Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Pregnancy Aftermath - Kegel-What?!

This is a good one. And by good I mean embarrassing. And by embarrassing I mean something that you'll probably laugh at me for. But it's still an important lesson for all moms-to-be out there.

P90X includes an exercise video called Plyometrics, which means "jump training." Jump training? Pretty much exactly what it sounds like. Here's a screenshot I found online.

Interestingly enough, this is the P90X kids doing the exact exercise that led to my seriously un-glamorous moment.

All of the already-moms know that there is a certain muscle group that gets weakened during pregnancy and in childbirth (um, snissing anyone?). My pre- and post-natal yoga videos were insistent on working that muscle group, constantly mentioning how important it is in the real world. I must have done that "elevator move" a million times. Consider yourself lucky if you don't know what I'm talking about. I thought I had strengthened them enough, especially considering that I'm now almost 20 months past that delightful modesty-stripping experience called labor and delivery.

Anyway, I'll spare you the full-out intricate details. Just imagine having those muscles being not-quite-as-strong-as-they-apparently-should-be, drinking lots of water all day, and then jumping around wildly like they're doing in that picture up there. Apparently they haven’t gained back as much strength as I thought….

Thank goodness we're doing the program in the comfort of our own basement. That would have been quite the walk of shame.

Monday, March 29, 2010

P90X - Week 4 Complete

Week 4 was our first Recovery Week. It was nice to not have any strenuous lifting days, but I definitely wouldn't say that it was in any way relaxing. It's not supposed to be!

I'm just glad it didn't include any Plyometrics. My knees needed a break. It did include two days of Yoga X, and that sucked. I love yoga, it's one of my favorite activities, but I do NOT love Tony Horton yoga. It's long (really long, 90 minutes!) and boring and doesn't give me that relaxed satisfaction that "real" yoga classes do. I might need to find something else to replace it with. I can only handle so many vinyasas, know what I mean? I think that my irritation was compounded by the fact that we did Cardio X instead of Plyometrics. The first 20 minutes of the routine is straight out of the yoga video.

We started week 5 on Saturday with Core Synergistics, which I love, and then yesterday we were back to Plyometrics. My butt is killing me today! Knees aren't doing so well, either. Tonight is shoulders, triceps, and something else, and after reading the book description of the moves I'm feeling pretty intimidated. I don't know about those push-ups with claps in the middle. We'll see how that goes.

We took our 30 day pictures and Charlie's progress has been absolutely amazing! I'm trying to convince him to let me blog about them, because I'm so proud of how well he's doing. Mine are just "meh," but everything I've read has said that women tend to peak later in the program than men. Tony even suggested that for women it should be called "P120X." I'm definitely getting stronger and leaner, my body fat percentage has gone down to the "lean" range, and I have a lot more endurance (well, except for superman bananas, from which I only have bruised hip bones). I've decided to try upping my daily caloric intake from 1400ish to 1600ish to see if that helps. Sounds counter-intuitive, which is why I'm having a psychological problem with it, but we'll see what happens!

Speaking of food, Coach Lynn is about to start an entire week of eating off just the top two tiers of Michi's Ladder. I can't wait to hear how it goes! She's a great inspiration for fit living.

Here's my Superman Banana!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

P90X - Week 3 Complete

Technically it's been complete since Friday, but I took a vacation day and didn't feel like sitting in front of a computer to blog when it was 70 degrees and sunny outside!

Right now we're in the recovery week of phase one. When they say "recovery" they definitely don't mean "rest," as Saturday was 90 minutes of Yoga, Sunday was Core Synergistics (possibly my least favorite because it hurts so good), and last night was Kenpo. I know most people LOVE Kenpo, but I'm just not feeling it. It's not bad, but it's all about kicking and punching and maybe I need to get a punching bag to use as a target because I just get frustrated that I'm not actually kicking or punching anything. That might be a better way to work out some irritations.

Last weekend I finally crashed on the 50/30/20 diet. We were doing Core Synergistics and it got to the point where I just couldn't physically move anymore. I guess that's what Tony refers to as "bonking." I moved up to the 40% protein / 40% carbs / 20% fat phase and things are better. It's more manageable from an energy standpoint and from a food standpoint, since I can choose from a wider variety. Still eating a lot of ground turkey and chicken breasts. I guess that was the point, though, to show you what different food types do for your body. Last night I had pasta for the first time in a month. I measured out my 56 grams and thought that it didn't really look like very much on the plate, but once I sat down to dinner I could barely even finish it.

