Weekly Weigh-In

The scale's been up and down, down and up all week, so this morning I didn't know what to expect. I knew my body was retaining water due to adding strength training back into my routine-- it happens every time, and my sore muscles have definitely been proof of that! But I'd also been eating within my calorie range [except for Friday, oops], which is always good. I also set myself a challenge to fall within all my ranges [calorie, fat, carbs, protein] at least 4 days this week.
As you can see, I didn't do too well with my ranges on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday but the first four days of the week were good. Also, I'm still [eternally] struggling with protein intake, just hitting the very bottom of my target, but at least I'm hitting it!

Anyway, the scale. Stepping on it this morning, I had no idea where it would be. I don't expect it to settle for a couple weeks, honestly. So... this morning it said 178.4! I lost 1.1 pounds from last week. Well, that was a surprise. Let's see what I can lose this week!
Now it's time to go to bed so I can get my ass kicked at strength training in the morning!

Fitness Class: AquaFit

I've always wanted to try water aerobics. It sounds like fun and hey, you're in the water so you're not sweating a whole bunch! So when I joined the Y and saw that they offered a class called "AquaFit", I was excited to try it out. It's on Wednesdays and Fridays at 9am, which just happens to work out perfectly with my work schedule, so I headed over on Wednesday morning to check it out.

First of all, can I just say how different the Y is from my old gym? I know, I covered that in another post but I mean this in another way. The people here are so friendly. Not that the people at Planet Fitness were mean or anything, more that they just... weren't social. I saw the same people every day and we didn't so much as say hi in the locker room. Here, however, people have no problems with starting up conversations with whoever in the locker room, and alleviating any nerves about new classes. So, when I got to the locker room on Wednesday and changed into my bathing suit, one of the women there immediately took me under her wing for the class.

The AquaFit class actually isn't just water aerobics, it turns out-- there are water weights that we use, as well as noodles for resistance. There's a fair amount of jogging, jumping jacks, etc. but there are also a lot of crunches and dumbbell curls, squats and lunges. I was surprised at the soreness in my calves on Thursday! Most of the class took place in the shallow end of the pool, but we spent about 15 or 20 minutes in the deep end [optional, some stayed in the shallow end] doing mostly core exercises. Exercising in the deep end was harder, but I liked it better. We stayed in the shallow end on Friday and my feet kept hitting the bottom of the pool, which wasn't a problem in the deep end!

I should also mention that I was the youngest person in the class by at least 25 years. But I loved it anyway! Friday, one of the women asked me how I liked being in a class with all old people [her words, not mine!] and I replied that as long as I could keep up with them, I knew I was doing okay! Honestly, it's not an overall challenging class but there are definitely some things that are difficult. Plus, I think my knee's ready to get back to running this weekend [once I can find a spare minute or two] and this class will be a nice break on my non-running days. In addition to that, we do a lot of running drills in the water [high knees, running backwards, etc.] that will improve my running.

All in all, it's a very enjoyable class and I'm looking forward to next week. The only problem is, the Wednesday class is at the same time as the Women with Weights class so I think I'm going to end up alternating them every other week once I adjust to the weights class [right now I'm just going to that one on Mondays].

Next week, I'll be checking out the kickboxing class on Tuesday! If I'm not too sore from Monday's weights class, that is.
Today, I headed to the gym before work to try out a fitness class. Well, I had planned on going earlier for some swimming before the class but that didn't work out [I was exhausted and ended up sleeping well past my alarm]. Still, I was determined to get to the strength training class "Women with Weights", which was described as circuit training for all ages and abilities. Now, I've never done circuit training of any kind before [I know it was all the rage a few years ago], and I'm very lax on my strength training lately. Plus, it's been years since I took a gym class of any kind. So, this was going to be interesting.

