Out for a Walk

One of my favorite purchases has been a few pairs of athletic pants from Costco. I wear them to hike, workout, run errands, and just lounge around the house in. They're so comfortable! Northwest Pearls: Out for a Walk Northwest Pearls: Out for a Walk

Self-Defense Class

Northwest Pearls: Self-Defense Class I went to a second self-defense class this past week. I've been wanting to learn basic self defense so I tried out this class a few weeks ago. I was hoping to do something at class, I'm not really sure what, but it didn't involve wearing huge helmets with face guards and punching someone (or getting punched in) the head.

But that's what we did.

It was so far out of my comfort zone. I've never done anything remotely similar to this. It was disorienting to keep on getting hit in the head. Even if it was done lightly and done with thick gloves and it was only a plastic shield in front of me that got hit. Still super scary.

I closed my eyes for just about every hit. Even though you're not supposed to close your eyes, it's really hard to keep your eyes open. I don't understand how you do so.

But while it was really far out of my comfort zone, I did have some fun. I didn't land very many hits, and most of my "opponents" were pretty easy on me. (There was one who I didn't like going against because he didn't go as easy on me and it was hard to block all his hits and annoying to get hit that much.)

If I had the money, I would continue to go to the classes for a workout, but since I'm looking for a self-defense class and this one is oriented towards men, I'm going to look for one that is for women. While it's probably good to know how to punch someone in the head and some of the other things that this class teaches, I think that I would be better off learning other techniques. At least until I have the money to take both.

Have you ever been to a self-defense class? What did you think?

Kickboxing Class

I went to a kickboxing class last night and let me tell you, I hate burpees. I like kicking and punching the bag, but there aren't words to describe how much I hate burpees. The class started out with a little jog, then some burpees, pushups, squats, and a little more before we started working on the bags. One of the employees made sure to show me all of the moves and I really enjoyed it.

We did jabs, hooks, roundhouse kicks, side kicks, and front kicks. I focused more on the form than the power behind the moves but it was fun.

Sadly membership is expensive and not worth it to me so I'm probably not going back, but it was a fun workout (except for the burpees) and I'm definitely feeling it today. I was even feeling it last night.

Have you ever tried out kickboxing? What did you think?

Relieving Stress

Northwest Pearls: Stress and Running  

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I get stressed and then I feel it in my neck, shoulders, back, and head. Whenever I go to get a massage the masseuse will comment on how many knots I have and how much I carry my stress. It doesn't help that I have poor posture when I'm just sitting at my desk watching Netflix and that my posture at work isn't a ton better. That's probably where a chunk of my aches and pain come from.

So on days when I can feel the stress and all I want is for it to go away I've found the easiest way to get it out is to run.

About ten minutes into the run and I feel like a different person.

I've tried using a heating pad and using a neck-pillow that you microwave, but neither of those works as well as just getting on the treadmill, or going outside, and running. The elliptical works too, but not as well. And sleep can help, but if it's the middle of the day or it's not time to go to bed? Then running works pretty well for me.

What have you found gets rid of your stress? Do you have any tips?


Last summer I did the elliptical machine five times a week for an hour to an hour and a half each time. Then I got sick, and then I got busy, and then I went off to school. So that ended my exercise routine. I don't like to work out at the gym, so I rarely went to the gym at school. I did rock climb at the gym, and I did play intramurals with friends, but there wasn't much routine to it.

It is hard to stick to a workout routine. I told myself all this past spring that as soon as I got home from college, I would start running. I suck at running. But then the public schools were still in session and I had to wait to use the track until they were out. (I didn't want to run on the street, there's too many hills.) And then once the schools got out, I ran our of motivation to do it. So I never did.

All that to say, it didn't kill me to not exercise at the gym in college. I wish I didn't mind it, but I really hate working out in front of people. I can exercise at home easily, as long as I've got the television (with something action-y to watch) on in front of me, but I'm hopeless at the gym. But, there were times at the gym when no one else was there. My favorite time to go, to either rock climb or use the machines, was when we had Friday night basketball games. I was one of two people at the gym. It was glorious.

Now I work at a specialty running store and go running 1-4 times a week either with people or on a treadmill in front of the tv. I'm slow, but I enjoy it (once I start running and get a few minutes into it.)

Long story short, working out is hard. But if I can run, and run a 5k trail race, (something I never thought I'd do. Did I mention I never thought I would be a runner?) Anyways, if I can do it, so can you. So get some motivation and exercise to live a healthier lifestyle!

Working Out Motivation

I've been trying to stay motivated to keep on running this winter. I bought a treadmill so that’s nice and I can run inside. But even that can be hard when all I want to do is curl up in bed and watch TV. But yesterday’s workout was, dare I say it? Fun! I enjoyed running! Sometimes I hate it, and for the first ten minutes or so I did, but I completely enjoyed it from then on.

I find that I do my best when I’m distracted by some sort of actiony show or movie in front of me. That’s not motivation, but if I’m entertained, I can go for a lot longer. But even if I'm entertained, I may not always enjoy it. That's why I was pleasantly surprised by my run yesterday.

Another motivator is getting healthy and in shape. I'm hoping to become a faster runner so that's a pretty big motivator for me.

Do you have any tips for staying motivated to work out?