Archive for June, 2015

Fri. – 6/19 Disturbing the Peace

Morris Brown founded the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston as a place for black Christians to worship on their own, away from the white supremacy of Charleston’s existing churches. The church quickly grew in power and prestige. Within a year, in 1817, Charleston’s white power structure felt threatened enough to send in the police. As directed, the Charleston police raided the church and arrested everyone. 475 parishioners were convicted of disturbing the peace. The punishment: 5-10 lashes with a bullwhip. The message: as a black person, whether enslaved or free, you will be made to suffer if you dare to disturb the peace. Morris Brown was given the choice to close the church and leave town, or be whipped in the town square. He chose to stay.

A year later, the police again raided the church. At this point, some historians believe, one of the church leaders lost faith in the possibility of gradual change and started planning an uprising. His name was Denmark Vesey.

On this 19th day of our 30 day Energy Challenge, we’re remembering that rage is a form of energy.

For more on Denmark, you can read here, here, and here. This is just an exercise blog, after all. Here’s our exercises for Friday:

Every 2 minutes, for 12 minutes (6 rounds):

3 person-makers (sub 7 burpees if you don’t have dumbbells)
6 walking lunges each leg
15 sit-ups (V-ups if you wish)
bear crawl back, growling if that’s how you feel

Thur. – 6/18 In your prime

Quick and not at all easy, descending prime number ladder of burpees & squats:

23 burpees, 19 squats,  17 burpees, 13 squats, 11 burpees, 7 squats,  3 burpees, 1 squat

Weight the squats if you’re able, with 1 or 2 dumbbells, or by starting with an empty barbell and loading weight with each set.

Then for the day’s energizer, drink 5 glasses of water throughout the day. 

What’s your fantasy fun workout involving water? Give us your ideas in the comments. 

Wed. – 6/17 Midweek mindfulness

photo 25

It’s hot. Hard to focus. Enervating. Hard to keep a whole thought together all the way through the…what? What was I saying? Oh right, it’s really hot.

And there’s nothing hotter right now in corporate America than the idea that it’s possible to increase productivity through a quick shot of meditation. This is oversimplified, capitalist crap, of course, but there is plenty of science linking meditation to everything from increased brain mass to increased pain control, better quality sleep, increased ability to learn a foreign language, and a higher tolerance for stress. Also, changes in epigenetic gene expression, whatever that is.

Sometime today, find a quiet place to sit for 10 minutes of meditation. If you have a meditation practice, practice your practice. If you’d like a 10-minute guided meditation, this is a fine video you can use. Or you can read this long-ish but good-ish intro to the varieties of meditation, and get yourself 10 minutes to start. Do you have a guided meditation link you like? Share in the comments.

Our high-energy midweek jam:

12 high jumps, 12 V-ups, 12 burpees, 30-seconds of your best inversion
3 times straight through OR once through 5 times through the day

Oooohm on, mindful queerfitters!

Mon. + Tue. -6/15 & 16 Off to the mountains

Queerfitters, you’re on your own for two days…I’m off to the woods without internet connection. Make up a workout you missed, or make up one of your own and post it to the comments. See y’all Tuesday night…

Sun. – 6/14 Sevens, then a Grocery List

Sunday’s workout, do as early in the day as you can manage.

7 burpees, 7 push presses, 7 weighted squats (dumbbells at your shoulders)

7 times through. Take a 1 minute break after the 3d and 5th rounds.

For energy throughout this next week, put these 7 lowest-cost, readily available high quality proteins on your grocery list:

Eggs
Chickpeas
Canned tuna
Cottage cheese
Ground turkey
Peanut butter
Lentils
Edamame (look in the frozen foods)
Milk

Skip the sodas and anything with sugar. Just for the week, friend – you can do this.

Sat. – 6/13 Practicing the Power Nap

Saturday we get the best of all the energy boosts: the 10 minute nap. They actually tested this, and confirmed that 10 minutes is the best amount of time for a sustained, midday energy boost. The best times are late morning and early afternoon.

