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Alternative Workouts

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My hyper-competitive self gets down when other people talk about their dedication to the gym—so many sets of so many reps with this much weight targeting that part of the body, then a set amount of time on cardio machine of your choice. Sure, I like to think I’m in decent shape, but I’m not […]

January 10, 2012


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My hyper-competitive self gets down when other people talk about their dedication to the gym—so many sets of so many reps with this much weight targeting that part of the body, then a set amount of time on cardio machine of your choice. Sure, I like to think I’m in decent shape, but I’m not following a conscious exercise pattern, and without that kind of gym-like quantifier, my workouts don’t feel real enough. So, were I to create my own signature, extreme, P90X-style workout based on my week’s activities, it might look something like this.
 
SUNDAY
Hockey game:
Three-minute warm-up—wearing 20 pounds of equipment, skate a couple half laps, stretch groin, hip-flexors, hamstrings, quad, shoulders, back wrists. Take some shots. Alternating between skating hard for about 80 seconds of game time (two minutes or so real time, with stoppages of play)—stopping, starting, turning, pushing against people along the boards, picking yourself up off the ice—then about 80 seconds of game time on the bench resting and rehydrating. Repeat through three 12-minute periods, approximately 50 minutes to an hour real time.
 
[For a hockey tournament: Repeat above workout five times in three days.]
 
MONDAY
Boxing:
30 seconds punching the mitts in combinations—jab, straight, hook, uppercut, duck, uppercut, slip, straight—then a minute of “Sugar Rays,” or sideways shuffles around the ring while CCB and Big J get their time on the mitts; two sessions on the mitts and two minutes of Sugar Rays for each three-minute round; three rounds.
            Do squats for a three-minute round, with two 30-second intervals punching the mitts as fast as you can.
            Next, shadow boxing in front of the mirror: throw combinations, holding an eight-pound dumbbell in each hand, for 30 seconds, then Sugar Ray while holding the dumbbells up by your chin for 30 seconds; continue for a three-minute round; rest for 30 seconds, then repeat for a total of five rounds, occasionally replacing the Sugar Rays with push-ups, squats, burpees, etc.
            Jog backwards around the building.
            Do lunges around the building, stopping at every corner to do 50 squats, for a total of 200 squats and 1/6 mile of lunges.
 
TUESDAY
Lunch break:
Walk from Nancy’s Bar-B-Q down Ringling, across Bayfront Drive, past the marina and up over the Ringling Bridge and back, approximately three miles. In an hour.
 
WEDNESDAY
Multi-Sport Extravaganza:
Head to an open part of a GT Bray soccer field with a soccer ball, football and baseball bat, balls and mitts. Warm-up with some baseball catch. Kick the soccer ball back and forth for approximately 10 minutes, moving farther and farther away for longer kicks that are more likely to go astray, so you have to chase the ball a lot. Play catch with the football, trying to hit each other on crossing routes, approximately five minutes. Take turns batting and shagging fungoes, approximately 20 minutes. (The shagging part is surprisingly exhausting.)
 
THURSDAY
Stationary Bike Tetris:
In guest bedroom, ride the stationary bike while playing Tetris on the original Nintendo. Play one game, so long as you make at least 130 lines—between 10 and 15 minutes; anything under that requires another game.
 
FRIDAY
Hockey practice:
10-lap leisurely warm-up skate. Circle drills, skating around each of the five face-off circles on the ice, alternating between forward and backward, with puck and without, regular speed and sprint, for a total of five times. Team drills, lots of starting and stopping in small areas on the ice. Iron man (no subs) scrimmage for 10 minutes. Team sprints.
 
SATURDAY
Soccer game:
30-minute warm-up with passes and a little jogging. Play full 90-minute game, consisting of 20-40 sprints of various distances—usually between 10 and 60 yards—as well as some quick changes of direction to target those thighs.