Last week I was all about push ups, how great they are, and how I don't do any other upper body strengthening exercises. Then I saw Michelle's comment asking if I can do an unassisted pull up, and I realized I had failed to mention the true genesis of my upper body routine.
My college coach also had us lifting weights. I could bench 3 sets of 10 of more than a 100 pounds, but I still couldn't do a set of 10 push ups correctly. And to make matters worse, I was gaining weight. I am one of those people who will gain weight when lifting heavy. Once I realized this, I stopped lifting and focused on the push ups. After a while, I realized that exercises like push ups don't make me gain weight and they make your arms look great. There are a few other exercises (besides push ups) that fall into that category. For instance, pull ups and dips are incredible upper body exercises. Similar to push ups they work the whole core. Dips aren't too bad to do. In the past, I've worked my way up to 3 sets of 7-9. Pull ups, however, are wicked hard! The only way I've ever been able to do an unassisted pull up (technically a chin up) is by buying a pull up bar and hanging on it every day. I'd hang and pull and pull and pull some more. Eventually I was able to do 3 unassisted chin ups. There's no way I could one now, but I still have the bar...I'm tempted to pull it out and start hanging on it again.
Push ups, pull ups, and dips combined make for a kick butt upper body workout. The only reason I don't do dips and pull ups is primarily a lack of time (or perhaps laziness). Usually if I have a little extra workout time, I run. I do still have that pull up bar though...
Moving on to another interesting topic, have any of you heard of Athlinks? I don't remember how I stumbled upon it last week, but it's crazy. I looked up my name and it found all kinds of race results! Even a few of my college races. I'm not really sure what it's used for. Other than stalking fellow runners perhaps? It was cool to see some of my official results though. I've only been keeping track of my race times for the last two years, so anything before that I'm never really sure of. Do any of you use Athlinks? If so, what do you use it for?
I guess I haven't mentioned my training yet. Last week wasn't bad. I managed to run 47 miles thanks to my new treadmill. Say what you want about the treadmill, but I love it. Yes, it's a bit monotonous, but I can do it with my toddler playing nearby. Kaylee is so good when I run. She never goes near it while it's on, and is generally happy playing with her toys and listening to her music while I run. So yeah, it's awesome.
Training Journal 1/11 - 1/17
Total Miles Run: 47
Total Time Running: 6:46
Average Pace: 8:38
Total Stationary Bike Time: 1:35
Push ups: 4 sets of 15 (pitiful I know)