Travel Workouts Week 15- TRX and Kettlebells in Nosara

Ever since the Around the World Running Blog Relay began, I have been running like crazy. It’s been great motivation, but, as a result, my strength training routine has fallen by the wayside.

When I read about the TRX and Kettlebell class at the Wellness Centre in Guiones, I knew I would have to try it out.

P1030131As some of you may have read, I rocked a TRX class back in Tamarindo and loved it. The thought of adding kettlebells to the mix sounded amazing. It’s funny how having the opportunity to add actual weight to your routine is such a treat when you are travelling!

I arrived at my first class and was instantly delighted by the temperature of the room. It had been a HOT one in Nosara that week, and although the room didn’t have a/c, it was in the basement of the wellness centre and was nice and cool. I find sometimes classes with a/c can get too cold and aren’t ideal for working out, this room was great.

Our class was taught by Tinis, a gorgeous Tica surf instructor who really knows her stuff. The more classes I attended with Tinis, the more I came to really appreciate her teaching style. Technique is super important when working with TRX and Kettlebells, and she spent ample time making sure everyone in the class was rocking it. No matter whether it was your first time, or your fiftieth time, she had her eyes out to make sure no one hurt themselves. I was also amazed at how she could tailor the class to suit everyone’s goals and levels. She could balance teaching a new student the technique for kettlebell, while guiding others through a TRX routine, all the while, motivating all of us to push ourselves to get the most bang for our buck.

P1030114

Tinis teaches Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 2pm. There is another class at 12:30 on Tuesdays and Thursdays taught by someone else. Drop in is $10 for visitors and $5 for locals. Ten bucks is an awesome deal for this type of class, as you are guaranteed to get your money’s worth. 

I try and get most of my workouts done early in the morning or later in the afternoon when it isn’t as hot out. For those who are looking for a mid-day workout, this class is truly ideal. Doing a cardio class mid-day is not only exhausting, but  the intense heat here in Costa Rica could make it potentially dangerous. Tinis’ class is the perfect way to get in a great workout that is focused on getting stronger, feeling the burn, but without over exerting yourself.

So, if you are in the Nosara area, check out the TRX and Kettlebell class at the Wellness Centre. Tell them I sent you!

Want to learn more about TRX? Check out this article that Tinis is featured in!

Check out more recaps of my travel workouts here!

Pura Vida!

Kate

Follow me on Twitter:@caketress

Travel Workouts Week 14- 5 Smartphone Apps for Travel Fitness

Well my friends, it happened!

I’m officially a member of the Travel Fashion Girl Team!

Starting this month, I will be writing a monthly series on Travel Fitness for this fabulous website.

Travel Fashion Girl is a one stop shop for everything a gal needs to know about travel. They cover everything from beauty, accessories and fashion to packing, destinations, and now fitness!

So, without further ado, I wanted to share my first article:.

cover-top-5-smartphone-apps-for-travel-fitness-628x356

5 Smartphone Apps for Travel Fitness.

As with all my posts, If you like this article please share it on Twitter or Facebook. It really makes a difference!

What is your favourite part of the Travel Fashion Girl website?

Pura Vida!

Kate

Follow me on Twitter:@caketress

Travel Workouts Week 12/13- Around the World Running Blog Relay

Sometimes you just need a good kick in the pants to get you through the home stretch.

With 7 weeks to go on this adventure, I find my motivation to work out dwindling a little. There are things to see, pool time to be had, and frankly, most mornings I would rather sleep in then get up and rock a workout.

That is, until I happened upon the Around the world Running Blog Relay 2014 over at Kyla’s Motivation blog

capture

Kyla, aka Drill Sargent Beattie, lives in my hometown of Victoria, B.C. I actually discovered her blog before I left Canada after reading a post of hers about a local obstacle race. It turned out that not only had we completed the same event, but we were in the same heat, and likely raced right next to each other. We didn’t even realize it until finding each other online. I love blogging for that kind of stuff!

