PEAK WEEK, Day 77: Legs from Phase 1 (aka The One That Requires Strength)

Strength is a funny thing.

There’s physical strength: CAN I LIFT THIS CAR OFF THIS BABY.

There’s mental strength: CAN I STAY AWAKE A LITTLE BIT LONGER TO FINISH THIS ASSIGNMENT.

There’s emotional strength: CAN I BE THE BIGGER PERSON AND NOT TAKE OFFENSE AT MY PASSIVE AGGRESSIVE AUNT.

And there’s what I call social strength: CAN I RESIST THE URGE TO FOLLOW THE HERD WHEN EVERYONE ELSE IS DOING IT.

In my experience, these strengths are all intrinsically tied to one another –if you improve one strength, it usually has the net effect of improving a strength in a different area.

Nowhere have I found this to be more true than in 80 Day Obsession, which is why I love the program so damn much.

To build your physical strength, you necessarily have to build your mental strength (I CAN DO IT! JUST ONE MORE REP!) and your social strength (SORRY I CAN’T GO OUT I HAVE TO GO TO THE GYM). You also have to build some emotional strength (SORRY NOT SORRY FOR HOARDING ALL THE WEIGHTS). Somehow, though you probably didn’t expect it, strength is a package deal with 80 Day Obsession.

You may have started the program to shred out your abs and get a booty. I did. I wanted a six-pack for summer. I kinda have one. Or, at least, it’s the closest I’ve ever been to having one.

I didn’t start 80 Day Obsession because I wanted to become stronger mentally. But I got stronger mentally. It just happened. Probably because as you prove to yourself with each workout that you can do hard things, that carries over to work and family and everything else and you end up reminding yourself, when faced when an otherwise insurmountable task, that you can do hard things.

The same goes for your emotional and social strengths. A million bucks says each have improved during this program (provided, of course, you have actually followed the program).

As a result, you will be ending 80 Day Obsession a different person than when you started. A much stronger person in body and mind and spirit.

I bring all this up because today’s Leg Day is a good reminder of your new and improved strength. The workout is hard: Three sets of 10 reps, where you do the rep scheme a group of exercises at a time.

SERIES 1: Reverse lunges, squats, curtsy lunges.

SERIES 2: Sumo squats, front diagonal lunges, twisting back angle lunge.

SERIES 3: Single-leg good morning, hip hinge, buddha squats.

Because this exercise is from Phase 1, if you recall, the emphasis was on lifting heavy weights. So it is today. But because you will not have lifted truly heavy weights for about four weeks – as Phase 3 was about jumping with a lighter weight – you will struggle today. This is doubly so because Autumn gives minimal rest going from one leg to another within a move; that is, when you finish up the right leg on reverse lunges, you go immediately to your left.

PRO TIP #321: START THE FIRST SET IN SERIES 1 WITH A LIGHTER WEIGHT TO WARM UP.

You will need the warm-up round. When I ended Phase 1 eons ago, I was lifting 25 pound dumbbells for each move. But after the warm-up today, I could feel my body was nowhere near warm enough to start with those 25s. So, I started with 20s. I used the 20s for the first set of reverse lunges, squats, and curtsy lunges. It wasn’t until that second set of reverse lunges that my body felt limber enough to handle the 25s. I knew I was warmed up when my knee banged against the floor on the first lunge, whereas I could barely bend the damn thing in the first set.

More so than my physical strength, however, the workout tested my mental strength. On Day 77, the workout felt long. And I was tired. And I am ready for a break after 77 days.

But here is where that newly developed mental fortitude kicked in. Instead of doubting whether I could finish the move or the workout, I reminded myself I already did – I’d finished it four times before in Phase 1. I could CERTAINLY power through this final round in PEAK WEEK.

To ensure I powered through, I took shorter rest breaks than Autumn and the cast; I knew if I stayed still for too long, I might not get started back up again. Don’t be afraid to start early if this is you. Don’t be afraid to do what you need to do to get the job done, ESPECIALLY in Peak Week.

My mind reminded my body it could do this workout. As a result, I have officially checked off yet another workout in 80 Day Obsession. GOODBYE LEG DAY.

