Today, my arms are J-E-L-L-O and they are certainly letting me know they’re alive.
Last night I did a free level 1 yoga class at Corepower Yoga. Even though it was ‘Level 1′, I got a great stretch and sweat. The room was warm from the class before and since I know the flow, I was able to focus more on technique. I paid particular attention to my chaturanga and my triceps are feeling it today.
This morning, my alarm went off at 530a, just as the sun was rising, so I could make it to the 6a spin class at my gym.
And yes, I was still in my skivvies when I took that picture on my balcony. I have to admit, when my rooster alarm annoyingly started crowing so early this morning, I was tempted to snooze it for another 20 minutes. But I knew if I wanted to make it to this spin class, I had to leave early to make sure I got a bike. So I hopped out of bed, snapped a sunrise picture, changed and was out the door.
I’m so glad I pulled myself out of bed and into class. It was just the kick in the pants I needed to start this work week off right. I’ve taken this instructor before and LOVE her – she’s young, energetic and puts together a great workout. And anyone who plays Enrique, Brittney and Coldplay in a class, before ending with Taylor Swift, is a-okay in my book.
Exercising in a Class vs. Exercising Solo
During one of the loooong uphill climbs, I got to thinking about exercising in a class vs. exercising solo. While I am a fan of both, recently I’ve found myself wanting to take more classes. I think it’s partly the social aspect of being with other people and friends but I think a lot of it is that I push myself a lot harder in a class. Be it my competitive nature or the high energy music, I always kick it up a notch when I’m in an exercise class.
Case in point – this weekend, I tried to do YogaTV 30 minute session after biking but quit halfway through. Frankly, I got bored. There was no music, there was no instructor walking around to offer suggestions, there were no classmates to feed off of and the flow was slow.
Classes keep me accountable – to stretch longer, peddle faster, turn the resistance up a smidge more than I would on my own. I knew this morning that if I didn’t get up and make that spinning class, I would be left to ‘ellipicize’ and would hardly work as hard.
The same goes for groups – when I have the green light to run again, I look forward to running buddies and new running groups. Another way to socialize, push myself and keep accountable. Every now and then, it’s nice to have a solo run but in general, I’d much rather have a friend or two with me.
Benefits of Exercising Solo
It’s on your timetable, and no one else’s. You can work out whenever, wherever, and however you want without having to adjust your schedule to accommodate other people’s schedules. You can concentrate on what you need, whether it’s general weaknesses, specific muscle groups, or a long-term goal.
When you’re alone, you don’t have to worry about what you’re wearing, what other people are wearing, their body shapes, your body shapes, how fit everyone else is, how unfit you may feel, how quickly they’re going, and how slow you’re going. You can concentrate solely on yourself and the task at hand. Exercising alone will not only help you improve your fitness, but it will also help you gain confidence. You might eventually feel comfortable joining a group fitness situation.
Working out with others creates more distractions, especially if the folks you’re working out with are your friends. It’s all too easy for your run to turn into a walk if you have a lot to talk about. When it comes to exercise, everyone and every body has unique requirements. You won’t always get the ideal workout for your current condition in a group training setting — for example, if you have a nagging ailment or aren’t feeling your best.
Read also: Ten Minute Exercise Routines For Busy People
Disadvantages of Exercising Alone
When you workout alone, it’s easy to become stuck in your training because you’re simply “putting down” miles rather than improving your speed or fitness. When you can’t inspire alone, a group can help you train deliberately and stay focused. Your workout will become more difficult and gratifying if you have to offer a little more to stay up with the group. To avoid overtraining injuries, make sure your workout group has comparable goals and is at the same level as you.
While joining a group may seem intimidating at first, you’ll be surrounded by others who are in the same boat as you, so there’s no need to be concerned. Furthermore, given the large number of group lessons offered (sometimes more than one per day, every day), you are sure to find a session that works for you.
As a result, working out with people can provide all of the ingredients for a healthy, active lifestyle.
If you’re feeling alone as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and its repercussions, now might be the best time to attempt remote group exercise. If the weather permits, you might be able to find an outdoor yoga class with plenty of space between people, or a disguised running club.
Train with someone who are a little faster or fitter than you every now and then to keep you motivated. But think of these sessions like the chilies you’d use in a home-cooked dinner; they’re potent, and while using them sparingly can greatly improve things, adding too much can be disastrous!
What about you? Do you like exercising solo or in a class/group setting?
Now, if you’ll excuse me, these tired arms need to take a typing break before the long work day!