Friday, April 27, 2012

Happy predicament

Insanity Day 26

I had a staff meeting today. I selected the outfit I wanted to wear out of my closet, took a shower and then got dressed only to find my slacks were too big. Like frumpy looking hover around me too big. I put on another pair of slacks, and another. I have about 7 pairs from when I was working in the SNF and had to wear business casual/professional attire to work every day. They’re all too big along with most of my shirts. They were starting to get too big before with some weight loss I had before I even began insanity, but they’re un-wearable now. I was so happy! But what was I going to wear?? I finally selected something, but it didn’t fit very well either. It was frustrating trying to find something that looked nice, but I’d much rather deal with clothes being too big than too small. I’ll just have to go shopping for new professional clothes in a month or so when I hit my goal size. For now I at least have a few casual and church outfits that fit well.

I haven’t missed any workouts this week, and there’s one more tomorrow before I start the recovery week in between months. Almost half way done! It’s fun to see my strength and endurance improve. I’m curious to see my fit test results in another week. I won’t have an official “weigh and measure” day until then, but unofficially, my measurements continue to decrease and the scale finally went down to show a 2.5 pound loss since starting nearly 4 weeks ago which puts me 3 pounds away from my first goal weight, and 7 pounds away from my “in my dreams” goal weight.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Cuz I wanna look good

Insanity Day 23

At the end of a particularly strenuous workout Shaun T says something like, “sometimes I wonder why I do the things I do as a fitness professional” then he answers himself… “cuz I wanna look gooood!”
As a young, single, childless adult I don’t see any reason why I shouldn’t push myself every day to be the healthiest version of me possible. Why shouldn’t I work out for an hour every day 6 days a week? Why would it be so hard to cut out things like diet soda, and dessert, drink more water and eat more fruit and vegetables? When else am I going to have the time or opportunity to focus so much on just me? I was really afraid of working out so hard on the days I worked and losing sleep to be able to fit in my workouts, but I find I look forward to waking up and doing my insanity workouts and that I’m not any more sleepy at work than before. It’s not impossible. There’s no good reason for why not. I’m young and able, and I should take advantage of that. And I wanna look goood!
I didn’t miss any workouts last week. My workout calendar has happy purple check marks on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday. I did them all. In fact, the only 2 workouts I missed since starting were when I had a fever, and I hated missing them!  Sunday is the day I don’t have to do an insanity workout, but I still got some activity in this last Sunday walking up and down San Francisco hills, stairs and some trails at Golden Gate Park for a few hours with 2 of my best buddies. I feel just as tired with the insanity workouts as I did in the beginning because I continue to push myself, but I’m able to do more and the warm up isn’t nearly as daunting as it was at first.
I weighed in yesterday for my weekly weigh in and the scale showed I was 0.4 pounds less than I was when I started about 3 weeks ago. At least it’s something even though I feel like it might as well be nothing. I’m not going to measure myself for another 2 weeks, but I can see myself getting smaller and my clothes are getting bigger. I achieved one of my goals already of being able to comfortably fit into the jeans I wore in nursing school. I now don’t have anything in my closet I can’t easily zip, button, put on or feel comfortable wearing because it’s too small.
Weighing myself has proved to be pointless since I can see results that don’t show up on the scale. Despite this, I can’t help weighing myself. And despite seeing results in other ways besides the number I can’t help but be disappointed in the number. I don’t like measuring myself either because it’s hard to tell if I pulled the measuring tape tighter the time before or not or if I lined it up in the same spot as before- so I decided weekly measuring is not a good idea. My favorite gauge is how my clothes fit. Most of my shirts are much baggier now and the pants I’m used to wearing are starting to fall off if I don’t have a belt. I went shopping the other day and bought the next size shirt down than I usually buy. That was fun.
Another fun area of improvement I can easily gauge is checking my heart rate. Before insanity, at rest I couldn’t get my heart rate much lower than 58 beats a minute. I’ve lowered it by 10 beats a minute. When I have quiet moments at work or when I’m just sitting chilling at home I’ve gotten my heart rate down to 45 beats a minute. Before insanity my usual “just sitting relaxing” heart rate was low 60’s. Now it’s upper 40’s to lower 50’s.

