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Posts Tagged ‘Rock My Run’

bilbl_super This morning it was time for me to start C25K Week 2, Day 1.  Since it has been cold outside (in the 40s, which is FREEZING in the SF Bay Area), I knew I was taking this walk/run to the gym.  I was sort of anxious about two things:

  1. I had skipped Week 1, Day 3 and wasn’t sure if I was ready to move up to today’s longer intervals.
  2. I hadn’t done C25K on the treadmill and wasn’t sure how it would go.

I started off the walk at a good clip – 3.5mph.  In the past, I have never been able to go faster than 3.3mph without really feeling it in my shins/calves, but today I had no problem keeping up this brisk pace.  The entire 5 minutes of the warm up, I was nervous about how the running portion would go.

  • Would I be able to keep up the running for 90 seconds?
  • How fast should I pace myself for the runs?

One thing I wasn’t worried about was how I was going to look while I was running.  I’d recently bought some Old Navy Max Compression capris that fit me really well, and didn’t show much jiggle in my at-home-full-length-mirror-bounce-up-and-down test. Plus, I’d found a treadmill in the back, so the only people behind me were the ones in the Group X room.

I had a great RockMyRun playlist on (today’s was Wogging My World, which is funky and upbeat), and was as ready as I could be to start the running portion.  I bumped my pace up to 4.2mph, which I was able to maintain for the entire 90 seconds.  It wasn’t easy, but it was smooth.  I noticed that a lady on a treadmill in front of me was walking at a 4.0 pace, but I didn’t let that get in my head.  I’m starting out, I’m short, and I wanted to give myself a pace I could maintain the entire time.  Which I did.

I finished the walk/run intervals and felt strong.  I was definitely ready for the running portions to end when the 90 seconds elapsed, but I was able to complete each of them in a really solid way.

Running on the treadmill was so much easier than running outside on the track!  First, my lungs weren’t affected by cold air, as they would’ve been outside. And I really liked the way I could set the pace and know exactly how fast/how far I was going.  I’m planning to push myself a bit more on Day 2 and see how 4.5mph goes.  Based on today’s workout, I think I’ll be just fine at that pace.  I know most runners prefer to be outside, and maybe when I get to be a better runner, and the weather warms up, I’ll feel the same way.  But for now, I am so glad that the treadmill went so well.  (I do plan to do at least one C25K session out on the track, just to keep in practice because my 5Ks will all be outside).

The entire time I was on the treadmill, I felt so proud of myself.  I wasn’t thinking about how I looked on the treadmill.  Or, I should say, I wasn’t thinking anything negative or self-conscious.  In fact, I felt like I fit right in, which is a first.  Don’t get me wrong, I’ve never really felt too far out of place at the gym, because I’ve always given it my all (insofar as whatever that meant for my fitness level at the time). But today I almost wanted other people to notice me and to see how great I was doing.  THAT is a first!

That smile really says it all (I snapped this at the end of my workout).

That smile really says it all (I snapped this at the end of my workout).

What do you prefer – treadmill or outdoor?  Any advice for this newbie runner?

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bilbl_superThis morning I woke up with a mission.  Even though it was freezing cold outside, I was going to head to the track at my neighborhood high school and start C25K.  (I was supposed to start on Monday, but Sofi was feeling ill and after our visit to the vet, I didn’t want to leave her home alone. I’ve had appointments and other obligations the rest of this week, so today was the first time I’ve been able to get to the track in the morning).

As you guys know, I’ve tried C25K once or twice before. Both of my previous attempts weren’t successful.  I really wanted to do the program, but I just weighed too much to physically do it.  In fact, both times before, I wasn’t even able to complete all of the running segments on the first day.  I figured that it was ok to skip a few of them, as long as I was out there and moving, and I guess at the time it was alright, because my fitness level just wasn’t up to it.  The heart wanted it, but the body couldn’t follow.

So getting up this morning, I have to say that I was determined that this third time was going to be different.  I wasn’t going to allow myself anything but success.  But I was still scared that I wouldn’t be able to do it, even though I really wanted to.

Always go with the choice that scares you the most, because that’s the one that is going to require the most from you.” – Caroline Myss  (One of my MFP peeps posted this quote today, and it couldn’t be more apropos).

