We would all like to think we can do everything, just grit our teeth and keep going and probably make any potential injury worse than it already is, which then of course slows down the whole recovery process. I guess with the discontinuation of boxing on a Tuesday morning, I have actually been having a sleep in and getting around 7 - 8 hours sleep a night (which for me is a really strange concept and it would be nice to do this on a daily basis but I dont). In my head I want to get up and do something, but I know that my ankle or knee will not get any better if I continue to run on it.
Resting is a major contributing factor to any training schedule, allowing your body to fully recover and build on any high intensive training conducted. Building muscles and maximising my body repairs with a combination of sleet, stretching, hydration and self massaging techniques. Enduro is only 2 months away and of course, I want to minimse any potential future injuries that may occur.
It was an absolutely beautiful morning to spend it at Conquer the Compound at the magnificent Mornington Peninsula location, like most things that we do, we go in blind folded not really knowing what to expect. It was all in aid of raising some money for Oxfam trail walkers team.
The warm up
The morning started off with some warm up activities from squat jumps to swimmers into burpees to sit ups, anything that will get the body pumping. We then had a jog around, stopping on a slope for some more sit ups on the slope, moving into push ups. We carried on moving around the compound collecting some water with the buckets (that we were supposed to bring with us opps - didnt know). We then had three rounds, plus another round around the compound whilst manoeuvrings the buckets filled with water, ensuring that no water is spilled (or a lot of water is spilled). Starting off with 10 reps, moving into 20 reps and then 30 reps after each rounds including:
Having never done this course before, we never really know what to expect but I have to say it was really well done and really well organised as well as a lot of fun. We set off in different groups, breaking away from each other during the running process (unfortunately it was during this time I decided to sprain my ankle again!!) but grind through the pain and carry on. After completing a lot of the obstacles (only struggling on the hercules hoist, and actually attempting to get over the walls without help (not very successfully), steps were used ;( But I guess I will eventually get the hang of these things, hence why practice makes perfect. I did overcome some obstacles that I couldn't previously do, as well as conquer the monkey bars (a little celebration there) but I did hit a brick wall...
That brick wall ;(
There should always be a least one day a week that you should have a rest day, and I usually take mine on a Sunday but with house hunting, and usually an event happening I will try and take it off whenever I can. The morning started off with meeting up with the beautiful Linda (my old personal trainer from Fernwood), she is such an inspiring person that has an enormous passion for health and fitness, that you can't help but find it somewhat contagious. She really has helped so many people along with their fitness journeys. Also it was the first time Dave got to meet her, I always find it a little strange that their are some people that have such an influence in your lives, but usually don't get a chance to meet each other. The only down side was that both of them started to go onto me about becoming a Les Mills Body Pump instructor, as I keep saying I love training, I love being trained and love pushing my limits. To deal with other people and to have patience, that I definitely don't have. It was definitely great catching up, just a shame we can't do it more often.
My rest day then consisted of going to the gym and playing on the slide board and skipping for a little while, nothing to strenuous, took it nice and easy. Also still practicing my pull ups and have now progressed onto the yellow bands, now just need to progress onto the pink and then finally my own body weight.
The afternoon turned into a beautiful sunny day, so we took the dog out again to enjoy a bit more of the sunshine, really have to say that when its so sunny outside the last thing you want to do, is waste it sat indoors cleaning. You are always better off getting out in the fresh air and enjoying the blue skys.
The great thing about doing a class built on HIIT, is that you are most certainly pushing past your own personal limits both physically and mentally. To get to a certain stage in your fitness on your own is always difficult to conquer, but when you have some pushing you to more than what you think you can achieve is definitely something else.
