Posted in Chicago fitness, Chicago gyms, Healthy Chicago, Uncategorized, working out

Get Sweaty at Sweat

Friday night I attended my first blogger event at Sweat. I’ve been to Sweat before and I regularly go to HIIT classes so the format itself was not new to me. We need a shortened class, Tabata style, and it flew by. Let me break it down:

Show up to Sweat. Everyone is super nice. Duh.


They give a quick tour and lavish you with water… Sorry Propel but you are not my jam. Amenities in the bathroom however, are tops.


IV me comes in to sell us on their services. While I am sure that stuff works great and I am always curious to try new recovery techniques, I also consider $80 shots to rehydrate during a hang over rich people nonsense.

Class is led by Owner Paul who I haven’t worked with before. Class breakdown is above. If I had know DB push presses were going to be on the schedule I would not have used I such heavy weights in the SWAT class I took at Enrgi shortly before. Total arm burnout. Other thoughts on class: he gave us different instructions for sprints (raise incline, raise speed, etc) which really forced you to push, they have a target on the wall where you are supposed to aim and as a short as hell women I moved to a different wall as I was concerned about my form in attempting to reach the ceiling, rowing and TRx were standard and boxes came in various sizes and again as someone with no legs I thank you kindly.


After class we were treated to some juice ( yum), homemade protein balls (double yum) and Q&A.


It’s interesting to talk to an owner about their goal for their gym and he was really interested in what we all look for in a workout and what we find intimidating.

For $169 a month, I think Sweat is a bit pricey for me, but they are a great little community oriented group fitness gym in the Gold Coast. Or if you just want to roll into KitchFix and then stop by Sweat to purchase one of their awesome tanks you could do that too.

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Posted in Chicago fitness, Chicago gyms, Chicago running, Enrgi, Uncategorized

Pimping My Friends

If I was a ClassPass member I would rate this class but I am not and thusI can only force you, my dear readers, to read my review of ElectiFYD with Lisa D at All About Dance

Years ago I was a regular at ABD but due to some schedule changes I made the jump to group fitness and found a new love. I use the term love because I love ABD and adore Lisa. This new class offers both dance (follow along, not learning a dance like their usual classes) and strength training. I will warnthe muscle heads out there (myself included) that this is more barre style with small weights and pulsing movements. I haven’t used small weights in awhile (except for at hardpressed when I scoff but then can’t lift 5lbs because I am dead) and while they feel like tiny butterflies in your hand, once you pulse for a bit you are thanking baby Jesus that they aren’t heavier.


And in other news, this was me from three years ago. My how things change quickly. I was just starting to run so I could get around the block in class and was attending a few 1hr classes regularly but not daily. Here we are, three years later, and I won’t tell you how frequently I work out, but I will tell you that I have vastly changed from the girl with the sandwich photoshopped on her (the class I was taking that day is BLT so it’s a most excellent pun).

Posted in Challenges, Chicago fitness, Chicago gyms, Chicago running, cross-training, Fitness, goal setting, Healthy Chicago, Warrior, weight loss, working out

Dichotomy 

There is a lot going on in my life right now. Which is true of basically everyone. And as much as I feel like a lot of things are falling apart, a lot of things also seem to be coming together. So to focus on the good…

1) I am pleased to say that I was chosen as a RAM ambassador this year which means that I will be repping the race series and Fleet Feet at various expos.

2) I’ve been picking up lots of shifts over at Coop. All this running around has me somewhat exhausted but I am gaining valuable and awesome experience. I work in Downsize which is a program for folks who have lots of weight they want to lose. I have a few regulars who are awesome and strong and have beautiful form. In the past week we’ve also had some newbies: one woman who has never worked out before and a 62 year old woman who doesn’t need to lose weight but wants to. They both require lots of attention and modifications but they are both trying so hard and I respect them so much for joining the program. This all means that I need to look up some more modifications of course, but it’s pretty darn cool. I only began my fitness journey a few years ago but it’s easy to forget how it feels when you start. It’s hard. It hurts. It’s somewhat embarrassing. But that all goes away so fast.

If you had asked me a few years ago where I’d be in a few years this would not have been the answer but I’m so glad it is.

Thanks Midas
Posted in Chicago gyms, Chicago running, Fitness, Uncategorized

Ch-ch-changes

It was 50 degrees on Saturday which for those of you who don’t live in the midwest or on the East Coast, that was a heat wave for us. This meant that everyone, including myself, was out running. I had a 6 miler. Not my fastest, not my best, legs tight and sore, but 6 miles done nonetheless. I spent the rest of the weekend making up for it by eating all the donuts, oreos, pizza and other bad food I could shove into my mouth. Soooooo back to the grind today which means back to regular workouts and back to limited sugar and not processed foods. Let’s take a minute and pour one out for our beloved icky for you but delicious tasting friends.

