e_juliana: (carson naked)
This all seems vastly obvious to me, but I've been reading exercise mags for as long as I can remember, as well as growing up with a PE instructor for a mother. I was talking about with someone else, and she asked me to write down a list, so I did, and now I'm inflicting it on all y'all.

There will be many exceptions to what I say below. As [livejournal.com profile] jesseh so often and wisely points out, Different Things Work For Different People, Because People Are Different. I'm just distilling what I've read over many, many years.

- Strength training doesn't boost your metabolism as much as many people say it does. A pound of muscle only burns 6 calories per day - which is 4 more than the 2 cal/day fat burns, but still not much.

- The "afterburn" - the increased calorie burn you get after physical activity - only counts for approximately 25-30 calories, depending on the length and intensity of the workout.

- You need to change up your workout on a consistent basis. The human body is a marvelously adaptive machine, and so it will find a way to do what you're asking of it with the minimum of effort required. This, of course, reduces calorie burn. So, change up your workout and keep your body confused and burning those calories.

- If you do two workouts on the same day, like strength & cardio, do the one you want to emphasize the most first. So, if you're training for a 10-K, do your run first.

- The calorie-burn readouts on many machines don't take into account the amount of calories you would have burned resting for the same amount of time. So, if the readout says you burned 500 calories in your session, but you would have burned 300 calories at rest in that same amount of time, you can only really count those 200 calories. Sucks, but true.

- Running remains the best way to burn calories and get into cardiovascular shape. Period. There are always external limits, such as bum knees or dodgy backs, but if you can run, do.

- If you can't run? Walk. If you can't walk, bike or swim. Hell, if you have access to a pool, do pool running. You won't get the weight-bearing benefit, but you're still using all of your body.

- Most importantly, do whatever will keep you interested. If running bores you to tears, but you can dance 'til the cows come home - dance motherfucker dance.

- If you're trying to increase cardio endurance, hit your target heart rate during workouts. A very crude formula is maximum heart rate (220 - age) x 60(min) or 70(max)%. Obviously, check with a professional before embarking on a plan.

- The US government's minimum weekly recommendations are 3 20-minute vigorous cardio workouts OR 5 30-minute moderate-intensity physical activities, 2 20-minute strength-training sessions, and daily 10-minute flexibility sessions. That's to maintain physical health - if you want to train for a 10-K or drop 15 pounds, you've got more work to do.

- Consistent, sustained weight loss only works if you eat less and work out regularly.

- Lean protein is key when you're attempting to build endurance/strength or drop weight. It's a good idea in general, but especially then. Complex carbs and leafy greens are also your friends. Crash diets and "detox" regimens often do more harm than good.

- Despite not burning many calories, strength training is a good thing - strong muscles help stabilize joints and allow you to do regular tasks with more ease. Also, less sets with more weight is the better way to go for strength-building - it's more efficient, and you're not that likely to bulk up (unless you're eating a massive surplus of calories).

- Your core is the most important thing to work. That includes your back. Too many people focus on their front - biceps, abs, quads - and overbalance themselves, which leads to injury. A strong core - abs, obliques, and back - will ensure trunk stability and reduce possible injuries.

- Stretching is key. It's easily overlooked when one is busy, but stretching helps prevent overuse injuries, as well as making one look sleeker. I've found yoga to be my best stretching routine, but others may find Pilates or plain old stretches to work for them.

- Stretching works best when the stretch is held or slightly deepened over 30-60 seconds. "Bouncing" (going in and out of position quickly and repeatedly) works against the stretch and can cause muscles to tear.

- Some discomfort is to be expected. However, if the pain is sustained, sudden, or sharp, stop the activity immediately. "No pain, no gain" is a dangerous fallacy.

- Warmups and cooldowns are also oft-neglected and very important. Imagine your muscles as a piece of gum - try stretching the gum out when it's warm, and then try it again when it's cool. The gum will snap apart when it's cool, and stretch when it's warm. You need to gradually coax your body into movement, and then gradually return it to the resting state.

- Always always always focus on your form. If you're lifting, focus on the muscles you're using to complete the movement. If you're swimming/biking/running, focus on how your body is moving through space. If you're stretching, focus on the muscles stretching. Mindfulness helps reduce injuries and increases results.


Nov. 13th, 2006 10:38 am
e_juliana: (delta winds)
Have been Lack O' Posting Girl lately. Haven't had anything interesting to say, really, and have been trying to severely limit my time on the internets.

