Posted tagged ‘personal training’

Catching Up, Eagle Sighting and Raw Cashew Cream

November 4, 2014

Blogging has taken a backseat these days—there have been a myriad of changes in my life and I have been busy focused on adjusting to divorce, moving, a new relationship, and a significantly greater workload.  No complaints here, though.  Life is good.  My ex and I have remained friends, my new relationship is a blessing I was not expecting, and work is physical and fun.  I am still teaching vegan cooking in a group setting on a monthly basis, as well as in private settings for individuals.  I am still running!  Definitely not the 50+ miles each week like last year, as I am doing a lot more personal training and wellness coaching for work, as well as teaching group fitness three times each week for the Recreation Department of my town.

This morning I had the opportunity for a long run.  My early client cancelled last minute and I found myself racing through Halibut Point State Park, enjoying the late fall scenery with it’s nearly-bare trees, glass-surfaced quarry and vast expanse of ocean view.  With the hours of cross-training I have been logging with work, running feels easier than ever.  This was one of those days where breath, legs and mind were all on board from the moment I stepped out the door.  I felt as though my feet barely touched the ground and I don’t think I heard a single song on my playlist after the first mile.  Running is meditation just as much as it is physical exercise, maybe even more than ever before. I did get to see an eagle perched on a treetop as I ran home. Not that I noticed it myself—a pram-pushing mama pointed it out for me. Magnificent.


Teaching vegan cooking is a joyful experience.  The people who come to my classes are enthusiastic, open-minded, and excited to learn each month.  My amazing photographer has been recovering from a broken ankle, so I am sorry to say I have none of her beautiful pictures to share in this post.  She is coming along nicely in her healing so am hoping to she will be back soon to take photos and notes for me.  It makes me realize how fortunate I am. It’s amazing how good people are to me and how much I depend on the kindness, generosity and skills of those around me to help me get through and be successful in this life.

In the meantime, I want to share a very easy cashew cream recipe.  I posted earlier about cashew cream and the recipe called for roasting the cashews first.  That recipe is delicious!  This recipe is even creamier than the first, and without the roasted flavor, it is even more versatile.  Used in vegan chowders, cream soups and cream sauces, the rich, thick texture lends a sensual mouth-feel and no one ever misses the dairy.

Raw Cashew Cream


1 c whole raw cashews

filtered water


Rinse the cashews in cold filtered water and drain.  Place the cashews in a medium sized bowl and cover with filtered water.  Soak for at least 20 minutes, but overnight is a great choice.  Without soaking, the cashew cream will not be as creamy.

Drain and rinse the cashews after they have soaked.  Place in high-powered blender and add 1 c filtered water.  Blend on low until the cashews start to move around easily.  Turn blender speed to high and blend until completely smooth.

I always double this recipe and freeze what I don’t use.  It’s great to have a stock of some basics ready to go when I find myself standing in the kitchen, pondering what to make for dinner.  Consider pasta primavera, pasta al invierno, sweet potato and corn chowder, creamy tomato soup, creamed spinach with cumin, cayenne and cubed tofu—bring it on, winter!  Hearty food awaits!  More to come…



March 15, 2011

The original title of this post was “Gym Rat”, but since I limped almost a mile home from my run this morning, I decided to delve a bit deeper into my vocabulary and psyche and find the truth here.  What I have discovered is that it’s really about the repercussions of perfidy, with a touch of James Cameron thrown in for good measure…

I recently joined a local gym  to learn how the equipment works.   I want to help some of my personal training clients who have gym memberships; my personal trainer certification course did not include learning the functions and use of gym equipment.  If a client really loves the gym and that works for them, I need to be able to adjust their exercise prescription to accommodate what they want.   I also thought it would be a great opportunity to mix up my workouts.  After the amazing Body Combat class I attended with my friend Charlene, I realized how much I loved the way it felt to move my body so differently.  The gym I joined is very affordable and only about 10 minutes away from home.  It’s open every day from 5 am to 11 pm, and offers a few classes.  Not Body Combat, but kick-boxing, spinning, and kettle bell classes.

I learned on my first visit that I should have made an initial appointment if I wanted someone to show me around.  I also learned that the gym has a solid core of members, many of them also personal trainers.  Friendly faces greeted me as I made my way around the machine circuit, and a woman who was working out stopped to show me how to use an entire roomful of machines.  She was tiny and unbelievably strong, without a lick of judgment.  She quickly demonstrated upper body and lower body moves, then waved me on each piece to try.  She kindly adjusted the weights so I could actually perform a set of reps on each one without rupturing my muscles.

