Insanity Relapse

I have mentioned a zillion times how I have just not gotten my groove back since moving.  Part of it I know is that with this being a smaller place I don't have my little Kim-den to go workout (re: by myself without an audience) in when we both are home.  I have had to really tell myself that I just have to get over it and sometimes I'll be working out in the living room and he will be at the computer and oh well.  That has helped me with consistency these last few days.  I also have started mixing it up on days I have no desire to do anything.  The last 2 days I went back to old faithful - INSANITY.  I am so glad I did, I feel more invigorated and ready to go than I have in weeks.  I love TurboFire and I think Les Mills Pump is growing on me.  But neither of those bring the pain like INSANITY does and I'm realizing that is what I need to jump me into a routine again.  I haven't been this sore in a while and I missed that feeling.  Now that I have it I am so ready to get back into a routine again.  A big part of this journey is about learning how you operate.  How you tick and what gets you moving...then using that information to help you along the way.

I will share the two workouts I did - they were the two INSANITY workout that I didn't do before, the deluxe package ones.

First up was Max Interval Sports Training which is 55 minutes long.  First I will say that there really aren't any intervals.  This workout really reminds me of Core Cardio and Balance (CCB)  in it's format.  Not the usual interval warmup, but it again mimics CCB with a slow warmup.  I really like this warmup because it actually helps me go from cold to warm without being out of breath immediately.  Next you go through drills from 4 sports - football, basketball, gymnastics, and track and field.  I'm pretty sure Shaun T meant to save the "this ish is bananas" for this workout.  I was sweating buckets by the end of the football drill section.  Each section is on it's own a pretty good workout so adding them together is mega intense.  Expect abs, cardio, and strength as you move through this one.  I really liked it and definitely would do this again.

Next I did the Upper Body Weight Training workout.  This one is basically all weight training with a little bit of cardio in each section to boost your heart rate up.  This workout is full of very basic exercises that every person can do regardless of fitness level.  Shaun T doesn't show any modifications as usual, but you can make some up if you need them.  There are some lower body and abs included, but it is pretty much all upper body focus.  The only thing I will say to you is that you need to lift heavy here.  Not light.  The ladders go down, so if you go too light you will not get the benefit of the workout.  Go heavy and if you can and your equipment allows go heavier on the last set.  You can pair this with either Fast and Furious or a Turbo Fire HIIT workout and get a solid hour or so of weights plus cardio.

At this point, the only INSANITY workout I haven't done is Insane Abs.  Considering I can barely get through Cardio Abs, I probably won't do Insane Abs for a while.  I'm seriously considering doing another round of INSANITY this summer after I finish the Ultimate Reset :)  I'm back in the Insane Ward I guess, lol!  I think I am at a fitness level that maybe another round of INSANITY I might be able to try Asylum...who knows.

31

Today I turn 31.  I know most people are anti-birthday after they reach a certain age....but I'm not.  I'm healthier, happier, and stronger than I have been at any other birthday.  I've worked my butt off (literally) over the last year or so especially, because I want to be better and healthier every year.  The last few months have been really really rough and I've been up and down and not really doing as well as I know I could do because I've had to really deal with some stress.  It's in general just been a really hard 2013 so far.  I have maintained...which I'm really happy with because usually this stuff makes me gain weight like crazy.  But I am over maintaining and ready to really push forward.  And a birthday is a FANTASTIC day to kind of reset my goals and reset my brain. So, a few of my teammates have some big weight goals for this year and we are working together to try to get to our goals this year.  My goal is to lose the rest of the weight (I'm guessing 40-60 lbs....but really it's going to be a visual check + a maintainable lifestyle) and to get back into a routine and by the time I hit 32 be happily at goal and maintaining.

I also want to hit emerald in my beachbody coaching business.  I have realized that I LOVE talking to people about health and fitness.  I LOVE helping people reach their goals and working on my own.  I want to be in a position to have more options with my coaching business and advancing will help me get there.  I want to use my beachbody income to pay for a nutrition certification so I can really help my team get the best results possible.  I'm saving all my income towards that goal, then towards a personal trainer certification.  I have BIG dreams and while part of the goals have to do with getting myself in shape the rest have to do with helping others and being in a position to help others.

More than anything I want to spend my year of being 31 really living. I always put things off to the future because I'm too big or I'm too scared or I'm not ready.  I know some of the decisions I've made have been the right ones for me but I don't necessarily want to make decisions out of fear - I want to make decisions out of really knowing it's the right decision for me and being confident in that decision.  I want to try new things and do more things and reach out to more people and try new things.  I want 31 to be the BEST year I have ever lived.  I want every day to be lived to the fullest.  I want to live a life free from fear.  I am so ready for you 31.  So ready.

Ultimate Reset: Part Deux

My hubby has been talking about the reset a lot lately.  He has had to go to the doctor because he wasn't feeling well and because he has strayed way farther from the post reset life than I.  With him being in Memphis and me being in Virginia last time, he kind of just went back to what he knew.  Since he got back from that job and has been home, we both have struggled.  Him with my cooking not being as processed/not healthy as before and me with trying to keep on my healthy path someone who is not quite there with me also in the house.

