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Archive for December, 2011

Wow, I thought yesterday’s workout was intense…

Workout G was 4 exercises (hopscotch, squat, burpee, and pushup) at Tabata Intervals. I’d never heard of this before. It’s 20 seconds of the exercise followed by 10 seconds of rest, repeated for 4 minutes. So for 4 exercises it was 16 minutes total. Man, by the time I was doing the pushups, I was done. I had to drop to my knees, and even then, it was all I could do to manage 5 or 6 pushups in the 20 seconds.

I enjoyed eating today. At the New Year’s Eve party I went to, someone had made a dip out of cashews and onions which tasted great on celery. I only deviated from the diet when I ate a small chocolate (same as yesterday) made by my friend

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Today’s workout (Workout F) was truly intense: As many squat jumps as I could do in 10 minutes. My total was 116. My legs were like jelly at the end. Felt kind of good, actually.

I stuck to the diet except for a minor deviation at dinner. I was given a belated holiday gift this afternoon of some homemade chocolate and bread, so I brought it with me to a friend’s house and we all ate it with dinner. I’m okay with these kinds of exceptions because I wanted to truly receive the gift. In this case my relationship with my friend was more important than my food choice.

This is a good example of empowered choice. I did not struggle over the choice, before or after I made it. I got clear on my values, made the choice, and felt good about it.

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Did Workout E today which was alternating sets of body-weight lunges and burpees, 10 reps each. I did 5 sets (5-7 recommended) and my last burpee was all I could muster. Definitely intense, but it felt great.

Diet-wise, things were relatively easy. No strong emotional cravings, but some habit energy had me thinking about grabbing a snack for a second or two until I remembered I’m doing the fitness diet.

Got a little discouraged with some business stuff, and that’s when the thoughts to snack surfaced. So in retrospect it seems like there was an emotional component, though rather mild.

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Today was a rest day, so no workout. A part of me missed not working out, but another part of me (my legs) was relieved. I am SORE. Typically, this intense kind of soreness after a workout stops being an issue after a few weeks, but it’s pretty funny right now. Just standing up or going up and down stairs is a pain, literally.

Diet-wise, things were good today. No real emotional cravings. There was a practical challenge when I was at my sister’s tonight and hadn’t had dinner, and it was challenging to find something quick to prepare. Luckily I had left some of my soup from Christmas, so I heated that up.

The big news today is that I was very inspired and reinvigorated in my work. I think this is due in large part to the mood shift and self-esteem boost that comes with regular, structured physical exercise. Emotionally, I felt the best I’ve been in weeks.

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Today was Workout D, which was similar in structure to B; 30-second sets of squat jumps separated by 30 seconds of rest. I completed 6 sets (4-12 recommended). This time the challenge was not so much the intensity of my heart rate, but the physical strain on my muscles. By the third set, it was getting very difficult to continue the exercise for the full 30 seconds. I had to slow my pace by quite a bit. It will be fun to see my progress as I get stronger.

The emotional cravings for comfort foods were much weaker today. More like thoughts than cravings. And the food that I did eat, I enjoyed. I didn’t feel a sense of deprivation.

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Workout C was almost identical to Workout A, except lunges replaced squats this time. So it gave me an opportunity to see progress. I nearly completed the workout (15 out of 16 sets), but chose to take a phone call from someone special to me who I don’t get to connect with often. After an hour on the phone, my body had already cooled down and I’d begun my breakfast (I cooked while I was talking), so I skipped the final set.

I was stunned how in just 3 days my body has already re-acclimated to the intensity of the workouts. I’m getting used to living in that “I feel like I’m going to die” fire.

I’m still struggling with the psychological cravings for comfort foods. It almost brings me to the point of madness at times. An irrational panic of sorts. Crazy stuff. Another kind of fire to sit in.

That’s going to be my mantra: Sit in the fire. And I think that’s the answer to my question of how sitting meditation will fit into these 100 Days of Fitness. When things get intense, I can literally sit and be present to the emotions.

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Today I completed Workout B which consisted of consecutive sets of burpees for 30 seconds followed by a 30-second rest. I completed 6 sets (4-12 were recommended). I enjoyed the intensity of the workout and find myself looking forward to tomorrow’s.

I’m noticing just how strong the pull is to eat comfort foods to mask emotional pain and relieve ennui. My story of myself is often one of failure and struggle, and eating is an easy way to escape that story momentarily. So today I took a few breaths to ground myself in my body until the compulsion passed. Likely this will be my practice. Sit in the fire and be present.

I’m also becoming aware of just how unconscious and compulsive the eating choices of most other people are. Their meals are almost entirely void of nutrition. It’s as if they are completely ignorant of that dimension of eating. Taste is the sole factor in their choices. It’s not like nutrition is even secondary; it’s simply not a factor at all. And I don’t feel judgmental, per se. It’s more like a new level of confusion and surprise. It also makes me feel a bit distant from my family. I don’t like to think that our values are so different.

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