Chest, Back and a Whole Lotta Rest

Oh Heyyyy! Just ANOTHER snow day here…Jamaica is just looking better and better lately.

This morning Chris and I got out of the house before the snow and did a chest and back workout. Check it out!

All the circuits are 3 sets of 10. Complete 20 total mountain climbers and plank jacks per set and 10 medicine ball tosses (with a partner or against the wall). As always, rest 1 minute between sets.

Chest and Back

  • Difficulty: intermediate
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I wanted to talk a bit about the importance of rest days. I typically work out 4-6 times a week for about an hour because that’s what works for me. Something I’ve struggled with in the past is finding balance between too much exercise and the guilt associated with my perception of too little exercise. My eating disorder really manifested itself in the way of compulsive exercise (once the other forms of purging had subsided), and I generated my own self worth based on how much I could exercise in a given week. In my mind, exercise=good, lots of exercise=better, way too much exercise=best. If I skipped a workout, my life really came to a screeching halt. My day to day was centered around my gym time, and if I couldn’t fit something in (like a hair cut, a doctor’s appointment, dinner with an old friend), then those activities would be cut first. The gym always won. In my mind: I was a good person because I was working out every day.

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A very hard and important lesson I have learned through my recovery is that quality far surpasses quantity. I know it sounds cliche, but it’s the truth. You’d be amazed how much better your body works when you treat it well. I was tired, grumpy, and weak for years because I was under fueling and over taxing my body. I thought I was just a tired person and that was the way it was going to be. Turns out, there’s more to life than elliptical machines and yawning. Missing a workout isn’t the end of the world. Changing a workout that doesn’t feel good doesn’t make you a bad person. Grabbing dinner and drinks with your besties won’t turn you into a monster. Laying on the couch all day watching Downton Abbey for 8 hours straight doesn’t make you a failure. In fact, I recommend all of those things! Often! Listen to your body. Need an extra hour of sleep today? The gym will still be there tomorrow. Rest is just as important as activity because your body  needs time to recharge and heal. Muscles need fuel and rest to grow. So far this week I slept through my alarm on Monday and Wednesday. Know what? I’m still awesome.

I really can’t stress it enough: my life is infinitely better without my eating disorder. It was a hard breakup. We were together for nearly two decades! But just like any other unhealthy relationship, I’m better off without him.

How often do you work out? Let me know in the comments!

xo R

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