It’s been a minute.

Hello all! Sorry for the lapse in blog posts. I have been going 100 mph non-stop it feels like! I finished my hardest semester of dental school with 10 finals in 1.5 weeks, then shipped down to New Jersey where I spent a hectic 3 days catching up with family and friends. Then, for the piece de resistance. I flew down to Costa Rica for official spring break! I actually left and arrived there on Marathon Monday and as soon as I landed and turned on my phone, I immediately received messages of concern, which put me into concerned and panicked mode as I had no idea what was going on and why people were asking me if I were okay. I immediately rushed to a computer and sat in front of it with mixed feelings of guilt, disgust, and distress. I felt so far away from my home, yet it was still so close to me and my heart. For days leading up to Marathon Monday, I kept repeating how I wished I was in Boston for it, but  everything happens for a reason, and luckily I was the farthest I could be from Boston and safe. 

Prior to finals and even during it, I was able to partake in several Blog and Tweet Boston events! One was a UFX Blogger Class at Boston Sports Clubs. It was referred to as comparable to a “Crossfit” style class and was mainly involved with high intensity interval circuits. I am very familiar with this type of workout thanks to ZuzkaLight and CrossFit so I was excited to take a class and compare and contrast all 3. The two trainers stressed the importance of form and it did almost feel like they were sort of criticizing CrossFit or other methods similar to this style by saying how they focus on form and not doing a million repetitions of a movement. Now I know CrossFit has received some criticism, but from my own personal experience they stress nothing but form as well, especially at Reebok Crossfit Back Bay. I think it all depends on the trainers because there can be bad trainers at good gyms, and good trainers at bad gyms, and every other combo in between. For example, I tried another Crossfit box when I was home in New Jersey and although they went over form in the beginning, the one coach couldn’t keep track of everybody once the workout started, and some people’s forms for the power clean was off. It was painful to watch but it also made me very, VERY appreciative of the great box I go to here in Boston. It is honestly a very high quality box and absolutely worth the money. 

Anyhoo, we did a nice warm-up, and then there were a set of about 6 different exercises, and we rotated through all of them with a little rest in between, and we repeated the entire circuit 3 times. We had to count the total number of reps we were doing, but I messed up and forgot to halve my reps for a couple of the moves for the first 2 rounds. It is SO difficult for me to keep count when I’m working out. Typical Stacey. Here are some pics!

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Or a lotta pics.

But it was a lot of fun and I got a great workout in! It was a great relief from studying and keeping up with my fitness schedule because I put my CrossFit account on hold due to finals and spring break. 

Another event that I decided to join on a whim was the Blog and Tweet Group Run. I decided to run down Commonwealth to Mass Ave. and meet up with the group, and while I was proud of my decision, I quickly realized how cold and freezing it was. My little pullover from Athleta was just not enough to keep the freezing wind out! Brrrrr. I joined the group and we went for a quick mile run over to the hatch shell. Once we got there, there were so many great surprises in store for us! First, a quick stretch by Kendall Covitz from On An Inhale. Then Kendall and @trainerceleste talked about the Wellness by the Water retreat which I will be attending! 

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Notice how everybody on the left look freezing and the two on the right were cozy with their warm, thick jackets. I was quite envious!

And then the goodies came. Oh yes, lots and lots of goodies. 

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Can we just stop for a minute and stand in awe of how much free goodies we received?! Two bag-fulls worth actually! I was stunned but that could actually have been the numbness I was feeling throughout my entire body from the cold… @ElizabethEats brought all the Vega goodness and some amazinggggg peanut butter protein balls. The tea and other goodies were from the last Wellness by the Water retreat. I was glad to help them out and take these off their hands! 😛

Overall, I am glad I made the last minute decisions to attend these two events, as I desperately needed a break to clear my head from all the studying I’ve been doing. These two events were well worth it though, especially the Group Run where I got so many free goodies. I love free things!

CrossFit

So I officially joined Reebok Crossfit Back Bay a couple of weeks ago after trying out the On-Ramp program. I had experienced a few free trials last fall, and then I got into watching a lot (and I mean, A LOT) of CrossFit videos on Youtube, so I finally decided to try On-Ramp. I had initially though that’s where my CrossFit journey would end as it is quite expensive, but after the first week, I was hooked. Then the last day came and went and I was at quite a dilemma. I loved CrossFit and it was something completely different that could help me push my limits and help me reach new stages in my fitness, but I was painfully aware of how much money and time commitment it required (and being a full-time grad student, both are lacking in my life). So, I considered it over a weekend and I asked my mom to help me pay for the monthly 2x/week student rate as my birthday present. I figured it will be worth it and benefit me in the long run because I only have one body, and I should be treating it right and get into the best shape of my life in my 20s. It’s my 3rd week as an official member and I absolutely love it. I actually went through a break-up right before I started my membership, so it has been a good outlet for me to just throw myself into in order to help me get over my ex. I know, I know. That seems really weird. I just went through a break-up so what do I do? Do I sit there and eat ice cream and watch romantic movies and cry all night? (Which I might have done ONCE :-P) No, I joined CrossFit. But I’ve never been one to be “normal” in any sort of way anyways and I like that about myself 🙂

I know CrossFit has received both a lot of support and a lot of criticism. I’m personally a fan because It helps people of all fitness levels get out there to try and move and do their best, no matter where they are. Yes, it can be intimidating being a novice, but I think it’s inspiring to be surrounded by such amazing fit people. It helps you push and want to become a better, faster, stronger version of yourself.

The most interesting thing about CrossFit for me, is the “mental toughness” that it is slowly but surely building in me. It is tough to push yourself to the limits again and again; to fight through and make yourself do the last couple of reps when every cell in your body just wants you to give up. But I am doing my best, giving it my all, and I’m getting the workouts done. The mental part is half the battle. I’ve already improved by successfully doing my first ever double under last night, and managed to even do a handful throughout the night! I can’t wait to be able to rock them out continuously. I like that it’s not just about strength, it’s also about skills and agility. A jack-of-all-trades kind of workout program if you ask me.

I completely admit that I might have been predisposed to liking CrossFit because my favorite type of and go-to workouts are HIIT (high intensity interval training) already. After discovering BodyRock and Zuzana a couple of years ago, I fell in love with the quick, high-intensity, efficient, bodyweight strength format of it. (I am now dedicated to Zuzana and her new channel on YouTube – ZuzkaLight – check her out! I love her positivity and motivation. And it’s amazing that she offers all that she does completely free!! But I digress…)

So, doing the CrossFit style of workouts was more “natural” for me (it helped that I was at a pretty good level fitness-wise going in), but I am also new to the Olympic weight lifting component of it. I’ve never done any sort of real strength training or weight lifting before, and I was actually quite interested in starting it right before I tried CrossFit. So I’m very lucky that CrossFit has catered to my workout style perfectly. I am getting stronger and making gains every week!

If you’re even the slightest bit interested in trying it out, contact a CrossFit box near you. Almost all of them offer a free trial class catered to the newly curious. It’s free so it can’t hurt (well, actually, it probably will. During the workout and days after when you’re sore – but hey, it’s a good kind of pain 😉

I’m the kind of person who will try anything once (maybe even two or three times) just to experience it for myself and form my own opinions about something. It keeps things interesting, and keeps me challenged. It helps me grow as a person overall, and add’s to my life experiences, which are priceless. So go out and challenge yourself with something new or scary this week (CrossFit or not). I dare you 🙂

Check out the links below for my CrossFit box, and to Zuzka Light’s YouTube channel!

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