Commitment

I dedicated this past week to getting back on track. As you may have read in my last post, I have a big marathon (as opposed to a small one hhaha) coming up in 8 months. Before we hit the big one though, I have 2 more immediate races I’ve signed up for:

  1. Nike Women’s D.C Half – April 28th
  2. Brooklyn Half – May 18th

….and since this past week I haven’t had weekly running mileage above 0-3miles…. So yeah, with 10 weeks out to my first Half Marathon 0f 2013, I decide it was time to buckle down and get back into the game.

The cold, the wind and short daylight hours have made it hard for me to get back into running, but I realized the D.C Half isn’t going to run itself so I needed to put my excuses aside and just RUN. Since I’m injury prone (or maybe just really dumb about training), I do not aspire to run more than 3 days a week.

Monday morning I had planned to run 2-3 easy miles outside with Nicole, but the 20-35mph wind chills of 11 degrees ruined our plan. I was bummed  I didn’t want to start off my week of running with a failed run. Luckily Dori reminded me that the treadmill is always an option. I hate running on a treadmill, but I do have one in the basement of my building, so I decide to go for it. I set out with a goal of 2 easy miles — after all, no one ever died from 20min of treadmill bordem. I got to my building’s gym and both of the 2 treadmills were being used. I felt defeated at first, but didn’t give up. I sat on a yoga matt and occupied my time with twitter while I waited for a treadmill to open up (using the yoga matt to actually stretch would have been taking my motivation too far). Luckily one opened in 5-10min and I was off and running. I started slow at 5.2mph. Once I eased into thing I decided to add some sprints to make it more exciting. One thing lead to another, like it often does with my runs, and I ended up running 3miles…and I felt great! I was so proud of myself for actually getting my run in.

Then came Wednesday and I had planned to run again. Again, the cold weather/winds ruined my outdoor run plans. In the morning I decided to spin instead and chalked it up to being OK because there were plenty of days left in the week to get in 2 runs. When I got home from work Wednesday night, though, despite being exhausted and feeling run down I remembered that I had made a commitment to myself. I headed towards the treadmill. Luckily this time one was free. Again I had planned to only run 2 miles and again I made it to 3miles (this time with hills)…I see a pattern forming…

Finally Friday was a nice day! Finally Nicole and I had planned for a morning run and actually met up! I hadn’t slept well the night before, so I was EXHAUSTED when I rolled out of bed to meet Nicole, but I had made a commitment to myself, to Nicole and to running and I was going to keep it. Once I got outside and we started going I began to wake up and started to feel good. We ran 2 miles out on the East River and they felt like a breeze; but then we turned around and that’s when the breeze became a real breeze. The wind picked up and the run turned into a “I’m putting my hood up and focusing on getting this done,” kind of run. I had planned to run 4miles and ended with 4.5miles — you know, simply to continue my pattern of running more than planned. By the time I got home my whole body was basically numb, but I felt good and it was worth a little lose of feeling in my limbs. Thank goodness for running buddies, though, that run would not have been enjoyable alone.

Three things I learned this week:

  1. I love running
  2. I never regret a run
  3. The value of commitment

QUESTIONS: What did you learn this week? How do you keep up running in the winter? What are you committed to right now and how do you stick with it?

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Never Give Up

NYC Marathon 2012 was not meant to be for me, or in this case, anybody else.  My hopes of running it ended in October when I suffered my last injury of the year and quit possibly the worse, a stress fracture in my foot. Luckily I was running through Team For Kids so I had the option to defer my entry to 2013, but having had a turbulent year with running and two failed attempts at a marathon, I wasn’t really looking forward to the prospect. 2013 seemed too soon to try again.

