Manic Monday – 02/09/15

Photo Dec 30, 12 48 14 PM

It was a much more low-key week this week than the last several have been. Between my knee bothering me and being downright exhausted after a couple of intense weeks of workouts and rehearsals, a cutback week was just what I needed.

Monday 02/02/15: Rest day. My knee was really bothering me after rehearsal on Sunday, so I knew I wouldn’t be going to the gym. And mercifully, rehearsal was cancelled due to inclement weather, so I got to leave work early, put on sweatpants, and relax for an evening, which was SO NICE.

Tuesday 02/03/15: Rest day. Since starting an Ibuprofen regimen (500mg 3x per day), my knee was feeling better, but I didn’t want to push it. I spent a good 15-20 minutes massaging my legs with a handheld roller and it felt AMAZING.

Wednesday 02/04/15: I backed off on the Ibuprofen so I could see how the knee was feeling. Verdict–still felt weird, but not actually painful. In celebration (and to help continue the healing trend), I skipped my scheduled run and went to my FIRST YOGA CLASS IN OVER A YEAR! Yaaaaay! Then I had a fast and low-key rehearsal, too!

Thursday 02/05/15: 10 minutes of incline walking to warm up; CXWORX class.

Friday 02/06/15:  I intended to try running a mile, but stopped at .5 because my knee felt weird. Not painful, but weird. I did 30 minutes on the recumbent bike instead. Rehearsal was somewhat dancey, but not too bad.

Saturday 02/07/15: Rest day. Lots of cleaning around the house. We also went to a special viewing party of my friend Emily’s Food Network debut on “Outrageous Chocolate.” It was SO COOL seeing my friend on TV, and she was so excited. Congratulations, again Emily! I hope they give her her own show soon 😉

Sunday 02/08/15: Rest day, other than some dance stuff at rehearsal, probably no more than an hour altogether.

I have my first race of the year, the Cupid 5k, on Saturday. I haven’t been doing a whole lot of running lately, so this week will be all about testing out the knee and making sure I’m good to run. I’m hoping to get back to Body Pump this week, but not sure that my schedule will allow it. I’m also hoping to check out a new yoga studio that’s cheaper than the one I went to last week, and of course, take my beloved CXWORX class on Thursday. Here’s a tentative plan for the week:

  • Monday: Short run (2 miles?) with long warm up and cool down
  • Tuesday: Fluid Yoga?
  • Wednesday: Short run (2 miles?) with long warm up and cool down
  • Thursday: CXWORX
  • Friday: Packet pickup; Spin?; rehearsal
  • Saturday: Cupid 5k; Valentine’s Day crepe brunch; Star Wars marathon
  • Sunday: Rest

Manic Monday – 02/02/15

Photo Dec 30, 12 48 14 PM

Aaaand it’s February. Wow. Holy crap. I’m a little overwhelmed by how quickly January went by, but I’m starting to remember that life passes a lot faster when you’re busy. Rehearsals and workouts are keeping me on the go WAY more than I’m used to. I’m still adjusting to the new normal, but on the whole it’s going well. I could definitely use more sleep, but that’s always been a problem of mine, so I’ll just keep on keepin’ on.

Monday 01/26/15:  Body Pump (check out my review here); 3ish hours of various marching and dancing activities at rehearsal

Tuesday 01/27/15:  Rest day. I should have done more stretching and rolling than I did, but I was simply too exhausted.

Wednesday 01/28/15:  Ran 3 easy treadmill miles and stretched it out before a short, low-movement rehearsal

Thursday 01/29/15:  10 minutes of incline walking on the treadmill to warm upCXWORX (check out my review here)

Friday 01/30/15:  I intended to run on my lunch break, but forgot I had made plans to meet a friend, so “all” I did was 3ish hours of jumping rope, marching, and dancing at rehearsal

Saturday 01/31/15:  Rest day. Lots of cleaning and organizing around the house because my father in law comes home from a month in New Zealand next weekend. He’s a bit Type A, and we’ve been pretty lax without him around!

Sunday 02/01/15:  2ish hours of jumping rope, marching, and dancing at rehearsal

Another week with only one run, which, while not ideal, is better than no running. My left knee has been bothering me quite a bit, most likely because I’m just doing way more activity than I’m used to. I’m taking Ibuprofen a couple of times a day to help with inflammation and trying to rest as much as possible. No running for a few days, and maybe no Body Pump this week (boo). The last thing I need right now is to be out of running for another 6 weeks, so I’m trying to be cautious at the outset.

