Hey there! I can’t believe it’s already 7:00 p.m. As these final weeks of my college career wind down (!!!), I’m finding the days are going by faster and faster. So much to do – so little time!
This morning, I completed a quick 35-minute workout, courtesy of my Tone It Up trainers. Yesterday, K&K gave us a challenge to complete The Sweet 16 workout from the SELF Magazine Drop 10 challenge. Since I had already completed my workout, I saved it for today. Sixteen minutes of HIIT later, I was ready for some ab work! I completed the Best Ab Workout Circuit and added on some side planks for an extra challenge before calling it quits. I was successfully fatigued.
I skipped my first class this morning to finalize everything for round two of my internship editorial challenge. <—In case you’re wondering, that’s another hint! I’m so sneaky. Anyways, it’s not like me to skip class but I knew that I wouldn’t be paying attention anyways and I really wanted to go over everything with my journalism professor. I worked through the morning and, before I knew it, lunch had arrived!
I piled my plate with lima beans cooked with Earth Balance, stir fried vegetables, and a mini spinach and shredded carrot salad topped with Italian dressing. Delish!
Two classes and many assignments later, Kristen and I were meeting up for dinner. Tonight’s meal was pretty memorable.
I opted to make myself a Mexican-inspired salad by topping my veggies with refried pinto beans and salsa. A side of roasted butternut squash rounded out the meal. This squash was insane! It was bursting with savory flavors (rosemary and sage?), which totally made my taste buds scream. My name is Heather and I get excited over squash.
What I’m Learning From Exercise
I try to do everything with good intention. I don’t like to half-ass things, and I thrive off of challenging myself because that is what allows me to grow. When I decided to switch up my workout routine, I simply wanted to challenge myself. I talked to Meg about my goals (she and I are very similar with our workout intentions) and did a lot of research from CPTs about reaching my personal goals. Through said research and Meg’s encouragement (love you, girl!), I decided to do three things: continue with the Tone It Up team (DUH!), up my weights, and incorporate ZWOWs into my weekly routine.
So, why am I telling you this?
I want to be honest: I was super intimidated to up my weights and try ZWOW’s. I simply thought that I wasn’t strong enough. I doubted my abilities. Boy, was I wrong.
Two weeks in, I’m feeling incredible. This is how I feel after every workout I complete.
So, here’s what I’m learning:
1.) Pushing myself to my limits makes me feel like a total bad ass. In an effort to challenge myself, I’ve been lifting heavier weights, completing less reps, and pushing myself to the point of exhaustion (without compromising form, of course). This challenges my mind and makes me feel like I can accomplish anything – like I’m a freakin’ Superwoman of the Framingham State gym. The further I push myself, the stronger I feel mentally. The physical part just comes along for the ride. I know that people toss that phrase around all the time but I truly believe it.
2.) When you think you can, you can. The morning that I did my first ZWOW, I was so nervous that I wouldn’t be able to complete it. In my mind, that was total failure. I told that stupid voice to shut up and banged out the entire workout – and even kept up with Zuzana herself! The mental benefits that come with those short, intense workouts are unlike anything I’ve ever experienced. I would encourage everyone to try them out!
3.) I’m getting to know myself better. It’s funny because I’m so used to zoning out to music playing in my ears and, now, I often don’t even notice it playing while I lift. I’m so focused on my form and telling myself “I can do it!” that the Biebs and Tegan & Sara sort of fade into the background (sacrelige, I know). This sort of self-coaching has totally improved my relationship with myself.
Take today, for example. When I submitted my internship project to the managing editor of the company that I applied for, I was totally confident. I wasn’t nervous. I was in love with what I created and proud of the work I had accomplished in such a short time frame. It might sound silly but lifting makes me feel the same way. We all deserve to feel that way every day – to be able to challenge ourselves and believe that what we’re doing is benefitting us – mind, body, and soul.
In closing, I just want to remind you to push yourself. You can do it. You are so incredble; you are so strong; you are so uniquely perfect just the way you are. Remain true to yourself while pushing your limits and don’t be afraid to have a little one-on-one time with yourself. You never know what you might learn.