Lazy Glutes

So apparently I have lazy glutes .. or it probably sounds better if I say my gluteus medius is not being recruited effectively. I admit I have been told this before and given my primary choice of exercise is running I kind of need them to work to a pretty high standard.

How do I know this? Because I will admit it's not something that you can see working, unless you know what you are looking for I guess. 

Well, I booked in to a seminar on Lower Back Pain Assessment and Training.  I was quite looking forward to going and I must say that with so many of my clients complaining of lower back pain, I thought it was rather informative.  The presenter was a physiotherapist with QAS and he certainly gave me more insight into lower back pain and how to assist and train clients with this complaint. 
Anyway, I'm rambling ... while I was sitting there taking all this knowledge in I started to think about how I had been starting to feel a little stiff in the hips lately.  I did put it down to my infrequent stretching routine after training.  Don't get me wrong, I do stretch .. it's usually as I walk up the steps to the shower and then a couple of obligatory stretches in the shower.  Or after I hop of the treadmill I do the usual hip flexor, glute, hamstring stretches ..
So while I was sitting there I thought that given I have this massive wealth of knowledge talking to me, why not ask him if he could help me out with a few more stretches to release my hips.  

After a quick assessment of my flexibility, watching me walk and a quick jog .. I was told I don't recruit my glutes enough and I am quad dominant.  What!? I have been doing my strength training and I really thought that I was focusing on activating my glutes and strengthening them! Clearly I have not been doing this enough *sigh* .. time to pick up my act and start doing a few extra exercises to get my butt moving .. technically my glutes.

The Hip Bridge ExerciseEnter exercises .. hip / glute bridge, clam shells,
one leg supported squats.

Use a Foam Roller   
And stretches .. quads, hip flexors, revisit the foam roller ( I wince as I think of this instrument of torture ). Make commitment to attend Body Balance class once a week ( check, did that this morning and already feel a bit less stiff ).

I guess I can't complain .. I did ask the question.  And I really want to set a new PB in the half in July ... oh the things we do in the name of a challenge! But I love it!!

Until I ramble again .. don't forget to recruit your glutes!

Fit Mum x

Fresh from the kitchen ...

I've had another one of those days when I seem to be spending a lot of time in the kitchen .. And I love it!

On tonight's menu is stirfry and rice.  One of my family's favourites! It is so quick, so easy and a great way to get some fresh vegies! YUM! 

The thing I love about a stirfry is that I can make it whatever flavour I feel like at the time.  Tonight I'm thinking stirfry pork and plum sauce is going to appear on the table.  I will confess though that I am using a bought plum sauce and I'll add some extra flavours for a twist. 

I like to make it simple on the nights when I get home late from ferrying the kids between school, sport, dance and the usual afternoon rushing!

Next up I'm baking a Strawberry and coconut loaf as we've run out of healthy snacks for the kids.  I object to filling them up on a lot of commercially made biscuits and snacks that have loads of sugar, salt and who knows what else.  They already get their fair share of rubbish food!
It has just come out of the oven and it smells divine ... I might even sneak myself a slice .. fresh out of the oven.  It won't count on my diet though if I'm taste testing it for the kids, right??

While my loaf was baking I threw together a fresh batch of muesli for breakfast ( or whenever really, because I have it for a snack too ).  I have searched everywhere and haven't been able to find a muesli that I really like so I usually make my own now.  This way I can get all the things I want in it, and a few extras too!  A handful of blueberries and I'm set!  It's great with yoghurt too. 

Are you like me and rather that your kids have fresh home made snacks?

Fit Mum x

Not quite the plan ...

Ok, so the week didn't go exactly according to my training plan.  I started off the week right on schedule but by Wednesday, I was feeling pretty blah and didn't recover the way I was expecting from the previous two days training.  I know only two days!! Not that I'm blaming anything for my blahness (??) but, you know how it goes .. busy weekend, busy week running kids here and there, running errands, work, late nights ...

View DetailsOn Wednesday I attempted a cardio challenge at the gym as part of the 12 week challenge we are hosting at the moment.  It was cycling .. not my strong point at the moment.  And certainly not my strong point when my legs are sore and fatigued. I know I'm making excuses and I don't usually make excuses but God how I struggled to push those pedals over! 

