Fall is Here!

All over the country, leaves are turning from green to orange, temperatures are dropping, boots are rocking the runway, the flu shot is available everywhere and the holiday season is upon us. Fall is here!

If you think morning runs are limited to open skies, you're wrong. Run next to skyscrapers and get on a whole new level.

If you think morning runs are limited to open skies, you’re wrong. Run next to skyscrapers and get on a whole new level.

What are you doing to gear up for fall? The activities you can do downtown now that it isn’t a scorching 105 degrees outside are infinite. Go outside! Explore your options!

Here are some ideas of ways to stay active and explore this fall:

  • Healthy Picnic in Civic Space Park: Here’s an idea — actually go to Civic Space Park with your gym buddies, and chow down on some healthy sandwiches and fresh veggies after that morning workout. I mean, what’s there to lose?
  • Morning Run Around Downtown: Instead of painstakingly forcing yourself out of bed and onto an elliptical somewhere, put on those running shoes and trek around downtown Phoenix before 8 a.m. You won’t regret it.
  • Phoenix Public Market: Walk to get your groceries! Go to the Phoenix Public Market instead of driving to your local grocery store. The walk to and from the market will do you good, and you’ll have locally grown, healthy food in your pantry.
  • First Fridays: No longer does makeup have to run on the first Friday of the month. It’s officially fall, and the sweat glands that ruin your makeup job are inactive upon stepping outside of air conditioning! Take advantage of the exercise you can get from all the walking around while you’re not collapsing onto the sidewalk from the heat.
  • Shopping: When I go to the mall, the two places I spend the most time at are Urban Outfitters and Charming Charlie. So if you’re like me, don’t drive to some crowded mall! Walk to CityScape, shop ‘till you drop, and walk back to your abode. You’ll get cute clothes and you’ll feel even cuter in them with the added bit of exercise. Also, use those walking shoes to explore a few local shops downtown, like some of the vintage stores recently featured in Downtown Devil’s A Tailored Place.

Seriously though, now that it has cooled off, you have no excuse! Staying active and healthy is so much easier. Going to an indoor gym is no longer your only way to work out. Switch it up. Go for a long bike ride, walk to breakfast with a friend or do my favorite and go for that early morning run with the skyscrapers towering over you. Take advantage of this cool weather before the heat is upon us again!

The Sun Devil Fitness Complex: A Diamond in the Rough

The Sun Devil Fitness Complex that just opened on ASU’s Downtown Phoenix campus has done nothing but ‘wow’ Downtown students who were relying on the YMCA previously.

Night swim, anyone?

Night swim, anyone?

While the downtown YMCA was a pretty good place to work out, it definitely doesn’t compare to the new SDFC in terms of enhancing the relationship students have with the greater ASU community.

Not only does the new center have four floors full of equipment and fitness class rooms, it also has a rooftop pool that overlooks the greater downtown area. If the rooftop pool doesn’t cut it, I don’t know what does!

The first floor of the facility is home to an array of workout machinery, including but not limited to elliptical trainers, treadmills and other core-enhancing machines. The second through fourth floors house various fitness classrooms, multipurpose rooms and even a track.

While the amount of workout equipment is nice and all, I’m more of a fitness class junkie. Whether it’s Zumba or yoga, fitness classes appeal to me a lot more than treadmills or ellipticals do. So, if you’re like me, the Sun Devil Fitness Complex has just what you need! You can start off by doing a little cardio on the machines on the first floor and then make your way upstairs to one of the many fitness courses offered.

Generally speaking, there are three different types of fitness courses available: strength classes, cardio classes and yoga classes.

The best way to get in shape and do so with the most variability in workout style is to go for the strength/cardio combination classes. This category includes “Power Hour,” “Insane Intervals,” “Total Body Blast” and “Mix.” Each of these classes are high-intensity total-body workouts.

If you’re looking for just strength training, the classes offered are “Totally Toned,” “Raise the Bar” and “Awesome Abs.” Strength training is good if you’re already in shape and you just want definition.

Cardio classes are best for people who want to lose those extra pounds and get back into shape. The classes offered in this category are “Zumba,” “Cycle, Rise and Ride” and “Total Knock Out.”

My personal favorite fitness class — after kickboxing, that is — is yoga! The yoga classes offered are “Flow Yoga, Sunrise Yoga,” “Gentle Yoga” and “Power Yoga.” These yoga classes will help calibrate your body in physical and spiritual terms.

But, of course, we can’t forget the highlight of the fitness center — the rooftop pool! I don’t know what it is about rooftop pools that gets me. Whether it’s the elusive party scene that normally takes place around rooftop pools or it’s just the ability to see huge skyscrapers on either side of you as you backstroke down the length of the pool, having a pool on a roof in downtown is a very cool thing, and the complex deserves a standing ovation for such a brilliant setup.

