My journey to a healthier me

Tales of my life

Feeling frustrated and getting beyond it

So I had an interesting day at the gym yesterday.

It started out really good. I ran into my friend Meggan as we were both going in. Always nice to see friends at the gym.

I needed to get some cardio done and I had some sessions booked with Cody for strength training.

First up was cardio.

I hopped on the treadmill. Sometimes I just power walk on the treadmill, sometimes I run, sometimes I do both. I started out with power walking, then when I felt like I was warmed up, I did a little running. The running felt good. I was even able to increase the speed. I only had about 40 minutes before my first training session, so I spent 35 of it on the treadmill. I was really happy with it.

Then it was time for strength training with Cody. Most of Cody’s sessions are 30 minutes long. They are small group sessions, so a maximum of 5 people. Often it’s just me and Cody, but occasionally other people sign up too.

So first up for strength training was arms. I love a good arm workout. This session was me and another woman. I challenged myself a bit, opting for slightly heavier weights. It was a good session.

Next up was legs. This time there was 3 of us.  In the first set of exercises he gave us, there was one I couldn’t do. I was frustrated by it. I kept trying but just couldn’t do it. He gave me a modification for it, which I was able to do, but I didn’t feel it was doing anything for me. I wasn’t feeling it. In the next group, he gave us, again, there was one I couldn’t do.  And I was feeling even more frustrated. The other two woman were totally getting it, they could do it all, but I couldn’t. I think that added to my frustration.  I managed to get through the rest of the session without breaking down, but it was close.

His next session was abs, which I hadn’t had a chance to try yet and he had openings, so I decided to give it a go. The first thing he wanted us to do was something I’ve never been able to do. A little background first:  When I joined my first gym in 2012, I came across this piece of equipment. I’m not sure what’s it’s actually called, but I called it a leg lift machine. It looks something like this:

Image result for leg lift machine

I actually had a breakdown at the gym once because I could not do it. As hard as I tried, I just couldn’t do it. Never could. Anyway, back to yesterday. He walks over to this thing and almost immediately the panic rushes in, remembering what it was like before. When it was my turn, I tried stepping up into it, and I started shaking and had to step away for a few minutes. I was embarrassed and frustrated all over again. I took a few minutes to calm myself down before coming back. We then moved to the mats. I got down on the floor, ready to work, but once again, frustration that I couldn’t do what he was showing us. They weren’t hard movements, I just couldn’t do them. I tried modifying them, but still couldn’t. I was on the verge of a breakdown and I knew it. I got up and walked out. I knew I had to remove myself from the situation. I was beyond frustrated. I was on the verge of giving up and going home. I posted this pic in that moment:

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In that moment, I was ready to give up. But I knew that I couldn’t. I knew that I had to push myself beyond my frustrations. I had to keep going. So I drank some water and walked around the gym until I was feeling better. I never went back into the abs session. I waited until it was over. I had another session following it.

Cody asked if I was okay and I said yes, I was fine. He asked if I wanted to go home and I said no, I was good. I could tell he was concerned, but I think he trusted that I wouldn’t push myself too hard. So we moved on to the next session.

The next session was a back workout. This session also had 3 of us in it. I pushed myself hard, opting to try slightly heavier weights that I used previously. It paid off. I felt like I did really well.

After the session was over, I took a break. Drank more water and used the time to chill. I still had one more session to go.

The last session of the day was a chest workout. This session was just Cody and I. He asked if I was okay, and I said yes, I was good to go. We did a couple new things, and again, I opted to try some slightly heavier weights. The session was good.

By the end, I was feeling much better. I felt like I had moved beyond my frustrations. I was proud of myself for not giving up. I felt that overall, I had a good solid workout. I was tired and a little sore, but left the gym with a smile on my face.

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It was good at the beginning, messy in the middle, and good at the end. Some days are like that.

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Life at my new gym

Well, it finally happened. I’m finally back in the gym. After far, far too long.

