Friday, April 29, 2016

Another Week 1 is Done

Week 1 of my third program for 2016 is in the books! Today was Friday Fight Rd. 1 from Max:30. I should point out that in all of my programs, if I schedule this or Friday Fight Rd. 2, I have to put it on a Friday. Someone online I was talking to about hybrid programs puts this workout on other days of the week, and the OCD in me just felt super dirty about that. The damn workout is called FRIDAY Fight!

So, I hit play this morning after getting some cleaning and freelance work done. Baby joined me this morning as well, and she was in a super good mood. She likes Shaun T's workouts a lot, probably because everyone on the screen is moving a lot!

My workout today was so so. Didn't sleep excellent last night and nutrition got weird yesterday toward the end of the day (didn't eat bad, but ate late, so I think that screwed me up). I'll give it a B- though. I get a little frustrated that workouts I've been doing now for four months still kick my ass, but this is Insanity we're talking about. They will never ever be easy, and I have to remind myself of that. And, B- minus aside, I still came out of the gym soaked. Sweat is the goal, and in that endeavor I succeeded today without question.

Stepped on the scale this morning, with a goal of 193.0 in my mind. Remember, I was .4 away from that as of yesterday, but with the weird nutrition toward the end of the day yesterday, I was a little worried. And I felt heavy. But, stepped on the scale I did, and I clocked in at....


BOOM! Weight loss goal for the week achieved. And this isn't a super inflated (deflated?) number like last week. I've eaten, I've drank water, and I did not do anything to influence the number. Other than waiting to eat until after the weigh in, of course, but that's just my routine. So ya, I'm feeling good about that!

I mentioned the other day that I'm looking at a new weight loss tracking method to alter my previous .5 from the previous system. With my scheduled cheat days on Saturdays, and with the weird ramping down I've been seeing over the last few weeks, I think it's time to reevaluate. So, I'm putting together a new plan. Here's what I'm thinking for next week.

Monday Goal: Weigh no more than 1 lb more than what I weigh on Friday. This makes this coming Monday's goal 193.8. Yes, that's a higher number, but considering I'm eating carbs on Saturdays, and possibly a little on Sundays too, I'm ok with this. Also my weights on Mondays have actually been substantially higher than my Fridays as of late, so this will still be a good challenge. It means I can eat carbs, but still need to focus on portions (which I have very much not been doing on my cheat days) to only gain that one pound and nothing more.

Wednesday Goal: Weigh 2 lbs less than my actual from Monday. Now, 2 lbs in 2 days sounds extreme, but look at my past few weeks, that's actually what I've been doing. Actually, I've been overshooting that. This is because a lot of that weight on Monday is due to excess carbs, which should be out of my system by Wednesday. This one might be extreme, I realize, and depending how my tracking goes, this number might get revised.

Friday Goal: Weigh 1 lb less than Wednesday. Again, 1 lb in 2 days is a lot, but it's exactly what I've been seeing. So, I'm sticking with it.

For those keeping track at home, that schedule technically makes the goal from Friday to Friday to lose 2 lbs, which is perfectly healthy and exactly what I'd like to achieve. If I over shoot, which hey, I definitely want to do, even better! I'm so close to the 180s, and if I overshoot I should be there next week, but I completely understand that on paper it should actually take me two more weeks. I'm writing that out here to remind myself in case I have a freak out next week about this.

Alright, Week 1 is in the books. Onward to Week 2, with Bas Rutten and some Ab Ripper X tomorrow morning!

Bring it!

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Hammer Build Up is awesome!

Ok, I'm only 6 days into my new program, but I have to say that so far I really really love it! There's a perfect mix of weight workouts (YAY!!) and Max:30 cardio. The only one I'm actually not psyched out about is the Bas Rutten workouts on Saturdays, which is a big change since those were some of my favorites a few months ago.

So, today was Hammer Build Up from Hammer and Chisel. I should say that my only fear going into this program was the focus on total body workouts. Not only are my legs absolute garbage when it comes to lifting right now, but thus far, 30-minute upper-body-only workouts from P90X3 haven't really been cutting it for me, and I was concerned that focusing instead on total body for the same 30 minutes (minus weekends) was just going to detract from my goals. But, if any trainer can make your body wish it could die in peace, Sagi is the one to do it!

Like I started the last paragraph, today was Hammer Build Up, another total body workout. No super sets today. Instead, we spent just a few minutes on every single body part. A few minutes for legs, then back, then chest, then shoulders, then biceps, then triceps, then abs, then tears. The tears I might have added myself at the end. Officially, I think we only did about two minutes of actual work on each body part, but that was apparently enough. Yes, my legs are dying right now, but that's normal. What isn't normal is the aching feeling I have in my biceps, triceps and shoulders right now. This is several hours later, and there isn't a doubt in my mind that I got a good weight workout in today. And at a run time of 32 minutes, that's pretty damn good!