I'm also extremely sick, but since it's confined to my sinuses and head, I'm still going to take a run today. Clothes shopping this weekend was not good for my self-esteem, and I refuse to accept that my current inability to budge my weight is a product of aging. I've already cut way down on drinking and cut out deep-fried foods entirely, but I think more drastic measures are necessary. No booze whatsoever? No bacon? What?

And where does the line between "unhappy with how I look" and "cutting out all the pleasures that make life bearable" fall?

In other news, '80s music? Not that great. Kind of like Star Wars in its way - not as good as you remember it, fun in some places, downright painful in others.
e_juliana: (also cute & fluffy)
Yesterday was one of those days that I wished I had a standing punching bag. Not because I was particularly crabby or violent (though the crabby was definitely there), but because running felt a little aimless. I needed something directly in front of me to focus on, somewhere to practice precision while also providing the satisfaction of connecting (which is why I like running - the thudding of my feet feels more real than the burn of my quads when I bike. Which I haven't in ages. Anyway). I have no desire to hit people - other than the occasional smacking upside the head - but the thought of punching and kicking a heavy bag is immensely satisfying.

Too bad I have a wee apartment that couldn't accommodate it. Sigh. Want to punch things in a non-hurty way!
e_juliana: (happyhappyjoyjoy)
We're coming up on the end of Week One of Zach's Grand Get In Shape Plan, and it's been interesting. He's getting advice from 3 separate sources - me, a woman he works with who is also a boxer and a trainer (R), and a man who is a martial artist (M). There hasn't been that much conflicting information yet, but the differences have been enlightening. I've missed a few things, primarily because my focus is so different from Z's. As a distance runner, I do not strength-train prior to running. I only do it after a run or on a completely different day. Z doesn't have that worry, so M told him to lift weights prior to cardio. As a freaky hippie eater, I try to avoid high fructose corn syrup in its entirety. R told Z not to worry so much about it, that there are a few things in which HFCS is okay to eat. Little shit like that. I'll defer to both of them, because R is used to whipping big guys into shape and M knows about being a guy, being a guy in theater, and being a guy in theater trying to get and stay in shape.

I'm currently in the middle of my own "Oh, fuck, I need to get in shape" plan, which is fun. We open Friday next, and I'm wearing a very skimpy outfit for a couple scenes. Vanity is a lovely thing.

I've also been concentrating on getting faster. My 10-K pace last year was 10:00, and I'd like to get it down to 9:30 in time for the Get In Gear Run. This is all part of a grand plan to run Boston sometime after I turn 40 (the qualifying time drops to 3:50 - which is a little less than a 9-minute mile pace over 26.2 miles). We'll see if this actually happens, since a lot can change in 12 years. And if I happen to speed up enough to qualify when the required time is 3:40? I won't complain.
e_juliana: (b&w)
Check out this picture of l'Alpe d'Huez, the 16th stage of the Tour de France (today's stage). This is one of the most famous stage of the Tour, and this year? It's a time trial. Oy. It will probably be better in the long run for the frontrunners, but I cannot imagine not having a runup to that steep trail.

In other sporting news, I've managed to complete a 7-mile run yesterday and a 4-mile run today, in weather so muggy I look like I've just stepped out of the shower 5 minutes into my runs. Zach has been dubbed Best Husband To Be EvAH!, because he got up at 6 yesterday morning and fetched coffee and a scone for me so I could refuel after my run. I don't know why, but I had been having a severe mental block about the 7-miler. Between my knee and exhaustion, the three previous attempts had ended in ignomy. Yesterday's run was good, though. Strong and consistent, at least until the very last hill. Today's run was fast, minus the three 15-second stops to stretch out a recalcitrant quad. Tomorrow? A 6-miler. I'll have to see about running a different loop. I'm getting tired of the lakes, and I really need to do some hill work. Maybe I'll loop around and make the marathon mile 2 hill part of the course. That would be good training. Yes.


Jun. 15th, 2004 09:20 am
e_juliana: (just happy)
Tired and sore, but the happy kind of sore.

Yesterday, we had the site visit for Fringe Festival. We get arches, yay!! (The Fringe setup is such that the venue provides a stage and bare-bones lighting, and each show gets one special. So little perqs like arches are bonuses. Bonusii. Yes.)

