Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Still a triathlete!!!

So I'm still here and will be doing other races. I will be taking part in the NYC triathlon in 2010 and before then some other triathlons here in the land of the maple leaf.

I consider this to be my off season. I'm taking 2009 off from triathlon to train for the 2009 marathon and also to work on my swimming and cycling skills so that by the time I do the 2010 NYC triathlon, my results will be a huge improvement. You know...self growth!

I will continue to post my triathlon training updates on here, but there won't be any for a while because I'm training for my marathon. You can visit my website at

Monday, August 25, 2008

Blogging on!!

I'm growing into my life's mission as a fitness professional and holistic lifestyle coach. It's a journey. I'm in Toronto. You can still leave comments on this blog & I'll respond. I still check this blog & will post sometimes. If you're considering doing a triathlon & just want to talk, email me!!!

Friday, August 15, 2008

Hello from C Fit P Conference in T.O!!!!!

I'm wearing my cheesy triathlete t-shirt today! I just moved to T.O. So if you live here, holla!!!

Sunday, July 20, 2008

I am a triathlete. No longer a Wannabe.

Piwai's NY Triathlon 2008 from TiM Franklin on Vimeo.

I completed my race today!!!! Wow! Congratulations to me & all other finishers.

It was an intense day from being up at 2:30 am, giving thanks for the day, eating quiche at 3am, taking the subway train to the boat basin, setting up my transition, getting body marked, putting on my

Here are some quick highlights of the day including some dumb things:

-One of the volunteers body marked me and she wrote my age on my calf. Twenty minutes later, I go up to another volunteer to ask why everyone else has a number on their calf and what that number represents. Yes, I completely forgot that I'd been body marked....

-Today was the first day I ever swam with my wetsuit. Yes, yes, stupid. In some ways I'm glad I did that because I hate swimming with a wetsuit and this way I found out on race day instead of the day before. Race day is tense anyway, why not just add more tension to it??!!

-I forgot to put on my goggles as I jumped into the Hudson!! Gross. Not a good start. The swim was good after a few minutes. I kept trying to avoid jelly fish. I did feel a stinging sensation on my face at some point in time, but maybe it was just Hudson grossness.

-The cycling portion. Given that I've only been on a bike a total of 10 times my whole life, I was not prepared. Yesterday I learned how to ride a road bike! Congratulations are in order to me for successfully riding 26 miles of pretty hilly terrain and sharp hairpins on the Henry Hudson Parkway. Needless to say, I often had to give way to speeding triathletes with their $4000 bikes and aerobars!

-ok, I stupidly don't know how to change a bike tire and I didn't even bring extra tubes and pump to the race. I completed the race with the faith that there would be no flat tires. And that my childlike riding skills would get me through coupled with my 1000% positive energy. Wow. I'm here. I did cry after I got off the bike because I was grateful & I wished my parents were there...Then I wiped the tears and thought "what stupid person decided that running 6miles is a good thing to do after cycling for 26 miles??" I quickly got over it and began my trot on the Upper West Side!

-My run/walk. My ankle had issues so I basically took it easy until the last 0.25 miles when I kicked it on and the African runner in me came out. The most beautiful thing was to hear spectators calling out to say "Go Zimbabwe" or "Go radiant" or "You're no longer a triathlete wannabe- you did it!!". The encouraging energy of watchers & races was amazing- I even appreciate the guy who said "keep going cookie!" to me as I slowly cycled along!

-The end- wow. Unbelievable. I have my medal. I'm a triathlete. This is the end of my quarter life crisis. Watch out world because I can do anything I set my mind to!!

Thank you to you all for your encouragement and for being there with me through this journey.

Thank you to all goodness and all life.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

One week to triathlon!!!! How do I feel??? How can you help???

Wow- 6 days to go & I'm still here & haven't abandoned this dream! I've never been this consistent about wanting something. EVER. So I guess I'm growing up. Finally:)

How do I feel with one week to go?
Don't ask me if I'm ready, but I really won't know until race day. I've been training somewhat, I guess!!

I feel:

Here are things I have to do this week:

-Thurs: pick up my wetsuit. I haven't been swimming in a wetsuit yet, so I need to get in the water with it on Thursday & Friday just to get a feel of how some tight neoprene outfit affects my oh so stellar swimming skills!! (not!)

-Thurs: pick up road bike??!!I hope. Ok, so I've only ridden a road bike once and I'm not sure about gears and stuff...Until a few days ago I was going to with the mountain bike that I'm quite comfortable on, but I realized it didn't live up to my standards of class & even though I learned how to ride a bike last year (don't laugh), I need to graduate to more sleek & visually appealing methods of transportation. Ok, so thurs & friday I'll be getting comfortable on the road bike!!!!

-Friday. Attend some dumb meeting for race participants. I hope they feed us...

-Saturday: drop off bike on the Upper West Side transition area. Call mummy & daddy to tell them that I love them and in case something happens in the Hudson or on the Henry Hudson twas nice knowing you.

-Sunday: wake up at 4am
-start swim at 6:20Am (don't worry, you're not expected to be there!!)


- Emotionally: I still have moments when I ask myself what I was thinking when I signed up. I'm positive 99.9% of the time. My goal is to finish the race and be alive at the end.

-Hair: You bet there's a superficial angle to this. Ok, my hair is too poofy for the swim cap and I'd like company when I braid it.

-Food: You all know I love cotton candy and redbull. Keep me away from this & all other similar products in the next week.

