The Workout Log Challenge

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running

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Brrrr…it’s cold out there today!

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This is the time of the year when I really start to notice the waning daylight hours and struggle with motivation when it comes to workouts. The early mornings are no longer bright and sunny, but dark, chilly, and uninviting. I’ve always preferred to workout in the morning, but lately I’ve found it difficult to stick to a consistent schedule and my workouts are all over the place.

I decided to do a few things that will help me get excited about exercise again:

1) I created a workout schedule to help with commitment

2) I created a daily workout log for inspiration & commitment

3) For support, that’s where you can join in if you’d like!

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My plan looks a lot like what I have been doing since the summer, only this time I’ve planned out specific activities for each day. Structure can be a good way to set commitment in motion!

I’m also going to workout first thing in the morning whenever possible. It’s pretty hard to feel the Winter blahs when I have endorphins surging through my body, setting the tone for the entire day. I always feel my best when I work out first thing in the morning.

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The plan: 

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Saturday

Sunday

Spin class Treadmill hill workout, 45 mins. + Whittle my Middle  Body Pump weight class, 15 mins cardio warm up OFF- active rest (light walking/yoga) Moksha hot yoga Anything goes- outdoor run, treadmill, spin/pump, or 
workout DVD
OFF

 

Of course, like every plan, this one is subject to change based on other life factors that come into play. If I’m sick or injured, obviously I won’t be working out. Generally, I like to have 1 active rest day, 1 complete rest day, and 5 days of regular, challenging workouts. It’s a nice balance for my body. I encourage you to create a plan that works for you. This is definitely not a one size fits all approach!

Here’s the kicker: I’m going to journal my workouts to keep myself accountable.

After every workout, I’ll write about several things:

  • How much sleep I got
  • My mood before, during, after exercise
  • Exercise struggles (for example, were triceps extra hard today? Did my quads shed tears on the bike?)
  • Exercise progress (did I rock a hill set in spin class or new yoga pose?)
  • How I felt the rest of the day (sore, happy, tired, energetic, proud, hungry, etc)
  • Any notes on workout wear that worked well or didn’t for the particular activity
  • Other random musings

 

See attached PDF to print your own workout log!

My plan is to share some workout logs on the blog and give a recap of how things are going. Many of you have been asking me to bring back my fitness posts, so I hope you will enjoy this! I think it will be interesting to look back on the week at a glance and read over how each day was uniquely challenging.

And if you’d like to log your own workouts, or even make your own personal Fall fitness challenge, that would be great too! My challenge to those of you who are interested is to make a workout plan for yourself and log your experience after each workout. Read it over at the end of the week and make note of what worked and what needs improvement.

This workout log is a great way to stay motivated even when the weather outside makes us want to throw in the towel and cover our head with blankets.

Here’s to making the last couple months of the year filled with movement!

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{ 35 comments… read them below or add one }

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Erica November 2, 2011

Thanks this much needed inspirational post! My workout needs differ right now since I am in the second trimester of my fourth pregnancy. I’ve had a difficult time getting used to how sluggish and tired I feel. I would like to get back in the “groove” of working out though now that my morning sickness has passed. Your plan is a good template to start since you’ve included two rest days. Now I just need to look up some good pregnancy strength training workouts!

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Bee October 31, 2011

I’ve been reading your blog for some time, and I’m a big fan! This post came at the perfect time for me! I injured myself while training for a half marathon, and I’ve been out of commission for about 6 weeks. I was struggling with the motivation to get back into a work out routine, then I read your post! Thanks for the inspiration! I hope it is ok if I give you a shout out in my own blog?

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GlendaM October 31, 2011

Your schedule looks similar to mine.
Monday – spinclass or treadmill HITT
Tuesday – morning 5 km run
Wednesday – ballet class
Thursday – 5km run in morning and body pump class
Friday – hot yoga
Saturday – run and workout
Sunday – hike with friends or rest day.

I do the same thing with clothes ready so that when I get up early at 5:20 am I can’t really think about it especially now that it is getting dark and cold. I find if I commit to the schedule I get more done and less likely to flake. I like the idea of creating a journal though to keep track of worksouts and emotions especially. I find it almost 99% a mental game with myself.