Planet Fitness opened up a location in my town last month. After hearing rumours about it for about 2 years. I was so excited when it was confirmed.

I’ve known for a long time that I need to get back to working out regularly again. There are a lot of things I can do that don’t require me being in a gym, but I’ve found that I work out better when I’m around other people. I don’t need to be working out with them. I don’t even need to know them. But for whatever reason, I just get in a better workout around others. Plus I needed somewhere I could do cardio when I couldn’t be outside.

So when Planet Fitness started accepting sign ups, I was ready. More than ready, actually.

They opened on a Friday night, but I was away that weekend on family business.  The first chance I had to go was on Tuesday.

To be honest, I was a little nervous. It had been a couple years since I had been to a gym on a regular basis. I worried I wouldn’t remember how to do things. Planet Fitness is famous for being a non-judgemental gym, but I still worried people might judge me. I wondered if I would like it, if I would be comfortable there, if the people would be friendly.

But I didn’t need to worry about any of that.

As soon as I walked in, I knew I would be happy there. The staff greeted me with smiles. The place is bright and cheerful. I was given a quick tour so I knew where things were. Oh my gosh, so much equipment! Treadmills, ellipticals, arc trainers, bikes, stair climbers. Weight machines, cable machines, smith machines, free weights! Plus, a special 30-minute circuit area and an area for stretching. And they have a trainer on staff as well. I was very impressed.

The first couple of times, I pretty much stuck to myself. But the more I go, the more comfortable I am, and the more I interact with other members. So far, everyone has been really friendly. I know I made the right decision to join.

After going a few times, I decided to meet with the trainer, Cody. The sessions are small group sessions, no more than 5 people. They offer sessions that are specific muscle group workouts — chest, back, arms, legs, abs, and shoulders. They also have a design your own program session, and a 30-minute circuit session.

I started with the design your own program session. It was good, a lot of information, but no actual workout.

So then I decided to try the specific muscle group sessions. I’d never done workouts like that before. When I worked with Tyler, I just did whatever he told me to do. And when he left, he gave me groups of exercises to do. I’ve seen people work just specific muscle groups, so I was anxious to give it a try. The sessions are 30 minutes, but you can easily get a workout in during that time. I did back-to-back sessions, thinking I would get a better workout in, and boy, did I! Since then, I have done several sessions with Cody. He really knows his stuff.  He is very personable and easy to work with. I’m glad I decided to give his sessions a try. I plan on signing up for his sessions as often as I can.

Since it’s been a while since I was at the gym on a regular basis, I know that I have to get my body used to it again. Right now, I’m going about 3 times a week. I’ve been there 10 times in the last 3 1/2 weeks. I think that’s a pretty good start. And I’m hoping to increase that shortly.  Some days I will just do cardio; other days I will do cardio and strength training.

To keep myself accountable, I check-in on Facebook and often post something after my workout. I’ve had a few people tell me that my posts have inspired them to join the gym as well. And I’ve had a few people at the gym tell me that I inspire them as well. That makes me feel pretty good. I don’t set out to inspire others, but hearing things like that, inspires me to keep going.

Having a place to work out like Planet Fitness makes this journey a little easier. I’m really glad I joined. Life at my new gym is good. And I’m really happy to be there.

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January 2015 recap

Well the first month of the year is over.  And it went pretty fast too.

Not much happened either really.

I managed to get a few short runs in at the beginning of the month, but super cold temps and snow/ice prevented me from running outside most of the month.

Instead, I concentrated on other things.

I did a 21-day squats and lunges challenge.  And OMG it was tough!  But I actually quite enjoyed it.  It really pushed me some days.  I can hardly wait until the next one LOL

I also did daily stretching and meditation, both of which I found to be quite helpful.  I will continue to do both of them.  The stretches are basically easy yoga moves and things I learned when I took a stretch class a couple of years ago.  I stretch for 15-20 minutes.  I’m not sure where I got the idea to try meditation, but it doesn’t really matter.  It was a little hard when I first started doing it, but it got easier each day.  My longest meditation session is 20 minutes.  I lay on the floor on my yoga mat when I meditate.  I’ve found that to be the easiest for me right now.  I did try sitting on the floor once, and it was okay.  I also tried sitting in a chair, but I didn’t like it and that session didn’t last long.