Rewind to a few months go when he asked about doing the reset again.  I was like um...didn't we just do it? It's not a cheap program and I really didn't know about diving in again so fast.  But then I stopped to listen really to what he was saying.  He wanted to do the reset again to get back to that place of health and he knows this time with us in the same state, I'll be there to catch him as he comes off of it.  To keep him from having such a large relapse because I won't go there with him.  Now the money seemed to not really matter or the fact that we already did this...this started to be something bigger...something that was about him taking back his health again.  It became clear that he felt he needed this to be back in control of his eating and that made it clear to me as his wife that I needed to support him on this.  I had to stop thinking about the fact I wanted to finish Combat or that I wanted to do something for me.  It became about the fact that he needs me to do this to help him and it will not hurt me one bit to join him and support him.

So, today we ordered the dual Ultimate Reset kit.  I was just going to order the refill kits - but it's actually cheaper with the sale to just buy the whole dual kit.  Considering since we did it last year there have been a few program changes (the soothe supplement, reset in a hurry, and shakeology incorporated into the meal plan if you want to drink it) I was glad it worked out that way.  We aren't starting right away - we are starting April 21st - so in about a month.  This gives us time to get the new kits (regular shipping from Beachbody is about a week) and time for us to adjust to a new schedule (the man is going to be taking on a new position with a very different commute in April) and avoids the April celebrations (I have 2 bridal showers, a bachelorette party, and a birthday all going down in April and while I am trying to lose weight, I'm also a human who really demands a piece of birthday cake on my birthday) so I don't have to face a delicious cake on day 2 of the reset or something equally insane.  It is manageable to do the reset and have events...but it's definitely not preferred if you can avoid it.  And since we have some open time between the party madness and the wedding I am in...just makes sense to wait until the open time.  Of course...I am lucky that my dress for the wedding is a corset back so I have some room to lose without fear because I can just tighten the heck out of that sucker if I need to do so :)

Anyway...I'm working on getting a facebook like page up and running so if you want to join me on this crazy venture we will have a place to discuss the whole process.  I am hoping to have a challenge group of 5 people...but the more the merrier.  If you order before the end of March, you can save on the reset.  If you can't order in the next few days, you can still order in April and have your kit in time to start with us on the 21st.  Here is my before and after shot from when I did the reset in September 2012.


I lost 21 lbs and felt really good by the end of it.  I was sleeping better and had way more energy and was able to handle stress a LOT better.  I'm getting excited to feel that way again...I have never felt as great as I did during week 3 of the reset and the month or so after before going back to a less regimented diet.  And as you can see, I was in a hotel at the end - I finished the last 4 days of the reset on travel for work.  It can be done!

Are you in?  Email me at healthyengineer@gmail.com for questions or check out my Ultimate Reset site  All the deals are listed on my March Promotions page for a break down of what you save with each version of the reset.  If you are interested in signing up as a coach you can do that by going to my main site here and you will save some extra on your kit (it's an extra 25% off for a coach...which is huge with this kit).



Hello Again :)

I finally am back in my groove and it feels oh so good.  I got the living room all cleared out and started back on Combat yesterday.  As I mentioned in my post the other day, I decided to just start over based on where I was in the program and the long break.  I knew I felt fluffy in the middle from not working out and eating different...but I KNEW I lost fitness when I was struggling to keep up with Combat 30.  I remember the first time I did it, it was hard, but it wasn't impossible.  Yesterday I felt like it was the hardest workout ever.  I got through it, but I was struggling.  Today with HIIT: Power I had to drop weights a lot.  I was at 12/15 lbs...today was 12/9 lbs.  Definitely lost some fitness.  But that's ok...because it's temporary.  What's funny is that my clothes do not fit any different.  This is just a feeling that I have now from not working out.  Change is happening...


My plan right now is:
1) Les Mills Combat Ultimate Warrior Schedule - 60 days of fighter fit baby!
2) Add in 2-3 days a week of weights.  Preferably Les Mills Pump or heavier lifting at the gym here at the apartment complex. 
3) Eat CLEAN.  

Yes number 3 is a biggie.  By packing up a kitchen and moving it over the last few weeks I haven't been eating my ideal diet at all.  I've been eating microwave food (mostly Amy's organic meals) and a random restaurant menu.  I've tried hard to eat right...just a few blatant slips here and there.  But now that the kitchen is back in action, I'm going hard core again.  As I type this, I have brown rice in the rice cooker, the Ultimate Reset fish recipe marinating in the fridge (I know...I'm cooking fish!) and am going to stir fry some veggies to make a delish lunch.  I miss eating my own food!  The buzzer just let me know it's time to put the fish in the oven so I'll catch you later :)

Links and Moving Update

Hey ya'll!

