Ready to get FIXed

Happy MONDAY!  Let’s kick it this June!  What are YOU doing to be happy and healthy?

GREAT news is that my challenge group on Facebook for the 21-Day Fix is full!

About a week or so ago, I put out a post on FB to see if anyone wanted to do this program with me, and whammo!  I had an amazing response, and from some people I’d never have expected.

All of us in this challenge group have our own health and fitness goals to smash, and this program is flexible enough to appeal to everyone. STOKED. We’re gonna rock it together!

***

My 21-Day Fix kit arrived – only 10 days to Canada after I’d ordered. Not too bad.

It contains a meal plan book, a getting started booklet, a 3-day fix (intense!) booklet,  the workout DVDs + a Plyo Fix DVD, a Shakeology shaker cup and then those cute little coloured boxes – WHICH ARE REALLY REALLY REALLY SMALL! – to measure out food. (Did I mention the boxes are small? I feel like I’m already getting my portion control lesson.)

To start, you need to figure out the calorie level for your own weight and body needs, incorporating both the workouts and a caloric deficit for weight loss (aka MATH).  There is a handy dandy formula to do that in the ‘eating plan’ book.  Then you match your calorie level with the calorie chart which shows how many of each coloured box you may have per day. So, I get…

  • 5 green – greens
  • 3 purple – fruit
  • 5 red – proteins
  • 4 yellow – carbs, beverages (including a sub-out for wine)
  • 1 blue – healthy fats, like nuts, avocado, cheese, hummus
  • 1 orange – seeds, dressings
  • 5 teaspoons – oils, seed/nut butters

I can have all the vinegar, garlic and ginger I want for free – yippeee – and a couple of other little things (Frank’s RedHot, anyone?).

For water, the program suggests drinking your body weight, divided by two, in ounces. For me, that’s just over 12 cups of water a day. That’s also a lot of bathroom trips…

Each coloured box has a dedicated page in the book with a list of approved foods for the category. The lists are not random – the higher up on the list, the better choice it is for you in terms of nutrients. Mmmm why are sardines at the top of the protein list – ick!

The book also has a set of recipes for all container colours and a brief dining out reference page – because chances are in 21 days you might have to eat something someone else has prepared, and you’d want to be ready.

Tah-dah!  I’ve got a week before the challenge group begins – a few of the others are still waiting on their kits to arrive. In the mean time, I’ve got some shopping and meal planning to do!

Plateau, schmateau

change starts with youOkay.

Soooo, a road trip followed by a couple of races and a case of extreme taper training = no weight loss. At all.

My goal of losing 8 lbs for the month of May is kinda shot right now, unless there’s a miracle.  And it’s not like I can honestly say I’ve gained muscle (from what, sitting on my butt?) or lost inches.  Maybe I’ll go with the idea that my body is taking a break after the 12 lbs lost last month.

Boy, when one’s head isn’t in the game, it sure shows.

I started tracking food again today, and saw that I’m actually coming a little too far under in my calorie count. I’m actually not eating enough.  DUH.  All that opportunity to go mental on broccoli, spinach, etc – lost.

The big race is Saturday, and I swear my muscles are seizing up due to lack of use.  I’ll have to get out the roller or sit in the hot tub to loosen those suckers up a bit in order to make that 25K on the weekend. I just want to go, run, have fun, FINISH, and go home.

I put up my Shaun T training poster and set up my workout area for Insanity – The Asylum, but I think I’m going to hold off a bit until my flexibility returns.  Keep your shirt on, Shaun.  I’ll be back in a month.

Instead, I’m rounding up friends to do the 21-Day Fix with me in June.  It’s all about three weeks of getting our shit sorted.  (You wanna hot body? You wanna Bugatti…?)  And knocking me off this stupid plateau.

Rumour has it from others I know who’ve done it…10 lbs + several inches lost in 3 weeks (can this be??) and a meal plan with portion guidance so you don’t fall off the track into nacho heaven…by accident. Haha. Although, nacho heaven can be a nice place, but not if you have like, a class reunion, wedding, or some other social event this summer when you need to be slim n’hot.

Oh yes, this just got all VANITY up in yer grill…

Want to join me?

Time to get on with it – for reals.

Like, summer is practically HERE.

April weigh in

April weigh in!

April weigh in!

How quickly a month goes by!

March saw a more concerted effort to stay clean with the eating and stick to the training plan for the half marathon. Life balance still factored in with a Guinness-filled St. Paddy’s Day and a stress-eating fest of Crave cupcakes nearing fiscal year end.

In all, down 15 lbs since the beginning of the year, and down 7.2 since last month. I didn’t quite make my 10 lb goal for March, but at least the scale is headed in the right direction this time.  I tell you, there was a lot of sweat and spinach involved in that 7.2 lb weight loss.

