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list making runs deep within me.  maybe it’s a virgo thing.

after writing yesterday i thought about what should i do about exercising.  sure i have my gym partner Michela on some days….but what about those days without her?  My biggest downfall in the past has been resting days when it comes to working out.  it becomes easier for me to stay in resting mode than to just keep moving.  it doesn’t have to be a big workout, just something to keep me on track. the antsyness drives me nuts when i do get into the groove of working out and have resting days.  i have to keep up that drive to continue to move.  so my plan will not include any official resting days only lighter days. if my body does say rest, i will.

the other thing running through my mind is that i’ve been wanting to play with ellen barrett’s studio workouts.  when i was able to attend her classes at the studio, i enjoyed them.  unfortunately, she closed her studio but she did release the workouts on dvds. i don’t own those specific dvds, but she did a similar series for crunch fitness which i do own.

challenges have also been a really good motivator for me, since i can be a little competitive (only when it is against myself). i’ve always wanted to do a 5k as a challenge, but sometime last year i admited to myself i really don’t like running. that might be one challenge for myself that may never happen. surprisingly, i found another. on a few other fitness forums and weight loss/fitness blogs i’ve seen the one hundred push up challenge. why this? for me it’s doable and it falls in line with my yoga goal of being stronger to practice some of the fancy arm balances. it’s also a challenge that i can incorporate in my gym workouts with Michela.

my plan included dvds, audio workouts, spin classes, and Ann’s plan for me when i worked out with her. i will have to check on what gyms offer spin classes that fit into my schedule. due to my schedule, i have to be able to change things as needed.

The Rambling Rotation for the next four weeks:

Monday Ellen Barrett dvd & Cardio

Tuesday – Gym workout  (based loosely on Jillian Michaels’ 30 Day Shred dvd, Ann’s workout, & cardio); Push Up Challenge

Wednesday Ellen Barrett dvd & Cardio

Thursday – Gym workout  (based loosely on Jillian Michaels’ 30 Day Shred dvd, Ann’s workout, & cardio); Push Up Challenge

FridayEllen Barrett dvd & Cardio

Saturday & Sunday wild card days.

Possible Saturday Spinning &/or Gym workout  (based loosely on Jillian Michaels’ 30 Day Shred dvd, Ann’s workout, & cardio); Push Up Challenge OR seeing clients OR  rest

Possible Sunday – Saturday’s workout plan if it doesn’t get done that day. OR Cardio Coach on elliptical & Yoga


i forgive myself. i am not beating myself up because i fell off the wagon.

to keep being negative about it would just sink me down even further.  i understand what happened. last year around thanksgiving my dog, who i raised since she was about a month old or so, got really sick.  cancer. a tumor that invaded the vena cava and stole her oxygen trying to get to her heart. on december 6th, 2007 we had to let her go because there was nothing else we could do for her. it broke my heart.

thanksgiving was always the day we celebrated her birthday, since she loved food. it was pretty much exactly 10 years to the week when she came into our lives that she also left us. needless to say i was a mess on the inside. i hid it rather well. i would talk about her and my sadness. i did my job. i smiled and laugh….but inside i was numb. very numb. even as i write this, christmas lost it’s joy.

i fell into stop and shop cupcakes, bags of kettlecorn, soda after months of not having any, chocolate and peanutbutter, turkey chili dogs with potato rolls, etc.  clean eating? what was that during those weeks. the gym became just a place i worked at, not workout in. my bed became my friend, and BJ’s wholesalers became a place i wandered around in to take up the time.

i can make up all kinds of excuses, but what it came down to was just lifelessness. the drive was still in me. i still admired those at the gym who worked out pretty good — pat, tayna, debbie, amanda, and strangers who had their pony tails flying while running on the treadmills. i admired yell for her commitment to yoga during her sabataical from the real world while she lived in san diego. i admired the women who were brave enough and survived ann’s bootcamp classes.  i admired all of them, while i couldn’t make myself do anything but mourn and eat.

thursday morning, michelle got her groove back…well sorta. i found a workout partner – michela. she also fell into a slump with experiencing the  economic downturn firsthand.  in a way, i understood her funk. we talked a bit. i’m not sure what possessed me to call her at 7:40am in the morning, but i did. happily she answered and didn’t hang up. i had a preschool yoga class at 8am and then the rest of the day free until the early evening. she met me at the Y and we played around at the fitness center.

since it was all last minute, i didn’t have a plan. she wanted to work abs. and i just wanted to move. so i recalled many of the things ann (the trainer and bootcamp queen) had me do during my short time with her.  it felt good.  we did lunges with curls. squats with raises, used the medicine and bouncy/stability balls. we even got on some of the machines. it was just awesome having another person’s energy around to workout with. to push each other and to chat a little while working out.

she texted me this morning with three words: “my abs hurt!” mine did too, and i loved it! i sit and type now feeling the soreness in my arms, i miss this. really i do.

working out with someone is 10x better than being on your own.  i think that is why i enjoyed having a trainer when i did.  unfortunately i can’t afford another one at the moment. so when i don’t have michela …i have to dig down and push myself.

we are going to make a go of working out together more often if possible. the only thing is i can only do it when i am in her neck of the woods, which is two to three times a week. and she can only when she doesn’t have to work one of her part time jobs.

it inspired me, and i am aching to move. so i sit here dedicating myself again to this blog and to my goals. my head is swirling with ideas for our next workout session, and what i can do on my own.

one of the fitness forums is doing a winter yoga sadhana and i am most likely going to join.

Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness. DOMS.  My body is feeling it this morning.  Saturday i was planning on going to Karen’s Spin class, but i had to take my mother on a few of her errands.  That evening i packed my bag for Sunday and made sure to include my spin shoes and my seat cover to take Julia’s class after my yoga class. I came close to talking myself out of it. Oh so close. Julia took my yoga class, and i could have walked out of the room. Instead i stayed.

Paul, another instructor, helped set my bike up with me since i’m still getting use to it. I first got on the wrong type of bike. I didn’t know there were different ones. My clips wouldn’t be able to click in on the first bike i rolled out.  I did a lot better than my first class. I was able to do some jumps, and stand up in the saddle (sorry if i got the terms wrong) longer than before.  My left hip started to hurt a bit about a half hour in. 15 minutes before class was done, i did feel like i wanted to quit. I wanted to give up.  Julia, like Karen, has that attitude towards spin in “do what you can.” Backing off was the best option. It made me stronger to complete the class. The stretching afterwards felt amazing, and since there wasn’t a class afterwards, i rolled out my yoga mat and went into a nice hip flexor stretch – piegon pose. So yummy.

For the rest of Sunday and the whole day Monday my hips did not have one ounce of pain or discomfort within them. I didn’t hobble out of my Escape like a 100 year old woman which sometimes happen when i have a long drive. The beautiful thing about the day after spin class….my butt wasn’t sore.

Monday was a day of movement as well. I taught my two classes, but inbetween i had a tiny Pilates Reformer lesson. I say tiny because i had to fit it in between teaching my classes, there was only a 15 minute window which was well worth it. I am feeling it today. The names of the pilates moves/postures i’m not fully sure of, but we did a few plank postures and i got a nice extention in the split. My pecks and core are so feeling it, and i love each one of those DOMS.

Tuesday;s workout? I don’t know yet.

there is absolutely NO excuse for me not to go to the gym.  i am in and out of them all day six days a week teaching yoga. that’s the rub. there have been too many days where i didn’t want to peel myself out of bed an hour or two earlier to workout, or the urge to eat nixes the idea of staying after class to work after being up since 4:30am some mornings. sure i could come home, eat then a few hours later go back out to the closest fitness center,  but with gas prices that just is not possible.

planning will have to be the biggest strategy here.  i will have to make sure i eat a good breakfast and pack myself a few snacks to keep the energy levels up, so i am not crashing.

The Workout:

this summer i started working out with a wonderful trainer. i saw her teaching a bootcamp class at the hamden gym and i loved it. it was just my style. every class was different.  one day while waiting for her class to end, so that my class can begin she and our group exercise director waved me in.  my gosh it was tough and i loved it. Ann runs her own personal training business called Functional Fitness: Workouts for Women, and if you are in Connecticut check her out. After speaking with her and talking about hip issues we started to work together. i loved it even more than bootcamp. i learned to push myself. things were always changing. i would ask for more because i knew i could push it. when i wanted to push myself but my hip was in discomfort she made me back off.

unfortunately, due to my business picking up and her vacation schedule we had missed each other. i was with hope i could go back and work with her again for this, but her business has picked up and my schedule won’t allow the times she has available.  honestly, it sucks.

my workout plan for now will be what Ann gave me for homework this summer with additions.  there is access to many classes at the gyms i can take and that will fit into my schedule – Bootcamp, Straight Up Strength, Kwando, Zumba and indoor cycling.  the plan is variety. i get bored too easily and i have a slight dislike for cardio, although one product has made it much better.

Cardio Coach

if you have noticed there is a link to Cardio Coach on the side. a few years ago on a great fitness forum, i found the link to Cardio Coach due to a CT woman who had no connection to him besides being a customer and loving the product.  at that time Coach Sean, the owner and mastermind behind this program, was offering a free volume 2 download. extremely generous, but marketing genius.  i was on dial up at the time, so she offered to download for me if i sent her the email link and snail mail it to me.  it was free, what did i have to lose?  Cardio Coach helped me go from really disliking those cardio machines in the gym, to seriously tolerating them.

i have gone from just five minutes of being killed on the elliptical, to now holding my own and feeling really good for a full hour on it.  the ellipitcal gets a special mention because it was the most difficult machine for me to tackle. Cardio Coachis an mp3 or cd that uses interval training, which i always knew was a good thing for building strength and speed when it comes to cardio. i tried doing it on my own, but i would lose track of time. here is Coach Sean telling me in my ear when to push it, when to back off, when to come into a steady state and always encouraging you throughout the whole volume. if i am not mistaken he was one of the firsts to put out these types of workouts on cd/mp3s.

i first stumbled upon Coach Sean i believe he only had three volumes out at the time, with the fourth volume due out soon.  when that fourth volume did come out, he had a sale and i was able to pick up the first, third and the fourth volumes to add to the second that i already had. now he has up to seven volumes (i believe the 7th just came out or will come out by the time i post this).  at this point i’m really not ready for anything beyond the fourth. each one gets progressively longer and more difficult even though you can take it at your own level.the plan includes to use my Cardio Coach mp3 on the cardio equiptment at the gym (changing the piece of equitpment to keep it fresh).