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The Mrs @ Success Along the Weigh October 31, 2011

For 2 1/2 years I have always, without fail, made out our workout schedules a month in advance. Looking over the month ahead of us gives me pause to truly consider how to balance all of our workouts to try to hit our calorie burn goals. I firmly believe it’s because of this planning that we haven’t missed a scheduled workout in that time. Actually, that reminds me, time to make out November’s schedule! Thanks for the reminder!

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Jess @ Jess Go Bananas October 31, 2011

I’m all for this!!! I have the same goal to complete 5 workout days too!

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varsha October 31, 2011

Thanks for the post Angela! I had become quite sluggish with the beginning of the chilly winds here; a plan was all I needed.
By the way, have you heard of horse gram? It’s a very good source of protein.

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Mike October 31, 2011

It’s hard to keep yourself motivated during the cold months…doing Bikram/Hot Yoga always works for me. A pretty intense workout in the heat: a nice way to keep yourself warm!

Peace
Mike

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JenATX November 3, 2011

love hot yoga in the cold months as well.. although stepping out the door with sweaty hair sure can be a shock after class!

I think the hardest thing about winter AM workouts is that its SO hard to wake up when its dark out… I’d love a remote timer on my overhead light to wake me up

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Allison October 30, 2011

You tie your shoes the wrong way! That’s why you have to double knot them or else they untie. Runner’s World can show you how to tie them right.

http://www.runnersworld.com/article/0,7120,s6-240-319–13001-0,00.html

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Kari October 30, 2011

Thanks Angela! I was just looking for a good way to set exercise goals and keep myself accountable. Here’s to keeping fit during the cold months! : )

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Nina October 30, 2011

Thanks a lot for the post! I’ve been struggling with finding balance in eating completely vegan, exercising and finding motivation to do both. This blog has definitely helped me to the joy in the journey of living a healthier lifestyle.

Nina

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Amy October 30, 2011

Hi Angela,
While I have been working out regularly I feel like I have somehow lost the va-va-voom of working out that I experienced while I was in training for the half marathon this year. I love the idea of keeping a workout journal and I have already got a schedule in mind. Thank you for sharing – I hope this will give me back my exercise spark, especially since we are headed into summer here in Australia :)
Amy

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J @ Ess and Jae V2.0 October 30, 2011

Great idea!! I’m going to do this too. And I like your Whittle The Middle workout plan. I’m in Ontario too, so it’s getting dark and CHILLY!!

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Christine (The Raw Project) October 30, 2011

So true on cold weather workouts, so tempting to stay in bed of by the fireplace instead! Great workout plan, love this idea. I need to motivate myself with better winter running great.

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Cady October 30, 2011

I’m also glad to see another fitnesss post – this has motivated me to write up my own workout schedule.
Now I just have to try to follow it. Even though I can’t do the same workouts as you, I don’t feel that
you target “well-suited women”. For the reader who did feel that way, I suggest reading your
previous posts on the comparison trap.

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suzanne October 30, 2011

I can totally relate to the dark, cold morning feeling! My boys get up an hour earlier this year too – and I run before I get them up – it can be tough to get out of bed in the middle of the night when it is cold and dark and my flannel sheets are so warm and cozy!!!
BTW – made your pumpkin brownie cupcakes for a pumpkin carving party last night – they were a hit. I made lots of mini ones too – perfect little treat! Thank you :-)

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Angela (Oh She Glows) October 30, 2011

Glad to hear they were enjoyed Suzanne :)
Good for you for rocking those runs! I bet it sets a positive tone for your entire day.

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Vanessa October 30, 2011

I love that you’re brining back some fitness posts!

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Emily @ The Divine Carrot October 30, 2011

Ohhh, that’s something I desperately need to do. Now that it’s getting colder and darker with every passing day here in Munich, it’s so hard to get out of bed and get moving in the wee morning hours! Your schedule has inspired me to make a plan for how to stay fit until the spring thaw arrives. Thanks for sharing – keep us posted about how your schedule is working out for you!

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olivia October 29, 2011

“Journaling” work outs is such a good idea!

I usually do:

1 day yoga (can be hard or easy, I use yogatoday free videos so it is always a wild card)
1 day bootcamp class at the gym
1 day weight training plus 15 minute cardio
1 day anything goes (Could be workout video/more yoga/or another weight training day)

I currently have two off days, but its nearly a mile walk to work from the subway, plus I walk the dog most nights so even my off days include about 2 1/2 miles of walking minimum. I always work out at night because I have to wake up for work at 7 am and there is NO WAY I would stick to a gym routine if I had to do it at 6 am. At the end of the day my butt is usually sick of sitting, so nothing feels better than a post-dinner work out! My only struggle is I will sometimes take my rest days Tues-Wed instead of spreading them out.

