The BodyPump Training Experience – Part 2

Me and Kristin, our awesome trainer In case you missed it, part 1 is HERE.   The BodyPump training was held in Harrisonburg, VA at a small gym near my sister’s house. I arrived at 8am ready to workout and excited about how the day would go.   We were introduced to each other and to our awesome trainer, Kristin Donnelly. She led us (and a few members from the gym) through a master class of release 91.   The equipment at the gym left a bit to be desired. They had the older, super-heavy (15 pound!) silver bars, and the weight plates were sometimes tough to get on and off.   I knew I’d be doing the release a lot over the course of two days so I didn’t lift my usual weights in the master class so as not to exhaust myself! It was fun to hear how she coached the class and I picked up a few new cues.   After the master class we sat and listed to Kristin talk a bit about the choreography and some Les Mills specifics. Then we had a “technique bootcamp” where she demonstrated each move in Body Pump and had us repeat it many times so that she could come around and make sure our form was perfect. This was helpful and I found a few things I could tweak to improve my form.   After that it was time for a lunch break, then more lecture and then finally it was time for our first presentation. Two weeks ago we’d been assigned two tracks to learn and perfect for the weekend. I had biceps and lunges. I really liked the biceps track (though it was HARD) and I was less enthused about the lunges. But I’d been practicing for those two weeks and felt like I knew my tracks pretty well.

Our training group - all of the ladies were super nice and supportive.

Many of the other gals in the training had never done Pump before and were a bit lost on some of the choreography and timing, but everyone got to present and we all did our best.   Kristin had taped us and so we got to watch that while she gave us feedback. After that it was 5pm and we all got to head home for the day.   I chose to stick around and get in a quick 3.5 miles on the indoor track (since it was 30 degrees outside!). I guess I’d over-prepared for the training because the first day wasn’t nearly the sweat-fest that I’d been promised it would be. Believe it or not, my little run made me the sweatiest I had been all day!


The BodyPump Challenge!

Day 2 was a bit more intense, thanks to the fact that we presented twice (so we did the full release two times) and we also had…the BodyPump Challenge! We were encouraged during the challenge to really push ourselves and lift 50-75% more weight than we normally do for each of the exercises. I ended up squatting over 75lbs so I was happy with that and definitely felt like I got in a decent workout during this portion of the training.   We had some more lecture time as well as a chance to practice our tracks before we presented a final time for her to grade us.   I was a bit nervous about the final presentation, but I felt like I’d prepared enough and tried to be confident. It must have worked because I passed and received a 3/3 grade for the weekend.   There are a few form cues I need to work on but the next step is to get ready to film my full assessment video! I have 60 days to video tape myself teaching the whole release (from warm-up to cool-down) and then submit that to Les Mills for them to give me a final score and determine if I have passed and can be designated an official instructor.   Since I’ve been back, I’ve been practicing as often as I can in hopes to film the video fairly soon so that I can stop stressing over it!

In other news, when I’m not practicing BodyPump, I’ve been RUNNING!!! It feels so awesome to be building my mileage. I’m still no where near where I was, but I’m back in the mid-40s this week and so, so happy to be there. I’m still feeling very SLOW (and I AM slow), but I am hoping that the speed will come back with time. (It will, right???) I eased back into speed this week with some striders. For the record, my legs were VERY confused about the re-introduction to speed and protested mightily.   But it felt good to pick it up and bit and it was a nice low-anxiety way to ease back in.   Here’s how the week shook out:

Monday: 6 miles Tuesday:   8 hilly with striders Wednesday: 6.5 miles Thursday: 6.5 miles + BodyPump Friday: 5.2 miles Saturday: 12.0 miles (avg. 8:11 pace) + BodyPump Sunday: OFF + BodyPump

Total: 44.2 miles

Next up, a recovery week.  I'll dial it back to 35 miles or so to let my body absorb the work.  We've had a cold spell here in the last few days (my long run was done in 20 degrees!) so here's hoping it warms back up slightly for next week!

Feel free to leave a comment below and tell me how you are doing!

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