My second visit included another learning session, this time with a kind and patient man.  He took his time instructing me on equipment I had not yet tried.  He showed me how to check my form in the mirrors.  Every wall in the gym is mirrored!  I felt self-conscious and had a hard time focusing, but after a little while, I got into it and felt like Wonder Woman  after an hour.

I met one of my clients on the third visit, and was able to go through most of the gym fairly knowledgeably, planning out a program for either a fast, intense workout or a longer, more relaxed one.  We used the treadmills and the elliptical machines last, and reviewed intervals on both.  I left him jogging on a treadmill, both of us satisfied with the new plan.

I made three trips to the gym last week.  Some muscles ached a little bit, but overall I felt pretty good.  I ran before I went each time, not trusting I would get an adequate workout without it, and also because the thought of not running outside was unbearable.  I have found a couple of things I love:  a pull-up assist machine, an upright core machine, and a weighted squat machine.  All three give me the support I need to work upper body, core, and lower body in a fresh new way.

I have also found a couple of things I strongly dislike:  the elliptical and the treadmill.  One of the best aspects of running for me is the satisfaction of landing.  I was not aware of this until I used the elliptical for 15 minutes.  I felt like I was in the film Avatar.  I remembered when the avatars ran, they seemed to glide, barely touching their feet to the ground.  Each time my leg came down, it just slid behind me.  My quads seemed like they were about to explode.  I could not find a rhythm, could not find a cadence that made me feel grounded.  And that grounded feeling translates to my mind and all that I am when I run.

Another aspect of running that satisfies me is movement.  Specifically, forward movement.  The treadmill is stationary, even though I’m running.  I could not let go of the feeling of being out of control, of being about to fall.  A nasty sensation of not being in the driver’s seat (or the runner’s feet?) overwhelmed me as the belt went around and around beneath me.  I held the side handles for dear life, raising the incline to 12 to try and lose that feeling.  12 was fine, actually, since I like hills, but not really what I wanted in terms of running.  Here’s where the perfidy comes in.  To top it all off I felt guilty, as if I were cheating on my one true fitness love.  Even as my legs spun around and around the belt, I found myself fantasizing about being outdoors, feeling the air against my skin, my feet softly landing on the ground like butterfly kisses over and over again.

My running partner Sue and I went to the gym together on Sunday.  She showed me her regular upper body routine, I showed her some of the lower body machines I had learned, we did core work together, then we split.  She hopped on one of the elliptical machines while I finished a circuit I liked from last week.  I joined her for and extra 15 minutes of cardio. Right away my left quad started to twinge.  Avatar!  Avatar! I just wanted it to be over.  I wanted the real me.  Outside.

So—lots of new moves, and extra workout time.  I should be feeling pretty good.  But I miss my free weights.  I miss my living room.  I miss the plyometrics and balance work.  And although I am still running outside, I somehow sense an ugly, passionless infidelity when I am at the gym.

Now for the repercussions.

This morning I planned to run the usual six miles.  The cold spring air opened my heart and my mind; I decided to go on to Halibut Point.  I have finally figured out a loop from the street that takes me through the park and all I could think about was the view of the sea from that long dirt road, with the feel of the earth beneath my feet.  The connection between mind and body is strongest in this place.

My left quad started feeling cranky as I exited the park.  I slowed down, easing my way along the side of Granite Street.  I foolishly turned onto Curtis Street, then Stockholm, thinking that the pain would subside.  I slowed even more when I turned down Story Street, and took it easy all the way to Beach Street, skipping the lovely downhill sprint I adore.  I wanted to run home.

I made it to the bandstand by Back Beach before listening to my body and giving in.  I walked the last .8 miles home, shoving the pain and fear back down each time it rose up inside me.  I fought back tears, trying to distract myself from the throbbing ache in my thigh and the acute awareness of the short two months until the Twin Lights Half Marathon.  I hobbled through my front door, swearing my allegiance to what works for me, ready to heal and get back to training for my first half marathon out in the real world.


November 18, 2010

My client arrives this morning and I greet her at the door, two medicine balls, two short fitness bands, and two pairs of gloves in my arms.  I have warned her to dress in layers, as we will be going outside for a good part of our session today.  We walk to the stop sign at the top of the hill, sharing the load of equipment.

