Like a Virgin

Hey kids, happy summer!  Today is my first day of my summer vacation and I already did the first thing on my summer to-do list: slept until my body told me it was time to get up.  Waking up to an alarm (then hitting the snooze button every five minutes for a half hour) really bums me out so all I really wanted out of my first day of summer vacation was to wake up on my own.  Now, that may have been 7:00 a.m., but it was without an alarm nonetheless 🙂

Then I did something I haven’t done in two weeks: I went food shopping!  We literally had NO food in the house.  I mean, when the cans of fruit and mini bags of Doritos that Jack was living off of got scarce I knew it was time to go.  I stocked up on a whole bunch of fresh produce including a pint of blueberries that were on sale, strawberries, bananas, and a quarter of a seedless watermelon.

Food shopping at 8:00a.m.is far less stressful than on a Sunday afternoon.  I even made it to Trader Joe’s to buy some whole wheat pizza dough for Pizza Monday and a bottle of Two Buck Chuck.

Have you ever tried this stuff?  It is only $2.99 a bottle and isn’t half bad!  I actually have only had the red wines but if the white is as good as that I will have a new go-to wine.  If not I can stick to the $2.99 red wines.  See, a win-win situation!

After food shopping I headed to Tristan’s 11am Avalon Crossfit class.  I love taking classes with Tristan but when I am in school I can’t make it to his afternoon classes.  This means I only take classes with him for bootcamp or when he is filling in for someone else.  Today’s class was different than the those other classes though.  First off, it was much smaller (I really heart small classes).  There were 4 of us (and I was the only girl).  With the class being so small I was able to really hoard Tristan’s attention and get him to answer every question I had.  It was just like the good old days when we did onboarding together 🙂

I got there before anyone else so we chatted about protein for fueling after a workout.  I just got a new Whey Protein powder today on trip to Trader Joe’s and wasn’t sure how much to put in a smoothie.  He said one scoop should be plenty because the purpose of the protein after a workout is to get protein digested as fast as possible after a workout.

Warm up was pretty straight forward: 3 rounds

  • 5 inchworms
  • 10 air squats
  • 15 jumping jacks
Strength:
  • 5 x 5 front squat
  • 10 pull-ups (modified with a thick band around my knees)

Front squats are hard for me because I do not have the flexibility in my wrists that I need to correctly hold the bar across my shoulders.  One of my elbows (the right one) is always high than the other too which makes me lopsided.  I can squat like a champ though with a modification where I rest the bar across my shoulders and criss cross my arms to keep my elbows up and the bar in place.  I did my first set with just the 45lb bar, the second set with 65lbs, and the last three with 75lbs.

Pull ups were tough.  We were working on dead hang pull ups and using the thick band around my knee I could do 4 in a row (woop woop) but then it got so hard and I would have to do like 1 and 1/2 then take a break.

WOD:
21-18-15-12-9-6-3 reps
  • Kettle bell swings (16kg)
  • push ups
  • ab mat sit ups

Today I was like a Crossfit virgin (sing it with me: “Crossfitting for the very first tiiiimmmeee”).  Let me explain:

When I started back in January I was so eager to improve and get stronger and faster.  Every class I really pushed myself.  I tried heavier weights and scaled down if needed.  I always started as close to prescribed as possible.  Somewhere over time though, I got lazier and didn’t push myself the way I should have.  I started with the lower weight kettlebells, did push-ups on my knees, underestimated what I was capable of.  Actually, I just went with the motions.

In Crossfit, however, they say something like “If you do the same thing you will get the same results”.  I want to get faster and stronger.  I needed a fresh start and a little pep talk from Tristan sure went a long way. We discussed the fact that I am kinda scared to be the last one finished and have been struggling to push myself because I don’t want to be the last one (even though I know it is a ridiculous thought). He sympathized with me, but explained that to get faster and stronger I need to go heavier and take longer (at first).  He encouraged me to not let finishing last hinder me from really progressing.  He strongly suggested always going for as close to prescribed as possible and said if I needed to drop weight or modify as I go to do so.  He encouraged pacing myself so I could move continuously through the WOD and take small rest breaks if necessary.  

