Sunday, February 24, 2013

And the Stretching Continues...

I have had a few more new gym adventures the past few days...

On Friday I attended my first Body Flow class.  It is a combination of Tai Chi, Pilates and Yoga and is also a Les Mills 'product'... and this session was about 50 minutes long.  It was led by a really enthusiastic female intstructor and I did enjoy it, although not as much as the Yoga Flow that I took part in on Wednesday.

It was a more disjointed class - didn't FLOW - but it certainly opened my eyes and hip joints to some new moves and effort.  I came away feeling like I am making gains in that area for sure.

On Saturday I joined three other women, all a bit older than me, in an orientation to the Fit Fix circuit equipment.  It was fun but this is not something I am particularly interested in. If I never did any other weight or strength training, perhaps.  Then we also had an orientation to some of the cardio machines... the recumbant bikes, ellipticals, and treadmills.

These machines are technical miracles. They have umpteen dozen different settings and programs, and they all have heart rate monitors, and cable tv screens, and I-Pod chargers. 

This was the first elliptical that I have tried that I really felt comfortable on... and it has an additional feature that I really liked.  The faceplate shows a drawing of a man running, and different parts of his body are highlighted with a green light, depending on which muscles are being worked based on the settings on the machine.  If a particular setting is lowered, his glutes and hamstrings light up... and when that setting is raised, the light on the glutes goes out but the calves and lower leg light up. Very cool.  And I could certainly feel the changes in my own body as atttested to by the lights.

It took me a few minutes to adjust to my arms going back and forth with each rotation of my feet but then I did notice that there are alternate hand holds so you don't have to have that arm motion if you don't want.  I felt quite uncoordinated for a couple of minutes but then I got really into it and felt like I could get a really enjoyable and satisfying workout on that  machine.  Who knew?

After that I left the other 3 women to the rowing machines, which don't hold any interest for me at all.

I really enjoyed this session and it was fun to chat with the others and get their take on things.  They are not interested in the classes at all, only in the 20 minute Fit Fix circuit training, recumbant bikes and rowing machines... one told me that she actually doesn't like to exercise and is only doing it to keep her friend company and get out of the house a couple of days a week.  I wonder how common that might be....

So, I planned to NOT go to the gym today, and get in a nice outdoor run, but the sky is gloomy and the cold wind is blowing... and I think that that treadmill is beckoning me back....

What is your alternate exercise when you don't want to run outside?

Have you ever trained on an elliptical?


  1. I think its great you try these things out and decide what is good for you. I had wanted to do a bodyflow class but we dont have any at my gym yet but I had a feeling being a Les thing it might lack flow! I will have to check it out if it ever comes but i have a feeling I will agree with you!

  2. I love the elliptical! However, I think it's pretty easy to "phone it in" if you're not careful about challenging yourself with a higher resistance and incline, and keeping those RPMs up.

    It was too snowy to run outside here this weekend, so I had to take it to the treadmill...

  3. The elliptical and I were best friends for a couple of years before I got married when I hadn't developed a love for running yet. Hope you continue to enjoy the elliptical!

  4. How funny - I was just contemplating my "home" exercise regime...

    I do miss being a member of a gym, but mostly because after a bit of a workout I would swim in an amazing (and often empty) swimming pool :)

    The machine that bores me the most is the bike. I guess it's because I don't like cycling, but it amazes me how quickly I get fed up with it.

  5. GOod for you for trying new things! I've never been a fan of the elliptical. I've used it when I was injured but really that's all. It was very popular on the cruise ship.
    I revert to my home mill when weather is nasty. Either that or a spin class.

  6. I LOVE Tai Chi!!! I LOVE even more that you are always trying new things and finding what works for you! I have a hard time running outside if it is gloomy or cold, so needless to say i haven't been running much. :-/ I am planning on joining a gym after we move to see if I can get in a better cardio groove we shall see. If anything Zoe will LOVE the daycare lol

  7. So cool that you tried all these new things!!!! I do most of my cardio int he gym on the treadmill, StepMill & Ellip. More on the treadmill than anything else since I can run, HIIT, intervals, hill walking & jogging.. so many ways to mix it up. The StepMill kicks my butt! ;)

    In general, I am in the gym more than outside for exercise so.. :)

  8. I was going to do a Body Flow yesterday but I forgot my mat. What was it that you didn't like about it? I am curious, because I like yoga that is a little more active, instead of the really slow relaxing kind, so I thought that the Body Flow would be just the ticket.


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