Monday, April 25, 2011

Crossfit: Death by Tabata

I was indeed able to fit in the Crossfit WOD before my EMS shift, and I'm really glad I did, even though it was brutally hard. The workout was four tabatas back to back: pullups, situps, pushups, squats. My heart rate was sky-high and my muscles were screaming doing this workout; especially hard were the pushups, and I wasn't even doing full pushups because I knew I wouldn't be able to sustain that over 8 sets at max effort. So even with knee pushups, my reps dipped from 22 initially to about 8 or 9 by the last sets. I could only manage two or three at a time, my arms were so fatigued. The situps, which I thought would be the easiest, were also hard to the point of failure, and I switched to bicycles halfway through. Woof. HARD workout. But I felt awesome and all those squats are just money in the ass bank, baby.

In other news, I'm inordinately excited about going to Dick's tomorrow for summer running gear.

Lotsa running

This past weekend was very busy with friends, errands, and enjoying the outdoors, so I didn't get a lot of focused working out in. I did, however, do a quick 21-15-9 workout of pullups, pushups, and air squats on Saturday before I went to dinner and a movie, then a 3-mile trail run along the Potomac yesterday just before the thunderstorm. Actually, partly during the thunderstorm. It was pretty funny; the sky goes from clear blue and shining hot sun to black in a matter of minutes, and just as I come back out at the trailhead by the river (still about a mile from my house), thunder and lightning occur maybe five miles away. I start sprinting toward home. All of a sudden, the relatively clear road becomes a traffic jam of runners converging from trailheads at all sides of the park, sprinting for the hills. I had just made it to the last block before my street when the wind suddenly went crazy and pouring rain started pelting me sideways. So, I almost made it in before the storm. It was a pretty fun run.

We had an amazing Easter dinner of buffalo burgers on lettuce "buns" with bacon, tomato, and red onions. I also added thinly-sliced jalapeno that I fried in the bacon fat, plenty of sriracha chili sauce, and sliced mango. It was DELICIOUS, although it could have been even spicier. I was going for four-alarm spice and it was only at about a medium. We had mango, banana, and strawberries in coconut milk for dessert.

This morning I was up bright and early to take River to the park. Then I got back, hydrated, caffeinated, and did another 3 miles, on the park roads instead of trails this time (my shoes got really muddy yesterday). It was HOT, but that's about a billion times better than cold, so I'm not complaining.

Today's Crossfit looks awesome and the Bodyrock still isn't up, so I'll probably do Crossfit later before my rescue shift. (If I can get all my work done--I have a ton to do.) Will update later.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Workout weirdness

So today, indeed, I did not do the Bodyrock workout because it was another butt-focused one and I didn't want to tax my already-sore sweet cheeks. Instead I decided to repeat the workout I created a few weeks back, the one I could only do 2 rounds of, except doing jump rope intervals before and after. Also I was going to take a run.

However, for some reason, the fates/Force/Lords of Kobol/Lady Gaga conspired to prevent this from happening. Cue an evening of severe frustration. Work went too late to take River to the dog park, so I figured, okay, I'll take her on my run for her evening exercise instead. River is unfortunately in a phase where she just WILL NOT RUN NICELY. She yanks the WHOLE time. She walks on the leash just fine, but running she is HOPELESS. She's just too excited to be out and about running with mommy, and she goes insane, as only a cooped-up border collie can. So about five minutes into our run, I said a great big "well fuck THAYIS" and just walked her two miles for her exercise. I was really, really annoyed that I therefore could not get my run in, because my legs felt really fresh and I was anticipating a good, fast run.

Then I got back to my place, fed River, and started the workout I had created. Only to have my jumprope break about thirty seconds into the first interval. GAH. I spent about twenty minutes trying fruitlessly to fix it, failed, and by then it was 8:30 and we still had not had dinner. With great noises of frustration I went ahead and made dinner, promising myself that since I had to stay up late to work anyway, I might as well break up the work with an exercise break later on, after my dinner digested.

