This time of year is always hard for me as an athlete. It’s getting colder, darker and it seems to be raining all of the time. Getting up in the morning to go outside for a bike ride is no longer an option, and it’s just too early to spend much time on the trainer. Running isn’t too bad but with no races in the near future, staying in bed or watching TV win out more than in the summer. Fall also seems to bring on the desire to eat comfort food, which in my case is usually laden with delicious fat in some form. Some of my favourites are lasagna, chocolate, pumpkin spice lattes, lots of beer, nachos, and anything fried. All this eating plus a lot less training usually leads to a few extra pounds. After working hard all season to get in shape to race, it’s too easy to lose all that hard work.
This week I am trying two things I’ve never done before, a detox and kettlebell. The detox program I am doing is 4 days long and includes eating veggies, mostly broccoli, and a protein at night. After I started this detox, I started doing some research and found that there isn’t a lot of research that proves that humans need to detox. It also seems like a lot of nutritionists aren’t the biggest fans. I think in the long run it’s healthiest to eat a well balanced diet. I decided to do the detox for two main reasons. My first reason is because I’ve never tried one before and because I’ve been eating really poorly since the beginning of October. This detox is my reset on eating. I am hoping it will encourage me to eat healthier for the rest of the winter. I will be posting exactly what I ate for the last four days and how it went in the next couple of days.
Kettlebell is another new experience for me. Developed in Russia in the 1700’s, it uses a cast-iron weight, shaped like a cannonball with a handle, to perform ballistic exercises. Doing a kettlebell workout helps build strength and endurance, particularly in the lower back, legs, and shoulders. What makes a kettlebell workout great, is that engages the entire body at once, this makes it great way to strengthen your core muscles. I wanted to try kettlebell as way of encouraging myself to get off the couch and workout. It’s also important to do strength training in the off-season to help reduce injuries when my training workload increases. I’ll post more about what kettlebell is like in the next couple weeks, so stay tuned.
If you’re interested in giving kettlebell a try, you should sign up for a beginner’s course at Hostyle Conditioning. This is the gym I am working out at and so far I am loving it! Check it out at www.hostyleconditioning.com.