Wednesday, April 29, 2009
Tuesday, April 28, 2009
Monday, April 27, 2009
As far as running is concerned none happened. However, Saturday was Maryland Day -- a giant festival celebrating the awesomeness of UMD where you can get free food and ice cream and beer (at some places) and watch all kinds of cool demonstrations from different departments. The BF and I met up with some friends and spent the day trekking all over campus (totally counts as a workout) to see cool things, including the engineering department making a tornodo out of fire. Yea it was the coolest thing ever and of course my camera battery died.
In other interesting weekend news, Friday night BF, I and BF's good friend were out and the subject of running came up. And BF, who to be fair, was a little tipsy, decided he wanted to run a marathon. Like a full one. And then we started talking about triathlons and BF wanted to know how long an IronMan and Half IronMan were and he got this little gleam in his eye.
I was like ohhhh great. Now he's going to want to train for an IronMan. And then I'm going to have to because well let's not lie, if he's doing it than I am too because I'm just competitive like that. (I'm realllllly hoping BF forgets about the IronMan thing, I'm so not ready for that.)
When I asked him Sunday if he had meant the marathon thing he said yes. Needless to say, I decided not to remind him about IronMan.
On tap for tonight: Subbing yoga.
Friday, April 24, 2009
My legs were tired and sore and my IT bands felt a little tight so I didn't want to run and it took all my willpower to drag my butt out the door to get to yoga. And then of course, the class I took was crappy. (Ironic, seeing as how I just wrote a post all about how much I love yoga yesterday.) But it was with a new teacher that I just didn't dig.
Not even talking to the BF and the mommy last night helped, and that always cheers me up. Bleh. I'm not sure what was at the root of the problem, but I'm determined to make today better, despite the sinus headache I woke up with. Sudafed will be my best friend to get my through a bunch of meetings this morning. If I'm not feeling better by then I'm using some sick time and going home and sleeping.
It's supposed to be 80+ degrees here this weekend. I will not spend it curled up in bed asleep with sinus problems!
So take that bad day! I will not have two of you in a row!
Thursday, April 23, 2009
First, here's a bit of background. I've been certified to teach yoga for just about four years now. I'm certified through YogaFit, a very flowing style of yoga that focuses on sequences that move seamlessly from one to another. YogaFit can be gentle or it can be more vigorous and active depending on the instructor and the personal style they bring to the class.
My personal thoughts on yoga are that it should be something that is accessible to everyone. Yoga isn't about the girl who can stand on her head or the guy who can wrap himself into some crazy pretezel contortion. While it's great that they can do that, I will never teach those kinds of poses in my classes. Instead, I teach on a more basic, but still challenging level. The poses aren't hard to get into persay, but there are modifications that make everything a little more challenging if you want to take it to the next level.
I believe yoga should blend strength and flexiblity, so what you will find in my class are tons of planks, side planks and not-too-tough balance work mixed with lots of deep stretching. I tend to focus a lot on the legs and back with the stretches, which is probably because flexible and loose leg muscles equal better running.
Now that we've got my theory and background stuff out of the way, I'm going to try to tackle some of your questions and concerns.
A lot of people are put off by yoga because it's slow moving or they get bored holding the same pose for a long time. (This isn't a specific question, just a common feeling I've picked up in blog reading.)
My advice is to try a flow style class. In flow based classes you move from one pose to another and don't hold anything for longer than five to 10 breaths. Sometimes it can be hard to tell if a class just labeled yoga on a schedule will be flow style. Unfortunately, the best advice I can give you there is to read the class description if there is one or try to talk to the instructor before you take the class and find out what style he or she teaches.
Susan asked: Do you have any tips for getting into yoga? I've tried a couple times, but maybe it's just not for me?
