Wednesday, February 29, 2012

One, Two, Hook...

Imagine having someone scream at you one, two, hook over and over and OVER again until you're blue in the face. Well, that about sums up my evening. Tonight was my last boxing class in the package that I got and it was like Alberto (the instructor) knew that. He pushed me further than I felt I had gone before and trust me, I'm already feeling it!

As much as I wanted to throw up at the end of class from the amount of energy I exerted, it is still one of the best workouts I've ever done. I can honestly say that I feel myself getting stronger with each class I take. Turns out the deal I wanted to buy last week was for new clients only, so I think I'm going to bite the bullet and buy a package of classes. It's not every day that you find something that you enjoy doing yet also makes you feel like you're going to die.

For anyone that is a slave to their gym, I highly recommend quitting! I was so sick of mediocre teachers at NYSC pretending they were yoga instructors and kickboxing instructors and decided it wasn't worth my $90 a month. Since then I found a gym that is $20 a month with no commitment that has more treadmills and ellipticals then you could imagine. The trade-off is, there are no classes, but that's ok! I've been exploring yoga studios and now found a boxing studio, both of which I would never have done if I hadn't quit NYSC. So if you're sick of the same boring workout routine, take a chance, you never know, you could be the next Muhammad Ali.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Everyone Needs a Kelso

Every single morning, my colleague Kelso runs 5 miles. 5 miles! Every day! Every SINGLE day! I've always marveled at this (for the last 5 months that I've known her) and have been trying to get her to sign up for races with me but to no avail. Kelso runs for herself. She doesn't need to show anyone that she can run further or faster than them or that she can finish a race. She knows she can.

It's always made me think - why am I running these races? Why don't I just run every day and be done with it. The truth is, I used to do that, and at some point along the way, it no longer became fun for me. I needed something to work toward, which is where these races have come in and more importantly it is just a race against myself. I'm not trying to come in first or even try to finish before one of my friends I'm racing with. I'm just trying to finish. To do better than my last race and to feel the sense of accomplishment that I was able to finish something.

I knew that I wanted to run this morning since I have dinner plans after work, which meant waking up at least an hour earlier than usual. Woof. But, thankfully - I have Kelso. I told her to text me when she was leaving to go running and text me she did. So again, it made me accountable. I got up, brushed my teeth, stretched a bit and off I went! I couldn't have asked for better weather this morning. Today was supposed to be a 3 mile run which I did without any problems. I finished the 3 miles in 28:21 which was better than I could ask for. My goal for my Saturday runs is to run in different parts of the city. I think that I'm so used to my regular path that it has almost become to easy for me. So if I add some twists and turns in Central Park or on the West Side Highway, maybe it will challenge me more.

With 3 miles under my belt before 8 am, the day was off to a great start. Looking forward to a nice meal tonight, and it will have been worth one hour less of sleep this morning!

Monday, February 27, 2012

All Souls

Raise your hand if Monday's always feel like the longest days ever!

While it's always hard to get out of bed on Mondays, I always look forward to them. For over a year now, almost every single Monday night of mine has been spent at All Souls Church on the Upper East Side. Monday nights are 'Hospitality Nights' which can only be described as a restaurant for homeless and low income people.

So my Mondays are spent waitressing. Serving soup, salad, coffee, tea, juice, milk, bread and entrees to close to 275 people most nights. Oh right, can't forget the desserts! I enjoy almost every moment of my Monday nights, running around, getting people more bread and butter or hot coffee. It's one of the most rewarding things I've done and when I miss a night because of work or vacation, my whole week just feels off!

In any case, Mondays are supposed to be stretch and strength days but they really are more of a cross training with all the running around I do! I'm pretty sure I'll eventually switch my Sunday and Monday workouts but for now my tired feet are up on the couch catching up on some TV.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

The Shopping Workout

Sunday's are supposed to be my second cross training day of the week. I'm not entirely sure I'll be able to do as such in the coming weeks so I may have to swap the Sunday and Monday workouts certain weeks.

Does outlet shopping count as cross training? While walking is technically a way to cross train I'm not sure this kind counts. :)

So what does one do if they miss a work out? Do I just try to do better next week? Monday's are meant to be stretch and strength training but since I volunteer Monday nights (by running around like a chicken with its head cut off) unless I work out in the morning before work I know I'll never get it done. That's why maybe if I swap days I'd be better off.

I may get home too late tonight seeing as I'm still on a train (and have an hour left of Braveheart) but if not maybe I can do some yoga in my room before bed.

Otherwise, I had a great first week and know that the coming week will be even better!

