Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Strengths - you better believe it!

Blogging Challenge Week 2

Tell me about your STRENGTHS

I WANT to know about your physical strengths.
I WANT to know about your mental strenghts.
I WANT to know about the habits you have that make you strong
I WANT to know what it is about you that makes you the fighter that is inside.

You can't just tell me one thing. Tell me what makes you strong.

Make me BELIEVE it! Make me BELIEVE you are going to fight for your health and you HAVE the power!

Tell me what prepares you to fight these 12 weeks now to make you extraordinary.
What is deep inside you that means you are going to succeed.
And how are you going to use those strengths??

Inspire me.
Cause you ARE inspirational to me.
Now I want to be sure that YOU believe it..

I have strengths, and I will tell you about them!

I am strong!  I completly rock at strength training!  I am enjoying it so much as I am finding out what I am good it - like squats!  I learn fast too and have nailed Lunges as well which had me in tears only a week ago!  I can leg press 100kg - I couldn't do that a week ago!  I am finding that I feel so powerful when doing the upper body workouts as well, and already I can see my ab strength increasing!  At this rate I will be getting advanced in everything!  Oh, and I was able to do one of the advanced balance moves in Body balance the other day - all thanks to the numerous calf raises I have been torturing myself with!
I am persistent and will never fail!  No matter what happens, I will always keep trying, keep getting back up, and never ever ever give up!  I can even give you examples... at age 15 I developed a love of genetics and decided then and there that I would become a scientist.  It has taken 20yrs, but I got my degree and am now doing my PhD.  I had lots of obstacles - I needed to grow up for a start!  I raised my family, battled anxiety, and got through many challenges in my marriage in order to get there!  Even just in these rounds, my persistence is paying off.  I may not have lost a lot each round, but it is adding up - 7kg so far - and even if it takes me 10 rounds - I will do what it takes to get to goal.
I am courageous and will face my fears with dignity!  I have done so every day for the last 15 years as I have battled with overwelming fears so there is no need to stop now.  I will continue to exist outside of my comfort zone - who needs comfortable anyway!  I am so proud that I have overcome many fears associated with exercise - it began with running - the fear of being out of breath, and vomiting from exertion and not being able to 'get home' instantly.  Now I am even doing my ab workouts at the gym and have worked through some nausea from eating yogurt too soon before a workout.  I know now that I can push my body, and that it is predictable - if I love it and respect it, it will love and respect me back!
I am intelligent and have a thirst for knowledge.  I love to know more, to read the research and find my own opinion on debated matters. I like to look things up and to share my knowledge as well. And the learning is not just of the 'book' kind!  I am learning about my own body, what it needs, how it communicates with me.  I am taking in the information that Michelle B is giving us in the program and running with it!  I have already learnt so much about nutrition, how much food my body needs, how to get the maximum nutrition in for that food, and what nutrition I need to get the results I want from MY body!
I am not a perfectionist!  Some people seem to think that perfectionism is something to aspire to but I have been there and found it doesn't work for me!  I need to be able to forgive myself, to accept that I am not perfect and that is okay - I won't always stick to the program and that is okay!  It does not mean it is time to give up.  I am my own best friend - I will give myself a push when I need it, and I will give myself a break when I need it!

I'm thinking I might even come up with a few more but I don't want to go on for too long!  My awesomeness might be overwelming for some so I will leave it at that!  lol

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Week One Wrap Up

As week one draws to a close I have to say that I am very happy with myself.  I have not let perfectionism take over, nor pushed myself too far - but I have still achieved so much in this first week that I can see that I will be able to stick this one out!

My food started off a bit shaky - and it showed in the weightloss.  I have finished strong nutrition wise though I am not properly calorie counting.  I fear that I may need to do so in order to lose weight as I have been tremendously hungry!  My 'sleep' eating, those midnight snacks, are not great even though I am making good protein based choices.  I still have that fear about less exercise in the lean and strong program, though it was mentioned that a good slow run would be okay once in a while.  I do like my running but I am enjoying the break from the evening runs and I really want to follow my trust in Mish philosophy! 
I have done my planning for next week, I have the full five days planned out but I will need to watch the weekends - that is for me to eat my leftovers!  I bought I chicken breast and cooked it up, divvying it up into 40g lots for lunches or for pizzas, and popped it into the freezer.  I've also put my pita bread and raison toast into the freezer so I can get out single serve lots the night before!  Organisation is the key!

