Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Day 27 - No time to talk

Wow, today is busy. I'm getting ready for the Head to Head Battle of the Sexes Biggest Loser Style Weight Loss Challenge that starts on April 1st. Go Team Jillian!

Today's workout was good. Another tough Level 3, but I did all the walking plank and traveling pushups with no modifications. I didn't quite keep the pace on pushups, but they were still okay. My knees are starting to feel it, though. I really need better shoes, even though I've switched already. These cross trainers just aren't quite right for me.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Day 26 - Are we there yet?

Wow. I can't believe it's already Day 26. That's almost 4 weeks of seriously working out. I don't remember doing anything like this in the last 15 years. Just writing that makes me think, "WOW!" You'd think at some point I'd have done a month of exercise, but I guess not. Hmm...I wonder why I have weight issues? *laugh*

Unfortunately, since it's called "The 30 Day Shred," it makes it sound like I'll be done in 4 days. Alas, I've come too far to stop after 30 days. This is going to have to become a routine for me, with the motivation and help of the Head Shredhead, of course. I'll change to other videos (for April it'll be Jillian's "No More Trouble Zones" and "Banish Fat/Boost Metabolism"), but it's going to have to continue. I don't think I've ever noticed such a quick change in my body. Combining this workout with going back to Weight Watchers was the best thing I've done for myself in a long time.

Today's workout went well. Level 3, which I'll probably stick with until day 30, is getting a little easier to follow. I was able to do all the walking plank and all of the traveling pushups with no modifications. !!! The only things I'm modifying are mountain climbers and jumping lunges. Oh, and those rock star jump things. I'm still not sure if that's what they're called or if that's just what I hear. Either way, my knees say no!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Day 25 - Payback

Crap. Last night tasted good, but Chevy's isn't so hot for the diet. So...today was a super-workout. Shred Level 3 followed by Banish Fat, Boost Metabolism. I skipped the cooldown of Shred and just went straight into the warmup of BFBM. By the end I was sweating and ridiculously tired. Wow. On the plus side, I did the entire first set of traveling pushups with no modifications!

Only a few more days like that and I might make up for all those tortillas. Why, oh why, am I so weak!?!? :)

On the plus side, I won some free stuff! Now all I have to do is keep from eating all the Quaker stuff in one shot. *sigh*

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Day 24 - Breathe correctly!

Day 24. I weighed in at Weight Watchers today and was down 1.2 pounds. Stripping down I was still 0.6 away from being "free" so I really need to work hard this week. Gotta cut out all the WW snacks. Stupid sugar.

Anyway, I once again noticed during today's shred that breathing correctly REALLY affects how well I can work my abs. And trying to pull the belly button in instead of letting it shove out helps too. Strange how that works.

The rest of Level 3, well, it's getting better. I made it through the first set of traveling pushups without modifying. The second set, well, I made it through one or two before modifying. At least it's an improvement!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Day 23 - Still Motivated

Wow, Day 23. The last time I was this motivated to work out was in Phoenix during my master's degree (1992-1993). I ended up losing 90 pounds and my legs were rocks from all the mountain hiking/running we did. I would LOVE to get my legs in that kind of shape again. At least with these workouts I can feel them getting better. Maybe one day soon. I was SO motivated back then it was crazy.

I'm bordering on that kind of motivation again, although my body isn't able to handle the abuse it once did. Particularly my knees. I can hear them creaking and grinding (literally, I can hear them) during a lot of the exercises so I have to take it easy. A few of them, like the rock star jump things, are just not going to happen. So I substitute things like jumprope and assume it's good enough. Better than going downstairs and eating, right?

Today was a 2-workout day. I did shred this morning EARLY, and Banish Fat, Boost Metabolism this afternoon. It really is motivating now that I can feel my body getting thinner. I was walking around the store today pulling my gut in (like they tell you to do in ab workouts) and for the first time in a long time I felt a lack of gut. I still have one, but it felt really good the way my clothes were fitting. That was the best feeling I've had in a long time.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Day 22 - Shred plus Abs

I guess it's a good sign that doing shred by itself no longer feels like a full workout. Don't get me wrong...I'm not doing the advanced moves...I'm still on beginner. But if I try to do more advanced either my knees hurt or my form goes to crap. So I've often been doing a second workout of some sort in addition to shred. It's a pain, because I need to carve out more time to work out, but at least I'm getting more in.