-Wetsuit: I need to practice getting in and out of my wetsuit. Maybe just moral support for this part will do.

-Pictures: I need to take pictures in my trisuit, wetsuit, bike & at the finish line to send to my family. It would be good to take some pics on Thursday & Sunday so I need help with this. There goes the superficial again!!!!

-Reading: I'm reading two stories a day from my book on First Triathlons. I don't exactly need help reading, but maybe I do. Sometimes I can't focus. Self diagnosis of ADD!

-motivation: I need to get in 2-3 light workouts this week but spending uber amounts of time in SBR or Jack Rabbit or just talking about the race sounds more fun:)

-See me at the finish line!!

-Or if you can't make the actual race watching, you can track my progress - the system can send you a text when I finish swimming, biking & running (duh, it's a triathlon!!) sign up at Accenture website

I may need help returning the wetsuit & bike to their respective homes after 2pm on Sunday.

I just want to take this moment to say to you all thank you for all your support throughout the year & for being there through my training, training with me, giving me advice. Regardless of how the race goes, the journey has been amazing & if I fail in any way, I've succeeded as a learner and I'll just get up and tri again!!! Of course my dream is the ironman race in 2013. Well. Dream on. I will.!!!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

ten days to tri...Running drills...strength training for my advice...nutrition dilimnas

My body hurts. Ouch. Ok, not that bad. I exaggerate. My right shin is a pain in the ****. My left ankle won't cooperate. I haven't run in a while. Yesterday I ran one PATHETIC mile, then gave up on account of taking care of my body. On Tuesday I took an amazing running clinic. Here's what we did in the class:

Running Drills class:
1. Half mile easy jogging warm- up
2. 3 sets of high knee exercises
3. 3 sets of butt kick exercises
4. 3 sets of four-by-fours. That's 4 high knees followed immediately by 4 buttkicks
5. 3 sets of sprinting drills. (My issue here is that I need to run on my toes more when I sprint)
6. Half mile easy jogging
7. Strength training exercises for runners:
a) Tricep dips. I hate these but hey- gotta work those triceps
b) Push ups. I know it's uncool, but I always swear at trainers when they ask me to do pushups!!! Ok, it is uncool because I remember showing clients pushup form and such and not appreciating it when they complained. Ok, I don't really swear, I just complain out loud, then I go ahead and do the pushups to the very best of my ability.
c) Push up followed by side plank(on hand) - 10 of these
d) Side plank (on hand) with top leg elevation
8. O.7 of a mile as a cooldown jog.

Wow!!! I need to just take a moment to take pride in the strength gains I've made! Today I had to drag myself to my strength circuit while kicking and screaming and pouting & crying. Not a good sight. Maybe not so dramatic. But wow, I gave it my all as usual once I started. My body has made amazing strength gains. If I was on testosterone or male, I would be looking mighty fine right about now. I still look fine, but as a female the cosmetic benefits from my training will take a while to show up...I've made 5 - 15lb increases in strength which is AMAZING. It's been just over a month. If you're checking me out in the weight room, you'll see me diligently marking my exercises in my journal every time and each time I assess to see where I can increase the mass. You will NOT see me with an ipod or other distraction in the weight room. I'll be focusing on my form or checking myself out. Probably the latter! You can probably predict my routine like clockwork. It's amazing & I gotta ride this out until the end of July. I'm so worried about losing strength after July. I won't have a gym membership which is ok, but can someone tell me how can I strengthen my hamstrings outside of a gym- aside from the ball method???

My eating has been both good and bad. I'm not allowed to have peanut butter in the house anymore because I just binge on a bottle in one sitting then I feel ill afterwards. For some reason, I'm allergic to TJ's frozen berries. I get violently ill whenever I drink a smoothie with TJ's frozen berries. I'm allergic to most foods actually. This week I've had more carbohydrates than usual & I've eaten some meals out. My last week needs to be cleaner than this. I need to eat a lot of good good food so that my body is ready, you know.

So today I ran into a triathlon trainer. I had one session with him months ago. I was in the middle of my strength circuit & he was impressed with my form & exercises & said "well done". I felt quite chuffed:):):):):):) A cheesy emotion indeed.
Except when I had to do my last side shoulder raise set, I chickened out- my form felt compromised, I think I need to bring the weight down...I didn't want to look shoddy after the compliment! So I went downstairs to another floor to finish my exercise somewhere else. Silly.

Anyhow, here are some last minute triathlon tips he gave me:

1. Get a good massage two days before your race. (I hope to do this)
2. Soak in epsom salts the night before the race. (I threw away my epsom salts last week:(:( are they cheap to get again???)
3. I expect you to do well and enjoy the race. My my!!! What strong words:):):)

Thursday, July 3, 2008

16 days to NYCTri

I'm supposed to do another OWS tommorow, but I just got cold feet. Not because of the water, but just the idea of going swimming on my own, you know. I would go with friends, but I want to go before 10am and nobody I know will agree to that "early" time...

I've had a good week. I have some new workout buddies & we do indoor spinning together:) It's fabulous!!!

Otherwise, still strength training strong. I did my 10th strength circuit since June 1st. :) I've made much progress & I feel good about that. My swimming is ok. My running. I'm taking it easy because of the ankle still. I'm at 3 miles lately. My goal is to run 6 miles by July 12th. I think I can do it...

I'm definitely a morning workout person. No doubt. Then the rest of the day is mine!

Question for anyone who's done NYC Tri: Is the bike course really hilly?? I read somewhere that it's moderately hilly...that statement disturbs me...Anyone???

