FreshStart Check-In, And What To Do If You Hate Weights

Dear FreshStarters — Please report! It’s the summer solstice today — have you been converting the longer light into physical energy? (What is FreshStart? Please click here.)

As we head into our final lap, I looked back at my initial goals to see how I’ve fared, and found one glaring area where I’ve fallen down: weights. I hate ’em. To me, they are just no fun. No joy. No uplift. I know study after study says that they’re a crucial element of any fitness program, especially as we age. But thus far, all I’ve managed to do is to add some light weights to my step routine. I simply cannot persuade myself to lift weights as a separate routine. I asked Coach Beth about this, and here are her initial thoughts:

1) Buddy up—Try out a class with a friend (the town recreation classes are a great way to start.)
2) Go to the local library and take out a couple of strength training DVDs–just make sure you have the weights or bands that you need.
3) Use your own body for strength training–push ups, pull ups, squats, sit ups (old fashion circuit training), yoga

But the big question is “What is it about weights that you hate?” That is the key question. Making some progress on your journey of self discovery in this area might help you take some small steps forward. Is it lack of experience? Is it lack of knowledge? Is it fear of becoming a muscle bound she-man? Is it fear of failure? Is it time constraints?

My response: “I think it’s that I perceive the burn/effort as pain. I know it’s possible to change that kind of perception with cardio — I now perceive huffing and puffing as positive, not negative — but haven’t managed to with weights yet.”

Ideas, anyone?

Why To Exercise Today: The Aerobic/Weight Mix To Beat Diabetes

I somehow missed this one when it came out in late November — many thanks to Dr. Eddie Phillips of the Institute of Lifestyle Medicine for pointing it out. Now where did I put those hand weights?

(HealthDay News) — Variety in your workout routine may be key to optimal diabetes management, new research suggests.

The study found that when people with type 2 diabetes did aerobic exercise some days and resistance training on others, they had lower blood sugar levels after nine months than people who did either type of exercise alone.

“From a health perspective, the combination exercise program really outshined the others,” said the study’s lead author, Dr. Timothy Church, director of preventive medicine research at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center at Louisiana State University System in Baton Rouge. “We really thought that the walking group and the combination group would be similar, but the combination group was the only group that had significant improvement.”