Today was a "light" day, and I did Shred Level 3 followed by "Straight to the Core" (a <10 minute ab workout) by Elise Gulan. Holy mother of pearl, she puts the ow in abs.

Anyway, overall I'm definitely feeling stronger and need to firm up what time I'm working out. I did it in the afternoon today and it just felt weird. I need to force myself to go to bed earlier and workout in the mornings while Sharon is downstairs. Then on days where I need a longer workout I can do that one in the afternoons - there's no way I can handle more than 20 minutes in the morning.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Day 21 - An Advil Day

Holy crap. Day 1 of Level 3 finds me popping Advils right after the workout is done. So I either did something right, or something wrong, and I can't tell for sure which. Dead center between my shoulderblades is ridiculously sore. Beyond what I worked out sore. So I don't know if something targeted a muscle I don't have, or if I pulled it. Please just be tired!

Level 3 is an interesting mix of hard and impossible to do because of my knees. What the hell are those things after jump squats? Like butt kicks with both feet at once? I can't even do the Anita version because my knees are crying!

Fortunately, a lot of the other moves I've seen before in her other videos (Boost Metabolism and Trouble Zones). It doesn't make them easier, just that I feel a little more coordinated. I'll be curious to see how I do with this over the next couple of days coordination wise. I felt VERY awkward today.

Plus, Sharon came in during the cooldown. Didn't I say nobody could watch me doing this?

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Day 20 - A picture is worth 1000 calories

Well, here are the long awaited Day 20 pictures (along with Day 8 and 1). Okay, it's not the pictures that were long awaited, it was reaching Day 20 without dying!

Now I'll admit, while it's not as impressive as I'd hoped, I can see a difference. There's no longer quite as much muffin top as before, and if I squint just right there's a little more ab definition. And by "a little more" I mean "some." I wish my abs looked like they felt, because it feels like I should have Anita's abs by now. Oh well. At least I can tell it won't be embarrassing to go to the pool with the kids this year.

I also wish that I'd taken pictures of my legs along the way because my quads are beginning to rip up (they've always been the easiest thing in my body to get defined). I can definitely feel the difference there. Oh well, I guess I know good things are happening, and that's what's important, right? It would just be nice to see better photographic evidence. Maybe by day 30. or 60. or 120? Ack!

Oh, the pushup report (I did L1) was 19 real ones (and no modified) the first set, 7 real ones the second set (followed by modified). A new record!

Anyway, for you squeamish viewers, you may want to avert your eyes right...about...NOW!

Day 1, in all my glory:

Day 8, a little better:

Today, Day 20 (not quite Brad Pitt, but better than John Goodman...and an external flash never hurts either!):

(edit, added day 20 leg pics...do you know how hard it is to take a flattering picture of your own leg?)

Monday, March 23, 2009

Day 19 - Time to make the doughnuts

Ugh. This morning was a slow wakeup, and I barely made it out of bed to shred. At this point I'm glad I did, but I ended up doing a little extra warmup on my own before starting the DVD because I was worried I was going to hurt myself. *laugh*

I did Level 2 today...I figure I'll try Level 3 tomorrow or the next day, so I'll push through Level 2 these last couple of days. Once again, it seems twice as fast as L1. I did a lot better with all the plank stuff. I didn't have to drop out of the plank moves (I did modified mountain climbers and plank jacks) until the abs at the end. And then it's partly because I can't get my body to move the way they do, and I only feel it in my shoulders. So I went into bicycles instead. My abs hurt. Tomorrow's picture day, and I sure hope I see a difference!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Day 18 - 18 Pushups!

I shredded after breakfast, which was a little strange, and I dropped back to Level 1 today. It felt good, though, and I managed to eek out 18 pushups the first set (no modified) and 4.5 the second (with a few modified afterward). Forward progress...yeah!

