Friday, February 10, 2017

My Fitness Journal - Week One

Ok, so I had this great idea last week to keep track of everything I was doing at the gym. And so I am going to follow through on this. Unfortunately, this week, I will have to say I totally screwed up. Wish I could say I did wonderfully. Wish I could say a lot of things. Usually, the first week of diet and exercise I attempt after not working out for a while, I lose 5 pounds.  Well that is somewhat problematic for me this week. I will go into the particulars here shortly. But woah what a week. And yeah I'm working at this and it's been a pain in the butt.  But let's begin with my Friday.  Or maybe slightly before my Friday.

So I have to admit that I cheated... kind of. Last week I wrote my blog on the evening before Friday because it is the easiest day of the week to go to the gym. Maybe it's not quite cheating but it feels like it is because I know I can do it without a doubt.   So I kind of went to the gym a little high on myself.  I was going to the gym and everything was going to change. I've done it before I can do it again.  What could possibly go wrong?

Well, I got to the gym and I started in on elliptical. This would be an easy 30 minutes going around and around, pumping those feet.  Well you have to decide what pressure you are going to start at. I began at 7 but decided it wasn't enough.  I moved myself to 10, then 13, then 16.  And about 5 minutes later I was out of breath. First, this meant I was out of shape. Second, It meant I am stupid. Not the unintelligent kind of stupid. The proud stupid who doesn't then move back a few levels because I can do it. I did it. Woohoo!! Colapse!!

No I didn't fall on the floor. I just made it to the men's locker room before I made it to a bench. Whew!  So now would be the time to go home right? I'm out of breath and barely standing. It's the perfect time. But did I listen to my inner mind? No!! Heck no!! I made a promise to myself, which makes me extremely smart, extremely proud, or extremely stupid. And maybe I was a bit of all three.  But I was going to do that half hour on weights.

So I sit down on the Hammer strength machine, which is basically a crunch machine although you are actually lifting weights with your legs as well as your arms, moving into a crunch position.  I decided to test my limits, as if I hadn't already. And I did it at 60 pounds. I'm sure that once I do this for a few weeks I will get to lifting 100+ pounds. But for now, I'm going to be forgiving to myself as I'm getting back into the swing of things.

Then I move over to the abdominal crunches, pull downs and back extensions, working my core and a little bit of my arms over the next half hour.  Finally I move on to doing the bicep curls. I didn't know how I would be doing because I used to curl at 140 when I last stopped so I cut back quite a bit this time.  This time I did it at 80. I could have pushed myself harder but I didn't want to wake up the next day unable to move my arms.  I know that's why you are supposed to alternate what area you are working on as far as weights, but I'm trying to pretend I know what I'm doing... at least for a week or two. Then I can break down and talk to a fitness expert.

So I finish up my bicep curls and whoops!  Holy crap!?!? I know that crap isn't holy, and I'm certainly not going to set it aside like Mr. Hanky Poo a la South Park. But wow!!! Going back to the gym after a week makes me feel weak. I have got to see this through. What's even crazier is that I feel like my arms are all tucked in like a weight lifter who can't carry his arms close enough to his body because of all his muscles. And I don't even have that many muscles. What gives?   At least I kept up what I wanted to do as far as exercise.

But after that? Epic fail!!!

Well at least it was a mini Epic fail.   First I have to say that I kind of screwed myself when it came to exercising this week. I cannot blame my daughter, but I really wasn't feeling all that well and I worked all weekend.  I finally did get back to the gym on Tuesday and did another hour, with mostly the same gym machines only I upped the weights I was lifting a little more.   But then I skipped Wednesday again. (It wasn't my fault, exactly. I had to ask myself whether I wanted to go to my daughters concert at school or the gym? It's not that hard a call.) And on Thursday morning I got up early and was ready to go. But then I was side tracked. By the time I did get out the door I had to deal with an accident on the road and it pushed me back as far as time even further. I only got a half hour of cardio completed before I had to go to work.  So as far as my exercise this week, I was off a day from my goals and I didn't get to do weights all three days either.

As far as counting calories, I'm going to say no comment. It is a pain in the butt to try to count calories when you are making your food.  And then when you aren't making it and relying on someone else for the calorie counts, you probably aren't eating healthy.  So this week was mostly based on guessing. Guessing is not a long term solution so I'm going to have to either invest in one of those expensive calorie counting machines or I'm going to have to be more vigilant. I'll let you know again next week.