This plan was well-conceived but a little sketchy on the execution. We had a nice dinner of grassfed sirloin steaks with broccoli, and berries and coconut milk for dessert. This took longer than I had anticipated to digest. I was also nursing some slight stomach upset left over from yesterday. So I waited patiently, watching Thursday night TV and doing my work, until I felt like I could work out. At 1:30am.

Yes, indeed, I just did a workout--outside, no less!--at 1:30 in the morning. I just couldn't let the day go without working out. Just couldn't. I feel good about it. No guesses as to how my sleep will be (as of now, I'm wired).

Here's what I did:

For time:
400 meter run
21 KB swings, pushups, chair dips
400 meter run
15 KB swings, pushups, chair dips
400 meter run
9 KB swings, pushups, chair dips

My time: 16:48

I could have done this much faster, and really didn't push this workout--it was definitely taxing, and my HR was nice and high, but I made my way through it at sort of a medium pace rather than balls-out. Also I had Born This Way blasting on my ipod and I was taking lots of dance breaks. Whatever, it was 1 in the morning, no one was watching.

Tomorrow will certainly be a run in the morning, some yoga, and Bodyrock.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Bodyrock: My Buns Hurt

Whoops, have forgotten to update the blog in several days. I think it's because I've been doing a lot of running, and while I like it, it's not really a scintillating workout deserving of all kind of blog space. Anyway, yeah, I ran Saturday and Monday. Monday I also did a super-fast interval workout: 5 rounds of 10 pushups, 10 seconds on, 10 seconds rest. I had to squeeze it in after my run and before showering quick and running to my EMS shift.

Yesterday I did nothing because I felt like I was coming down with a cold, and my mom is sick, so I just rested. I did take River for a long walk, though. Mostly because I didn't feel like driving to the dog park. I was bushed.

Today I did Bodyrock's My Buns Hurt workout. It was hard in a cardio sort of way, and my legs really burned during the workout, but I didn't feel wrecked after or really sore hours later. Maybe I'm actually--gasp--improving my fitness? NO WAY

Here is the link to the workout. It was in four parts:

Part 1 - Sandbag lunge back and press up & squat leg lift
Jesus that's a long title. Anyway, this involved starting in a half-squat, lunging back on one leg while lifting your sandbag above your head, returning to the start position, and then lifting the lunging leg to the side 90 degrees. That's one rep. Do 40 reps for time, alternating legs.
My time: 4:48

Part 2 - Rocket launchers
This was fun. Basically you're in a squat the whole time and you jump your feet together, then back out, then back in, and after the third jump you jump up into the air, straight body. Then on the next rep it's out, in, out. Keep alternating thusly. This was intervals, 15 seconds on/5 seconds rest. Sweat was really starting to pour by the end of this.
Reps: 6, 6, 5, 5, 5, 5, 5, 6, 6, 6, 5, 6

Part 3 - Kick ups
I love/hate these. This particular workout had us doing the weird turny crawl thing that Zuzana's been incorporating lately, and I did it at first but then stopped because I just didn't have the room to do it properly. So I just stayed in the crab position and took couple seconds of rest between each set of 5 kick ups. I actually felt like it was harder that way. My arms were killing me, holding me up that long. This was 20 sets for time.
My time: 3:51

Part 4 - Holy eff OW (...I mean, Jump Lunges/Mountain Climbers)
As Zuzana promised, this was total burnout. If you watch the video of her doing the workout, she stops many times and whimpers, "Ow ow ow!" It's ROUGH. It's 10/10 second intervals back to back, no rest, going from jump lunges to mountain climbers. I wanted to die. Also I had no way of keeping track of my reps without a rest period but suffice it to say, I was pouring sweat and my heart rate was through the roof by the end of this. And it was only 4 minutes (12 intervals)!

Food this whole week has been great. With my mom on Whole30, I've been cooking awesome dinners for us, and haven't had any real trouble sticking to it. Tonight I didn't even have dinner, I just had an omelette early in the day and then a shake after my workout.

Tomorrow I may do Crossfit because the Bodyrock workout looks like more glutes stuff and I don't want to overtax the bum.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Bodyrock: Hot in Here

It's definitely warming up in the nation's capital, thank goodness. Although we are supposed to get rain tonight and tomorrow morning... but that's okay, because I've had a couple nice days of sunshine and running.

