My first mistake was mixing it in water because I was out of almond milk. My second mistake was also mixing it with my chocolate stuff. It tasted like somebody melted some chocolate and vanilla Tootsie rolls together, but forgot to take the wrappers off first.

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Barf.

Edit: Apparently I need some lessons on updating my WordPress from my phone.

Body Snapshot 7/6/12

Posted: August 6, 2012 in Stats
Tags: , ,

I was going to wait to do more body updates until I had broken my next weight “bracket” (aka, once I got a scale reading below 150) but progress has been slow (though consistent!) but I’ve got a few numbers to share with you.

See, I’m lucky enough to work for a company that views our health as high importance. We have an onsite gym, discounts at local gyms, organized sports teams, we take part in Bike to Work month, encourage and organize volunteer work (including some physically demanding tasks), hold “Wellness” fairs and most recently, a “Wellness” reading that they refer to as a “Blueprint for Health.” The idea is that you receive four numbers as a snapshot of your overall health: glucose, cholesterol, blood pressure and BMI.

Generally, I find the BMI to be complete and utter bullshit. BMI stands for Body Mass Index and it is literally a chart, which is meant to apply to all adult ages and genders, that tells you whether or not you’re fat based on how tall you are versus how much you weigh. It does not take muscle into consideration. Based on the BMI, a number of bodybuilders are considered obese, despite having very little body fat – getting an actual body fat percentage reading is far more accurate. Let’s not even get into the discussion of how having body fat can put you at risk for certain complications, but doesn’t necessarily make a person unhealthy.

So, no surprise that my results came back with a big ol’ WARNING! button for me to click on that linked me to a warning that I’m fat. Thanks for that.

Anyway, more importantly, all of my other readings came back looking pretty good! My blood pressure is in a decent range:

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My glucose levels are a little close to high, but I also forgot to fast the night before so although they took that into consideration, it may not be entirely accurate:

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Last, but certainly not least, the readings I was primarily interested in, my cholesterol:

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This is HUGE for me. The last time I got my cholesterol readings, my LDL’s were higher, my HDLs lower. I’m still right at that cusp, but my numbers are still down (plus, again, forgot to fast – whoops!) and overall I’m looking good! This has been one of my major goals behind treating myself better. I just need to work a little bit harder to get my LDL’s a little lower, my HDL’s a little higher, and keep them that way. My long term goal is to never have to take medication for my cholesterol.

I also have some progress pics!

 

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Why yes I DO rock a Sparkly Soul pink headband and sparkly pink laces on my Chucks on weights days.

Again, I was going to hold off on these, but I threw this image together on a whim for a friend who hasn’t seen me in a while (which is why one of the pictures is grainy. I had to do some rescaling – in MS Paint). I have better progress pictures on hold, where I’m wearing the same (or similar) clothes in each one, standing the same distances from the mirrors. I’m saving that for about another 20lbs/two sizes/ideal body fat %/whatthefuckever.

I’ve got a couple of things I want to discuss soon, namely the challenges of weight lifting and getting enough protein on Weight Watchers, as well as a product spotlight on the Sparkly Soul headbands I wear during every workout.

I know this is a little late, but a few weeks ago, I entered – and finished – the Warrior Dash!

Also, I’ll tell you now that this post will be long, but sadly lacking in pictures. The short explanation is that the professional photographers were only stationed at the end and they expect about $8 per digital copy of the pictures they took of us. No thanks. On the plus side, some dude took video of the whole course (from a later wave, so I’m not in any of it) if you’d like to see the obstacles in action

For those of yoImageu not aware, the Warrior Dash is a 3+ mile (ours was 3.55) obstacle course that includes thick mud, climbing, crawling, and jumping over fire. While it’s relatively “easy” compared to some  obstacle races, it’s still a crazy run that takes courage and willpower – especially when it comes to climbing over walls.

I did a little bit to train for it, but not as much as I would have liked. I only started running a few weeks before the race, which helped a little bit, but I ended up pretty far back in the standings. I beat out 460 people (yay!) but that was out of 5,700 people (boo), but what was important, at least to me, were two things:

  • I ran a little bit between every obstacle. I never once walked from one obstacle to another.
  • I didn’t have to skip a single obstacle.
  • I fucking did it.

Some of the strength training I did absolutely helped. I also focused on deadhangs and flexed hangs on the pull-up bar in our closet and worked a little bit on jumping and knee-highs. My biggest issue with exclusively weight training is a lack of agility training and I wish I had maybe alternated strength training with Zuzka Light videos to increase my speed and range of movement, or had at least spent more time jogging and running. Come race day, I felt like I hadn’t prepared nearly enough.