Jan 01 – 235 lbs
Feb 01 – 225.2 lbs
Mar 01 – 227.2 lbs
Apr 01 – 220.0 lbs

For inches around the waist, I’ve gone down a smidge as well:

Jan 01 – 50 inches
Feb 01 – 47.5 inches
Mar 01 – too pissed off to measure
Apr 01 – 44 inches

What does April hold??  Well, it would be splendid to lose a bit more weight before the big race. Seriously – all vanity aside – I can only assume my feet and knees will thank me if they aren’t hauling that morbidly obese label around.

I’m sticking with the 10 lb weight loss goal for the month of April. Gonna blitz it!  And to making super healthy choices in meal planning.  Breakfast and lunches are covered, but dinner is always a crapshoot… Will look into some teenage-boy-and-husband friendly foods that won’t kill ’em in the long run.

For a little bit of monetary motivation, I joined up on Solana’s DietBet, which starts tomorrow.

This is my first DietBet, and although I thought the concept was cheesy at first, I found some sole sistahs who think it’s a great kick in the pants to the race season. So, I signed up.  This one is $25 and players have one month to lose 4% of their body weight.  Do so, and you get your money back and then some.  If you don’t make your goal, you lose your little investment.

Why the hell not… here’s to a rockin’ awesome healthy April!  Wooot!  And to baseline 4 mile runs! Woooot!

PS: My new Sauconys … make my left foot go numb.  I’m soooo sad. BUT that was only one day out in them, walking. Hopefully this will just go away, otherwise I now have a nice pair of shoes that can only be worn for like, 15 minutes at a time.

 

Pushing through barriers

Pain of overweightTotally stoked about the Week 5 (do-over) of my couch to half marathon training plan. I made every single training day – woot – and was very careful with my eating/drinking!!

Here are the highlights:

Your mind will quit 100 times before your body ever does.  Feel the pain and do it anyway.

I’ve started paying attention to when I start wanting to throw in the towel when I’m running. Most times, my breathing is okay, my legs are coping, etc. I can still run, but Brain just says, “Hey girl, you’ve already run long enough. You deserve a break.” I’m trying to push past that. It’s hard. But I’m doing it bit by bit.

After you think “Holy shit, I can’t!” Stop and think “Holy shit, I just did.”

This Saturday was my 5 miler on the treadmill.  That is a loooong way for me.  And I did it. There was walking – no doubt! But I finished it in one hour and ten minutes. And then I could go to the hot tub.  That same day, I clocked 31K steps on my FitBit. Yesssssssss.

Fitness is 20% exercise and 80% nutrition.  You can’t outrun your fork.

This week I tried to view food as fuel… tying it in with my training plan, I looked to what my body needed in order to run properly, but without adding in too many empty calories.  Everything I put in my mouth had a purpose, with the exception of two cappuccinos (with sugar!) which were a total treat.

I think I like who I am becoming.

I’m the first to admit that I latch on to something, do it for a while, accomplish a few goals, then move on.  I’d like to think that my “project fitness 2014” is a little more than that.  It’s nice to feel proud of myself, and to be healthier.

Here’s to starting Week 6 of half-marathon training!

Sweet Sunday snowshoe

Sundays no longer equal brunch, football or sleeping in.  Sundays are now when-am-I-gonna-meet-you-to-snowshoe??

Round 3 – ding!  Snowshoeing this week was back at the dog park, fully loaded with packs ready for the mountains.  The only thing I hadn’t yet packed was the first aid kit.  And the cheese and jerky. And the rum.  And the rope. (Rope just seemed like a good thing to complement the duct tape which was already packed. It also is a lovely accent for the snazzy blue & orange avalanche shovel Jill bought.)

Thankfully, it was a glorious day at only -6C and it was our first warm weather, sunny sky go at it.  Long, slow ascents and a couple of loops.  It almost felt as though this was getting easier.  We had a few minor heart attack moments when dogs came racing past or stealthily just appeared at our sides.  Good prep for any unexpected backcountry visitors on our 11km trek next week: you know, grizzly bears taking a break from hibernation, or cougars just out to plain old snap our necks.

Yes, cougars.  Cougars stalking us is one of our safety concerns for our Rocky Mountain snowshoe adventure. Another is turning left too early (aka getting lost) at Deception Pass and falling off a cliff in a white-out.  There are one or two more, but thankfully I can’t recall them right now.

This Sunday snowshoe outing with Jill ended the week on a high note.  For the past several days I struggled with getting to the gym in the mornings, which meant I then had to go at night with 20 million other people. I dreaded that.  And then I began to lose focus – why bother? I’m never going to get into shape. It’s going to take forever and there will be so many disappointments along this journey. And my knee hurts. So, why not take a “rest day” or three?