So, seriously, if you want to lift weights while watching a DVD about how to lift weights, do so with Sagi! I seriously love this man and his approach to fitness. I can't wait to do this workout again in two weeks.

Well, I'm on my way to tomorrow's goal of 193.0. I clocked in unofficially today at 193.4, which is great! A good walk and a healthy diet for the rest of the day should push me to that edge, and I think at 193.0 tomorrow I'll be at a true weight, not the push-as-hard-as-I-can-to-get-the-scale-down weight I had last week (which I have no regrets about - it was the end of a program and I wanted to max the results on paper. It keeps me motivated).

Tomorrow is Friday Fight Rd. 1, and then Week 1 is in the books!

Oh, final thought about the future. I gave it more thought, and obviously this can and probably will be changed, but I'm going to do an 8-week Body Beast variation, bro split and all. There's a good chance I'll only run it once, not twice or indefinitely like I've been planning, but pure and simple it's what I've wanted to do since the start of the year, and for 8 weeks in the summer (actually 12, but who's counting) I'll have the opportunity to run the program. It's a schedule thing. So right now, this looks like a roughly 90-minute workout on Saturday and Sunday, an hour or so on Monday, and then 30 minutes of isolated body work the other days. More info on that to come. I mention it now because I've been toying around mentally with functional strength and total body work, the latter more-so because of this great first week of my current program. But strength can come in after I work on physique (by strength I mean actual strength work, which is totally different than building big muscles) and honestly I have no clue how my total body stuff is really going to develop my body, and even after 8 weeks of my current program I won't know how it does compared to the bro split until I've done both. So my August program might have a lot more diversity in it, but not so much for my summer program. This also might mean not a lot of cardio in the summer, but that's ok. For 8 weeks I can balance with diet, and this will help me determine how much cardio is really impacting my weight loss overall.

That's a long-winded paragraph that most of you didn't really understand. That's ok. This blog is also here to help me keep track of things, so for those who merely skimmed, let's just assume that last paragraph was for me more so than you.

Final note, I also upped my MCT oil intake to 3 pills starting today. This is the max amount I'm going to take (even though the bottle says 9....ya, f that noise, that's definitely too much). So, I'll let you know if I notice anything different. So far, so good.

Alright friends, keep fighting the good fight.

Bring it!

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Feeling good today

As the title says, I'm feeling good today. Been eating healthy all week, had some good workouts, got some rest, and spent some time with family. It's only Wednesday, but all in all, this week has been very nice.

So I hit play this morning Sweat Intervals. I really screwed up having this in practically every week of my last program, but oh well. The variety keeps me interested, and I found myself losing a little focus as I could anticipate what was coming. Oh well. Sweat Intervals is still a very very awesome workout, and I felt awesome at the end of it as well. Super sweaty, super soaked, super tired....good times.

I mentioned last night I was having sushi, and I was a little worried about the rice. Well, my incredible wife looked over the menu before we got there and found a delicious sashimi platter that had all FatFreeJew-favorite items on it. Well, mostly, a few items I'd never had been (I didn't even know what ono was). But, that's what I got, and hot damn was it delicious! Thanks Amazing Wife! So my dinner last night consisted of a whole lot of raw fish, miso soup, and some edemame that was ordered for the table. It was one of the best sushi meals I've had. I'll still eat regular sushi on weekends, rice and all, but on weekdays, this is an excellent way to stay on diet and still enjoy myself.

So diet + exercise = fat loss, and I stepped on the scale to see where I was. Goal today was 196.0, and I actually already hit that yesterday. So I stepped onto the scale, and clocked in at....

194.0. Boom!

Yup, feeling good, and I feel like this is a much more accurate 194-ish weight than what I was at last week, where I kind of forced the scale lower to end my Max:30 journey.

So, officially, this means I should be shooting for 193.5 on Friday, but again, weight loss is weird nowawdays. I was considering revising that to 192.5, but as I write these numbers down I realize it seems a little too extreme. So, 193.0, right in the middle. Seems like a good Friday goal. I'm writing it down now. Please hold....

commence hold music

I want to reiterate, I am not starving myself. Hell, I eat all day. Like, all day all day. I finished a protein shake at 7:40 this morning, and I have another meal planned for around 9:30ish. Then another just before noon, another around 2, probably a snack around 4, and then dinner. None of these are big meals, but with the exception of some sunflower seeds I'm looking forward to, each of these is a pretty extremely sized snack. I had heard that when you find foods your body works well with, everything kind of clicks, and I think that's what's happening. Yes, I'm pretty sure I'm in ketosis (I'm not checking, don't really care to) and that's helping my body go after fat, and yes, I'm probably at a calorie deficit purely because I'm not eating carbs (other than a single serving of fruit every day, I do enjoy fruit) and carbs just happen to have a ton of calories, but overall, seriously, I eat a lot. And I still love to eat. My nightly meal prep is one of my favorite times of day, because I seriously get to prepare four to five meals for myself for the next day.

