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Week Four: Operation Bikini Bod

Posted Jun 02 2009 4:38pm

I am on a mission to get ready for summer!  Each week I will post an overall review, a featured workout and nutrition tips.  If you have any questions  or want me to address a certain topic feel free to comment or email me: runforlife[at]ymail[dot]com

Weekly review:
Running – 5 days
Yoga – 7 days (mini-goal for the week.)
Cross-training/abs – 1 day

I cannot believe a month of this has gone by already!  Yeah, you read that right.  Only one day of cross training and abs…someone needs to yell at me: I still need to get some time management issues down.

The past week I did better nutrition wise and felt better as a result.  I did have a minor issue with a French baguette…seriously why are they so delicious?!  I’m off gluten for now though and the other night made a great meal: corn tortilla with hummus, veggie ground round, romaine, red peppers, sprouts, and carrots.

Featured Workout

Here’s the ab workout I did:

Warmup
Plank – 1 min.
Sit-ups – 2 mins. (Yes, I do sit-ups and not crunches.  I personally think that as long as you have proper form you’re fine.  To each their own.)
Reverse plank – 1 min.
Tuck-ups – 1 min.
Side plank – 30 secs. each side
Bicycle crunches – 2 mins.
Pike-ups – to failure

This worked pretty well for me.  Make sure with ab exercises you don’t strain your neck and to use the abs and not momentum.

Once again: I am NOT a personal trainer so try this at your own discretion.  Remember that everyone is different so you may want to use it as a guideline.  Also, PLEASE keep good form, protecting your knees and back especially.


Nutrition Tips

I present to you this week the carb conundrum!  Lots of people think carbs are the enemy and severely cut them out when they go on a diet.  Athletes need more carbs than someone who doesn’t workout and are not usually prone to doing this but I wanted to address the subject since it’s pretty widespread particularly among women:

Carbohydrates are your main source of fuel – especially for your brain.  Cut them out and you’ll definitely notice you get to “empty” on the tank faster.  Ever had a run where you’re lagging, realize you haven’t fueled up and as soon as you take some sports drink or gel you feel better?  This is no coincidence.

Good carbs are whole grains, veggies and fruits which provide you with the needed energy and no “empty calories.”  It’s best to take carbs (when you aren’t running) with some form of protein so your  blood sugar stays stabilized.  When you are doing a workout those carbs are used up pretty fast.

Bad carbs are refined such as doughnuts, pastries, white breads, chips, etc.  They have been processed and a lot of nutrients have been sucked out of the food.  They also tend to have a higher sugar content which will definitely make you want more and more once you crash.

Carbo loading is a controversial subject.  Some scientists say that it isn’t necessary while others think there is an advantage to athletes loading up before a big day.  Theoretically this “tops” your glycogen stores and will allow your body to burn carbs longer before moving onto the fat and protein burning phases.  The scientists against carbo loading say that your body can only take on so much before it is stored as fat.  Your body is efficient and great at regulating things so do whatever works for you.  Just remember you don’t need to go overboard and devour a whole box of pasta!

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