It was 46 degrees as I got out of the car and walked toward the track. (That temp downright frosty for this Bay Area girl!) But I knew that I’d warm up quickly once I started jogging.  So I turned on Endomondo, opened my Madonna Madness Rock my Run playlist, and opened my C25K app from Zen Labs.

I started on the 5-minute warm up, really enjoying the Madonna beats the DJ had put in the mix, and taking in the gorgeous, sunny weather.  There were only 3 other people out on the track with me, and since I had my shaper on underneath my workout pants, I felt confident that there wasn’t “too much jiggle in my wiggle.” Even though I was anxious about starting the running portion of the C25K, I decided not to psych myself out and just enjoy the warm up.

As I was rounding the track for the third time, I thought to myself, “wow, I’ve gone 3/4 of a mile in 5 minutes!” And then I thought, “wait a minute…that’s not possible, I’m only going at about 3.5 mph, what’s going on?!” And that’s when I realized that the dumb C25K app I was using wasn’t prompting me to switch to running.  Apparently, I had to keep it open and active for it to give me any cues.  I thought it would work in the background, but apparently you get what you pay for.  (This app from Zen Labs was free and not worth the time it took to download it).  In reality, I’d gone 13:56 minutes.  Ugh.  But I wasn’t going to let this less than stellar start deter me from doing the C25K – I’d make it work.

So, I started the app over again, did another 5 minutes of warm up, and then hit the intervals.  60 seconds of running, followed by 90 seconds of walking, for 20 minutes.  It sucked to have to keep the app up and active the whole time, but I wasn’t going to let that stand in my way of completing this goal.

{If anyone can recommend a C25K app, please leave it in the comments. I’m willing to spend some money on an app that can run in the background}.

As I started running, I felt light, smooth, and easy.  Ok, easy probably isn’t the right word, but I did feel strong.  I wasn’t huffing and puffing as I had in the past.  I’d learned from my last attempt at C25K that I needed to pace myself and not run at a sprint, otherwise I’d wear myself out.  So I jogged in my “tip-toeing-through-the-tulips” style that my sister says I have.  Carina said that this might mean that I’m light on my feet, and since she’s a running expert, let’s go with that.  🙂

In the past, I’ve been so out of breath during the running portions of the program that I had to skip a few of those segments, but not today.  Today I completed each 60-second run, and sure, those last 10 seconds or so were me willing myself to finish it, but I didn’t give up and start walking early.  I stayed with my jog and pushed through it.

83db7483820eceb252910509dfbb17d9I’m so glad that this morning, for the first time ever, I listened to the part of my brain that has helped me lose 106 pounds.  Today I tapped into every single ounce of perseverance that I possess, and I kept going.  And you know what, it was actually great.

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As I finished the 20-minute run/walk intervals and began the 5-minute cool down, I had the hugest smile on my face.  I’d accomplished something that had been a goal of mine for so long.  And I did it well.  Sure, today’s just Day 1, Week 1, but I am confident that I will be able to complete this program this time, and that’s more exciting than I can express.

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Reward Time!! TGI(Black)F

Because I’m someone who responds well to rewards, and since today is Black Friday, I decided to take advantage of the deals Old Navy was advertising and buy myself a few casual/workout/”after school” clothes.  I’d just completed Day 1, Week 1 of C25K and it was time to shop!! I got all of these items for $65, including tax, which I’d say is a GREAT deal. I know that within two months these will be too big for me, but at prices like, this, I’m fine with it.  Part of enjoying each step of my journey is feeling and looking my best as I do it.  Having clothes that fit is a huge part of that. So I don’t mind buying a few pieces that won’t fit me forever – I deserve it.

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Throughout the month of December, I’ll be participating in #reverb12: celebrating the successes of 2012, honoring the challenges of 2012, and planting the seeds for a rich and rewarding 2013. December is the perfect time to reflect on the year that has passed and start to manifest dreams for the new year.

Day 11What was music to your ears in 2012, literally or metaphorically?

Music is a huge part of my life! I’ve come to learn that I do my best work (grading, cleaning, working out, etc) when I have music in the background. As someone who’s iTunes collection is so big that I had to buy an external hard drive to house it all so that it didn’t overtake my laptop’s memory, it’s interesting that in 2012, most of the music I’ve listened to wasn’t music that I purchased.

