Power Pigtails

wearing pigtails and being an athlete at the same time

Archive for the ‘training’ Category


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It’s Winter!

Originally uploaded by NidalM

Dear teammates who are consistently skipping my scheduled conditioning sessions,

I’ve created this alternative workout to be the perfect substitute for conditioning practice in the event that you aren’t able to attend:

THE GREAT NORTH FACE WORKOUT (GNFW)* is designed to feature the two most important components of any great workout: 1. works up a good sweat, and 2. has the potential to make you look ridiculous in front of a bunch of people.

Here are the rules:

This is a timed (30min) workout designed for use on any major college campus. Run around the main campus drag for the allotted amount of time. Each time you see something on this list do the exercise associated with it:

A person wearing a black North Face jacket – do 10 jumping jacks
A person wearing a North Face jacket of any other color – do 10 squat jumps
A person with a North Face jacket AND backpack combo – do 10 butt-kicks and 10 high-knees
Two or more people wearing North Face jackets in a pack – skip for 10 seconds
Two people holding hands and wearing North Face jackets – do 5 pushups, do 5 more if the jackets are the same color
“North Face Swarm” where you see too many North Face jackets around you to keep track – do 15 standing mountain climbers

*Bonus: the GNFW also doubles as a drinking game should you have the means and desire to get drunk in a public place.

Just kidding! I’m pretty sure this workout would kill any person who attempted it. And the drinking game is definitely attempt at your own risk!


Written by powerpigtails

January 29, 2010 at 10:32 pm

Posted in training

Setting Goals for 2010

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goal juve

Originally uploaded by pierodemarchis

I didn’t do a very good job identifying specific fitness goals for this year. I pretty much operate on a non-stop “harder, better, faster, stronger” model of fitness and self-improvement.

Some things that I’ve started taking more seriously lately are:

Strength training. For this I’m using workout videos and 5lb hand weights. I know that “toning” is supposed to be a silly form of strength training, but I’m currently at the point where toning exercises really do slay me -sad, I know. I feel like I need to do this to build up a base level of strength before I can pursue more hardcore methods of training.

Speed training (middle distance). I’ve done the marathon thing, I have stamina to spare, so now I need to focus on getting faster. That means shortening my distances down to 4 or 5 miles tops and utilizing other types of workouts than the tempo run.

Coaching/Captaining. I’m always looking for ways to become a more effective captain and coach to my team. I hope to attend a coaching clinic in February that might give me a push in the right direction.

Making progress in these areas will, I hope, help me become a better athlete in 2010.

Written by powerpigtails

January 13, 2010 at 7:48 am

Posted in training, ultimate

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Reading: PowerBar nutrition articles

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Originally uploaded by KelvinM

Weight loss for athletes by Christopher D. Jensen
In-season is not the time to drop the weight, because the combination of strenuous training and cutting calories is bad for performance and bad for your health. When you’re not meeting your energy needs, you’re also not getting sufficient carbohydrates to restore glycogen fuel reserves on a daily basis. This can lead to chronic fatigue, poor training sessions, and a decline in performance. Too few calories combined with a tough training schedule also can impair your immune system and leave you more vulnerable to colds. Losing weight is tough enough on the body, so do it during the off-season.

I feel like I’m constantly grappling with this problem in particular, wanting to cut weight during the season when I need calories to perform well. It’s not like ultimate has a real “off season” anyway. So I struggle to find a balance between meeting weight loss or strength building goals and fighting off the effects of fatigue and soreness. It’s a recipe for the perfect storm, or a really great eating disorder!

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January 8, 2010 at 3:04 am

Tightening up, getting strong

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Yoga mats

Originally uploaded by Richard-

If ever there was an incentive to tighten up it’s having a skinny athletic dude poke you unceasingly in the stomach.

Recently I’ve discovered that supplementing my workouts with “strength training” exercise videos does more for me than any amount of straight long distance running ever did. I’m all over some Exercise TV which comes complimentary with our comcast package. It’s part of my ultimate goal to finally develop some legitimate upper-body strength (or at least toning) for the second time in my life. Most of the workouts are awful and I can’t stand. Some are decent though.