The ab work felt easier for the most part. This is the first time working out EVER that I've felt my abs getting stronger. Hopefully they'll start looking better someday too.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Day 17 - Down 2 pounds!

Yeah, today was a good one at Weight Watchers...I'm down 2 pounds since last week! I didn't quite make the 40 pounds I wanted to, but I won't turn down the 2 pounds. :)

I didn't end up shredding until after lunch today. As much as getting up early sucks, I do tend to prefer working out in the morning. It gets it over with, and it also gives me the option to work out again in the afternoon if I feel fat. *laugh*

Today's workout was Level 2, and felt pretty good. Much like most other days, it doesn't seem to work me out as well as Level 1 does. My muscles are just as tired, but I think there's some "wasted" time in there. Like during the walking plank things, the time spend walking out doesn't seem to do much for me. And then some of the other plank things wear my shoulders out before beginning to give me any cardio benefit. So it seems like more of a muscle workout rather than a cardio. So be it. I may do L1 tomorrow. We'll see.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Day 16 - Another Morning Shred

It was a morning shred today. I started thinking about (a) how nice it is to get it over with, and (b) how much faster my metabolism might be (who knows?) by doing it first thing. Anyway, it was Level 2 and it felt good.

I modified a couple of the exercises that were holding me back. So instead of doing skaters I did jumprope, and instead of doing the plank abs at the end I did bicycles. My shoulders are so tired during planks that they fail long before anything else, so I'm not really getting a very good workout if I do all of them.

Maybe that's just excuses, but at least I feel like I got a really good workout this morning. I still prefer Level 1, though. Strange. Maybe one day they'll come out with an interactive DVD where you can pick and choose what you want and then run through just those exercises. Oh well.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Day 15a - No More Trouble Zones

OK, I was extra motivated and after doing Shred this morning, I decided to do No More Trouble Zones this afternoon during nap time. It's on On Demand right now, and I figured I'd try it to see if I want to buy it. The verdict on buying it?


It was HARD. In a different way from Shred, though. It was hardly any cardio (except you never stop moving). The only cardio was in the warmup. Then it was all toning, with LOTS of ab work. This is the first time I've ever been working out where I feel like I really want to work abs, so it was nice. Hard, but nice. I may have dropped the c-bomb on Jillian during one of the many sets of abs.

Everything else got worked really well too. My legs and shoulders were a little weak from Shred this morning, but I was able to do most of the moves without modifying them too much. By the end I was shaking. Literally. It was great. And terrible. *laugh* Some of the shoulder exercises were ridiculously hard - exactly what I need. And it targets a lot of parts that Shred just doesn't have time to hit, like outer thighs. The only downside is that it doesn't have Anita in it. *swoon* ;)

So I'm definitely ordering Jillian's 2 new ones (No More Trouble Zones and Banish Fat, Boost Metabolism, which I tried on Tuesday).

Day 15 - Motivation

I'm not complaining, but why have I been doing this for the last 2 weeks? I've been motivated to get back to my goal weight (via Weight Watchers) for the past few months, but exercise was never on my agenda. I suppose I've been wanting to exercise for a while, because I need to deflabify, but I never found the right motivation.

Enter the shredheads.

Yeah, it's pretty silly that a bunch of bloggers I've never met can inspire me. It's not like I'm working out with people who know me, and who will give me crap if I miss a workout. Heck, I won't even let my wife in the room while I'm doing a workout video. Other than this blog (which is hardly read), my comments on the main shredhead blog, and a bit of twittering, nobody knows if I'm doing this. Yet somehow the shredheads are holding me accountable. I'm not sure how, but it's there, and I'll take it.

Anyway, it was a morning shred today - I did Level 1 again, and felt like I got a much better workout than with Level 2. Everything seemed to work better, so I'll drop back down to L1 for a couple days, then bump back up. If I feel up to it I'll do one of Jillian's other videos later - I want to try her trouble zones one before it goes off of On Demand. Yeah, I'm cheap. And apparently masochistic, but I figure I need to take advantage of motivation when it comes. (EDIT, I DID IT.)

