Wednesday, May 4, 2011

It's Not Goodbye, It's See You Over There!

Faithful Blog Friends!

It has happened. I need to make some physical closure to my weight loss journey. I set a goal, I reached it. It's been two years. I'm putting a bow on it, I'm sticking a fork in it--it's done.

I need to separate myself from "Need to Lose Weight" Erin and "Living Healthily" Erin.

A tangible way of doing that is wrapping up this blog and starting a new one. So I did! It's not goodbye, it's see you over there! And by "there," I mean here. :)

So long! And thanks for all the fish! :)

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Lifted For the 1st Time in 8 Weeks!!!

Administrative Note

I am considering ending my blog writing days. I was actually very close to doing it--didn't even post my cardio yesterday. I feel like it has run its course; I lost the weight, I struggled with maintenance, I debated the surgeries, I got the surgeries, I recovered from the surgeries, I still struggle with maintenance... But Liz today said I should "do it for me and no one else." So, I am going to keep posting. But no promises it will be funny, or even interesting! I do like having a log accessible from anywhere the internet is. :)

Yesterday's cardio

I did the gradual build workout again. I think I may make it my standard Monday workout. I like routine. :) Last week I started at 3.0 mph but had to reduce it down to 2.5 mph at the 10.% incline. This week...I made it 3.0 mph the whole time!!! It kicked my hiney--but I did it! Recall that I was doing 3.5 mph before, but I am still building back up. :)

My Stats:

Calories Burned: 413 (Treadmill)
Time: 42:00 (with 2 minute cool down)
Distance: 2.07 miles

Today: My First Session with HCL!

So, first things first: I wore my arm compression garment while lifting. Yes, I *did* look that cool. :) We started by weighing in and taking body fat and lots of tape measure inch measurements. Liz's tape measure is just as hard core as she is--it's retractable! She offered to print out my number. Um, YES PLEASE! I LOVE STATS! But then I never got them from her. :( I will say that I am down SIX POUNDS from last Monday. Woot. Woot. It's probably mostly water weight--but I'll take it. :)

Now, the lifting. Liz wanted to do a full body thing to evaluate my current post-surgery state. It was hard. I will be in a WORLD of pain tomorrow. And am in some right now. But overall, I feel good about the session:

Lat Pulldowns: 60 lbs, 12 reps; 65 lbs, 10 reps; 55 lbs, 10 reps (worked on form the last set)
SA Low Row: 30 lbs, 12 reps; 35 lbs, 12 reps; 40 lbs, 12 reps
Incline DB Press: 17.5 lb DBs, 15 reps; 25 lb DBs, 12 reps; 30 lb DBs, 12 reps
Hammer Strength Shoulder Press: 25 lbs 15 reps; 25 lbs, 12 reps; 25 lbs, 12 reps
BB Squats: 85 lbs, 15 reps; 95 lbs 10 reps; 95 lbs, 5 reps
Lying Leg Curls: 50 lbs, 15 reps; 60 lbs, 15 reps; 70 lbs 15 reps
Seated Leg Extensions: 40 lbs, 15 reps; 50 lbs, 15 reps

It's hard to say what was the hardest. We started with back because the leg stuff was all being used. Doing the two back exercises definitely fatigued my arms (probably because I use my arms too much--at least that's what Liz says). By then time we got to shoulder press, my arms were done. :) The BB squats were easy at first. I thought I could wow and impress Liz with my form (this is something I've worked very hard on). I got really low. She wanted lower. She got a box. when a trainer gets a box, it forces you to go lower. This is because your butt should kiss the box and then you should push your body back up. Boxes are pure hell to me. Liz got THE SMALLEST BOX AT LIFETIME. I swear it's only a foot high. She must have seen my face so she got a weight plate and threw it on top. Thanks for the extra 2" Liz... She spotted me and I was actually quite surprised that I was capable of doing it. The first one was shaky--had to get the right neurons firing--then I was very pleased with my success!!! Until I started getting dizzy and feeling slightly nauseous. I had to wait for several seconds until I no longer felt dizzy or like I was going to vomit in between reps. That is why the last set only had 5 reps. Even given this apparent failure, I still see the whole session as a success! I am easing back in and I feel really good about it.

