Friday, September 30, 2011

Lower Body Day

September 30, 2011.

I've talked about my attempt at my new routine on my own and my encounter with Jodi and Carson to actually learn it. Now I should fill you in on what I actually did. I'm starting a 2-3 different workout day routines. On Wednesday I ran through the lower body circuit (see below) and this week I will learn two others. It is Friday night and my legs are still super sore, but good sore.

Using the lowest box step (and trying not to rest inbetween):
Step-ups 15 reps per leg in a row holding 15lb weights
Sit and Stands 15 reps holding 17.5lb weights
Step Lunges 15 reps per leg in a row holding 17.5lb weights
Lateral Squats (squat with one foot one step, hop over step, squat again) 20 reps

Push Throughs 20
Reverse Crunch (hold legs in air, lift butt off ground) 20
Scissors 20

Aim for 5 min with incline of 6 and resistance of 15
Chest Press on Cables 15 reps at 8
Fly Curls 15 reps at 6

Toe Touch 20
Leg Drop 20
Modified V-Sit 20

(repeat arms above)

Cybex: as above

Lateral Pull Down 15 reps at 55lbs
Straight Arms Pull Down 15 reps at 27.5lbs

Russian Twist 20
Modified Double Crunch 20
Bicycles 20

(repeat arms as above)

Cybex: as above

Curly Barbells:
Shoulder Press with a Squat 15 reps at 25lbs
Bicep Curl 15 reps at 35lbs
(2nd set of each if inclined to do so)

Stretch Out

This program will take me more than an hour to complete. I have yet to do it in full and at the end of my training session with Jodi and Carson I went home with the shakes and cold sweats again, drank some G2 upon arrival at home, tried very hard not to throw up, and passed out on the couch for 2 hours. Bringing G2 to the gym with me again next time.

"Meet Carson: My Placement Student"

September 30, 2011.

I showed up at the gym on Wednesday ready to learn my new program that I attempted on my own last Sunday. I was excited! I was enthusiastic! I was ready to exhaust myself with a new workout routine guided by Jodi, my trainer. I even hopped on the dreaded stairmill for 1.5 minutes at 85 steps/minute for my warm-up because I arrived late to the gym and wanted to get my heart pumping. I walked over to the training desk to meet Jodi and that is when I met my biggest challenge to date. His name is Carson.

Carson apparently is Jodi's placement student. He is learning how to become a personal trainer. As a teacher, I fully embrace the practice of teaching others and it usually does not phase me the slightest to include students in whatever I am going to see an expert for (the doctor, the chiropractor, etc.) even when I am surprised with this information upon arrival. My heart stopped though at the thought of having to complete a new, difficult workout under the guidance of not one, but two trainers, especially when one of them was a male trainer. I definitely do not have my workout confidence built up enough for this yet. I sucked it up though and off we went.

Turns out Carson is a pretty cool dude. He is very quiet and respectful and encouraging. As I was sweaty and dying for breathe and unable to complete some of my tasks without stopping I did not get embarrassed for long as he was very professional and mostly acted as a gopher for the equipment we needed or just observed my form (something Jodi brags about that I get spot on most of the time). I'm meeting with Jodi (and likely Carson) again twice next week. I'm hoping it goes just as well.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

I'm Excited Again!!!

September 25, 2011.

Last night I decided I was getting back on the gym bandwagon and dragging my butt out of bed this morning at 7am in order to do so. When 7am rolled around I was not as enthusiastic and it took much willing to get my head off the pillow. I even considered bribing myself with a swimming workout instead of a gym workout, but decided I had made a committment to returning to my cardio and weights.

I arrived at the gym less than enthusiastic about my morning workout, but happy that we only had an hour before Chris and I had to return home so this workout was going to go by quick. Plus, I intended to only do my favourite gym things so it didn't seem all that bad.

I pulled my tracking sheet out of the filing cabinet with the intent to only mark down that I did in fact come to the gym today and was surprised to see that Jodi had attached my new workout sheet to my old ones (we were supposed to meet last week to learn a new program). I quickly read through it and discovered that for the most part I knew how to do the workout she had planned. So much for my original intentions, but game on for the new program!

The new program is a lower body workout, which leads me to believe that we will be adding an upper body workout on alternating gym visits. Yeah!!! That means the gym becomes less monotonous. I will post the full routine once I've met with Jodi to go over it, but for now here is an overview...