Bused ('bussed' is kissing, right? 'bused' just looks odd) home, and went for a 4-mile run. I could have gone longer, but I didn't eat much over the weekend, and I was still feeling the effects of that. Also, Z & I were scheduled to go on a bike ride once he got home from work. It was a gorgeous day for running - not too hot and a little breezy. Also? I have new running gear - shorts and a tank top. I love new gear. I need new shoes soon, though. The Mizunos are not cutting it, and I'm fearful of taking distance runs in them.

Anyhoo. Home again, did my new dancer's workout for my legs, since I'm starting to have hip problems and I need to have more hip mobility, and then biking! Yay biking! We're exploring the Grand Rounds right now, which is bloody gorgeous. Well, Z is leading and I'm just following behind, gawping at the scenery. Yesterday we went from Theodore Wirth to Northeast, and cut through to pick up the Downtown Riverfront, and then cut through Downtown to home. About 15 miles, and about two hours. Not great intensity, but a good time. We swung in and said hi to some friends who live at the very top of the Victory Memorial loop. Surprised the heck out them, we did. Fun.

Despite my best efforts, I'm going to wind up with major tan lines from my sports bra and shorts. No amount of SPF will block my skin from merrily turning golden brown. Grump.

This morning, I swung out of my apartment building on my bike just as my usual bus was pulling out of the bus stop a half-block away from me. So, I decided to race it. I'm possibly a touch insane at times. I beat it to the intersection across Hennepin, and I went one way around Loring Park as it went the other way. I was ahead by three cars and charged up the hill, making the turn onto the bike lane two blocks south at the same time the bus swung onto Nicollet Mall (a dedicated bus/taxi/pedestrian street). It was a lot of fun, and much better than being stuck on the bus. Much better.

Gronk. Work. Don't wanna!!
e_juliana: (b&w)
Some days, I wish I could be as hysterically hyper and random as [livejournal.com profile] datlowen. But then I realize that that would take too much energy. I'll settle for the random, I guess.


Ran yesterday morning. It was good, and it was fast. The problem was that someone fell into pace 5 steps behind me, making me feel like a rabbit. (The race kind, not the bunny kind.) My stupid stupid competitive streak won't let someone who is close to my pace overtake me, so I kicked it up a notch. Which made that person actually use me as a rabbit. Which made me run about 5 seconds faster than my usual race pace. I need to do that more often. Run faster, not be a rabbit. Although, if rabbiting makes me do that....

The word rabbit has now lost all sense to me. Rabbit rabbit rabbit.


So I ran in the morning, and then biked into work. I love my bike, as it is big and tough and was Robin's, but it has some bad habits that seem to be ingrained (hey, just like Rob!). Chain slippage, gears not quite in place, etc. I'll take it in again, but they haven't been able to find the cause yet. I'm only worried about the MN Red Ribbon Ride. My daily commute is one thing, but I'd prefer it to be in top shape for a ride that is 100+ miles per day.

Huh. Looking at the website, I see this year's Ride is sponsored by Chipotle. Huh. Well, at least I like their food, if not their corporate parent.

The upshot is, I'm biking in to work instead of walking in now. Which means I'm going to try to get in a 7-mile run tonight. We'll see if it works.

It looks like Zach and I have found an apartment. It's within spitting distance of the Walker museum (old Guthrie), garden-level (which I don't like), 2-bedroom, gigantic, etc. My biggest objection to the place is the bathtub. More specifically, the absolute lack of one and the slightly institutional feel of the shower room. Yes, shower room. The shower is bigger than some of the bathrooms I have had before.

My second objection to it is that it was clearly a gigantic studio apartment, and then they decided to put up some walls to make it a two-bedroom, so the interior walls are extremely flimsy.

Zach says it has sort of a bohemian feel to it, and he's right, even if the thought does make me sing "La Vie Boheme" from Rent. We're going to spend a small fortune on fabrics for draping and muffling and whatnot. We'll also probably be allowed to paint, which will be nice. I'm tired of white walls.

The best part about the place? Private entrance. There's a door that leads into the building proper, but there's also an entrance that goes right up and out into the street. You'd better believe that will be our main entrance.

All in all, not a perfect place. On the other hand, as I've been saying, 2004 is all about pushing boundaries. I tend to find places that are already perfect (see my last two apartments). This one can be made to be ours, and I think that's a good thing. I also think that I'll be doing most of the initial ours-making, as Z is, howdoyousay, hella busy for the next 6 months. And if it's truly hellish, we can move in a year. The joys of renting.
e_juliana: (you rang?)
I'm hoping to persuade Z to do the SELF Fitness Challenge with me. Not even signing up, just doing the activities laid out every month. We'll see. He just started a new job that's going to take a lot of his energy, so it's going to be tough to start a fitness program at the same time. On the other hand, we both need to start training for the Red Ribbon Ride. July isn't that far away.

