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Posts Tagged ‘gym’

I have stretch marks and saggy skin from all the weight I’ve lost. I’m young enough that I know that’ll eventually go away with time. I have a pretty good skin-care regimen, I use a good cocoa butter lotion and such. But it’s annoying, and it’s a reminder of the damage I did to my body by being so fat for a good decade or so. At least now when I’m walking I can look down and see my feet. Most people in my life consider me a “normal” weight at this point. I have about 30 lbs. left to lose until I’m at my goal of 120. It feels good being in the “home stretch” for sure, but I just really hope that my skin starts to look normal eventually. I accept that I may always have a little bit of stretch markage going on, but I hope they at least become reduced in appearance.

My ankles are weak for some reason. Wearing ankle braces while I work out isn’t really helping, it almost seems to make it worse. I still work out and work on my feet anyway. I have to. I deal with the pain with Tiger Balm, ibuprofen, and soaking my feet and ankles in epsom salt. I keep telling myself that this too shall pass. I can’t afford new shoes right now. Good shoes are expensive, even if you get them on sale.

My mom got me a cute, new workout outfit to wear to the gym. My current workout clothes are more appropriate for winter time and what my mom got me will be good for when the weather is warmer. We’ve been having really nice, sunny, warm days this week so I’ve been skipping the gym in favor of getting outdoor exercise. I just can’t stand being shut-in inside all day. I’m on day 2 of a 7-day work week. This shall be interesting. I know that exercise will help me not get too stressed at work. The next Saturday that I get off work, I want to go swimming. The bathing suit I bought at the end of the summer last year that was a bit too snug now fits great. It’s not a “sexy” bathing suit, it’s just a nice suit that a swimmer would wear, very full-coverage and aerodynamic (or would that be hydrodynamic?)…Even when I get to be thin I’m not sure I’m into the idea of prancing around in a bikini.

I would rather have saggy skin than extra fat. I know for a fact my skin isn’t as saggy as some people’s who’ve lost a lot of weight since I’ve lost weight slowly, and because I didn’t get as fat as some people.

I’m going to go change into my workout clothes and run now. It’s really pretty outside and unseasonably warm.

As far as being poor goes, we seem to be doing ok. I’ve picked up extra hours this week at work (obviously) and hope to pick up some more later, enough to cover all the bills and such. It’ll be close, but we’ll make it. Roomie’s bosses want to get people back to work in a few weeks if all goes well. Think positive for us, I’m doing my best to do so.

I had a tough weekend with food. I succumbed to my lust for donuts and ate a half dozen of them over 2 days. I guess some would argue that you could do far worse than that, but 3 donuts is a lot of calories and sugar and bad crap. This is why you eat before going grocery shopping. Me and the roommate went to go get a few necessities and neither of us had eaten much that day. That was a mistake because we cruised by the bakery to maybe get a little of the day-old bread for dinner, and instead left with a dozen donuts since they’d marked down the day-old ones to half priced dozens. I told myself I’d only have like 2 of the whole dozen and the roomie could have the rest, but I ended up having six. And I felt it, too. Blarf. I suppose that other people do worse and maybe I shouldn’t beat myself up over it, but because I felt very “out of control” and binge-y while indulging in these things, instead of it being a planned thing, I feel that it merits a little bit of reflection so I deter myself from doing it again. That being said, we rarely keep any sweets in the house aside from his lime sherbet and pop tarts (which I hate anyway, they’re all his and the skinny mofo can eat a ton without gaining an ounce), and sometimes some lowfat frozen yogurt for me to have on weekends (to keep me from eating things like donuts, lol). So I guess I didn’t do as bad as many people do every day. Sometimes I wonder if I do replace food for other forms of pleasure that would actually fulfill me more, like masturbation or massage…haha. Either way, back in control yesterday and today, which is good.

OK I’m going to go exercise now. Laters!

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Hey everyone…I’m thinking now that I’ve gotten back into music, I’m not going to have a lot of spare time to post to this blog. Between making myself practice for an hour a day and making time to hit the gym, along with work and a social life that seems to be developing more for me recently, I’m not going to be focusing as much of my thought on weight loss. Also, I have to admit that weight loss had become somewhat of an obsession to me as of late, and while it’s always good to be focused on your goals, there is a line you can cross where it becomes unhealthy. While I still want to lose those last 30-odd pounds and become very physically fit and stick to a healthy diet, I feel like I’ve said all I need to say for now. Weekends will be easier for me to post, so from time to time I will still probably have something I want to say. I haven’t dropped off the face of the earth or anything, just busy with life is all.