Today I took River to the dog park for a good two hours in the morning. I just sat on the bench and read (I'm in the middle of Into Thin Air by Jon Krakauer, which is fascinating) while she romped around with the dogs. Then when we got back in the car, I realized that the sun is strong enough already to wreak havoc on my skin. I have really weird skin that freckles only on my face and tans like crazy on the rest of my body. After sitting in the mid-morning sun for two hours my skin was cray-cray freckled. Thankfully they fade pretty fast, but I immediately hightailed it to the Whole Foods for a) the week's meat shopping and b) a good all-natural face sunscreen, for those days when I don't wear makeup (my makeup has SPF but since I work from home a lot I rarely wear it). I grabbed a Kiss My Face sunscreen with SPF 50 and called it a day. I don't know how much I believe that SPF 50 is any better than your typical SPF 15 or 30, but whatever, it smells nice and it didn't wear off when I went running later. I'm super picky about what I put on my face, so all in all, a good buy.

My run was nice. Two miles in bright afternoon sunshine. For some reason, my calves were really tight and tired, but it was still a relatively easy run. However, my new Nike sport watch is just not working out. I initially had a different one that worked perfectly, but I exchanged it for a different color, and now this one is just a lemon. The distance is NEVER right, no matter how many times I calibrate it. And the distance being wrong throws off all the other measurements. It's essentially useless. I'm returning it and just using the Nike + on my ipod as a stopgap until the Nike GPS watch finally comes out (SERIOUSLY, when will this be available to purchase?! It's been forever since it was announced, and now it's only available in the UK--WTF?!).

In more tech news, my ipod shuffle finally died. It just won't hold a charge anymore. Two years, people, two years. I think that's pretty damn good for a device the size of my thumb that cost me 50 bucks, and that I have put through ridiculous amounts of rain, sweat, heat, and freezing cold. Tomorrow will see me at the Apple store purchasing one of those new touchscreen nanos, which I'm ambivalent about because the tiny touchscreen is annoying to use while running, but I really want the radio, pedometer, and Nike + integration that it offers. Also, I have to admit that now that I'm more into listening to podcasts and books on tape while I run, having a way to actually access my song listings, rather than just the shuffle button, is key. It is dang hard to tell where you are in a book when the shuffle starts up.

Hanyway. When I got back from my run, I did today's awesome workout courtesy of Here's the link to the workout so you can look at it. Explaining her moves is hard sometimes.

Part 1: Sandbag Step Ups Combo
Take your sandbag, hoist it onto your right shoulder. Step onto the chair next to you and back down the other side. Complete three of these step ups. Then, when you've stepped down the third time, extend your right leg behind you into a lunge, sink down, then bring your knee to your chest. Do that three times. Switch the sandbag to your other shoulder. That's one set. The workout was 20 sets for time, switching shoulders and active legs on each set.
My time: 6:42
Z's time: 7:59
I absolutely do not count this as a win because I'm pretty sure her sandbag is 5x heavier than mine. Mine is totally makeshift right now, as I have not yet procured the rice I'll fill my bag with, and instead just wrapped my two 5lb dumbbells in a couple towels and stuffed them inside the bag. So it's only like 12 lb, tops. This round was basically not that hard, and I could definitely have done a lot more weight. I'll be visiting the international food store tomorrow for some giant bags of rice.

Part 2: Pike Jumps & Pushups Combo
Start in sort of a loose down dog with your hands on your mat and your feet together beside one edge of the mat. Jump and kick your legs to the other side of the mat, back and forth three times. Then do two traveling pushups. That's one set. This is hard to explain so just go watch her do it on Bodyrock. The round was 6 30:10 second intervals, doing as many sets as possible in the 30 seconds and resting the 10 seconds. This was fricking hard and I had to switch to knee pushups halfway through because my arms were just burning too much.
My sets per interval: 2, 2, 2, 3, 3, 2
Z's sets per interval: 5, 3.5, 3, 3, 2.5, 2.5. Yeah, she's a beast. I have no earthly clue how she squeezed 5 sets into a measly 30 seconds. And I'm certain she didn't take any rests mid-interval like I did.

