Tag Archives: Elliptical trainer

Better check yo’self before you….pants yo’self?

The past week was a super duper hectic one and my time at the gym (however short it may be some days) has been sweet respite from all of the standing in lines, running errands, and counting down to Santa that has filled the largest part of my days.

I’m still following along the same sort of plan that Jamie’s workouts outlined as best I can: a day each for legs, back, biceps, triceps and shoulders, and throwing in some abs and cardio. I also had  the opportunity (due to my car being in the shop and missing the early train to work, oops! Nothing makes you miss your mechanic Dad like having to defer to the schedule of an auto shop) to do an at-home workout. Lacking weights and any equipment other than my own body, I found the at-home workout to be less satisfying than going to the gym, but still felt better having done something. It was also funny to have my cat ‘help’ me do pushups. I ended up doing a facsimile of a workout I outlined last week: a circuit starting at 10 jumping jacks and pushups, subtracting one each time until down to zero, twenty mountain climbers, and 15 crunches (which I swapped for 15 reverse crunches half way through the circuits) for a total of 55 pushups, 55 jumping jacks, 200 mountain climbers and 75 of each type of crunch. The workout took me about 45 minutes to complete and I had the reward of showering in my own bathroom sans shower sandals which is probably the biggest motivator to do an at-home workout. If you are in a bind and can’t make it to the gym, head over to pinterest and type At Home Workouts into the search bar and take your pick!

Drop and give me twenty! Then scratch my ears...
Drop and give me twenty! Then scratch my ears…

I had a pretty difficult time with my cardio workouts this week, specifically the days I ran on the treadmill. I try to alternate between the elliptical, treadmill and stationary bike so that I don’t get bored doing the same thing over and over again. Usually this plan works out fine, but lately whenever I try to run (and sometimes on the elliptical too) I get a terrible side stitch; it seems like such a silly thing to complain about, but some days it forces me to stop and switch to the bike or simply call it a day. I’m not even certain what a side stitch actually IS (and neither is anyone else, definitively, it seems); is it a cramp or simply your body’s way of telling you that cardio is a stupid option when there are couches to sit on and cookies to eat? Whatever they are, they can really throw a wrench in your plan.

Sometimes I can get rid of my side stitch by walking for a few minutes and stretching. Friday was one of those days when I was able to take a break and resume my running pain-free, but, alas, I then experienced a problem of a different kind. Like many people, I have favorite workout clothes (I’m looking’ at YOU super slimming UnderArmour yoga pants) and not-again-I-just-wore-you-last-week-and-you-totally-sucked-why-can’t-I-remember-to-do-laundry-so-that-I-never-have-to-wear-you workout clothes. I found myself wearing the latter on Friday; a tshirt that is a little too short and a little too tight in the shoulders and a pair of yoga pants that used to be my absolute favorite until they started to shirk their duties.

These pants just will.not.stay.UP! I learned in Phase Two that they travel south when I am jumping rope, and I have noticed lately that they shimmy lower than I want when I wear them to walk my dog, but I was attributing that to my bulky winter coat pushing them down and did not realize the severity of this problem until I tried to run in them on Friday.

I started out at a slow jog, hiked up my pants as they slid down and continued  my run…only to have to hike them up again and again. After maybe the tenth time I yanked them back up, I started to time them and my pants were falling down enough that I was concerned about mooning the poor guy who was on the treadmill behind me every fifteen to twenty seconds! I’m not sure if any marketing research has been done in this area, but I’m certain that 100% of people polled would not list ‘slides down until you are showing off some sexy plumber’s crack’ as a quality they seek in exercise attire.

The faster I ran, the faster they fell down, and the higher I pulled them up. Ten minutes into my run, I was dangerously close to Steve Urkel/camel toe territory, and my pants would still not stay put. When I relayed this story to my husband and my Mom, they both thought that my pants falling down must be a good sign because maybe I’ve lost THAT much weight and they are too big for me. While that is a nice thought, there is no way that these pants should be too big for me and I actually think (as embarrassing as it is to admit) that, since I wore these pants as frequently as my laundry schedule would allow when I was at my heaviest last winter, I stretched the elastic out and it no longer has the ability to fully contract. Basically, I turned a fantastic pair of yoga pants into ‘fat’ pants and they have never been able to recover! Needless to say, the pants have been retired as lounge wear; they deserve it.

Despite my wardrobe malfunction, I powered through my run deciding it was better to look like I had a really strange nervous tic than to waste a day when I had overcome my side stitch. As Kenny Rogers, wise man that he is, once sang: you’ve got to know when to hold ’em and know when to fold ’em, and I wasn’t going to fold on a day when pretty much everything was lining up so that I could have a great run, but I sure did do a lot of holding onto my waistband.