Wednesday, February 10, 2010

I'm going to post all these entries at once. I wasn't going to blog this stuff, but friends and family have been asking about my new regime, so I thought I'd put it all in here. I don't know if there's any way to "postdate" these entries--I'm not a fancy blogger type. I don't have any pics yet either. I don't have the guts to post my "before" picture! But I'll have to make this a little more colorful soon.

January 10, 2010

Tomorrow I’m starting at a new gym. I’m excited, I’m curious, and I’m a little nervous. It’s a CrossFit gym, which from what I know is pretty hardcore weight training. We are talking about girls who do pull-ups. That about sums it up for me. I have never in my life been able to do a pull-up, and I am in awe of women who can. If I could do a pull-up, I would be my hero--or heroine I guess, but that word just makes me think of drug addicts. A guy in our neighborhood started this gym in his garage, and it is getting so popular that he has a new, much bigger building with lots of specialized equipment. There are 20-foot ropes, gymnastics rings, and kettle bells. Not that I have any idea what to do with any of those things…

I’ve never done a ton of weight training, and I’ve never had nice sculpted biceps. So I’m worried that I’ll be bored by weights and that I won’t be able to pick up the 5 pound medicine ball. But I would really like to be less flabby. So I guess the hope of sculpted biceps and unflabby thighs (maybe, possibly, perchance, if there is such thing as miracles) has won out over the fear.

The gym is kind of expensive compared to what I’m used to. I have really debated spending the money, but Doug has talked me into at least giving it a try. My last gym was $35 a month with babysitting. This is a few times more. Still my sister thinks it’s hilarious that I’m worried about the money. She goes to a personal trainer, shared by three women, and hers costs substantially more than mine. We do have a trainer for every session, and the amount of people can vary. Tomorrow night I start the Foundations class, which is training in what CrossFit is and the basics of lifting and other exercises. We will have seven women in the class. More news tomorrow.

January 11, 2010

That was insane. If anything is going to get me in shape, this is. My pecs are on fire, my triceps are screaming, and my quads can hardly keep my body upright. But I liked it! Even though the most notable event of the evening was the rest of my class cheering me on to finish my 75th push-up (on my knees) with arms that jiggled like jello, and when I was finally done I was so tired that I lay flat on my face on a disgusting, rubberized gym floor. I was the last one to finish our workout, but I still liked it. Maybe it’s because I’m telling myself that they all started out in better shape than me. Maybe it’s because we cheered for each other. Maybe it’s because if you told me three days ago that I could do 75 push-ups (even on my knees and not all at once) I wouldn’t have believed it. So I know that this is going to push me to do things that I didn’t think I could do. Definitely more motivation than a woman in leg warmers telling me to rhumba over a fitness step.

I haven’t worked out like that since I played high school volleyball, back in the day. Well, I may have been as sore after a long run or ride, but I have never started out from scratch and dived into such a serious workout. In high school, at the end of the school year our coach would say something like, “Okay, I want everyone running 10 miles a week, doing push-ups and sit-ups, and staying in shape over the summer.” We would all nod and then go to the beach and eat ice cream and French fries for two months. The first day of school would be our first day of practice and our coach would send us up and down the bleachers on one leg, then the other, then on two. Then we’d run suicides and jump over hurdles and do net-top touches. Then we’d dive, roll, and scramble. Then we’d have a game. The next day I could hardly walk the school halls, let alone get down a flight of stairs. That’s how I feel today. But I like it.

January 14, 2010

Back for more last night. I wasn’t the slouch of the group, probably because we did more exercises that used leg strength. I think running, cycling, and soccer have kept my legs pretty strong. So that helped with the final WOD, which was squats, box jumps, and pull-ups. (I can’t remember the reps for each, maybe 20-15-10?) We did as many sets as we could in twelve minutes. I tried to be intense, ignore the pain, and sweat a lot. You know be really tough. Doug says I don’t really have that killer instinct. I have to agree. Most of my fitness moments are made up of women chatting while running or riding. I might be looking for birds while hiking along a pretty trail, or stopping a mountain bike ride to sniff a flower.