Part 3: Crab Toe Touches
Start in a crab-walking position. Reach one leg up to the sky while reaching the opposite arm to touch the toe. Alternate back and forth. This round was 50 reps for time. It was hard. My arms literally gave out and sent me crashing to the ground twice.
My time: 2:09
Z's time: 1:36

Another really fun, hard, great workout! Thanks, Bodyrock.

For dinner I made trouts baked with ghee, herbs, and lemon, with bacon-wrapped asparagus on the side. I also had a protein shake post-workout.

Tomorrow it's supposed to rain. I might do Bodyrock, might do Crossfit, probably won't run. We shall see.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Bodyrock: Yeah!

Oh Zuzana. Ow.

Like I said last night, it was heartening to see that even Zuzana's perfect little self had to take gasping rests during this insane workout. I sure had to take rests, too. But I didn't skip a single interval, didn't shorten any reps. I did the whole workout. Whoo! This is what it was:

Part 1:
Pushup and Monkey Kick, 30 reps for time
This was a one-two set of basically a burpee followed by spinning your crouched body around and kicking the opposite leg in an arc behind you. Go here to watch the video and see what I'm talking about, because it's hard to explain. The 30 reps were actually less difficult than I was anticipating, but still really hard.
My time: 4:48
Z's time: 3:42

Part 2:
Cartwheel and Mountain Climber, 5:10 second intervals, 24 sets
You do a full cartwheel (that takes up the 5 seconds) and then do 10 seconds of Mountain Climbers. This was REALLY BRUTAL. Thankfully, due to childhood gymnastics, I've always been able to do a perfect cartwheel, but around... oh... set 15-ish of the mountain climbers, my arms were shaking so hard that when I lifted up into the cartwheel I was worried I was going to crash back down and break my neck. Thankfully this didn't happen, but on the last five or so sets, I definitely only did about 7 of the 10 seconds, gasping the last three seconds until the next cartwheel.
24 sets = 6 minutes.

Part 3:
3x Jump Lunge and Front Kick, 50 reps for time
ABUH THIS WAS SO HARD! You start in a lunge and jump, switching legs to a lunge on the other side, repeat two more times. Then with the leg that's behind you, you kick forward and up into a high kick. 50 REPS! Dear Christ. I took a ten-second breather every 10 reps, and nearly cried when I finished, I was so happy to be done.
My time: 6:14
Z's time: 7:43 YYYEAAAAHHH I BEAT ZUZANA! Nevermind that she was probably going twice as deep in her lunges and twice as high in her kick. I'm still calling that a win.

All in all, the Yeah! workout was really difficult, I sweated my ass off, and I feel awesome now. Time for the dog park with River!

In food news, my mom really wants to do Whole30. Any interest she has in eating better/exercising is something I want to cultivate, so I told her I'd do Whole30 again with her. We're starting tomorrow (I have to go grocery shopping). I had no real problem doing it the first time around and really appreciated the benefits; I definitely enjoyed this past week of cheats like chocolate and cheese, but all in all, I'm glad to get back to super-clean eating. 

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Damn you pistol squats

Yesterday, thankfully, was a Crossfit rest day, so I took a rest day, too. It was actually more than just a relief, it was completely necessary, as my thighs were so thrashed from the pistol squats I did that I could barely walk. Today was the same, with the hobbling and screeching in pain whenever I needed to bend for anything. I was planning on doing a Bodyrock workout, but quickly realized that my thighs need a but more downtime. So instead, I muddled through an easy 2-miler just now, and I'll do my 100 Pushups Challenge pushups tonight, walk River, and call things kosher.

Tomorrow's Bodyrock (actually it's today's, but I'll be doing it tomorrow) looks BRUTAL. At one point Zuzana collapses, just breathing, and squeaks out, "This is really hard!" I'm excited. It involves cartwheels.

