I hope you are having a wonderful weekend! It’s another cold, overcast and dreary day in Asheville. I NEED Spring to get here! I need warmth and sunshine my friends, and I know you do too! I’m sitting at my kitchen counter with a cup of chamomile tea, working on my laptop this afternoon. I can’t complain.. at least I have comfy clothes and a puppy to snuggle with <3
I’ve been taking notes and journaling every weekend for the past month, documenting how I feel at the end of each week during my cross-training challenge. I wanted to share with you my first month’s worth of journaling. I’ll have a second post with my final four weeks at the end of this challenge, and include it with my body composition analysis results.
Below (in a very informal format) are the notes I took at the end of each week! It includes the number of classes (of each format) I attended, if I added anything else into my routine, and my reflections on the week!
Week 1: I took 4 Pure Barre Classes and 4 Scorch Classes. I was definitely dedicated and excited to start my first week! I actually feel amazing! Occasionally I mentally struggle at Scorch because they tell you to move as SLOOOOWLY as possible.. like moving INCHES for a minute before switching to a different position and moving inches again. When this is done correctly it’s really effective for tapping into your slow twitch muscle fibers and strength building, but I’m used to incorporating musicality into my workouts and moving “to the beat”. Exercising in a room where everyone is going at a slightly different pace actually really distracts me but I just try to close my eyes or keep my eyes downcast. I’m starting to learn each of the positions’ names so when the teacher says on the mic what the next move is, I’m able to transition more quickly. This takes a while so anyone new to Lagree: be patient. It was really cold outside all week, so this was the perfect way to keep me really active (but) inside. I’m feeling good, and my core muscles (obliques especially) are really sore!
Week 2: I took 4 Pure Barre Classes, 3 Scorch Classes and added 2 (30 minute) cardio bouts: 1 run and 1 elliptical workout. Okay now I’m sore! Both Scorch and Pure Barre are very core-centric workouts so my abdominals are working more than they ever have in a week. I think my posture is improving from the constant abdominal work, and my glutes are working overtime. I will admit that I’ve started to miss cardio. Pure Barre and Scorch both elevate your heartrate: but not in the same way a cycle class/ run/HIIT class can. I think the max heart rate I’ve achieved in either a Pure Barre or Scorch class is around 130bpm, and I hover around 150-165 bpm when I do more serious cardio. I did find myself missing that cardio high so I added the two cardio bouts.just to get the oxygen in my lungs and to feel that mental release of a cardio program. This means that I exercised for about 8 hours this week, which is more than usual for me. If you are a serious athlete that’s nothing, but for me it’s new so I’m adjusting! I’ve been sleeping better, but haven’t noticed a big uptick in appetite nor anything else. I do feel a little “tight” like I need a good stretch, so my goal is to take 1 yoga class a week as well to reset and center my body. Going strong!
Week 3: I took 3 Pure Barre classes and 3 Scorch Classes, with 2 (30 minute) runs. I tried to take more of either class format and failed. It snowed mid week so both studios were closed in the morning (which is usually the only time I can exercise). My dad also visited this weekend so I opted for a hike with him instead of a class on Saturday. I noticed this week that I was encouraged multiple times to slide my shoulders down (away from my ears) in Scorch. I think I may be just holding a lot of tension in my neck this week, or maybe I am shrugging my shoulders in an attempt to recruit more muscles to help me with the work. Either way it’s been a good personal project for me and I’m trying to mentally focus on pushing my shoulders down more often in everyday life. The Scorch teachers are very knowledgeable about their technique. I appreciate how patient they are with me, and for all of their hands on corrections. I was able to stay committed to my program this week but the snow and weekend entertaining slowed me down just a bit! I’ve realized that it’s really hard to fit it all in if I take the weekend completely off. Luckily I’ll be in town on most weekends! I’m feeling pretty good! My hamstrings are sore this week! No yoga this week but I tried to make more time to stretch before and after classes.
Week 4: I took 4 Pure Barre Classes, 3 Scorch Classes and 2 (30 minute) runs. The only reason why I was able to fit in that fourth pure barre class is because I had to take it.. I’m working with a new teacher and we are practicing together (a lot) until she is ready for her first class. If I didn’t have to.. I wouldn’t have done it. I am SO SORE! Both Pure Barre and Scorch can feature a lot of forearm/straight arm planks, ab pikes and pushups. It varies and depends on the teacher and their choreography choices. I think I just took classes this week when everyone was in the mood for pushups. My core feels really strong this week, and I see more definition in my shoulders than usual. I have to admit: I’m missing working with weights bigger than 5 pounds though. My body is very accustomed to bigger movements and bigger weights.. like a chest press with a barbell for example, or using a squat rack. At Scorch you use the hand cables and mega-former for upper body training, and for Pure Barre the biggest hand weights you use weigh 5 lbs. I know that I’m getting a lot of upper body work from all of the planks, pushups, pulling off the barre and using the resistance cables (at Scorch), but I still find myself missing the gym this week. I am curious to see if I lose or gain upper body strength… I know that there will definitely be some sort of difference because my upper body is absolutely working in a different way than it usually does. Again no yoga classes made it into my schedule… working on it!
Okay so those are my notes and thoughts from Month 1 of my Pure Barre/Scorch cross-training challenge! I’m really enjoying this mix and look forward to every class. I’ll have so much more information to you soon! Do you have any questions for me? What are you doing this week to stay active despite this cruddy weather?