Forgot About Dre

This post has taken two point five weeks to finish and publish. This does not mean to raise your standards.

I love the new job. Love it, love it, love it. We’re crazy busy right now, but it’s all going so well.

 The only downside of the job is how much I hate my commute home. Hate it, hate it, hate it. Leaving at 5:30 I’m right in the middle of all the rush hour traffic. My office is 15 miles from my house, yet it takes over an hour most days. It’s heavy traffic, construction, and Ravens/Orioles traffic on top of it. The stadium traffic all gets off at my exits. Why did I want to move to a city again? Haha. I hate driving so much, and my drive home probably isn’t actually that bad, but it really stresses me out. And now that I get home at 6:30-ish, suddenly everything I’ve ever wanted to attend in life is at 6 PM. Sucks.

 I’m doing better at eating healthy although I’d really like to track and see how many calories I am eating per day. I used to be, at best, mediocre at this but the whole tracking every morsel thing is tiresome (mad props to those who faithfully keep it up) and I kept forgetting to track. Some days I’m just like ughhhh sure I had 3 cups of feta in my salad, I DON’T KNOW. Some days, when I’m on my food prep game, I feel like I just might be eating too many calories considering my activity level is somewhat low. Some days, the calories are definitely too little. I keep meaning to do a WIAW to show it all off but..Wednesday keeps catching me unaware. Weekends are still an issue, like they have always been, but we’ll get there. Some day.

 Fitness. Hmm. I’m on the cusp of a new routine. <— That! That is the sentence I believe jinxed the post. I made that proclamation via keyboard then I got knocked down by a sinus infection that just wouldn’t quit and sidelined me for over a week and made me the enemy of all co-workers who sit near me. So, this new routine is walking. My office is on a 2.3 mile loop. It took me a dumb amount of time to realize this. I’ve always loved to go for long walks (now I sound like an on-line dating ad cliche), so the next day I packed a bag and changed at work at end of the day. Of course, I continually run into co-workers after I change. I still feel extremely embarrassed, like I have been caught stealing the Crown Jewels. One girl asked what I was doing, so I told her i was going for a run. Yeah, I straight up lied. What is wrong with me? It’s pretty dumb to feel so awkward about it but rationality isn’t a strength of mine. 

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The route.

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It’s a supremely nice, safe route. I feel really lucky that this is right outside my office. It’s really cool to see all the bikers, runners and walkers out on the loop, so way to go Columbia for helping people stay active. The arrival of pumpkin everything makes me sad because I know I won’t be able to do this walk forever since eventually it’ll be cold. We’ll cross that bridge when we get to it. The big bonus is that walking the loop twice takes me about 1.5 hours, so when I do get in my car and pull out of the office parking lot, I’ve missed a lot of the traffic. Score! So, weather, preparation (one day I only packed one sneaker. yep), and schedule permitting, I do this at least 3 days a week. While it’s not heart-pounding cardio, I burn over 300 calories according to my Map My Walk app.

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A surprise diversion on the loop. But it’s a fun one. 

I also am trying to get back on the bike. The spin bike. I can’t quite figure out my relationship with spinning. I really like sitting down and spinning away, while playing with the resistance to make the ride harder. I hate the standing up part. I’m SO freaking bad at it. I can manage like 10 seconds total. I know I’m out of shape and so it’s going to be uncomfortable and all that, but sheesh. I really loathe it (the standing up part) more than anything else I can currently think of that’s fitness related. Can I just sit down and spin the whole time? Can that be a class? Normally I’d just toss spinning aside as another Thing That Caitlyn Can’t Do And So Hath Abandoned. So why do I keep wanting to go?  I think it’s all Rev Cycle Studio’s fault. I just love that place. The instructors are all amazing, and so nice. The place has such a good vibe. That makes no sense.  I’m there every Saturday morning for barre with Mary and I just like being at Rev. This is big because as we all know, I hate being anywhere that reminds me how out of shape I am. So if you’re in Bmore and want to join me once a week at a 6 am spin class, lemmmme know. You can kick off your morning with a good, hearty laugh at my performance. 

But! What about the gym you used to go to all the time? Yeah. Hmm. It doesn’t make geographical sense to go to the location I used to go to (my gym is a chain), on weekday mornings because I’ll hit tons of traffic for endless miles. I really don’t like the locations near my house and just feel uncomfortable there. So. My gym and I are kind of at a standstill. That I’m still paying for. 