But more importantly, I was reminded, yet again, that I can do hard things.

You can too. Check out the link if you want to get started on your own path to 80 Day Obsession. Or email me with questions or for more details. Whatever you do, I hope you are finding your own way to improve your own strengths and live your best life.

After all, why settle for anything less?

PEAK WEEK, Day 76: Cardio Flow (aka The One Day At the Zoo You Might Enjoy)

This is the Cardio Flow workout you’ve been waiting for: The one you might enjoy.

Finally, FINALLY, Autumn takes away the stupid build-ups.

Instead, from the very beginning you go straight through the workout, four reps of 10 moves, all in a row. To refresh your memory, that means four reps each of:

  1. Inchworms;
  2. Spider push-ups;
  3. Diamond jumps;
  4. Flamingoes;
  5. Ducks;
  6. Gorillas;
  7. Step-throughs;
  8. Bears;
  9. Crabs; and
  10. Mule-to-Frogs.

I hate the build-up so I much prefer this set-up. Plus, Autumn keeps it interesting by challenging you – and her cast – to do as many rounds of all 10 exercises as possible.

*** SPOILER ALERT ***

You will do 10 rounds.

BUT, I will add that if you are feeling ambitious, it IS impossible to beat Autumn and the gang and squeeze out an extra round. I know because I got a wild hair to do that today. So I did. Eleven rounds, finished at the exact same time as Autumn and everyone else. Here is my face after:

Cardio Flow DONE.
I can’t smile my face hurts from Diamond Jumps.

It occurs to me that there are very few photos of me smiling after finishing a workout. Even though I feel great and love the endorphin rush, I’m pretty sure I look like I want to pass out in every post-workout photo.

I’m aware of this, I really am. And today I tried to change it up and smile.

I won’t post the photos. I looked like I was being tortured. All grimaces and teeth.

This too is another clue that I need a break because my first time through 80 Day Obsession, I was smiling HARD after finishing each and every workout in Peak Week because it meant the damn thing was FINALLY checked off the list. Hell, you’d think I’d muster up a grin today at having f-ing Cardio Flow out of the way.

Yet the best I can manage is a look of dazed bewilderment.

I know it’s time to switch things up when I’m not finding joy in the little things. ESPECIALLY in not having to do Cardio Flow again. I hate that workout. Seriously. I know I should be super positive and tell you to follow the plan to a T, but I swear to God if I do 80 Day Obsession again I’m gonna swap the damn thing out for a different cardio workout. I don’t like dreading a workout, yet Cardio Flow was this program’s dentist appointment: You know you have to do it because it’s good for you but you hate every second of it and spend the rest of the day sore and vowing to never to it again.

I guess the take-away is it’s okay to hate the workout (and your dentist) so long as you keep going back for more. Interesting side note: My dentist is my godfather. Yet I still hate going in for check-ups.

Sigh.

Sometimes you just have to appreciate the ends and not the means.

In the meantime, good luck with today’s workout. I hope you enjoy checking this one off your list. Should feel real good!

Link to more Beachbody stuff. Feel free to message me with your thoughts on the zoo or writing requests.

Yours in worms and diamonds,

Katie

PEAK WEEK, Day 75: AAA from Phase 1 (aka The One Where You Can Feel Yourself Shredding Out)

I came up with multiple aka’s for this program during the course of the workout:

  • The One Where You Can’t Stop Grabbing Your Ass In Public;
  • The One Where You Want to Run To the Nearest Mirror to Check Out Your Abs;
  • The One Where You Might Faceplant Because Your Arms Give Out.

Since nobody remembers this workout (so much has happened since then), here’s what you have to look forward to:

Three series of four exercises each.

Series 1: Upright Row, Bent Over Fly, Frog Sliders, Glute Bridge with Loop.

Series 2: Push-Up, Skull Crushers, Weighted Ab Sit-Up, Quad Ped Heel Press.

Series 3: Bent Over Row, Hammer Curl, Knee Tucks, Fire Hydrant.

