Wednesday, 14 January 2015

Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité.

Week 3

Blog reading music this week is from Billy Bragg, Tank Park Salute. I've always loved the way Billy can write and perform songs with such heartbreaking poignancy without resorting to any cloying sentimentality, utterly authentic at all times.  Plus he's an Essex lad like me so I've probably got a soft spot for him due to that too.

Zut alors!
Bit of a blip in the diet this week. Diana and I headed to Paris for the weekend for her birthday present (What's that? Oh yeah, I suppose I AM an awesome boyfriend) and while we headed to all the usual tourist must see spots, the Mona Lisa (meh), Notre Dame, the Eiffel Tower (wow) our main focus was food and pâtisserie so the usual diet was thrown out for a couple of days in favour of visits to Stohrer & Sadaharu Aoki, salted caramel éclairs, the worlds finest chocolatiers, wonderful bread, amazing coffee, wine & charcuterie, buckwheat crepes with eggs and country cider in stone bowls. Spectacular.  We were lucky enough to meet up with a Parisienne friend who took us around the city for a few hours and pointed out interesting places for us, it seemed we spent every moment not eating walking somewhere so hopefully managed to exercise off at least some of that cake.  Fantastic couple of days, now back to salad for the foreseeable future.

My old shoulder injury has flared up again this week so I've stayed off the boxing and swimming. One of the important things I took away from the 12 week course last year was listening to my body, I've got a few ongoing injuries/problems I'm always carrying around with me and I would previously always tend to overwork in the short term and and then end up in loads of pain and unable to exercise in the long term, so I've skipped a couple of boxing sessions and stuck with yoga class.  I didn't want this to stop me doing exercise though and as Diana is a big fan of stay at home exercise DVDs she invited me to join in with her Les Mills Bodycombat session in the living room.  If I love Billy Bragg because of his stripped down, no nonsense approach then Les's high energy, plucked eyebrow, cheesy Bro singalonga-douchbag routine was about as far removed from that as I could handle, I lasted less than a minute before I went in the other room, googled 'bodyweight tabata' and found this class on Youtube that I could do on my own without aggravating my shoulder (or Diana).  Tabata's great - quick, high intensity exercise sets with short rest periods that Daniel at 12 Rounds uses as inspiration for his classes and it smashes me to bits without me having to be a judgemental prick towards the extremely successful and probably lovely in real life bloke on the screen.
HI GUYS!  We're aspirational figures!

So a few lessons from that.
- Don't overexercise if hurt, but don't let your discomfort become your excuse for not doing anything.  Can you work around it?

- Find something that works for you.  If it's a dude in a leotard singing along with 80 power rock, so be it, if it's a personal trainer screaming at you like a drill sergeant that's fine too.

- There's loads of exercise classes on Youtube for free.  If you want to get your body moving this January but don't know where to start, feel intimidated or are just too skint for the gym, get to Youtube and find something that appeals (just remember to warm up beforehand and stretch afterwards, you can find tutorials for this too).

Thanks for reading, here's further evidence that cats are dicks and a video of a panda cub playing in the snow.

Liberté, Egalité, Fraternité.

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