We get to take our 30 day pictures on Sunday! I'm more excited for C than I am for myself. I think he's made great progress so far.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

P90X - Week 2 Completed!

I know there are some people who are reeeeeeeeally tired of hearing people talk about P90X and how hurty it is and how great it is and all that, so I'm going to limit myself to one P90X-related post per week, at the completion of each week. Today is our "off day," and marks our completion of week 2 of 12. I'm so proud of myself for suffering through every last rep I've encountered.

The diet has been the hardest part by far, but even that is getting more manageable. I'm pretty much right on my 50/30/20 targets. If anything, I'm struggling to get enough calories - I'm fuller faster and I stay full longer. It's really amazing how much more you need to eat to reach a reasonable calorie goal when you're eating the "right" foods. We're not talking about extreme calories here, either, I'm struggling to come up with 1400-1600. I'm also getting used to the protein shakes.

I definitely need to change up my lunch option - the easiest and most protein-efficient thing I could come up with was tuna salad, so that's what I've been eating for lunch Monday through Friday. I'm about over it.

Once I hit Phase 2 of the diet I'm going to incorporate a weekly cheat meal. This kind of deprivation isn't really sustainable for me, and every so often I'd like to have a nice bowl of tortilla soup from Apple Spice or a cookie. Nothing too crazy. I don't want to do it yet, because I know that I'm learning from the suffering :)

C and I were talking about the 90 days last night and realized that 90 days is pretty much 25% of a year. That's a very "well, duh" thing to say, but when you start out saying you're going to do something "just for 90 days" you don't really appreciate that it's more a long-term lifestyle change than a temporary commitment. I don't think I'll look at what I'm eating the same way again.

Also have to say another big thank you to Coach Lynn for her support and tips and recipes and awesome food tracker tool. It's always helpful to have someone on your side.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Pure Torture

I want pasta. And pizza. And bread. Lots of fresh Italian bread with butter. I want carbs, period. It's only been three days. How am I going to last an entire four weeks?

Last night I made Baby C his dinner of ravioli, grated cheese, and broccoli, then sat down to this:

When he told us that he was ready to get down from the table there were still a few pieces of ravioli left on his plate. Glorious, cheesy ravioli, just waiting to be nibbled up. It was all I could do not to eat his leftovers, but I persevered. My will-power prevailed.

Today was even worse. Tuesdays are Donut Days. I was able to ignore the fact that there were two dozen donuts sitting in the cafeteria for most of the morning. Then 10:00 rolled around and I had to go to the kitchen to mix my protein shake. I stood RIGHT NEXT TO the donuts while I mixed the chocolate brown, sweetish-flavored powder with some cold water. I looked at them longingly but did not touch.

It will be ok.

Monday, March 1, 2010

P90X - Week 1

Well here we are, with 2 1/2 days under our P90X belts. So far we've done Core Synergistics and Cardio X, and both of them have been delightfully painful.

I've also taken a big gulp of the P90X kool-aid and agreed to go ahead and follow the diet plan, too. In this phase of the program that means a low-carb/low-fat/high-protein mix. We've planned out our meals for the next week to make sure that we're able to get the right proportions of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats.

I'm struggling with this one already because I don't really like most proteins. I'm not a big fan of meat, and the tofu preparations that I enjoy would have a negative impact on the carbohydrate ratio, so I have a lot of chicken breast and ground turkey on the menu. I think that I'll probably eat more meat in the next four weeks than I have in the last three months. It kind of goes against my food philosophy somewhat, but at least we can keep it to morally(ish) raised. That makes me feel a little better about it.

I also have to include protein powder in my diet to make up for the meat protein that I'm not willing/able to eat. We bought a tub of chocolate-flavored powder and I thought I was going to puke when I took the first sip of my first shake yesterday afternoon. Big thanks to Coach Lynn, who graciously offered me a sampling of her myriad flavors and varieties of powders. The one I enjoyed for my morning snack was pretty palatable.

I'm a big carb junkie, and I make no secret of that. Normally my diet is very carbohydrate-focused. I love pasta and potatoes, corn, bread, all that good stuff. Few things are more satisfying than kneading a home-baked loaf of soft Italian bread and then enjoying a slice still warm from the oven. I'm definitely going to miss that. Later on in the program there will be room to enjoy things like that, but right now we're focused on fat burning.

Right now all I can think about is freaking pasta salad and the macaroni and cheese we made a few weeks ago. I'm hoping that things work the way everyone says they do - that once I get used to the new way of eating my body won't crave those things anymore and I'll be able to eat a more balanced diet going forward.