GNR training: week three

Week three was a much better week by all account, due to the fact I actually did something. Nowhere near as much as the training plan told me I should do, but something nonetheless.

Last week actually started off really well – on Monday I did my usual pump and boxercise classes, and I particularly enjoyed the latter. On Tuesday I did a few miles on the bike at the gym, before trying out a new class, Bokwa, which I wrote about earlier in the week.

I missed two 30 minute/5k runs this week, but on Thursday I had an awesome run which left me feeling on top of the world.

This feeling was quickly forgotten come Sunday, when I got up at 7am for my first proper ‘long Sunday run’ of training (naughty me). I was feeling smug that I actually dragged myself up and out at such an hour (despite being woken at around 2am by my boyfriend returning from a night out), and confident that I could manage the 6 miles the training plan demanded given how good I felt doing 4 miles a few days earlier. Silly me.

I only managed about 2 (rather excruciating) miles before the panic set in, the ‘why did I think I could do this’ (maybe because I’ve done it once before) thoughts started and a couple of tears fell. In a complete tantrum, I decided this was not my day and my breathing was too all-over-the-place to attempt running again. Massive Sunday fail.

This week I’m off to Barcelona for five days with my two best friends, so not much training is going to happen this week. Apparently there’s a pool of the roof of our apartment block (although the internet cannot provide any photographic evidence of its existence) so I’m not sure how much swimming will be happening to balance out the sangria and tapas. Adiós!

Tonight on my run…

…I ran past two glass fronted gyms. Along the front of the windows were people plodding along on treadmills. And I actually felt sorry for them. Yes, it was that weird time between light and dark, between day and night. And yes, it was that weird drizzle that doesn’t fall, it’s just there, hanging in there. But I was actually enjoying my run. I managed to push past the it-hurts-it-hurts-it-hurts phase.

Furthermore, I ran four miles. I can’t remember the last time that happened (…okay I looked it up, it was 26th April – TWO AND A HALF MONTHS AGO). That, my friends, is progress.

Bokwa Fitness

Last week I noticed a few posters going up in my gym for a trial session of a new class called Bokwa Fitness. I’d never heard of it before, and the poster looked a bit Zumba-esque. Even so, I did a quick search and found Bokwa described as:

an intense cardiovascular workout combined with South African war dance, Capoeira, Kickboxing and Steps. It has been proven to burn a great amount of calories making it easier for weight loss goals. Through the use of fast paced extreme movement, a fun, challenging, and energizing total body workout was created

I had no interest in doing the class for weight loss, but the combination of dance, Capoeira (something that I’ve never dared to try) and Kickboxing sounded good. Plus I’m becoming more up for trying new ways of getting a cardio workout.

I’ve never done Zumba, but the fact the instructors of this class also teach it, makes me think they are perhaps similar. A quick flick through YouTube and I think they do look quite similar, but I’d say Bokwa is a bit more ‘steppy’ and a bit less ‘hip shaky’ than Zumba.

Here’s a clip of the Bokwa Fitness DVD to give you an idea:

I actually quite enjoyed this class – it basically used different variations of stepping forwards, backwards and side to side with jumping and kicking thrown in between. The videos I’d seen on YouTube all used quite generic music, but this was done to the gym classic of chart remixes. I can see how it’s a good cardio workout – my feet did not stop moving for the whole sixty minutes, in fact the balls of my feet were starting to feel it by the end thanks to all the bouncing. As it was a taster session I’m sure it could definitely be ramped up more to give even more of a workout.

There was a little bit of whopping (definitely not for everyone) and a small amount of booty shaking, for which my skinny little white girl ass was definitely not up to the job! The class moves at quite a pace and follows a routine which is built up to the end when all the movements were repeated together. Having danced a lot when I was younger, I was comfortable following all the sequences – but this is definitely a class that requires coordination and an ability to follow a basic routine. I’m definitely going to give the class another go and see how I get on, I’d say it’s one of those classes that you just have to give your all and not be shy to get the most of out it. As there’s some dance moves in it, you just have to go for it – you’ll get more enjoyment and more of a workout that way anyway.

NTC Live Festival

Back in November of last year, I went to my first Nike Training Club live class on Clapham Common. I’ve always been pretty scared to talk too much about the classes since, mostly because they are free but also because they are pretty awesome, and quite frankly I still want to be able to get a spot on them. But as it’s summer, the timetable has expanded massively, with loads of mid-week outdoor classes added – I highly recommend checking them out via the Facebook page.

Anyway, as a regular(ish) attendee of NTC – and after a little bit of Facebook registering and QR scanning – I got myself an invite to the first Nike Training Club live festival which was held this weekend at Old Billingsgate right on the Thames.

Me and my friend Lou turned up uber keen before the queue even formed or the doors even opened, but when we were eventually let in we were treated to NTC classes, a NTC yoga class, a WAH nail bar, a tasty healthy lunch, music, challenges, massages and my first ever taste of coconut water.

Vertical jumps, jump rope, foot fires

Nail bar

Yoga time

NTC Live class

Basically, what an awesome way to spend a Saturday afternoon.

GNR training: week two

Another quiet week on the blogging/running/training front, which has lead to week two not showing anything in the slightest in terms of progress.

One gym class (boxercise), one run (a measly 2.2 miles) and a visit to the NTCLive festival on Saturday (more to come on that) are all I can add to this week’s list of activities.

The list of excuses this week however includes: rain, a last minute invite to the Katy Perry film premiere, hunger, rain and the boyfriend’s birthday night out in Camden.

On the plus side, my snazzy new toy – a Garmin 410 – arrived mid week, so I’m looking forward to having a play with that, and working out how to get the most of it. After all, it was slightly more than the price of the Nike+ Running app.

The only thing that’s preventing me from panicking at this stage is that my Berlin training was only 10 weeks long from a fairly similar base of appalling fitness, so it can still be done! Onwards and upwards (again)…