Favorite exercise/Least favorite exercise + Anything you want to try?

saltysparkle
saltysparkle Posts: 145 Member
Want to share what your fave and least-fave workout activities are? Got anything you've always wanted to try but haven't?

I love ballet and gymnastics the most, but have loved nearly every type of dance I've tried. I also enjoy swimming -- in an advanced-beginner, I-can't-do-a-flipturn kind of way -- and yoga -- whenever I'm able to kick my butt back onto the mat. The tiny bit of trapeze and lyra I've tried I really enjoyed as well.

I have always struggled with hiking and weight-training. My family of origin and my husband love hiking. I...don't understand all the fuss unless there are waterfalls, or lots of lovely-smelling evergreens, or blueberry bushes along the way. And even then, I don't love it; it just makes it seem less horrible. My family particularly love the White Mountains, whereas I struggle along behind them, feeling like I'm going to die, and also like if I look up from the ground and don't see anything other than a forest of boring, deciduous trees, I'm going to lose my mind. My strategy even as a kid was sprint and scramble to the top, and get back down again as fast as I could, so I could read a book in the car or practice walkovers on the grass.

Weights I think I struggle with because they feel super-boring. If there were some kind of arc or competition involved, maybe I could get into it, but it just doesn't do anything for me? Which is a shame, because it's so good for us!

Someone on another board referred to her home-workout equipment as a "dreadmill" and I'm still giggling about it a few days later, because that really resonates with me.

What I've always wanted to try but not yet had an opportunity is rhythmic gymnastics!

Replies

  • KimShea01
    KimShea01 Posts: 23 Member
    I was always horrible at anything remotely athletic growing up. My favorite thing is to sit in a comfy chair with a glass of wine reading a book. As I child I did gymnastics - badly. And that was it. I found as an adult that I enjoy less conventional type physical activities, and now that I'm older, I don't mind trying things that push me out of my comfort zone - which I'd have never have done as a younger person.

    I hate running, but I did a half marathon once. I feel like that's good enough there. I've tried scuba diving and golf. I liked the diving but live in the middle of the midwest, so not a lot of opportunities. Golf bored me to tears. I do like to hike, but often in the middle of a couple day backpacking trip, I'll sit down on a log and cry, certain I'm either going to die in the backcountry, or have to be helicoptered out. But I haven't had either of those ever actually happen. I've tried free weights, and that was OK, but I also found it a little boring after a while, and I hated going to the gym with a bunch of 20 something dudes who like to look at themselves in the mirror a lot and hog the equipment. Probably that's unfair, but it's how I felt sometimes.

    I do find I enjoy the martial arts class I've been taking the last year or so. I did this originally because my middle daughter didn't want to play club volleyball over the winter. She has ADHD and depression and I felt some kind of physical activity was necessary for her, especially during covid when she was doing e-learning and depression was off the charts. She didn't want to do any school winter sports, and I knew a friend who taught the class. I said I'd do it with her, because she was nervous to try something new. And then I found I really enjoyed it myself. Though I'm easily the worst in the class. But the teacher and a couple of the black belts are around my age, and I've known them for a long time before starting the class - one of the black belts I used to co-lead a girl scout troop with for several years when our kids were younger. So I find I fit in, and it's not really competitive per se. More just working to get better. Although you can do tournaments. I don't think I want to do that though.
  • TwistedSassette
    TwistedSassette Posts: 7,697 Member
    I do the majority of my exercise at home. I do mostly videos on YouTube which are for yoga, indoor walking, or dance (not that I'm very good, but I enjoy it). I also have an attack bike so I ride that a fair bit. My favourite exercise lately has been playing Beat Saber on my VR headset - it's surprising how much of a sweat you can build up and how sore you can be afterwards, it's definitely a good calorie-burner!

    I used to go for walks with my son in the stroller, but he's outgrown it now. He's 2.5 so walking with him now is a bit slow-going. We still go for walks, but it's more for his exercise than for mine!

    I really struggle with any kind of strength training. I don't enjoy the repetition, and I don't like the muscle soreness for the couple of days after. I used to go to Body Pump classes which made it much more fun, but the times they're on doesn't really work for me now!