Various squats, lunges, and step-ups while holding weights.
Cardio on the Cybex
3 types of abs

Arms on the cables and weight machines
3 types of abs

More arms
3 types of abs


It was great! I didn't finish it all in the hour because it took me awhile to figure out some of the sets (with Chris' help), but the time went by super fast and nothing seemed overly strenuous. There was no time limit set for my cardio (I figured Jodi's intention was 5 min) so I decided to go as long as I could and then try and beat that time the next session. I did 3 min and 3.5 min the two times I hopped on the Cybex today.

Today I'm back to loving the gym!!!

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Weekly Weigh-in 14 and 15

September 24, 2011.

I've been falling down on the job for blogging lately. Mostly because I've fallen down on the attending the gym goal as well. Week 14 I went up .1kgs and again week 15 I went up .1kgs. I have been hovering around the same weight for the past 2 months and I have stopped putting the effort into the gym.

I'm surprised how long I lasted at the gym going on a regular basis. I've never kept it up this long. I'm very bored with it right now and am not seeing the progress I want so I put in less effort and then get less results and that just starts the whole cycle over again. I do want to go to the gym again and begin to love it again as well. Tomorrow I'm dragging my butt out of bed and heading in with Chris for a much needed returning workout. I've decided to do my favourites from all my workouts combined to re-energize and excite myself.

I've also figured out my work schedule for the next two months and have built the gym back into my routines. Tomorrow is the start of revisiting my goals and working towards success.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Teaching Health and Phys. Ed.

September 14, 2011.

I'm a teacher and as such I teach a variety of subjects. The most mind-boggling one to me though is health and physical education. Growing up we had an assigned teacher that taught this to all classes. She was fit and energetic and intimidating. This year the grade twos at one school get me - soft, slow-moving, and friendly. I am trying to lead by example which has me showing up sweaty to the staff room for lunch with looks of "did you really just run around the field playing soccer with the students"? And my answer is yes. I think it is important to show the students that I am trying to be healthy too.

Today I was working on my health class plans though and remembered my frustration with the Canada's Food Guide. Nobody eats like that. I would never be able to eat as much food as it recommends to get all my servings in. Yet, next week I need to teach my students to do exactly that. I have planned part of my lesson to be a photo slideshow of my meals and snacks for the week. We will be discussing is it healthy or not? and if not, how can you make it healthier? Should be interesting so I might post the results here as a comparison to the Food Guide. Nothing better than doing the same assignments I give my students. I might even challenge you to do the same...more details to follow. For now, think about your own health plan and whether or not it is a good example for a 7 year old to follow. I know mine will be changing...Now off to the open house meet the teacher barbeque (where I will be serving and not eating).

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Weekly Weigh-in Week 13 and Talkative Strangers

September 11, 2011.
I did my weigh-in yesterday, but was unable to post it online. I went down again so I'm back on track. I did hit my ultime lowest weigh since starting this journey about mid-week, but I gained some of it back as soon as I returned to the gym so I think my theory of losing muscle was correct.
I went to the gym again today with new motivation because I'm getting a new program on Thursday. I want to have great increases to show from this current routine so I stepped it up a notch and have 1-2 more days to keep it going. Stairmill is killing my body and my spirit. I'm going for a do it at a faster speed for less time approach right now.
I also thought I'd be nice at the gym today and made a comment to a woman doing a plank with a hip shimmy that her workout looked brutal and it was awesome she was doing it. I continued on my way, but another woman overheard and took my passing comment to someone else as an open invitation to yap to me for 15 minutes. She didn't get the hint when I tried desperately to return to lifting my weights while she talked more at me than with me. I gave in and eventually reciprocated the conversation (she was pleasant, but odd) and then sent her on her way by getting into push up form. I do not go to the gym to talk with strangers. I do not make it a point to talk to anyone when I am dripping with sweat and holding 35lbs of weights. Why must others using only the walking track at the gym talk to me? She wasn't the first and she won't be the last. If you're at the gym - workout. Period.
This week down .2kgs or .4lbs.
Overall down 3kgs or 6.6lbs.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

It's Been A Long Time

September 8, 2011.

I went to the gym today after a long time away from it. Time seemed to pass by without my knowing it because I thought I had missed one week at the gym, but my workout tracking sheet does not lie and I have missed two weeks. Brutal. I paid for it too at the gym today.

I was concerned because over the last few days I have been losing weight. I'm at my lowest weight yet and I haven't been to the gym and I have been eating lots of sweet foods. I thought I must be losing muscle mass, but Chris doesn't seem to think so. I went back to the gym today to get back with my program and see where I lapsed.

