Thursday, January 31, 2008
I am pleased to say that I slayed the dragon that is leg training this morning. I didn't use much weight, but I didn't need to go that heavy to achieve complete and utter fatigue.
Workout went like this:
20 minute run: 8 minute warm up and 12 hard 50/50 intervals
Specific warm up and preparation, mobilization exercises.
Bulgarian Split Squats - my nemesis, though today I really felt like I made more "connection" through my glutes. Used a plate rather than dumbbells and made a big difference
Single Leg Back Extension with glute focus.
20 minute steady state run/stretch
Done and dusted!
Weight today: 60.5kg .
Wednesday, January 30, 2008
After drop off I went to Fitness First and did Upper Body Training and went for a run on the treadmill, as well as doing some bike work. Ran into Miss Alicia - her first day on the job as a PT - I think she'll enjoy rubbing shoulders with our crew here at Indro. This morning's workout involved RPM - I could not believe that 6 out of the 9 tracks John used this morning were tracks I had worked into my class this Saturday. There's a weird synchronicity there! It was a good workout and I rather enjoyed riding and experimenting with even more resistance than usual.
Then morning tea with Miss A and back home to do all the fun things like the washing and ironing.
I bought a new digital camera and am working out slowly how to upload photos with it. Today I'm putting in a photo of Cathe Friedrich who is working on her new series, STS (Shock Training System). I love the use of Gliding Discs/paper plates with lunges! There will be 37 DVDs which are incorporated into a full six month strength training program. I'm unsure of final cost at this stage but I think the series will be awesome for those who train at home. It goes without saying that any Aussies who are interested should get in touch so I can finalize orders.
Monday, January 28, 2008
Sunday, January 27, 2008
Friday, January 25, 2008
Today I had an interesting discussion with a gym member today about the criteria they used for choosing a personal trainer. Not surprisingly there was a bit about looks in there - if the trainer looks good, then often the client will aspire to "a body like theirs". Although I would prefer that clients chose their trainers on the basis of their credentials and experience, I do understand this phenomenon as many of us are really "visual" and want examples of the "trainer's work" eg the trainer themselves as a measure of how competent said trainer is.
However no trainer, no matter how well qualified, is going to take you where you want to go physique or fitness wise, unless you take responsibility for your workout. We can give you the tools, we can arm you with the knowledge and we can provide a kick in the pants if you need it. At the end of the day, it all comes down to you. Did you leave your class thinking "that was way too easy"? Truth is, it probably has more to do with you than your instructor.
The same idea works with nutrition - many people who are overweight develop this complex network of reasons that are contributing to the weird phenomena of them being over fat. Mostly what they're trying to do is dump the responsibility of their weight problem on someone else's shoulders - that's when they hire the "consultant" to do all their work for them. Does it work? Guess what I think!
Today I went for a 65 minute run. As I will be on the road for up to three hours in this adventure race, it's time for me to develop some endurance :)
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
I'm not exactly sure how the magnet works, but it has done wonders for my sacroiliac joint dysfunction. It's a different approach to what I usually do - my new physio is trying to re pattern a lot of my movement rather than simply correct my pelvis every time it slips.
What else - pretty good day nutrition wise - I made a rather yummy Mexican lasagna using low carb tortillas, ultra lean mince (you could try chicken), salsa and a little reduced fat cheddar sprinkled over the top (it's not Mexican unless there is a bit of cheese). I also put 1/2 can of refried beans in the mix.
Tomorrow I am possibly teaching RPM and going to try and squeeze in some deadlifts and squats - hopefully beforehand - it's never very pleasant doing anything to your legs after RPM
Monday, January 21, 2008
Love this quote today - a timely reminder for me of what will happen if you spend too much time ruminating, rather than doing.
Busy again today -taught RPM and had a little run. Tomorrow's effort involves some strength training and grappling again with Core 2. I'm not looking forward to it, but when it is done, it will be done ;)
Sunday, January 20, 2008
Taught CORE on Friday and then had the pleasure of having lunch with Lisa, who is doing mightily well on her "Lean and Green" Protocol - I handed over her copy of "Gourmet Precision V 2.0" with strict instructions not to drool over it until her L and G Protocol was over. Anyway, I'm looking forward to vicariously watching her journey this year.
