#UpYourGame 2017 – Day 1!

And, we’re off!  I wound up deciding to use day 1 as a day to do a quick juice detox.  You know– a “hard restart,” but for my guts.  I’m debating over doing a second day, since I do usually do 2-3 days.  But, I’m heading back in to work tomorrow, and I’m far too busy feeling depressed that the holiday break is officially over to stack having to juice all day long on top of it.

I didn’t work out today, on account of the juicing, but I just finished planning/scheduling my workouts for the next 4 weeks.  It may require some tweaking in the 3rd and 4th week, since it’s looking like I’ll be heading out of town, for work.  I’ll worry about that later.

To keep things simple (I prefer workouts and programming where someone else just tells me what the fuck to do), I’m going to be trying out Mark de Grasse’s Fitness Is Function 4 week bodyweight program, which I downloaded about two years ago, and then NEVER DID IT.  I also downloaded the kettlebell one, and NEVER DID THAT ONE EITHER.

I was probably just too busy doing other workouts, because I had been working out consistently at the time, and kept it up until the dog came around.  So, I guess I shouldn’t feel too bad about letting these ones sit on the shelf my hard drive, collecting proverbial dust.  Better late than never!

I’m also in the midst of making some turkey vegetable chili, at this very moment.  It’s simmering on the stove, the aroma taunting me, whilst I sip on green juice.  With this batch of chili, dinner is sorted for the whole week in one fell swoop, which is super dope.

Breakfasts will be eggs, as usual, since that’s all I ever seem to have time for (and, I often don’t even have time for that).

Lunches will be salads and other healthful choices from places near work.  I’ve got plenty of options.  It’s L.A.  Ideally, I’ll be brown bagging my lunch, once I get more on top of meal prep.

The primary objective is just to get back on a schedule, with my meals.  I think the only reason my poor diet hasn’t completely destroyed me is, I typically have only been able to have one or two meals, per day.  I haven’t had breakfast in weeks.  Yesterday, I worked all day on my 2016 hair favorites video, and didn’t eat until around 8pm at night.

I had a steak sandwich, in case you were wondering.  Last hurrah, and all.

Oh, and since that  mention of my last video segues so perfectly into a shameless plug, here it is:

#12DaysOfFitmas – Day 1

So, I lied.  I said that I was going to focus on doing strictly body weight workouts for this year’s 12 Days of Fitmas, mainly because I have the puppy to worry about.  Wouldn’t want to clock her in the head with my 20kg kettlebell, you know?

I’d written a circuit I was going to do tonight, pulled out my whiteboard to write out the WOD, and then saw the *last* WOD I’d done at home still written on it, which was a nice little kb circuit.  Exactly the type of shit I need to be doing, since I’m coming from the couch back into workouts.  And, I caved.

I kept a close eye on the pup whilst I warmed up to see if she was getting too close, and to see if I’d need to be put her in her crate, or what have you, for safety.  But, she seemed so perturbed by what I was doing, she stayed away the entire time!  Like, peeking at me for a while, then scurrying away into the bedroom, type of deal.  Now, as I type this, she’s at my feet, nuzzling her cold, wet little nose on my leg, in hopes that I’ll pick her up.  Back to business as usual.

This is very encouraging!  I’m excited to be able to work out with weights so soon, and I’m excited to work out period.  The circuit I did is posted below, and I think I probably got it from Marcus Martinez, at some point or another.  I’m not really sure.  It went pretty well.  I did 4 rounds with my 12kg, just to keep it easy on my first day back.

I’ve been nursing some pain in my achilles for several months now (indeed, it began before I stopped working out, and well before I even got my dog; yet, it has not gone away despite the lack of workouts…).  It’s great to be able to use kettlebells at this stage, because I can work out hard without having to use any movements with impact, if I don’t want to.  Huzzah!

The WOD

4-6 Rounds

  • 10 alternating swings
  • 6 alternating clean + pause squat
  • 10 figure 8 to hold
  • 10 explosive deadlift
  • rest 60-90 (seconds, not minutes or days)

FYFF Challenge & Protect Ya Ends Are ON!

And, we’re off!  I’m pumped to have another fitness challenge kick off on my YT channel and here on the blog, with you guys.  It’s going to be a bit trickier than I expected to work out my exercise schedule.  Here’s why.

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That’s my new roommate/best friend. It happened pretty fast, but to make a short story even shorter, she’s a rescue. Found in a bucket on the side of the road with the rest of her litter. She was the only black puppy in the bunch, and I fell in love with her immediately.

She was turned over to me from her Watts Project foster on Friday, which was sooner than I was expecting.  I also didn’t truly expect to have a dog, quite at this point in my life.  But, after our first two days together, I can easily say it’s the best decision I ever made.

