Wednesday, January 02, 2013
Is my exercise routine getting results? Sometimes, I think it isn't, but actually in the long run, it is. I focus on core and full body workouts on MWF and cardio on T/Th/Sa. When doing my strength exercises, I include cardio by moving quickly from one exercise to the next through all core and eight body exercises. This keeps my heart rate at around 70% of capacity throughout 45 minutes of intensive workout.
I like what I'm doing and it shows on my body. I'm getting cut marks on my abs and chest!
Thursday, December 27, 2012
I lost one of the pounds I gained way before Christmas during the holiday. I enjoyed a couple of desserts and could easily have eaten a whole lot more pie. Let me say that I'm a "pie guy". I love pies!
Thankfully, I chose to remain focused on my weight loss goals. Even though I exceeded my daily caloric requirement by a few hundred calories on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, stepping on the scale this morning showed that I actually lost one pound this past week!
So, what's my theory? I don't know, but I do know you don't lose weight by stuffing yourself with cheesecake, cherry pie and ice cream. Overeating is simply not a good weight loss solution. Having said that, here are a couple of educated guesses:
First, I burn up approximately one day's worth of caloric intake at the gym every week. So fitness is an essential ingredient to successful weight loss.
Second, I went light on food the day after Christmas because I really didn't have much of an appetite.
I think either one or both of these things may explain why I dropped instead of gained weight during the Christmas holiday.
The moral of this story seems to be that if you're doing what you're supposed to be doing most of the time (proper nutrition and exercise), weight loss will follow despite fudging a bit here and there.
Sunday, December 02, 2012
Several weeks ago, I watched an SP video suggesting that our "happy" weight is often what we can reach even though it may be more than our goal weight. Well, for the past three weeks, I've reached a plateau. The scale isn't budging! This is understandable because I haven't been as active at the gym since I fractured my finger on a dumbbell several weeks ago. So the scale hasn't budged. I have two pounds or so to go attain goal weight and six pounds to go to attain optimum weight. And I want the pounds OFF!!
Today, I began the SP Plateau Busting Program through SP. It's back to the gym tomorrow! I need the motivation to hang in and work through a frustrating moment.
Sunday, October 21, 2012
In SP today, SP Trainer Nicole advised mixing up the routine to avoid plateaus. Two weeks ago, I began doing just that.
Since June, I have alternated a brisk walk with a pace walk on the treadmill. A few weeks ago, I discovered my body was no longer responding to the treadmill. So after consulting a trainer, I began using the elliptical trainer. It took a few cardio sessions to get used to this machine but oh, was it worth it!
The settings on the trainer allow you to target specific muscle groups and adjust the resistance. In two weeks of intensive cardio, I was doing a 10-minute mile on the elliptical trainer and burning nearly 1/3 more calories than on the treadmill. Moreover, I melted 1.5 inches of fat around my gut by targeting my glutes and quads It's an amazing machine.
There's enough variation on the elliptical trainer to vary your workout, so get off the mill and get on the trainer! It will become your new best cardio friend! Guarantee it!
Wednesday, October 03, 2012
Today, I accomplished what was for me an amazing feat.
-I worked until 10pm last night, went to bed at 11:15pm and slept until 5:00 AM. I'm accustomed to around seven hours of sleep per night, but it didn't work out that way last night.
Today, as usual, I taught school all day and, by the end of the day, was quite tired. Nevertheless, I drove my step-daughter to work, then went to the gym for a full-body workout and wound up kicking up my program to the next weight level with dumbbells.
I never imagined that I could actually get past holding 50 pounds in each hand just four months ago. But today, I was holding 90 pounds in each hand for my squats, 60 pounds in each hand for chest presses, and 50 pounds in each hand for shoulder presses, throwbacks and bicep curls.
It was amazing workout! But it was hardly easy. I was uncomfortable with the new weight levels. Dumbbells are heavy and awkward and the exercises are difficult. But, despite how tired I had been throughout the day, I gave it a try and surprised myself!
It took me a great deal of effort just to make it to the gym after a short night and a long work day. But I broke through the exercise plateau and learned a valuable lesson: we must never become so comfortable where we are that stop challenging ourselves to reach higher and press forward. If we do not challenge ourselves to climb the next steep hill that lays before us, we will soon become stagnant, ineffective, and miss the joy that hard work affords us.
There are many steep hills to climb in every area of our lives. We must not approach our lives with a spirit of fear, complacency or self-satisfaction but brace ourselves for the challenges that lay ahead and yet are ever before us. When we approach our tomorrows with faith and confidence, we break through plateaus and are surprised by joy at the resilient spirit that lies within us.
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