Eating the past couple days has been weird. Technically it hasn't been too terrible, it just feels terrible because I've been so diligently Whole30-ing it for the past month. I had some dark chocolate and some cheese last night, and today I've had almost nothing, just nibbled on some more dark chocolate and cheese (this stuff was in the house because my mom wanted a pig-out night). I'm not really hungry and don't think I'll have dinner. So far the readdition of cheese into my diet has caused no problems. I still don't think I'll make it a habit, and I definitely don't see milk, cream and yogurt as things I'll be eating on the regular ever again.

In other news, did I mention my legs hurt? OW

Monday, April 11, 2011

Strength, strength, strength

I keep coming across new reasons why I need to build strength. Like my ever-bigger lab puppy trying to yank away from me on her leash. Or tonight, hauling a stretcher up a flight of stairs, and back down with a patient, at two different calls. That shit is heavy. Like, my arms shake and I'm near failure kind of heavy. This just motivates me to work harder on my strength. It's not just about looking good. It's about being able to DO shit.

Today after work I chose my puppy over myself and forewent my run in order to walk her a mile before my shift. However, I did indeed have time to fit in a 21-15-9 rep workout of pullups, pistol squats, and handstands (again, just holding it against the wall while counting). Good, short workout, and I could definitely feel the effects in my back, arms and legs while climbing and jumping in and out of the ambulance tonight.

Tomorrow is going to be a really busy work day, but my plan is to get in a run and some yoga nonetheless.

I think it's time to call this horse dead

Yeah, I'm not even going to pretend anymore, I'm done with P90X.

I just find it immensely boring and sort of a time-waster. True, I'm seeing results. But I also see results from doing shorter HIIT workouts and Crossfit WODs, and those are more fun, and I feel like they build more functional ability rather than just tone muscles and burn fat.

Also, I'm getting more into marathon training and having a lot of fun with it (still not doing really long distances, just working on setting up a weekly habit of mileage runs, hill repeats, and speedwork). And I just don't have the time in my day to squeeze in the hour-plus that P90X requires, when I'm already doing a half hour-ish of marathon training and an hour of yoga.

And I can't keep saying this enough: it's not FUN. Crossfit is fun. Bodyrock is fun. Running is fun. Yoga is both fun and makes my ADD brain quiet down for sixty precious minutes. P90X? Not fun. Boring. Irritating. Effective, but that's not enough of a dealbreaker for me.

SO I'm back to my shorter, more intense workout style, using mostly bodyweight, and sometimes my kettlebell, jumprope, or "medicine box" (jumbo kitty litter jug filled with rice, which I use for medicine ball moves).

Let's talk about the weekend. Saturday I went to class and then did the Crossfit WOD, which thankfully was suited to a speed workout in the marathon-training category:

Run 1600m
Rest 3m
Run 1200m
Rest 2m
Run 800m
Rest 1m
Run 400m

4K total, and my time was 21:12. Really fun. My last 400m was like running on cement legs, but I still pushed it.

Sunday I went over to Arwen's place for some workout/food fun. We went to a local park and did a Crossfit-style workout I pretty much made up. It was:

3 rounds, 40:20 second intervals
Kettlebell swings (20lb)
Jump rope (my jump rope fucking sucks and we basically struggled to make it work the whole time)
Chair dips (on a park bench)
Box jumps (again, park bench)

About a minute rest between sets

It was hard, not so hard we were dying or anything, and I feel we could have easily done another round at the end. But it was quite effective. I can feel it in my back and arms today. Including our warmup (a light jog around the park), it took us about 24 minutes. I was pretty happy with my pushups: my sets were 20, 20, 16, and I maxed out each time at around 12. 12 pushups in a row two months ago would have been madness. So, thank you, P90X.

Then we went to Trader Joe's and stocked up on taco ingredients, and came back to the house to make steak and chicken tacos (lettuce wraps, really) with slaw and cheese sauce. I also indulged with a beer and some gluten-free brownies Ar made. As much as I enjoyed Whole30, and feel it did me some real good, it's nice to have the freedom to indulge the 20 to my 80 now. When I know I can let go a little bit on the weekends, my weeks are so strict and good eating-wise and it's not hard to stay on the straight and narrow.

