Friday, December 31, 2010

Insanity Day 18 - Cardio Recovery

Thankfully, this workout is getting better.  I was able to hold most of the poses until about the last 6 seconds.  My quads were still on fire but not nearly as often to the point I had to rest.  I worked up a good sweat this morning.  I've been finding myself really trying to get the most out of each workout.  I'm sore in different areas everyday.  Only 2.5 weeks in and I can already see & feel a difference.  I think I might like Insanity more than P90X.  Ssshhh...don't tell Tony!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Insanity Day 17 & 21 - Pure Cardio & Cardio Abs

I was away from home all day yesterday, so it was my rest day (Day 21 on the calendar).

Pure Cardio is still as intense as ever, but I am able to make it all the way through the warm-up without extra breaks.  I'm still working up to the speed.  I go a little faster each time but would rather make it through without stopping first.  I'm also improving a lot through the main portion of the workout.  I can stay in it about half way through without taking a break.  My breaks are shorter & my breathing is more stable.  I've noticed my heart rate stays stable, also.  I don't peak as often and it stays at the top of my ideal burn range.  I'm loving the progress...strength and conditioning!

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

The Truth About Your Weight Gain

This is a great article. Simple pieces of knowledge like this are powerful tools.

"EAT RIGHT RULE: If your food can go bad, it's good for you. If it can't go bad, it's bad for you."

The Truth About Your Weight Gain

Insanity Day 16 - Plyometric Cardio Circuit

This workout seems to get a little easier to get through each time.  Don't get me wrong it is as intense as ever.  By easier, I mean I don't have to take as many breaks.  I still can't make it all the way through all 3 sets of each circuit without extra breaks but my breaks are shorter.  My arms and quads tend to get fatigued at which point I can't continue.  I tend to miss out on most of the ab work.  Instead of pushing to the all the way through the 2nd & 3rd sets of each circuit, I might run through the beginning and join in on the ab work.  Each time I put this DVD in, however, my goal is to make it all the way through one set.  When I can do that, I try for making it through two sets, etc.  I can make it all the way through the warm-up without extra breaks, so I'm quite proud of that!

What small steps are you doing each day to achieve your goals?  Remember, you won't see results today or tomorrow or eve next month, but you will see them a few months or a year from now by doing these simple steps.  Don't do the steps and you won't see the results ever!

Monday, December 27, 2010

Insanity Day 6 & 15 - Plyometric Cardio Circuit

Today was supposed to be fit test #2.  However, since I did this already the first time I attempted this program, I felt my numbers wouldn't be much different and felt it was a better use of my time to make up the last workout I had missed.  That workout was from Day 6, Plyometric Cardio Circuit.  Guess what is on the agenda for tomorrow?  Yup, the same freakin' workout!  Oh, well, I feel much better knowing that miss isn't hanging over my head.  I can proceed with a clean slate and finish out week 3 stronger than before I got sick before Thanksgiving. 

Thirteen more days left in the first month before recovery week.  I can see my body changing shape, slowly but surely.  I feel stronger each day.  Each day a new set of muscles let me know how much they worked the day before.  All these a positive, tiny, simple steps to achieving my fitness goal. 

Simple, positive steps repeated daily will guarantee success!  Come grab some success with me in 2011!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Insanity Day 13 - Pure Cardio & Cardio Abs

Pure Cardio is always difficult but it does seem to get easier to get through each time I do it.  My cardiovascular strength is increasing each day, so I don't struggle through my breathing nearly as much.  I noticed today that my heart rate didn't shoot up and stay up for as long as it did just a few days ago.  My max HR was 177 today, compared to 183 the last time I did this workout.  I'm rather looking forward to seeing where I will be in another two weeks.

