Aerobic Training | True Fitness Blog

So if you don’t know by now about JETT Training’s WEEKEND WARRIORS Class, shame on you! The class is every Saturday, 10:30am-11:30am at Sport and Spine Rehab Center, Wintergreen Plaza, in Rockville Maryland. Its a group circuit workout, “boot-camp” style, focusing on functional exercise. Its only 10 bucks per class to attend. Sales pitch completed, what I’d like to do today is give a shoutout to Dave Arnold, who came out last Saturday and totally ROCKED his workout. So what did Dave do? He did a great endurance workout, focusing on total body endurance. Here’s how it went: Warmup and Stretch, then… 10 Single Leg Squats per leg stabilized with TRX Straps 20 Pullups 15 “Perfect Pushups” 30 Kettlbell Swings with 16 kilos 10 more Single Leg Squats per leg 20 more Pullups 15 more “Perfect Pushups” 30 more KB Swings 10 Upward Chops from a Single leg kneel w/ 16 kilo KB, each side 20 Accordion Crunches 20 Twisting Crunches 20 “Toe-touch” Crunches 15 “Perfect Pushups” 20 Alternating Leg backward lunges w/ 16 kilo KB on the chest 10 more Single Leg Squats per leg 10 more Pullups 15 more “Perfect Pushups” 30 more KB Swings 10 Upward Chops from a Single leg kneel w/ 16 kilo KB, each side 20 Accordion Crunches 20 Twisting Crunches 20 “Toe-touch” Crunches 15 “Perfect Pushups” 20 Alternating Leg backward lunges w/ 16 kilo KB on the chest Cooldown and Stretch. Total Workout time 1 hour.

Great job Dave, can’t wait to see you at WEEKEND WARRIORS next week!

We all know that we need to exercise, but how do you make it fun?  Having been involved in some type of physical activity all my life this question comes up for me personally quite often…quite simply I get bored sometimes.

I have managed to come up with a very simple system, that I call “go with what you know”.

I am interested in multiple sports and exercise pursuits, which tend to vary depending on the time of year. This actually makes my whimsical approach a little easier and much more fun.

I am into triathlons, martial arts, weight lifting, and skiing.  So what I do is, on Sundays I schedule my workouts for the week with as much variety and flexibility as possible.  If it is nice out, I might ride my bike, run, or practice martial arts outside and swim at outdoor pools.  During winter I like to ski, practice martial arts inside at my school, use our spin bike, or swim at indoor pools.  Then there is weight lifting, which can be done all year round at almost anytime.

Even though I try to plan my workouts, I love switching things up if I am in the mood for something different.  So don’t get bogged down in routine or strict schedules.  Otherwise exercise can start to feel more like a chore than a fun way to get away from life’s stresses.  If you are feeling the need to move, make it fun by doing what you like, and what is of interest in that very moment, and I promise you will have fun.

This has been one of my personal secrets and tricks that I have used for years to stay in shape, and I hope it works for you.

Bed rest can be a fairly common scenario to alleviate certain pregnancy complications.  Bed rest can vary greatly with a range of simple periodic resting at home to full blown hospitalization.

There can be a number of reasons why Doctors put expectant mothers on best rest. In most cases, bed rest is used to help the body have the best chance to normalize. Here is a quick list of some of the risk factor involved.

Bed rest will tend to cause muscles to lose tone and can cause joints ache. Lying down for long periods of time can also reduce your blood circulation. Changing from side to side will help stimulate your muscles and relieve pressure. Exercise is important for your blood circulation, but make sure that you check with your Doctor before you begin any exercises. Below are some common exercises that may be used:

  • Squeezing stress balls
  • Pressing your hands and feet against the bed
  • Turning your arms and feet in circles
  • Tensing or tightening your arm and leg muscles

I hope that no one that may read this will ever have to deal with a bed rest situation, but hopefully some of this information will be helpful if needed. When in doubt always check with you Doctor.

Last Saturday, I ran in the Baltimore Half-Marathon.  When I initially decided to do this race, I wasn’t sure exactly what I was getting into, and for everyone out there who has considered it in the past, I have a few things to say about my experience.

First, why did I even decide to do it?  Frankly, I wanted nothing more than so prove to myself that I could.  I wasn’t exactly starting from scratch, I run quite a bit, but had never before gone beyond 10 miles. 13.1 seemed like a perfectly attainable goal.  I began gradually increasing the distances of my training runs over the course of 3 months.  I had no doubts until a couple weeks before the race, on a 12 mile run, I finished, but by the end my right foot and left knee were aching so bad that I could do little but ice them for the following 2 days while I could barely walk.  My confidence was admittedly a little shaken, but I determined that I would stay the course.  For the last weeks leading up to the race I continued my lifting regimen, but did little running.  I wanted to give myself the chance to heal.