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

The trauma of trying on wetsuits


So traumatic. I hate neoprene.

I'll be going with the long sleeved zoot

Sunday, June 29, 2008

My first open water swim!!!!

I did it!

At the beach, in the ocean- swimming away for over an hour & holding my own pretty beautfully without a wetsuit. Wow!! Most people in the group had their wetsuits so they were floating better than I. I'm so friggin proud of myself. Someone bring on the cotton candy because I deserve a treat!!!

I learned a sexy move for going around buoy's. It felt pretty easy swimming in the ocean. Yeah yeah buoyancy. But I also think I've done my time especially when I was swimming intensely earlier this year. Damn is that water salty. I swallowed so much I had to pee AFTER I got out of the water.

I feel confident for my race, especially knowing that I'll be swimming with the current.

I'll be going to the SwimBikeRun store this week...

Friday, June 27, 2008

Getting stronger!!!

So I've been very consistent with my strength training program. The last time I'd had a consistent routine was July 2007, so it feels good to be back on track. It's a total body program and I strength train 2-3 times a week. For the past 4 weeks it's been going strong.

Yesterday I increased my bench press amount by 5lb and I also started to do wide grip bench presses in order to target my chest. Hopefully this will improve my pushups soon.

I woke up today & my chest hurts like bloody hell. My shoulders hurt, everything hurts today. I was going to go swimming at 5:30 am but instead extended my sleep time to 10:30 am. And I still hurt. I need to do at least some yoga today though. I'm not opposed to rest days at all. The sports masseuse will be back in town in two weeks and I'm definitely getting one of those before my race.

Tommorow is my first open water swim. Wish me luck!!!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Do athletes have clear skin?

I've been eating very well and training consistently, but my skin isn't clear. And no, I'm not doing this triathlon in order to attain clear skin, but usually, when I'm on track, my skin isn't acned and rashy. Ugh, I hate this. Cheap dermatologist anyone?

My new routine begins on Friday June 27th. From June 27th to July 20th, my excercise will be stepped up a little. I'll be adding morning yoga, dance & core routines & my exercise will be in the mornings except on Tuesdays when I have sword fighting & kickboxing in the PM. Just a little fun cross training, I guess.

I'm probably renting a wetsuit for this first race...

Monday, June 16, 2008

Outdoor training!!!

As the weeks move on, I'm transitioning to training in the parks & in open water. I'm quite excited about this. My gym membership ends soon , but come January, I might sign up again.

I almost bought a tennis racket yesterday, but decided to wait till after my race to play tennis:):):)

More actual training updates soon.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

3...2...1...Step it up the Clean Crash week!

So tommorow is the start of me taking my training a little more seriously. I've been doing relatively ok. I'm struggling at times though. Today is an off day just so I can get my life in order, do grocery shopping etc. Staying motivated is really really hard for me right now. I do very well with AM workouts, but it's not always possible to leave my house at 5am, you know. I'm trying.

For the next seven days, I'll be eating pretty clean & healthy - eating enough and an lot though, but good stuff, sweating like a pig, sticking to my routine & hopefully enjoying the process...allergies are getting in the way though:(

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

heat trisuit!!

Hooray!!! The store replaced my trisuit. It's now proudly hanging in my room:)

This weekend I had a work retreat at this hotel in NJ. Guess who ate well throughout the stay and went to bed early and woke up at 5Am to do an intense exercise session????!!! Me!

I'm stronger than before. My current philosophy is working out smarter not longer or harder. I'm spending probably an hour in the gym lately, then I leave to live the rest of my life. I feel balanced & healthy because I just fit in what I need to do & do it throroughly instead of wasting mediocre hours.

I'd like to register for the Toronto Island Triathlon in August. This is what my workout has looked like this week:
Sunday: strength training
Monday: swimming & spinning
Tuesday: swimming & running

Oh- you wouldn't believe it! Yesterday was the hottest day of the year so far. And guess who went to Bikram Yoga class just to add to the misery! Me!!! Crazy or hardcore? Does it matter??? I don't know how many liters of water I drank yesterday. Definitely enough!

If you're a triathlete in training too & you have a blog, leave a comment- would love to tap into more online tri support through reading blogs & such.

Friday, June 6, 2008

my first triathlon...tri tantrums

Thursday am I find myself at the gym at 5:30am in my brand new Danskin tri suit.

I did my first triathlon ever!!! I swam for 30 minutes, then cycled for 30 minutes, then ran for 30 minutes- one after the other & all in the same trisuit! It was awesome.

How do I feel about my first tri? Here are my numbered thoughts.(How organized am I!!)

1. Swimming with the tri-suit, I felt heavy and fat at first, then by the end it was better.

2. The tri-suit does improve my bouyancy so I'm not as concerned about drowining.

3. My stroke was good towards the end of my swim session. In terms of endurance, I just need to keep on swimming. I can feel my heart struggling to get stronger

4. The transition from swimming to cycling(indoor) was ok- it was just rather wet because I kept my trisuit on.

5. When I got off the bike and onto the treadmill, my legs felt like rubber. So friggin strange. Maybe that's why they call it the brick transition. I actually started out by walking, then went into my jog. I took it easy with slow increments in speed and my final speed was just the ten minute mile. I'm content with that because this is my first week getting back into running.

