hips and arms, push your feet off the ground to propel yourself onto the bench. Your goal is to land as quietly as possible. Step down and repeat.
Take a look at the entire sequence inthis seven second video by clicking this link: Blitz Your Body Bench Workout or check me out on Vine (AmyBlitz1), where I have posted this workout and more.
Yesterday was perfect weather for a run. BUT, I’m trying to limit my running days to just three a week, and Saturday I ran down Park Ave for Summer Streets. Hmmm…what to do? Wait! I have a TRX! And I know how to use it! So I grabbed my gear and headed over to the chin-up bars near W. 85th.
Wow, was I glad I did! The chin up bar area also has picnic tables and swings, and is a common place to workout. There were a few other guys there doing exercises and I definitely had to stop and stare. Talk about using your environment and body weight as a “gym”. These guys were repurposing everything around them. Picnic table box jumps, modified back rows with the baby swings, it was really quite impressive. Definitely gave me some ideas for my next park work out. Finally, I saw this guy pick up the picnic table and use the weight for shoulder presses.
Thank you, mystery man, for letting me take your photo!
But the best part of the morning was my work out session with Kevin Bacon. Yes, Kevin and I did chin-ups together…well, maybe just one set. I was already done with my workout and about to pack up when Mr. Bacon stops by looking all incognito in his hat and sunglasses and starts doing some chin-ups. Well…maybe I can squeeze out a few more reps and stick around a little longer. Here’s how it went down:
Me: Excuse me?
Kevin Bacon: (just gives a look)
Me: May I jump in and do some chin-ups?
Kevin Bacon: (politely) Yeah, yeah. Sure
Me: Thank you. (proceeds to do pathetic chin-ups due to fatigue)
I TALKED TO KEVIN BACON AND HE TALKED TO ME!
WE WORKED OUT TOGETHER!
I feel a little guilty about taking this sneaky photo.
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