The lift scheme is two sets of 15 reps, where you take it all a series at a time; that is, you do all exercises in a row for 15 reps each, then go back and repeat before moving on to the next series. As a result, the workout moves along nice, though still clocks in at 53 minutes.

Also as a result, you will get some booty pump and dead arms. I am having to take breaks as I type this to shake my arms out at my side to get the blood flowing. My biceps/triceps/shoulders literally start spasming if I keep my fingers on the keyboard for too long. It’s too much work for those tired muscles.

It’s not that these exercises are hard. They are. But the intensity is different. You’ll sweat, but nowhere near as much as you did in the Phase 3 AAA workout. You will also notice that there are almost no compound movements. For example, if you recall the last time we did skull crushers, we did them while up in a glute bridge and with loops around our thighs. You would think that without the loops and glute bridge, the move is therefore a lot easier.

My shaking arms stay otherwise.

Without the extra moves, you can focus in on one particular muscle group – triceps for the skull crushers – and try and lift a little heavier. Surprisingly, the static focus acts as a shock to the system. You get a good burn going; so good, in fact, that afterwards you’ll want to run to a mirror to see if your tricep muscle is popping because they are going to feel extra defined.

Same goes for your abs on the slider moves.

But the true test of strength, the real measure of how far you’ve come, is push-ups. I guarantee you that is why Autumn chose this workout. You might not be able to find your Phase 1 tracker sheets to see what you lifted at the end of that Phase; and, even if you find your tracker sheets, your weights today might differ from your weights back then. But when you do that first push-up, you’ll feel the difference.

Autumn will be calling out cues, and you’ll find you can follow along. Don’t let your back arch; head in a straight line; lift your butt and pelvis a bit more. Instead of dreading these normal push-ups, you’ll relish them. If you’ve made it this far in the program, this move, more than any other, will be the true testament to your progress. You’ll surprise yourself with how strong you feel, especially in the first few. You can actually LOWER yourself with some control and come up with some power. And you can do this for multiple reps! Sure, it gets a bit sloppy at the end, but remember when you FIRST did these push-ups? you were on your knees! Check out how far you’ve come. You might even feel good enough to go back and take a few photos to share:

Push-Up
Amazing how such a simple move can tell such an important story.

Aside from the push-ups, you will be afraid that your arms are going to give out during the quad ped moves and the fire hydrants and the knee tucks and the frog sliders. Don’t think this is just you. You are not alone. And it does not mean you are weak. It just means your body isn’t used to the workout and it’s a good wake-up call. Which is the whole point of PEAK WEEK, to shock your body off any plateau it might have reached.

It will also have you grabbing your ass a lot because of the focus on your glutes.

Again, when was the last time you did an exercise on your hands and knees, using the loops? Maybe Phase 2. Which is why when you do it during Peak Week, your ass can tell. It feels EXTRA big after all those reps, and I guarantee your hands will be wandering back to check and see how many sizes it grew during the exercise.

Regardless of the Booty gains made during this workout, it’s Day 75, and if you’re like me, you’re going to be happy to say goodbye to this workout. It’s nice to FINALLY have one in the books for good…until next time.

Get some sleep for Cardio Flow tomorrow. It’ll be fun for once, I swear.

Link to the Beachbody goods here. Message me with any thoughts or tips or hopes or dreams.

xo

Phase 3, Day 69: AAA (aka The One Where Autumn is a Hot Mess)

It is a truth universally acknowledged that not every day will be perfect in an 80 day workout program.

So it is with 80 Day Obsession.

But there is a huge difference between being the hot mess yourself, and seeing a celebrity super trainer also struggle with hot-messy-itis just like a normal person.

Today’s workout finds you doing AAA for the last time in Phase 3, and the rep scheme is one that feels like it moves quickly, even though the workout still takes close to an hour (58 minutes). As previously described, there are three series of exercises, four exercises to a series, and this week you’ll do each series for two sets of 15 reps each, before moving on to the next series.

While you will enjoy pushing yourself with the weights with this workout, you will mostly enjoy watching Autumn struggle.

