***8 Minutes in the Morning for Real Shapes,
by Jorge Cruise
June 17, 2003.
Rodale, 2003. 249 pages.
Available at Sembach Library (613.7 CRU).
Some of you may have been following my efforts to start exercising.
I’ve never been an exerciser, mainly because I’m not willing to devote any
time to it. However, reading Pain
Free for Women,
by Pete Egoscue, convinced me that leaving exercise
out of my life probably wasn’t good for my health. I tried the exercises
in that book and in Pain Free,
that it would help my headaches, but with no real improvement. I gave
them up after a few months, because they simply took too long.
Next, I read The Slow Burn Workout.
This book claimed that their slow burn strength training techniques, done
only once a week (taking about a half-hour), would keep you just as fit
as time-consuming aerobic exercise. I’ve been doing those exercises
for about four months. They’re boring, with the same routine every
time, but I figured that I can stand a half-hour a week for the sake of fitness.
In the mean time, I read The New Sugar Busters
and lost ten pounds simply by cutting out my four cans of Mountain Dew per
day and having oatmeal for breakfast. (Of course, the Slow Burn Workouts
may have also contributed, as did catching the flu!)
Parenthetically, I should mention that cutting the caffeine made a big
difference in my headaches, at least once I took antibiotics and got rid
of the sinus infection that came on when I had the flu. I’m sure the
exercises don’t hurt, but cutting the caffeine helped more than anything.
I almost didn’t bring home 8 Minutes in the Morning for Real Shapes
because it says on the cover that it’s “specifically designed
for people who want to lose 30 pounds or more.” I would definitely
be in serious trouble if I lost 30 pounds!
However, the book was sitting on my desk while I waited for its circulation
date. When I looked at the exercises, they are very similar to the
Slow Burn technique. They are strength-training workouts. Because
they are designed for overweight people, they are perfect for a thin but
weak person like me. Like the Slow Burn workout, they exercise all your
different muscle groups. However, instead of exercising everything and
then waiting a week to exercise again, with this book, you exercise two muscle
groups per day, going through your whole body in six days, with each muscle
group getting a week off before it’s worked again.
Best of all, this book has a set of four weeks worth of exercises, with
different exercises for each day (with Sundays off), so it’s much less
boring than repeating the one Slow Burn workout each week.
This book also includes an eating system. It seems reasonable--simply
fill half your plate with vegetables, one-fourth with grains and one-fourth
with protein, using one tablespoon of fat. He also recommends small
snacks a couple of hours after eating, and a treat each day. The book
is full of motivational ideas for losing weight.
Since I’m not doing the exercises to lose weight (though I wouldn’t
mind losing another five to ten pounds), but to gain some strength and
fitness, I’m skipping the “people solution” sections. These sections
include ideas like enlisting a team of friends to help you lose weight
and visualizing yourself in your new body. It all seems like a great
plan if you do want to lose 30 pounds or more. As it is, I’m enjoying
these exercises and am finding that getting my body moving is a great way
to start the day. Like a half-hour per week, I find I can stand to
give 8 to 10 minutes to exercise each morning. Any more than that
I’m too busy for, but 8 minutes, I can do.
Copyright © 2003 Sondra Eklund.
All rights reserved.