Wednesday, February 11, 2015

What Exercises Do You Really NEED?

I follow a lot of running and fitness accounts on social media and I've noticed that the language of a lot of posts is very...  demanding.  Specifically where nutrition and cross-training are concerned, there seem to be a lot of titles of articles like, "8 Foods You Should NEVER Eat," or "The 6 BEST Exercises for Runners."  (Emphasis is mine)

I'm guilty of it, too.  One of my YouTube core strengthening videos has the word "essential" in the title to convey the idea that you might be missing something important if you don't do these exercises.  FOMO is real, people.

I totally get why we feel the need to throw around these words - there's a LOT of information on the internet, and in order to make your article or video or product stand out, sometimes we go a little overboard with our own importance.

Yes, there probably are a few exercises for your hips that would be a good idea for you to do.  And you're right, doing some core work certainly isn't going to hurt your running.

But I'm here to tell you, as a fitness professional and a (non-professional) runner:  You're doing fine.

When I first started filming workout videos, I spent a lot of time trying to work around my running plans and using a lot of exercises that were supposed to be good for runners.  I kept my (filmed) workouts pretty short because I didn't want to be too tired to run.

After a while, though, I realized that it sort of didn't matter.

I filmed a cardio tabata the same day I ran eight miles.  I made a "heavy lifting" workout on a day that I was supposed to be resting.  And once I - and this was actually an accident - did a medicine ball workout that left me sore for four days just two days before I ran a marathon.  Oops!  But I survived.

Unless you're actively rehabbing an injury, I feel like anything that you're doing to be healthy and fit is a really good idea.  You do you.

But, in case you're worried, here's a vital and extraordinarily important quiz to determine if you are, in fact, doing the right workouts:

  1. Do you enjoy what you're doing? (Yes = 10 points, No = 0)
  2. Are you probably going to continue doing it?  (Yes = 10 points, No = 0)
  3. Is it causing you or anybody else bodily harm?  (No = 10 points, Yes = 0)

You probably just scored a 30, didn't you?  Alrighty then.

Do you ever get information overload, or FOMO?? 


Marcia said...

I think those provocative headlines are simply meant to draw the reader in. Probably good for SEO too.

Laura said...

Sitting on the couch scored a 30!!! And here I thought I wasn't working out...

dion.middelkoop said...

I dream of being a professional athlete and of all the training I would do... but I have a full time job, so I only ever get round to doing what is fun, and what I love!

HoHo Runs said...

THANK YOU for this post. Sometimes, I get caught up in what others are doing and feel inferior for not doing yoga, strength training, barre class, pilates, planks, spinning, boot camp, swimming...the list really never ends. This is a great reminder to only do what you enjoy.

PahlaB said...

Here's a little secret: the inspiration for this post was all those yoga pictures I'm seeing this month! I suck at yoga and don't especially enjoy it, but I have found myself feeling very "left out." So silly! Really, this was just a reminder to myself, but I'm happy you can relate, too!