Thursday, February 19, 2015


Today I did a 90 minute Ashtanaga Primary series led practice from   I always enjoy Primary. I enjoy the pace and especially some of the seated postures that are often not done in a flow class. I decided on Primary today because it was so cold. I want a practice that kept up the heat, and Ashtanaga does.

Tomorrow is running and a shorter yoga practice.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Running, Yoga, and Lent

I've been so busy, that it's been hard to find time to write.  I've been able to increase my running, but at the cost of kettlebell.  My right knee started hurting.  It didn't hurt while I did anything, only at night or when I would try to stretch.  So that, combined with the fact that I've been getting incredible, personal yoga instruction has led me to a difficult decision.  I'm taking a break from kettlebell and just running and practicing yoga.  I still plan on keeping up my pull-ups and push-ups, and I may even add back swings in a few weeks.  But for now, I want to pursue the yoga more fully.  I'm making progress, and learning so much from my incredible instructor.

And now Lent.  I was raised Roman Catholic, but I've only attended Protestant churches since college.  We are currently attending an Episcopal church, which has been nice.  And it's been good to be somewhere that uses the Liturgical calendar again.  Faith, for me, has been mostly pushed aside because we live so far from where we attend church.  I've been burned out with church for the last few years, but I want to use this season to try and reconnect to my faith.  I want to remember why I had faith.

Growing up, Lent meant fish on Friday's and giving up something, usually ice-cream, until Easter.  But I want this to be a time of true fasting.  Besides making Friday's meatless (so, no fish) I would like to go vegan the entire time.  That may not be possible, since I'm still cooking for my family, who have no desire to go vegan.  So I will do vegan as much as I am able, as well as dropping wine and chocolate.  I'm also planning to practice yoga everyday.  It may seem that yoga has nothing to do with Lent, but it's the discipline, as well as the way yoga gets me out of my head, focusing on my breath, on life itself.  It's very meditative.

I also have books to read for Lent, one being The Imitation of Christ, and the other is a collection of writings for Lent and Easter by Henri Nouwen.

This morning I ran 5 miles on my treadmill, since it's bitter cold and icy outside.  I'm planning on 30 minutes of yoga later.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Plugging along

Last week was good, but I may have to rethink my schedule.  Right now I have a plan of running plus kettlebell on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, then yoga on Tuesday (plus kettlebell swings) Thursday (no swings), and a long run on Saturday.  Sunday, which is a rest day, I do Yin or Restorative yoga.

On paper this works nicely, but in practice by Friday I'm shot.  My Thursday's are spent out, the entire day, and on Friday I'm wiped out.  Last Friday I ran but I had trouble doing kettlebell.  I want to keep up my strength work, so I'll have to see how this all works out.

My "long run" on Saturday was just 5 miles, but that's the longest I've ran in months.  I didn't hurt at all, and it felt so good to run more than 3 miles.  I ran a total of 15miles last week, which is back to the minimum that I want.  I'm making sure I get my push-ups and pull-ups done, which I think is the key for my strength work.

On a more fun note, I spent last Thursday at REI shopping. I went in there for SOL emergency blankets, for when my husband and I hike.  I end up spending $100.  Included in that was a map and a trail guide for The Big South Fork area.  I think it would be fun to explore that area this year.  It's a bit of a drive, but no more (and usually less) than the Smokey's.  I'm excited to do more hiking.  I love hiking and would prefer that over more races, which just seem to make me push myself and get injured.  I love being outdoors and on the trail, and I have a goal of at least 5 long day hikes with my husband this year, and at least 6 shorter hikes with the kids.  If it goes well, maybe my husband and I could do an overnighter.  We don't have the gear, so we'll have to see.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Hike to Dogslaughter Falls

Last week was busy, but I managed to get my training all in.

M - 3 m run plus 30 mins kettlebell strength work

T - yoga in the AM, then a 1 mile run in PM

W - 3 mile run plus 30 mins kettlebell strength work

Th- yoga

F- 3 mile run (outside!!) And kettlebell.  I had to cut the kettlebell short. I felt wiped out.

Sat- 3 mile run, then 7 mile hike to the falls.  It was a beautiful day to be outside.  There was still some ice on the trails, which made it hard (we don't have traction devices) but it was fun. Came home and did some resrestorative yoga by the fire.

Sun was a rest day.

It was a good week and I've been able to be consistent,  which is good. I would like to work more on some strength goals, but right now I just want to work on being consistent and continue to run.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Getting back to blogging and back to running

The holidays were as busy as they always are, and again, I was sick.  I seem to get sick every Christmas.  This year I had 2 different stomach bugs and a nasty cold.  No flu, not yet at least.  My beautiful workout schedule fell apart, but Christmas came together.  We had a great Christmas, with our Polish Christmas Eve supper and our Christmas day breakfast feast and then turkey dinner.  The kids loved all of their presents, and then we left for vacation.  The kids went skiing/snowboarding while I stayed at my folks and read books. :)  I also started running again.  I got 3 runs in while at my folks, including one that was so cold that my feet hurt the entire 3 miles.  I also have been getting back at kettlebells and of course, yoga.

