Anyhow, I have a few new year's resolutions, as it were. I've been trying to tell myself that these are not resolutions, just goals for the year. But then, that's what a resolution is now, isn't it? So here they are:
- Lose 20 lbs
- Go to the gym 150 times (about 3x per week)
I decided to make it a # of days to go in the entire year rather than stating it as 3x per week, cuz I know there will be some weeks I just can't make it - too busy, injured, too lazy, on vacation, etc. If I hold myself to 3x per week then if I screw up just 1 week, I'll be really down on myself. This way I can catch up and stuff. I figure as long as I'm averaging 3x per week, that's good!
So I weighed in on 1/2/09 and came out with 173.0 and 33% body fat, so I am calling that my starting weight for the year 2009. Well, kind of. I say kind of because my scale totally sucks. Like really, totally. Today I went to weigh in and it literally told me 6 different weights. And outrageously different body fat %s. I kid you not, it told me as high as 33% body fat, and as low as 21%. Really??? Stupid thing. Not to worry, I have ordered a replacement scale. It should be here Thursday. But I have long suspected that my current scale is too generous, and reads 5-7 lbs lighter than reality. At least that is what has happened when compared to the Wii Fit scale, my doctor's scale, and the gym's scale (which, by the way, all say the same thing). So 173.0 will probably turn out to be 178.0, but I can't confirm that because....
I have lost 2.2 lbs already! So at next Sunday's weigh in I'll take a reading from each scale and try to determine the ratio of difference. And then the old scale is going in the trash. Really. Just horrible. My summer of fitness, there was a digital medical-grade scale in the locker room of the gym, and that was the only scale I went by. My gym now only has the slide-the-bar kind of scale, and it's over by the water fountain and stuff. I don't want to be obsessively jumping on that the way I did on the old locker room one :)
So how have I been doing on my goals? Well as mentioned above, I am 11% towards the goal of losing 20 lbs, which is great. In January I went for my first workout of the year....and strained my calf. Somehow. Using the power of magic. I've never had a calf strain of any kind before, and I don't think I did anything to strain it, but all the same there it was. It was so bad that I was limping just walking around for several days. To play it safe, and because that killed my motivation, I didn't visit the gym again until almost the last week of January. I'm proud to say that I finished January with 7 gym visits, more than halfway towards the goal of 12.5 times per month (which is needed to stay on track towards the 150 visits in the year).
I also purchased a shiny new heart rate monitor (Miz? Your post on HRMs actually sealed the deal for me, after reading lots of people comment that their HRM was like a personal trainer and kept them honest!). I considered this purchase last October, but my work reimburses up to $400/yr on health and fitness purchases, and I had already used all of mine last year. I'm not entirely sure it will count, but I fit it into my monthly budget too and decided I wanted it even if I was footing the bill. I purchased the Polar FT60, which as it turns out was part of the new fall line in 2008, so I'm glad I waited!
I just completed my first week of HRM training. On this particular model, it can set up training programs for you. You can tell it you want to improve your fitness, or lose weight, or another one, and it will create a week-by-week program to help you achieve this goal. For my first week it had me complete the following goals:
- Work out for 4:45 (4 hours 45 mins)
- Spend 2:15 in HR zone 1, and 2:30 in zone 2, where zone 1 = 60-70% max, and zone 2 = 70-80% max
- Burn 2650 calories
Here's the great part. The really great part. Ready for it? It is literally impossible to complete all 3 of those goals without doing additional work. After the first session I was about 100 cals behind what I needed to burn for that session to complete the week successfully. Why is that? Why, because I can only train in zones 1 and 2! No zone 3 for me (80-90% max), which apparently is what I usually do when I go to the gym. I just completed that week today, and I did 1:15 the first 2 sessions, 1:18 the 3rd, and 1:35 today, the 4th. I miscalculated the # of cals needed per session and ended up 70 cals over the target! Oops. So I completed the overall time, the time per zone, and thanks to even more time, the cals burned. I feel really proud of that.
After the first workout, I thought the HRM was crazy. As in, this workout was way WAAAAY too easy, I'm wasting my time. A whole lot of it, too. After the 2nd I thought it was just ok. After the 3rd, I was sore all over. And now, after the 4th, I think this HRM knows something that I don't know. Something to do with more time put in, and less effort. Which kind of directly conflicts with the whole HIIT theory. But I've tried HIIT. Guess what? It earned me nothing. I sweat, I felt like I did a good job, but no soreness after. And no weight lost. So maybe there's something to this slow and low thing. I figured I'd give the HRM at least a month to prove its point to me. And hey, I lost 1 lb of my 2.2 lbs of the year in this last week. So...HRM, you win! At midnight it will tell me this week's program. I only hope it doesn't increase the amount of time needed...
My legs seriously hurt. Calves are not strained feeling, but very, very stiff. Whole leg hurts. Youch. With soreness, though, not pain pain. About 15 mins into my zone 1 workout I was feeling the burn. Felt it even more after about 25 mins into zone 2. Hard stuff! Hard stuff parading around as cake.
So, I'm 4 visits for February. Total: 11/150 for 2009. And if the HRM keeps training me, I'm gonna hit that 150 goal in no time. Heck, I'll probably even hit that 20 lb goal no problem. So far that HRM was worth the $200.