Playground Workout

Disclaimer: We are absolute amateurs. We are not professionals like this guy, or this guy, or this guy.

That being said, I didn’t make a total fool of myself.

I’ve been trying to get back on the workout horse for a while (see how Primal made me lazy here). I recently signed up for the Oregon Warrior Dash in September, so this is also important training for that. Now that the weather is finally cooperating, I’ve started terrorizing small children on the playgrounds of our town, as you can see below.

I brought my husband, Brian, along for the fun. Backstory: He always kicks my ass at whatever we do. Anytime I initiate a sprint during our runs, he zooms past me without even breaking a sweat. We would come back from hikes and then he would decide he needed to go for a run. Sheesh. I, on the other hand, have always enjoyed bootcamp-style classes and bodyweight exercises, and I may have discovered the thing that finally wears Brian out more than me.

The exercise circuit consisted of squat jumps up the ramp, 5 push-ups at the top, run across the bridge, take the monkey bars to the other side, up a step then down the fire pole, 5 pull-ups, run and jump through the swing, 5 hanging ab crunches, 5 tricep dips, and then you start all over again until you either pass out or puke, whichever comes first. Then we did some sprints around some cones someone mysteriously left on the field (Thanks!) and some animal-mimicking drills (rabbit hops, crab walk, and bear crawl), recommended by Darryl Edwards, aka The Fitness Explorer. Then Brian suggested a circuit that focused more on agility. That’s the part where we’re squeezing through chains and such.

How much you wanna bet Al Kavadlo could do a Human Flag on this thing?

I felt hesitant to get started on playground workouts because I thought I needed to know what I was doing. I was wrong. All you need is a complete willingness to make an ass out of yourself in public. But it’s not as bad as it seems, because before you know it, the kids are following you and you’re the envy of all the moms sitting on benches with their Starbucks and text messaging.

The key is to stop seeing the equipment as serving one purpose. Kids are very good at this, but we lose that ability somewhere along the way. If you haven’t already, click on the links in this article, and you’ll see some truly inspiring ways of reckoning with playground equipment. That’s what has always drawn me to Parkour—the lack of obstacles, adapting to the environment, being fluid and going with the flow. So try to make one movement flow into the next, figure out creative ways to get from Point A to Point B, and don’t waste a single moment that could be spent in motion.

I’m nowhere near making this look easy, but I noticed that by the third time through the agility circuit, we had both improved at smoothing out some transitions. I realized I don’t completely suck at pull-ups. And it’s such sweet, sweet music to hear my husband groaning every time he moves today.

As always, be prepared for the tsunami of hunger afterward. Douse it with a fatty, meat-heavy lunch or else you’ll suffer from a persistent case of the snackies all day.

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2 Responses to “Playground Workout”

  1. When’s the next one? I want to join in!

  2. You rock! I wanna play, too!!

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