Sunday, January 23, 2011

Schedules, arms, shoes and other things

My abs are burning as I write this.

So far, my "back to normal" routine has been going pretty well.  I'm not as tired as I was in the beginning stages of recovery and my strength hasn't disappeared too much.  Last week:

Monday: Rest
Tuesday: A.M. Cardio and Weights
Wednesday: Fleet Feet running group (see below)
Thursday: Rest
Friday: A.M. Spinning
Sunday: 20-20-20

This week/Accomplished and Planned:
Monday: Rest
Tuesday: A.M. Cardio/Weights, P.M. Cycle
Wednesday: A.M. Cardio
Thursday: A.M. Cardio/Weights
Friday: A.M. Spinning
Saturday: Rest
Sunday: 20-20-20

And I just sneezed and it burned.  Clearly, I got a good workout on Sunday.

Teaching again is really great--a lot of my regulars were there and were clearly happy to see me (even though I had awesome subs).  I had a great time and made a special effort to make sure everyone is in just as much pain as I am...

(one week later)...

I need to get better about hitting "publish post"...because this has clearly been sitting around for a bit since I wrote it.

Continuing the workout trend has been good--I took Wednesday and Thursday off because I was lazy and slept in, and had Restaurant Week dinners both nights, but I made up for it by working out on Friday morning (am cycle) and skipping out a bit early on work and hitting the gym before date night with Chadd.

This morning I taught 20-20-20 again, which was awesome.  This week we did an arm burn out, which is my new favorite workout method:

10 exercises, 1 minute each.
- bicep curls/hammer curls
- upright rows
- shoulder press
- triceps kickbacks
- deadlifts
- pull over (lie with shoulders on ball, squeezing glutes, holding weights above chest, then over head, then back to over chest)
- bear hugs on ball (shoulder still on ball, arms out with weights, to center, back out, repeat)
- pushups (can be substituted for "pyramid" pushups--10 basic, 10 with one hand on top of step, 10 straddling bench, 10 with other hand on bench, 10 basic)
- weighted jumping rope (act like you're jumping rope weights in hand)
- triceps dips

Do that 2x through, broken up with 10 minutes (or more) of cardio (Good time for speed work on the treadmill, to be honest) and the finish up with the 10 minute ab routine that will slice you up:

1 minute each:
- basic crunches (no cheating)
- leg lifts (don't swing the legs, even foot prints towards the ceiling)
- rope climbers
- leg scoops
- bridge
- side shoelace grabs
- double crunch
- the "row" (sit on tailbone, feet off ground, holding a weight, scoop from side to side, fully rotating body)
- low plank
- high plank


Now, I need to get around to creating a lower body workout that will be just as painful and effective.

Gym routine this week looks like:
- Monday: Evening group run with Y (likely to be a minor workout for me)
- Tuesday: Morning leg routine, evening cycle
- Wednesday: Morning Cardio, evening running group with Fleet Feet
- Thursday: Morning upper body routine
- Friday: Morning cycle
- Saturday: Rest
- Sunday: 20-20-20

Changing gears, fun new subject: Shoes!

I am sad to announce that I've decided to break my many year streak of wearing Nike Max Motos.  I love those shoes and strongly recommend them to anyone looking for a good, light weight, neutral running shoe.  However, after roughly 4 years (probably more) of only using motos, I've decided to try something a bit different.  I will likely keep purchasing the motos to teach in, but since I've vowed to take running seriously this year (something that people think I'm kidding about because how can one not be "serious" about running when training for a marathon), I've decided to get a pair of shoes dedicated to running only.

When I was at Fleet Feet the other week, I had some time to kill before the running group.  I met Phil, one of the guys who works there, who talked to me about shoes. I thought I knew about shoes, and boy was I wrong. Phil knows shoes. If you're looking for someone to tell you about running shoes and what you need, ask Phil at Fleet Feet, though I'm sure they all know their stuff. Bottom line, we decided that if my then-current shoes (motos) were on the scale of Good to Best, mine were somewhere between the line of good to better. Looking to work with a shoe dedicated only for running, he let me try on about 7 different pairs of shoes. I took 2-3 of them out of a test jog up and down the block. I tried everything from Nikes to Brooks to Sauconys to Asics, and there I found, in the last pair of shoes, something miraculous: Ascis Gel Nimbus 12. Yes. Please.

I've been running with Nikes that use air technology (which keeps the shoe very lights) and since I wear orthodics in my shoes, the lighter the better. However, they cushion just a little less. I really have liked the gel nimbus in the week or so that I've had them. I can definitely tell the difference with the gel (better shock absorber), and the fit is just a bit more suited for stability. On top of that, the shoe laces come around on a slight "s" curve to better bind the shoe to your foot.  Better yet, Phil taught me how to tie my shoes just a little differently so that the shoe better connects with my heel.

I've been cautions since I haven't run out of a moto in so long (basically my entire running career), but so far, just doing 3-4 miles, we're off on a good start.

Also related to shoes:
Last tuesday at my first cycle class in quite some time, I realized that the instructor bike at the Y only accommodates clips (yikes). The instructor before me kindly help me take the bike off the stage and change it for a bike with cages. Then, someone in the class asked me why their clips weren't fitting in our bikes (???). She said she had "egg beaters" (over my head like a flock of geese) and thankfully someone stepped up and said "oh, those are the types our bikes don't handle, they're really only made for mountain bikes."

I don't mind being ignorant about something fitness related, God knows there is more to that subject that I'll ever have a handle on, but something that is pretty basic to what I'm teaching...I can't ignore it much longer. I haven't ever invested in a pair of clips, simply because it's just that: an investment.

Chadd and I went over to City Sports in Georgetown (which is launching a running club that I am seriously stoked about) and I talked to one of the guys and basically owned up to the fact that I am a clip-ignorant cycle instructor.

They only carry two pairs (both Shimano). He grabbed each for me and I tried them on. It's tough to say "wow, that's a comfortable shoe!" when trying on clips. Clips are essentially made to be supportive (read: stiff) along the bottom of the shoe to act as an extended pedal. You clip into the pedal, making your foot much less likely to slide off/out of the pedal.

They didn't have my size in the older version (read: cheaper) and since the difference was only $10, I figured what the heck, and grabbed the newer version:

Pretty slick.

Report to come on how those work out on Tuesday, though you should have seen me this morning. After teaching 20-20-20, I figured I better try them out before I taught with them. I found a bike on one of the floors that was a spinning bike and clipped in. Ok. Not too bad. Pedal pedal pedal, awesome, we're good. Now to dismount.

Oops? I finally gave up (I was feeling fuzzy after a lack of food and teaching) and took my shoes off while still attached to the bike. Note to self: release by moving heel to the side and then release.

Also this week: aiming to get 8 hours of sleep a night--no more, no less. Which means, in order to be up at 7:15, I need to jump in bed.

Btw, stick to your resolutions and outlast that dude at the gym who doesn't know the unspoken rules. You're better than that.

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