The instructor, surprisingly, was not a woman teaching the women-only class. That wasn't really off-putting to me but I understand how it could be to some people. The class was small, eight of us total, and I was awkward and apprehensive at first, especially while the instructor was saying what we'd be doing for the circuits. Jackknife? Haha, yeah right. I did the modified one for those, and that was still difficult [mostly because my wrist started hurting, but not entirely because of that]. The rest wasn't too bad, although I'm sure I'll be feeling it tomorrow, but those were awful.

Once we actually started on the circuit, the instructor came around and corrected my form. A lot. The only ones I didn't need help with form were the jackknives, surprisingly, and walking lunges. But by the end, I had gotten everything down. And that's why it's important to have an instructor, to tell you how to do things correctly! He didn't make me feel embarrassed for needing corrections,  he was just helpful. Which was nice and what I needed! I was familiar with most of the exercises [dumbbell flys, tricep kickbacks, etc.] but had never had someone actually show me how to do them other than through workout videos.

We paired up for the circuit and by the end, my partner [an older woman] and I were laughing about the awful jackknives and sighing with relief when we got to the exercises we did like. She even reminded me when I let my form drop once while the instructor was with someone else. She was great! And after the cooldown, a couple of the others said that they hope I come back [I will!], and one even said I should go to yoga with her this afternoon. [Unfortunately, yoga's at 4 and I'm at work until 5 so I have to miss out on this session but maybe next time.]

So, it was definitely a good time and I'm looking forward to next week's class. I'm not really looking forward to tomorrow's soreness but, well, it's my punishment for letting my strength training lapse. That soreness will go away soon enough.

Weekly Update, New Gym

Weigh in day! I know, I didn't update last week. I'm sorry! Life has been pretty busy and I've moved up to actually working 5 days a week, so I'm trying to adjust to that. Plus, I had a knee injury that prevented me from running [or... doing much of anything for the better part of a week], which in turn made me lose motivation to check in, and you know how it goes. Well! We're here to stop those excuses, right?

So, my weigh in today. Still at 179.5. I was actually up last week [due to not being able to exercise, as well as eating above my calorie range], and I'm now back down to where I was two weeks ago. Not the best, but it could be worse. And this week's going to be better! My knee's better [although I'm still not sure about running on it], so I can exercise again! I actually went to the gym yesterday and got a workout in to make up a little for the rest of the week [although it didn't show up on the scale... it will, in a few days]. Which brings me to my other update.

I'm saying goodbye to Planet Fitness and have joined my local YMCA. There are a number of reasons for this, and it's a decision I'm happy with. I joined Planet Fitness a year ago, when I was unemployed and could just barely afford the $10/month. It helped me rehabilitate from my sprained ankle, and I started running again while I was there. But it's a very basic gym, and there are times when you just have to move on. This is one of those times. My Y offers so much more than Planet Fitness, and it's a mile closer to my house [which is a big deal when you're walking or biking to the gym]. It's also right down the street from the library, so it's super convenient to work out before work [I'm becoming a morning exerciser, try not to be too shocked!]. And, a quick rundown of everything my YMCA offers:

  • pool [laps and open swim available, as well as LESSONS!]
  • movie nights in the pool ["flick and float"!]
  • standard gym equipment of ellipticals, treadmills, etc. [will check to see if they have a rowing machine]
  • their weight room is separate from the cardio room which can be intimidating but I like it that way
  • rock climbing wall
  • spinning room
  • sauna [as well as regular showers in the locker room]
  • running club [I could be part of TWO! Doubles my chances of actually attending!]
  • racquetball and basketball courts
  • classes include: aikido, kickboxing, aqua fit [aerobics AND strength training. SO EXCITED FOR THIS ONE], women-only weights [going to take this too], spinning, yoga, zumba, and a super-intense p90x-esque thing that i want to do once I get my strength training back to where it should be. And a few others that I’m forgetting.
  • [plus you can rent lockers for the entire month so I don’t have to haul my shampoo, etc. back and forth]
  • oh and they have separate gyms and locker rooms for adults, teens, and children. I don’t even have to deal with teenagers!
Whereas Planet Fitness had:

  • standard cardio equipment [ellipticals, treadmills, and stationary bikes. that’s all]
  • standard weight machines and free weights
  • all in the same room
  • that’s it
  • oh and a locker room and showers [but you couldn’t rent lockers]
See what I'm getting at? Yesterday morning I got there for about 8:15 and the pool was almost entirely empty [just two people in it], probably because it was a perfect beach day, but I'm not complaining. I did about 15 minutes of swimming, re-discovered that I am terrible at swimming laps, and decided to make "improve my swimming" my goal for the summer. So I'm really excited! Then I went up to the cardio room and did the elliptical and treadmill [no running, just incline work] before showering and heading home. And then taking a spontaneous 2 hour nap because swimming really tires me out.

So, my super-optimistic-getting-out-of-bed-early schedule looks something like this:
Monday: lap swim 8-8:30ish, women with weights 9-10am
Tuesday: kickboxing 6:30-7:30pm
Wednesday: aqua fit 9-10am
Friday: aqua fit 9-10am

In addition, they have a weight loss contest starting in a few weeks that I'm considering.

I don't really care about the contest aspect of it, but the accountability? And all that personal training? Yes, please! The personal training alone is worth $600. I've always wanted a personal trainer but they're expensive, so I've never had one. $200 is still nothing to sneeze at [that phrase makes no sense], but it's more manageable than $600. And it's part of a whole program that will keep me on track. And weekly fitness challenges! Okay, I just saw that [after contemplating this for the last 24 hours] and now I'm sold.

So, I will almost definitely be doing this come July 15th. Almost definitely because I still want to go to the informational meeting and make sure it'll be what I'm expecting, but it looks great so far.

Have I mentioned that I love my new gym?
I know, I said I would update every weekend with my weight and that lasted... all of one week. But I've just been really busy! But before we get to that, you may have noticed something different about the site! [Or maybe not, as the redirect doesn't seem to be working at the moment.] I've finally gotten around to purchasing my own domain, so you can now point your browser directly to fuchsiagetsfit.com to keep up with all my shenanigans! Having my own domain also means having a related email address, so feel free to email me with any fitness related things at fuchsia-at-fuchsiagetsfit.com!

As for this week's weigh in, Sunday morning the scale said 179.5. Eight tenths of a pound isn't a huge amount but it's also not too bad. It's moving in the right direction, which is all I can ask for.

After weighing in, I went out for a run. I'm once again trying the half marathon training plan [I know, I "started" it back in March... and then April... and maybe in May... but minor injuries and bad weather kept sidelining me!]. Anyway, with the training plan, the long runs are scheduled for Sundays. Earlier in the week, I had done the longest run I'd ever done in one go, with a distance of 4 miles. Sunday, the training plan called for 6. I told myself that I would try for 6, but would be happy with 5 [I missed those long runs the first couple weeks of this training plan]. So I went out, water bottle in hand, and headed down to the bike path.

I did it! The longest distance I've ever run! Okay, I took a couple walking breaks [can you tell from the blips in my pace?] but a lot less than I'd expected. I was so proud of myself. And the next two Sundays also call for 6 miles each, so I can work on eliminating those walking breaks over those runs.

A few pictures from Sunday's run:

Product Review: Spibelt

I have a fair amount of stuff that I'd like to carry on my runs, but not enough space to carry them. I have an armband for my phone, where I usually stick my house key and my license as well, but getting one of the three out without pulling all of them out is a hassle. When I bike to local races, I have to add at least one more key [my bike lock] to the mix, plus usually my debit card for emergency money [or, more likely, a drink at the corner store on my way home]. And then there's the added bonus that the phone I use for music and logging my runs isn't the phone I use for actual phone calls [my Android is currently off a plan so I only use it on wifi and have a cheap tracfone for those rare calls] and yeah, two phones don't fit into my armband. So, if an actual emergency were to arise, I'd be pretty screwed anyway [my Android can call 911, but not my mom].