The research suggests we should be taking a 10 minute nap every day. That may seem a stretch, but let’s go ahead and try it out today. Find a dark, quiet place, set your alarm for 12 minutes, and start counting sheep, one for every deep, relaxing breath. Get up when the alarm sounds, drink a glass of water, and go on with the rest of the day. 

That’s it. No workout today, unless you’re in Supergroup. In which case, see you at 10:00 for your pre-nap workout. 

Fri. – 6/12 One Thing

Do one thing every day that scares you. – Eleanor Roosevelt 

On our 12th day of earning our Earnergy, we turn to Eleanor for the general idea and science for the details. You’re going to give yourself  a shot of adrenaline today by doing something that really scares you. If just thinking about it makes your heart race a little, good. If you break out into a sweat when you imagine actually doing it, even better. 

Don’t pick something that makes you frustrated or angry. Do, if possible, pick something that involves other people.

Today’s dare, either as your daring thing or in addition to your daring thing:

4 sets of (25 squats + 1 min wall sit) in 4 different public places.

Let us know what brave thing you did today in the comments. 

6/11 – Thur. No edits

I’m writing this on my iPhone, which is at 10% power. That means I have no time to edit. My writing coach says we should write like that sometimes, without going back to correct, without editing, just an almost stream of consciousness getting from point A to B. 

How much energy would you be saving if you didn’t edit everything about yourself? We edit what we put on social media, we edit how we write, we edit what we say, we edit how we feel.

For Thursday’s energy challenge, cut out the editing. If not in everything, in something. Like waiting until you have exactly the right way of saying something before you say it. Let us know in the comments how that went.

As for the workout:

21 squats (weighted if possible), 21 lunge steps each leg, Bear walk back to your starting point

15 squats, 15 lunge steps, bear walk back

9 squats, 9 lunge steps, bear walk back

Wed. – 6/10 DB squat clean thrusters & a good night’s sleep

In our 30 days of science-backed methods for boosting energy, today’s booster is the easiest and hardest of them all…

Get more, better sleep.

Sleep deprivation has been linked to everything from depression to persistent anxiety. People who don’t get enough sleep tend to develop unhealthy eating habits, because we crave high-carb/high-fat foods when we’re tired. Sleeping less than 6 hours a night increases the risk of a stroke in older people, the risk of diabetes in younger people, and the risk of heart attacks in everyone. And what else? Oh yeah, memory loss. If you want a handy but unhelpful chart, here’s one from the National Sleep Foundation telling us most adults need something between 7 and 9 hours, but maybe as little as 6 or as much as 10.

Here are top 4 things to do to get more, better sleep:

4. Block out as much light as possible.
3. Keep the three hours before bedtime free of screen time.
2. Go to bed 30 minutes earlier.

And number one…

1. Exercise regularly. Ideally in the late afternoon, but anytime is better than no time.

Here’s the workout for Wednesday…

6 minutes of dumbbell squat clean thrusters,
with 3 burpees at the top of every minute

Tell us in the comments how many you got.

Tues. – 6/8 Helping Out

IMG_3230How great are we?!

One of the greatest energy boosters is to give someone else a hand (or a piggyback ride). As social animals, most of us are hard-wired to help one another. When we help someone out, endorphins tend to spurt out of our brains and our stress level drops. Less stress, more energy.

Tuesday’s dare for our Earnergy Challenge is to help someone who can use some help. Stranger, friend, co-worker; big, small or medium…it doesn’t matter to our little endorphin factories. What good thing did you do today?

Then, at the top of every hour, at least 8 times throughout the day:

8 squats, 7 push-ups, 6 mountain climbers each leg, 7 push-ups, 8 squats.

Then run around the living room at the end of the day with your arms above your head in a celebratory pose when you do the math and realize how many push-ups you did today.