When I started playing women’s soccer, I upped my intensity and tried to do more interval/speed workouts. I couldn’t keep up with all the women who are ten years younger than me! But this is all-round, all-body intensity. At least they let me do my pull-ups with four giant elastic bands. The bands are hanging from the pull-up bar. You put your foot in the bands, and it gives you a little bounce/lift to get your chin up to the bar. I was able to do a few reps. I wouldn’t have been able to do any without my lovely stretchy bands.

My arms are pathetic, and then there’s my core—or lack of it. I’m not sure that it will ever be the same after being pregnant with twins. Carrying 16 pounds of baby on a 5’4” frame did a major number on me. The “twin skin” is stretched out and flabby, but I think maybe the muscles underneath were damaged too. Or maybe that’s just my excuse for having no core strength and still looking like I’m five months pregnant.

And what’s a WOD? That means workout of the day. Everyone does the same workout, just scaled to your own ability. There’s a lot of CrossFit jargon. I think I’ll catch on, eventually.

January 18, 2010

My Foundations group is cool. Seven women and an amazing trainer. Everyone is probably more fit than me, since I haven’t really been doing anything regularly for the last three or four months. Rachel, a yoga instructor, is probably the most fit. She is already doing squats with 60 pounds on her back and throwing the medicine ball 10 feet in the air with impunity. Everyone else is kind of at various levels of fitness with various strengths. Some are good at sit-ups, some at push-ups, some at kettlebells. None of us can do a pull-up without bands except the hallowed trainer Robin Lyons, who can jump up to the bar and demo five pull-ups while chit-chatting about points on proper form and explaining what a kipping pull-up is and looking like she might just have a little cup of tea while she is at it.

January 21, 2010

The good things so far. I’m trying to eat better and eat more protein. I’m making a hot breakfast of eggs or oatmeal for the fam. Even Doug is eating breakfast, which he never does, because I came home and gave him a lecture about how he has to eat regularly to keep his metabolism going. Robin (trainer) was adamant about that. You have to eat breakfast and you have to eat enough protein and fat to keep your body from feeling starved and trying to store fat. The protein helps you burn fat and have energy.

I love having breakfast together. It is really fun. I don’t know how I made the time. I guess it really only takes me a few more minutes to make eggs than to pour cereal. And the kids now think I’m supermom. Doesn’t take much!

Why do I resist things that are good for me? I know why I resist, cause it’s hard—but I feel so much better eating right and working out. As it says on our Crossfit web site, "The pain of discipline or the pain of regret...YOU choose." For me, the discipline is so worth it. I feel better. I get stuff done. I do more for my family. And all that even though I’m taking up time to work out. I magically have more time even though I’m taking time for myself. I think I’ll call this “Sunny’s Magic Theory of Relativity.”

January 25, 2010

Today was my first regular CrossFit workout after finishing my Foundations classes. I got up at 5:40 am to make it to the 6 am class. That was early but I could be living in Manhattan and have to get up and take the subway for half an hour. Or I could live in Panguitch where they don’t even have a CrossFit. The location is so close. I love it.

I can’t get over the shortness of the workouts. A big workout for me is riding for 5 hours in preparation for a 100-mile bike ride. During our hour at the gym, we warm up for about 15 minutes. The warm up is a workout in itself though.

Shoulder exercises with a 5 pound weight

Solomon stretches (lunge, stretch hip flexor, and stretch arms overhead)

500 m row


10 push-ups

10 sit-ups

10 overhead squats

10 pull-ups

10 back somethings (elevated on pad, feet hooked in, bend forward toward ground and back up)

There might be more. I can’t remember it all. You do up to 3 reps of all those.

Then we usually do a group exercise, like high knees or vertical leaps kind of stuff. Then we prepare for the WOD, which lasts about 15 minutes, but of course is high intensity. On go, you work as hard as you can until the WOD is done and you’re exhausted. Then you write is down in your log book so that you can feel better next time when you’re faster or stronger!

January 29, 2010

I’ve been up Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and today Friday to workout. It sounds like torture—the waking up and the working out, but I am really liking it. I’m not gonna say love, that would be a little nuts. As in yes, please beat me with a stick. But I do love how I feel. I already feel better, physically. It’s almost like that feeling after you have a baby. Pregnant, you are so tired, you can hardly walk up a flight of stairs and you can’t reach down to do up your shoe laces. Then you have the baby and a few days recovering, you feel so light and mobile. You want to jump on a trampoline or ride a bike. You walk up the stairs without holding the railing!