With such a wide variety of fitness options and placement in the heart of downtown Phoenix, the Sun Devil Fitness Complex truly is a diamond in the rough that all ASU students should visit. With the multitude of fitness courses, the high volume of workout equipment, the track and the pool, this fitness center offers one of the most well-rounded workout routines a downtown Phoenician could ask for.

The Spartan Race: Sign up today!

Our friends at the Exercise and Wellness Organization at Arizona State University Downtown Phoenix Campus are not only amazing at promoting healthy lifestyles, but they also host events to inspire wellness and help get students special fitness deals for activities on and off campus.

Photo via Exercise and Wellness Organization ASU DPC Facebook

Have you heard of The Spartan Race? It will be held in Chandler, Ariz. on Saturday, February 9th at 9 a.m. The race is a 5k obstacle course consisting of mud, barbed wire, rope climbing and fire that’s as much of a mental test as it is physical.

Spartan Race Motivational Video via the Spartan Race Website

The event normally costs $120 after all fees, but as a Downtown Phoenix ASU student, you can receive a reduced rate and transportation for only $40 for the first 100 participants.

For every additional student after the limit, non-Downtown students and friends, the cost will be $87 at the time of sign-up and $15 given after the race.

How to sign up:

  • Come visit the table for the Exercise and Wellness Organization at ASU DPC on Taylor Mall today from 11:30-12:30.
  • “Like” the Exercise and Wellness Organization ASU DPC on Facebook to add yourself to the event and for general club information. Also join the OrgSync group, using your Campus ID to log in and visit their page.
  • You must present your ASU ID at registration.
  • Have a credit or debit card handy.
  • If you are signing up a friend, you must have his or her student ID as well.
Training Tips
  • Start running. Since you’ll be running a 5k in addition to the obstacles, you need to make sure you’re aerobically ready. Start with small distances and try to fit running, biking or elliptical in four days a week. Make sure to include some sprint workouts for speed to help lower your time.
  • Strength train your upper body. Practice push-ups, pull-ups and rope climbing if possible in addition to your cardio workouts.
  • Get the right gear. Make sure you have the proper shoes for an outdoor running event. You’ll need a shoe that has good stability for quick movements and is comfortable enough for the distance running.
For more information on the Exercise and Wellness Organization at ASU DPC, how to join the club or help with registering for the event, send an e-mail to ASUEWO@gmail.com.
Sign up, Devils! Show those Spartans how it’s done!


Just run with it

I have a love/hate relationship with running. In theory, running is perfection. It’s the human equivalent of learning to fly. It’s your body’s way of taking flight and building a healthier body with every step. I love the idea of it. Lacing up your shoes, turning on your stopwatch and sprinting out the door. Motivation is what I hate about it. No one’s pushing you to eat healthy. A trainer isn’t telling you to stay on your workout schedule. A coach isn’t telling you to do one more lap. It’s all up to you.

Running is for everyone. If anyone argues, they just haven’t fallen in love with it yet. There’s a mysterious pull that draws you back on the track or out on the treadmill that simply can’t be explained.

I’ve been a runner all my life. I competed in track and soccer in middle school. In high school I ran cross country and track and played soccer. In college, I missed that. I missed the competition and the daily workouts. I missed the early morning runs and late night ice-baths. I missed the feeling of success and accomplishment after a long, hard run. Little did I know, I could obtain all that and a free Tiffany’s necklace if I just started running again.

Me and Cronkite Grad Berenise Solorio

Last week, I competed in the Nike Women’s Half Marathon in San Francisco. And you know what? I’m hooked. I’m never going to stop. I’m already looking ahead to what’s next.

ASU all the way

Here are a few upcoming races to get bit by the running bug that are fun and challenging:

10.27.12 PHOENIX, AZ- Lincoln Family Downtown YMCA Half Marathon + 5K Walk & Run

11.4.12 TEMPE, AZ- Congenital Heart Walk

11.4.12 SCOTTSDALE-TEMPE, AZ- Women’s Half Marathon

11.10.12 PHOENIX, AZ- Third Annual Phoenix Sister Cities 5k Run and Family Walk

11.10.12 PHOENIX, AZ- Zombie Outbreak Run

11.10.12 BUCKEYE, AZ- Cahoots Mud Run (ASU Student Discount)

11.17.12 PHOENIX, AZ- Dirty Girl Mud Run

11.17.12 SCOTTSDALE, AZ- Mad Mud Run

12.16.12 PEORIA, AZ- Desert Classic 30k, 5k, and 30k Relay

Also, plan for the Rock’N Roll Marathon and IMS Arizona in 2013.

Free Training Plans

If you haven’t tried running, try it. If you haven’t tried racing, sign up. If you need a running buddy, let me know. Lace up those running shoes, Devils!