I don’t say that to be cruel. What I mean is that for the past 68 days, Autumn has been with you for every rep in every set. She has done every curl and every lunge, every jump and every squat. You see her sweat and see her have to go down in weights because her forearms can’t handle a heavy pair of dumbbells.  Through it all, amazingly, she talks. She calls out cues and counts and reminds you what you should be doing to lift safely and get the most out of the workout.

In short, she is superwoman.

Which is why on Day 69, it is refreshing to be reminded that she is also human.

Today, she will do the side lunges with only one dumbell instead of two, and have to make the correction for the second set.

She will grab loops and start to put them on when all she needs is a weight for twisting roll downs.

She will continuously grab the wrong weights for the exercise she is doing and have to switch them out right before she starts her countdown to begin.

You would think her messiness would be irritating; after all, she’s supposed to be leading the workout –you look to her for guidance and reassurance that you are moving in the right direction.

Yet it is exactly her hot messiness that is so reassuring. It’s those moments that remind us Autumn Calabrese is human, and if she can do these workouts when even she seems to be a step behind, then by God, the rest of us can as well.

I happened to switch on a teaser program for a new workout regime coming out this summer with a different celebrity super trainer, and as I watched him move around and critique form without lifting a weight himself, I admit that part of me switched off. I didn’t realize how much I liked seeing Autumn work out with us until I watched a different program where a trainer didn’t do the same. I remember that in 21 Day Fix, Autumn always at least started the exercise and did a few reps before moving about the room to correct form. With 80 Day Obsession, however, she starts every exercise with you, and she finishes every exercise with you.

I had no idea how motivating this would be until I tried watching another program.

I suspect it might be hard for me to start a new fitness journey with a different trainer who doesn’t acknowledge that the struggle is real. That is, by joining in herself, it’s almost as though Autumn is telling us is okay to struggle because this shit is HARD; after all, if it’s difficult for her, then it should be difficult for the rest of us!

So yeah. Enjoy today’s workout. Know you are not alone in your struggles or your journey. Know also that the journey is almost done and you have come pretty damn far. Enjoy these last two weeks and make them count!

Now for your moment of zen and the usual link:

IMG_0669

 

Phase 3, Day 58: Cardio Flow (aka The One Where You Reach For Fifth Gear and Get….Nothing)

I effing hate this workout.

I hate the build-up of exercises. I hate diamond jumps. I hate mules to frogs because I feel so damn uncoordinated doing them and like I’m water-boarding myself with all the sweat.

I can’t really even zone out during this workout because I have to keep track of the count.

The only thing I like about this workout is FINISHING it. That feels damn good….until I remember I have to do it again a week from now.

So, this morning I dragged myself out of bed and to the gym at 6 am, even though I had just worked out at 8 pm the night before. That’s not even a 12-hour break, people, and I was running on less than six hours’ sleep.

So I had that going for me. I was already unmotivated to do the workout, and I was tired.

It was the perfect storm.

I got all the way through building up the exercises. Then I made it through the first of the eight rounds and gave myself a two-second towel break so I could see.

I started the second round, and by the time I got to spider push-ups, something was off. Not like something was wrong, but it was as though my arms stopped working. I lurched my way through four reps, then stood up for diamond jumps.

At that point, I had a semi-out-of-body experience. I knew I had to do a diamond jump; I knew how to do a diamond jump; I knew the effort required and how low I wanted to get and how high I wanted to spring; but in that moment, it was as though my body simply went, “NOPE. Dial that shit back about six inches.”

The best I can describe it, it was like standing on an open air elevator platform being lowered slowly into the earth, and looking up and seeing my Stamina standing on the edge of the pit, smiling and waving cheerfully as I sink into the darkness. In that moment, my stamina said goodbye.

And suddenly I realized I wasn’t just sweating, I was DROWNING in sweat. I couldn’t breathe. My heart was beating too fast. I managed to somehow limp through the remaining diamond jumps and take a few deep breaths doing flamingos; but the sense of drowning returned full-force in mules to frogs when it felt as though the sweat was flooding my nose and mouth and blocking my ability to inhale.

In essence, I was on the verge of losing my shit.

