Partial Eclipse Workout! - Valerie Bock blog entry #5, August 21


Partial Eclipse Workout!

Today’s workout was planned for the time leading up to the solar eclipse, so Molly arranged for us to do it outside. She had eclipse-viewing glasses for us to enjoy during our all-too-infrequent breaks. I confess some gratitude for the light cloud cover, as it was warm and humid which adds a layer of challenge to any workout situation!

She’d sent us an email over the weekend reminding us to hydrate thoroughly in preparation for this workout. I am finding drinking all that water to be sort of hard to do, but I dutifully downed 8 ounces before arriving, and had a nice frozen 25 ounce bottle waiting for me for breaks. I was not too worried about whether it would melt fast enough in the 80-plus degree heat!

Molly taught us how to monitor our heart rate using the fingers on the pulse method (works even when the fitbit is out of juice!) and talked for a bit about how to modify our experience so that we did not overdo. Then she walked us through today’s torture challenge plan. We would cycle through these themed events:

  • Sun Run: Rolling a die to see whether we were to run to the 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 or 6 marked WAY down at the end of the sidewalk
  • Ground to Solar Pound: Squats enhanced with dumbbells of various weights which we would lift and lower during the squatting process
  • Lunar Lunges: Lunges enhanced by lifting a weight and rotating our torsos over the leg in front
  • Fireball Slam& Shuffle: Lifting and smashing to the ground a medicine ball twice, then lifting it and shuffling four steps to the side, and repeating the process
  • Cosmic Walkout: Walking two dumbbells out to a plank position, then lifting each without rotating our bodies, and walking back up to standing again.

I had the pleasure of joining Matt Whitehead and Bruce Jeffery for this fun. Bruce is pretty fast and strong on the run – I could not beat him, even the time he rolled a six and I rolled the three!

I tried lifting the 15 pound weight for the lunges, but was informed by the rest of my frame that this was a non-starter. Dialed back down to the 3 pounder and did ok. I’m pretty proud of that, since the lunges were really hard last week but this week felt pretty good, even with added weight. Apparently, I am making progress! I was able to shuffle with the 10 pound ball, and feel pretty proud of that, too.

We were afforded LONG breaks between rounds this time, which gave us lots of time to catch our breath, have a little water, and check out that encroaching moon. We all remained upright until the end, and every one of us lasted through the stretches. Such are the rewards for pacing ourselves! Several of us, along with YMCA staffers and even a lady who left the pool and joined us in bathing suit and towel, hung out to watch the eclipse attain maximum coverage, which we are told was 87% for Decatur. It’s pretty amazing just how much light 87% of the Sun provides – as somebody observed, it gets darker around here for a thunderstorm!

I cannot imagine a more congenial, if sweaty, group with which to share a historic moment. I’m looking forward to Wednesday!

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