No pain no gain I guess?!

My renewed Crossfit mantra: Go big or go home.

  • I went with the 16kg kettle bell and used it for the entire WOD.
  • I also did “real” pushups for the 21-18-15 reps, resting a little between then modified to my knees for the 12-9, and went back to “real”ones for 6-3.
  • Ab mat sit ups were a piece of cake 😉

I finished in 14:32 (or something like that), at least 4 full minutes after the guys.  I feel AMAZING.

My run to and from Crossfit totaled 2.25 miles and served as a great warm up pre-Crossfit and a form of post-workout torture on the way home.

Upon walking in my house I made myself a giant glass of chocolate milk and procrastinated doing anything else of my summer-to-do list.
Hey, I was off to a pretty good start 😉
When have you approached something you routinely do with new eyes?  What brought about the change?
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Thing I haven’t Done

Hey everyone!  Happy Saturday!

I haven’t blogged in over a week, but that isn’t the only thing I haven’t done in a week!

I also didn’t:

  • run (with the exception of an 8k road race last Sunday and a 5k run Thursday)
  • Crossfit
  • do laundry
  • go food shopping
  • cook a home made meal
  • make my bed when I got up
  • wake up without hitting snooze or resetting my alarm
  • shower
OK, I did shower, but I didn’t do much else.  Sometimes life just calls for you to take a break and I guess, as you can see, when I take I break I take it from everything.  Why discriminate right? 😉

Unfortunately one thing that happens when I am not on schedule is that I feel more stressed out and cranky than normal!  I am sure if you asked Jack he would agree that I was probably one tough cookie this week to put up with.

Today I decided it had to end.  I had to get back on track with my Saturday morning bootcamp class.

I always liked the bootcamp classes because I am a fan of the circuit type workouts where you do timed intervals for each exercise.  Our WOD in a regular Crossfit class includes these types sometimes too but usually is a certain amount of reps for a certain amount of rounds.  For a while I thought that because our bootcamps would be outside that we wouldn’t be doing circuits until winter because we had access to a track and could run instead.  Tristan never disappoints though, and he must’ve read my mind, because today’s class was what I would consider my dream bootcamp class.

Warm Up
  • 1 and 1/2 laps around the track
  • 30 jumping jacks
  • 20 air squats
  • 10 push ups
Bootcamp:
stations with a partner, two 30-second rounds for each exercise (totaling 2 minutes)
  • (A) jumping jacks
  • (A) burpees
  • (B) bear crawls
  • (B) bicycles
  • (C) side steps
  • (C) Thrusters with 15lb weights
  • (D) kettle bell swings with 14kg
  • (D) jump rope singles
  • (E) push-ups
  • (E) walking lunges
  • (F) shuttle runs
  • (F) ab mat sit ups
  • (G) grape vines
  • (G) mountain climbers

Then we did the whole circuit again but for just 30 seconds a piece.  I love the 30 second intervals because I can do anything (bear crawls and mountain climbers mainly) for 30 seconds.  It keeps the workout flowing and moving at a fast pace, which I LOVE!

It was such a good workout and I felt strong and happy to be getting back at it.  The sun got very warm toward the end so I was a sweaty mess by the time we were done.  I have got to get myself some unrestrictive summer workout clothes so they only thing that makes the workout hard is, well, the workout! (and not overheating because of clothing thats too heavy).
What haven’t you done this week?

~L

Shake It Up

Only in New England can it be 70 degrees one day, and then, the day after the first day of spring, snow!  I mean, I guess since we haven’t seen snow in so long I should’t complain and it is not like it’s sticking, but come on!

Operation Breakfast Smoothie was mildly successful today.

By mildly successful I mean it was drinkable.

I made it with 1 frozen banana, 1 cup skim milk, a handful of ice (which DID not even become blended at all), and a scoop of chocolate Shakeology.

It tasted like a freezer-burned fudgesicle and had the consistency of warm, melted ice cream.

Not very refreshing but….

