Monday, December 9, 2013

RBC Fitness Challenge Days 21-24: Breaking Eggs and Cracking Ropes

Margaret, who is the orchestra teacher at my school, is a runner. She's the stereotypical suburban middle- aged mom who way looks too good to be driving a mini-van.

She had never said anything about my weight during the last year we'd worked together, but today she gave me two compliments: One that was great and one...not so much.

As I stood up from the lunch table that day, Magaret looked over in my direction and said "You know what, you really look a lot leaner..."

"...and your walking looks A LOT more coordinated than it used to."

What the hell? I'm well aware of the "velociraptor with a stick up it's butt" thing with regards to how I walk, but had my general movement looked so bizarre that now the simple act of strolling down the hall seemed "coordinated" compared to what I did before?

I asked Makayla, Tracie's younger daughter, if she also noticed a difference in how I was walking.

"Yeah, you actually look normal," she stated.

I'll take it. I experienced another end of the week crash when I got home and didn't work out for only the second time in about a month. I figure the rest was needed.

Day 22

Small victory today, but an important one: After getting done with a workout that consisted of Tracie's exercises and some intense intervaled cardio, I came home to find Karen about to walk our three dogs.

In the past, I had normally forgone the dog walk all together because

A.) I was too lazy and couldn't be bothered to get off the computer/up from the bed or couch.
B.) Walking the dogs as my only physical activity would still wipe me out for the rest of the day.

But instead, I was able to walk for a few miles with my wife and our furry children after over an hour of exercise. Good times.

Day 23

Aside from destroying another friend in fantasy football, not much interesting happened. Had another great workout, ate better, etc.Unfortunately, I also began to come to a horrifying conclusion: I can't make eggs. I know it's embarrassing to admit, but I'm seriously terrible at it.

Day 24

I really wasn't kidding. Every time I try to flip the eggs (I like them over-medium), the yolk breaks. That one near the bottom looks okay, but was totally obliterated after this picture was taken.

But onto other things besides my vast array of culinary failures: Today was another grueling session at Long Training Studios with Tracie. This time, however, I was actually doing really well. I was receiving occasional corrections on my exercise forms, but I was also hearing a lot of "Good, Nick!" while ripping through the circuits (except for the hellish 'Around the World' plank).

Unlike my last few sessions, I felt like I could keep going after this. I confidently strode up to Tracie and asked "So what's the metabolic finisher today?"

That was a mistake.

Tracie proceeded to pick up a giant rope that resembled a stuffed python and had our small group head outside. We were then assigned circuit involved whipping the rope against the ground like you was riding one of the chariots in Ben Hur. This was followed by a run around the gym property to the dumpster. We were split into two groups, each one trading off the exercise when the running group had come back

At first, whipping the rope was kind of fun. My enjoyment of this activity, however, lasted for about 10 seconds. After that, I began to develop a severe hatred for the girl who was running and her inability to break the sound barrier, relieving me of my cursed predicament.

Once she finally got back, I gladly handed the ropes to her and began to run. As I stumbled towards the dumpster, a family at a nearby apartment eyed me as if I were a deranged crack addict about to dive in and start digging for rocks.

Instead, I touched the dumpster (not sure why since that's kind of gross), turned around, and ran back towards the ropes. That's about the point that the grilled chicken sandwich I had from Wendy's began to claw its way back up my esophagus towards sunlight and freedom.

"You ready for the ropes again?" Tracie asked.

" No I can't," I replied.

I felt terrible not being able to finish this, especially after how good I'd just felt before. But Tracie seemed to understand (or she could tell that my skin complexion had turned a strange hue of green).

"It's alright, you still did great today," she said while reminding me to breathe in and out through my nose so that I didn't pass out. I spent a few minutes resting and watching another group suffer through the finisher. It made me feel better to see that they all looked like they wanted to die, too.

Even though I was mad at myself for pulling up at the end, it was still a great workout. My energy level at work and home was much better. I was actually starting to feel pretty good.

I still suck at making eggs, though.

If you want to cheer Tracie on while she kicks my butt on a weekly basis, you can find her on Twitter. If you live in the Charleston area and would like to have your butt kicked into shape like mine has been, then take a moment and check out the Long Training Studios website.

Please also feel free to leave a comment below. If you'd like to sing my praises or tell me how terrible I am more personally, I can also be found on Twitter. To get updates on when new articles or podcasts are published (and occasional random musings) 'Like' the official Facebook page.