Friday, June 8, 2012

Tough Training + Yoga Challenge

Tough Training

Tuesday, I had the opportunity to spend an hour with a trainer at my gym.  I was nervous for being pushed out of my comfort zone, but glad to get out of the rut I've been in with my typical cardio and free-weights routines.  She had me doing plyometric squats, using machines for weight training, and medicine balls to throw around.  Everything was in sets of 15, paired with another move--also 15 sets--and I did two sets of each before moving on.

It was DEFINITELY out of my comfort zone, but helped that she was there to demonstrate the moves, to challenge me to finish the set, and to alternate which muscles were getting used (so that just when I thought I was going to die, we switched to something different that was ready for the challenge.)  It was great learning some new moves and surprising my muscles.  (It's Friday and I'm STILL sore!)

Which do YOU prefer for strength training? Free weights (barbells/dumbells)... pure body weight exercises... or strength training machines/equipment?  

Now, I have a few of EACH at my disposal to use to switch up my workouts.  I'd like to keep using machines a little bit so I learn better and keep my muscles working in different ways.  (I dare myself!)

Yoga Challenge Check-in

As part of my June Goals, I joined Courtney's June Yoga Challenge.  Originally the plan was to do 3 yoga sessions each week--an improvement over my once-or-twice a week trip to the few classes my gym offers that coincide with my schedule.

Sweet Tooth, Sweet Life

On Wednesday, I mentioned that, so far, so good, but I haven't been doing them as long or steadily as anticipated.  BUT!--I've been doing them more often.
  • Sunday: 10 minutes of yoga stretching, post-run
  • Monday: 15 minutes of sun salutations to wake up.
  • Tuesday: 30 minutes "A.M. Yoga", instructed by the Element DVD I received at the FITNESS Magazine event.  It's a 30-minute routine that really wakes me up, stretches me out, and prepares me for my day.  
  • Wednesday: 30 minutes of "A.M. Yoga" (again)
  • Thursday: 55 minutes of yoga at my local gym's class.
Whoah!  I did at least a little bit of yoga each day so far!  This far exceeded my expectations, especially after completely failing a May challenge for daily yoga.  AND it looks like it's building up :)  The truth is, the amount I can do depends on my day's schedule, but I'm glad to slip a little in in the morning, when I can.  I really like the way it wakes up my body. 

TODAY?  Today, I will either do some yoga-based stretching after Spinning, or, if I feel like it, I'll stick around for the full hour class.  I've got a lot of work to do today, so I have a feeling it'll just be the stretching.  (Which is FINE!) 

How often do you do yoga?  Do you only do hour-long+ sessions, or do you sneak in short routines like I did this week?


  1. WAY TO GO on the yoga, girl!!! That's fantastic!!

  2. I yoga once a week at an hour long class, then sometimes fit in more on my own after runs.

  3. i love dumbbells but mostly because that's what i have at home. when i get the chance to go to the gym i take advantage of the machines because that's what i grew up training on!

  4. I am treating myself this month to a 1 month unlimited pass to my local yoga studio. Because I am trying to get back into shape after my post-op recovery, I am using active rest days and rocking a 2-3 hot yoga classes a week. So far I am LOVING IT!

    1. That's a nice way to treat yourself! A reward after all you've been through, plus last weekend's race. Yoga's a great way to get back to--no, BETTER THAN--your former self :) Keep it up, Krysten!

  5. Way to push yourself out of your comfort zone with a trainer! I try to do a variety of machines and free weights, but am usually not sore the day after so I think I need someone to push me a bit... :) Yoga, hmm. I have every intention of going once/week, but it rarely happens. I should try breaking it up on my own, a little is better than nothing!

  6. I stay away from the machines. From everything I've read, it is better to work on "bid muscle" exercises instead of trying to "spot train". In other words there is no need to do isolated strength training like dumbbell curls, tricep extensions and leg curls when you can do things like pushups, bench pressing, and squats and deadlifts. Those kind of exercises will work more muscle groups at the same time! In other words, more bang for your buck.

    On the other hand, I am a firm believer in doing something that you enjoy and changing things up. So if it makes you happy, stick with it - until you crave a change!

  7. Great job with the yoga challenge and the personal training session! I definitely push myself much harder when working with a trainer. There's no way I would do plyos and other high intensity stuff without someone standing watch over me :-) But also having someone make sure I have correct form and showing me new exercises that I can rotate into my routine. I like a combo of free weights and body weight exercises. Not so much a fan of the weight machines anymore.

  8. I usually stick with shorter DVD routines, just because that's what has been fitting into my schedule. But I was just telling a friend last night that I'm going to try to get to the gym's hour long class next week ... just to mix it up :)

  9. I am definitely a free weights kind of girl, or body weight depending on the exercise. I love working with trainers who know what they are doing though! I currently go to a small group class and love it.

  10. I like that you're doing the challenge but being so flexible about it! I think that's key. If you're too strict on yourself you just won't want to yoga at all. I'm not doing this challenge but I did yoga yesterday morning for the first time in about a month and my arms are a bit sore! Goes to show what can happen when I slack on the yoga for a bit too long, eh? I'm doing a yoga RETREAT on a small lake island tomorrow in CT. I can't wait! Relaxation, meditation, and 2 yoga classes.

  11. Great challenge! I typically try for 2 Bikram Yoga sessions a week which are 90 minutes in length! Love every moment of it!

    I prefer dumbbell/barbells :)

  12. Personally I don't care for yoga, but I LOVE strength training! Give me muscles, baby!


  13. I quit yoga a few years back when I had to adjust my budget because we were buying a house. Sure, I could have done videos or things I knew how to do and such. However, I really did love the instruction - the teacher telling me how to adjust the pose to suit me and so that I was doing it correctly and getting the most out of it. She is no longer teaching yoga in the area, so I found a new one this past week. I couldn't believe it - I was sore for 3 days! Boy am I out of shape... But I think it improved my run the next day...

  14. I do yoga about once a week, but I strive for 2-3 times.


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