Bored with exercise?

JUST BE - Bernadette Sembrano (The Philippine Star) - June 8, 2014 - 12:00am

“When you’re bored with your workout, perhaps it’s time to start looking for another.” Since the beginning of my fitness routine, I’ve been bugging Dyan Castillejo to help me out. I seek her out whenever I feel I don’t have the motivation for working out — like when I was just getting started and recently, when I felt I was already “plateau-ing.” 

I had many attempts some five years ago at finding the perfect workout. I tried working out at the gym, boxing and lifting weights, but I was not consistent. It was a feat if I lasted three months.

Then I discovered yoga. Liza Dyogi, wife of director Lauren Dyogi, teaches yoga at ABS-CBN, and my body aches and headaches instantly disappeared. I love the stretching, the awareness of my body in yoga. Yoga is my “me” time. I’ve fallen in love with yoga ever since. 

Because of schedule constraints, I couldn’t attend Liza’s classes anymore so I sought out another kind of yoga. This time, the Bikram Yoga of Tristan Choa in Tomas Morato. Hot yoga is good for your joints, and you will really perspire while doing it. I combined Bikram with jogging (because I get bored with doing just one routine) and instantly, I dropped pounds. That was the point when I became lanky. Okay, okay, some said that I looked anorexic then. When people started noticing that I lost weight, only then did I realize that I was overweight. No one would describe me as fat before, but after looking at old photos of myself, I realized I was certified overweight then. 

I never got tired of Bikram and jogging, but because of schedule considerations, I had no choice but to go to the gym within ABS-CBN. Given my past experience with the gym, I was reluctant. Until now, I have to thank my beautiful and fit titas and other gym friends for getting me excited in doing group exercises like body combat, body pump and spinning.

When the gym at ABS-CBN closed, I went to do the non-conventional way of exercise: Circuit training — no gym equipment — all in 30 minutes! My goal was to be stronger. I saw results with the use of kettle bell, suspension cables and my body weight. Getting a trainer once a week helped. I missed my cardio workout and it was good that I decided to learn swimming. Swimming is something I will never get tired of — that along with yoga. I’m sure that if I continued on with circuit training, I would get good results but my interest and excitement over circuit training have dwindled. At least for now. Enter Physique 57. 

I’ve been wanting to do Physique 57 ever since. I’ve heard about it from my friend Dr. Vicki Belo, and she swears by its effectiveness.

Based on the Physique 57 DVDs and book, it’s the kind of workout that will make you achieve a dancer’s body — long and lean. It incorporates isometrics — holding a pose and making small movements, hence, addressing the small muscle groups. You will really feel the burn. Physique 57 was also inspired by a rehab workout. It’s very challenging but not bad on your joints. It also improves one’s posture. I still have to learn the proper execution for maximum benefit. 

When I tried Physique 57 in the Planaforma studio a year ago, there were not a lot of classes then that would fit my schedule, too. It was also impractical to maintain several fitness club memberships. So, when I read Cat Ilacad’s tweet that Planaforma was giving a 50 percent discount for a six-month membership at a time when my membership at 360 Circuit Training was expiring, I grabbed it.

Price is a consideration for most of us. My advice to beginners planning to sign up for a fitness club membership, go for the per-visit package first and see if you like it. When you renew, get the annual membership where you can avail of more savings. You can be fit without having to pay so much. Take note: It’s not the fanciest gym or gear that will get you fit but your level of commitment. 

The key to any workout is consistency. Be consistent at least for three months. Work out three to five times a week, and I guarantee you will see and feel the results. That will keep you motivated. 

It’s only been a few weeks that I’ve been doing the Physique 57 workout. Since it’s a new workout, I can feel the challenge and I love it! I rush to the Planaforma studio whenever there’s a window in my schedule. I have yet to see the results, but I am committed to do it at least three times a week. In between, I do yoga and spinning at Gold’s Gym, and swimming on weekends. 

Fortunately for all of us, there are so many gym studios that offer a wide variety of workouts. If you love the outdoors, then get into running or cycling. There’s absolutely no reason for us not to be active; there’s no room for excuses. Be fit and healthy. Commit.

Follow me on Twitter (@bernadette_ABS), Instagram (@bsaguinaldo) and e-mail me at

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