Snowpocalypse Workout(s)

If you live in the North East, you’re probably aware of the awesome blizzard that we experienced from Sunday into Monday morning.  If you’re not, I pulled this off  13 inches of snow, 26 degrees, 33mph winds, 9 degree windchill.


I found myself outside at 7:45am beginning the arduous task of clearing the snow from my 110ft driveway, sidewalk, and front walk.  My brother was out there too, and we had snow blower, but it was still a bit of suck.  In between taking turns shoveling or snow blowing, I’d go from cold to overheated, thanks in part to 3 layers of Under Armour products and an awesome snowboarding jacket from Spyder.  As I shoveled, I thought about something my friend Anthony said to me yesterday: “There has to be some exercise value in shoveling snow.”  There certainly is, depending on who you ask.  According to the Surgeon General’s Report on Physical Activity and Health, 15 minutes of shoveling snow counts as moderate physical activity.  If you don’t meet your ‘goal’ of 30 minutes of moderate aerobic activity 3 times a week, then shoveling is a good way to get in your cardio.  YOU may be satisfied with the Surgeon General’s recommendations, but I’m not.  (90 minutes of activity a week?  Please, you could be doing that in a single day, Neville Lazybottom.)  So even though I was outside for 4 hours clearing the snow, I’m not really counting that as ‘exercise’, it was NEAT.  Without a doubt, shoveling snow burns calories, but if you actually count it to replace exercise, you need to try a little harder.

Mondays are a workout day for me, but my gym is closed due to the snowpocalyse.  What do I do?!? Well, instead of totally taking a day off, I’m just going to get in an at-home training session.  Bingo-bango!  Mondays are supposed to be a 2 session lower body day, but things must change because of the snow; Monday and Tuesday get pushed to Tuesday and Wednesday, and everything else goes as planned.  Perfect.

Instead of completely forgoing any real exercise today, I’m going to put together a little metabolic conditioning circuit so I can get sweaty for a few minutes.  It’s not going to last as long as a gym session, and I’m not going to use the same exercises I would for a normal finisher; just ones that will raise my heart rate, but without affecting my regular training tomorrow.  As usual, I get to choose between my wonderful toys for cardio destruction:  20kg Kettlebell, TRX, ValSlides, Iron Gym, and an assortment of bands.

I didn’t plan on using all of those pieces of equipment, but as I put together movements, it turns out I used every single one of them.  (I used a strong band from EliteFTS, wrapped around a foot of my bed, and I attached the TRX to the Iron Gym, hanging in my bathroom doorway.)  I performed the following 3 circuits, twice each, and moved from exercise to exercise until everything was finished:

  1. 8 Chin-Ups, 20 Kettlebell Swings, 15 Push-Ups
  2. 15 TRX Rows, 8 Asymmetrical Squats (per side), 5 KB Clean/Press (per side)
  3. 8 ValSlide Reverse Lunges (per side), 10 Side Plank w/ Row (per side), 50 ValSlide Mountain Climbers

The circuit was completed in  14:19, which is the total of 4 Rage Against the Machine Songs: Killing in the Name, Pistol Grip Pump, Renegades of Funk, and the first 1:10 of Fuck the Police.  By the time I was finished, I wasn’t very happy, but not because of the music; I was pretty nauseous.  Normally I use that as a barometer of workout intensity, but it sucks when your mom makes an awesome pork chop dinner. (Thanks, Mom!)

That’s a pretty short workout, but I did some damage as far as a training effect is concerned.  I’m satisfied with both my fake workout (shoveling) and real workouts, and I’m excited about resuming the two-a-days tomorrow.  Week one was a blastyblast, and I’m sure week two will be equally as fun.  I’m even thinking about training splits for the Spring Semester already; I’m getting a little carried away.

And now, with perfect timing, I’m off to watch the Saints embarrass the Falcons on their own field.  Easy-peasy, Breesy.

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