Stepping off the treadmill today was more like wobbling off the treadmill, there was a stage when my legs didn't actually feel like my legs any more, they just felt legs jelly, your breathing is so heavy and hard that it doesn't feel like its you doing it, but you just have to push. Although there were points today when I did stop to catch my breath, will the feeling of not being able to get past it is just horrible. There was points that I truly did think I was going to see todays lunch again, but the worst thing about it, you move on and within a minute you've recovered and then you question yourself, can you push yourself harder or longer. Is there a point in my own head that I stopped not because I couldn't actually do it, but mentally I started to struggle.
Have to say that there is something so addictive about feeling of achievements afterwards, that you have achieved so much more than what you expected and you can give so much more. 24 hours is a bloody long time and will be a challenge both physically and especially mentally, but having faith and belief that we can do it will make the world of difference.
I was lucky enough to meet up with Julia on Monday morning, so I had the opportunity to push myself that little bit more, as we came yo with our own morning met con session. After the haul warm up we did the follow 1 minute intervals moving to each station within 30 seconds, 5 rounds:
There is something about it when the sun is shining and its warm outside. Considering we are in Autumn, it was great to have a 28oC. Since Sunday are taken as a rest day, instead we went for walk down to Elwood along the beach to St Kilda, nothing too strenuous. The beach were full of the usual hustle and bustle, giving you an array of people that gives St Kilda is character.
Not sure if the dog enjoyed as much as me, but it is always good to get out of the house and enjoy the fresh air and atmosphere, get out of the gym especially after spending the morning in the gym yesterday.
I thought I would participate in a met con session yesterday, but didn't actually know there wasn't anything on, so I ended doing my own thing. Roxy gave me a couple of ideas which is great to apply for to other sessions that I would do on my own, and surprisingly it took a lot longer than what I thought it would take.
Run for the Kids
Run for the Kids was also on today, this year being the first year in the last 3 years that I haven't participated, after my performance last year, I really didn't want to go through it again and of course risking any issues with my knee, especially with the 24 hour endurance run, definitely not worth risking it and there is no way I was going to walk it.
The ongoing debate and battle between healthy weight loss, what is it? Secretly you always hope for more. On the occasions where either your haven't lost any weight or even gained weight, you have to ask yourself the questions why? Are you lying to yourself about how much calorie intake you are actually consuming, or does the fact that you are developing lean muscle need to be taken into consideration.
I would be lying if I wasn't slightly disappointing by my overall weight loss over the last couple of weeks. and as I know what I can achieve, I want to get there again BUT... there are some major differences from when I weighed 52kgs and now, one being the most significant is that I am stronger, I feel stronger and Spartan last week proved that I am.
My Cardio during that time was quite crazy with a lot of road running involved, hence the issues with the knees and ankles (and true running really does help with the weight loss and keeping it off BUT... if you get injured, you can start putting on the weight again), so alternatives need to be found.
Of course over the next 8 weeks, I will be continuing to monitor my weight and take a weekly photo just so I can see the physical changes (maybe at the end I will add the pics, but not now) BUT... the one key thing that I did do at the start of this journey was take my overall statistics including full body measurements and muscle and fat percentages. This, I believe is where we are going to see the changes and not on the scales.
With Jake being away we had Roxy aka 'mini Jake', the sweat came quick and fast especially on a 31 degree day. After the warm ups, including some sprints, we did a circuit as follows:
1 minute on x 3 rounds
After doing Spartan last week, I noticed the massive change in my overall strength and abilities. Although my weight increased overall the last year, my overall strength has also improved and increased. Tonights strength and conditioning, I found that I was more focused on improved technique and building strength. Increasing the weight on the bar bell squat, but ensuring that goo technique was still being performed.
After completing the warmups of skips, side shuttles, thrusts and craps. We got stuck into the class which consisted of:
My morning tuesday morning boxing class has now been cancelled, it was a great class just to keep active first thing in the morning and to build up a sweat. Apparently the numbers were never high enough, I will now probably start to feel lost on a Tuesday morning. At least we had a good session this morning, with a mix of drills and 1,000 punch sprints.
First we did a set o punch drills from upper cuts, jab cross and hooks.