I’ve been really getting into music sites like

  • 8tracks where you can listen to pre-made playlists based on mood. Cleaning + upbeat and rain+indie are favorite searches of mine.
  • Spotify where you can listen to whole albums from artists you like or you can make playlists to share with friends. I’ve become a big fan of the FitSugar playlists.
  • Rock My Run where you can download DJ mixes to match the bpm you want to sync your workout to. I have downloaded tons of Rock My Run mixes and use them to help me get through especially challenging workouts.

My musical tastes are eclectic, but if it’s 80s, alternative, Madonna, or indie pop, you can be it’s in my earphones.

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Before I get into the fun of today’s post, get in the mood by pressing play…

Last Friday I was catching up on my blog reading, when I came across this post from Amber @ Hungry4aHealthyLife. (The post itself is so inspiring – Amber spent over 3 hours at the gym one Saturday doing her own sprint tri (she swam 750 meters, biked 12 miles, and ran/walked 5K! Go read the whole post, it’s a great one). In the post, Amber mentions that to help keep herself motivated during the swimming she was using a Speedo AquaBeat – an mp3 player made to wear in the water! How cool is that?

I literally left her blog and headed straight to Amazon to buy one. Amazon is usually my go-to for this sort of thing, but the prices were more than I wanted to pay – $140 for just the player, no headphones (those were another $20-40). So I headed to eBay, and found one that was brand new and included the Aquabeat player, headphones, and a bag (plus charger and USB cord) for $75. The seller was excellent (which is why I’m including the link to his store), and I received the Aquabeat yesterday. Fast!

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It’s really light as a feather, and the size of a pager (remember those?).

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My attempt to show you the headphones. I thought the cord was in the shot. 😛

The headphones are earbud-style with wraparound earpieces and the cord is nice and short.  It comes with an extension cord, although I couldn’t imagine swimming with a long cord dangling. The packaging says that it slips over the strap of goggles or a swimsuit, but I couldn’t figure out how that would work. I don’t use goggles when I swim, and the strap of my swimsuit didn’t seem to fit. But it didn’t matter, I just tucked the Aquabeat into the top of my suit.

Before I go into what it was like to swim with the Aquabeat, I want to go on a mini tangent to show you the new swimsuit that I got today (perfect timing!). I had to buy a new suit because one of my older ones got a rip in it last week when I went swimming with my nieces (not sure how that even happened). I headed to QVC because I’ve had good luck with their swimsuits in the past, and found this one from Isaac Mizrahi. I was drawn to it because it was sophisticated, yet modest. I was so thrilled that it was on my doorstep as I got back from the dentist this morning. I immediately put it on, and really liked what I saw in the mirror:

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This is the first swimsuit I can say that I actually love the way it looks on me. (Yes, I love the swimsuit with the cherries, but I don’t love the way that I look in it). I adore the length of the skirt, since that’s my trouble area. The cut of the suit accentuates the positives and definitely minimizes the negatives. It’s light and comfortable; so many swimsuits with Lycra are really heavy, but this one isn’t. I also liked that it was mostly black, with just the edging of leopard print. Cute!

I liked the suit enough that when I arrived at the pool and saw 4-5 preteens/teens, I didn’t even think twice about taking my coverup off and getting in the pool. I was utterly confident with how I looked – I love that! It’s rare when I’m wearing a bathing suit, let me tell you.

The reason I wanted to get the Aquabeat was that although swimming is really peaceful and tranquil, after 20 or so minutes, it can also get a bit monotonous. I’m left with my thoughts, but there’s only so much thinking a girl can do, you know? I’ve been striving for those big calorie burns, and the way to do that is to keep swimming for 30+ minutes.

So I got to the pool and started listening to the Rock My Run mixes I’d loaded onto the Aquabeats. (Side note: in order to use songs from iTunes there’s a whole process that you have to go through to convert the songs to mp3 format which I didn’t feel like doing today (though I will eventually), so I just used the mixes that I knew were mp3s already). I love Rock My Run because of the mix of music they offer. I started off with some Latin/Miami beats aka PitBull.

I swam/water-danced to the songs, and before I knew it, I’d done 45 minutes! It was so fun to hit my strokes in time to the music, and when I type “water dance” it’s because I felt like I was really grooving through the water. It was so much fun!

