Archive | April, 2013

Phase 3 Begins!

4 Apr

Nutrition Plan

Carbs! Glorious Carbs!  We are back in the land of the carb-eating and I must say it’s pretty fabulous.  See our delicious pasta from last night – no worries, it was wheat and all that jazz.  And of course measured out our serving per the P90X nutrition guide.  This plan feels more ‘normal’ or more what we were used to.  I can have 3 servings of carbs a day and 2 servings of fruit.  It’s fantastic.  I’m still noticing that I’m hungry throughout the day so Adam and I have been trying other carbs such as oatmeal and pasta to fill us up longer.  So far so good!

IMG_3605

Oh pasta – how I’ve missed you!

We have a big Costco run planned this weekend – I’m excited to see all those delicious carbs piled up in the cart.  :)

Workouts

Adam and I are now on day 4 of the workouts and we’ve already noticed a few things:

  • We are stronger!
    • We are back on the videos we did week 1 (oh so long ago!) and it’s amazing to see and feel the progress.  It’s incredibly encouraging.
  • We are sore!
    • Because we are able to really push it with weight and reps, we are both super sore.  Tuesday we were remarking that we don’t remember ever feeling this sore…even in the first days. Yeah, surprised me too!
  • Variety is back!
    • Phase 2 was starting to get a little monotonous so I’m very pleased to be starting the last phase.  We are back to new videos and only have 2 weeks with them.  It’s hard to believe it’s almost over! (I’ve been watching a little too much ab ripper).

Running

Though running isn’t a part of P90X – it is a part of my P90X experience, as I’m training for a half marathon May 4th.  Unfortunately Phase 3 of running isn’t bringing great things for me.  My knee problems I experienced this fall are back with a vengeance.  Last night I went out for a run and had to walk home due to knee pain – never a good thing.  I don’t remember the last time that has happened.  I’m going to increase my icing and have decided to skip my second shorter run of the week.  Rest is all I can do at this point.   I’m also contemplating making an appointment with a doctor.  My knee has been ‘clicking’ for about 7 months now and no amount of rest has allowed it to improve.  Yeah…it’s probably time.

I’m keeping my fingers crossed for my 15K this Saturday.  At this point I’m just hoping I can finish it – I won’t even care if it’s terribly slow!

Weather

And to end on a positive note… the weather is improving!  Here in the midwest we’re finally seeing consistently sunny and somewhat warm days.  That’s incredibly encouraging! :)

-Kelly

How do you deal with injuries?  What remedies have you found for running pain?

Reasons to Run

2 Apr

Running is a sport that brings me calm, keeps me in shape, and allows me to set and achieve (hopefully:)) personal goals.  This post is dedicated to my dear friend Katie.  Just yesterday she was saying, “Well, running is free.”  But pretty much stopped there on her reasons to run.  After our conversation, I got to thinking about why I run – or why someone should consider running.  So if you’re looking for some motivation to start or just want to reflect on why you currently run, here are my top 25 reasons to run.

