Day 105: Interval training on the elliptical Christmas Eve!

Heading to the Gym.... Christmas EveOkay, so this is proof that if you don’t write about your training you lose track of what you did which day!

On Christmas Eve, we hit the gym again. My sister continued on with running (God love her, I hate the treadmill) and I did interval training on the elliptical for forty-five minutes. I started out at the highest resistance (20) and every three to four minutes, I would bring it down by one (1). It was pretty tough and I was sweating a lot, but it felt great to get it done.

I did some planks, push ups, stability ball work and a few weight machines. I think we were at the gym a little over an hour. We were definitely sweaty and burned enough calories to enjoy Christmas Eve drinks and goodies guilt-free (though truth-be-told, I probably would have enjoyed them anyway).

I really enjoyed the switch-up with the elliptical because I was getting a little bored of running and I think taking a break from it was necessary!


Day 94: cross training… and TRX… @TricoCentre

Precor Elliptical at the Trico Centre - beauty! Today was technically a rest day, however, since I didn’t have a super successful training week last week, I decided that I should head over to the gym and give the new equipment a test run. All I that I really need to say is, AMAZING.

But you know me and my love for rambling. So here I go. I felt like I was transported to the future. EVERY piece of cardio equipment had it’s own TV! No more fighting with the old people for the remote. No more watching frickin’ soaps. No more watching the news, on repeat. There were so many treadmills and ellipticals – I felt like walking by each one with my arms out. Touching them to make sure they were real. And when I finally got to my machine I almost forgot I was exercising because I was staring at all the new stuff in awe.

I did make one suggestion and left it in the comment box. The cardio equipment is now facing a Studio and a gigantic wall (with a super weird paint job). My thoughts were that they should paint some inspirational quotes on the wall to compliment the new, fantastic equipment. Seriously. All you need are some good stencils and someone who isn’t afraid of heights, and without shaky hands. Heck, I’d even do it, if they went through with it.

Think about it: you’re having a particularly crappy day. The last thing you want to do is exercise. You do not want to be at the gym. But you sign up for your machine. Walk on over to it (without even looking around). Punch a few buttons. Start moving. But then you look up… and this is what you see:

Trico Centre Inspiration Wall








C’mon. Isn’t that brilliant? There is a ton of wall space. They could find motivational quotes from every which way. I know it would keep me motivated. They could even have a contest. Or do some research and get some local athletes up there. Maybe have some kids quotes? I was sort of thinking how the Markin MacPhail Centre has things laid out – I mean, they’ve got pictures of athletes but it would be much better (in my opinion) to have words. Or maybe a combination.

Anyway, okay, some times I over think things. Back to the workout. I did about 15 minutes on the elliptical and about 15 minutes or so of TRX. I don’t know how sore I’ll be tomorrow (I went pretty easy on myself). I did make a mental note to get together a really good TRX work out that I can do on my own. Have to do some research tonight!

Anyway, hope everyone is happy and healthy out there.

Again, HUGE kudos to the Trico Centre for getting 45 beautiful new pieces of equipment in there – we’re lucky to have such a superb facility almost literally on our doorstep 🙂 Thank you! 


Day 36: Cross Training at the gym – YEAH BUDDY!

What a day! So much to do and so very little time. I think (fingers crossed) I have finally beaten this darn cold. F is still sick, but it sounds like he is also nearing the end of the cold as well. As usual, my Monday night cross training took place over at the Trico Centre (love that place.) There was lots of buzz in the gym – people on the track, at the TRX bars, on machines, in class and weight area – it was nice to see. I only spent about 15 minutes on the elliptical and the hopped off to do some circuit training. I did the same workout from a few weeks ago – partly because I was being lazy and didn’t want to bring the JM book and partly because I knew it could be done!

Anyway – not too much to report. Felt pretty good. I’m super excited because my son and I head to Cape Breton tonight with Westjet! YAHOO! We’re going to spend a few weeks there with family and also celebrate my cousins wedding – we can’t wait!!

Alright, tomorrow evening I’m doing hills. I may not be able to blog right away but it will happen. Hope everyone is happy and healthy out there!

Use the elliptical, it’s not a total waste!

As a running snob, I always thought that the elliptical was a useless piece of equipment that would totally reverse all the hard work I’d put into running and developing muscles. However, after a long winter of essentially spending more time at the gym than on the pavement, I can confidently report that it’s actually helped me. (And I apologize to all those people I have ever made fun of for using the machine).

Much to my surprise, if used correctly, the elliptical is a full body work out machine. It not only works the core, but arms and legs (specifically, the latissimus dorsi, deltoids, triceps, biceps, glutes, quadriceps, hamstrings and calves get worked. – from If you’re anything like me, you’re thinking what the heck muscles are they? Check out the diagram below. Essentially, you use glutes and hamstrings to run, so working them on the elliptical helps.

In my case, I recently ran a 5k after weeks of not running at all. Of course, I was apprehensive because I had only been spending time on the machines (despite being told it would be a waste)… However, I totally kicked that 5k where it hurt. My time was 26:29 – a personal best! I could tell my run was different because my legs actually felt stronger; and at the point in the run where I’d generally start to feel tired, I still felt great (it helped that I was listening to The Wanted). I had a burst of energy with 1km left and finished stronger than usual. After the run, I had that tinge of worry in my belly like “Oh crap I’m going to be sore tomorrow…” but I wasn’t. At all. I mean, stretching well helps (and I am guilty of not putting enough time into this either), but I know spending the hours I have on the elliptical working more than glutes and hamstrings has helped me with my running. Try it out. Let me know if you have a similar experience!