I also challenged myself to do at least one plank every day for as long I could hold it, but a minimum of 30 seconds.  Some days, that was all I could manage.  But as the days went on, I could hold longer and longer.  Most of the month, I was able to hold for at least a minute, with my longest time being 1 minute 20 seconds.  I’m pretty proud of that!  I think I’ll keep doing a daily plank as well.

I saw my doctor in January as well.  He said I’m doing fine.  I see him about every 3-4 months, just routine check ups.  He did suggest I watch 3 documentaries — Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead; Forks Over Knives; and Food Matters.  The first one I found the most interesting.  He also suggested I try juicing, which I promised I would try.  I’ll be writing a post on that in the near future.

I bought a couple of new notebooks to use as a food journal and a workout journal.  I had been keeping the information on my phone, but I noticed that I started getting a bit lazy about it.  So I decided to go old school again.  I used notebooks when I first started out, so I thought they might help me get back on track and stay there.  It seems to be going well so far.

As I said before, I didn’t get much running in this month.  I think I got 3 or 4 runs in, and maybe 3 walks.  Pitiful.  But not having winter running gear makes it hard.  I really need to get some.  I know I keep saying that.  And, of course, I’m still not in a gym, so no access to a treadmill.  I still have the indoor track to use, but going around and around and around in circles really started to get to me and I had to take a break from it.  Maybe if I had someone to run/walk with, it might be different.  Sometimes I really dislike running alone.  But I don’t have a choice right now.

That’s about it really.  Like I said, not much happened this month.  Hopefully I’ll have more to report next month.

 

 

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Goodbye 2014 – a year in review

Another year is coming to a close.

2014 was a year of ups and downs; struggles and triumphs; good times and some not so good.

I started the year still struggling a bit with working out on my own, but determined to keep going.

It was much harder than I anticipated working out on my own.  I did the best I could, though, with the list of exercises Tyler gave me before he left.  It was made even more difficult with my gym being nearly empty every time I went.  Without having someone around to spot me, I couldn’t go very heavy with the weights.  And being by myself, it was hard to know sometimes if my form was correct.  I started almost dreading going to the gym, which is not a good thing.  Sometimes instead of going to the gym, I would just shovel snow for my workout.  And let me tell you, shovelling snow is an awesome workout – cardio and strength training in one!  I really missed the social aspect of the gym.  It was nice having people to chat with while working out.

I’d been at my gym for over a year, and I really liked it when I first joined.  But the last few months of 2013 things changed.  And they only got worse at the beginning of 2014.  It wasn’t kept as clean as it should have been, there were issues with some of the cardio equipment, membership declined, and as I said before, there was almost no one there when I was there, including staff.  All these things started me thinking that I needed to find somewhere else to work out.

The thought of changing gyms was scary, but I knew deep down that it was the right choice.  But it still took me a few weeks to realize that.  Eventually I started checking out the other gyms in town, and in the meantime, I was using the indoor track at the wellness centre for cardio. running as much as I could.  And it felt like I was getting better at it too.  The first time I ran around that track for 5k without having to stop or walk, I was over the moon with excitement!  And I was still shovelling snow too.  And walking outside if the weather was decent.

One of my goals this year was I wanted to get better at running.  Sounds like an easy thing, but not for me.  I don’t think I was born a runner.  I hated running as a kid.  I think that was partly due to my asthma and partly because I was overweight.  I still find it funny that I somehow became a runner.  Anyway, I wanted to really improve this year.  Because I was now doing races, I wanted to be able to run for longer periods, and not take as many walking breaks.

I did my first race of the year near the end of April.  It was one I’d done the previous year called the Pitter Patter.  I only did it was a 5k this year, but I ran the whole thing start to finish.  I was pretty proud of that!

