Monthly Archives: July 2012

Week 8

MONDAY:  Rainy days, Mondays and sinus headaches always get me down…..not exactly the lyrics sung by the late Karen Carpenter but they definitely apply to my Monday morning.  I still rolled out of bed at my usual time to get ready to go to the gym.  I still did a complete Upper Body Day 1 workout and didn’t skimp on the weights or the exercises…although I was rather sloth-like today.  But by the time I got home, my headache was gone 🙂  Funny….before this summer challenge I would have let that headache defeat me.  Who knew exercise was the best cure for a sinus headache?  It has happened time and time again, too.  I never would have thought that in a million years.

TUESDAY:  My first coherent thought this morning was “Oh crap…..cardio.”  How did I go from being a cardio fan (I almost said fanatic but if I’m honest I have to say I was never THAT excited about it) to loathing the idea?  It is a mystery to me.  However, I have reached the point where cardio is no longer my idea of a good time.  But I do realize and acknowledge that it is a necessary evil for burning the stores of fat I still have in abundance on my thighs and elsewhere so I will continue to endure it.  Just don’t expect me to like it….much.

This morning I chose the elliptical as my torture machine and I did the full 45 minutes.  I almost stopped at the 25 minute mark and switched to the treadmill but slowed down instead and drank some water.  Aside from that little moment of hesitation, I turned up my ipod, put my nose to the grindstone and pedaled on undaunted.  It is a lot easier when I can shut my mind off and not play the psychological games.

WEDNESDAY:  I got through my lower body workout today but it would have been a whole lot easier if I drank enough water yesterday.  My thigh muscles burned about 2 reps into each set instead of burning near the end of the 12 reps like they should.  That is all thanks to being dehydrated (again), I’m sure.

Why is it so hard to drink enough water?  I bring filtered water with me to work every day in a 24 oz bottle and the vast majority of the time I barely drink half of it.  My friend, MHH over at Sustainable Health and Fitness, shared in her blog this morning http://sustainablehf.wordpress.com/2012/07/24/the-wetter-the-better/) that the old thinking which says a person should drink 6 to 8 8oz glasses of water every day is no longer a good rule of thumb.  Instead, you should take your weight and divide it by 2 and THAT is how many ounces of water you should be drinking.  What a revelation!  The old 48 ounces just turned into 83.5 for me!  I think I’d have to put one of those hats that have the 2 cup holders and a straw on my head and just drink continuously 24/7 in order to consume that much water!  OH!…..and let’s not forget the catheter I’d need to have inserted so I don’t spend every waking moment in the bathroom eliminating all that water.  As my son would say….. FOR REAL??  Yes, Amy…..for real, now stop your whining.  I can complain all I want and that doesn’t change the fact that MHH is right (along with lots of other smart people who have done the research) and I need to just suck up the water and be quiet already.

THURSDAY:  This morning I was supposed to do cardio but I interrupted my regularly scheduled programming.  Today is my last workout day for this week because tomorrow I will be traveling and will not be able to get to the gym before my departure time.  But I anticipate some extra curricular activities this weekend so I’m not worried about one missed day in the gym.

I decided to do my Upper Body Day 2 workout his morning instead of cardio mostly because I just didn’t want to do cardio (how’s that for honesty?).  However, I did my workout with gusto.  I didn’t skimp on the weights AND I was able to get through all 3 sets of bicep curls with the 15 lb weights!  That was the first time I’ve done that since I started my new routine at the beginning of July.  Usually, I can only get through 1.5 sets before I have to drop down to 12’s.  I am excited about that accomplishment!  It means I’m progressing and getting STRONGER!  🙂  I also challenged myself when I did abs by switching out one of the exercises.  I usually do leg raises where I lie on my back with both my legs in the air and I alternate lowering one of them at a time without touching the floor for 3 sets of 12 reps.  Today, I went “old school” and I did leg lifts like we used to have to do in junior high gym class.  I put my hands under my butt for support and raised my legs about 6 or 8 inches off the floor, opened them (like scissors), closed them and then touched the floor quickly before I went into the next raise.  That brought back some torturous memories!

