Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Pictures! Sorry they took so long to post

Picture pretty much says it all - you might need to click on it to see the whole thing properly.

Game plan is take 1 week off - celebrate - then back on the band-wagon, just as hard or harder than before.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Final Day 90+

It seems like it has taken forever to get here, but today is my last day of P90X round 2. As I sit here eating my almond and water breakfast, I'd like to look back and reflect at what's changed since the beginning of round 2.

Well... food wise, I've swapped out fruit on the bottom yogurt for plain yogurt. Which, by the way tastes nothing like flavored yogurt and is sometimes a challenge to eat (-25g sugar). I've swapped out peanuts for almonds (I don't know the real benefit, but it sure is costing me a lot!). I've replaced my morning power bar with almonds, also.

Fitness wise, I've increased some weight, but reduced in reps in many categories, namely biceps and triceps, most of the other weight stuff is body weight and I've stayed approximately the same size (150lbs). I had some gains earlier in the summer, but recently I have fallen back to my starting weight. Foolish me for not taking my weight this morning, I was late for work, so my final weight might have to be yesterday's which was 152lbs.

Exercise wise, I started out doing P90X+ but after about 2 weeks, I started to resort back to regular P90X. Then sometime in I swapped out Plyo + Yoga + Kenpo for all weight training. And then I enlisted about 4-5 people into P90X, 2 of which work out with me at the gym so I began to do the regular program again. But then I realized some of the workouts were too hard for "beginners" so I made my own workouts that were not easier, but certainly more diverse, allowing for completion. And very recently I have been adding 3-5mile runs to my workouts, not really considering it doubles because somedays I'd swap out ab-ripperX for a run. We'll call it even.

Overall, I can definitely say the 2nd time through I was not as disciplined and/or dedicated like the first time. I think a lot of that has to do with the novelty of a new fitness program. Having done it before, I wasn't quite as "Lets do it" as I was in round 1. Also in round 2 I kept my weekends workout free. Saturday and Sunday were both rest-days, and I tried to accomodate the schedule as such. Obviously losing out on those workout days could mean lost potential results. I was okay with that.

Looking forward, I definitely want to continue with the diet. I've become 100% accustomed to it, which is fantastic because it's so simple. I don't cook anything. Ever! I'm eating mostly veggies, salad, nuts, and tuna. It's wonderful. As for exercise, I'll definitely keep helping the P90Xers that I convinced to start. Again, I still want size, so I might start doing weight lifting, we'll see. I still plan to do semi-regular or daily posts.

Tonight I will post some final photos. I'll have to take them after my final workout this afternoon which I think will be Run,Chest+Back,AbripperX "The gauntlet"

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Day 88+ Keep it simple (apheresis today)

I love this cartoon. It holds a lot of truth to many of us. And it doesn't always reflect just a diet, and certainly not always all at once. But I find a lot of people lack the focus to stick with something for a period of time that will show results. Is this human nature? Is it the digital generation? I'm not sure.

I do know that many people often find themselves frustrated after a week or two of a diet (or exercise plan) and say "Oh, this and that don't work" or "It's not working for me" and quickly hop off the band-wagon or find another wagon to hop on that might be completely opposite.

Don't get discouraged people. Stick with the game plan. Often one or two weeks is not nearly enough time to see good results. Sometimes dieting takes months (depending on who you are and your dedication level). Just because it didn't work immediately, doesn't me quit or drastically change your strategy. It means figure out if you're really being honest about your commitment and say to yourself "Just a few more weeks... it's still early"

For those of you who have been following regularly (I KNOW you're out there, because my hits/page has gone from 1600 to 1770 since my last post, and I've been too busy at work to maintain daily postings...which I contribute MOST of the hits) today's P90X round 2 day is 88+ and I will ABSOLUTELY 100% be posting pictures on Friday. For whatever reason I have been slacking with photos (perhaps it's partly in fear that I haven't gained much muscle and that I haven't lost much fat) I almost feel like I am the same size. But let this be my confession to the world - FRIDAY OCT. 22nd, afternoon, I will have pictures posted, for better or worse.

And I will probably start yet another round or perhaps some kind of hybrid P90X/Training system with my co-workers who have been working out with me. I'll also continue to be very active on Yahoo! Answers. I really enjoy posting solutions to people's health problems.

Anyway! Apheresis tonight, so no workout schedule for this afternoon.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Day 84+ Wrist problems

I've been doing a lot of running + legs lately because of wrist problems :-( When I say WRISTS, I actually just mean my left wrist. It's just really tender. I don't know where it came from, could be driving, could be pushups, could be burpees, I don't know. But I think this week I'm just going to have to lay off the arms...