6. Afterwards I felt such wonderful accomplishment. I was a ball of sweat. Bathing in endorphins. Absolutely amazing.

7. I'm a triathlete!!!!


3am the next morning I wake up and look at my trisuit. I notice a little defect. I'm freaking out. Yes- tantrum style. Internally I guess. I bought this from my all time favorite fitness store & it's an investment so I'm upset. I have to wait until the AM to call the company. Oh well. That's life. I must calm down & grow up.

I don't know why I'm wide awake so early. My sleep patterns are terrible. I do try awefully hard but I'm an early early early morning person.

Here's to a good week of training!!

I've been eating well & when I don't eat well, I just plan on improving the next time. I'm not eating meat(except fish) until after my triathlon. Yesterday I did exceptionally well with my eating habits. Free food was available all day at work, but because it was all bagels and pizza and cake, I brought my own lunch and breakfast- soup, blueberries, yogurt & tons of goodness:):):) Go me!!! Free food doesn't entice me anymore- what has happened to me???

Will post more update this weekend.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

mid week 1 update- I bought a tri-suit

My body hurts from running. My allergies are flaring & I'm a non-believer in medicating. Running is hard. I am sleeping way too much. I hate when my hamstring cramps. I can't imagine being able to swim for a mile. Morning workouts are hard to do before I go to work. Evening workouts are hard to do after work. I think I'll workout in my sleep.

The theme of this training week is "What was I thinking when I signed up for the triathlon?!"

I bought my tri-suit from Danskin yesterday! I need to get a wetsuit soon too.

Need to find some sprint & olympic distance triathlons to do in Canada. Any insight on this is much appreciated:)

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Training Day 1

So y'all know I haven't been running since the Turkey Trot race in November due to my injury.

Anyhow, today I was supposed to take 7am yoga, but shock horror, I overslept. 8:30 am a text message from my roommate wakes me up. "Would you like to go running?"

dum dum dum...

Ok, I NEVER say no to someone wanting to sweat with me so I find my dusty running gear and hear this!

I can still run!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ok, minus the misery I feel while doing it (this used to be bliss for me...), I can do it! We ran 2.5 miles - running the whole way! Well- he is 6 ft 3 & uber athletic, I am 5 ft 2 & pseudo athletic so I'm sure it was more like a walk for him!! I came back drenched in liquid, but still going strong! Wow.

Pace needs to improve majorly, but I'm more concerned with endurance. I need to build back the kind of endurance that can run for 6 miles and still feel like running for 6 more miles after. I'm also good at running with other people so I'm going to start enlisting everyone I know to come running with me any chance I get, even at work.

No pain in ankle at all. For that I am grateful. I think the yoga & taking it easy has helped, as well as the goodness that comes from the universe & other powers.

I'll be posting my training updates & plan once I have it. I'll be updating blog a lot. I need so much encouragement now more than ever. Triathlete Wannabe, Triathlete Gonnabe.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Going strong... except...

I need to step up the swimming and begin to run. I need to get back to strength training . My routine will include those things from June 1st...Right now I'm doing a lot of cross training- I've been spinning twice in the Am before work this morning. I went to sword class for the third week in a row. I also went to kick boxing for the third week in a row. I love routine & consistency. It's orgasmic.

I'm regaining that athlete feeling. Tummy getting flatter. Eating well.

Anyone who can help me answer this question- are bananas good for me?

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Back in the groove!!!

Monday - Saturday here is what I did:
Bootcamp class on thurs- it kicked my butt, but it's totally what I need!
Sword fighting class on Tues!
Kickboxing on Tues!
Spinning on Wednesday
Total body class on Monday
Swimming on Monday
Session with Trainer on Saturday
Dance class on Saturday

Some yoga throughout the week.

The session with the trainer was intense- he had me working on these glide like objects changing my centers of gravity to work my inner thighs mostly because I have thunderous thighs. He made me do running drills on the stairs, push ups, cruches with the ball- feet holding the ball up & crunching up to the ball. I'm missing speedball class again today:(:(:(

I might check out another branch of my gym this week because I hear they give you free workout clothes and all!!

I clearly did start out slow, but still worked hard.

I'm taking today off to get my life in order so I can focus on organized exercise this week without. Laundry's all done just trying to tie up some loose bits. I will kick even more butt this week!

Sunday, May 4, 2008

2.5 months to go!!!!

I haven't exercised in almost a month due to bla bla bla.

A few days ago I had my swimming evaluated. The verdict was that I have perfect stroke mechanics but I need to loosen up in the water...

not bad, right? The same can be said about my boxing skills. Always very stiff.

More updates soon...I'm getting back into it- took yoga the other day. I'm cleaning my house and will be hittin' up the spinning...

Monday, April 14, 2008

Upcoming 8 week training program...

During May & June I'll be embarking on an intense training period as the triathlon date fast approaches. I'm excited about that.

During the next two weeks I'm not going to be at the gym, but rather I'll take time out to make peace with my body, maybe do a few body weight excercises. I'll be out of the country mostly & formal exercise won't be accessible to me in the same way. I look forward to May & June. I'll also start taking a dance class in a few weeks & I'm excited about that.

Otherwise, I'll be trying to update even before the 8 week training program beginz...Thank you all for your support!

Saturday, April 5, 2008

what to do when you have no time to exercise???

For the past week I've exercised twice. Been working till late. I thought I was gonna lose my mind, but I made it. My regular fitness routine starts tommorow. It's been hard, but I had a chance to reflect in really intense & sometimes self destructive ways.

The good thing is I'm back!!! & here to stay:):)

Monday, March 24, 2008

Spring update

Been doing ok. Taking rest time & sweating in healthy amounts & eating in healthy amounts.