We finished off completing 1,000 punches:
The day really couldn't get any better after the world record attempt, but having witnessed another world record attempt was just amazing. I also just happened to stumble upon the world record attempt by Eddie Hall dead lifting 462kg!! I love watching the world strongest man contest on tv, so to see it up close and personal was just unbelievable, the men are just giants compared to me, and the weight that they lift in uncomprehending. Also to have Arnie come out and cheer you on, would have been so surreal.
I then just had a wonder around the fitness expo, and then suddenly there was all this commotion, as Arnie was making his way through the crowds of people, pretty much mauling him as he went. I actually thought there would be no hope in hell that I could make my way through the crowds of people, so I carried on my merry way. To my surprise, he was actually heading in the direction I was in, so getting pushed aside by the security and phone at the ready, I got a small glimpse of Arnie. At this stage I was happy, and with a gloating text to Dave, I carried on looking around.
The next thing I knew, I was getting pushed back AGAIN - only this time I actually didn't have anywhere to go, so I apart from the security guys I saw Arnie up, close and personal. I then turned into one of the those crazy fans (not quite screaming), but reaching my hand out for him to shake, and to my upmost surprise, he looked me in the eyes and shook it, even now just writing about it does not seem real.
How amazing my day was, these are some of the reasons why I love keeping healthy and fit.
The weekend has been a little crazy so hence why it has taken me a little while to update the blog, finished work on Friday, got home, drove to the Mornington Peninsula for Hellfit, finished at 12.30ish got home about 1.30ish, got up about 6am Saturday morning and then was out all day, but this post isn't about the whole weekend its just about Friday Night.
Like most events that we do and especially the ones that we have never done before, there is always the anticipation on what we will be doing (4 hours in the dark), all we knew was that we needed torches and our water packs. The first was always trying to find our way, especially when we haven't been there before and it was being held somewhere in Mt Erica. It was an absolutely amazing location and a perfect spot for an event like this.
It all kicked off with some introductions with group intro activities, and shaking hands with someone you haven't met, it then moved onto hugs (hug the person you just met like they're an old friend). It was a really great way to get everyone together and to break the ice.
We were then put into teams of 9 or 10, we were team Charlie or the Red Team, each team was allocated four 25kg sand bags in which there were a couple of rules:
A couple of warmups in, we started with 50 step ups each, and then moved onto the bear crawls, then were wrapped together in glad wrap for a team race. After this, the team leader had to roll the dice to determine the fate of the team. We were lucky and received 20 burpees and while we performing these burpees, another team unfortunately rolled to take a sandbag from another team until the next fate check point, we were the lucky team)...
We then had a trek through the ranges, up a massively steep hill, of course during this time, there were 10 ribbons located around the trek in which we had to spot and collect (sounds easy in theory, but remember its pitch black except for our head torches). It was getting to the stage were we thought we missed a few, but we started to find them along the way (we did miss the best one (the one that had the protein balls included), but not to worry.
The team were in good spirits, having come first in the steps ups and third in the team run, our points were in quite a good position. After the trek, we came to another check point, in which we got our sandbag back and rolled to speak in a Indian accent (actually quite difficult, but a lot of fun). The exercise had to come eventually, with the planks, jump and crawls team tasks, a run around the parkland with the sandbag, we then moved onto the next section which consisted of 8 rounds of the following:
Tabata, 8 sets, 20 seconds on 10 seconds rest
Due to time restraints we had to miss the plank and pushup rounds. We did roll the dice, in which this time we had to sing - which was interesting since we could definitely not sing.
The last task, in which determined the winning team. For an additional 50 points, we had to go through the ;ale. For our team, there was no question that we were doing it. We were first and received an additional 10 bonus points for being the first team to go through.
Our final task was not to lose our ribbons, while the zombies chased us and through water balloons.
It was an amazing and fun night, and definitely looking forward to the next one.
