Physical Funness for the Motion Starved

Fit more fun into your fitness while exploring the outdoors.


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Stoked to be in the water – Jeff Clark

Okay so I must admit I get all hot and bothered when the conversation turns to surfing and surfers. See, I grew up in San Diego just blocks from the beach. Until the day I turned 20 and moved north, I basically spent every day of my life on the beach. Yep, I was a “surfer chick,” or wanabe. I never did get the hang of surfing but I was excellent at posing on the beach with my long, sun-bleached hair waiting for my yummy, bronzed surfer-boyfriend to come in. Oh…those were the days.

So, when my friend Cindy sent an email asking for volunteers to try paddleboarding at the famed Mavericks (Mavericks is surfer HQ here on the NorCal coast), I jumped at the opportunity like a shark after a hunk of meat.

Rather than rambling on about our adventure I’ll simply let you see for yourself how the day transpired. It’s pretty tame, there were no massive waves and no surfer boys (aside from the world-renowned Jeff Clark!) but there were lots of really nice people and we had a fantastic time.

Rule #1 if you don’t want your shades to sink when you fall off the board, put them on a leash. I was too cheap to buy a leash so I did a little MacGyver work.

                 

Ever try to squeeze into one of these things? Kind of gross if you ask me.

At this point we’re done with our paddle. That’s Cindy on the left, me, Cassandra our fantastic teacher and Diana in the sexy little top.

You get extra points if you can do a downward dog sans falling in the drink.

So there you have it. A nice relaxing way to spend a sunny day. We saw stingrays and a few harbor seals popped their heads up to have a little chuckle (do you think seals can laugh? Seriously, can they?) I can’t say that I got a workout paddleboarding but that’s mostly because I was too focused on staying on the board. According to Cassandra there are things you can to do work a little harder. Next time I’ll be braver and head for where the big waves and the surfer boys are (yea right!).

As they say at the beach…  It was pretty bitchen! Thanks gals for an awesome day.

P.s. If you want to check out paddleboarding at Mavericks, call Cassandra. She was really great and the prices are super reasonable!


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Very interesting

I can help you with that!

Well, it’s Friday. I hope you’ve had a fruitful week. I must say I’m very disappointed that only one person responded to last Fridays post. Remember, “Put the hurt on Kelley?” I asked you to help me get out of my comfort zone and challenge me to a little friendly competition. My friend Dawn came through, but the rest of you seem a bit shy. It’s not too late. You can still play.

In my travels this week I’ve learned a few things that I’m quite impressed with. I hope you find them interesting and useful as well.

Endive — According to Dr. Oz, if you eat ½ cup of endive two times per week you can reduce the risk of getting ovarian cancer by 75%. I say, what the heck, eat up! All you have to do it put it in your salad. Super easy and either way, good for you. Click here for additional info on endive.

Muscle Pain Relief — I read this on Basic Training SF’s blog, and then did a little checking on my own. It’s true! Peppermint oil can be used externally for providing relief from pain. It’s believed that the presence of calcium antagonism in peppermint oil aids in removing pain. It also improves blood circulation, which aids in soothing sore muscles.

Basic Training says, “Dilute peppermint oil with water (or body oil) and give your back, shoulders, hamstrings, or IT band a rub down. Instant gratification.” Check out their site for other good ideas.

Write an “ignore list” — Most of us have to-do lists but they never seem to end. Cross one thing off and another few seem to appear. Real Simple Magazine suggests, in order to succeed in today’s distraction-prone world, you should ask yourself: What is not worth doing? Write down what you’re willing to disregard, emails you don’t really need to respond to, posting things on Facebook, the guilt of not doing the things on your to-do list. Make the list and get those things out of your head. Review the list from time to time just to be sure they aren’t getting your undeserved attention.

Okey-dokey, that’s it for me till Monday. Do something to talk about this weekend!


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This is your chance to put the hurt on Kelley

Not my comfort zone

Hi! I know you’re out there, I can see from the site stats that quite a few people are looking at this site. I don’t know who you are, but I know you’re there, and I know that you’re from all over the world. That’s pretty cool. I just wish I had some idea of who you are, are you “old,” young, fit, wanna be fit? Are you male or female?

Anyway, it doesn’t really matter who you are, but frankly I’m getting a little bored trying to figure out how to inspire you, and I hope you’re not bored as well. I’m thinking, we need a challenge. Something to kick-start my creative juices and fire us all up for “Cookie Eating Season.” What do you think?

Here’s what I suggest: A fitness challenge. You and me and anyone who wants to join us. It can be anything, just as long as it gets us out of our comfort zones.

