yoga {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}
Jogging it down: my week in review {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}

I moved my body regularly this week! Much of last week into the weekend we were dog sitting at a friend’s house, completely throwing off any semblance of routine I had started to build. But we had a dog for almost 5 days and free laundry. This week I was determined to manage several good workouts. I succeeded, thank you.

The breakdown:

Monday

Treadmill speed workout: 4.0 miles, 40:35 (10:10 pace)
Lest the 10:00 pace fool you, this is a serious workout (although, that’s still a pretty quick pace for me, I can’t lie). Of the 4 miles, 2 are the long warm up and cool down for some steady run work, and 2 are the sprint intervals. After a few weeks of doing this and similar workouts, I can definitely say my legs are feeling more comfortable with a speedier stride. Hopefully I’ll see that translate to longer runs come spring!

Strength: 30 reps each lat pulls, bent rows, seated presses, squats, lunges and abs work in plank. I switch the weight every 10 reps.

Tuesday

Yoga, 1:00:00
A little sore all over and needing a good, slow, yoga workout. Usually I have a goal each time I come to the mat; work on the warrior series, or hip openers or upper body strength. Today I spent a lot of time opening my back. I really want to catch my feet in King Pigeon II and Lord of the Dance poses; after months of working toward it, I’m so close.

And it happened:

yoga {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}

yoga {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}

I cannot express how proud I am! It was very a specific goal; not simply to strengthen my back in regular yoga, but to complete these two postures. And I did it!

Wednesday

Light yoga, ~30:00
Wednesday’s are traditionally a day off for me, but I was in the mood for some light yoga while watching TV. I stretched out and warmed up enough to again reach my feet in king pigeon II – I had to prove it wasn’t a one time thing!

Thursday

Treadmill hill workout: 1.81 miles, 25:00 (13:57 pace)
I brought someone with me today! Jon hit the weights, row machine and some treadmill time when I finished. I worked my ass – literally – on a hill workout. The last time I did this 25:00 set (removing Set 4 from the workout I posted this week), I completed 1.74 miles. That extra little .05 I eked out at the end feels like a ton. Which is good because I had to slow to a fast walk for a few minutes of the highest incline sets. You win some, you lose some I guess.

• Strength: 30 reps each lat pulls, bent rows, seated presses, squats, lunges and abs work in plank. I switch the weight every 10 reps.

running {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}

Today will be an evening off and tomorrow I will sleeeeep in. I’d like to fit a longer run tomorrow but I won’t be disappointed if I get into other Saturday things and it doesn’t happen. Then Sunday is Super Bowl time!! Looking forward to a party with new friends.

P.S. Last chance for the New Year discount! I can take on 2 or 3 more projects. Go here.

New year, new blog. {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com LDStephanoff.com}

 

Any success or struggles in this week’s workouts?
Who are you cheering for in the Super Bowl: Denver, Seattle or commercials?


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{Piloting Paper Airplanes} treadmill boredom

If you’ve spent more than 3.72 minutes on a treadmill, you know the struggle. Those 3.72 minutes feel like ages. If you like to read (how?? My eyes can’t focus on the words!) or have a TV, count your blessings. Here are some tips for the rest of us resigned to staring at the display or a wall for all those miles.

1. Watch the calories instead of the miles.

Because honestly, it’s impossible not to watch the display.

I’m so serious. At least on mine, I switch the display from distance & total time to show avg. pace & current pace. This also switches to calories burned. Now I know that calorie counts on fitness machines aren’t accurate but let me tell you: I am sure as hell not slowing down before I get to that next 50 or 100 calorie mark.

Watching those flaming calories add up is far more motivating than begging the mile decimals to move faster. Plus, I don’t mind watching that avg. pace metric to see if I can nudge it down.

2. Cover the display.

Sometimes I imagine there are runners next to me.

I’m not sold on this simple one. It makes me more anxious not to know. But that fancy machine tells me my exact pace and I know how much farther I have to go… so I also know about how much longer I have. I’ll keep the display covered until “x” number of songs have finished, estimating that each song is about 3-4 minutes. Yes, that’s some math on the treadmill. It’s a mental challenge more than anything.

