Way back to exercising (3): Fitness Evolved 2012 [X-Box 360 + Kinect]

For the past few weeks, I have been using the Fitness Evolved 2012 game on X-Box 360 + Kinect to exercise. I just would like to share with you my thoughts on this.

I started about a week into my beginner yoga program on the free phone app I mentioned in my previous Way Back to exercising post. The activities and workouts on this game is definitely interesting – especially they have yoga and dance “classes” too! 2 of my favourite form of exercise. For the first week or so, I felt muscle pain! The good kind! I used to get this back in my ballet days – every Sunday, without fail, since I had 5 hour classes every Saturday. I knew better not to stop exercising though and the games have definitely motivated me to come back and work out on it almost everyday since.

The game has 4 components: “My Zone”, “Activities”, “Workouts” and “Classes”. My Zone is where your profile, progress, goals, etc are and activities include things like warm-up games, a game simmilar to Dance Dance Revolution (DDR) minus the mat, a running game, skipping rope game, etc. The workouts section is more focused on body parts – like arms, glutes, legs, back, stomach, etc. Classes is what I spend most of my time with – here they have Yoga,

If you know me, you probably know I can not stand running and working out on my own on the machines. Even with a friend next to me, I still feel very bored… These kind of activities on this game does exist but I don’t mind them as much as they tell you what to do, how many reps to go and they set challenges – for example, 20 seconds of high knee running, etc. But I do still prefer doing stuff from their “classes” section. Dancing is more of my forte.

Though I feel a little silly doing this (and so I wouldn’t do this in front of anyone with the exception of family and maaaaybe a few close friends), I love the African Rythm and Bollywood the best! They are so different to any form of dancing I’ve done in the past (well, I did do a little tiny bit of Bollywood for college performances), they are fast paced, works the whole body and I just looooove dancing. The hip-hop however, I was a little disappointed with. The songs are slow and the movements I found to be a little weird – maybe it’s just not my style.

The calorie counter I feel is not at all accurate. I guess this is expected since they didn’t weigh me or even asked me how heavy I was, etc. So I don’t take the counter seriously – I just use it as a guide to measure how much I’ve done that day relative to other days playing it. Anyways, I’m not the type to count calories.

The great thing about this game is that it’s in the comfort of your own home. If you have enough room, you could even do it in your bedroom out of sight of anybody to save yourself some embarrassment (especially for a recently-came-back me). Plus, it’s nowhere as expensive as a gym membership! Especially, if you got this game on a discount. You can find one nowadays for about $40 or even less.

One of the biggest con to this game is that it requires quite a bit of space. I don’t live in a very big house so I do bump into things (or people) sometimes. It is also not protable (well, technically, you could bring the X-Box and Kinnect system with you wherever you go – but that’s such a hassle and waste of space/kilos).

Now it’s been about 2 or 3 weeks since I started. I just play about 4 days a week until the calorie counter says I’ve burnt 100+ calories, depending on how I feel and how much time I had that day. My soreness is gone, my knees and legs are a lot stronger and I feel healthier in general. I like to believe that the exercise is “enhanced” by the giggles me and my family get when I dance. I will definitely continue on using this game.

I know people who have laughed at me when I told them I work out using X-Box. They say I won’t be able to push myself, etc. But I found this to have worked for me better than going to the gym and working out on the machines. I simply found this game motivates me more. So don’t let people get to you! Definitely check this out – maybe try it out? If you have an X-Box, I know you can download a free demo version.

I saw Fitness Evolved 2013 for Wii-U at shops but I have yet to see the X-Box version. When that goes on sale (because I can not justify spending more than $70 on a piece of disc) I will surely try it out.

PS. none of the images in this post are my own nor do they belong to me.

 

Lots of Smiles,

-Sita

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Way back to exercising (2): free “Daily Yoga” app

Welcome to another Sprinkle O’Rainbow post. Today I would like to share with you a free “Daily Yoga” app I used since about 3 weeks ago to kick start my “way back to exercise” mission.

If you missed my last post on health & fitness and if you want to know my history (injuries) and why I am on this mission then click here!

The app is literally called “Daily Yoga” and is available on both Android and Apple devices ranging from smartphones to tablets. I personally installed this on my Android Samsung S3 (smartphone) so I have it accessible at all times, wherever I am. That way I have no excuses not to at least do yoga once a day.