Today will see an easy mileage run, some bodyweight work (I'm thinking I'll work on my prime weaknesses, i.e. pistol squats, clapping pushups, handstands, and pullups), and my overnight shift at the rescue squad. It's supposed to rain tonight, so everyone in Loudoun County, could you please drive carefully so I can get a full night's sleep? That would be amazing. Two weeks in a row would be a phenomenon.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Tacos, Crossfit and marathon training

Hooray! After a solid three days of feeling like shit (and a very uncharacteristic chocolate binge last night that extended into this morning), today saw me perking up and back to my old self by the end of my workout. If you're a man reading this blog, I apologize in advance for the next paragraph, and maybe skip over it while thanking the Force you don't have lady parts.

JESUS CHRIST, the older I get (and it's not like I'm even close to what could be termed "not young", so I've got a long road of this ahead of me), the worse my special lady friend, as I like to call it, gets. It's getting to the point where I am straight knocked on my ass for like two days before and the first three days of it. I have a couple days of feeling bloated and like a truck hit me, a day of feeling like I'm going to vomit if I even smell food (and I lay around all day trying not to vomit), and then a couple days of cramps and more nausea, all the while SO TIRED and lacking energy that it's a struggle to even get out of bed, let alone work out. Also I cry at the drop of a hat. Like if anyone even mentions children or small animals. IT'S TERRIBLE. I HATE IT. Okay, rant over, because it's really pretty redundant to rant about how much the special lady friend sucks, but CHRIST.

However, my month of Whole30 has cut my junk cravings so completely that with this month's SLF visit, I didn't totally break the bank with eating shit. Yesterday I had three dates with salt sprinkled on top pre-workout, which sounds innocuous, but dates are 15 grams of sugar each, and usually I only have a single salty date pre-workout if I'm taking a long run or feeling especially tired. Then in the evening I binged on dark chocolate-covered pomegranate seeds from Trader Joe's. I know, not so bad, but a pretty carby day, and having gone from eating zero sugar besides thrice-weekly sweet potatoes (I didn't even eat a single piece of fruit last month), I'm sure my insulin was like WTF YOU BITCH. Then this morning, I finished off the chocolate pom seeds for breakfast. SO BAD. So unlike me. But that's the nature of the special lady friend. At least I didn't have a donut, and all things considered, I feel okay about it all. Thank you, Whole30.

I forgot to take pictures of last night's dinner and update the blog afterward, but WOW my dinner was so delicious. If you've ever been to Austin, Texas, you have undoubtedly had the pleasure of visiting the following:

Torchy's Tacos is basically the greatest restaurant ever conceived by man. It's not especially healthy (unless you don't eat the tortillas, in which case it's actually pretty good because there's no rice and beans and it's all fresh whole foods), but it's DELICIOUS and cheap. They have a zillion different kinds of really creative tacos and they all taste like heaven. After several Torchy's trips during which I made it my mission to try every single taco on the menu, I narrowed down my #1 favorite to the Crossroads and my #2 favorite to the Brush Fire. Whenever I visit Austin (and I will be moving there quite soon--yay!), I make it a point to eat at Torchy's every single day and work out extra hard to make up for it.

So last night, in the midst of the deleterious effects of my SLF, I was craving Torchy's so hardcore. (Again, at least I wasn't craving doughnuts.) I decided to try to recreate some Torchy's right here in boring-ass old Northern VA. I made two kinds of tacos: my best attempt at the Crossroads, with pre-cooked brisket from Trader Joe's that I simmered in Mexican spices and vinegar for a while, and some fish tacos using the Garlic & Chile fresh halibut fillets from TJ's, with a creamy lime-paprika dressing and homemade vinegar slaw. Instead of tortillas, I used big romaine pieces. I also added fresh minced jalapeno to both


I ate six of those fuckers. Sweet holy Skywalker, it was satisfying. Not nearly as good as the real thing, but good enough that it made me really happy. And I actually still stuck to the dairy-free thing: the creamy lime dressing was something I whipped up myself, using homemade olive oil/ghee mayonnaise mixed with coconut milk, lime juice, vinegar, and paprika.

