The 2017 Fitness Challenge

Are you ready to get fit in 2017? If so… then here is the 2017 Fitness Challenge for you! OK… it is a small challenge with a gentle start. The basic premise is to build up to running the Lisbon Half Marathon in March, although you obviously don’t have to run the actual race in Lisbon to be part of the challenge (although it is a pretty neat ‘excuse’ to visit Lisbon, in case you need an excuse!).

The challenge is a simple three days a week running – and twice fitness to take care of the rest. Two rest days: For me the rest days are Sunday and Monday. Running days are for short runs: Tuesdays, Thursdays – long(er) runs on Saturday. Of course, being flexible is a good idea when it comes to days – but sticking to three runs and two gym sessions is the key here.

My start day will be the 27 December (Tuesday)… just after the Christmas feasts, which will hopefully result in enough motivation!

The actual training plan with all runs/gym/restdays looks like this:

Week
Monday
Tuesday
Wednesday
Thursday
Friday
Saturday
Sunday
1 26/12/16 Restday 5 Gym 5 Gym 10 Restday
2 02/01/17 Restday 5 Gym 5 Gym 10 Restday
3 09/01/17 Restday 5 Gym 5 Gym 10 Restday
4 16/01/17 Restday 5 Gym 5 Gym 10 Restday
5 23/01/17 Restday 5 Gym 5 Gym 10 Restday
6 30/01/17 Restday 6 Gym 6 Gym 12 Restday
7 06/02/17 Restday 7 Gym 7 Gym 14 Restday
8 13/02/17 Restday 8 Gym 8 Gym 16 Restday
9 20/02/17 Restday 9 Gym 9 Gym 18 Restday
10 27/02/17 Restday 10 Gym 10 Gym 20 Restday
11 06/03/17 Restday 6 Gym 6 Gym 12 Restday
12 13/03/17 Restday 6 Gym 6 Gym 3 Lisbon Half

All the above runs are in kilometers – not at least because I’m a slow and gentle runner ūüėČ …

If you don’t want to be training alone, but fancy a virtual training buddy … please remember to add me on Runkeeper – if we get a few virtual training buddies together, we can create a virtual running group there. My Runkeeper profile can be found here. Don’t forget to connect by sending me a tweet and say hello here: @urbangay¬† or follow/DM on instagram. And if you are running the Lisbon half… let’s make sure to say hi!

Benefits of exercise for more and better sex…

Of course, most people know that sex can be a good form of exercise (in case you want brush up on why, have a look here)… however, while sex can be a good workout, a few good workouts can also mean better sex: so here are the good reasons not to skip the workout.

Sex can be a good workout, but a few good workouts mean better sex - here is why! Click To Tweet
  1. Exercise increases energy
    If you exercise regularly, you are more likely to have higher energy levels than someone who prefers to slouch on the couch (and yes, probably also someone whose only exercise happens in bed!). Of course, most people won’t feel highly energetic after completing a marathon,… so, for a more fun sex life – some moderate exercise is the key.
  2. Exercise improves your mood
    Exercise is a pretty good anti-depressant,¬† by increasing¬†endorphins in the body, which are a natural form of happy-pill cum painkiller – free of side-effects. The good news: you don’t have to be feeling down to feel their effect either – they will make your mood better anyhow. And if you feel good, that generally leads to better sex.
  3. Exercise enhances stress response
    Cortisol is the culprit here: the stress hormone kills sex drive (if you have ever worked a 60 hour week, I’m sure you’ll know what I’m talking about!). Regular exercise reduces the effect of cortisol – so effectively reducing the damage stress does to your sex drive (sorry, it does not reduce your stress at work though!). However, with a better defense against the libido-zapper hormone, stress can take less of a tole on a fantastically destressing activity…
  4. Exercise improves the body
    This should really go without saying that exercise improves how you look – it tones your body. Of course, great sex isn’t all about having a great body, but it is all about feeling good. And most people feel pretty good in a toned body… and if you feel good, why not share it?
  5. Exercise increases testosterone
    Moderate exercise increases testosterone – at least for a short while. Especially good are muscle building exercises, but all exercise seems to have a positive effect. Again, don’t overdo it, but maybe have a warm-up in the gym or along the river front, and a grand(er) finale between the sheets afterwards.

Of course, you don’t have to trust me on this: way back in 1990, this academic study looked at sex and exercise. Particularly the effect of moderate exercise on men… the result: Guys had more sex, better sexual function and found their orgasms more satisfactory.

So… next Sunday morning, maybe don’t just put off your workout in favour of being with your partner. Rather: get some exercise together – and reap the rewards afterwards!

LGBT Sports in Lisbon

In this recent post I lamented (or maybe just ignorantly assumed) that the list of LGBT+ sports clubs in Lisbon is “short”. Well… let me come clean: I was wrong, there are a few. So trying to bring them together, here are the ones I have found out about so far.

Basically from what I could find out, there are two main “groups” offering sports: BJWHF (Boys Just Wanna Have Fun) and ILGA. Each of these offer a variety of different sports options … so here is a handy list, listed by day, sports type and link to further information/address.

Day Sport Organiser Address
Monday Volleyball BJWHF http://bjwhf.weebly.com/info1.html
Football BJWHF http://bjwhf.weebly.com/futebol-bjwhf.html
Tuesday Rugby BJWHF http://bjwhf.weebly.com/info2.html
Dance (Tango) BJWHF http://bjwhf.weebly.com/tango.html
Wednesday Running BJWHF http://bjwhf.weebly.com/corrida-bjwhf.html
Swimming BJWHF http://bjwhf.weebly.com/info.html
Yoga (Lunch time) ILGA https://www.facebook.com/CentroLGBT/
Thursday Football BJWHF http://bjwhf.weebly.com/futebol-bjwhf.html
Dance (Kizomba) ILGA https://www.facebook.com/CentroLGBT/
Running ILGA https://www.facebook.com/CentroLGBT/
Friday Rugby BJWHF http://bjwhf.weebly.com/info2.html
Volleyball BJWHF http://bjwhf.weebly.com/info1.html
Saturday Running ILGA https://www.facebook.com/CentroLGBT/
Swimming ILGA https://www.facebook.com/CentroLGBT/
Sunday Tennis ILGA https://www.facebook.com/CentroLGBT/
Football ILGA https://www.facebook.com/CentroLGBT/
Swimming BJWHF http://bjwhf.weebly.com/info.html

 

As always: If you know of any other sports clubs/meetings… please share it below! Many thanks!
P.S. Thanks to @BJWHF for reaching out and updating some of the dates in the earlier version!

 

Lisbon by Half

What is better than one half? Three halfs! Or at least that is how many half marathons I could find for the next year taking place in Lisbon… All seem to have quite a different flavour – and routes, so it shouldn’t be boring going for all three…. Here is a quick overview:

Lisbon by half (marathons)

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I’m missing it.

running that is. Because of an injury, together with being insanely busy and the injury being a convenient excuse not to get off my bum and run, I haven’t really stuck to any running routine at all so far this year. While, luckily, that hasn’t resulted in a major increase of my waistline (although a little bit more is there, I think) I really have to take this up again – and stop making excuses about why I can’t.

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Last weekend I went with my ex (BF1) to cheer him on while he ran another Half. Yes, while he has always been quite hit and miss with regards to running during the week (largely Continue reading “I’m missing it.”