Oh, my "real" pushups were 15 first set (no modified) and 4 second set (followed by modified). Yeah, some improvement!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Day 14 - The Last Few Pounds

Dang, these last few (okay 5 to free, 7 to goal, 12-15 to where I really want to be) pounds suck to get off. I figure Shred has to be helping, but I think I'm going to have to resort to more drastic measures as well. Yesterday I did "Banish Fat, Boost Metabolism" in the afternoon (after doing Shred in the morning). It sucked, but wow did I feel like I worked out. I may switch to an every other day double workout thing. Or every third day.

As for Shred, I did L2 today. It doesn't feel as rewarding as it has on previous days, and I feel like I still need to do cardio (see above). Some of it is that I'm protecting my knees and shoulder a little more since they're tired. No use in re-dislocating any of those. Some of it may be my body getting used to the exercises. Some of it may be that I'm just so tired. Why can't Matthew sleep past 6:15? Why can't I bring myself to go to bed before 11:30? Argh.

So that's it. At least I worked out, and I'm still motivated to work out. I just want it to burn again. I may drop back to L1 for kicks tomorrow. And I may ride my bike to pick up Ellie. That should kill my legs tonight.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Day 13 - This had better be working

Wow, Day 13 is finished. I went back to L2 and it felt good. My wrists were fine, so as long as they don't stiffen up I'll do L2 again tomorrow. Yesterday and today I implemented the "bathroom break" rule. If I have to stop to go to the bathroom, I have to start again at the beginning. Both days I ended up doing the warmup twice. Stupid jumping jacks and small bladder.

I'm at that weird point of exercise (there's a similar point during weight loss, which thankfully I've passed) where I feel like I should be seeing results but I'm not. I'm sure it's doing something, but I still have a long way to go and in my mind's eye I still see the pre-working out me. Heck, I alternate between seeing me 40 pounds ago and me 100 pounds ago. At this point I'm not even really trusting pictures of myself. I mean, I see what I look like, but all I see is the fat. Every time I get to this point I can understand what people with eating disorders feel. Fortunately I don't feel it to anywhere NEAR that extreme, but I know how a skinny person could only see the flab.

Anyway, at least I'm feeling good and I'm still motivated, and that's really thanks to the shredheads. I sure hope Kristen and the gang keep going with something after the 30 days is up!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Day 12 - Children are cruel

This morning before my workout I was looking through pictures with Ellie (4) and Matthew (2). We were just flipping through my digital photo folder, and we came across some of my Day 8 pictures. Ellie's reaction when she saw the first one?

"Eew, what's that?!?"

Uh, yeah. Well, time to work out, I guess.

I dropped back to L1 today because my wrists were in such bad shape yesterday during L2. And...today my knees hurt. I'm a wreck! At least I can modify the exercises a bit to help my knees. The workout was good, and I'm definitely feeling it. Especially in my shoulders. How on earth can they be so weak? I guess my "fork to mouth" workout wasn't doing what I'd hoped.

On the good side, I managed 11 real pushups the first set and 4 the second, which is 1 better each time. On the super good side, my abs are definitely getting stronger. I made it through all the ab work much better than I have before, and feel like (gasp) it might not be enough. Certainly this workout is all that Anita does, right? Yeah, okay. I noticed there's some ab stuff on our On Demand, so maybe I'll add some in soon. For now I just want to keep up with the shred.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Day 11 - The Scale is a Harsh Mistress

Stupid scale. At Weight Watchers this morning I was down 1.2, which ordinarily would be fantastic, but since it's less than I gained last week I'm pissed at myself. *sigh* (I know, complaining about a loss is annoying, and I hate when people do it too...but I can't help wanting more!) Oh well. To make up for it I showed Jillian and Crew who the boss was.

Okay, it turned out that gravity was the boss, I'm weak, and I was the one punished. In particular, my wrists got punished. They were a little sore going into the workout, and I realized that the planks are killing them. Not muscle-wise, but in a carpal-tunnel-type way. Not good. So tomorrow I'm going to do Level 1 again. Partially because of my wrists, and partially because I want to mix things up for my body. Maybe a couple days of 2, a couple of 1. I'll see how it goes.

