Thursday, February 26, 2015

How to get through the "real" workout. #pinspirationthursday

If you've been following A Daily Dose of Fit for awhile, you know that I like to share motivational images on Thursdays. I've been calling it #pinspirationthursday, and I want you to join me. If you like to share motivational images on your website or blog, do it on Thursday and add your link to the bottom of my post. 

When I train my clients, there are a number of things I have to be responsible for. One such thing: Coaching them through those last few repetitions. Getting them to believe in themselves when they're at what they perceive to be the point of no return—the point where they want to just stop. That point, though, is often right at the most real part of their workout. The part that counts the most.

So how do I get them through it? Also, how do I get myself through it when I'm working out? There are some tricks of the trade, and some things to consider. Because as you know, it's not always smart to push it when you feel like stopping. But how do you know when to stop?

Let's discuss that first.

Don't push through your workout if:
1) You are pregnant.
2) You are injured and/or recovering from an injury.
3) Your doctor tells you not to.
4) You feel sharp pains.
5) You are nauseous, dizzy and/or lightheaded.
6) You can no longer maintain proper form.

Safety is always more important than making fitness gains. And you must always listen to your body and your physician if either one of the two are telling you not to push. But, if you're an everyday Joe or Jane without restrictions, there are ways you can get through the "real" part of your workout. In no particular order:

1) Remind yourself why.
Never lose sight of why you're exercising. Focus on the benefits, your goals and the fact that every last repetition gets you one step closer to them.

2) Lighten up your weight.
Don't get caught up on the numbers. Focus on your muscles. If you can't finish your set with whatever weight you're using, lighten them up and take your muscles to the very last repetition. Or, drop the weights completely and go through the motions. There's no shame in working hard, and you are not defined by the number on your weights.

3) Modify the exercise.
Modifications exist not to make things easier, but to make them safer. Use them. They're not for wimps—they're for people who want to keep going when they're faced with a workable obstacle.

4) Listen to the voices.
Whether it's a group fitness instructor, your trainer or your friend—tune in to what is being said. Listen to the words, not just the sound. Embrace the meaning behind them and let them guide you forward. Because when I say "you can do it" to my students/clients, I really believe it. And so should they.

5) Believe in yourself.
Put yourself down and you'll stay down. Lift yourself up and you'll go up. You are your biggest cheerleader. So never stop cheering for yourself.

6) Focus on the work.
Forget about the struggle. Forget about the sweat. Just focus on the exercise. Focus on moving the weights, flexing your muscles, breathing in and out. Focus on the work, and you'll find a way to DO the work.

Remember, everyone approaches their workouts differently, but what we all can agree on is this: You can't stop when it gets tough. If it were easy, it wouldn't be work. And we couldn't call it a workout.

How to link up with me on Pinspiration Thursday:
1) Use #pinspirationthursday in your post title and on your social media outlets. 
2) Use the Pinspiration Thursday image in your post (if you want to). 
3) Link to my blog (please and thank you!) so we can attract new participants. 
4) Add your link below, check out the others and followpinsharerepeat!

Monday, February 23, 2015

Affordable Workout Clothes from H&M #fitfashion

I am THE WORST when it comes buying fitness gear. Affordable workout clothes get me almost every single time. Target, TJ Maxx and Kohl's are all in the same shopping complex, and whenever I head that way, I get the look from my husband. It's not like he babysits my spending habits, he just knows I have no willpower. And no need for new fitgear.

But, #workclothes.

So when I got this in the mail, I just knew that bad things were going to happen:

fitness gear, fitness fashion, HM, catalog, sport collection, fitgear
I have always been a huge fan of H&M. Whenever I go into Chicago, I do what I can to pit-stop for some shopping. My new winter coat is from H&M, as is my favorite denim shirt. And now they have affordable workout clothes? Mind blown.

Mind especially blown when I saw this outfit:

fitness gear, fitness fashion, HM, catalog, sport collection, fitgear, yoga outfit
I am loving the open-back tank top trend. They're all so incredibly cute—and functional. I tend to sweat when I exercise, especially when I teach PiYo Live, but I don't exactly work in a gym that would welcome the bra-only approach to fitness fashion. Nor would I really feel comfortable teaching in just a bra. So the backless workout tank seems to be a happy medium.

Obviously I ordered the outfit above.

And I was pleasantly surprised when it arrived.
It's every bit as cute in person, and the quality is top-notch.

fitness gear, fitness fashion, HM, catalog, sport collection, fitgear, yoga top
I'm always hesitant to order fitness tights online because I am extremely picky. If I can see through them at all when I bend over, they go right back on the rack. When you're at the front of a class, you can't have that happening. And when you order online, you just never know.

So I wasn't sure. But again, I was pleasantly surprised.

The pants are perfection.

fitness gear, fitness fashion, HM, catalog, sport collection, fitgear, yoga outfit
Add caption
And the top is great, too.
It fits perfectly with plenty of support, and I love the contrasting colors and crossback details:

fitness gear, fitness fashion, HM, catalog, sport collection, fitgear, yoga top
Plus, $60 for the whole outfit? I know, right. Sweet score.
I'm already planning my next purchase. Or at least making my wish list.

One thing that's been on my wish list for quite some time now: Crow pose. And guess what:

fitness gear, fitness fashion, HM, catalog, sport collection, fitgear, yoga, crow pose, bakasana
I have no idea where this came from, but I am finally able to get up and hold it. Make note: Without falling flat on my face.

I think it's all the PiYo Live.

Question: What does your favorite workout outfit look like? I need details!


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