Happy Monday!

CXWORX – A Killer Core Workout

As part of my quest towards a more balanced fitness program, I’m in the process of checking out various group exercise classes offered by my gym.  This past Thursday, I decided to check out CXWORX.  I chose this class for three reasons:

  1. The class starts at 5:10, so I don’t have to hang around the gym waiting for it to start (I get out of work at 4:30)
  2. The class is only 30 minutes long, which means I get home that much sooner on one of my few rehearsal-free nights
  3. The class is focused on strengthening your core, which is really important for me as a runner

Here’s a description of the class I lifted from the Les Mills website:

Exercising muscles around the core, CXWORX provides the vital ingredient for a stronger body. A stronger core makes you better at all things you do, from everyday life to your favorite sports – it’s the glue that holds everything together.

All the moves in CXWORX have options, so it’s challenging but achievable for your own level of fitness. During the 30-minute workout trained instructors guide you through correct technique as you work with resistance tubes and weight plates, as well as body weight exercises like crunches, and hovers. You will also get into some hip, butt and lower back exercises.

I was nervous before this class, especially because I attended solo.  Thankfully, I lucked out once again, in that this was only the second class of a new release, so we were all learning together.  There were also a number of other newbies, so I felt fairly comfortable.  The instructor, Betsy, was REALLY good–great descriptions of the movements, variations for different levels, what we should or shouldn’t be feeling or doing, and she called the transitions between movements really well.

This class may be only 30 minutes, but we were WORKING!  The class flowed really well, in that every time I was starting to feel like I couldn’t continue a particular movement one second longer, we transitioned to something else.  We worked our entire core, as well–back, abs, obliques, glutes, hips, and even some shoulder and arm work.  The movements that we did are kind of hard to describe, because most of them are not traditional exercises like crunches or curls.  There was a lot of rolling around and going from sitting to standing and back again, so if you’re not super mobile, this is probably not a good class for you.  I’d definitely call it more of an intermediate level class than a beginner level class, so keep that in mind if you’re just starting out on your fitness journey.

All in all, this class is a lot of bang for the proverbial buck.  Having a strong core is essential for a runner, and if the way my abs felt the day after is any indication, this class is really going to up my game.  I plan to go every Thursday.

Have you ever tried CXWORX?

What are your favorite core exercises?

Manic Monday – 01/26/15

Photo Dec 30, 12 48 14 PM

This was a killer week.  Between running, fitness classes, and intense jump roping/dancing rehearsals, I logged 6 workouts this week.

Monday 01/19/15:  3 easy treadmill miles; 3ish hours of jumping rope at rehearsal.  This was a TERRIBLE idea.  Cue death by exhaustion.

Tuesday 01/20/15:  Well-earned REST DAY!  Did some stretching and rolling to relax my sore muscles.

Wednesday 01/21/15:  Unscheduled rest day.  I was too tired and sore from Monday to attempt anything other than some very ginger walking around the office.  Stairs were not my friends.

Thursday 01/22/15:  10 minutes of incline walking on the treadmill to warm up; Les Mills CXWORX class (stay tuned for a post about this!).  Sneak peek:  OUCH!

Friday 01/23/15:  Still too tired and sore to run.  2ish hours of jumping rope at rehearsal. Cue death by exhaustion Part 2.

Saturday 01/24/15:  45 minute spin class (stay tuned for a post about this!).  Sneak peek:  I’ve never worked so hard in my life.

Sunday 01/25/15:  2ish hours of dancing at rehearsal.  Cue death by exhaustion Part 3.

I’m mostly joking about the death by exhaustion thing, but not totally.  I don’t think I’ve ever had a week with this many workouts.  While it was good to try new things and I feel really accomplished, I know this is not a sustainable pace.  First of all, I was too tired and sore to run at all after Monday’s back-to-back.  My body needs more recovery time.  Secondly, I mentally need more couch+Netflix time.

The focus for this week will be dialing it back a bit and finding balance between getting adequate rest and doing ALLTHEWORKOUTS!  My shins are VERY tender after all of the high impact jumping rope last week, so I plan to take it easy and not even attempt a run until at least Wednesday.

Have you ever done back-to-back workouts?  How did that go?

Do you take it easy after a tough week of training?