It has been weeks since I posted an update about the Go Green Get Fit Challenge I started in early summer. All throughout August it seems my fitness goals just fell to the bottom of my priority list. I did some traveling, spent lots of time with extended family, and allowed way too many sleepover parties because I knew that once school started, it would just not be possible.
Now that school is in session I am back to making fitness a top priority again and it feels really, really good. Well, mentally at least. Physically I am kinda hurting this week!!
On Tuesday the warm up was a 200 meter run, pvc pass throughs, and stretches. WOD #1 EMOM 10 minutes – Two Turkish getups w/Kettlebell and sumo deadlift high pulls rest of minute – 20 pound bell. WOD #2 5 minutes perfect pushups and 6 minutes mobility. WOD #3 was 7 minutes AMRAP 5 stiff leg deadlifts, 10 regular deadlifts (52 pounds/kettlebells), and 5 burpees.
On Wednesday the warmup was 8 minute AMRAP 100 meter run, situps, squats, burpees, toe touch back bends, and lunges. WOD #1 5×20 Push Press (33 lb bar) and 5×20 ring rows. WOD #2 was 15 minute AMRAP 200 meter run w/sandbag, 200 meter row, 20 zercher squats w/sandbag, 20 burpees, 20 situps, 20 backsquats w/sandbag. 20 pound sandbag.
On Thursday the warm up was 2 rounds 100 meter high knees skip, 10 squats on wall, 2 minute wall figure 4, 2 minute banded shoulder stretch. Skill was 3×10 wall ball with 2 second pause at bottom (14 pound ball) and 5×30 second plank on rings. WOD was 200 meter run, 10 burpees, 200 meter row, 100 meter run, 20 burpees, 100 meter row, 50 box step ups (20 inch box) with medball and 50 medball slams.
On Friday , since my arms were so thrashed, I decided to swim and I attended a high impact water aerobics class at my other gym for one hour. I may do that again tomorrow.
One really FUN thing about CrossFit of late is that I am attending the classes with my husband and my 6 year old (photo above). The kiddo plays in the play room while the hubby and I sweat. It has been awesome to spend that time together each morning. :)
What about you? Now that school has started is it easier or harder to get some fitness time? For me it’s MUCH easier!
Last week was mostly pretty sad on the fitness front. I only got to the gym one time. Yeah, pathetic. I went hoping to swim but the pool was closed. That is what I get for assuming it would be when they gave a July 8th expected re-open date. Ha!
On Monday I just lifted free weights, did planks, weighted box step-ups, and used a medicine ball to do lots of Russian twists and situps. I kept get getting the weirdest stares from ladies on the circuit machines, like they did not understand why on was on the floor exercising when there so many machine around me. I am really trying to avoid machines though because using free weights and dumbells requires so many more muscles groups than what you use on a machine. You are of course using the muscle specific to that exercise, such as the biceps and trapezius muscles for a push press but you also use your core to stabilize and even your legs to help you explode that push. Circuit machines just hold no allure for me anymore.
After the weighted part I got on the treadmill and did a mile. My legs were still pretty sore after the almost two mile run from the day before.
Then for the rest of the week I did a big fat nothing but I am back on the horse this week. It’s a good thing too because I have at least one but possibly two bootcamp workouts I will be doing in New York City next week. This is no time to be lolly gagging around!
So this week it was off to CrossFit with renewed vigor and NEW shoes! PlanetShoes generously sent me a pair of ECCO BIOM Lite 1.3 shoes. They are pretty darn close to barefoot shoes and PlanetShoes recommended them for CrossFit so I hoped they would be a good fit for me.
The most remarkable thing about them is that they are super comfy. I am used to toe shoes like Skeletoes or Five Fingers but I was pleasantly surprised to find that these were also uber comfortable. I have a hard time finding shoes that fit well and that are comfortable because I have very wide feet and high arches. It is a non-issue with these. The narrow-looking shoe expands quite comfortably and my toes have wiggle room. The heel area did not dig in and give a blister either which is another thing that commonly happens with new shoes. The true test of course was Crossfitting in them…
They performed like a dream. They feel very minimal and barefoot, which I love. Though do not allow for a grip like my toe shoes do so I did feel my heel lift off the ground during some of the squats but I just need to concentrate on my form a bit more with “regular” shoes. Running in them was super breazy though and that really surprised me. I prefer these to toe shoes for sprinting/running short distances because I have a tendency to heel strike when I am getting competitive and going all out. I end up getting a headache after class. The natural foot position and minimal sole make running much more pleasant because I don’t have to focus so much of form. When you are racing someone…or ten other people, who has the time??
I can see already that I will gravitate to these shoes on days when I will be running/sprinting and less so on days when I am lifting weights. But for any CrossFit WOD you can’t go wrong with these. Plus I LOVE the color. I often wear the brightest, loudest shoes I can find and at first I thought these may be too tame for me but I really enjoy the purple/orange contrast. I give them an enthusiastic A+. Thanks PlanetShoes!
