Thursday, June 24, 2010

Insanity Peer Pressure

Last time I blogged, I went on about how everyone on Dailymile was on the naked running kick. So I had to try it out for myself. Well, there's also an Insanity thing going on. Everyone is either doing P90X or Insanity. I looked into P90X months ago. I was turned off from the cost, along with additional contraptions needed that you have to buy separately. I hate strength training anyway. Not a good match.

But everywhere I looked, people were talking Insanity this, Insanity that. I've done triathlons and Insanity still kicked my ass but I love it, type thing. So let me check it out. Apparently, some part of me wants to get my ass kicked. Luckily, I found a website that sold legit ass kicking dvds for cheap. It was shipped from China, but who cares? I paid only $65 AND got the deluxe version that would cost close to $200. So I got it, put it off for a couple weeks, got a little visit from a year + old injury, then started the program.

Each dvd starts off with a disclaimer basically saying: If you're a couch potato, this is not for you. Please consult with your doctor because you may end up within an inch of your life. Don't be a fool. If you know your fitness sucks, we won't call you a punk for starting with something less intense. It's better to be a wuss than to be dead. For whatever reason, I decided to go through with it. So I began last Thursday with the Fit Test. He starts you off with a warm up that I quickly learned is not a warm up. It's a mini workout. Yeah, I had sweat dripping into my eyes and everything. Then into the actual test of various exercises that I expected to hate. Come to find out, the exercises I thought I'd be bad at, I was pretty good at. I did more than I thought I could. After doing some online research, I saw that my initial results were better than average. Go me! Really, I surprised myself (I've come so far, but that's a story for another blog post all together). But then I got worried wondering if I'll actually improve on the next Fit Test. Will I get any better?

As of yesterday, I finished up the first week of workouts. I've noticed improvement in my endurance so far. I'm able to go faster in some exercises. There are some exercises that still kick my butt, and will continue to do so. That's what they're designed to do. In between circuits, I find myself gasping for air like I just did sprints. And it's all good. Do what you can, take a break if you need to, and keep it moving. If you can do that, it's not scary at all. And believe me, I was scared to even begin. But now, it's Kool and the Gang. I'll actually start running again soon while doing Insanity. I don't think it will be too much for me to handle. I guess that says something about my fitness. I've come a long way, baby!

So I've put three videos up on Youtube about Insanity. But I'll just show the one I did yesterday. It's a wrap up of my first week. I think I'll keep the videos to once a week. I figure if I do videos, it will keep me motivated to continue with the program. Well, just the workout portion. There's a handy guide for meal planning and such, but food is not my issue. I have no weight loss goals. I'm at a healthy weight and my body fat percentage is in order. Actually, I wouldn't mind shaving a bit of fat. Just a bit. But mainly, I want to improve my fitness. You can always improve your fitness. I get stronger every year. I love knowing that I get better with age.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Naked..It's the New Black

So there has been this naked running trend going down on Dailymile. No. I'm not talking about exposing booty butt cheeks. I'm talking about running sans music and Garmin. Well, going without music may not be a big deal. I did a 10 mile race without it. But the whole no Garmin thing, well that's HUGE. Once you get into the world of running, you become obsessed with numbers. How fast did I go? How far did I go? What's my best pace? What are my splits? All this goes on and you start to forget why you started running in the first place. And it stops being fun. Yes, it's nice knowing that I can run fast if I want to. But do I really enjoy it? Not that much.

I hit the road yesterday without a damn thing. In all honesty, I've been running without the supposed necessities for a bit now. I don't do socks, unless it's cold. I got rid of the stability shoes 3 months ago (viva la minimalist running!). I've been without music for 2 months (because I'm waiting for an ear bud replacement from Hong Kong..Long story. And now I can't tell you where my mp3 player is.). So yeah, I was almost there. But I never ran without my Garmin until yesterday. I wasn't tempted to take my Timex Ironman watch. I didn't set the stopwatch on my phone. Heck, I didn't even look at the time when I started/stopped. And you know what? It was a wonderful feeling. And the best run I had in ages. I wasn't even a minute into it when I started smiling. Who does that? Apparently, I do. I haven't run with a smile probably since the very beginning. Running went from something I enjoyed to me saying, "Okay, let's just get this over with." What are the chances of having a good run when you think of it that way? It shouldn't be that way.

So I enjoyed naked running so much that I may do it for the rest of the week. If all goes well, I'll be knocking out a 6 miler by the weekend. I won't stress about it. I won't try to hold a certain pace or beat a certain time. I'll just do it because I like to do it. And I'll remember how overjoyed I was when I started. Because running was something I was never capable of (damn anemia!). I dreamed about it, but couldn't do it. And when I finally did it, my thought was, "Thank you, God." I need to get back to that. And yesterday was one of those moments. I had no distractions. It was me, the sun, the blue skies, and the Canadian geese (one hissed at me).

Speaking of dreams, a couple weeks ago I dreamed of running a half. I know I mentioned the possibility of running one. But you don't understand. When I dream something, I must make it happen. Or I'll keep dreaming about it until it happens. That's how I got into running in the first place. If I dream it, it shall be or I shall be nagged to death in my dreams. So if all goes well with my running, all the sudden, you'll check my blog to find a race report out of no where. Yeah, that would be funny considering how much I hate racing. Hmm, maybe I'll race naked. That's a thought. But first, let's hope my mojo continues and that nothing breaks down on me.

Happy running or whatever it is you do. Be free! Run naked!