On Sunday, I did a yoga workout, and then decided I wanted to follow that up with some heavier cardio. For most of the last few years, I’ve done a lot of yoga and walking on hills, with some occasional jogging (indoors, essentially the equivalent of jogging in place). Every once in awhile, I’ll do something heavier (like dancing) but mostly I’ve let the heavier cardio portion of my workouts be the steep uphill sections of my walks. And don’t get me wrong, those hills can be intense – but they never last more than a few minutes, with downhills sections that follow, allowing my heart rate to drop back to more normal levels. What I haven’t done in a very long time is keep up a high, sustained heart rate during a workout, with the exception of an occasional outdoor attempt to run intervals. Those exceptions are few and far apart – like half a dozen in the last year – so they don’t really improve my cardiovascular fitness level. The hill-walking does, to a certain degree, and I thought it was enough. Until Sunday.
As I said, I did my yoga on Sunday, and then decided to round out my day with a ten-minute kickboxing video that I used to do years ago. This video was part of a Sparkpeople challenge that came out in May 2011. Back in May 2011, I participated in this challenge, which turned out to be a really good one for me. This kickboxing video was our Sunday workout, and it involved what you’d expect – punches, kicks, jumping jacks, scissor kicks, high knee grabs, etc. There was a lot packed into that ten minutes, and when I first did the workout on May 1st, 2011, it was the perfect level for me. Not too intense that I couldn’t get through it or had to modify, but not so easy that it didn’t feel like a workout. That’s about how I’ve thought of this video ever since. Again, until Sunday.
Oy. Ten minutes. Ten frickin’ minutes. Afterwards I had the same feeling I used to get after an hour-long intense swimming practice as a teenager, with that tired feeling in your heart that means it’s worked hard. Also, I didn’t make it through all the moves. I had to slow the jumping jack sections way down, and I had to move to marching in place halfway into the 30 seconds of scissor-kicks. The workout was mostly cardio, but after finishing, I felt like I’d done a full-body strength training workout in addition to heart-training. So okay, I thought, back in May 2011, I weighed less. Except then I realized…um, I weighed like two pounds less than I currently do. The weight thing is NOT the issue. I’m just WAY out of shape right now compared to back then.
It makes sense, really. Back then, I was doing a lot of heavier cardio workouts. Not only was I out running intervals like I do sometimes now (except on a regular basis then), but I was doing water aerobics, and aerobics videos, and elliptical training, and zumba…so on. Clearly, my exercise was far more varied and intense back then, and my fitness levels reflected that! Honestly, I’d like to get back there again. It would be good for me. It’s long past time to diversify my fitness and vary the kinds of workouts again!