I don’t know what I expected when I went back to the gym at 5:30am, but I kind of imagined applause when I walked in… some cheers… at least a hello? Just kidding, but could you imagine how awesome that would be. It was literally the same people in the 5:30am gym crew that have been going for years, and it was nice to be back in the familiar crowd. One gym friend that I chat with every time I see him asked how my summer was going and I said, “Check out my cycling tan, it’s going great!” He looked at my tan lines and laughed. He’s an Ironman so he totally got why I had weird lines on my legs.
I wanted to get in a weight lifting session yesterday before a morning interview and then an afternoon shift at work and an evening spin class. I did 60 minutes of upper body, everything from chest, back, biceps, triceps, and core. I have been doing a lot of outdoor activity like cycling, walking, swimming and running, so my weight lifting has taken a back seat. I was hesitant to go back to the gym in case I had lost a bit of strength but I killed it with the same weights I left off at, feeling pretty strong.
The nice thing about doing a bunch of cross training is that I don’t feel I’ve lost a lot of strength, I’ve just built it more naturally if that makes sense. I have stronger shoulders from swimming, I have stronger calves and quads from cycling, and I have strong legs from walking and running. I focused A LOT on strength training in the winter and to see it paying off in the summer is really cool. I am a much stronger swimmer after doing a lot of upper body work. I am definitely a faster cyclist after so many leg days. I like seeing the real advantages of weight training outside the gym because after all, I really wanted to be training for life. While I love the gym and lifting weights, taking a break from it and hitting the weights once or twice a week instead of 4-5 times has been wonderful. I love being outside in the summer and knowing that I’m not losing strength is even better. I also felt more tan than my pale winter self so that was nice. 😉
I saw lots of the same people at the gym, sadly no Hot Gym Guy, but it’s kind of funny to not be in the 5:30am gym crew for a few weeks, go back, and see everyone doing the exact same thing. It definitely made me think about progression and how I should think about my goals and what I’m working towards physically. I like to switch things up and push myself to new challenges. Right now my focus is generally not related to the gym but more keeping active outside, but it’s great to get back to weights and keep getting stronger as I push to do 100km+ bike rides and various hikes and runs.
Funny story: I had about ten minutes left of my workout and the power completely went out in the gym. The generator quickly came on and about a quarter of the lights came back on but it turns out it was the entire neighbourhood that was out. I finished my workout in the dark like the dedicated person I am and then headed out. I was very thankful that I wasn’t on the treadmill at the time of the outage, ha!
Do you strength train in the summer?
Do you find it harder to stick to the same fitness routine in the summer?
What’s your favourite endorphin-pumping workout lately?