Is Week 3 over already?!

ironman march

In my quest to run, swim, and bike the total Ironman distances over the course of a month, I did four workouts this week, including one double:


  • Run 4 miles
  • Run 2 miles (speedwork) + 1,000 yard swim
  • Run 2.5 miles
  • Spin class


In contrast, my goals:


This means that I rocked the swim and the run and fell short – again! – on my spin goals.  Now I’m two classes behind in general. This challenge is making me appreciate how much I need a flexible workout schedule (i.e. one not beholden to set class times). It’s really hard for me to consistently make it to spin class because of Henry, our one-car lifestyle, and various other factors.


I was planning to find a spin class to attend today in Philadelphia – even packed my shorts – but it’s impossible to find a class offered between 2 – 4 PM on a Friday.  Makes sense, but it’s something that I failed to anticipate.


Bottom line – I’m probably going to make up these 30-odd miles out on the road sometime before the end of the month.  It’s the only way I’ll be able to fit it in, and I should out there on the road regardless.  Perhaps this is a blessing in disguise!


Do you struggle to make it to group exercise classes because of your schedule?  Any tips?



  • Angela @ Eat Spin Run Repeat March 22, 2013, 7:21 am

    Ooh YAY I love when you post before I go to work Caitlin – I miss my morning dose of HTP! Even though you fell short a few miles, great job on what you DID accomplish! I find it difficult to get to the classes I want to go to because I’m a major morning workout person and I’m often done my workout before classes even start! This is especially true on the weekends when the first classes don’t start till 9. Luckily though, I’ve been making it a regular habit to go to a 6am Monday hot yoga class, and I love it after a nice hard HIIT run. Melting into the mat and blissing out for an hour…. that’s a great way to start a Monday!

    • Live Love Yum March 23, 2013, 11:31 am

      Wait…do you do hot yoga 6 a.m AFTER a HIT run? What time do you get up?…and sleep?

  • Nina March 22, 2013, 7:23 am

    Good job on reaching your goals, Caitlin! I don’t understand why you’re waiting for spin, though. Aren’t there stationary bikes available between 2-4?

    • Caitlin March 22, 2013, 7:29 am

      omg, i freaking hate stationary bikes!!! i can’t imagine sitting on one for 45 minutes. LOL

      • Elisabeth March 22, 2013, 1:02 pm

        Ha! I actually love stationary bikes! I just rode mine for an hour yesterday with a good book 🙂

  • kwithme March 22, 2013, 7:25 am

    Schedules are one of the reasons I don’t do group exercise classes. My gym has Zumba at 9am some days, and spinning at 8 and 9am others. But I get there at 8:30. I can’t be there before, and to wait until 9 when I can be mostly done by then, just seems silly. So, I work out on my own.

    My personal trainer appt is at 8:30 so I don’t have to wait around for that either. Now, if class were at 8:30, I might go, as long as the music is good and no one is yelling or making me count out loud or cheer, which is rare as well. I am pretty picky about my group classes.

  • Steph @ A Life without Ice Cream March 22, 2013, 7:33 am

    Love these posts! And yes, I struggle all the time… and I don’t think my life is that hectic but still I have a hard time getting out of work on time to make a 5:30 class but also really don’t want to wait around for a 6:30. I also find it strange how few Friday evening or weekend classes there are… I get that they’d be less busy but I actually have time to go then!

    Happy cycling!

  • Jamie March 22, 2013, 8:07 am

    Yes! It is tough with kids. Spinning is at 9:15 at my gym and that’s when my daughter’s preschool starts. On the one day she doesn’t have preschool my kids are pretty against anything that interferes with Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. 🙂

  • Victoria (District Chocoholic) March 22, 2013, 8:16 am

    I finished the biking for ironman March (last leg!) on Sunday. Can you bust out your bike trainer for some miles? I just say 15 miles per hour on the bike trainer…

  • Katie @ Talk Less, Say More March 22, 2013, 8:26 am

    I have my own car and no baby, and I find class schedules difficult to fit into my schedule. I think that’s just how it is, and then obviously made harder by other factors. I’m usually looking for a good yoga class and they don’t usually offer them except first thing in the morning or late at night…at least at my gym and local studios. Bummer.

  • Susan March 22, 2013, 8:30 am

    I thought you had a bike at home that you could adapt for riding inside. (didn’t I see a picture of it on your blog?) That’s a great idea when it’s cold (like it has been) and you wouldn’t even have to leave Henry. Better than nothing, anyway!

  • Sara March 22, 2013, 8:50 am

    Keep it up, I am so excited to try this next month! THAT is if the weather lightens up around these parts (Massachusetts). Sorry you cant find your spinning class…If you are just looking for a Gym in general to workout at I would recommend the “Sporting Club at the Bellevue” its pretty fancy… Professional Athletes work out there when they visit. BUT I bet if you told then about your blog they would give you a guest pas ( I had a friend who worked there)… its super nice. OR If you have a car I would try to look at some gyms in Manayunk, its still technically Philadelphia but its the littered with college kids, which may help you find a gym class at that time. IF you go to Manayunk and are okay with a splurge food try Union Jacks for seriously the best wings you will ever have. (Although I am newbee reader and I think you need to eat GF, and if that’s the case you would not be able to splurge ;))

    Here’s the Gym-

    Oh- and I find it very hard to make it to classes! Ug, one of the things I want to work on.

  • sara @ fitcupcaker March 22, 2013, 9:12 am

    The only thing I really do right now is crossfit and most of the classes are after work, so I go straight there. If I go home first, im in for the night. My suggestion, go while your out if there is a class after work or something!

  • Nicole March 22, 2013, 9:47 am

    I adopted a puppy in November and workouts haven’t been the same since! She’s no human-baby but pup-babies have their own needy schedule (as you well know). ;] Major props for getting your workout on!