I end this week with anticipation of things to come.   On August 6th I will begin Week 1 of the new workout my nephew has given me for the final 4 weeks of my challenge.  I am totally stoked and can’t wait to start it.  I was initially going to start it on Aug 1st but have decided to delay until the 6th so I’m not changing in the middle of a week.  That means I will continue my current workout for one more week.  The new one promises to be the hardest physical challenge I have ever taken on….voluntarily…..haha!  When I’m a sweaty, exhausted mess on the gym floor, would you remind me of how excited I was at the beginning?

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Weight Update 7.0

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Weight:  167
No change.  I did better on my calories this week, too.  I was only over on 2 days and not by very much (59 calories on Monday and 160 on Wednesday).  At least I didn’t gain anything this past week.

This next week will be the last full week of my second workout for the summer.  On August 1st, my nephew is giving me a new workout that is designed to last for 4 weeks.  That will take me through the end of August and be my last workout of my summer challenge.  I’ll post details when I have them.  It will be a grueling and challenging workout.  I’ve already done a modified version of it at his house.  It kicked my butt to be sure!  I was sore immediately and stayed that way for about 3 days.  It’s an all over body workout that incorporates weights and cardio combined into one workout.

The highlight of the week was a trip to Fashion Bug yesterday afternoon to spend a couple gift cards I had.  By the way…if you have gift cards from there I suggest you go spend them.  Fashion Bug is closing in January.  The store in my town is already liquidating (I assume because profits are too low).  Anyway, the highlight wasn’t the sale, although that was an added bonus.  The highlight was trying on jeans.  Fashion Bug has a sizing system called Right Fit jeans.  They come in 3 different cuts:  yellow square, red triangle, blue circle.  The cuts are based on your type of figure:  straight, moderately curvy or curvy.  I tried on blue circle 14’s and 12’s yesterday.  I couldn’t believe how big the 14’s were!  That was the last size jean I bought at that store about a year ago.  But the 12’s fit!  They might be a little tight after I wash them but they fit in the store and they were 50% off so guess who got a new pair of smaller jeans! 🙂

I hope you have a good week and accomplish the goals you set for yourself in the gym.  Don’t give up even when you get discouraged.  I had a lot of excitement going into this adventure back in June and it has waned a lot since then.  But I am not going to stop trying to progress and strive for fitness.  It is worth it!  Every day isn’t going to be like the one I had on the elliptical machine back in June.  Most days are going to be average and low key.  But every day I’m in the gym is a day moving forward toward my goal of being fit and trim.  So I won’t psyche myself out doing cardio or when I’m laying in bed and I really, really don’t want to get out and go to the gym.  I am going to keep pressing toward my goal.  Don’t you give up either.

Week 7

I didn’t do very well logging my meals last week….especially over the weekend.  Sunday was a bit of a diet disaster.  I did well in the morning but for lunch I ate Chinese with a bunch of people from my church.  I love Chinese but I feel so bad the next day it’s usually not worth it to eat it, even when I try to order something with veggies and no breading like on Sunday.  I was also careful not to eat until I was stuffed.  Then dinner was a combination of whatever I could find in the fridge….cucumbers, veggie dip, a small piece of shortcake with butter and crab rangoons.  Not a lot of protein there and too many carbs!  UGH!!  Then I crashed out on the sofa at around 7:30 PM and was out for the night…for the most part.  We won’t even talk about the lack of water for the day.

Oh let’s just move on, shall we?  One thing I know for certain is without this blog, I would have caved by now.  It is knowing that someone might read this and not wanting to write a post that says “I decided to wimp out and not go to the gym today” that has kept me going every day.  So thanks for being part of my daily motivation.  It means a lot that you’re interested.

MONDAY:  Upper Body Day 1 for the week which is chest, shoulders and tris.  My workout went so well that I had extra time at the end.  Just for my friend, MHH, I got on the treadmill and did 10 minutes of cardio intervals instead of heading out the door.  I’m still tight in my right hamstring so I didn’t push it too hard.  I’ll throw in more cardio at the end of weight days from now on if I have time at the end like today.  I’m still of the mind that strength training is more important than cardio…at least for me…at the moment so I’m not willing to cut out sets in order to make time for cardio every day.  But….I won’t slack and blow it off when there is time to get it done.