Now, will I be able to walk tomorrow? Certainly not. :)

Next workout: cardio tomorrow.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Not Much To Report

Did 30 minutes on the cross-trainer today. Stats:

Calories Burned: 305 (Cross-Trainer)
Time: 30:00
Distance: 3.28 miles

Also, my Aunt Rachel joined me! That was fun! I always love working out with someone and getting to show them around my (and hopefully soon-to-be her) gym!

And I should probably note that I have been eating well ever since Liz's email on Monday. It's been two days. Soon to be three. :)

Monday, April 25, 2011

I Want To Magically Be in Good Shape Again!!!

Man, "easing" back in stinks. I hate feeling out of shape. I hate huffing and puffing on easier cardio than I was handling fine before. But I need to just get over it. It'll take some time. And I'll get back there. I hope. Not everyone can be like Amanda J. who claims after her 6 weeks off, she's running faster than ever. ...

Today I decided to do the gradual build workout. I thought it would be a nice way to push myself in a not horrible way. Recall that gradual build is when I do 5 minute intervals for 40 minutes on the treadmill, starting at 2.0% and increasing by 2.0% each time up to 14.0%. The last interval is the "cool down" at 9.0%. I was doing 3.5 mph walking because as Liz told my "legs are strong" but since I am coming back I tried it out at 3.0 mph. Somewhere in the 10.% interval, I was dying and lowered the speed to 2.5 mph. Also, I shamefully must admit that I held onto the treadmill for about 30 seconds and then a little bit later for 10 seconds before I downed the speed. Shameful!!!

My Stats:

Calories Burned: 403 (Treadmill)
Distance: 1.96 miles
Time: 43:09 (I cooled down at a reasonable incline after the 40 minutes was up as well)

I am glad to feel my muscles again. I really missed the feeling of having had a good workout while walking out of the car to go get my mail. It's hard to explain but there is something about freshly worked muscles that feels good. It's not painful (yet), but just affirms that you overcame the lazy couch potato inside of you and won the fitness battle that day. I missed it and am glad to have it back. :)

On an unrelated note, Liz emailed me today. So, she told me to keep a food log and email it to her once a week. I asked if it had to be *good* food choices, she must not have heard me because she answered, "Just write it all down for now." So I did. I wrote down every donut, every slice of pizza, every candy bar...and emailed it to her on Saturday night. She wrote back today. Oh. My. TERRIFYING. She let me have it. She also made some excellent points between the curse words and threat to break my fingers. I'm glad she did it--petrified to see her next to be sure, but glad. You'd better believe my butt will be getting back into gear for the near future...

Next workout: tomorrow or Thursday, cardio. :)

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Every New Beginning Comes From Some Other Beginning's End

It's been a deep-in-thought-decisiony-type week. You all read my post from Monday about the changes and information I have been processing now that I am back at the gym. From Monday to Tuesday I thought long and hard about what I want/need to be successful. I came to the conclusion that the sun was setting on my professional training relationship with Devon. For the sake of full disclosure on the blog, here were the key factors in the decision:

Reasons to Stay Training With Devon:
1) Devon is an excellent trainer.
2) Devon is excellent at training me.
3) Devon knows me--the good, the bad and the ugly.
4) I have had 16 months of more or less success with Devon.
5) I like Devon as a person and enjoy spending time training with him.

Reasons to Get a New Trainer:
1) I am the type of person who needs to change things up periodically.
2) I am comfortable with Devon and so do not always heed his advice/respect him. (Read: I can be so whiny and complainy.)
3) I feel that going from the challenge of friend lifting weekly to bi-weekly regular trainer sessions is a step backward for *me*. The reason we started friend lifting in the first place was because I needed to change things up (See reason #1) and this was a great way to do it.
4) The diet support from Devon, although sound and well thought out, is not working for me regularly.

So, I thought about who, if anyone else, I would like to train with. Out of all the lifetime trainers that I know something about there is only one other person I feel has the same knowledge and expertise that Devon does: The One. The Only. Hard Core Liz.