  1. It’s free!  Well sort of, you do have to buy some quality shoes, an ipod maybe or some clothes…but it is a relatively inexpensive way to exercise.
  2. It’s relaxing.  This one has an asterisk…it’s relaxing once you’ve been doing it awhile.  And believe me, it can take a while.  It took me about a year after a break from running to enjoy it as a “relaxing” activity again.
  3. Cardiovascular health.  It keeps you in good cardiovascular shape.  My lungs will attest to this.
  4. It can be social.  I’ve had amazing runs out with friends or coworkers – running can be an awesome way to socialize (while working out, talk about efficiency!).
  5. It can be you time.  On the flip side, you can enjoy running to just think, ponder, and zone out.  It allows you a bit of quiet alone time.
  6. Musica, musica!  It’s a great way to catch up on music.  I love listening to new music or Pandora to hear new jams.
  7. Goals.  Running is an awesome way to make small goals and work towards them.  No matter where you begin you can always have new goals.  Whether it’s pace, distance, or just number of times per week, you can always make a new challenge.
  8. Racing is fun.  Whether you like the medals or the free food at the end, racing is pretty cool. It makes me feel like a real athlete, practically an Olympian.  I mean, right?
  9. “Free” t-shirts.  Okay so you really pay for them, but somehow on race day it feels like ‘oooo a free tech shirt!’  Some of them turn out to be pretty awesome.
  10. Participation trophies aka medals.  It’s one of few places you can get a medal just for participating.  It’s like t-ball trophies…for adults!
  11. General fitness.  It’s possible to get into pretty decent shape running.  Like I sure can wear this dress fitness.
  12. Vitamin D.  Running is an awesome way to spend some time outside in the daylight.  I find the extra dose of vitamin D particularly helpful in winter.
  13. Runner’s bond.  Yep – there is a definite bond.  When I hear someone is a runner, suddenly it’s ohh you’re a runner! 
  14. It’s challenging.  Let’s face it, running is hard. Being able to do it genuinely feels like an accomplishment.
  15. You can be proud of it. Because it is so challenging, running is something to really be proud of…or at least I am :)  Gearing up for my long run I will  silently feel proud of myself all day for getting that distance in.  What a boost for mental health!
  16. It’s simple.  Not simple in the actual act of running, but simple in terms of just needing yourself and a road.  Basic.  Simple.  No gimmicks.
  17. It’s rewarding. You put time into it and you will get something back.  Whether it’s toned muscles or better health or a faster pace, you get a return on investment.
  18. Running can be a family affair!  I’ve attempted to drag my sister and brother into running…it’s something we can all do together.  And someday if I have children I’ll drag them into it too!  Themed races or 5Ks are great ways to get people introduced. How neat to have a fitness related activity to all do together!  So much of our culture centers family time around food (Just think of holidays…Thanksgiving, 4th of July etc.) that it’s great to have running as an alternative activity.
  19. Stress Reducing.  Running can be very calming in itself – but exercise in general is a huge stress reducer.  Feeling tense?  Go out for a jog.
  20. Potential.  I love the idea of pushing my body and seeing my potential.  That’s an empowering thing!  It’s one of those, “If I don’t push myself now, when?”  I’m not getting any younger. What can my body really do?
  21. It’s convenient. Because running requires essentially no equipment (besides sneakers) you can do it anywhere.  It’s easy to plan around travel schedules or busy weeks.  Some weeks I end up running over lunch or early in the morning, and occasionally late at night.
  22. It’s great bang for your time bucks.  Running is a top calorie burning exercise, burning about 100 calories per mile.  If you’re going to put in time to work out, why not go for something with a great return?
  23. Self-esteem.  Running can make you feel pretty darn good about yourself.  Whether it is meeting goals, losing weight, or just the endorphins from exercise running will have you feeling more self-confident in no time.
  24. Purpose-oriented training.  Whenever I struggle to stay in the habit of working out regularly, I sign up for a race. Every workout has a purpose and the ‘training’ aspect of it keeps me coming back for me.  I’m not just running, I’m training.
  25. Improved overall fitness.  This one is huge.  I love when I’m in good running shape because it translates to so many other aspects of my life.  Suddenly I can climb stairs faster, I can carry in my groceries more easily, I’m happy to go on a long walking tour, and I’m prepared if I’m suddenly getting chased (you never know when you might need this one).  If for no other reason to run – remember you will be ready to outrun zombies should the need ever arise.  That’s preparation.

Hope you’re feeling motivated to lace up those sneakers.

Happy running!

-Kelly

Why do you enjoy running?  What’s your favorite reason to run?

P90X Phase 2 Results!

1 Apr

Adam and I have successfully completed Phase 2 of P90X!  Can I get a hallelujah? We are feeling very pleased with our progress and overall are extremely happy with the program.  Here are the results and highlights!

These results are based on following the nutrition guide (with a few cheat meals such as Match Day, a cast party, a little bit of Easter candy etc), running 3 times a week (Kelly), and doing a minimum of 6 workouts per week (sometimes 7).

Phase 2 Tape Measure Results:

(Kelly in blue, Adam in green, in inches. Phase two results are followed by total results in parentheses.)