I'm also tracking my points (Weight Watchers) this week. I'd been doing the core plan (from the last program they did) and it was working great until I started exercising, but I think I'm now undereating. And the core plan is a little confusing (for me) to do when you add exercise. So we'll see what happens with the points. I'd better be victorious at the scale next Saturday or I'm going to start crying. *laugh*

Friday, March 13, 2009

Day 10 - More Level 2

Wow. I just finished, and can barely type. I did a little extra stretching, but I may need to add some more warmup time tomorrow too. Wow do my shoulders hurt (in a good way).

So today's observations:
  1. Jillian's boobs are still distracting. Very distracting.
  2. Natalie is still not motivating. Her form stinks compared to Anita and Jillian.
  3. Those planks suck. SUCK! And my shoulders are failing before my abs. How sad is that?
  4. It's still going faster than L1. I don't feel like I'm working out as hard, but I'm sweating more and my shoulders are killing me.
  5. This morning (after one day of L2) my back muscles were sore, even though it didn't feel like I've been working them. Hopefully whatever has been working them keeps doing it.
Overall it's going well, and I'm still motivated. I like that there are 3 workouts so I'll be able to cycle between them. Unfortunately I think I'm going to need to add some cardio (ugh) to help take the layer of blubber off. At least biking season is coming up and I'll be able to take the kids to school in the bike trailer.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Day 9 - The Switch to L2

I just finished my first day of Level 2, and my thoughts are:
  1. Anita is still my hero.
  2. Jillian needs a bra with more support. Wow was that distracting!
  3. Natalie isn't very motivating for me. She looks like she doesn't want to be there, and her form is often pretty bad.
  4. WTF with the planks! Dang, and my shoulders are so weak I'm getting hit in my shoulders AND my abs with those!
  5. Am I the only one who thinks the phrase "plank-jacks" sounds dirty?
Anyway, on the plus side it felt like it was over quicker than L1. Probably because so much of it is new, and because when your brain is short on oxygen time moves more quickly. Did I mention I am way more exhausted than I was with L1? Wow.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Day 8 - More Pictures

Day 8 is officially over. Well, the workout part at least. I'm looking forward to switching to Level 2, mostly because I'm beginning to get bored with these exercises. Level 1 isn't too easy, I'm just ready for something else. I may switch tomorrow and then alternate between 1 and 2 for a while - where the heck did I get the notion I had to wait 10 days, anyway?

Today I managed to once again squeeze out 10 real pushups the first set and 3.5 the second set, failing completely both times. At least I was able to switch to modified ones (both sets). I'm happy that it was as good as yesterday. I'm still really having trouble keeping up with the shoulder exercises, but at least I'm only having to drop the weights for a couple of reps. And the burn does feel good. Abs...well, I've definitely noticed a big difference in how it feels now that I'm working on exhaling during the crunches.

So I'm posting more pictures today (comparing to day 1 again) because (a) Kristen has a contest, and (b) I saw she took back pictures and realized that was a good idea. Sideways is probably a good idea too. So I'll recompare the front and then add the back and side so I can compare again next week.

Day 1:

Day 8:

Alas, hardly the difference I feel inside. Oh well.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Day 7 - Officially a Record

Wow - 7 days in a row of using a workout video. Without quitting. That's officially a record!

Okay, it was probably a record at 2 or 3 days, but I figure after a week I can officially call myself motivated. Thanks to Kristen and the other Shredheads for that!

Anyway, today was good again. There's really not a whole lot to say. I can definitely feel myself getting better. I don't know if I'm getting stronger or just more coordinated, but I eeked out 10 "real" pushups the first set and 3 the second set. My shoulders are definitely still weak, but I only had to skip a couple of reps on the shoulder presses and raises, so that's also a plus.

My abs, however, are still lame. Well, the regular crunches and oblique crunches are getting easier, but anything involving lower abs...oof. Ouch. Not so much fun.

So here are some new "Day 7" pics. Let's compare them to the first day, shall we? Day 1 is on the left, Day 7 is on the right.