I must apologize for an earlier post in which I had said that "failure was not an option."  I'm reading this book "The Slight Edge" by Jeff Olson.  He makes it a point to inform us why some people succeed and others do not, despite having the exact same opportunities.  The simple fact of the matter is those who succeed have come to have a fond appreciation for patience.  They know that doing the simple things that will get them where they want to be will not do so today or tomorrow but will a year from now.  Many of us was instant gratification.  Upon not receiving the results we seek within a matter of days, we give up...we fail.  This is where successful people set themselves apart.  Instead of allowing this one simple failure to defeat them, the learn from it and keep on with those simple acts that will get them where they want to be.

So, make failure your option.  If you are beginning a weight loss journey, accept the fact that you will have days when you don't do the simple things you know you need proper & exercise.  However, do not throw in the towel when it happens.  Cease that negative action, learn what to do differently, and choose the option of doing the things you know you need to do to reach your goals.  

"Successful people fail their way to the top." ~ Jeff Olson

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Insanity Day 12 - Cardio Power & Resistance...Yes! Even on Christmas!

Well, I had intended to workout first thing this morning.  However, sleep persisted.  Considering my horrible habit of procrastinating, then having a horrible time getting the workout in, I wasn't hopeful.  Nevertheless, even I can surprise myself.

We ate breakfast, opened gifts, mixed cookie dough, and got the turkey in the oven.  I told my kids I was working out at 2pm so they would have to take a break from the Wii...and I did just that.  I didn't even think about it; I just got up and got it done.

It feels really good to not have to pep talk myself into my workout.  I am nearly two weeks in and have missed only one workout, which I still intend to makeup.

Merry Christmas everyone!  NO EXCUSES!!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Insanity Day 11 & 14 - Cardio Recovery

Again, today, I had a difficult time in my wanting to do my workout.  I was very tired and lacked the motivation due to a very rough night of sleep...or should I say lack of.  I knew if I skipped it I would kick myself and regret it.  I also knew the workout wasn't that long and was a break from cardio.  I little pep-talking later, and I was pushing play!  Each day will get easier and more routine for working out.  Until then, I have to keep working through the struggles, whatever they may be.

This workout never ceases to make me scream out in quads are on fire!  All the same, I love it!  this workout is vital for building the strength needed for workouts like the Power & Resistance, which is up tomorrow.

I moved up my rest day and used it yesterday instead of Sunday.  Ahh, the crazy schedule of a single parent!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

New Year's Resolutions - Get the Picture!

In celebration of the coming New Year and the impending resolutions, let's put things into perspective for anyone looking for a lifestyle change by getting fit and/or losing weight.

The white-ish stuff is fat.  The pinkish stuff is muscle.  Both weigh five pounds.  Notice how much LESS space the muscle consumes as opposed to the fat!

(Liken this to the whole "This is your brain. This is your brain on drugs." lesson from a few years back.)


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Insanity Day 10 - Plyometric Cardio Circuit

Okay, today was rough!  I honestly doubted whether I was gonna get it done.  I've started a new thing of late.  Whenever I was to slack, or skip, on my workout, when I want to eat something "not so" nutritious, or when I want to spend money, I ask myself "is this going to help you achieve your goals?"  "Is this going to get you where you want to be?"  Doing this has helped me tremendously!  I've managed to curb my insatiable craving for french fries!  I've not eaten out when I really didn't feel like cooking.  Today, despite about dozen little pep-talks, I've overcame a bad case of "lead-ass" and got my workout done!

Granted, I don't feel like I did as good as I could have.  Honestly, though, I woke up (well not fully) this morning feeling sluggish and generally worn out, physically and mentally.  I have one more day of work before I am off for nearly a week.  It may be simply that I am yearning for the much-needed break.  Nevertheless, I must push on, no matter how I think I feel.  I am determined to regain my routine I once had and of which I was so proud. Before Thanksgiving, I was on a 3-week streak, then I had too much of a "free" evening and it all went down hill.  I refuse to fail; I may struggle, but I will NOT give up!


