So as we’re coming to the end(ish) of April, I’m into week 4 of the half-marathon training with 1 more race under my belt and 1 to go . Besides the running training, I’ve changed up other aspects of my health and fitness life – why stay stable if you can shake things up like a pretty little snow globe, right? Here’s the facts, and I’m sticking to them!
Let me tell you. I am soooooo not a morning person. I remember telling my parents when I was in college that I wouldn’t accept a job that started before noon. Minus a few lucky positions I got starting between noon and 5pm, my start time has been firmly between 8 and 10 am for every job since leaving school. Funny how things change when credit card bills are piling up and you’re only eating ramen and rent is due. That being said, prior to turning 30, I got up and worked out in the morning maybe a handful of times in my life. Ever.
For some reason, on my birthday, it kicked in that I have a flexible start time (8 to 10 am). Sometimes, even if I get in early, leaving at 5pm is not an option. Instead of getting antsy and annoyed that I’m gonna have to work out late and eat late and generally have my day disrupted – I can get my lazy ass outta bed about the same time, throw on some running shoes, autopilot out the door, and by the time I get to work, I’m absolved of all responsibility to have to make it to the gym later.
Since then, most weeks, I’ve done either all or part of my workout in the mornings. Some days, it’s just yoga. Some days, it’s my full workout. But I’m glad I’m learning this now, because soon it’s going to be morning run or treadmill due to the heat, and I don’t wanna give up outside running!
On the days I don’t get up and do my full workout in the morning, the majority have been two-a-day workouts. I’ll either yoga in the morning and run at night, or run in the morning and hit the gym for weights at night, or even DDR in the morning and yoga at night, I like to keep things spontaneous. I’m now finding that if I leave my full workout for after work, I don’t feel as good as if I even just knock out a 20 minute yoga session in the morning. The only caveat here is I just don’t have time (see above, not a morning person at all) to do anything that involves me hitting the gym. Too much with travel time, involves a lot of prepping and packing stuff for the shower, and just not worth it.
One Set Reps to Exhaustion
I’ve done this once at home and once at the gym, and I LOVE IT. It’s a 30 minute full body circuit instead of 45, and I feel just as worked in different ways. I still find that I have to set a number to work towards – and I aim for at least 2x one normal set and then keep going if I can. Some exercises I can do more, and some I’m barely able to hit the double set. I’m not sure if that means I need to up the weights/numbers on the easier ones, or just that some exercises lend themselves better to doing many in a row (back extensions) than others (pushups). These will remain a staple in my weight training.
This was the “half the reps, double the time on each one” day. Honestly, only did it once so far, but I’m not impressed. I’ll keep it up through the training and see if I take to it more but…ugh. Slow and workout just don’t ever seem to have their place in the same sentence for me. Maybe this would be better suited for a morning weights workout where I don’t have the “just get ‘er done quick so you can go home and have dinner and relax” mentality.
So I knew into week 2 my cut calories weren’t gonna…cut it. Har har. I also went and looked at various calorie calculators (it’s late, I’m lazy, just google “how many calories should I eat” or “calorie calculators” and you’ve got 20 to pick from). They all said for my activity level that I should be taking in between 2500 and 3000 calories per day to maintain my weight. To lose one lb, not a one suggested I eat under 2000 calories. While the 4 days of gluttony that ensued after I decided I needed to eat more was not the best idea, I’m back on the straight and narrow now.
I’m not feeling the 2000 calories a day – but I have upped my average weekday calories to 1500 and am not beating myself up for 2000 on the weekends. As I start logging more miles per week, I’ll keep shifting that up. I am loving being able to eat a bigger breakfast, more fruit, and yeah, a little more freedom to dip into the jelly beans or chocolate chips. What I am not looking forward to is the taper phase, when I rest and recover, which means back to 1300 weekdays, 1500 to 2000 weekends. Boo. Maybe I’ll just keep my activity up but go less poundy poundy on the legs…
While I have been stalled out a bit lately, I did hit a new low of 150.2 this last week and perhaps once it stops being the time of the month where I stay up ’til 4 am waiting for the aleve to take my cramps away, I will see something in the 140s. I think eating more, while it’s taking to take a few weeks of commitment to see results, is going to both help my weight loss efforts and training with less fatigue. As long as I don’t use it as an excuse to waddle up to a bacon double cheeseburger and fries or the like every meal and fill myself with the usual good stuff, just more of it, I think it will be nothing but wonderful for me. I used to always be scared I would up my calories and somehow never be able to lose weight again – but since I’m not doing such a good job of it now, I might as well try, right?
What are you trying out these days, everyone? Anyone find their magic bullet that made you instantly your goal weight, accomplish all your fitness goals, lose that last pinch of belly fat and make you euphorically happy all day even in the face of grumps and people just out to pee in your sandbox?