Friday, March 25, 2011

Update: Body Rock

I just wanted you to know....we mentioned "body rock" to one of our Krav Maga instructors...the one we like BEST who works us the hardest. And she took a look. And today, she borrowed some of the moves and built them into our warm-up. Fan-freakin-tastic...not so fantastic was the "evil eye" we received from a few of the other members of our class who were aware that we had tipped off the instructor. They knew where the new material was coming from and they weren't so happy about it.
Tomorrow, I'm really gonna feel it. I didn't know there were so many ways to do a push-up. Oh, and while on the subject of the push-up, did you know that many fitness experts are currently suggesting that the push-up replace the sit-up? Yep! Turns out that "plank position" is super duper good for the abs and the stability required for the perfect push-up will build your core muscles. I still like sit-ups...a lot. But, I could find a new love for push-ups. Our friends over at body rock seem to agree as they are the inspiration for the new variety of push-ups our Krav instructor treated us to this afternoon. So, once again, I'm pluggin' the Body Rock here....and encouraging you to do some push-ups....even if you have to start 'em on your knees and work toward being on your toes. It's that plank position that matters. Go get 'em tiger!

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Body Rock

So I am going to post this on here with a hubby (who I've mentioned before is FREAKIN' Amazing and blessed with a super high metabolism and lean body as a result) and I have been really focusing on doing stuff together. I told you about Krav Maga. And, for those of you that care, I want you to know that I love it. The workout is amazing. I feel wonderful. And, the best part of it all, I look better. (Not quite ready to tell you HOW much better...I want to save that for a big reveal later...but it's coming.) Anyway, because my husband is so amazing and supportive, he spent some time looking for workouts we can do at home (because when we leave the West Coast in a few months to return to the East Coast, we won't have Krav Maga to keep us healthy. I am already afraid and mourning the loss in my life). We stumbled across one that I would like to share with you. It's called bodyrock. And can be found at:
The coach/instructor on the site is very REAL (as in she works hard and sweats and runs out of breath) and she is from Prague. Her hubby does all the filming. He also does all the posts. He seems to be "artistic" in the poses he deems appropriate for the photo/demo he uses. So, this is the disclaimer I want to share. Don't judge the site by the somewhat provocative poses...get past them...and watch the workouts. He is clearly using her envy inducing athletic body to promote the site, and, let's face it, she does look amazing...but some of the images are just a bit TOO much. However, trust me, there isn't anything provocative about the actual demonstrations and workouts. Disclaimer aside, she posts a new one every day. The best part about it: They are interval workouts (All the current rage sweeping the fitness web sites). Some are only 4 minutes. Some are 16. Each segment she demonstrates how to properly do the exercises, then shows you what a full interval segment will be like. She then instructs you on how long or how many reps you should do for the day. Interval training is intense. And, if done correctly, it will yield results quickly and dramatically. In fact, they (as in "fitness experts") are suggesting that unless endurance is your goal, running on treadmills and doing long sessions or cardio isn't going to produce results as quickly or as effectively as interval training will. It is an amazing work out in about 1/4 to 1/2 the time. But, you REALLY have to crank it up for those 15-20 minutes. If you do a soggy workout, you'll get soggy results. That makes sense, right? So....if you are looking for something new and intense and easy enough to do in your own home...and BRIEF, then I would recommend checking it out. She also has a bunch of stuff on there about nutrition. I haven't really gotten into that part of her web site yet, but it might be something to check out as well. Right now, I can only comment on the workouts...and THOSE are excellent. Give 'em a look-see and tell me what you think.
Have fun!

