Thursday, 14 May 2009


I have to apologise for being sooooo lax in blogging here. I have really been so busy recently that when I do have 5 minutes to myself the last thing I find I want to do is get on the computer and start typing!

I haven't really been to the gym since the end of March however I have started a new regime of exercising. I have finally got the courage up to cycle with the dog running alongside me. Other than one or two close calls when he wants to go on the other side of a lamppost than me it's not too bad so when I don't have the use of the car I cycle to and from work with the dog.

I have finally started back to bellydancing. The classes are good and I do find myself working up a sweat but I am a bit disappointed because there are soooooo many girls in the class that it's hard to find a space where you can dance and not bang into the person next to you. We have been learning some nice moves though and I'm enjoying the challenge. There has been talk of an upcoming student show but I am not sure that I will be participating, watch this space...

Anyway, bellydancing is my Monday night activity. On Tuesday I have started going to an Iyengar Yoga class. It is AMAZING!!! It's such hard work but the use of props like blocks & belts help you progress in the movements amazingly fast and I'm already finding myself becoming so much more flexible and strong and I've only done 4 classes! In fact I love it so much that I have bought myself all the various props that I need so I can practise at home as well as at the weekly class. I haven't been this excited about a new exercise class since I started bellydance and I'm hoping that the 2 classes will help compliment each other and the new moves I learn in each class will help me in the other one.

My new Wednesday night activity is another yoga class. I was quite excited about this one too after the Tuesday night class being so fabulous but I have to say I was immensly disappointed with it. It's a 2hr class and I think we must have spent at least an hour lying on our backs doing "relaxation", which would have been fine for a meditation class but that wasn't what I wanted. Compared to the precision of the Iyengar Yoga that I've been doing the postures our instructor took us through felt very sloppy. We didn't hold any of the postures for any length of time and she was moving in and out of postures very quickly giving you no time to understand what she was doing. The one good thing about the class was the fact that my friend Venus & I who attended together got a right good laugh out of it. I'm sorry I've paid up for the rest of the term, but if I get to laugh as much as I did last night maybe it will be worth it!

Thursday, 26 March 2009


I have been horrendously lazy this past week or 10 days. The last thing exercise-wise I did was a cycle on St Paddy's day. I went about 5 miles round the town and through Tipperary Wood (an "on the beaten track" kind of a path) and my handlebars slipped - I hadn't tightened them well enough - so I had to go home and get the allen keys out. Unfortunately when I arrived home I realised that out of the 2 sets of allen keys I own there were none the right size to tighten up my handlebars so I had to abandon my cycle plans for the day. I did however spend the rest of the day dandering around town with my mates H & S who had come down for a day out in Newcastle with their family so I got a little bit of extra exercise!

I have still been doing my walk to and from work every day. It's about 1.25 miles one way so I'm getting a 2.5 mile walk most days so I've not been completely lazy but I have been very tired recently and it's been hard to motivate myself to do much except sleep.

However today is a half day for me - I'm still not back at work full time - so I am going home to get one of my bellydance dvds out and I plan to shimmy the afternoon away to burn off a few calories. I am also really looking forward to hearing back from my bellydance instructor as to her new venue for classes and when classes start up again as I am desperate to get back to dancing soon!

Monday, 16 March 2009

Woot! My New Bike in Glorious Technicolour!

Yay, I love it! Although my bottom is definitely in pain after 2 days cycling. I think I need to get me a gel saddle cover or I'll be bruised from top to bottom (quite literally!)

Saturday, 14 March 2009

My new bike!

I decided in the interest of exercising more often (and avoiding the tourist traffic in Newcastle) that I would buy myself a bike. I've wanted a bike to zoom about the town on for ages and I didn't get one before as I lived in the city and I knew I'd never use it really. Anyway I didn't want anything fancy as really I don't know how well I'm going to keep up the cycling (despite all my best intentions!) so I went to a local place who sell second hand bikes as well as new bikes. After a bit of looking around I chose a second hand raleigh that doens't look a million dollars but it rides well and is highly unlikely to fall apart after 5 minutes. I suspect a new gel saddle is in order though as the current saddle is a bit old and uncomfortable, but not as uncomfortable as that blimmin' exercise bike I was on a couple of weeks ago!

I took the bike out today and went for a modest cycle - only about 4 miles in total and mostly on the flat - but boy am I feeling it! I remember when I was a kid and me and my friends took our bikes absolutely everywhere! We would get together in the morning, take the bikes out and cycle all day for miles in the nearby forests and on jaunts all round the local countryside and I've no idea how we did it. I am hoping that once I get used to being out on the bike again it won't seem so difficult but I'm definitely glad I got it and I'm looking forward to all the cycling I'll be doing soon! I am now waiting on a lock, a bell and a new saddle to arrive and once they're here there'll be no stopping me :-D

p.s. there'll be a picture soon!