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 Remember that couple I posted about a few months ago? He passed away a few weeks after I posted. His wife wrote an amazing blog entry entitled “Rest In Peace My Sweet Husband” which you can read here. I cry every time. They also blogged their 5 year journey to cancer which is linked at the top of the post. So amazing and so inspiring. Whenever I feel myself being unnecessarily whiny, dramatic, or just acting like a bee-yatch in general, I remember their posts and how Dan lived. At his wedding he hugged me and told me “I’m so happy you’re here today” and meant it. I was a complete stranger! All he knew of me was that I was his now brother-in-law’s best friend who was obsessed with weddings. He visited 52 countries and 44 states in 33 years, and judging by the amazing posts on his Facebook wall, left an immeasurable legacy everywhere he went. It’s weird how much his death has affected me. Sometimes I get both angry and sad that such a GOOD person isn’t here anymore. Like, really? Keep all the jerks around but take him? I can’t pretend to understand now but maybe someday. 

I Spent Cinco De Mayo At The Bar(re)

I dunno what it is but…winter. I don’t want to do anything but hibernate in my house in sweatpants and fuzzy socks and just watch all the TV, eat all the bad food and read all the books. Then nice weather rolls in and I’m suddenly thinking “gahhh why are my pants tight?! Why haven’t I been going to the gym? Why have i instead just languished about? Why am I so lazy? SO MUCH TIME HATH BEEN WASTED. Gotta get MOVING.” I’d probably be starring in fitness videos by now if I lived in California.

It was Sunday, I was procrastinating picking out a work outfit and figuring out my work meals, when fellow Bmore healthy living blogger friend Mary posted that she was teaching her first SB Barre class the next day at a new location of my gym that had just opened…aaaaand it was 10-15 minutes away from work. I decided this was perfect because I’d been wanting to try a barre workout…and the best part…it was the first time the class was being offered at the new gym so it wasn’t like I would be a buffalo in a sea of prima ballerinas. It would probably be everyone else’s first time taking the class, too. Hooray.

But first! Before I went to class, I went to the beautiful shopping center across the street which included a Target. I had  a gift card to use, so I threw all this stuff in my cart, then at check-out, the cashier informs me the gift card is for way less than I had thought. Crap. Yes, crap. That’s what I wound up paying for on my credit card. Gahh. Oh well. Great story, yes?

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As described on the website, the Soul Body Barre class is an hour long class that incorporates “principals of Pilates, wisdom of yoga, grace of dance and the body sculpting benefits of traditional interval strength training.” And it was haaaaard. I had my usual “oh crap why did I subject myself to this public display of humiliation? Come on, come all, see the 20 something that can’t figure out how to move her body!” thought train that I have for the first 5-60 minutes of any fitness class I go to. It was pretty hectic for a first class. In the middle of it, a gym manager came in and said there were way too many people. At our gym, you have to register for a class a few hours beforehand (or it fills up), and then check-in 10 minutes before class. If you don’t check-in, the wait listed people will get in. Some registered people forgot to check-in, so a bunch of wait listed people filtered in. The manager sorted it out with who had not checked in and told them they couldn’t be at the barre, but it still was an unfortunate interruption for a few looong minutes. Growing pains for a new class and new location!

Mary pointed out something i’m always lazy about – triceps kickbacks. She reminded us “no swinging”, which is pretty much what I always do and then think “What was I thinking earlier on [in the class]? Exercise is easy, I got this, me so strong.” The barre part was crazy hard. She would tell us what to do, and then demonstrate, and I would think “oh look that’s not that bad”. And then I did…and..burn. Such simple, deceiving movements.  Haha.  I definitely want to keep going to her class. I’m so sore, in a good way! I’ve missed feeling this way.

 

1. barre- yay or nay?

2. how did you spend cinco de mayo?

3. think about how to bottle up the spring energy and hang on to it for winter consumption. your homework. go. 

 

Caitlyn Combat

I honestly don’t even know what to say (cue the ‘so why say anything at all?’). Last night was my first Les Mills body combat class and “butt kicking” even seems too tame to describe it.