I got out, took in some rays, and was going to call it a day until I realized that the teens had left and I had the entire pool area to myself. That hasn’t happened yet this summer, so I wanted to take advantage of it. I also wanted to listen to the Madonna Madness mix (I’m obsessed, okay?). The mix was 30 minutes, so the plan was to keep swimming until it was over. I kept vogue-ing/swimming and pushed myself to go farther. Madonna is a great workout inspiration because she kills it; whether it’s 3 hours on the Stairmaster in the late 80s, yoga/running in the 90s, or Barre3 today, she’s a machine. She’s got the body to prove it – can you believe she’ 54?! (Someday I’ll write an entire post about my love of Madonna, but that’s enough of the Material Girl for tonight). Anyway, I kept going and going and finally had to get out of the pool because my fingers were getting pruney.

When I checked out the length of the Madonna Madness mix, it was 60 minutes, not 30! I’d been swimming for another 35+ minutes. 80 minutes of swimming in one afternoon = 1290 calories burned. Wooohooooo!

I had the BEST time today, and I have to give a lot of credit to the Aquabeat. It’s going to be a staple in my pool bag, for sure!!

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I had an absolutely glorious weekend! I relaxed, read, yoga’d (ok, I tried), and enjoyed our wonderful weather. It was 75 degrees both days, and yesterday I even got a bit of a sunburn after sitting outside at Starbucks for about an hour and a half. I need more weekends like this one where the pace is slow and I get to really rest. Better than all of that, one of my best friends had her baby yesterday!  Congrats, CTLB!!

Switch to today, which zoomed by faster than I can say.  I was going, going, going until right now.  Phew!  It’s time for FMM, though, so let’s get on with it, shall we?

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If you’ve taken part in FMM then you know the rules. If you’re new, please take a moment to answer this week’s question on your own blog then add your link in the comments section at: www.alltheweigh.com so we can all see your FMM questions and answers. Please invite your blog readers to add their links here too so everyone has to opportunity to be seen. The idea is to connect with other awesome bloggers so take a moment to post your own FMM post and comment on a couple of other posts. Now it’s time for this week’s topic!

FMM: What’s On Your Workout Playlist?

I love this week’s topic because I am all about music.  I have playlists for every type of mood you can imagine.  I have some playlists within playlists.  My workout playlist has 167 songs, mixes, and mashups on it:hours and hours worth of music.  I’m always on the lookout for new tunes to move to, and I just keep adding to it.

I love working out to mashups, and recently downloaded a bunch of them from Best of Bootie2011, which I found out about from Emmie. The greatest part?  They’re free!

I’ve also got a lot of mixes that I found on Rock My Run.  I love that site because they let you refine your choices based on bpm, genre, and length. Rock My Run is great because they’re constantly updating their catalog with new mixes from hot DJs.

But I’m sure you’re interested in a few of my go-to tunes that I use to really motivate me to push through the tough part of the workout, right? The one disclaimer I’ll offer is that my workout playlist has a lot more pop/hip-hop than my normal musical inclinations. With that said, here goes:

Cardio:
S&M – Rihanna
U & Ur Hand (Bimbo Jones Remix) – Pink
Give Me Everything – Pitbull
‘Till I Collapse – Eminem & Nate Dogg
Panic Switch – Silversun Pickups
Moves Like Jagger – Maroon 5
She’s a Stallion – Bush
Glamorous – Fergie ft. Ludacris
Heavy Cross – Gossip
Kryptonite – 3 Doors Down
Celebrity Skin – Hole
Vogue – Madonna
Lose Yourself – Eminem
Rain Over Me – Pitbull
Wow – Snow Patrol
Somebody Told Me – The Killers
Miss Murder – AFI
It’s a Fine Day – Miss Jane

Cool Down
Lebanese Blonde – Thievery Corporation
Aganju – Bebel Gilberto
Geraldine – Glasvegas
So Damn Beautiful – Poloroid

Now it’s your turn to share your list. Don’t forget to go back to Kenlie’s blog to link up in the comments!

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Oh, today has been full of irony…but wait, I’m getting ahead of myself.

You see, this morning, I was all set to go to a 9am spin class. As I woke up, I started trying to make excuses about why today wasn’t a good day to take the class. But I pushed those fat girl thoughts out of my head and told myself that if I’m really trying to reach my goals, there’s no room for excuses. So I got up, got ready, and even tweeted about it.