Taught RPM Hi Performance on Saturday morning - felt this week's effort was much better, felt pretty good during and after the ride. Had a great morning tea with Miss S - just wish I could have stayed longer.
Today - practice CORE 2 - this release is a b*&tch! The choreo, hard to master in the "back" track and the "push" track - a killer, if you don't like tricep pushups on your toes.
I finished off by doing BodyBalance - only the third class I've ever participated in but enjoyable nevertheless.
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
It seems that my life has been full of indecision lately in varying degrees. For a start, I've been wrestling, rather than toying with the idea of competing again. One minute, I will say "yes" and the next minute I will say "no". After flipping again to "yes" on Saturday, I realized that on Sunday and on Monday and Tuesday that I didn't feel one bit excited about it - no "competition bug", nothing, whereas with many of the figure girls I know, it is the candle that is burning brightly in front of them without exception. It was this morning that I realized that I couldn't give myself to training for a competition, "no exception". At the same time I was also wrestling with doing my Bodyvive Certification - yay or nay - the program hasn't excited me but one of our Cluster GFCs had phoned me and asked me to consider doing the course etc etc.
The obvious answer it seemed was to go and do RPM. I was sitting next to Mark, who always pushes me to the absolute max when I participate and by the end of Track Seven, I thought I was going to die - I was pushing some major load and thought my heart would explode and that I was going to puke there and then but whilst I was there I had some good fortune.
Firstly the opportunity to be part of a team that is going to do Johnny G Spinning as well as RPM and secondly (the best bit) being invited to go Adventure Racing in Brisbane with good mates K and R - the race is on 15th February and it involves running all over Brisbane for 3 hours making different checkpoints and challenges and picking up all sorts of goodies along the way. This sounds like a lot of fun for an "Amazing Race" addict such as myself.
The best part about it is that I have never done an Adventure Race before and it gives me something to train for and focus on.
In regards to competing, I think it is one of the most amazing experiences I've had and it's even better when you're helping others out -again, I will say "never say never", but for now, I've got to step on this boat and see which path it leads me down the river. I can't wait to see where this one will take me.
Tuesday, January 15, 2008
As I've written previously, I've suffered from bouts of depression over the years and twelve years ago I spent six months working with a fantastic psychologist who taught me all about Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, which I use to this day. Every time I would see her, she would be very calm, very collected and it would be easy to imagine that her life was sheer perfection, just by the way she carried herself. However, during the time she saw me, she was going through a separation, trying to keep her business going etc etc.
Monday, January 14, 2008
Thursday, January 10, 2008
My answer is - depends on what you're doing and aiming to achieve. You should always train "the most important thing" first when you're rested and "fresh". In other words, if you are training to gain muscle or strength, then prioritise accordingly - have a light warm up and do your weights first.
The lower body training I've been doing with Mike takes a lot of effort and there is a high energy cost involved, particularly as exercises such as deadlifts and squats use more than just the lower body. The weights are heavy and the reps are low. There is also a high neural (nervous system) cost involved as well.
For me, it's usually weights first.
Over the past few weeks though, I have had a change in focus to improving my aerobic power (how much work I can output given a certain heart rate), so yesterday's workout was a test to see where my endurance is right now. I need to maintain a high level of cardiovascular fitness to be able to teach classes such as RPM Hi Performance. In terms of how much muscle I own, I can definitely get away without trying for more growth in my legs these days. I love my cyclist's quads and my Bodystep calves! The leg workout was more about technique than heavy iron :)
Which leads to the question, "is training for strength and cardiovascular fitness mutually exclusive?" Most people benefit from doing both, however as you progress (depending on what your goals are), excessive amounts of both become counterproductive. For example you won't see many athletes who train for strength and power doing lots of long slow cardio and vice versa - you won't see many endurance athletes performing cleans in the gym.
