Freestyle Fitness

As we close out one heckuva whirlwind year – let’s take inventory of what’s good. Many people, myself included, have felt the fire light under us; we’re getting our rears in gear for what’s to come. This dynamic comes to fruition in numerous ways, whether it’s being more proactive in our community, being kinder to those who are less fortunate, or turning off the white noise of the mass media/mindless consumption machine.

Here in Audreality, we’ve created Freestyle Fitness: a way to get fit and have fun doing it, at no cost. Our gym is the Great Outdoors, usually Mt. Tabor Park (because for too long, we’ve taken it for granted). My number one workout partner has, for the last few months, been my daughter’s boyfriend, George Padilla, but now that we’ve gotten consistent, we are expanding! During todays workout we recruited two new members, because we were having such a blast – there’s no denying – it’s contagious. I’ve long believed the hardest part of working out was getting out the door. Well with a group like this, THAT’S A HARD PART NO MORE! (Can you tell my endorphins are super-charged?)

Every workout lasts at least one hour. There isn’t a whole lot of structure, even our scheduling is flexible, so it may not work for people who are stuck in the nine-to-five grind. We generally meet anywhere from 10am to noon, and we are up to hitting it three times per week. We have two basic Tabor workouts: “platforms” and “stations” which are both highly variable with lots of room for add-ons, when we have surplus time and energy. We have countless ideas for bigger/badder workouts, unlimited room to grow.

“Platforms” is stair-intensive. We begin at the 69th entrance to Mt. Tabor Park, at the foot of the stairs. Since the stairs are broken into clusters, we use each platform to get our full body workout. For example, today at Level One we did push-ups and sit-ups (two sets of each), then returned to the bottom of the stairs before proceeding on to Level Two, where we did two sets each of jump squats and mountain climbers. (If you don’t know the lingo, just show up, we’ll learn ya.) We go back to the bottom every time. This ends up being over a thousand stairs! We get in lots of pushups, sit-ups, planks, side planks, lunges, squats, front and back kicks, jumping jacks, AND SO MUCH MORE. At Level Eight we broke away on a short path to a nearby pull-up bar where I attempted to do one (agonizing) pull-up. This is my weak area! But at this rate I know I’ll be able to do a solid pull-up soon.

“Stations” are similar, but with more running and less stairs. We pause at a handful of stations (usually scenic points) where we work in full body exercises, always staying engaged, keeping the heart pumping. We try to get in at least a hundred pushups along the way.

Sound fun? Join us! Shoot me your email and/or phone number and I’ll keep you in the loop as to where and when we’re working out next. One of our favorite non-Tabor workouts is “Hill Run Surprise” which is like the others but happens on the west side, and includes a delightful OHSU tram ride. Sometimes we incorporate bikes. But the best part is, everything is free! Unless you count sweat equity. So what are you waiting for?! The next workout is tomorrow (Thursday) at 12:30. Stations!

Reach me at AudrealityPortland@gmail.com or 503.839.2208.

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