But have I listened to any of THAT?
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO. I've continued to run, bike, swim, exercise (am LOVING the Wii Personal Trainer BTW), and the heel has not healed. Not really. Not one bit.
Saturday's run with the track club was a testament to that. I ran 5 miles. At 4 miles I had to stop and walk my heel hurt so bad (thanks to Irene for hangin' in there with me and my super-slow pace for the first 4 miles).
So, what's finally gotten me to not run, bike, swim, lift, or do any other effing thing for the last two days?
A nasty cold.
Or at least I hope it's a cold, and not the swine flu (although, unlike Diana, I don't work in a place that'll hose me down at the first sign of illness). Symptoms include: stuffy nose, tired, congestion, no fever...all in all, good signs that's it's not the flu, but I still feel like crap.
And, since I have no running, biking, tire changing, bike-store-dude conversation stories to share with ya'all today, I thought I'd do my FIRST PRODUCT REVIEW!
Yes, the Hefferblog does it's first product review! I like to try out free stuff as much as the next blogger does!
Here goes...about three months ago, nuruplanet.com contacted me and asked me if I'd review their Exercise Anywhere cards.
"Why the heck not?" I thought.
They arrived in the mail about mid April or so (yes, I've had them that long...I've been REAAAAAALLLLLYYYYY BUSY!) and they've pretty much been sitting in the mail pile since then.
Knowing that I had little else to write about, and that I hadn't even had the courtesy of writing anything over the weekend, I located them this morning and took a look. Basically, Exercise Anywhere is a deck of cards; each card describes a single strength exercise. The cards are organized into sections. Each section targets a major muscle group including: the chest, back, lower body, shoulders, arms, abs. There is also a section of cards that describes exercises called the "cardio lab."
The cards are advertised as a way to get a full body workout when you cant (or don't want to) go to a gym. Here's a sample (from their website)...I suspect they won't mind since I've linked it again here.
Good things about the cards:
- They are compact. I could keep them in my pocket, and anyone who has ridden or run with me knows that I have some storage issues, and I tend to carry way too much stuff with me.
- The directions for each exercise are well written and simple to follow. If I didn't know how to do a plank (or if I'd been doing it wrong) the card explains it pretty darn well...
Get in pushup position, but rest your weight on your forearms. Keep your face looking toward the floor (my comment: this is a good point as I've seen plenty of people doing planks on Tuesday nights looking up and around and not at the grass...maybe they're looking strength, or for inspiration, or to see if someone else (Stoney for example) has given up on his plank, but in all cases, looking up and around while doing a plank is bad form...so is sticking your butt in the air, but that's another rant...anyway the card continues) Stay firm: no drooping or bending. Hold for 15 seconds. Work your way up to 30, 60, and 120 seconds.
- The cards seem comprehensive and seem to target all the muscle groups as advertised.
- The cards give a sample weekly routine to follow (I would need this. I tend to do all major body groups all at once, on one day, then get sore, and stop...which is probably why I've never gotten into strength training.)
- There are modifications for typical weight training exercises that you can do if you don't have hand weights...that is, you can use "cans" instead of "weights" for the arm exercises.
- It has a glossary. For the uninitiated, it tells what a "set" is or what a "superset" is. In all honesty, I know at one point of my life, I didn't know these things.
- It includes random bits of information about the muscle groups that made me giggle...for example did you know that "the word "triceps" comes from the Latin tri (three) = capit (head) which literally means "three-headed" (for the three muscles that compose it)." So you can get your anatomy lesson in as well as some exercise. Or you can giggle whenever you see the word "head" like I do.
- The type is really small. When I exercise I wear contact lenses and to see these, I'd need to put on some reading glasses to read the small print. So these are best for people who don't need reading glasses.
- Basically, each card has the same layout and the same color scheme, and even though each muscle group has a tab, the tabs aren't really offset all that much AND they're all the same color, so the tabs are not particularly useful in quickly finding exercises. (If that were a goal). I think it'd be easier to find the "chest" exercises if they were color-coded in a different color than the "arm" exercises.
This would be sooooo much better if the tabs, or even the card headings were color coded
- The black and white drawings, which illustrate each exercise, while straightforward, are a bit boring...On the other hand, maybe that's a good thing. I always wonder whether or not those models in Self magazine actually DO the exercises they're modeling, or if they're just
standinglying there faking it....
As luck would have it, my Self magazine arrived yesterday (why do I even get this magazine...I think I got three free issues from Active.com when I signed up for a race one time and never cancelled...GAH!). Anyway, here's one of this month's tear out exercise cards
A similar exercise featured on the Exercise Anywhere card...why does this card not make me feel like someone should at least be buyin' me dinner?
So, the final review? Exercise Anywhere cards...they aren't sexy, but they're functional, and for $9.95 with free shipping, relatively affordable. They're probably best for the beginner who wants to start a strength program exercise, but doesn't really know where to start, or for those who've been at it awhile and who need a tangible reminder of what to do next.
And, also for someone who doesn't need glasses :-).
Just leave me comment that says you'd like to be included in a drawing for a free set of Exercise Anywhere cards before this Saturday, June 27. If you don't have a blog you should also email me at hefferblog [at] gmail [dot] com, to let me know you'd like to be in the drawing, so that I know how to get a hold of you. This is a really important thing to do if you don't have a blog. If you do have a blog, I can track you down.
OK...that was exhausting. I need a nap now. (evidence of how sick I am? I started this blog at about 9:00 this morning and it's almost 3:00 now...a full days work for me).