Thursday, March 26, 2015

Lifestyle Challenge: Intensity

We're two weeks into our lifestyle challenge. If you're just hearing about it now and want to join, feel free to jump in -- it's never too late to start making little adjustments towards living a healthier lifestyle. You can read about the challenge details here.

For the first 2 weeks the focus has been to increase your water intake and decrease the intake of other beverages, particularly those with sugar (e.g. juices, sodas). Although we're starting a new focus, you should still continue to drink your minimum daily requirement of water.

The focus for the next 2 weeks will be on increasing the intensity of your activity. This doesn't have to be an aggressive increase - just a bit more to challenge yourself.

I've often found that my biggest accomplishments have been when I've made a 'mistake' -- I miscalculated the weight I put on the barbell and ended up lifting more than I thought I was; I got distracted while on the treadmill and ended up running for longer than I thought I could ... so many times it's our own belief that we may not be able to accomplish something that prevents us from trying.

If we don't try, we won't ever know how much we can do.

So, the challenge is to try and push yourself a bit more this week. Some suggestions of how to do this:

1) Add a few extra reps to your sets or even add an extra set to your workout routine
2) Add more resistance to your training -- increase the weight on your lifts, when stretching use a resistance band, hold that plank for a bit longer
3) Workout for longer -- if your step goal is 10,000/day, try to make it 10,500; if you go for a 30 minute walk, try to walk for 35 minutes
4) Speed it up -- if you walk, quicken your pace 30-second stretches; if you're doing walk/run intervals, try and increase your pace during your run

Since I don't think I'll have extra time this week, what I'll be focusing on is adding more resistance weight to my lifts and quickening my pace during both my walks and my jogs. I know that my plank pose holds suck, so I should probably work on increasing my hold time with those too.

Figure out what you can do to increase the intensity of your workouts (if you're not working out at all, use this challenge as a time to start, even if it's just 15 minutes a day). Make a plan and then starting from Monday put it in motion.

Here's a short article on 'The Afterburn Effect' -- describing how the body continues to burn calories following high intensity workouts.


  1. You seem to be doing ok ...... and working things out. Stay focused.

    Have a good weekend.

    All the best Jan

  2. This was exactly my plan for this week. I am taking a fitness test and talking with a trainer on Wednesday.

    Enjoy your day!


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