Today I woke up still feeling a bit poopy (actually I slept in ridiculously late, and it's not like I chose to snooze that long--my body literally did not wake up until nearly noon--DAMN you SLF!), and I felt nauseous yet still chocolate-craving, so like I said, I polished off those chocolate pom seeds. Then I had a ginormous pot of coffee and worked until just about an hour ago, when I was feeling a bit normal again.

Workout today: Hill repeats (part of marathon training) and the Crossfit WOD.

I warmed up by completing two sets of the following circuit: gently jog 400m, do some P90X-style Military Marching and Knee Raises, some Mary Katherine lunges, and 20 jumping jacks. Really good warmup.

Hill repeats are accomplished on the big hill right behind my house. It's an increasingly quite steep grade, and running up it and back down again is a .15 mile distance. It takes me about a minute-thirty, on average, to run up and back down. What I do is alternate sprinting the repeat and just running the repeat at race pace, with about a minute of rest in between each repeat. I do as many as I can in 20 minutes. It's a hard, fun workout, the weather was GORGEOUS today, and I had a great time. I got in 8 repeats in 20 minutes.

Then I came inside and did the Crossfit WOD, which was 21-15-9 of handstand pushups, ring dips, and pushups, for time. Modifications: I cannot do a handstand pushup, and can barely do a handstand, so instead I hold a handstand against the wall for as many seconds as reps are called for. Also, I don't have rings. So I substitute chair dips. Pushups I do full, but I take breaks in child's pose when I hit failure. I did the whole workout with these modifications (and I was actually really proud of my pushups form and stamina) in 11:14.

I followed up the workout with a glass of coconut water and my usual protein shake, only I was running low on spinach and used some frozen kale instead. Discovery: I can actually make the kale palatable (i.e. blended finely enough, with which a shitty blender is difficult) by just blending it for a REALLY long time. You just have to be patient, and then it's great.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Phase 2 - Day 3

Uuuuuuugh I am hating P90X. I don't know if it's just my mood today, or if I've completely hit the wall with how long the workout takes/how annoying Tony is, but it took everything I had to get through Back and Biceps just now. Lately I'm looking at the P90X for the day and thinking "Guuuuuuuuh... an hour and ten minutes... let's just do the Crossfit WOD and call it a fucking day." Part of me is really resisting P90X and I'm not sure why, because I'm seeing results. It definitely works. It just takes a huge chunk out of your day and is BORING.

Back and Biceps is sort of like Shoulders and Arms in that it's really isolated movements targeting specific body parts. So, lots of curls and pullups, and many variations of both. It's both hard and mind-numbingly boring.

I had a two-mile run beforehand, for which the weather was nice but I felt really tired.

I have no idea what tomorrow's P90X will bring. If I'm in this same mood I'm not even gonna do it, just gonna do a fast interval workout. I'm also doing the 100 Pushups Challenge over on the Mark's Daily Apple boards, so that's fun.

Today is sort of blah, if you can't tell from this incredibly unmotivated blog post. But I do have a really great dinner planned! I'll update later if it goes as it's supposed to.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Aaaand derailed

Well, I can tell you right now there won't be any P90Xing today. I was waylaid by my boss for three hours, then when I got home, I discovered that River had had a little gastrointestinal issue all over her crate, requiring me to give her a bath, scrub out the crate, and launder all her bedding. Now I'm (blogging) trying to finish up a piece of work with enough time left to maybe take River for a run, or do a quick interval workout, either, or both.

P90X will be done tomorrow after I sleep in, go to the office for a quick meeting, come back, and sleep some more.

Weekend of crazy

This was a fun weekend. Thankfully, I actually got in most of the working out I had planned to finish off Recovery Week, even though I was suddenly and unexpectedly busy. Guess what I didn't do, though?*

Friday I finished off the week with a 15-minute burpee chinups session (I can't actually do a dead hang chinup, so the jumping up from the burpee helps), then an hour of yoga. Felt great.

Saturday morning I took River for a nice easy 3-miler. No hills, no worries about speed, just smooth ambling along. My pace was slow and the run was highly relaxing.

