Monday, June 27, 2011

(Occasional Blood), Sweat and Tears

In the July issue of AY Magazine I was asked to write a story about fitness fads, and always looking for an excuse to get up and out of the office, I decided to give some of the workouts a shot.

Can you trust a workout that is known only by letters? And that was invented by Navy SEALS, used for training by firefighters and police officers, and consists only of nylon cords and rings? No, I would never trust it but you will get your fanny whipped into shape if you try it, and if you take the class at CrossFit Little Rock, the cutest, most innocent-looking, blonde lady you have ever seen will be doing the bum-whipping. 
We tried this class taught by the lovely Tracy McNeil at CrossFit Little Rock and loved/hated every minute of it. TRX is a great workout that you can take anywhere (if you buy the kit), that lets you use your own body weight as resistance to work all areas of your body. This workout is awesome because it really challenges your balance and you can increase or decrease your workload by just slightly altering the position of your body.
I would definitely recommend TRX to anyone, any age, any fitness level. On the day I tried it, my co-worker Ashlee and I were the only beginners, but there were a few pros and regular Crossfit athletes. My boyfriend is in the Crossfit class, which calls on Tracy to give them a workout from hell once a week or so. He described TRX as, “The single most comprehensive and exhausting workout I've ever tried (and all through the use of one simple, misery-inflicting band of nylon.)” He keeps going back though...

The TRX area at CrossFit Little Rock

Tracy showing you how it's done.

Serious TRX

Not as easy as it looks.

This is one of those classes that is absolute torture but you find yourself coming back for more. I (very cautiously) jumped right into this class with my adventurous and yoga-experienced sister. Hot Yoga is classically performed as a series of yoga poses done in a heated room, usually set between 95 to 100 degrees for 90 minutes. The idea is that the warm temperature and profuse sweating that occurs (very profuse, trust me) warms up the muscles and lends them to become more flexible. As soon as I walked into the yoga room at Floating Lotus in Little Rock, the words “God, it’s hot in here” came out of my mouth (a little too loudly).
With the thermostat turned well above the 80-degree mark and TWO space heaters blasting, we began the class. It was hot, obviously. And I got sweaty. Like pouring sweat, never been that sweaty in my life, sweaty. As gross as it all sounds, it actually felt pretty cleansing and the yoga poses really forced me to focus, balance and clear my thoughts …  all of my thoughts except “God, it’s hot in here.” Don’t forget to bring your own yoga mat, a towel and a bottle of water. (I’ll spare you the sweaty pics from this adventure.)

Check out "Fitness Fever" in the July issue of AY Magazine at for more fitness trends!