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Another day, another workout. I went with the elliptical again today instead of swimming to avoid the swimmer’s ear. I had time to relax in the sauna today, which was great. Went and got lunch and saw a friend after, home now relaxing. Mind trying to convince the body not to get the sick that everyone around me seems to have. I feel a little congestion coming on, but I feel like I won’t get as bad as my roomie or my friend I saw today (the latter is already feeling better than he did before). I feel my workouts and healthy diet and vitamin-regimen will help stave it off. I just have to keep getting lots of sleep. That’ll be no problem tonight. My muscles are sore and it feels good because I know they’re getting used to the new routine (hence not wanting to get sick, not wanting to slow down the process of getting in shape). I think I can use the power of mind over matter to keep myself from succumbing fully to the bug going around. That combined with common sense (getting sleep, good diet, taking vitamins), I shall overcome. Sorry if I’m boring people. I actually do have a point to posting.

People always freak out when they found out that you’re pushing your body physically. Not seasoned fitness folks, mind you, but just everyday people. They’re the people who tell you that you shouldn’t push yourself, and you shouldn’t feel any pain whatsoever from exercise, and that building muscle will make you “bulky,” do pilates instead because it’ll give you a “long, lean” look…the people who say that taking the stairs instead of the elevator, parking far away from the building you’re entering, and playing with your cats is enough exercise for anyone. The body is made to do a lot more than that, and with the insane portion sizes people eat these days, they should be doing more. Furthermore, I want to be super fit. I want to be able to lift heavy things without asking a man to help me. I want to be able to clamber around mountains and climb up rocks with grace and ease. To me, having a very strong body is my ticket to seeing the world in a very unique way. Why shouldn’t I push myself? If I just go for a nice, little walk every day, I can keep from gaining more weight maybe, but I won’t maintain actual fitness. Fitness requires cardiovascular and muscular exercise. Fact.

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Well, with the windchill making it feel like it’s -17 degrees, I’m not so eager to go outside today unless I have to. I do have to go to work later, and I work earlier than usual today, giving me way less time to get to the gym, work out, stretch, yada yada. Thusly, I am going to skip my gym trip today and go tomorrow. That doesn’t mean that I’m allowed to slack, however. I plan on working out in my own home here in just about 45 minutes (I’m having a little spot of coffee, drinking some water, and I’ll be warming up as soon as I finish writing this). I dug through my videos and found a highly amusing, but highly effective 80’s aerobic tape. A couple years back, my mom dug it up and asked me if I wanted it. We both laughed at the hairstyles of the women on the box, and the fact that it promised you a “great body” that the women on the box obviously didn’t achieve by doing this workout alone. However, it does get the heart pumping, and that’s basically what I aim to do. Its downfall is that it’s only a half-hour long, so I plan on rewinding the more challenging part of the tape and repeating it, because I thrive better on more of a 45-minute to an hour cardio session. If I’m up for it after, I plan on running up and down the stairs in my apartment.

My housemate is really sick, like coughing up his whole lungs sick. He’s quarantined in his bedroom and has pretty much been keeping to himself except to hang out with me for a little while when I get home. I’m hopeful that my “free immunization” of touching money all day at work has made me more resistant to things like this and that even if I do get it, it won’t be as severe as his. Also, I did my sick-time at the beginning of the season, fighting a near-constant sinus infection for what felt like 2 months…ugh. Anyway…

I’m off to get warmed up and stretched before I start my 80’s workout odyssey. I’m bummed about not going to the gym, but dangerous cold (and no car to boot!) and time constraints make it a task that would cause me more stress today, and tomorrow there aren’t any phys. ed. classes going on, so everything will be open for much longer and I’ll have way more time to devote to getting there safely on a bus as opposed to freezing my ass off in the bitter cold. Also I won’t have to worry about going to work tomorrow since I’m off. I’m thinking since the pool is open all day tomorrow it’s going to be a lap-swimming day. The black bathing suit that I bought that was too small at the end of the summer now fits! 😀

POST WORKOUT EDIT: Ugh, that tape was so EASY I had to do it TWICE, and I had to do the moves 3 times as fast as the ladies in the video to get my heartrate up to where I wanted it to be, AND I still wanted to run up and down my stairs. This tape is for absolute beginners and not for anyone who wants to push themselves. So I’m going to buy some Gilad tapes (high impact aerobics) for those odd occasions when I can’t make it to the gym.