Monday, February 14, 2011

New things

So, I don't know how many people actually take time out of their day to read these posts (they are scarce on purpose folks). Because of this, I figured it would be best if I do it for me as some sort of record that I'm actually making an effort to be healthy. After all, they're always saying stuff like "You should be doing this for yourself...", right?
Since today is Valentine's Day, I figured it would do my heart some good to take a moment and blog about recent developments and heart friendly activities. I love love love going to classes. Step aerobics, circuit training, pump it, ANYTHING that has another person (preferably a professional) guiding me and driving me through a work out. I try to do a class every day. For the past 5 weeks I've been doing a class AND I've been counting calories like crazy. I think the advice of "calories in, calories out" makes a lot of sense, so I'm trying to pay attention to what I'm eating as well as how many calories I'm burning. The problem with classes (and really, any type of machine) is that you never REALLY know for sure how many calories you've burned. I was watching Biggest Loser the other day (cause I do that now) and noticed that they were wearing these little black devices on their arms. No one was really talking about them, but I wanted to know what it was. So I did some googling and discovered that it is the answer to my current challenge. I want to know EXACTLY how many calories I'm burning. They use something called a Body Bugg. And from what I have been able to gather so far, you wear it all day (except when showering, it isn't waterproof) and it tracks how many calories you burn. You also enter how many calories you consume. There's a nifty web site and everything. Of course, there are other cheaper brands out there (some claiming to do even MORE then the bugg) and I'm doing some research to learn more before making a purchase. If you have one, or know someone who has one, please feel free to drop a comment and share your knowledge. Thanks!
This week, tonight in fact, I am going to add a new workout to my regiment. My husband has been doing Krav Maga every night at 8pm. About 2 weeks ago he convinced my baby brother to go with him and give it a try. He loved it. And has lost 12 lbs. (Men!) Tonight I am going to join them in the gut wrenching vomit inducing activity. I'll let you know how it goes. I didn't know much about it except that it is the preferred fitness activity of Hillary Swank. (I also don't know why I remember that little bit of trivia, but I do.) And now I'm going to see first hand what it's all about. I may get sick. I may fall in love with a new activity. And THAT will do my heart even more good! Right? Right! Hope you all have a wonderful Valentine's Day.
UPDATE: Just in case you're wondering...I went to Krav Maga on Monday and loved it so much I went back again on Tuesday. And might even try to go AGAIN tonight. It's a lot of fun and it teaches fact, it STRESSES self-defense. The first 15-20 minutes of class is spent doing some sort of intense warm-up. Not like, step left step right now to a grapevine, type of a warm-up. More like running lines back and forth across the mat and stopping at each end of the mat to kick or throw a few punches. Awesome! Then we spent about 20 minutes working on the self-defense method for that day...kicking or punching. Then we get to do "practical" work. Which means you take turns standing in the middle of a group of 5 and close our eyes and wait to be attacked (a choke hold)...then you get to fight back. It's intense to stand there and wait for the attack, but it's a rush when your body responds automatically to the threat and you realize that the stuff you've been learning actually works. Anyway, if you get a chance to try it, I highly recommend it.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Biggest Loser?

Do you watch the show Biggest Loser? I don't....or I didn't....until this season. Why? Good question. I confess, it's on at the same time as another one of my favorite shows, GLEE. So that might have a little something to do with it. But, I started watching this season. The drama (new trainers who's faces we still haven't seen? Oi! Immunity for 4 weeks? Wow!) was unexpected. But what snagged me was this: the first challenge of the season. They took the teams and put them each on a treadmill. Together, as a "couple team", they had to complete a 5K. Some of these guys weren't training for anything beyond getting up from the couch to get more food or go to the bathroom. They all weigh 200+ guy is like 500 lbs or something. It's amazing. So in the teams, they got to take turns walking on the treadmill, trading off and on until they hit the 3.1 mile mark. I smugly sat there watching this and remembering when I thought 5K was impossible..and feeling fairly confident that I would be able to complete this task WAY faster then the teams could. As I watched, I became more and more alarmed. The fastest team finished in just over 40 minutes. What? How could this be? I run my 5K in 38 minutes...and that's after 6 weeks of training! I was only 2 minutes faster. I was horrified. I haven't run in a while. I'm doing a lot of other cardio but running has sort of fallen off the list. I did a mental check: I weigh less. I was "training" for a while to run a half marathon. I'm pretty active. Determined that there must be a mistake, I laced on my tennis shoes and walked over to our club house fitness room...and ran a 5K. In 37 minutes. I should feel good about this, rigth? So, why do I still feel defeated? I mean, I can run a 5K now without just the thought of it elevating my heart rate. I can't get past it. BUT maybe I don't want too...because since that day (2 weeks ago) I have been focused on my health in a way that I haven't before. My workouts are stronger and harder. I've added a day of running back into my cardio routine (Fridays, to be exact). I've added weights and strength training. I'm paying attention to the number of calories I eat. (By the way, if you want a great website, try for an easy way to track not only calories, but fat, protein, whatever you want really...and your exercise. There is also a community room where you can chat with others if that's your thing.) Has this worked? Well...remember back when I said that it takes 12 weeks to see a difference, according to SOME trainers? Well, it's been about 12 weeks since I said that, and guess what? My "skinny" jeans are now my "comfy" jeans. And before too long, I think they will be my "fat" jeans. Do I weigh less? I don't know. And I can't lie and say I don't care. But I don't want to get on the scale and have the number not match the way I feel. Is that crazy? Maybe. But, I'm thinking I might be on my way to being the biggest loser I know. And I'm okay with that. By the way, I've never trained with Jillian Michaels and don't think I ever will, but when I feel like I'm gonna die during a training, I picture her yelling at me. It works...for me.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Week 4 and 5