TUESDAY:  Today is an all cardio day.  I did the full amount but I decided to take it a little slower today.  My right hamstring is better but still wanting to give me grief so I decided it was best not to push it.  I went 45 minutes on the treadmill at 3.5 mph.  I was able to do that with hardly any tightness in my hamstring until after the workout.  Tomorrow is lower body so we’ll see how the hamstring feels on Thursday when I have to do cardio again.  It may just be a light cardio week this week.

WEDNESDAY:  Another morning thunderstorm at the gym 🙂  Not like the last one…less thunder and lightening.  Today was lower body and it all went fine.  I didn’t have extra time at the end to get more cardio in today.  My right hamstring is still tight but feels a little better.  I’ve been in a perpetual state of soreness since I started this new routine.  It’s good because it means I’m working my muscles but sometimes it just makes me tired.  Today is a tired day.

THURSDAY:  What I’m learning this week is that it’s as much psychological as it is physical…maybe more.  Not long ago, cardio was my favorite part of working out.  I had no problem jumping on the treadmill after 45 minutes of weights and doing 15 minutes or so of cardio.  It’s not that I don’t like it anymore but I sure don’t love it like I used to.  Since I’ve increased my time to 45 minutes, it’s been a real psychological battle to get through it all.  I find myself watching my time a lot.  After the first 4 minutes I’m thinking, “Great!  I’m 1/10th of the way through this!”  At 10 minutes I’m trying to talk myself into switching to a different machine (today it was elliptical to treadmill) at  the 25 minute mark.  At 20 minutes I’m coaching myself through the next 5.  At 25 minutes I’m telling myself to suck it up and stay where I am.  At 30 minutes I’m berating myself for not switching.  At 35 minutes I’m telling myself that it’s only 10 more minutes.  When I get to the end, I’m not sure if I’m more exhausted because of the physical stress or the mental stress!

FRIDAY:  Wow….where did the week go?  I am amazed to wake and discover it’s Friday already.  Today’s workout was “routine,” I guess.  Everything went well and I had 10 extra minutes at the end so I did some walking at 3.5 on the treadmill.  I met a nice woman who just started coming with her son in the mornings on her way to work.  Her son is 11 and he’s a little chubby.  I wouldn’t call him obese, exactly, but he does have a weight problem.  She said it was his idea to start coming to the gym.  She thinks he’s getting teased.

We humans can be so cruel to each other.  I was not very nice to some people when I was his age and I had it returned to me in spades in junior high.  What a waste of time and energy.  I am glad to see this boy reached out to his mom and asked if they could do something constructive about his situation.  Too often, kids who are teased or bullied keep their pain hidden inside until it manifests itself in violence against others or themselves (or both).  Maybe this little boy’s experience of finding something positive in the gym will allow him to positively motivate someone else down the road who is getting teased about his weight.

Weight Update 6.0

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Weight: 167 lbs.

Back down 3 lbs. I’ll take it.

I have high hopes that this will be a good week. Hormones and mood are back in check. Hopefully my energy levels will stay the same or increase and I’ll see some good progress. I’m trying not to panic over being on the “downhill” side of this adventure and having a vacation coming up soon. I will only miss 2 days in the gym but I know it will be harder to eat right and not eat late in the day. I’ll have to be diligent with the workouts I do to replace what I will miss in the gym.

I had some back and forth discussion this week with my friend, MHH, about adding more cardio to my fitness plans. I’m rather resistant to the idea, mostly because of time constraints in the morning and lack of energy in the evening, not because I dislike cardio. I just read a very interesting article on weight loss vs fat loss and resistance training vs aerobic exercise. If you’re interested you can read it here:

http://blog.metaboliceffect.com/2012/03/10/weight-loss-or-fat-loss-which-would-you-rather-have/

There are benefits to doing BOTH but HOW you do them is key to your success in losing fat and not just losing weight. Furthermore, you need to be careful not to lose muscle. For myself, personally, I want to lose fat and gain muscle. I already have plans for kicking up my pace and doing interval-type resistance and cardio exercises in the 3rd month of my journey this summer. Reading this article has reinforced my plans.

I hope you have a good week of learning and progression.