A few days later, I was set to go visit my friend Jeff in Arizona.  On the way to the airport, my husband and I were involved in a car accident.  We got lucky and only had minor injuries, but the car was a write-off and I never made my trip.

The accident forced me to take a break from pretty much any kind of workout.  I took the brunt of the impact in the accident so the right side of my body was pretty sore.  I had several cuts from breaking glass, and a few bruises.  After some tests, it was discovered I had a tear in my rotator cuff too.  A few days after the accident, I went for a walk, but I didn’t get very far.  I tried again a few days later and was able to go farther.  I was pretty proud of that, even if it hurt a bit.

I had planned on joining a new gym when I got back from my trip, but the accident changed my mind.  I decided to hold off until winter and instead, I would spend the next several months enjoying the outdoors as much as I could.  I also figured it would be just what I needed to improve my running.  Or at least I hoped it would.  And I would still use the indoor track when I couldn’t be outside.  I was really happy with that plan.

After taking about 6 weeks off after the accident, I decided to try running again.  I didn’t really know how long I would need to recover, but 6 weeks seemed a good amount of time.  I decided to try a short run to begin with, just to see how it felt.  Let me tell you, that first run hurt!  But I didn’t give up, I kept going.  I ended doing 5k that first time out again.  While I was pretty sore afterwards, I was really happy.  I decided to run every other day (or at least try to) and see how it went.  It went well.

On July 1st, I did my second race of the year.  And it was one I hadn’t done before.  It was a very hot and humid day, but I crossed that finish line feeling pretty damn proud of myself.  A couple of weeks later, I did my third race, the Run for Reece.  This was the first race I had ever done in 2012.  This time I ran it start to finish.  It felt awesome!  And in between races, I was trying my best to run every other day.  Sometimes it worked out, sometimes it didn’t.  Because it would get pretty hot and humid, I often got up and out early in the day.  I’m not a morning person, but I am a coffee person, and that definitely helps (haha).

I still missed being in a gym for strength training, but I did what I could with little to no equipment.  There are actually quite a few things that I could do.  I know it’s not exactly the same, but at least it was something.  I was concentrating more on my cardio.

August brought more running, but no new races.  I didn’t have another one planned until September.  My goal was to do 5 races and I had already done 3.  There are a lot of races in the area where I live, so I was pretty sure I wouldn’t have a problem doing 2 more.

August also brought Tyler home after graduating from University.  I’m incredibly proud of him for making the commitment to get his degree.  And he brought home his new fiancee.  I somehow knew he’d meet someone out there.  I met them for coffee not long after their return.  Her name is Angela and she’s wonderful.  They are perfect together.  I’m so happy for them both.

He and I began working together again.  It felt good to have someone to workout with again.  And he had me up my cardio.  I had been trying to run every other day, and I was running at least 5km each time.  But now he wanted me to do 8km, 5 days a week.  I’m pretty sure I called him bat-shit crazy, but I did it anyway LOL.  When I first started doing it, I had to walk quite a bit, but eventually I got to the point where I could run the whole 8km.  Another proud moment for me.  A few times, I even went a little farther just to see if I could.

September was pretty busy.  First came my birthday, which is always a good time.  Then Dan and I went to Muskoka for his work trip.  I had never been there before, so I was super excited.  I even got a few workouts in while I was there.  I also did 2 more races in September, both were ones I had never done before.   There were both in neighbouring towns, which was also new to me.  Up until then, all the races I had done had been in my little town.  Now I was expanding to other areas.  Another proud moment.

No races in October, just more running and workouts with Tyler.  I could have done a race or two, but decided against it.  I had met my goal and wasn’t sure if I wanted to push it further.  The weather was still nice, so I was still running outside as much as I could.  And to be honest, I was started to feel a little bored running around the track.