Finally through the packing and into the unpacking phase of moving.  How we got so much stuff....I can't figure out.  I have been throwing a lot of stuff away though....new start clean start kind of thing.  That's why posting is a little slow lately...I just haven't been really doing much except trying to stay on track, exercise when I can (and where...box jumping is today's activity, lol), and trying to get this new apartment livable.

So today, I thought I'd share some of my favorite fitness/health links.  Please share some of your favorites in the comments too, I'm always looking for more good resources.

Michi's Ladder - very good resource if you are trying to start eating clean.  It works pretty easy.  Figure out what tier your foods are in and try to swap out a tier 1 or 2 item for your tier 3-5 items.  It's not a diet - it is a clean up your eating plan.

Daily Hiit - used to be BodyRock.  I started with this and UFC Trainer on XBOX in January 2011 at 300 lbs.  No, I couldn't do everything and yes, there are probably better workouts to start off with that would have given me faster results because I was so big and out of shape there was so much I couldn't do.  But I was SO pumped up and motivated after finding out about BodyRock and so wanting to start that I just jumped in and did what I could do.  This is what happens when you just wake up and decide to go forth and do something on a whim.  Anyway, long story short - I owe a lot to this program because it got me moving and starting the weight loss process.  A lot of the early posts on this blog are breakouts of my BodyRock workouts.

Fleur Meets Fitness - This blog has served as many a motivating moment for me.  Fleur is a Australian girl who lost a ton of weight in a very short amount of time.  It's motivating for me because it's a story of what you can do if you really put your money where your mouth is.  You can do pretty much whatever you want to do if you decide it's your #1 priority.

Truly.Into.Fitness - I just like reading about the lives of people that change their weight.  And apparently aren't from the US, lol!  Jess is French Canadian and is living the dream - lost the weight and became a personal trainer.  Motivation in leaps and bounds.

Team Beachbody - Great resource if you are doing a Beachbody program for sure.  Also if you just want recipes and a fitness community.  I use the message boards a lot, especially to research a program.  I spent a TON of time on the message board before deciding finally to take the Ultimate Reset and I still check the forum a lot.
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Don't forget this month's deals:

1. P90x and Ultimate Reset deals end on March 31st.  Don't miss these awesome deals if you want these programs!
2. Shakeology greenberry and chocolate (non-vegan version) go up in price by $10 a month as of April 1st. Order on HD this month to lock in the price for life.
3. Challenge pack or Shakeology HD orders this month get a free Shakeology shaker cup!  :)



One Week of Les Mills Combat

So as I've been mentioning - I tried out Combat when I got home from Michigan because I needed a boost. Since then, I've been following the ultimate warrior calendar.  It's a 6 day a week schedule with 30-60 minutes a day.  I wanted to discuss some of the workouts and how I liked them.

Combat 30:  This is a 30 minute workout that focuses on kicks and punches.  I felt super sore in my core and across my upper back/shoulders after this one for sure.  I liked how intense it was for a short workout - it ramped up rather quickly so it got to the point.  The immediate thing I noticed about this program from the first workout is that the low impact option actually is a good one.  Some workouts (INSANITY) don't really have a low impact option and others (TurboFire) have them, but sometimes it's too low.  This one was pretty good.  I use the low impact sometimes when my knees are bothering me, but aim for high impact whenever I can.

HIIT: Power: This workout is stupid hard.  Lots and lots of burpees.  Lots of them.  And squats.  As much as Combat 30 is focused on the upper body, HIIT: Power is a butt workout.  The weird thing about this one is that weights are used.  Not for the whole DVD, but in parts of it.  It is short, another 30 minute workout, but also intense.

HIIT: Plyo: Burpees, burpees, burpees.  Which I'm ok with - I mean they work.  I think at one point you do like 40 in one set, that kind of erases your mind.  It's a 30 minute workout.  This one was weird to me because it seemed not really a HIIT or a plyo workout.  It wasn't bad, just not what I expected.

Combat 45: Very similar to Combat 30, just a little longer.

Lower Body: So I thought this would be a strength workout...it's not really.  It's a cardio workout with more kicks then punches.  Oh and burpees.  I guess martial artists love burpees.  Okay, it sunk in by day 6 of week 1.  This was a hard workout and I did feel the burn.  I am not sure I would really consider this a lower body workout...more of cardio workout with a bit more of a lower body focus.  I do think it's a good workout, just not what I thought I was getting by reading the name of it.

Combat 60: See Combat 30 description.  I will say that this was closer to the full class that I'm used to from way back in the day when I took combat at a gym.  I liked the DVD and it's pretty hard.  There is a section at the end, the last track before the abs/pushup track, that kicked my butt that I loved - probably my favorite track of the program to date.  Lots of punches and cross jacks.  The kick tracks on this one are some of my favorite as well.

So right now I am on the 2nd week (did day 1, week 2 this morning).  I'm really enjoying it and now that I'm finally healthy and over this cold (I'm claiming it...even if it's not 100% true yet) I want to try to add some activity in the evenings like I talked about a few days ago.  I am so ready to really boost it this month.  I took some photos this morning and I'm not really happy about it.  Yes it's a little remaining bloat from that time of the month, but it's also from the fact my eating has been meh ever since going home for my Grandma's memorial.  I am really now back in the buckle down mode.  Beast mode if you will.  Let's go.