The first obstacle (at time 4:45 in the video I linked above) was a series of alternating low walls and barbed wire fences (if I recall correctly). The idea is to jump over the wall, then climb under the fence, over the next wall and so on. I haven’t exactly done any training with vaulting, plus I’m short and have trouble with my hips, so I thought I would have to get my top half up and drag myself over each one, versus just getting a foot up and hopping over. Imagine my surprise at being able to jump and hold myself up at the top of the wall to get a leg over and pivot gracefully on my butt to hop down on the other side.

My surprise continued when having to balance as I walked across a series of planks (11:10 in the video). The planks are secured, so it’s not like they’re wobbly or anything, but I’m accustomed to a lifetime of being off-balance and clumsy, plus they were a little caked with mud. I made it across surprisingly quickly and without wobble. I’m going to credit lifting to an increase in balance and core strength.

A short while after, we came across our first real climb (12:20). In the video, it doesn’t look so bad as he’s approaching, but when he’s actually standing next to the wall, note the girls around him and how short they are compared to the wall. Also, note that the top of the wall angles out, making it difficult to swing a leg over. I definitely hesitated at the top and waited for Danual to finish helping another girl over before making the attempt, just in case I needed him. As it turned out, I didn’t! The climb itself was easy, but whenever I have to swing my legs over something before down-climbing, I tend to freeze up a bit.

Everything else from here on out was relatively easy to me, running aside, until we got to the mud pit. The final climb, a very tall rope wall, and the two rows of fire that I had to jump over near the end were cake, so it stood to reason that I was basically done, with only a large puddle between me and the finish line. What I didn’t realize, however, was that this “puddle” was filled with mud that had about the consistency of wet cement. I stepped in carefully and began to trudge my way across. When it became too deep for me to walk it, I started to swim, but at some point I just… stopped moving. I tried to put my feet down, but they didn’t touch the bottom. I couldn’t get any traction. I tried holding still, waiting to sink so I could get my feet on the ground, with no luck. I tried struggling in the hopes that it would have the quicksand effect and pull me down. Nope. No movement. I actually started to feel a touch of panic rising in my chest, so I took a deep breath and I waited. Danual (my husband) happened to enter in close enough to the edge of the “pool” that he could drag himself along the wall. He pulled ahead of me, reached out a hand and dragged me through the mud and under the next barbed wire (oh yeah, did I mention the barbed wires running the width of the mud pit?) until I could get my feet on the ground. A man operating a backhoe kept dipping the claw end of it into the mud to move it around, which at first seemed like a really dick move, but I think it actually really helped to break up the mud a bit – so backhoe operating man, thank you, and I’m sorry for calling you an asshole at first.

Anyway, this probably isn’t the most exciting write-up out there about the Warrior Dash and I again apologize for the serious lack of photos. I think the next obstacle run I do, I’ll be running it with a waterproof camera – or at least I’ll leave a camera with bag check for some pictures of us covered in mud, drinking beer and eating turkey legs. Like y’ do. For now, this is all I’ve got:

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Aren’t I just precious?

Aside  —  Posted: August 4, 2012 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , ,

Ok, ok, so they’re not really the “big girl” plates (45s) but this is still a huge milestone for me.

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The bar is 45lbs, making this a total of a 95lb deadlift. I hit this at the end of a spree of lighter deadlifts, so I feel confident that I could go heavier for a single lift.

Gallery  —  Posted: July 6, 2012 in Uncategorized

Slackin’

Posted: July 6, 2012 in General, Stats

Not on my workouts – just on my blogging! I’m still alive, still working out and still eating well (… most of the time).

I neglected this blog through all of May and June and now we’re back – and exactly 10 lbs lighter than when I last updated.Yup, as of today, using the scale in the gym at work, I’m at 152.8. I’ve also gone down roughly two pants sizes since I initially started going to the gym, dropping me from a size 14 to a size 10 (in Juniors sizes I’m probably still a 13 depending on the brand). I haven’t done any actual tape measurements in a while. I should have those ready for you in my next blog post (as well as some progress pics!).

To a lot of people, 10 pounds in a little over two months doesn’t seem like much, but I feel pretty confident that this slow, steady decrease in fat is exactly how I need to do this to keep up what I’m doing and keep my body in good shape. Considering I’ve been strength training while still losing weight, it seems like pretty decent progress. I’m just surprised that even after being sick for over a week (I didn’t go to the gym for nine days – that’s the longest I’ve gone without it in the last six or seven months!) plus two weekends of indulgence and the 4th of July, I’ve managed to not break my progress. I feel like if anything, that’s evidence that for once in my life, I’ve got this down – it no longer feels like one day of “bad’ eating is going to cause me to balloon up. No more yo-yoing.

Also, I’ve decided to attempt to use this more like an actual blog and less like a place to store my stats. I can’t figure out the best format for my posts, so I think I’m just going to go with writing more “organically” and just going with what’s on my mind and what I’ve been up to. As blogging becomes more of a hobby and less of a thing that I feel like I have to do or should be doing, I’ll hopefully have more interesting things to talk about.