The gym time went well but I am still struggling to get into uni and get that work done.  I need to make it happen though!  No stuffing around this week - straight from gym to work!  I am a bit upset at missing my Super Saturday Session, but I was sick and the day off served me well. I felt heaps better today and was able to get to the gym and meet Natalie for body balance - it was so great showing her around the machines and having a chinwag while on the treadmill!  20mins went sooo fast!  She was choking up the calories burnt pretty quick too!

All up, I have had an excellent first week.  I'm not sure how I will go with kilo's lost but I know I am stronger and fitter then ever before!  Oh, and my digestive system is loving the food!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Finding my way.

Breakthrough today at the gym!  No tears lower body and abs workout purely because I accepted where I am now.  I need to concentrate on form, learning how to do the exercises, learning where I am at now.  Pushing yourself is all well and good, but pushing too hard will mean you won't be working your target muscles effectively!  I also learnt a very important lesson in self-talk and how it affects our actions.

Today I learnt that I can do squats.. and do them well.  I can even do sumo squats!  I can do hamstring curls on a fitball, and I am learning to do lunges!
I can already see massive improvements in my abs.. I can do side crunches so easily now - I want to do the twisties though so I am doing a bit of research on how to build up the right muscles!  But omg!  I can do proper side planks!  I could only hold for 10secs but by golly I reckon I will be doing full minute ones in a couple of weeks!

Food wise I have been doing a lot better.. still getting caught out with midnight snacking but I am keeping it protein based (gotta love baked beans!).  I did eat some fantales and a freddo frog yesterday much to my disgust but I learnt something very important about how I talk.  I met up with a colleague as I was walking up to my office and she commented that I had lost weight.  Happy face!  I said yup, given up chocolate, I am such a chocolate addict I can eat a whole family block without thinking!  I went on to say that I was doing some strength training .. really sore (she is an instructor at the gym so I wasn't gabbling for no reason! lol) blah blah.  Anyways, a few hours I went to a library session and there was chocolate out ready for us.. so I grabbed one.. and another with my chocolate 'personality' coming out full force.  I went back to being that chocolate addict instead of the person who says no to chocolate.  I really think that if I hadn't of had that conversation earlier then I would not have indulged!

So today I have had my weightwise oats and cuppa tea with natvia sweetener, yogurt (forme) after my workout with a cuppa tea with half a sugar, and then made up the broccoli soup (took a lot longer then it said it would mind you!).  I accidently used twice the parmesan I should have .. weighed out 30g as a single serve without thinking that it is meant to be two serves but I reckon it's okay as I didn't have any bread to go with it!  Very filling I must say.. I will have to sit and rest while my stomach processes all those healthy vitamins and minerals!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Sooo tired!

Today has been a hard day.  Both with my exercise and life in general.  It began with a gain on the scales and just kept getting worse...

I don't know what happened with my scales.. it was the new ones that were evil and gave me a 0.55g gain on last week.  My other scales were a loss - a very small one, but still a loss!  I am thinking it was the pizza and garlic bread from the night before come to haunt me!  I am going to be a lot more careful with my food and have even done a bit of planning and shopping. 

I cooked up the chicken soup - how quick and easy was that!  But doubled the recipe and used more chicken as I didn't want to eat the dessert.  I've got two serves left - though I really don't know if they are proper serves or not - I just estimated what looked like a decent amount to eat (I got 7 meals all up out of it, with one being a double serve for hubby so it should be about right!).  I also bought the ingredients for dinner tomorrow night, and lunch and dinner the next night.  No excuses!

I did bum out for lunch today had steamed rice, stir-fry veg, and thai green chicken curry - but it was in a small 300mL?? serving bowl so hopefully that minimises the damage.  I didn't have my afternoon snack to make up for it!  and dinner was pretty light so lets hope I was at least near my 1200cal range.