    My local gym has a class schedule with a lot of the Les Mill program which is good, but I can't really get there when the classes are on as I'm either working or tending to my son! Most of my free time for exercise happens after 8:30pm so I'm pretty much limited to what I can do at home! Sometimes there are yoga classes on a weekend which are great and I really enjoy those.
  • Skyler103
    Skyler103 Posts: 121 Member
    I have a stationary recumbent bike, and riding it is really the only exercise I've never hated. I played tennis in high school, but I'm not sure I could do it anymore. I used to play golf, but that's really not much exercise, and it's the most frustrating game in the world. I value my mental health too much to take it up again. I would like to try yoga, but I'm not very bendy. I would love to do boxing, but I worry that I'd hurt my hands and then I couldn't work. My husband and I are thinking about getting some weights and turning the office into a workout room. That's already where my stationary bike is.
  • TwistedSassette
    TwistedSassette Posts: 7,697 Member
    @Skyler103 That's what we did as well, put the bike and weights etc. in the office to turn it into a workout room. I currently share the "home gym" with hubby's 3D printers, so there was some compromise!
    If you're interested in trying yoga, I totally recommend Yoga with Adriene on YouTube, she's really down to earth and doesn't take it all too seriously. And, you'd be surprised how quickly you can become more bendy! I don't know how old you are but for many people, mobility becomes more and more important as we age, so getting a head start is never a bad thing!
  • saltysparkle
    saltysparkle Posts: 145 Member
    Wow, so much of what you all have shared is relatable.

    I'd like to second TwistedSassette's plug for Yoga with Adriene for anyone thinking about trying yoga. She has a ton of free classes on-line. Some are as short as 5 minutes, just to explain a pose, some are instructional where she talks you through, and some are flow, with quiet music and less talking. I think some folks take one look at Adriene -- who is young, and a model, and very flexible -- and think her classes won't be for them, and that's a shame, because I think she's really down-to-earth and while I'm sure her sense of humor isn't for everyone, I think she's a real hoot. And let's face it, how often does working out make you laugh?

    (I'm actually about to do one of her videos today, because I've been doing far too much walking and weights and not enough stretching, and I can feel my body starting to get out of whack.)
  • Skyler103
    Skyler103 Posts: 121 Member
    That's really great to know that there are some good beginner videos out there! Maybe I'll try it as soon as I get the room cleared out enough that I have some floor space. It seems like I'm always stiff and kinked up. Especially my back and shoulders. I've started up massages again, after not having any during covid. Hopefully that will help too. FYI I'm 48, so not ancient lol. I can tell a difference I how move the last 4 or 5 years, though.

    I think about my elder years a lot. That's the main reason I quit smoking. Since we don't have kids, or really anyone younger than us we really need to be completely independent as long as possible.
  • goal06082021
    goal06082021 Posts: 2,130 Member
    I actually really enjoy weightlifting. My middle school actually had a small weights room, the various PE class sections would rotate through different activities week to week and I loved getting to be in there. Part of that was because it was inside in the AC, rather than outside in the Florida heat and sun (in the 2000s, well after they stopped using the locker room showers as anything but storage, probably realizing "hey maybe we DON'T want to have eleven-year-olds naked on school grounds, for any reason, ever, their post-gym-class pubescent funk notwithstanding"). But, also I think if someone would have steered me toward that and actually taught me anything about strength training in middle/high school, it would have done wonders for my self esteem and given me a 10-15 year head start on achieving dwarven shieldmaidenhood. But then again, I also had the misfortune of being born female. Probably if I'd tried to go out for the weightlifting team in high school I would have been shut down from all sides. Everything I know about lifting is self-taught, because paying another human person to scrutinize my body is basically my personal definition of hell, so a trainer is Right Out. But yeah, resistance training is so so so important for women especially - it keeps our bones strong and healthy, protecting against osteoporosis.

    I go to a Planet Fitness because that's where my budget is at right now. For while in 2019 I had a membership at a boutique gym in town - they bought a Gold's and were in the process of converting it when I joined, so I managed to get a membership for like $25/month. I did appreciate being able to do real bench presses, squats, and deadlifts with real Olympic bars and plates, instead of the preloaded tiny bars and Smith machines at PF. I should look and see what my PRs were at that time, I wrote them down but I don't remember now. But then a Planet Fitness opened closer to my house, so I quit the boutique to head back to PF. It was newer, cleaner, half the price, and way less crowded. Then the pandemic happened, I sat on my *kitten* for 8 months, got sick of feeling crappy all the time and started following the workout videos in the PF app at home in my living room. I did a mix of cardio and strength, bodyweight as well as dumbbells (with some little 5-pounders). Right now I'm halfway through the Strong Curves program - things ramp up at week 5, though, so I'm fully prepared for this program to kick my (increasingly strong and shapely) behind this month. I do that three days a week, get my cardio in the form of walks at the various parks and natural areas around town two days a week, and do some yoga and play Ring Fit Adventure on the Nintendo Switch one day a week each.

