Archive for the ‘Impact’ Category

Need a better goal

I’m going to be 30 in just over 4 months.  Yikes.  I wanted to be down at least 100 pounds by then, but I’m not sure it’s realistic.  I would have to lose 10-15 pounds a month to get there.  I’ve really enjoyed the mental break of not weighing in every day.  Maybe I need more consistency with my thermometer jeans.  With photos.  Still thinking about this one.

 

In other news… My workouts are getting better, though my energy level is still low.  My nutrition hasn’t been great.  My meals have been healthy, but I haven’t been great about listening to my body and stopping before I’m full.  I started buckling down on that today.  I also need more rest, since I think that the typical holiday business is contributing to my low energy.

 

As always, plugging along…

Getting better

It took me awhile to motivate myself to get out of the house today.  Maybe this is why…

Too Soon for THIS!

Isn’t it technically still fall??  As I’ve aged, my tolerance for the cold has DROPPED.  Just knowing I was going outside into single digits made me get ready a bit more slowly.

 

I did have a good workout, even though I have some nausea if I don’t give myself enough rest time between sets.  I’m getting more work done while at the gym than I have been since I started not feeling well.   I’m trying to be smart about this, though – I don’t want to get sick at the gym, so I just take longer rests, but really push it while I’m working.  Because of this, I’ve had to shorten my workouts so I can finish in 60-75 minutes, but I’ve been able to complete the missed circuits as part of my “cardio” days.  Seems to be a good balance…for now.

Back at it… sort of

I’ll admit it – I missed a full week of workouts.  I don’t remember the last time that happened.  I didn’t feel the twitchy feeling that I usually get when I miss a workout.  This concerns me a bit – fear of that twitchy feeling is what helped me get on track.  I hated having an excess of energy just sitting in my muscles.

 

I’m still not feeling well, but I’m feeling better.  I got back at it today.  The workout was NOT fun – I really had to grind it out.  But, I got it done, and even added some cleans at the end just to have some fun.  I had some nausea when my heart rate got really high, but I managed by taking a longer rest period.  I may just be burned out – this is far and away the most stressful time of year at my job.  The kids are lonely and sad, and generally triggered by their abandonment issues.  I leave work each day with a tension headache on top of all the other generalized crappiness I have going on in my body.  But, I got in my lift.  I didn’t wimp out on my weights or my reps.  And, I’ll go back tomorrow.  And the next day…

The Weekend FLEW by!

I kind of can’t believe it’s Monday again already! We had a great weekend – even though it was too short.  Jeb got good news at work on Thursday, and we planned to celebrate on Friday.  Unfortunately, I got out of work late, and we ended up grabbing a quick dinner at home and watching a movie (Harry Potter 6).  Wendy watched it with us.

 

Princess Wendy

So angelic – there’s even a little halo of light around her head!  Of course, Jeb and I both forgot that Harry Potter movies are very long, and stayed up much later than we anticipated.  Saturday morning, I was the Queen of Productivity – for about 1 hour (I made us an AWESOME breakfast!).  Then, I became sleepy and let Jeb convince me to snuggle up together while we planned the rest of our day.  Three hours later, we both had taken a power nap, and STILL hadn’t planned our day!  Whoops! (yes, I realize that a “Power Nap” by definition lasts 20 minutes or so – but I’m sticking with it!)

 

We ended up going to see Harry Potter 7, which was awesome!  We both felt like the movie left out some important details, but overall it was very well done.  We’re pretty excited to see the final movie, though I must admit that I will miss them!  This series is one of my favorites, but it’s hard to find the time to sit and watch the movies at home.  Am I alone in this?  I have such a hard time relaxing at home for long periods of time.  I always feel like I should be doing something. Maybe part of this is worry that I will become sedentary again and gain back all the weight.  We also grabbed a late dinner at the Met Burger Bar (I got the Paris Chicken burger), and headed home.  Everything seemed a bit wacky at the mall – maybe from the full moon?

 

Full Moon from the driveway

People think I’m crazy when I say this, but I firmly believe that the full moon affects people.  From years working in EMS and mental health, I barely even have to check the calendar to know that the full moon is coming.  Everyone gets a bit unsettled, and the craziest things seem to happen around the full moon.  Keep an eye on it – you’ll see the correlation!