  • Sarah @ Yogi in Action March 22, 2013, 10:21 am

    Way to go- I count this week as a definite win for you! That’s still a lot of exercise.

    I struggle with group classes- not so much making the actual class, but carving that time out in my day. I find when I go to hot yoga, by the time I incorporate driving there, changing, the class, showering, changing again, and driving home- it’s about 3 hours of my evening. It makes it pretty hard to commit to them on a regular basis for sure!

  • Sarah March 22, 2013, 10:42 am

    There is an elusive 5:30pm yoga class at my gym that I just cannot seem to make it to. I’ve made it twice in the past 3 months. Twice. I’m afraid the instructor thinks I didn’t like the class and that’s why I haven’t gone back but that’s not true!

  • Chantal March 22, 2013, 10:53 am

    The morning classes at my gym start at either 6:30 or 8am – when in my world, 7 or 7:30 would be perfect. The 6:30 spin class did get me cycling a lot more last year when I taught an 8am class though!

  • Emily March 22, 2013, 10:55 am

    I love group fitness classes, but I just try to make them work into my schedule whenever I can, even if that means getting up at 5:30am during the week to make it to a 6:15 barre class. Also, I’m sure this won’t work for you so much, but I pack clothes almost everyday to take to work. That way if I get out on time and am able to make it to a 5:30pm class, I have all my stuff ready to go.

  • Katie March 22, 2013, 10:57 am

    Thank you so much for having these challenges and sharing them! It really helps me stay motivated in my workouts. Which right now aren’t that great, I’m having knee pain and trying to find the balance of resting to heal, versus resting for lazy. But my first marathon is at the end of June!!

  • Corrie @ Casa Beebe March 22, 2013, 11:43 am

    Hey Caitlin! It’s Corrie from Blurb Column. I moved my blog to wordpress and changed the name to Casa Beebe. It’s still the same old me, though.

    I don’t struggle with group classes because of MY schedule (which is really open now that I am totally done with school and haven’t found a job yet) but rather the gyms schedule. I don’t want to get up at 5 in the morning to make it to a class, and I don’t want to go to a super packed class in the after work hours. There are so few classes offered during the day; I really think a LOT of gyms are missing the boat. So many people have flex schedules now that the before work/after work class schedules are a bit…out of touch. IMO.

  • Kelsey March 22, 2013, 11:46 am

    I have a hard time prioritizing running when I also want to take fun classes with my friends. Some days I’ll run before class so I’m not slacking on my miles! But I also don’t have as many responsibilities as you! My schedule is pretty flexible 🙂

  • Bobbie March 22, 2013, 12:24 pm

    You’re in my stomping grounds this week…Jersey and Philadelphia! Maybe I’ll bump into you…ha ha! 🙂

  • Ashley M. [at] (never home)maker March 22, 2013, 12:33 pm

    I definitely struggle to make exercise classes! I missed yoga this week due to an unexpected ER visit for Ada. Stuff just . . . happens! 🙂 At our gym they have the spinning room open when classes aren’t in session, though, so you can use the bikes. Do they have that at your gym? Definitely harder to keep up the momentum alone, but I’ve used it many times. Oh, and I have a spinning bike at home + a DVD that’s pretty good.

  • Carolina John March 22, 2013, 1:17 pm

    you’ll get it all in. hang in there. Biking is the hardest leg to find time for imho.

  • Mary March 22, 2013, 2:21 pm

    I can’t make it to scheduled group classes either. I have put together a really nice set of weights, basic spin bike, tubing/bands, and a lot of DVD’s to pop in on my own timing. Cathe Friedrich is amazing…at least as tough if not more than a group gym class. She has all kinds of workouts including spinning…keeps the variety there while keeping the time flexible!

  • Cate March 22, 2013, 6:26 pm

    You have a bike trainer, right? I have an 18 month old, work full time, and am training for a half ironman. I have been riding my trainer from 4:45-6 to squeeze in my bike workouts. It puts me in a good mood for the day and doesn’t interfere with my husband or daughter’s schedule.

    • jmd March 23, 2013, 9:35 am

      This. You don’t need a group exercise class. Having a bike trainer, a jogging stroller, and a gym with daycare makes this a million times easier. I have a 6 month old and a job and find plenty of time to workout. I ride the trainer either very early in the morning (4:45 …) or after he goes to bed at 8. I run with him in the jogging stroller. I take him to kidcare at the gym a couple times a week so I can lift or swim or do yoga or whatever. It’s really not that hard if you’re motivated. Get yourself some Spinervals or Sufferfest videos and get it done. No excuses.

  • Lesley March 22, 2013, 6:55 pm

    Haven’t read through the comments, so I may be repeating others, but my gym has a few spin bikes available outside of the classroom area and next to treadmills/ellipticals/other non-spin bikes. I frequently have to work late and have a 40 minute commute from work in Toronto, Canada to the ‘burbs, so I miss class a lot. I’ve been doing spin for years, so I generally can come up with routines on my own (thanks to all different types of instructors I’ve come across) and that’s how I started making spin fit to my schedule. If you can, try it! I find I burn more calories and get a higher average heart rate (my most important goal) when I do my own routine rather than some of the available classes. You might get some odd looks when you do jumps, figure eights or slides, but it’s worth it!

  • Anna {Herbivore Triathlete} March 22, 2013, 8:01 pm

    I think you did great this week even if the bike miles fell short! It will all even out in the end. I agree that biking is the hardest to fit in time wise.

  • Kathy March 23, 2013, 10:55 pm

    Most gyms will let you go into the spin studio and blast your own music and ride if you don’t mind being without an instructor. Also, check out for online spin classes

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