“Go!” I urge, and we begin a power walk interval to the little park by Old Garden Beach.  We drop the medicine balls, 4 and six pounds, and the bands.  She looks at me, a bit nervous and self conscious.

“Okay.  We’re starting with push ups, just to get warmed up.”

We both groan as we do as many as we can— not the girl push ups with our knees on the ground, but the real thing.  We go until I look over and see her straining hard.

“Okay.  Little break.”

I count to ten.

“Go again.”

And so on.  We do jump squats, then grab the medicine balls.  We slam the balls into the soft, damp grass until I can see the green mashing into the dirt.  Then we smash the balls to the left and catch them, them to the right.  We toss the six pound ball back and forth.

“Throw with the left, catch with the right.  Now after you catch it, go around the world.”

I demonstrate, twirling the ball around my waist after I catch it, then toss it back to her.  We toss and catch standing on one foot.  We toss and catch, pass the ball under one leg and throw again.

We race back and forth across the park, tossing the ball, dribbling the ball.  We do squat throws.  We get down on all fours, move to plank, then walk like that half way across the park.

We are both panting and laughing when a man comes along with two big dogs.  (I know, more dogs!!!  Sorry.  But it’s true.)   Off leash.  The dogs are friendly, but it’s time to go back to my living room and finish up the session with glute strengthening and Super-sets.

When we are done, my client is tired, but she hugs me.

“Thanks, Elizabeth.  I love being your guinea pig!”

I can’t help it.  I am pumped after attending a fitness conference hosted by Exercise Etc., Inc. in Natick, MA last weekend.  The hotel conference rooms were packed with trainers; it was the first time I have been in the presence of so many of my professional peers.  The presenters were knowledgeable, experienced professionals in the fitness and nutrition fields.  Armed with the newest information in the areas of exercise science and nutrition, each expert gave a dynamic two hour PowerPoint presentation.

I had to choose between two classes for each two hour session and had a tough time prioritizing which lectures to attend.  Because my clients are all women, I chose the ones most pertinent in training them, talking myself into attending “Boot Camp Workout Drills” because I knew there would be new, fun exercises to mix into my personal training sessions.  I was smart enough to bring my laptop; I would never have been able to remember even a fraction of what I heard, especially during the boot camp workout drills presentation, as it was participatory.  Just to see where I stood along side my professional peers in fitness, I turned on the recorder on my laptop and jumped (no kidding— there was a lot of jumping!) right into it.  Since I did not have time to run on either day, and also because the first day was all lecture, two hours of drills felt mighty good.  I realized a couple of things on a personal level.  The first is that I have a lot of energy!  The second is that, although I sometimes still feel like the little girl I was in gym class with Mrs. Hermann, I was able to see that I am equally as fit if not more so than my peers.  I did my “barefoot thing” and although some of the trainers seemed a little bit freaked out about that, I demonstrated that you can be barefoot, safe and fast all at the same time.

I know it will take weeks of reviewing my notes and listening to the recorded lectures for everything presented to sink in.  I came home totally wired, demonstrating the 30 second push up to my son, revving up my clients’ sessions right away with new moves and fresh ideas.

Fitness rule for today:  Educate yourself.  You don’t need a trainer or a conference to do it, although it’s nice to have one or both.  There are lots of resources on the internet and on the newsstand to help you learn what the newest trends are in fitness.  Learn what you can, implement it into your fitness life, and pumped will replace boredom every time.

Fitness Rule #14: Break It Up

October 5, 2010

The holidays are approaching quickly, and many of us are starting to think about how we are going to maintain our fitness through all the preparations and parties that fill our autumn and winter months.  It’s time for a fitness rule to support all of us wondering how we are going to squeeze in those early morning workouts, after-work gym time, or into that little black dress we bought last year.  Today’s rule addresses staying on track through a goal-oriented approach.

The first thing I ask my clients when they hire me to train them is about their goals.  I ask them to prepare for our first meeting by coming up with three goals they would like to achieve with a personal trainer.  What do they want to get from training?  Are they interested in being fit?  Do they want to lose weight?  Both?  Do they want to feel/look better in their clothes?   Are their goals around lowering their blood pressure or cholesterol?   Sometimes it’s as basic as maintaining their current level of mobility and improving it a bit.  Many times, a new client doesn’t have a concrete answer to my question at all.  They simply know they need support to get their bodies moving.  Jumping in without a plan can be overwhelming.  Part of my job is to support a client to decide what they really want, then to help them find the path that works  for them.

