Thankfully, after the mucus debacle of two weeks ago, last week was a somewhat better week of training. Things started slowly:
Monday: Easy Run
On the urging of a friend, I tried out a yoga class with a new instructor. The diversity of yoga – and yoga teaching styles – still amazes me. This particular class started with lots of breathing exercises, including things like, “Breathe in through your left nostril, and out through your right. This is good for cleansing the right side of the body.” or something to that effect. I know that breath is important, but I’ll admit this was a bit weird for me – particularly since the residue of the previous week’s cold left me unable to breathe through one nostril, so I kept having to “cheat” through my mouth. I felt very self-conscious about this – especially when the instructor stuck his ear in my face to listen to my breathing. Whoops.
We then proceeded into a very energetic class, with lots of jumping from pose to pose. However, there was very little instruction on proper body position, pose alignment, or how to sync the breathing and postures. As of late, I find myself getting annoyed when I take a class where the instructor fails to…well, fails to instruct, on proper execution. This is true in classes from BodyPump to Spin to yoga. I wish I could chillax, but even if I know what I’m doing, I feel like all participants deserve proper instruction, to maximize their workout and keep them safe. So I get peevish when I feel that isn’t provided.
The instructor did come off the stage several times to help students individually – but when he moved me (and others, as far as I could see once I started watching) I found him to be a bit too rough. He didn’t hesitate to push, tug, and twist people’s bodies in not-so-gentle ways, and without even communicating with them (“How is this?” Where do you feel the stretch?”). Hmmmm. When I’m already stretching to my limit, roughly pushing my leg further down isn’t going to win me over to your method of instruction.
Perhaps there is a method to his madness – and I know plenty of students enjoy so class. I just wasn’t my favorite. I think I tend to prefer classes that provide a greater aerobic workout (a flow class), or a workout that I leave feeling like I’ve been very well stretched. This provided neither. In fact, the next day I was sore in one spot: The back of my neck. Weird.
Still, I have a tendency to get into a workout rut – so big thanks to my friend for pulling into something new. Although it wasn’t quite the right class for me, I’m glad I went. Thanks, C! 🙂
Thursday: Run & BodyPump
I ran quite early in the morning, and headed directly out for BodyPump. By the time class was over, I was ravenous. So I grabbed a peanut pancake (not quite like an American pancake) to tide me over until lunch.
This is completely random, but as I was walking to the bus, I saw this sign. I won’t lie: It made me sad and distracted enough that I missed my bus.
Friday: Rest/Cheer Squad
Very late on Friday night, I headed out to cheer for the participants in this year’s Sundown Half-Marathon. I staked out a spot just before the bridge to Marina Barrage and set up camp. The race flagged off at 11:30 PM, so the lead runners came through at around 12:30 AM. I got to cheer the leaders through, and then the trickle of runners quickly turned into a tidal wave. I jumped, clapped, yelled, danced, and did whatever else I could think of to make people smile and keep them moving. [I did not, however, tell them that they were “Almost there!”. I was far more explicit, “Just over 5K!”] I have no photos from the cheer session (as it was, you know, DARK), but here are a few pre-cheer photos.
Around 3 AM, I finally called it a night and went on a hunt for a taxi. Unfortunately, I was downtown and in Drunk Tourists Central. Fortunately, I was totally sober, hyped up from a cheer session, and wearing sensible shoes. This allowed me to walk far enough to avoid taxi-hailing competition, and I was home in about 15 minutes and asleep 5 minutes after that (4.75 minutes to guzzle some more water and grab a shower, 0.25 minutes to fall asleep). I slept in until 10 AM (super late for me!), thus missing the cool of the morning for a run. But one of our favorite spin instructors was teaching the New Release Les Mills Spin Launch on Saturday afternoon, so KMN and I splurged on the extra travel time to get down to the One Raffles Quay gym.
Sunday: Long run
On Sunday morning, I set out early for 7 solo miles on the roads, then looped back home for a dry shirt, trail sneakers, and my husband. We headed out for a 7 mile loop around McRitchie Reservoir. Unfortunately, I had been rather lazy in the stretching and foam rolling department during the week, and my IT band decided to get some revenge. I was able to keep any serious problems at bay with frequent stretch-stops (and possibly fervent promises to do better next week!!!), and KMN stuck with me and was a good sport about the whole situation. These stops made the run part seem really easy, though – my legs didn’t feel too fatigued, and despite some lingering lung-ickies, my aerobic stamina was quite good. 14 miles in the books. Last week’s formula of 1 Nuun + 1 salt tab per hour seemed to do me well again this week. There were no post-run electrolyte-loss headaches to be found. Yes!!!
The best part of the run was when KMN spotted a huge spider working on her web, right over the trail. The web stretched across the whole path! The spider was enormous, too – probably 3-4 inches in diameter (including legs). She had already anchored the ‘spokes’ of her web, and we watched her unravel silk from her spinnerets and fasten it to form the circular part of the web. Nature is SO COOL.
After a busy Sunday morning, a lazy Sunday afternoon, and a quick buy-a-toaster-but-don’t-because-the-one-you-want-is-out-of-stock trip, my legs were craving an inversion. I was tired, so used the wall:
Total Workout Time for the Week: 8 hrs, 14 min
Plan for this week (already in action, obviously) is extra TLC for my IT bands, and a return to daily aerobic work, now that I’ve kicked the cold completely to the curb. Bring it on!!
What was your best workout last week?
When was the last time nature made you stop and think, “WOW. That is SO COOL!”?