Wednesday, August 17, 2011

On Again, Off Again

Is it Wednesday already? Things have been going well on the exercise front. I started off shaky though, I was so tired on Monday and Tuesday that I walked around with puffy eyes all day and just felt like I could nap at anytime. I was going to take some iron on Monday but I forgot. I still dragged myself into the gym on Monday and put in the effort. I did 25 minutes on the bike and then did chest, triceps and core work. I didn't have time to do the stairs. I wrapped it up with stretching. Tuesday (yesterday) I took the day off but remembered the iron. I'm feeling better today but I don't know if it's the iron or the day off from the gym - either way I am happy to have lost the puffy eyes.

Today was my day home with the kids. We went on a nice little walk in the woods with some friends in the morning. Before the day was done Marek had 3 meltdowns - 2 medium, 1 major - and about did me in. If I need to be "training" for anything it's probably parenting. I don't always have the mental energy or patience it takes to deal with a toddler. Thankfully Miguel came home early and I was able to go to the gym before dinner.

Today was the start of c25k Week 5 and, you guessed it, I gave it a try and it was fine. Kristy pointed out that Week 5 has three runs which, cumulatively, are 15, 16 and then 20 minutes of running. Somehow that made me think I might be able to do it. Anyway, today was three 5 minute runs with 3 minute rests in between and it was great! Runs after a day off often are. The iron probably didn't hurt either. Then I did legs and shoulders, core work and the stair climber. I counted calories burned during the stairs - 50 calories - not bad for 5 minutes, and then stretched. I walked out feeling ready to face the evening.

So I'd pretty much decided not to do a tri this year. I started to think I was pushing it and wondered why I was even thinking about it considering how crazy our lives are right now. I was all set in the "no" camp when I had a chat with a tri trainer (I'll spare you that story) and he has me thinking I can do the Marin sprint without a wetsuit. This would seriously increase my interest. I am going to write to the organizer and see what he thinks. So I was off of the tri, but now I'm sort of back on. We'll see, I have time.

So we've got a busy weekend ahead, we're headed north to go camping. Back to Russian Gulch, where we camped in 2008 pre-kids. I borrowed a Strider balance bike from a friend to see if Marek enjoys it. I am hoping to get some exercise while we're away because my food intake has been not-so-good this week. I am planning to get up on Friday morning and go to the gym, like I did last time.

That's it for me. The next time I post will probably be with camping pictures!

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Squeezing in the Gym during a Busy Weekend

Whew! This was one of those busy weekends where Miguel asks me more than twice why I planned so many things for the same weekend. It just happens that way sometimes. But I managed to get to the gym both Saturday and today (Sunday) and Miguel is a rock-star husband for being so supportive.

On Saturday I had a mom's club event so I spent the morning hours at the park with other moms and kids. I had a good time running around with toddlers and was happy to have energy to keep up with them. Being out in the sun drained me a bit though. I came home and had a chicken salad sandwich for lunch. A couple hours later I left for the gym. I didn't do a gel because my lunch was enough to keep me going.

I did 25 minutes on the bike and then started my legs and shoulders routine. My back was a bit achy but I was able to get through it without experiencing any actual pain. I mixed in the core work and hit the stair climber for 5 minutes (which was super hard after a leg routine) and then wrapped up with stretching.

I read this article about new exercise guidelines from The American College of Sports Medicine. Damn! These are no "take a 30 minute walk 3-4 days a week" guidelines. They include cardio, weight training, flexibility, and neuromotor exercises. I'm pretty sure I'm not up to snuff according to these guys. That's ok though, I'm comfortable with what I'm doing. I think getting to this level of specificity for people is probably good though.

I also read an article on motivation. I liked a lot of the tips for staying motivated but found this bit of info interesting.
People who asked themselves each week, "How much will I work out?" increased their activity by 138 percent. Wow! How can posing a question have that big a reward? It yanks you off autopilot (when you constantly and unconsciously choose the couch over the elliptical) and encourages you to actually make your fitness plans happen, explains study author Pierre Chandon, Ph.D., professor of marketing at Insead business school.
Interesting stuff. I've "liked" a few pages on Facebook and they keep my news feed filled with motivation - is one, couch to 5k is another - they both post links to short but motivating articles. Keeping exercise and fitness on the brain is good. I've also liked my local running shoe store and the marin triathlon - and voila!, my news feed is motivating too.

So, back to my weekend. Last night (Saturday) I went into SF for dinner with some of my favorite girlfriends. We had a nice evening and ate some good, but healthy, food. I appreciated that. Then this morning was a baby shower (Congratulations Michelle!). Snacky foods and cake, but all in moderation. After a little break (it felt SO good to be laying on the couch I was tempted to stay there but no...) it was off to the gym. I had a very nice c25k run, Week 4/Day 6. It was so encouraging I'm thinking about trying Week 5 just to see how it goes. After the run, strength training back and biceps. I dropped the bentover rows and went back to the seated row machine. I think my back is better off this way. I'm really pushing myself on the biceps front - why? I have no idea. Core work, the stair climber and then some good stretching to close out this busy weekend.

I came home and enjoyed nice backyard fun with the kids playing with water and just hanging out at home. Next weekend is camping so it's going to be super busy. After that I'm sure I'll be ready for a weekend with nothing at all on the calendar.