3. Step off for strength.

Lately I’ve used this for longer runs. Six treadmill miles might as well be 16. Pause the machine at every mile and step off for some squats, lunges, plank, fill-in-the-blank. As you start again in time, this is a great way to push through each mile and break up the run.

4. Switch up the workout.

Here’s the cherry on the ice cream that is this post. The treadmill is perfect – perfect I say – for interval workouts that eradicate the monotony. I’ve scoured Pinterest for treadmill workouts, experimented and adjusted (I’m sorry, the workouts with 20 lines of intervals are hard to follow while running. And most speed workouts are way to fast for me), and am finally happy with these.

Treadmill hill workout {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}

↑ This kiiilllssss me. I’m determined to use my treadmill winter running to improve my hills. Excuse me, 12% incline? Oh yes. It hurts. I huff and gasp and curse the paper that says I have to do it. Talk about working the hips and bum. Then I 100% enjoy the leg stretcher of Set 4. And by the way, upping that incline burns more than a few extra calories. Workout success.

Treadmill speed workout {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}

I have fun on sets 1 and 2. Solid speed for me, fair amount of work, nice “wind” in my face… but not dying yet. Sets 3 and 4 are nearly dying; 15 seconds on the side rail is the only savior. Still, it feels great to full-out RUN! With a longer warm up and cool down, I usually finish this around 4 miles. Perfect mid-week workout.

 

How do you stay motivated during treadmill runs?


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{PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}

I’m scouting out a spring 1/2 marathon. I think I’ve decided on one (stay tuned) and I’m way motivated to run. Got a fair amount of work to do building up my mileage again, but I’ve kept a moderately acceptable base and I’m stronger all around thanks to regular yoga this winter.

Ready to run!

My motivation this week is about work. Seeing a goal and working to meet it – even if that goal is a piece of pie! Or brownie, in my case. Or beer/glass of wine. Hey, my treat goals are some of the most important. Within reason, of course. *wink wink*

Who else has a spring race on the calendar?
What goals are you working toward right now?


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Last week I wrote on the equipment to start a regular yoga practice at home. Today I’m sharing some video resources. Sometimes I prefer to put on some music and do my own sequences, other times I just want to follow an instructor. Here are some favorites!

1. Erin Motz

Erin rules. She is my absolute favorite for online instruction. Erin is all about making yoga accessible to everyone. “You won’t hear much Sanskrit but you’ll probably get plenty of corny jokes, lots of core work, and sweet, delicious deep stretches,” the Florida-based teacher wrote on her website about her studio classes.

Start with this playlist of her 30-day challenge she did for DoYouYoga.com – also a fantastic resource with lots of trainers, articles, how-to’s and videos. I prefer selecting the videos in this way; I tend to skip around and choose 2 – 4 of them. Together I’ve got a good length session. There’s a new 10 day ab challenge as well.

Here is her Bad Yogi YouTube channel as well. {Bad Yogi ™ n. 1 a renegade yogi who indulges in the occasional burger, has never been to a shakti dance class, and admits to not always knowing their asana from their elbow. Usage: you are one bag yogi, and damn, we like you.} See… this is why I like Erin.

P.S. Follow her on Instagram. She’s one of my faves there as well.


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2. Bex Borucki

Bex is huge. Like, crazy big. Her YouTube channel is so packed now – and her website is just as tough to find stuff – so I’ll help you out and link my favorites.

• First, the Slim By Summer series with Yulady (also a fabulous Instagram yogi, along with her husband). The series is 7 videos about 15 minutes each and they’re designed to use together for a full class. I especially like that Yulady leads the class, so you can watch her make some adjustments to Bex that help us home yogis adjust at home.

• Second, the “How to” series of five postures – some you’ll find in nearly every yoga class plus a couple balances for good measure.

• Third, my #1 reason for enjoying Bex are her meditation videos. Most are just 4 – 5 minutes. For people new to meditation, or who picture meditation as lots of chanting and strange words, this is a great way to start.

