Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Les Mills Quarterly

Every quarter we have an opportunity to attend a Les Mills Quarterly where Les Mills instructors get to drink the Les Mills Kool-Aid. At Quarterly, you can chose to take as many or as few Les Mills classes that you want. As a bonus, the classes are led by Master Trainers who truly inspire you to become a better instructor.

Sheldon McBee

Last March I was able to meet Body Pump Program Director, Glen Ostergaard. I was absolutely beside myself getting to actually meet the man behind the empowering Body Pump program. This weekend I was all about Sheldon McBee, National Program Coach for CXWorx and GRIT as well as Master Trainer for Body Combat and Body Pump.  I mean we have so much in common! I love every program he teaches. If he only taught Body Flow, we'd be like twins!

Kelsey, Michelle, me, Melida and Jen
Add in the fact that I was getting to attend quarterly with some of the best people in the world and it was the making of a fabulous weekend. Spending time with people who are passionate about making the necessary lifestyle changes to be fit and fabulous just has a way of motivating you!!
Motivational T-shirts
I love attending the expo to see all of the latest programs and gadgets in the fitness industry. Of course, then there's the motivational t-shirts you can buy. These are a few of my favorites. I bust mine to kick yours is probably the best reflection on my 2012; however, I want my mantra as an instructor to be RESULTS NOT EXCUSES. I do get tired of hearing about the TV programs everyone has time to watch, but not the workout they were able to complete today. Let's flip that around, OK?

Body Pump  Tricep Track
We started out the morning at 7:30 am with Body Pump 83. Nothing like starting off your day with over 800 reps to create lean muscle.

Jill getting her step on. 
Then we moved on to Body Step. Here's a picture of my niece, Jill, who teaches Body Step, Body Jam and Sha'Bam at Gold's Gym. She's a fantastic dancer. If you have a chance to attend one of her classes, you should. Jill didn't even know I took this picture until she saw I had tagged her on Facebook. She was too busy watching her Step Hero, Amanda Scales. Yes. Fitness. It's a family business.

Next I was able to participate in the new Les Mills GRIT Strength program. There are actually three different GRIT programs: Cardio, Plyo and Strength. Each program is 30 minutes in length and uses HIIT (high intensity interval training) to send your energy level through the roof. I immediately fell in love with the program which pushes your heart rate as well as your muscles to the limit. The small sample of the class we participated in reminded me of a Cross Fit type of program. All I kept thinking was how tough the training for any of the GRIT programs would be. I really need to get into shape for that one.

Next I participated in Body Flow 58. Body Flow is the first program I got certified in. I signed up to become a Body Flow instructor just to get something started in my small gym, but quickly fell in the love with the program. Even as the instructor, I finish every class feeling centered and relaxed and as a result, I will never give up Body Flow.

Sheldon and Mysti Oglesby
After a one hour break for lunch, I came back psyched up and ready to go. It was time for my absolute favorite program: Body Combat. The program is based on martial arts and draws from various disciplines such as karate, boxing, taekwondo, tai chi and muay thai. I went to Combat training last November; however, after I signed up for IMLOU, I decided I couldn't put the energy into completing another certification at that time. After this weekend, I am again contemplating getting my Combat certification. The class is exhilarating and exhausting! And if you are looking for a shoulder and core workout without sit ups, you will love this program.

With burned out shoulders, I couldn't get down in proper position for Firefly.
As I've already established, I was excited to watch Sheldon lead the Combat class; however, he now has some new competition....and this one is a woman. I fell in love with Mysti Oglesby during GRIT Strength. I loved her tough exterior, but when she approached participants about correcting their form, she professional and informative. I found her to be inspiring and motivating.

By the time we got to the core track of Body Combat, my shoulders were fried. I tried, I really, really tried to have good form doing the Firefly, but I just couldn't get down in push up position and hold it while driving my knee to my elbow. Wow. I guess I have a new goal. I need to work on that one.

After Combat, I sat down to chill for a bit. My friend, Michelle, loves Body Attack. I, however, cannot stand the high impact of Attack. I feel like I've stepped right back into the 80s. There are certain things about the 80s that I loved and would give just about anything to experience again. The high impact aerobics of the 80s? No, thank you. So while Michelle jumped, leaped and bounded around the workout room, I sat my derriere down to catch up all of my Facebook messages.

The last class of the day for me was CXWorx, again led by my main man, Sheldon. CXWorx is a 30 minute class which tightens and tones the core. I know that in the next few days my stomach muscles are going to scream "Ouch". After all of these classes, I am going to need a massage to relieve all of the tension and muscle soreness. Anyone know a good masseuse?

Caramelized Mango Chicken
After CXWorx, everyone was ready to head out for a nice hot meal at PF Chang's. Nearly every meal for me at PF Chang's has to begin with calamari. I also ordered the Caramelized Mango Chicken. Yummy. Anything mango makes me happy.

A little birthday celebration
What better way is there to finish a meal at PF Chang's than with a free birthday dessert? I'm not sure what all they crammed into this little cup, but I am sure my blood sugar hit the roof.

My Trader Joe's Purchases
After dinner, we made a trip to Trader Joe's. Sadly, we don't have any Trader Joe's in the Central Illinois area. I was a little surprised by my first trip to Trader Joe's. I guess I thought it would be much bigger, but I loved all of the incredible selection that they did have. I picked up some Tomato and Roasted Red Pepper Soup, a Hummus Quartet and Mango butter. Mango - it always finds its way into my shopping cart.

My new BFF, Art

While waiting to check out, Michelle mentioned to the cashier that it was my birthday. Suddenly, he took off running and came back with a bundle of flowers for me. My new BFF, Art, wished me a Very Happy Birthday and actually made my day with his random act of kindness.

We arrived back home a little before 11 pm sore, tired, and ready to hit the sack. Les Mills Quarterly is a great time to get rejuvenated as an instrutor. Even though I was tired and sore for my Monday morning PUMP class, I felt like I could have motivated anyone to make a change toward a healthy lifestyle. 

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