Sunday, February 28, 2010

Project X- Days 5,6,7, and 8

So- call me a liar...I haven't posted about Project X in a few days. My bad!

Thursday- D and I hit another spin class this morning. The tension on my bike was a little wonky- a tiny turn in the tension knob would make me feel like I was riding up Mount Everest!! Seriously- I had to pay such close attention to my bike it kind of took the fun out of the class. Oh well.

Friday- Day off! Today was a scheduled day off for both D and I. We deserved it!

Saturday- Yikes...I'm a slacker. I was supposed to go running today with my marathon training group BUT when I woke up, it was raining. I'm not about to get wet, cold, and potentially sick, so I didn't go. Oops. D, on the other hand, went to her hula class. Good for her!

Sunday- I wanted to sweat today- like, a lot. I went to the gym early and hit the elliptical for 30 minutes on the "hills" program. Yikes! Then I still had some time to burn before D showed up so, I did the treadmill, increasing the incline and speed every minute until I reached incline 11 and speed 4.0. After 15 minutes, I jumped off and then D arrived. Here was the workout I put us through (again, we did 2 sets of everything)

1. Push-Ups (15 reps) (I DID MOST OF THESE ON MY TOES!)
2. Squats with a body ball, against the wall (15 reps)
3. Sumo Squats- (15 reps- one set with a medicine ball shoulder press and one set with a calf raise)
4. Dumbbell press on a body ball (15 reps)
5. Dumbbells fly with a crunch on a body ball (15 reps)
6. W shoulder press with leg extension (15 reps)
7. Tricep dips on a bench (20 reps)
8. Tricep press down with a rope (15 reps)
9. Side plank (30 seconds each side)
10. Plank (30 seconds)
11. Crunches with punches (20 reps)
12. Ankle taps (15 reps)

Phew- just writing it down makes me tired...again...

So, I'm hoping this week will look a lot like last week, only with a few more runs thrown in on my part. Stay tuned!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Project X- Day Four!

Hit the weight room this morning with D, after I put in a quick 2 mile run on the treadmill. We did arms and shoulders- a "tank top workout," if you will! Here is what we did:

1. Tricep dips on a bench
2. Bicep curls
3. Single leg front raises
4. Upright rows
5.Stork stance chest fly
6. Lateral shoulder raises
7. Crunches
8. Walking plank

Let me tell you that I had never DONE a walking plank before- and I may never do one again. Basically, you get into a full plank position and then "walk" your hands, first to one side, and then to the other. It's incredibly difficult. D and I laughed A LOT while we struggled through them!

Tomorrow- spin class, Lord willing!

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Project X- Day Three

For those of you that are counting- today is day three of Project X- the "get my butt back in the gym while helping out a friend" initiative. Day two, yesterday, was a rest day...and we needed it!

This morning, we hit a spin class at our gym. I walked in fifteen minutes before the class was supposed to start and snagged the LAST two open bikes. People are eager to work out at the crack of dawn, I see. Anyway, the teacher has these amazing biceps- I'm seriously jealous of her. Someday...

Ok- so, call me a wimp but the class was really difficult! I hope the teacher was just really trying to kick our butts because, well, she did. I had to lower the tension on my bike more times than I can count. Maybe I should have kept that a secret...

So, tomorrow- day FOUR- we'll be hitting the weight room again to do upper body. I'm also going to throw a quick run in there. Wish me luck- I may not be mobile tomorrow thanks to the spin teacher with the perfect arms!

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Project X- Day One (AKA Project Freak!!!)

As promised, today was the kick-off of my project(s). My friend, D, asked me to help her develop a work out program. Since I'm hoping to get my personal trainer certification soon (despite the one stupid, difficult test that's in my way), I told her I would. So- we've named that adventure, Project X- because I wasn't feeling that creative and, again, I'm hooked on all things Shaun White.

My selfish motive for helping her, though, is to get myself back into the gym. I ran 5 miles this Saturday, and while it was not difficult, it also wasn't as EASY as it should be. I feel like I've been slacking and just want to hit the weights and cardio hard. Therefore, in honor of yesterday's post, I've named my personal project Project Freak.

To keep myself accountable on both projects, I've decided I'll post about our workouts, my feelings, progress, and any funny incidents that are by-products of the project(s)- as I'm sure there will be. I can't seem to do anything without it turning into a circus!!

So- today was Day One. I headed to the gym earlier than I was to meet D because I wanted to get a quick run in. I hit the treadmill for a pathetic two miles- it was pretty slow-going- I did run yesterday, though. Then, when D arrived, she warmed up on the treadmill on an incline. Then, we proceeded to the weight room. Here was our workout (we did 2 sets of 15 reps of most of these exercises):

Walking lunges
Chest fly
Low rows
Leg press (2 sets 30- 10 reps in each of three different positions)
Hamstring curls
Incline chest press
Clean and press
shoulder raises
Bicep curls
Tricep push-down
Lower back extension
Plank pose
Oblique crunches

Phew!! Tomorrow, we're taking a rest day and then Tuesday and Thursday, we'll hit a spin class. On Wednesday, I plan to lead D through another strength training workout. I also have to throw some runs into all of this for myself!!

Oh- and don't think that any of this scares me- it makes me crazy with excitement- it's the freak in me!!

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Project Freak...???

If you know me, in real life, you'd know that I have been strangely obsessed with Olympic Snowboarder, Shaun White. I'm talking relentless google-searching, changing my iPhone background, Tivoing all of his interviews, obsessed. So, what's the deal? The guy isn't THAT hot...

Yes, but he is THAT good. Today, I figured out that the thing that is so enchanting about Shaun White is that, literally, no one can do what he can do. He is the absolute best at what he does. Yes- there are people that are CLOSE to him in terms of skill level but, as his final Olympic snowboarding run proved, he is just the best of the best. That's kind of crazy to think about...

I was running with my group of trainees in the SF Marathon program today, and one of the remarked how much his fitness level had improved in just four short weeks since the beginning of the program. I told him that, yes, the time when a person first gets off of the couch to when they become an intermediate athlete is the time when they see the largest, and fastest, gains in fitness. I then, stupidly, said, "It's the shift from intermediate to advanced and elite that separates the humans from the freaks..." My trainee chuckled and I confirmed that he had made great gains and should be very proud of himself.

So- what's the deal...why is it so hard to go from good to great? Is it because most of us have full-time jobs, family responsibilities, school...?? According to my hubby, it's because we spend too much time on the internet. While watching the Olympics Opening Ceremonies, I told hubby that I was so amazed by the athletic ability of the Chinese. China always bodes well in the summer and the winter games. Hubby says, "They're so good because they don't have Google or YouTube..." So, I guess (human)- (YouTube)= Gold Medal???

Anyway, I've determined that there's got to be something else that boosts athletes to the next level. I'm pretty sure it's something like an "x factor"- or, better yet, a "freak factor". I mean, really, Michael Phelps, Apollo Ono, Meb Keflezighi, Lindsey Vohn, etc. all work VERY hard- and yet, there are athletes that work just as hard, and just can't catch them. So- there has to be something else at play here. What is it???

Since I'm pretty certain that I DON'T have the freak factor, at least not when it comes to running, I've decided that the only way I'm going to get better is to just bust my tail. Therefore, I'm launching a new project. My friend, D, has asked me to help her work out- so, that's going to be my excuse for getting back into the gym. Once I get there though, I'm planning to just go nuts- push myself like I've never pushed myself before. It begins tomorrow....because, really, just because I don't have the freak factor, doesn't mean that I can't just be a freak.

Apollo Ono- He's A Freak Too...