Friend Friday: Fashion, Fitness, and Femininity

This week Katy decided to focus on a topic that I think we should all be thinking about more often, and that is fitness. For more of my commentary on this topic, or inspiration for the gym, read my Health & Fitness/Gymspiration posts.

She asked:

  1. When you hear the word fitness what do you think?
  2. Do you have a workout routine? What’s your favorite way to workout?
  3. To you, what is the purpose of exercise?
  4. Do you think it is possible to be feminine and still workout?
  5. What do you think about the people who are workout obsessed? (You know those women and the gym who spend 4 hours working out and have more muscles than some men.)

Part 1—My fitness philosophy and regimen

Exercises

Some of the many exercises I do on a weekly basis include weighted single-leg deadlifts, squats, lunges, bicep curls, triceps extensions, lat pull downs, plié squats, leg raises, crunches, push-ups, side raises, upright rows, and many more. Bodybuilding.com has photos and details of all these exercises, organized by body part, if you’re interested.

Routine and Weights

I usually do a combination of two or three exercises in a set of three. I do between 10 and 20 repetitions per each exercise. For most exercises, I lift between 7.5 pounds and 50 pounds either using a machine, dumbbells, or a weighted bar. Some exercises (like standing rows or sitting squats) require double the weight since you are using both limbs or almost half your body. For those, I might use between 50 and 120 pounds or more.

An example of the combinations of exercises I perform: Using a 45-pound weight bar, deadlifts into standing bicep curls, 10 reps. With the weight bar on my shoulders, 20 lunges (10 each leg).  Then 30 torso rotations with a 9-pound bar on my shoulders. That is one grouping, each set done three times.

Or with 12-pound dumbbells in each hand, I do a hammer curl while stepping onto a bench, then hammer curl again while stepping backward and down into a lunge. I do 10 each leg, then 20 leg raises on the end of the bench. That grouping is done three times.

Part 2—Yes you can be fit and feminine!

Cardio

I don’t run or do high-intensity cardio two days in a row because it bothers my knees. I can walk every day, though, and that is my favorite cardio exercise when the weather permits. But I walk fast and for at least 45 minutes if I am outside, sometimes with a sprint or two in between.

In the gym, I jump on the elliptical and repeat this pattern for 20 or 30 minutes with the crossramp at level 5:

  • 2 minutes at level 10
  • 2 minutes at level 12
  • 3 minutes at level 14
  • 2 minutes at level 12
  • 2 minutes at level 10

On the treadmill, I start on a level 5 incline and repeat the same pattern above, using levels 5, 10, and 15, usually at between 3 and 3.5 mph. If the treadmill only goes to a level 10 incline, then I stay between level 5 and 10. I vary my stride, too. Sometimes I up the speed and go fast, almost at a jog, sometimes at the highest incline, I walk slower with the longest possible stride I can take.

*The Friend Friday project by Modly Chic is a way for bloggers to share more about themselves and create a friendly connection with other bloggers. Katy of Modly Chic sends us questions weekly, and we answer on our blogs.

PS: Be sure to check out my first Fab Friday 5 post at In Their Closet for my picks of the ‘Net this week!

44 comments

  1. Went through couple of your posts. Love your blog and this is great post for me too. ‘Coz I am in love with fitness. I started my blog originally with fitness on my mind … eventually it evolved 🙂

    P.S. You are so beautiful [even in your gym gear :)]

    1. Tanvi, welcome! So glad you found me! Following you back on Twitter and Bloglovin’…I love your blog!

      Thank you for your sweet words. You are too kind.

      1. Following you on Bloglovin and Twitter too! 🙂 but forgot to mention it … I would love to do a guest post. Will mail you about it soon! Have a great weekend!

    1. WOOT! Right on, mama. Hope you had a sensational workout!

      I’ve found on the days I’m dreading going to the gym, it’s all good once I get there. The key is to go even when you don’t want to, with no expectations. Then once you’re there, the endorphins start going and you feel energized and you do more than you intended.

  2. WOW, I’m so drooling at your toned arms, I need to take up pilates again, thanks for your wonderful VLOG as always, fabulous and easy to follow step by step fitness tips, LOVE it!!! wishing you a fabulous weekend darling :D, XOXO, J

    1. Thanks Jemina! Pilates is so great for the body too…wish I could afford regular private instruction on the Reformer!

  3. This post could NOT have come at a better time. All my life I have been scared away by the word ‘fitness,’ but for the past 6 weeks I’ve been jogging in an attempt to get more fit! (Unfortunately I haven’t dropped any weight…) So I think I should add some weight training into my routine!

  4. And that is why you look so freakin’ amazingly toned girl!

    That is one inspirational workout for sure, so thanks for sharing… I’m still lacking in the motivational side of things – my excuse is that it’s seriously hot, and knowing me, i’d probably pass out!!

