Notes by Nectar

Your destiny lies in your own hands

Randy is definitely on a mission! I had two killer sessions with him this week.

I was doing my warm-up on the cross-trainer when he came in with some new instrument of torture.

‘What’s that?’ I asked.

‘A ladder,’ he replied.

I was none the wiser.

After my warm-up I began the first circuit:

  • Combined upright row and single shoulder press (3-kg weight) x 15
  • Kettlebell swings (8 kg) x 20
  • Backward lunges x 10 on each side
  • Burpees x 10

I did three sets of that. The first exercise was done holding the weight, bending down towards the floor as if you’re picking it up and then lifting it straight above your head like a single shoulder press. I noticed after two kettlebell swings that Randy had increased the weight of the kettlebell. By the third set my lower back was feeling very uncomfortable!

I did 3 minutes on the cross-trainer while Randy set up the ladder.


Yes, that’s Randy.

The second set consisted of:

  • Combined plank/push-up x 5 on each side
  • Sit-ups x 20
  • Squat jumps x 15
  • Ladder (back and forth) x 3

I did that three times too. So for the combined plank/push-up – I started in the plank position on my elbows and had to raise myself into the push-up position using my arms (obviously). In the first set I started on my right side but by the time I got to the left I really struggled to do it – so for the next two sets I started on the left side which was a little easier.

The ladder wasn’t too bad. What I had to do was step in and step out in one direction really quickly. So: left foot in, right foot in, left foot out, right foot out, while moving up the ladder. In the other direction I had to jump in and out while moving down the ladder. It wasn’t as awful as I thought it would be, but by the third set my left knee was starting to ache a bit.

After that, Randy stretched my legs and I was done for the day.

I had yoga on Monday as usual. Our teacher has introduced side planks into our class which we never had before (thank God it’s something new!).

On Wednesday I had my second session with Randy and the entire session was outside. I was warming up on the cross-trainer when he came in and told me to join him by the pool when I was done. He’d set up some cones at equal distances and I really didn’t like the look of them!


‘We call this the suicide run,’ he told me.

Oh, good.

‘You have to run from the first cone to the second, do a squat, run back to the first cone, squat, run to the third cone, squat, run back to the first cone, squat, run to the fourth cone, squat, run back to the first cone, squat, run to the fifth cone, squat, run back to the first cone, squat.’

Suicide, indeed.

My first circuit consisted of:

  • Suicide run
  • Kettlebell swings (6 kg) x 20
  • Sit-ups x 15
  • Burpees x 10

Randy said he noticed I had struggled with the heavier kettlebell in our last session so brought back the 6-kg kettlebell.

The second circuit consisted of:

  • Combined plank/reach x 40 seconds
  • Push-ups x 10
  • Side plank x 10 seconds
  • Side plank raises x 10 on each side
  • Suicide run (without the squats)

By the time the second circuit began, whatever shade from the sun we had to begin with had disappeared and it was hot. There were also a couple of people sitting by the pool, watching me run back and forth!

The combined plank/reach began with me in the plank position on my elbows and then having to reach out in front of me – right arm then the left and so on, without swinging my body too much. The side plank was held for 10 seconds followed by raises on the same side, and then switching to the other side. And with the push-ups, Randy told me to lower myself all the way down so that my chest was on the floor and then to push myself up. It was a bloody hard session.

We went back indoors (air conditioning, yay!), I did 3 minutes on the cross-trainer to cool down and then Randy stretched out my legs.

On Thursday I went back to the gym on my own for the first time since the beginning of December. I spent 30 minutes on the cross-trainer and combined walking and jogging (1 minute walking, 1 minute jogging, and so on). I told myself that if I could feel my knees starting to get sore I’d just walk, but they seemed OK. I managed to do 3.5 km. In October I was able to do 3.90 km in 30 minutes so I have some catching up to do! But at least it’s a start. After that I did the lower body exercises that Rama taught me and some sit-ups.

I went back again on Friday. I thought about skipping it and going on Saturday but as I’d had an early night on Thursday, and may very well be hungover on Saturday, I thought I’d just go. I did 30 minutes on the treadmill again (3.54 km). I considered stopping at 20 minutes, and then again when I got to 3 km (at 25:20). But I just made myself go on. I then did the lower body exercises and sit-ups again.

I wasn’t hungover on Saturday but decided to take the day off anyway. I lazed around the house, read my book and played the piano (burning 200 calories in 70 minutes, according to My Fitness Pal). I didn’t even do any work or check my work email. It felt so good.

Low point of the week? Learning that the Vertical Marathon is on the 5th of April (just 3 weeks away). I will never be ready for that in time and will have to postpone it to next year instead. Oh, I also seem to be addicted to mini Galaxy bars again. That’s not good.

High point of the week? Going back to the gym on my own. I’ve been meaning to do this for a long time but really had no motivation. It’s good to be back!

Weight loss? None.

2013 Fit

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