Okay, I know what you're thinking. You're thinking, "Dang, he worked out so hard his pants got lighter!" No, they're different pants. Okay, and some of you are thinking, "Boy, his nipples are at way different heights!" Yeah, I hope that's cause my arm is up. But other than that, it's pretty depressing. I'm sort of automatically holding my abs in part way, so I guess the picture on the right is a little better. But other than that, *sigh*.

Here are some other pictures which I feel will help me view some progress. The first is an angle picture, and the second one is of just my arm and shoulder. I didn't take a Day 1 picture like this, which is too bad, because I think my shoulders will benefit from this workout a lot. Heck, I think they already have.

Yep, it looks just like The Rock's arm.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Day 6 - Weekend Underwear

So I'm on Day 6 of "The Anita Show", er, I mean "30 Day Shred," and I decided to follow some of Kristen's advice on form. Well, on almost everything. I've replaced butt kicks with jumping jacks because of my knees...oh well. It's still good. Oh, and I added some more shoulder stretching at the end. They don't do nearly enough. But I'm still motivated, still working hard during each session, and definitely noticing some things getting easier! Except for shoulders. How can my shoulders and arms be so weak? I'll never impress Anita that way. *laugh* Although at least I did some real pushups today before modifying them.

After my workout yesterday I was thinking about weight loss and toning up, and remembered something from a long time ago on Oprah. I swear I was watching it with Sharon. Really! Anyway, this was some time ago, before Oprah became the "I Love To Talk About Myself" show, and she was discussing weight loss. I know, it's shocking, right? Anyway, one of her viewers had a tip that stuck with me. In essence, it was "Don't save your weekend underwear for the weekend."

I may have misremembered the exact quote, but her point was that you need to dress a little sexier in order to feel better about yourself, especially when losing weight. And I've lost weight enough times (*sigh*) to know that it's true. Regardless of whether you choose to wear sexy underwear, sexier clothing, or just clothing that fits correctly, it's important to feel good about yourself. I mean, hello! We're losing weight, getting smaller, and toning up...why do we wear the same frumpy crap we started out with? I end up wearing pants that are too big with an oversized shirt day after day. The only reason it's not frumpy sweats is because there's no pocket for my wallet. Why do I do that to myself?

So because we are having a little spring-ish weather today, I pulled out some shorts I bought when I had hopes of losing weight last spring. They were way too small a year ago, but today they not only fit, but were a little big. Hooray for me! And when I put a shirt on that fit correctly, I felt a lot better (dare I say, sexier?) than when I wear baggy stuff. Amazing.

So while you're losing weight, toning up, or whatever, make sure you take some time to dress more carefully and feel nicer too. It's totally worth it. Even with kids who get you up every morning too early, and who drive you insane. Not that mine would do that.

Oh, and never-you-mind about my underwear. Pervert. ;)

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Day 5 - Still Motivated

Well, I did my workout for day 5 in the morning, which is unusual for me. It does feel good to get it out of the way early, but during the week that just can't happen. Oh well.

Anyway, today was a lot better than yesterday. I can't say my body is changing yet, because I think it's too soon to feel it, but maybe it's getting used to being punished. (And yes, I'm still punishing it for the stupid weight gain yesterday.) I still had to modify the pushups (cringe), but I felt better doing the ab work (except for bicycles) and the shoulders went a lot better too. And I think it's encouraging that after it's over I still want to work my chest and back more. I'm going to wait a week or so before adding anything else in...I don't want to burn out too fast.

I've also realized I need to change when I'm eating relative to the workout. And make sure I get enough protein and starches around the workout, too. And drink more water after. And stretch a LOT more after. Hmm, is there anything I DON'T need to work on?

Also, I'm not sure if it's a male/female difference, or if I'm just totally unlimber, but I can't stretch at all the way they tell me to at the end. When I get into that "straight leg in a V" position I can't sit straight up. Not even close. It doesn't even feel like I SHOULD be able to do that, so I'm guessing that's something guys just aren't designed to do. Oh well, I know what stretches to do...I just need to do them!