For some reason, my gym didn’t see fit to advertise the classes that well, so there were only other three people there. I was excited for the class because I have wanted to try BodyCombat for a while, and because this was the first class my favorite gym location was offering so I knew everyone else would be new to it, for the most part, as well. Not so. The other three people had all taken classes off and on for the past year. Sigh. Here we go again, I thought. I think I should just accept I’ll always be the worst person in the classe.

We were halfway through track 1 and I was already huffing and puffing. I had to stop looking at myself in the mirror because I would start to giggle at how funny I looked, just flinging weak punches at the air. I also received yet another generous reminder that I am horribly uncoordinated. Chris, the instructor, probably thought I had been bedridden for the last two decades and that it was my first day ever in the outside world. I was so behind on the choreography. Even if my life had depended on it, I could not have figured out the counts. At one point, when we were punching like crazy, my two fists knocked into each other which I thought was hilarious yet undeniably pathetic. Great showing of teamwork there, by my brain and my hands.

I also learned that I am a visual learner. The instructor facing us is always helpful for the most part, but at some points when we were doing 1/4 turns then jumps then 1/2 turns the other way then a combo of high kicks and low kicks, I wish he would have had his back to us so I could see what the heck my feet and arms were supposed to be doing and which way and which angle because my brain could not figure out how to make my body do it.

Chris kept yelling at us to think of our enemies and who we hate and want to punch. I couldn’t think of anyone. My best guesses were Taylor Swift and Kim Kardashian. At a water break, one of the girls remarked to her friend that she was thinking of the leaders in Syria. I was all “….ohhhh…” I guess that’s a good one to think of, too. Haha. Jeez.

At the end, Chris announced that we just burned between 750-800 calories (!) and the class was the equivalent of 1,000+ crunches. I was all but slumped over thinking I would have preferred the crunches because at least then I would have just been able to be splayed out on the floor the whole time. But now that I’m of sane mind [well, as sane as my mind can be], I know I had fun. Chris said it would take us 4 or 5 classes to get the hang of choreography. I’m just glad that the first class is over with because I can only get better after that disastrous performance.

After class was over, I went to my car and just sat there, trying to process what the hell had just happened. I was so spent, I was thinking I probably shouldn’t operate machinery. And I’m super sore today. But…I can’t wait to go back.

Five Facts Friday, 2

I liked last weeks so much I’m doing it again. This works because a lot of times I have stupid things to share but don’t because blah that’s not worth a whole post and how do I tie it into the other stupid thing I feel compelled to put on the Internet because they don’t “go together” at all? I take things too seriously and I like this format. Plus, my love for alliteration makes sure I keep this somewhat short and weed out the really stupid anecdotes. So away we go.

 

1.  I still haven’t decided whether I like “fitness fund” or “muscle money” better which makes it really sad that the month is [practically] over.  I made myself $25. Yeah! I meant to take a picture of my wonderful jar full of dolla dolla bills y’all but I forgot and it’s at home and now I’m at work and I know you’re sad that I’m starting your weekend off by denying you such a joy. I don’t go to the gym on weekends usually because I like to go the one near my work, and not the one near my house, BUT my DVD player now works and last month I bought myself fitness DVDs that I’ve been doing on weekends so that’s why my number is so high. I liked this jar thing, except it took me  awhile to get going as I kept forgetting to put $1 in as I never have any cash on me so I had to keep writing “IOU” notes to myself. I think I am going to reward myself for all my hard work and go get a manicure or something. My nails are atrocious. I was drunk one night and saw how chipped they were and so I “filled them in” myself and it looks like a two year old did it. I’m embarrassing.

 

2. I’ve been talking about going to BodyCombat forever but I haven’t done it because the only time it was offered was inconvenient and got me to work too late. BUT…the location I go to is now offering it Wednesday nights! I am so, so, so excited. It goes to show that if you take absolutely no action and complain about it enough inside your head, things will happen. I think that’s the mantra they advocate in The Secret or something. It’s offered at night, which throws a wrench in my schedule because when you get off work at 3:30…and the class isn’t until 6…there’s not much to do. Refresher, as I live downtown, and work 25 minutes outside of the city and the gym location I like to go to is near work because it’s so much less crowded and the people are nicer. It makes no sense to go home, then drive back and get stuck in rush hour with all the commuters leaving the city. And the pool has closed so there goes that option. So I’m going to have to figure out my Tuesdays too because no way in hell am I giving up my fun Zumba and the adorable teacher.  I’m probably going to go to all of the wonderful shopping in the area [yay! uh oh?] or just make Sarah hang out with me. O hai gurl.