I hopped on the stairmill and did a straight 3 minutes at 65 steps/min which is better than I have ever done. Bad news is I pushed myself so much I never recovered from it and couldn't convince myself to hop back on the stairmill as my heart felt like it was exploding out of my chest. I very much like the rest of my workout routine right now and I increased my weights and matched my scores for reps and sets so my muscles were actually doing better. I figured at this point it is the stairmill that is keeping me from the gym. I just out and out hate that machine. It is exhausting and hard and boring. I preferred running on the treadmill.

As I did my abs and stretch out I resolved that I was going to book another session with Jodi to change up my workout just so I will continue going to the gym. It didn't help either that the gym was super busy with students returning to the college and trying out their free gym passes and the fact that I just paid $900 for Chris and I to have a one year membership to this gym. Working out is pricey.

Back to the gym tomorrow to see how things are looking up.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Friend Making Mondays (FMM)

September 5, 2011.

Apparently I need to do this little quiz because some bloggers I follow are doing it and I would like to stay connected.

The setup:
If you’ve taken part in FMM then you know the rules. If you’re new, please take a moment to answer this week’s question on your own blog then add your link in the comments section here at: so we can all see your FMM questions and answers. Please invite your blog readers to add their links here too so everyone has to opportunity to be seen. The idea is to connect with other awesome bloggers so take a moment to post your own FMM post and comment on a couple of other posts. Now it’s time for this week’s topic!

1. What is your favourite food? My favourite food is watermelon. I could eat it for every meal (and have). Even as a child I was known to eat through half a watermelon in one sitting on more than one occasion. A close second is ice cream (nothing with a chocolate base though) as it is also a great meal replacement and comes in many varieties. Current favourite flavour is birthday cake by Kawartha Dairy.

2. What is your favourite childhood memory? My favourite childhood memory is playing hide and seek on my street with the neighbourhood kids. We lived on a court in a tiny village where the fire hydrant on our yard or the sewer grate in the round-about would always be home base. We had the kind of street where no one had a fence so you could have free run of everyone’s backyards (including those that did not have kids), hide in the woods or down by the creek, climb trees, and go as far as the medical centre and church at the entrance to our street. Even the kids from the neighbouring streets came to ours to play hide and seek, tag, baseball, road hockey, or one day even to swim in the street and the churchyard when the creek ran over.

3. What is your favourite way to burn calories? Resting. Granted it doesn’t burn that many calories. Maybe that is why I have a blog about learning to love the gym this year. I am trying to find active things I enjoy doing. I love swimming, I loved biking before my butt got too big to be comfortable on a bike seat, and at one point in time I even liked skiing. These are things that I’m working towards getting better at as I get in better shape. To do that I am learning to love lifting weights, running on the treadmill, and still working on enjoying the stairmill (killer workout).

4. What is your favourite mode of technological communication? A land line phone is still my favourite. Nothing beats talking to someone in person, remembering their phone number without accessing a contact list, and hearing the phone ring because someone was thinking of you.

5. Who is your favourite actor/ess? I’m not really an I love so and so kind of person when it comes to famous people. So if I have to choose then I like Denzel Washington and John Travolta. I also like Michelle Pfeifer and Sally Field. I think that when it comes to music and movies our generation is lacking great people in the field. Too much focus on looks and who can garner publicity and not enough on talent.

6. What is your favourite lip colour? Natural. I don’t wear make up very often. When I do I wear Loreal Taffeta (a pink shade) or another Loreal pink with glitter in it with some Rimmel clear Volume Booster over top (it doesn’t plump your lips but it gives them a sting that in my mind makes me think it smoothes my chapped lips better).

7. Who is your favourite historical figure? I hate history so much so that I can’t even think of an historical figure that I might mention, let alone one that I might consider to be my favourite. I took grade 10 Canadian history twice because I failed it the first time and I barely made it through the second time. I hated all things war, but loved hearing about what music and clothing they wore at the time – didn’t really help me out on the exams though.

8. Who is your favourite athlete? I don’t watch sports. I used to watch figure skating when I was a kid, but then the great skaters retired or got old. Sometimes I like to watch rhythm gymnastics. I think I would like football if I was going to get into watching a sport regularly, but my husband loves hockey so I see far too many sports games than I care to at this point.

9. What is your favourite TV network? The New CW for all my teen dramas. I really like HBO shows too, but I tend to watch them online – Six Feet Under is my all time favourite tv show and if you haven’t seen it I recommend you watch all the episodes just so you can see the best series finale of all time. I watched the whole series within three weeks I was so addicted.

