Posts Tagged ‘Yoga’


This was the first time I was out for a run this summer and the mosquitoes actually seemed to be a problem.

Also I saw what looked like a huge cockroach crawling on the sidewalk, ewww!

Also saw a dead mouse on the sidewalk 😦 That one was sad. I like mice and rats. I don’t want to live with them, but they are cute and I hate seeing them dead.

So I have been running in vibrams for… years now. The black and grey pair in the photo are bikilas and were my first pair of vibrams. They lasted me several years but the bottoms were wearing away so 8 months back I got the grey and pink ones which are seeyas ls. I mention in my last running post that my feet were hurting making it hard to run any distance at all. Specifically it was my arches that hurt. So I started wondering if I should get a more supportive running show (eventually down the line, one day when I have money), but then ended up in my looking coming across the bikilas again. And the description for them said they were specifically meant for running with a bit more heel cushioning and more arch support than most vibrams. I never got rid of my old bikilas, so this run I decided to wear them to compare. I seemed to have a little bit less arch pain this time though still some. Of course given how worn out the shoes are who knows how much can be gathered from that.

Still I’m not sure what the right solution for shoes is. I love the vibrams for the most part and I HATE those bulky stabilizing shoes (which is what I found a lot of recommendation for. ugh, no!) But not infrequently I feel like I need just a little bit more arch support than I get in my current vibrams.

Of course I have no money for new shoes at the moment anyways, so it’s not like they will be getting replaced anytime soon one way or the other.

So week 2 was a 10 minute warm up walk, *30 seconds jogging, 5 heel lifts, 1 minute walking*, repeat * 5 times, and a 10 minute “free form run”. Looking at the timing on my phone I discovered the 10 minute warm up walk definitely isn’t just 10 minutes. They start with a little intro talk which I always walk during before they announce the start of the 10 minute warm up walk, and I checked today for sure that it starts counting this time but it doesn’t count toward the 10 minute warm up, so that added a minute, then it was about another minute between when the warmup walk was announced to be over and Dr. Meyers tells you to start your first 30 second jog, so it is quite a long warmup! For my free form run this time I did 1 minute jogging with 1 minute walking intervals the whole time.

Though I had a bit of a scare when I got back to my house, as I approached my house a dark grey cat ran from my porch- the same color as my cat, Blake. I was freaked out he had somehow snuck outside with me and I didn’t notice. I tried running after but the cat kept running from me. So I went inside to check if Blake was inside, and sure enough he ran to great me at the door (who says that is a dog only trait?). Thank goodness! Had me worried.

Today was actually quite an active day for me. Started with deadlifts early in the morning followed by 35 minutes of yoga, then went to sleep, Blake woke me up after just a few hours and it wasn’t that late so I went out and mowed my lawn and did some other yardwork for awhile, came back inside, took a shower, rested a bit, then got dressed and headed out for my run, then 20 minute post run yoga cool down. Now a big dinner and then going to sleep soon.

I’ve been slacking on my yoga recently so need to start doing this much (or more) yoga more often again.

So since my last post I’ve been thinking a lot about the ways that disability issues play out in fitness. And it keeps bringing to mind the “supercrip” stereotype. This something I’ve been thinking a lot about but struggling to put into words my thoughts. Particularly because those identified as “inspiring” are typically folks with different disabilities than me- typically folks with visible disabilities. All my disabilities are invisible, people look at me and they see a healthy, able-bodied girl. That’s not who I am, but it’s what people assume because I don’t use a wheelchair or a cane or have any other visible identifier of disability. That assumption is frustrating, but that’s a topic for another time, right now I merely am trying to explain that my experiences with disabilities are very different than those who have visible disabilities.

Still, there something that doesn’t often sit right with me about the frequent use of photos and videos of people with visible disabilities engaged in various fitness activities as inspiration. It does bring to mind this quote from the bitch magazine article though:

Supercrip provides a way for non-disabled folks to be “inspired” by persons with disabilities without actually questioning—or making changes to—how persons with disabilities are treated in society.

I think this hits the nail on the head for what makes me uncomfortable. For all the times I’ve seen photos or videos of people with disabilities lifting/running/swimming/doing yoga/et cetera with commentary on how inspiring it is, I’ve never seen those posts include commentary on the experiences of people with disabilities in the fitness world. Especially given barriers to access, stereotypes, and discrimination that people with visible disabilities often face. There are many who would assume those with visible disabilities are not capable of engaging in these activities, and so I doubt that these individuals have never run into problems with gyms of people, possibly even staff, assuming they shouldn’t be there or using certain equipment. Given the issues of accessibility people with certain disabilities (especially those who use wheelchairs) face all the time, it would be odd to me if gyms and fitness related events where the one area where this is never a problem. But this is never the discussion. Rather, it’s people without disabilities sharing images/videos of people with disabilities, for the purpose of inspiring other people without disabilities. It treats people with disabilities as people who exist solely to make people without disabilities feel good.

And it also veers often into assuming that all disabilities are the same or can be hierarchically ranked. I mention in my most recent post on spoons, the experiences of a particular disability is different for different people, and can even be different for the same person at different points in times. As well, as I’ve discussed before, different disabilities are different. It’s not always a matter of better or worse, just different. I don’t have the same experiences as a person who uses a wheelchair, and they do not have the experiences as I do. The experiences are simply different.

