Cross Training: Pole Dancing

Best done by women of course, and to us warm-blooded men, a pleasure to watch specially when they swing their booties sensually in those short-shorts or hot pants and hold those poses while gripping the tubular poles with the power of their legs.

But aside from having fun, there’s more to pole dancing than showing off those sensual moves. They build and tone-up the whole body, specially the arms, core and thighs plus it’s a great exercise for stress release and burning more calories.

In the Blogapalooza event which i attended recently, many eyes feasted with a demonstration of pole dancing by the Polecats Manila (Polecatsmanila) which is the premier pole dance group in the country. They’re part gymnasts, ballerinas and sexy dancers rolled into one! So to the ladies who want to spice up their lives and at the same time get that upper and lower body work-outs to complement their running, pole dancing might be for you!

This is best seen “live” but the pictures below will show glimpses on how to do it.

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Stressed!

I admit it and I’m going to be honest about it.  I am SPENT! Really EXHAUSTED to the point of collapse! And I need to stop all this running that I’ve been doing!

This has been an overwrought 2 weeks from a training perspective. Since the 2nd Avenue Earth Run 21k two Sundays ago, I have been running almost every day, 7 days a week and twice on some days if I’m not too busy at work. I follow a sort of hard-easy day schedule but the short, easy days become a somewhat “active recovery” run that can get my heartbeat on double time.

I’ve been kind of obsessed in getting in those mileages and I think I’m falling into the mental trap of thinking—if a little is good, a lot is better. And if I did “OK” running the Earth Run half-marathon just running 60 kilometers a week, maybe I should be doing better with 80 or 90kms/week?

The last 3 days have been a struggle that I observed my energy levels sagging a bit specially in mid-afternoon when there’s still more to do at work and at home. Also, I’ve noticed some muscle soreness in my lower back, calf muscles and feet and I’m just hoping that the dreaded Plantar Fasciitis doesn’t come back. Signs of over-training, I guess.

So, I didn’t do any running today, absolutely no running! Still, I went to the gym instead and met-up with Betty, Leo, Sylvia and Elaine to do what was supposed to be a relaxing spinning session and some mild stretching which I thought would give my aching muscles and the rest of my body some respite from the rigors of pounding the roads every day.

Leo, Betty and Sylvia doing their medicine ball thing

And yet, I know the relaxation thing didn’t happen as I’m finding myself nodding my head as i’m typing right now. This is what we did at the gym:

  • 20 mins of of core exercises with the medicine ball
  • 30 mins of spinning
  • 15 minutes of floor exercises and
  • 30 minutes of circuit/resistance training with nautilus machines

I completely goofed the floor exercises as I couldn’t even sustain the plank movements for more than 3 seconds! I got to be one of the most inflexible person on earth! Betty is a pro when it comes to core exercises as she instructs like a licensed personal instructor! Leo, who is 67 years old but who has the strong, agile frame of a 35 year-old triathlete got me through the resistance machines, as I lowered the weights following his routine.

Failed big time on this one:-(

I was totally washed-out after doing these work-outs that I could barely stand while waiting for the elevator at the lobby.

I really don’t want to put much energy into cross-training activities specially those that are hard to perform. However, I know that these exercises strengthen different muscle groups and add variety to your training but doing an additional work-out to an already stressed body doesn’t help if it only contributes to over-training.

Seems easier just to run!