Well hello there!
It’s Friday, and that means that there are only 2 sleeps until my first olympic distance triathlon. GUYS. I’m freaking out a bit but at the same time, am excited to tackle this. My main goal is to treat it as an experience that’s going to prepare me for Challenge Penticton Half, so I’ll be taking lots of mental notes of what worked, what didn’t, and what I still want to work on. We’ll talk alllll about this on Monday, but today I’ve got a little something different for your Fit Bit Friday.
Work It Out
With all my triathlon training, it’s probably no surprise that the majority of my workouts are cardio-based. In a perfect world I’d balance it with plenty of strength training, but in real life, there’s a bazillion other things to be done each day and time is limited. Right now my coach has me doing one strength training session per week, but I can’t wait until I can get back into lifting regularly again.
Based on conversations I’ve had with clients and friends, it seems I’m not the only one doing a whole lot more cardio than strength-based work. Whether you use weights or just your own bodyweight, the benefits are huge. For example…
- Strength training helps to build stronger bones and reduces the risk of osteoporosis. Bone mass declines as we age, so this is a huge deal.
- It also helps to develop balance and coordination
- It takes more calories to sustain a pound of muscle than it does a pound of fat, so people with more muscle mass actually burn calories more efficiently.
- Strength training helps to reduce symptoms and risks of health issues like lower back pain, arthritis, and heart disease.
- … and let’s face it, toned muscles just look really nice!
Hopefully that’s enough reasons to convince you that strength training is a GREAT thing to add to your fitness regimen, and today you’re in for a treat because my friends at Vega have just released a free 4-week strength & conditioning plan to help you make it a long-term habit. (They’ve also got one for running, but the strength & conditioning plan is hot off the press!) Remember how last week I talked about how I always swim further when I have a plan to follow? Well the same is true for strength training.
If worrying about whether or not you’re doing a particular exercise properly is something you struggle with, don’t you worry: This plan’s accompanying handbook focuses strongly on 3 moves (although the workouts have many others – you won’t get bored!) and goes through each one step by step. They’re compound movements, meaning that they’re going to engage a whole bunch of your muscles at once. (Think squaaaaaats!) We’ve all got 24 hours in the day, and compound moves make it a whole lot easier to get in and out of the gym faster than single-muscle group exercises like biceps curls.
Oh, and each guide also comes with some nutrition tips and crazy delish plant-based recipes (chocolate mug cake, anyone?) so you’ll want to check those out too! You can sign up for all of it (again, totally and awesomely FREE!) right here.
Turn It Up
To supplement your strength & conditioning plan, you need some good jams, right? Those of you who are male readers (and I know there are a few) are going to have to excuse me this week because I am currently obsessed with this girl-power packed song, Invincible by Kelly Clarkson. I’ve lost count of how many times I listened to it this past weekend, and if my neighbours were home on Sunday, they’re probably sick of me. It’s slower than my usual workout tunes but still SO good. If you want to make it an even better experience, listen to it with headphones on.
Ok, the training plans are great, but this part is really great! I’m excited to be teaming up with Vega for another HUGE giveaway, and one of you will be the lucky recipient of a gift basket stuffed with the following (some of my personal faves!):
- 1 tub of Vega Recovery Accelerator in Tropical
- 1 box of Pre-workout Energizer in Lemon Lime
- 1 box of Endurance Gels in Raspberry
- 1 box of Electrolyte Hydrator in Berry
- 1 tub of Performance Protein in Vanilla
- 1 box of Performance Protein in Chocolate
- 1 box of Apple Cherry Energy bars
- 1 Vega shaker cup
- 1 Vega sport towel
- A copy of Brendan Brazier’s book, Thrive Fitness
(You can read all about each of these products here. The photo below is a little different to what’s actually in the basket, but it’s allllll good stuff!)
How do you enter?
Great question, I’m so glad you asked! To get in on the action, here’s what to do:
- Mandatory entry: Leave a comment below telling me your favourite strength training exercise or strength-based workout.
- Bonus: Snap a photo of yourself mid-strength training sesh and post it to either Instagram. Be sure to tag @eatspinrunrpt, @Vega_Team, and #FuelYourBetter
- Bonus: Tweet about this giveaway. Something like…
This one’s open to all Canadian and US residents until Tuesday July 7, 2015 at 8pm PST. I’ll announce the winner in Wednesday morning’s post.
Good luck, and to all my friends in the US, have a wonderful holiday weekend! 🙂