Waist:    -.5 (-2)      -.5 (-2.25)

Chest:      -1 (-2)      +.5 (+1.5)

Hips:      -.5 (-1)       -.5  (-1.5)

Calf:          0 (0)           0 (0)

Bicep:     -.5 (0)        -.25 (-.25)

Body Fat Percentage:

(We just got our fat caliper about a month ago, we have no previous recordings)

Kelly: -2%

Adam: -2%

Weight:

I finally found a scale!  I’m still trying not to focus on a weight number, and spend more energy focusing on overall fitness, feeling, and inches.  Because of this philosophy, I haven’t weighed myself at every milestone.  However, I weighed myself at the very beginning of the whole journey in October (beginning of round 1 or ‘pre90x’ as I’m calling it… now I’m on round 2).  From then until now I’ve lost 8 lbs.  I was shocked!!  I’m thrilled with the number, and it’s a true reflection of all the hard work put in.  I’m also pleased because it’s been very slow and steady weight loss – the best kind.

Adam has also lost weight – somewhat to his dismay.  He lost 10 lbs and both of us audibly gasped at his number.  Adam is naturally very thin (poor thing ;)) and now weighs slightly more than he did his freshman year of college.  This is a little bit of a yikes.  He was in level 2 for the nutrition plan, but we’ve both agreed he needs to significantly increase his calories.  What a problem to have, right??  He certainly looks thinner, but we weren’t concerned because he looks more toned and muscular and feels great.  You really can lose weight on P90X!

Running:

My pace is consistently sub 9 minute miles .  In fact I haven’t had a run over 9 minute miles in a month at least.  This is still hugely surprising for me.  P90X has definitely made me faster!  My average pace previous to P90X was 9:30-10:30 and now I’m about a full minute faster at an average 8:30-9:15.  That’s pretty amazing to me.  My asthma being under better control could also be a factor – so it might not be 100% P90X.  But I can’t wait to see what Phase 3 will bring.

Photos:

60 day results

These results are just from “round 2.” Slow and steady progress!

Our results since October.  Slow and steady!

From Halloween to now!

It’s a little tough to see the results from Halloween – but this was the best picture I could find!  During that time period I had a knack for deleting anything that didn’t have a nice angle.  That is the nice thing about life now – I don’t get stressed when I see a camera!  I’ll post more pictures in my Phase 3 results when we “graduate” from P90X in May.

Low Points of Phase 2

  • Adam needing to hide food from me because my cravings were out of control. Yeah that’s low – not my proudest moment.
  • Eating wayyyy too many m+ms at a cast party – missing the control focused days of Phase 1!
  • A super slow run on a very cold, sick day.  Glad that’s behind me.
  • Not feeling quite as motivated as I was in Phase 1.  Hoping the switch up to Phase 3 will bring rejuvenation.

Highlights of Phase 2

  • I did my first pull-up!  Just this past week I did 12 pull-ups in one workout (not consecutively).  What an improvement (from zero).  :)
  • I did all the moves in Ab Ripper X – including the bonus Mason Twists!
  • My first 10K – and a fast one at that.  Definitely starting to consistently notice increased speed.
  • I tried on bridesmaid dresses (for my brother’s wedding) without having a complete meltdown!  Every dress was okay :)
  • Adam was matched to Nashville and we celebrated with a little bit of non-P90X approved food.
  • Adam and I were in a musical and still managed to find the time to fit in all our workouts.

Coming up: Phase 3

Phase 3 is the last phase in P90X and will bring more carbs – it’s a total change in the diet plan!  It’s been interesting to see our bodies react to the different ratios of protein and carbs.  With all this running, I’m certainly happy to be in the higher carb phase now.  Additionally, I’m excited to go back to our original videos – the workouts from week one.  Looking at our workout sheet today, we blew reps out of the water.  Going from 5 “regular” push-ups (which I was incredibly proud of at the time) to 20 in one set is amazing.  It’s very clear this is working!  The progress is incredibly empowering and motivating; it has made all the early mornings worth it.

I’ll keep you posted on the next 5-7 weeks and our progress.  Traditionally, Phase 3 is five weeks, but we have a vacation and race week/graduation in there so we’ll have to do some modifying to make it work.  We’re a little bummed at the timing, but hey, that’s life!

Keep bringing it!

-Kelly