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Juliane @ C'est moi à Paris October 29, 2011

I also always journal my workouts. What I did and how I did during the workout. That is the best way to see your progress. Ervery other day I do a Bodyrock workout and once a week I go to ashtanga yoga. And every single day I do a lot of walking to discover Paris!

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Amelia Tobias October 29, 2011

That sounds like an awesome routine! Sounds more fun than mine, but you do what works for you, right? :P I’m wondering if I should include another off day.

Mine is Sun- Run/weights: back/biceps
Mon- Easy swim
Tuesday- Harder swim
Wednesday: Light Run/weights: Tricep/chest
Thursday: Off
Friday: swim or run and weights: legs/shoulders
Saturday: Hard swim or run

The set schedule really does help with sticking with it. It’s not an “I could”, it’s a “I’m going to!”

Also, what helps me is having my running or swim stuff laid out in the morning, so I see it there and can’t glance it off.

Also, I am addicted to your blog now! Especially the recipes :)

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Angela (Oh She Glows) October 30, 2011

I do that too (putting out workout clothing) and sometimes I sleep in it if I’m getting up by 5:15am

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suzanne October 30, 2011

I am obsessive about this – having the clothes out makes me feel committed and half way there. If it is a weekend and I can just run when i get up, I consider it a luxury to not have to lay my clothes out the night before! It is all a matter of perspective :-)
BTW – your workout routine is inspiring – I tend to get too into running all the time and know I should mix it up more. I love to get the outside time though and it is the easiest thing to do. I do cut back in the winter and hope to increase my yoga time and take a zumba class once in awhile. I live in a small town so no other class options really – plus love to get my workout done very early – even on days off – so class schedules do not appeal too much. Would LOVE to try hot yoga though!

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LizAshlee October 29, 2011

Fabulous idea!! My goal is also to start journaling…about everything…workout, food, emotions…I am very excited and think this will be very helpful! Thanks for posting the PDF…perfect!

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val October 29, 2011

Love your blog, look forward to reading it everyday. I especially appreciate the variety of topics–you’re helping lots of women with food, self-esteem, fitness, and puting a smile on their face at the same time!

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dawne October 29, 2011

Sounds like a great idea, a workout journal is always helpful in the cold winter months, or even in the hot hot summers!! I would suggest including your meals for the day in your journal, as this can affect your energy and stamina, and might help you make changes along the way! Good luck and thank you so much for your outstanding recipes, LOVE THEM!!

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B'klynHeart October 29, 2011

Oh goodness, yes! I need to re-commit to fitness, I get myself so easily distracted, and the mornings are so cold and dark! I will join along, I love your site and hope you remain motivated and hope to do the same myself! Thank you (for all you do)!

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Jill October 29, 2011

Thank you so much for posting and providing a PDF with the log. This is exactly what I need right now. I am in the process of moving and starting a new job and have had very little time to prepare for this transformation so lets just say I am a little bit overwhelmed and now exercising or eating as well as I would like to be. Hoping that writing things out will help me get back in my groove!
Thanks a bunch
Jill

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Angela (Oh She Glows) October 30, 2011

enjoy Jill!

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Jennifer @ Peanut Butter and Peppers October 29, 2011

Thanks Angela! I need to set myself up on a workout program again. I have slacked! With the Holiday Season getting near us, I need to get my butt moving!! I don’t want to hibernate over the winter and come spring be disgusted with myself! :)

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Michaela October 29, 2011

that is great!!
I love working out so much and especially with colder weather.

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Tiff @ Love Sweat and Beers October 29, 2011

Neat! Looks like a good plan. It sure gets easier to sleep in instead of getting up for a workout with this darkness, colder weather, and holiday planning.

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Irina October 29, 2011

that plan looks great! I usually struggle with sticking with the plans long-term, so I try not to plan further than the next 24 hours, but I will keep out for your fitness posts to keep myself motivated for the day.

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Lynne October 29, 2011

I love this! I’ve been lacking motivation to exercise recently, even though I know that I feel sooo much better when I do. I am printing out the log and starting with a fun Zumba class tomorrow afternoon!

Thanks, Angela. :)

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