Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Group-Oriented Fitness - 1st Anniversary!

I started GOAL-ORIENTED FITNESS one year ago to provide a fitness program where a group of us exercised together, consistently, for a period of time. THANKS to all of you who have participated in the past year!

For the 1st anniversary (June 1), and to emphasize the power & success of working together in a group, GO Fitness is offering:
Group-Organized (GO) Fitness! Form a group of 5 or more, and the Group-Organizer is free! (or share the discount with your group) Alternate scheduling may be available.
Regular appointments for exercise, and meeting friends, will lead you to success! There was an article in the Wall Street Journal about that today! Set goals and achieve them together! Work out with your friends, co-workers, neighbors, or teams. Think about what other groups of people you know, for example: mom’s groups, daycare, preschool, school, organizations, clubs, etc.
Email me the names and email addresses of those in your group, and I’ll take it from there! (Individuals can also register for GO Fitness.)

Monday, May 10, 2010

Ibuprofen is My Friend

Saturday, my running group, SOAR (Streets of Alameda Runners), trained along our 1/2 marathon course, to familiarize ourselves with it. The night before, Mary Grace and I marked the course with chalk: the turns and the miles. That morning, we parked a "pitstop" car at the halfway point with drinks, snacks and a first aid kit.

8 of us met at the starting line and met each other for the first time. We all had our SOAR running hats on, which looked great! Most of us took off walking, some as a warm-up and others as a workout. It was nice to see the mileage along the route! About 3.5 miles in, my right knee started hurting! Damn it! I'd been doing exercises and stretches for it for the past couple weeks, but learned that I need to be more diligent about it for the next 4 weeks before the actual race.

I made it to the pitstop, where I stretched a lot, ate, drank and took some ibuprofen. Mary Grace had taken some before she started running, and Annie said she always takes some before a long run! Wow! Why hadn't I ever thought of that? Ibuprofen is my new friend. It really helped decrease the pain in my knee for the second half of the run. I don't want to depend on it for pain relief; I'd rather stretch and strengthen my body than take drugs to kill the pain, but I will take it before long runs in the future, just in case.

I ran the 12.5 miles on my  training schedule and walked the last 1/2 mile to the finish line, where Laurie was there to congratulate me. That was fun! We laid out a picnic blanket and had more snacks and water for the finishers.

I finished 1/2 mile short of race length in 4 minutes over my goal time. On race day, can I run 1/2 mile farther in 4 minutes less time? Well, Saturday, I walked the first 5 minutes as a warm-up, which I won't do on race day. There will also be the excitement and adrenalin rush of the actual race, which will make me run faster at the beginning. Plus, I have four weeks to improve both my distance and time. On the other hand, I won't have a nice pitstop in the middle of the race, when I turned off my stopwatch! Hmm, I think I can do it. That's good to know. I can achieve my goal for my first 1/2 marathon!

One of the best things is that I felt pretty good afterwards and still do. I immediately stretched a lot, ate well, and drank even more. The rest of the day I felt pretty good, although I did take a nap in the early evening. The next day, my legs felt a little stiff in the morning, but I stretched again and they felt fine. Today (2 days later), I feel fine. That's great because I've heard of recoveries taking a week after a long race, and I can't do that!

Thank you, Ibuprofen and Mary Grace, for getting me to do this 1/2 marathon training!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Self-Discovery: I am a Teacher

I've been rediscovering things about myself that I'd forgotten about: I am not a jock; I am a teacher. My style of teaching is not the "Sage on the Stage;" I am a "Guide on the Side."

Because of these things, I do not compete in marathons and triathlons. I'm not addicted to exercise nor want to continually challenge my body to meet increasingly higher standards. That doesn't interest me. It also doesn't fit the image of a Personal Trainer. As a Certified Personal Trainer, I'm supposed to be completely focused on the body and how to improve everyone else's. I'm supposed to critique other people's form and lecture them to exercise more and harder. But I'm not a jock, and I'm not a "Sage on the Stage."
I'm a teacher, and I'm a "Guide on the Side." What I really want, is for everyone to live the SWEET Life. The SWEET Life integrates Sleep, Water, Eating, Exercise and Tranquility. We need all of these, in moderation, to live a balanced, healthy lifestyle. I want to guide people in ways to live a balanced, healthy lifestyle, with everything, in moderation, even exercise.

But what else I've rediscovered is that it's not my style to shout it from the rooftops. I don't meet everyone I come across and lecture them about living the SWEET Life. I'm a guide, and I'm on the side, not in your face. I'm not very out-going; I'm not larger than life. I'm here to support you and to encourage you and to help you create steps to achieve your goals.

I've been a teacher for 20 years. 5 years ago, I changed my teaching subject from ESL (English as a Second Language) to fitness. They are surprisingly similar. In both cases, the point is not to improve myself (i.e., the jock); the point is to help you improve yourself. The point is not to let you know how much I know (i.e., the Sage on the Stage); the point is to help you improve your abilities.

More surprising similarities the next time . . .