As part of my expanded lifestyle content, I’m delighted to be introducing fitness Fridays to the blog. Fear not, curls will continue to be paired with cocktails. My new fitness content is well-suited to my new role as a Lululemon affiliate. An affiliate means that when you follow my unique links, like those included throughout this post, you’ll pay the same price as usual, but I’ll make a small commission for referring you. In these images, captured by the talented John-Finnigan Lin, I’m wearing an older style of the High Neck Long Line Energy Bra and the Fast and Free 25″ tight.
You may or may not know that I was a high-performance athlete for many years and even won a national championship at the university level.
That’s right friends, I was part of the CIS championship-winning field hockey team of 2010. Upon transitioning from daily practice and cross-training workouts including both cardio and weightlifting to not being part of a competitive team after graduation left me feeling completely rudderless. For so many years, my sport and the enormous commitment associated with it had been one of the core organizing principles of my life and my time. I hardly knew what to do with myself when I didn’t have to get up at the crack of dawn to get to the pitch.
It took quite awhile to get back into a regular routine with exercise and some years or months have been certainly been more successful than others. Over time, I’ve learned that the best thing for my consistency is a workout buddy or accountability partner. This probably shouldn’t have taken as long to figure out as it did, given that I come from a team sports background and work hardest and most regularly when I’m surrounded by teammates who challenge and rely on me.
Before the pandemic hit, I was in nearly the best shape of my life, I was doing high intensity interval and weight-training five days a week, hot yoga twice, and one tennis lesson weekly. When we lost access to in-person classes, I fell off a cliff in terms of physical activity. I went months without doing much more than staring at a screen. The lack of exercise left me feeling sluggish and sedentary.
In August 2020, I decided I needed to ask for help. I reached out to my friend and former trainer from the gym where I took group classes and began personal training. At first we were just doing one 45-minute session together per week, and dear God, was it painful coming back from months of being a couch potato. Heaving and breathless after about 10 jumping jacks.
After a couple months, I realized I was going to need to more than a single 45-minute session because I still didn’t have the motivation to do anything without direct supervision. Yes, I’m a child. Without an accountability partner, a wall of mirrors, an audience, and classmates to push me to work harder, I was content to laze about eating bonbons all day.
Now, after six months of consistent thrice weekly workouts I’m feeling better physically and the improvement for my mental health has been immeasurable. Getting out of bed in the morning is an accomplishment in and of itself during these unprecedented times. Getting out bed AND putting on clothes is award worthy. I can definitely say that putting on real clothes does provide a bit of a bright spot but that feeling is amplified when I wake up and reach for my workout clothes and actually get sweaty in them.
With that in mind, I wanted to share a little shoulder burner workout I did with my trainer Anna a few weeks ago. For this functional strength-training workout, you’ll do these movements – determine the number of total rounds you want to do based on your level of fitness. Make sure you do a full warm-up and dynamic stretching before beginning and cool-down and stretch afterwards.
– 10 Bent over reverse fly with dumbbells
– 10 Resistance band rows
– 10 Burpees with push-up
– 10 Push-ups with hands turned towards each other at a 45-degree angle
– 10 Resistance band chest flys
– 20 Mountain climbers – pressing up through the shoulder blades
– 20 kettlebell swings
– 10 V-Ups
– Handstand (to failure)
Drop a comment below or on Instagram and let me know if you give this one a try!
what hand stand? never mind to failure! Yikes, but you go girl!
Looking simply fabulous daarlilng!
Thank you SO MUCH for sharing your athletic herstory, Yvonne! You’re a powerhouse and womxn to admire!
I can’t wait to try this workout. Now that I’m exercising solely at home, with weights and walking the ‘hood, I need all the advice I can get.