Race day arrives.  I’m excited but not nervous, remembering the foot and knee incident, I have told myself that finishing is my goal, I am not running for time.  Finally FINALLY it is time to start, and I set off at a conservative pace in the 3rd wave.  After the first mile, I start feeling confident, I pick up the pace.  I feel so good, there is so much encouragement from the watchers as well as the other runners, that I find that I am truly enjoying this run.  Suddenly, I have to pee so bad it hurts.  Crap, there goes my time… maybe I can hold it for the next 9 miles.  No, I had told myself not to worry about time, and I didn’t want this discomfort to ruin my fun, so I sucked it up and stopped at the next bathroom stop.  I lost 3 or 4 minutes in line, but I felt infinitely better.

Resuming the race, and feeling great I picked up the pace again.  Going going on this beautiful day, before I knew it I was halfway there, then more.  Hell, it felt easy.  Then mile 11 hit.  Every muscle in my body screamed.  I thought maybe that I’d slow to a walk, just for a minute, just to give my legs and feet a break.  Very tempting.  Then again I noticed all the people along the street, cheering genuine encouragement to total strangers, their support was just the push I needed.  Reason took over, I knew if I started walking, I wouldn’t be able to run any more, so I grit my teeth and kept going.  From then on it was a mental, not a physical challenge, I just willed myself to keep putting one foot in front of the other and ignore the protests of my body.  The last 3.1 miles felt like it took 3.1 years, but I made it.  I ran through the finish line grinning like an idiot.  I had done what I set forth to do for no better reason than to prove to myself that I could.

Ultimately, I ran a 2:04:24.  Not a terrible time.  More importantly though, I felt proud of my accomplishment, and I felt warmth and gratitude for all the other runners out there, my loved ones who came to support me, and for all the strangers along the course who didn’t know me, but still wanted me to succeed.

Maybe next year I’ll run the full marathon.

Have you ever noticed when riding that there are some riders stay fast through out the entire ride and they make it look effortless.How do they do it?

Well, of course, being in great shape is the obvious answer, which just means a lot of time spent in the saddle.

The other side of that effortless equation is good shifting and high cadence.  I like to keep my RPM at minimum of 90 and sometimes even as high as 100.

You should never feel like you are trying to muscle your way threw your peddle stroke.  The high cadence will help you stay fast and smooth with less overall effort.

The key to keeping this high cadence is proper shifting.  Be constantly aware of changes in terrain.  If you come upon an uphill, be ready for it.  Anticipate the grade and downshift so that you can still keep the high cadence.  Likewise, when there is a downhill, up shift to gain speed and again keeping the cadence high.  Don’t get lazy and avoid shifting, which can force you to push much harder than you need to on an uphill and not let you take advantage of a gain in speed on your descents.

You will need to stay alert to keep with the changes in grade, and you will end up shifting more than you are used to.  But you will use much less energy and be able to keep a faster pace for longer periods of time.

It just comes down to a matter of efficiency – good shifting and high cadence means better riding!!

Road biking can be a very daunting task for many people and I most certainly include myself in that category. I have been riding now for just over a year but still am hesitant to bust off my normal route ie the Capital Crescent Trail onto the major roads of the area

But today that that all started to change. The first change I made was that I started my ride at Candy Cane City by Meadowbrook Park and the second change was hitting the road.  Within the cycling community Beach Drive is a very popular riding spot and the middle of the day was a good time to get out there without too much car or bike traffic. Though I still did about half of my ride on the trails in that area, the time I did spend on Beach has dramatically added to my confidence on the road already and I’m looking forward to another good ride out there soon!

Have you ever wondered how certain people are able to exercise so much?

I’ll let you in on a little secret, it just takes a little prep time to keep you ready to switch gears from work to exercise mode in minutes.

Here are some tips that will help you to “change gears” when time opens up for you.  Your day could change, you could take a long lunch, a client could cancel. Perhaps you have some time in your day but you haven’t been efficient enough to take advantage it.

Always have your exercise clothes with you, the simplest change of clothes is if you are going it the gym. Shoes, shorts, shirt, socks, a lock, and your toiletries.

If you are into multiple sports keep a set of clothes ready for each type of workout you do.

If you swim, have your suit, a towel, shower shoes (no athletes foot please!), goggles, deodorant and a lock.

If you run have your shoes, running clothes, sunblock if outside, a water belt or bottle, your gel packs (gu, acccel gel, cliff shots etc.) and your heart rate monitor and iPod if you use them. Don’t forget baby wipes if you don’t have access to a shower.

