Monday, August 20, 2012

Cedar lake trial, Orange Theory Fitness, and some other stuff

  It's hard to know where to start because I have so much to say, but I don't want to bore you with a ten page essay, so I will keep it short as possible.

  Friday August 10th my family departed on an airplane to Minneapolis Minnesota.  I was nervous to leave only because I had been gone so much this summer, and each time I left proved to be a challenge to keep some sort of running schedule.

  I have learned that running is a lot like matters of faith.  I love my Jesus so very much and when I have spent time in His presence I am renewed!  I feel rested and ready to face the day as I know everything He has for me is good and perfect.  So then why is it that going to Him and spending time in prayer proves to be a challenge as well?  It is a rhetorical question that I know the answer to.  Just like spending time in prayer and in the bible, getting out to run isn't always what I am being pulled to do.  When I go to read my bible, I can think of all the house work, or any sort of errand or task I should be doing.  When I am supposed to be running that day, I can think of all the reading and relaxing I want to be doing.  As I have mentioned in the past, there is very little that I will give myself as an excuse, and then there is the little thing I look forward to the most, ENDORPHINS!!!!  These babies are the best, and they are the #1 reason I keep going.  I am also quickly realizing the importance of a running schedule!  I am so glad I decided to train for another half marathon, weather I participate or not!

  Before we ever packed our first bag, my dear sister in-law Holly was making plans for all the sisters in-law to get together.  She had worked up a few ideas involving a work out then appetizers, and/or drinks.  These were creative ideas too!  One of them included having an evening session at a place called Orange Theory Fitness, this link opens in a new window.  Well with so many different schedules it was proving to be difficult to get the families together.

On the right is Orange Theory

  I realize the photo is hard to make out, but I thought it was interesting that the gym was all the way to the right, and there is a Subway on the left.  This is very similar to my gym close to home, of which I have no photo.

  So you have probably figured out by now that I made it to OT (Orange Theory Fitness).  Holly and I made plans when we were eating out at Dicks Last Resort (more about that later...maybe) on Wednesday evening.  We decided to meet Friday morning at 6:30 am for a class to begin at 6:45.  I was quite relieved to be doing this early in the morning as I am not an evening work out sort of a girl...UNLESS I already got something done in the morning.  If I have to wait till later in the day, or evening to do something intense, I will become a huge stress ball throughout the day!  

  I have no photos of my experience, but if you are curious about the appearance of the place and the machines, their website is great!  I won't bore you with too many details about the experience, but I will point out some of the highlights.  After I signed all the paperwork, it was time to put on a heart monitor.  I have no previous experience with one of these gadgets...but I think one may be on my list.  When I put the thing on, I wasn't sure what to do as the place I needed it to rest was just under the band of my sports bra.  They pointed out to me that it was a good idea to tuck it under there as it would be more likely to stay put anyway.  Also the lady who handed me the HRM took a guess at how long the strap should be and she was right on the money!  Which I am so glad because I did not have time to be adjusting.  There were three groups of people all starting at different points of the circuit.  
#1 Treadmill
This was the first point for me.  Of course I was stoked about this.  I won't go into detail, but this was all about speed work, and pushing yourself...this is where the HRM's come in.  There are two television monitors in the studio, and on these monitors each person receives a square.  In this square is a percentage and a color.  The color represents where you are with how your body is struggling to receive oxygen.  The instructor lets you know how hard to push and in what range you should be.  The only guessing I had to do was what speed to put my treadmill at.   
#2 Rowing
This was actually included with the weight circuit, so I guess there are technically only 2 groups.  We were to row 500 meters
#3 Weight lifting.
Some lifting with free weights, and a lot of body resistance moves.  This particular workout was using mostly arms.

Everything I do proves to be a "learn from your mistakes" sort of a deal.  
Treadmill goofs 
1. Going so fast I knocked the emergency cord out of the machine therefore having to reset.

2. pressing 9 incline for the all out push yourself speed instead of 9mph.  (and just incase you are thinking 9 is a weakling speed, I had to do this for a whole minute after running my base speed for 3 minutes, then a push speed for one or two minutes)

Rowing goofs: This was my first time ever using the rowing machine...
1. She told me I had to be between a 28 and 30, I was looking at the time, and it kept going up, so I thought I was rowing too fast and kept decreasing my speed.