A lot of the yoga experience relates back to the instructor. If you don't enjoy the instructor's teaching style, it's almost a gaurentee you won't enjoy the class. I'd suggest trying a few different classes to see if you can find something you like. (Free week long gym trial passes work great for this. You can go to all the classes you want for a week until you find one you like. Then you can decide if you actually want to join said gym or yoga studio.) Another thing to try is different yoga DVDs or YogaToday.com, which is free. I've watched a few YogaToday episodes and it's kind of hit or miss on whether or not I like it, but it's worth checking out if you're interested. When I first started doing yoga, I had a hard time enjoying it because as a runner I just found it too slow moving. But after sticking with it for a while, I came to really enjoy the half hour or hour of calm yoga provided. So if you're thinking it's not for you, don't give up after a few classes, stick with it for a month or two and then see what you think.
Amber and XC2 both asked about my thoughts on Bikram (or hot) yoga. Amber asked: I was just wondering what your thoughts are on Bikram yoga? Would I better off getting a membership at a Bikram studio or a regular yoga studio??
I have never tried a hot yoga class, but one day I would really like to. I've heard mixed reviews on hot yoga. Some people love the feeling of the sweat pouring down their bodies and feel the heat lets them sink deeper into poses. Other people find the room is just too warm and they can't get comfortable. Again this comes down to personal preference. Before you invest in a hot yoga membership, I would try taking a single class to see how your body reacts. Most hot yoga studios will let you take a class on a drop-in basis for a small fee. Some places may also offer a free trial class. Same is true for a regular yoga studio, I would see if they offer a free trial class or a drop-in rate so you can see if you like the instructor's or the style of the class before you invest the money.
To wrap up this rather long post, here's a few of my final thoughts on yoga:
If it's something you haven't tried, I really encourage you to give it a shot. The worst that can happen is you don't like it so you don't go back. But who knows, maybe you'll really like the class and the benefits it has for your running.
Yes, yoga will help your running. It will help loosen tight hamstrings. It will help strengthen the core, which supports us through all our pounding on the pavements. It will build strength in the legs as well through lunges and various other poses.
If you have more questions or want to know more, feel free to leave them in the comments and I'll do my best to answer as best I can!
Wednesday, April 22, 2009
But overall it was a good hard run.
I forgot to mention that over the weekend, BF and I went shopping for running gear. BF was in need of some tech tops for summer running and all the bouncing around with Jillian has proved to me that I really, really needed some new sports bras.
We hit the Under Armour outlet first where I found one sports bra and four pairs of socks and BF found some shorts. However, it was only a mildly successful trip. I was a little let down by the lack of awesome sales that I usually find there.
We hit Sports Authority afterward where we were both much more successful. I found two more sports bras, a really cute pair of Nike shorts and a champion top. BF found three or four tech tops and a golf glove (not at all running related, but something he needed.)
Registration for Virginia Beach is coming up soon and then before you know it BF and I will both be in official training! Craziness!
As for today, I'm teaching yoga tonight and trying to fit some Jillian in as well. If you didn't catch yesterday's yoga questions post, go check it out and leave me some good questions.
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
I just wanted to throw out a quick request to everyone. If you have yoga questions for me, leave me a comment on this post and I will try to answer all of your questions in one post later this week.
OK that's it for me for today. Read below for my real post from today. :o)
Needless to say, that's not the most fun way to kick off the work week.
But, I'm gonna think happier times and tell you about my awesome weekend that started with a super fun BBQ on Friday night to celebrate the wonderfully warm weather.
Saturday, I was subbing for one of my fellow yoga instructors at the gym and it also happened to be the launch day for the new Body Series classes so you could bring friends for free to any of the classes. My friend Emily and the BF came to my yoga class and let me tell you, I think it was an experience for both of them.
Emily's been wanting to come see me teach since I started like four years ago when I was back in college, but due to class and work schedule conflicts she was never able too. Afterward she said she had really enjoyed the class, but was surprised how tough it was.
I think it was also a little more challenging than BF expected. He didn't love yoga, but he didn't hate it. His overall feelings were that it wasn't bad "but he thinks there are better things he can spend his time on at the gym." I will have him convinced though that he should do it every so often to help with his flexibility, which will as a result help with his running.
