Holy Hilly Steps Strike Again!

I can totally hear Jeanne saying this!

This was our final week for the 5 week Group Training Session with Jeanne.

On Wednesdays she combines groups and we (the Tue/Wed/Thr group) train with her (Mon/Wed/Fri group) – um, yeah – did I say that right? Okay – so we all train together on Wednesdays! Anyhow, this being the last week she really hazed us!

Tuesday – 3 sets of:

1Set =

Push-ups (for 1 min 45 sec)

15 sec rest

Burpees (1 min 45 sec)

15 sec rest

Sit-ups (1 min 45 sec)

15 sec rest

Squats (1 min 45 sec)

15 sec rest

Jumping Jacks (1 min 45sec)

Then when the 2nd set started you worked your way backwards through the set from Jumping Jacks back to push-ups. OH Momma – did this hurt! I was sooooo sweaty when I was in the push-up position I could feel sweat running down my scalp to my forehead, then I would stand up for the burpees and the sweat would roll into my eyes! YowZah!

I need to get some sweatbands! This was truly a tough, mentally and physically, workout. By the time you were done with one set an entire muscle group would be smoked – then as you worked your way opposite in the set you would get some relief and then again burn-out the other muscle group! Total body!

Wednesday – HOLY HILLY STEPS! I know I posted about these numerous times but I just think they deserve all the attention I give them! To see these steps in pictures doesn’t do them any justice to the fear they impart on a first timer – they look scary and they are!

View from the top! Hello, Okinawa!

For the steps – Jeanne worked me OUTTAH! I have never done the steps like this before. Normally she has me go up and down 3 times and I have to do pushups on every landing and then I have to wear a weighted vest, etc. not to make it sound easy – its not but compared to THIS TIME – OMGosh!

1st Time Up = 5 burpees every landing and I had to transition from landing to landing as fast as possible.

Look at that naive smile! Only in round 1 sweetheart, 3 more to go!

2nd Time Up – Walk at a pace just below jogging – bog arm swings to help with the momentum and just go straight up.

See the smooth part on the left - I had to run that.

3rd Time Up – I had to run it… GASP, I know! Wha, wha – whaut! Run! So I went up the smooth side of the steps and grunted and screamed a little – and ran up! I made it about mid way and had to move to a much slower pace. Then about 5 landings from the top I though for sure I was going to throw up but managed to hold it back.

4th Time Up – Side steps all the way switching sides at each landing. My hips are so sore!

Coming down for the final time - fasciculation all the way!

This workout was so tough but I loved it! Call me a masochist but it was the sort of pain that hurts-so-good! Now – 3 days later – is another story. DOMS has set in and is really making my calves and gluteus maximus scream. Every one was struggling with this workout – no one walks away from the Holy Hilly Steps without a beat red face and pride!

Get out of your comfort zone ladies!

Thursday – Last Day

Tabata time with 20lb Kettle Bells. I am not a huge fan of kettle bells but only because they are tough to workout with – not tough as in cumbersome but tough as in make my body hurt badly the next day! So the Tabata is a timed exercise for a specific duration of on and off sets. So like – 20 seconds on of hip-thrusters and 10 seconds off – until the total amount of time allotted for the workout it done.

I have signed up for one more 5 week Group Session Training with Jeanne and so haven’t all of the same ladies from my group! YAY! It’s really nice to see the progress that everyone is making – AMY – I saw all that awesome core work you powered through today!!! Just 5 weeks and everyone was showing signs of being so much stronger! This last session will get me through to the end of summer and then the personal training sessions will be back in full swing.

The heat here is just so miserable and life draining. It can sometimes be in the 90’s by 8am with humidity levels already at 100%. So while meeting at 5am is not my ideal time, it certainly enables me to beat the heat!

In other news – Now that I am almost to the double digits range in my mileage Jeanne is now having me focus on faster paces for my shorter distances. This should be interesting! I’ll be putting my new Nike + watch to the test for its ability to be accurate on my instant pace. This has been a problem in the past (the instant pace being very fast) compared to my husbands Garmin.

My up-coming mileage:

Fri – off
Sat – 5miles @9 min
Sun – 4 @8:30
Mon – off
Tues – 3 @8:00
Wed – 5 @ 9 min
Th – 4 @ 9 min
Fri – off
Sat – 4 @8:30
Sun – 7 @ 10

Anyone want to join me for any of these runs? I think Amy and I will try and team up again for my 7 miler but she is training for a marathon in October so her miles are already exceeding mine.

