Back on the workout wagon

13 08 2011

I’m back in the gym! I finally admitted to myself that I was doing a terrible job finding “alternative” workouts outside the gym. Yes, I ran for a bit (Couch to 5k program. It was ok, but since it was just cardio, my weight stayed the same and I gained 4% body fat in 2 months). There were also months of 3x weekly yoga plus some sporadic Zumba. But nothing feels like being in the gym.
It’s only been a week, but I’ve gone three times and completed a strength routine and 20 mins of cardio each day. Lifting weights is always when I’ve felt best, I wish it didn’t take so long to remember that! I’m following the guide in this book and social networking with people here.  I was pretty sore after the first couple days, but then remembered tricks like eating a banana post workout (potassium) and taking BCAAs (help muscles recover and reduce soreness). And of course, lots of water. I’m no where close to where I was last summer but I know I can get there again. Well, maybe not quite there, but strong, anyway! I don’t think I ever posted this video – I wanted to “deadlift more than I weighed” for some reason. The way Jeron had me working out made for quick strength gains. There was (mostly joking) talk of training to be a powerlifter. I still think that would be awesome.


Apparently I like running

19 09 2010
yay for me

Post-run glow!

I’ve been talking about running for a few years now.  I’ve even tried a few times to make myself into a “runner.”

After the Dash last week, I realized that running a couple miles now and then on a treadmill isn’t all I want from running.  After my workout Wednesday, I spontaneously ran to the nearby park and back (estimate – 1 mile).  It felt great, and fairly easy.  So this Friday, I did the same thing!  (even though my workout was brutal – major circuits including 100 pushups, 100 kettelbell swings, tire jumping, mountain climbers and my first go at boxing).  Somehow, I had some ‘juice’ left and took off (even though it was drizzling.)

I made sure to check the clock this time before leaving the gym, I was curious. And curiosity paid off! It took me less than 14 minutes to run to the park and back!  I wonder if when on the treadmill, I spend too much energy watching time, thinking about intervals, not pushing myself for fear of “wasting” energy that I’ve over analyzed simple running. (I’m actually pretty sure that’s the case. I’ve very good at over analyzing).

A friend gave me the book Running for Mortals and although I’ve just started it, I already appreciate that bonafide runners (that is, those who run marathons, are capable of running several miles without stopping) consider what I do (that is, running, walking, jogging, walking some more) as running.  I don’t know if I’ll ever be at that level, but I know that running feels good (most of the time) and it’s easy.  So much easier this time around.  Why? I’m not sure.  Probably due to my mindset.  Instead of thinking it was going to hurt, being preoccupied with every ache and pain afterwards, I just run.

I’ve asked for these kick ass shoes for my birthday (if they don’t come, I’ll actually be able to use my grown-up income to buy them!) I know several people who wear these and swear by them.  Barefoot running is suppose to feel completely different (which it probably does) and amazing.  Over time, leg muscles learn to work together differently to stabilize and make use of the anatomy of your foot.  I (probably have some grandiose thinking here) believe that thanks to years of ballet, my feet will be strong and my body will adjust to these shoes quickly.  Even if they don’t, I’m excited for the challenge and experience.

Kicking Ass

3 09 2010

The workout I did today was just… insane.  I can’t believe how long it went on! It was designed to be  go-to-failure conditioning. There were 4 exercises and each round added 5 reps.  First round: 20 kettlebell swings (see video below if you don’t know what that is), 10 dumbbell shoulder presses (each arm), 20 squats (holding the dumbbell or kettlebell) and 10 pushups.  No rest between exercises.

We (the two guys I was working out with and me) went SEVEN rounds.  Two more than Mr. Trainer expected, 2-3 more than other groups (!). Not only is the circuit difficult, adding 5 reps to each exercise each round is torturous. So at the end, we’d done 245 swings, 175 shoulder presses, 245 squats and 175 pushups (the final round was 50 and 40 reps, which is crazy itself).  This took us 1 1/2 hours!

I’m so damn proud of myself (and I have a lot of free time, what with the unemployment and all) that I made this (very low quality) graphic:

Well, that’s a fun surprise!