Operation size 16 - Mission Complete!

So my goal in February was to fit nicely into my size 16 jeans.  I think I made it...do you?




I definitely think I could wear these out the house now and be good to go!  I'm really REALLY happy with the changes in my body and I learned a valuable lesson - leave the scale ALONE.  The scale right now has me up in weight.  Partially I know from that time of the month and partially from leftover stress from February.  But obviously I haven't gained weight in the sense of my body getting bigger or flabbier.  I get compliments about having lost weight and looking smaller, weird.  I feel really good going into March and the March Madness challenge.  I know I can keep making big changes in my body if I stay dedicated and CLEAN with my diet.  It will be hard since I have very little in person support for that.  But I know I can do it if I try really hard.  

March Madness

Oh yes, it is ON for March peeps.  My birthday is in April.  I already am the smallest I've been since I was 17.  I'm ready to hit my birthday looking as smoking hot as I can and as healthy as I can.  So it's going to be an aggressive month with diet and exercise.

Eating
Clean clean CLEAN is the plan.  Better meal planning because the last few weeks have been meh with all the ongoings.  More vegetables, more fruit, more nuts, more seeds.  Less dairy, less miscellaneous snacks, less dirty junk.  Essentially, I'm going to go back to those favorite Ultimate Reset recipes and those other favorites.  I need more veggies in my life and in March I'm going to find them ALL.  Shakeology every morning for breakfast because I will need the help cutting cravings and that seems to be the only thing that does it for me lately.

Exercise
Les Mills Combat in the mornings - sticking 100% to the schedule.  I shouldn't have tried it in the middle of this hybrid because I like it WAY too much to go back to the hybrid.  New stuff wins.  Always lol.  Adding in some of these short Fit Girl Army workouts as a warm up or post workout before the cool down burst.  In the evenings I will start taking at least 30 minutes to do something 4 or so days a week.  My new place I'm moving to in March has a gym there, so I may just go there and walk while watching tv (because we don't have cable and the gym does, ha!).  Or add some heavy lifting in sometimes. I just need to get out of this habit of sitting on my butt for hours every night.  Especially since we are moving to a smaller place - I think this will be my way of giving the hubby some space since we won't have our separate little domains anymore.

Life
Sleep baby.  I'm going to be in bed by 10pm every night, end of discussion.  Bed by 10 and up at 5:30.  One reason I'm deciding to do Combat in the mornings is that it's a shorter workout for the most part.  I like that because it means I can sleep in a little longer :)  I also am going to really push to get the hubby to participate in my evening workouts a little so it's time we can spend together along with time we can get fitter together.  I'm going to try to slow down a little bit on the weekends and take some extra time (like today - I'm taking a half day at work) to rest and rejuvenate.  I've been a busy madwoman lately and it's starting to catch up to me.  I don't need to do that.

Are you in for a hardcore March?  I'm on a mission this month - not just to improve my health and fitness - but to help at LEAST 5 people do the same.  If you are ready to be one of those 5 people who is taking on a similar challenge and would like me to coach you please send me an email healthyengineer@gmail.com.  There are some fantastic challenge pack deals to help you get started PLUS this is the last month for the chocolate and greenberry Shakeology at the current price.  If you don't lock in Home Direct now, the price is going up $10/month starting in April.  You can cancel whenever you want if you don't like Shakeology, and there is a 30 day empty bag refund policy, but if you have been thinking of getting started with it, I would highly suggest you think about doing that now to save yourself $10/month on the product + on HD there is no shipping, so you save another $12/month for a $22 total savings.  More if you decide to sign up for the coach discount.  Check it out on my Shakeology page or watch Tony Horton's silly little video on it and shoot me an email if you have any questions about it or want more info on the coach discount.


Operation Size 16 - Entering the Home Stretch

It's already February 21st - how did that happen??  Either way, I've been trying my hardest to get to my goal - of fitting into these pants - by the 28th.  I have 7 days left, so I'm in the home stretch of this challenge.  I didn't feel like I made much progress this month at all, but that's why I take pictures instead of listening to my inner voice.


I'm so close.  Like thisclose to these being wearable.  I could probably wear them now out if I really wanted to...I'm sure I've worn tighter and more ill fitting jeans, lol.  But I am just going to keep working until they fit RIGHT, especially in the back.  I'm going to really be pushing this week to see how much better I can get these to fit :)

I'll be at home for my Saturday and Sunday workouts, so I will probably bring a DVD to do while there.  It's going to be a hard weekend - lots of emotions, lots of family, and lots of out of my control meals - and I would like to not compound all the feelings I will have by doing lots of emotional eating and feeling out of control that will just make me feel worse in a different way and at the end just feeling horrible physically and mentally which isn't the point.  I just want to keep something feeling "normal."