Today's training: Elliptical Steady State 30mins (warm up)
Upper Body Specific Warm up and preparation:
Strength training: Chest/biceps (taking a more bodybuilderish approach for 3-4 weeks) 10-12 rep (cardio! ouch!) range
Treadmill: 30/30 Intervals x 10 (triple ouch)
Wednesday, January 09, 2008
My latest post workout recovery meal is a little bit like the picture above, except it contains way more cereal and Ladybird Protein Crunch.
Enter the "Crunchola Recovery Meal"
1 scoop Ladybird Crunch (15g)
20g Crunchola cereal in apple/cinnamon or apple and blueberry
200g Nestle Diet Vanilla Yoghurt or Strawberry or Mixed Berries Flavours
30g blueberries or raspberries (I use the frozen sort).
I usually take this to the gym in two containers. I simply dump the yoghurt and fruit into one and then mix the Crunch and Crunchola (like an old married couple!) in when I'm ready to eat.
Stats are 235 calories, 20.8 g protein, 31.7g carbs, minimal fat. This is a fantastic post workout PN compliant treat!
Training today was a 45 minute run at 11km/hr (steady state). I was pretty exhausted by the end though! Then I trained my legs and shoulders and I can already feel the DOMS setting in. Still not doing as much volume as previously, just easing back into things.
Scale weight up a little this morning, no problem. Which is going to lead me into another thing - putting the scale into perspective. I seriously want to jump off a cliff when somebody tells me that the "scale is doing their head in". Following on from other posts, we are 100% responsible for what we think, say and do, thus we are totally in control as how we decide we are going to react to a NUMBER. Do you let it define who you are? Do you avoid the scale with the "see no evil, therefore no accountability" lense? I will post more on this later.
On the flip side there are those who are obsessed with jumping on the scale ten times a day. This isn't any good either. For this , I recommend putting in the good habits first and reconnecting with yourself for a little while before you deal with your irrational beliefs about scale weight. It's not the scale that is the problem - it's what WE believe about scales that does our heads in.
Gosh, once I start rambling I can't stop myself :)
Tuesday, January 08, 2008
Today I had the opportunity of participating in Ruthie T's RPM class. Amongst us Les Mills afficiondos, Ruthie T has legendary status, being the head choreographer for Bodystep until Release 55 (I think) and featuring in numerous Bodypump, RPM and Bodystep DVDs. I think Ruthie's gift lies in her ability to be "at ease" with herself and her participants. I worked hard and felt a zen like calm wash over me as I rode. I had my 10 minute obligatory warm up run beforehand and had an abbreviated chest and bicep workout.
I also got up with the sun and had a nice hour long walk to get the daily newspaper. I don't count this as working out, I call this early morning time to myself. I listen to my IPOD and enjoy some early morning quiet time because when I get home it certainly is anything but quiet.
I've enjoyed a little more scale loss this week and am edging closer to that 60kg mark. Nutrition has been good but not perfect. Tonight, I had Thai left overs with plenty of steamed veggies. In my old life I would have freaked out - "coconut cream---oooh how fattening - this meal isn't clean". In my new life I now know coconut cream contains good saturated fats and that it's not a reasonable portion of red curry of chicken, beans and eggplant with steamed rice (who can resist that) that will derail me, it's mindless eating and bad habits.
Heck, I even had Mexican the other night (which is a carb and fat fest) and rather than beating myself up for having such an offplan meal, said "oh well" and just got on with it, realizing that I haven't eaten a Mexican meal for well over a year. It's not the rare off plan meals that ruin a transformation, it's every day bad habits. (did I just say that - heck I must have wanted to make a point!).
1. Women always underestimate their strength. I've never once walked into a gym or weight room and seen a woman lifting to her full potential. If I do, however, her body composition reflects the hard work: she's lean, attractively muscular, and still very feminine. True - I was so fortunate to see a woman lifting heavier than I do in the gym the other day - she offered me a spot and now we can look out for each other in the weights room and support each other to better lifting!
2. Most women avoid lifting weights because they don't know how. You don't need anyone to show you how to use a cross-trainer or a treadmill, but it's a good idea to learn how to properly lift. Men usually learn from their buddies or their favorite magazine, but a woman has to learn either by following her boyfriend around the gym or reading a non-female magazine (because most female magazines are worthless). The better way is to seek a good personal trainer: one who won't just promote bicep curls and only lifting weights less than 10 lbs dumbbells. Women have to stop using the excuse that they don't know how to weight train because weight training is the best way to achieve the body that they've always desired.