Ok, I'm getting really tired now ... I thought that maybe I should listen to my body .. and it really was yelling at me! So, I scheduled a rest day ( well I'm telling myself I scheduled it! ).  My justification so as not to feel too guilty was that it was a long day at work.  I even tried to get into bed a bit earlier than normal to allow my body that extra time to recover.  

Skip through to this morning and I'm still feeling a bit dusty when I crawl out of bed .. missing my usual run.  I'm still resting my body remember ... 
Coffee seemed to perked me up a bit .. off to work with a mini spring in my step!  

Made it through the morning feeling not too shabby now ... before I head home to feed, I quickly completed the strength challenge of the week. Yep, I seem to be getting a little extra energy back.  I won't let myself leave without a quick 20 minutes of cardio .. nothing too strenuous but the heart rate was up there and I was glowing that pretty pink of the huffed and puffed.  I'm feeling good again!

The moral to my story .. you are going to have those days or weeks where you feel like .. well, you know what .. and life is going to get in the way.
What matters is how you don't let the set backs get you down, work to your limits and pick yourself up and get started again. 
Tomorrow is a new day, next week is a new week ... you are here for the long haul and you will get the results you want if you keep working towards your goal!

Keep going, listen to your body, you really are stronger than you think!!

Fit Mum x


To the gym floor ...

Remind me again why it is that I want to do weight training?  I've just started back training with my PT and I dread look forward to whatever she has in store for me.  And even though after each session I am so exhausted I can barely lift my arms or walk down the stairs, I love it!!

There are certainly times when I am not so fussed on it .. like the times where your legs are sore for days and it's quite the struggle to sit on the toilet ( sorry, but it needs to be mentioned! ).  No, I really don't like it much then.

So to combat these feelings I remind myself why I do weight training ...

* It makes me stronger and faster for running ... 
* Squats and lunges make for a great butt!
* I get that toned look that we all strive for ... and who doesn't want that in summer?? 
* It just makes me feel stronger, like I can do whatever I set my mind to

There are heaps of other reasons why weight training is a great idea to add to your training each week ( at least once a week ).  I remember a lady I met at the gym told me why she loved weight training .. because it made her feel strong and empowered.  Her favourite exercise was the bench press. Personally, I like legs .. squats, lunges, deadlifts .. I just keep telling myself that I'm going to get a nice arse .. not that I can see behind me unless I look in the mirror it but it makes me feel like I've worked hard! 
And just like most things in life .. you get out what you put in.  Make the effort and you will be rewarded.  And as my trainer so kindly requests if it all gets a bit hard .. "Suck it up, princess .. " ( This was the nice version! )

Work hard people, it will all be worth it!

What's your favourite weight training exercise? Why?

Fit Mum x

Retail Therapy

So, I thought that I would go shopping today .. just a bit of retail therapy, you know something for a bit of me time.  It was all working well, rest day from training, morning off work, kids dropped off on time at school and I'm at the shops as they open .. list in hand. Well, it appears that was my first mistake .. planning what I needed to buy.
First stop is for kids shorts for school.  Now I know that they sell them here because I have seen them.  Yep, there's a pair .. nope, wrong colour.  Keep looking, surely they're here.  After 5 minutes of wandering up and down I finally accept that they don't have any.  That's OK .. I'll look somewhere else. 
Next stop, new running shoes for work. This one's easy, I know what I'm after and no thanks, I really don't need the 12 year old sales assistant to help me with my socks ( well, he looked 12 ).  After much standing and staring at the dozens of shoes on offer, I accepted the fact that I wasn't actually going to get what I wanted today. And the new Nikes I saw are in some seriously gaudy colours!!
I'm starting to get a little, let's say impatient with this whole experience.  Maybe I'm hungry .. again.  No will keep going ... still haven't looked at some new clothes for me! 
To cut a long story short, because that's where my patience level was after checking out another half a dozen clothes shops, I cannot believe some of the hideous clothes that they are selling .. I mean, I have got running shorts longer than some of the skirts out there.  Oh dear, am I getting old??

I am rather disappointed at my lack of success.  Why is it that when you want to go and buy something you can't get what you want, but when you have not money or time, there are dozens of things on the shelves ... 
I will not be deterred.  I will again venture out for retail therapy, maybe next time I won't take a list and I'll just tell myself I'm doing the groceries ...