You know what a comfort zone is right? It’s a place were you feel comfortable, I don’t mean your bed, it’s a state of mind. Example; I have a tendency to run/ride/workout at a certain (not so impressive) pace. A pace where I feel very comfortable. I don’t push myself out of that comfortable zone, so I rarely see much improvement in my fitness.  The only way to get outside of that zone is to try a new sport, do something completely different or push yourself way past your perceived limits. Shake things up. Understand?

Back to the challenge, the challenge can be anything, a daylong challenge, week-long, or month-long. A running challenge, stair climbing, rope jumping, you could challenge a certain number of squats or some other exercise, a dance class, anything you like. Make it something realistic but challenging, and remember you gotta do it too. What do you think? Play with me?

If you win the challenge, you get a $10 iTunes gift card and lots of props. If I win, you say nice things about me to everyone you know and I keep the gift card.

Lastly, since we can’t do this challenge in person/together (unless you’re in San Francisco). We’ll need to play fair and trust each other. For fun, I request that we share photos or perhaps a little video, something to show the challenge in action, just for fun, no big deal!  I won’t post anything unless you say it’s okay. I promise you that!

So… who wants to play? Who wants to be the first to challenge me? Don’t be shy, be brave! What do you have to lose?


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Move and learn this month

Yes, you can teach an old dog new tricks!

Gwad, it’s already September! Soon it’ll be cookie-eating season, the rain will be back and because of all those cookies and our fear of melting in the cold wet air our fancy holiday attire might not fit. Ugh….what ever will we do?

Well, you can be sure I’ll come up with some ideas to keep us looking svelte, your task is to take my advice.

As you know, September is the month students return to school. With that, I suggest we follow tradition and learn something new ourselves. At least get some culture as we exercise and make an effort to learn, and experience something new.

Here are a few ways you can move, learn and experience all at the same time:

Parking Day — Ever hear of it? PARK(ing) Day is an annual, worldwide event that invites citizens everywhere to transform metered parking spots into temporary parks for the public good. The idea is to promote the need for more open space within our cities. It’s creative, green and inspiring, get a map and go for a walk or cycle to check ‘em out. Parking day is Friday, September 16th.

Presidio Habitats — If you’re in The Bay Area you need to check out the Presidio Habitats walk. It goes away at the end of September so this is your last chance. What is it? – It’s an art exhibition celebrating the wild Presidio. 25 pieces of sculpture are scattered around the Presidio mixed in with the plants and wild life. It’s very cool and a great way to get some exercise along with a little culture and history mixed in. Get a map and go!

Look up — Generally as we walk around we see only what’s at eye level. When was the last time you stopped and looked up? We’re missing the best parts of old buildings by not looking up. The top of a building is like the decoration on the top of a cake. An Architects’ signature is the top of his building. The next time you’re walking around, make an effort to look up, not just once but often. You’ll be amazed at all the beauty up there.

That should get you started. I hope you get the idea, move and learn is your challenge. Have at it!

Happy 3-day weekend!


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Watercress, really?

Watercress

I find it amusing that things that have been around forever, all the sudden become popular. Like they were just discovered or something.

Watercress is one of the oldest known leaf vegetables consumed by human beings. Strangely, it seems to be the current “wow look at this” item of discussion.  The reason: watercress is one of the five vegetables highest in nutrient content per calorie. It’s believed that getting the most nutrients in the fewest calories, is the recipe for disease prevention, reversal, and permanent weight loss. It seems kind of obvious but maybe not something we think about on a daily basis?

With that, I decided to find out what the deal is with watercress. I learned quite a few things, here is what I found the most interesting:

  • The Basics — Watercress can often be found in the wild, in and around streams and cool running water. It is a member of the mustard family, has small, crisp, dark green leaves. Its pungent flavor is slightly bitter and has a peppery snap. Choose crisp leaves with deep, vibrant color. Store it in the frig.
  • Yo’ eyes — Watercress contains among other things, Lutien in very high levels. Lutein acts like sunscreen for the eyes (that’s kind of cool, since regular sunscreen burns when you get it in your eyes).
  • Energy & Metabolism — A generous dose of iodine is found in watercress. Iodine helps make the thyroid hormones that regulate your metabolism.
  • Water weight — Watercress is 93% water, and provides some protein (veggies containing protein are a bonus!).
  • More than you think — Watercress has more calcium than milk, more vitamin C than an orange and more absorbable iron than spinach (that’s impressive).
  • The list goes on — Basically watercress is loaded with everything your body needs to live longer and live better. It’s full of, many nutrients with antioxidant effects, and phytochemicals including different carotenoids. If you’d like the complete nutritional lowdown you’ll find it here.

That should be enough info to get you started. The next time you see watercress in the market, pick up a bunch and give it a try. It’s all the rage!