 

Week 6

This week marks the midway point of my summer workout challenge.  Time sure is flying by!  I really feel like I have to make the most of these next 6 weeks.  I am trying to remind myself that this isn’t about the number on the scale but after last week’s diet disaster, it’s hard not to focus on that.  I didn’t set a particular BMI goal level…only to reduce it.  If I’m honest with myself I have to admit that what I really want is to be out of the “over weight” category…which will require a 16 lb weight loss.  But do I want to focus on that?  I know from past experience that if I get fixated on a number on the scale I will not be able to enjoy the progress I do make if I don’t make that one goal.  I don’t want to do that to myself.  So what is the answer?

MONDAY:  Today was chest, shoulders and triceps day.  There was nothing really remarkable to speak of during my workout except the gym seemed crowded this morning with 2 other people there besides me.  I’ve gotten used to having the place all to myself this early in the morning.  I also had a little bit of an issue with my left shoulder but nothing that made me think I should alter my workout in any way.  Aside from that, it was fine.  My mood and hormones, however, were NOT.  I can’t wait for the next couple of days to pass so I can get back to feeling more like myself again.  Sometimes it really stinks to be female.

I still have no food in the house so finding a good lunch & dinner today is job #1.  I am going grocery shopping tonight so tomorrow will be a better nutrition day.

TUESDAY:  I can already feel the hormone fog beginning to lift.  It is amazing what hormones can do to how I feel, think and act.  I am beginning to get a better perspective on what happened last week and how to move forward from here.  It also helps to have a new supply of food in the house to make better choices with.

I did my first 45 minute cardio workout on the treadmill this morning.  It has been several weeks since I completed an entire workout on the treadmill.  I forgot how hard it is.  It amazes me that I can get so breathless and feel so exhausted by the end and I only burned 3 more calories than I do on the elliptical for the same period of time.  That just seems patently unfair, doesn’t it?  I did go a slightly shorter distance but really it’s basically all the same.  Several times I wanted to give up and only go 30 minutes.  But instead of doing that I backed my speed down a little bit from 7.0 running to 6.5 running for about 4 or 5 intervals.  I also added about 7 seconds to when I switched from walking to running.  That seemed to help.  At the very least, it allowed me to finish my full workout and not succumb to the difficulty.

I noticed some pretty major tenderness in my upper left back today.  I had some shoulder difficulty on the left side on Monday so I wonder if it’s connected.  It actually itches it’s so sore and it feels like I got hit with something and there’s a bruise back there.

WEDNESDAY:  Today was lower body.  Again, nothing remarkable to speak of regarding my workout.  The tenderness in my upper left back is still there but better than yesterday.  I also feel like I’m walking funny today and I wonder if it has anything to do with yesterday’s treadmill workout.  My right foot feels “off.”  I can’t put my finger on the problem.  It just feels like it doesn’t want to work right and I’m slapping it down on the floor when I walk.  It doesn’t hurt but I’m definitely walking funny.  Hmmmmm…….Maybe it’s my shoe.  I have a pair of Birkenstocks I’ve had for about 6 or 7 years.  I LOVE them!  I know my feet are smaller (or rather thinner) than they used to be.  I have adjusted the straps.  Maybe I need to adjust them again.  I have one hole left!

THURSDAY:  I decided this morning to split my cardio workout between the elliptical and the treadmill.  I did the first 25 minutes on the elliptical which was pretty uneventful.  I stuck to the 15 minute mile pace (or slightly under).  When I switched to the treadmill, however, I encountered problems.  First, my left ankle felt like it needed to crack and I couldn’t get it to.  I even got off the treadmill for a minute to stretch and still nothing.  The sensation made me feel like my footing wasn’t sure.  In addition, my right foot was still flapping away on the treadmill whether I was walking or running.  I did 2 running intervals and decided that was enough.  I walked the rest at a 3.5 pace (approx. 16 min. mile).  I still managed to burn a total of 345 calories between the 2 machines but I was unimpressed with my treadmill performance.  It was during this ordeal that I realized my foot flopping issue has nothing to do with my Birkenstock shoes (I wasn’t even wearing them!) and EVERYTHING to do with my rapidly tightening right hamstring muscle.  My leg doesn’t want to fully extend which causes my foot to “flop” about mid-stride.  I guess I need to spend some time doing hamstring stretches tonight.