I feel so blessed to be in the company of such an experienced runner. She had already offered up some great advice and I look forward to picking her brain some more before her and her husband PCS off the island.

Nutritional Tidbits:

I have started combing through all of my old recipes to find ways to make them more Paleo or as close to it as I can. Shane called this Paleo Comfort food – which by the way there is a cook book out called Paleo Comfort Foods and if you order it now (before it’s released) you can get it at a discount through Amazon.

Example of one revamped non-Paleo to Paleo recipe:

Pillsbury Chicken and Roasted Vegetables Dinner (Crockpot)

Ingredients:

1 lb unpeeled small potatoes – I subbed acorn squash for this

2 cups ready-to-eat baby carrots

1 cup frozen small whole onions (pearl) – I subbed a med. yellow onion chopped for this

6 boneless skinless chicken thighs (YUM!)

1/2 tsp sea salt

1/8 tsp pepper

1 jar chicken gravy

1 1/2 c. frozen sweet peas thawed – I realize now that peas are legumes and are not paleo

How to:

Spray 3-4 qt. slow cooker w/ cooking spray. In cooker, place (potatoes) acorn squash, carrots and onion. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper; place all the ingredients except the sweet peas in the cooker. Mix well and cover. Cook on low for 8 hrs. Stir in peas 15 min before you plan to eat.

Without any subbing the recipe states that the Cal per serving (1 1/2 cups each) is 290. Fat 9g, Sodium 640mg (but can be lower depending on the subbing you do for your gravy).

Review: This was so super stinking delicious – the chicken was just falling apart when I was trying to scoop my serving out. The gravy got thicker as it set in the fridge for leftovers and was even more delicious the next day.

————————————– 

I mentioned before that I would talk more about Phytochemicals – so here’s the skinny! Remember that Phytochemicals are herbs and spices – the word sounds weird but it literally means “plant chemical.”

All information listed here is taken from:

Insel, P., Ross, D., Turner, R. E. (2010). Discovering nutrition: Third edition. Sudbury, MA: Jones & Bartlett Publishers

Overview: 

Phytochemicals make food functional. What does that mean? Well, a functional food is a food that may provide a health benefit beyond basic nutrition.

Example: Garlic contains sulfur compounds that may reduce heart disease risk, and tomato sauce is rich in lycopene, a compound that may reduce prostate cancer risk. The soy protein in tofu and the fiber in oatmeal can help reduce the risk of heart disease.

 

All the functional foods just mentioned get their health-promoting properties from naturally occurring compounds that are not considered nutrients but are called phytochemicals. While the word phytochemical might sound futuristic, its meaning is simple, “plant chemical.”

Vitamins are a food substance essential for life. Phytochemicals, in contrast, are substances in plants that may promote good health, even though they are not essential for life. Plants contain phytochemicals in abundance b/c these substances are of benefit to the plant itself.

Benefits:

An orange has 170 distinct phytochemicals. Singly and together, these compounds help plants resist the attacks of bacteria and fungi, the ravages of free radicals, and high levels of ultraviolet light from the sun. When we eat these plants, the phytochemicals end up in our tissues and provide many of the same protections that plants enjoy.

The trick here is that you actually have to eat the food source to see the benefits. In tests done where people have just taken supplements of the food source (i.e. pills) they did not show the same benefits as people who actually ingested and process the food through absorption and digestion – the same benefits.

 

Good Website for info on Herbs and their levels of phytochemicals

http://www.phytochemicals.info/research/antioxidants-herbs.php

I will now step off of my soapbox! BUT – if this has spiked your interest in knowing about food, your body and how they connect – I suggest NOT buying a “for profit” book sold at Borders or any other commercial bookstore but instead buying a textbook like the one I am reading for some great (somewhat non-biased) information. I have learned so much about how our bodies process and use food!

Have a great weekend everyone and please shoot me some great recipes if anyone is reading this and has tried something new and Paleo – I would love to try it out and blog about it in my Nutritional Tidbits!

Now, I am limping off to eat more protein and hope my muscle pains are better by Saturday when I have to run…and do it faster than normal! Eeeek!

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