Right?? Not sure where the devil on the shoulder came from, but it was rough. Once I was out snowshoeing on Sunday, it was all, riiiiight. Now I recall what I was training for… And it didn’t hurt that we had a couple of interested bystanders at the dog park be all like, “That looks like good training!” (why yes, yes it is) “Why are your snowshoes so big?” (it’s all about size, ma’am) and the like.  Part of you just wants to smile smugly and say nothing, and the other part wants to talk their ears off about training, snowshoeing, getting fit, going to the mountains and other exciting parts of my life story.

Only three more work days until we hit the road for the Rockies! Woot!

Keep close to Nature’s heart… and break clear away, once in awhile, and climb a mountain or spend a week in the woods. Wash your spirit clean.
~ John Muir

January joiners

I get that I’ve started my blog about my quest for fit-supah-stahhh-dom in January.

Mentally, I started in October. It just takes a hell of a lot of visualization to get from my cozy nest of complacency to …. actual movement.

I’m essentially in the January Joiners category. An annoying person who crowds the gym, takes up the machines, and will break up quietly with fitness somewhere around the 25th of the month.

Having said that, I am trying to nail down a lifestyle change. Really! Truly! And in that, I decided to break out of my treadmill & snowshoe routine (yes, my one-week routine) and try some of the nifty fitness classes offered at the community centre where I work out.

Zumba is supposed to be all that, so zipped out of work and skipped my duties of meal prep/foraging for food to the boys. I made it to the gym from work in time, changed into my workout gear and promptly chickened out. I ended up back on the treadmill marching through my 3 mile challenge.

The gym at night is a completely different animal. Not sure if I’m just witnessing the influx of the January Joiners or if it just is massive chaos in the evenings. People. Everywhere. I have crowd issues. Yikes. The saving grace tonight was watching the aqua-size class as I walked.  The treadmills overlook the pool area including the kids play area, the water slide, the hot tub and the swim lanes. The aqua-size instructor was like an unbelievably animated KD Lang. Punching and kicking the air on the pool deck, rocking out to the music I couldn’t hear, all while her dutiful followers mimicked her exercises in slow-mo in the pool. Highly entertaining.

Of course, I hadn’t had supper, was getting tired, etc, so I figured let’s end this torture and actually run on the treadmill.

Bahahhaaaaa. SO WRONG.  The minute I upped the speed and began to trot, I realized I needed a new sports bra.  Dire need of a new sports bra.  At the same time, my back fat started to move. MOVE, I say. I’ve got no excuse for that.  I must have had so many layers on during the resolution run outside in the winter weather that nothing could possibly wiggle.  Not so much in the gym.

Pride kicked in immediately.  I couldn’t reduce the speed. What would the guy on the next treadmill think? (He probably wouldn’t care). But I also couldn’t hold my boobs in place like Ellen Barkin in Switch. (Back fat was on it’s own.) So I ran. Gotta hit 3 miles, gotta run.  Then my right knee kinda got twitchy.  Like, really. Every part of me was malfunctioning as I tried to look normal running on the damn treadmill.  After several minutes of this attempt at running, I casually reduced the speed, nodded at the guy next to me and said, “intervals.”

I am such a weirdo.

Thoughts on training

Training. To train. Train-a-rama. I like this version of the definition of “train”: gaining the physical ability to perform and survive.

Yeah, baby.

I had to switch my thought process from “going to the gym”, “losing weight” and so on to TRAINING. It just seemed more exciting. To train.  I’m training so I can go up the stairs from the LRT station and not keel over. I’m training so I can one day do the monkey bars again. I’m training so I don’t die on snowshoes in the wilderness.

It keeps coming back to setting little goals and making them happen bit by bit.

My average gym workouts look like this:

  • 40-60 minutes – incline treadmill, no lower than a 5 (of 15)
  • Push ups
  • Sit ups
  • Leg lifts
  • Mountain climbers Stopped doing these in public when my shirt almost went over my head. No one needs to see that.
  • Squats
  • Planks – sort of
  • Assorted moves using your own body weight against you that I’ve seen on TV, You Tube, etc but have no idea of the names.

All these floor exercises I do in the fitness alcoves found dotted around the track at my community centre. I grab a mat, throw up my hood a la Rocky Balboa, plug in my head phones and just do it. I do all the embarrassing/humiliating exercises after the runners have passed by.

I want to branch out a bit, but it took enough guts to do my alcove training in public. No self confidence, perhaps. I think people are whispering, “What makes her think SHE can do that??” Like box jumps. Or weight lifting. Or maybe an intimidating class like “Cardio Thunder.” I have to work my way into trying new stuff and not feeling like an idiot. Not to mention my lack of memory and coordination.

My January weight loss goal – as I told my little fitness group on FB – was to lose 9 lbs in January. So, hopefully all that nonsense above is good to go for the first month. Oh, and that 3 mile a day for 45 days challenge?  Killing me.  I feel so guilty if I don’t get 3 miles in!!  So, I just do it.