Saturday, June 9, 2012

Incline Walking for Anyone

First of all, congratulations to my cousin Barbara, who graduated from high school yesterday! She’s off to the University of Michigan this fall and will be playing water polo there. Awesome, right? We can’t wait to visit!

I was nervous this morning that last night’s blog post might not have made any sense. I was so tired! Nevertheless, we woke up early this morning to complete a new workout before starting the day.

I really think incline walking is a fantastic way to squeeze in your cardio.
  • It’s low impact and far less intense on the knees and other leg muscles than running.
  • It’s a great tool for cross-training if you usually run.
  • It doesn’t discriminate. It works for beginners, amateur athletes, or marathoners.
  • It works your core and, if you’re pumping your arms, your upper body.
  • It’s a great way to start a workout regimen if you’re new to fitness.
  • You can do it on a treadmill or outdoors—just find some hills!
  • You can make it more difficult by adding hand weights or increasing the speed/incline; you can make it less intense by decreasing the incline and speed.

So since we needed to get some cross training in today for our half marathon plan, we hopped on the treadmills at our complex’s gym and made up a 30-minute incline walking routine.

If you or someone you know is in the mood for a less intense workout but one that will still get your heart rate up and will work those quads and glutes, try the same routine with lower speeds and inclines.

I also threw in a quick upper body workout:

After a quick shower and breakfast of spinach, eggs, and Havarti cheese, we took off for a day of wine tasting with Terry’s parents. We had some shipments to pick up, and it’s always great to get to spend a few hours sipping wine, chatting, and soaking in the gorgeous scenery. After such a crazy week, I was thrilled to be relaxing outdoors.

Sandwiches from Panino

We stopped at Bridlewood, which is among our favorite wineries, as well as Saarloos & Sons. We usually try to hit four wineries each time we venture up to the Los Olivos area, but we took our time and chatted a lot with Terry's parents and their close friend Kelly. Terry and I also picked up a shipment from Lincourt, another local favorite. 

For dinner, we ate at the Hitching Post, which was featured in the movie Sideways (ßpretty hilarious, if you haven’t seen it). The Los Olivos area has surprisingly few restaurants, so we rarely stay for dinner, but we gave it a shot. The food wasn't terrific, and we thought it was overpriced, but they did have good split pea soup to start the meal. I also liked the grilled artichoke appetizer. 

My meal: grilled chicken with baked potato. 

Terry's parents actually recommended the place they enjoyed last night, Sides Hardware and Shoes (strange name, right?). They said the dishes had incredibly creative flavor combinations, such as a bacon-nectarine-arugula-balsamic salad. I'm looking forward to checking out that place when we go back. 

But we are again exhausted and ready for a real night of sleep. I’m letting Scout wake us up tomorrow—he woke us up today as he chased his straw around the house and asked us to play fetch. That guy is adorable!

He's all blurry and bushy-tailed because he heard another cat.

Fun fact: Terry and I have been married for 11 months today!

 Our one-year anniversary is only one month away, and the traditional gift should be made of paper. Any creative ideas? What’s the best paper gift you’ve received, given, or heard of?


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