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Not entirely sure on the breed, on account of the whole bucket on the side of the road thing.  My guess is that she’s got some Rottweiler, as well as some terrier in there, because she was not just the only black pup, but the only one with these long, wiry hairs randomly around her face and body.  But she’s TINY.  She’s 11 weeks, and only about 5 pounds.  We suspect there may have been different dads for the litter.

The rescue had named her Raspberry, which is a pretty cute name.  But, since she’s from the hood and all, I’ve been calling her RayRay.  Funny enough, she actually responds to “Ray” or “RayRay” far better than “Raspberry,” so I guess I was onto something.

I’m lucky enough to work in a dog-friendly office (and my job even offers pet health insurance!), so we’ll be doing the 9 to 5 grind together.  As far as working out goes, I’m going to experiment with crate training her, just for while I’m at the gym.  I’ll also have the help of the boyfriend, to look after her.

I always felt badly about using crates/cages, like it was mean to the dog.  But, I’ve been watching a lot of YouTube videos to help me learn how to train her (she’s doing so well already!), and crates really aren’t puppy prison.  As long as you do it right.

So, hooray for hair and fitness challenges!  But, I’ll be super distracted raising this little girl over the next few weeks, which will mean less frequent check-ins for the challenges, at least in the short term.  Just keeping it real.

 

DNF

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This was an absolute shit show. This WOD was to be done pyramid style.  So, after you worked your way down the list to do the front squats, you’d move back up to the swings and work your way all the way back up to the double unders.  The good news was, we’d only have to front squat once.  The bad news was EVERYTHING ELSE.

Rx for women was 16kg and 95# (no rack, because of course not!).  I Rxed.  I didn’t even sub rowing for the 400m runs, which I pretty much always do because of my bum knee.  But, when you’ve just finished rowing 60 goddamned calories, the absolute last thing you want to do is row more.

There was a 25 minute cap.  I did not finish.

I made it as far as finishing the second/final 60 calorie row, and that was a wrap.  I’ve never DNFed on a WOD, since joining this gym.  And, I do not like it!

The September challenge has been very so-so for me.  My eating has been *almost* the way I outlined, with me getting looser than I really should be, on the weekends.  I did, however, order some meals from a paleo meal delivery service, which should be arriving tomorrow, and which should help me to reel things in.  More on that to come.

Workouts have NOT been where they need to be.  I’ve been averaging 2-3 a week, instead of the intended 4.

It’s a vicious cycle of being out late a few nights each week, because of evening screenings I have to go to for work– which also means I can’t work out after work.  But then, see, I’m too tired to get up to work out in the mornings, because I was out late!

I’ve got to figure this out, because this is going to be my reality for the foreseeable future.  I’m going to have late nights, and I’m going to have to learn to drag my ass out of bed to work out in the mornings, at least 3 times per week.  More, if I don’t want to make up workouts on Saturdays and Sundays.

Anyway, the struggle continues.  But, at least I don’t have to do any more fucking front squats today.

Things! All Sorts of Things!


Right! So!  I have, for sure, been kind of M.I.A. on here.  Less so on YT, as evidenced by the video I just put up today (above), and a couple of others, in the past few weeks.  I started yet another one of my backslides into a chaotic life of no routine/structure, mainly due to changes with my work situation.  I have a new job, even though it’s really my old job.  It’s a long story.

Thus, workouts have been in the 1-2x/week range, whilst I try to get a handle on a new work schedule/commute.  And, I’ve been indulging in all sorts of bread, sugar and alcohol, because of…reasons.  Basically, I took August off from living right.  Frustrations with my failure to lose weight were at an all-time high, and I had had it.

Fuck carb cycling.  Fuck macros.  Fuck everything and GIVE ME THAT CROSTINI.  That was/is my general attitude.

And I actually haven’t put on a ton of weight.  I might be up maybe 5 pounds, but it’s really not bad at all.  Not to toot my own horn, but I still look mad decent.  I just don’t look nearly as cut in my upper body as I tend to do in my “after” pictures, from my various challenges.

But, when I caught a cold last week (which is lingering, much to my chagrin), I knew that it was time to get back in the groove and/or zone, commit to eating cleanly MOST OF THE TIME and working out a minimum of 4 days per week.  I had sort of been planning to do a September challenge, here on the blog, anyway.  Getting sick just confirmed that it needed to happen.

I started on Tuesday, which was September 6th, and this’ll run until the end of the month, on September 30th.  Following that, I’ll be starting a challenge on my YT channel, which will be the Fuck Yeah Fall Fitness Challenge.