 

3. The Baltimore Grand Prix is this weekend and I can’t hear the sound of all the newspapers and all the interviews from city officials spouting off about how wonderful it is for Charm City’s PR and how lucky we are to be “chosen” and be in the spotlight over the reality of how effing inconvenient it is. They closed alllllll of downtown and it makes getting in or out of the city mission effing impossible. I loathe it with the passion of a thousand trillion suns. I hear Patrick Dempsey (McDreamy) is participating or something so the only way this is acceptable is if he finds me in my house and offers to give me a bunch of money he doesn’t want anymore. Otherwise, if anyone needs me I will be locked in my house this weekend with a pillow over my head [in an ideal world i would be asleep beneath it but], whispering “come and get me when it’s over!” Dramatic party of one? maybe,  but it really is the worst ever ever ever ever.

 

4. You know I love to read. It’s like my full-time job.  I made the mistake of reading Gone Girl [by Gillian Flynn] last year on a 5 hour car ride to New Hampshire to visit family friends, which in hindsight, was a terrible error. Because I was miserable all weekend, you know, being social and stuff with people we haven’t seen in years, when all I wanted to do was be left alone on my air mattress so I could readreadread and figure out what the hell was going on and how it would all end. I know people are “eh” about Gone Girl but I loved it because the plot [to my eyes] was so original and fresh, and I really had NO clue how it was going to end. Nada. SO…where is this going…I’ve been looking for a book similar to that and haven’t found any but my boss Sharon introduced me to Jeffery Deaver and the Lincoln Rhyme series. I am obsessed. I’ve torn through 7 of them, and they are lengthy. This is a blaring signal that I need a life. My two favorites are “The Vanished Man” and “The Cold Moon”. Buy them. It’s not the kind of series where you need to read them all or even read them in order. You think you know what is going to happen, then you’re wrong and you think this is going to happen, then you’re wrong, then you think oh! I’ve got it! THIS is totally going to happen, then you’re wrong, then you think okay the book is almost over this is totally how it’s going to happen and you’re fifty shades of wrong.  Then the end comes and you’re still surprised. So….get them.

 

5. Al, the maintenance man who works in our office building is the cheeriest, nicest guy ever. When I started at this job, he asked me my name and I said, of course, “Caitlyn” and he nodded, and said okay. He then started addressing me as “Hey Hayden!” At first I assumed I had heard him incorrectly because I spent my teenage years blaring my i-pod on the loudest possible headphone settings and my hearing ain’t so gewd. Then by time I realized no, he really is saying Hayden, I didn’t know how to politely correct him because though I am awkward, I do try to at least be polite.  So for months, he’s called me Hayden whenever he sees me. I figured it wasn’t a huge deal if some man I see every other day or so calls me by the wrong name.  Then on Wednesday I’m waiting for the elevator with my company president, and of course, who walks up but Al. “Hey, Boss man! Hey Hayden!” He sings out. I turn scarlet red and suddenly develop an intense interest in counting the dots on the ceiling tiles. The president turns to me and says “Hayden??? Really, CAITLYN? You are something else.” He chuckles for a long time. I sheepishly turn to the maintenance guy and I’m like “I’m so sorry I didn’t know how to correct you!!!” Al thought it was hilarious that I let him call me the wrong name for so long. I was mortified. I feel really bad. I wasn’t trying to be deceitful or anything (although I do like giving out fake names at bars). Blah. I haven’t seen the company president since but I am really hoping this doesn’t turn into some kind of inside joke where he  calls me Hayden. Le sigh.

Tuesdays Are My New Favorite Day

Aside from the fact that it is so freaking far from Friday.

After last week’s attempt at figuring out my new Tuesday evening gym routine, I think I’ve got it down. I left work at 3:30 and made a pitstop to Walmart to buy a visor ($3!!) because I burn to a crisp. Never tan, always burnt. I got to my gym around 3:45, changed, and made my way to a lounge chair. The pool at the gym just opened two months ago and…….I approve.