FRIDAY:  I am always glad to get to this point in the week.  Workouts on Friday are much more motivational because I know I get 2 days of blissful rest after this.  🙂 Today’s workout went pretty well.  I didn’t slack and I tried a new bicep exercise my nephew suggested.  It’s called a French Curl.  You use a barbell with lighter weight than you would use for a traditional bicep curl and place your hands on the bar palms down.  I can already feel some soreness in my arms because I worked muscles that rarely get used.  I love trying new things and seeing/feeling the results afterward.

I also want to give a shout out to my friend, MHH from Sustainable Health and Fitness (http://sustainablehf.wordpress.com/2012/06/06/the-journey/) for helping me with my wretched hamstring muscle.  She reminded me how to stretch it and I spent about 20 minutes rolling around my living room floor and putting my feet on furniture trying to stretch that sucker back into the proper size.  I felt like my leg was slowly shrinking on me!  It is MUCH better today and I am grateful.  So, thanks, MHH!  I love you to pieces!  xoxo

I asked at the beginning of this post what the answer was to my dilemma with the scale.  The answer is proper perspective.  I have to regain the perspective I had at the beginning of this.  I know I am making positive progress because I can feel it in my body and others have commented on it.  Forward motion…no matter how small…is the goal.  Progress….baby steps in the right direction.  Any weight lost will result in a lower BMI which is what I want.  I might not get out of the overweight category this summer and that’s OK.  That doesn’t mean I won’t eventually and when this challenge is over, it gives me something to continue to strive for.

Weight Update 5.0

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Weight:  170

Up and down the weight roller coaster we go!  That “skinny feeling” was no where to be seen this week.  I know the reasons, too.  They aren’t excuses but facts that made up a week of bad decisions.  Bad hormone levels and a mid-week holiday provided an atmosphere for low will power that lead to an entire week of bad eating.

I have been pretty diligent about filling out my food diary on MyFitnessPal.com but not last week.  I didn’t even bother with last Sunday because we had a church cook out.  No…I didn’t make good decisions about my diet on Sunday.  On Monday, my choices weren’t bad, I just ate too much and went 469 calories over my 1540 allotment.  Tuesday was a good day.  The only day I was legitimately under my allotment.  Wednesday…the day started off good.  I was in the gym on a holiday!  But my lunch and dinner came from 2 different 4th of July parties.  Again…I didn’t make good decisions.  On Thursday, my husband and I arrived at work to find our office had flooded in a storm on Tuesday night.  We spent the day getting it cleaned up and came home to a house without a lot of healthy food in it.  I allowed my fatigue from the day to rule and I made a poor choice at dinner and ate 993 calories in that one meal alone.  That put me 314 calories over for the day.  Friday wasn’t horrible as far as types of food but I still went 336 calories over due to the amount I ate.  Yesterday, was OK.  I didn’t log all my food but I think I stayed within my allotment or maybe went slightly over but I did a lot of walking with a friend at Frankenmuth so I’m not too concerned about yesterday.

That brings me to the weigh-in today and I knew it wasn’t going to be pretty.  I’m honestly surprised I didn’t gain more than 4 lbs.  This week was a perfect storm of hormones, holiday parties and unhealthy choices.  If we’re honest, we know that we all have weeks like this.  The good news is I had my butt in the gym every, single day and I did the workouts without slacking even though I really didn’t want to…especially on Friday.  I am going to feel good about that.  Not long ago, I would have eaten like this (and then some!) and not done a single physical activity to counter act all those calories.  I may still make bad diet decisions occasionally but it is not a constant way of life any more.

It’s a new day in a fresh, new week.  I’m looking forward to advancing in my new workout schedule for the month and to seeing progress at the end of this week.  No looking back…just moving forward.

Week 5

This week was the beginning of my new workout for the next month.  As you’ll see, I thought I might be taking it too easy at first.  But after each day I experienced a decent amount of soreness so I know I’m on the right path and I’m challenging myself sufficiently.