Size 16 Mission and More

Today is the 3rd day of my new hybrid program. So far - I'm in love with it AND I'm already feeling awesome from it. I am glad I found it and took the steps to see if something else would work better for me. I have done 2 days of Chalean Extreme and I am sorry I thought it wouldn't be that great before. I bought it at least 4 years ago after falling in love with Turbo Jam. Then I got it and didn't have the weights and just never got into it. I've had it forever and just never picked it up again. If not for one of my fellow Beachbody coaches posting amazing progress on instagram I may have never actually picked it up. Anyway, what I am learning to appreciate about the program are the compound movements. The weight exercises are very different from P90x and the sessions are full body instead of very focused on a certain area. So it's just totally different. I didn't really appreciate that before trying them out. I'm thinking that this is better for me while losing just based on a few sessions and the way I feel afterwards. I think P90x is going to be amazing for me once I am closer to the end of this weight loss journey.

It was also fun to do INSANITY again!  I did plyo intervals yesterday and it's JUST as hard as it used to be, which is the nice thing about INSANITY - it can't get easier, ever.  I was able to do so much more than I could when I was in month 1 in November.  It's kind of amazing how much more to me, because I felt like I was rocking it before, ha.  I didn't really realize how much room I had to grow.  I want to do the fit test again one of these days to see how I do on that.

Now I'm heading off to the city to meet my friend for lunch.  We are going to a vegan restaurant so I'm excited about that!  But before I go, this week's pictures from my size 16 mission.


This is week 1 to this week, so quite the difference.  I started doing more cardio and I can tell.  All the cardio programs I do are very ab focused, so I think that is why my stomach is shrinking so much.  I took these on Wednesday, and I'm pretty pumped for next week's picture.  I can already see a difference in my stomach from the last few days, so I am really excited to see if I can pull this off in the next few weeks!


Time for a Change

Okay, so if you read my blog regularly or follow me on instagram (@healthyengineer) you know that I haven't really been all that excited about my P90x journey so far.  I LOVE the workouts...but I am not getting the results I should be getting 30 days in.  Maybe I'm not lifting heavy enough.  I don't honestly know.  I have really no clue since I have seen people shrink with this program. The only thing I do know is that me +P90x right now aren't working out so fantastically.  


For a while I was determined to push through it.  I thought that since I made this commitment that I would be a failure if I quit the program.  I thought that I wouldn't be giving it the good old college try and it would be unfair to not give it the full 90 days.  But then I started realizing that honestly - who gives a damn.  Really.  My goal here isn't to best any program but to get in the best shape and health I can get in.  And if a program isn't giving me what I need, then I need to stop and re-assess.  

I realized that it was this thinking - that I'm quitting or I'm failing - that has been something I have struggled with for YEARS with weight loss.  I have the wrong mentality.  It's not quitting, it's fixing or re-adjusting, or just doing something new because I want to do something new.  This isn't a 90 day mission to lose weight, it's a rest of my life mission to be better for myself.  So that means that if it's broke I need to fix it.  Because if I don't fix it, this P90x feeling, then will I be able to give my all for the next 60 days?  Did I miss an opportunity?  Exactly.  

So with all that said - it's time for a change.  I scoured the internet and found a basis for a new program - a INSANITY ChaLEAN Extreme TurboFire hybrid.  What?  Yes.  I have owned ChaLEAN Extreme for years and never actually done the program because I never had the weights for it.  Then once I did I was just kind meh on the program.  Recently I've seen some amazing results from my teammates that have been awesome and have me re-thinking it.  What I didn't realize was that those workouts are shorter - most under 45 minutes, which is also a plus because I would get to sleep in just a little more than I do now.  I already adore INSANITY and TurboFire as you know, so I feel like this is an opportunity to add in the weights but still get the cardio I think I need right now.  I never thought of combining these programs like this at all.  

So the plan is to take this schedule and stick it on the wall and start this tomorrow.  I'm going to do this like P90x - give it 30 days and see.  I believe that I will know relatively quickly - I did with every program so far - if it's going to be right for me or not.  I'm excited for this but a little nervous since it's got some hard hard cardio days.  I will keep a log here of course and let you guys know how I like it!!

Dieting vs. Healthy Living

Dieting to lose weight.  Start creating a healthy diet.

These two things are completely different from each other.  Completely.  I want to share that with you we go forward in our February challenge and our efforts.  It's something we all need to remember, even when we feel like we aren't getting anywhere.

Let's start by defining dieting.  A diet is the food that is consumed for sustenance   The word diet has nothing to do with weight loss or health or anything else.  But the word dieting, which is to attempt to control your food/intake through specific food choices or dietary changes.  The motivation of the dieter is only on the scale and how the scale changes dictates if the diet is working.  The entire goal is weight reduction or body change.  Okay.  Now that we have defined dieting, let's really look at what dieting entails for the typical diet for weight loss.  The typical diet for weight loss from my personal experience, my friends, and what I see on the interwebs is centered around trying to maximize (quantity and satiety) the food you can eat while staying within certain calorie or macronutrient restrictions.  So essentially, that the goal for weight loss is set to be achieved by reducing or eliminating excess calories or certain macronutrients.  The food selections are typically based on what is the most I can get and stay within my program.  Lots of diet foods may be consumed, the quality of food may not be a consideration, and exercise is seen as a way to lose weight quicker, by creating a larger calorie deficit or for some programs a way to allow the dieter to eat more food. Guilt plays a big role in this strategy because the dieter believes that any shift from the rigid plan will cause weight loss to cease.  People may push harder than necessary in the gym to burn off excess calories or eat less than necessary to make up for splurges.