I hate when people lie to try to make a point. I’ve been seeing a lot of claims recently that fitness costs nothing- just go outside and run! And really, as much as I love fitness and think it’s worth the cost, and I think it’s also an investment in myself, my well being, and my health. Financially speaking that will have pay-offs, more importantly it has non-financial pay-offs.

But yes- it costs money! How much will vary, but it does cost money.

Just go outside and run? Really? I have never hear actual advice regarding getting started running that suggests one should just go out in whatever footwear is closest and run in that. Everything I’ve read says that running in improper footwear can cause injuries and should be avoided. I’ve read over and over that people should expect to spend around $100 or more on a good pair of running shoes. Which is also what I spent on my first pair of running shoes that I got at a running store where I trusted the advice given on what kind of shoe I should wear based on watching me walk. After that I decided to try out the whole “barefoot” running thing. Except not literally barefoot, I bought vibrams which cost over $100 as well, because actually going barefoot would pose a different set of dangers. Just heading outside my house to run barefoot outside means running across areas with broken glass among other danger to one’s feet. Not to mention even if one was going to take such a risk, that would only be possible a few months out of the year after that you risk hypothermia and frostbite.

My new vibrams shoes, which I got for under $50

My new vibrams shoes

I just had to buy a new pair of vibrams for running and thankfully they were cheaper than my old ones. Though they also seem to be a somewhat cheaper quality so I am not sure they will last me as long as the old ones.

And as a woman with boobs, for running, I consider a good sports bra non-optional. All the good sports bras I have also ran me >$50 a piece (which is why I own only 3 good sport bras). I’m a D cup, and those basic little sports bras you can pick up at meijer or wherever do not provide the support needed for running. I have those types of sports bras too, they work for some lifting*, yoga, and other low impact activities, but I can’t wear them for running.

*depends on the lift. I prefer something better if I’m doing Clean and Jerks or similar which will result in bounce.

Aside from that, the rest is not as essential. I suppose I don’t really NEED designated workout clothing, though honestly anyone who is going to claim that what you wear doesn’t matter, I have to wonder how much exercise they are really doing. Running in my jeans will not be comfortable, and lifting and yoga I’m definitely going to have restricted range of motion in them. I have a few pairs of lounging around pants which could work for lifting or yoga- I’d be stopping every couple seconds to pull them up from falling off my ass if I tried running them. So yeah, I have specific running pants that are made for wearing while working out that I wear for running and lifting.

Totally gratuitous picture of me in my workout clothes

Totally gratuitous picture of me in my workout clothes

Aside from that for the most part my workout clothes aren’t really that workout specific. I find some t-shirts more uncomfortable to workout than others. The one pictures above, aside from loving the saying on it, is actually really comfortable for working out in- it doesn’t shift around too much or bunch up. But I don’t bother with shirts made for working out usually- my workout shirts are just standard t-shirts or tank top, and hoodies, that are comfortable to wear when working out.

But pretending like clothes don’t matter? No- clothes do matter! Physically speaking some are more comfortable than others and that matters.

Beside that, psychologically they can matter and that’s just as valid as the physical aspects as well. I actually care what I look like when I’m working out even thought typically I workout in my own home, alone, in my basement. So why do I care? Because I have more fun and more motivation working out if I feel a bit badass about it. Though it also matters what I’m wearing if I’m going to take form check videos that I might post online, because sometimes I lift in underwear and a sports bra… but I’m not posting a form check video of me squatting in just a bra and underwear.

Of course before I move entirely away from the topic of clothing, I also wear gloves when lifting and I have a lifting belt, so there are some more fitness specific clothing items I own and use that cost money. Though certainly both are matters of personal preference and not entirely required.

Aside from clothing though, not all fitness is running and even running outdoor depending on your location can not always be an option. I prefer running outside but it’s hard to do during Michigan winters- I don’t mind bundling up with the cold, the difficulty though comes when sidewalks and streets are not shoveled or plowed and we have several feet of snow. You ever try running through that? I have. It doesn’t work very well. So come winter if I want to keep running, realistically I’m going to have to find a way to do that indoors. So that means pay for a gym membership or treadmill… luckily for me the first part is actually covered in my tuition, so I just need to pay or parking to go to the on campus fitness center.

But what if running isn’t your thing? Every person isn’t interesting in all areas of fitness.

I posted before about how much my home gym cost me and how it relates to average gym membership costs, so I won’t bother going over all that again. But for most people, if you want to work out, there is some cost involved in it. For most people that means gym memberships fees. Or you workout at home and pay for any costs associated with that. Unless you only body weight stuff that requires no equipment- though even pullups will require a bar, but it’s certainly rather limiting if you go that route.

I think the cost is worth it and certainly there are ways to cut costs. And I would hope that people wouldn’t be pushed away from getting active because they think they need all the fanciest equipment. Heck, even though most places say to expect to spend $100+ on running shoes, you can find some that are cheaper if you know what you are looking for and shop around. Don’t be discouraged and give up. But also, let’s be honest about it- zero cost options are pretty limited. I don’t see any benefit being served by pretending this isn’t the case.