I somehow got through the round, hit “pause,” and took a moment to calm the fuck down. I wiped the sweat from my face and drank some water. I hit “play,” but then immediately hit “pause” again. The thought of having to go another six rounds in a row had my heart racing. I don’t know if it was a mental block or my body not being fully recovered from the night before or a heady combo of the two, but suffice it to say, I didn’t have it. I was missing that GRIT that usually had me gutting it out through the most difficult reps at the end of the workout. Instead, I felt tired and worn down and a little hopeless, to be honest.

So I made myself a deal. I didn’t have six rounds left; I just had two rounds. I’d do two rounds in a row without a break, then hit the “30 second repeat” button on my phone to give myself a 30-second towel and water break. I’d get 30 seconds to gather myself and my strength. Did it somewhat cut against the gist of the workout, which is to do it all without stopping? Yes. But I wasn’t really stopping. I was just taking extended pauses. And I wasn’t quitting.

By breaking it down into sets of two, I got that shit done. It wasn’t perfect, and it certainly wasn’t pretty, but apparently that’s all my body could handle today. I just didn’t have it.

I could be beating myself up right now, angry that I didn’t complete the workout the way Autumn intended, bummed that I didn’t make the most of this morning’s opportunity to take a step towards that fabled six-pack.

But I’m not. More than anything, I’m focused on the fact that I need more sleep. I need to be in bed within the hour, and I need to get some much needed Zzzzzzzs so my body can repair.

That’s just how it goes. Today wasn’t a good day. I can’t win them all. But I can make sure I don’t quit. I didn’t quit. Which means I’m quietly celebrating completing Day 58 for the second time in this 80 Day Obsession journey. I’m relishing the fact that this is the best workout streak I’ve ever had. And I’m already planning on kicking ass in tomorrow’s workout to make up for today.

Some days, you’ll reach for fifth gear and find you can barely get into third. That’s normal. But don’t let it become the norm. Accept it for the day, roll with the punches, and move on to the next workout. Be nice to yourself about it. Figure out what went wrong and address the issue. Get more sleep or get back on the eating plan or drink more water. There’s always SOMEthing.

Whatever you do, don’t get discouraged and quit. Because that’s so much harder to come back from than a quick towel and water break.

I hope you read this and know the struggle is real. I couldn’t feel my quads in the duck walks, pictured below:

Duck Walk
I’m in a tiny house and it sucks.

I had no idea how close my knee was to the ground. As far as I could tell, I was barely getting down there; I had no body-mind connection today.

Turns out, it wasn’t as bad as I thought. Which is my last point: Even when it feels terrible and you can’t get low or push through that extra rep, things aren’t as bad as you think. Guaranteed.

So take a moment, wipe off that sweat, take a drink of water, then finish the workout in whatever way you can that day. It’ll get better.

Looking for inspo? Link to Beachbody here.

I’m off to bed to gear up for Leg Day tomorrow. It’s gonna be good.

Phase 3, Day 54: Total Body Core (aka Be Your Own Detective)

SPOILER ALERT: This post has next to nothing to do with today’s workout. Let’s just get that out of the way right now. In fact, let’s just get the description out of the way so we can move on to the fun stuff.

Total Body Core in Phase 3 means a workout that flows relatively nicely until you get to the third series when it slows to a crawl. There’s five series, each dedicated to a different muscle group, and three exercises within each series. It’s a mix of weights and loops and sliders. Here’s how it breaks down:

SERIES 1 – Shoulders: Surrender to shoulder press, quad ped crawl, burpee sliders.

SERIES 2 – Back: Bent over Row tap back, squat tabletop row, saw on sliders.

SERIES 3 – Chest: Modified 1/2 Turkish Push-Up, side reach push-up, V crunch to scissor crunch.

SERIES 4 – Biceps: Runner’s lunge curl, static sumo hammer curl, slider crawl outs.

SERIES 5 – Triceps: Tricep push-up w/knee tuck, squat hold kickbacks, weighted windmills.

FAVE EXERCISE: Surrender to shoulder press (don’t ask me why).

LEAST FAVE: Modified 1/2 Turkish push-up (IT’S THE DEVIL).