Here’s what I’m doing for this one, the September challenge (haven’t bothered to come up with a snazzy name, this time around):

  • 4 workouts per week, minimum
  • NO sugar, dairy, grains or soy Sunday through Thursday
  • NO alcohol Monday through Thursday
  • full glass of water with every meal

It’s pretty simple, which is by design.  With this setup, I can still relax at home and have mimosas on Sunday with the boyfriend, or go out for tacos on Friday night.  But, there’s no allowance for fuckery, throughout the week, which’ll keep me in line.

I need to have a doable set of goals, since I’m just getting back into the swing of things.  Then, in the FYFF Challenge next month, the car will be all tuned up and ready.  (Editor’s note: That is a metaphor.  The “car” = “my body.”)

I can tell you one thing.  My body is already sore as shit from getting back into the gym, this week.  One or two workouts a week is definitely not a way to maintain any modicum of fitness.

I’m also embarking on a long term protective style challenge, which I began this week– the beginnings of which I talk a bit about in the video I posted above.  I’ll talk about that more, soon.  Just not right now.  I have to go blow my fucking nose.

“Cardio”

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Today was kind of brutal. I mean, it wouldn’t have been so bad, if they hadn’t made us do 50 burpees in the first of three workouts. But, yeah, that happened. And, in the very same workout, we had to do 50 wallballs.

I started out strong in the first workout…and finished in the bottom 3rd.  Then, I was in the top echelon on the second workout, and finished the 3rd workout before anyone else, which made me feel slightly less like a loser.  I mean, the WOD isn’t a competition, or anything.

Except, IT IS.

Anyway.  Even though I hated this, whilst doing it, this was a great WOD.  I’ve been going to the “cardio” classes at my gym, the past several weeks.  Thanks to my heart rate monitor, I’ve learned that my calorie burn is about the same in the 45 minute “cardio” classes, as it is when I go to an hour (or longer, if I’m suffering, that day…) CrossFit.

The metcon portion of CrossFit just doesn’t last very long.  And, since I’m still trying to drop some LBs, calorie burn is paramount.  So, why spend more time burning the same amount of calories?

Problem is, the cardio classes have gotten extremely monotonous and lame.  The programming at my gym has failed, in the imagination department.  But!  They brought on a new coach, recently, and he seems to have infused some new life into the cardio WODs.

On Thursday, we used ropes (which we have NEVER done in the entire time, since I joined the gym, in May), as well as the Assault Bike (also the same as the ropes situation, too, as well!).  So, just using new shit really helped to breathe new life into a tired workout format.

Today, the format itself was quite different.  And, the addition of bear crawls into the WOD (which I’ve only had to do in a warmup, once or twice, at this particular gym), was an insufferable and deceptively hard, but welcome, challenge.

Anyway, my #AWEgust Fitness Challenge has been going okay.  Oh?  You haven’t heard about that?  Because I have literally not mentioned it even once, here on the blog?  You are not incorrect.  (Read: You are correct.)

Long story short, #AWEgust is, more or less, a #JUICYINJULY victory lap.  I’m still working on getting in 5 workouts per week, consistently (so far, it’s been more like 4 per week, in a good week…).  That, plus not letting one weekly cheat turning into a cheat DAY– or, worse still, a cheat WEEK?  Yeah, I’m still a work in progress.

On top of allladat, I still have yet to dive into educating myself on carb cycling.  I’ve got some research waiting for me.  I just have some sort of fear-based mental block stopping me from diving in.  Good times!

#JuicyInJuly – ONE MORE DAY!

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My gym has been in a testing week, this week.  So, the programming has been testing max OHS, front squats, stuff like that.  Wednesday is always gymnastics day, though, so they had a menu of different skills we could test for today, until it was time to do the metcon above.

I went with double-unders (I’ve done better on them, but had to settle for 51 unbroken today), chest-to-deck push-ups (got 15), plus pull-ups (you could kip or do strict; I kipped a measly 3, but with no band, so I’m okay with it).

Then, since we had time left, I went ahead and tried seeing if I could get any closer on doing T2B, and to my surprise and delight, I got my toes to the bar for the first time EVAH.  In fact, I did it twice!

Yesterday was testing for the clean and jerk, which I was ALL ABOUT mentally.  But, my energy has been really bad this week (I daresay, it has been decidedly *unjuicy*), so I decided against testing my C&J.  I knew that I didn’t have a PR in me, and I just didn’t want to be disappointed/frustrated.  So, I went with their cardio WOD, instead.  It was this.

4 minutes of work, then a 100 meter run (I rowed instead– trying to keep my knee happy), then a minute of rest before moving on to the next segment of the circuit.  Repeat.

It kind of sucked.

Anyway, #JuicyInJuly may end tomorrow, but this challenge has been different because I don’t really feel like much will change for me, after it’s over.  I’m still striving to maintain these behaviors, while also sorting out what needs to change in my diet.