Now let's look at what it means to create a healthy diet as the goal instead of dieting to lose weight.  When you are creating a healthy diet, the focus shifts.  Instead of focusing on outcomes - weight reduction or body change the focus shifts to the inputs - the creating of a healthy diet and healthy habits.  The foods that are selected are chosen because of their health benefits and the focus is on quality, not quantity.  Typically people looking at this option are focusing on eating a clean diet focused on eating mostly clean fresh produce, lean meats, healthy grains, home cooking, and not a lot of foods in boxes or packages.  Exercise is considered an essential part of this diet because of the health benefits and to maximize the results of the healthy diet.  The scale may be used to track progress, however lack of weight loss isn't considered a failure because it's not the ultimate goal.  The goal is to improve your health via improving your lifestyle (diet and exercise) and by reducing weight.  Non ideal foods aka unhealthy foods are typically included in moderation.  The diet consists 95% of healthy choices and the remaining 5% may be used for splurges.  The person typically in this camp naturally eats for health most of the time and sets them self up for success.

Do you see a difference between the two?  No? That makes sense because the difference between the two is very small.  The difference is motivation, which trickles down to what you will do without inducing stress.  Dieting is typically hard on the body because it's restrictive and the motivation is only to change the number.  Healthy eating is easier once you have accepted that as your plan because it's a more natural way to live and the motivation includes many non-scale victories as well as weight loss for some people.  Also dieting has an end point - when you reach your goal weight.  Healthy eating has no end point.

 Is that clearer?  Now let's be honest - most of us do not fall strictly into one camp or the other.  I certainly don't.  I was a dieter.  I spent many years dieting, mostly yo-yo dieting, and feeling like the only thing that mattered was the scale.  I am getting better and realizing that there is more to a healthy life than the scale and for me I cannot maintain a dieting lifestyle.  I get burned out.  I do fall into it a lot, diet thinking, and I think that as I've felt very stressed lately I have started to think diet not health.  I need to stop...because dieting for me has always lead to failure while lately my healthy focus has lead to much success.  I also think some of this is from my P90x feelings as of late and realizing that you can change your body shape/lose inches and the scale not drop dramatically.  I needed a reminder of this fact and I hope it helped you too.



Operation Size 16 Update!

It's been 7ish days so here is my photo update!


Left on both photos is the older picture if you can't tell....

I'm actually pretty shocked.  My weight has gone up, I feel like I haven't lost a thing, I feel BIGGER.  So this is also a "this is why we take photos" post too I guess.  I was actually sitting here before doing the side by sides thinking that it was time to re-vamp my whole P90x effort or possibly stop P90x and start doing a mostly cardio focus again because it was doing nothing at all for my body and I wasted a whole 3 weeks before figuring that out.  I guess it is doing something, I just couldn't tell.

I will be shooting a video tonight about the challenge and some of these P90x feelings tonight.  I have been very busy thinking about what I should do/if I should do/what is RIGHT for me a lot...I'm sure I'll figure it out soon.


Operation Size 16: The Beginnings

Morning everyone :)

Woke up bright and early this morning to get the stats and pictures done before my workout.  It was cardio day, which is one of the shorter days, so I had a little extra time :)

First up the pictures.  So the jeans go on and zip up.  But as you can see- they are not ready for prime time yet.  Too much muffin in the pan for me and I have too much junk in the trunk for these to leave my house...



And here are the stats:

Weight: 236.8
R arm: 15.5
Chest: 40.75
Waist: 33.75
Belly: 45.5
Hips: 52.5
R thigh: 30

This is my starting point this month...I am so excited to see how these numbers change.  That leads into the challenge this week, which is to PUSH.  One of the things that is very different with P90x than I am used to with cardio only challenges or a classic weight lifting program (where you are in a gym in a rep based program instead of a time based lifting situation) is that I have had a harder time figuring out how to push and get results.  I think I am starting to figure that out because I'm pretty sore today from yesterday's chest and back + ab ripper x workout.  And I need to continue it and really push.  It was easier to figure out the push level for chest and back because it's push ups and pull ups mostly.  It will be harder for shoulders and arms tomorrow but I am determined to figure it out.  It also means for cardio, sometimes not listening to Tony's cues (this means you Kenpo X) and going at a speed and pace that gets me that hot sweaty mess look that I want.  If the goal is to move the dial, then the plan has to be intense enough to get the results I need.  So let's go!  

