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Running the 2019 Sole of the City 10k

15 Apr

Why do I keep signing up for these races?

The last time I ran outside was October, when I did the Baltimore Running Festival 5k. The last time I ran a 10k was in June, when I did the Wayfarer’s Annapolis 10k. I was supposed to run the Across the Bay 10k in November… but we drank too much the night before and decided sleep and coffee were a better idea.

So yeah, NO running for 6 months… why wouldn’t I shove my 41-year-old body into a running skirt and run a race?!

Running races with no preparation is kinda my thing though, so I strapped my lady lumps into my exercise bra, laced up some running shoes, stuck a few Tums in my fanny pack in case I got hit with a case of the I-haven’t-run-forever-case-of-the-pukeys and went for it.

And…

It was GREAT!

First of all, I love running with Lindsey. So any time I get to just chat with her while burning a bunch of calories is a win in my book. Especially if we get brunch after. With bacon.

Which we did, of course.

Also, the run actually felt pretty great. In fact, I have to check but I may have gotten my fastest 10k time ever (which is NOT fast for a normal person, but I run at turtle speed… so I’m cool with it).

Anyways, before the brunch (and bacon) was the beer and band!

At the end of the race, each runner got beer tickets for 2 cans of Natty Boh. But after meeting up with another friend, we ended up with a pile of beer tickets. Which did not go to waste.

The after-party band, Alter Ego, was also really fun. So we basically danced, bounced and drank our running aches away until they shut everything down around noon.

THEN we had brunch.

All in all, it was a fantastic day. Of course, once I got home and took a shower I needed a little nap to recharge. And my knees felt awful until I got a full night of sleep. But I’m totally ready to sign up again for next year!

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Elite Warrior Boot Camp Diary: The Halfway Point

1 Apr

In case you missed it, I decided to join a 6-week Elite Warrior Boot Camp at my gym. I’ve been in a bit of a gym rut, so I thought that working with a trainer in a small group might be just the thing to get me motivated again. I picked the 3-day-a-week option, so as of today I am 9 classes in… or the halfway point.

You can read my thoughts after my first week here: Elite Warrior Boot Camp Diary: Week One

Thoughts on my Second Week:

Coming back into the gym for my second week of classes was much easier than starting the first week. I kind of knew what to expect now that I’ve been through three different workouts. I also have seen many of the same faces at each class, which is nice. At the beginning of this week, I’m already feeling stronger than I was last week.

Monday was a “normal” workout with a mix of cardio and weight training. On Wednesday, the trainer had to reschedule the class for the weekend (which I was unable to attend), so I went to the gym on my own and did an hour of cardio. Friday was another beating-the-crap-out-of-the-punching-bag-day, which is my FAVORITE kind of day!

Class #6 was the one that really killed me. The session started with the group running up and down 3 flights of stairs 13 times and then just kept it going with bunch of different cardio activities for the full hour. I. Was. Pooped. But, I felt pretty great about myself.

Thoughts on my Third Week:

This is where it started to get hard. Not so much physically hard, but emotionally hard.

My goals when starting the boot camps were basically to feel stronger and altogether better about myself. However, I do admit that deep down inside I also hoped that like 10 pounds would just slide off and I’d suddenly look amazing in a bikini.

That hasn’t happened.

I DO feel much stronger and my muscles ARE much stronger, but my weight is basically the same.

I understand that muscle weighs more than fat, so at the end of the program I am interested to see if I have lost any inches. I also understand that it’s only the third week and real body change takes time. Also, if I really want to see some hard-core changes…I’d need to adjust my diet even more.

Even knowing all this, the petulant 13-year-old inside me is grumpy about it.

I brought that bad mood into class #7:

But luckily, I snapped myself (mostly) out of it by Friday… because as I’ve mentioned before boxing day is my favorite day!

Yesterday was class #9 for me, marking my halfway point and I’m still feeling really great about my choice to push myself with this boot camp. It feels good to go to the gym and sweat it out for an hour. I’m not happy about my tummy, but I’m working on it — both mentally and physically. I feel proud of myself when I’m able to keep up with the other people in the class. And I really feel good when I punch the hell out of a punching bag.

If you want to follow along with my Elite Warrior Boot Camp, I’m trying to post after each workout on my Instagram account (find it here). I’m also planning to do a Results blog check-in at the end of the 6 weeks.

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Elite Warrior Boot Camp Diary: Week One

16 Mar

I mentioned earlier this month that I was thinking of doing some sort of March Fitness challenge to get me out of my rut. Well, that Friday at the gym I noticed a private group working out with a trainer in one of the rooms and decided to ask about it.

I ended up speaking to the trainer, Walter, and found out that the class I saw was a private lesson called Elite Warrior Boot Camp. I could sign up for 6 weeks (for a fee, of course) and either do just Friday nights, or the three-day-a-week option of Monday, Wednesday and Friday nights.

I walked away from that meeting thinking I’d sign up for the one-day-a-week option. However, I thought about it over the weekend and was apparently feeling quite energetic… because I decided to just invest the money, and time, and pain into the three-day-a-week training group.

Yeah, that snowballed quickly.

Now, let me make this very clear. Although I try to get to the gym 2-3 days each week, I’m not very fit. I can knock out a bunch of cardio, lift some light weights and have tried out a class or two. However, I am NOT what you would consider an athletic (or graceful) person. When it comes to deciding that I could do an ELITE WARRIOR boot camp, it really is all about my misplaced confidence that I can pretty much do anything I want to. Like when I run a 10k with no preparation. It’s not recommended, but I’m stubborn and I do what I want.

