Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Burn off steam, not your wallet

After a long day at work, there was nothing that I was looking forward to more than burning off some steam. I went into my spinning class tense & frustrated, and left an hour later on the most incredible high feeling exhausted yet accomplished & re-energized.

My idea of exercising used to be window shopping along Ste. Catherines. After the day I had today, the old-me would have treated hersef to a little 'something' from Winners, Jacob, Tristan, H&M or Zara. I'd grace my closet with a new item thinking I deserved it for all I had put up with and wearing my new piece to work the next day would at least give me a thrill on my way into the office.

But two years ago I met my Eye Candy and he's a fitness buff. They say you can't change your partners, but his 5x a week crossfit work-outs inspired me. I went from being an occassional jogger to a runner. And from finishing my first half-marathon last spring, I kicked it up a notch with spinning and swimming. Now I'm working out 4x a week minimum and it's true, there is nothing like the athlete's high. I'm by no means an extreme athlete or anywhere near a top-notch competitor, but I consider myself to be the real Sporty Spice! The thrill I get from working out genuinely out-weighs the thrill of the find during a shopping spree.

The best part is that this high is affordable. I budget each month for my YMCA membership ($52 after a 10% corporate discount) and train with my 3 Vitesses club for spinning and swimming ($100 for 3 months). And running? It's free to pound the pavement as a road warrior!

There are lots of free or inexpensive, but fabulous work-out options. So say you're 5'4 and about 135 lbs, LIVESTRONG says you would burn the following calories by exercising for 1 hour:
  • Vigorous spinning = 730 calories
  • Dog walking = 350 calories
  • Vigorous swimming = 617 calories
  • Yoga = 324 calories
  • Stretching = 154 calories
  • Running = 555 calories
  • Stair climbing = 458 calories
  • Hiking = 410 calories
  • Tennis (doubles) = 408 calories

In addition to spending my evenings burning calories, my money is now safe & sound. Mostly because I'm too tired afterwards to hit the shops. Who would want to try on clothes after they are all hot & sweat anyways? No one I hope!


1 comment:

  1. I really need to get back into exercising.

    I ran my first half-marathon last spring, and haven't done much since. Except volleyball. But that's not really exercise. At least not when you play 6's.