Try something new!

Send your butt to Boot Camp with Tough Mudder!

Looking for a new gym to kick off your 2019 resolutions? Or maybe just a new addition to your normal workout routine. This past weekend I tried an intense new workout that challenged my body at the new Tough Mudder BootCamp in the Heights. This is not your typical gym, but it still got my heart pumping, body sweating, and feeling great! That's because they offer HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) for 45 minutes of non-stop work! The workout consists of several different stations of plyometrics, body weight exercises, abs, weighted exercises, and more. Even better…workouts through Saturday are FREE!

Every work out is different to help keep you on your toes and challenge your body. I love that the exercises take you through a full body workout, as well as a focus on abs. The workouts focus on strength, agility, power, and endurance. The workout is designed to support all levels of fitness. Even for superb athletes like myself, (kidding), but they always have modifications on each exercise that can suit anyone. For our 45-minute workout we had six different stations, each station had 1-2 exercises. For two minutes you are at that station and rotating exercises. I find it very neat and encouraging that Tough Mudder BootCamp focuses on teamwork, so most exercises you will have a partner to alternate the exercises with, while still working out the full two minutes. They focus on the team-based workouts to encourage everyone to push together to do their best and have fun. Even better…. they have TVs with examples of the exercise to follow! So when you forget 10 seconds after the instructor just walked through all the stations, you're in luck!

In the video above I will take you through a little snippet of the TMB workout. I start out with some kettle bell swings and then move into "spider-mans," or side mountain climbers. Trust me, just :30 of those bad boys feels like two minutes. Then you have some dumb bell deadlifts to curl, while your partner is doing push-ups, then you switch after one minute. For the next two minutes straight, you are doing tri-cep dips, while working those tiny little tri-cep muscles. Then at the next station you have a little bit of agility and cardio. While one person is doing kettle bell deadlifts, the other is running in and out of the cones, not only forward, but backwards as well and then full sprint down. Now let's get in some abs; these are knees to elbow, (key is: don't let your feet drop), this will be for :45 seconds straight. On the other hand your partner would be doing a dead hang from the bar, with the chin above. A little bit harder than I thought, but as always there are always modifications. We went through 6 stations for 3 rounds at 2 minutes each station, not bad and quite challenging. And somewhere in the middle of my video, I challenged myself to cross all monkey bars from one end to another. I'm going to re-challenge myself again soon to cross all the monkey bars forward and backwards, as I saw franchise owner Jason Stanley do ever so swiftly.

And after he got off the bars, I caught up with Jason to get his thoughts on something that was once a thought and now a reality.

"We're excited to officially introduce Houston to our Tough Mudder Bootcamp team this weekend! Our team-based high intensity workouts have already been a big hit with our early members, and everyone agrees that having a team nudging you outside of your comfort zone makes all the difference. We're looking forward to growing the tribe and helping more people achieve their fitness goals while making new friends at TMB." – Jason Stanley, Tough Mudder BootCamp Franchise Owner.

Remember Grand Opening is this Saturday and TMB will have 2 workouts at 11 a.m. and 12:30, and you can sign up on the app or website. But if you can't get in by Saturday don't worry, anyone can try the workout for free on their first time anytime! Grand Opening is from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. with Fit Bit giveaways, tickets to a SaberCats games, membership giveaways, and more!

H-Town Run Tourist

Are you an H-Town Run Tourist?

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Jovan Abernathy is an international marathoner and owner of Houston Tourism Gym. To claim your free tour, contact her at info@tourismgymhtx.com. Follow her on Twitter @jovanabernathy. Instagram @TourismGymHtx. Facebook @TourismGymHtx

You may have noticed that I have begun calling my column: H-Town Run Tourist. H-Town Run Tourist describes my relationship with the city I live in, the sport of running, and myself. Below is a list of the characteristics of an H Town Run Tourist. Read and decide if you if you are a run tourist too.

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You are super curious.

If you are anything like me, you love to discover new running or walking routes. What is this? What is that? Who painted that? When did that open? What does that taste like? Sometimes I feel like I am a dog that has her nose in the grass ready to smell just about anything.

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You started running to find yourself.

A lot of people spend a lot of time running away from themselves. But, if you are like me, you starting running to run into yourself. (Clever, huh) If you missed it, what I mean is that maybe you started running for your health, a mid life crisis, a divorce, or for your mental health.

When I was in Africa, I asked many of the other runners why they were running in Victoria Falls. I got many answers, all of them were amazing. However, one gentleman answered that he and his wife always wanted to run a marathon. She had died the year before and he was running for her. (I know, I need a tissue too.)

You are just not that competitive.

When I thought about it, I found that I am not competitive with other runners as to be the best. I am more interested in how well I can beat my best self. I am always competing with myself. I feel that once you make it to the start line, you have already won. (many things can happen before the start line.) Many times, I "compete" with how much I can enjoy the experience of the race and still stick to a timetable. I love reading signs, taking pics with new friends, and chatting with people at the before and after party.

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You love to think and dream. BIG.

If you are like me, you love to dream and think BIG. If you are running a long distance, you have time to dream. I quickly found that I could let my mind go. When you are on the open road for hours training, you find that it is the best place to solve problems. Then, I began to dream big. I quickly decided that I wanted to run around the world. I set the intention and I was able to achieve that goal. I also use it to meditate. I love studying flowers and trees for their fractal patterns. It helps get the best endorphin high.

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You have wanderlust.

Let me get this straight. If I strap on my running shoes, walk out of my door, and just keep going, I'll end up in this cool place. If I can do that here, where else can I go? This rabbit hole is worth going down. Where is the next race? In Houston? In Austin? In a national park? In a jungle? Overseas? It never ends.

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You can totally put yourself first.

This sounds crappy. Co-dependent people confuse this with being selfish. Healthy minded individuals know that true self care means to take care of yourself first so that you can take care of others. Others will try to get in your way by guilt tripping you to spend more time with them, but know that you have to be in a good place to help others or it just will not work.

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You are truly grateful for......everything.

Chances are, you don't even know that you practice gratitude. It just comes naturally. If you are anything like me, you starting running out of hardship, almost necessity. But, along the way, you could not help but notice the trees, the flowers, and the birds. You just had to stop and smell the roses. Gratitude comes naturally to you!

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You are Houston Proud and Houston Strong.

If you are like me, you love you some Houston, Texas. Whether you are running in Memorial Park to Buffalo Bayou Park or in the Chevron Houston Marathon. You could be running downtown Houston passing by originals by Gonzo 247, David Adickes, or Daniel Anguilu. You know one thing…..You would not live in another city in this country. In fact, you can't wait until this weekend to do your weekend long run and enjoy all the Houston craft beer that goes with it.

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