So the gym.. I had to do it in the afternoon as I had a job interview at 10am, not to mention drama with kids in the morning as well!  Grr!  Anyways.. I got to the gym and did my 15mins on the rower - longest I have ever been on the damn thing - and made it 2.6km.  Then I started the abs workout - groan.  I couldn't do the Aeroplanes - it just hurt my shoulder, so I just did the lifts without the L/R thing - hold for 10secs and repeated that 5 times each set (assuming the 15x was a typo).  The planks were great, I did 20secs on toes, 10secs on knees.. repeat 4 times.  The side twists were okay... I'm not sure if it is doing anything though, crunches all good, side crunches fine (though my left side seems to have less flexibility),  reverse plank I couldn't even do one of... and I can't seem to get the picture up at the moment to see what I was doign wrong.  I would like to note that at this point I was in tears AGAIN! - two days in a row I have cried at the gym!  Reverse crunches were fine, but the leg extensions were horrid.  I tried the holding for 5 secs but could only make it to 3 secs and then could only do about 3reps each side.. I had to go back to 1sec for the whole 15 reps!  I was so upset, and still am.  I am so peeved at myself for not being able to do the exercises I need to.  I'm annoyed that there are typos in the program which mean I don't know if I am just being a whuss or not - I just feel so inadequate.  I'm not giving up though... I am more determined to keep going so I can see those improvements.  In Mish we Trust. 

Sigh.. anyways... it took me 1hr and 15mins for today.. so much for a 'quick' one!  And then I came home and cooked dinner, cleaned up after dinner and sat down and here I am.  Almost bed time so I will have to get up and chase the kids very soon!

I'm glad today is over.. but I will be checking the program for tomorrow to make sure I can follow it!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Day Two.. Blah Blah Blah

It seems things can never stay up for long.. they must always come down again and that is where I am today!  Two kids home sick, the sniffles, and feeling like poop.  I made it to the gym for my workout (my eldest is 12yo and the neighbours are pretty good at keeping their ears out for them) and topped up at 255calories for the session.. again down from yesterday.

It started off a bit down even.. the crosstrainer is my worst enemy!  I just don't have the weight behind me to make it work I think.. I never seem to get too far on it and feel terrible afterwards!  So ten minutes on that and I was already feeling pooped!  Leg press was great... started at 86kg x12, tried 91kg and managed to do 12, so tried 100kg and managed 8 reps.  Ripper!  That is double my goal weight!  The hamstring curls and leg extension machines were fine.. 30kg of 3x12 and 23kg 8/11/9 reps each set.  Lunges ended up with me nearly in tears... I tried with 3kg dumbells and 3reps into the middle set on my left leg and my knee gave in a bit.  I just need to practice more but it is one of the exercises where you don't really feel it until you 'really' feel it.  So lots more lunges (without dumbells) for me until I get my form right.  I had a similar issue with twisties - I could not physically get into a position to do them so I did the side crunches instead.  Tomorrows work out has both so I think I might just try holding a half sit up postion for a while instead!

Now, food is an issue.. I had to get up and eat twice last night!  And it wasn't a hunger I could ignore either - totally ravanous vacuum type feeling - not just belly rumbling!  I'm not calorie counting right now, and can't follow the meal plan exactly either but I am trying to stick as close as possible to it.  I'm hoping I just need those extra calories to put on muscles!  The scales this morning didn't look so positive though!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Lean and Strong Day One

The Mishelle Bridges 12 Week Body Transformation includes a Lean and Strong Program for those at, or near, goal weight and wanting to tone up.  This is the second round it has been running and my second attempt.  Last round I did the first four weeks and changed to Lean to Fit as I as a little overwelmed by the program itself - pyramid sets, super sets, whatthehell sets?

Today was my first day and first session.. 9am at the gym!

I was hoping to go into the general area but it was overrun with a group of women on the cardio equipment so I headed to the ladies only area thinking I would come back for the rest of the workout.

Alternating tready and rowing done.. about 2.30mins for each.  I started at 11km/hr on the tready but dropped to 10km/hr for the last two sets, and the last set on the rower was closer to 3mins!  Heartrate was right up there!  I had my HRM running but pretty much forgot about it after this point...
Ok, so lat pull-downs were down with the handles rather then the bar.  There is no lat pulldown  machine with a bar in the gym and that bar was hooked up to the freedom machine - about 2in out of my reach (I hate being short some days) and the only trainers around were busy.  Feeling a bit blah about that but I am sure I will get over it.  I will mention something to the gym folk and see what I can do.. I could have used the freedom machine in the girl area - at least I can set the arms wide.

