Progress Report

So I saw a friend of mine on Friday, someone I haven’t seen in two years: belt notch #4.  Oh yeah.  There have been times recently when #2 was the norm and #3 was a stretch.  Not any more.

Yesterday I finished the last strength exercise of phase 1 of P90x.  The next week is just light cardio and stretching; it’s a recovery week before phase 2 kicks in.

Today I spent 7 hours working outside in the garden.  Moving mulch, topsoil, bricks and the like.  That’s enough of a workout for today.

Day 17 – Shoulders & Arms

I’m loving going downstairs and doing my workouts.

Today I was definitely pushing myself.  Almost every workout got a bump in weight or reps.  I was trying to pick weights I couldn’t do 11 reps with.  I was mostly successful.

I expect my strength progress to slow or plateau soon.  This is my last time doing this workout for 6 weeks.  Phase 2 of P90X has me doing different workouts for chest & back and shoulders & arms.  (Legs & back, my bane, isn’t going anywhere.  Thankfully?)

I’ve got one last strength workout on Saturday, then I’m in my recovery week, which is stretching and cardio.  I don’t enjoy cardio, so I’m hoping I have the motivation to go downstairs during that week.  I want to keep my momentum going.

Plugging Along

I’m happy to report that my jogging is getting easier.  Today I went to the gym at work; about 4:15 p.m.  No one was there so I felt relaxed and the black eyed peas kept me company.  I was able to complete longer intervals and my stride was strong … made my day!  I have to keep plugging along…

My husband suggested we go “home” (Chicago) next week and sadly my response was, “no way, I’m much heavier than when everyone saw me last”… a reminder I must keep plugging along… even though some Chicago Pizza is VERY tempting!  🙂

So, I will work towards a July visit as my goal; perhaps in time for Summer Fest in Milwaukee!  Must keep plugging along…

See you at the office!

Day 15 – Chest & Back

 

I did this workout yesterday, I just didn’t have time to make a post.  This workout was easy.  It looks like cardio is no longer my limiting factor, at least for this exercise.  I pushed through to failure, but still had energy by the end.  I considered hopping on the elliptical for a bit, that’s how much I had left in the tank.  I had a tight schedule, otherwise I really think I would have.

Recovery was great.  I feel like I’m at 95% today.  A very tiny amount of soreness when I stretch, but that’s it.

I’m really excited by my progress.  If I can summon the willpower to head downstairs on cardio days I think my results are going to be fantastic.

Week 2 Winners Announced

Congratulations to Katherine Precht, who swept the 2-week checkin with both the most weight lost and the highest %.  She received the medal for her astounding 8.4lb loss.

The % weight loss medal went to runner-up Steve Hartzog for an impressive 4.04% loss in bodyweight.

Hunger Games and Hungry Pape

Busy, busy day… After taking three girls shopping for Summer clothes, I was determined to fit in Day 1 of Week 3 of my couch program.  It was 60 minutes in length but I did it… It was raining pretty hard so I had to run inside in the basement.  I finished just in time to shower and take my son to the movies; Hunger Games (wouldn’t have gone if it weren’t for my son).  I am starving today, I admit… I was out all day and didn’t want to subject myself to popcorn (my favorite snack) or McDonald’s so I waited and of course, eating too late 🙂  (but eating light).

Enjoy your Sunday and see you Monday, Losers!

Day 12 – Legs & Back

This workout was incredibly difficult.  I don’t know what was different this time compared to the last time I did this workout, or any of the other times I’ve done it.  All I know is that I was wiped out about halfway through.

There’s a typical pattern in my workouts: Enthusiasm at first, then I do a few sets and it’s hard and I see how long I have to go, then my second wind kicks in and I’m ready to go. Sometimes I’m disappointed when the workout is over.

That was not the case this time.

I hit my aerobic threshold almost immediately.  I wish I knew what was different this time (this ain’t my first time at the rodeo), but one of the early exercises wiped me out.  The rest of the workout was me gasping, hitting pause to recover, and questioning whether I wanted to continue.

Strangely enough, the thing that kept me going was visualizing what my charts were going to look like.  The lines must go up!  The least I will accept is my previous best!

Just What the Doctor Ordered!

Tonight I completed week two of Couch to 10k.  I intended to complete my workout at work but got caught up in meetings and other things.  I thought, I’ll just run at home.   By the time I got there, it was 6:35 p.m. and I really wanted to just pass.  But NO!  I went for it.  It was a fantastic workout.  Something about the weather, the smells in the air, the sun setting and a gentle cool breeze was just what the doctor ordered!  I blasted my music (a lot of great Queen tonight) and even went further and longer than planned.  My goal is to run both Saturday and Sunday and so I’m praying I can fit it in with all going on!!!

Keep plugging away, losers!
 

8 Weeks to a Better Body

If you’re looking for a really good workout plan for the gym, this is one I LOVE! It’s great whether you’re a seasoned veteran stuck on auto-pilot or just starting out and need some direction.

It works on the premise that you’ve got to keep hitting your body with something different or else it gets used to common movements and doesn’t improve. So the first week is Circuit Training, second week is Heavy Sets, third week is High Reps (or Light Sets), fourth is Supersets, and then back ’round again but it takes it all up a notch.

Here’s a link to download the program:
8 Weeks to a Better Body

You’ll see that it scopes out exactly what to work on each day. For specs on what’s involved in Circuit Training, Heavy Sets, etc. there’s info at the bottom of page 3. I got all this from Muscle & Fitness Hers so rep counts are tailored for women.

Guys can use the same program, just reduce the reps as follows:
• 10-12 max for Circuit and Supersets
• 6-8 max for Heavy
• 12-15 max for High Reps

Checkboxes are there so you can chart your progress. Put this somewhere you’ll see it (ie. your fridge) and as you start checking off boxes, you’ll want to keep the flow going. Helps you stick with the program if you can see it.

For the different kinds of exercises you can do, Bodybuilding.com is a great resource with detailed instructions and videos: View Exercises Here

Click any exercise and there are tabs at the top, too, for Male and Female.

Enjoy!

ps. If you need a good gym nearby, I go to the Gold’s Gym down the road at Clocktower. I think membership right now is $29.99/month. It’s open 24 hrs a day and awesome.

Day 10 – Shoulders & Arms

I’m showing progress in every category, except for one, the In-Out bicep curl.  That same muscle in my left shoulder/back gets exhausted very quickly when doing standing curls.  I can also feel it when doing upright rows.

The dramatic growth in the orange line is chair dips.  I only went from 20 to 24.  Not nearly as impressive as the graph makes it look.

Progress Graph

I’m switching up my diet slightly. I’ve quietly been doing Eat. Stop. Eat. as part of my fat-loss program and am pleased with the results, not just fat loss but also in focus and energy levels. What it boils down to is that two days a week, my “fast days”, dinner is my only meal.  My fast days have been Tuesday and Thursdays, which also happen to be  strength training days.  I’d like to be able to take my supplements after a strength workout, but that would interfere with my fast.  So I’m going to switch my fast days to Monday and Wednesday.  Monday is a rest day and Wednesday is Plyo/Cardio, so those seem like good days for it.