    I tried to get into running in college. I did OK - I wasn't a speed demon or anything, I think my personal best was about a 9-and-a-half-minute mile. And I promptly fell off the running wagon senior year in the midst of finals. Turning 21 didn't help matters either. I've made a few attempts since then to get back into it, doing Couch to 5k and the like, and usually around week 4 I realize wait a minute, this sucks and I hate it. Maybe I'll give it another go when I'm closer to goal, who knows, but I'm really thinking that hiking may be my preferred form of cardio. "Hiking" should probably be in really generous air quotes - I'm in south Florida, there are no real hills to speak of here, let alone mountains. But there are a TON of natural areas around my county, many of which have walking and "hiking" trails. Some of the natural areas include sand dunes, which do represent some amount of elevation change (like...fifteen feet, it's something), and trudging uphill in the soft sugar sand has to burn extra calories, right? That's what I tell myself.
  • saltysparkle
    saltysparkle Posts: 145 Member
    @Zephy/Goal (<--Do you have a preference?), having been walking in my hilly, rural area 725 days out of the last 730 (since getting a dog -- don't worry, someone else walked her while I had surgery), and having just gone to the beach for the first time in ages and walked on sand as it gave way under my feet, I am here to attest that yes, that definitely burns extra calories!
  • hessiondesign4
    hessiondesign4 Posts: 18 Member
    I really like walking...walking in the woods, walking along city streets, walking in a public park or reserve, just walking the dogs, walking and talking with friends....I've used walking as my go-to, "isn't going to be to hard to motivate myself to do that" sort of exercise, kind of along the lines that anything is better than nothing. Some days I make it harder by incorporating the hills I live on, some days the dogs want to go faster, some days they just want to drag up the hill at a slow pace so that's the way we walk it, we average at least 2miles anytime we go. And if we have the opportunity to hike on a dog friendly trail well that only helps the dogs who don't get out of their routine much.

    I also like exercise bicycles, treadmill, and concept II rowing ergometers (I used to do JV Crew in college) In the winter I walk on the snowmobile trail or snowshoe or Country ski when I can (which is usually only on a saturday or sunday because the days are so short and I work). I don't mind exercise classes, although I've stopped paying any extra money for membership anywhere...I have some workout DVDs that I sometimes enjoy doing (a couple from SELF and there's a Denise Austin dance inspired one (she is waaaay too perky! LOL). I like weight training and yoga (or stretches/pilates...it's very non formal) because I've been doing that since I was in middle school Jr. High.

    I was never athletic as a kid/school person...organized sports were not my thing, but I was always active and on the go (just the team sports thing, I wasn't coordinated enough for) I found swimming when I was in high school and really enjoyed being part of that team even though it was only one year...the idea of just trying to be better than the day before appealed to me. It paved the way for going out for the crew team (again no previous experience) because I was fit and muscular I adapted well...it was a team sport and an individual sport rolled into one, you had to constantly work to improve your own strength and endurance, and also work like a cog in unison with the other members of your boat. I loved it.

    I always loathed running - other than the kind you did as a kid playing tag, flying kites and goofing around with friends...when I was an adolescent I developed quite amply in my chest area and I never really had good sneakers for it, so running would be painful on two accounts...several years ago I took up running for fun (because i had been enjoying it on the treadmill) I am no longer encumbered by an ample chest (due to situations out of my control) and I figured 'hey, why not!?' I didn't loathe it any more, but my body sort of still did (knees especially) since I am also quite a bit heavier! So I had to cut that out unless I am in an area that has a flat dirt road, or on the treadmill (which i do not have but am saving for, instead of paying gym fees).
  • Skyler103
    Skyler103 Posts: 121 Member
    I don't know if you guys have Lifetime Fitness where you are, but I have one less than a mile away from me. I'd love to join that gym! They have so many amenities and classes and perks. You could probably spend all day there. But a membership is almost $150 per month! I could swing it, but that's just way too much!
  • goal06082021
    goal06082021 Posts: 2,130 Member
    Skyler103 wrote: »
    I don't know if you guys have Lifetime Fitness where you are, but I have one less than a mile away from me. I'd love to join that gym! They have so many amenities and classes and perks. You could probably spend all day there. But a membership is almost $150 per month! I could swing it, but that's just way too much!

    I'd never heard of Life Time Fitness (apparently it is two words) - YIKES on BIKES, very literally. It looks cool and all, but realistically how often would you utilize ALL of those bells and whistles, for what looks to be closer to $180/mo for the "standard" membership. There's a "digital access" membership tier where you pay $15/mo for a phone app with live-streamed and video workouts but you aren't actually allowed to enter the physical building and work out there.