3. Women do not need to train differently than men. Period. Amen!
4. Protein is still the most misrepresented macronutrient in the diets of most women. Women still think that low-fat, low-protein diets will make them lose more weight, when in fact, an equal balance of high-quality protein, fat and plant-source carbohydrates is the best way to positively influence body composition. Have fish, poultry, eggs, beef, pork, cottage cheese, ricotta, or whey protein every time you eat a meal. I agree, the key, the secret!
5. Arachidonic acid, the n-6 polyunsaturated fat, in plasma membranes is good. Free arachidonic acid in the circulation is bad. There's a difference. True, arachidonic acid may lead to pro-inflammatory eicosanoids if released from the membrane, but if you eat a diet that reduces oxidative stress (i.e. with antioxidant foods, no trans fats, low sugar) arachidonic acid will stay in the membrane and serve its positive role as a polyunsaturated fat. I need to read all about this :)
6. It's harder for women to lose weight than men with exercise and diet. Mostly this occurs because women gain muscle and lose fat simultaneously while training which causes their body weight to stay the same. Also, psychologically, women tend to believe that they need to severely under-eat in order to lose weight. This often leads to failure with any diet plan because it's not providing enough calories to allow her to workout or to function normally throughout the day. Therefore, women first need to not judge themselves by a number on the scale to determine if they're body composition is changing and secondly, they need eat enough food to give them energy to exercise effectively and to not force them to abandon the food protocol to which they've committed. I often wonder why women are so scared to try something different. After all, the restrict-binge way of life doesn't work...as we all know!
7. If you hold your body fat in your abdominal region then you should reduce the amount of carbohydrates in your diet and increase your intake of omega-3 fatty acids (from fish, walnuts, and flax). A large waist circumference is positively correlated with insulin resistance, which means your ability to process carbohydrates is limited. Several lines of recent research have showed that low carbohydrate diets containing less than 30% calories as carbohydrate are most effective for battling belly fat. They also increase insulin sensitivity. Omega-3 fatty acids (especially the fats in fish oil) are also well-researched for their ability to promote increased fat burning and improve carbohydrate processing. Liz's note: Some women do very well on macros like this, whereas other women will do better with slightly higher carbs and lower fat. Increasing you intake of Omega-3 fatty acids is a good thing.
8. If a woman loses her menstrual period and is actually eating enough calories to sustain her metabolic demands, then it's likely an overactive stress response that is inhibiting her reproductive hormones. In this situation, she should evaluate her stressors and look for ways to promote relaxation. Sometimes this may mean time off from working out, time away from work on the weekends, and spending more time with people who make you happy. Losing your period not only has negative consequences for long-term bone health, but also depresses the immune system and makes it harder to reach a desired body fat level. Amen to that. Eat enough calories and minimize stress responses.
9. Women use fat for fuel better than men and need more protein to promote muscle protein synthesis. This means that fat and protein are definitely macronutrients that should not be limited in any woman's diet. Agreed~
Monday, January 07, 2008
When you hear others describe emotions, do you hear words such as angry, happy, excited, resigned, positive or sad? Do you ever hear anyone describe an emotion called "fat"? You may carry fat on your body (as we all should) but you cannot feel fat. You are more than just your body - you have your psyche or your soul - your psyche doesn't weigh anything and fat does not live as an emotion there.
Then what is fat - what it is - a chemical structure with certain characteristics just like other molecules eg salicylates have their own structure and function.
When somebody says that they're feeling fat, it's really a smokescreen for something else that is going on in your life - so go beyond thinking "fat" and really work out what is going on. Many people are scared of feeling a negative thought. What is the worst thing a negative thought can do? Heck, it can be unpleasant but the take home message is that it won't KILL you.
That's it for today - off to teach RPM just for something different
Friday, January 04, 2008
Wednesday, January 02, 2008
Hopefully I'll be able to write a smashing post about my training tomorrow!