It's a rest week anyway for my final P90X week, so it's not a huge deal, but sorta sucks to round out the end of the 2nd P90X on an injury. I weighed in at 150lbs this morning, no news flash there. I don't appear to be much different than day 30ish... but I guess in 6 days we'll find out how different I look.

Other than that, I got top contributor on Yahoo! Answers again. That's always nice!

As for what I will do next, I might do 1-2 months of just training my co-workers at the gym. Sort of consider it as Carl's Boot-camp. I already pretty much work out with them at least 3 times a week. I could bump it to 5 and raise the intensity. The only downside to training is I spend a lot more time going over form and convincing people to KEEP GOING, and I end up doing less than if I were to do it on my own. So we'll see, it's certainly more fun... but I can't let all my hard work go to waste.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Day 80+ Ten days left!

Who doesn't look forward to the last 10 days!? I certainly do. It's a little more than a week away, but it should line me up nicely for a Saturday finish! P90X round 2 is nearing completion, but the Canadian thanks-giving is sneaking it's ugly head around the corner (next Monday). Let's hope I don't blow it in the final week.

Halloween is just around the corner. I'm thinking POWER RANGERS this year... I haven't started making a costume yet, but I think it will go over amazingly well. Last year, Mickey mouse... and the year before Sub-Zero.

Weighed 152lbs this morning, with clothes on. No major changes there. I'm going to start tappin' into my almonds on a more regular basis. Put the peanuts to the curb for a bit, even though almonds are way more expensive than peanuts...Circuit/Cardio today.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Day 79+ Arms+Shoulders

Does anyone know what the picture above is? If you're familiar with Italian food, you'll probably know that it's 3 Manicottis. Unfortunately, that was what I ate for dinner last night, actually I had 4. What a shame. To think yesterday, not only did I do a double (P90X + cardio), but I ate really really well... and then it came time for Tuesday Night Dinner (TND), which I have little control over.

Calories through the roof. Carbohydrates off the charts. All that hard work down the tubes. Oh well, at least it was delicious. I can't say I'm too proud of myself. But on the other hand, I really can't control what other people cook for their TND choices.

It had been a long time since I had Italian food though, it defeinitely went down the hatch without resistance. It's just the guilt I feel NOW that bothers me more than anything. Oh and did I mention garlic bread? *SIGH* Not the best role model, but I guess everyone's human!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Day 78+ legs and cardio

Yesterday I went to the grocery store. I was running low on yogurt, something I have been meaning to axe from the lunch menu for a while, but I am stubborn. Either way, I remember somebody asking about yogurt and plain yogurt vs fruit on the bottom yogurt. Turns out, there is a big difference.

I picked up the regular yogurt I get, store-brand fruit on the bottom low fat yogurt. 190 calories, 33g sugar, etc. etc. Picked up the same size plain yogurt container (checked the serving size and servings per container, see previous post), and it turns out plain yogurt is 160 calories and only 13g sugar. Plus it actually had a bit more protein! Don't quote me, but I think it was 2-3g difference. From 4g for the fruit version to 6g or 7g in the plain.

So I bought 8 and will be eating them from now on. I know I won't get the flavor rush I am used to, but it's better for me to reduce those unnecessary sugars.

I weighed in at 150lbs today - still not gaining. Hopefully not losing muscle mass. I haven't been doing nearly the same quantity of pullups I normally do. But I've still been workout out every day. And I'm still training/workout out with people!

Monday, October 4, 2010

Day 77+ Chest and Back + Nutrition Labels...

Oh how I love to read nutrition labels. They are as much of an art form as say a fine sculpture or a well-crafted painting. But it's not because they are beautiful on the outside, but because they are so crafty made to deceive and gain sales at the same time.

My favorite parts of the FDA nutrition label are the Serving Size, Servings per Container, Total Fat, and the Asterisk. Please, let me explain.

Serving Size: Whenever you pour yourself a bowl of cereal, do you consider it 1 serving? I know I do. It's about how much 1 person eats when they sit down for breakfast, so NATURALLY that seems like a logical serving amount. Until you turn the box of cheerios around and read the label. Hm... 1/2 cup of cereal is 1 serving. Before you pour that milk in your bowl, go grab a measuring cup (you know the kind that made of glass, and have a handle on the side) and pour the bowl you just poured in there. $20 says your 1-serving is actually 3 according to cheerios' suggested size. So all this time you thought you were eating 110 calories, you were actually eating 330 calories (or even more). Cereal has another downfall... it puts that column of w/1/2cup skim-milk. I actually use skim milk... but most people don't. Also, most people (myself included) don't use 1/2 cup. They use again, about 1 to 1&1/2 cups. Meaning anything you thought was moderately portioned... was not.

