Saturday, May 26, 2012

When you get right down to the root of the meaning of the word "succeed," you find that it simply means to follow through. ~F. W. Nichol

Spartan Shape-Up, Day 310:

It seems that summer is finally upon us, here in VT, BlogLand. It was something like 72ish degrees when I suited up to go running this evening. First off, I would like to note that doing races is a fascinating way to increase your workout outfit choices. For instance, today I was running in a fabulous tech shirt I acquired at the Hoppin' Mad 10k Mud Run. It's an entertaining shirt with a story behind it AND practical! Win! I've got another one from the Tortoise and Hare 10K, a handy (cotton. sad.) long sleeve from the Frosty Knuckle 5K+ (that makes up for it's cotton status by having a snowflake design made out of beer bottles), and a couple other 5K t-shirts. Seriously, they're going to need their own drawer soon. (However, I must confess, my *favorite* swag - other than my prized Spartan Finisher Medal! - is the custom Pint Glass that says "I survived" with the mud run logo... lol)

Alright, I digress. It was a lovely, warm evening. I was feeling a bit sluggish thanks to a long week at work and the warm weather, but my Up The Hill running buddy was up for a run, and I needed to go. This would be my last chance at a run before my part in the marathon relay this weekend (!!!!).

We drove out to investigate a new spot. Supposedly, our town had put in "recreation path" and off of it ( a sub-path, if you will) there is a short path with a few "stations" to play on. We decided to investigate. Could there be a perfect Spartan-Training worthy trail that we had not yet discovered?!

Off we trotted and found the path easily, although the "stations" were a little less than well-maintained, sadly. I must confess, our first obstacle, we had no idea what it's purpose was. Next time, we'll need photographic evidence, because even my Google-fu could not turn up an explanation.

Next, after rounding the corner of a perfectly lovely wooded running trail, we happened upon my arch enemy: The Pull Up Bars. However, some enterprising soul with foresight at least had the good plan to cut a stump and include it near by for those of us of the T-Rex persuasion who needed a little help. I resigned myself to my fate and hopped up to do my damnest. It was at this point I figured out that the bar actually spun in its' sockets. Geesh. Because modified pull ups weren't hard enough already!? I whined. I eeked out 10 (the number of the day).

Passing a few more dead end stations and subbing in our own moves (10 squats!), we came across an incline bench. Oh yes, folks, there was an incline bench in the middle of the woods. Hilarity ensued (ever try to get yourself ON to a smooth incline bench in the woods? Trickier than one might seem, as the wood has worn down to a lovely slip and slide...).
For posterity, my Running Buddy even decided to capture my torture on video. I find her commentary immensely entertaining:

I think what I may enjoy the most is my primal grunting. I'm sure you all can relate... this was trickier than initially anticipated! Still, I'm thinking next time, I'll need to do a longer set and possibly find a rock to hang on to. Spartan up!

The rest of our run was relatively uneventful, except that we decided to Spartan-ize our otherwise docile rec-path run. What does that mean, you say? Well, you run down the path with an eye out for potential obstacles. For instance - the quaint granite benches became an ideal venue for box jumps! Further on down the path, we found a bridge than triggered some incline push ups. Over the course of our evening soiree, we also worked in some high knees, and rounded out our mission with a set of burpees. Because really, no "Spartan" WOD is complete without Burpees.

Interestingly, I found that I can bust out a greater number (like more than 10!) at a consistent pace, *without dying* now!!! For those of you familiar with Death by Burpee, I'm sure you understand where I'm coming from. It's that feeling when you start to reach your Burpee Limit, as you try to jump up there are invisible concrete pillars tied to your ankles holding you down, and every time you drop down to the first position, you're pretty sure your arms have just collapsed for good and you will just have to lay there and die.

Just to prove how crazy warm it was, I had my buddy photo document my post-run self:

Yeah, that's a huge sweat ring. You should've seen my back. EEeeWWWww... haha... But we're all about realism and truth in this blog! I'm human, I get sweaty. It was dripping like a crazy salty river into my eyeballs this whole run, but it no longer stops me. Instead, I laugh and remind myself that it is "my fat cells weeping."

I've also been doing my best lately to add in some pull ups here and there as I walk around my house. I leave the pull up bar set up and the tiny stool next to it, so there's nooo excuses. I walk by, I curse my way through a set of 10 as best as I can, and then I go about my business. I'm SO hoping that this helps with the upper body in the long run.

With that, I take my leave, BlogLand. I'm tired and tomorrow I must brave the craziness that will be Burlington, VT on Marathon weekend. I have to go meet my team mates up at the Health and Fitness Expo to check that out and get my bib and everything. EXCITING. I should probably try and look well rested...

1 comment:

  1. AWESOME!! I am a little jealous of your pull-ups in the woods- Good job!