Jungle Janie's Blog

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Thursday, June 12, 2008

About the gym

So, as y'all know by now, I've been doing a job at a gym to meet other people interested in fitness as well as for the benefit of a membership and a little (I stress little here, heh) extra cash. It's a fun and easy job and is close to the farm so it's been working out fairly well. I can take a break from the farm and go there to work out if I want and have the time. You get an hour with a personal trainer when you get a new membership there in order to help you have a workout focus and know how to use some of the cardio equipment and the Cybex weight machines. I finally arranged one for myself, which is good 'cause I had forgotten how to use the Cybex machines from when I was a member years ago and I didn't know how to use the treadmills ever. I've never used a treadmill actually. Since I work there I felt a little strange about trying to figure out how to use stuff when going there to work out, so I've been sticking to the free weights and the rowing machine 'cause I know them well already.

The trainer that I met with was fairly new to the gym too, and I had a few challenging and usual questions, so we ended up figuring out some of the equipment together. We spent two and a half hours, and it was fun! :) I wanted to know if I could program at least one of the treadmills (they have 2 or 3 different kinds) to do a series of custom specific speeds and durations so that I could go back on the running plan I used to get running a while back. I haven't been running for a while and had only gotten it down for a couple of months so figure I need to start over from the beginning again. We figured out that the older less fancy looking machines were actually better about that than the new ones. Funny. Figures though. So, cool. I can do up to 5 different increase/decrease changes, which should be enough combined with the manual settings too. Yay! :)

I rediscovered the nifty advanced moves the Cybex machines can do. Fun! I asked her if she knew what the ideal ratios between opposing muscle groups in order to balance them properly and avoid injuries and other problems from imbalanced muscle development. She didn't know 'cause she usually does more specific training with Pilates and looks at posture instead, but said she'd find out from the other trainers and get back to me. She was very prompt about getting back to me, but unfortunately they didn't know either. So strange how that information is so hard to find. I know that I ran across it in the past, but didn't keep track of it. Later on I tried to find the info. and was unable to. Luckily this time I was able to find things online and shared the info with her. I'm planning on putting it and other goodies up on this site somewhere at some point too. I find it helpful to have that info in order to guide my work with weights so I can work on increasing strength in weak areas for more balance and such - while increasing strength overall.

I also wanted to learn how to use a common body building piece of equipment for use with the olympic style of weights, but none of the trainers knew how to use that either. Bummer. I guess I'll just have to ask someone who I see using it at some point. That could be good though, perhaps I'll make a new friend. There's a woman who comes in regularly that I think uses the olympic weights, so perhaps she knows. I'll have to ask her. Alternately I thought I could look up the equipment's owner's manual online at some point... It's something that helps you do squats more safely without a spotter and has a specific name that I've forgotten. I've seen weight routines that use it for some of the exercises, but haven't seen how to use it anywhere... yet. When I find that out I'll want to add it to here somewhere too. Hopefully I'll have time. :)

Part of the session was to find out what my fitness goals are, so I'll share them with you too. :) I want to alternate rowing and running each day for my cardio for 30 minutes to an hour. The elliptical and step machines are sort of fun too, so perhaps I'll put 'em in every once in a while instead of the rowing or running. I figure I'll do upper body weights after the rowing, using the rowing for a warm up and lower body after the running in the same manner. For running, I want to eventually get up to running over 20 miles a week, perhaps 7 miles three times a week. I also would like to get to a pace of an 8 minute mile or better.

In terms of weights I want to achieve and maintain balanced muscle development, increased strength and ability. Visually I'd like to increase the size and strength of my deltoids (shoulders/top of the arm cappy area) so that I get a nice cappy look on there; increase the size of my pecs (chest muscles), especially the upper ones; tone and tighten my upper thighs and butt. It'd be nice to look like a fitness competitor without competing. :)

I have other fitness goals that don't apply to the gym so much so I didn't mention them. Things like getting my pull ups/chin ups back; being able to pull my legs up over my head while hanging from my hands or supporting myself on something with my hands; walking on my hands; doing handstand push ups; and being able to do a V press into a handstand and back again. I'd also like to fit Ashtanga in somewhere again too somehow... So, I'll just continue to do things as I can and figure it'll work out in terms of my overall fitness. It'd be so cool to be able to do Ashtanga in the mornings before harvests and all, do the cardio in the afternoon in-between things, and then the weights and/or dancing, etc. in the evenings... Eventually I'll have a lifestyle that settles down for me to attempt it all. Oh yeah, and learn to play the guitar and/or ukulele and juggling as well. I'm loving the changes we've made so far, so it's all good. Enjoying the journey. :)

K, gotta' go and do other stuff while I've got time online now. Blog to y'all again sometime soon - I hope! :)


1 comment:

  1. Great fitness update! You are inspiring, I do stuff daily, but craving to step it up a bit too.