What is your area to PUSH in this week?  Leave it in the comments :)

Tenacious Health Challenge Group

As we get deeper into 2013 I already have had some friends drop off the healthy living resolutions they set for themselves and some others struggling to figure out what to do next.  So with that in mind, I am setting up a Tenacious Health Challenge Group that will start February 18th!

Why Tenacious Health??  Because tenacious means persistent, stubborn, and tough.  My Beachbody coaching team is called Team Tenacity so I wanted to play on words so here we are.  Point is that we are going to KICK butt together and get healthy.

Why Now?  Now because it's a good time to get committed.  Starting a  program mid February takes you through to the spring time when the weather is nicer and it's easier to be healthy because the sun is out more, the fruits are out in abundance, and the weather is nicer.  This is to help you through the dog days of winter and push you to start working on your health and wellness during a time where it's easy to slip.  It's also a good time to think about not just the exercise programs, but the Ultimate Reset as well.  I did the Reset, then rolled into exercising and I think my results were better for it.

What is it? The challenge centers around Beachbody's challenge packs and 5 very committed challengers.  Any program you want + Shakeology + your commitment for the duration.  Challenge packs vary in price depending on what program you would like and can save you upwards of $70 on the program + shakeology.  There are ways to get discounts if you are interested in them so don't let cost be a deterrent.  We will also enter the Beachbody Challenge.  What is the Beachbody Challenge?  It's a contest that Beachbody runs that pays you for your awesome results for using their products.  I just entered my results from INSANITY and have my before pictures taken to submit after I finish P90x :)

Your coach?  Me :)  You get me as your coach for the whole of the program and beyond.  I'll be here to answer questions or go find an answer if I don't have it, to help the group stay focused, and to motivate when times are rough.  I will set up a place for us to communicate - email group or Facebook or Google Groups depending on what the people involved want and use for communication.  This isn't just about a one on one coaching situation, it's about a team moving forward and getting healthy together.  I'm a graduate of the Ultimate Reset and INSANITY programs and am currently working on P90x.  I have also used Turbo Fire, Turbo Jam, and Les Mills Pump, so I am familiar with a lot of the Beachbody programs and drink Shakeology pretty much every day, sometimes twice a day.  I drink my own kool aid because it tastes like weight loss, lol.

So if you are interested, please shoot me an email at healthyengineer@gmail.com and I can help you select a program or get signed up as a Coach if you are interested (this is the moolah saving option).  If you just want to check out what the challenge packs are in general look at my general site, my Ultimate Reset site, or my Shakeology site.

Hope you are interested in getting started on a healthier life this spring :)





Month 1 plus Recovery Week Progress Pics

Started month 2 today. Before I get into my month 1 pics, can we just figure out who thought the fit test plus max interval on the same day was ok. Seriously, I burned almost 1000 calories today before 7 am. Ridiculous. It was like oh, you thought you had it in month 1?? Ok, lets take you down a notch. Mission accomplished.

Ok, whine session over. I have to be honest - I was pretty impressed by my pictures. I didn't think I made a lot of body changes the last few weeks. I actually started feeling a serious lack of progress. I was tired during recovery week and really struggled. But I really did try hard on diet, even though I was on travel. I took my shakeology, my gnc travel blender, and my insanity DVDs and pushed through. I had bad days where I was barely lifting my legs up - but I did what I could instead of giving up. I remember in Pump last month the one guy always mentioned that when it's hard that's the range that makes the change. That's where I was I think.

Anyway, here are my day 15 to 36 progress pictures. I am pretty proud of them :)



Insanity: Month 2 Coming Up!

I officially finished Month 1 + Recovery Week today!  I am so pleased with myself for sticking to the workouts and am excited (and just a little bit terrified) of Month 2.  I wanted to give a little bit of a review of the first part of INSANITY and give you an idea of what you will see.

The first month of INSANITY consists of 4 workouts + the Fit Test (descriptions from the Beachbody website)

Pure Cardio and Cardio Abs - Skip the intervals—this nonstop cardio workout is all extreme.
Cardio Power and Resistance - Build lean muscle and upper-body definition with strength-training and power moves. 
Cardio Recovery - Shaun goes easier on you once a week so you're ready for the next round.
Plyometric Cardio Circuit - Burn fat with intervals of intense lower-body plyo and sweat-inducing cardio

These workouts repeat for 4 weeks, typically 2x each Plyometric Cardio Circuit and Pure Cardio.  The last 2 weeks of the month the Cardio Abs are added in.

Now I will be honest - I have to modify during the workouts.  I do most of the pushups on my knees and as I get more tired some of the more plyo moves become static.  I did notice over the month of the program that I could do more and more though.  My point here is that you shouldn't feel like you can't do the program because you can't do certain moves or can't do every workout start to finish.  I STILL can't do that move where you balance on your toes and hands and do leg lifts.  Yeah.  But I found a sub (I did it on my knees, but I did do the balance move w/o the leg lifts as well to get stronger) and kept working it out.