Monday, 9 March 2009


I completely skived off my last gym session - oh the shame! I woke on Saturday to a horrible day and too many things to do so ended up spending the day bathing the dog (which is a harder task than you'd imagine!) and cleaning out the chicken shed which involved lots of moving things about and shovelling lots of sawdust so I reckoned I got enough of a workout from that. I had really hoped to go on Sunday but as I mentioned I've not been sleeping right and I was so tired all day that I thought it would be better to just chill. Ah well, excuses excuses but I went yesterday afternoon and am still utterly trashed now! I'm really looking forward to going home after work today and relaxing this evening and having my lovely husband cook me dinner :-D

So yesterday's workout consisted of:
  • 4 min warm up on cross trainer followed by all my stretching.
  • 10 mins of cross training on the cross trainer followed by some thigh and hamstring stretches
  • 10 mins on the treadmill doing fartlek training (alternating the speed and incline of the treadmill) followed by some more leg stretching and my chest stretch
  • 2 sets of 12 reps on chest press @ 7.5kg followed by one set @ 5kg - actually I think what I've been calling the chest press isn't actually the chest press - it's a pec machine or something!
  • 3 sets of 12 reps on thigh abductor @ 35kg
  • 3 sets of 12 reps on thigh adductor @ 30kg
  • 3 sets of 12 reps on the actual chest press machine @ 10kg
  • 2 sets of 12 reps on the leg press @ 30kg
  • 2 sets of 12 reps on the leg extender @ 30kg
  • and finally a 4 min cool down on the cross trainer followed by stretching stretching stretching
I'm really feeling my shoulders, pecs and upper arms today so there'll be more stretching later to help ease my aching muscles!

Friday, 6 March 2009


After a week of not sleeping I finally managed to catch a few ZZZs last night and I'm exhausted today so I'm gonna skip the gym this evening and go in the morning instead. I reckon I'd do myself more harm than good going tonight so it will be early to bed tonight and in the gym early tomorrow before I head up to Belfast to watch the wrestling!

Thursday, 5 March 2009

I hate exercise bikes!

I meant to put this up yesterday - I wasn't slacking on the exercises I promise, just the blog entry!!! Despite being exhausted on Tuesday I made it to they gym with a plan in mind of what I’d like to do. I reckoned I should try and mix things up a bit so I wouldn’t get bored with doing the same old thing but I think just being so tired made doing anything a bit more difficult than it should. Anyway, Tuesday’s workout consisted of:

  • My usual 3 minute warm up on the cross trainer followed by all the stretches I could think of. I’m holding the stretches for about a minute on the big muscles and about 40 seconds on the smaller muscles.
  • 5 minutes on the rowing machine. I could really feel this working my abdominals so I’m going to keep trying it in small bursts to start with.
  • 4 minutes on the exercise bike. I friggin’ hate exercise bikes – the seats on the bikes in my gym are adjustable but they don’t go down far enough for me, a confirmed short-ass, to be comfortable. I now have an incredibly sore bum from where the seat was digging in to me so I’ll not be doing that again. I had planned to do more than 4 minutes but it was so painful I gave up!
  • 2 sets of 12 reps on the chest press machine at 7.5kg with pec & deltoid stretches in between sets.
  • Some inner thigh stretches followed by 2 sets of 12 reps on the thigh adductor at 30kg.
  • 12 minutes on the treadmill at varying speeds – anything between 3mph and 6.5mph
  • 2 sets of 12 reps doing bicep curls on the incline bench with 3kg weights. I did deltoid and tricep stretches between sets.
  • 2 sets of 12 reps doing tricep kick backs with 2kg weights.
  • A 4 minute cool down on the cross trainer followed by yet more stretches for hamstrings, calves, soleus, front of thigh and inner thigh, deltoid, biceps, pecs and triceps.

All the stretching seems to be helping keep the after workout pain away. Part of me keeps thinking that if I’m not sore the next day I’ve not been working hard enough but given how hard I found my workout last night I’m not sure if that’s quite true or not.

One thing I have noticed though is that the day after my workout my scar and the surrounding area is tender to touch and it feels a bit sore. It might be my imagination but I think it might also be a bit swollen but not much. I’m not doing any exercise specific to my abdominals but I know the rowing machine, cross trainer and treadmill all involve some kind of abdominal work. I’m hoping that it won’t be too long before I can go in and have a good workout without worrying too much about my stomach so keep your fingers crossed for me!!