The rest of the workout went exactly as Mish stated.. I used recommended weights all round.  Two exercises I struggled with though.. the tricep one - I used two hand weights (3kg) and did the same movement.  I just felt like I didnt' have control of the barbell and my shoulders were working rather then my triceps, and the sit-ups.  For the full sit up I hooked my feet up under the pilates machine (irony anyone?) for the first set and managed 12 but struggled, next circuit I only managed four and then switched to crunches for the rest.

Oh, I also had trouble with the shoulder press... my neck kept hurting so I think I need to build up my upper body strength before doing some of the exercises - no point over-reaching if I am not getting the benefit of the exercise!

Anyways.. I checked my HRM just as I went to do my abs circuit and it was over 340cals, and I stopped straight after I completed my circuit for a whopping 366cals!  I am totally blown away!  I wasn't even trying to push my cals up, was stuffing around changing equipment and setting up barbells as well!  I might see if I can pull a 400 cal session in the morning!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Birthday Parties for Children

Yes, it was one of those days today!  Master C was invited to a 6th Birthday Party at the Crazy Joker.  Lots of exercise, lots of sugar, lots of fun!

Well, for the kids anyway. I, on the other hand, had the rather daunting task of sitting in front of a table full of party food for 3hrs, with no money to buy my own food and little food at home to eat before hand.  Until Tuesday we are surviving on what is in the cupboard and nothing fresh is left - no fruit or vege (we used the last of the frozen vege tonight) - and it is hard!  My 'lunch' before going was a nutella sandwich!

While I was there I consumed about 3/4 of a plate of wedges with sourcream and sweet chilli sause, and a myriad of lollies, chips and a peice of cake with 2cm thick sugar icing around the top!  Having said that.. I did have fun.  I talked to people - something that is hard for me to do, and I smiled and enjoyed it!  It would have been nice if the food was a bit better.. I know that Master C had burnt off any calories he consumed there playing in the huge play area (and he guzzled down a good litre of water while he was there too!).

I guess the lesson today is to be prepared.  I didn't budget properly this week as we were expecting the loan to come through by Friday.. now it will be another week.  If I had of had planned I could have ordered myself a decent plate of food, or better still, bought something (though I think that is not allowed!).  I also could have had a better snack before I left.  I had had oats for breakfast, but an egg on toast would have been better!

Live and Learn!  Tomorrow is the official start of the challenge and it feels terrible to be starting off on such a bad footing.. no food in the cupboards and all.. but it is only one day so I had better suck it up and get on with it!

Saturday, May 21, 2011

My Fitness Test

Today I went through the fitness test for the 12wbt... I was procrastinating a little as this has been my biggest obstacle in 'completing' the rounds - I do the first two tests and that's it!  But this time I am going to succeed.  I am going to improve in each test and it will be fantastic to see how much I am improving!

So first up I did the 1km time trial.  Now I know that my first 5mins running are my slowest - I need that time to 'warm up'  So that is exactly what I did.  I set up runkeeper with two 1km intervals, mapped the route and checked where the 1km trial will start and finish (to make sure runkeeper is accurate) and off I went.  The first 1km I walked and jogged and then I took off when the beep went - right in the middle of 'firework' by Katy Perry. Talk about motivation to move my tooshie!  Half way through is the hardest, you have to fight with your mind 'I can do anything for 5mins, It's only five minutes of pain, just keep going'.  And I did.  It felt so good to actually run!  Not jog or waddle, but to actually run!  Feel the wind against my cheeks, my hair blowing out, that nip of cold against sweaty skin.. can you tell I get a runner's high around this point?

It was over quickly though.. it felt like it was too quick but I checked.. the gps was working fine and it was 1km.  I had to wait till I got home to check my time.. I could see that I ran 10.77km per hour which translated to 5.34mins/km for my time trial!  I am soo happy!  Given I haven't been running much this last 2mths now, I was happy to see that I was on the borderline between intermediate and advanced.  I will smash it out of the water next fitness test!

So I come home with nice warm muscles and quickly moved through the rest..