Anyways, I assume eventually my body is just going to level out. It has to. I'm no longer focused on diet for weightloss, even though I obviously want to lose weight still. This is just purely how I want to eat from now on. Joe Rogan said that about keto on his podcast a few weeks ago, that it was just a 2-month experiment for him, but after 2 months he realized he just wanted to keep eating this way because he felt better and his body responded better. Don't get me wrong, there's some bagels sitting outside my office door this very moment that I would absolutely love to tear into, but it's not about momentary pleasures - I know for a fact that if I eat that bagel, I'm going to feel terrible for the rest of the day, or at least not at an optimum level like I feel now (because truthfully, I feel great right now). It just doesn't seem worth it to me. Saturdays are fine, I can feel like garbage on Sundays since it's a day off, but really, nope, my current diet is how I want to live from now on. And it's a good feeling.

Ok, that got preachy and long-winded, so let's wrap this up. Final thoughts: my legs feel good (read that: sore) from yesterday, but hey, they'll get there. I'm looking forward to more lifting tomorrow with Hammer Build Up. Also I know I'm only a week (less than) into my current program, but I'm still debating what my next program will look like. I want to lift heavy, but I also want some functional strength in there (long story, I'll get into the difference in a future post), I'm not sure if I want to see Max:30 for a while, if I want to lift heavy on legs or do plyo or both, etc. I'm going to dwell on it for the next 8 weeks, so plan on more updates and ideas.

Alright, no more blog post for today. Onward with your daily life!

Bring it!

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Lucky 7 - what the hell was that?!

Today I hit play for the first time on Lucky 7 from Body Beast. I'd read mixed reviews on this one, but considering I needed a full body workout that a) focused on weights, and b) fit in under 30 minutes, I programmed this in as my every-other-Tuesday workout.

My reaction? Well, reaction 1 is THIS IS AWESOME! Reaction 2 is WHAT THE HELL DID I JUST DO? Seriously. I heard we were going to be doing 7 pyramids of 7 reps each, so I figured this would be a walk in the park. That would be the case if the park was filled with ninjas and the floor was made of lava. This thing kicked my ass, and all in 22 minutes!

First off, I did not finish the first set. The pace is just insane, and add in that the first set included legs (which mine are both weak and still jelly from two days ago) and I just couldn't keep up. I made it through six rounds, not seven, so it's a good starting point.

After that first set, I realized I needed to move a little quicker, and generally I got started as soon as the workout was announced. This cut most of my rests in half, but it was the only way to keep up - these guys finished about the same time as me, and in all cases after that first set I started before them.

So, I'm super happy with where this is in the schedule. Everything is still sore from Sunday's workout, but not so sore that today was impossible. I could feel that this would get more realistic to accomplish as the weeks progress. And as far as a workout goes, this is an excellent workout. It's not like anything I've done before, and is hitting the whole body in a really fun and unique way. Plus, more weight lifting - I love it!

Now, perhaps you noticed that I said 22 minutes. I'm trying to keep my workouts at around the 30 minute mark (except on weekends), so I had 8 minutes to fill. That's why I also scheduled in Core 2 from 22 Minute Hard Corps today, which clocks in at 11 minutes. I previewed this one on a whim on Saturday, and I'm proud to say I did (a lot) better today. Still a beast, but it's more manageable than Ab Ripper, so I'll take it.

Alright, I think that's it for me.

But wait, FatFreeJew, what about your weight?

Oh! Thanks for the reminder! As avid readers will know, I placed a goal of 196.0 for myself tomorrow, and I think I'm on track to get there - that's what I clocked in at today. No, this wasn't an official weigh in, so I still need to actually pull it off tomorrow, but so far I'm looking good.

I should note that I'm considering rethinking my every-other-day weigh-in/goal method. It's worked excellent so far, but as I've been seeing over the last few weeks, with my carb cheat days on Saturdays and keto-focus during the week, I'm always off track on Mondays and always way overshooting on Fridays. As of right now, I'm going to keep it the same, but I'm putting some thought into a new plan moving forward. I'll keep you posted.

Special shout out to my wife too. She hit a major milestone in her own health/fitness journey, and I couldn't be more proud of her! I know her schedule's rough and that makes a journey like this difficult, but she's committed and breaking personal records left and right!

Also, special thanks to my daughter for joining me in the gym today. She kept me motivated the whole time, except when she fell asleep during the last two pyramids + all of Core 2, but it was early for her. I'm so pumped that I have a healthy body coming in to set a good example for her. These two ladies are my world and I definitely want to be around on this earth for a long time with them!

Ok, that's my story. I have a good walk planned at lunch (it rained yesterday, so I was stuck inside) and healthy food waiting for me in the kitchen. Plus, sushi tonight, and I'm planning on almost all sashimi (so, all healthy fish and no rice, woop woop!).