Anyways, as of March 2nd, Kyla launched the Around the World Running Blog Relay. As it stands, 38 bloggers from all over the world have signed up to run as much as they can from March 2nd until April 30th. The goal is to see how far across the world we can make it!

My friend Shannon over at The Birthday Dinner, convinced me to sign up for a Half Marathon, 3 weeks after I get back. Unless I want her to have to drag me across the finish line, I know I’m going to have to stay the course.

Kyla’s blogging relay is exactly the motivation I need to keep up my mileage up for the remainder of the trip. So thanks Kyla, this is such a great thing to do, and I’m so excited to be a part of it.

For those of you who are wondering, I have pledged 100km and as of this morning I have 94km to go.

Better get running!

What motivates you to workout? Competition, goal setting, friends?

Pura Vida

Kate

Follow me on Twitter: @caketress

Travel Workouts Week 10/11- My Travel Fitness Must Haves

Staying on track with my workouts during this adventure has been easier then I expected. Most mornings I get up early, and get a quick and dirty workout in before starting my day.

This process is a lot easier thanks to a couple essential fitness items that I packed with me. So without further ado, here are my travel fitness must haves.

My brightly coloured ladies!

My brightly coloured ladies!

Two Pairs of Runners: I’ll be honest, I remember feeling a little high maintenance when I put these two pairs of shoes inside my backpack. Would I really need two pairs of runners to work out in?

The answer…yes.

Having already committed to a couple Half Marathons when I return, I knew I would have to log some serious miles here in Costa Rica in order to keep up my endurance. Running shoes are extremely important for long distance runners, and before leaving I had just broken in these saucy hot pink Asics. I knew if I was going to be running long distances, these babies were coming with me.

I also knew that I wouldn’t solely be relying on running for my fitness adventures. I knew I would be doing a lot of cross training in my room. My asics just weren’t flexible enough for all the jumping, burpeeing and all around flailing that I planned on doing. It’s also important to save your “running” shoes for running only, as they tend to wear our fast. So I brought along my Vibrams. These shoes are super compact, and are great for my hotel room workouts. I’ve also worn them on a whole bunch of hikes, and on the plane!

Call me high maintenance if you wish, but having two pairs of runners has been a huge help to my travel fitness regime.

SO glad I packed these!

SO glad I packed these!

Workout Bands: I wasn’t sure how much I would use workout bands, as I rarely use them at home. Well my friends, let me tell you, these things are pretty much a part of EVERY workout I do. You can do it all with these babies; Bicep Curls, Tricep Extensions, Rows, Chest Press, Abs Crunches, and the list goes on!  Whenever we check into a new hostel I’m instantly on the look out for what things I can wrap my bands around! I was totally expecting to lose a lot of definition in my arms during this trip, but thanks to these bands, I’ve managed to keep up a pretty decent strength training routine.

My little bean makes me smile whenever I look at my phone

My little bean makes me smile whenever I look at my phone

iPhone: Although this magical piece of technology is good for blasting music and podcasts while you are working out, I have found so many amazing apps that have become essential for my routines. I am not going to go into to much detail because I think I’m going to do a whole post about them at a later date.But whether its tracking my steps and runs or timing my Tabata or Intervals, my iPhone always has role in my workouts.

And yes, my iphone cover photo makes makes me smile every single time I see it!

Lots of sweat on these pages!

Lots of sweat on these pages!

Workout Journal: Before I left I took an old journal from home and recorded a whole bunch of workout routines in it. Little did I know that this thing would become my workout bible.

Before each workout I take a glance through the ever growing list of workouts. I either choose an exisiting one, or create something new. I then use the book to keep track of my reps and sets as I go.

Not only does this book keep me organized, but it is a constant motivator to keep my workouts interesting and creative. No workouts plateaus here!

So there ya go!

You certainly don’t need much to workout effectively while travelling, but these couple items have definitely made my life easier!

What do you bring to help you workout while travelling?

Pura Vida!

Kate

Follow me on Twitter:@caketress

Travel Workouts Weeks 4/5- 5 tips for beach running

Well the holidays are finally over, and all things fitness, and food are back on track here at Hostels and Hot Rollers.

