Sunday, January 1, 2012



Off season, we and our teammates cut back on the competition focused workouts, and "crosstrain"---go hiking, play some golf if it's warm enough...and hangout with friends over leisurely evening meals.

It's never worth getting remotely out of shape though-since we're not wired that way- anyway-and it too hard getting into triathlon shape to begin with, so why lose it.

One thing that we've been told---however---is to work on perfecting swim strokes-and pick up strength training---weights, core exercises etc.

SO---an offer to try out LA import-a class at STRENGTH, LENGTHEN, TONE (SLT) in midtown-interested us-though truth be told, we never took a pilate/yoga class that didn't have us watching the clock after about 20 minutes-or had us wishing for engagement in some other workout, given our limited amount of workout time.

What it is-

---similar to those classes our nieces rave about in London where they live ---SLT uses a souped machine that resembles a Pilate's Reformer (Megaformers™)-to well strength, lengthen and tone targeted areas -in a fast pace, music blaring atmosphere-that does somewhat get the heart rate up.

In a super clean, sunny studio overlooking 57th Street-just off Fifth Ave.-SLT offers several instructor led classes throughout the day---we took a weekday/mid-day class with 5 other women of various ages-two from across the Pond---all SLT veterans. At most-there are classes of ten class attendees---a full class usually scheduled-we were told-right after work hours.

Our instructor accessed our fitness level before the class began (high) and gave us a fast tutorial on how the machine worked.

We are not good with gadgets, still it's pretty easy to follow along-and the instructor was hands on, showing us and correcting us- when we needed it. Without missing a beat-our instructor started with a core crunchy kind of move---and swiftly had attendees moving around the Megaformer™-targeting different areas-and we also figure, keeping us engaged with 'named' exercises -similar to the catchy Yoga positions like warrior/downward dog, etc.

The music helps---and yup, the work-out is efficiently real...muscles all get hit-in a isometric/stretchy kind of way-in a way-with pulleys-adjustable all for easier or tighter tensions---being pushed/pulled. Described as a combo of weight-training, Pilate's and cardio-we would say that's fairly accurate-though it wasn't like our cardio workouts for triathlons where we really push our heart rate up.

The gals in our class all took classes 2x a week---an amount we figure ideal. And yes there are men that take SLT-and no surprise to us-we were told they sweat buckets-as SLT is challenging-and especially for those guys who are used to muscling through a weight lifting session-using momentum.

Also new to us-and what we would call essential-as we truly believe you are what you eat---are the delicious protein/vitamin/mineral powder formulas we tried recently (vanilla and chocolate mixed with plain ole' water for us)----made by PURE ESSENTIALS®...

There are plenty of powder protein/mineral options out on the market-that frankly bewilder us---so we were very intrigued by PURE ESSENTIALS' M.O: " provide maximum bioavailabilty at the cellular level."

Made without harmful containment's-(remember- the supplement industry in this country is not regulated like the food industry)---Pure Essentials is manufactured to the highest pharmaceutical standards, meaning you get what you pay for without cheap fillers.

What was really new for us to learn about-was that- for example-even if a vitamin or protein powder is composed of what they claim to be composed of, how our body absorbs said nutrients...i.e. "...transport, uptake and metabolism of the nutrients..." might render the entire concoction useless to the consumer. The body misses all the benefits because it's not absorbed "right" ---hence bioavailable.

Good to know then-that all smartly developed things with the Pure Essentials label-that includes a full range of vitamins, mineral, nutritional supplements,  and "active elements"-get actually utilized/metabolized by humans..."delivering real benefits faster and more effectively than other nutritional supplements."

And yes, theoretically, we should be getting what we nutritional need via meals-but given our schedule and  high level of exercise...we need the supplements, without a doubt.