MONDAY:  When I sat down last night and determined what my new workout would be for the next 4 weeks I thought I may have been too easy on myself.  I thought I’d whip right through it and have plenty of time at the end for 15 minutes of cardio.  Looking at it on paper it just didn’t seem like that much.  Then I went to the gym this morning and did my first day of upper body (1 of 2 days in my new routine).  I added weight to my shoulder butterflies, power clean and tricep kick-backs.  I no longer think I’m being too easy on myself!  The workout was still approx. 40 to 45 minutes long and not only did I not have time for cardio, the muscles in my arms were quivering when I left the gym.  If soreness follows tomorrow, I know I’m on the right path.

TUESDAY:  This morning I did my first 45 minutes of cardio and I did it on the elliptical machine again.  I didn’t go at the fast pace of 6.4 at all during this workout.  The fastest I went was in the low to mid 5’s.  I did this on purpose because I was adding an extra 15 minutes and I wanted to be able to finish the workout.  I finished and went a total of 3.25 miles so I was still at or under the 15 minute mile pace for all 3 miles.  I also burned 376 calories according to the display on the machine.  It was hard going for that long.  I’m glad it was hard because if it was easy I wouldn’t be challenging myself.

It was also hard to recover from.  It’s been 3 hours since I finished and even with coffee, I’m feeling more fatigued than normal.  It could be because that lovely female gift is going to arrive again this week.  More likely it’s the additional cardio.  I also noticed in the middle of my workout my heart rate dropped to 125 and stayed there for a couple minutes before it suddenly popped back up to 172.  Not sure what that was all about.  I hope it was a glitch in the machine and not in my heart!  I have had issues with my heart rate spiking before.  I’ll have to keep an eye on that.  I am also sore from yesterday’s workout which is a good sign regarding the difficulty level.

WEDNESDAY:  Happy Independence Day!  It might be a national holiday but I was still in the gym this morning to do my lower body workout.  I did sleep in for an hour though so that was nice. 🙂  I have to admit, I’m not really “feeling it” today.  I think I might be fighting another cold bug (gggrrrr!).  For now I plan to ignore it and go on as usual.  I pushed through and got it all done without slacking.  I reintroduced myself to pop squats today.  My trainer showed these to me a few months ago as part of a cardio workout.  They are pretty fun and they really work the thigh muscles.

I plan to spend the rest of the day having some fun in the sun with friends and church family.  I will probably indulge in a few treats, too, but I’m not going to worry about it.  Life isn’t much fun if we deprive ourselves of treats…especially on holidays.  If you’ve worked hard and “earned” the treats, there’s no reason to feel guilty about eating some.

THURSDAY:  Today is a cardio day.  I started off on the elliptical machine but about 25 minutes into my workout I started getting a twinge in my lower left back in the area known as the sacrum.

Last summer I injured my sacrum by running on uneven pavement.  The result was a shooting pain down my left leg that was so intense, I initially thought I had pulled a hamstring muscle.  I spent about $130 over the course of a month at the chiropractor fixing the problem and then had to nurse my leg for another month or so afterward.  A friend of mine who is a physical therapist showed me an awesome stretch that completed the healing process of my injury.  You stand in front of a chair and place your foot in the seat of the chair with your toes toward the back of the chair.  Then you turn the foot that is on the floor so your toes point to the side.  In this position your feet look like they are making the letter “L.”  Then you turn your body in the direction the foot on the floor is pointing and “hang” by bending at the waist and letting your arms dangle.  This action stretches the sacrum.  It is awesome!  I am so grateful to her for showing me this stretch.  It made all the difference in the world to my recovery.

When I felt that familiar twinge yesterday, I finished up the minute I was on and then switched to the treadmill for the last 20 minutes of my workout.  I’m glad I did because the twinge subsided.  It is important to listen when your body speaks so you can avoid injury and a long set-back from reaching your fitness goals.

Over all my workout was pretty good.  I haven’t run intervals for a while so it was nice to do something different for cardio.  I will likely run intervals again next week on Tuesday and Thursday and give the elliptical a rest for a bit.

FRIDAY:  Aahhhh…..Friday!  Today I did the second day of my new upper body workout.  It went well.  I didn’t push too hard doing the barbell curls today.  I am doing 2 more biceps exercises than I was doing last month and I didn’t want to push it where weight was concerned.  I’ll see how the next week goes and increase it if I don’t seem to be challenged.