Oh, one final note. In the break room this morning, I ran into my boss's boss's boss, and she complemented my work. I can't tell you how awesome that made me feel. Made me super inspired to do even more awesome work! Just wanted to share that victory for the day.

Keep fighting the good fight team. I'm going to go to do some marketing!

Bring it!

Monday, April 25, 2016

Sore! But it hurts so good!

Heavy lifting has begun. Yesterday I got started on my first full body heavy weight workout day, and the workout was Total Body Hammer from Hammer & Chisel. This thing is a beast. It's the big big lifts, like chest press, back rows, squats, etc. Each one is done 10 reps, 8 reps, 6, reps, then on to the next part of the three-exercise circuit, then repeat. Sad part, the weights didn't increase. I thought they'd go up each set as the reps came down, like in Body Beast, but not the case. But the rests between sets was pretty much nonexistent, you really just skip two counts where you'd be doing reps. Also, with the low rep counts overall, I upped the weight a lot on all of these, and man, did it hurt.

Total Body Hammer's only flaw? No tricep/bicep work. I knew this going into it, and on days that I have this workout (every other Sunday) I paired it with Bulk Arms from Body Beast. Yup, that did the trick.

Absolutely everything hurts this morning in the best way. Chest and back are both crying for help, triceps feel awesome, biceps are pretty good, shoulders have some ware in them, and my legs.....jeez. This entire journey for 2016, I have not touched legs and weights at the same time. That all completely changed yesterday. I couldn't even finish the sets yesterday, I barely did half of what they were doing, but holy hell do my legs hurt today. I even had to take the elevator into the office because the stairs just weren't happening.

A few more workouts to recap. Saturday was a weird day. I had Bas Rutten scheduled along with P90X Ab Ripper, but only had time in the morning for Ab Ripper. Did it, it was good, but on its own it doesn't feel like a whole workout. I felt sore, but didn't sweat much.

After I ran some errands, I tried to hit play on Bas Rutten, but just couldn't get into this. This is why I workout first thing in the morning - otherwise I lose focus/motivation. I thought MMX from P90X3 might work better, so I hit play on that, but ended up losing steam at the 20 minute mark. Still not wanting to call it quits, I decided to do Core 2 from 22 Minute Hard Corps. That at least got my abs a final punch, and I called it a day.

This morning was Cardio Challenge from Max:30. This is still an awesome workout that kicked my ass. My legs being sore didn't help much and I had to take a few more breaks than usual on the jumping stuff, but overall, good workout.

So, let's talk nutrition and the scale. Saturday was Passover (fat free JEW, remember?) and there were carbs everywhere. Taking the last few weeks into account mentally, I decided to have and enjoy a cheat day. Matzo balls, chocolate covered matzo, fruit, along with some healthier things like chicken, and even sweet potato latkes (which falls somewhere in the middle) were all had. It was delicious!

Sunday I ate healthy and within diet overall. I did have some matzo ball soup, sans matzo balls, so I think I'm ok from that. And I had three latkes with dinner too.

With all that in mind, I clocked in on the scale this morning at 197.2. Ugh, clearly not the 193.6 I had on Friday, nor the 193.1 goal I had for today, but I knew Friday was a press to get down that far and 193.1 was an absolute stretch. I binged on Saturday, and I'm still under 200, officially, so I feel good. Plus, I had my carb reset, and the last few months I've done that on Saturday, my weightloss isn't linear through the week, it's curved, with better results on Friday than Monday. Anyways, this is my longwinded way of saying I'm ok with this. However, I'm not shooting for .5 down on Wednesday, I'm shooting for 1.2. A nice, round 196.0 is the Wednesday goal, and dammit I think I can do it!

Final note, I've added in a few different supplements for my current program. First off, there's creatine. I'm taking the bare minimum amount, 3g per day. There's a chance this will slow down the weight loss overall since I'll be retaining water, but I'm not too worried about it, and it shouldn't completely kick in for a few weeks. I've also added in a good quality whey protein. I've been taking protein in some form after workouts this whole year, but this will be the first time that I make sure that the protein is quality (aka very low carbs) and I take a full serving (I varied previously depending how I felt) post workout, treating the full scoop as an actual meal.

I've also added in MCT Oil, which is supposed to help regulate the body overall, and increase how well I do while in ketosis, which I'm fairly confident my body is still going into by about EOD Monday or early Tuesday based on a Saturday cheat day.

I just wanted to mention all of these supplements so they're documented.

Ok, that's my story. Final final thought: today is 3 years since I proposed to my amazing wife (she wasn't my wife then, but you get the picture). We've gone through a ton of amazing experiences since then, and I love her so much for saying yes to me on this day 3 years ago. Thanks for being my world baby! I love you and our little girl so much!

Alright, onward and upward (downward on the scale though) toward the future!

Bring it!

Friday, April 22, 2016

Round 2 is Done!!

