to do… get a bike trailer

I really wanted to swim today but lap lanes and childcare didn’t line up with in-between-nap times. So I found myself at the gym on the machines. This was carefully planned to back up to Baby A’s post-swim lesson nap. Whew! And to think I’m not even working right now. How will I ever fit that back into my schedule?!

I ran in the clouds, forward and backward for 15 minutes of elliptical boringness then moved to a stationary bike. Not even a spin bike since I didn’t have bike shoes or padded shorts. The large squishy seat treated me fine but as I stared off into space, listening to food talk on The Splendid Table, I realized that I could actually be biking in the sun towing Baby A.
So, added to tonight’s to-do list… start researching bike trailers. And plan to get a better workout tomorrow at Boot Camp. In the sunshine with Baby A.

the workout: 30 minutes of cardio, split between machines to break up the boredom


Maybe it’s the jet lag but my math skills were non-existent this morning at the gym. It wasn’t until I’d completed my half hour of cardio that I realized it was I’m fact only 25 minutes. Oh well.
We’re back on the east coast and my mother-in-law brought me to her gym because with temperatures in the teens there’s no way I’m going to run outside. What punishment after 70s beach runs last week in Tel Aviv!
My intention was to run for half hour but my body didn’t feel up to it so I warmed up and began on the techno something or other machine that seemed to simulate rollerblading (or cross country ski racing?). I then moved from machine to machine, spending five minutes on each. Techno, treadmill, elliptical, escalator, bike. Yep, that’s five minutes on each to total twenty five minutes!
I then found the assisted pull-up/dip machine and did three sets of each followed by push-ups. Apparently, carrying Baby A around isn’t keeping my upper body as strong as I thought. Finally, I stretched and did a few core exercises using a foam roller & cardio ball.
Back out into the cold.…

The workout: 25 minute cardio circuit- a good workout and boredom prevention, upper body strengthening, core work, stretches

catching up

So many days have passed since my last entry and the ironic thing is, I’ve been working out more lately than before!  I had one slow day in the past week when I got on an elliptical trainer and felt too overheated to continue.  I left the gym and came home to sleep for an hour!  Otherwise, I’ve been feeling energetic and healthy, both before and after workouts.

3 half hour run/walks: My stamina is returning and although my three months off certainly affected my aerobic capacity, if I take it easy, I can still run!  I did the first of these runs on my own, meandering through the park, the second with my husband and the third with my sisters.  I appreciated having running buddies and helped them get better workouts by always saying what my next walking landmark was so they could either sprint to it or continue forward then loop back and pick me up.  I noticed that even by the third run of the week, my run portions were lasting longer than my walk portions and I was feeling as though I could be out longer.  I’m drinking tons of electro-mix and supporting my belly with clothing as best I can.  Two times now, the sides of my belly have felt a little bruised to the touch at the end of running days, so I finally found a support belt I think will work nicely as I grow.

25 minute gym express: On Friday I really wanted to run in the park but it was raining, so my husband and I drove to the Embarcadero Y so we’d both be close to work afterward.  Unfortunately, the parking meter we found wouldn’t take a credit card or parking card, so I became exasperated and went to the gym while he ran around getting money and change for the meter.  By the time I finally reached the gym floor, I had 25 minutes before I needed to shower.  I hopped on an elliptical trainer and set it to intervals with very low resistance.  I monitored my heart rate and level of exertion closely since I was a little warm working out inside.  After 20 minutes, I switched to 5 minutes of lunges, squats, push-ups and quadruped bird-dog.  Great workout in a short amount of time!

900 yard swim: Yep, I can swim a half mile easily again, but what I once did in 14-17 minutes is now taking me a good 25.  Oh well!  I purchased a new bikini speedo to give the belly growing room since the maternity swimwear I’ve seen doesn’t actually look like it would function for swimming laps.  I did manage to almost lose my bottoms 3 times before it occurred to me to pull the drawstring tighter.  Call it pregnancy brain…

fall season

The start of fall opera season has not been conducive to working out and having extra energy.  Plus, when I have had the time to do something, I haven’t wanted to spend my free time writing about it!  I’ve made a commitment to practice yoga every other day, so on the mornings when I roll out of bed and onto my mat, that usually takes the place of an aerobic workout.  I also rediscovered the elliptical trainer last week and enjoyed 30 minutes of “running in the clouds” last Friday and yesterday.  The grey outdoors have been so very unappealing that I don’t even want to be outside, and I haven’t made it back downtown to the warm pool.  Rumor has it, the Presidio pool’s pump is fixed so maybe I check it out tomorrow.  I do love my gym workouts because of all the props available to me for my floor work and core exercises.  I always come out of there feeling stronger and energized.

My exercise faux-pas of the week was waking up early Sunday morning (after a late show) to bike to the farmers market (with my violin on my back) on the way to a long day of rehearsal and concert at Stern Grove.  If I’d gotten more sleep and hadn’t over-bought produce (as usual) I would have been fine, but by the time I left the market and began bumping along a bike lane in very bad repair, I knew I’d overdone it.  I carefully made my way to Stern Grove, happy that all of my bags were securely strapped to my bike, and was thrilled to find my cyclist friend waiting for me at the entrance.  She’d guessed that I would have no clue how to actually get to the stage from the bike route!  By mid morning, I was so tired I wanted to put my violin down and cry (which I did on lunch break as I called my husband).  He agreed to meet me and haul by bike and produce home after the concert.  I survived the freezing concert knowing I’d have a ride waiting at the end and a warm bath at home.  Bonus… dinner was made while I soaked in the tub.  How did I get so lucky?