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I need to get in shape so I can buy a bathing suit and go down those slides.

It’s a “family pool” so there are lots of kids around but I don’t mind. I dutifully put on my 70 SPF sunscreen and settled in  reading
“Such a Pretty Fat: One Narcissist’s Quest to Discover If Life Makes Her Ass Look Big, or Why Pie Is Not The Answer.”  I thought I would be doing you a disservice if I didn’t post the full title. I’m only 18% in so I’m not sure if I love the actual book yet, but I knew by page two that I love Jen Lancaster, the author. I’ve never giggled aloud so many times while reading a book and did I mention I’m only 18% in? Jen is absolutely hilarious. Anyone who writes “I’m not lazy. I’m simply judicious about excess movement” is meant to be my friend. Seriously.

 
Anyway. I noticed they had $5 sangrias and I stood there for a good three minutes engaged in a heated debate with myself about whether or not I should get one. Sangria was practically invented for 90 degree days at the pool. I thought that with a little liquid courage, I would most likely be adventurous and more self-assured so I’d  stack tons of weight onto my bar at BodyPump and convince myself #yolo and that it made for a more productive workout. Hey maybe my newfound strength would impress hot body pump guy. Then, I would probably throw my back out because I was not in fact ready for all that adventurous weight on my bar, crumple to the floor in a writhing drunken heap, and the hot body pump guy would sweep me off into his arms and carry me off to the party room to tend to me because nobody is ever in the party room…..and yeah. Probably no sangria.

I was so relaxed that in any other situation it would have been difficult to peel myself off my chair and turn my Kindle off but I was so excited for Zumba. After about an hour and a half, I headed back inside to check in for Zumba at 6 and BodyPump at 7. It’s really weird to see the gym so active at this time. I’m normally there twelve hours earlier. People were just sitting around chatting in the lounge or watching TV whereas normally everyone is off to work in a rush and doesn’t have time to hang out and chat. The kids playroom, which is usually locked and dark at 5 a.m, is alive and vibrant with tons of kids running around.  I was standing in the hall waiting for yoga to end so I could get to Zumba, and a girl taps me on the shoulder and says “Have you gone to this class before?” She explained this was her first fitness class ever and she was really nervous. Ha! Lucky her, she unknowingly  was talking to the one who would be the most sympathetic person to her plight. I gave my passionate spiel and was very comforting, but I  think I pissed off a few people who were standing around when I declared “If you’re good at Zumba, you’re in the minority”. Thinking about it now, that sounds meaner than I intended it to.   I guess I went overboard on the trying to comfort her thing. I was trying to say nobody in the class is a professional dancer (that I can tell).

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I can’t say enough how much I love the Zumba instructor, Brian. He has the perfect personality for a Zumba class. You can tell he is having so much fun and is really sassy. He gets up off the stage every so often and will start dancing with a random member of the class for a few seconds. We all know I get intimidated at the drop of a hat or by a glance, but it’s fun. He said to this one older woman, “Drop it low, hot stuff!” and she did and it was hilarious. A new personal trainer dropped in to the class for a little to try it out and Brian pulled him up on stage with him. It was pretty comical to see this 6’4 guy with bulging muscles fumble around with the choreography to J. Lo’s “Papi”.

The class is always packed. Attendees started asking the gym managers if Brian could add another class, so they did! It’s Saturdays though so I’m not sure how often (if ever) I’ll get there. But yeah, Brian’s Zumba is apparently legendary, another classgoer told me.

After Zumba, it was time for BodyPump. The Tuesday night instructors switch off and on every week between a woman named Lori (last week) and Ashley (this week). I didn’t like Lori because she kept rushing us, urging us that “ya gotta move more quickly!!” when we were adjusting the weights on our bars after tracks, since she had to leave right after class ended to go somewhere for her son and I do not like to be rushed in situations like that. It makes me feel panicky. Ashley is mid 20’s and seems new, but I like her a lot more than Lori.

I think this is interesting…there were 18 in last week’s class, and this week there was 10. NONE of which was Hot Body Pump Guy. 😦 I’m intrigued to see if the attendance is a trend, if more people prefer Lori, who is older and who is clearly a veteran, as opposed to Ashley who’s new and you can tell still figuring out her teaching style and such. Of course, it could just be coincidence. In other BodyPump news, I was able to plank for the entire time which has happened all of nada in my lifetime.