I think I need a coffee ...  

Fit Mum x

And there it went ...

Well, the weekend has been and gone! And it certainly went in quite the blur!  So many things that I wanted to do and so many things that I had to do.  Number 1 on the must do list ..

I am greeted by this first up every weekend ..
My least favourite chore greets me in all it's glory each weekend and mocks me until I've finished .. oh and then it screams at me until it's folded and away!
After dealing with this I am forced to make coffee and sit down to recuperate.  Only to realise I'm running late for my little get together with some friends! I am flying around the house trying to find clean clothes ( the rest are in the festering pile of laundry .. ) when I remembered I hadn't chopped the veg to go with the hommus dip I was taking.  I decided to take something on the way to healthy so I wouldn't snack on the usual cheese and crackers ...

Can't stay and chat long with the girls .. must race home and gather up my son to take him to his mates 5th birthday party.  He has been counting the sleeps and is so excited to see his friends!  The boys had a great time running around and well, being boys!  And of course, as with any party .. there was party food!! I used my will power so as not to eat more than the boys but when it came to the Mars Bar Slice, there really was no use .. one of my party favourites!

      See the missing piece .. it was me!

Made it home late in the afternoon to a quiet house.  Hubby was doing long training run and our daughter rides alongside to hold waterbottles and keep him company.  So it was my chance to reacquaint myself with the piles of clothes in the laundry. 

After all the running around of the day I was quite happy to sit down after dinner and watch a movie .. oh wait that's what the kids did!

I guess I'd better get used to my weekends being busy again .. sport starts soon and then we'll be spending our Saturdays sitting by the netball courts and soccer fields! 

Hope everyone had a fabulous weekend with family and friends!

Fit Mum x

Early mornings are not my thing

I will start by saying that I am NOT a morning person.  I have been in the past so I'm not sure what changed .. life, kids? 
I really wanted to commit to my new training program so I didn't want to slack off in my first week!  So when hubby mentioned that he had to leave for work at an hour that I should have been just crawling out of bed, I was struck with dread.  I would have to get up extra early if I wanted to fit in my last training run of the week! I know that I could have clocked those kms up on the treadmill after work but even though the gym is airconditioned, at midday it is so hot and humid that I was reminded of my speed session a few days ago.  That was not particularly pretty and I certainly paid for it later that day!
So, I bounced out of bed and hour earlier than usual .. oh alright I didn't bounce, I could possibly have been shoved by said hubby ...
I forced an apple in while I was trying to wake up, because if I didn't I possibly may have passed out somewhere down the track! Trying not to think about the time ( I still should be asleep ) I went downstairs to meet my extremely excited and furry running partner!

Baxter is always ready before me!

With my ipod drowning out my thoughts of bed, I wandered down the street.  Half way down the street I realised something ... it was quite cool for a change and it was really quite pleasant to be out! Please don't mention this to my hubby ...
Even though by the time I made the turn around and started heading home it was starting to really warm up I must say that my dreaded training session was quite enjoyable!

Make the effort .. you just might be surprised!

Fit Mum x

February fitness

Can you believe that the first month of the year has gone already? How are you going with your goals for 2011? Are you on track, or still needing a little bit of a nudge?  It might be time to start picking up the pace a little bit.  

I've started my month off with a couple of great training sessions and I'm feeling totally pumped!  Can't wait for my next training sessions!  This month I'm aiming for some serious consistency in my running training and to increase my weekly mileage.  I know that that is what is going to be the key for me in getting what I want in my running this year.

Why not think about what you really need to do to achieve your goal and set yourself a challenge for February?  It doesn't have to be a big challenge, just something that will see you on your way to your vision.  January was your "settling in" month ... February will be your move it more month.  If you are not getting in enough exercise at the moment, you need to be aiming for a minimum of 3 days of activity a week.  These sessions don't need to completely exhaust you but work up to at least 30 - 40 minutes and you need to get pretty huffy puffy, red in the face and you need to sweat!! Or glisten, or glow as your case may be!  
Keep it up for the whole month and by the end you will feel great, be in a new routine and be looking for the next challenge! 

Make sure you keep yourself organised and prepared .. it will make it easier for you to succeed!

Keep working hard!

Fit Mum x