Check out those shoulder muscles...Wowsas!!!

So, some of you may recall that HCL once told me (and several of my friends at various other times) that she would (and I quote) never train me. So, when I called her on Tuesday to broach the subject I informed her that I did, in fact, know what that meant, but also wanted to know if she would consider changing her mind. I truly believe that if I try to pull any monkey business by way of not giving it my all or having a bad attitude, she WILL drop me as a client. I have no doubt about that. I feel that fear will motivate me to bring it the same way friend lifting did with Devon. I knew I had to step up on those days because I wasn't paying him and so if I was not bringing it, he could end the fun at any moment. And I brought it. Every time.

On Wednesday, I called Devon and discussed my thought process with him. He was very supportive. He said that my needs are changing and he likened it to me saying: Devon, I want to be trained in Pilates. Devon doesn't do Pilates so of course I would go to someone else. He says this is the same thing. I told him "It's not you, it's me" and (unlike times I have used this line in the past) I meant it. Devon agreed that HCL was the best choice for me and told me I can still come to him with questions and stuff. How sweet. He even said he was going to have a meeting with HCL to fill her in on his lessons learned with me. :)

That brings me to today. I met with HCL to discuss my needs/wants and her stance on my attitude. We talked about goals and my emotional eating. We planned our way ahead. I'm VERY excited for this new beginning. My first session with HCL will be the first week I can lift again, on Tuesday, May 3rd. Mark your calendars, friends. I think this will be a good post. :) I am growing up and becoming a big girl and writing my own workouts!!!! No more daily workouts from Devon. In the beginning I will send them to Liz when I am done and she will tell me if I am not working hard enough or whatever. Also, Liz is making me write down EVERYTHING I eat starting today, this morning actually. Not fair making me go back in time to when I ate a whole container of chocolates for breakfast. But I did it. Because she told me to. :)

After signing paperwork to ensure Liz will get paid for our sessions, I did my cardio. Today I did 30 minutes on the treadmill with 3 minute intervals at inclines from 3 to 6 to 9 to 6 to 3 to 6 etc... The uphill battle cardio (shortened version) from before. I went the whole time at a speed of 3.5 mph. It was challenging but doable--the way every workout should be. :)

Next workout: Saturday? Sunday? Whatevs. :)

Monday, April 18, 2011

You Love My Honesty--Even in Posts Like This One

I went back to the gym today. And it went horribly. Not the actual exercising part. That was uneventful and fine. The pre-exercising part. Let me list the ways in narrative form.

But first, an explanation. I list this not to be whiny or complainy or vent (which I certainly need to/like to do) but also to continue to give you an unfiltered look into what makes me tick in this struggle.

1) Other Trainer Judgement

I got to the gym (early of course) and waited to meet with Devon (knowing he would be late--because he always is. When he is not having a paid session with me. He's on time for the paid ones--reasonable.) Devon was meeting with me to take First-Day-Back Measurements for comparison. Lynn was there finishing up a session with her new trainer. So I said hello. Lynn mentioned it was my first day back, so I got excited and told her all about my weight loss and my tummy tuck/arms procedures. I even showed her my before picture (which I had printed out to show Devon the comparison). I was not pleased with how the conversation went. Lynn told her I lost 90 lbs. She told me she lost 115 lbs and her skin shrank back over time--I was just impatient. I told her that 3 doctors told me it wouldn't. She gave me some line about genetics. I felt judged. I then shared with Lynn that I felt like my arms are not any smaller. This frustrates me--not because I hate my body and my arms, but rather--because I paid a large sum of money and if my arms don't change, I feel like it was wasted. Lynn's trainer interrupted me and asked me if I knew that I was beautiful. I understand where she was coming from, but felt so judged. What I heard was: you didn't need a tummy tuck, you're just impatient and you clearly feel so bad about yourself all you can do is spend obscene amounts of money to try to fix it. This is so frustrating because the surgeries TO ME were a celebration of the hard work I'd done--not some desperate attempt to "fix myself". Lynn mentioned the blog and I said that it has really inspired some people. She told me that not everyone can do it because they aren't determined so I should be careful what I say to people. Really? Ok--so what she is saying is that not everyone can work hard and diet and exercise, but apparently EVERYONE'S skin is super elastic and will stretch back over time. I was really put off--but it didn't get me down because I was SOOOO excited to see Devon and get back into the swing of things!!!