This week was a bit of a let down in that I did not get to workout as much as I wanted to. Much of this was because my CrossFit box had a wonky schedule due the CrossFit Games in LA this past week. Our box had a competitor, Marcus Hendren, in the games and several of the coaches went with him. He finished in 7th place, which makes him the 7th fittest person on earth, or so they say. His performance was way awesome! On Monday I was doing the WOD and looked over to see him doing lunges right next to me. Pretty cool.
On Monday the warm up was 100 meter lunges, situps, wall couch, supermen, wall pigeon, and squats. WOD #1 was 5 rounds max backsquats (53 pounds). I did a 110 of them. WOD #2 was 3×10 Kang Squats w/33 pound bar and hold a hollow position while partner does their reps. WOD #3 was 2 rounds air squats, situps, supermen, and 200 meter run.
On Tuesday the warm up was a 2500 meter row. Wod#1 was 100 situps with a medball (20 pounds), touching overhead and passing to a partner. WOD #2 was 7,14,21 pushups – calorie row – situps. WOD #3 was 7, 14, 21 ring rows – box dips – medball slam (20 pounds).
I did both workouts with my hubby. He claims his legs still hurt. ;)
On Wednesday through Friday I did nothing as far as exercise. I spent most of it entertaining my daughter and friend, who accompanied us to my parent’s house up north. We saw three movies…Ice Age 4, Madagascar 3, and Katy Perry. We went to a waterpark, played numerous board games (Risk, Scene It? Disney, Battleship), played Croquet, went to see my Dad play softball, and went out for ice cream. It was very fun.
On Saturday and Sunday I spent a large chunk of the day watching the CrossFit Games via live stream. It was hard to watch and not be able to WOD myself! On Sunday morning I HAD to do something and went for a 1.8 mile run. Over 200 squats on Monday did almost nothing to my legs but that run really made them sore. I figure I need to run longer distances and toughen my shins and calves up, so I ran on a treadmill the following day too.
As the title promised I also want to highlight the blogs I have been following for inspiration. These are my fave fitness blogs to read and follow. They are in no particular order:
CrossFit Lisbeth – This blog is unique in that it highlights the Words of the Day, a play on WOD. I loved this recent post on having perspective.
Elizabeth Akinwale - This is a CrossFit Games competitor’s blog. She came in 7th for the women’s competition. Since I had been reading her blog for months before the competition I felt like I actually knew her somewhat and was rooting for her.
On June 18th, along with 20+ other green bloggers I am kicking off a Go Green, Get Fit Challenge. The idea behind it is to join together and support each other in making a commitment to fitness and since we also happen to care about sustainability issues we will be considering the impact of this process too. We moms spend so much take taking care of our families and our household responsibilities that sometimes self care gets lost in the mix. As I have discovered over the past year or so though, this is a huge mistake. My health and well being needs to be the foundation upon which all the rest is carefully laid or I am doing myself and my health a great disservice. I am also not in a position to be the best mom and wife I can be when I am unhealthy, unfocused, and unhappy.
I don’t think anyone ever sets out to be sedentary and unhealthy, they just allow other things to take priority and the cumulative effect of this over a period of years is what horrifies us when we look in the mirror or realize we can’t demonstrate a simple cartwheel for our children. I am going to be painstakingly honest about what woke me up in this regard. It wasn’t that I hated what I saw when I looked in the mirror, though I certainly had issues with that. It wasn’t that I couldn’t keep up with my kids, though I certainly could not. It was the fact that one morning I woke up to find out my marriage was likely over (and not by my choice). The idea that I might have to start over in my mid thirties motivated me into changing things up. I was faced with looking at how I wanted my life to look if I was starting an entirely new life. I wasn’t scared at all, in fact I was excited. It felt like an opportunity to put myself first after 12+ years of being dead last on my own priorities list. My husband was doing the same for himself. After a few weeks we quickly realized that there was no reason we couldn’t do this together and that it would be even easier with a loving partner. Once we started putting our own needs and that of each other at the top of the totem pole everything else just fell into place.
Our lives look sooooo very different now.
This morning I woke up at 6:00 am, showered, and hustled over to a CrossFit class. It was a morning full of pushups, situps, planks, squats, wall couch, pigeon, sprints, supermen, knee tucks on the bar, deadlifts, Kettlebell swings, Kettlebell high pulls, Kettlebell presses, and an obscene amount of Turkish get ups with a Kettlbell. My husband woke up slightly later to start taking care of the kiddies. When I got home I made breakfast and my husband readied himself for the same exact class I just took but at 10:30. While he is working out I log some work time on the computer and prepare lunch and dinner, especially if both require long cook times. Today the menu was lamb chops for breakfast, baked chicken and fresh fruit for lunch, and pork with sauerkraut is working away in the crock pot for dinner. When my husband gets home he eats lunch with us and we just hang out until he leaves for work at 2:00 pm. Often times though one of us will use this time to get out of the house to run errands or do something recreational like hit some balls at the golf range (him) or get a pedicure (me). Sometimes we nap.