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Anyway I’m really pumped about my new Tuesday routines. The only thing I’m still unsure about is BodyCombat. The gym near my house offers BodyCombat at 5:45 on Tuesday mornings.  I really, really want to try it and that’s the only option I can make it to. I just don’t know if three fitness classes in one day is too much? Remember I was all impressed with myself when I did three fitness classes that one time? Haha. I’m leaning toward the thought that it will be fine as it’s not 3 fitness classes in a row (there’s literally a 12 hour break ha), but I don’t know. It will get me at work a good 30 minutes later than usual which I’m not happy about but from work’s perspective, is a non-issue. I also will  need to figure out how I am going to handle dinner each week.

So, I had a great time last night at my two classes and am a bit amused that I now look forward to Tuesdays, of all days. I just hope  it never rains.

 

1.  favorite group fitness teacher ever?

2. ever worked out with a nice alcoholic buzz? it’s probably all kinds of bad and not safe but…i’m sure it’s happened before.

3. who makes your have fitness clothes? i am looking to buy (surprise surprise) capris for the new longish reebok tank i just splurged on.

Back At It With Big Ideas, a Vengeance and a Partial Fail

For as well as I was doing at the gym, June was a mess. An absolute mess. As I’ve mentioned before, I’ve been really struggling with sleeping in the heat lately. I’ve never been a great sleeper, but paired with the heat, it’s horrible. There was a string of three days where I downed a glass of wine before crawling into bed and that knocked me out, but I hated my monster headache the next day. Such a lightweight. Sleep, why you be so elusive. When I was back at my parents for the 4th I had my air conditioner cranked up high and was out within 30-40 minutes. It was bliss. Now it takes me a few hours to fall asleep because I’m so hot, so I’m finally drifting off around 1 am, and when my alarm goes off at 4, there’s just no way. I have to be at the gym at 5 to get to work on time (my “on time” is by 7, so I can leave at 3:30 to comfortably beat most city traffic).

The only day I have consistently gone to the gym, no matter how pitiful my sleep was the night before, is Thursdays for BodyPump. It is incredible to me how much I like it and look forward  to it. Will wonders never cease? I’m slowly adding more weight to the bar, though I’m still way lower than everyone else I’m getting better at not letting myself feel embarrassed about that, and I really love the class and how I feel after it. I walk out of the class, sweaty and aching, but I feel awesome, strong, ready to take on the world (and win) and so confident after seeing and feeling my muscles work. I never really paid ‘strength training’ any mind and convinced myself it was not important. I just assumed I wouldn’t know how or wouldn’t be able to, because I was weak, intimidated, ignorant and too embarrassed to ask to learn. So, to feel my muscles that would have gathered dust if they were able to tremble or my legs begin to ache is such a cool feeling. You know how Cosmo always asks their cover girls “when do you feel prettiest?” I think my answer would be “after BodyPump”.  Just so you know Cosmo, whenever you want me, I am ready.

On weekdays that are not Thursdays, I’ve occasionally dragged myself to the gym near my house a handful of times in the afternoon but the gym was crowded, I was intimidated (my own issue), and so basically I just walked/jogged on the treadmill for 30 minutes before making my hasty exit and vowing “tomorrow I’m getting up early!! I can’t do that again!!!” I know. Excuses, excuses. It’s all on me. I’m not proud of it. So June was pretty much a wash.

Thus I have  been determined to make up for it in July. Not sure what to do about the sleeping issue, but I really need and want to get back on track so I’m going to figure it out. To get back into things, I came up with this brilliant idea that since I feel more comfortable at my gym location near work I’d try to incorporate another BodyPump at that location into my brand new weeks. On Tuesday evenings, they offer Zumba at 6  and BodyPump at 7. My genius idea  was to run to my gym from work, which is 2.2 miles. I’d leave my car in the parking garage at work, run to the gym, take BodyPump, and run back to work and drive home from there. I didn’t want to do that every week but since I have a 5k on Sunday, I decided I’d run there and back just this once.