I love my gym. I hate my job.

Nothing is new.

I want to write about my Triathlon bootcamp class that I took last Tuesday at the a*# crack of darn, but I really am too lazy to type.

I'm here.

I'm in a bit of a foul mood because I was looking forward to my training session today, but my trainer bailed at the last minute. Jerk. An emergency came up & I have to reschedule. The problem is that I won't have a free hour to spare for a few more weeks. At least not for that. I have plenty of tie for sillier things.

The strangest thing- people are super nice to me here at my new gym. I like it. I have made some awesome acquaintances & I'm already a groupie in this hot trainer's exercise classes. I mean I attend EVERY class the trainer teaches. Obsession much??!! No. Dedication to athleticism.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Getting back into the groove...

of exercise...after 3 rocky weeks.

Tommorow is my slow exercise day. Today I took three awesome classes & now I'm relaxing before I take my Yoga Basics class. My first real yoga class!!!!

Tommorow is an easy light day exercise wise.

I feel obese & that's a real issue for me:( It's hard to talk about this & have people tell me that I'm not fat, because honestly it doesn't help to hear such "encouragement". I love my body, but I also need to nurture it into the changes that it's going through.

In two weeks my life will be turned topsy turvy. Only for 10 days though. My exercise schedule will be stolen from me because I'll be working from 8Am - 8pm during that time period:( Next week is a 3 day weekend & for sure I will be swimming & spinnin' like a mad woman to make up for it.

On a not-so-good note, my ankle injury is rearing it's nasty head lately. Running is out of the question & I have no idea how I'll make it to the triathlon if I can't run. I have been walking on the treadmill though. The fact is I can't give up walking or else I wouldn't be able to get anywhere. I'm resting a lot though.

Monday, March 10, 2008

State of the art...

I'm a snob when it comes to the finer things in life...

I'm cancelling my gym memberships & yoga membership so that I can afford the fancy gym! I actually save quite a bit this way.
Ever since I made that decision, I can breathe easier & I feel happy. I start my exercise there today. I'm beginning a 6 week cross training routine. Then a break. Then an 8 week Olympic triathlon workout routine. then tapering...then triathlon!!!!! Wow!

I met a triathlete wannabe this weekend. Good to know I'm not alone!

I'm so glad I have this blog. I appreciate the advice & encouragement others leave for me & the experiences others share on their blogs.

I did get a new swim suit 3 weeks ago & I followed the advice of a blog reader who told me where to go for expert advice. Hooray! I ended up getting a TYR diamond back. Supposedly chlorine resistant. Either way, this is the last swimsuit I buy before I buy my trisuit in June:):):):):):):):)

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

After my 2 week exercise hiatus...

On Saturday I returned to my lovely world of sweat...I certainly jumpstarted it.

You are not going to believe this, but I made strength gains just from taking time off!! I'm benching 10lb more. I'm using 3 lb more weight in my sculpt class...
It's quite exciting really.

In yoga class though, I seem to have deteriorated:( But I'll get it back in a few days...patience.

On Sunday, DOMS was killing me & yoga class was almost impossible to get through, but I made it.

Something great happened at Spin class on Sunday. This woman I don't know came up to me after class & said,
"You have such perfect form & I'm always looking at you to figure out how to fix my own form"
Wow!!! It was so good to hear. I'm always working on my form. Good form sometimes takes time.

For those of you that know position 2? I always engage my core & the rest of my body is still & balanced except for my legs that are can balance a pot of water on my head & it wouldn't fall...I think that's why the woman commented on my form...I love second position. Great for quads.

My push up form is pathetic- better now, but still not good enough at all for me. But it takes constant practice & strengthening of core, chest & tricep to get to the absolute perfect form. A lot of people can crank out pushups with bad form & they don't even know it...Very bad for the lower back to abandon form like that...

I'm back in sweatville!

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Vancouver musings...Another Transformative month ahead...

I have done NO exercising for two weeks. I feel lousy. While in Vancouver, I rode around "my" bike in Richmond & around the Pacific sea wall it was amazingly beautiful!!

Vancouver is the cleanest city I've ever been to. Also the healthiest city. It seems like the yogic lifestyle was prevalent almost everywhere I went. "Everyone" runs outside even in the winter. People take walks in central park & rent bikes all the time. I've never seen so many bike rental stores in one place!! I'm hoping that I can spend my summer working & exercising outside there. Wow- that would be bliss. And I thought central park was the be all and end all...Stanley Park, here I come!!

March 1st begins my fitness routine again. I can't wait to get back into my groove. This month I am mostly focusing on the other parts of health- cooking my own meals instead of store bought things. One of my goals is to cook every week for the week ahead and to eat something ever 3 hours or so. It may be a challenge, but it will be better for my metabolism in the long run and a cheaper way to live.

I will also be starting an 8 session dance class next week. It's a sensual African dance class. I will tell you more about it once I actually start! I can't wait to start swimming again! The March madness begins on Saturday the 1st of March:) February was awesome! Please stay with me through my journeys.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Living & discovering Yoga...

This morning I was up at 5am. At 6:30Aam I was in bed deciding whether or not to go to the 7Am yoga class...Then 10 minutes later, there was was outside the studio after a train ride, only to find out that the 7Am class was cancelled because of a mistake with building keys. There were 6 of us waiting out in the cold pretty bummed out about the fact that here we were up & about on a Saturday night, ready to medidate, or should I say, sweat!