The rest of the weekend was spent housesitting and playing in the hot tub because I could.
I feel like today I will either be way too wiped out to do any form of workout or I will totally need Jillian and some running to blow off steam. We shall see.
Monday, April 20, 2009
Sending lots of luck to FrayedLaces, Lil Runner, MarathonDudeBill and everyone else competing today. I hope you all have a great race!
Friday, April 17, 2009
We did my normal out and back route by my house with lots of hills. I was thinking maybe the hills would slow him down a little bit because there aren't too many by his house where he normally runs. I'm not sure if the hills were the reason I was able to hang with him the whole time (and even finish before him by a step or two) or if it was my competitive streak not wanting to be left in the dust, but I somehow managed to do it.
We ran 2.32 miles in 21:00, that's about a nine minute mile. Speedy for me, pretty much par for the course for the BF.
It felt good to get some speedy running in even though I hated it while I was doing it. Afterward though I felt like I had accomplished something because if I can do Level 2 of Jillian and then go keep up with BF and crank out some speedy miles, it's a pretty good day in my book.
Also, I have officially turned BF into a running nerd. As soon as we got home he was all about going inside and mapping it out on MapMyRun to get the exact distance. Then when we were getting ready to walk over to the grocery store for dinner he changed out of his running shoes and his running socks and I was like um you don't have to change your socks. He said something along the lines of "These socks are only for running. They're too good for my crappy shoes."
(Edit: I stand corrected. BF pointed out his exact quote was "These socks aren't compatible with my old shoes.")
Apparently I also made him a sock snob. Mwahaha!
Thursday, April 16, 2009
Here's the Website description:
BODYFLOW™ is the Yoga, Tai Chi, Pilates workout that builds flexibility and strength and leaves you feeling centered and calm. Controlled breathing, concentration and a carefully structured series of stretches, moves and poses to music create a holistic workout that brings the body into a state of harmony and balance.
Overall it was a decent class. As a more traditional yogi, I definitely didn't think you held certain poses quite long enough, but I did like the flowing style of the class. I teach a more flow style yoga anyway, so that worked well for me. However, like all of the Body Series classes, I think I would get bored doing the same thing over and over every week. Although I think BodyFlow would be the class where that would be least annoying because each week you could work deeper into the stretches than the previous week.
In other really super exciting yoga news, after the BodyFlow class, my boss asked if I would be interested in teaching another yoga class Tuesdays at 7 p.m.
The back story here is that after I had to give up the Thursday class, participants were asking if I would be able to teach at 7 because that time worked better for them. I ran the idea past my boss but there were already two yoga-style classes Thursday nights and adding a third would just be too much.
But after my former class participants kept emailing her, she decided to re-work the schedule, move another girl to a different night and offer me the 7 p.m. slot on Tuesdays! Needless to say, I'm so super pumped.
I loved the people that I met in the Thursday class and I've been bumming that they haven't been able to make my new class time. So it would be great to get them back Tuesday nights. Plus she said I could keep my Wed. class if I wanted.
I've already started tinkering with my Va. Beach training plan and a Tuesday night class would actually work perfectly! Hooray!
Wednesday, April 15, 2009
Two weeks ago my job offered a battery of health screenings for relatively cheap. Two that caught my eye were bone density and body composition tests.
As a female, I was intrigued by the idea of getting my bone density measured so I knew where I stood. Was I getting enough calcium, doing enough weight-bearing activity, etc.?
For similar reasons, I thought the body composition was interesting. My scale at home does measure body fat percentage, but we all know those scales aren't the most accurate, so I was really interested in getting a more accurate reading.
To test bone density, I placed my foot in this little box and two little rods (maybe plastic?) touched the back of my foot on each side. I felt nothing as the electrical current was passed through my foot. The test works by determining how fast the current passes from one side to the other. Good news for me, the results showed I was above average. That was exactly that kind of news I was looking for. Must be all that running build strong bones!