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So I went to the gym for a second time yesterday. I walked a half mile on the track to warm up, stretched, then hopped on an elliptical machine for 45 minutes. My heart rate increased tenfold, and it felt really good to get into that “zone” again. This time I had more time than I did the other day, so I went for it. I found that I liked it better when I cranked up the resistance and incline, which shows that I have some inherent muscle tone in my legs from all the walking I do, and in my arms from my daily pushups and incidental lifting at work, and that I can handle pushing myself. After my workout on the elliptical, I stretched some more and walked another half mile on the track to cool down. Then I stretched again, rinsed off in the shower, took a quick sauna, and took an actual shower after that. Then I walked to work where I purchased lunch and ate it, just in time to clock in for my shift. Again, an indication of how out of shape I’ve gotten. You have to be in decent shape to do my job well as it requires a lot of physical activity. But I realize when I was “working out” at home, I wasn’t really challenging myself the way you get challenged at the gym. And I’ve also learned that you can lose a good amount of weight and still be pretty out of shape. The gym combined with working an 8-hour shift after really kicked my ass, and my muscles are complaining today. That’s ok, though. I know it’s all a part of it. It’s a “good sore” really. I found that I felt like I had a lot of endorphins released and that I felt cheery and in a really good mood the rest of the day, despite being as tired as I was. I also found that I had a ravenous hunger and had to work really hard on my mind to resist eating more than I should. I made sure to eat quality protein to help my muscles. I’m not going in to the gym today, as work today will be particularly intense since it’s one of our more heavy delivery days and I’ll surely be running up and down the stairs with heavy boxes today. While I want to push myself, I also need to bear in mind that I need recovery time as well. I do plan on going in tomorrow early afternoon before work, though. And the pool is open for a long time on Saturday so I’m thinking a nice lap swim is in order for then. My housemate is really sick, and I feel a little sniffly, but I get exposed to everything by touching money at work, so I feel like I always get a lesser version of the bugs that everyone else gets. Call it free immunization. When I do get really sick, it’s usually always a sinus infection. From what I’ve read, it’s okay to keep doing cardio if you’re sick, as long as you aren’t running a fever and as long as the congestion is primarily in your sinuses and not in your lungs. So if you’re constantly coughing up green globs, perhaps hitting the gym isn’t the best thing to do, but if you’re sniffly, you’re okay. And I practice common courtesy when I do have something and always wash my hands and sanitize after myself to keep others from catching my yuck.

One thing that kind of sucks is that my apartment doesn’t have a bathtub, just a standing shower. I have a huge bucket that I can soak my feet in with epsom salts, but I miss my old house where I could soak my entire BODY. I’m thinking it may be time to invest in a heating pad for the rest of my muscles. I have some nice ice packs, but it’s nice to be able to ice, then heat. I have always had weak ankles and pain in those and the insteps of my feet. Running shoes are expensive, but another near-future investment will be some new shoes. This time instead of using the same pair for everything, I’ll be getting two pairs, one for working out and one for work and walking around. That way they’ll both last longer and support my body better. I also need to head for my chiropractor and get fitted for some new orthotics (mine are on their last legs, or feet as it were, and I was much fatter when I was fitted for em), but those are UBER expensive. Rent is due next paycheck, so we’ll see what happens.

My housemate and I were hanging out last night when I got home from work, watching some boob tube, and he noted my newly forming biceps and triceps. He felt my arm and went, “damn, that’s some definition there!” That was a nice compliment 🙂 Today, despite my arms being sore from the elliptical machine, I did my daily pushups anyway. It’s weird, I used to be afraid of muscle pain from working out. Now I can handle it. I think my pain threshold has increased a lot in the last 2-odd years. It’s also good motivation to know that this kind of pain isn’t forever, that this is just part of me getting used to a new routine. I know the body adjusts. In 2-weeks’ time I should be feeling tons better. I of course won’t be stupid and overdo it, but I’m going to push myself to a reasonable level.

A note about elliptical machines…a close friend of mine who has inspired me with her own fitness journey over the years told me that when she was dropping weight, the elliptical was a great tool because you can get a great cardio workout and burn a lot of calories on it. However, when she was done dropping weight and was ready to take it to a new level, she found that actual RUNNING was a whole lot harder than running on the elliptical (same goes for stationary bikes versus actual cycling). Since I want to train for a 5k this summer, this is good food for thought. But the elliptical is a good start for me, I feel, because it’ll get the job done to get me less fat. It’s a means to an end. The excess weight is a huge reason my foot and ankle pain persists, I think. Once I’m less fat, then I can most likely focus on getting used to REAL running on actual ground (much more impact on the body and takes a much more in-shape person to do).