I hadn’t had any dessert for nearly two weeks (the Easter fudge being the last dessert item I indulged in) until this last weekend. I was home visiting my parents and my parents brought home a strawberry boston cream cake thing after a grocery shopping trip Saturday night. I just can’t say no! I can keep myself from buying it and not have it in my house, but if it’s there I have the hardest time convincing myself that I’d be happier without it. I had already done the Plyometric Cardio circuit workout in the morning, and when I saw the dessert I went out to the treadmill and put a couple miles on it and let myself eat cake. It was a tiny piece, but I had another on Sunday too. After two weeks of no dessert I thought it would be too sad to not enjoy it. And it was good. However, my piece on Sunday was a normal sized piece instead of the size of the ½ inch slice I took on Saturday. I should have stuck with the smaller size. Just before the last bite I became nauseated all at once and couldn’t finish it. I felt gross. I didn’t regret eating the cake. I did regret the amount- even though it wasn’t a disgustingly huge piece, it was too much for my body and I should have been content with half of it (which I originally planned on eating, and then changed my mind after eating the first half and went ahead for the rest of it). I felt fine after the first half. My body thanked me for the superfluous second half with a feeling of grossness.
I don’t see anything wrong with dessert. I think people should enjoy yummy things every once in a while, we just have to not eat it every day and be able to eat a smaller portion than we’re used to and be done. There’s a family my parents go to church with who don’t keep sweets in the house, but once a week they ride their bikes to go get an ice cream treat that they eat there. I really like this idea. I think it would help knowing and being able to count on that once a week you’re going to get a treat so it wouldn’t be so hard to say no to other temptations that come along since you know yours is coming, but it isn’t time now. I like the eating a single portion out of the house and not keeping anything in the house…because I honestly have no self-control if it’s accessible when my desire for dessert hits. I also like that there’s a physical activity involved in going to get the treat. Life would not be as enjoyable without dessert, but on the flip side how fun is it to be fat? Kudos to that family. They have found a healthy, fun tradition that allows them to enjoy life.

Monday, April 16, 2012

You give them an inch

Insanity day 15

Since my first Insanity day 2 weeks ago, my weight remains exactly the same down to the tenth of a pound. My leg, arm, and chest measurements also remain the same. I have lost 1/4th of an inch off my hips and 3/4ths of an inch off my waist for a total of 1 inch lost.

I was nervous going into the fit test today. I kind of had an idea of what my measurements and weight would be since I can weigh and measure whenever I want, but I had no idea where I would be with the fit test. I dreaded not seeing any improvement, or doing worse, but I was worrying needlessly. I saw enough improvement in each exercise that let me know that I’m not just wearing myself out every day for nothing. The exercise I had the least improvement in was the push up jack. I only improved by one, but I know my pushups were of a better quality than they were 2 weeks ago and I still improved by one. It helps knowing what my number was before to push me to do better. There were a couple times when I was ready to quit and then looked at my last fit test results and pushed myself that much harder just to get a few more in.

Overall I’m happy with my improvement with the fit test and I’m happy to have lost an inch overall of fat off my body. I would have liked to have seen more weight (any weight for that matter) off the scale since it’s my dream to get down to a certain number, but I guess if my body is getting smaller numbers aren’t everything.

Saturday, April 14, 2012

More cow bell

Insanity Day 13

Pure cardio kicks my BUTT. And I was a little miffed at Shaun T for making me do cardio abs after. Today was the first time the ab workout was introduced in the program. I was completely exhausted from the “pure cardio” workout, and then one of the first things you do in the ab workout is jump and bring your knees up. It was so freaking hard after 40 minutes of insane “pure cardio”. At one point you’re supposed to sit in a C position and lift both your legs with your core (bend in, stretch out, lift up lower down) with your hands resting on the floor at your side just in front of your butt. ARE YOU KIDDING? I felt like my legs were a bajillion pounds and I couldn’t even get them an inch off the floor. The ab workout was a little frustrating. I’m used to not being able to do every exercise in the videos and modifying things that are still hard for me to do (like any kind of pushup exercise) but for some reason I was especially irritated about it in the ab workout. I guess I lose patience after the first 42 minutes of butt kicking.