    I'll just say Planet Fitness is ten bucks a month, twenty if you want access to the black card spa/other clubs, and the app is free (with membership)...they advertise some kind of premium features in the app for another $5ish/mo but I haven't sprung for that so idk what else there is.
  • Skyler103
    Skyler103 Posts: 121 Member
    I'm not sure I'd have the time to enjoy all the amenities, either! I know I'd be spending some time in the eucalyptus steam room, though! I priced out a membership and it's $120 for a single person. $180 for a couple. My husband is definitely not interested lol. Im thinking of going and taking a tour, just to see what it's really like. There are tons of things for kids to do there, too. I worry the place will be crawling with kids. You guys will probably think I'm horrible, but I can't stand kids. If there are a bunch all over the place, it wouldn't be for me.
  • TwistedSassette
    TwistedSassette Posts: 7,697 Member
    Wow, those gyms are expensive! That's crazy. My local gym (we don't have any chains here) use a sliding scale depending how often you attend, so if you don't go then you don't pay, and it caps out at AUD$110 (~USD$80) a month after 10 visits. I thought that was bad enough, considering it's a small gym but it does offer classes and has everything you need. I'm lucky that my employer covers our gym fees if we want to go!
  • Skyler103
    Skyler103 Posts: 121 Member
    Wow, that's a win-win if it's covered by work! I'm not going to be comfortable there if it's just a bunch of rich people flaunting their expensive gym clothes. The tour will be interesting, though! I'll report back about it when I get around to going.
  • goal06082021
    goal06082021 Posts: 2,130 Member
    I would definitely expect a gym like that to be nothing but rich people flaunting their expensive gym clothes, and probably expensive bodies, too. Do let us know if the vibe is different when you do check it out, but even just the website gave me very strong "see and be seen" vibes - it's an exclusive space for the social elite to be, it exists because there is a group of people who will pay for it just because it is there and it is expensive, and the fact that there is exercise equipment available is incidental at best. There's also something to be said about the cultural legacy of fitness as a luxury pursuit but I haven't had enough coffee yet to put together a coherent sermon about it, LMAO.
  • saltysparkle
    saltysparkle Posts: 145 Member
    So, the YMCA offers Livestrong classes (and a family membership for a year for FREE). to anyone with cancer. I'm on the list, but unfortunately, I can't be cleared til after my next surgery, and then I'll need to be working -- most likely when their classes are. But I've got to say: The YMCA near me is really, really nice. I'm crossing my fingers that I'll manage to make it work somehow.
  • jo_nz
    jo_nz Posts: 595 Member
    I absolutely hated all physical activity as a kid. Didn't mind a day hike, and walked to friends' houses often, but that's about it.
    I later did some casual sports with friends, had various gym memberships at different times, but still basically hated it all.

    After I broke my ankle a few years ago, I then had a long recovery, and my balance was not good. I then joined a Tai Chi school, which was great, gentle exercise and helped me get a bit of balance and mobility back. And that's also around when we got our dog - it's great to have that extra nudge to get out the door for a walk.

    When I was ready for a little more, I found a Reformer Pilates studio, and I really loved that - a great way to work on imbalances. But that shut down with lockdown in March 2020. The owner did offer some one on one sessions at her place (after the initial lockdown when we were allowed out again) to complete my membership period.

    When that ended, I was a little lost, and then found Les Mills On Demand - a subscription service with classes available whenever I wanted. I didn't realise how self-conscious I must have felt at the gym until I wasn't. I love the flexibility and variety, and am now dreaming of getting a spin bike.... once I figure out where it can go in my small house.
    I can't believe I am even saying it, but I look forward to my workouts now!!
  • goal06082021
    goal06082021 Posts: 2,130 Member
    So I just realized that Strong Curves is actually a TWELVE-week program and somehow the spreadsheet I pulled off of LiftVault only had the first 8 weeks on it. So, I guess I know what I'll be doing in the gym next month. The only thing I'm not excited about is Workout A includes push-ups. Never been good at those, might just keep working on bench press instead.
  • Skyler103
    Skyler103 Posts: 121 Member
    I've been doing push ups after my cardio lately. I ordered some resistance bands and they got here last night I'm going to look up what all I can do with them!
  • saltysparkle
    saltysparkle Posts: 145 Member
    You all are doing great! I've been almost 100% failing lately, but I'm trying to check back in. Today I will do my hour of PT exercises.