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Weekend Workouts

Thank you Dr. Martin Luther King Jr! In celebration of you, class today is cancelled :)

Morning coffee time (stronglikemycoffee.com)

With an additional day for my weekend, I definitely prioritized workouts. My last bleomycin treatment was one month ago, and I’ve been steadily increasing my exercise amount since the beginning of January. Now that my mileage is back to an average state, I feel like I can start adding in weekly HIIT workouts, some body-weight strength training, and even a little elliptical interval action. What I really noticed yesterday was how stiff my legs were feeling. So I took to Youtube to find a beginner’s level stretching video. This was the first one I clicked on, and I really enjoyed it!

Yoga is not my thing. I actually kinda sorta really hate it. The whole ‘breathe in, breathe out’ thing is too hippy for this anxious girl. The poses in this video, which are mostly just basic stretches, were not so bad. Something I will definitely try to incorporate after particularly-strenuous workouts.

Don’t think I’ll ever be considered a yogi. Even though sometimes my nightstand looks like it.

My nightstand (stronglikemycoffee.com)

Other internet inspirations = Alexa Jean Fitness’s Instagram account and her latest “towel workout.” I brought two hand towels out onto our faux hardwood floor last week to follow along to her workout video. Loved the variety of exercises.  For some reason, using a prop made it seem more fun. Always a plus!

High Bun Workout Mode (stronglikemycoffee.com)

 

Sweaty High Bun = Business. Serious-workout-mode hair style. No drippy ponytails please!

Last night my roommate had her (large) family over to our (little) apartment. While they cooked and ate dinner, I decided to escape to the fitness room. Have you heard of the podcast ‘Serial’? Other bloggers have been mentioning it for a while. The first episode kept me entertained through some more stretching and walking. The podcast is several episodes all covering a single murder case from 16 years ago. Seems like there isn’t enough material in this case to span several hours worth of a story, but I’ll try the second episode today.

Serial Podcast (Stronglikemycoffee.com)

Later today, some people are coming over for a movie night. After today’s run, I plan on finding another video for cooldown stretches and a core routine. Justification for the wine and popcorn I plan to enjoy tonight ;) enjoy the rest of your long weekend!

Group Fitness: Pilates!

With so many group fitness classes, intramural sports, active clubs, and beautiful scenery, it’s pretty difficult to not  get in some form of exercise at my school. Amazingly, though, there is a large portion of the population who doesn’t take advantage of all these great opportunities, and they are truly missing out. Fitness is proven to be beneficial in academic areas too because it improves mood, memory and brain function. Just do it!

One of my friends Chelsea is an instructor for a fitness class here on campus– Pilates! Monday night I grabbed a friend to come with me and headed over after dinner. I honestly have never taken a Pilates class. I’ve done yoga, zumba, spin, boot camp, body works, step, and kickboxing class but never pilates. One more thing I can cross off the list!

These classes are fun because there’s always other newbies and beginners there. You shouldn’t feel self-conscious about your athletic ability because everyone is there to have fun and enjoy their workout!

(I only got the giggles once!)

This was a mellow-style pilates with lots of breathing and stretching, and some Jack Johnson music playing in the background. I liked it, and I plan on making it a weekly thing! I felt like I stretched my whole body while working out individual muscles in the feet, legs, and core.

Since this class is only once a week, I tried to remember some of the things that I could do on my own a few more days a week:

  • Hip Bridges
  • Hip Bridge with alternating leg lifts
  • Superman (back hyper-extensions)
  • One-leg circles (lay on your back, one knee bent; draw large circles rightward and leftward with your straightened leg)
  • SLOW bicycles with inhale/exhales

If you’re on a college campus, I bet they offer these same classes. Honestly, you won’t regret finding one hour of your time to try a new workout class :)

 

Wake Up Work Out

5:45am – alarm goes off.

5:57am – Out the door for leisure bike ride

My body has come a long way from just 3 weeks ago when my “physical activity” amounted to 5 minute walks around our hotel courtyard. While I am in no running shape, I have built up my walks to around 2 miles each morning and each evening. Occasionally I’ll go on an easy bike ride next to my mom while she  jogs or do some light stretching and balance exercises. So this morning I decided to do them all back-to-back for a true workout! You gotta work with what you’ve got. Because my mom jogs before work, we started at 6am. Once you lace up your shoes and get outside, it really gets easier to be awake at the crack of dawn (during summer vacation I might add!).

Well….not according to my “walking partner” Missy…..

She would not be accompanying me on my early morning route.

My mom jogged two miles this morning (Sadly, this is more than I have run in a month. I’m going through withdrawals of endorphins). It was beautiful out, even though it’s supposed to be ugly and in the 100’s by this afternoon. And I got to wake my legs up with a cruise on my bike.

Next I ditched my bike (and my mom), turned on my Garmin GPS watch and headed out to the neighborhoods. At just 6:30am, it was silent. I finished my two miles in under 40 minutes (not impressive, I know. Right now, walking is more to get my body moving than to get some serious cardio exercise. It’s a slow process.) Meanwhile, Missy snoozed away!

Leg 3 of Wake Up Work Out was in the comfort of my own living room with some mellow morning music playing. I stretched my entire body, starting with my neck and ending with my calves. Next, a series of balance exercises like Tree Pose, Dancer’s Pose, and other things I made up as I went along. 85 minutes total, and while I wasn’t sweating or breathing heavily I felt like I had worked my whole body and EVERY LITTLE BIT COUNTS! All of this should help when I start my training again in just 2 weeks. “Real” workouts are coming!

My music selection, odd as it may be, was a ‘blast from the past’ type of thing. All CD’s that I had and forgot about. It’s funny how years later I can still remember the lyrics, yet I couldn’t tell you what I wrote my English 205 persuasive essay on last semester.

Missy was not forgotten! She went on a mini-walk with me after she fully woke up. Rough life…

Time for breakfast: Oatmeal with Cinnamon and Craisons!

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