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!

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Jovan Abernathy is an international marathoner and blogger. Check out her new blog, HTown Run Tourist. Follow her on Twitter @jovanabernathy. Instagram @HTownRunTourist. Facebook @jovanabernathy. Join her facebook group: H-Town Run Tourist

Six years ago, I got this great idea to become a tourist of Houston on foot. I had no idea what I was doing or where it was going. All I knew was to put on my running shoes, walk out the door, and just go. Go learn, go talk, go ask without judgements. What I found is that Houston was full of diversity. We all knew that. However, let yourself be immersed in it. Look and listen to the sounds of different languages being spoken around you. Smell the scents of the different cuisines. You would think you were in a foreign country. This made me more curious.

As I explored the emotion of curiosity, it led me to change my behavior. Where I might have rushed to this place and to the next, I took it slower. Where, usually, I would have just assumed that I already knew, I found myself asking more questions. When I asked more questions, I had to acknowledge that I did not already know, so I practiced listening. As I listened more, I felt compelled to show more appreciation to the person who interrupted their busy day to educate me. This made me feel grateful.

I took that gratitude and wanted to share with others. It blew my mind when people would say that they hated Houston. It was boring. The people are mean and it was ugly. And even more shocking was Houston is not walkable. Instead of getting offended, I decided to do my part in brightening up the day of the Houstonians who were stuck in a rut. Who saw and did the same things day after day. I didn't judge because I knew they could get out of that rut by simply deciding that today they do something different. I braced myself for rejection, but put myself out there to share the wonderful things that I had learned about Houston. Given the chance, the vast majority, was ready to learn a different way. This made me proud.

It is true that 2020 has been full of disasters. These are opportunities if we choose to see them that way. If anything that COVID-19 taught me the answer was not MORE, but it is LESS. We have the tendency to take on too much, we had the unique opportunity to take on less. Thus, instead of going to exhaustion, we had the opportunity to rest.

Then, the tragedy of the death of Houston's own George Floyd happened. It could not have happened at a worse time. My heart goes out to his family. Some might use it as an opportunity to work out their own frustrations by causing more problems with violence and looting. My hope is that whatever happens will be an expression of appropriate sadness, but with Houston's best attributes; curiosity, gratitude, and pride. Instead of LESS it is time for MORE. MORE curiosity. To see if Houston's law enforcement cares about the well-being of Houston's black community and make changes in protocols. MORE gratitude. For the opportunity to express the frustration in a peaceful way. MORE pride. To not destroy this city and give it over to violence possibly doing more damage to the economics of business owners. We can see this as the opportunity to take time to heal.

Houston has changed. As I restart my exploration, I'm not looking for LESS. I'm looking for MORE this time. I'm looking with MORE curiosity. Because I know that we have even MORE to show each other. I'm looking with MORE gratitude because we have endured so much already and there are better times ahead. And, I'm looking with MORE pride because just as we did it before, we still have it in us to do it again. I have one request: if you see me in the streets, promise me that you will say hello.

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