You read that title correctly, Round 2 of Insanity Max:30 is done. Now, again, this was my modified schedule, not the verbatim schedule I did in Round 1, but the big three workouts (Cardio, Sweat, Friday Fight) all stuck with this program.

Let's start with the numbers! I finished my first round of M:30 at 213.6, exactly 8 weeks ago today. I was on a steady weight loss track throughout the whole second round, except for a week of frustrating setbacks last week. I did my reset over the weekend, dieted well this whole week, and, I'll be honest, kept it super light yesterday because I was excited about today's weigh in. This was a single day, not the whole week, so please readers, don't think I'm going about this unhealthy (truthfully, I'm never hungry anymore because I eat literally all day - I'm amazed how much I eat and still lose weight). Anyways, I woke up this morning, hit the gym with Friday Fight Rd. 2 (which kicked my ass as always), got done, hopped on the scale, and clocked in at....


That's right folks. 20 lbs down in this second round! I even got the before/after photos to prove it (which will arrive on the blog someday, I promise, just no clue when). Now, again, I want to stress that I pushed hard with the diet in the last 24 hours to bring the number down, but just knowing that I can get my body to weigh this low is outstanding. I feel awesome today!!! I'm also wearing an entire outfit (minus the socks) that did not fit two weeks ago.

So, onward to program #3. The same big three M:30 workouts are coming with me, this time scheduled for M, W, and F, with the same two four-week blocks. Saturdays I'm alternating between the 2 minute and 3 minute Bas Rutten MMA workouts, and for Sun, T, and Th I have various Body Beast, P90X3 and Hammer & Chisel workouts scheduled, all total body weight lifting stuff. I want to get the weights up to par, and I'm super excited to incorporate this into the next round. I'm a little concerned with what the weights are going to do to the scale numbers, but for 8 weeks I'm willing to run this experiment. Also I'm adding in creatine and a little more protein powder in the mornings to aid in the muscle building, which I'm hoping is excessive, so same concern with the numbers. I'm going to take actual measurements tonight or tomorrow so I can track my progress a few ways other than just scale numbers.

So, that's my story. Right now, in a very good place, and feeling well on my way to really getting the body I've always dreamed about. I should say I'm a little concerned about a big Passover dinner we're having at the house tomorrow - fat free JEW, remember? - because there's definitely going to be some carbs. BUT, the reset last week really did fire me up, as it has most weeks I've done a cheat day, so as concerned as I (always) am about these kinds of meals, the macro part of me thinks this actually can have some benefit to the overall goals.

Ok, I'm going to sign out for now. I'll check in again next week, when I'm knee deep into Week 1 of my Cardio/Weights mix! Let's do this!

Bring it!

Thursday, April 21, 2016

One day left - almost final check in for this round

Well, a lot has changed since my last blog post. Namely, me. I may have started the week with high weight numbers, but it looks like my diet reset over the weekend worked. I've been down every day this week, yesterday and today both being extreme low points on the scale.

My goal is still 195.0 for this second round. I clocked in today at 195.8, so, eek, almost there. I'm going to push extra hard today and tomorrow to accomplish this, then it's right back to my normal .5 every two days method.

Some initial thoughts as I wrap up this program. First, this wasn't a well put together program. The extreme back-to-back-to-back cardio at the end of each week is not conducive, and doing Sweat Intervals today, right after doing Max Sweat yesterday, just isn't giving my body time to recover. The Max workouts especially are too taxing to stack like this. Moving forward, no two Max:30 cardio workouts will follow each other back to back.

Second, I definitely wish I'd added more weight. I'm also really glad I decided not to to my original plan for the next program, which had even more cardio and even less weight. Mixed reviews on how weighted work affects weight loss compared to cardio, but the research I'm reading is making it out to be a much more even split than I've been doing. On top of that, weights are what I enjoy most. Enjoyment keeps me motivated. So, I'm super looking forward to starting 3x/week weights next week. Also, the P90X3 weight routines just don't feel like they're cutting it for me anymore, so I'm very excited to add in some Sagi DVDs as well.

Regarding the two recovery weeks, those were pointless. They didn't help me recover, and they really just let me preview DVDs that I've ultimately decided I don't want to use (though there was some debate in my head over adding in Les Mills' Combat's Upper Body Blowout, even though that's ultimately been scrapped at the moment).

Finally, I'm starting to realize that in some aspects, I may have made this current program too easy. Yes, the cardio was super taxing and not in a good way, but the body weight stuff from the Tuesday/Thursdays workouts that I ultimately eliminated served more purpose than I thought. In retrospect, if you count those workouts, I was doing 3x/week weights with my first round, including those two and one P90X3 routine. This round, I downed it to 2x/week, both P90X3. I was reading an article yesterday that the Captain America workout from the movie didn't have any cardio, just circuits of weights at a high intensity. Obviously this was weighted work, not body weight, but it does make a strong case for the benefits of those Tabata workouts. I did not enjoy them at all, so no way are they joining me on a future workout program, but I do want to see in a few months if I can get some sort of circuit-training-style weighted work involved in my future programs.