    Have a fab weekend beautiful!
    x.o.x.o

    1. HA! Thank you hon! I know one thing, if I had to work out in the heat, it wouldn’t be happening. It’s hot even in my modern, air-conditioned gym.

      You have a fab weekend too!

  5. This is a great post as usual! And I love how you broke down exactly what you do for fitness. I’m totally with you about the combinations. The only way to really get a good workout in and train your whole body is to do a combination of weights, cardio, stretches, etc… And honestly, the way you feel when you are on a normal workout routine is so much better than slacking off.
    So cool you inspired your readers to hit the gym today. 😉

    1. Thanks Katy! We’re totally on the same page. I’m glad I inspired some readers to get to the gym. I need to get inspired and get on it myself…now!

  6. I enjoyed this post. It is so nice to hear that other women realize they can workout and still be feminine. Part of the reason I choose to walk instead of run is that while I know it takes more time, I realize that I enjoy it more – who cares if others think it’s a bit wimpy. After all, all I want is to look fabulous in my skinny jeans. =)

    1. Thank you. I’m totally with you on the walking. It’s better for your body on every level, anyway!

      And I’m sure you DO look fab in your skinnies!

  7. Unfortunately I’m at work right now so I haven’t been able to watch your vlog but seeing as I work at a gym this post is super relevant to me. I think it is incredibly sexy when people take care of themselves and have a healthy attitude towards fitness. It is also incredibly putting off when people take it too far. Exercise should be treated like one aspect of a healthy lifestyle.
    I personally get bored very easily so I try to mix up my routine a lot but yoga and pilates are my main loves. I also walk a lot and incorporate weights. I 100% believe that being fit and feminine can go hand and hand. I see beautiful, healthy and seriously FIT women every single day and they scream of femininity. My yoga instructor is my real-life girl crush and she positively glows!
    Overall, people who exercise on a regular basis are happier and that state of well-being transfers into the other aspects of their lives.

    You set a great example V!! xx

    1. Awesome, Brooke. I agree totally. Fitness has to be part of your lifestyle, not a chore you check off the list. It does help when you have a partner, though, I must admit. Or friends in yoga you can’t wait to see at 5:30am!!

      Thank you for your thoughtful comment and sweet words.

    1. EXCELLENT!!! I’m totally going to steal that from you! You’re a doll. Every time I see your name, I smile. Thanks, Lee.

    1. Awwwwwwwwwwwwwww!!!!

      Man, B, that is the LEAST, honey. If only we were closer. I value our friendship too. You’re one of the coolest chicks out there, hands down.

    1. Wow, thank you Lynzy! I always check you out, so I will definitely keep my eyes peeled. I appreciate your support and readership!

  8. Do you find that you have to eat a certain way to keep your body looking nice too? (You look great by the way.) I’ve never gotten my body looking the way I want it too. Right now I just walk or run every day. What I like about it is I can fit it into my daily life and it’s free. I love it but it doesn’t “do” much you know? Like you I really like yoga but I just find it’s too much of a time requirement.

    1. Heather, that is a good question. Diet is absolutely a part of staying healthy and fit. I have found over time that my body functions best on a low-carb plan. I don’t crave carbs…my nemesis is sugar…and peanut butter. Some people, like my father, for example, need a lot of carbs. What’s funny is I have more of my dad’s build and metabolism, but he eats a LOT of complex carbs, and I very, very little.

      A typical day of meals for me is two fried or boiled eggs in the morning with fruit or ham or turkey sausage. Lunch is a salad with bleu cheese, veggies, and chicken or seafood salad on it. Dinner is a fresh veggie or salad with baked or sauteed chicken, pork, or beef. Snacks are usually a tablespoon or two of peanut butter, a couple slices of turkey, fruit, or nuts. On the weekends, I’ll have chocolate or ice cream and a two or three gin martinis. I might have pasta or a slice of pizza once a month or every other month. Italian food is a major indulgence for me. I like it, but it really does not like me.

      As you noted, you have to do what works for your life, schedule, and body. It has taken me a lot of trial and error. But this is what I know for sure: I feel sluggish and my system gets totally thrown out of whack when I eat pasta. I need to go to the gym at least 2x a week to feel good and maintain, I can’t drink alcohol daily and stay lean, I refuse to not enjoy my life.

      Thanks for your comment!

  9. Loved this! Fitness used to be so much more of a priority of mine. Ever since I had my little dude…I’ve slacked. It’s definitely time to pick it back up!!

    1. Thanks Kristin…it is tough for those with children, that I know. Hopefully you’ll be able to get back to it soon. Baby steps—no pun intended.

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