The end of 2012 I was pretty annoyed thinking that I HAD to run the NYC Marathon in 2013 because I deferred my 2012 entry before NYRR’s set date of who would have the option to chose the year of their deferral. December 2012 I still wasn’t running and I had little to no desire to; I couldn’t contemplate a marathon in November, just 10 months later…

Then a miracle happened, NYRR sent notice in January 2013 that they would allow everyone who was registered for the 2012 NYCM to defer their entries to 2013, 2014, or 2015! I automatically thought my decision was set — 2014 OF COURSE!…

…but then indecision set in. As some of my friends announced their excitement for the 2013 NYCM, I began to rethink my set decision. Peer pressure set in. My friend and relentless workout buddy, Megan, was running the 2013 marathon for the first time and prodded me with how fun it would be to run together. I also remembered that I had declared that 2013 was going to be my year. I had wanted to run the NYCM for 2 years now, did I really want to delay it another year? Passion for running aside (because honestly I felt none at the time), part of me just wanted to get this shit over with already. I had personally resigned to run a marathon, so it eventually was/is going to happen; I know myself well enough to know I wouldn’t back out of that promise to myself. I thought about what I would say to someone else if they were to ask me what to do in the exact situation and without thinking I’d tell them to give it another shot, run 2013. So, on a somewhat thought out whim, I did it:

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I made my resolution.

Since the day I selected 2013 I’ve gone back in forth in my head thinking I’m completely bat shit crazy, nuts, why would I not just give myself more time?

I hit that button on January 25th and it’s taken me almost a month to realize why the heck I actually did it. Then yesterday I saw a sign posted on instagram. It was an inspirational poster consisting of a few sayings, but three words suddenly hit me. Sure peer pressure played a part in my decision and my motivation to be done with the whole marathon thing helped, but the real reason was based on three simple words:

Never Give Up.

I haven’t in the past, so why start now…

See you at the finish line!

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2013 Resolution

I’m off to Jamaica tomorrow morning and won’t be back in my beloved NYC until 2013. I’m honestly so excited to get away that I likely will not sleep and I may piss myself on the cab ride to the airport. I’m going on vacation to clear away the awfulness (best word to explain it) of 2012 and ring in the New Year where the phrase “no problem man” is the answer to all life’s questions. Next year is going to be a good year and my 2013 New Year Resolution is quite simple. In 2013 I resolve to…

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Enough said.

QUESTION: What’s your Resolution?

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Things I loved in 2012

I’ve complained A LOT about all the terrible things that have happened in 2012. I still hold emphatically to the fact that 2012 has not been a shining year for me and I’m honestly just proud of myself for making it through the year in one piece (kind of)… and still managing to have hope. That being said, there are a lot of GOOD things that have happened in 2012! I feel like all the happy moments have been overshadowed by the negative. So here’s to honoring the things I loved about 2012 (in no particular order):

1) Finding my strong with the help of Refine Method

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2) Making a new best friend, Kitty:

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3) Discovering the tasty goodness of The Cinnamon Snail vegan cuisine:

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4) Embracing LOTS of pizza into my life! Seriously, I’m obsessed with pizza. Some may call it a problem, I consider it a blessing.

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5) New Transportation — biking! I got to re-discover the West River in a new way and biking kept me sane when I couldn’t run. I also learned to get around the city like a bad-ass (note: probably one of my more dangerous hobbies, but walking in the city isn’t real safe for me either).

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6) Overcame my fear indoor cycling. Found my wheels at SoulCycle and discovered spinning can be challenging and fun with Revolve Fitness. I’ve even made my way into the first row 🙂

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7) Running the Brooklyn Half. My not have been the smartest idea and I probably should have walked part of it when my IT Band started killing at mile 6, but that’s just not how I roll. I’ll chalk that up to my fatal flaw, but ending on the beach of Coney Island with a huge cheering crowd made it all worth it.

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8) Eating lots of lobster in Maine!

2012-09-03 19.32.469) Enjoying casual and intimate wine tastings at NY Vintners with lots of delicious wine and EXCEPTIONAL food:

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10) Running the Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon with my Soul Sister and favorite running buddy ever! Again, this could probably be added to the “stupid” list of things I’ve done, but worth every single ache and pain. Seriously, the Disney Half weekend and race was the highlight of the year. I may be not running now (AGAIN) due to it, but it taught me that I really can do anything:

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Oh hey, I didn’t die!

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11) Signing the contract of my boyfriend’s and my first home purchase, a lovely apartment in Tribeca (fingers crossed the next 60 days go well and we move in February!). Please note, this does not make me a grown-up, I refuse the title.