Man, it feels good to still be motivated after 5 days.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Day 4 - Stupid Scale

Stupid Weight Watchers claims I gained 1.4 this week. Crap. I was good last week. Well, okay, I was pretty good last week. :(

To make up for it I punished myself - okay, I punished the floor beneath my out of shape self - with what seemed to be an extra difficult 20 minutes (of the 30 Day Shred, of course). I can't figure out why it seemed harder. Maybe it was that I bought hand weights to use instead of the workout bands I'd been using. They're lighter, but I didn't have to drop them partway through. Well, maybe a little bit for the shoulders. *laugh*

Unfortunately, I'm still stuck doing the "girlie" pushups. While it means I can follow my new love Anita (hellllllooooo, abs...what? Oh hi Sharon...hee hee...uh, nothing!), I feel like a super-wuss. And I can tell it'll be a while before I graduate to the "real" ones. Oh well, as long as it burns, right?

Okay, I stopped sweating so I'd better jump in the shower before Sharon and the kids wake up.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Day 3 - Anita is my hero

There's no way Anita's abs are natural. She's totally my hero.

My ab (yes, I still only have one), however, is totally real and completely weak. *laugh*

The rest of me is sore, but it feels good to finally be working out again. I can't say I feel myself getting stronger (who could by day 3?) but I'm super shaky right now so the workout must be doing something good.

I don't seem to have a problem with the music like others do, but it helps that I can't hear it over my pulse pounding in my ears. Oh, and I managed to still get the workout in even though Sharon was home. I told her it was forbidden to watch me doing it. :)

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Day 2

Wow. I'm not as shaky as I was yesterday after working out, but I'm definitely tired and I was weaker today than I was yesterday. I have a feeling I'll REALLY start feeling it in a couple of days. I'm in that weird first-phase place where my muscles are too confused to really put up a fight.

Hopefully tomorrow and the weekend go okay. My schedule is going to be messed up, and I'll have to work out while Sharon is home. That'll be nice, because she can watch the kids, but it's going to be strange because I can barely do a workout video in front of myself, much less in front of someone else.

Oh, and I've decided I need a man-ssiere (or a "bro", depending on who's product it would be). Plus I need one for my gut. It flops around a lot during the jumping jacks too. *ugh*

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Day 1

Holy crap, this is embarrassing. I did my first workout of 30 Day Shred, and I'm amazed at how weak I am.

OK, I guess I did make it through the whole thing, but about the only things I felt good about were the jumping jacks and the fake jumprope. Everything else sucked. I knew I'd have problems with the ab workout. I'm not entirely sure I even have abs. But the lunges, the shoulder exercises...ouch. I even had to modify the pushups. I didn't even start out with regular ones.


And now - even after my shower - my legs are wobbly, my arms are quivering, and I still don't have rock-hard abs. *laugh* But at least I'm doing something.

And here's the "before" picture, although my abs are so ripped because it was AFTER the workout. Ha ha!

See ladies, it's not just women who get stretch marks!

The backstory

OK, I was always fat. From puberty on, it just got worse. 7th and 8th grades were bad, and high school was worse (weight-wise, at least). College came and went, along with my friends making jokes about how when I took off my shirt there would be a "flabilanche." Ha ha, look at the fat man laugh at himself!

So in grad school I pulled it together and went from around 280 to 190, and that was a solid 190 - I got it from diet and a LOT of hiking. The steep, desert mountain hiking that I miss so much in Phoenix.

But then came the move to Berkeley for more grad school. Some of the weight came back on, and then I got married and started working. Lo and behold, I topped out (officially, according to Weight Watchers) at 304.8. Wow.

By 2003 I'd lost more than 115 pounds and was well below my goal of 192. The weight stayed off until we moved to Virginia in 2006, when I gained about 15 pounds. Over the next 2 years I gained another 15, and then after my dogs died in 2008 I gained about 20 in the next month.

I rejoined Weight Watchers in Nov. 2008 and since then I've lost a bunch of weight (see the sidebar for current stats), but as I near my goal weight I'm noticing I'm significantly flabbier than I used to be. So I'm reading one of my favorite blogs, and she's talking about doing some video called "30 Day Shred." I looked at the sample on Amazon, liked that there was no modification of the jumping jacks for beginners, and figured "What the heck?"