Slow-Cooker study party & Monica Geller

My body (mostly my sleep cycle) is really enjoying this four-day weekend we’ve got going on! Since I don’t have class on Fridays to begin with, I got a head start on my weekend starting Thursday night. For most college kids, this would mean some intense drinking and things like that. I, on the other hand, value the rare times in which I can actually relax with nothing to do and so I literally parked it on the couch for the evening on Thursday. And then woke up there on Friday morning =)

Yesterday was super productive! Something about crossing things off my to-do list makes me irrationally happy =) I had a meeting with my [hopefully-soon-to-be] Master’s Program Advisor yesterday, and I had planned to workout right after our meeting. First of all, our meeting lasted two hours. Not sure how that happened… I had mentally prepared for about 30 minutes max., so yeah…. In my bag I had packed snacks, my swim suit, swim cap, goggles, work out clothes, socks, sports bra… I totally forgot to bring my gym shoes! (This thought occurred to me one of the many times that I zoned out during our talk….woops) so I knew I had to walk all the way back to my apartment, grab my gym shoes, and walk back to the gym, which is pretty much across the street from that guy’s office. Oh well.

I called my mom to kill the time and was back at the gym (soaked in sweat, it’s ridiculously hot out!) before I knew it. In the locker room as I was setting all the things I needed for my workout on the bench (ipod, watch, water bottle, etc) I realized that I didn’t have my sheet of paper that I meticulously write out before each and every lifting session. My mind went blank. How did I forget that too!? I don’t even know what I’m supposed to be lifting today!

My sheets usually look like this:

(Sorry for the terrible picture quality)

It has my plan for cardio, (which I then update when I’m done with actual distance and how I felt during and after), and then it has the list of lifts I’m going to do, with how many reps I plan on doing, and also, how much weight I lifted for that particular move the last time I did that. For example, the last time I did Dumbbell Shoulder Press, I did two sets of 15 @ 12lbs. So for yesterday, I wrote that down, and so I knew that I wanted to increase my weight, which also meant I wanted to decrease my reps. So I do this for every move I plan on doing…

Having something concrete in front of me keeps my workouts focused. If I walk into the gym without a plan, chances are I’ll end up there for too long or too short, either doing every exercise I can think of or feeling discouraged and overwhelmed with all the possibilities, that I’ll leave before actually getting anything done. Yessenia and I had this conversation yesterday on our way home from the gym. So I feel like I’m  not the only one that can sometimes feel like that if I walk into the weight room without an agenda.

There’s also a sense of competition that I enjoy (I have a disgusting competitive side, Monica Geller, anyone?) in being able to write down that I lifted more today than I did the other day. Maybe that’s why I run. To be competitive with myself. Even though some of my runs feel worse than others, I know that by running, I’m bettering myself, and in the big picture of it all, I am getting better. With lifting, it’s the same thing. First of all, I’m a huge advocate of lifting weights.  If you want to change your body composition, you need to lift weights. If you want to become a stronger runner, you need to lift weights. If you want to become a better athlete in general, regardless to any sport, you need to lift weights. While I will argue that I think that free weights (fine, I’ll settle for machines, too) are the best and most effective way to build muscle, plyometric type exercises as well as body-weight exercises are better than nothing. In an ideal world, all of the above would be incorporated into everyone’s fitness regime. Actually, in an ideal world, everyone would have a fitness regime, but one step at a time, right?

Needless to say, I was so confused with myself yesterday as to why I forgot the most essential things for my workout that I only ended up running and swimming. It was a great cardio workout, nevertheless, and I pat myself on the back for knowing that my weight workout would NOT have been effective if I would have gone up there unguided by my weight lifting bible sheet.

Today’s plan was to get up early and workout. That just did not happen. I would love love love to be a morning-workouter, but I just can’t get up in the mornings. Maybe it’s because I knew that I had all day today to workout whenever I so pleased, but my goal is to do it at least once a week this semester. Speaking of goals: soon up, my September Goals post.

On the to-do list for the rest of the day:

  • Bring my gym shoes and sheet to the gym
  • study Biomechanics (blaaahhhh)
  • laundry (more blaahhh)
  • figure out how to use my slow-cooker
–>What do you guys have planned for the long weekend? Anything fun? Or just slow-cooker study parties?
–>Do you go to the gym with a plan? Or just wing it?  
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