Anyhow, it turned out to be quite an adventure...Two of the women there had been practicing at this studio for over 4 years and they began to gossip about different teachers...there seem to be a few types....

-the ones who are so strict & make you do every posture exactly the way the founder prescribes it, even though you may have injuries

-the ones who learn your name & acknowledge all your little progresses & help you modify asanas sensibly

-the ones who keep the room at 150degrees F & end up getting fired because people are burning up...

So far in my experience with fitness professionals & yoga instructors, I find that I'm extremely sensitive to negative energies. I've had two personal trainers & one of them is super hardcore & strict in an old school way but with little to be said about the emotional transformation & caring piece. But I do appreciate the END result...My other trainer was gifted in unconventional ways- his training sessions never included cardiovascular components. He would show me 3-4 excercises that involved core, balance & strength challenge all in one. The excercises were crafted by him & very hard, but super transformative for my body. We would also have very meaningful discussions & he was very profession, very personable & never got huggy or friendly in suspicious ways with clients. Flirting wasn't part of his image. He felt like a brother or father figure to me. I find that many personal trainers market themselves through flirting & I find that so unprofessional. Anyhow, it works though as a money making tool...
My experience with Bi.kram. instructors hasn't been too traumatic. I don't like the ones that don't learn the students' names. It's important to me that the instructor has excellent command of the english language...
I had one negative experience...I am happy with the progress that I've made with my supta vidrasana pose...but depending on the energies in and outside me, I don't always fully go into the posture. Even when I do go into it, my feet can't go straight back without pain. I also have very interesting shaped feet, so I may never be able to straighten the feet safely in this posture. That said, last week, one teacher was asking me to try to fix the feet. I told her that it hurt if I did so. Then she went on to tell me how important it was to try. I told her I tried every day & that I wasn't going to hurt myself in the process. Then she went on about how I need to try harder & how I was still new to yoga & bla bla bla. Yogic energy or not, I completely ignored her advice because it was coming from the control freak side of her- I wanted to beat her up. I don't appreciate anyone telling me what to do when it's not laced with love. I would NEVER do something that I wasn't comfortable with. I work hard in all my fitness & yoga endeavours & I'm one that knows to keep on trying, trying trying, until one day the change happens. However, it's only for me, not about any teacher or anyone else...

That said...Back to the cancelled class story...
So it's 7Am & we're all pretty upset that the class is cancelled. Two of the women were willing to do anything to find another class in a different Manhattan neighborhood. I was drawn to the idea of going back to bed, but I needed to be in Chelsea for my jumprope class at 10am, so the women were able to persuade me to come with them to a studio on the Upper Side. It was a little trek to get there but boy was it worth it!!! This studio is like a 5 star B.ik.ram. Yoga studio!! Fancy, two studios, amazingly well kept. I was blown away!!!I like my regular studion, but this one is quite something, I must say...200% more fancy, which I'm all about. I guess what can you expect from snotty Upper. Side??!!! I got to know two wonderful women along the way, experience this gorgeous facility & a brand new positive energy. I bought mat cleaner & yinyang earrings at the studio. Don't ask me how I was able to make my 10am chelsea class, but I was able to run from one end of Manhattan to the other in 15 minutes- using public transportation. I love this city!!

So here I am wondering around Union Square looking for Sports...I've been there a few times, but never on my own, so given my nonexistent sense of direction, I was getting lost...Here are the amazing things that happened to me this afternoon:

1. I stumbled upon the Union Square Bikram studio - it's gorgeous in there!! I didn't take a class, but I'm considering checking it out. Wow is all I had to say when I walked in there...

2. I stumbled across a huge yoga center called WOWWWW is all I can say. I walked in & I could feel my life changing forever. I spent time picking this staff member's brain about the center & what I could get out of it. They have a cafe in there & they gave me free food. All I felt was love & peace in there. I know I'm being extreme & cheesy. I will return to that place when the time is ripe.

3. I spent hours at P sports trying to find a bathing suit that was polyester(more resistant to chlorine), and that fit me, & whose style was acceptable in my eyes. Bathing suits can be way too expensive. You can find good deals online though...Anyhow, of course I wound up looking for a new workout outfit. Unsuccessfully.

4. Then I walked to J.ack Rab. & ended up buying a TYR swimsuit! Black & classy. Somewhat me.

5. I bought 5 amazing reads...
-The Joy of Partner Yoga (i've been wanting to do this for a long long time now & hopefully will find some friends to do partner yoga with)
-Bi.kram's Beginning Yoga class (I know I'm a sucker, but I just thought I should own this!)
-Jivamuk.ti Yoga (I can't wait to delve into this.
-The triathlete magazine
-Canada guide book

I've been transforming in many amazing ways, but the best is yet to come. A new 30 day cycle begins for me on February 25th. Meanwhile, I will continue to update you on my adventures. Thank you for being a part of this, virtually.

Friday, February 15, 2008

My 30 Day Bikram Yoga Challenge...

Is complete!! I am so amazed & extremely proud of me!

It has been an amazing month of intense training, wonderful eating & self reflection. I look fabulous, my clothes fit better. I've been eating very well. I feel confident in my body. I feel wonderful when I dance.

The biggest accomplishments during this past month have been non physical. I have taken care of business- things that I postponed doing for YEARS, I took care of. I have a to-do list posted on my wall every week and I ALWAYS accomplish what I should. I am very disciplined in my personal life & taking care of business. I am better at returning calls. I know what I want out of life and I'm ready to do what it takes.

I didn't get to write as much as I hoped. I took some rest days & felt alright about it. Last night I even had chocolate and that too was alright!

