Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Opening Day on Outdoor Bleacher Season~Its time to get your Bleacher On !!! ;)

     I don't think its any coincidence that Opening Day of Bleacher Season has fallen on April Fools Day!!!  This is the time of year that Koch Arena goes dark and Cessna Stadium lights up !!!  Track Season is in full swing, people start filling the Bleachers at Shocker Fitness, and people in the community show up to walk the track or CLIMB THE BLEACHERS !!!  Bleacher work is by far the hardest thing I do all week, in fact, I only do Bleacher work ONCE a week because of the physical demands on my body.  So for starters, your first time out, only plan on walking up the 74 seats once or twice.  You might be confused that an earthquake is occurring, but don't worry... the only reason your pants are shaking is because your legs are quivering so bad you think the tremors are coming from mother earth. ( this reaction does fade as time goes on and you stick to the program)  If necessary, you can walk a lap in between sets.  Always, start with a warm up by taking one lap around the track to get your muscles good and warm. Our muscles respond better when they are warm and work more efficiently with less risk of injury.  Each week I add 2 sets to my previous week.  After a couple months you should be close to the goal of 20 sets in an hour, or close to that if that is your goal.  Any amount is great and will make great improvements in your fitness level.  I like to run Half Marathons and climb Pikes Peak each year, and this is the one activity that really gives me the fitness advantage I need to reach my goals.  Cross training is key in fitness, and bleacher work is definitely an activity you should include in any fitness regime if possible.  So, to work up to 20 sets, add 2 sets each week, and also you can break up your sets with laps around the track, a brisk race walk is fine if you don't want to run.  A short term goal would be to work up to doing 5 sets then taking a lap, then repeat.  If you need to start out with 3 sets, then a lap, that is fine too.  As your bleacher legs improve you will be able to start increasing your sets before taking a break.  Soon you will be able to do 10 sets, then a lap.  Before you know it you will be doing 20 sets with out taking a break and you will have the tushy to prove it !!!  The bleacher work does wonders for your back side as well, so there is another added BONUS !!!  A couple of helpful hints~ to keep track of your sets, gather some rocks to use as a counter for each set you complete.  Its hard to remember what number you are on unless you have some help counting. Also, its nice to invite a friend to do it with you so you can visit the hour away.  Lastly, if you have some music to play that really helps keep you energized!!!  Also, I might add as you progress in your bleacher work, I like to try and run on my last set to see if I can make it to the top on my last set. Some people like to try and run half way up on each of their sets. Or, if you want to add some variety, you can step OVER the bleachers and work your way up using that system a time or two.  Or if you want to throw in a couple sets walking up the steps, that's fine too.  Be creative and make it fun.  I've seen people work in a zig zag pattern around the stadium as well.  ( I'm a bore and usually just stay in one place... I have to stay close to my rocks I'm using as counters!!!  HA) The sun is the last issue I need to address.  The heat is not a huge problem til June, but when it starts warming up, its best to get there in the morning by 7ish so you can have your work done before the sun rises over the east side of the Stadium.  Those metal bleachers become hot plates of radiating heat when the sun is on them, and can be dangerous to be exerting that much energy in those conditions.  So in the summer I work on the east side, and when its cooler out I do all my work on the west side.  All I know is that when my feet hit that 74th bleacher on my 20th set it is the happiest moment of my week !!!  ;)  Please feel free to contact me with any questions about Bleacher work, I will be happy to help in anyway I can.  The more the merrier!!!  Happy "Bleachering", and I hope to see you at the stadium this season !!!  ;)

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