I drank it all and was completely satisfied until mid-morning.

Shakeology claims to be “The Healthiest Meal of the Day” and it actually helped my friend Meghan lose over 100 pounds last year by replacing one meal of snack with a shake each day, and of course eating right and exercise!

By the end of week four I should expect:

  • improved digestion and regularity
  • reduced cravings (man is this one chocolatey shake)
  • increased energy and stamina
  • lost weight
  • improved mental clarity

I really wanted to try it out as a healthy snack choice.  If I replaced a meal with it I have a feeling I would drop dead in Crossfit 😉

I love that it came with a monthly calendar that gave daily suggestions for how to create different shakes!

Since I am going into my second month at Crossfit and I am giving Shakeology a try, I am going to be taking some measurements tonight to track my progress at the end of April.  I am not going to be a slave to the scale, I don’t even own one, but taking measurements will help me track my progress.  I can’t wait to see what one month will bring.

Game plan?

  • Shakeology once a day for snack
  • Crossfit 3-4 days a week
  • Running 3-4 days a week

I guess once I figure out how to blend things together appropriately I will be golden!  All you smoothie makers out there (Starbucks that includes you) make it look so easy.  Or maybe I am a moron?!

Do you have any fitness or health goals for this month??

Lunch was delish so I must share it with you.  I made a shredded chicken sandwich with lettuce, and an individual string cheese.  Oh, and the best part was the tortilla.

It was perfectly spicy.

See what I mean?  Yum!

Tonight I have Crossfit.  The WOD is titled “Filthy Fifty”.  Sounds intriguing, yeah?!

Do you have any smoothie advice for me?  I am dying over here trying to perfect my smoothie skills!

~L

Hello HAL!

How is everybody’s “Jersday” going?

Anyone else looking forward to seeing what shizzt goes down on “The Shore” tonight?

I figure that since I still have a few hours to go, I’d get to planning out my training for my half marathon that is coming up in 12 short weeks.

I love routine and I love plans, the only problem I find with myself is that it takes me forever to sort through my plans to make a routine! 😉

I have three colored markers to help me:

  • Green= Crossfit
  • Red= Running
  • Silver (not pictured)= everything else (because my life needs to involve more than the two above!)

Today I printed out Hal Higdon’s Half Marathon Training for the Novice Runner.  I dated each of the 12 weeks until the race and marked my four upcoming races.  This plan couldn’t be more perfect because my Half Marathon falls on the very last Sunday of training! Not only that, I got excited at the prospect of the Week 9-12 runs because that is when the spring-y weather will be around!

Hal’s plan keeps running/rest/cross training/strength training to specific days each week:

Week
Mon
Tue
Wed
Thu
Fri
Sat
Sun
1
Stretch &
Strengthen
3 m run
2 m run or cross
3 m run +
strength
Rest
30 min
cross
4 m run
2
Stretch &
Strengthen
3 m run
2 m run or cross
3 m run +
strength
Rest
30 min
cross
4 m run
3
Stretch &
Strengthen
3.5 m run
2 m run or cross
3.5 m run +
strength
Rest
40 min
cross
5 m run
4
Stretch &
Strengthen
3.5 m run
2 m run or cross
3.5 m run +
strength
Rest
40 min
cross
5 m run

Any days that call for “strength training” or “cross training” I am going to do CrossFit.

My 12 Week Training Plan will look kinda like this:

  • 3-4 days(ish) Crossfit
  • 4 days(ish) running
  • 1-2 full rest days

Now I am working on getting all the dates, daily mileage, and stuff into a monthly planner.

I already messed up once, so I am actually working in my second planner (I hadn’t perfected my color system in the book above).

I am not going to stick to the plan exactly as Hal planned it because I do like the flexibility of arranging the runs around the weather/time of day/mood.  Fridays are sometimes when I love to run most and Mondays I can find myself dragging. However, I will do my best to spread the running days out to prevent myself from getting bored with running and will also try to only have to double up with a CrossFit and Running Day two days a week.

