Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Should You Put Your Child In Music Lessons?

The last few posts have been about running, so I think we all need a music post.

A friend recently emailed me about her daughter, whom she wanted to start playing the violin or the cello. I don't know if her daughter has musical aptitude or if mom wants her to play. It seems like mom wants her to play because her question was about the cost and ease of getting a violin versus that of finding and purchasing a small cello, not about daughter's desire to play the cello or violin or the oboe or the tuba.

I didn't know what to say, so I just kind of fluffed around with "neither one is more difficult," "look into renting," and "music is great."

The truth is, her daughter is going have to learn the notes, the instrument, and just stick with it until she can play something enjoyable for mom. And if she doesn't want to play, it isn't going to happen.

I wish that I had read this article and had passed it along to my friend.

"The Truth About Piano Lessons"

It really hits a lot thoughts that I had regarding my friend's daughter.

  • Music is great and has so many benefits on your brain.
  • Music is hard work and requires dedication to get anywhere with it.
  • If your kid is already overwhelmed with other activities, they aren't going to practice.
  • The parents really need to be involved in their child's early practice.
  • Any child can learn the piano (or any instrument).
Basically, we want your child to play music and appreciate music, BUT, are you and they willing to commit to spending time with the instrument?

I think the same is true to any extracurricular. Are you willing to spend time with a soccer ball to become great? Are you willing to log the miles? Are you willing to practice for hours? Are you willing to be diligent with this so you can reap the rewards and satisfaction?

I don't know what my friend will decide to do. I suggested that she let her daughter decided which instrument. I hope she picks something and sticks with it.

How old were you when you started your instrument or other passion?
6 for the piano, 11 for the cello.

If you could go back to your childhood, would you do a different activity or not have quit something?
I would have liked to do more swimming lessons beyond just treading water.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Starting Over

I have been so lazy when it comes to running lately. Drew and I are running a 2.5 mile race with his brother Wes and his wife Maren in March. That isn't a challenging distance! Right?

On Saturday I went out to run, and it was so tough. Not too bad for my legs, but it was hard on my lungs. I need to build up my stamina again! It is discouraging to have to start over when you've been somewhere you never thought was possible. But, I'm not at all surprised.

I've run once or twice a week throughout December and January, no wonder I lost endurance. My speed, fortunately, has stayed around 10:45. I was excited about that. For short distances, it is good to work on speed.

My goals to prepare for the race will be to run four times a week, to build up to four miles as my comfortable distance, and to maintain or improve my average pace (the dream is 10:00 mile). I think these are doable in the month and a half until the race.

Sometimes starting over is a good thing.  It can be discouraging. But is can also be motivating. You already know what you are capable of, so why not go above and beyond that? Starting over can also give you drive to work harder and to meet your goals, not just setting them and ignoring them, as I have done since September.

Our lives are constantly changing. We are always starting over. It isn't a bad thing,

On the schedule for today: strength training and a 2 mile run with El in the stroller. We will probably end up at the park and play for a while there.

Have you started over recently?
I've just started digital scrapbooking and it much more motivating to me than paper scrapbooking! So I feel like I can start over and finish things,

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Have You Ever Been So Excited To Exercise That You Couldn't Sleep?

I experienced such a thing last night. I was so tired and fell asleep right away. El woke up in the night and after I wrapped her back up and gave her a binky, I couldn't fall asleep again. I was disappointed that it was only 1:30 because I was so excited for the 5:45 a.m. spin class. Sad, I know.

The class was great except I forgot a towel to wipe my sweat off with and the microphone wasn't working so it was hard to hear the instructor. Other than that, I had a great workout.

Since spin this morning, I've been thinking about running. I push myself in spin but I seem to balk at pushing myself so hard when I run. Maybe I'm afraid of killing myself when I still have to get home.  This has inspired me to push myself a little harder in my runs, especially in terms of pace. Yes, I have been pushing my pace lately but I think I could do more.

I'm hoping to hit up the 4:30 yoga class tonight (before my week trial ends) if Drew gets home in a timely manner. Hopefully he will, seeing as the camera he just ordered and has been bouncing off the walls over for the past week just arrived. I think he'll try to get home as soon as possible.

Today's workout
Spin, 45:00, 17.5 miles

What is the weirdest thing you have been so excited for that you couldn't sleep?

Do other workouts inspire you to do better in your main sport?