The bus driver union will most likely strike tonight, after the caucuses are done. Additionally, I've just decided to sell my car. Um. Poor timing, that. I can hoof it or bike for most everywhere I need to go, and Z has his truck, so it should be all right. I'll miss the thing, though. I like having my own car, especially a little one like the Tercel was.

I've been having a problem getting enough to eat. Again. I'm ravenous, I start eating, I get full within 4 bites. V. annoying.

Gah. I had more, honestly, I did, but I'm tired.
e_juliana: (tease)
This quiz is a little opaque to me.....

Discworld: Which Ankh-Morpork City Watch Character are YOU?

brought to you by Quizilla

But it seems to fit.

Didn't run. Must do yoga, at least. Must.
e_juliana: (Default)
JeebusFUCK, my hip hurts. It's okay when I'm up and moving around, but the first moment of standing up after sitting for a bit is officially No Fun. Yes, I need to go in to my doc. No, I'm not going to this week. Probably in August.

At least it doesn't hurt when I run. Just after. And yes, I'm stretching and doing yoga and all that. Which helps.


Okay, bike thing for those who know more than I do (DX?):

I've got a mountain/rockhopper men's bike. The rear brake line has slipped out of the stops, which means that the tension is gone, which means that the rear brake is useless. I'm getting no love from any bike repair sites I Google. How the hell do I re-thread the brake line? It would seem that getting a big-ass allen wrench and releasing tension on the cable would work, but something tells me that this is a fix that does not require tools. Any ideas? Other than taking it to the bike shop, which is not so much an option in the next two days?


Favorite Buffy line ever: How do you like my darkness now?


I got my birthday present from my parents & grandparents last night. See's candy, pyjama bottoms & a camisole, and one of my grandmother's prized crystal bowls. Only problem is, my mother forgets that chocolate melts when one ships it to the Lower 48 in the middle of summer. It's still edible, thankfully. Just has new! interesting! shapes. I'm very touched (and a bit worried) that my grandmother has started giving me things of hers that she's had for ages.


[livejournal.com profile] serasempre is a lovely lovely woman, and has made icons for [livejournal.com profile] redwright. Thank you, hon.
e_juliana: (sandman)
Another reason why I love biking so much: it demands brute strength. Well, at least it does with the way I bike. I can't help it - I'm a speed demon no matter what. Also, unlike skiing and skating (which I wish I could do), it involves a machine other than my body. I rarely can figure out how to do a manuever with my body (unless it's dancing), but put me on a machine and I'm golden. My brain works in very odd ways.

I've been listening to the top-40/R&B oriented station whilst packing, and I have an oh-so startling revelation: most music out there sucks. A lot. Kelly Clarkson is possibly the most boring singer ever. Nevertheless, R. Kelly's song has earwormed me past all comprehension. Grrrrr.

now gimme that toot toot
and i'll give you that beep beep
runnin her hands through my 'fro
bouncin on 24's
while they say on the radio...


Just found out that my apartment won't be ready tonight. I was planning to get it all done tonight. FUCK.

I'm ready to cry at this point. I want to be out, dammit. And it's going to be an absolute clusterfuck tomorrow. I almost don't want to move until Sunday at this point, but I don't think either of us would be happy about it.



Jun. 3rd, 2003 09:14 am
e_juliana: (Default)

Did not sleep well. First I couldn't get comfortable, then I was too cold. Aaargh.

When I did sleep, I had the most mundane dreams ever. Seriously. They were all about plucking my eyebrows, figuring out which shirts needed to be washed, doing laundry, dusting, etc. Basically, all the things that I haven't had time to do and won't have time to do until we open on Friday. At least I didn't dream about work.

I haven't cleaned our apartment in at least 3 weeks. I probably won't before I move out. Why bother? Besides, I need to start packing.

On a different note, I think my favorite part about riding my bike is when I get to stand up on the pedals. I couldn't with my old bike, and I missed it. It makes me feel like a kid. My least favorite part is when the bike slips its chain. V. annoying. I haven't named it yet. Maybe that's it.

Grrrr. Must. Work. Don't. Want. To.

And lastly....


Which Personality Disorder Do You Have?
brought to you by Quizilla

But of course.


e_juliana: (Default)

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