Saturday, June 30, 2012

The Dailey Method: a 30-day challenge

I'm a runner, a gal that like to get outdoors to feel the sun on my skin, the wind in my hair, and let sweat fly off me like it's no big deal. My heart lusts after that burning sensation in my lungs from a good tempo run and the sinewy feeling that lingers in my legs hours after a long run. I rarely ever take classes and snobbishly turn up my nose at most of them. The only exercise classes I ever attend are in a 100+ degree room with high humidity where down-dog creates a fire in my body and I begin to sweat at the first tadasana as the gentle hush of my ujjayi breath whisks me away.

In my mind
Sweat = Power and Strength
the more sweat, the better

But after the rough ending I had to my spring cycle, I've decided that I need to try some new activities and give my body a bit more variety in cross training to move that much further outside of my cushy-tushy zone of comfort. Try something different. Live outside of the box. All with high hopes that it'll get me one-step closer to achieving my big hairy 2012 goals.

So I jumped on a opportunity that I normally would have waived away because I knew it had the capacity of putting me 100% out of my element. There would be no jumping, no heavy weights, no swoob. Just controlled and concentrated tiny body weight movements that are at the command of an instructor in a calm and supervised environment.

I'm guilty of being the athlete that thinks my level of fitness for running transfers to almost every activity. You name it, I think that I can do it...even if I know I really can't. Ever see Ninja Warrior? Yeah, I've convinced myself that it would be a walk in the park and I would be the 1st Ninja Warrior ever. A 30-trial membership from The Dailey Method Bucktown? Sure, no problem. I'm fit, I run marathons, which means I can do anything. Instead of just trying out the studio, I thought I'd turn it into a little 30-day challenge for myself. Ge out of my comfort zone and let my body find strength in areas I under appreciate as a runner and go to as many classes as possible.

My first class I walked into the studio and was warmly welcomed by other students and the instructor. Since I had no idea what the heck I was doing, I warned the instructor that I was more then likely going to need a few more cues then the other students. She than kindly advised me to grab a set of 2 lbs. free weights where I almost felt insulted. Not knowing what was to come, I grabbed those dinky 2 lbs. weights and begun to think that this workout was going to be a walk in the park.

As I fumbled my way through a mix of core work, pilates movements, and more butt exercises in 1 hour then my body had ever seen, every muscle in my body shook like crazy. My legs burned, my shoulders could barely lift those unsuspecting 2 pounders, and my butt felt like it was about to crack off my body. Every single exercise engaged all the muscles of the body, head to toe. I gracelessly fidgeted like a fool to find the proper alignment for every single movement, where once again I found myself gracefully humbled by my physical abilities.

The morning after my first class, my legs felt just as they would if I had ran a marathon the day prior. With little to no equipment and slow controlled movements using my own body weight, that walk in the park I thought I was in for really came after me giving me a swift kick in the pants.

10 days into my 30-day challenge, and I'm still finding soreness in all kinds of new places. My body is slowly building the muscle memory for a c-curve and bum exercises that I never would have done otherwise. Even in the short time that I have been going, my core is feeling pretty strong and fighting back for the strength it lost during my never ending spring training cycle. Fingers crossed that I'll have one hell of a booty by day 30 and will finally break the vicious cycle of flat butted woman in my family...but only time will tell. Until then I'll be showing those 2 pounders whose boss.

Disclosure: I was provided a complementary 30-day membership for a 3 part review, however all opinions stated here and experiences are all my own.
All photos of TDM Bucktown studio were taken from their site.


  1. Looks like this is some pretty hard core stuff but if anyone can handle it... you can! I think you already look amazing so this is just going to make you look even more amazing! Have fun with the challenge!

  2. This is the kind of thing that makes me wish it were easier/cheaper/more convenient for me to go to a gym with classes like that. Sounds like a really great workout.

  3. I love it! I take classes at Bar Method, and I swear, I'd rather run a half sometimes than take the class. I am sure you are just rocking it, and I can't wait to see what you think after the 30 days!

  4. I want that class! We don't get any great classes like that around here - I tend to think like you, like I will dominate any new activity, and am quickly humbled when that's not the case. I hope you continue to love it and see great results!

  5. Love the new challenge. I hope you enjoy the classes each time you go. And get yourself signed up for that ninjas warrior competition. There are some hard core things going on in that show!! I think it would be fun to try.

  6. This sounds INTENSE!! I'm pretty sure you already have a nice booty ;) How convenient that Marc Jacobs is just underneath the gym!

  7. I love Ninja Warrior haha! Great review on the effectiveness of other activities besides running :) xx