To check that both Dave and I were up for the challenge of a 24 hour endurance run, we had a full body service. Checking blood pressure, heart rate cholesterol etc.. Of course we want to make sure we are at our best for when we do it. We of course get the blood pressure results straight away, which I was fine and Dave was a little high. Next came the blood test results, Dave got a phone call on Tuesday to come in today for the results, I am still waiting for mine. Not sure why mine would take longer, I am just presuming that because of Dave high blood pressure his got fast tracked.
Dave results weren't the greatest, and due to the high risk of them being skewed due to minimal hydration etc a re test needs to be done in a couple of weeks. Also a liver test was conducted, in which he we will receive the results in 3-5 days.
Apparently all these can be associated with a high protein diet, we really do have to find the right balance. It also goes to show that not all healthy eating plans work for everybody. We will continue to monitor and then amend if we need to.
It also goes to show how important it that we are doing this for the heart foundation, everyone can be affected by heart disease even if your on a healthy diet and exercise regular. Your heart health is always important.
Its amazing that all it takes is a couple of unflattering photos of you at an event, for you to open up your eyes and see how much weight you put on. I always know that I carried a little weight, but always thought that my fitness sort of counteracted this, until I saw the pictures from Spartan at the weekend. Wow, gotta say that was a slap in the face, wasnt quite expecting that. Although I overall during the event, I felt stronger, then I have done previously I wouldnt actually say I was fitter. This is going to be a long journey for mind, body and soul. The overall lift and carry of a 35kg ball was a lot easier than the first time I attempted to do this, maybe age has something to do with it.
On the bright side of things, at least I did my ankle now rather just before the event. I could stand and walk without too much pain, so I knew it wasn't anything too serious. The hardest part would have been to cancel all my classes this week, to ensure that I will be fit enough to participate in Hellfit this Friday (a four hour endurance event in the dark), I just have to make sure I am on the mend, and everything is working as it should be.
Of course a visit to Ben at Mosiac Health helped, especially to have some reassurance that its not as bad as I thought, and with rest and some more exercises I should be ok to go on Friday. I know its not that far away, and I am sure I can cope with not going to the gym for a few days. Somehow I have to keep on track with my diet since I am not heading to the gym, at the end of the day its only a few days and its better a few days than a few months. Slowly learning not to be so stubborn to help get fitter quicker.
Today was one of those days that I felt that I was achieving something, having walked the dog to Elwood so we can play around on the outdoor fitness equipment, mainly to practice monkey bars. For done odd reason I have developed this weird fear of monkey bars and the thought of carrying your own body weight across is quite daunting. Of course you have the kids that just make it look effortless, but since I keep coming across these types of obstacles, thought I should start practicing. All was going well, got across twice, although not the most graceful but still did it, the next challenge was to do it swinging across, this of course is where a rip my hands to shreds! You have to love building up the calluses only then to destroy them.
Dave then got me some antisecptic powder and tape, my hands really aren't looking that pretty.
As its way in day today, thought I would go for a run, only to roll my ankle again whilst flying across the pavement, actually had to call Dave to come and pick me up. Annoyingly if was a really nice run and was actually contemplating whether or not to go further, which the pavement obviously gave me my answer with a nice swollen ankle to match.
Next would be the way in, hmm after doing so well over the last couple of weeks, went back over the mark this week just to add onto the disappointment of my already swollen ankle!! Recover from one thing that then leads into another. I really hope that this is going to hinder my training too much, as well as no more peanut butter for me. Today really couldn't get any better. Let's see how training goes tomorrow, just have to remember the ankle support! 👎
Although there a few areas that we need to improve upon including our overall running capabilities especially up hills, overall we did it without any issues. Including the ROPE climb!!! I actually conquered my own innate fears of climbing a rope and actually did without help! Although the start was sloppy, it did get there in the end. The whole day was a great success and as always look forward to the next Spartan event.
That moment when you realise that 3 months today, we will be under going the most brutal event that we can ever put ourselves through, and 3 months really isn't that long.
