Heading Into Week 7: On Boot Camp, Yoga, and Cross Training

Despite my best efforts to will myself back to health, my lungs aren’t having it. They continue to wheeze. And hack. And be general trouble makers. (If you missed the background, check out how I fell from asthmatic grace last week.) What that means is my training for the half marathon has taken an unexpected, and rather lengthy, siesta.

I am finally feeling better today, and cautiously hopeful, but I plan to reintegrate myself slowly. And even though I’ve been woefully incapable of working out lately in any capacity, I figured this post would be a fun time to chat about my cross training, and more specifically, my love of boot camp and yoga.

My one run this week left me wheezy for the next 2 days due to cold air in my lungs. Hurrumph.

My one run this week left me wheezy for the next 2 days due to cold air in my lungs. Hurrumph.

Before we dive into cross training specifics, let’s review my last week (however embarrassing it may be) and my plan for this week.

Last Week In Review

Planned Schedule:
Monday: Day of Rest
Tuesday: Day of Rest
Wednesday: Day of Rest
Thursday: 3 miles
Friday: No running, 5:15 Boot Camp
Saturday: Day of Rest
Sunday: 9 miles

Actual Schedule:
Monday: Day of Rest
Tuesday: Day of Rest
Wednesday: Day of Rest
Thursday: Day of Rest
Friday: 3 miles
Saturday: Day of Rest
Sunday: Day of Rest

Not only was I unable to run, but I was unable to work out at all this week due to my lungs. I know that may sound like an exaggeration or simply laziness, but when it comes to asthma trouble, it’s just not possible for me. And, believe you me, I missed working out. So much. So here’s my plan to get back on the proverbial horse.

At least my one run this week took me through the gorgeous twists and turns of Bloomfield Cemetery.

At least my one run this week took me through the gorgeous twists and turns of Bloomfield Cemetery.

Plan For Next Week

Monday: 5:15 Boot Camp
Tuesday: 3 miles
Wednesday: 5:15 Boot Camp
Thursday: 3 miles
Friday: Day of Rest
Saturday: 2 miles
Sunday: 8 miles

My fingers and toes are crossed that I will be able to stay on track this week. And have more runs like this one:

Another shot of Bloomfield Cemetery from Friday. How could you resist this light?!

Another shot of Bloomfield Cemetery from Friday. How could you resist this light?!

Topic of the Week: Boot Camp, Yoga, and Cross Training

There are many schools of thought when it comes to training for a half marathon. Some say to strictly run and increase milage at a steady rate each week. And while this approach may work for some, it’s not the approach for me. I am not a runner by trade. And the half marathon for me is about becoming stronger, and that means all parts of my body. Since I don’t have the background in running, cross training has been instrumental in my training.

I attend Boot Camp twice a week at Panthro Fitness in the Strip District and I absolutely love the place. I am a big believer in group training as an ACE-certified group fitness trainer myself. My mom owns a small fitness studio in Mt. Lebanon called Training By Tami where I used to teach and attend classes. It’s the kind of place where everyone knows each other and swaps stories of life while working out. When I moved to Bloomfield in September, I was really missing my fitness community until I found Panthro Fitness via a GroupOn (which is still available, if you’re interested).

Panthro Fitness' Strip District studio.

Panthro Fitness’ Strip District studio.

The coaches at Panthro Fitness push me harder than I’ve ever been pushed in an exercise class. We begin with interval training (:30 seconds of intense workout, :15 seconds of rest, continued for several minutes), and then move into specific strength and/or cardio work. We run sprints, hit the battle ropes (those things kill me every time), heave a sled, work arms and legs on TRX ropes and free weights, perform box jumps, and so much more.

But even better than the workout is the vibe of the studio. My 12-person class has become my cheering squad and my workout buddies, and that makes these twice weekly workouts both challenging and genuinely enjoyable. My boot camp classes have made my long runs much more manageable, and have made me feel more prepared for the half marathon.

Outside of Boot Camp, I try to attend yoga once a week. When I was in college at Ohio University, I attended my beloved Inhale Yoga Studio twice a week, where I learned to touch my toes for the first time (I wish I was kidding), trust my body, soothe my personal battle with anxiety,  and do a head stand (which was a bucket list goal for me … I’m constantly terrified I will flip over and break my neck … logically).

My old yoga studio in Ohio: Inhale Yoga!

My old yoga studio in Ohio: Inhale Yoga!

 

Since coming to Pittsburgh, I haven’t been able to find just the studio for me (as any yogis know, finding your studio is half the battle). I currently practice at YogaFlow in Shadyside, and I love the classes, but I’m not a huge fan of hot yoga (I think it’s because my old studio wasn’t hot yoga … a personal bias). But when it comes to training for the half marathon, there is nothing better for a runner than stretching out all of those aching muscles, focusing on the breath, and just letting all the tension go.

So for me, when it comes to cross training, I go to Boot Camp for the strength training and the vibe, and I attend Yoga for the anxiety relief and the release. There are many other types of cross training if those don’t tickle your fancy: swimming, spinning, Cross Fit, etc. Do you have a favorite form of cross training while preparing for long runs? What do you look for in a fitness studio or class? (I’m a sucker for good energy.)

I hope you all stay happy and healthy this week!

Your partner in (wheezy) running,
Jessie

 

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3 thoughts on “Heading Into Week 7: On Boot Camp, Yoga, and Cross Training

  1. I’ve cut back on my running days this year and replaced those days with Crossfit. I’ve noticed a lot of improvement in my pace and hill running. Your boot camp looks fun! I also like to do yoga once a week after long runs. I haven’t been to a studio in a while though. I practice at home.

    • Hey Sarah,
      I’ve wanted to try CrossFit lately! And it’s cool that you practice yoga at home. Do you follow a video of any kind? I would love any leads to in-home yoga practice guidance.
      Thanks,
      Jessie

  2. Hey Jessie,

    My go to yoga is Zen in your Den. It can be found on you tube. It’s quick, 20 min and hits all the right muscles after long runs. I hope you find it helpful!

    Sarah

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