Alright, that's about where I'm at. One more day, going to see how far I can take the weight down. I have a lunchtime walk and Friday Fight Rd. 2 scheduled between now and the scale tomorrow. Wish me luck!

Bring it!

Monday, April 18, 2016

Feeling super down today, and not in a good way

Well, we're in the final week of my second program. Last week I saw some setbacks, and decided I needed a short break. So I binged over the weekend, mostly on Saturday. But Sunday I kept it clean, worked out hard, and felt good.

I stepped on the scale this morning, and it was over 200. It just barely over 201. Dammit, I'd done so well, I knew cheating this weekend would be bad, but I didn't think this bad.

I have five days, including today, to get myself as low as possible. I'm not sure how I'm going to do that yet, but I'm going to push push push and figure it out. Extra workouts every night this week, super strict diet. I have to do this.

So, any positive vibes you can send my way, please let me know. Come next week I'll be lifting more and it'll be a different plan, but this week, I want so badly to be at 195, even 190, but I'll take 195. I don't even know if that's possible at this point, but I'm going to work my ass off to get there.

Alright, not a great blog post, not a great day. Onward to tomorrow. Bring it!

Thursday, April 14, 2016

It might be time to change things up

Ok, maybe I'm being drastic with that title, but I think it might be time to change things up a bit. Today was another unofficial weigh in day, but the friggin' number went up again. Today I was at 197.8. Yesterday was a super clean diet day too. On that note, I should also say that this week I'm finally getting sick of salad for lunch, and as far as cardio goes, my feet and legs are killing me.

This isn't complaining. This is me realizing I need to listen to my body. My current plan has been to focus on cardio/HIIT workouts, and for 15 weeks and 42 lbs it's worked. Those are damn good results. I've never been really that sore, nor have I ever hated my diet. For some reason, that's all changing this week, and that, to me, means it's time to reevaluate the plan.

So all this time I've been planning to get down to 170ish, then switch to weights. There's a lot of reasons for that, mainly that if I don't focus on weights (note that I've only been doing 2 upper body workouts per week) it's easier to track my downward progress on the scale. BUT, increased muscle does promote fat loss, so starting weights earlier isn't a bad plan - it's just a harder to track plan.

With that in mind, I'm seriously debating moving up my timetable and starting a heavier lifting program next Saturday, after I complete my current program. Yes, I'm OCD about my 8-week programs. That's not changing.

What do I need to do this then? Well, first off, I need to find a new way to track progress. Measuring body fat is priority 1, so I'm looking into options for that. Something more accurate than that pincher thing would be nice, but that might need to be it. Second, I'll need to accurately and frequently measure my waist, which in terms of fat loss is my most important section. Finally I'll want to measure arms and legs, so I can tell if they're growing, and compare that to overall weight loss to see if I can better account for any unexpected weight gains.

What's the plan then? Well, I have several Body Beast and Hammer and Chisel workouts lined up. I'd been considering doing an every other day thing in the summer, and I'm planning to tweak that a bit. Saturdays will still be Bas Rutten, M, W and F will be the big 3 workouts from Max:30. That leaves three workouts per week for heavy weights. Sundays will be big heavy since I have a little more time. Should clock in around the one hour mark for workouts. Tuesday and Thursday are going to be 30 minutes like normal, but total body, no more upper body only.

Right now my biggest concern with this is my work weight loss program. Come May 9, I'm stepping onto a scale to weigh in, and I need that number down. I started at 216, so if I were to step on today I'd be down 17. Not bad, but not what I wanted either. This would put me into week 3 of this program, but I'm thinking I can't put on that much muscle weight in 2 weeks. It'll be necessary to track though.

Also I want to add in a few basic supplements. Definitely creatine, and also two good protein powders: a full meal replacement whey protein for after workouts, and a casein protein for one hour after dinner.

Anyways, I'm giving myself another few days, probably the weekend, to completely make up my mind, but come next Friday I need to have a decision in place and this seems to be the direction my body and mind want to go. And, worst case, after 8 weeks, I can just go back to major cardio then.

Oh, today I did Sweat Intervals. Kicked my ass, my energy was low, but hey, I came out of it sweaty. All the more reason I was disappointed on the scale this morning, but I've gotta say no matter what I'm proud of the work I put in in the mornings.

Ok, that's where I'm at. Updates to follow.

Bring it!

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Setbacks - sigh

First off, there's muffins in the office. They're apparently delicious, everyone is talking about them. Sigh....

I'm feeling discouraged today. I started the week at 197.2, which was amazing. Then I ballooned up yesterday morning to 198.2, and clocked in today, tragically, at 197.6. Not only was this not my goal (that was 196.7), bu it's higher than Monday.

