It’s not my favorite type of exercise, but I enjoy it enough to give it a go for weeks or months at a time, and the benefits are definitely worth the investment. A few months ago, I retired the weights for a while. It felt more of a drag than a joy and besides, the weather was finally warm enough for running. Like most things that resonate, I knew I’d pick up the barbell again, but I didn’t pencil it in my calendar.
My runs have been good, but really great. My legs had stamina but lacked power, and I didn’t see any improvement in the offing. For me strength is sexy and it was time to bring sexy back.
About a week or so later, I pulled out my barbell and dusted off my Pump DVDs. I decreased my monthly mileage goal from 50 to 40 to make room for strength training. As expected, the first runs post weights weren’t easy:
It’s April 1st, and today I was supposed to “rest.”
I spent the past 12 weeks doing a high intensity cardio program, TurboFire. I enjoyed it a great deal. I lost body fat and a few pounds (no mean feat when you already exercise regularly), and gained cardiovascular fitness. I also embraced my newly realized love of exercise and made the 6-day/week workout non-negotiable. It reaffirmed my need for routine and structure, despite my love of freedom and flexibility in my work schedule.
I debated long and hard about continuing the program for another 8 weeks or moving on to something else. I decided the fact I was feeling so attached meant I needed to break away and move on. As of next week, I’m beginning a new regimen – Pump (a full body weight training program) 3 times a week, plus cardio (running) 3 times a week.
So that brings us to today.
I ventured outside for my first run of 2012! I wish I could say it was glorious. It was definitely a good run, and I know for sure my cardiovascular fitness has improved. Breathing was easy and I had plenty of air, even when I pushed my normal pace. The problem? Lack of “rest.”
TurboFire is all choreographed kickboxing, squats and plyometrics. Running four miles was easy on my lungs, but my glutes and quads had commentary.
A lot of it.
I had to walk a little bit and/or slow down during the burn. Still, I’m excited to report I hit a new personal record:
My previous PR was my last run of 2011, so it’s a happy surprise that my new one is my first run of 2012. Here’s to continued temple building.