Ultimately success or failure comes down to my weight, how I look, and how I feel.  As far as weight, I didn't move the needle at all. This is disappointing but not too unexpected based upon how I counted calories this week.  A couple people commented that I looked trimmer. I didn't see it but if I do then that's a small win.  And I do feel like I have slightly more energy. That's definitely a win.  Hopefully next week I will have three wins. Either way I know I'm moving in the right direction.

How did you do with your goals this week?  What things are you going to change for next week? What does your ideal self look like?  I hope I hear some good stories from you as well. It's always great to hear other people's success stories.  They inspire me to keep my own goals.

Hope you are all having a Good Friday, or had a good one. I'm going to sign off again for today. Looking forward to the weekend with my daughter. This is me signing off.

David Elliott, Single Dad's Guide to Life

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  1. I have been working out for the past few weeks. It is hard to stay consistent. On days that I do not want to go, I go anyway. Sometimes I have to sit in the car for a few minutes though.

  2. It so hard to fit the gym in sometimes especially when you've got a full-time job and family. Good on you though for sticking to it, even if was once or twice in the week! I end up going 5-6 days a week now and I feel like it's my 'me' time. My gym doesn't get reception so no one can contact me on my phone, and you just get a whole hour to yourself to sweat and relax. I always look forward to my workouts now after adopting that mentality :)

  3. At least you made it to the gym!!!! Keep on trucking it can be so hard to make it to the gym when you have kids and work going on.

  4. Don't be so hard on yourself. It's ok for the first week. Stick to it and it'll get easier!
    Personally, I hate gyms. I think it has something to do with being around other people's sweat. Anyway, I've been working out at home for years and it's been great for me. Of course, I do have my ups and downs. The good thing is that I never miss a workout. The bad thing is that I still have to control everything that goes into my mouth. That's the real hard work. I screw up a lot of times. Today I found myself eating a handful of chips before I could stop myself. Argh. There's good days and bad days, but you haven't failed until you quit, so I'm not quitting.
    I did start a new health and fitness program last month and it's working out great. My pants are already a little looser around the waist, so I feel motivated. Let's keep going!

  5. Cut yourself some slack, David. It's good that you chose showing up on time to work when it came down to it, and it's good that you chose showing up for your daughter, too. Many other dads wouldn't - and most of those wouldn't have been choosing the gym! You're being a dad, being a provider, and trying to improve and grow yourself as a man, and that in itself is an accomplishment.

    Besides, if you went to the gym more times this week because you WERE trying, than you would have if you HADN'T been trying - it's a win. Just keep building on what you're already doing right!

  6. You and me both. I didn't do much anything this past week either. Lets do better next week, ok???

  7. I had a major goal fail this week. Who knew it was so hard to stick to goals. I need to incorporate fitness into my goals so I can fail at that too :).

  8. I always feel like if you are eating the right things then counting calories isn't really the issue. We stopped eating meat, dairy, processed foods and all the junk with refined sugars and it has made the most difference then any workout/diet plan we've ever tried.

  9. Keep it up! We should really get a fitness routine started! It just seems like there is always something getting in the way though.

  10. I need to find the time t put the gym in my schedule and keep up with the routine. It's actually on my other list of goals for the year. More exercise! And you're trying that's more than some of us can say. Be kind to yourself!

  11. It can be tough to lose weight! And I stink at counting calories. I just like food wayyy too much. But you can do!

  12. It can be hard to keep to regime when it comes to exercise, well for me it can anyway. I think the important thing to know is 'you are doing it' You're not going to have perfect day everyday, but you are doing your best. And you should be proud, you've achieved. I love the idea of a journal because a couple of months or so from now, you ca look back and see where you've come from. keep going, you're doing great

  13. Great job for going to the gym and wanting a change :) The more you workout, the more it will feel like a lifestyle rather than a hassle!

  14. It's awesome that you're doing your best to become healthier! I've been trying to clean up my diet for the past couple of months. It would be awesome to have time to go to the gym as well.

  15. don't be too harsh for yourself. It's not easy but you will be fine remember that it takes a time