Wednesday, April 04, 2012

Wittering on Wednesday ...(2)

More outdoor
Last night I attended my fourth session with the Outdoor Fitness crew and wow was it tough! There were bunch of hill sprints with the usual spot exercises, and again some pairs work. All of this was good fun and again I met some lovely people. This morning though I ache like a very achy person, and wish I had taken myself off to my bed early. I have plans to go at least twice more (possibly trice more) this week - I figure aches on top of aches won't hurt as much, and happily my hip is not reacting to badly to the sessions.
Image: renjith krishnan /
It is all a little more than follow the leader, but this was the best image I could rapidly grab [I will investigate better ones]
In some ways I am wondering what next? In the four sessions I have attended I have 'experienced' four different trainers / leaders and so the variety has been pretty broad. It isn't possible to say which I have enjoyed more because aside from common themes they have all brought interesting and subtle twists. These being anything from how the interact to exercise style to different kinds of intensity. At the early stage of my block I am wondering where I could fit this into my week going forward beyond these six weeks and also beyond my marathon training block.

Podcast powered
There is something tempting about listening to a podcast or an audio book while training / running. The temptation of getting 'two for one' out your time is very appealing. I used to try and listen to crime thrillers in the gym several years ago, but found they struggled to compete with the background noise (even after I had invested in better headphones). In fact I usually enjoyed the plots better during the short walks to and from the gym, wherein each book seemed to last so long I lost the will to remember the threads of the stories. So personally I like the concept but have struggled a bit with getting a great deal out of it.

Image: Pixomar /
In the last week or two I caved into advertising and tried out the wisdom of Jillian Michaels podcast (free via apple's itunes istore, the most recent can be found at Just so we're clear, the advertising came in the form of tweets and facebook comments from the eponymous Jillian after I clicked 'follow' and 'like' respectively. I tend to follow athletes and sports people as a form of living my sporting life vicariously, I am not ashamed to say that I am an avid sports watching fan (the Olympic period is always an absolute treat for me). Anyway I downloaded the podcast an dipped my toe into the world of American fitness and lifestyle tips and found it was actually pretty good. I don't mean it in a derisory way but it is just like listening to the radio but with topics that are generally more useful than which celebrity did what, when, with whom which you get between tracks on a lot of 'regular' radio stations. The banter is fun, the topics illuminating, and so I will be listening to more in the near term.

Music to exercise by?
When I do exercise with music I generally go loud and large, stuff like the Prodigy (heavy dance tracks), the King's of Leon, the Foo Fighters (driving rock), basically stuff that is real adrenaline fuel. I have never really found anything that I can run long distances to outdoors, the rhythms of a long run for me at least, haven't fitted my (albeit eclectic) music collection. As I have moved to higher mileage I have found that I need to listen to my rhythms, breathing, footfall, and even the noises my t-shirts make (?). So music with exercise has become for me very environment driven: indoor gym = music, outdoor run = no music, and perhaps I am not so very unique in doing this?

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