If you’re a cyclist put your bike on the back of your car (lock it or lose it), have your kit ready in your cycling bag.  Don’t forget sunblock.  Baby wipes are key for cycling as well if you don’t gave access to a shower if you are a commuter.

There are some days where you just might not have time to get a workout in, but you do have a small break.  No worries, exercise your mind – have a book with you at all times (preferably a kindle, you won’t kill a tree and you have access to many books at once without taking up any extra space that could be saved for exercise gear.

The most important thing to remember is planning.  Plan your workouts for the week and have your respective gear ready to go.  But even more important is to be ready for the change of schedule. Be ready to SWITCH GEARS and jump into a workout at anytime.

  1. First and foremost you will lose weight.  I am back on the triathlon trail and have been swimming, running and biking for the last 12 days and I have already lost five pounds.
  2. Your health will improve greatly – lower blood pressure, stronger heart, lesser chance of certain cancers, improved cardiovascular system, this is just to name a few…to list all the benefits would take days.
  3. Try something new – triathlons are one of the most exciting sports ventures you can think of.  If you in an exercise rut, think of how fun it would be to try three new things at once.
  4. Improve your mood – nothing beats an endorphins fix.  The feeling you get after a long swim, ride or run is second to none. I don’t think I have every seen anyone have a bad day on a bicycle or in the pool, and well they don’t call it runner’s high for nothing.
  5. It’s fun – Being able to swim, bike and run is fun.  Most triathletes will tell you, you do one and you’re hooked!
  6. You’ll never get bored – Every workout is different and provides it’s own set of unique challenges and skill sets to complete.  Being able to work towards mastery of the swim, bike and the run is very mentally stimulating.
  7. Lowering your stress level is one of the best benefits of doing triathlon training.  It just comes with the territory.
  8. Become a better time manager – I always find that I am more productive when I am training for triathlons.  You have to be very organized to get your training in and that level of organization seems to carry over into the real world.
  9. Meet new people – Triathletes are very cool, and always seem willing to help out people getting into the sport.  I know my wife and I have asked our share of questions, and I love being able to help out anyone I can.
  10. 10. Bragging Rights – There is no better sense of accomplishment than completing your first triathlon.  You feel like you can take on the world, and that you are ready for the next one!

Last week Marissa (another fabulous JETT trainer) and I spent two mornings with some kids from St. Dunstan’s Church summer camp. We had them for about an hour each morning and we ran them through a mini boot camp! Though at first some of the kids, age range about 5-15 years old, were a little hesitant about having to run around for an hour once we got them going they all had a blast. We started them off with some running, dynamic drills, and stretching. The biggest hit was anything that included competition especially having them racing through an obstacle course that had them running, jumping over hurdles, and doing ten mountain climbers! Overall we had a great couple hours getting some young kids running around and getting excited about exercise!

Everyone knows or at least I hope they do that running is one of best forms of exercise.  So what other reason could one need than just doing it?

Now that summer is here, and I have been running outside, let me just tell you what I have come across that made my runs all the more enjoyable.

I was recently in Sonoma, where my wife and I did some trail running.  One morning we came across a coyote on the trail that was by no means yielding for me or Marianne.  After what seemed an eternity, and being a little worried that this coyote was rabid; he made a fast aggressive lunge toward what he had been stalking.  I don’t know what it was but he got it and then faded away into the brush.

Just fifteen minutes later, we came across a field of the most beautiful purple flowers and what must have been at least 50 Orioles.

Two days later my wife and I drove out to the Armstrong Redwood Reserve to continue our running adventures.  It was one the most impressive things I have ever seen in my life – 1400-year-old trees, beautiful colors, and it was nice being far from the hustle and bustle of the city.  Amongst the Redwoods, we came across a doe and her little bambi, who both felt quite comfortable with the many onlookers who had gathered to watch their little family eat, but suddenly another doe attacked the mother, and the pour thing ended up limping away. Ok so this wasn’t the happiest moment in my recent running adventures but it was definitely noteworthy.

Now bringing it back to Maryland, just last week I saw a fox when I was running in Rock Creek Park…very cool!

I have a client that I train in Rockville, MD very close to Wootton Parkway, and when weather and time permits I run from Wintergreen Plaza towards Wootton High School.  There, I have kept up with a family of geese and  am happy to report that as of last week there were four goslings to be seen following Mommy, marching in perfect order and it instantly made me smile.

I also at times run in Bethesda, which is where I train most of my clients, and when I get a break in between appointments…I am running.  I have a Bradley Blvd. loop that I run regularly.  During my run today, I came across four baby rabbits frolicking about and it made me feel all warm and fuzzy.

If these aren’t reasons enough to run I don’t know what is.