During my Christmas slump, I found myself relying on running as my go to fitness activity. It’s easy, requires no planning, and can be done anywhere.

Having been here for well over a month, I feel I have mastered the art of effective beach runs.. So, I thought I would share some tips for getting the most out of your vacation runs:

Hostels and Hot Rollers Top 5 Tips for Beach Running

Pre run smiles!

Pre run smiles!

1- Time of Day: Not sure if you are aware, but it is HOT here. Not only is running during the day uncomfortable, but it can be down right dangerous. Exerting yourself in the mid-day heat is simply a recipe for disaster, and although I see people doing it on occasion, I believe it should be avoided at all costs. Besides, mid-day is the time for vacation naps anyway.

If I am running a 10km, I set my alarm for 6am, and get out the door asap. The sun is up, and the air is cool. There are often very few people out, which makes it nice and relaxing. Plus, my workout is done super early, and I have the whole day to look forward to.

Some days I will break my workouts up into two parts. In the morning I will do a strength training circuit, and in the evening I will do a short 5 or 6km run. I try and get these runs done between 5 and 6. The air is cooler, but I can still get home before it’s dark. Careful on these runs though, bug spray is a must!

2- Sand: Running in sand adds great resistance, and can really up your calorie burn. That being said, sand is a really unstable surface to run on, and can easy lead to sprained ankles, or pulled muscles. Whenever we get to a new beach, I look for areas that have sand that is more compact, to make for easy running.

The perfect running tide...the sunset isn't so bad either ;)

The perfect running tide…the sunset isn’t so bad either 😉

3- Tides: There is nothing worse then planning a nice long beach run, only to discover the tide is up, and the beach is non-existent. Or even worse, the tide is up, so the beach is packed with tourists trying to take their sunset photos. To avoid being the photobomber of everyone’s photo, grab a tide guide and check out when the tide is out. Having more beach real estate will make your run much more enjoyable!

4- Be Prepared for Critters: During my runs I’ve been howled at by monkeys, dive bombed by bats, chased by dogs, charged by iguanas and chaperoned by a very persistent horse. I certainly have had to develop a certain level of flexibility with my runs. Each one is a new adventure. I like to think that each one of these experiences made me run just a little big faster!

Me being a creeper on a beach front wedding.

Me being a creeper on a beach front wedding.

5-Bring Your Camera: I have yet to go on a beach run where I haven’t wanted to snap a photo of something. Whether it’s some crazy animal, a gorgeous sunset, or a beach side wedding, there is always some memory I want to document. It was a sad day when my iphone camera died, and I could no longer take a quick second to snap a pick. That being said, I have been known to run with my canon on my shorter evening runs. I just can’t resist a sunset photo!

Finally a bonus tip: Whether you are running morning, or night, on beach or on road, remember to HYDRATE. We’re not in Victoria anymore Toto, and running in hot whether can suck the life right out of you. I try and get a litre of water in me as soon as I’m done running, just to get myself back on my A game!

So there ya go! My top 5 tips for beach running. Remember, all you need is a good pair of shoes, and you are off! No excuses!

What are your beach run experiences?

Pura Vida!

Kate

Follow me on Twitter: @caketress

The Christmas Slump- Travel Workouts Week 4

Turns out, even in another country, working out through Christmas is a challenge!

I feel like my Christmas season didn’t really start until December 22, the night before my family arrived. So I had the luxury of being able to avoid an entire month of shortbread, nog, and all other goodies that come along with the season. I was actually feeling pretty healthy coming into this week.

Since we were back in Tamarindo, I decided to make full use of their gym facilities. Gym’s are few and far between in Costa Rica, so I wanted to take advantage of it while I had the chance. The first morning at the gym I bought I week long pass. I figured this would be another way to encourage me to workout everyday, as I wanted to get my money’s worth.