Sit and Reach was -5cm - borderline between beginner and intermediate (it may have been -4cm as the ruler moved a bit)
Push ups.. 25 in 1 min.  I did the first 5 on my toes as well!  Intermediate for this one!
Wall sit.. 1min 19secs  Intermedate again
Abs level.. a big fat 0!  Dyllan stood on my toes and I could do a full sit up but I think that is cheating!

All up I average out at intermediate for strength, adv for cardio (I'm giving myself that 4secs!) and beginner for core and flexibility!  But to hell with that.. I'm doing advanced lean and strong!  Just try and stop me!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Today, in 12 Weeks Time.

The Blog Challenge:       If you can dream it you can achieve it!!!

I want you to paint me a word picture. Pretend today is not today. You are not nervous, or overwhelmed or apprehensive or excited about the next 12 weeks. You are none of those things because you have LIVED it! You are at the finish line!

Maybe today is the day you run city 2 surf! Maybe it is the finale party. Maybe you are at the final workout. Maybe you are standing up there on the stage with Mish - a WINNER this round.

Paint me the picture. What are you feeling? What are you wearing? What can you do?

What have been your greatest achievements? Your biggest challenges?

How do you feel inside?? Just how excited ARE you???

Before you achieve it - you have to dream it. Put those dreams down. Make them real.

The more specific your dreams the closer you are to making them a reality.

Well, here goes:

Today is a day in 12 weeks time.. or round-a-bouts there.  It's the evening of the finale party.

I am standing in a hotel room in Brisbane, just as scared, nervous, and excited as I am right now.  But so so proud of myself.  I have strength, commitment, character - and I can prove it.  I've completed the lean and strong program, lost 6kg and gained muscle.  My body is toned and beautiful.  I've splurged out and got myself a fake-tan - well, if my photos are going to be used to inspire others then I want to look my best!  I even have my nails done, and had my make-up done professionally for the party. 
I start to put on my dress, a cute black shimmery dress that I picked up that day on a shopping spree!  As the dress shifts into place, I catch a glimpse of someone beautiful in mirror.  My breathe catches in my throat as I realise it is me.  At that moment I smile.  I remember back to 12 wks ago when I cried at the thought of this moment.  I cried because I thought is was impossible.. something that I would forever want but never recieve.  Now I smile because I have come to know the new me, the me that isn't afraid all the time.  The me who knows that I am a good, true person, a woman of my word.
Tonight is my night.  I have overcome so much to be here.  I have saved money, been to the gym everyday, booked plane tickets and accomadation, caught a plane and got to the accommodation.  I have made friends - my first in a very long time.  I can hear them coming down the corridor of the hotel to get me.
A flutter of the old nervousness passes me through me but I know that it won't stay.  I won't get panicy or be shy, I won't stay 'safe' by hiding the corner.  I can now say that I can do anything!  Gone is the girl who cowered in the corner sobbing because she couldnt' answer the phone, the girl who spent a week too terrified to go hang out the washing, the girl who barely left the house for 3yrs!  In her place... a brave and beautiful woman.
It wasn't that long ago that I wished for normal, to not be defective.  Now, I am extraordinary!  I am about to meet Michelle Bridges and lots of other wonderful people who have become my friends over the last 12 weeks. I don't know if I will 'win' a prize, if I do, I will accept it with grace and pride.. I have already won more then they could ever know, or even imagine - I have won back the ability to live a life outside of the shadows of fear. 
I grab my handbag and head out the door, ready for anything.  I run down the hallway giggling with excitment and happiness and disappear around the corner to my new life!

Okay.. so that is my 'dream' for 12 weeks time.  I don't know if it is possible.. I'm actually kinda scared that it might come true.  I am freaking terrified that I might just win the 'train with Michelle' competition on facebook as then I have no excuses! I wont' be able to hide in the shadows, to make excuses, to turn my back and pretend it isnt' there.  I want this so much I am afraid to want it.  I'm vulnerable, exposed, and so easily knocked down.  But everyday I will fight to move one step closer!

My first sessions for round 2!

As per my post last week, I have downloaded the week one program (L&S) from round one and have been doing it this week.  I blogged wednesday's core session and now I have completed the thursday and friday sessions (upper and lower body).

I was pretty stoked with myself.. I was able to complete them all and a lot easier then when I tried last round!  I need to record the weights and reps and any changes I needed to make as well!

