I have a love hate relationship with running. In 2013, I did over 13 half marathons and 2 triathlon sprints. I was out running all of the time, and by the end of 2014, I was totally burned out. It wasn’t until early spring of this year, when I ran the Shamrock Shuffle, an 8k, that I got back into running, but reluctantly so.
Over the summer, I wanted to start running again, but there are times that even being out there on the running path can be totally deflating. For me, running has never, ever been easy. I’m honestly not a great runner, and still either do slow miles, or walk/run/walk method to get to a pace of what others would consider “normal.”
If I were to approach running the same way I did before, I’d get totally burned out, and quite frankly- I’m not at a point where running nonstop would be the quickest way to get towards my fitness goals and gear up before things cool off and the roads get icy again. Plus, I’m not training for any long distance runs, and being out there for miles by myself isn’t as appealing as it used to be. I am mixing things up this year- while I would typically just run and do fitness DVD’s at home, I’m adding in some fitness classes to the mix.
I recently got a Groupon for a local fitness studio that specializes in a fusion of yoga, Pilates, dance and bootcamp style workouts, so I’m really excited to use up a 20 class pass (it was $49 for 20 classes, that’s a silly stupid bargain!) and run to the studio and back. The studio is about a half mile from my house, so I can get a jog in on the way over, do my cardio workout for an hour and jog back.
Fitness is a journey. For a former couch potato and klutz, I’m challenging myself to be less shy about my fitness.
I was hesitant for years to take any fitness classes- thinking it would be expensive, crowded, or that I’d be the fumbly one in the corner who couldn’t stay balanced or hold a plank position for long enough, causing both the instructor and I much awkwardness when he or she decided to come over and give me encouragement, only to see I was woefully maxed out, leagues behind the rest of the class.
I figured that I could play catchup on my own, and by the time I came to class, I’d be totally ready for whatever they threw at me. Seriously, we have weird things that play in our heads that tell us what we are or are not capable of. I saw a Groupon for a group fitness studio that combined Barre, Pilates, Yoga and dance and decided it was time- sitting on the sidelines for the perfect time means that time never comes, so I signed up for a 20 class pass.
Funny story- when we were wandering through the neighborhood to take photos, the studio’s owner, who I’d taken classes with spotted us and invited us in. Of course though, in total fitness instructor fashion, she also challenged me not to just stand and pose, but to get on the floor and do some moves. The dance pose with the yoga mat above? Her idea. Oh yes y’all, I’m out of my comfort zone and I kind of like being in this space! I was bored with just running to the point that doing a mile was painful, but now, my mind and emotions are challenged. Taking photos in a sloppy but totally genuine (I was honestly trying in the above photo!) hydrant/plank, is far beyond what I would have allowed a year ago… but that’s what happens when you hire a professional to help you with your fitness goals- they challenge you. If you could do it alone, you would have already.
I got the chance to try out some new gear from PUMA, and their new IgniteXT Training Shoe which is designed for enhanced traction, support, agility and energy return. Since my new routine involves both running and high impact cross training and a bit of dance, I put them to the test:
The shoe boasts features: a full length midsole for responsive, high-rebound cushioning, flex grooves on the outsole for fast dynamic multi-directional movements extra thickness around the heel to support lateral movements, and outsole pods that give traction without adding too much weight, which work well for the HIIT/dance combo classes I’ll be taking.
The shoes feel really grippy on the concrete, and had good traction inside as well. The tongue is designed a bit different- it’s attached on one side, and the laces keep the shoe nice and snug, so your feet don’t slide out the back when you’re doing moves like jumping jacks or burpees. (God, I hate burpees.) They’re a sporty shoe, but cute enough to wear outside the gym as well…which is another feature that I appreciate about PUMA, they’re always functional and cute!
Check out the new IgniteXT Training Shoe to see if you’d like to add it to your gym bag. More resources are available for training, inspiration and product info at the PUMA training hub.
As for my new take on a fitness routine- we’re training for a 5k in Chicago on October 3rd, so I’ll let you know how it goes.
My running buddy and I will be doing some miles, but also folding in cross-training to get to our desired goal time, so stay tuned! Honestly, I just want to stay consistent with fitness but really, have fun in the process. Yes, some days working out feels like nothing like work, but I’d also like to dance a little 😉
This post is sponsored by FitFluential on behalf of PUMA.
A jog to a fitness class and back sounds like such a good idea. I keep telling myself I want to run more (or even just exercise more) but when I don’t have a commitment, it gets pushed to the side too often! Good luck with the classes (also that groupon is amazing!)
Also, I just wanted to let you know that I nominated you for the Blogger Recognition Award 🙂 You can see my post about it on my page. Thanks for having such a great blog!
Thank you so much for the nomination! It’s so difficult to get a good fitness routine down- I think that’s most of the battle we face. That, and keeping the motivation going. It’s not easy!
I’ve been pretty solid at going to the gym in the morning doing cardio and weights, and also ran a number of 5k’s this year. I’ve been getting more and more into fitness these past two years and just finally started signing up for classes. I just finished a 6 week session of Aerial Hammock which was amazing, even though totally out of my comfort zone. I’m already trying to find a class to take next, might end up doing hula hoop!
That’s so awesome! I love all the variety. A hula hoop class sounds interesting!
Get it girl! I love your fun poses! And that Puma gear is great!
These photos are great! I’m going to see if I can get my feet in a pair of these PUMAs. I need new gym shoes like no one’s business, but I just haven’t found a pair I love yet. Congrats on getting back in the running game. You’ve got a great plan, and seeing you blog about it definitely motivates me.
Thank you!! I firmly feel that financial and physical wellness are connected. I try to work on both, sometimes I’m not super consistent- but it’s a process! To stay on the wagon, trying something new has helped!
That class sounds amazing! Fusion classes are so much fun and such a great workout. Good for you for keeping true to yourself and your fitness goals and listening to what your body needs. Sometimes it’s good to push and train for a big race, but it’s also great to work on form, endurance, and toning.
Those shoes are actually really cute. I’m using the New Balance minimus shoes for running right now, but they are almost out of life. I’ll have to give those Pumas a try.
Thanks! I definitely agree with that. If you give them a try, let me know how you like them!
Those shoes are really cute! And I’m intrigued by the tongue design. Does that take any getting used to?
I’m not a natural runner either. It has always been a struggle. Because of a back injury sustained as a young kid, I will never be a long distance runner, but I do love running for two or three miles a day while pushing both of my kids in the stroller though.
You know, the tongue design actually made my feet feel really snuggly and secure, since it sort of wraps and tucks, which was great!
I feel you- I was in a wheelchair for a year due as a kid after a bike accident, so anytime I can get out there I’m just happy I am. I see some parents out there totally crushing it with the stroller!
Good for you! I’m totally familiar with the attitude of “I’m not ready for that class yet, I need to get into shape first!” but I’m trying to turn that around and remind myself that no one at the gym or at fitness classes is there to judge me. Thanks for the inspiration to get my butt off the couch!
Thank you! Glad I’m not the only one. “No one at the gym or at fitness classes is there to judge me”- so true, and most people are probably equally concerned with how they look- too concerned to be bothered with judging in the first place.