So I'll leave you with the wise words of Mel Gibson 'They may take away our lives but they'll never take our freedom!'

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Crisp New England Weather

One day it's 60 degrees in NYC and the next it's 30 degrees with 60 mph winds outside of Boston! Oh Mother Nature how you confuse me!

I laced up my sneakers and put on my head warmer and got the courage to go running this morning before Karen and I started our day! I never really know what to do before I run in the morning. Do I eat? Do I not eat? How long do I really need before my body is awake? So many questions! Top that off with being in a different city and you have just a normal run.

I did 2 miles in exactly 20 minutes which is fine with me since I was so cold and it was so windy tears were streaming down my face! I think overall it was a great run and shows me that I can run anywhere. I hope that running in different cities will be beneficial to my training so I get used to different terrains and such.

Anywho after running two miles I treated myself to a few tasting beers at the Sam Adams Brewery. Not a bad day in Boston!

Friday, February 24, 2012

A Day of Rest

It only makes sense that Friday is the one day of rest during the weekly training program. After a long week at work, Fridays are always my lounging nights. Oftentimes they are also my travel nights, which tonight just so happens to be!

Right now I'm on the train to Providence to spend the weekend with my beautiful best friend Karen! So thankfully I didn't need to squeeze a run in before my 4 hour train ride!

The coming weekends are filled with travel to Atlantic City, Framingham, Italy, Connecticut, Boston and more! So while I'll have my Fridays to travel, you can bet my bags will be packed just a bit more full with all of my gear to get my Saturday runs in!

Only an hour and 20 minutes left on the train! Guess its back to reading for now.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Warm February Nights

When I walked out of my apartment this morning I knew I would be taking advantage of this beautiful winter weather. Unfortunately we haven't 'sprung' ahead yet so it's pretty dark after work still. I didn't want to let that get in the way of my run though so I left work a little early in hopes to have a little sunlight. Well, even at 6pm - its pretty dark. On the bright side only 2 more weeks of this!

I don't know how it happens, but every time I run outside I'm like a speed demon! I ran 2 miles in 18:50! That's a 9:25 pace! When just two days ago on the treadmill I finished in 19:54. It seriously amazes me! I was feeling so good and wanted to keep going but I'm trying my hardest to stick to the training schedule. So I ended up doing 2.25 miles total in 21:11 which ended up being a 9:20 pace, can't complain!

Now that my tummy is full after a delicious avocado pasta and stuffed chicken dinner, time to relax and read the latest book club book; Room.

Recipes if you're interested: (thanks to Dom)

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Work Train Fight

A few weeks ago I bought a deal at a boxing gym near my office. Once I finally made the move to quit NYSC at the beginning of this year I felt like I could finally explore other outlets to workout.

The deal offered 4 boxing classes for $35 and when one class is normally $35 how could you pass this up!

Tonight was my third class and I wish that I more than one left. This workout leaves you physically and mentally drained. It's a lot of core and A LOT of arms which I don't get as much of as I would like, so I know it's worth it!

Wednesdays are supposed to be 'cross training' nights which typically means some form of cardio other than running. I think boxing class definitely counts as my heart rate was racing!

One of the girls in the class tonight mentioned there was a deal on a different site today for 6 classes for $44 but by the time I got home it was sold out. :( They do have another deal for personal training sessions so I may consider buying that since I'm sure that it couldn't hurt my training process.

So, day #2 and I can say that hopefully all of this work will pay off.

If you're interested here is the link for the gym:

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

New Adventures

Today began my first day on my newest journey.

I'm officially training for the Broad Street 10 Miler! I'm hoping that this training will turn into training for the Brooklyn Half-Marathon if I can register. Setting these goals for myself has really gotten me excited about the coming months. It's been a while since I have had a goal for myself outside of my professional life.

I printed out a 10 week training course and have it taped up to my door in my room as well as being engrained in my mind!

I know it's not going to be easy and I'm going to need to continuously push myself, but I hope this blog will help. It will help me to be accountable to myself and it will help that my friends and family read this and continue to push me even when I don't think I can be pushed any further.

The training program has me running 3 days a week, Tuesday, Thursday and Saturdays with the longer runs on Saturdays. I know those will be tough since I have a lot of weekends away in the coming months, but I'll do my best to get the runs in!

Today was a simple 2 mile run. It was a bit windy outside so I headed to the gym. While it was hot and sweaty and the air was barely circulating, I had a good solid run finishing in 19:54.

Hopefully it sets the tone for the next 10 weeks!