Servings per container: I love factoid for an entirely different reason. This is a number the manufacturer can manipulate in order to display or not display something legally on their label. By law, any food containing over 0.49g of saturated or trans fat MUST BE DISPLAYED ON THE NUTRITION LABEL... anything less, is optional. So a company which might have normally suggested 5 servings per container (but be forced to show 0.8g trans fats 100calories, might decided to double their servings per container to 10. And have the label show 50calories but 0TRANS FAT! At this point they can even put "Fat Free" on the label (assuming there are no other fats). How dastardly food companies are.

Another one of my favorites is Vitamin Water. Only 50 calories per serving. Oh wait... there are 2.5 servings in a 20oz container! Who stops at 2/5ths the way finished of a vitamin water?! NOBODY! So why put 2.5 servings? Because 50 calories looks healthy, when you're really about to drink 125calories.

Total Fats: Most people don't realize that there are lots of good fats. I believe fat is an essential food, because our body has a difficult time producing certain length fatty-acids (don't quote me on that). But either way, it's wise to stay away from saturated and trans fats due to their high calories and artery clogging capabilities... but mono saturated fats are "healthy" and they aren't even ON THE LABEL! So what we (as consumers) have to do is add up the saturated + trans fats and subtract them from the "total fat" to determine the monosaturated fat content. I almost think it would be better if they just had the three columns and omitted Total fat. But put Monosaturated fat in a good column, like protein or vitamin section.

Then we have the all mighty asterisk! "*" If you haven't seen this little bad boy on a food product, you haven't been looking hard enough. I don't think there is a single FDA food label on the planet that doesn't have this. Typically it's followed by *Based on a 2000 calorie diet. But not everyone should be eating a 2000 calorie diet...Body builders need more and little kids need less. Dieters also.

Its not only the label that bothers me. Some of these less-fat and fat free foods get me too. Fat free (like I mentioned above) just means the serving size is small enough that the grams of fat per serving is less than 0.5g. But tells you nothing about the TOTAL FAT in the container. Doritos are notorious for this. 6 chips per serving, but fat free! Hey hey! lets eat them all then.. Oh wait, there are 15 servings per container? 6x15 = 90chips... if the fat is hovering around 0.4g x 15 = 6g of fat. But because it's below 0.5g we don't even know what type of fat we're eating. And I doubt there's a person on this earth that eats 6 Doritos and stops.

Then we have the all mighty reduced fat. All this means is that the product in question has 25% less fat than the previous product. Which may or may not even make it healthy.

So next time you're shopping in the store and you think something is healthy... take a step back. Does it come in a bag? Does it come in a box? Chances are it's not that healthy for you. It's not to say healthy food can't come from a package... it's just that a lot of manufacturers pay people LOTS AND LOTS of money to out smart you, the consumer and you know what - they do a damn good job.

Watch what you eat people. And be good!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Day 74+ Kenpo Cardio Plus

I think everyone can relate to this cartoon in one way or another. I refer to it as the slippery slope effect. Where you just start sliding and crashing to an eventual slump where you're not working out anymore. Often this is caused by a simple missed day (if it's exhaustion or a schedule conflict - it could be anything), but then the difficult part is getting back to the gym, or back pushing play, or waking up early to go for that morning jog.

If you find yourself on this slippery slope, the best thing you can do is GET BACK TO THE GYM. In all honesty, the shorter the time between missing days, the faster you'll get back on schedule and the less used to the "relaxed" attitude you had on the day off. If you miss multiple days in a row - it's going to be a lot more jarring on your body + system than if you just miss one or two days.

It also helps that if you're doing a diet + fitness program, that you don't give up on BOTH at the same time. For example, if every one's going out for pizza on Friday. You'll be better off making it to the gym and sacrificing your diet for 1 day, than throwing in the towel and saying "Today is a complete waste day" and forgo diet + exercise. Likewise, if you skip a workout because you're exhausted or because you have some kind of scheduling conflict, keep your diet on track. This will help motivate you to get back in the gym the next day.

One last note: Never start a diet/workout "TOMORROW" always start a workout today. And this applies to getting back too. Don't tell yourself "I'll start tomorrow" because tomorrow is always in the future. Start TODAY that's NOW time. If you start today, you have no excuses. Plus, you gain an extra day!