Someone in my YT fam suggested carb cycling in the comments, to break my plateau.  I’ve known of carb cycling for years, but it always just seemed so tedious and complicated.  But, since I’m at my wit’s end, I’m looking into it, and doing some research so that I can figure out the most simple way for me to give it a try.  I think my weight loss app will be a big help in that, since I can set targets for my macros, and alladat.

I talked about this already, but if you want to try the app I use, it’s free.  AND, the folks over at Lose It! (that’s the app), hooked up a code that’ll let you upgrade from the free version to the premium one for a whole month.  Premium has a lot more bells and whistles, which is cool, but I had a lot of success with the free version too, prior to this offer.  Anyway, the coupon code for Lose It! Premium is “JUICY” (or the all lowercase “juicy” if you’re on Android, like me), and it’s good until tomorrow, 7/28.

One more day to get #JuicyInJuly, y’all!

#JuicyInJuly Week 2!

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Week 1 = DONE!  It went *okay* for me.  I actually didn’t meet my own criteria of 5 workouts minimum, thanks to Lady Problems.  In recent years, I typically don’t have cramps too badly, when it’s that time of the month.  (I have a lot of thoughts on why that has improved so much, but that’s another post entirely.)  Nonetheless, I am still unlucky a couple of times a year, and this was one of those times.

I actually really hate to use that as an excuse, but I seriously couldn’t have handled a workout that day.  And, since it was toward the second half of the week, I didn’t have enough days left in the week to make up the workout that I’d missed, without doing a double.  As sad as it is to say, I just didn’t have a double in me this week, either.

Besides faltering on getting the prescribed 5, the first week of this challenge has gone really well!  I feel like I’ve bounced back from being overtrained from #JuicyInJune, and my old knee injury seems to be calming down again.  It’s not completely quiet, but it’s definitely not as pissed off at me as it was.

My cheat for week #1 was a chicken parmesan sandwich– one of my favorite things to eat in life!  I really do think that knowing I get to cheat again each week might be a good way to keep me from my typical bouncing between the two extremes of eating SUPER STRICTLY for 4-6 weeks, only to then go full crazy once that period is over, and eat everything in town.

No more extremes!  That’s the goal.  Just do my best, all the time, and maybe have a slice of pizza on the weekend.  Seems like a pretty good deal to me.

I started off week 2 today with the WOD posted above, which wasn’t terrible.  I hate thrusters, and it didn’t help that I also had to do them in yesterday’s WOD.  I’ll be hitting the gym in the morning tomorrow, as well, and then I’m off to a birthday party for adults that is going to have a bouncy house.  Seriously.

Even though it’s only week 2, I’m really excited for week 3, because I have something pretty cool lined up for my YT/blog fam.  So, stay tuned for that.  In the meantime, I’m gonna watch this week’s episode of American Ninja Warrior, and floss my teeth.  Good night!

#JuicyInJune Day 16: Frustration & Disappointment

I went through with weighing in this morning.  Even though I’ve been worried that I look about the same as I did at the beginning of this challenge, I had low key thought/expected to see a 2-3 pound loss.  After all, we all have a hard time detecting progress with our own bodies, since we see ourselves every day, and I’ve been doing everything I should be doing.

Instead, my fears were confirmed: I am exactly where I was, when I weighed out at the end of #SnatchedForSummer.

Actually, it was worse than that.  I was one pound UP.  I became depressed pretty much instantly, and went right back to bed.  It was about 6:30a, so I didn’t have to be up yet, anyway.

When I got up for the day for real, a bit later this morning, I weighed again and the extra pound was gone, probably thanks to peeing.  The point is, there has been zero progress whatsoever on the scale.

I feel really defeated, because the dark thoughts of never being able to break through this plateau are becoming more and more real.  I want to lose 25 pounds, which is already a lot of weight to lose.  And, I’m working so hard, only to fail at losing even 1 pound.

I’ve cut calories to only about 1500/day, meaning I’m eating at a deficit daily– which should be enough on its own for weight loss.  I’m working out pretty hard.  And A LOT.  For fuck’s sake, I went to CrossFit and two spin classes yesterday (after the normal 45 minute class I went to was over, the instructor invited anyone who wanted to to stay for her next “express”/30 minute class, for free; I did so).  WHAT ELSE DO I HAVE TO DO?

I’m trying not to feel overwhelmed by hopelessness.  My next move will be to dial in my macros, I guess.  I’m going to have to sort out meals that will leave me with a 45/35/20 percentage of calories from protein/fat/carbs.  This is the distribution recommended by Michael Matthews, and a lot of people seem to have had success with his advice, based on Amazon reviews of his books.

So I guess there’s a lot of chicken breasts and broccoli in my future.  Ugh.