#060 - P90X Newsletter - The Skinny on Carbs! - Fitness, Nutrition, Diet, Weight Loss Official Web site

#060 - P90X Newsletter - The Skinny on Carbs! - Fitness, Nutrition, Diet, Weight Loss Official Web site

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Insanity Day 9 - Pure Cardio

Ugh! Twice in one day...the one workout Shaun T himself says he's worried about!  I did do better this evening than I did even this morning.  My breathing feels so much better now.  It is amazing how fast you can gain strength with these workouts.

Bring on the double tomorrow!!

Insanity Day 5 - Pure Cardio

Made up one of my missed workouts from last week this morning.  I rather surprised myself that I got up!  Now, I have great motivation to keep the rest of my day moving forward!

Have to admit, however, part of me is not looking forward to my regularly scheduled Pure Cardio this evening.  But, hey, LET'S GOOOOO!!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Insanity Day 7 & 8 - Cardio Power & Resistance

Day 7 was rest.

Yep, still tough as hell!  I can't wait until my cardiovascular strength is back up.  I'm still fighting a little congestion and it messed with me a little tonight...choking a bit.  I pushed through, though, and still got in a 448 calorie burn with an average HR of 159.  

Pure Cardio tomorrow...mommy!

(I'm a bit behind on my blogging folks, bare with me.  I did miss two days last week.  Crazy busy time of year for an accountant! I fully intend to make those up, but back to back with the day's regularly scheduled workout...I'm thinking not! I'm shooting for two morning workouts this week.)

What is your definition of Optimum Fitness?

The following came from one of my upline coaches.  I thought it very motivational and inspiring, so I wanted to share it with you!  His name is Mike French.

"What is your definition of Optimum Fitness? When you think of being in the shape you always dreamed of, what does that mean to you? I am going to share what it means to me...

Optimum Fitness to me is a blend of many different disciplines:

1.)Muscle Mass ~ Muscle is impressive on a man and sexy on a woman. More is not better in my opinion for men or women. We have all seen the typical "Meathead" weightlifter at a local Gym. They walk around with "ILS" (Imaginary Lat Syndrome) it is a condition where in the effort to look bigger while strutting around the Gym an individual holds their arms away from their body like they are carrying a rolled up sleeping bag under each arm! It looks

Muscle is supposed to enhance your Fitness level and physique, not
dominate it to the point that how big you are is all that you care
about. I want to be very muscular, yet be able to continue to buy
jeans off the rack that fit my legs as well as my waistline. When a
man carries too much muscle it throws off his symmetry and the flow of his physique. Also, the added body weight of a ridiculous amount of muscle mass is hard on your heart and other systems. More weight, be it muscle or fat causes your body's systems to work harder. I won't even get into what I think of the women we see in magazines that have more testosterone in their body than your average man! Take my gorgeous wife, Tami for example. Tami carries a very impressive amount of muscle on her 5'3" frame. It is shapely, sexy, and absolutely adds to her Fitness level. She is very strong while remaining feminine. She has, in my opinion, the perfect amount of muscle for a woman.

2.)Low Body Fat Percentage ~ our bodies don't want to carry excess body fat. Again, extra weight is harder on our bodies systems. Our bodies want to be lean and fit. A low percentage of body fat is attractive to the eye and is a natural drug for the mind. You get a very special feeling of accomplishment from getting your body fat to a minimal level. It takes nutritional discipline and focus.
Let's face it; our midsections are the weathervane for fitness. A
lean waistline or Six Pack shows the world that you have discipline
and have worked very hard to achieve your conditioning. Like the
old saying, On the Beach it doesn't matter how big you are, the
person with the best abs steals the show EVERY TIME!"

3.)Cardiovascular Conditioning ~ cardiovascular conditioning makes
you healthier. It improves circulation and strengthens the heart,
lungs, and blood vessels. The heart is a muscle that needs regular
conditioning. A well- conditioned heart can pump a large amount of
blood with fewer beats than a weak heart. Exercise conditions your
heart to become more efficient as well as more resistant to stress,
heart attack, and other health problems. What could be more

4.)Total Body Flexibility - Flexibility is the ability to move
joints and muscles through their full range of motion. As you
become more flexible, you will find it easier to perform daily
tasks with less effort. You will be less prone to injury. You will
also have a better sense of balance and coordination. My favorite
method to achieve total body flexibility? YOGA!