November included another new race for me.  This one was also in a neighbouring town, put on by the local running store.  It was called the Egg Nog Jog.  A couple of things drew me to this race.  First, it was a free entry — hard to pass that up; second, it was for charity, the local Coats for Kids program.  I was nervous about it, but hard a great time doing it.  And I made some new friends too.

Near the end of November/early December brought an end to working out with Tyler again.  And while I miss working with him, I understand.  He’s building a new life for himself and his family.  We remain good friends though, which is important to me.

It started getting cold in November, but I still ran outside as much as I could.  I’m determined to run outside as much as I can this winter.  Of course, I need some warmer clothes, but I’m working on that.

I did another new race in December.  This one in the same neighbouring town as the one in November.  This one was called the Run for Food.  Another free entry, this time taking donations for the local food bank, another worthy cause.  It was very cold, and there was a bit of snow and ice on the ground, which made it a bit tough for me, but I crossed the finish line, and that’s what’s important.

My goal was 5 races this year and I did 7 … super proud of that!  I know it may not seem like a lot to most people, but it’s huge to me.  I never thought I’d be this person, but I quite like it.  And I never thought I’d be a runner, but I am and proud to say I actually really enjoy it!  I don’t have to run — I get to run.  Hopefully, I will be able to do most, if not all, of these races next year too.

I really wanted to up my running game this year, and I think I accomplished that.  Between running and walking, I logged over 835 kms, and most of those were from running.  Actually, those are only the kms that I logged on my running app.  There were a few runs and walks that didn’t get logged, so the total is probably closer to 900 kms.  I’m extremely proud of that!

I also wanted to volunteer more of my time this year.  And I did.  I continued working with Celebrate the Hero.  I so love working there.  It’s an amazing organization and everyone there is so great.  Being there makes my heart and soul happy.  And I feel like I’m making a difference, which is important.

This year, I was hoping to have part of the skin removal surgery I need.  I had consultations with 2 plastic surgeons, but surgery didn’t happen.  And looking back, I honestly don’t think I was ready this year.  It will happen when it’s meant to happen.

I wanted to do more reading this year.  And while I did read quite a bit, I didn’t read as much as I really wanted to.  I love to read, I have ever since I was very young.  It’s something I really should do more often.

One of the most fun things about this year was discovering chats on twitter.  I started going on twitter more and more this year, and by accident I came across chats.  I participate in several of them now.  Most have to do with running/racing or fitness/wellness, but my favourite is actually about coffee.  I actually get up early on Sunday mornings to chat about coffee on twitter.  I’ve “met” some really nice people through these various chats.  They’ve really helped me stay motivated and together.

Well that’s it, my year in review.  While I didn’t accomplish everything I wanted to this year, I’m extremely proud of what I did do.  I’m looking forward to the new year and a new set of goals.

*~*~*~*~*~*

I’ve been working on this post on and off for several days, and I’ve been struggling with what to say and how to say it.  I mentioned it on facebook, and my friend Jess had this to say:

“Quite honestly, I feel like this year was a learning experience about our inner selves. Our capabilities, our strength, our perseverance, our will power”

And I think that really sums up this year quite nicely, thank you Jess.

 

 

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November recap (2014)

Wow, another month has gone.  Time is really flying this year!  I’m not sure where it’s going, but sometimes I wish it would slow down.

Overall, November was pretty good.

I did more strength training, even getting back into a real gym a couple of times.  I almost forgot how much I missed being in a gym.  I really need to join one again.  I miss the routine.  I miss the weights.  I miss the machines.  I miss having other people around when I’m working out.

I didn’t log as many kilometres as I’d hoped, but still did well.  Between running and walking, I racked up 156 kms in November.  Much of that was at the indoor track, but I got outside as often as I could.  It’s a little harder this time of year because it gets dark earlier and it’s colder.

This will be the first winter where I will attempt to run outside, so I did a practice run a few days ago.  I layered up and headed out for a relatively easy 5km.  It felt pretty good too.  I was still a little cold, but overall, I think it went well.  Better than I thought actually.  I definitely need to get more gear for winter running though.