I know you're interested in the physical accomplishments:
-I am slimmer & more toned
-I can fit into clothes haven't worn in a while
-I can do pushups with 200% ease than I could/couldn't in January
-I can excercise for 15 minutes & break a sweat that equates to a 1hr workout.
-I am swimming 40 laps now!!!
-My eagle pose has improved

I'm an athlete.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

3 days to go!!!!

Yesterday I took two yoga classes in a row! Today I took a class at 7Am, then another one at 7pm. Pretty fabulous! I double up today so that on Thursday (valentine's day), I won't have to do any excercise, but I also won't have to feel guilty about it!

I feel good:)

Today I did't swim & I didn't go to the bootcamp class. I'm learning how to take little rests in between so that I don't burn out.

Otherwise, I'm flying!!!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Day 24...6 days to go!

I'm going strong!!! I had 2 rest days this week but I'm still on schedule!

My pushups are 200% improved from how pathetic they were 3 weeks ago!!! You wouldn't believe it!! I haven't weighed myself since Feb '07 but I feel very light...

Damn thunderthighs still exist, but I like the way I look in a bathing suit...

Yesterday my swimming partner & I saw this professional swimmer doing his freestyle- it was AMAZING- his strokes are long & powerful- it takes him 4 strokes to do a lap, yet it takes me 400 strokes to swim the same lap. I'm pathetic. I do acknowledge my little progresses though. I'm up to 40 laps a day (4 days a week or something). woohooo...


Saturday, February 2, 2008

Is it yogic to...

fantasize have sexual fantasies during yoga postures in class???

I woke up quite ill today, but I'm trying to fight it so desperately because I can't afford to miss work...I tried to sweat it out. I also drank the Cold Warrior tonic from JG on 72nd street.

Otherwise I'm feeling good & flying high athletically.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

A part of the triathlon community...

Yesterday I attended a meeting for people who are training for NYC Tri. It was held at anonymous high end health club in Manhattan. Anyhow- it always feel good to be adressed as an athlete & get to be surrounded by other triathletes. I ran into an acquaintance & it's good to know that I'm not the only one attempting this for the first time. Hooray for good training & July 20th & post July 20th parties celebrating this goal!!!

Full time athlete...Help me with my research:

That's one of the things I dream of being...

Anyhow on a more serious note...

Feb. 17th, I'm flying to Vancouver, BC. Just for a few days, but I'd like to check out their high end health clubs/training facilities & I'm looking for suggestions.

More importantly, I'm also researching high end health clubs/training facilities in Toronto.

Most importantly, I'd like to complete a few tris in Canada this year- any suggestions of good events would be welcome.

I am desperately seeking advice on all of the above.

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Day 12 of the madness & food updates...Also my first real yoga class...

I'm flying!!! I feel fabulous. I had two rest days during this past week. I have been eating fabulously & living still. I ate wonderful food at my friend's dinner party-:) Yay home-made cookies & sorbet. I went out for dinner on Friday nite at the Republic. I was happy to find delicious options that felt good to eat...I am still eating massive amounts, which is good. I eat tons of veggies, lots & lots of chicken, beans,nuts, raisins etc... I'm also eating a lot of fruit- blueberries, peaches, nectarines. Today I treated myself to a Juice smoothie. Delish.

I feel fit. My pushups show a slight improvement, but still need a lot of work. The past two days, swimming has been ridiculously easy & pleasant. I felt like a fish. I'm adding 10 more laps to my routine & also now working on drills. I feel like I can swim. I just don't know how to tread water- how ridiculous is that....I can tread, but only for a minute(barely)- I can't imagine treading for longer than that...I'm staying away from back stroke & breaststroke for a while. My freestyle is rocking & I need to hone that & be efficient. I keep wondering- how does one swim in a straight line in the ocean? With hundreds of other people in the water???

Speaking of firsts- I took my first real yoga class yesterday!! Vinyasa Yoga. About 10 minutes into the class I realized I had signed up for 90 minutes of madness- plus it was an advanced class. I am still hung up on the foreign names used for the postures & the ommm chanting, but I will try to be open minded & overlook that. I can pretend to be an ignorant closeminded person at times. I just need a really positive introduction to yoga. This class wasn't a positive introduction to yoga. It was advanced- everyone could do head stands except me- everyone knew what do to & the instructor barely demonstrated anything. The good thing is that because I'd taken Bikram & because a lot of my friends are yogis, I'm familiar with a few postures- enough to get me by. I know how to get in & out of the asanas. However, I know I know nothing & that I have much to learn. I am looking to hire two people:

1) Wanted: Someone to teach me how to do a head stand safely & effortlessly & other cool postures like lotus. This is a 6 month job. I'll pay in food/kindness. Bonus pay in 5 yrs. Payable at Ironman Kona 2013.

2) Wanted: Someone to turn me into a fish that can swim backstroke & tread water effortlessly & swim for miles & miles & miles. This is a 6 month contract also. I'll pay in hugs. Bonus pay in 5 yrs. Payable at Ironman Kona 2013.

The bonus pay for both occupations will come in the form of fame for you when I become an ironwoman in 5 years!!! I'll attribute my success to you (part of it anyway), dear imaginary trainer.

Am I kidding? Way too much adrenaline & endorphin in me!