The body composition test worked much in the same way. After recording my height and weight, the nurse place little electrodes on my legs and arms (I think, I can't quite remember if they were on my arms or not. I think they were, but it's been a while lol.)
Then again, I felt nothing as the electrical current did its thing. I got good numbers here too:
19.7% body fat (that number surprised me, I thought it would be a bit higher because I hadn't been doing much regular strength training) Normal range is 20-26% according to the paper from the nurse.
80.3% lean body mass. Normal here is 74-80%.
I was also 55.3% water, which is good. Normal is 50-60%.
I thought it was like the coolest thing ever to get some baseline numbers, but maybe that's because I'm just a big health nerd. If you ever have the opportunity to get any of these screenings for a reasonable price, I totally recommend doing it!
Monday, April 13, 2009
So Happy Belated Blogiversary to me!
I can't believe I've been blogging about running and actually running seriously for three years now! Craziness!
In the past three years I've "met" so many fun bloggers and I've learned so much from all of you! You've helped me through injuries and cheered me on through PRs so I just wanted to say a big thanks for all of that! I love reading all of your blogs!
In quick weekend update news, I worked out zero times since Wednesday. Thursday I drove home, Friday and Saturday my mom and I spent the day shopping (that totally counts as working out right lol) and Sunday was Easter and driving back to Md. followed by a serious three-hour nap.
I plan to get back on track with the workouts this week though. I offered to sub yoga tonight for one of my co-workers at the gym and I'm going to try to fit Jillian in too once I get home (if my roommates aren't home, seriously all the jumping and stuff makes the whole house shake).
That's it for me. Hope you all had wonderful weekends!
Thursday, April 09, 2009
Susan from Nurse on the Run sent me this fun survey. Since I don't want to bore you with another "I did Jillian post" I figured today was a good day for this. The rules are:
1.) Fill it out
2.) Change one question with one of your own
3.) Add an additional question
4.) Send it to 3 people.
1. What are your current obsessions? Kashi Heart to Heart cereal, the Phillies (even though they sucked against the Braves in the opening series), working out (duh lol) and experimenting with fun new recipes that I'm learning from all of you.
2. Which item from your closet are you wearing most often? This pair of black pants I have for work.They fit nice and they're comfortable and go with everything. Wow what a boring answers lol.
3. Last thing you bought for myself? I bought myself a veggie hoagie from Subway last night. Does that count?
4. What’s for dinner? Three bean salad. It's my mom's recipe and it's cold and delicious. It's basically a can of green beans, wax beans and kidney beans (I add chickpeas and edamame when it's at my grocery store) in olive oil and vinegar with salt and pepper.
5. Say something to the person who tagged you: I'm glad you found my blog and I'm having fun reading yours!
6. What is one item you could not live without? Either my cell phone or my Macbook Pro.
7. Vacation spots you must visit before you die? The Carribean. I'm a simple person. Give me sparkling blue waters and white, sandy beaches and I'm happy.
8. Three things to do before you die:
a. Find time to work with Girls on the Run or some other community-involved health and fitness program.
b. Husbands, kids, house, dog, all that family stuff eventually
c. Own a beach house so I can go every weekend and eventually retire there.
9. What are you reading right now? Women's Guide to Running.
10. What is the last movie you saw and enjoyed? Rate it out of 5 stars. Confessions of a Shopaholic. My roomies and I went for a girls day and we had a great time. It was a cute movie and was exactly what we were looking for. It's no Oscar winner, but I'd give it three stars.
11. What’s your guilty pleasure? Really bad TV, especially shows on ABC Family.
12. What’s your favorite smell? The salty smell you get as you drive into the beach....are you seeing a theme here with me and the beach.
13.If cost wasn't an issue and you could run any race in the world what would it be? The Caymen Island Marathon or Half Marathon. I'd make a whole vacation out of it.