Strength goofs:
I didn't realize she was showing us the moves and then all the moves she showed us were written on the white board exactly what we needed to do, so I was just doing whatever Holly was doing. (yea, trying to keep up with her was like trying to keep up with an Ironman contestant!)  By the second round I figured it out.

At the very end your statistics show up on the screen, and at what levels you were.  The instructor went over with me what it all meant.  This is the sort of place that you could really improve your workouts with out a lot of guesswork...if any :)

I give this place a good score because the people were super friendly, it was fast pace and NEVER boring, and everyone was so helpful!  Had I to do it all over again, I would have gotten there even earlier and asked for a quick overview of how it was all going to go down.  I am just glad they let me in.  It was free for my first time, and even though they knew I was from out of state, they offered me to come back again before I left for another free workout THAT is GOOD business!  If I could I would open one.   
I didn't really mean for that to be a review, but I guess it sort of was.

  About my runs while being in the city.
As many of you may already know, I ran something called Cedar Lake Trail 

 This is the makeshift path down to the trail
 This is where the path comes out
 This is one of the views while on the run
This is a view of what part of the path looks like

  The very first time I ran this, I ran for 3/4 of a mile next to the RR tracks on the gravel road.  I am not a fan of running on gravel, but I though "oh well" it was at this .75 mile that I realized it was probably never going to cross the trail, so I found a place I could duck in... there were a lot of bicyclists passing by.  I was very excited to see all these people out exercising because where I live I don't see many at all when I am running.  I was waving hello to everyone I passed.  Most of the time I got strange looks.  I think out of the 20 people I waved and said hi to...2 of them at least gave me a nod or smile back.  I am NOT exaggerating.  I got back to the house and was happy that I got a 6 mile run in, but frustrated at the whole path situation, and was griping that bikers think they own the road.  I decided to look at the map again to see what was the deal with the path.  As it turns out there was a makeshift path from the railroad tracks all the way to the third path which was meant for foot traffic...which brings me to another point. 

Path Goof
From MY point of entry there were no signs that designated it being a running or bicycling path.  The bikers were acting as though they owned the road because well...they sort of did.  It wasn't till my second run that I could see that there was a distinction between the foot traffic and bicycle traffic.  Let me be clear though, that there ARE points where the bikes, and feet meet up and MUST share the path.  

  It is in my opinion and upon my observance that Cedar Lake, and it's surrounding trails in the Minneapolis area are well sought after and for very good reason!  These are a beautiful place where fitness minded people can get a good run in without having to dodge traffic.   This trail has a pretty neat history, which the link above titled Cedar lake trail will go into detail. (I only wish I would have come across it before I started).

Not running in Monte
  For part of this vacation we drove out to a little wonderful town named Montevideo. Corn fields as far as the eye can see!  
We seen some more family, and my sister in-law Julie, who I have inspired to begin running!  Yay, I am so proud of her, and I hope to keep encouraging her!  (I still cannot believe I am an inspiration to people). 

  I had brought my running gear, but over the two and a half days we were there, I never even opened my gym bag because I couldn't find an opportunity to run.  Well it is a good thing because I NEVER brought my Sports bra!  I guess if I would have discovered that fact while I was there...a trip to Walmart would have cured that.  Yes BTW, a SB from Walmart would have worked perfectly fine.  Running shoes however...not so much.  I have yet to go somewhere and forget my shoes...I have come close, but got saved at the last minute.  I know it will happen someday, but until then I won't worry about it.  

  On Friday night Kurt and I went to Dicks sporting goods where I seen they had a Nike + GPS watch powered by TomTom for $169.  They weren't on sale, but these babies have come down in price!  I was between wanting the sport band, and this, and my husband said why don't you just get the watch because it has everything.  I have only run with it once and that was before I had hooked it up to a computer.  I still have some reading to do on it, and plan to use it again tomorrow.  

  I am going to close for now, but have so much more to tell you all concerning my future with fitness, and how this GPS watch works, and probably some points about my vacation I may have forgotten.


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