Also, I need to learn how to manage my time at the gym so I can give myself more time to chill out, eat lunch, etc. before work and let my brain “reset.” I found yesterday that I didn’t have much time after completing my workout, sauna, and shower in time to give myself enough time to eat slowly for one (I had to wolf down my food really fast in time to clock in). I found that my mental functioning was impaired when I first started working. I was easily distracted and felt mentally “fuzzy.” This subsided after an hour or so, though. What I need to do is time it so that I can still get my hour-long session done, have that relaxing sauna and shower, and have a whole hour to devote to eating and relaxing/refreshing before heading in to work. Because of the nature of my work schedule and the hours at my gym, it makes it tricky. The cardio room and track are open from 11:30 am to 1:30 pm, and then close for classes (college gym and phys. ed. classes happen there), then reopens again after I’m already at work and closes before I get off work. It’s tricky timing since I don’t have a car and have to take the bus to get there, but I can do it! I just have to really be on top of my shit.

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Well, my gym finally re-opened, and I went and had my I.D. card made for my membership. I am officially a member now, with a shiny, plastic ID card with a silly picture of me, still wearing my coat. I look fat as hell in it because my winter coat is huge on me. But also because I’m still fat. I even quipped to the woman who made my ID that I hope I look drastically different from that ID pic later in the year. She was pretty encouraging. I told her that I’ve been exercising at home for awhile now and that I’m ready to take it to the next level.

Since it’s a college gym, and yesterday was the first day back at classes, it was pretty crowded. The gym I’m at is where there are a lot of phys. ed. classes going on, and the college does require that you take a minimum amount of phys. ed. You could tell that some of the people there really didn’t want to be there, and you could tell the ones who DID. I was one of those people. But I must admit, there were a lot of really fit and attractive people there of all ages, and it was a little intimidating. It’s easy to think while working out at home that I’m so bad-ass and getting in shape, but when you’re surrounded by muscular and hot people, it can be easy to let it play to your self-conscious side. Also, I could feel some stares. People thinking, “oh look, another New Year’s resolutioner,” those kinds of looks, but I suppose it comes with the territory. I won’t let it scare me away or stop me. I actually want to keep going and see how many people I saw today actually keep coming in regularly. I also talked with a staff person about personal training options. I have dabbled in strength training, but I want to take it to a new level and have someone with more expertise coach me. You have to pay out the ass to have multiple sessions, and I’m a quick learner so I’m thinking I could do the package where you just have 3 sessions for around $100.00, then have it all squared away and take it from there myself. The weight room was of course completely male-dominated by hulking body builder types, not a female to be seen. I’d love to break that barrier. More women need to lift weights. The guy I talked to seemed impressed that this short little fat girl was interested in becoming serious about lifting. He also commented that it was good that I’d lost as much weight as I had and noted the muscle tone in my arms. I do pushups daily which has helped, but I haven’t yet gotten serious about lifting.

I did 3 miles of running, varying the intensity from time to time a la interval training, with a bit of an incline on the treadmill. Because of the time it took to get me processed as a new member, I didn’t have as much time to work out as I would have liked before I had to shower up and get ready for work. But when I go again tomorrow I’ll have way more time. I’m pretty sore today because I admit I haven’t been working out as hard or as much over the holidays, and I got more out of shape than I thought I did. I was really feeling it, but it felt good. I love when I’m doing cardio and I finally get into what I like to call the zone (not to be confused with the high-soy Zone diet plan, yuck) where I’m really feeling it, that “runner’s high” thing, feeling my heart pumping, starting to sweat, etc.