Then it was time to figure out what I was going to wear to the class. Because I’d purchased those padded spinning pants, but I knew they didn’t look good on me. But I knew I’d be sorry if I didn’t use that padding. So I decided to try them on and hope against hope that they looked ok on me.

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Nope, they still look bad from the back. I hate that fold at the bottom of the skirt. And the skirt BAREly covers my ass.

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It's not a good look from the front, either.

That darn skirt just didn’t fit me yet.  So I had the thought of avoiding the skirt altogether – at first I thought about cutting it off, but thought that I could just tuck it into the pants.  And since the pants are pretty see-thru because of the coolmax fabric, I decided to add a second pair of leggings on top of them. That way, I’d have the padding, but I’d be a bit more modest with the 2nd pair of leggings.  I’m so uncomfortable  showing that much of my thighs – I love/hate how tight the leggings are.  I love that they feel like I’m not wearing anything and they make working out easier, but I hate how my thighs look in them.  No where to hide, if you know what I mean.

I figured that if I paired the leggings with one of the long yoga tops that I have, that would work to semi-camouflage the thighs. But as you can see from the photos above, it really looked no better than the skirt did.  Plus, the tank top showed quite a bit of “flub” around my back and arms. And really, how was that an improvement?

So I decided to just pair the leggings with the tshirt I’d originally planned on wearing.  I love Animal, don’t you?

Not great, but at least my back flub was covered.

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A bit better from the back?

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When in doubt, cover it all up with a hoodie!

After all of that messing around about the wardrobe, I had wasted at least 30 minutes, so I quickly set Sofi into her puppy area, grabbed some water, and decided to bring some headphones, too, just in case I couldn’t make it through the whole class and needed to finish my workout elsewhere.

I left about 15 minutes before the class started, and by the time I got to the gym and entered in my pin info at the front desk, it was 8:56.  I went straight to the spin room, all the while wondering just how awful I looked in this getup, not to mention the fact that I felt like I was walking strange because of the padded leggings.  Definitely not something that inspires confidence.  Anyway, as I walked into the room, the spin instructor was just asking people if there was anyone new to the class.  I raised my hand, while I weaved through the room, looking for a free bike.  I asked a couple of people if the one next to them was taken, because they had towels or water bottles on them, and sure enough, they were taken.  Dammit!  No free bikes to be had.

See, this is where the irony comes in – if I hadn’t been so worried about what to wear to the class, I might have actually been there in enough time to actually take the class.  Ugh.  Well, lesson learned.  Lots of people still take a spin class offered at 9am on a weekday, especially one that’s in the week between Christmas and NYE when lots of people are off of work. Spinning just wasn’t in the cards today, I guess.

But I still wanted to get a workout in, so I went on the recumbent stationary bike…

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…and I burned some serious calories!  I don’t go by the calorie count on the screen, because I didn’t enter in my weight or any other stats, but I do like the pace I was going at.  MyFitnessPal said that I burned 508 calories, which is great!  I was definitely sweating and my heart rate was pumping as I was on the bike.  I am SO glad that I thought to grab my headphones.  I’m also really glad that I had just uploaded some new mixes from RockMyRun.

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I'm proud of my speed.

After all of that worry, I still haven’t taken a spin class!  But I’m going to the one at 9am on Thursday.  Definitely. And I’m going to get there at 8:30, just to be safe.  Since I already know what I’m wearing, it shouldn’t be a problem.

Speaking of workout wardrobes, have you entered the AdoraOm New Year, New Look, New You Makeover Contest yet?  There are only 5 days left!

When all is said and done, I didn’t get to the class I had hoped for, but I still worked out and got in a good calorie burn.  I feel great about that. Plus, I have so much energy.  I can’t wait to tackle the rest of the day.

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I just found out about this great new site called Rock My Run that has tons of music mixes and mashups all available to download free.  They’re in “beta” right now, so that free part may change.

I just downloaded a bunch of new mixes, and I can’t wait to try them out.  The cool thing is that they have all different genres and lengths, depending on what you’re in the mood for.  I love having music playing in the background throughout my day – when I’m grading, when I’m cleaning, and of course, when I’m working out.  These mixes are high energy and definitely motivational.

It was super quick to download the mixes and then just add them to my iTunes.  I made a special “Rock My Run” playlist so that I could take them with me on my iPhone, since I never know when some musical motivation might be needed.

Go check out Rock My Run today – I guarantee you’ll find a little something that will keep you sweating.

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