P.S. I really like Bex, but I do feel the need for a slight disclaimer. Recently I’ve noticed her talking more about losing weight or getting a flat belly and the like. I’m pretty sensitive to language like that and much prefer body-empowering language. One of the best aspects of yoga is learning to understand and appreciate what your body can do now and then how it can grow deeper into the practice.


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3. Sima Tamaddon

Admittedly I’m new to Sima, but I adore her thus far. She’s super cute and tough as nails. Sima got into yoga after a car accident that left her right leg with limited mobility. Now, not only did she leave a finance career behind to teach yoga, but she’s long-distance runner! Plus… you guys… she lives in the D.C. area. Sima might be my new best friend and just doesn’t know it yet. 🙂

Try her 7 minutes with Sima videos. They’re short and specific; great for something quick or as add-on’s to your practice that day. She posts them once a month so there’s not too many yet. I’m excited to see more of Sima!


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4. Yoga Journal

There are two parts to this one. First, Yoga Journal on YouTube. Some videos are very simple and some are high quality with an instructor leading a student. The Standing Hip Openers with Baron Baptiste is a fave. Work the hips while working on balance with the fabulous Mr. Baptiste… score.

P.S. Baron Baptiste is a yoga rock star. There aren’t a ton of class videos from him, but the Baptiste Yoga YouTube channel has a few. His meditations are wonderful as well. Someday I hope to take a class with him! If you’re curious, read more about Baron and the Baptiste Power Yoga Institute.

Anyway, the other Yoga Journal resource is the website. In particular I like the Poses Index – which is browse-able by category instead of a long list of Sanskrit words that I’ll look at for … maybe… a minute. I’ve learned and improved a lot of postures using this tool. By the way, Yoga Journal is a magazine. I don’t subscribe, but I’ve thought about it. Anyone read it and really enjoy it?


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5. My Yoga Pro

I know I said 4 resources so disclaimer here: this one isn’t free. But I am SUPER DUPER excited about it and just had to share. Remember Erin Motz from the top? And remember I mentioned her videos with DoYouYoga.com? Well, Do You Yoga founder Andreas (Andy) Zoltan and the lovely Erin teamed up on the My Yoga Pro project. What started as a Kickstarter campaign for $20,000 closed at nearly $183,000. !!!

My Yoga Pro (launching in the spring) will have 16 different courses – yes, full courses! – plus 200 stand-alone videos. It will be super interactive, with level-up badges, progress tracking and a strong social component. Also, it’s perfect for all yogi levels.

Obviously I’m excited, and here’s the real reason why. Normally My Yoga Pro will be an annual fee (I believe the expected price is $100). The campaign offered life-time passes for half that. Because Andy and Erin and team are awesome, you can still purchase the life-time passes for $55 directly from them.

Geez I sound sales-y! I promise I’m not getting any perks to write about this. I’ve been part of a Facebook group that helped start the Kickstarter campaign and I absolutely can’t wait until it launches. This was totally my Christmas present. 🙂

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Any other resources for home yogis that I didn’t mention?
Have you used any of these and what do you think?


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{PilotingPaperAirplanes.com}

First: there is a yoga studio in my office building.

Second: it, and the four instructors I’ve had class with thus far, are fabulous.

Third: last week was “preview week,” so all classes were only $5. I took four.

Fourth: this was the first time in years I’ve taken a studio class. I’ve been pretty strictly a home yogi. (Let’s talk about the cost of studio classes). Even so, I received some pretty great feedback that made me feel like a home yogi rock star.

Five: the first bummer. I can’t sign up for the winter/spring session just now. Jon isn’t working yet and it’ll be a bit before the bank account recovers from a cross-country move ($$$$!). BUT the studio does offer a discount for people in the building and I will enroll when I can.

So! I had a great week with lots of yoga… but no running. Got to get in a few this week!

P.S. Don’t forget about the blog design discount!
Shoot me an email {ldalton0982@gmail.com}.

New year, new blog. {PilotingPaperAirplanes.com LDStephanoff.com}

Any great runs or fabulous classes over the weekend?
Do you prefer studio classes of any kind or to work out at home?


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