This week I was very upset because I had to miss 2 days of working out. I did wind up getting sicker, but I was feeling better almost right away so at least I only missed 2 days instead of being wiped out for an entire week. I had a fever on Tuesday and couldn’t even go to work. I was so mad at my body for not keeping me healthy. It seemed I just finally got over my last snotty episode and here I am with another. I hated missing work and I hated missing an insanity workout. I had imagined finishing the 2 months looking at the calendar with check marks on every single work out day. Wednesday I went to work, but still wasn’t feeling up to par and passed on that workout as well. Thursday I was “eased” back in with “cardio recovery”, yesterday I did “cardio power and resistance” in the morning and went for my old 3.5 mile hilly jog in the late afternoon snot and all. I felt like I had to do something extra for missing a couple days and I wanted to see how jogging went after not doing it for 2 weeks. I felt like I owned the hills a bit better than I used to and judging by the amount I was jogging vs walking and how I was feeling I was thoroughly expecting to turn out a better time, but my time stayed the same average time it was before- so that was disappointing. I guess I was jogging slower than I thought, but I have to remember it’s only been 2 weeks, it was my second workout of the day, I’ve got a cold, and my time didn’t get any worse.

My exercise is done for the week, and I’m happy for a rest tomorrow. Monday is the start of week 3 with the fit test and I’ll re-weigh and take measurements again.

Monday, April 9, 2012

If you don't look like this take a break

Insanity day 8

Needless to say today was rough. I was watching more than participating even though my body felt like I was doing everything. I woke up during my sleep today with a mild fever and discomfort whenever I took a deep breath that would make me cough. I finally got up at 4 after about 12 hours of sleep and still felt crummy but there’s no way I was going to miss a workout. It was really really hard today and I hated not being able to do as much as I know I could do if I felt better. Even the stupid warm up and cool down deep breaths were hard.

Before I began I started out by weighing myself to see my weekly progress and I gained a pound and a half since last Monday. Dang you Easter and the three days of chocolate cake and fudge I indulged on. I have a hard time believing that I gained a whole pound and a half of fat though just because I had some cake and fudge over 3 days while I was still working out as hard as I was. Maybe the pound and a half I gained was muscle, maybe it was the pound and a half of chocolate I ate, but either way, Easter is over and I have no more candy or dessert in my house and I expect the scale to go down eventually.

On the bright side, until today when I wasn’t feeling all that great I’ve been enjoying the workouts. I’ve been able to wake up and work out and still make it through a whole shift of work without wanting to die. My muscles are no longer sore in a painful way. Saturday I got to a point where I did the entire warm up without stopping (I was slower than the rest of the group, but I didn’t stop) and I haven’t missed a workout yet. Here’s hoping I’m not really sick or get any worse.

Monday, April 2, 2012

You have been weighed and measured

Insanity Day 1

Today is day number one of Insanity.

Technically it’s week 2 since I kind of started last week, but I’m marking today as my official start day since when I started last week I wasn’t expecting to really “do” insanity so I didn’t take my measurements or do the fit test you’re supposed to do on your first day and every 2 weeks after.

I bought the insanity DVD’s last December after watching an infomercial, liking that it didn’t require any special equipment, and asking my brother who had done it before (along with other workout programs like P90X) if he thought it was worth my money. He assured me it was and encouraged me to do it. I was looking for something I could do inside when it was too cold, wet or
icy to go outside. The only thing was it was never too cold, wet or icy for me to go jogging outside. I even went jogging in the rain. Shaun T sat trapped in his DVD’s on my shelf for the last 3 months. I usually go jogging for just under 3.5 miles around my hilly neighborhood on the days I don’t work minus Sundays. So some weeks I only go out 1 time, other weeks as many as 4 times but usually 2-3 times a week. On the days I work I usually don’t eat as much and figured being a nurse for 12 hours was good enough to wear me out, so I didn’t go jogging on those days. For now, I’m going to put my jogging aside and give Insanity a whirl.