Other than being excited about weighing below 155lbs for the first time in ages, this post is mostly to discuss the rate of my progress in general terms as well as coming to a decision on how I want to run this blog. I do have a lot that I want to post about and haven’t because I didn’t know how to approach it, but that will all come in time. A few upcoming topics to look out for: Progress pics, rock climbing, product reviews (the “I bought this, here’s what I think” kind, not the “this company gave me free product so I’ll say nice things about them” kind) and food.

Also, I’d just like to note that as I was typing this up, a coworker that I don’t see very often anymore came by to observe the construction outside of the window behind me and when I stood up to look at something he was pointing at, he did a double take. I saw him look down at my body but thought he was noting my lack of shoes (what? It’s the end of the day and I’m not going to put them back on to turn around and look out a window) but then he asked me if I “lost a bunch of weight or something.” When I confirmed he said I looked good and he could really see the difference in my face.

I’d be lying if I said I’m not hyped as fuck right now.

I’ll figure out a proper format for these updates eventually, I promise.

Some notes to add: I’ve omitted “weight since Weight Watchers” and I’m just settling on total weight loss. I only lost 3lbs before I started WW and really, that’s a small number and as we go, I hope to omit weight entirely as a measure of my progress.

I’ve also decided I’m not going to use bra and pants sizes anymore because I don’t go shopping often enough to include that in every update. If I drop a dress/pant/bra size, that in and of itself will probably warrant its own special update.

So where are we now?:

Body Stats:

  • Weight: 162.8lbs
  • Total weight loss: 13lbs

Gym Stats/Victories:

  • Dead lift (for reps): Increased weight from 45 to 75lbs. This was actually kind of an accident. We have three bar weights in the gym (the heaviest being the Olympic bar at 45lbs) and I typically use the lightest bar and don’t factor it into my weight lifted. I accidentally grabbed the mid-weight bar, which is about 25lbs, when I had 50lbs worth of plates on.
  • Lat Pulldowns:Increased weight from 55lbs to 70lbs. I have to be careful with this – I did this yesterday and today, my bad shoulder is sore.
  • Shoulder Presses:12.5lb dumbells
  • Dumbell Rows: 25lbs
  • Bench Press:50lbs
  • Squats: 45lbs
  • Pull-ups: Still can’t do them. Slowly but surely…
  • Push-ups: Guys, I have a confession to make – all these years, I’ve only been able to do knee push-ups. Thanks to a friend with whom I’ve started a “push-up challenge,” I’ve gotten off of my knees and can do three full, proper push-ups. It may not seem like much, but it’s a big deal to me.

NSVs:

  • My husband and I started biking to/from work. It isn’t an every day thing for me (yet) but soon I hope to start riding every day. Fuck car commuting.
  • In the short time that I’ve started riding to work, I’ve already started to improve my speed/time. Each ride so far has taken me almost exactly 40 minutes but this morning, I made it in 32 minutes. That’s an increase of about 9mph to 11.25mph. I was a bit slower on the ride home, but I’ll take any victory. Husband has noted improvements in my stopping, maneuvering and speed.
  • My favorite jeans, which are always very snug just out of the wash are starting to experience a little bit of sag around the waist – right out of the wash.

Misc:

  • Energy levels are… different. Overall, my energy as a person is improving. I recover from a hard workout better (in fact, I had a wicked buzz all morning after my ride to work) and I feel a little more… peppy? Is that the right word? But, when I’m tired, I am tired. I’m hoping that soon I can wear myself out hard enough at the end of the day to sleep through the whole night (I wake up often).
  • I am excited about working out. Even when it sucks, I still do it and I feel so much better for it afterwards and I look forward to doing it again. I willingly, with only a minor amount of flip-flopping, rode the six miles to work two and a half days in a row even though all of the rides I did last week were a painful struggle. “Exercise” still feels like a dirty word in my mouth – what I do has evolved from “exercise” to “working on being a badass.”
  • My pain tolerance is increasing. This is probably a weird thing to note so early on, but last year, the amount of ache in my hips from the bike rides would have discouraged me. I realized this morning that I’ve just accepted that as part of my life now that will get better in time but, in the meantime, is just something I have to go through. Despite the current hot bath I’m taking to ease some soreness, I’m actually rather bummed that I will not be biking tomorrow.

Whoops!

Posted: April 19, 2012 in Uncategorized

Oh my – guess who hasn’t been updating?

Hint: The answer is me.

So, go figure, I still have no measurements to provide. Despite upping my physical activity level, as it turns out I’m still incredibly lazy in every other regard, including buying measuring tape. I don’t know that this will ever change – no matter how ambitious or dedicated I am, there will always be things for me to intentionally shirk. We’re supposed to balance things out by allowing ourselves laziness as reward for the good things we do, right? RIGHT?!

…Funny thing, I’m fairly certain it’s that mindset that let me get fat in the first place.

Next post: Stats for Week 13, Thursday, April 18th, 2012