It’s the long holiday weekend, and I think this will be my one and only post until the week officially starts on Tuesday. (And be sure to come back to my blog next week – I have a couple awesome things planned, including the sharing of a video that I just KNOW you’ll love…)
It won’t be news, if you’ve been a reader for a while, that I’ve been attending boot camp classes for a few months now (I went to two in the month of June, as my June Progress Report showed). They’re led by Craig Ramsay, who was featured on Bravo’s Thintervention last fall, and he’s a fantastic trainer, a really wonderful guy, and a friend (see a picture of me and Craig here). Recently, Craig started offering a new service – sessions where he pairs up two of his boot camp clients, and works with them on the gym floor (his boot camps, on the other hand, are held in a classroom).
Yesterday, I had my first session. My friend Kristy, the super-talented singer-songwriter, had one of these sessions last Friday, and told me she was sore for nearly a week. Craig’s boot camps are brutal, so I knew I’d be in for something tough…
…Here’s what went down. Craig started me on an exercise bike. After a good warm-up (about 10 minutes or so), he brought over two 10-pound weights, and had me, while pedaling, do a series of five different shoulder and bicep exercises, for 30 seconds each. Not easy. Especially not easy when, after I finished the first set, Craig came by and replaced my 10-pound weights with 15-pound weights! I did two more complete sets, and the bike portion of the workout was completed. I had to then pick my arms up off the floor and snap them back into their sockets, like they were Lego pieces.
Next was the bench press, where Craig emphasized proper form (I benched 65 pounds), followed by another type of standing chest exercise using dual pulleys that worked a different part of the chest.
Craig then said the StairMaster was next. Ugh – StairMaster. I’ll come back to the StairMaster in the next paragraph. Following that was two different types of pull-ups, which I hate because I can’t do them very well at all, and the final exercise took place in the parking lot, where Craig put 20-pounds weights in each of my hands, and I climbed a 2-story staircase carrying them, going 2 steps at a time, for a total of 4 times. I. Was. Ready. To. Collapse. It took me a while to get home (Friday evening rush-hour traffic), but when I finally pulled into my garage, I didn’t want to leave my car – I was too comfortable, and all my muscles were sore!
OK – back to StairMaster. I don’t like the StairMaster, but I do it every once in a while, because it’s such a great workout, and I can burn lots of calories, and fast. My dislike of the StairMaster led me to create my favorite motivational exercise tool, which is to track the number of stories I climb when I’m on the machine, then, afterward, find a skyscraper somewhere on the planet of an equivalent height. Most recently, I added the Renaissance Center in downtown Detroit to my skyscraper collection (you can see the rest of my skyscraper collection here).
When Craig told me to get on the StairMaster during our session yesterday, I wasn’t surprised, as Nina, the other client I was paired with, had already spent some time on it. But I was dreading it more than usual, because the session had been so taxing so far – I usually start workouts on the StairMaster, when I’m fresh, and yesterday when I got the machine up and running, I was already rather tired. After a few minutes at level 5, Craig had me jump up to level 8, and then, every minute, go up one level, until I hit 12. After a minute on 12, I returned to 8, and started the process again. Craig also taught me another trick to mix things up on the StairMaster – pointing my feet towards one of the corners of the stairs, so I was walking at an angle, which works different muscles (or different parts of the same muscles… or whatever).
All told, I was on the StairMaster for 13 minutes, and I climbed 62 stories. Time for a new skyscraper!
This time, I’m heading overseas, all the way to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – home to the Vista Tower, which, at 62 stories, is the fifth-tallest building in the country:
Yep. I climbed that.
Even though the building has “The Intermark” written on it, it’s called Vista Tower – The Intermark refers to the development as a whole, which includes the DoubleTree Hotel on the right, a shopping center, and a 39-story office tower that’s under construction.
A month ago, I lamented about how not working out on the first day of a new month can be such a bummer – and, guess what! Having such a great workout on the first day of a new month feels wonderful (duh)!
I have my next floor session with Craig scheduled for next Friday. As for today… time to throw on some clothes and head to the gym!
Keep it up, David!