So, life got crazy....but not crazy enough to through me off completely. Just enough to mess with the original plan of going to the gym every day. I missed a few days because I went to a funeral (my grandmother, sad, I know), the kids got sick, I was helping babysit nieces and nephews, and other such things. I went to the gym as often as possible.'s paying off. Today during my circuit class a lovely lady who has been in the classes with me since I started but I haven't really spoken too (just waved as I puffed past heaving and panting) came up to me and said, "I don't mean to be intrusive, but I've noticed that you've lost weight since starting and wanted you to know that." then she smiled and got back in the torture line for squats. How kind is that? Seriously. She is my new BFF, or at least someone I would think about being BFF's with. It made me feel good. Of course. Have I really lost weight? I couldn't tell you. I've avoided the scale and intend to do so until 12 weeks have passed. Besides, Thanksgiving is coming, followed by Christmas...and I don't need that pressure. :) However...I can confirm that my clothes are fitting a little better. I think everyone needs a sweet little semi-stranger moment like this. OH! I almost forgot. I wanted to give props to my team mate today....she and I are together in the beginner level of the circuit training group so that we can work out together and not hold up the die-hards (of which my husband is one). Our very final circuit was jumping squats. You know, stand in one place, squat down and then jump like you are trying to slam dunk a basketball, then go back into a squat. Killer! And I think I would have totally wimped out if she hadn't come over and stoop next to me and said, "Come on, we can do this!" and together we jumped and groaned for 30 seconds...and ended with a hi-5. It was awesome. Working out with a buddy is wonderful and effective. So, a huge THANK YOU, to the 2 nameless work out buddies in my class today. You both made my day.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Third Week

This week the Flu Bug hit our house. Which means that all 5 of us had a sick day. My 8 year old took Sunday. My 6 year old and 2 year old shared Monday. My day was Tuesday. Wednesday I was still in recovery mode. Thursday evening my hubby began his round and ended it Friday evening. So, I went to the gym on Monday, then did 2 classes on Thursday. Wednesday, even though I was not feeling well, I took my oldest kids to a corn maze and wandered around for a while. On Friday evening I went to the gym and did 45 minutes on the elliptical. So I still did 3 days, and one of those days I did 2 classes to make up for missing one earlier that week. Not bad for a week of sickies. Right? Have you ever noticed that men don't handle the flu quite as well as women do? Is that only at my house? When I was sick, I emptied my own bowl, still managed to get the kids lunches packed, back packs ready and kids out the door. My husband laid in bed and asked me to empty his bowl each time he got sick. Under normal circumstances, my husband doesn't mind helping around the house...but when he's in charge of the whole day, well, it turns out he DOES mind. It was a LONG week. Incidentally, it turns out that the flu offers some pretty quick weight loss. 5 lbs in 24 hours. Not bad. Also not permanent and certainly not the way to do it. I don't recommend it. Fortunately THIS week has already started off better. I even talked my hubby into joining me for circuit training. It's fun to exercise with a buddy....and for me, it was even better that it was my hubby.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Second week done

Okay, so remember in my last post, just one week ago, I mentioned that it takes 12 weeks to see a difference? And I sort of naively inferred that I would STILL be stepping on the scale (daily) just to check-in? Well, I have ben doing it. And after 2 weeks I can tell you that the scale isn't budging. I *KNOW* I am working hard. I confess that I haven't changed my eating habits. BUT, I figured I'm working out and burning massive amounts of calories 5 times a week and DARN IT if I didn't expect to see some sort of drop on that scale. It is SO hard not to get frustrated. I even did 2 extra classes this week. I mean...come ON! What's a girl gotta do? Okay. That's not a fair question. If I were to alter my diet on top of this increase in calorie burning, I'm sure I would see the number on the scale begin to drop. Anyway, despite the lack of decrease, I am still going to keep getting up every morning and going to these classes. I tried a "pump it" class this week (one of my new "extra" classes). It was 45 minutes of weights using a barbell and hand weights but working your whole body. Most of me is just a touch tender but my pectorals are KILLING me. A good sign. Sore muscles. This coming week I am hoping to make it to a spin class. Shudder. I don't like to bike. That little teeny tiny seat just doesn't do it for me. But, it looks like a good calorie burn...and my husband wants to go. (Just what I need, to work out next to my incredibly healthy skinny husband...who just happens to be a cyclist.)
One of the positive side effects of this exercise thing is that I have no problem falling asleep at night. If I would just get off the computer and close my eyes, that is. So I'm going to do that now and probably dream about working out. 'Cause that's what I do now. I even workout in my sleep. Ridiculous.