I've been trying to take my diet ketogenic, but I think it's going to be too hard for me. I'm abusing the cheese aspect of it, and honestly I miss fruit. Keeping mental track of foods and just eating whatever I wanted (within reason, and within limits for the day) was working great, so I think I'm going to go back to that. I should probably give keto a few more days, and I probably will give it til Friday, but as of right now a purely ketogenic diet doesn't seem right for me.

Anyways, weight isn't the only reason I'm feeling discouraged today. Not sure why, but I was moving SLOW during my workout today, which was Max Out Sweat. After a super slow start, I got into a good rhythm toward the middle, but by the end I was gassed. I was soaked, don't get me wrong, but it just wasn't where I thought I'd be today.

Hey, ups and downs right? Yesterday I did have an awesome Incinerator workout. I sure do enjoy lifting weights. One more week and one more round of Max:30 and the weights are getting upped! Hoping to be lifting every other day come summer.

Alright, feeling super down, but I'll get back on the bandwagon in a moment. Going to go for an awesome walk today at lunch, and I'm going to DESTROY Friday's upcoming goal of 197.1. And then it's on to the final week of my second round!

Bring it!

Monday, April 11, 2016

Decent Start to Week 7

Week 7 is in full swing, and I can practically taste the end of my current 8 week program! Let's recap what's been happening.

Since the last check in, I've had some good workouts. Saturday was Eccentric Upper from P90X3. Now, I've been doing this one for a few months now, and it was finally starting to feel stale. Mostly in the arms section, of which we only hit bis and tris twice each. For some reason, that wasn't flying for me, as I really wanted a good arm workout. So, with 5 minutes left and the arm stuff just barely starting, I turned it off, pulled out the heavy weights, and hit Play on Bulk Arms from BodyBeast. And DAMN, that did the trick! It's Monday as I write this, and my triceps still hurt! Biceps were definitely feeling it yesterday too.

With that in mind, BodyBeast is all I can think about today, so be prepared, there's a good chance I'm going to be trying to lift heavy sooner rather than later. Maybe back to my end of June goal like I'd originally set for myself.

Anyways, that was Saturday. Had some popcorn at a fight Saturday night, but other than that I kept the diet pretty clean all weekend.

Sunday I hit play on Max Out Cardio. Damn, this thing will never stop kicking my ass, will it? I got through, but I was dying by the end. In an effort to get some ab work in, I tried to do Max Out Abs from Max:30 also, but 2 minutes in I realized it just wasn't happening. I did about 10 minutes of abs on my own just to do it, but ya, I was dying.

Finally, this morning I got my day started with Bas Rutten's MMA workout, the 3 minute one. Today wasn't nearly as good as last week. I was definitely dragging ass, and if this had been a real fight I'd have been demolished after Round 4, definitely. BUT, this wasn't terrible either, and I was soaked by the end. Hey, mission accomplished, right? So, good workout today.

So after all that this morning, I stepped on the scale. Today's goal: 197.7. And I clocked in, officially, at....



Yup, overshot, felt good, and now it's onward to 196.7 on Wednesday!

Had a decent walk at lunch today too. Overall, I'm feeling like I'm making progress and back on track. And going back to that discussion of lifting heavy, if I can get down to 175 by the end of my next program, I'll make the switch. My goal is 170, 180 is pretty much out the window now, but at 5 lbs I can still pull that off while doing some lifting, before the muscle sets in and tracking just weight will be difficult. We'll see if I can get there. The next program is designed to take the cardio up a notch, so hopefully that pushes me over the edge.

Alright, that's my story. Incinerator tomorrow. Ya weights!!

Bring it!

Friday, April 8, 2016

Rounding out a solid week 6!

Week 6 is officially in the books. Friday Fight Rd. 2 returned today, and it returned with a vengeance! After a week of very very respectable workouts, this thing truly kicked my ass from left to right. I'm giving myself a low B, it really wasn't a good workout for me, but I also came out of it drenched in sweat. Considering I'm coming off some great workouts this week that left my legs a little jello-ish, I'm not too disappointed.

So, as you know, the goal weight today was 198.7. Jeez, even writing a number that doesn't start with 2 felt weird just now. Anyways, ya, that was the goal. I ate healthy yesterday, went on a good walk, and did my best to achieve today's goal. And when I stepped on the scale, I clocked in at....


Yup, a whole 0.7 more than I was shooting for! BOOM!

So, this makes Monday's goal 197.5. But, I have some fun events planned this weekend. The wife and I are doing a double date tonight, at which I plan to have a beer (which I'm very excited about by the way) and tomorrow I'm going to a fight with Dad (which I'm also very excited about) and I'm guessing there'll be at least one beer and some not so great for me food. Hopefully I can keep the rest of the diet clean all weekend to balance this out a bit.

Anyways, that's my story. Two more weeks of my current program. Let's do this!

Bring it!

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Enjoying the view from the other side!

Last time I posted, I mentioned I was teetering over the edge, locked in at 200.0. Yesterday morning I clocked in, and I'd done it! 199.2!!!