I took Monday off from aerobic exercise and walked to the outer Richmond to meet a friend for coffee.  I had time to spare before my acupuncture appointment, so I wandered around the park for 1/2 hour first.  In my appointment a strange thing happened.  Every needle he put into my legs hurt!  I rarely feel a needle go in and almost never ask him to remove one, but I couldn’t stand it.  Most of them were in spots that had to do with digestion.  Hmmm…  I’ve been working with less dairy lately, which seems to be improving my skin and decreasing stomach pain.  I’m sure it’s all related.

Time to get moving with my day.  More whenever I get around to it….

summer fitness-not what I expected

There hasn’t been much time for blogging lately but exercise between music still exists! My workouts remain drastically lower in volume than they’ve been for several years but my back is feeling great and Wagner is taking every ounce of energy! My only disappointment is that I signed up for two half-ironman events I won’t be racing. The first was Silicon valley in late June. I officially gave up this race when I found out I would be sitting concertmaster for the Ring. There is no way I’m going to play Walkure then drive to San Jose and race at 5am the next morning. This summer season is simply not the time for fitting races between shows because I need recovery time to be truly restful. The second race I spent too much money registering for is the Boulder half-ironman in August. Since I haven’t maintained a heavy training schedule during summer season there’s no way I’ll be able to race at altitude with little time to acclimate. Oh well! Life’s curve balls… I’m (very slowly) getting better at going with the flow!

the workouts:
I’ve been alternating between short outdoor runs and 30 minutes on the elliptical trainer. I try to keep the runs mostly on trails and find at least one hill near the end. I use the elliptical machine without arms and touch the railings only for balance when I “run” backward. My pace is fast & I work around level 5, which is enough resistance to get me sweating but still light enough to move equal to or faster than a 10 mm pace.
Core work & stretching always conclude these workouts!

ready to move again

My new favorite time to hit the gym is Saturday morning at 9 am.  Am I nuts?  Car talk is on and the gym is reasonably full but not crowded.  I also enjoy the walk over as the neighborhood is waking up.

This morning was my first workout since I last blogged.  I took a break for my back and focused on getting through long flights and Passover Seders comfortably seated!   I began each day with a gentle yoga practice and walked later in the day, either around my in-law’s neighborhood (gorgeous and in full bloom!) or through NY city.  On practice breaks, I stretched, did roll-outs and core exercises.

We arrived home late Wednesday night so on Thursday I took my city bike out to run errands.  Gas is up to $4.11 at the cheap station, so I figured no time like the present to really reduce my driving!  My husband and I are beginning a 3 week cleanse so I made a long list of things best found in bulk and biked across town to Rainbow Grocery.   I stuffed both pannier bags full and had quite a time balancing on my bike when I first started home!  Luckily the hills on the way back are minimal and I got the hang of riding weighed down pretty quickly.  Since then I’m slowly getting back in the swing of things, with a walk yesterday and 30 minutes on the elliptical trainer this morning.  I enjoyed working up a sweat again and am feeling antsy about getting back into more regular workouts!

the workout:

30 min elliptical, ave HR 135- low aerobic zone, 275 calories, 2.9 miles

motivation through friends

The last few days I’ve been particularly unmotivated to exercise. The weather has been unpredictable and mostly unpleasant with grey skies and rain most conducive to drinking tea at home! Luckily I had three motivated workout buddies to help me get out the door.
On Sunday night my sister & I made plans with GC to do a Monday morning run to the beach. Of course I was the last to wake up and still groggy by the time we met at the park. All of the paths were muddy, littered with fallen branches. Exposed slick tree roots made it necessary to look down constantly and after a short time we decided to stick to the road.
We chatted on the easy run down to the beach and were rewarded with a stunning view of the expansive beach and grey, tumultuous waves. After a brief walking break, we turned around and started toward home. We kept a good pace on the steady climb, encouraging ourselves and discussing how much easier it was to run with friends. Still, I was thoroughly exhausted by the time we left the park. Our altered course was slightly longer and harder than the usual trails!
the workout: 4+ mile run

Yesterday, I had hoped to ride my bike after bringing my sister to the airport but the rain had already begun by the time I returned home. The afternoon of cleaning, packing and general pre-trip organization got away from me and before I knew it, my husband was on his way home from work. Instead of skipping my workout completely, I made us a fresh juice for energy and invited him to the gym. He was happy to accompany me and we found ourselves side by side elliptical trainers. I punched in a half hour cross training program and set a fast pace with no resistance. I realized a while back that resistance on the elliptical irritated my back but I could cover the same distance as I would running if I treated my workouts as low impact run replacements. I pay constant attention to my form, only holding on lightly for balance when I’m “running” backward and I follow my pacing on the machine to be sure I’m not getting slower. The half hour flew by as my husband and I discussed our days and pizza toppings for dinner. (We ended up making one with fresh pesto, tomato and mozzarella; the other with marinara, leek & mushroom, and gruyere.) I concluded my time at the gym with stretching and core exercises. I added back in a couple I really dislike but I think are necessary for the continued balancing and healing of my back. I’ll post them on my Core page next week.
the workout:
30 min elliptical, 3 miles, HR ZN 2-3 fat burning