Well tomorrow we have Spartan Super so it will be good testing point for us, and also we can then analyse the areas we need to improve on. A 14km, 25 obstacles course that will test us physically abad mentally, not to mention the 4am wake up call to ensure we have breakfast, get there, register etc.. Oh the fun of these events and how the nerves kick in, not really knowing what the hell your getting yourself info.
Yesterday we both went for a general health check, since we will be participating in a 24 hour obstacle thought we best get everything checked out. We don't get the blood tests for another couple of days, but we did have our blood pressure and heart rate tested. Nothing too exciting, and we could have probably done it at home, BUT we didn't and it is probably and good thing that we didn't.
Although Dave is a healthy, fit person he still has HIGH Blood pressure, coming out with a result of 150/100. It does not fit your typical stereotypical 'high blood' pressure criteria, and all the things that need to be done to reduce it, he is doing.
Based on Dave's results, he is going to have to wear a monitor for 24 hours, and then go back to the doctors. The monitor isn't available for another couple of weeks, so we will keep you posted. Of course this puts everything into perspective and goes to show that you can't take everything for granted, even if you lead a healthy, active lifestyle, the importance of heart health is always paramount and should aways be taking seriously. I was normal, but will continue to monitor to ensure that my heart is performing as it should...
The morning started, as most morning do ;) with a workout. Started off with an 1/2 hour bootcamp session, the only major thing that was probably most concerting would have been the additional pushups on the bosu ball, considering my workout yesterday also consisted of pushups as well as a full on boxing class. Felt good to get through it, 4 and a bit rounds of the following:
and then we incorporated the 20,000 plus steps done today (to be far this does include the run later on in the day), and then a 5km run. Felt great and good to be moving again (missed having those run moments), and now just need to increase the distance which I am sure I will get there with some time and patience.
Felt like a full on crazy workout today, my usual 'boxing partner' was not here this morning, so I had the pleasure of training with the trainer and doing two sets of circuits. Which to push yourself to new limits are always great, but most definitely hard work, although surprisingly the 'killer' part of the circuit would have been the touch jumps, doing them for 30 seconds for 3 sets, your legs start to feel pretty heavy. The usual combos, are always a mind beep, especially at 6am!! So my major workout this morning consisted of the following TWICE
Of course when your training for a 24 hour endurance event, your training doesn't stop first thing in the morning. The second session of the day had to happen after work. This is more strength and conditioning based rather than cardio, but is still a killer workout:
Why is it when you feel like you are actually achieving something, you end up doing something that ends up setting you a couple of step backwards. After feeling a little lost this morning without my usual PT session with Megan, it took me a little while to work out what to do in the morning. Not really sure what to do when you don't automatically get up and put on some gym clothes, and run out the door. Made up for it after work, creating my own kettle bell workout, that was after a 30 minute stretch and warm up session.
After an hour in the gym, topped it off with a 5km run, yep this is where I rolled the ankle. Taking an over excited dog with you on a run is probably not the best idea in the world, and when he starts getting under foot stride, there is no real surprise that the ankle ended up going. I hadn't gone too far, but it would have probably taken me the same amount of time to walk back as it would to continue running, so I continued running. Annoying it was a really good run, apart from the dog, and felt confident I could have gone on longer (if not for the ankle).
Trying to stick to a clean diet over the weekend is definitely the hardest, especially when there is so much temptation everywhere. Didn't go of the rails too much, but trying to stick to a healthy eating plan when you realise that:
The jelly beans lasted until we were walking home, so not really that long (plus it had been a really long afternoon, walking from one house to the best). The good thing the dog had an amazing walk today, and is now fast asleep. Really is a hard life being a dog ;(
No gym workouts today, having a day of rest but I think we compensated with the walking instead. Back to the gym tomorrow.
Keeping you posted on the OCR (Obstacle Course Racing) journey. Letting you know about courses, events and general health and fitness.