These workouts are about 30 - 45 minutes each.  Not too bad at all, and pretty easy to fit in my morning schedule.  (Phase 2 is a little longer - about an hour each workout - which will be a good challenge for me for another reason I will discuss in another blog post pretty soon.)  I also really liked the format, it was pretty different for me.  The warmup was about 11 minutes - then you go into a long 6-7 minute stretch.  So by the time you actually start the meat of the workout for the day, you have burned quite a lot of the workout.  Mentally I think this was really helpful.  The stretches are fantastic and I have noticed that my flexibility has improved a lot.  I do add some stretches to my warmup stretch, as I have some that were given to me by a trainer long ago that have really helped with old injuries.  I probably could just do the ones on the DVD - but I'd rather be safe then sorry sitting up in the bed with my leg in ice.

Now for the fun part - results.  I haven't taken my pictures yet - I will do that the morning of my fit test.  But I have lost at least 7 lbs and have gone down to a size 18/18w on the bottom (started with a loose-ish 22w).  These are big changes that I worked hard for!  I am significantly more flexible.  I also have finally really rid myself of my really bad knee pains.  I have always had bad knees from injuries in high school sports.  I work out in the basement of our home and sometimes I literally wondered how I would get upstairs post workout. It was a problem that doctors told me unfortunately would not get better until I (1) got in better shape and (2) lost weight.  So I just pushed through.  I was smart about it and it's one reason why sometimes I don't do the full plyo move or will switch mid set to a less jumpy modification (a power squat to a regular squat), because I didn't want to turn a sore knee into an injury.  But I knew I needed to keep working out.  At some point in the last few weeks I realized that post workout I'm running up the stairs like nobody's business with absolutely no pain.  And that I'm feeling less soreness in general in the knees during/post workout.  This is a huge thing, as I've just had to live with it for ages.  I'm so happy that finally, I am feeling good.  This doesn't mean I will change my knee strategy for workouts, but it's just nice to feel something different that is a health/fitness improvement.  My mom saw me last week for the first time since starting INSANITY and she told me she hasn't seen me this small since high school.  Which is pretty awesome since I weigh at least 10 lbs more now.  But I wasn't working out in this manner, so it was a flabbier 225-230 then I am now at about 240.

Would I recommend INSANITY?  HELL yes.  I would.  I love it so much.  I was really concerned that I wouldn't be able to do it, but I found that I could do a lot more then I though I would be able to do.  I love the changes to my body and how good I feel now.  If you feel like you are in ok shape, even if you are overweight, you will benefit. I would not do this program if I was an absolute beginner to working out, as it is really advanced.  It could be done - and you would lose weight.  But if you are completely out of shape there are other programs/plans you could do that you would get more benefit from.  If you have old nagging ankle/knee injuries like me, you could do it for sure - but you just need to see a doctor and make sure you won't damage things worse or to find out what modifications you need to do.

I'm simply terrified for month 2, but I was simply terrified for month 1 and I managed that ok :)  I think it will be totally fine - just have to dig deeper - right!!

Progress

Well, it's December 1st. One whole month on insanity. How is it going?

Pretty freaking fantastic I would say!!

I have lost about 6 lbs, but I have definitely lost some inches. I'm a size 18w now in all my bottoms and am a XL or L in my tops. I feel great and am in the midst of recovery week.

I think I love insanity. Everyone talks about their soulmate workout. I'm 99% convinced this is it. Why 1% of doubt? Because I haven't tried everything. I don't mind the repetition of DVDs and still push hard in the mornings. Every workout I try to improve my form or add another rep. This is the key - keep pushing!

Meal wise, you already know my drill. I'm a vegetarian with commitment issues. That seems to keep me balanced and healthy and I like it.

Here is a pic of me pre workout this week. Whoa body!! I will be taking my next fit test on Thursday, I also am including my fit test 1 to 2 progress.



Non scale victory - jet style

Today was my first flight in a while. My first flight since coming home and starting the ultimate reset in fact.

My first flight in about 30 lbs.

And let me tell you how *different* it was. I sat in a window seat. I don't ever pick that unless I'm with my hubby because I'm do worried about being squeezed into that spot. But I picked it today. There was a guy already in the aisle (who turned out to be that jackass type traveler who thinks the no electronics rule doesn't apply to him) and I was nervous. Usually my hips are right against the seat, spilling over a bit. I'm a hippy girl and that's just where I have always carried a lot of weight. Well this time, I fit fine. I had ROOM. This was crazy. Buckled in and no hoping and praying the seatbelt fit. I have never used an extender, but to be honest I was damn close. Not today, extra belt! It was fabulous :) It was one of those non scale moments that makes you realize how far you have come and that you really are doing something.

Being big, I think I don't appreciate my weight accomplishments. 30 lbs to me - I'm still plus sized and still fat to the world. It's sometimes easy to forget that even though I'm still not at my goal, I have done a lot. I fly a lot. This was flight 30-something for me this year. So this is a place where I have had to really face my weight and where I could really see that I am shrinking. It feels sooo good :) gives me so much motivation to keep it up!