Idea Days 2 & 3-Hormones, Cycling Playlists, Metabolic Training

Hello! I’m back home now. Thankfully I don’t have work today, so I’m hanging out at Starbucks with a (decaf) iced latte so I can do justice to the amazing past few days that I had.

Friday

Session 1: Balancing Hormones Through Nutrition

This session was okay. It was more science based than the lecture I had been to the previous night, but at this point I’ve learned enough about the science nutrition through so many different sources that I’ve developed my own personal view of it so things like this I either take or leave. The lecturer had a very holistic view of health, and had a degree in holistic health (as well as other Biochem degrees). She began talking about hormones (which was the part of the lecture I enjoyed the most). Some takeaways:

-We can’t separate the mind and body. Thoughts lead to biochemical messages to the body. We secrete chemicals that lead us to feel what we are thinking.

-Physically, an emotion lasts 90 seconds in the body. (For example, the neuropeptides secreted during anger last for 90 seconds)

-Excessive exercise leads to excessive stress, which suppresses the immune system. 80% of fitness professionals have lowered immune systems.

-Every body is different and may react differently to different foods.

Honestly, where she lost me was when she started talking about when our hormones are off, we need a nutritional detox, consisting of a vegan diet (temporarily, while things reset). I totally agree that we should eat plant based food that is rich in nutrients, but I’m not entirely onboard with the concern about acidity/alkalinity in the body, because as someone who suffered stomach damage related to high acid levels, I wouldn’t eat some of the foods she preaches.

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If it’s something you’re interested in, the concept is certain foods leave the body with overall acidity (meat, dairy, grains) and plant foods create an alkaline (basic) environment. I agree that this is true, I’m just not sure it matters all that much. She also sort of lost me when she mentioned to cure illness, we should chew on garlic. I’m not sure I buy that! That’s just my view though!

My second session was exercise science. I’m going to do an entire post on that because the session was AWESOME. I was in love.

Then, it was lunchtime. I actually thought the food options there were really good. I had a teriyaki chicken bowl with brown rice for lunch, and a little bit later, a gluten free blueberry muffin.

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That being said, I went through most of my food supply, simply because with that much activity, I was constantly hungry, and therefore constantly eating. I ate my entire stash of Luna bars (partly because I had one for breakfast each morning). That teriyaki bowl was the first real food I had had in a while so it was amazing! Lots and lots of bars were consumed though.

Session 3: Schwinn Cycling Metabolic Mash Up

One great thing about the workshops is that we were given the playlist+choreography for the entire ride, so we can take it back to our classes! I’m spin certified through Spinning, and it was interesting to see another program’s view. I’ll do a separate post on my overall impressions of Spinning vs Schwinn as well!

This session focused on metabolic training, which is basically training in a series of intervals in a way that helps you get the most out of the workout (in terms of overall fitness as well as calorie burn). Some well known examples of this are HIIT and tabata training.

There are two ways to train-aerobically and anaerobically. Anaerobic means “without oxygen,” and this is the feeling of breathlessness in a workout. This is a maximum effort, and cannot be held for more than a minute or so (depending on fitness level). When you’re huffing and puffing on the treadmill for 20 minutes, although you are out of breath, you aren’t breathless, because you are maintaining that activity level of an extended period of time. I’ll talk a little bit more about this in my exercise science post.

When building metabolic conditioning into class, it’s essential to build in recovery as well. The following picture shows some different types of intervals-all of which we tested out in the workout portion of the workshop!

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We also utilized a projector screen during the workout which showed our stats compared to the other riders, which was a little added motivation!

My last session of the day was part of the Spri Summer Games, a competition against other attendees. I was signed up as part of the college program. I think the college program is still in its early phase, because I don’t think there were that many attendees! I only met a couple of other college students. The competition was 4 stations-jumprope, kettle bell high pulls, and then a couple of things I hadn’t done before. One was on paralettes, and the other involved leaping on and off of a step. We had 30 seconds of max effort at each station. The people with the highest scores at each station advanced to a final round. I did not win.

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I was pretty beat, and headed back to the hotel for a night of Netflix. By the time I went out for dinner, almost everywhere nearby was closed so I stopped at a cheesesteak place for a salad and cheddar broccoli potato.

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Saturday

Saturday was a LONG day. And the crazy thing? It rained all day! Like I actually got wet walking back in the evening!

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Session 1: Schwinn Pimp My Playlist

This was fantastic. Music is something I’m always keeping an ear out for, and a few tips were greatly appreciated!

-This about the audience, time, and location of the class when making music decisions.

-Create a playlist with texture (I love this because it describes it perfectly.) You want a riding experience with music that follows a journey, with crescendos and bumps. You don’t want all techno, you don’t want all country.

Here are a few places to look to for new music or music mixing:

-iTunes top music-start at the bottom and work your way to the top to find new music and get ahead of the curve.

-Spotify as a search engine-you can follow other fitness instructors to see their playlists!

-SoundCloud-good for mash ups.

-ClickMix-Say you want a 8 minute hill and have 3 songs, but don’t want the music to stop in between songs. ClickMix can meld together songs of your choice.

This is also a good time to mention the Schwinn app. I’ve had it before but didn’t really know how to use it. It’s actually awesome-it’s designed to be user friendly in terms of where the buttons are, and you can overlay sound effects on the spot. The coolest thing? You can adjust the pace of music (i.e. speed it up) on the spot in class. It also allows you to save notes for each song.

Session 2: Jillian Michaels Bodyshred

To be perfectly honest, I don’t know a lot about Jillian Michaels, other than that this was a workout a lot of people were excited for, because she led it herself. It was in a big room with hundreds of people, and was bodyweight based, plus some water bottles for weights. I wasn’t exactly clear on the concept, but it’s a total body workout where you do each move for 30 seconds. There are some recovery moves built in but you’re moving constantly for 30 minutes. It was a pretty good workout, but in a crowded room it was a bit hard to move around. That and my legs were already wiped from spin! The energy in the room was awesome though!

I was starving after this, and got a fruit cup and turkey wrap for lunch.

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I spent a couple of hours at the expo.

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Blueberry smoothie with honey nut cheerios blended in=delicious.

Session 3: Keiser Cycling

I wanted to try a non-Schwinn workshop, so I decided to pop into this one (I was planning on doing another lecture). Keiser is another bike maker, and we have Keiser bikes at school. The cool thing about this class was the projector screen.

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It followed the terrain of the ride, so you felt like you were actually flying downhill! The best part? It also showed little avatars numbered with your bike, that followed your power up the hill. Even though I had already been on the bike for a while that day, it was so motivating to watch that little guy and make him go!

Session 4: Plantar Fasciitis

We discussed imbalances causing plantar fasciitis, especially in the hips and ankles. Strengthening exercises and loosening therapy (like foam rolling) can help alleviate the pain.

That night, I went back out with my new friends.

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Despite the long day, I stayed out quite a bit later than would have been ideal for my sleep levels! When in LA! Sidenote-I actually had to stop at a store to buy some clothes to wear because I packed very few non-workout clothes! Whoops.

Day 4 recap to come!