Jared, one of the other trainers who is also a great guy, told me I need to eat before I workout—even if that means before 6 am. That is weird. I’m not used to eating that early. He gets up and has whole milk and a banana and an apple. I really wish I liked bananas. He also said that you need to refuel, or whatever the word was—essentially replenish your energy, right after working out. It seems like a lot of people at the gym drink protein shakes. That is another thing I have never done. It seems so processed and un-whole-foody. Can it really be good for you? The whole eating thing is getting complicated, but I’ll just take it one day at a time. So far, I am really enjoying the high-protein egg breakfast.

February 3, 2010

Let me start by saying that a cleanse seems a little bit weird and over-the-top to me. I mean I’m not up for coffee colonics or having my medians recircuited, and a cleanse is almost in that category for me. And yet here I am. I’ve been convinced to give it a try. You can do anything for ten days, right? Today is the big day for me and (thank heavens I have someone to do this with) my husband. We’ve started our cleanse. Not the lemon juice, maple syrup, cayenne pepper kind of cleanse as in Kelly-from-The Office cleanse. This is a paleo-zone cleanse, as in Paleolithic, caveman diet. You gotta eat like a caveman for 10 days.

Here are the rules:

1. No fried foods, refined sugar, corn or white starches, or bread

2. No wheat products (i.e. bread or crackers)

3. No dairy (i.e. cheese, yogurt, milk)

4. No alcohol

5. No coffee or soda

6. Eat veggies: salads during the day and steamed at night will scrub your system (choose spices over dairy/sugar based condiments)

7. Eat fruit: fibrous and low glycemic choices (i.e. apples, grapefruit, berries)

8. Eat healthy fats (i.e. avocado, nuts, seeds, olives, olive oil)

9. Eat clean proteins: feed muscle and reduce appetite (tuna and salmon will aid in cleansing; eggs/chicken would be secondary options; stay away from processed lunch meats)

10. Eat clean carbs if needed (quinoa, hummus, oatmeal)

11. Drink water: try for 1 gallon a day

I just ate 5 raspberries as I was typing this, and yes, I counted them. I think it’s completely insane to count five raspberries. It’s like Tyra Banks saying, “Ooh, I just ate half a celery stick and one macadamia nut. I’m so gorged.” Or my friend Lisa who I always tease about her lack of appetite, “Oh, no thank you, I couldn’t eat a half a pickle.”

Last night we went to Costco and spent $400 on “cleansing” food. I really hope the food lasts at least the 10 days of our cleanse, maybe even two weeks. And I hope we eat it all before it goes bad. If it does last, it really won’t be that expensive compared to our normal food budget. If you’re willing to spend $5 on some good ice cream then you should be willing to spend $5 on strawberries right? Cut out the ice cream and there’s your five bucks. (I know I can’t cut out the ice cream forever, but at least for 10 days.)

The most expensive things we bought were frozen wild salmon (don’t eat farmed), which was $29.99 for about 12 servings; canned tuna, which was $11.99 for eight regular sized cans; top sirloin, which was $17.36 for about 16 servings; beef stew meat, which was $16.74 for about 12 servings; frozen shrimp, which was $11.99 for a 2 pound bag (about 70 shrimp), Canadian bacon, which was $8.39 for two bags, each about 4 inches long; grapefruit, which was $10.99 for a huge bag of at least 20 grapefruits; and for the amount, the raspberries, which were $6.49 for 12 ounces (about a 10” x 5” container).

Wow, that seems like a lot of meat that is going to rot in my gut—not clean me out. We don’t eat a lot of meat, especially red meat. I rarely buy it, but I might get a hamburger when I go out. So we shall see if I overdose on protein or balance my hormones and metabolism and appetite and all the other miracles that this cleanse might bring about.