Daily Yoga

What you need to do to get this app is to download the main app: “Daily Yoga (All-In-One)“, and then you can download individual “plugins” which feeds into the plugin so in the end, all you need to open is the plugin app and you have all your modules accessible from there. The app also includes a few training programs so you can follow a schedule if you prefer that (they give you reminders on your phone to do the scheduled yoga session) though there’s only one free program which is the beginners program.

Home Screen of Daily Yoga App

The plugins (which most are free) vary from beginner to advanced and are titled very clearly so you can choose which part of your body you would like to work on for the day. There’s also sequence plugins like “Yoga Sequence for Beginners“, “Sun Salutation“, “Yoga for Weight Loss” and “Yoga for Body Toning” where it doesn’t concentrate only on particular bodyparts. If you get days like me where I feel like I can’t be bothered standing up or I feel like exercising so I’d prefer standing up, they also have plugins for that.

Personally, I downloaded all the free plugins – because I’m a horder like that. Jokes. But really, it’s because I want to have the choice there depending on my mood that day but at the same time I don’t want to spend money.

The concept of using this app is very simple. Just spend 10-15 minutes of your day to do Yoga. No excuses right? everyone has a 15minute break in their day? Also doing these really wakes me up in the calmest but fastest way in the morning. So I like to do it just after I wake up in the morning next to my bed. Now I really have no excuse not to do it.

Though I am not really a beginner in Yoga, I started by doing the beginner program which went for 2 weeks. There is one session everyday with a 2 day break in the middle. I thought this would be a good light start to ease myself back into exercising. I loved it! About half of the sessions went for 10 minutes and the other half went for 15 minutes each. It wakes me up, loosens me up and gets my body moving in the morning. Oh and a tip – you can change the scheduled times for your sessions in the program to match your desired schedule.

This is definitely not enough of  an exercise but in my opinion, it’s a great start nonetheless. Plus, it’s FREE!

::Links to the app::

Android App – PLUGINS
(all the ones with the blue-icon)

Apple App

Definitely check this out! it’s definitely worth trying!

Thank you for reading and happy exercising!

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Lots of Smiles,

Sita

Way back to exercising (1): my injuries

Right now, I have 2 injured knees and I am trying to get back into exercising again. I want to exercise to keep my body weight balanced and to maintain a healthy life. You  know, better than being a couch potato. This post will contain the story of my 2 injuries.

The Knee

I used to dance A LOT. Ever since I can remember, I’ve always idolised ballerinas. When I was 4 years old, mum put me in to a ballet school and started a pre-primary class with a ballet school which follows the Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) syllabus and grading system (known world wide). By the time I was 13 or 14 years old, I was dancing more than 10 hours a week. Add the compulsory school “Physical Education” periods (sports), and Tae Kwon Do classes I started when I was 14, I was doing 15 hours of exercises/week.

When I was 16, I injured myself. The story is very lame and silly. I jumped (while doing a jumping Tae Kwon Do kick) and landed funny on my leg, ripping a ligament on the right knee (ACL). I of course would still LOVE to continue with Ballet and Tae Kwon Do so we decided to do the ACL reconstruction surgery.

Unfortunately, the next year was my final year at school. My knee was not getting as strong as I would like it to be before I started a few classes again so I decided to take a break that year.

Knee Cartilage

First year of uni came and I started dancing again – for fun. I went to a few beginner classes (because I don’t know how much I could do) and did a few performances for my residential college. I did the same in 2nd year and had planned to do the same in third year. However, during one of the quality checks of one of the performances in third year, I, again, did a jump during one of my dance pieces, fell and hurt my knee yet again. But this time, it was the cartilage on my left knee. Lets just say, A LOT of money went into physiotherapist fees.

It’s been a year since then and my left knee is still weak and I am terrified to hurt it again when I jump on it. However, I am determined to slowly get back into dancing and exercising again like I used to. Don’t worry, I put extra attention into my knees and don’t do anything that would make them feel like they’d be hurt again.

What am I doing right now? I am following a Yoga app on my phone and X-Box 360 + Kinnect fitness games. I will do reviews on things I come across. Though keep in mind of my needs – slowly getting back into exercise with emphasis on keeping my knee un-injured.

That is all for today and I hope you can benefit from this new series on my blog! Don’t forget to follow my blog, favourite this post and give me feedback!

Lots of Smiles,

Sita