Today, after my ten minutes of warm-up, I went through the usual drill of machine weights (including my fave, the leg abductor/adductor), all the arm machines were in use. I figured today was as good a day as any to try out the free weights.
Here's what I hate about free weights: they are usually found in a room with very muscular men and women who look like they are training for a weightlifting competition. The good part? All the 3 and 5 pound weights are free for use. (Another play on the term "free weights," perhaps?) I grabbed a 5-pounder and tried to look like I knew what I was doing.
First, I stood feet shoulder width apart (it seems all exercises begin like this, so I figured it seemed correct), and extended my arms out so they were in line with my shoulders. I then lifted my arms up and down slowly ten times. Then I used a weight bench and placed one knee on it, and one arm with my palm flat against it (as if leaning over the bench) and I pulled my arm back to work my triceps. Then I did curls. I have to say...these worked my arms much more than the weight machines. I found a site that has fairly simple yet effective arm exercises: http://www.shape.com/fitness/toned-arms-in-record-time?page=1
These are perfect for slipping in during lunch breaks. They don't take a lot of time, yet they will sculpt you like nobody's business!
Anyhow, after the weights and some ab work (of which I could use more of), I went onto the Precor and did a good 45-minute workout. I became too hungry to polish off another 15-minutes, so I went home and ate a bagel with spicy-flavored tuna fish, a tiny bit of mayo, and celery. I was told to eat protein after a workout, remember. So I try to do just that.
I think I will incorporate free weights into my routine once a week for the time being. I'm still a little intimidated by them...and by the brawny men and women who use them regularly. But they were a nice challenge, something to keep me from being bored. And when working out regularly, that's very important!