A Special Sunday

Happy Easter, all!

Hope you got to spend the holiday with family and friends – and that you took advantage of all the delicious Easter candies out there.  Hershey’s eggs, Peeps, coconut cream eggs, Reese’s eggs… the list could go on and on!  And I may or may not have had one or more of each of these.  😉  Guess I’ll have my work cut out for me in the gym this week, but I wouldn’t have it any other way!

BETT

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Two-For-One

Friday was jam-packed with things to do.  I was on the go from before 6 AM on Friday until almost 1 AM the next morning, so a workout was not in the cards.  It was OK though, because a day of rest was in order for a couple of reasons.

First, giving my body a break gave me the chance to do something good for my soul.  I went to see the Philadelphia Orchestra perform The St. Matthew Passion by Bach.  It was fantastic.  The conductor was mesmerizing, the instrumental solos were inspiring, and the voices from the Westminster Choir College and American Boychoir were just incredible.  Apparently the rest of the audience thought so, too – the artists received an insanely long standing ovation at the end of the performance.  Music does a body (and heart and mind) good!  Info about the program is on the Philadelphia Orchestra’s website.

Second, a workout-free day gave me a much-needed opportunity to rest before the 5K I had signed up for this weekend.  I haven’t been training for this race in particular, but had decided to register a month or so ago as motivation to keep up with my running.  After a week of new activities (Power Cycle!  Swimming!) I just wanted to finish the race – and maybe break 30 minutes if my legs weren’t too tired.

Saturday was a gorgeous day, and the morning was perfect for a 5K.  (Is spring finally here?)  The 2nd Annual Cherry Blossom 5K followed a lovely course by the Brandywine River.  I’m happy to say that I not only finished, but also came in under the very attainable goal of less than 30 minutes.  I’m also inspired to look for some more 5Ks and 10Ks that would provide convenient motivation for my running over the next few months.  I’ll let you know if I find anything good!

BETT

What A Difference A Day Makes!

As I mentioned yesterday, I struggled to fit even a short strength training workout into my hectic Wednesday.  On Thursday, things were quieter on the work front and I actually had time to go to my second Power Cycling class.  I’m happy to report that it was just as wonderful as the first.  The instructors were different, and their focus was different, but the results were the same:  legs aching, heart and lungs working overtime, but a smile on my face.

My first Power Cycle class (on Monday) was really focused on the lower body and on quick changes of position.  There were many sets of tough switches from a seated position to half-standing and back.  I felt like my legs never got a break, even for a minute, which was awesome!  Today’s class didn’t have as many of those transitions, but it included an entire segment devoted to arm and chest strength.  It seemed strange at first to try to work those muscles while riding a stationary bike, but by the end of that section, my upper body was smoked.  I have to admit that this was the perfect change of pace since my legs were still a little sore from the first class on Monday…

I really like the fact that the same Power Cycle class can be so different, depending on the instructor, the group in the class, the music, etc.  Going to classes at different times seems like a great way to keep the basic workout the same but change it up enough to prevent boredom.  I definitely plan on fitting this class in as much as possible so I can build up my biking muscles before I hit the roads!

BETT

Do What You Can

Yesterday was a long day at work.  I got back to my house 17 hours after I had left it in the morning.  I kind of knew that was coming, and that I probably wouldn’t get to the gym last night, so I did a really quick strength workout at home first thing in the morning.  I love to get my workout finished in the AM, but not as much as I love sleeping.  🙂  Needless to say, the workout was shorter than it would have been had I not snoozed my alarm approximately 23 times!  Strength training was a great change from all the cardio I’ve been doing, though, and I was happy to be able to come home and not have to worry about fitting in a workout after such a long day.  Still, if you have any tips for beating the snooze button, let me know!

BETT

Practice What You Preach

On Monday, I told you about my return to swimming and first attempt at bilateral breathing.  Trifuel had a recommended BLB set on the bottom of the page that I had referenced that day:

  • Warm-up: 200 yards alternating BLB every 3rd length.
  • Main set: 4×100 on 10” rest, with 1st and 4th length being BLB
  • 4×100 on 10” rest with middle 50 being weak side breathing
  • 3×200 on 15” rest. Swim 200 as follows: 50 blb, 50 ws, 50 blb, 50 ws
  • Cool down – same as warm up

I wasn’t quite ready to take on this challenge, as it was only my second swimming workout, but I was definitely excited to get some BLB laps in.  I adapted Trifuel’s recommendations and made my own workout:

  • Warm-up: 200 yards breaststroke
  • 4×100 on 20” rest, with BLB on every lap
  • 200 yards breaststroke to recover
  • 4×100 on 20” rest, with BLB on every lap
  • Cool down: 200 yards breaststroke

It seems quite scaled-down, compared to the original Trifuel set, but this was a great workout for me!  I definitely needed those 20 seconds to catch my breath between 100s – and that recovery breaststroke was the perfect thing between sets.  My arms felt like wet noodles when I was finished, but I liked going in to my workout with a plan that ensured an efficient session.

Today’s workout will be a brief strength session.

BETT

Power Cycle = Amazing!

Last night I made it to Power Cycling at my new gym – and just in time, too.  I’m so glad I rushed over there to make it to class.  It was the very first cycling class I’ve ever taken, and it was amazing!  The instructor was energetic, the music was motivating, and the workout was definitely grueling.  I’ve never had so much fun while simultaneously thinking I might have a heart attack.  🙂  With the bad weather last night, an indoor cycling workout was just the thing I needed to get my heart pumping and start my preparation for the bike segment of the triathlon training.

Today’s workout will either be running outside or lap swimming, depending on work, of course.

Have a good one!

BETT

So It Begins

Yesterday evening I did my first swim workout!  I am very happy to be able to write that, because I almost didn’t go to the gym.  (It was the last thing I wanted to do after working most of the weekend.)  I’m glad I went though, because I swam 64 laps (25 yard pool) and had a great time!  I alternated 100s of breaststroke with 100s of freestyle, practicing a new skill on the freestyle laps – bilateral breathing.  This is something I had tried years ago, when I was participating in an organized swim program, but I was never successful with it.  I think my hiatus from swimming has helped, because I found it much easier to do bilateral breathing (BLB) this time around.  Apparently it is quite helpful in open water triathlon swimming, so I’m happy to get started on practicing it early!

My workout today will ideally be a run outside or a cycling class at the gym – but will most likely be work and weather dependent!

BETT