When we meet, we sit down and talk about the different aspects of fitness.  I help them turn their goals into measurable goals, a fitness rule I have already written about.  Measurable goals are ones that have a start marker and an end marker.  A simple example:  a client can walk a mile.  They would really like to do a 5k walk to raise money for a cause.  Or they might want to lose some weight in time for a special event.  We set the big goal— 5k or 25 pounds, write it down, and then make little goals to support the big one.  So how do I break up big goals into smaller ones?

I work with each client to determine a time line.  If they want to be able to walk a 5k event, I break up the time frame into weeks, planning a fitness program designed to support it by lengthening their walking distance each week, and by including some intervals to build speed and endurance.  Each week, we examine their personal fitness goals and when a goal is met, we create a new one based on their current level of fitness and the time frame of their big goal.  If the goal is to lose weight, we examine their level of fitness and their diet, look at changes to support their goal, choose a reasonable time frame for achieving the goal, then note what is working each week.  There is lots of tweaking— the individuality of each client is taken into account; what works for one person might not for another.  The one thing that seems to be  consistent from person to person is breaking the big goal into smaller goals that support attaining the big one.

Fitness Rule #14: Break It Up.

Breaking up big goals into little pieces has great advantages.  The feeling of success comes much earlier when a small goal is achieved and checked off.  We made it to the gym.  We didn’t walk the 5K— we ran it!  We can fit into our favorite old jeans again.  That feeling carries over into the next goal or set of goals, urging us to continue to move forward and stay on track.  The big goal suddenly becomes manageable.  When we maintain our fitness logs, food journals, or use whatever tool we have chosen to monitor our behaviors and celebrate our successes, the big picture takes form and becomes real.

Break it up can be applied to other areas of our lives—  work, home, garden, even relationships can benefit from us looking at the big picture, writing down a long-term goal, and figuring out how to break that goal into smaller pieces.  Sitting around thinking about the work and preparation it takes to run a marathon, lose 50 pounds, give a Power Point presentation, or clean the whole house in one day can consume every ounce of our energy, leaving us none for the actual doing.  Preparing ourselves for success by reaching our goals one step at a time helps keep us from that stuck ‘thinking about it, how will I ever get there’ place to a place of action. Checking off a list of accomplishments increases self-efficacy.  It leads to strength, confidence and success in all aspects of our lives.  It leads us to the place where our dreams come true.

Measuring Up

April 15, 2010

I love to know how far I run every day.  I also enjoy discovering that I have increased my speed.  It’s not really something I am able to guess, though.  Before my sister bought me the Nike+iPod last Christmas, I used  to burst into my house at the end of a run and head right to the computer to Google Maps and trace my route that day.  I had to remember every turn I took, and to find my pace, I had to keep track of the  minutes on my watch.  Not really a big deal, probably not all that accurate, but I always felt a certain satisfaction in knowing how my progress was coming along.  There were plenty of days when I spaced out on my run and could not remember what time I left my house.  There were even a few times,  (I hate to admit this) that I forgot the exact roads I chose and could only guess my distance.

I do know, because I wrote it down in a fitness journal, that my first run was about 2.5 miles, and that it took me about 32 minutes.  Because I measured and kept track, I have been able to see my progress. I now know that my time and speed have increased considerably.  I am now running at a speed of about 8 mph and have been able to run more than 13 miles in one run.  I also know that I have lost about 20 pounds since I began to run.  I wrote that down, too.   I fell in love with running and the calories burned one day at a time.

I didn’t start running to lose weight.  I did it to exhaust myself so that I could fall asleep at night— to keep the nightmares associated with my father-in-law’s death at bay.  It seemed important to write it all down— the running, the distance, the time, my weight— and so I was able to really see what happened.  After a few weeks, I decided to measure my hips and waist, and since then, my waist is only about an inch smaller, but I lost seven inches from my hips.  Although exercise was only about stress relief and trying to sleep better, it became a big enough focus in my life that I went back to school to become a personal trainer.  I feel better than I ever have before in my life!  I wanted to learn how to share that with other people.

Fitness rule for today:  measure and keep track.