And of course listening to my body is *key*.  I mean I need to give it what it needs so it will take me those 13.1 miles.

This is real deal planning!  A Half Marathon is no joke, and I am only now realizing how big of an undertaking training for it is!  EEEK!


“Setting a goal is not the main thing. It is deciding how you will go about achieving it and staying with that plan.” Tom Landry

 

What long term goal have you set and how did you planned to meet it?  Did you look at the larger  picture or take it day-by-day, week-by-week? Inquiring minds want to know!

~L


 

Fight Gone Bad

I am going to make this post short and sweet and to the point…

I got a hot bowl of home-made beef stew siting in front of me and I need to eat it and go to bed…  I am not sure how much longer my legs will allow my body to move….

I just got back from my first Crossfit class, and let me tell you friends, Crossfit rocks my world...

HOLY COW!!!! 8)

I was extremely nervous to take my first class because:

1) I didn’t know anyone else in class

2) I wasn’t sure what to expect

Good thing Crossfit thought of these fears before me:

1) Tristan, my onbaording trainer, was the instructor for tonight’s class.  Ok, I kinda jumped at the chance to sign up for class when I noticed he was the instructor, BUT it was still pretty frightening walking into a room with 5 guys already waiting for class to start. Thank goodness two other ladies showed up so I wasn’t the only one! (I introduced myself to them right away and they were so friendly and welcoming to the “newbie”)

2) They post their WOD (workout of the day) on their Facebook page the night before so I was able to obsessively research each movement on You Tube.  A girl’s got to feel prepared!

Crossfit

Tonight’s workout was titled “Fight Gone Bad” and it consisted of 5 exercises you preformed for 1 minute each.  I had to do as many reps as possible (AMRAP) in that time and my reps were kept score on the white board at the front.

There were 8 of us in the class so we got paired up so that we were each starting at a different station each round.

We got a 1 minute break after rounds 1 and 2, and a 2 minute break after rounds 3 and 4.

WOD- Fight Gone Bad

  • Wall Ball (10lbs)
  • Sumo squat deadlift (20lbs)
  • box jumps (20 inch box)
  • push press (35lbs)
  • jump pull-up

I got paired up with another Crossfit instructor, which was cool.  But you want to know the best part? NO ONE EVEN PAYS ATTENTION TO WHAT YOU ARE DOING…everyone is busy busting their own ass in an effort to beat their previous rep. amount.  The only competition was between me, myself, and I tonight. Tristan told us to stay in the 5 rep range from the previous rounds for each new round.

Round 1- 65

Round 2- 66

Round 3- 72 (go me!)

Round 4- 63 (not in the range but at least I didn’t puke!)

Round 5- 72 (finished strong)

They took the top 3 rep amounts and totaled it up.

I was very proud of myself after class was over.  First because every time I didn’t think I could do one more rep, I did one more rep. (I made a conscious effort to not tire myself out early, but still to push myself as much as possible).  But most important of all, I did something I wanted to try, without anyone else!  Big steps toward one of my New Year’s goals!

I heart Crossfit!  It is just the thing I needed to spice up my fit-life and get me seeing those amazing results I was seeing last summer!

How are you coming with your goals for the year?  January is almost over!

Off to eat, then crash (possibly on the couch, haha),

~L

I have never…

I have never been one to have a New Year’s resolution.  Well, not that kind that I actually intended pursue.

But when thinking of how many positive experiences I had in 2010 I don’t see how I couldn’t at least give some resolutions (or goals if you’d rather) a good-ol’-college try.  At the very least they will give me some direction this year, and at the most they could make 2011 the best year yet.

After all, I am turning 30 this year (dun dun duuuunnnn) so if any year is going to be the BEST EVER, why not this one???


I have been thinking of writing my goals for the year for quite some time now, and even though I haven’t been blogging regularly I knew that I would be sharing them here….

Hmmm….Where do I begin??

