Day 1-2 on P90X

August 27th, 2010

I’m the first to admit that I am a big marshmallow. My upper body strength is close to the consistency of orange Jell-O. My legs are strong from lots of running/Tae-Bo/Turbo Jam/Walking. From the waist up, I’m a physical wimp.

My brother recently told me that I needed to work on my muscles. I have read that women over 40 start losing muscle mass at an alarming rate. Not doing strength training a few days a week is asking for bad posture, bone loss, and possibly that “grandma slump”. I don’t want that. To me, just looking good in a bathing suit would work. Not being self-conscious in a sleeveless top would be great too. Look good naked and be proud of my body? Where do I sign up?!

We’ve all seen the infomercials about exercise programs. The ones that promise that their gadget will make you skinny overnight. I don’t buy into those. I KNOW that it takes hard work, eating right, staying hydrated, and getting enough sleep. Fad diets and gimmicky equipment don’t work. Hard work and persistence is always the answer.

I have seen countless posts on Sparkpeople & other fitness sites about P90X and their results. The before/after pictures are amazing. Overweight folks just like me worked their tails off and got to the end more toned, lighter on the scale, and full of confidence. Many exercise programs are all about cardio. I’m a testament that running a ton won’t make you skinny. I’ve done 3 marathons, 5 halves, and countless little runs. 100% cardio doesn’t make you skinny. It just doesn’t. Maybe throwing in strength training along with cardio would help? Hmm…why not give it a try.

I lucked out and bought the P90X disks one at a time on Ebay. I found the resistance bands & pull-up bar on there as well. All of it with shipping was around $90. Not bad. I found the literature (calendar, workout schedule, and nutrition) online. Time to get my head on straight, and commit to this for 90 days. That means working out 6 days a week AND eating right.

The first day is Chest & Back, but I didn’t have that DVD in yet. I used Shoulders & Arms instead. I started off with 6 & 10lbs weights. The workout was a challenge, but I made it through. Next up was Ab Ripper. One word: OUCH! I had to do a modified version of almost every exercise. I did stick with it, but it was really tough. I know I will get better with this, but my stomach is a bowl full of jelly right now. Day 1 down with 69min of exercise.

Day 2:
I started off the morning with Plyometrics. I had no idea what this one was about. One word: Jumping. This 55min workout is FULL of squats, lunges, and jumping. My shoulders & back were sore this morning. I’m sure my thighs are going to be hurting tomorrow. Plyometrics gets your heart rate way up there. You also sweat a TON. Once again, it was tough, but I made it through. Only 88 days to go.
I’m off to make a recovery smoothie for breakfast. 🙂

C is for cookie…and chocolate…and chips…and…

August 21st, 2010

I’ve come to the realization that foods beginning with “C” are my downfall. These foods call to me. They seem quite innocent at first, but they are fiendish little things. Just a taste, that is all they ask of me. They know that I can’t resist them. They call to me. “Eat us, Shan. We’ll stay on your thighs. We’ll make your muffin-tops into full-fledged loaves. Eat us!”

Chocolate (the milky, melts in your mouth kind)
Creamer (coffee just isn’t coffee without it)
Cookies (my husband buys these darned things when he is in town)
Chips (see Cookies)
Creamy & Crunchy peanut butter
Candy (I’m usually good w/this unless it is Halloween)
Cheese (melted, shredded, in chunks…yeah. Dangerous stuff)

I know that this is my imagination, but it seems like foods starting in “C” are my DANGER foods. How can I avoid these foods? I just thought of it!

“C” is for CELLULITE

No thanks, C-foods. I usually stick with the motto: “Everything in moderation”. However, I really need to be careful with you guys. Just because I “SEE” you, doesn’t mean I have to “EAT” you. emoticon

Life lessons I wish I could have told my teen self

August 13th, 2010

I was just telling a childhood friend via Facebook that we are all a work in progress. Things didn’t seem to go exactly as she had planned earlier in life. Do they ever go as we plan?

I think we all have experiences in our lives that have formed who we are today. Some were amazing and some were awful. You know what? We are getting better with time. We are far better than we were yesterday, but are not quite there compared to tomorrow.

I was thinking of a way to encourage this childhood friend. What have I learned over the years? What advice would I give to my younger, teen self now? What will I try to pass on to my teen son before he goes out into the world? This is my list. If you have others, feel free to post them!

1)Learn from mistakes in your past. If you regret the outcome, don’t do it again!

2)Not everyone will like you in this world, no matter how hard you try. You can’t change others. You can only change yourself and how you react to the world around you.

3)Bullies are EVERYWHERE. They take your lunch money on the school ground, are in the locker room in high school, take the guy/girl you worship in college, and are in the office cubicle or adjacent church pew when you are an adult.

4)Stay true to yourself and stand for what you believe in. Even if you are the only one in the room that feels that way.

5)What goes around ALWAYS comes back to you. Make sure that it is good coming your way.

6)Tell those that you love how much they mean with words AND actions EVERY DAY.

7)Think before speaking. Those nasty words can never be taken back.

8)Be happy with the little things in life. Financial tragedy can come at any time. Enjoying a board game, playing in the sprinkler, or watching falling stars doesn’t cost anything. Be thankful for what you have. Someone ALWAYS has it worse than you do.

9)Forgiveness is hard to give, but it is crucial. When there is hate and anger filling your heart, you can’t give all of your love to others. Let it go. Nothing/no one is worth all the negative anger, sleepless nights, etc. Let it go!

10)It is NEVER, NEVER, EVER too late to change your path. If you don’t like where you are right now, CHANGE IT! Go back to school, move to a new place, get a different job, start exercising & eating right, etc. JUST DO IT, ALREADY!

11)Life is too short to be surrounded by people you don’t like. If the people around you aren’t enhancing your life, they don’t need to take up space in your life. This is ESPECIALLY TRUE with those that put you down or make you feel badly about yourself. Yes, some of these people can be relatives. This statement applies to them too. If your aunt makes you feel badly about yourself, STAND UP AND TELL HER. Tell your aunt you love her, but you DO NOT DESERVE how you are being treated. Sometimes, distancing yourself is what is best for YOU.

12)Realize that you influence the lives of many – treat yourself with love and respect too. Be a friend to yourself. Pamper yourself. Love you for what you are.

What a wonderful quote! I’ve found one of these guys, and I am NOT giving him up!

August 8th, 2010

“Find a guy who calls you beautiful instead of hot, who calls you back when you hang up on him, who will lie under the stars and listen to your heartbeat, or will stay awake just to watch you sleep… wait for the boy who kisses your forehead, who wants to show you off to the world when you are in sweats, who holds your hand in front of his friends, who thinks you’ re just as pretty without make-up on. One who is constantly reminding you of how much he cares and how lucky he is to have YOU… The one who turns to his friends and says, thats her…” – UNKNOWN