I felt wimpy doing 3 miles on the treadmill and getting so sore from it (it was a reality check to how out of shape I let myself get, as I didn’t push myself as hard over the holidays when I worked out), but a friend of mine who works next to me and frequently comes into the store for lunch said that she was impressed by my 3 miles and that she can barely jog a block before she gets tired of it and wants to quit. So I suppose I’m not in terrible shape compared to others, but I’m also not in the BEST shape either. I chalk it up to the fact that I don’t drive right now and do a lot of walking (even when I take the bus, I have to walk to the bus stop from my house and I get off 6 blocks or so from work so’s I don’t feel completely lazy), and that I have to be in enough of decent shape to perform my physical job (lots of lifting of boxes of stuff, going up and down stairs [we have stairs in my store, yes], store stocking, running to and fro to grab things for customers, cleaning, etc.). If the weather is decent I often elect to walk home from work instead of taking the bus to avoid the crazy bus people. So I’m in way better shape than a lot of Americans, but I always want to get better. I also want to be able to run away from crazy people, and sprint to beat dwindling traffic lights when I’m crossing the street (which I can do the latter way better than the former). I also want to run a 5k later in the year. And I want to be able to lift a lot of weights and be insanely strong compared to most women. I don’t want to ever have to ask a guy to lift something for me anymore. I want to be the chick that guys at work ask to lift something for them (hahaha). I have some big fitness goals and a long way to go, but I suppose we all have to start somewhere. I’m glad to be starting young.

Tomorrow I’m going to the gym before work. I’ll have way more time to try more than just the tread. I’m thinking for the cardio I’ll do the elliptical for an hour or so since my ankles and insteps of my feet hurt pretty bad today, and I do work on my feet and would like them to be reasonably comfortable. I think I may hit the equipment room for some boxing gloves and try my hand at the giant punching bag. There was a really cute boy practicing high-kicks and punches on it yesterday, and it looked like a very gratifying exercise. I want to beat the crap out of a punching bag, too! Today I’m going to do my Abs of Steel tape. While my legs, feet, and ankles hurt pretty bad, I can at least flail about on the floor and do some toning exercises, better than nothin’. The weather here toady is pretty stinky, lots of snow. So I’ll probably have to shovel later, which will be more exercise. I also have to work today, which inevitably means exercise. Yay exercise!

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Well, I hope everyone had an awesome Christmas! I sure did! I enjoyed some really fun times with my family and my housemate who came along for some of the celebration since his family lives pretty far away. Christmas eve I spent at an uncle’s house doing the family reunion bit, and Christmas day me and the housemate spent over at my folks’ with them and my sister, and one of her friends who came by for awhile. They got my sister a Wii, and those things are fun as hell! I thought it was funny that the person who played with it the most was my stepdad, who got really into the Wii sports, and was kicking butt at the boxing game! I’m thinking he’s going to be addicted to it enough to buy one for him and my mom to use, since my sister will be taking hers to school with her. He was actually joking, saying, “well, we’d better keep it here and not send it to school with her, she’ll never study if she takes it with her!” haha. The boxing game is actually a pretty good workout if you play it long enough – my stepdad was sweating after an hour or so of the boxing game. I liked the tennis and golf ones, too. I used to pretty much be annoyed with video games since I’m such a dirty hippie and like to run around outside all the time and I view video games as a lazy person’s recreation, but Wii is respectable because it gets you up off your butt out of your chair and actually physically engaged in the games. I could see how a person could have a lot of fun with a Wii.

I got some lovely gifts. My mom and sister gave me cute clothes and some much needed socks, underwear, and long underwear (I am outside a lot and need it to keep me warm in the winter, and my long underwear from last year was falling off me). My sister gave me this gorgeous, purple hippie skirt with a drawstring so I can keep wearing it as I shrink. The underwear my mom got me is the girly version of kids’ underoos but in women’s sizes. They’re very comfy but adorable at the same time. I work on my feet and walk everywhere so I wear through socks quickly, so the crew socks I got were much appreciated. I use a pre-paid cell phone and the folks got me the ultimate minutes card, which gives you 800 minutes, a year of airtime, plus double minutes for the life of your phone. I refuse to get a cell phone contract, so this is the best deal. I was grateful for that. Also, my mom and stepdad got me something really awesome: a gift certificate for a year long membership to the gym I like to go to! It’s close to work and it’s a really nice facility. I’d been going sporadically and buying day-passes, but this way I can get more bang for my buck and go more often. They have a really nice natatorium, and I LOVE to swim for cardio, so I win! In addition to that they have a running track, a lot of other really nice equipment, and a SAUNA! So I’ll be going in to redeem that ASAP. I can’t wait, it’s going to be fun 🙂

All that being said, it’s about the love, not the stuff. I feel truly blessed that I have an awesome family and set of friends who love me. While I love the gifts I got and appreciate it all, what I appreciate most is the people in my life, they are the real gifts 🙂

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