Sometime in the middle of last week, I signed up for Gina's annual Summer Shape Up Challenge. This year's is an awesome 4 week routine (with optional meal ideas) and I've been loving it so far. In fact, I love her workouts so much that I mentioned her first Summer Shape Up Challenge (a full-on 12 week program she came up with in 2009) in an earlier post I wrote about the 5 best workouts of my life.
Having just launched into a new SSU series, I thought I'd talk about the flip side of that coin by sharing exercises that I just dread. Conveniently, a lot of these are features in Gina's latest SSU so I guess I'll have to conquer my fears! I know, I know. They're really effective. You have to work up to them. It'll all pay off in the end, but as much as I love weights or bootcamp style workouts, whenever these babies appear in my routines, I kind of want to run for the hills:
1. Burpees: Push ups, planks, jumping up and down, all of these moves I love individually, so why does combining them turn into something so evil? Sure, they raise your heart rate very quickly and are super effective, but they're so difficult (that's the point I know). I know people like Katie can do insane things like 155 burpees, but I'll keep on trucking and struggle to complete my one minute's worth. P.S. I have no idea what this photo is about. When I put "burpees" into Google images, this was the second hit... so here you go!
2. Stability Ball Passes: They. hurt. And not in the good way. I think I've tried not to cry every time I've done these. I'm glad routines usually make you only do about 10-15 of these because I can do about 3 cycles of 12 and that's pushing it. I always make fun of people who make weird noises at the gym (grunting, sighing, whooping, etc.), but oh the temptation to become "one of those people" when I have a set of these in store!
3. Pigeon Pose: My hamstrings have a message for you, pigeon pose: "We hate you." Sure, they'll be honest: It's a love-hate thing. I get into pigeon pose, they want to scream and cry, and curse the Yoga gods, but then I also feel really good, those endorphins get released, and I keep coming back for more... It's an abusive relationship I tell you.
4. Mountain Climbers: Does anyone climb mountains like this, seriously?? Because I've never seen it. I thought these were hard to begin with, then we went to an acro-yoga class where we would bust out power yoga for 3 minutes, then launch into 1 minute of mountain climbers, over and over and over again. You wonder why I only went back twice.
5. Lateral Raises: These definitely aren't as bad as they used to be, but there's still something about the muscles they target that makes me feel weak. When I first started working out seriously with Andrew by doing the Body for Life program, and had no arm strength, these were a killer. When I did them, I kind of felt like this:
The feeling hasn't gone a way, so I still resent them.
Ah, those painful exercise, we all have them and yet we learn to love them! What are yours?