Day 1: Monday 11th

I went to the gym ready to get my butt handed to me. There were about 8 people at today’s session and everyone had been working out with Walter for a pretty long time – some for 1 year, a couple for 2 years and one couple for 4 years! I’m hoping there is some sort of pricing break if you renew after the 6 weeks…

Anyways, we started with doing a circuit of 8 different exercises. Each person would do their exercise for one minute and then we’d switch to the next exercise. The first circuit included: running on a weird kind of treadmill, waving around some ropes like some sort of superhero, crunches on a ball, doing a sit/squat thing against a wall, dumbbell stuff on the bench, kettlebell swings while thrusting like a porn star, push-ups on a bar, and stepping up on a box. These are obviously the technical terms.

From there, we went to another room and did a circuit on machines. This circuit was a little different where we would first do the machine, then do something like jumping jacks or crunches, then a plank, then back to the machine, then all over again, then switch to the next machine.

By the end of the workout my arms felt like limp spaghetti and I was seriously concerned about whether I’d be able to get out of bed the next morning.

Day 2: Wednesday 13th

I was still sore from Monday, mostly my poor non-existent abs. There were only 4 people in the Wednesday class, so there was lots of extra attention from the trainer. I really liked that we did entirely different exercises than the first day. However, I did make a BIG mistake. I was really hungry during the first class, so I thought it would be a good idea to have a yogurt before the Wednesday session.

This was WRONG. This was a TERRIBLE IDEA. We started with doing all sorts of stuff on a step, like push-ups, kicking around like a crazy person, step ups, squats and more flailing around. I honestly thought I might hurl and I may have even turned a little green.

Towards the end of the session, Walter had us go onto a group of treadmills to do some sprints. Basically we would walk for 30 seconds and then run flat out as fast as we could for 30 seconds. Over and over and over. There was some friendly competition on how quick you could turn the treadmill to for the sprints and over the course of the 25 minutes or so I was able to get quicker and quicker without the treadmill throwing me off. I actually REALLY liked doing the sprints and plan to add this to my list for when I exercise on my own.

Day 3: Friday 15th

I was surprisingly not feeling as sore as I expected going into the third class of the week. Today’s class was in the private fitness room that had piqued my interest the week before… the punching bag room! When I walked into the room, Walter instructed me to put on a pair of boxing gloves and I knew it was about to go DOWN. There were 5 of us in Friday’s class (one woman was in all three days – she’s super fit and totally my hero) and we all got our own punching bag.

Let me tell you, I punched and kicked the bejesus out of that bag! It was like the bag had personally wronged me. It was a GREAT way to get the stress of the workweek off my shoulders and I loved every single second of it! We used boxing gloves from a bin, but I’m thinking I might buy these boxing gloves so I don’t have to share hand sweat with anyone (BLEGH!).

After beating on the bags for about 30 minutes, Walter had us go pick a cardio machine and do 10 minutes out there. Then, we returned and punched, elbowed, kicked and kneed the bags for another 20 minutes.

By the end of the hour, I was dripping with sweat and had a huge smile on my face! Once again, I am NOT an athletic person, but give me a pair of boxing gloves and I turn into Ronda Rousey! And yes, I had to google her name, because I’m not a sports person.

Week One Thoughts:

I wasn’t really sure what to expect going into week one, but I was pleasantly surprised. Sure, there were times where I wasn’t going as hard or as fast as some of the other people in my class, but I did the best that I could for the entire 60 minutes of each session. I certainly worked out much harder than I do on my own and I learned a bunch of new ways to work out too. I was sore after each session, but not so sore that I needed to pop any Tylenol. Mostly I’m proud that I decided to put this 41-year-old body to the test.

I can’t wait for next week!

If you want to follow along with my Elite Warrior Boot Camp, I’m trying to post after each workout on my Instagram account (find it here). I’m also planning to do a half-way point blog check in at the end of week three!

Disclaimer: This post contains a sponsored link.

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A March Fitness Challenge. Maybe.

4 Mar

A couple weeks ago I was feeling kind of… pudgy. Apparently I had myself a bit of a fluffy February. So, I was thinking maybe I could spice things up with a fitness challenge for March. I was calling it “MARCH into Fitness” and would do a corny eyebrow raise for my husband’s benefit.

But I never actually got around to figuring out WHICH fitness challenge to do. I mean, I’m already trying to eat relatively healthy. I’m already trying to get to the gym 9x a month. What should I do??

I have the iWatch, so I thought maybe I could try to close my rings every day. For those non iWatch people, you have three fitness rings with the goal to close them.

Ring 1: Your Move goal. For me it is set at 500 calories a day.

Ring 2: Your Exercise goal. Mine is set at 30 minutes each day.

Ring 3: Your Standing goal. I need to stand up for at least a minute (and move around) each hour for 12 hours during the day. This is especially good for getting me up from being hunched over the computer for hours on end.

Some days I do a great job at closing my rings, but others… not so good. Here is what January looked like:

So, that’s a goal idea.

Another idea is to try and get to the gym a higher number of times for the month. Maybe 10? Or 12? Or 15? Or actually achieve my current goal of 9…

Sigh.

This all sounds like a lot of work.

Are any of you doing a fitness/health/back on track kinda challenge this month?

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