Saturday, April 23, 2011

Anatomy of My Workout

Subtitled: Worst Picture of Julie Ever
Also Subtitled: Julie is the creepy lady in the gym with a camera.

Hi - it's Julie here!

I am working on a couple of posts that really detail how a latex allergy (and other allergies) work, but they aren't ready yet, so I thought it would be fun to start my showing you what exactly my workout looks like right now, including what gear I'm using. I have an appointment with a trainer at my gym next week, so it will be interesting to see what she changes. I'll update you with her report!

So- when I joined the gym, I had to buy new workout clothes because I was too big for the stuff I had. I hadn't been to a gym or on a workout in almost four years. My original workout was 30 min. 3-4 times a week on the elliptical and then about 20 min of weights 2-3 times a week. I've now changed to to 30 min of running/walking according to the Couch to 5K plan, which I do 3-4 times per week (I'm on Week 2, Day 3). I've kept my weights the same.

Weight wise, I wanted to focus on toning up my arms and my core. I have disproportionally large arms that have always been a source of discontent for me, regardless of my size, so I really want to tone them up. I put my weight plan together based on things that I'd been taught in the past by various friends and fitness professionals. For my core, I have been doing machines that build ab and back muscles. For my arms, I've been doing machines that work on biceps, triceps and shoulders. I also do the leg press, two hip machines, and the chest press. I'm curious to see how the trainer alters this.

When I go to the gym-- here is a look at what I'm bringing. I usually also have my ipod, but I dropped the headphones in the toilet at the gym last night (NO JOKE, I do dumb stuff like this more than I'd like to admit). Here is what the 'dashboard' of my treadmill looks like. (Right now, all my running is on a treadmill-- I plan to take it outside when I finish the Couch to 5K and can handle a move vigorous run).

First, I printed out the treadmill times for the daily Couch to 5K program in big print so it's easy to read and follow while I'm working out. This has been a big help for me. Not having to think about the timing and just being able to follow it and visually see on the sheet that I'm half way done, etc., is very helpful for me. Second, I always carry my epi-pen, emergency contact card, and topical Bendaryl. The gym is full of latex based things and I don't ever want to be in a situation where I don't have my epi-pen. Luckily, I've never needed to use mine, but I don't want the day to come where I do need it and I don't have it. The topical Benadryl is great for me because most the reactions I have start as hives or discomfort on the skin. Keeping the travel size spray bottle handy helps me keep a reaction under control once it starts. I do use that one quite a bit while at the gym. Finally, you see my sweat towel, because I sweat like a man. No joke. I just use a kitchen towel because it's a good size. I'm not sure if there is any particular benefit to getting a sport towel or not. So far, this works for me!

So that take us to what I'm wearing during a workout.This pic was taken post workout, just to prove I'm actually trying to run. :-)

So, I mentioned I had to buy all new gear-- what you are seeing here is $20 at work! I bought both the carpi pants and the shirt, as well as a package of cotton socks for $20 on the sale rack.The shirt is from the men's department. (Yes, I just admitted that on the internet.) As any lady with larger than normal arms knows, girl workout shirts are just SO tiny! I was not comfortable in something so tight as a lady's shirt, so I opted for a man's size. What I like about it is the wicking fabric. What I don't like is, now that I'm running, the extra fabric in the arm-pits chafes a little bit. The capri's are just 100% cotton, drawstring workout pants. I tend to opt for the 100% cotton, elastic free stuff because of my latex allergy.

What's on my workout wish list?

- New shoes. I know how important it is to have the right shoes to run. I'm still researching the best latex free options.
- Clothes made for running to prevent chafing.
- A water bottle with a straw or squeeze top so that I can drink while running.
- An MP3 player that clips to my clothes
- A running watch.

Runners out there: What's your workout look like? What's your favorite gear?


  1. You go, girls! How brave of you. I'll be following along.

  2. I recommend signing up for road races where you get the "tech" shirts instead of cotton t-shirts (although, I'm not sure about the latex content or anything). I hate spending money on running stuff (including races), but I'll admit I do get a bit jealous of the fancy gear of others. I have two of those shirts I've gotten from races, and they are definitely my favorite! And ignore people who claim "you know the beginners" when they wear the shirt from the race AT the race. When I get one of those fancy shirts, you bet that I'm going to wear it during the race. And I've been running for 15 years.

  3. I'm doing that plan! I'm doing that plan! I'm doing that plan!

    I just did day one today - outside, in the heat of the sun, wearing plimsolles, normal trousers and a baggy jumper. I'm sure the lycra'd up joggers were chortling but at least it's a start!

    So far I will be doing that 3 times a week (Mon, Wed, Fri) and inbetween using the wii fit. It's my arms too that I hate the most and never ever ever go out with 3/4 length sleeves or a shrug so I hear ya!

    I have running shoes and an mp3 player and now some work out pants like yours on my list. Oh, and one of those bottles with the hole in the middle so you can hold it easily while running.

    Am following along with you both and have put you on my fit blog sidebar :)

  4. p.s do you know about this? My friend sent me the link today -it's playlists but a voice prompts you when to run/walk/warm up etc

  5. I'm curious where you are able to find elastic free clothing. My mother has a terrible allergy and we aren't having any luck finding latex/spandex/elastic free clothes.

  6. Hi aksnowflaque! I didn't know the answer to the question, but I asked Julie (who wrote this, but now is not doing the blog anymore), and she said the following:

    "I don't have a good answer for this, except that high end athletic stores can usually tell you if there is latex in the clothing. Spandex always has it, and most clothes are at least some percent spandex. I have some cotton nike pants that I do not react to, so my guess is that their elastic is latex free, but I have no facts to back that up. I usually get cotton draw string pants for this reason. (Sweat + elastic waist band + latex allergy is the suck.) I buy Moving comfort brand sports bras because my local running store was able to asses that they do not contain latex. I've been super happy with them. Since they don't have to put latex on labels, it requires a lot of individual research. Feel Feet, my local store, was willing to look a lot of things up for me, which was nice. I hear rumors that Lululemon items are latex free, but I've not tried them, nor have I evidence to prove the rumor true."