They say that to succeed in life and obstacle course running you need to be able to laugh at yourself and get comfortable being uncomfortable. Well this week both of these were tested but not how you may think. Yes there were Mamba’s, grapevines and wood chopping involved but no I haven’t left the comforts of Leeds to visit the rainforest. This week’s challenge has been Zumba. What can be more intimidating than walking into a room full of women in brightly coloured lycra “whooping” away while showing off sexy hips? Well actually it was a little different to that, yes there was plenty of sexy hip movements going on but less of the brightly coloured lycra. As if Zumba in itself is not enough of an alien concept to an ex-rugby playing martial arts fan turned OCR wannabe, one of the dances was burlesque inspired. Now imagine having no rhythm, two left feet and learning a burlesque inspired dance whilst positioned between your wife and mother in-law. I cannot imagine any obstacle making me more uncomfortable than that! But yes I did laugh at myself, quite alot in fact, mostly when I found myself free-styling and facing a different way to the rest of the class. Thankfully the instructor is exceptional, she has the knack of making everyone feel welcome, even encouraging the rhythmically challenged of those to do our own thing as long as you’re smiling. So thank you Emma (Holistic Fitness) for making the whole experience as comfortable as it could be, I will be thinking of this moment when climbing a seemingly impossible cargo net or swinging from monkey bars.
In other more traditional training a landmark was reached when I achieved the double figure distance of 10kms on a run. As is normal I took my loyal dog along for company, unfortunately she ran into the bush to chase a fox (thankfully the fox was far too quick). This distraction added an extra 1.5 kms through thick bush, brambles and over fences, perfect training. Having never ran this far, in fact, this almost doubles the farthest I had ran before signing up for Rat race Dirty Weekend, I am quietly pleased with myself. One of the key reasons for signing up was to push myself and see how far I can push physically and mentally, as long as it remains this enjoyable the next 11 months are going to interesting.
(my loyal dog – Lexi)
My focus for June includes a 33 minute 5Km time and continuing to work on bodyweight strength (pull ups, push ups etc.). I’m a big advocate of Zuu which focuses almost entirely on bodyweight training with no equipment, this has been a staple of my training for some time now. The great thing about Zuu is that you don’t need anything or a large amount of space to get a good workout, just be aware your neighbours may start looking at you differently when they see you bear crawling, doing sumoscissors, Rhinos and Iguanas around your garden.