PRO TIP #62: If you are tall, consider using the larger 12″ loops for the runner’s lunge curl.

Otherwise, you’ll spend the entire exercise wondering if you’re gonna snap the loop in half and take out an eye.

The Turkish push-up move is the worst. Even though it’ll go down to 10 reps next week (down from 2 sets of 15 reps this week), it still takes forever to get through. Any momentum you build from conquering the surrender to chest press is completely obliterated by this move. Just make sure you drink your Energize before the workout and come prepared.

SO, with the “work” stuff out of the way, let’s talk about being your own detective.

If you are on this 80 Day Obsession journey, you have probably become pretty familiar with the celebrity trainer running the workouts, Autumn Calabrese. Autumn talks a lot about her own personal struggles, fitness and otherwise, and one of those struggles was dealing with an undiagnosed food allergy over the past few years. Despite repeated visits to the doctor, no one could figure out what was wrong with her even though Autumn kept insisting something wasn’t right with her body. It finally took a visit to her naturopath/M.D., who ran a barrage of blood tests, to figure out that Autumn is allergic to eggs AND has some sort of mutation where she can’t properly absorb Vitamin D. The end result, as Autumn will tell you in one of her post-80 Day Obsession videos, is that when she was filming the 80 Day Obsession workouts, she was still dealing with the fallout of these health issues. The long-time gut inflammation that resulted from her food allergy was not quite resolved and so she felt that she never got quite as shredded during 80 Day Obsession as she thought she would.

However, the only reason Autumn was able to figure out what was wrong with her is because she was her own advocate; she was her own detective. Even though her doctor would tell her she was healthy, Autumn kept chasing leads: “Yeah, but I don’t feel right, and after I do X I’m more sore than normal.” It took persistence and finding the right doctor to run the right tests to solve the problem. But more importantly, it took Autumn being in touch with her body to know something needed to be solved in the first place.

As you go through this 80 Day Obsession journey, you are going to connect with your body more than any other time in your life. You can’t help it. Between the focused workouts and the concentrated nutrition plan, you will see the cause and effect of exercise and healthy eating. And, as a result, it may shed some light on some undiagnosed health issues; issues that you once took for granted as normal, but when they consistently occur despite eating a clean diet and in the face of regular exercise, tells you that something might be wrong with your body.

That was me. For the amount of work and healthy eating I put into 80 Day Obsession the first time around, I didn’t think my end results were as good as they could be. Even going through this second time, ESPECIALLY going through this second time, I realized that some of the stuff my body experienced on a day-to-day basis was not natural, even though it had been happening for years.

So, I made an appointment with my GP: All blood work came back normal.

I made an appointment with a naturopath: Adrenal cortisol tests came back normal.

I made a second appointment with my naturopathy to test for more food sensitivities.

And BOOM! There it was: I am severely sensitive to EGGS. I’m not allergic, but I have a severe gut reaction in the 2-48 hour span after eating eggs. Which explains why I have been having issues throughout 80 Day Obsession and the last few years because I’M EATING 2 HARD BOILED EGGS EVERY MORNING FOR BREAKFAST AND EGGS ARE IN EVERYTHING.

If not for 80 Day Obsession, I would have never discovered this sensitivity. I would have just continued to think my explosive situation was normal.

But something about 80 Day Obsession inspires you to want to live your best self. And that includes playing detective when it comes to your body and your health. As a result, I now have to figure out a different source of protein for my pre-workout meal. BUT, even better, I now have the PERFECT excuse to not eat my body weight in baked goods: It’ll make me sick! Kinda. Let’s just say I’ll be seeing the effects for the next day. And it’s not pretty. And now I know why!

So, play detective. Because your health is worth it. And if you’re not getting the most out of 80 Day Obsession as you think you should, you might have some underlying issue that’s holding you back.

Any thoughts or questions? Shoot me a message. Or check out the usual link for Beachbody stuff.

Happy sleuthing, gumshoe!

Phase 3, Day 52: Cardio Flow (aka The One Where You Look Like You Just Climbed Out of a Pool)

So, I lied.