2012-11-16 14.03.25Wine and take out fits nicely in here:

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12) Celebrating the magic of the Christmas Season. If only I focused on tap dancing instead of ballet…c’est le vie…

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13) Following my dreams and doing what I love:

Started the Push the Limits Run Club with Erin and Push Cart Coffee :

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Started to teach TRX classes at Remorca’s The Studio:

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There you have it, 12 AMAZING things that came out of 2012 and one for good luck 🙂

QUESTIONS: What has made your year exceptional???

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A Thought

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That was the my quote in my high school year book. According to Google, the quote now appears to be acquainted with Sex and the City, but I could have sworn it came from the 1998 movie, Can’t Hardly Wait. Anyways, I’m getting off track per usual…

After not sleeping last night, I was in a tired/not feeling well mood today and was not in the mindset to exercise. However, I had signed up for a Soul Cycle Community Ride (new instructors giving free classes = awesome); no way did I want to give up a free class and I’m glad I didn’t. Towards the end of class the teacher recited over and over my high school yearbook quote with passion, “you need to let go of who you were to become who you’re going to be.” I could tell this quote meant a lot to her and at some point it meant a lot to me; but words often hold different meaning at different points in our lives. Today the words that had once held a lot of truth for me just felt wrong. I thought:

Maybe you need to let go of who you were to realize that, that is who you were always meant to be

Just a thought.

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Spinning with Revolve Fitness

“Riders at Revolve will Rethink the cycling experience, Revive their spirit, and Reshape their bodies.”

This past Saturday I did something audacious — I cheated on SoulCycle. I know, the shock is outstanding, but in my defense a girls got to branch out every now and then. I honestly don’t seek out new spin studios — Before I was introduced to SoulCycle, I HATED spinning and swore I’d never go inside another spin studio after a terrible experience at FlyWheel. Many classes (including hour long and front row appearances) at SoulCycle has increased my confidence in my spinning ability, though, and when a new studio opened up in Union Square I was kind of siked to try it.

Who is this mistress I rendezvoused with on Saturday you ask? Revolve Fitness. Revolve is a cycling boutique that first originated in D.C. and has recently opened their doors to a second studio in NYC, located in the very popular Union Square neighborhood. Will we likely meet again? YES.

In short I’d describe Revolve Fitness as half way between FlyWheel and SoulCycle; or a friendlier version of FlyWheel with better music, but let me explain…

I was signed up for a 11:45am Real Ride class on Saturday with one of the master instructors, Kristin Kenney. I came a few minutes early to scope out the studio. My first impression on walking into the lobby was “this place is definitely new and pristine.” It’s set up very similarly to both FlyWheel and SoulCycle — You check in at the front where you get your shoes and can also peruse their branded merchandise (shirts, pants, bags, etc). Then there’s a long thin hallway with some seating that leads to the spinning studio and off to the side, down stairs are the locker rooms. They have lockers with built in locks, which is always nice (you just need to remember which locker you picked, your password and how to use the lock and you’re all set…probably easier for most, but for me I generally forget which locker I used). The locker room is co-ed and then there are separate women’s and men’s changing rooms with a couple of showers. The studio wasn’t packed, so the locker rooms felt spacious, but I honestly don’t see it ever being overly packed since there’s only one 50-bike spinning studio and a decent amount of space.

Students were allowed into the spinning studio about 5minutes before the start of class to adjust bikes and set up. I really liked the bikes. They were easy to adjust (*cough* unlike SoulCycle *cough*) and the upward positioning of handle bars tends to take some pressure off your back and forearms (I have my tilted upwards slightly on my outdoor road bike as well.)

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Each side of the handlebars has a spot for water/towel/whatever you want. It nicely held my 16 ounce Poland Spring  water bottle and would fit a larger water bottle as well. Each bike is equipped with a screen that tells you your RMP’s when moving; similar to FlyWheel, but not competitively displayed over a large TV infront of the class.  One criticism is that I wish the staff had offered to help me set up my bike, knowing it was my first time at the studio. When I asked one of the staff how my bike should be positioned she replied “it’s just kind of what feels right.” I understand the logic, but for someone who is anal about proper fitting/alignment, I like some benchmarks to go by.