On Sunday, Jeb and I went to the gym.  He did part of my workout with me (which was a BEAST), and then we went home to “get stuff done.”  We ran some errands and I made a yummy game-time dinner and Baked Alaska for dessert (more to come on that).  Jeb took a nap on the couch…I mean, watched the game. 🙂

All of a sudden, though, the weekend was over!  There were so many things I wanted to accomplish – especially with the holiday coming up!  Back to the grind today!

Making Progress on Burpees

I’m starting to worry that I won’t be able to handle the Impact workouts much longer.  The exercises are getting much more advanced, and I think I am going to have to regress a couple of the exercises coming up in a few weeks (pull-ups?  I don’t think so!).  That being said, however, I am pushing myself harder to try and achieve these more athletic workouts and I’m feeling the results in my muscles and joints.  The best part about this book is the focus on recovery – I think my body would be screaming right now if I wasn’t committed to soft tissue work and a full dynamic warm-up before each workout.

Ah, the Burpee…

Much loved by Crossfit enthusiasts, the Burpee is a very challenging exercise (in my opinion) that requires total body strength and cardio endurance.  Searching the internet for a good video, I found that LOTS of people are starting to incorporate Burpees into their regular routines.  There is a good description of the exercise, some variations, and it’s benefits here.

If you’re fit like this guy, your Burpees look something like this:

 

Mine do not.

In fact, I have not done Burpees since the high school soccer team back in (gasp!) 1998-ish.  Yikes.  When I saw that they were a part of Week 3 of the Impact workouts, I was apprehensive to say the least.  The workout calls for 10 Burpees as part of a circuit that includes two other high intensity, lower body exercises.  Realizing this, apprehensive became a HUGE understatement.  For the first time in awhile, I was anxious as I drove to the gym on Monday morning.  I even tried to take as long as possible to leave the house (maybe I would run out of time?).  I haven’t been this avoidant of the gym in YEARS.  Usually, it’s my one hour of the day that is about ME – and my own mindfulness.

But, I digress.

For my first workout this week, I decided to adjust the goal reps so I only had to complete 5 Burpees per set to allow my body to remember what it’s supposed to be doing!  Unfortunately, my fears were somewhat founded – I was sucking wind BIG TIME and still had to finish the circuit.  However, like in every other Impact workout, my body adjusted and I was able to complete 6 Burpees on the next set!  I made similar progress on Tuesday, and today, I completed 8 Burpees per set and I didn’t feel like I was about to die after I was done!

 

I’ll take it!

Kettlebell class tomorrow.  Can’t wait.

 

Back on Track!

The house renovations are mostly done – there is, of course, still some organizing and decorating to do, but there is no more MAJOR tasks ahead of us!  We’re so happy with the results and feel like we can enjoy our home for the first time since buying it in 2008!
During this project, however, I missed a couple workouts (but made up for them with plenty of NEAT), and Jeb and I often found ourselves trying to grab a quick meal (read: pizza) more often than we should have.  My body has been feeling out of whack, so I was excited to get to the gym this morning.

 

I started a new week of my Impact workouts, and REALLY enjoyed them.  They were hard, but I was able to push through and feel successful!  For my “Grand Finale Conditioning” I may have overdone it.  I decided to use Kettlebell Swings for the 30:30 intervals (5 rounds).  Since I normally use the 24kg bell for swings, I decided to use the 20kg one since it’s for conditioning. I should have gone with the 16kg, I think – my body was HURTING by the end.  I was so tempted to switch weight (from the 20 to the 16) mid-set, but gutted it out.  I then took about 15 minutes to cool down and do some (also recently-neglected) soft tissue work.  I already feel back on track, and look forward to cooking a healthy dinner tonight!  Now, to decide what to eat…

Back to the Gym!

As I mentioned yesterday, I missed about a week’s worth of workouts.  While I found it extremely frustrating, I also still got plenty of activity (and was even sore for a few days!).  Today, I decided to re-start Week 2 of Impact.  It was tough, but I’m SO glad I went.  I had to deal with some poor gym etiquette, but otherwise really enjoyed myself!

Weekend Update and Week 2 of Impact

We had a busy Halloween weekend!  We’ve been working on some remodeling of our house (after the Ice Storm of 2008 pretty much destroyed part of it), and we are FINALLY near the finish line!! 🙂  On Saturday, we did some painting and shopped for new floors.  We’re thinking of going with Laminate flooring for durability’s sake.  I think I would LOVE hardwood, but the hardwood in the rest of our house took some damage from the water, and the peace of mind knowing that it will last is very appealing right now.  As a result of all this extra work, I did not get in my workout on Saturday.  It was just as well, though, since I was still feeling pretty beat up from my other workouts last week.