1) BLOG! I really want to spend more time this year blogging.  Mostly I envision myself blogging about a variety of stuff: the healthy and not so healthy, the fun, the food, the fitness, new experiences, and old traditions.  Basically I will write about what my little heart desires.  What I won’t do is promise to post everyday or post everything I do or eat.  A lot of the times I am eating the same thing (breakfast is oatmeal, lunch turkey sammie…you get the idea) and there is only so much I can say about yoga.  BUT I will let you in on what I feel is worth sharing!

(SOURCE)

2) Go it alone (when necessary)..Something I know about myself is that no matter how much I’d like to try something I won’t try it alone. And while the power of a buddy has given me the confidence to do a lot of things, sometimes I prevent myself from doing things I really want because I’m scared to try it alone.  This year I am going to try to not be such a scared-y pants…

(I obviously shouldn’t be allowed to dress myself though…)

3) Challenge myself physically I need something different to spice up my fit-life because what I am doing now (which is not very much) isn’t cutting it for me.  I like being active and it is killing me that I can’t even WANT to TRY to get to the gym in the morning (or any other time fore that matter).  My solution?  Try something new and train for something big!

“Ask yourself: ‘Can I give more?’. The answer is usually: ‘Yes’.”
-Paul Tergat, Kenyan professional marathoner


4) Read more for fun What is better than being so completely engrossed in a book that you can’t go to bed until you finish it?   You know what I mean, those kind of books that you can’t put down but don’t want to finish in fear that you will NEVER find a book that good again? Well, I get that feeling each summer I lay on the beach and each time I take a vacation, but I can honestly say I never have that feeling during the school year because I just don’t want to read. Period.


5) Become a better cook I can cook, but I want to know how to COOK, if that makes sense.  Enough of my zucchini lasagna and risotto balls (sorry mom 😉 ).  I need a variety.  For Christmas I got three new cookbooks from my mom and part of my goals for the year are to 1) not buy anymore cookbooks and 2)not download any new recipes until I can do the following..really well…

~make home made raviolis

~ make a really good pizza dough, from scratch (ditto for home made pie crust)

~ and learn how to make a restaurant chef quality: appetizer, salad, entree, and dessert.  I haven’t picked specifics out yet….

Well, there you have it…

5 goals I have to make 2011 even better than 2010…

I have other mini-ones that I decided will help make me a more sane (i.e. leave school at school) but above are the ones I am really. truely. going to pursue…

Here goes nothing!

~L

Do you set New Year’s resolutions/goals?  What are some you set for yourself this year? Inquiring minds want to know 🙂


Truth be told..

Truth be told, and I am being really honest here, winter has never been my favorite season.  I have never been a fan of the cold, dreary days or the fact the I wake up and go to bed when its dark.

Jack calls this one "The Walk of Snow"

This is weird I know, considering I knowingly went to college in Maine, where the winters are more frigid, the snow is feet deeper, and the chance for a teacher to get a snow day is slim to none compared to here.  My college was (actually, still is) about 45 minutes from Sugarloaf ski resort, and though I bought a season pass and every conceivable accessory to become a snowboarder, I only ONCE woke up and dragged myself to the mountain.

ONCE, in 4 years….

So it will probably surprise you to know that running in cold, winter weather is my favorite weather to run in.  Yes, more than running in summer or spring, or running in Hawaii for that matter!

This time last year, if you told me I would have geared up with my Spibelt, Garmin, gloves, winter hat, and triple layers of sweat-wicking clothing just to go for a run,  I would have said “HELL no, not me”.

How amazing is it that a gal can change so much in a year (or two)!

yes, I am the hott stuff in the middle

 

Well, today I ran 5 miles in the cold and flurries.

It was challenging, yet do-able..

both invigorating and exhausting…

and though I may have damaged a toenail in the process…

I did it…

in just over 57 minutes.

This is for sure is a positive sign for the *bigger* and *better* things I have in store for myself as a runner.

(I have run 5 miles before (here and here)…but my head wasn’t in the run the way it was today.  It felt damn good today!)

So, there you have it.  I ran 5 miles in the wintry cold.  I have no pictures to prove it though, so you’re just going to have to trust me on this one! 😉

 

 

What have you done that surprised yourself lately??

~L