When you don’t belong to a gym, you need to be inventive in finding ways to exercise. I prefer running, cycling and yoga but there are days when I can’t do any of those and need to either come up with my own workout or rely on a something like an exercise DVD. Recently I was sent Cathe’s Tabatacise, part of her XTrain series. I had heard great things about Cathe from others – she’s tough and makes you work so I was looking forward to a kick butt workout.
For those of you who aren’t familiar with Tabata, it’s a short but very intense workout that improves your aerobic capacity. It’s generally eight intervals, 20 seconds each, of all out effort followed by 10 seconds recovery for a total of four minutes. It may not seem like that’s a workout but if you are truly putting in an all you’ve got, you should be exhausted when time is up.
Tabatacise uses this formula but adds to it with five different four minute Tabata workouts. After each Tabata there is what Cathe calls a “step recovery blast.” It’s the rest portion but an active rest to lower your heart rate.
A very nice feature of the DVD is that it’s broken down into Levels. You can perform level one and gradually work your way up to performing all five levels. Perfect for those just starting out with Tabata style workouts. There’s also additional bonus tracks for targeting the core, back, triceps and biceps.
After going through all five Tabatas, I see why everyone ravs about Cathe. I really like her style of teaching and she’s tough just like everyone says! Don’t expect her to take it easy on you. Lots of plyometric moves but the choreography is easy to follow. I was left super sweaty with legs quaking and shaking. The DVD does rely on a step with risers for the recovery blast and some of the bonus tracks. I don’t have a step but was still able to do the workouts just at a lower intensity on the floor. Now that I’m in the thick of marathon training, I won’t be doing as much plyometric work. It’s tough on my knees and kind of like another day of running. I don’t want to risk an injury. However, after May 26th I will definitely be using Cathe’s Tabatacise XTrain Series to add variety in my weekly workouts.
5 By The 5th Virtual Race Recap – March
Yesterday I got in my 3rd 5K “race” as part of Laura’s 5 by the 5th Virtual Race Series.
I’m using this series as a way to improve my 5K time on the treadmill. I’d prefer to run it outside but my early morning runs aren’t possible just yet and at least this way is consistent. If you’re interested, here’s January and February’s recaps. This month was the first that I actually ran the right distance (duh!) and did not have a race within 2 days of it. My calves were feeling a little tight and fatigued but other than that I was ready to better my time.
I did a gradual, easy warm up for 1.5 miles before clearing the treadmill. I’m finding that I do better with a warm up of at least that distance to get into the groove. My average pace was 7:50 and I finished in 24:19.
I’m still trying to figure out what my 5K pace should be. I find that I get in the long distance mind set – start slow to conserve for the duration. I will say that I’m happy with my improvement over the past 2 months. I feel stronger and am more confident in my running abilities. I finished the run off with an additional 1.5 miles for a total of 6 for the day. I’m hoping to reach at least the 24:00 mark for April.
I received the DVD for free to review. My opinions are completely my own.
Do you use workout DVD’s?
Do you prefer short or long distance running?