I got changed into gym clothes at work, went to my car and dropped all my bags off, transferred my ‘must-haves’ into a drawstring bag to carry with me (ID, banana, water) and I was off. Walking. The drawstring bag was a dumb idea because …. duh. It bounced all over the place and was annoying. So I walked/jogged on and off.  Again, I didn’t really plan this epic voyage so the socks I grabbed off my floor were of course the tiniest ankle socks I own, and I started getting blisters. I went to Target, which is thankfully right in the middle of my route, and bought new socks as well as a cute shirt because, obviously. I resumed my nice leisurely walk, cursing myself for being an idiot because it was hot and this plan was stupid and why don’t I think anything through and why did I saddle myself with the drawstring bag?

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At least there were pretty flowers on my route.

Longest 2.2 miles ever. I love a good walk but this one was annoying. I was hot, tired, and one of my blisters was bleeding. I eventually got to the gym where I saw what could have been. My gym has a brand new, beautiful outdoor pool. I could have been reading, relaxing and laying out. I think they also serve alcohol. Man. Next time. I got to the gym at 6:25 and took this stupid selfie to commemorate my achievement.

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I was so relieved. And sweaty.

I sat in the hall outside the group exercise studio peering into the Zumba class. I used to take Zumba in college and LOVED it. I have no rhythm and no moves in my arsenal whatsoever, but so enjoy shaking it, thus I need choreography to help guide me. I went to a Zumba class a month ago but the instructor was lackluster and the class left something to be desired. I think I can unofficially declare that my search for a Zumba instructor is officially over. I only saw 5 songs, but the instructor Brian, was my kind of Zumba instructor.  He threw a freaking party. The songs were all songs I knew and the choreography was fun. The class, jam-packed, was full of people of all ages who were smiling, laughing, and most importantly, DRENCHED in sweat. For the last song before the cool down, Brian divided the room in half and made the two sides stand and face off, and then he jumped in the center and it was a ‘dance-off’ of sorts, right side versus left side, demonstrating Brian’s choreography. Definitely want to try and go next week. They were having so much fun!

The BodyPump instructor was okay but more importantly, there was a super hot guy in my class. I nearly tumbled off the step thing after triceps trying to crane my neck and see if he had a ring on. No verdict. The cooldown song was Evanescence’ “My Immortal” which I found to be a hilarious throwback. God, remember them? I think that song was my default AIM away message when I felt like being ~deep~. After class ended, I was totally deflated to remember I had to hoof it back to the parking garage.

Not one of my brightest ideas. But this Tuesday evening class business is going to stick. I do want to get to that Zumba class and then do BodyPump after (hot BodyPump guy YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED). Maybe I won’t commute on foot anymore, haha. But I’m excited to get back on track and feel a renewed sense of motivation.  I got home at 9:20, and wouldn’t you know, after being out of the house for 15 hours, fell onto my bed and passed out.

 

My Day in the Lab (with Burpees)

I made my return to BodyPump yesterday morning after my first class. I really love Thursdays because of BodyPump. The class is at 6 a.m., which means I get to sleep in an extra hour!! Woohoo. I wake up at 5, instead of 4, which of course is amazing. But like all good things bestowed upon me, I ruined it yesterday morning and overslept by 12 critical minutes which left me scrambling. I arrived with two minutes to spare but whenever I’m running behind, I turn into (even more of) a disheveled mess. After all of two classes, I’ve deemed that I do really like BodyPump. I now understand why it’s as popular as it is. I love feeling my arm muscles tremble and knowing that they’re finally getting the attention they deserve after being largely ignored for 24 years. I like how the class isn’t boring, how I know all of the songs they play, and how we work sooo many muscle groups. It also seems the class flies by. In 99% of things I do I have a very limited attention span and become “over it” pretty quickly, so I’m always pleasantly surprised when Sherri (she still rocks, by the way) announces we’re going to warm down and stretch.

Merritt, my gym, sent out an e-mail last week to members announcing that they were doing a demo of Xercise Lab classes to decide if they wanted to add it to the group fitness schedule. They were only hosting the demos at three locations, and I was excited to see that the location I go to was one of them! The class was the same day as BodyPump so I gave serious thought for all of 12 seconds as to if I should skip one. I declared I could handle two-a-days. I didn’t want to skip BodyPump so early into my “career” but Xercise Lab: Burn Lab class sounded intriguing.

