Monday, March 26, 2012

Moving On

Well, I finally got a response from my dragon boat coach today. It seems there isn't any room for me on the team. I can't say I'm very surprised. I really liked my team but I got the impression that I made my coach and my captain uncomfortable somehow and I don't really know why.

So this leaves me at a crossroads. I could find another team, or I could give up on dragon boating. I really enjoyed paddling, but I think a huge part of it was my team. I felt really connected with my coach's style and my teammates. Half of my motivation was because of them. So if I had to join another team it would always be tainted by what I'm missing, and it would be hard to go to races and see my old teammates and miss them like I would.

My other option is not to paddle anymore. This makes me a bit sad because I did enjoy being outdoors and on the water during the summer and I really like working to perfect a new skill. It would have been really difficult to figure out the practice schedule with little toot to keep track of as well.

The thought popped into my head after I talked to my coach that I should find some other sport to play outside then. And then I thought about how much I missed softball. I played for 6 years until I was 15. I wasn't half bad either. I figure I still have most of the motor skills I just need to get back into shape so that they work better.

I looked it up and there's an adult league that's holding tryouts next week. I used to have tons of gear, but I've since lost or gotten rid of nearly everything softball related so now it's a matter of gathering the respective items I need for the tryout without spending a ton of money. Paul and I went and priced stuff out and it looks like cleats will be $36 and a new glove will be anywhere from $60 to $100. I like the more expensive one of course. First I'm going to call tomorrow and ask what the chances are of getting on a team. Then I'm going to pick up the cleats and borrow a glove from one of my sister's friends. I hope the weather holds out this week so I can play some catch to brush up on my skills!

Monday, March 5, 2012

Zumba Shoes

Today was my third Zumba class and I think I'm already an addict. I've downloaded tons of songs (although I want to find the ones my instructors use more often), and I got a more appropriate pair of shoes for all the dancing and jumping. I like the instructor Monday mornings because she gives more verbal cues about how to do the steps and she uses the same songs for the beginning of the workout and it really gave me a chance to learn the steps better.

Nike Shox for Dancing
I went on a grand hunt for a good Zumba shoe last week. I've never had to find a shoe that was more light-weight and flexible because I'm used to the clunkers that prevent me from rolling my ankles. I ended up finding that I preferred shoes that weren't really meant for exercise at all. I liked the Merrell barefoot shoe and a pair of Nike Shox meant for dance.

I tried on the Merrell's and liked how flexible and lightweight they were and how the support in the arch and mid-foot, but after a few minutes the outsides of my feet started to ache, and that was just standing and walking in them. My Aunt works at REI and when I told her I liked the barefoot shoes but didn't think they'd work for my flat feet she convinced me to try the Brooks Pure Connect running shoes. They are a minimalist shoe which seems to be a trend lately, very lightweight and flexible, and a little bit more supportive and shock absorbing than the merrells. This video kind of gives you an idea about them.

I'm not sure how these are going to work out yet, but I'm holding out hope (if only for the fun color!). I did a workout in them today and my feet ached about halfway through the class, but they did that with my Nike's before too. I wonder if it's just a matter of getting used to them and breaking them in. I'm going to give them a few more classes before I decide if they're going to work for Zumba.

This is the color I got. I want to get a neon
yellow sports bra to match now.
I also wore them this evening for a choir rehearsal thinking I wouldn't be doing much walking so it was a chance to break them in a bit. My feet did start to hurt while I was standing during rehearsal, but I couldn't help but notice how good my posture was and how long my stride felt walking in them. I kind of want to try the first couch to 5k workout to see how they are for running. Perhaps this is the ticket to my running career!

Thursday, March 1, 2012

An Exercise State of Mind

There's just something about exercise that gets me in a good state of mind. It's probably the endorphins, but I think it's more than that. I think it gives me a sense of structure that I've been lacking in the chaos of new motherhood, and, besides my voice lessons, it gives me something to look forward to. I feel like I'm being proactive in working on myself and it feels really good!

you've probably already seen this
on Facebook but...
I went to Zumba for the second time last night. I can't really say too much yet because I've only been to two classes, but the classes seem really different even though it's the same exercise. The morning class was smaller, and I think this made it easier to follow along. Wednesday there were so many people and it was obvious that many of them had been doing this awhile. I think this made it more difficult because several of them seem to be modifying the steps and doing their own thing (especially the ones dressed head to toe in zumba gear). It was also really difficult to see the instructor and the music was so loud I had a hard time hearing myself think. I also got some stink eye looks from some of the women around me when I would talk between songs to Heather who had come to try the class out with me. I'm not a fan of bitchy intense exercise snobs. I'm glad this wasn't my first class experience because I don't know that I would have been as excited about it.

I'm going to try the gold class next week since it's supposed to be more for beginners. Hopefully that will help clarify some of the steps and I'll be able to keep up in the main classes better. Having done other things similar to this I know that there must be some technique to it if I really want to strengthen my core and improve my posture. I think Zumba will be a good fit for my competitive perfectionist personality!

I managed to wiggle my butt into a size 14 pair of jeans today. Given there Old Navy and they're a bit broken in already but I think it still counts. My size 16 jeans were getting so big I didn't have to unbutton them to get them off. I haven't weighed myself in a couple weeks and I think I'm going to continue putting it off for awhile. I'm tired of being attached to a number. So for now I'm just going to enjoy the endorphin high of doing something good for myself!