Once I got my pass all set up, I jumped on the treadmill, then the elliptical, then the spin bike. Uh-oh, old Kate habits kicking in. I didn’t have a workout plan, and was just doing mindless cardio to pass the time. I did a couple HIIT intervals to shake it up a bit, but after about 40 min stopped, and went to the weight area. I wanted to lift some heavy weights, and target muscle groups that I have difficulty reaching using just my workout bands.

But again…I had no plan…So after 15 min of a wimpy little circuit I left.

This pattern continued over the next two days. Steady state cardio, short little weight session, and done. Combine this with an over indulgence of Beer, Wine, Costa Rican Egg Nog, and tons of delicious food, and I was feeling not so good about myself.

On the fourth day, I woke up, feeling awful, and realized, I didn’t want a gym workout, I wanted to make one up for myself. For those of you who know me, this is a huge deal, as I used to love the gym! Those days are gone. I wrote myself up a Tabata style workout that incorporated my bands.  I was a sweaty, tired mess by the end, and felt the light at the end of the tunnel. The follow day I rocked some bootcamp style circuit training using the stairs of our condo. Again, feeling so much better about my progress.

After two days of more effective workouts, I’m feeling like I’m getting back on track.  We have guests until the 6th, so I know eating healthy will be a challenge, and the beverages will likely continue to flow, but in the meantime, at least I know I’ll be rocking some great early morning sweat sessions!

This experience is truly a testament to the amazing life skills picked up during my 30 day challenge with Wholly Fit. Even from afar, the continue to motivate me, and help me strive for greatness.

P1010716

This was me right before I uploaded this blog…got up at 6:30am and rocked a 10km run. Thanks to Shaun who rolled out of bed to take this photo for me.

Miss you Wholly Fitters!

How did your workout regime pan out over Christmas? Did you fall of the wagon? Are you back on track?

Pura Vida!

Kate

Follow me on Twitter: @caketress

Cardio Fit at Casa Zen- Workouts Week 3

Travel Fitness, how I love thee…

This week I was able to track down another awesome group fitness class here in Costa Rica.

After spending the first several days running my little heart out, I was ready for a little bit of a break in my exercise routine. I thought about doing a Yoga class, especially since there is a yoga studio on every corner. I ended up seeking out something that would get my heart rate up. So you can imagine my excitement when I stumbled across a Cardio Fit class at Casa Zen Guesthouse.

This pretty much sums up the mood of Casa Zen

This pretty much sums up the mood of Casa Zen

First off, this is a beautiful hostel with, funny enough, a very “zen” like vibe.It’s set back from the street, on a busy beach access road, but it feels private as its nestled in its own little jungle.

There are awesome hand painted signs scattered about their communal living spaces. Sayings like “there is no rush”, and “call your mom”, set the tone of the hostel.

Reception/Kitchen at Casa Zen

Reception/Kitchen at Casa Zen

I checked in at reception, paid my 5 dollars (score!), and waited patiently for Tico time to roll around. Sure enough, at 8:35 the instructor, and her students all rolled in.

The classroom

The classroom

We headed upstairs to the classroom. There is one main outdoor classroom used for all the classes offered at Casa Zen. It’s gorgeous. Everything is brightly coloured, and there are stained glass tiles that the sun shines through. It was such a great space.

The class started, and I was instantly caught up in the fabulous energy. The group was all Costa Rican women, who laughed the whole way through. The instructor walked us through several circuits. We did everything from kickboxing, and weights to old school aerobics. It certainly kept me on my toes! I went to two classes in the week and left each one feeling pumped, and full of energy. They were just what I needed to shake up my super chill week of reading, and relaxing.

The instructor only spoke Spanish, but it wasn’t a problem at all. Shaun always watches the sports in Spanish here. He says he can still understand what’s going on because he is so familiar with the content. Well apparently the same goes for me when it comes to group fitness instruction. I learnt so many new words just from listening to the class, but often found myself a beat behind everyone as I worked out the translation in my head.

Have you every tried to watch or listen to something you are really familiar with, but in a different language?

Pura Vida!

Kate

Follow me on Twitter:@caketress