Last week I went home to visit and my brother was home visiting too. He told me to bring my insanity DVD’s so he could “show me how it’s done”. I was shown. After the first day doing the plyometric workout I was so sore I could hardly move. I was especially feeling it in my back and calves. I felt like a little old lady hobbling around. My glutes and quads were tired, but not nearly as sore as my back and gastrocnemius and I attributed that to the hills I frequently walk/jog around where I live. It hurt, but I liked having new sore muscle areas. I found the insanity workouts left me more tired and gave me a more complete body workout than jogging has ever done for me and got my heart rate higher than jogging did too. The next day my brother and I went for a 2 mile jog instead of a workout because I was too sore for anything else. I finished the week doing an insanity workout every day and decided I would actually “do” insanity and since it was more effective and complete than jogging it was worth doing right rather than just an exercise supplement for when I didn’t want to go outside (because as it turns out I’ll always want to go outside anyway).

So today is my official day 1 with it being Monday, allowing me to line up with the workout calendar they provide for you. I have documented today’s weight, measurements and results of the day 1 fit test so I can track my progress over the next 60 days. I refuse to take pictures in my underwear.

The hardest part I’m anticipating is working out on the 3 days a week I work. I work a 12 hour night shift. When I get home from work in the morning I shower, eat and go to sleep. Then I wake up, eat, get ready for work, read a chapter out of the Book of Mormon and go back to work. In order to fit in my workouts (Insanity requires 6 days a week with a rest day on Sunday) I’ll have to wake up an hour (or more) earlier than I usually do. I’m afraid with the physical exertion and less sleep, and inability to always be able to eat every few hours while I’m there I’m going to be extra tired at work…but I’m going for it anyway.

Right now, I can’t even make it through the entire warm up without taking a break. Every time Shaun T says “know your limits” or “it’s ok to take a break” during the actual workout I’m already taking one. My goals with insanity are: improve my fit test by any amount every 2 weeks, be able to get through the entire warm up (warm up mind you, not the whole workout) without a break by the end of the first month, and to lose 10 pounds by the end of the 60 days. Right now I’m only 5 pounds away from the goal weight I’ve had for the last 10 years that I came close to once in nursing school, but have never actually made it to. I’m hoping insanity can bring me there minus another 5 pounds or so.

I don’t expect I’ll be able to do an entire workout without an unscheduled breathing break (or several breaks) at any point in the next 2 months, but I’m ok with that. I’m doing as much as I can and it’s definitely a workout. After the first month it gets kicked up a notch and you move on to the next set of videos with longer and more intense workouts so I’m pretty sure I’m never going to catch up…at least not in the 2 month time frame the program lasts, but I get my heart rate up and my muscles are sore so I’m pretty sure that’s all that matters even if I’ll never be able to do the entire workout without breaks.

I like that all the exercises don’t require any equipment and I can do it in my little living room without much space. All it takes is a tv, dvd player, and a willingness to move. That's one of the reasons I like jogging. All you need is running shoes and outside. Another thing I enjoy about jogging is seeing my improvement in how far up a certain hill I can jog before walking, or how much faster I finish my route than before. I like that insanity gives you ways to see and track your improvement also. I look forward to seeing good changes. It will be interesting to see when this 2 month program is done if I'll be able to better handle the hills on my jogging route that would contribute to a faster finish time. We’ll see how it goes.

I find it ironic that I finally commit to doing Insanity when the weather starts getting nice when I originally got it for when the weather was not nice. Oh well. I might have to go for some walks on my days off in addition to my insanity workouts so I can get my outside time too.