My only problem is that I’m ashamed to admit that I’m doing these workouts to anyone. I have to wait until Ron leaves to do any of them and I worry that he’ll see them on the recently viewed programs list. I’m a closet-exercise-videoist.
Really I don’t know why I’m afraid of people knowing I do Jillian Michaels Cardio BOOST or whatever it’s called; is there some underlying stigma attached to people who rely on these workouts? I’m not sure.

I guess I just don’t want people to think I’m concerned with sculpting my abs for bathing suit season. I love to sculpt abs, however I do not own a bathing suit. Swimming is for people who like to swim you know?

Thoughts: I have the same body image insecurities as any other chick on the block. I have a skinny athletic dude poking me unceasingly in the stomach when I’m just trying to watch It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia. It would be awesome if he broke his stupid finger on my rock hard abs. I’m working on it.

In the mean time, I tried my first yoga workout tonight and enjoyed it quite a bit (hey-o Healthy Tipping Point!). I just hope I didn’t further injure my groin by it.

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November 11, 2009 at 6:19 am

Practice- Monday, 11/2

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NYC Marathon

Originally uploaded by thisisformyspacepics

I spent some time before practice today looking up sprinting and agility drills. Some of the more advanced girls have expressed concern about their running- mostly in terms of speed and form. I’m glad, more than glad, to spend time working on sprinting because it’s something that everyone can always improve on and is an integral part of improving our game as a team.

Our most effective defense is man on man. As a team we have enough girls with speed to be competitive against most other teams we come up against running man. Where holes develop in our game is the man offense. I’d say 70% of our team is quick enough to get open on offensive cuts most of the time. But that 30% who really struggle to break their defenders consistently can be the difference between a successful and unsuccessful offensive drive. It comes down to the fact that most of these girls have never been taught how to run -let alone how to sprint.

Last week we filmed each girl sprinting from the front and side. We then watched the footage in slow motion together with fairly comical results.
-use of the arms was fairly good but I had lectured everyone about bad arm habits directly prior so it might have been a fluke
-foot strike was all over the place, lots of heel striking!
-stride length was pretty varied but I didn’t pay a whole lot of attention to it
-speed of turnover was also very varied for each person
-some people need better sports bras

For today I decided to focus on drills that would train people to stay on the balls of their feet for sprinting. The first drill was set up like box but required quick feet movements followed by initial acceleration and then change of direction and deceleration. The second drill was designed to work on sprint and reaction stimulus.

The guys actually ended up joining us for the drills since I was the only captain present for the first half of practice. I got positive feedback from everyone involved. The men’s team doesn’t have a whole lot of variety in their conditioning program so I think they enjoyed it.

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November 2, 2009 at 5:57 pm

Running- speed vs. endurance

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Running with High Heels

Originally uploaded by vestman

Setting goals for running is fairly a straightforward practice. I can say I want to run a 5 minute mile or a marathon but what about running goals for sports? How do you strike the perfect balance between speed and endurance?

Ultimate is a lot like soccer in that you have to have a quick sprint, but you also have to be able to run for a long time, often for multiple games a day. It seems like sprints and long distance aren’t often taught together or worked on at the same time.

I’ve personally struggled with the speed vs. endurance paradox training for my second marathon and playing frisbee at the same time, I noticed a considerable drop in my ability to sprint as I increased my weekly running mileage. But do you have to choose between slow and fast twitch muscles?

For me, it did come down to a choice. Being in shape to go out and run twenty miles whenever you want to is a cool feeling, but I’d rather be fast now while I still have the opportunity to play college sports and sacrifice the long miles. There will be time enough to return to a distance running lifestyle when I’m older. So I’ve stopped running marathons and started concentrating on speed again. I never run more than 6 miles at a time and I’m not afraid to do some strength training. My sprinting has improved and I’m much happier with my overall game now. It’s all about identifying what you want and using common sense and a little trial and error to get it.

ps. I in no way condone running in heels.

Written by powerpigtails

October 12, 2009 at 12:55 am

Posted in training

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