I even did another race, a 5k one yesterday morning.  And it was another new one for me.  You can read all about it here.

I met some awesome new people this month too.  I love that about the running community – you can make friends just about anywhere!  And everyone is so welcoming and so supportive.

I’m still battling with the scale, but I think I’m winning … finally!  With the holiday season upon us, it might be a hard battle, but I’m determined to win!

I’m doing pretty well with my eating as well.  I’m trying to concentrate on eating more fruits and vegetables.  I’m not sure if I’m getting enough protein, so I’m looking for ways to add more protein without adding more meat.  In fact, I’m trying to find ways to eat less meat.  I actually don’t eat a lot of meat, but I would still like to find other ways to get more protein.

I did eat a very small bite of cake at a dinner for Dan’s work.  And to my surprise, I found it incredibly sweet.  Too sweet actually.  So I didn’t eat any more of it.  I’m pretty proud of that.  I used to have a huge sweet tooth.  But it seems as if it’s disappearing.  Or at least lessening.

And I’ve been feeling really good later.  Both mentally and physically.  And I’m proud of that too.  Sometimes I can let things get to me, bother me.  But I’m trying hard to stay positive, and do things that make me happy.  I still have bad days, or bad moments, but I’m doing my best to have more good days than bad.

Like I said, overall November was a good month.

And I’m looking forward to December.

 

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October recap (2014)

Well another month has come to an end.  Where has the time gone?  This year seems to be going by really fast!

I didn’t run any races in October.  I had the chance to run one the first weekend of October, but I was still pretty sore from the race I ran the last weekend of September, so I decided against it.

I continued to log a lot of kilometres between running and walking.  Most of the kms this month were from running.  Between running and walking, I covered a total of 173km in October.  I would have logged a few more, but I had a little issue.  Earlier this week, I was running around the indoor track and landed a little funny on my right foot.  It’s been a little sore for a few days, so I’ve been taking it a little easy.  Hopefully I’ll be back on track for November.

Around mid-month, I started stretching more before running.  I’ve always known stretching is important.  I always did a little bit beforehand.  But for some reason, I decided to do more to see if it would help.  So a couple of weeks ago, I started stretching for about 20 minutes before running.  The first class I ever took when I joined my first gym was a stretch class, so I tried to remember some of the stuff we did in that class.   Nothing too hard or strenuous, just easy gentle stretches.  And I think it’s really helping.

I continued my workouts with Tyler.  We did more leg work, which hopefully will help my running.  And we started working with weights more.  It feels good to be back at it.  I haven’t done much with weights since before the car accident.  I still have to be careful with my shoulder, use lighter weights and watch movements, but I think I’m making progress there.  It will be a while yet before I can do heavier weights like I was doing last year.  But I’ll get there.

The biggest thing I did this month was deciding to do a half marathon next year.  It’s something that’s been on my goal list.  I had been thinking I was probably 3 years away from being able to do it.  But Tyler thinks I can do it next year.  So after talking with him and a few other friends, I decided to make the leap.  I’m terrified, but excited.  It’s not until October of next year, so I have lots of time to train.

Overall, I think October was a pretty good month.  Some days felt better than others.  I just have to keep reminding myself that every little bit counts.  Hopefully I’m making progress with both my running and my workouts.  I’ll just keep doing the best I can.

 

 

 

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Review: ENERGYbits

I admit it.

I’m a little obsessed with twitter lately.

And more specifically, I’m obsessed with twitter chats.

You get to chat with all kinds of different people from all over the place.  And you can get lots of good tips and information.

This is how I heard about ENERGYbits.

I came across them during one chat.

Then they seemed to be everywhere.

Lots of people I followed were raving about them.  They were saying how much more energy they had, and how much better they raced, and how much better their workouts were.  Some people swore they’d never use anything else.

I had to know more about them.

I looked at their website http://www.energybits.com

Very interesting information.