5.)Disciplined Nutrition that can be adhered to for a Lifetime ~
This is THE biggest problem for 99% of people in their Quest for
Optimum Fitness. Effective nutrition is not rocket science where
you need to measure every macronutrient down to the gram on a
scale. It's not eating strange foods that can only be purchased at
a health Food Store. It's a matter of discipline, proper planning,
and intelligent choices.

You should be able to buy all of your weekly/daily food at your regular grocery store. There are exceptions, like Agave Nectar and Tami's beloved Almond butter! ;-) Your nutrition should be simple, easily prepared and above all else, NORMAL. Tami is the Gourmet Chef in our House and she has the uncanny ability to make ANY meal, no matter what it is, healthy and nutritious. Taco's, meatloaf, pizza, beef & gravy over rice, chicken scampi, stir fry, hamburgers and healthy French fries, ECT! You can do the same thing if you stick to the basics and make smart substitutions.

6.)Mental clarity in regards to your Fitness Goals ~ What do you
REALLY want? Are you prepared to do what it takes to achieve your
Fitness goals? Have you set attainable Fitness goals? When you set
small goals and then achieve those goals you gain mental and
physical momentum. It's like a small snowball at the top of a snowy
hill. As it rolls down the hill it gains speed, momentum and
strength. More victories equals more set goals and you come out on
the winning send of that equation! It's easy to be motivated for a
week or two. It's downright HARD to remain motivated and focused on your goals week in and week out. This is where my beautiful wife Tami is my hero and inspiration. She is the most disciplined,
focused individual I know. She knows EXACTLY what her Fitness goals are and EXACTLY what effort and discipline it will take to achieve those goals. Her weight doesn't bounce up and down. Her strength levels don't fluctuate. She is the model of consistency and focus. When she decides to have a splurge treat food, it's not an impulse, and it's a conscious decision. THAT is the source of her mental strength and willpower! Once you give into a craving you are mentally broken. However, when you make a planned, choice to have a treat, YOU retain the mental strength. We ALL can learn a lot from her example.

What is most important to me is to be able to run, jump, climb,
crawl, swim, bike, workout, chase my Wife, Wink and play with my
children with little effort because I have put in the time and the
work to get myself as close as possible to my Optimum Fitness level.

So where are you in your Quest for Optimum Fitness?

Live Strong ~ Live Lean


Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Insanity Day 4 - Cardio Recovery

OMG!!! My quads were on FIRE!!  I was determined to do this entire workout without having to give my thighs a rest.  After having done the Power & Resistance workout yesterday, I realize better now that I really need to strengthen my quads for those power moves.  I didn't quite make it through every move without giving in.  I did have to rest a couple of times, but for the most part, I did better than the last 3 times I've done this workout!  Now, for Pure Cardio tomorrow!! (help me!)

Monday, December 13, 2010

Insanity Day 3 - Cardio Power & Resistance

The breathing was the most difficult, again.  I'm working on getting it under control again.  I know once I do I will get this workout done, in its entirety, without so much struggle.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Insanity Day 2 - Plyometric Cardio Circuit

Well, what does two weeks off of any workout get you?...weak muscles and poor breathing.  This certainly wasn't my best effort due mostly to difficulty breathing.  This is normal when I don't workout on a regular basis.  However, after having fought a cold for nearly a month, it wasn't horrible.  I did my best.  I was unable to do the last set of the circuit, but I did jog it out the whole time.  I was still able to get in a 500 calorie burn!  Props to picking myself back up.

Lesson Learned

I realized something over the Thanksgiving holiday.  My family didn't celebrate until the Saturday and Sunday after, so it was easy to stay on track the day of.  However, I did not do as well as I could have during the weekend after.  I overate and ate too much of the bad stuff!