P.s. The other veggies highest in nutrient to calorie ratio are kale, collard, mustard and turnip greens.
P.s.s. Check here for some pretty yummy sounding watercress recipes.


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Do U have what it takes 2B a Warrior?


Last month my friend Dawn participated in her first Warrior Dash. What’s a Warrior Dash? According to their website it’s a, mud-crawling, fire-leaping, extreme run from hell. It’s a fierce running series held on the most challenging and rugged terrain across the globe. Warriors conquer extreme obstacles, push their limits and then celebrate (with beer and “gargantuan” roasted turkey legs). Sounds like hella fun if you ask me! Dawn thought so too, which is why she and her friend Tiffany donned their old running shoes (you did wear old shoes right Dawn?) and bucked up for what sounds like a death deifying challenge.

Rather than foolishly attempting to explain Dawns’ race I ask you watch the short video above. It’s taken via a GoPro video camera that her husband Mark Brent strapped to her chest. Thanks to Mark (and Dawn) you get to experience the whole event at high speed. It looks really fun!

In the end Dawn had a great time. She says, “It was a little scary leaping over roaring fire, but EMT’s were close by, just incase…” She adds “The most challenging part was trying to untie our mud-caked shoe laces afterwards, all in all, what better way to spend a rainy Sunday afternoon – got a great workout, caught up with an old friend, and got to share it with you all!  Oh, and the bonus – free body mud!”

Watch Dawns’ video! After that, you might actually consider signing up for an event like this yourself. They’re held all over the country. There’s one scheduled for the Bay Area in late October, which I’ll be participating in (can’t let Dawn have all the fun!). Let me know if you want to join the fun, we’ll be training for this event in all my classes starting next week!

P.s. Thanks for sharing your experience with us Dawn! You’re an inspiration! Wish you were here…

P.s.s. If you live in Seattle, check Dawn out. She’s at The Exercise Space. I can vouch for her, she has great taste in friends.


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Rubber Feet?

Caveman running

I’ve been asked quite a few times lately what I think of those FiveFinger shoes, aka Barefoot runners, Skeletoes, etc. You know what they are…those shoes that look like Rubber Feet.* Remember toe socks? Like those, but made outa rubber.

The thinking behind Rubber Feet is that modern-day running shoes provide too much support and cushion, therefore changing the biomechanics of running, causing injury. They use the example of how children run before they walk, and that they seem to launch at full speed everywhere sans shoes. They also claim that cavemen used to run for miles and miles just fine sans fancy shoes. Apparently donning Rubber Feet is like being barefoot, but with a thin barrier between you and the earth. Call it, Paleolithic-old-school and the answer to pain-free running.

Here’s what I think (brace yourself). First of all… sure, kids run like crazy for a few yards in the grass or inside the house, not down the road for 10k, or up some single track covered with rock. The caveman point is especially fun as I’ve never seen a caveman that didn’t appear to have walked all hunched over looking like he was in unbearable pain. My guess is, his feet his back and everything else hurt because he spent all day running on rock! Not only that, but cavemen only lived for about 20 years. I bet if they had to run around for another 30 years sans shoes they’d have figured out how to stitch up some nice fat pads for their trashed tootsies.

Basically, I don’t buy the Rubber Feet hype. In my mind it doesn’t add up, they look incredibly stupid, they make an annoying slapping sound as they trot along, more seriously, I’ve never once seen a person wearing them that didn’t look like they were in severe pain. During my last half marathon (on the trail) my Asics Trail Runners and me started just behind a young man wearing a pair of Rubber Feet. When the whistle blew the man took off running, a mile and a half up the road I passed him as he limped along delicately navigating each small pebble in the trail. I never saw him again, guessing he didn’t finish.

If your feet hurt when you run then you need to learn how to run properly. If you don’t support proper running form and mechanics, your shoe choice will not change anything. Learn proper running form and then play around with footwear if you like. My suggestions, hire a running coach, attend a clinic or take a class. Don’t just jump on the Rubber Feet bandwagon.

Now…I realize that I’m not being completely fair, as I have not personally tried to run in Rubber Feet. I am only sharing my educated opinion. With that, if you wish to prove me wrong and or convince me that running in Rubber Feet is a good thing, I invite you to send me a pair and I will happily try them, and revise my post accordingly. I take a size 9.

P.s. If you want to run barefoot, go to the beach and run in the sand. That’s something I approve of whole-heartedly. Stand tall, pick your knees up and have fun!

* The term Rubber Feet is a Kelleyism used to refer to “shoes” that look like fat rubber feet, make annoying slapping sounds when they hit the ground, look stupid and don’t make sense, in her mind.

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