1000m on rowing machine: 5mins 30
Assisted chin-ups (50kg  3x8)  At 56kg I think that this means I was only lifting 6kg.. I'm meant to be lifting the equivelant of 25kg!  Any help here would be great!
chest Press with Barbell... there was a 12.5kg barbell set up so I used that for 3x12, I think I need to increase it as it was quite easy.
Dumbbell Fly.. 5kg, 3x12 (I felt it, and it felt goooood!)
Machine Shoulder Press.. I used the 'overhead press' machine with 16kg.. 3x8
Tricep Dips (1 leg elevated).. I did the three sets left leg/right leg/both legs down.
Front Raises 2kg, 3x12 (ouchies)
Bicep curls with dumbbells  5kg 3x8.  These were weird as I am not used to started with my hand by my sides.  I might check the instructions again!
Abs circuit was easy as, though I used knees for the side planks as I have never done them before!

Leg Press 84kg, 3x12 sets (I reckon I could increase it a bit too)
Squats.. I need to use a barbell next time as I just don't feel it!
Leg extensions.. my core is so soft but I managed the 3x12 easy
Step Ups, 3x12l/r 5kg - no problems
Seated Donkey Calf Raises.. no machine so I did straight calf raises, the last set I did toes in for 12 and toes out for 12.
Fitball Hamstring Curls - loved it.. I felt it this time, last time I tried these I just couldn't get it to work! 3x12
Clams.. my flexibility is limiting my success here.. I can do them but it pulls my right quad to a cramp.

Nice to not have abs in this one but the extra stretches were lovely!

The new program is going to be a bit different to this but I am enjoying getting into the gym and loving the muscle work!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Measuring Up...

Ahhhhhh!  It is that time again.  Out comes the bikini and the camera, the bar stool and the newspaper, the tapemeasure, scales and then comes the sound of my delusions being shattered.  We all do it!  We all hide behind our carefully constructed fantasy world in which we really don't look that bad.  In my case, my little fantasy includes having boobs, a flatish belly, and no triple chins.  And we won't even go near hair issues (hopefully the camera wasn't close enough to either!).

So here goes.

I weigh 56.65kg (at 155cm tall I have about 5/6kg to lose)
Chest.. 88cm
Waist also.. 88cm
Hip.. a whopping 92cm
My thighs were measured 24cm up to make sure I got the fat bits..
right.. 51cm
left.. 50cm

Unfortunatly I think they are pretty much identical to my starting measurements last round.  Logging in to check now... and.....omg!  I feel better now... they are equal to my week 4 stats!
Here is a run down of my week one stats last round
weight 58.1 (down from 60+ in the preseason)
chest 90cm (-2)
wasit 92cm (-4)
Hip 96cm (-4)
right 54cm (-3)
left 52cm (-2)

Well, now I feel a little happier.  After week 4 I hit stress town - had to move house and had some major financial worries but no real reason not to do the challenge.. I just let myself down.

Okay so now for the big one... here is the photos.  Please pardon the horrid tan line on my arse.  I took swimming lessons over the summer and my one peice is much more arse friendly then these bits of fabric they call a bikini!  And a quick note to self.. don't tuck your chin in for a photo... it looks awful!

I'm thinking I am not too bad.. just a little padded!  No definition, no shape!  Well, apart from the roundness of my belly! 

Now, my scales..

I have 28.0% body fat (15.8kg in body fat!  OMG!  Ewwww!).  That needs to change!  I want to get as close to 20.0% as possible, and 51kg.  I want my photos to show a flat stomach, less flap in the arms, less thigh-thigh contact, and a WAIST!  I have never had one of those! (Though I must say, it looks like it might be coming along in that back flex photo!)

So anyways.. there I am in all my glory!  I am truely sorry if you're eyes are permanently damaged in anyway!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

So I started to exercise...

I snuck back in to Round one, Week one Program and printed out the L&S program to do today.  I was a bit lazy and held off until this afternoon but I did it.  My gosh was it hard!