While in the midst of the situation, I hesitated as I filled my plate but proceeded to make what I knew were bad decisions.  Later, I asked myself why I had done such a thing.  I was so excited to see my weight at the lowest it had been in over a year up until I ate with the family.  Afterward, I was extremely disappointed in myself.  I had gained back everything I had lost, about 7 pounds!  I have a 2-3 pound daily fluctuation, so my net gain was about 5 pounds.  Nevertheless, I was disappointed in myself and had to discover why I had done wrong when I knew better.

I came to the realization that I was more concerned about negative comments I would get from my family for "not enjoying" the holiday feast than I was about setting a healthy example.  I am now the thinnest, healthiest member of my family, immediate and extended.  Now, instead of hearing that I am "pleasantly plump," I hear how I am too thin.  They think I starve myself.  They don't see that I eat a healthy balance of protein, carbs, and fats and eat five times a day, as well as, working out 6 days a week and that is the reason I am thin.  I don't see myself as "thin" but as healthy and much leaner than I was even when I ran track and played basketball in high school.

You see I come from a very conservative, traditional mid-western/southern family.  Historically, not much thought goes into the preparation of our meals.  They are full of saturated fats, sugar, and highly processed.  Mashed potatoes are best when turned yellow from the unreasonable amount of butter added.  Chicken is best when fried in grease.  French fries aren't edible unless fried, as opposed to baked.  Butter must be added to all vegetables.  Most dishes are salted in addition to any salt added in packaging.  It isn't just my family who sees this type of nutrition as normal.  Our state meal is chicken-fried steak, mashed potatoes, and fried okra!  How can our state's population be expected to change our ways when our state government condones poor nutrition and puts it on a pedestal?

I realized, after much soul searching, that I had made poor decisions over Thanksgiving because I thought it would feel better to not make my family feel bad for what they were eating because I made healthier choices.  I now realize that it is better to set a healthier example for them.  If they feel bad for the choices they make, it is because they know they should make better choices, not because my choices had any part in how they feel.  I need to be consistent in my choices and continue to set a better example and a precedent.  One day, they, too, will make healthier decisions and break the cycle.  Even if that cycle isn't broken until my own children are adults and have families of their own.

My new goal for Christmas is to do just this.  I should, at the very least, maintain my weight through the holiday.

So, if you, too, made less than healthy decisions over Thanksgiving, join me in vowing to do better over Christmas and start the new year off on the right foot.  What do you say?

Thursday, December 9, 2010

You Will Be Alright

I'm feeling rather reflective and sentimental today. This song is for those who may be challenged in their motivation...for whatever reason.

Lifehouse - Storm (Live)

A Break from the Norm

A New fave song...Enjoy!

The Script - I'm Yours

Wednesday, December 8, 2010


I realize I haven't posted much the last couple of weeks. I've been battling a cold since before Thanksgiving. I had a relapse after Thanksgiving but thought I was getting better until this last Sunday. I took a turn for the worse, again. This time, however, I have bodyaches and can't seem to get enough sleep (8 hours & I could do more). Yep, sounds a lot like the flu! I'm grateful I got my flu shot. I'd hate to think what I would feel like otherwise.

Please know I haven't given up. I try to get back to it each day. I have learned over time to give my body the time it needs to recover. Otherwise, I relapse & end up more sick than when it first hit. I continue to make sure my nutrition is in check at the very least. My sodium is way high on the days I feel nauseated thanks to crackers, but Shakeology helps offset the negative effects, fortunately.

I am struggling, but I know this is only temporary & will get past it. Bare with me & keep checking back. I still share useful info as I find it. Lots of new things to come from Beachbody in the coming year!!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Follow Me on Facebook

I'm on Facebook!  Come "Like" me!  I even made it easy for you.  Just click "Like" over there on the right-hand side of my blog, just below the Blog Archive.