#4: Is This Working Out?
This week has been gruelling for me. I’ve been on edge because of the alarming rise in Covid cases, wondering when we’ll all get back to normalcy. I also pulled a back muscle so I’ve been deprived of one of the things I enjoy doing most- working out. No, I’m not being sarcastic, I actually love exercising - I live for the endorphin rush and the sweat. I’ve just been recuperating and missing it terribly, it’s been on my mind all week, so here we are! Also, it’s been a month already since I started this newsletter! Thank you for reading and sticking around, I’m extremely grateful!
Without further ado, here are some of the things I learnt from when I first started exercising.
Getting started will be tough
To combat this, make sure accountability is present. That can manifest in the form of a workout buddy, like how I exercise with my cousin everyday. If another person is suffering along with you, it makes the pain seem diminished! In the beginning, it’s going to be hard for sure, but like how Emily Ricketts ( another one of my favourite fitness bloggers ) tells people to just start by showing up for yourself - which can either mean getting into your workout clothes, putting on those running shoes or just starting off by stretching!
Finding an optimum time to exercise through the day is imperative. I like to do it in the morning so I feel accomplished and it sets the tone for the rest of the day. Working out in the morning leaves no room for laziness to prevail is my take on it.
Experiment and find out what works for you
There exists a multitude of different ways in which you can get your body moving, and even more resources on the internet. I absolutely loved going to tennis and badminton classes which focused on fitness and form as well. Then, I shifted to taekwondo classes, which I reveled in. Equal importance was given to fitness, stretching and getting your body moving in the form of fun games.
Then started my era of Youtube workouts. I’ve tried Blogilates, Emi Wong and Chloe Ting. But right now, I’m in love with Madfit. I feel like it’s a perfect match. My cousin and I do whichever workout of hers we feel like everyday. Sometimes it’s HIIT, strength training with weights, dance workouts, yoga, low impact workouts, walking or just stretching. Switch things up is what I’m trying to convey. Don’t be afraid to try something new. Once we even tried a taekwondo workout which was challenging, but I’m so glad we did it.
Listen to your body and mind
Working out every single day is a bit of an ask. Taking one or two days to rest or stretch is good for the body and mind. Some days, when we’re not feeling a workout, we just stop halfway. There’s no point in forcing things and feeling unhappy while doing it. Also, know your fitness level and start small and easy, going overboard might lead to injuries. If you’re exercising without a trainer, give attention to your form. With respect to diet, cutting down on junk food and sweets helps but there are days where I’m just craving that sugar and I don’t resist. Nothing’s going to happen if you indulge a bit now and then, this is coming from someone who cannot live without eating something sweet!
Exercise to become fit, not thin
I first started this journey with the wrong mindset all together. I wanted to lose weight but I’ve realized it’s all about becoming stronger and fitter physically and mentally. Don’t expect results in a flash. It took me 4 months to visibly see a small change, just know that what you’re doing now will definitely be of help in the future. Happy working out and don’t forget to stretch!
Some resources for you -
Emily Ricketts - She has 28 days of free workouts on her IGTV.
Madfit - My absolute favourite, she posts her workouts on Instagram and Youtube, them mostly being HIIT style but she’s known for her dance workouts.
Emi Wong has HIIT style workouts along with a schedule to make things easier.
Blogilates focuses on pilates and was a bit too intense for me at the start, she’s known for her monthly workout calendars and challenges.
Chloe Ting became famous over quarantine for her ab challenges.
Links you’ll love
I’ve been in a slump of sorts with my reading. The last book I devoured was Cutting For Stone by Abraham Verghese last November. A friend suggested I check out Books On Toast - a Youtube channel discussing books of all genres, giving out recommendations and having têtê-a-têtês with authors as well!
Lockdown Love Stories - Most think that finding love in a pandemic is extremely inconvenient, but some have been lucky.
Recently, I’ve started using Notion, a productivity app, to get different aspects of my life a tad more organised. I'm all over the place - I have notes on my phone which make no sense to me! So, I watched this video to get started.
Ever miss sitting in a coffee shop for hours, working and enjoying your caffeine? This website mimics a café!
Pentatonix’s acapella covers are better than the originals.
A Scientist’s advice on healing. I loved reading this intricate poem on how to start getting over loss, I thought it was fitting to include as the pandemic has taken away a multitude of things away from us.
Please stay at home as much as possible, mask up when out, think about how your actions might affect the ones around you. Stay safe.
Sending love and support,