2) Bad Body Measurements

Devon finally showed and I gave him the appropriate excited greeting! The we went off to do measurements. They suck. I was upset. I asked Devon to put a positive spin on it for the blog, so he did.

My trainer says: of course the numbers are going to be up--you couldn't work out for 6 weeks. I expect this. Plus, you are still swollen. Once you get back into it, the numbers are going to go down fast. As for the calipers measurements, now my fat is detached from my muscles and so can be pulled farther which explains higher numbers.

So, there's the upbeat take on these:

Before (2 Mar 2011)/After (18 Apr 2011)
Weight: 193 lbs/195 lbs
Calipers, Arm: 24/28
Calipers, Stomach: 24/26
Calipers, Leg: 32/32
Body Fat %: 29.0%/30.7%
Inches, Waist: 39.75"/35.75"
Inches, Hips: 42.75"/41.75"
Inches, Bicep: 13.25"/12.5"

Summary: Gained 8 lbs (looks like 2, but they removed 6 lbs of loose skin, remember???). Gained 1.7% body fat (maybe, or the surgery affected the way it is measured). Lost inches all around. :)

3) Bad News from Devon

Devon no longer will be friend lifting with me. This made me *very* disappointed. I tried to explain to him why without sounding like a crazy stalker client. Sure, I enjoy hanging out with Devon for free (::grin::) but the disappointment is not about that. Friend lifting was the HIGHLIGHT of my week. I tried harder. Pushed harder. Was inspired by Devon. Felt like I contributed to help push Devon. Went for 2 1/2 to 3 hours and went hard the whole time. Challenged myself in ways that aren't possible while lifting alone. I could go on. Lifting on my own had turned into a means to do better and go harder while lifting with Devon. I'll have to try to find the passion for lifting alone again, but it will be hard.

And what sucks is that I can't be mad about it. He was doing me a favor. Favor's over. Super bad news...

4) Erin's Diet Plan Meets Devon's Negativity

As if all of this weren't enough, and I wasn't already on the verge of an Erin-cannot-handle-bad-news-or-change-well-at-all-and-might-cry-in-the-middle-of-the-gym breakdown, I told Devon that my friend and I were considering Weight Watchers. I am an All or Nothing Diet girl and this just *isn't* working for me. I need to learn how to eat flexibly within parameters--Weight Watchers is the clear choice for this. Devon is so opposed to this it's not even funny. He thinks it would be terrible for me. He says that he knows me and that I am the type of person who finds the loop holes in things and Weight Watchers has too many (he is correct about that attribute of my personality--I consider it an asset. ::grin::). I was actually able to list one on the spot (unlimited fruits--don't give me unlimited anything...). He tells me I should meet with the Lifetime Dietitian. I feel like he is trying to sell me on Lifetime crap. He could tell (perhaps by my not subtle eye rolling). We debated this a lot. We left saying that I would ease back into cardio and he thinks I should "talk to" the dietitian. I am going to do what *I* want when I decide what that is. Devon has had 16 months to help me with my eating. His time is up.

Anyways, I then went to ease back into cardio, quite dejected. I did the elliptical for 30 minutes. My stats:

Time: 30:00
Strides: 4497
Calories Burned: 348.3 (Elliptical)
Distance: 2.42 miles
Resistance: 5
Crossramp: 10

Next workout: Wednesday or Thursday. Doing 3 cardio this week. Will begin lifting again on Monday, May 2nd.

Blah. Where's Sean to take me to ice cream??? :(

Monday, April 11, 2011

I Missed You Too, DOMS.

I saw the Sauconys today. They aren't glittering. There's no heavenly music. Nope. They are just mean, dull shoes laughing at me and my inability to walk due to DOMS. Thanks a lot, Sauconys.

But DOMS is a good step back to recovery! At least that is what I told myself every time I stood up today and hobbled. :)