And here is the changes part of this post… I know I lost weight, I know I am healthier, but thanks to Facebook’s remember these moments pics today I saw one from three years ago and thought good lord…
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Quite frankly it’s a bit difficult to even look at this picture. I shouldn’t hate it because I am still mostly the same person, except now I am thinner and find joy and fun in working out. I shouldn’t hate it because due to this being my old physical self I pushed to find a new physical and mental self that I like better, but something about it just makes me sad.

Posted in Chicago fitness, Chicago gyms, Chicago running, running

Monday Got Me Like

  
It’s 40 and about dang time I got back into regular running so today at lunch I decided to do this thing. This thing meant that for about two miles I chased a guy who was taller and faster than me and was running 7.something min miles (which is hella fast for me) and I just about caught him. Miles 3 and 4 had me chasing another dude who was doing short sprints and was killing it and quite frankly I think I just wanted to run fast. Running isn’t a competition per se, but sometimes you just need the competition.

I think I ask felt all kinds of free as on Saturday I ran just under 5 miles with a backpack and if there is one way to slow yourself down its by adding a backpack filled with random things like your winter  coat. Don’t judge.

  
I also had another session at HardPressed group fitness on Saturday.

 

We pushed and pulled that tire and then did it again..and again… And again. For those of you who are like ahem, rest days… Don’t you worry! I spent Sunday in yoga and coloring. #noregrets

And since I feel like I should talk about nutrition… This is how I fuel on weekend mornings:

  Slow cooked oatmeal

Sunflower seeds

Banana

Almonds

Cashew butter

Raisins & cranberries

Trader Joe’s seed mix

Cinnamon

Salt (because I’m not a total monster) 

Posted in Chicago fitness, Chicago gyms, Finding your calling, Fitness, Health and Happiness Movement, Healthy Chicago, Mental Toughness, Warrior, working out

The Time Is Now

I’ve been in a weird mental state this week as some personal things are going on but when your mental state is inclined to be sad, I find that it’s the best time to push through with the things that you want that make you happy. And thus, I am working out like a monster and have been applying to gyms for jobs. JOBS! How scary!! I received a few responses from my resume and quite frankly, I am suddenly afraid of failure. I shouldn’t say suddenly afraid, I think I am always afraid to chose something to do with my life because what if I fail? The realistic part of me knows that so what, you fail, you move on. The part of me that really wants this is like oh god, but what if? Not that long ago I had a nightmare where I had chosen to go back to grad school for creative writing and I was in my program freaking out because I didn’t want it anymore. I woke up stressed out and sweating. Making choices is a nightmare for me. I mean that’s just ridiculous.

Anyway… I was listening to a podcast with Tim Ferriss this morning and he said this:

“Most people don’t attempt great things because they don’t think they can achieve great things.”

– Tim Ferris

And that’s where I feel like I am at in life. I want to stop living a mundane office life and achieve something great. I mean maybe it won’t be great to some, but it will be what I want which makes it great for me.

And where have I been working out this week:

Running… in snow… and cold… because sometimes you just need it to clear you head and make you happy.

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Rowing and taking various Athlete classes with Robert over at Enrgi. These classes are stellar because you just focus on one thing (like rowing, KBs, etc) and focus on form and performance at a higher level and yes, I want that.
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I just realized this video is missing my actual sprawls… but oh well!

And finally, this isn’t where I am… but I love this note from a No Meat Athlete FAQ on running.

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This weekend I will be checking out a class at a new to me gym, attending a Dry Athlon over at Equinox as part of a Sweatworking event, and taking a group fitness class at HardPressed. By Sunday night I suspect I will be among the dead.

“Make this year the year that you astonish yourself.”
– Tim Ferriss

Posted in Chicago fitness, Chicago gyms, Uncategorized

End of Year Wrap Up

I know it isn’t technically the end of the year yet, but let’s look back at what we have accomplished in the past year:

Ran first marathon
Ran first Ragnar relay
Obtained Group Fitness certification
Began team teaching at favorite place on earth
Purchased TRX training gift certificate because I am coming for you in 2016
Blogged and attacked social media more
Had my first Ninja Kids event and while this seems to have moved to the back burner, it’s still there… just trying to figure out how to make it happen

Do awesome things at the gym fitness goals:
Ok so I didn’t work on these as much as I would have liked, but I did actually cut back on my gym time in the summer and while that might seem like the opposite of a gym goal for some of you. For me it was important. I was going to HIIT classes twice a day and sometimes running in there as well. That is not good for your body folks. When I started marathon training it was a mental game to cut back on my gym time and post-marathon I have decided to stay that way in hopes that when I begin distance running again it was be as depressing for me as¬† I won’t need to make that change.

2015 was an exciting year for me in the fitness field. I am quite positive that as long as I don’t lose steam 2016 will be just as bad ass. My last post was about setting goals… so really I guess I should get on that so I know what my trajectory is.

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