I did the warm-up then headed over to the mats for the core workout (wednesday is core day) and started off, 20reps of each exercise in 3 circuits. 
The first exercise was simple, and not too much work at all (alternating leg and arm raises from a hands and knees positions) and I felt like a bit of a dufus doing them - though by the third circuit I was grateful for the opportunity to stretch!  I did wobble a bit though so I certainly have room for improvement - just goes to show - you don't need to be in pain to be working out!
Next was the back extension.. alternating sides.. this was a killer and I really pushed it but boy am I feeling it in my back already!  Even with my chin tucked in I am feeling it in my neck muscles but not badly which is good! 
Then it was the twist crunches!  Now I assume as it was specified to do both left and right that all up we needed to do 40 crunches: 20 left, 20 right.  It felt great counting them out though I did have to stop and rest a few times!  I find I am stronger on the left crunches then the right too.  It felt a little lopsided!
The next exercise I struggled with, lower body twists - I really should have looked at the instructions better before hand as I wasn't sure if I needed to lift my hips off the ground or not!  Looks like you do though which is good as that is what I was doing! The 20reps seemed really huge for this one as well as it was left and right so 40 all up!
Lastly was the reverse crunch - fantastic exercise and the only one I didn't need to have breaks for.  You do need to concentrate on your movement though.. make sure you are getting the core muscles working to the max!
I found overall that the workout seemed very drawnout.. 40reps for some exercises (particularly the first one with a 5sec hold) were tedious and then going for the three rounds seemed to take forever.  But it felt really good at the end.. I was very happy that I didn't take short-cuts like lowering the reps on the left/right exercises.

The stretching felt really great afterward though!  I love taking those few minutes to really stretch it out!

My back is really feeling it tonight though.. and I pray that my stomach muscles dont' freak out tomorrow!

Food. Glorious food!

Food is a big thing for anyone trying to lose weight! Even Mish says that the results you get from the program depend more on food then exercise! 80% food: 20% exercise!

So this is what I am eating. Last night's dinner was Chicken Parma - my way! 130g of Chicken, grilled in the George Foreman, throw on a couple of tablespoons of salsa dip (yup, the kind you use for corn chips), and some Parmesan cheese. Throw it under the grill to melt the cheese and serve with some greens!! It sits around the 300cal mark depending on the size of the chicken and how much Parmesan cheese you use!

So yummy!!

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Goal Setting!

Continuing on from last week.. I am really stuck on this goal setting task!  I really think this is where I fell down last rounds.. I focused on goals I thought I should.. rather then what I actually want.  My ultimate goal is to feel loved, by me, my family, and my partner.  I want to have a 'hot' body.. I want to be wanted for my sexiness! lol  I want others to look at me and say 'wow' she is looking awesome!

At the end of the challenge I want to go to the finale party and workout.  I want to look awesome. 
I have made it as a finalist in the Michelle Bridges facebook comp.. (please vote for me!  Jenifer A)
so it is possible I can get there.. fingers crossed!  But I am going no matter what!  It is a huge motivation to work toward as well!

So I am going to take my 'body' goals from last week and get more specific!

Exercise (Running, Gym)
  I want to look hot so I think it is time to get serious and do the lean and strong program, with a little extra cardio thrown in for good measure.  I have my gym membership... I am thinking I can wake up early and get in a 3-5km run, then get dressed and ready, drop off kids to school and do 45mins at the gym before hitting uni!  I can do a couple of hours extra study at home each night to compensate!  this will also clear up my afternoons so I can concentrate on cooking healthy dinners! 
Nutrition (obvious)
  Okay, I really fall down here.. no take out, no 'treats' - I need to treat my body like a temple so it will look like a temple!

Health (doctor’s Dentist, podiatrist etc)
  Time to get my crowns done and see about getting my mouth looking like a normal persons!  I was born with no adult molars, and have lost two of my baby ones now with nothing to fill the gap - it looks awful enough having the ones I have filled with silver but the gaps are even more obvious!
Less obvious is my mental health.  I think it is time to go see about getting some help with my panic disorder/social phobia.  It is time to get over it once and for all.  Sure, I have come a long way from where I was 15 years ago, but it is not normal to be this scared of life.  The finale has a lot to do with it.. I think if I can fly down for the finale and attend, I can do anything!

General Care (haircuts, clothing, waxing etc)
  So I doubt I will ever wax my bikini line but I need to start looking after how I look.. I want to get my eyebrows shaped, my arms waxed, and my nails done.  I derserve to look hot.  I am happy growing my hair long at the moment - it means I can do it up, but I might see about getting a colour done!  And of course, I need some clothes!