This is another one of those double-meaning fitness rules.  The first aspect is about taking measurements at the start of a fitness and/or weight loss program.  Without taking specific measurements, like body weight, waist, hip, arm, calf, and thigh circumferences, body mass index, or any combination of these, it is impossible to measure and assess progress.  Sure, there might be a little bit more room in your pants after you have been watching what you eat and exercising, but knowing exactly how far you have come is an intrinsic reward that cannot be either matched or assumed without having a starting point to go by.  Saying “I lost 10 pounds!” or “My waist measure two inches less than it did a month ago!” feels much more concrete than “I think I may have lost some weight” or “I think I might need to wear a belt with these jeans.”

The other meaning is about measuring food to get a general idea of calorie consumption.  I attempted to explain measuring to one of my clients the other day.  She is pretty resistant to measuring anything.  I made an analogy to money.  When in a store,  let’s say what you want to buy an item that costs $15. You hand the clerk a hundred dollar bill.  The clerk gives you your change.  You count your change.  You want the right amount back.  $85 is a lot of money!  You also have more shopping to do, and you need to plan how you are going to spend what is left.  You need to make sure you have enough to get what you need.  (No, there are no credit cards in this analogy!)  Maybe if you had a couple of pennies coming back you might not be so careful, but when it comes to dollars, knowing what you have spent and what you have left to spend makes or breaks your shopping trip.

That’s how I think about calories.  I don’t believe in measuring everything consumed— in fact, I think of vegetables and fruits as pennies.  But unless you know whether you ate a serving of rice— that’s a 1/2 cup cooked— you just remember that you ate rice.  You could easily consume a double portion.  “So what”, says my client, who wants to lose twenty pounds.  “It’s whole grain.  It’s good for me.  I like it.”   It’s just like counting your change.   1 lb. is equal to 3500 calories.  If you want to lose that pound, you must create a deficit of 3500 calories.  Easily done— eat less or burn them.  A combination of each is most efficient.  But, you will never know how many calories you have “spent” unless you pay attention to them and figure out how many you have left over for later.

I don’t think anyone should go around every day of their life measuring each morsel they are going to pop into their mouth.   I do believe, though, that measuring cereal, rice, pasta, oils, and meat, fish or nuts for a few days will give a good general idea of what a serving actually looks like.  Seeing one cup of cereal in a bowl for a few days lets your eye get the idea.  Soon, pouring the right amount becomes second nature.  Everything we buy at the grocery store has a portion size and calorie count.  It’s a simple step.  Look at the package.  Pay attention to how much you eat.

There are all kinds of little tips for assessing amounts.  A palmful of nuts is a serving.  A piece of meat or fish the size of your palm is about one serving.  (3-4 ounces.)  A cup is about the size of a tennis ball.  2 tablespoons of peanut butter is about the size of a ping-pong ball.  After just a few days, you will be able to eyeball a serving and know how many calories are in that portion.  When you add up your calories and deduct the number you have burned during exercise, you can closely estimate how long it will take to lose a couple of pounds, or twenty.

On Being a Glutton with a Touch of OCD

March 26, 2010

Remember the P90X routine of a couple of days ago?  The one that turned me, the speedy little show-off runner into a winded, super sweaty, and exhausted jumper?  The workout that left me unable to run for a couple of days (and I will also admit, unable to sit down comfortably for a couple of days, too)?  I decided, since I have been able to sit down without too much discomfort for the past hour or so, to give the workout another go.

It’s raining again; the hubby is home and happy to be off his recumbent bike for a strength training session with me before we indulge in our steel cut oats.  The weight training feels amazing, as usual, and I love to watch my husband attempt to mirror me as we go through a long series of upper body lifts.  I lead him through a short cardio burst at the end, and some gentle stretches so he will be able to carry on with his work day with a minimum amount of soreness.  I see the issue of Health Magazine on the ottoman in the living room and decide to take a glance at the workout again, wondering exactly which moves put me in such misery.