My dream is to be a full time athlete. I'm looking for a soccer league for the summer. I hate my present occupation. The funniest thing- last week I was reading my horoscope & it talked about the perfect profession for my zodiac sign- Leo as being a personal trainer! It was exciting to read that because I already figured out last year that working in some shape or form in the fitness & health industry is my calling. I already have my certification. But I'm not ready to make a career switch yet- many obstacles. I'm not ready to be there yet & I'm working on me. I don't want to do it for money- just because I enjoy it...I want to teach group excercise classes mostly & get my spinning cert...Need to take the CanFitPro test. Today I took a sports conditioning class & I used to take this class once a week during the summer till I fell off the bandwagon. Anyhow, it was great because after 5 months of absence, I show up to the class & it's still the same students taking it- they all look the same & all, but the instructor was someone new- it turned out to be a trainer that I used to work with at the gym. So there was definitely no slacking off for me in that class! It was good though to see someone who knew me. Will definitely go back next week. I haven't excercised at the gym I used to work at in 6 months - I definitely need to go back. It's hard to work out there because it just becomes a huge social scene of people wanting to talk to me & telling me that they miss me & that I should come back to work & bla bla bla.

Otherwise I'm soaring. I pray that I keep up this momentum through Feb 16th. Or should I say...forever.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Week 2 report & update on my 30 day Challenge

Today is Day 7 of my 30 day challenge.

The 30 Day challenge is a countdown until Feb 15th, my next week vacation from work. Here is what I have to accomplish in 30 days:

-30 hot hatha yoga classes aka, the dreaded word...Bikram
-20 Spinning Classes
-12 Strength Training sessions
-20 Swimming sessions
-4 Books Read
-4 Chapters/poems written
-4 Rest days (at least)
-Continue to eat well

If I accomplish all this, here is my reward:
1. A new bathing suit
2. A new hairdo
3. Tattoo
4. Brazilian Wax, Total body wax & Brow threading

So far I have 3 Spins, 3 Strength training sessions, 5 swims, 6 yoga sessions.


C'mon a little encouragement from you won't hurt!

Monday, January 14, 2008

Help- the chlorine ate up my bathing suit:(:(:(

To be honest I haven't been that good with looking after my bathing suit.

But I just want to scream, I'm annoyed about this!! It's deteriorating really fast lately. Probably a combination of the chlorine & the fact that my room is 100 degrees warm.

Now I'm on the hunt for a really good swim suit brand that won't get eaten up quickly. I'll pay whatever & I promise to look after it better. My last suit was/is N.ike. Please offer suggestions of good brands & good places to shop. Don't say Mac.ys. or Mo's. Until then I might just be caught indoor skinny dipping. Save me. Thank you.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Week 1 Report!

I raise a glass of water to the past week! I'm soarin & flyin!

Here are the good things about the past week:
Consistent excercise
close to 90 laps total
Sweated every day!!
Ate well!

The great thing about this week was the fact that I got to excercise with part of my fitness posse of friends:) The second greatest thing was Wednesday night's total body conditioning class- the instructor was awesome- the moves were unique & effective so on Saturday, I took another class with the same instructor- Cardio Jump Rope. Crazzzzyyy sweating & fun! Then trying to run over to Union Sq to make a spinning class that was full by the time I got there...darn:(:(

Another awesome thing about the week was Monday night's boxing class. Spose to be an indoor class & we showed up & the dude makes us run along CPW & do lunges & pushups bootcamp style at 9pm at unexpected, but hey- I'm love that stuff to be honest though I may be cursing at the instructor the whole class, inside, I love a challenge.

Sad notes:
I almost cried when I realized that I'm benching 10lb less than I could in July 2007. Simply because I haven't been using my pecs much:(:( Gotta build back up to that.

Reflective notes:
I was blessed with gigantic thunder thighs which always appear big to me but not so big in photos. Today I took part in the no pants subway ride & the photos of me from that actually show my thighs to be toned. A camera never lies! I guess I'm not obese after all. Hooray!

Next goal: keep it up, self!!!! More reports in 3...2...1....

Thursday, January 10, 2008

6 week goals...

I'm off to a fabulous start.

Aside from trying to fit in some fun classes- boxing & all...and going out dancing, here is my goal for the next 6 weeks.

Each week my training will consist of the following:
-5 swim sessions: Fast/Slow intervals Skill drills. 30 mins
-4 spin classes (minimum)
-3 strength conditioning sessions

I'm trying to find a way to fit in Bikram Yoga, but I probably won't be able to because of time constraints. It's also a cost issue. However it's worth it- completing the 30 day challege would rock my world.

I've been eating so well lately. I'm hungrier though so I do end up eating later than I really should.

Otherwise I'm flying!

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Jumpstartin' my year!

On the first of January I attended a fitness day at this facility on the Upper West Side. A huge fitness fair with some rocking classes, among which was a class on Chi Running!

If you remember I purchased a book about Chi Running several months ago. Running is a basic motion, but many times, the ways in which we run are strenuous on our bodies & accelerate injury & stress to the joints. Using some of the principles of Tai Chi, this form of running drastically reduces or eliminates injury. The main things I got out of the class are
-keeping the core engages while running
-propeling the arms backwards & using the rear delt

I still need to read the book a little more, but even with just these two concepts, running felt good. I was supposed to run the NYE race in Central Park but I decided it wasn't a good idea because it might invite reinjury. I'll run again in the spring.

I now have access to an good sized pool for my training. I have a training/fitness partner. One consistent training partner & two others that exist in spirit. Beginning on Monday I have a one- week jumpstart program. I'll also be starting a 5 week triathlon training program that is swim intensive. Details on all this coming right up...