Then I stopped by the fire station to sign my County insurance forms, and lo and behold, my Monday night crew was there on their 24-hour shift (we have to do one 24-hour shift every seventh week). I wasn't officially supposed to start until today, but they were like, oh who cares, come run with us tonight! So I did. It was awesome. It was actually a pretty busy night, but we were able to squeeze in dinner at Dave's Famous BBQ (I had a salad and tried to keep things as Whole30 as possible, but it's clear that my EMT shifts are going to have to be the 20 to the rest of the week's 80, because these people eat like shit and the captain chooses where we go. Apparently there is a lot of hitting up the 7-eleven and cramming Slim Jims down their throats [that's what she said] between calls. That kind of thing). Thankfully, the night was pretty quiet after about 1am, and our sleep in the bunks was largely undisturbed.

Sunday morning I got back around 6:30 and went back to bed for a few hours. Then I got some food at Silver Diner, took River to the dog park, did some random shopping, and went to my dad's place to have dinner (I didn't actually eat his food because his idea of a meal is pasta topped with potatoes, beans, and tofu). We watched The Social Network and listened to some new banjo music he found.

Today I have a 6pm-6am EMT shift, so I'm going to squeeze in whatever P90X workout I'm supposed to do (today begins Phase 2!) and then settle in for the night at the station. A shift is in and of itself a bit of a workout. Lots of running, climbing in and out of the rig, carrying the stretcher up and down stairs, and hauling giant heavy bags of supplies and a heart monitor.

Will probably update later with a review of the P90Xing.

*If you guessed Core Synergistics, you win a pound of bacon! That's right, I just never got around to doing this workout, and I don't feel bad about it. I'm pretty sure the workouts I did instead were more effective and I KNOW they were about 5000% more fun.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Friday Food Porn

I just made myself this gigantic plate of food (first meal of the day; I generally don't eat before noon).

That's three pieces of the baked curry chicken thighs left over from last night, two bacon-wrapped asparagus pieces also left over from last night, and today's Morning Mashup (haters to the left, that's what I'm calling it) of grassfed beef, spinach, onions, and cayenne pepper sardines, cooked in ghee with a little salt and TJ's 21 Seasoning Salute (heretofore known as 21SS because that is a bitch-ass long name to type).

A veritable SHITLOAD of food. Guess how much I was able to eat?

That's right, bitchezz! All of it. I'm now not-uncomfortably stuffed and will probably just have my post-workout protein shake for dinner, then call it a night.

OMG, though. I'm really concerned about all the saturated fat I just ate. I can feel my arteries clogging as I type. And even not a single whole grain, you know, for heart health. Clearly I'm going to be dead in a week. (ahem... note the date.)

2011 NYC Barefoot Run

Officially registered for the 2011 NYC Barefoot Run this morning! Last year looked like a ton of fun and I was bummed to be stuck in Canada where there is no cheapo Chinatown Bus to ferry me into Manhattan along with the rest of the broke college kids and unwashed backpackers of the world.

If you register by April 10, you get a $10 discount. Really, at $65, a weekend lecture intensive followed by a run and a party, in New York of all places, is a freaking steal. I've paid 65 bucks just to run 5K with a bunch of strangers for 25 minutes.

Go here to register.

As I told Arwen this morning, I will, btw, be running this in Vibrams. It's New York City (well, Governor's Island, but still). I'm not that brave.

In other non-workout-related news, I'm beginning the process of "weaning myself off the bean", as my yoga instructors call it, in prep for the teacher training this summer. We have to sign a contract saying we won't drink, smoke, druggify, or ingest stimulants like caffeine for the whole thirty days. Thankfully there is no such contract for meat eating, although I will be surrounded by militant yogi vegetarians/vegans and will probably have to get my steak requirements in under the radar, or risk ostracizing (the yoga community, as much as I love and am a part of it, is generally not so good about sticking to the non-judgment yama--bitches can be judgy). Anyway, back to my original point about caffeine: I've suspected for a while that's it's more a matter of the daily coffee ritual than the actual caffeine I am addicted to, so to begin to get off caffeine, I've switched to green tea and decaf coffee in the mornings. We'll see how this goes. I'm giving myself two whole months for the weaning, so really, there's no way I can fail, right? Ha.