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Starting the Week Right: Workouts and Wellness

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Hi Everyone,

It’s a brand new week and I am ready to meet it. Sometimes in our lives we find that we desperately need a reset. For me, that’s been the status quo for a while.

The Covid-19 pandemic has been challenging, and the changes to my routine combined with the addition of a new baby have left me feeling spread thin and very, very tired. I’ve been feeling two steps behind on my to-do list. As someone who likes to get stuff done and checked off my list, that has increased the mental burden of this unprecedented time. Add to that the financial impact of the pandemic and my stress has been in overdrive.

So what helped me get through the stress and feel ready to move ahead? I stopped telling myself that everything was alright and I had no reason to be stressed. I have so many reasons to be joyful. I am 100% aware of that. However, I was using all of those reasons to talk myself out of acknowledging that my stress was valid. Giving myself time to recognize that things are hard right now helped to decrease my guilt in feeling overwhelmed.

The demands of our life and our energy levels fluctuate. I’ve been in a phase where the requirements of my life were exceeding the levels of energy I had to meet everything with. Once I recognized that, I identified some of the areas that were causing me stress and I worked to eliminate the things that I could.

One of those things was easy. I deleted the Facebook app from my phone. The hatefulness I was seeing from so many people made my heart ache. I found that one small change had a lot of impact. I had more time, and I was spending less energy getting upset. I didn’t log in for a week and I found that it positively impacted my mood.

I raked leaves and let my kids run and jump in the piles. I did yoga outside, and taught Maverick some new poses. I went through closets and donated or sold things that we didn’t need. I enjoyed the smells of autumn and the sun shining on my face. I admired the colors of the leaves on the trees and the crunch they made underfoot. I let myself disconnect without feeling guilty for it.

I did some workouts, made a playlist of happy songs, read two books, made it through some sinus headaches, showed up for work and had some great interactions with my students, and I feel refreshed.

Somehow, when I let myself relax a bit, I continued to get stuff done and I found more joy in it.

What helps you when you’re feeling stressed and overwhelmed? Let me know in the comments.


PS You can find me on Social Media: @BenderFitness and on Facebook: @MelissaBenderFitness and Jesse is on Instagram: @BenderCrosby1

PPS If you want to help support BenderFitness so we can keep bringing you new workouts, your donation is greatly appreciated:

Today’s Workout:

Equipment: I use one dumbbell in this workout. I alternated between High Knees and Dumbbell Swings for my cardio bursts. You can easily use a kettle bell instead of a dumbbell if you decide to give the swings a try. You can also choose another form of cardio (High Knees, Burpees, Mountain Climbers, Jump Rope…the sky is the limit!)

Proper Form for Kettlebell (or Dumbbell) Swings.

Workout Video:

Set Your Interval Timer for 10 Rounds of 10/30/10/50

*30-Seconds of Cardio Before Each Exercise*

  1. Low Impact Burpee
  2. Lunge to Hydrant-Right
  3. Lunge to Hydrant-Left
  4. Down Dog Cross Kick-Right
  5. Down Dog Cross Kick-Left
  6. Leg Drop Series
  7. Reverse Plank Step Out
  8. Angel Abs
  9. Side Plank Foot Tap-Right
  10. Side Plank Foot Tap-Left

Repeat 1-3X

Full Workout Breakdown with Photo Tutorial:

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