The class started and the instructor, Kristin Kenney, told us to press the button on the bottom of the screen on our bike to light it up and make sure it was turned on. Being new I was kind of lost at what the heck she was talking about, but luckily the girl next to me could see I was lost and showed me what to do. Unfortunately, the monitor on my screen was broken. I wasn’t sure what to do, I tried to get Kristin’s attention, but when that didn’t work I decided to just go with the flow. The instructor started the class by explaining that for the next 45min we were a team and we’d be riding as a pack — I liked this and the idea of “this is going to be tough, but we can do this together.” Another thing I truly appreciated was that Kristin had drew on the board behind her the topography we were riding. I liked knowing what was coming next on the ride.

Note: Picture not taken from my specific class. Taken from the web.

Note: Picture not taken from my specific class. Taken from the web.

This particular class consisted of 10 hills — so each hill you went up, you also went down. Kristin kept the class riding together by instructing us how fast our RPM’s should be at every point and how much resistance we should have on based on whether we were going up or down a hill. We went uphills at a slower pace with sporatic runs out of the saddle, while the down hill was faster paced with runs as well. I would say this ride was definitely more in the saddle than out, but that’s what a “real” ride on a real road is. Because I took the barebones signature Real Ride class, it was 45min of pure riding — no fancy arms, or dancing around. Revolve does offer more fully body classes that incorporate weights as well, but I enjoyed the simplicity of the Real Ride. Sometimes I just want a cardio fix without all the jazz, or already did another strength workout and don’t have the need to double-work my arms. The monotonous nature of just straight spinning scared me, but Kristin managed to keep things exciting and my attention at bay. She gave the perfect amount of motivation speaking, where it helped me push through some tough climbs, but wasn’t overwhelming to the point where I felt like I was trapped in a self-help book. I also LOVED the music. Kristin played a perfect new, cheesy hip-hop/pop style mix. Like any spin class, the intensity is what you make of it, but I was sweaty and tired after class and definitely felt like I had the opportunity to challenge myself.

After class I was chatting with the extremely approachable instructor and I learned that the Revolve Real Ride classes are based on actual mountain terrain, like FOR REAL. She explained how each class mimics an actual terrain, from the hilly cities of NJ to the French Alps. I thought this was kind of cool, keeps the ride authentic and probably a huge plus for anyone training for an outdoor bike race.

To be honest I came into this class somewhat hesitantly (the monitor of the bike reminded me of FlyWheel, which I strongly dislike), but came out pleasantly surprised. The class was not intimidating at all and the 45minute ride was tough, but flew by. My only criticism would be that the staff could be more helpful for new riders with setting up the bike and explaining the class and usage of the monitor.  That being said, the staff was EXTREMELY friendly and welcoming. I mentioned to a staff member after class that the monitor on my bike was broken simply so that they’d be aware. Without me even asking or suggesting it in anyway, a staff member emailed me later to offer me a free ride as a makeup.

QUESTIONS: Have you tried Revolve? If so, what do you think? If not, want to come with me sometime? 🙂

Studio Details

Location: Union Square, 52 E. 13th Street, between Broadway and University

Cost: $28 + $2 shoes

Schedule: http://www.revolvefitness.com/newyork/reserve-main.asp

Class Options:Real Ride, Body Ride and RIP Ride

Class Length: 45min and 60min options

 

 

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Push the Limits Run Club Starts Tomorrow!!!

BIG NEWS!!!! Thanks to the wonderful people at PushCart Coffee, Erin and I will be hosting a running club that starts tomorrow! The run club is perfect for runners in Murray Hill/Gramercy/Midtown East, or anyone who loves some wonderful company! Details below:

Push Cart Running Club

We’ll start and end at PushCart Coffee, where you can leave your bags, stay warm…always nice to grab a hot cup of coffee or pastry after a run 🙂

There will be two groups. Erin will be leading the intermediate/advanced level and I will be leading the beginner group. Seriously, ALL levels welcome, even if it’s your first time running, you will be welcomed with warm arms :-). Workouts will vary and we’ll be including some speed work/tempo runs as the club goes on.

Winter can be cold and grim, but getting out their and staying fit throughout winter will ward off the winter blues.

If you have any questions/concerns/suggestions, please feel free to email us @ PushTheLimitRC@gmail.com, or you can always reach us on twitter/facebook/etc!

Hope to see everyone tomorrow at 6:30am!!!

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