Indoor Cycling

when i lost the biggest amount of weight in my Weight Watchers era, i was indoor cycling. my lovely friend Yell was teaching at the time and invited me to her class. it wasn’t love at first pedal, again it was tolerable. i wasn’t strong enough to do the standing in the saddle with the crazy reisistance, but i went into it with the goal of just pedding for the whole class. i did. i made it and went back again. my thighs were the smallest they ever gotten in my adult life.

there were two issues i did have with spinning. 1. my butt hurt! those seats are so freakin hard. Yell did help take some of the sting away by giving me a gel seat that was in lost and found. that made it a bit more tolerable. 2, my feet hurt because i was wearing your regular run of the mill sneakers. it was very pinchy. i had no idea that there were special shoes. according to the Queen of Spin at the Y, Karen, they have a harder sole.  on thursday we are taking her hubby’s cute BMW z4 (i love this car) for a drive to breakfast and a cycling store in Wilton so i can try on some shoes.

when i get the new spin shoes and with my gel seat, i plan on adding spin to the workout schedule. i can take the 5:45am classes at one of the gyms on two of the days i teach in that area.


the boxing bag is on my list of things to add to the workout. i already own a pair of pink 12oz gloves. Ann would let me hit the bag and i loved it. one of the gyms has a whole boxing room and in the mornings it is usually empty. i am in that particular gym twice a week.

THE PLAN: Sunday October 5th – Saturday October 11th

Sunday – yoga

Monday – Cardio Coach Vol. 1on the eliptical & Ann’s routine/homeworkwith the Bosu

Tuesday – 8-9am Bootcamp with Karin in Stratford & Yoga

Wednesday – 5:30-6:30pm Straight Up Strength with Eileen  & Cardio Coach Vol. 1on the eliptical

Thursday – If my hip is feeling good Kwando with Kristin at 6:30pm

Friday – DVD of my choice & Cardio Coach Vol. 1 on the elliptical

Saturday – rest

i reserve the right to change things as i need to, my clients come first.

Live. Love. Laugh.

“i didn’t know we were going to sweat!” said the older woman next to me.

Karin the instructor responded, “that is why it’s called Cardio Tease.  some men like a little sweat.”

it was a great exchange and the whole class laughed because we were all sweating.  Cardio Tease is strip tease choreography, sexiness, and a workout rolled all into one…with your clothes on!  at one point your mind turns off thinking about what you are doing, and  just have fun with it.

the class was filled with seven beautiful women, including the instructor, of all shapes and sizes bringing out their sexiness with sultry moves.  the moves weren’t crazy difficult. i was able to follow along quite well. (although i have two left feet with choreography, i do have some rhythm), at some point you get so into it, and nerves fly out the window. you forget about the men, taking moments out of their workout on the other side of the window, to check us out. maybe it had something to do with the energy in the room, awesome music Karen picked out, just being in the moment, or all of the above.

although my knees and hips made me modify some of the moves, i felt damn sexy.  i didn’t feel like a potato.  sweat dripping into my eyes. my core, hips and thighs were absolutely getting worked.  i laughed, had fun and was happy i didn’t talk myself out taking the class.

choreography is not always my friend.  me taking a step or a hi/lo class is watching a train wreck. choreography is one of the reasons why i don’t teach Zumba that i am certified for.  i love to dance, but i can’t always get down the moves.  Hip Hop, Cardio Tease, Bellydancing, Zumba, Latin Impact, and various other unique classes have been offered at the various fitness centers i work in.  one of two things usually happened, i couldn’t go because i was scheduled somewhere to teach or i would talk myself out of it.

i couldn’t come up with a valid excuse. since i was already teaching i would already be there with an hour in between to kill. the class i teach on friday morning wasn’t before sunrise, so i didn’t have to be in bed early.  there was no way i could talk myself out of it. i’m happy that i didn’t.

the hour to kill between teaching and teasing was spent on the elliptical and stretching, just a nice steady state cardio since i wasn’t quite sure exactly what  Cardio Tease was going to be, besides the obvious.  it was nice and what my body needed. my hips started to feel pangs of discomfort, and i started to stretch (pigeon pose and a few twists) until Cardio Tease time.

when Karin offers this class again, i will be there if i am not teaching. i’m contemplating taking her Hip Hop class on wednesday evening. classes like these make cardio fun and interesting for me.

…oh and yes we did slap our butts.

Live. Love. Laugh