Tuesday, December 29, 2009

30 Day Shred (AKA Why is this still so hard?)

So today was Level 1/Day 7 of the 30 Day Shred

The workout is still good, because I still get winded. Though I am able to do nearly everything (a few reps short on the second set of lat raises and side squats - ugh those hurt). And my push-ups still pretty much stink. But other than that, I'm hanging in there. Level 2 looms like a black cloud though...

And I'm finding that I'm kind of depressed about it and thinking that this, like everything else, will do no real good. (Still wondering where all those happy, endorphin things are...)

But I'm going to keep pressing through. As I was praying about my crummy attitude (because thankfully God always hears me even when my attitude is crummy), I was reminded of a few things:

Therefore do not throw away your confidence, which has a great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that when you have done the will of God, you may receive what was promised. (Heb 11:35-36)

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. (Heb 11:1)

First off, the "reward" is not some magic number on the scale. I'm very aware of that. It's that God is working something out in me that is for my good, and hopefully, His glory. Endurance can be a tough "fruit" to cultivate, and God knows that while I've grown some, I definitely need more. Because real endurance is cultivated in the dry lands. Where the ground looks like it will bear no fruit and yet you keep going, pressing deeper into Him.

God asked me to focus on my eating and exercise, and while I don't really know why it's so important, I am positive I need to keep going - even in the complete absence of "fruit". I don't know about you, but I am overly dependent on results sometimes. But I must remember that God's "results" are often things we cannot see until we've gone on the journey.

So here's to the journey. May it blow away the chaff in my life that needs to go.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

30 Day Shred (AKA Pumpkin Pie Payback)

Today was Day 4 /Level 1 for me - I confess that I skipped Christmas Day. Not really because it was Christmas, but because I had a migraine on Christmas Eve. (Yeah, a pretty rotten time to get a migraine). I was feeling better on Christmas Day but my head was still hurting and bouncing was not in the forecast.

So today was especially hard. Partially because of the junk I ate (like the aforementioned pumpkin pie) but also because like anything, getting back to it after a day off is just a challenge.

Most of the battle is really mental.

So what I've noticed:
- endurance getting marginally better
- push-ups are still cheaty and girly but better than what I did the first day (gotta take the small victories)
- a few things I still struggle to do every rep (lat raises with the side squats, and squats with press), but a few others that I probably need to use a heavier weight (chest flies) or can do extra reps (abs).

But I'm kind of surprised that I'm already feeling a little hopeless about it having any real effect on anything. Four days in and the emotional battle is on. But just as with our walks with God - we can't rely on feelings. I need to focus on what is true - God asked me to do this. That's pretty much all that should ever matter. The results - I can't control those - so I have to leave them in His hands.

A few things that are true:
I feel better when I exercise
I feel stronger when I exercise
I eat better when I'm exercising
I drink more water when I'm exercising

All of those things are pretty good reasons to keep pressing through. No matter how I feel emotionally about it. The Shred - well, I look at as a bit of a jump start. A manageable jump start. One day at a time.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

30 Day Shred (AKA Sarah's crazy attempt to start something new the week of Christmas)

We got snowed in around here. And mind you, we don't get much snow in these parts. A couple times a winter it snows, 3-4 inches is a good snow. We got 20 inches. 20! Insane amount of snow. So because no one in the state was actually prepared, our neighborhood was never graced with a plow; effectively shutting me in since last Saturday. I blame all of this on VDOT.

Sunday we shoveled. Good grief did we shovel. I'm thinking the whole time that I would look at it as a workout. (P.S. - haven't actually worked out in...a while...) Totally fell off the exercise bandwagon and the wagon never seemed to come by and pick me up again. But the shoveling - it was a nice kick start. (That and Q's Blog - just seeing her name gives me exercise guilt - love you LAQ!)

That, and I knew God had been speaking to me for quite some time about food and exercise. (Oh yeah, and my intake of diet sodas - that's a whole other blog story). I lost thirty pounds during the first part of 2008 and I've kept it off. A victory to be sure. But the last twenty have kinda stuck around. I think I've gained and lost the same five pounds four dozen times this year. It's kind of annoying. And when I get quiet before God, well, we end up at the food, exercise and diet coke issues.

So I re-committed to the food plan the Lord lead me to and started praying for grace and help daily to stay within the boundaries he has placed me in.

That left exercise and the Diet Coke. But funny thing about exercise. I naturally drink more water when I work out so the Diet Coke problem hasn't been a problem.

So Monday I did a TurboJam tape. Chalene can be a little too perky and happy but it's a solid workout. Especially for those of us snowed in.

Then Monday night, I found Jillian Michael's "30 Day Shred" on the Apple TV and three things crossed my mind

1- it's short. 20 minutes. Even I can fit in 20 minutes.
2 - it's less than $10
3 - 30 Days. Even I can focus on something for 30 days.

So I downloaded it and Tuesday I did the first work out level 1/day 1. Since I was already sore from the shoveling/TurboJam combo earlier, I was a bit concerned.

Many, many things crossed my mind during the workout but were thankfully censored because the kids are home.

1- push-ups. hate them.
2 - jumping jacks - bouncing isn't very flattering and they're hard - especially when your legs are on fire from everything else
3 - my upper body is weak, weak, WEAK!
4 - not-so-nice-thoughts about Jillian. I know that "flat abs don't come free." (But I would gladly purchase if I could...)

I survived but it hurt to move. And breathe.

Waking and standing upright was painful today but I couldn't quit already. I didn't even want to take a rest day. 30 days. I wanted to push through - so I did Level 1/Day 2. The workout is set up in three levels so in theory, you should do level 1 for ten days.

It hurts to move. And breathe. And standing takes a focused effort and moans of pain. (P.S. The moaning doesn't actually help).

Day 3 may kill me.

I abandoned this blog a while back feeling a little lost, unsure what I wanted to talk about, or why. But accountability, even if it's on a blog, is a nice motivator. That, and I imagine that I'm not alone in my struggles. So if anyone is still out there listening, let me know.

Either way, if I still have use of my hands, I'll be back tomorrow to check in.

Peace, Love and Ibuprofen.

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