I’m not looking forward to my weigh in on Sunday.  I indulged on the 4th and that lovely monthly female thing is going to make an appearance this weekend.  Along with it will come extra water retention.  I think I’ll be riding my 5 lb float in the upward direction this time.  We’ll see what Sunday brings.

My Workout Sched 2.0

This week I will change up my routine and focus more on muscle groups.  I will still do 3 days of weights and 2 days of cardio.  On Mondays I will do chest, tris and shoulders.  On Wednesdays I will do all lower body but I will add some more exercises.  On Fridays I will do back, biceps and abs.  I am still doing 3 sets of 12 reps for each exercise but I will also be adding weight.  For cardio, I will still use the elliptical and treadmill, however, I will bump it up to 45 minutes of cardio instead of 30 and still do this on Tuesdays and Thursdays.  Hang on to your hats, folks….this is going to be challenging!  But…that’s what this journey is all about.  When it starts to get easy, it’s time to add more weight and switch things up.  My new workout routine is below:

Upper Body – Day 1

CHEST – push-ups, pulley flies and one of the following:  pec-dec, incline dumbbell presses or flat dumbbell presses

SHOULDERS – butterfly, power clean and one of the following:  shoulder press, forward raises or lateral raises

TRICEPS – pull down extension, kick-backs and one of the following: skull-crushers, dips or overhead raises)

Upper Body – Day 2

BACK – seated rows, lat pulls and one of the following:  dumbbell rows or bent-over barbell rows

BICEPS – dumbbell curls and one of the following:  seated or standing barbell curls

ABS – revers sit-ups w/weighted ball, leg raises and extension

Lower Body

Dead Lifts and one of the following:  squats w/dumbbells, squats on bosu ball or pop squts

All 4 leg machines

CALVES – standing and seated calf raises

Low Back extension

Stats Update 1.0

Sunday, July 1, 2012

I must admit, I was pretty apprehensive about doing this today. After having the “getting skinny” feeling and then seeing my weight swing up 3 lbs I really wasn’t sure what to expect. I am happy to say I’m relieved and excited about my measurements. In fact, I had to go back and double-check a couple of them. I re-measured my knees because there was an increase in my left knee and my lower waist because the reduction was so big.

Taking into consideration that it’s hard to measure the exact same spot every time, I think I did pretty well. I measure my upper waist in the middle of where the curve starts and my lower waist just above my bellybutton. For knees, I measured the fat above my knee. For calves, I measured the top part to include a pocket of fat I have just below my knee. For my thighs, I measured the top part that has the most fat (that area that always seems to touch). For my chest, I measured the upper part just under my armpits because there is an area of fat there that I want to get rid of. For everything else, I measured the largest area.

Sunday, June 3, 2012                                   Sunday, July 1, 2012 (4 wks)

BMI: 27.1                                                           BMI: 26.8

Weight: 168 lbs                                                Weight: 166 lbs

Upper Arms: R: 12 1/4” L: 12 1/4”         Upper Arms: R: 11 5/8″ L: 11 6/8″

Fore Arms: R: 9 5/8” L: 9 7/8”                Fore Arms: R: 9 5/8″ L: 9 7/8″

Chest: 35 6/8”                                                 Chest: 35.5

Waist: 31 6/8” (upper) 36” (lower)        Waist: 31.5″ (upper) 33 6/8″ (lower)

Hips: 43 7/8”                                                   Hips: 43″

Thighs: R: 24 6/8” L: 24 6/8”                   Thighs: R: 24″ L: 24.25

Knees: R: 16 1/2” L: 16”                              Knees: R: 16.5″ L: 16.25″

Calves: R: 15 1/2” L: 15 1/2”                    Calves: R: 15″ L: 15.25″

As you can see, I went down or stayed the same in every area except my left knee. For some inexplicable reason, I went up 1/4 inch there.

I hope the next 8 weeks go as well or better than the first 4 have.  The pictures below don’t show that much of a physical difference (except the current one is blurry and I smiled at the advice of my sister…haha!) but by measurement, there is a difference.

Me on June 3, 2012

20120701-153742.jpg

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