Pilates, Pictures and Progress



I think the streak I was on last time I wrote ended after about 12 or 13 days all in all – not too shabby!

I’ve been pretty busy with work lately, leaving me knackered at the end of the day and not really wanting to do much by way of physical activity, but I’m still getting at least 3 or 4 days of exercise per week.

I went to get some new gym gear the day after my last post – with only two of us in the house, we can only justify putting the washing machine on every 4 or 5 days, so I needed an extra set to keep up with the gym and yoga. I also went to Sweaty Betty to get a hairband as my fringe really gets in my face. While I was trying them on, the cashier started to tell me about the free yoga and Pilates classes they run there, all you have to do is sign up for a free membership card, so I did! The only problem was that our chat distracted me so much, I didn’t notice I’d popped out one of my earrings with the hairbands. They’re one of my favourite pairs of studs, the family I lived with in when I was on my year abroad in Germany gave them to me as a leaving present, so I was pretty upset. Luckily, I had the sense to call the store in the morning and the cashier found it while I was still on the phone. Phew!

I picked it up on the Tuesday when I went to my first Pilates class. I hadn’t done Pilates before, but I enjoyed it. It’s fairly similar in some ways to what I’ve done at yoga, just focusing more on strengthening the core and other muscle groups. I went this week too and ended up having the instructor pulling on my leg to demonstrate how we should be stretching! She also showed me how to roll onto the outside of my feet to stop my knees coming together when I bend them, always good to know!

Now on to the pictures and progress!

I did my first 5K run since September this week! Rob was out all day Saturday, so I headed to the gym and battled along on the treadmill. I ran a lot more than I walked, trying to do 800m – 1km at a time running with 100 – 200 m walking gaps in between. I ended up finishing in 37 minutes or so. Not too bad considering I’m pretty much on 2 weeks of training at the moment. After that, I headed to the pool and jacuzzi for a nice relaxing cool down. I had the entire place to myself most of the time I was there!

My other achievement of the week was this:

Headstand

I did my first headstand at yoga! I haven’t done one since I was a kid! I was so pleased with myself, I came home and made Rob take pictures of me doing it so I could show off on Facebook.

Where I also showed off this:

Sloth T-Shirt

My Nan sent me this pole dancing sloth T-shirt. I love it!

That’s all for now, planning on possibly doing another 5K tonight for Kirsten’s challenge!

 

 

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Streaking (No, Not Like That)

I’m not sure what’s come over me.

A week ago, I was doing one yoga session a week and barely getting out of the house.

Today will now be my eighth day of an activity streak! Here’s what it’s looked like:

Friday: Gym – treadmill, bike and cross-trainer for a total of about 40 minutes

Saturday: Gym – treadmill, bike and cross-trainer for a total of about 45 minutes

Sunday: Yoga video at home (about an hour)

Monday: Yoga class (an hour)

Tuesday: Gym – cross-trainer and treadmill for a total of about 40 minutes

Wednesday: Yoga video at home (about an hour)

Thursday: Gym – all treadmill, 40 minutes in total but with much more running

Today: Planning on another hour long yoga video.

I’ve also got gym/yoga plans going up to Monday – this ish is bananas.

I’m really surprised with how well my lungs are coping with starting to run again. I thought I’d be coughing and spluttering all over the show, but it’s more my stamina in general that’s the problem. It’ll come back though. I’m trying to do different kinds of  runs to get me back up to speeds and distances I used to be capable of. I started off with trying to start at 8 km/h and running for a minute before adding 0.1 km/h until I got to 9 km/h or thereabouts and then coming back down, but couldn’t manage it and ended up doing some really haphazard speeds, running fast and walking slow whenever I felt I needed it.

I then figured that the problem with that was also partially mental: I was trying to run faster every minute and didn’t think I could do it. So yesterday I tried running two minutes at 9, then took off 0.1 every two minutes – same thing overall, just in a more mind-friendly order. It worked! Yeah, I had to walk for between 1 and 3 minutes every now and again because I had stitch (and am pretty unfit at the moment), but I did every rep I set out to do. I even got the Runner’s High at the end and wanted to keep going!

So I think I’ll be sticking with a routine like that for a bit, switching it up when I’m starting to master it. Probably the best part is that in that 40 minutes (which also included a 5 minute warm up walk and a 5 minute cool down walk), I got to nearly 5K, so I’m pretty hopeful that I can put in a respectable time for the Virtual Run coming up next month.

Any bets on how long I can keep this streak going?

New Gym Member Right Here!

Yep, I’m officially a gym member once again!

We live between two gyms here, so as I had a bit of free time at the beginning of the week (work was still pretty slow coming in – assuming nobody wrote anything over Christmas that needed translating), I decided to look into them.

The nearest one is literally over the road, but it’s a national chain that’s notorious for being expensive. They don’t even put a price on their website, kind of like the old “If you have to ask, you can’t afford it” saying, but I decided to ask anyway. A very enthusiastic sales guy tried to sell me on all their facilities, but all we wanted are the basics. Eventually I got the price out of him, and it was of course stupidly high!

So I checked in with the gym at the hotel down the road my parents sometimes stay at when they come to visit. I called up on Wednesday and the instructor invited me in for a look on Thursday. I’d had a look on the website and it seemed quite little (it’s only a small hotel), but it turns out it’s just what we need. There are treadmills and bikes, crosstrainers, rowing machines and all sorts of weight stuff, and a pool. OK, so the pool is tiny, but I can see myself going for a cool-down dip after a workout. Rob and I went back in last night to have a free trial and decided to sign up on the spot. This gym also has the benefit of paying month to month instead of by direct debit so we can have some time off if *touch wood* we injure ourselves or get sick.

I had my first proper session today and decided to see just how unfit I am. Surprisingly enough, not running for four months has really affected my stamina, but I did around 35 or so minutes on the treadmill, changing up the speeds to what I used to do at my old gym (pre C25K) and what I managed during C25K, with a fair amount of fast walking. I wouldn’t say it’s comfortable by any stretch, but I don’t think it’ll take me too long to get right back into it. I then had a wander around doing 5 minutes or so each on the bike and crosstrainer. We’ve also booked in for an induction on the weight stuff for next week as I’ve never done that before. I’m figuring at the moment that multiple shorter bursts in the gym are better for me than a couple of big ones a week – I don’t have the attention span or the stamina!

Atmosphere-wise, it’s so much nicer than my old gym back in Birmingham. It’s properly quiet, over the three times I’ve been there (mid-morning Thursday, mid-evening Friday and early Saturday afternoon), I’ve never seen more than three people in at once. You don’t have the big hulking guys showing off or instructors buzzing around trying to get you to come to classes, the music is quiet so you can just stick your headphones in and go. The only thing I miss is being able to plug my headphones into the machines and get the feed from the TV – I’ll tell ya, watching Embarrassing Fat Bodies really gets you going on the treadmill!

So there you go, my first gym wrap-up! I’ve also got another goal to add to my ones from last week! I’m going to take part in Kirsten’s Virtual Run Fundraiser. I’ve been following Kirsten as she’s gone through the C25K programme and now she’s going for her first 10K. She’s asking people to sponsor her while completing a 5K or 10K of their own, and she’s giving out medals! I’ll probably go for a 5K as the event is next month, but who knows!

This has gone on a bit now, so I’ll just say that yoga was great this week! My instructor has managed to start the Yoga Flow class, which I really enjoyed! I’m still going to try and do yoga at home tomorrow too to make up my 2 a week goal.

Happy running!