I try the first one.  Nope.  That’s fine.  The leaping up from the floor with my fists up actually feels good.  Kind of exciting, like a tough, kick-boxing frog.  I do all 25 reps.  Then I try the second one, the wide stance squat that involves circling the arms overhead like giant windshield wipers while leaping up, then landing softly back in the wide plié squat.   That’s fine too.  I hate to do just the couple, so I complete the set, 20 reps.  The third move, where I run in place four paces then jump both knees up to meet my waist-high-held elbows is actually very easy and fun.  It’s almost as good as running, and I only have to do 15 reps.  I’m warmed up, so move on to the flying lunges.  I raise my arms above my head, nice and straight, and drop one leg back behind me into the lunge.  I push off, leaping into the air and switch feet, landing in another lunge.  I can feel my butt complain a little bit; this must be one of the ones that really got me on Tuesday.  It doesn’t seem too bad today, at least not the one rep, so I try a few more.  By the time I reach 10, I figure I may as well go ahead and do the last 15 reps.  And since I have now completed four of the five moves, why not just finish up?  I do 25 reps of the lateral leap, careful to land softly back in the one-legged squat each time.  My fingertips graze the old wool rug, and the roughness makes me glad that at least today I have worn sneakers to protect my sore toe.

I stand panting, waiting to catch my breath for a minute.  Because, as you might guess, since I completed the sequence once and a full circuit means doing the sequence twice, I have to do it.  I cannot leave it half-finished.  I go through all the moves a second time and march in place for a couple of minutes to cool down at the end.  Nothing hurts, at least not yet.

Shake It Up, Baby

March 15, 2010

Here on Cape Ann, the rain and winds have been relentless for the past three days.  Heavy downpours have left puddles big enough to row boats across, and wind gusts has been strong enough to knock giant limbs to the ground and uproot trees.  Our gardens are underwater; the seas are crossing our streets without looking both ways, leaving piles of seaweed and driftwood strewn across yards and parks.  We are lucky we are on granite ledge, otherwise our homes would be floating out to meet the fishes.

I ran early Saturday morning, before the heavy rains began.  Two remarkable things happened on that run.  I saw the first red-winged blackbird of the season.  Actually, I saw three of them.  Two flew across my path as I blasted along Penzance Road between the two marshes.  One came so close it nearly grazed my arm.  But there was one in the marsh, balanced boldly on one of the few remaining stalks of timothy grass, its bright orange-red wing tips the only brilliant mark in the gray, drizzly morning.  I also ran my fastest pace yet.  I did 6 miles, averaging 7’28” min/mi.  No run yesterday or today; I guess the weather is giving me time to focus on core and strength training, and on flexibility.

Fitness rule for today:  Cross-train.

Cross-training keeps our bodies guessing.  It keeps our muscles from repeating the same old motions in the same old ways, which can cause overuse injuries.  When our bodies grow accustomed to doing the same exercises every day, the muscles don’t have to work as hard, so we burn less calories.  But what exactly is cross-training?

Cross-training is working on all aspects of fitness:   muscle strength, muscle endurance, flexibility, and cardio-respiratory.  It’s also shaking things up a bit in each of those areas.  Try different core exercises on alternate days.  Focus on plank, side plank, table, and Pilates one day, then switch to lotus crunches, oblique crunches, and reverse crunches the next time you work on your core.   Lift free weights from different angles— try them balanced on one foot!   My personal favorite is to do curls while standing on one leg, with the other leg straight out at a 90 degree angle behind me.  Still too easy?  Close one or both eyes!

Change up walking, cycling, swimming, running, rowing, or whatever you enjoy.  Take an aerobics class at your gym, or rent a video from the library.  Aim for at least 30 minutes of cardio-respiratory exercise on most days.  One of my clients told me she did 20 minutes on the elliptical machine at her gym, then hopped onto the rowing machine for 10 minutes right afterward.  Great idea!

Work on flexibility for 10 minutes each day.  Stretch on the floor, in a chair, or on your bed.  Try standing.  Try varying angles slightly, hold each stretch for about 30 seconds,  always being gentle and never to the point of pain.  Mild discomfort is as far as you should go with a stretch.

Not only does cross-training keep our bodies guessing, it helps our minds.  Mixing up a fitness routine prevents boredom and burnout.  Learning new steps in a dance class, new yoga poses in a different style of yoga, or taking a walk on a new trail forces us to think differently as we try to get our bodies to redefine movement.

It can be challenging.  I love to run!  Since I have been wearing the Nike Free shoes, running has become easier for me.  I am much faster, and don’t seem to have any of the little twinges or annoying side effects I had in my old running shoes.  I have been running most days, and although I have stretched some, done drop sets, and made very good use of the gigantic ball in the living room to keep my core strong, I have had a hard time buckling down and taking the time to train my whole body.  The weather has kept me inside for the past two days, so I have had to be creative with my fitness routine.  I know my body and mind will reap the benefits of the extra cross-training.  So will yours.