Keep Calm and do Intervals

Keep Calm and do Intervals

I wake up at the same time everyday. Exercise at the same time. I always plan my meals and snacks in advance. If something is due on Friday, I will finish it on Wednesday. Please don’t misunderstand. This isn’t a humble-brag. This is how I’m wired. Structure. Routine. This is me.

I’ll admit, I get a bit out of sorts when I’m thrown a curve ball — when something knocks me out of my routine. Cranky. Impatient. This is who I will be.
Last month I went on a great family vacation—perfect setting, beautiful accommodations—it really felt like we were in paradise.

Naturally, I wanted to keep up with my exercise routine (click here for details).
I went to the fitness center. It was not what I was expecting. No Jacob’s ladder. No Bosu ball. There were strength training machines, yet my (e-hem) 5’ frame was too small for them. No music or TVs. My routine was rattled, and I did not want my family to have deal with a cranky mom and wife. (Cranky is not allowed in paradise.)

I had no other choice. I rallied.

I used the pull-up bar and did exercises with the free weights. (Think squats with a shoulder raises, one-legged scooping press, back bends, v-ups, etc.)

For cardio, I played little games with the machines and the time. I took everything in 10-minute bites and did variations of interval training, like on the exercise bike:

  • First 10 minutes: Tabata style (20 seconds of all-out effort, followed by 10 seconds of rest)
  • Second 10 minutes: 3 and 2 (3 minutes hard, 2 minutes easy)
  • Third 10 minutes: 4 and 1 (4 minutes hard, 1 minute easy)

Changing the intervals kept me motivated and interested in what I was doing—and dare I say—I had fun. When I was done, I felt energized and had a sense of accomplishment. I was relaxed and happy that I could keep by steady routine.

If you use the machines or would like some new ideas on using them — please let me know. I am happy to help get you started.