“Made from 100% organicallly grown spirulina algae and loaded with 40 nutrients, ENERGYbits® algae tabs have the highest concentration of protein in the world (64%) all for just one calorie per tab”

I was very intrigued.

Could they really give me more energy? Could they really help improve my workouts?

I ordered a sample.  And impatiently waited for it to arrive.

It took about a week to get here.  Not too bad I thought.

I sat down and read all the information that came with it.  It got me more excited to try them.

NON GMO

Gluten free

no sugar

no caffeine

no fructose

no preservatives

nothing artifical

100% nutrition

I decided to give them a try the next day.  I have been working on my jogging and doing a daily 5k in preparation for my first race of the year.

I admit that often when I need extra energy, I drink a cup of coffee or two in the morning.  I love coffee, but don’t like the crash that sometimes happens when I drink it.

I decided to skip my morning coffee and just rely on the ENERGYbits.

I took 10 of them about 30 minutes before I began my workout, and another 10 about 15 minutes before.

I didn’t feel an immediate surge of energy, but didn’t really expect to either.

So I begin my jog and I’m feeling pretty good.  I have my GPS tracker on so I know how far I’ve gone and my time.  It goes by miles instead of kilometres, which is fine.  3.1 miles = 5 kilometres

I was surprised when at less than 20 minutes in, it called the first mile.  I was making great time! And feeling good!

Halfway through and I’m still feeling good!

I hit the 5k mark in record time!  I was shocked and delighted! I did it in 50 min 17 sec.  My previous best time was 54:35.

Best of all, I still felt great.  Even later that day.  And no crash either.  Sweet!

I was really excited.  I had tons of energy without sugar or caffeine.

I still had some left from the sample they sent me so I decided to use them again the next day.  I was meeting up with a friend for a 5k walk.

Again, I took 10 about 30 minutes before, and another 10 about 15 minutes before.

I got there early, so decided to do a 5k jog on my own.  Again, I felt great.  And best of all, I beat my time from the day before! Incredible!

I sat down to rest a bit before my friend arrived.  I decided to take 5 more while I was waiting for her.  I was still feeling great when she arrived.

We finished our 5k walk and I still had energy to burn! I was so excited!

Thanks to ENERGYbits, I had huge amounts of energy with no sugar, no caffeine, and no crash later in the day.

These things are fantastic!

Do yourself a favour and check them out for yourself!

http://www.energybits.com

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@ENERGYbits on twitter

(All opinions are my own. I was sent a sample of ENERGYbits at no cost to me)

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1st month with new plan

Okay so I’ve been working out with my new fitness plan for a month now.  And I think it’s going okay for the most part.

Tyler gave me a bunch of workouts before he left.  Different workouts to do on different days.  All are moves we had done together so I knew how to do them.  I’m seeing improvement in some areas.  There are a couple of moves I’m struggling a bit with, but I’m working on them.  I’m still getting used to working out alone.  It’s weird.  I’m so used to having someone there, encouraging you, pushing you, correcting your form.  It’s hard doing that alone.  Sometimes I can tell if my form is right, other times I can’t.  Occasionally there are others working out at the gym, and they offer help if they see I need it.

My cardio, on the other hand, is lacking a bit.  And it’s frustrating.  Tyler also gave me a new cardio regimen before he left.  About 2 weeks into it, my right foot starting hurting.  I don’t know what I did.  My doctor thinks I’m just putting too much pressure on it.  He recommended I slow down and get arch supports for my shoes.  I’ve done that, but I’m still having the problem.  There are some days that I can’t do cardio at all.  I’m waiting to hear back from my doctor again to see what else I should do.  Hopefully we can figure out what’s going on and fix it so I can get my cardio back on track.

My nutrition is pretty much on target.  I’m staying within a certain calorie range most days.  I occasionally have a bad day or a bad meal, but not often.  I’m getting better at controlling my food.  I still deal with cravings now and then, but I’m able to overcome them most of the time.