Now, I should say, all day Tuesday I was pretty excited about hopefully getting to that sub-200 goal, so I definitely had a lighter diet than normal. Not unhealthy at all, but definitely a few bites short of what I'd normally eat in a day.

All day yesterday, though, I ate healthy and normal. Nothing weird about the day. And this morning I clocked in at a respectable 199.6.

K, so I went up. Not a big deal. Still under 200, and that's probably a more realistic figure considering it's based on a real normal diet. But, I'm aggressive, so Friday's goal of 198.7 still stands.

Workout wise, I feel like I'm on fire this week. I did Max Out Sweat yesterday, and even though I was basically gassed by the 18 minute mark, I finished the whole thing and felt damn good at the end.

I also had a weird day yesterday - my wife and baby were both sick, so I stayed home and took care of them - which meant no walk. But, around 2:30, I decided to hit play on MMX from P90X3. I think I've done this workout once before, not totally sure, but man oh man did it kick my ass! I should note that I strapped on weighted gloves too to add that extra oomph, and it did the trick. This more than made up for my walk!

Today I hit play on Sweat Intervals, which for some reason I programmed in as my Thursday workouts for this final month. Well, it was tough considering yesterday's workout, but man do I love this workout and I had an awesome workout today. That's a lot of workouts in that last sentence. Anyways, ya, excellent workout today.

Onward to tomorrow, goal weight of 198.7, and a solid Friday Fight Rd. 2 standing between me and the scale. Let's do this!

Bring it!

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

I'm at the precipice, teetering on the edge

As you know, I was not thrilled with my weight yesterday. I was aiming for 201.3, and clocked in at 202.4. Since we last spoke I've gone on two walks, had a great upper body workout, and eaten a pretty lowcal diet. No, I'm not starving myself, but I focused more on salads and less on cheese.

Anyways, today's walk excluded, I think I made a dent. I clocked in at my unofficial weight this morning....


Right there. Right freakin' there, and it's not an official. I want that sub-200 number so bad. So freakin' bad! So yes, tomorrow's goal is officially 201.9, what am I hoping for? Something about 2 lbs lighter. Something that starts with a 1.

Tomorrow is Max Out Sweat. If any workout can take me down to that number, this is it.

Wish me luck, because I'm working my ass off to make this happen. And, at the very least, I feel confident that I can totally conquer my 201.9 goal either way.

Let's do this team!

Bring it!

Monday, April 4, 2016

Missed two goals in a row

I'm finding myself at a low point in my journey today. Friday's goal was 201.7, and I came in at 201.8. Close, but it's not the whole enchilada (man, enchiladas sound tasty) and I personally always want to overshoot my goals. But, ok, I'll keep it clean all weekend and crush my new 201.3 goal on Monday, or so I thought. I clocked in this morning at a whopping 202.4. Ya, not even close. That's two goals in a row, missed.

Ok, back on the horse. Let's look at the diet and see what happened. Overall, it really was a clean weekend. I ate 3 pieces of fried calamari, and had half a piece of cake for my mother in law's birthday last night. Aside from that, it was a clean weekend. However, I probably put a lot more cheese into the diet than I should have. Yes, that's allowed on my no-carb low-carb whatever you want to call it diet, but this isn't pure Keto I'm doing, it's still calorie counting. Or at least calorie estimating. And I overdid it on the cheese left and right.

Workout wise, I've actually been on fire all weekend! Friday I crushed my final TurboFire workout of this program, HIIT 15, and it was combined with Max:30 Max Out 15, which went pretty damn decent as well. Saturday I lifted heavy weights with Eccentric Upper, then did Ab Ripper X, and because I was feeling up for it, I tried out Cardio 2 from 22 Minute Hard Corps in the afternoon. Good workout.

Sunday I started the official month 2 workouts of Max:30 with Max Out Cardio, and I really did great. It's still hard as hell and by the halfway point I was gassed, but I did the whole thing, the first half was excellent and the second was still really good.

Yesterday we also built a firepit, and I'm proud to say I moved 54 individual 20-lbs bricks from the driveway to the backyard, which felt like a pretty outstanding workout on its own.

Finally, this morning I hit play for the first time on the 3 minute round version of Bas Rutten's MMA CD. And honestly, I did a lot better than I thought I would. Don't get me wrong, I was destroyed by the end, and rounds 6 and 7 were questionable (I'm pretty sure in a real fight, I would have lost those rounds), but hot damn, that's the hardest program in the whole series and I did it! There's no going back now, and I can't wait to see what more I can bring to it.

So ya, all of that great work made me feel a bit disheartened when I saw the scale this morning. But, ok, back on the horse, less cheese, less carbs, no cake, this week should be good. I really really want to get under that 200 mark, and honestly I want to see if I can eclipse 195 before this program's out. 2.5 more weeks, I can do this.

Bring it!