February 4, 2010

A day of desperation—wanting something just because I can’t have it. The ice cream in the freezer is calling my name, and I don’t even like the flavor that much: peanut butter cup. If I were “allowed” to have it, I would probably open the freezer, look at it, think “I don’t really love that flavor,” and shut the door. Today, I am looking longingly at my one-year old’s bread crusts and honey nut Cheerios and feeling like if I just ate them up, it would fill any longing in my soul.

It’s not that the food I’ve eaten today hasn’t been yummy. I had eggs, grapefruit, and strawberries for breakfast. By the way, the Costco grapefruit is really tasty. And the strawberries were pretty good, too, considering it is February. The produce is definitely better quality at Costco. I wish it were down the street instead of 40 minutes away in the “big city” of St. George. Anyhow, for lunch I had a salad of romaine, romas, English cucumbers, pepperoncini (which I think might be illegal because they are pickled, I have to find out), avocado, pine nuts, olive oil, and balsamic vinegar. All the ingredients were yummy, but the combination was a little strange. I don’t know if it was the balsamic and avocados or the pine nuts and pepperoncini or what, but I probably won’t do that combo again.

Back to Costco for a moment. Last night we had frozen green beans from Costco. They were so good! I just steamed them in the microwave, and they were delish. My one-year-old grabbed the bowl and started eating them by the fistful. The brand is Lisa’s Organics, which I hope the store keeps. They always seem to be switching brands just when I find something I really like. The frozen salmon was also pretty good, and that’s coming from a salmon snob who grew up in the northwest eating barbequed salmon that my uncle caught fresh. I was strong and resisted eating it with lime and brown sugar, the way my mom often makes it. I just brushed it with a little olive oil, and it was pretty good. Today I realized that I could make it with honey and lime. Cavemen ate honey, yippee! So I’ll try that next time.

As for tonight, it’s Greek salad (without the feta), steamed carrots, and chicken. I had some fresh cilantro so I made a marinade with lime and cilantro. We’ll see how that goes. Probably won’t be like a night at CafĂ© Rio.

been so kind as to say that she will have hummus and veggies and even lettuce wraps!

February 5, 2010

Okay, now I know why they call it a cleanse… What does it say in the cleanse rules, veggies will “scrub your system”? Yup, uh huh.

I should have bought the Omega-3 eggs at Costco because they are $5.99 for 48 eggs. But I bought two 24-packs of the extra large eggs.

Can I eat Canadian bacon even though it is processed meat? Am I a medium or small sized woman? These are the questions I ask myself and must find answers to.

Raspberries gone in one day, strawberries two days, cucumbers three days. I spent another $40 on fruit and veggies, including for a superbowl party. I brought a fruit platter and my friend was kind enough to make veggies and hummus.

February 7, 2010

Paleo kids. I’m trying to make the kids eat better, too. For the most part, they are happy to eat fruit and many veggies. Frozen blueberries straight from the bag. Love ‘em, including the baby. Clementines, strawberries, raspberries, cantelope, celery, carrots—all devoured. Kale with turkey bacon, weren’t so thrilled, but dad’s little game worked wonders: Eat some kale and then punch Dad in the arm, Dad says “Ow, but I think you can hit a little harder. Eat some more.” So with each bite, the kids get to punch dad. Dad’s owing louder and the kids are laughing the heads off and running back to their plates to eat kale and come back for a free punch to Dad’s shoulder.

February 8, 2010

I have lost 5.4 pounds in 5 days on my cleanse. That will keep me motivated. Instead of saying to myself, “Ooh, yummy cake, I’m going to scarf down a huge piece o’ that tasty refined sugar.” I’ll be saying, “I’m going to enjoy a delicate slice, I don’t want to spoil this slender form.”

Now let’s discuss yummy, yummy fiber drinks, which I started today. Here are the some of the ingredients:

psyllium husk

oat fiber

sodium carboxmethyl cellulose

guar gum

citrus pectin

butternut bark powder

acesulfame potassium

papaya fruit powder

prune powder

rhubarb root extract

black walnut hull extract

licorice root extract (mmm, licorice)

Sounds pretty voodoo. Tastes pretty voodoo too. You mix up your dee-lish powder with a cup of water and drink away, without gagging if possible. I washed it down with some extra water. I felt a little bit like my father-in-law drinking his Metamucil. Gotta keep regular you know.

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