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Happy Monday Morning Folks! (Yes there is such a thing).

It’s definitely a happy one for me with all these good endorphins roaming round my body. I’ve taught my 5:45am Body Step class and I was surprised at the turn out- these people are dedicated to their Body Step, I love it!

Today was not ideal for working hard and getting sweaty (it can happen!). It was humid, sticky and hot. Which makes ‘hitting the wall’ a lot more likely. If you’re unsure what I mean by this term, it’s like when your reach that point when your mind wants to give up. You feel like you can’t come back from this point and either stop completely or crank down the effort. Whilst hitting the wall can also be a physical sensation and not just a psychological one (see here), it’s my favourite kind of stuff- the stuff most of us overlook, the mental side of hitting the wall that I want to discuss today.

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Mind you, that your hitting the wall could feel and look completely different to mine. As an instructor I don’t allow myself to get to that point because I will admit it’s tough to bounce back from- plus I’m too preoccupied instructing my butt off to notice anyways. However, as a participant I know I’ve hit the wall when I start to doubt myself, shake my head, technique drops and negative thoughts run through my mind.

Thank goodness it doesn’t happen often. Plus I exercise enough that I know how to push through it (practise makes perfect), and I’m pretty competitive and prideful so I don’t like to give up or in (ha, I have an ego).

However, others might be slightly less determined, perhaps they are new or maybe they’re just not as exercise-enthusiastic as I (this is not me pumping myself up just explaining others feel differently about exercise and obviously have different personalities).

How do you break that wall down and push on to do bigger and better things?

  • Psyche yourself UP not out.
  • Block out your mind and listen and respond to your body. (It can often keep going. Your body usually out runs your mind).
  • Have a few motivational and inspirational quotes handy. (If it doesn’t challenge you, it won’t change you).
  • Think about how you’ll feel after.
  • Remind yourself of past experiences and successes.
  • Look at someone who is still going and tell yourself you’ve got to keep up or beat them. (If you like a competitive edge).
  • Maybe taking a couple of minutes to breathe, shake it off and grab a drink is all you need to jump right back into it.

Last night as my partner and I were watching an Arnold Schwarzenegger documentary Pumping Iron- Arnie talked about how the last few reps are what makes the difference. It’s in the state of muscle fatigue that changes occur. (Ps. He is an amazingly dedicated and motivated man).

This same analogy can be applied with hitting the wall. When we make it past that wall we achieve greater things- better fitness, greater lung capacity, higher heart rates, bigger and stronger muscles, and so much more!

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  • When do you typically hit the wall and what happens?
  • What do you do when you hit the wall?

Daily Healthy Thought: I can do it, if I WANT to.

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I’m a cardio girl through and through, and not because I love cardio (although I do) and it burns calories and I wanna lose weight (well anymore) blah blah blah. But because I am passionately in love with Les Mills and specifically Body Step which just so happens to be high cardio-based. I also happen to be a Body Step instructor (soon to be Body Attack too woo!) so that means I’m teaching the class quite often. Therefore, I do a hell of a lot of cardio. My only weight training use to be the weights used in my circuit Fitbox class, Grit Strength and Body Pump.

That was until on one odd day I decided to forgo my usual cardio group fitness class and do some machine weights. And there we can say the rest is history…

Well not quite since I veered away from the machines but kept the weights (thanks to the constant inspiration and pestering from lovely Tara).

From there I actually started looking forward to those weight sessions.

It’s almost been a month of free weights for me (with the assisted pull up machine thrown in there also- don’t hate!) and I’ve already seen changes. Not changes as in, OMG I now look like a man- we all know that’s not going to happen. Well not on its own at least unless I wish to help it along with some pills here and there, which is not my intentions (at all).

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Anyways, in that short amount of time I’ve already seen changes. Aesthetically (which is what we’re all really interested about right? Ha) I’m not sure if all that much has changed. It’s hard to look at myself objectively sometimes without interior motives and lenses blocking my view, but I will say that I am seeing my body shape improving and my stomach/abs are becoming more pronounced.

More importantly I’ve seen changes in other areas of my life. My strength and technique has increased both in terms of my training and everyday life. I don’t know if this is coincidental but since starting weights I’ve had like zilch knee issues. I’ve also seen myself more able in everyday strength activities such as garbage bags (they are heavy at work okay- lots of beer drinkers) and during classes where weights are used.

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My progress with my weight training routine (I’m not even sure it’s a beneficial or ‘approved’ routine but it’s what I do- I’d love feedback from other weight go-ers!) has also seen me adding additional weights on already!

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My full body routine (done 2-3 times a week)

  • Squats- 11.25kgs x 12 reps, I continue to add 2.5kgs each set for a total of 5 sets decreasing my 2 reps each time (end at 4 on 21.25kg each time.
  • Chest Press- 3 sets @ 12, 10 & 8 reps. Weight’s go 9, 10 & 12.5kgs.
  • Deadlifts- 3 sets @ 12, 10, 8 reps. Weight goes from 10kgs-12.5kgs.
  • Assisted chin ups, back pull ups & tricep elevated dips. 3 sets. The first 2 sets are with 30kg and 6 reps, for the last set I make the weight 25kgs for 4 reps.
  • Today (with help from my bro) I did overhead presses and did 3 sets of 8 reps just with the bar (20kg) to get use to the technique. I’ll continue to add this into my routine.
  • Finish with some type of core/ab workout.

**Plus the bar which is 20kgs.

Feedback?!

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I’d say the biggest change and the one most important to me is the change of my mental state. (Although not 100% of time) I’ve started to see my body in a different, more positive light. It’s no longer on my ‘most hated’ list (so to speak) and instead I’ve seen it as a vessel of amazing things. I’m able to lift this, squat that and press those- weight training has given me a new appreciation of what my body can do. In return I’ve tried to be kinder to my body, shower it with love and nurture it with proper nutrition, rest and foam rolling.

On top of that I think weight training has given me more body confidence, which probably has a lot to do with my increase in body acceptance.

It’s actually crazy surprising how something that I use to stay far away from, due to fear (back in my ed days), is now something that actually helps me deal with my ED and body issues.

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This is what has happened to me in a month. I can’t wait to see the changes I’ll see further on down the track.

How has weight training changed you? Or why do you choose to not do weight training?

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