By Fitness Editor Paula Jager CSCS
I am pleased to announce that we have received almost 20 entries for the Fall Fitness Challenge and it is now underway!
Even if you have not entered The Fall Fitness Challenge formally by sending me before pictures with your body fat measurements etc, you can still do this challenge informally by following along with the requirements and update posts each week.
A few questions I’ve been asked. . .
Food Logs: I will offer feedback to any that request it; due to the time consuming nature of reviewing a log you must kept it at www.fitday.com. You will need to make your journal public and send me a friend request (my username is pjager). You must then send me your username and password. That will allow me to view it. This is not mandatory–only if you want feedback on your nutritional intake.
What to eat and how much: A very quick summation or review of the foods to eat are pastured meats, fish, fowl and their fats, vegetables, some fruit, little starch and no sugar. Quantity? That which will support activity but not body fat.
Lack of time & other excuses: I may not home school 6 kids but I have sufficient energy to almost single handedly run a business with over 80 clients and 6 coaches working 12 to 14 hours a day. I cook the majority of my family’s meals, render lard, make bone broth, workout 4 to 5 times a week and am 51 years old. Am I a little tired at times, challenged to get enough sleep and find downtime? Yes, yes and yes. But if I did not eat right, exercise and make sleep a priority I would not be able to meet the demands of my life and neither will you. So send over your excuses–I am an expert at negating them and offering solutions to overcoming your obstacles.
Now that we’ve got that covered let’s focus on the exercise portion because you are going to need to move!
Everyone is at different fitness levels, different places in their lives, different schedules and some faced with medical or orthopedic concerns that others are not. Respect where you are at, begin at a comfortable level and push yourself in an intelligent and progressive manner.
There are many ways and paths to exercise. Choose what is best for you.
Creative Work Out Ideas
For those with a gym membership and/or access to equipment: Lift weights 2-3x a week using compound movements. A compound movement works multiple muscle groups, which is how they work in life or sport. Examples of compound movements are squats, bench presses, over head presses, bent over rows and deadlifts. Throw in some lunges, dips and pull ups. Aim for 2-4 sets of 6 to 12 reps for general purposes. Get some cardiovascular exercise in 2 to 3 times a week, making 1 day some type of sprinting. Sprinting can be done on the pavement, a trail, biking, swimming, rowing or other cardio machines. Throw in some plyometrics. You can combine the cardio modes with the weights for a time efficient circuit or crossfit type workout. There are no hard and fast rules; mix and match, get creative, have fun and challenge yourself.
For those with limited equipment or working out at home: Check out these simple workouts that can be done anywhere, anytime with little to no equipment. or contact me [email protected] and I will send you a pdf of over 100 workouts you can do almost anywhere. I would rx installing a pull up bar at home or in your garage along with assistance bands for working your back or pulling musculature. Bands can be purchased at www.ironwoodyfitness.com
Other avenues: Take a yoga class, tai chi, play basketball, racquetball, softball or any other sport of your choosing with friends and family. Go for long walks but make sure you exert some effort and are not house walking (which btw is the pace you would walk around your house)–breathing must be labored and talking should be somewhat difficult.
Lift heavy things: So you don’t have any weights–look around your house; fill up a bag with sand and carry it on your shoulder or overhead as you walk around the neighborhood. Fill up an empty milk jug with water and squat or lunge with it. You can hold in it in front of your chest like a goblet or overhead for an added core challenge. Pick up a sledgehammer if you have one in your garage and beat something (like an old tire) or push your car. There are many things you can do; again, be creative.
Reader Feedback: Let’s hear about some of your creative workouts that you put together for this challenge using objects such as above from around the house. Share your tips in the comments section and we’ll learn from each other while offering support.
Next week: Both Sarah and I will be posting one of our favorite healthy recipes and we’d like to hear yours. Please send me a recipe that falls into the above guidelines for the challenge to [email protected] and I will post a few next week along with ours.
Until next week–now let’s get sweating!
Sarah Pope has been a Health and Nutrition Educator since 2002. Her work is dedicated to helping families effectively incorporate the principles of ancestral diets within the modern household. She is a sought after lecturer around the world for conferences, summits, and podcasts.
Her work has been covered by major media including USA Today, ABC, NBC, and many others.