Merritt has two locations a few minutes from my house, but the one I go to is right down the street from work (which is 20-25 minutes from my house), and is much easier and more convenient. I think its the nicest one too 🙂 The class was at 5:30 p.m., and since I leave work around 3:40 each day, I just hung out at the gym for an hour, reading and doing light cardio because ya know, I am a delicate flower that tires easily and I wanted to be in as best of form as I could muster up for my butt kicking.

Burn Lab is 45 minute, high intensity cardio workout. It kicked my butt all over town. I was drenched in sweat, beet red, the whole pretty enchilada. It was INTENSE. It was fast. No rest for the weary… you have to grab water in between songs, they don’t give you breaks. There was a lot of boxing which I surprisingly loved. We did a lot of jump lunges. In the link above, there’s a video that’s a pretty good summary of it. I can only imagine how many calories I burned.
I read a lot of blogs and always hear about burpees and how they’re designed by Satan and all that. I never looked up a video or anything, didn’t know what they were, I just knew they had to be bad. So when Breann, the Burn Lab trainer, announced the next song included Burpees, I involuntarily groaned. They were awful. I don’t know how everyone else seems to just spring back up, but I seemed to require an extra step or two to haul myself back up. I can only imagine what I looked like doing them, ha.
The nice lady working out next to me said the class was a lot like Insanity, which I have never done or even looked at, because I am not that insane. Another girl said it reminded her a little of Les Mills Body Combat, which she loved. We have to give the gym our feedback and I mulled it over the whole ride home. Burn Lab is a class I’d love to do once a week. Seriously, after the class ended I was a dripping mess. It was hard. It was intense. It was fast. It is the perfect class for a day after Thanksgiving or Christmas where you eat waaaaaay too much.
After the class they held a Build Lab demo. I wasn’t going to stay, but my new gym friend Frances (sp? some friend I am) was staying and I felt bad because not many people seemed to stay. Also it was raining and I hate driving in the rain so I was giving the sky some time to sort itself out (it didn’t). Build Lab is also 45 minutes and is described as weight training without weights. I should have left right then. We did a lot of planks. A lot of push-ups. Some burpees. NONE OF WHICH I AM GOOD AT. It took me half the class to realize I should probably get a mat to ease the pain of all the push-ups and planks. BodyPump is about all I can handle. I was a pitiful, embarrassing sight but the trainer who taught this class, Sasha, was tough. We also did a lot of lunges and jumping, that which I can handle. Frances – a 53 year old who was 50 pounds heavier until she started working out 1.5 years ago, so great — said the class would pair perfectly with spinning.
photo-32
Sasha, in a picture that is not at all creepy.
Frances liked Build Lab better, I liked Burn Lab (duh). Of course afterward I asked the two trainers, Breann and Sasha, obnoxious questions because I can’t help myself. Xercise Labs is only a year old (!) but they are in a lot of gyms all over the US, Russia and Switzerland. Breann and Sasha said they fly all over and have been doing a lot of demos lately. Breann and Sasha were super energetic, annoyingly gorgeous and seemed to be having so much fun. I think it would be incredibly important with these classes to make sure the trainers are really good because the classes are hard and intense (have I mentioned that part yet?). Breann (and she works for the company so…who knows) said in her 13+ years she’s never seen people get such great results as they do when they go to 5 Labs a week. I think it was 3 Burn Lab / 2 Build Lab, but it might be other way around. She also noted that people have told her they’ve dropped minutes off their running pace because of the Lab classes.
People seemed enthused so I think we’ll probably take them on….and hopefully I can start going to Burn Lab semi-regularly, and when I get stronger, give Build Lab another whirl and seek redemption for myself.
Maybe I am a little bit insane as I did THREE-A-DAYS technically yesterday. Three fitness classes in one day!! Who am I?!!!?! I came home at 8:00 and slept like the dead. So. Breann gave me 5 of her business cards, I have no idea why. This isn’t a sponsored post and I’m not a PR plant or anything but if you’re interested in the labs and want ’em for your gym or just want more info, I have their contact info, just send me an e-mail and I’ll give it to ya for you to forward to your gym or whatever the heck you want to do.
questions.
1. What’s the most you’ve ever worked out in one day?
2. burpees: the worst? yes or yes?
3. have you tried any new fitness classes lately?