Now for the how-to and breaking it down.  I will just focus on this week and week one of the challenge and then will reassess and see how it all went!

1. Exercise: I am running this afternoon, but will run again in the morning.. at 6.30am so to bed early tonight.  I will head to the gym after school drop off and do the wednesday of the week one L&S program.. I have it printed out ready to go.
2. Health: I will go through my dental quote and ring my health insurance then make the appointments!
3. I will call the wax shack after gym tomorrow and make an appointment for the eyebrow wax!

I feel better!

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Delineation of goals


One of my major obstacles/excuses in my Michelle Bridges 12 week transformation challenge has been negotiating the priorities in my life – exercise, family, housework, university, and everything else that doesn’t fit nicely into a label!  So I think it is time to really define the areas of my life and apply some of the mindset exercises to these areas.

1. Body Goals

First up are my personal goals.  Things that are just about me and my body.  Can I divide this up even further?  Let’s see!  I will try and keep it simple!

Exercise (Running, Gym)

Nutrition (obvious)

Health (doctor’s Dentist, podiatrist etc)

General Care (haircuts, clothing, waxing etc)

Romance (dates and sex!)

2. Study/Work Goals

Written/ research (confirmation, papers)

Lab work


3. Family Goals

Health (doctors appts, etc)

General care (haircuts, clothes, etc)

School/ learning (participation, homework)


4. Home Goals

General cleaning and organisation

Decorating and furnishing


Car (cleaning and maintenance)

5. Money Goals

Everyday finance



6. Special Events

Birthday parties for the boys


Holidays/ camping

Extended Family visits


Oh gosh!  The scary thing is that I am sure I will think of more!  On an everyday level, the hardest things to juggle are the exercise, uni, and finding time to do the housework and cook nutritious meals!  I have to work in 6-8hrs a day of uni time and take full advantage of that time, as well as fit in everything else!  Time to do up a schedule me thinks!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

How to Jump Back on the Wagon..

Having just successfully 'jumped back on the wagon', I thought I would share what I have learnt and how I got over the mental hurdle of 'restarting'.

Firstly, you need to define the difference between being on and off the wagon.  At what point did you realise you weren't on the wagon?  And then look back to when you started getting off the wagon?  I realised around week 5, but looking back, I can see that from week 3 I had 'let go' of the reins which is what caused me to crash and burn.  What I realised was that 'falling off the wagon' was, for me, I loss of my sense of control.  I stopped flexing my willpower muscle and let the inner labrador take over.

What changes happened in my eating and exercise plan? How did I 'see' that I wasn't on the wagon anymore?  Most noticely, I had starting eating chocolate and allowing 'treat' foods.  It started off inside my calorie limits which was okay.. but it stopped being okay when that changed to chocolate, biscuits, icecream - things I wasn't controlling but were letting control me.

So how does a person get back on the wagon?  Take back your sense of control.  It doesn't have to be big.  I started by doing a 24hr ban on chocolate.  I knew that it was the chocolate and 'treat' foods that was the problem so I had to reign that in and control it.  Now I am in the 5th day of a two-week chocolate ban.  Last night was the most painful as the inner labrador came out in full force.  But I survived with only a half a peanut butter sandwich consumed after dinner!  Now in the five days, I have also started exercising again.  Not to the level I was in the first weeks of the challenge where I as going everyday, but enough to feel I have control.  That is my focus for now - control, not perfection!

And I think that will be the trick for staying on track for me... to escape my perfectionism and accept what I can do rather then focus on how I am failing.  I don't think anyone is capable of doign the program perfectly - we all have red flag days, different schedules and commitments, holidays, monthly cycles, financial issues, etc etc which will affect the program, but the success is in making the program work for you.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Super Sunday Rocks it out!!

So today I totally hit it out of the ball park!! It has now been 24hrs since my last chocolate which is pretty impressive on it's own.

I also signed up for round two before heading to the gym. At the gym, I found out that step had been replaced with Body Combat. Omg! Pain!

I followed it up with Body Balance so around 450 cals (assuming only 100 cals for balance). I will be sore for weeks!!

But to top it all off - I ran!! Five kilometers, 35mins, 300 cals!!

Add it up - 750 cals!

I would just like to state for the record that I am Awesome!!!