Yesterday’s blog post, I told you today’s Cardio Flow would be better than it was in the past because you wouldn’t have to build the exercises one on top of each other. Rather, you would just go straight through all the exercises for as many reps as you can in the allotted time, which totals about 8-10 rounds.

I got the 8 rounds right and everything else completely wrong.

For Phase 3, Autumn takes the zoo back to four reps for each exercise. But you still build one exercise on top of the other until you’ve built up to all 10 exercises. THEN, instead of doing an additional two rounds…you do an additional EIGHT. Yes. EIGHT ROUNDS.

The reason I misremembered this is because, like child birth, I’m pretty sure I blocked it out. Or rather, doing it the first time through just never registered with me. You can absolutely zone out and disassociate doing this workout. And then you look up and you’re on Round 7 of 8 and you have no idea where the time has gone. Pretty sure that’s what I did last time. I don’t remember doing this set-up because I didn’t remember doing the set-up the FIRST time around, which is pretty much the only way to survive. You have to focus on the moment, forget how many rounds you have left, and just know that at the very least, you are capable of accomplishing four reps of each exercise because that’s what you did all the way through Phase 1.

Regardless, even that strategy won’t stop you from sweating.

Buckets of sweat that go flying with each diamond jump; rivers of sweat that course down your legs and soak your socks and shoes; a thin sheen of sweat that coats your entire body and attracts blades of grass like kids to pointy objects. Here’s me in the aftermath of all this sweating:

All the sweat.
WHAT JUST HAPPENED. My socks are squishing in my shoes and I can’t feel my face and yes that’s grass on my forehead.

Now, was part of this sweating due to working out in the balmy PNW heat we’re enjoying on the cusp of summer? Absolutely. But part of it is also just me.

I’m a sweater. Always have been. And this workout reminded me of that and also of the pure volume of sweat I can produce when pushed, especially in the heat.

In case you also produced an obscene amount of sweat during this workout, here’s an anecdote to make you feel better about yourself.

Two weeks after graduating from college, my best friend and I hopped on a plane to New Zealand for a 15 day excursion around the North Island. At the end of those 15 days, my best friend left, as scheduled, and I stayed….for two and a half years. During that time, I joined a basketball team (old habits die hard) which eventually had the honor of traveling to Fiji to play their National Team to help them prepare for the 2008 summer Olympics.

The Fiji that we visited, the main island of Suva, was NOT what one pictures when summoning pristine images of the island nation. While the people were amazing and their hospitality unbeatable, the infrastructure was solidly third world, and it extended to their basketball gym.

At some point in the last 30 years, the gym had been brand new, and probably had air conditioning that worked. But by the time we arrived in early 2008, neither was true. The “air conditioning” was simply leaving all doors open to the 90 degree heat with 100% humidity and hoping for the best. As a result, the gym floor had warped. There were dead spots in the floor that made dribbling impossible. The basketball went down…and did not come back up.

But the heat…I’m from the Pacific Northwest. And while I love me some heat, I’m not built for humidity. I’ll overheat like a Husky in Hawaii. Which means that during our practices in Fiji, I didn’t sweat. I melted. I wore spandex shorts under my mesh basketball shorts. I sweated so much that I not only sweated through my spandex shorts, but also through my mesh shorts. And when I say “sweated through,” I mean that after our two hour practice, I was able to wring sweat out of BOTH sets of shorts. To this day, I have yet to participate in another activity that had me wringing sweat out of my BOTTOM wear; sports bra, yes. But shorts? F no.

Until today. Today came close. Had the workout lasted for a full hour, I likely would have approached the sweat level experienced in Fiji.

As it was, I was so sweaty, that at the end of the workout, on my walk back to my apartment, I passed a group of millennials who, upon checking out my wet appearance, started asking one another, “Is there a pool around here?”

No. No there is no pool. There is just Cardio Flow.

So now I’m hydrating with copious amounts of turmeric tea and water, all so I can get my muscles ready for the quick turn-around time that will be Leg Day in less than 12 hours. Wish me luck.

Link here for Beachbody shenanigans, including towels.  May your sweat run hot and your water stay cold.

Good luck!