After he leaves for work I keep plugging away at my desk, working but often taking breaks to do this or that with the kids. Sometimes I just have to get up and walk which means we all walk a few blocks away to a small gas station store that sells ice cream. Sometimes we go to the library for awhile. In the early evening I read usually, either inside or out depending on where the kids are playing. Later on my kiddos are required to be in their rooms and quiet by 8 PM (doing whatever they want) then I have an hour or so to watch DVR shows or read some more. In the morning we will rinse and repeat but always with fitness and health being tops on the priority list.
So why do this challenge if fitness is already a priority? Well, I thank my lucky stars I discovered CrossFit.
Previously I was swimming, running on the treadmill, and doing circuit weight machines. I felt like I was fit or on my way there and was pretty content. Then CrossFit took me to new places. Sometimes those places made me so sore I could barely get on and off the toilet without assistance and other times they made me realize the words “puke spot” painted on the sidewalk in back of the gym was no joke. I couldn’t even do one single pushup when I started, a full pushup – not the girl ones on your knees. No pushups after more than a year of exercising at the gym for 3-4 days a week. Last week I did 110 in one workout or WOD (workout of the day). It has made me feel like an athlete and I have actual training goals now. I want more! If I can do 110+ pushups what else can I do???? I look forward to finding out.
I think it is also important to consider the impact of fitness too because it has made me a bigger consumer for sure. I try to find workout clothing at second hand stores and only rarely do I actually find some that isn’t in sizes XXS or XXL. Workout clothing gets pretty worn out, pretty fast so I am guessing that the ladies who actually wear the clothing to workout in don’t have much left to donate later. I know my workout tees get turned into rags or reusable bags when I am done with them cause they are ratty! Shoes also get worn out fast and you NEED good shoes for CrossFit. Sport bras are another thing you need to buy regularly as are workout clothes that fit with the seasons. I also admit that I am falling victim to wanting stuff I don’t actually need too, to show off my enthusiasm for the sport. Like this Kettlebell necklace. I have two of them now and they have many more colors available. Can I resist???? I am always wearing them and I don’t even like jewelry!
During the challenge I plan to start attending Olympic Weight Lifting classes at my local CrossFit box and increase my morning workouts from 3 times weekly to 4-5 with swimming or running thrown in on the weekends. I am going to have to increase my calories to maintain muscle gain and energy levels so I will have to play around with the nutrition aspect as well. I also have goals to do kipping pull ups, hands stand pushups, toes to bar, and more consistent double unders. Once I begin Olympic Lifting I will also have weight goals too. I am ready to see just how far I can push myself and what I can accomplish during this challenge? Will you join us?
Is there really any greater gift, than the gift of health? No, not likely. Being healthy and fit takes us a long way on our journey to happier lives and it helps to ensure we are around to share our lives with our loved ones. It gives us greater energy and happiness. It keeps us young.
You may need gift ideas for loved ones who consider themselves gym rats and fitness enthusiasts or you may want to encourage someone who wants to be. Either way these gifts are perfect for those who want to prioritize fitness and greater health. Some I would consider “green” in their design or materials and others I have added because they are high quality and designed to last, even if they are not technically green. Enjoy!
Shoes – There are many brands of green and/or minimalist shoes out there so if you want to buy shoes for your loved one you may want to do your homework and see what they like and what they use their shoes for. Some good ones to try:
Cushe Women’s Shucoon-MJ – Trail shoe made with 100 percent organic cotton, 70 percent recycled lycra, and 60 percent recycled jersey.
Garmin Forerunner – Most fitness nuts want to track their progress and compete against their own times. This nifty device is considered one the best tools to do that. It tracks your distance, time, pace, and heart rate. Works for running, walking, hiking, cycling, cross country skiing, and even windsurfing. Also has GPS. This is on my wish list for sure!
Mp3 player and Headphones – Whether at the gym or outside the workout goes mush faster and is much more enjoyable when you have tunes to listen to. You ideally want something small for fitness though, like the iPod nano or the shuffle. Both clip onto your clothing! Don’t forget the eco headphones to.
Sustainable Workout Clothes – Workout clothing that is ‘environmentally conscious’ is widely available now. Some of my faves include:
Eco Yoga Mat – Got any yoginis in the family? Well, then an eco friendly mat will be perfect. Most conventional mats have some toxic nasties in them and there are a few options now that are healthier for us and for the planet. Try the Gaiam Eco Reversible Yoga Mat (Peacock). Non toxic TPE, no PVC or latex, eco conscious company.
Gym Bag – Anyone who hits the gym a few times a week will need a bag to cart around all their stuff… swim suit, change of clothes, towel, toiletries, mp3 player, headphones, heart rate monitor, water bottle, etc. I have the Gaiam Everything Fits Recycled Gym Bag and it is roomy enough for all my stuff, has a pocket for wet stuff, and has a rope band on the bottom for holding a yoga mat.
Fitness Books: If your giftee happens to love fitness and reading then perhaps you could incorporate both pursuits. You might try a Winter Trails book specific to their state or an athletic memoire like Becoming Odyssa or Hiking Through.
Hi there! I am a green, paleo, crossfit mom of three. I am concerned about health, wellness, and sustainability issues. This is my life. This what I am passionate about. Come get to know me and feel free to connect. Enjoy!