Tyler has started sending me workout videos.  Some of the moves are a bit challenging, but I’m okay with that.  I need to learn new things.  There have only been a few moves I haven’t been able to do, but I will continue to work on them.  I’m happy he’s still willing to help me from far away.  I worry sometimes that him helping me like this while at school will add stress to his life.  I certainly don’t want to do that.  What he’s doing is important.  Anyway, for now it seems to be okay.

So that’s the update for now.  Like I said, the new plan seems to be working okay.  I’ll keep the updates going.

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New fitness plan

Once again, I’m being taken out of my comfort zone. No, that’s not quite right. It’s more like I’m being catapulted out of my comfort zone.

With Tyler returning to school to finish his degree (which I’m very proud of him for doing), our training will switch to virtual. Which, of course, means I will be doing much more on my own. And that has me a little worried. I do well when I’m working with someone, but how well am I going to do by myself? Will I be able to push myself hard enough? Do I know enough to make sure my form is correct? Can I keep myself from getting hurt? Can I keep myself on track?

So we sat down the other day to write out a new fitness plan. Goals for me to work on, rules I need to follow, daily routines to do. In addition, once he gets settled in, he will be making workout videos and sending them to me. We will also have an accountability session, where we discuss how things are going. And, of course, I will continue to do my food journal. I’m excited to see how it will all work. And hopefully it will work well.

I will be working out at least 5 days a week, preferably 6. I will do strength training 3-4 days a week, and cardio every day. And I now keep a workout journal.

Strength training is broken down into 4 categories — push day, pull day, leg day, and core. Each category has a variety of exercises to choose from. All of them are ones I’ve done before with Tyler. Each day, I’m to write down what exercises I pick from the list, what weight I use (if applicable), and any notes about each one. At the end of the workout, I write down how much time it took me to complete the workout. At some point, Tyler will review my workout journal.

Cardio is not much different than it was before. At the gym, it’s an hour on the treadmill, doing a 5k walk/jog (minimum), burning at least 400 calories. If I choose to do more cardio, I can pick between the elliptical, the stair stepper, and the AMT (all movement terrain) machine. I can also choose to do my cardio outside. If I do that, I have to do 10k. I’m still not super good at jogging, but I’m working on it. Part of my new goals is to improve my jogging. So I need to do a little every day, working up to jogging at least 10 minutes without stopping. That seems a little daunting to me, but I’m going to do my best.

As with any fitness plan, nutrition is very important. I think more so for me because I’m a stress-eater and an emotional-eater. The stress of this change could send me into a tailspin, but I’m trying really hard not to let it. I’m trying to be extra careful about what I eat. And making sure I write everything down, including the number of calories for each meal and snack. Tyler will continue to review this as well.

Tyler is a big part of my journey. I’ve come a long way with his help, but I still have a long way to go. I’m worried about getting off track and not being able to get back on. I know he’s only a text or call away, and that does help. I also have a lot of support at my gym, many people willing to help me as much as I need. That’s priceless to me. And I think I’m going to need all the help I can get as I get used to this new fitness plan.

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I promise …

Dear Tyler,

I’m not gonna lie, I’m worried. This new change is scary. While I’m excited for you, and proud of you, I’m also sad because I’ll miss you. While I’m excited to see how this new system works, I’m scared of failing and disappointing you. I know there will be a period of adjustment, for both of us, as we figure it all out. With that said, I want to make you a few promises.

I promise to always do my best.

I promise to push myself as hard as I can.

I promise to eat as clean as I can and keep my food journal going.

I promise to talk to you when I’m having difficulties.

I promise to try not to be so hard on myself.

I promise to keep you up to date on my progress.

I promise to do my best to make you proud.

I promise not to give up.

I still have a long way to go on my journey, and I hope you will be there to see me through it. I think we make a good team. I’m anxious to see just how far we can go.

I wish you much success. I hope you have a great time. Know that you will be greatly missed. And I look forward to when you come home.

Always,
Jenn

P.S. My friend Liz wants me to write this letter to myself. Read it to myself and see how it changes how I see me.

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