 

On Sunday, we were both pretty tired.  We ran errands, did some work in the yard (raked and planted bulbs!!) and went over to my parents’ house for dinner and trick-or-treating with my niece.  This was a great option for us – for several reasons.  First, we got to walk around with Talia (the elephant!) for her first REAL Halloween (even though it’s her 2nd, I doubt she remembers much of the first one!).  Also, we avoided spending $50+ on Halloween candy, since our neighborhood is the kind that gets TONS of trick-or-treaters.  It was really nice (and conducive to my goals) to wake up on November 1st without any extra candy lying around the house.

Talia the Elephant!

Speaking of goals, Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups are NOT helping.  Seriously, these are what Reese’s will always aspire to be.  However, I WILL RESIST the dark chocolate, salty goodness for the rest of the year!  As a reward, I will buy myself a nice outfit to wear on New Year’s Eve – in what will undoubtedly be a better body sans PB cups.

Also, I’m working damn hard in the gym, and am starting to think that it would, in fact, be worth it to count calories just to get through the holidays.  Thoughts?

Workouts are going well now.  I’m getting used to the pace of the Impact workouts and have a bit more confidence when trying new exercises.  I’m stronger than I thought!  Hopefully, all this home remodeling won’t keep me from too many workouts.  I will be getting plenty of activity, so I’m trying not to stress too much – but I also want to stick with the program.  Tonight, we buy floors!

On a side note, don’t forget to vote!  It’s important!

Winning the Day

As I’ve mentioned, I’m currently working on Todd Durkin’s Impact Body Plan. The workouts are fun (but TOUGH – see previous posts), and I’m already feeling changes in my body.  However, the part of the book that is helping me the most is the chapters devoted to the psychological aspects of dieting/body composition.  Or, as Durkin says, “Getting your mind right.”  This video, aside from the silly halloween costume, has some great tips for making change –

 

He says to “Win the Day.”  This is something I need to keep in mind.  I need to avoid impulse and be mindful with my eating (there’s that word again!).  As I mentioned yesterday, I’m having trouble keeping my eating habits particularly effective.  I don’t want to have to count calories all the time again, but it may come to that.  In the meantime, however, I need to focus on whether I WANT something or if I actually NEED it (as Durkin says).  There’s no need to work so hard at the gym and then waste some of the benefits by eating junk.  I’ve definitely slipped up some today, but I’m going to switch gears and try to Win the REST of the day! 🙂

My plan for this –

  • Cook a healthy dinner.  I’m thinking pistachio-crusted chicken with butternut squash.
  • Drink a LOT of water – and make sure I’m not thirsty when I think I’m hungry.
  • Only eat the food I brought with me to work – not allow myself to be tempted by the baked goods and halloween treats around at work.

Wish me luck!

Training log

I took a much-needed rest day yesterday, but got up early today to get in my 3rd lift from the new program.  I’m definitely feeling more comfortable with the routine and have been improving each workout – both with increasing the weights used and decreasing the rest times.  At the end of each workout, though, my muscles are burning!  For my “Grand Finale Conditioning” I did kettlebell snatches for my first set (intending to repeat for the other sets), but was so smoked that I switched to single-arm swings.

 

We’ve been having some really warm, muggy weather here in New England.  Today, the high temperature was 73°F!  Plus, the gym isn’t using the air conditioning anymore, so the humidity was even higher inside and I was REALLY sweaty.  When I left, it looked like I had been working out in the peak summer weather!

 

These workouts are challenging, but fun.  I don’t stop moving for more than a minute at a time, which is a dramatic change from 5/3/1.  Plus, even though my muscles are tired, my energy level is MUCH higher than normal.  I’m also quickly improving my cardio fitness, which is a plus.  I was worried that these workouts would seem less fun (and like more WORK – haha, I don’t want that!), and in a way, that is true.  My motivation remains high, though, and I feel really committed to finishing every rep of every set.

 

I am struggling a bit with my eating now.  I don’t feel any more hungry in between meals, but when I start eating, I just want to FEED.  Not sure what’s up with that, but I have to be careful!  My mindful approach to eating is still working, but I am worried that I will start to gradually slip.

 

Tomorrow, I’m planning a nice, slow run – should be gorgeous with the leaves changing!