14. Care to share some wisdom? Well behaved women rarely make history. (But I can't take credit for that one)
15. Describe one of your happiest moments. I was about to get all sappy on you, but I'll spare you all and say that one of my happiest moments was when my college roommates and I took a cruise after my graduation. Times were sometimes tense in our apartment between some of us, but on the cruise we just all let loose because we didn't care who was doing the dishes or taking out the trash and I feel like it was a trip that repaired some of the damage we caused by living together.
16. What was your best Halloween costume? When I was a little kid my mom made me a Dalmatian costume not long after the movie came out. I repurposed the head piece my senior year of high school for Senior Dress Up Day when my friends and I went as the Peanuts gang. I was Snoopy.
17. What do you have an addiction to? The Internet for sure. Google Reader's a close second. I used to be more addicted to Facebook, but I'm slowly backing off the addition.
18. What do you do that you would be embarassed for others to know about? Sometimes I talk in my sleep. It's on really rare occassions, but once in college my roommate and I apparently had a whole conversation while she was awake and I was asleep. I remember none of it.
19. What is one totally irrational fear you have? Flying over water makes me nervous, but not because I'm afraid the plane will crash and I will die. I'm actually afraid the plane will crash, I won't die, but then I will be eaten by a shark. Seriously, who thinks like that?
Ok, I tag:
I did do Jillian again last night and I taught my yoga class.
I managed to survive the DMV fairly unscathed. I now have a Maryland license, which by the way has to be one of the ugliest state licenses I've ever seen (sorry don't mean to offend) but seriously. It's all washed out looking and boring. Pennsylvania's had lots of color and was pretty. I also have Maryland plates for my car, again boring and ugly, unlike PA's with fun colors. I'm going to have my dad help me switch the plates this weekend when I'm home in Atown for Easter.
Wednesday, April 08, 2009
Tuesday, April 07, 2009
Ok rant over.
Anyway, I thought about laying down and letting my stomach settle, but then I figured I might fall asleep and what the heck Jillian's workout is only 20 minutes.
So I popped the DVD in my laptop and went to town on Level One.
Like some of you have said, Level One seemed a little bit easy. The cardio got my heart pumping and the squats and lunges were nothing terrible, but it still felt like a good workout. I don't have hand weights at home so last night I used two cans of kidney beans as my weights. Unfortunately those kidney beans were used in last night's dinner, so I'm not sure what I'm going to use as weights tonight.
I plan on picking up some small hand weights this weekend (maybe some three and five pounds), but until then I'll just have to be creative. If you've got suggestions feel free to throw them my way.
I was really glad my roommates weren't home when I was doing all kinds of jumping jacks in my bedroom. I feel like I was shaking the whole house. I get home a few hours before them usually so I should be able to have time to fit Jill in after work without anyone being the wiser (except my roommates cats, who I probably scared the crap out of).
My plan is to stick with Level One for the next three to five days and then move up to Level Two. From there I'll play it by ear on when I can move up to Level Three.
Alright that's all from me! Happy Tuesday.
Monday, April 06, 2009
Maybe I'm just sad to see it go because it was such a perfect, awesome weekend. The weather was amazing from when I left worked Friday until I groggily rolled out of bed this morning.
Friday night I rolled the windows in my car all the way down and blasted some country tunes on my drive over to the BFs. I love love love driving with the windows down and the music blaring and it was the first time since last fall since I'd been able to.
Saturday morning was winnnndy and there were times during my eight-mile run when I felt like my legs were moving but I wasn't going anywhere or that I was getting blown side to side. Running in a straight line was nearly impossible.
But in really awesome news, I didn't tape my knee for the run and it didn't hurt at all during the eight miles! Whooo hooo!
That night BF and I went over to his friend's house for what was supposed to be a cook-out, but instead involved popping frozen pizzas in the oven. Worst excuse for a BBQ ever, but we still had a decent time.
Sunday I played mini-golf! I seriously love mini-golf. We used to go as a family a bunch when I was a little kid and then get ice cream afterward. I came in two under par for the course and had a hole-in-one! Haha go me!
No pictures from the weekend because my camera battery was dead.
In workout news, I think I'm going to try Shredding tonight for the first time.