“Exercise your muscles, not your mouth!”

Tough-sounding words this hot & humid morning from our Coach, as we met for our regular Tuesday ASICS Running Club session.

But actually it wasn’t half as strict as it sounds 😛

Coach had just demonstrated a new drill – sideways walking lunges – and we all groaned when we saw how difficult it looked.

Quick as a flash came Coach’s retort to our groans:

“Exercise your muscles, not your mouth!”

Fair enough 🙂

Today’s session was termed Boot Camp, which scared the living daylights out of yours-super-unfit-truly.  I am horrifically bad at all things exercise-y, and so I approached today with huge trepidation.

I can’t do a push up, am hopeless at even Jumping Jacks, can’t do a burpee…is that even the right verb, by the way?  Do you “do” a burpee?  Or do you perform a burpee?  And actually what does this funny word even mean?

…so yes, the idea of a boot camp was downright scary.

But you know what?

Other than making a complete fool of myself, unable to burpee at all, I actually enjoyed the session.

There.

Said it.

I actually enjoyed exercising – though Sunil’s photo, below, makes it appear otherwise!!

Today I was blessed to have Navi Singh by my side for most of the session. He is a mine of running gyan (knowledge) and is happy to share this knowledge.  He corrected my position on several occasions, he encouraged me when I kept flailing around like a beached whale during push ups, and he mentioned Chi Running, which is now going to be my next big voyage of discovery.

More on that anon.

Back to our training.

We did a whole series of exercises – planks, burpee, push ups, leg raises, donkey kicks, to name just a few – and just when we thought it was over, we were ordered back on our feet to run 2 x fast 400m laps of the park.

 

And this is where it was very interesting.

Despite being knackered, we all ran fast.

These are not my splits – I wish – but Abhay’s, and just look at the pace for his first lap.

Cracking.

I’m no sports scientist, but I can’t help wondering if the fact we’d exercised so much, meant we were better primed to run…or of course it could it be that we were so relieved that boot camp was over that we ran in sheer joy!!

(Just kidding, Coach!)

2 cool down laps of the park, and we were done.

Oh, some of the guys did amazing headstands.

Just for fun.  As one does.

I googled “value of boot camp for runners” & a whole slew of articles came up.

The extract, below, pretty much sums up what I feel…correction, felt…about strength training, and nicely summarises the pros & cons of boot camp type work outs.

“Many runners, especially long distance marathon runners, tend to spend most of their time only running. Why? Well, most of them feel that the additional pounds added from strength training will be a decrement to performance. This is a common misunderstanding.

With our busy schedules, most endurance runners feel as though if they have the free time to work out, they should be out running. Running alone will not develop the lower and upper body strength and power needed to perform well as well as avoiding injury. Runners need to strength train for many reasons.”

This is an old post, advertising a boot camp by the way, but the list of suggested exercises gels pretty much with what we did this morning.

“…if they have the free time to work out, they should be out running” – sound familiar?

If this morning’s session is anything to go by, then let’s hear it for more boot camp type training!

Let’s end with a fab slow mo of (some of) us in action, taken by Sunil, who is sidelined with an injury, yet still rocks up for training.

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