Thursday, February 19, 2015

Workout Modifications: Your Best Work, Not Less Work

One of my goals this year was to work on my core. Between being a nominal core work person combined with having a baby, things have gotten pretty weak in my mid section. As I mentioned, I joined a gym. One of the factors that helped make that decision was that the gym offered Pilates a few times a week when I could actually make the class. Although this helped convince me to join, Pilates is a double edged sword.

You see, Pilates scares me. I've taken several classes in the past, and I know what it entails: CORE CORE CORE. C CURVE C CURVE C CURVE. SCOOP SCOOP SCOOP. All these words send a shiver down my spine (and abs...). Ab work often makes me feel nauseous, and post baby ab work is no different!

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I took my first class and tried to do EVERYTHING. I would find myself super frustrated because I could only lower my legs two times before I had to take a break. I could only do 30 of the Pilates 100. I kept trying and trying and trying but felt weak, deflated, and unworthy. Seriously? It was my first class! I was sore for days. When I went back to my second class a few days later, the instructor put a strong focus on something that changed my experience: modifications.

No pictures from class. that's not a pretty sight. This is from the yoga challenge that I'm currently really behind lower back has been killing me so I've taken two rest days from all workouts.

Modifications can be beneficial on both ends of the fitness spectrum. Modifications does not mean to make things easier, it simply means to change things. This instructor listed modifications to increase or decrease the level of difficulty. I started thinking about the word modifications, and realized that it didn't mean putting out less work. Modifications mean putting in your best work. I realized as I used the modifications, such as not lifting my head, staying in tabletop instead of extending my legs, that I was able to complete more reps of exercises that were previously discouraging to me.

Doesn't matter your workout. Always Dig Deep within you to get the results you want. @homeweightloss

I walked away from the class feeling pleased with my performance. I had dragged my feet to attend another one after a discouraging first class, and I am so glad I did. I am excited to see my progress from modifications that lessen the difficulty to modifications that increase the difficulty. Either way, I'm still getting a burn! 

How about you? Do you feel weird about doing modifications? How do you motivate yourself to try new workouts? Pilates: are you a fan? TELL ME ABOUT IT!
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