Posts filed under ‘burn more calories’
In less than a week after doing the Muddy Buddy Race, I competed in Scale the Strat 2010. This is a charity event, a fundraiser for the American Lung Association, so I had a raise a minimum of $250… and climb 108 floors or 1,455 stairs. It was the ultimate validating event for someone who climbs stairs as part of her regular workout regimen. My concern was that I didn’t know how I’d do climbing continuously. I only have 6 floors in my building, so I always have some built-in recovery time when I come down. The Strat doesn’t afford that luxury. It’s all the way straight up. I was even more daunted when I learned I couldn’t listen to music.
When the day came, I did it in 17:43 minutes, using the “turtle method”: slow and steady with no jogging or two-at-a-time stairs. I was BEYOND proud of myself. It was such a tremendous accomplishment, another huge first for me. I am already looking forward to next year. 🙂
Earlier this month, I did something unprecedented: I competed in two athletic events in less than a week. Me! The girl who was only ever picked to be anchor for tug-o-war!!
The first was the Muddy Buddy Race. Teams of two traverse a 6-7 mile off-road course and 5 obstacles. At the start of the race, one team member runs and one rides the bike. At the 1st obstacle, the rider drops the bike, completes the obstacle, and begins running. The runner arrives, completes the obstacle, finds their bike and begin riding. Teams continue leapfrogging each other through the entire course. At the end of the race, racers crawl through the infamous Mud Pit crossing the finish line together as official “Muddy Buddies”!
It was one of the most fun and exhilarating things I’ve ever done, and I’m still in awe of myself for finding out about it, finding a partner, and doing it… all within the space of three weeks. Something brand new and daunting… but I didn’t let that hold me back. I just did it! I’ve become my own Nike commercial!! LOL 🙂
We’ve all heard of active sitting: where you incorporate some sort of physical movement, no matter how small, into your sedentary job or homelife. I do it myself, by sitting on a stability ball as my office chair. I also do it by performing various arm movements during the day, or sometimes using my FLOW software, which prompts me to do exercises at my desk every hour or so.
But, tonight: a first! Active Hair Coloring! I ate too much today and wanted to get more cardio in to compensate, at least a little. I also needed to color my hair. I’m a home hair colorer, so the ideal solution was easy to find. While I was waiting for my hair color to process, I did 30 minutes on the Gazelle. Voila… active hair coloring! I was so pleased with myself for coming up with it. I love combining necessary or fun activities with fitness. It makes me feel efficient, and it makes onerous tasks seem more purposeful and worthy.
It also turns potentially “risky” situations into opportunities for success. For example, tomorrow morning, my husband and I are going to a pancake breakfast at the airport hangar.
- We are pedaling our bicycles to and from the airport, which means we’ll get in at least a six-mile ride. 🙂
- I normally dread being confronted with the white-flour pancakes, syrup and sausage they serve. The food is always yummy, but it’s got no redeeming nutritive value. This time, along with getting exercise by biking back and forth, I’m also bringing PB&J pancake batter, made with white whole wheat flour, Smart Balance Light Buttery Spread, Smart Balance Omega 3 Peanut Butter, and unsweetened vanilla almond milk. The topping will be reduced-sugar strawberry jam. It’s fun… and healthy!
- Plus, I’ll be too busy cooking to have much time to eat.
In addition to doing stairs, I also try to do mini workouts during the day on my breaks. This week, I tried two new ones:
1) Pure Barre Workout – http://www.womenshealthmag.com/fitness/isometric-exercises
2) Women’s Health Mag Ab Workout – http://www.womenshealthmag.com/fitness/isometric-exercises
The Pure Barre workout was perfect for the office. Very doable in a cramped space and in work clothes, even a dress or skirt and blouse. That doesn’t mean it was a low-key workout, though. It was surprisingly challenging! The small, concentrated moves quickly grew tiring; I could definitely feel it and was somewhat relieved when I finished up each exericse. This one is going to become part of my regular repertoire.
I was excited about the Ab workout because many of the exercises use a stability ball, and I sit on one as my office chair. I didn’t have a medicine ball in the office, so I had to improvise with a door stop (that a friend had made for me) as my hand-held weight. Yowsa! This workout was SUPER tough! I couldn’t get through half the moves. Plus, it was hard to do them in the narrow confines of my business crib while wearing a dress and pantyhose. In fact, I was pretty discouraged after doing the workout yesterday, and I’d basically decided that I could only do this one at home. Interestingly enough, today, some of my ab muscles are sore; I can feel that the exercises – that I did manage to do – worked. That made me smile. 🙂 I think with a little tweaking, I’ll be able to do this routine here at work, too.
Breaks at work are so important, particularly breaks for movement if you are in a sedentary job. If you can make the most of those breaks by getting in a workout, you’re way ahead of the game. Try every possible workout you can and be open to customizing them for your ability and surroundings.
I was feeling glum, distinctly ho-hum. I did NOT want to do my stairs. My stairs are only one component of my workout regimen, so I can get away with not doing them. However, my Scale the Strat is coming up on March 13th, so it’s critical that I keep up my “training” for that event.
All of a sudden, the motto “Do it and then feel it” popped into my head. I got off my stability ball, changed out of my suit jacket, and proceeded to do 20 sets of stairs: 1520 up and 1520 down, for a lovely grand total of 3,040 stairs.
The endorphins are flowing, and I do, indeed, feel it now. Yay!
It’s been an off week for P90X this week. Work has been so busy, with meetings and outreach events during non-work hours, that it’s been really hard to fit in the DVD workouts. Instead, I’ve been doing 30 minutes on Tony Little’s Gazelle. It’s not nearly as intense as P90X, but at least it’s something. My fiance has been home, and I can do the Gazelle while he’s home without waking him up super early or hogging the TV/DVD player at night. It’s also a little more mindless after a crazy long day at work.
I may end up repeating the P90X program in the fall, after the wedding and after some of my evening work commitments have passed.
I’m now six weeks into my P90X program, and I’m still going strong. My schedule has made it tough to stick with it perfectly, but I’m doing my best. When I can get up early and do it in the morning, I do. A couple of times, I had DVD malfunctions in the middle of workouts, and I had to fill in with the glider. I’m also still doing up to five sets of stairs, 1st thru 4th, during the week.
I don’t really notice a difference in my physique visually, but I can feel the changes. I’m sore in places that I haven’t been, and I feel leaner in some areas. I wish I looked more like one of those “ripped” fitness models, but the internal changes are more important. Not bad for a regular girl! 🙂