And that brings me to my normal crossroads. I want to get my running back up, I want to increase my overall strength, but more then anything I want more yoga in my life.  I'm trying to find ways to sneak it into my day.  I've always done some yoga stretching after running or kettlebell, it's been my cooldown, but I'm wanting more then that.

Today I did a 90 minute Ashtanga practice and I loved it.  I know I really want to work on that, but I also still want to improve my strength and increase my running.  I want to be running between 15-20 miles a week.  All of this takes time, which is not something I have a ton of.  I don't work full time, but I have 4 kids at home who I am homeschooling, plus driving them to all of their stuff.  Still, I want to work on my goals too, and I plan to find ways to make it happen.  Yoga can be yin before bed. It doesn't have to be a 90 minute fast moving practice.

I'll see where this all goes in the next few weeks. I'm still trying to increase how much I run, and I want to do that carefully so I don't re injure my hamstring.

And blogging.  Writing stuff down helps. It helps me think through it all and helps me see what I'm actually doing.  I plan to try and keep it up.   We shall see.

Monday, December 1, 2014

Hoping for Healing

I injured my hamstring at the end of August.  I have not run since then (I did a couple test runs, but the pain was too great).  Our insurance doesn't cover much of PT, that and other expenses have kept me from going to see a PT,  I've been doing strength training and yoga, trying not to irritate  my injury. I want to run.  I want to run a whole lot.  I've been thrilled with the progress I've made in my strength training, but I still miss running.  So today I got on my treadmill and ran.  I ran for 1 mile using a 1 minute walk, 3 minute run pattern.  I could "feel" my hamstring, but it didn't hurt.  I plan on running that same mile tomorrow.  In fact, I plan to try it everyday for a month.  If it starts hurting I will not put off going to the PT anymore.  I will know that I need to go if I ever want to run again.

In the meantime I plan to keep up my strength training.  Last month's schedule of 4 strength days, and one shorter cardio day of kettlebell worked great.  This month I'm going for 3 strength days, 1 longer cardio (with the kettlebell) day, and a shorter kettlebell day. I plan to warm up each day with my 1 mile run, then the workout.  I'm also going to add, at the very least, a 4 minute tabata exercise at the end of each strength day.  Today I did 30 minutes of strength, which consisted of half TGUs, push-ups, squats, lunges, cleans, and swings, and I followed it up with a tabata of swing and snatches.

I'm also still trying to get in more yoga, even if it's 15 minutes of restorative before bed, or a few sun salutes and some meditation after lunch.  Yoga everyday is my goal, at least 15 minutes.  I do about 7 minutes of a yoga cool down after my workouts, but I want at least 15 minutes at some other point in my day.

Over Thanksgiving break I bought a new kettlebell video.  It's a streamable version of Kettlebell Lightning.  So far I'm loving this video.  I wanted the streaming version so I could use it when I travel.  I can stream it on my iPad or phone.  When I travel I only like to bring 1 bell, and these workouts seem perfect for that.  They are short and more cardio focused.  I can do 1 or do more, depending on the time I have.  I love all of Lauren's stuff.  I think she has some of the best kettlebell DVDs on the market.

Kettlebell Lightning DVD with Lauren Brooks & Alex Verdugo

Friday, November 21, 2014

Making a Goal

So last Saturday my workout called for Turkish Get-Up practice then a 22 minute cardio workout with the kettlebell.  I did 5 Get-ups per side, alternating.  I started out with my lightest bell, a 15#.  I then moved on to my 12kg (26#) bell.  I've had a goal of using my 16kg (35#) bell for my Get-up.  I've done half get-ups before with the 16kg, but I could never get past the seated part.  On Saturday I decided to go for it, and I did it. :)  I did the 16kg Get-up on my less strong side first, then my stronger side.  I did a total of 2 each side with the 16kg, then finished off with one more per side with the 12kg.

Since Saturday, I've been sick with some stomach thing.  I was able to workout with my kettlebells on Tuesday, but Monday and Wednesday were no good.  By Thursday I felt a little better and went to a yoga class.  I tried Brikam again, and I'm starting to like it.  I like all of the balance poses. I really need to work on those.

Today I did a kettlebell workout; it was a series of half TGUs, swings, then squats, push-ups, lunges, and cleans.  It felt good.  I pushed the weights and felt like I worked as hard as I could have by the time I was done.

I may do some yoga tonight.  I had planned on going, but a bad illness with one of my kids kept me home. If I still feel up to it, I will use to get in a practice tonight.