Sunday, August 28, 2011

Running and the Total Gym (or is it TotalGym?)

It's been a couple of weeks since I last posted, and things are progressing along exercise-wise.  I actually took it easy and only focused on my running the week immediately following my last post.  I bought a new pair of shoes (ASICS Men's GEL-Kayano 16 Running Shoe,White/Royal/Lightning,13 M) that was recommended by my running coach.  Of course they're vegan, as most running shoes are, and they address my overpronation while giving my knees some cushioning.  I'm still very, very slow, but I am running for longer periods of time and noticing an improvement in my technique.  My coordination in the running drills is also getting better, so I am feeling pretty good.  So far, I am the only person in my class to have attended every single time.  What can I say, I'm motivated!  The more I train, the better and fitter I'll get.  As I drop more weight and the weather cools, the running should get easier.  I'm excited about that!

I'm planning on signing up for a run in October, and the Dell Children's Medical Center 5k looks perfect as far as giving me enough time to train for it.  Even though a 5K may seem relatively easy, this will be my first race.  My goal is to run the entire race.  I'm not at all concerned with speed right now, particularly since I am regularly passed on the trail by young and old, fit and fat. :)  I haven't signed up for the race yet, but I'm fairly certain that this is the one that I want to participate in.

As expected, the Total Gym XLS that I ordered arrived on Monday, August 22nd.  (Jessica likes to say "TotalGym" running the two words together.  I was giving her a hard time about it, and then I noticed that one of the personal trainers on the beginner's DVD says it like that too. :-/) I also purchased the Total Gym Ab Crunch and Total Gym Dip Bars and a boatload of DVDs with a variety of workouts.  I opened it up immediately and have to say that I am impressed with it.  It allows you to do a variety of exercises, is easy to store, and both Jessica and I are having fun using it so far.  We've only done the beginner workout, but I anticipate that we'll move into the more sophisticated exercises within a couple of weeks.  One of the criticisms I read on the web is that it isn't for people who are very advanced, and that at some point, you will surpass the machine.  If that's the case, then I am okay with that because that means I will have reached a certain level of fitness.  There are so many things you can do to amp up the workout that I think that is something I won't have to worry about, at least for a long while.  For right now, it's very challenging as it is.

I'm certain that training with the TG will help me with my running, so it'll be interesting to see what kind of difference I notice in the next few weeks.  It will be impossible to know how much of the improvement is from the TG and how much is just from running itself or from the drills.  Regardless, it has been proven that cross-training makes a difference in running and improves overall fitness.  Besides, anything I can do to lose fat and gain muscle will help me achieve my goals.

8/15: Running class
8/16: 0
8/17: Running class
8/18: 0
8/19: 0
8/20: Running class
8/21: 0
8/22: Running class + Total Gym beginner's workout
8/23: 45 minutes walking
8/24: Running class
8/25: Total Gym beginner's workout
8/26: 65 minutes - treadmill incline work
8/27: Running class

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