10. What is your favourite site on the web? My favourite site on the web is my husband’s blog because I get to read funny stories about his life and it sparks discussion between us sometimes. But that’s the sappy side of me. Something more practical for others… PostSecret, CakeWrecks, 1000 Awesome Things, YouTube, BestofYouTube, channel131, and WagJag.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Weekly Weigh-in 3 months

September 2, 2011.
I thought I would be a lot further along than I am at this point. However, I barely made it to the gym this week. Surprisingly I didn't go up by much, but I bet I lost some muscle from the lack of workouts. Next week I'm back to teaching. It will be interesting to see how my workout schedule changes. I'll post my commitment to working out on my blog when I figure it out.
This week up .1kgs or .2lbs.
Overall down 2.8kgs or 6.2lbs.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

5 Thoughts That Stop You From Losing Weight

September 1, 2011.

This was an article that was forwarded to me by someone else who went on a weight loss journey and successfully lost 50lbs over a few year. Congrats to her! It is a long process.

The article can be found in full here:

Here are my thoughts on it...

My first thought before even reading a word of this article is that thoughts are always at the centre of stopping me from losing weight. It has nothing to do with my ability to do the workouts or my time available to go to the gym or my knowledge about diet and exercise (although I do like to blame these things frequently). It has everything to do with my mindset and my choice to not go, not workout, not eat healthy, etc. If I had even half of my husband's determination and mindset I would be shedding the pounds as fast as he did (40lbs in one summer I believe).

Limiting Thought #1: "I'm afraid I'll never be able to lose weight."
I have never agreed with this thought. I know I can lose weight. I know that up until this point I have chosen not to try and that at this point I am trying a little, but certainly not as much as I could. Everyone can lose weight - if this statement comes out of your mouth followed by any kind of reasoning I will smile and nod, but inside think that you are looking for excuses. The statement I do err in making is "I know I can lose a lot weight, but I will never reach my ideal body weight."

Limiting Thought #2: "Even when I lose weight, I always gain it back. What's the use?"
I have totally said this. My weight goes up and down like a yo-yo right now. I find it frustrating. I do see the use of losing the weight though as overall my weight is still down, my measurements are improving, and I feel better - the latter point being the key. I have never used this statement though in terms of losing lots of weight then gaining it all back, losing and gaining again in a viscious cycle. I lost 40lbs once by going to the gym every day years ago. It took me two years to gain it back, but I gained it back because I didn't do anything active and I ate junk. When I lose weight this go around I intend to keep it off. I gained weight every year of post-secondary school and lost it the year I worked full-time between college and university. I am not going back to school so I am not regaining the weight.

Limiting Thought #3: "I've tried everything to lose weight and nothing seems to work"
If you've tried everything and it is not working then the problem is partially what you are trying, but mostly the problem is you. I've heard friends talk about so many diets, pills, workouts, etc. that they have tried unsuccessfully. I will never take anything to enhance/substitute my diet or increase my metabolism, etc. I will eat good, healthy foods. If I eliminated junk food I would see more of a difference, but I'm not willing to do so at this point in time. If your workout is not working then you are not working hard enough - you should finished soaked in sweat. You are also not tackling a workout that is challenging you.

Limiting Thought #4: "I hate my body."
This has not been an issue for me since I was 16. Perhaps that is why I have allowed myself to gain so much weight. I still think I look hot. I still love to look at myself in the mirror and admire my curves. When I was 16 and weighed 150lbs I had a tiny pouch of a tummy that I hated and wanted to lose. I competed to be Millbrook Fair Ambassador because a friend begged me when they were short participants and I agreed because I would have to give a speech and I was currently practicing my public speaking (to later use as a teacher). The girls I admired for their beauty that were stick thin complained in the change room about their looks and how fat they were. I thought if they don't think their perfect then I will never be able to obtain perfection by losing weight either so enough of that. I developed a high sense of confidence right then and beat all my idols by placing first runner up to a girl from out of town - she deserved it.

Limiting Thought #5: "It's taking too long. Nothing's changing."
Losing weight takes forever. I hate that I am gaining weight (muscle) to lose weight (fat). It makes it confusing. I feel the difference though. Muscles are popping up under my skin - you can't see them through the fat yet, but I feel them there. At 1-2lbs a week of healthy weight loss I thought this process would take me forever. At only 5lbs in 12 weeks roughly it is taking an eternity. Things are changing though...I like to focus on those. Good thing I'm patient (most of the time).

Interesting article sent my way. Thank you for it. It helped me bring some thoughts together. Now to create a plan of action based on it so my thought help me lose weight instead of stop me.