1 09 2010

I ran 3 miles in 48 minutes today!!!!! That’s a 16-minute mile (not exactly fast) which is pretty darn good, I feel.  That 48 minutes includes a 5 minute warm up, so I guess it was actually at little faster. This is better than I expected, even though I’ve been working out so much.  Better, I think, because it didn’t seem that hard.  I’m pretty confident I can cut a couple minutes off that time if I’m more conscious of it the whole run.  I’ll let you know!

I say “run” but it was run-walk the whole time.  1 minute back and forth, 2 minutes back and forth, whatever felt right.  When I tried to make myself a runner a couple years ago (which lasted about 4 months) I don’t think I broke a 15 minute mile.  And I was at least 15 pounds less then, and it started out as WAY more walking… like 21-minute mile.

I think, for my size, this is quite amazing.  Imagine how much more effort it is to move this body that far.

In other “well, that’s a fun surprise!” news, I can button an old pair of pants! Can’t quite wear them yet (still tight) but I was pleasantly surprised that they buttoned so easily.

Training for…

10 08 2010

the Warrior Dash! It is so much fun working out with a goal besides just weight loss.  This has to be the funnest race I’ve ever hear of – at the end, they hand you a beer and warrior helmet! There’s also obstacles like crawling through mud and jumping over fire.  Here’s the link to see the Northwest course.  A couple friends have asked about just coming to watch – yes, you can! Scroll to the bottom of the pages for details.

More losses!

28 07 2010

I’m down 2.7% body fat (in the past 6ish weeks) which is 6 pounds of fat; I’ve also gained 6 pounds of muscle, which is crazy.

I’m also down 6 inches (2 in my butt/hips alone!) It would be 6.5, but my forearms have gained.  It’s interesting how much they’ve changed shape in just 6 weeks.

My conditioning is soooo much better.  I ran on the treadmill last night, as was able to go 3 minutes straight, compared to barely 2 minutes a month ago and probably only a minute a couple months ago.  I was also able to run faster and breathe properly the whole time, which makes it feel easier. And didn’t feel like I was gonna die, which is nice.

The video below is me, last week, doing some bad ass dead lifts.  I never knew I could lift so much!

This next video isn’t me, but it’s almost the same circuit I did on Monday (4x).  When I’m not lifting tons of weight, I’m jumping around and throwing heavy things! (I ran with the drag sled today, pulling 135 lbs. followed with a sprint.  Because my trainer is trying to make me puke.  As long as my butt keeps getting smaller, that’s ok with me!) The tire thing is harder than it looks.  You’ve got to stop the force+gravity on the way down, and lift/push it back up. The first time I did this, I wanted to cry, but didn’t have time between reps nor the energy to waste on crying! “Burpee’s” are the jump+push up move.  They’re horrible because all of your major muscle groups are involved.  That medicine ball weighs 12 lbs and has handle cutouts that make it impossible to bounce straight.

“Work it out”

20 07 2010

Sometimes when I’m working out, or thinking about working out, I sing (to myself) “work it out, work it out”  ad infinitum to the tune of this ridiculous song. Try as I might, I can’t get it out of my head!

I’ve been working HARD! A couple weeks ago, I leg pressed 605 pounds.  Yes, you read that right.  Six hundred and five pounds. Then last week I pushed a car.  Yeah, pushed.  Across a parking lot.  I should’ve measured how far… 150 yards maybe? 200? The thing with pushing a car is… it doesn’t get easy.  You’d think once you get it rolling it’s easier, but it’s not.  Then on Monday I benched 105 pounds.  That’s more than I ever even thought about putting on a bar! I think in the past, I’ve stopped trying more weight around 70# or so, because that just seemed like a lot.  But I’m strong!

It feels really good to be working out like this.  I still spend some time on the treadmill or elliptical, but most of the stuff I do is big time, heavy duty, can’t-believe-I’m-doing-it stuff.  Oh yeah – I flipped a 200 # tire fairly easily.  On the first try.  Who knew?

Even though the weight isn’t dripping off, I feel strong and that feels good.  I walk a little taller, being the muscle woman that I am.  And it’s possible that my hourglass shape is peeking out a little. (real or not? hard to tell if the reflection in the mirror is due to a different perception of myself.)