Monday, January 20, 2014

Swim and Spin

On Friday, I swam a half mile at the gym and it was lovely! I cannot believe how much I have missed swimming in the past two years. It was nice to be in the pool. But the pool was fine, just a little murky, just because it isn't the point of the gym, but it was just fine. Having a pool at my disposal is really a selling point for me.

And then on Saturday I went to a spin class. Those are the nicest spin bikes I have ever been on. They were so quiet and smooth and had a nice display. I also have missed spin class in the last two years too. I went 22.6 miles in the hour class. Great time at spin class.

I'm planning on another swim tonight (!) and a spin class in the morning.

I'll report back when I report back.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Some Yoga

Last night, I started my free trial at LA Fitness. And just walking in, I knew I liked it better than tho their place. Talking to the sales rep was great; he did not badger me and cause me stress. And the equipment is much nicer. Plus, they have a pool, classes, and racquetball courts! Andrew says the salesman probably didn't stress me out because they aren't competing for my business. They just let me loose and let the facility convince me. Then, when I want a membership, the stress will begin.

Anyway, last night I went to the yoga class. I like yoga and I felt good after the class, but I did not like the style the teacher taught. I like a little more flow through the asanas. She practices Kundalini yoga, which I guess is about energy flow. We flowed between two poses for a few minutes and then did a completely different pose. It wasn't my kind of yoga, but that's ok. There were about 30 people there, which I thought was really cool.

Tonight when Drew gets home, I'm going swimming! I'm so excited. We went to a nearby pool on Saturday and I have been itching to get back in the water. There's a part in the movie Big Fish when the Dad gets in the bathtub because, he says, "I'm drying up." I understand exactly what he means. Maybe I am more swimmer than runner? Ahhh well, we shall see.

I haven't done much running lately. It's been nice to just go on walks with my neighbor and El in the stroller. Sometimes taking things slow can make you like it more when you start back up again. Or it can make it harder to start.

Do you swim? What's your favorite cross training?

Do you like yoga? Do you have a favorite yoga blog?

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Running And Health Goals, 2014

I am not sure what this year will bring. It is going to be crazy with two family trips in June and maybe a road trip in March and just the general busyness of life. But, I do have some goals for running and for my health.

Run two 10ks. At least two 10ks. This is a distance I have never done, and it is much more manageable than a half marathon when life gets busy. One will be in the spring and one in fall. Maybe I'll throw another in somewhere...

Improve my speed. I have been working on this since the half marathon. I went from and average pace of 11:30 to an average pace of 10:45. I would still like to cut that down. This will be done by doing sprinting and interval workouts.

Be more consistent. I really do enjoy running, but I make too many excuses. I need to make a schedule and just do it!

Eat more veggies and fruits. Because I do like produce, it should be easy to do. But sometimes it is just easier to have some bread and jam than it is to have an apple---and apples aren't even hard!

Floss. I am not good about this and it doesn't take much time. Just do it!

Support Drew in his running goals. He is thinking of running a marathon this year. He will, for sure, run a half. Being parents takes a lot of time. He was such a great support to me last year when I was training. I will support him in whatever races he chooses to do. It is tough to be parents and to want to run these long distances.

Lap swim. I love lap swimming. I need to discuss this with Drew, but this will either involve me getting a punch pass to a nice facility and swimming once a week of getting a gym membership for a place with a pool and going once or twice a week plus a weekly spin class. We'll see. Ugh money.

Walk with El more often. This girl loves being outside. I love that. We both like the fresh air so we should make sure we enjoy it together!

Today's workout
15 minutes of yoga
Planned 3 mile run after the repairman comes and goes

What are some of your running and health goals for 2014?

Any advice for spousal support during marathon training?

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Rain, Rowing, and Running

Hello there. You probably didn't even miss me because I don't think anyone even reads this blog. But I had a great Christmas and New Year. I also didn't run or even workout much for that matter.

Today I did a great workout from a blog I read, A Daily Cup of Kate. It was a run/row workout. Perfect for a wet day while your teething child naps. I used my rowing machine in our garage and then ran up and down the street. It was really great and I will be repeating this workout again. I was so tired by the end!

I'm also doing an 8-week fitness challenge. You get points for eating enough veggies and exercising and so on. Everyone puts in $10 and the money is divided between the person who lost the most weight and the person with the most points. I probably won't win, but it is good to have a group to encourage me with being more healthy.

Today's workout
5, 4, 3, 2, 1 minutes of row and run, for a total of 15 minutes rowing and 15 minutes running, .26 mile row and ~1.5 miles run

Did you have a jolly holiday?

Have you seen Saving Mr. Banks?
Not yet, but I want to!