I've been thinking about this since last summer, and researching different things for holding my gear. It's not a lot of stuff, but it's enough to need something. I'm not comfortable with going out for longer runs or to races without a phone that can make calls. So, after much research and internal struggle [twenty dollars for a glorified fanny pack?], I finally settled on buying a spibelt.

I ordered it late on Friday, it was shipped on Monday and had arrived on Wednesday. Not bad for a pretty small company in Texas. This is the high visibility spibelt, it costs the same as the regular but is in brighter colours! Because when would I ever turn down a bright pink anything? [The picture came out a bit darker than it actually is, but it's also darker than shown on the website.] Besides, it matches my running shorts. Perfect.

As for holding my stuff, it does exactly what it says it will. My phone, ID, debit card, and house and bike keys all fit into it, with capacity to spare. That'll be good for when I get into the heavy duty half marathon training and need nourishment on my two hour long runs.

I took it out for the first run and my immediate reaction was that it does what it says it will. It stays in place, and it holds all my stuff. I was confused as to where to put it [it says to put it below your waist but I have a very high natural waist so do they mean halfway between that and my bellybutton? Or closer to my bellybutton? Or even lower?]. Unfortunately, I have a pretty flabby stomach so anything exerting pressure on it, to stay in place or whatever, makes awful lumps elsewhere on my stomach. The spibelt was no exception. 

I've gone on a few runs since that first one and have finally found a good position for it, just above my hip bones.

Can you spot it? It continues to do a great job, and is still unnoticeable to me even after four miles of running. And, even though I was sweaty and didn't get the waterproof model, everything was still dry after I got home. So, I'm pretty satisfied with this product and would definitely recommend it to anyone who needs an extra pouch while running. I know that I feel more at ease now that I've got everything with me.

June Start

Well, I've been weighing in frequently and although it does keep me accountable to an extent, I realized the other piece of the puzzle was missing: keeping myself accountable to you, dear readers. So I'm going to start up again with the weekly weigh-ins and monthly progress pictures/stats. Today, I weighed in at 180.3 which, while not great, is better than the 186 or so that last week started with. So, yay! Progress!

I also took my measurements and updated all my SparkPeople stats, which I hadn't done in months:
So, I gained an inch here and there but overall, it's not too bad considering how badly I've slacked on strength training.

And then, to finish it all off, I took some updated progress pictures, which actually don't look too different than my last ones:

To kick off the new month, I also went grocery shopping yesterday and bought a ton of healthy food.
My fridge has looked like this for WEEKS, basically.

I mostly based my shopping list off of this post, which is why I'm glad I documented my start so well last year!

I've also been doing work on my goals and rewards list. As a reminder, I get a star charm on my bracelet for every 5 pounds I lose [starting once I get back below 176 because I've already got the charm for that]. I've got some non-weight related goals, and I'll add more of those as I go along.

  • run 5K without walking, finishing under 30 minutes: sneaker charm, new heart rate monitor
  • finish all Zombies, Run! season 1 missions: charm for my bracelet (to be determined), new phone! (*This may be impossible without a new phone for reasons but in the event that I can't actually finish it, I will just count one mission done for every ~25 minutes of running.]
Weight goals:
  • 170: mani pedi, new short sleeve tech shirt
  • 165: buy remaining Circle of Magic books, new tech shirt
  • 160: buy remaining Circle Opens books, new running shorts
  • 155: buy remaining  Tamora Pierce books [Will of the Empress, hardcover First Test], new running outfit
  • 150: new swimsuit
  • 145: traveling cupcake dress from modcloth
  • 140: new ice skates
  • 135: train trip dress from modcloth
Hmm, that doesn't look too bad when it's written out like that. Totally doable. And yes, I am bribing myself with books. They're the books by my favourite author (Tamora Pierce) that I don't own at the moment (or, in the case of First Test, it doesn't match the rest of the set) so they're definitely motivation.