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When Do I Increase My Weights

My barbells

Weight lifting has become a HUGE part of my fitness journey, and I am still working on as well have improved on my nutrition which is major.  I am fond of my home workouts for reasons I shall share later but my focus is on weight increase.

My workouts are with a trainer, and still at home.  There is a sheet to record weights used and monitor growth and the trainer actually suggests when to increase the weights. I am good in following the trainers because they have more knowledge than I.  However if my current weight use is still challenging I will not increase for reasons of : possible injury and compromising form to get the benefits.  When I am able to lift, lunge or press with weights that are not challenging or I am able to do 3-5 more reps without feeling a challenge then I will increase my weights.

I know by how much well, this depends on what I have at home.  There weights in between the 5 pound increase such as 10 to 12 instead of 15 or 15 to 17 instead of 20 and yes 20 to 22 instead of 25.  Oh yeah I am speaking of dumbbells because I can increase in increments of 2 or 2.5 on the barbels.  For me I have only that 12 on the dumbbells so I have to up my weights by 5 .  Which I do with caution.

Cautious weight increase is important to stay on the journey without injury and to benefit from the challenge of increasing the weights.  To a week of increasing weights and or reps with safety.

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My Reasons for Combining Caridio and Weights

My fitness journey like so many has ups and down but there is one thing I know for certain it is necessary for me to combine my workouts with cardio and weights.

It took me awhile to like  weights, what got me interested?  There are a several reasons :
1. With my history of eating disorder it has assisted (not solely) in increasing my metabolism.
2. Weights has assisted me in giving shape to legs, arms and (in the works) lift that butt and the boobs.
3. I feel stronger also.
Now for the cardio- endurance, fat burning but so are weights, toning and leaning out muscles. By the way it took me a minute to realize with continuous weight training and no cardio, my muscles become define and contracted that it shorten my stretching another reason to combine the both.

All of my reasons for the combination which I am certain I have left out a few, these are my REASONS and may or may not apply to anyone else.

To a week of workouts, choose what works best for you and go get it.

How Strong and Focused Am I

First of all I want to say I am strong, but I was unaware until recently.

This all begin near a month ago.  I had my well woman’s exam and which also included a BMD (bone mass density) due to previous medication I took years ago.  Every test came back normal, well almost EXCEPT the mammogram. ABNORMAL in each breast.  I must say when you get that type of news  you’re not sure what to do.  For me I went numb and weak at all extremities.  I took a breath and knew I had to reschedule for further testing (scans and ultrasounds). 2.5 weeks later. It doesn’t seem long but my mind was going weary.

I didn’t tell anyone, WHY? Well I didn’t want the negative conversations, or the stories I just didn’t want to hear them.  I didn’t want pity talks.  I didn’t tell my family for several reasons.  Also the family reunion was approaching and 4th of July.  I didn’t want to be the downer for anyone’s holiday spirit nor the gossip or tea at the family reunion.  Now don’t get me wrong not all friends, associates or family members are negative

Did I cry, YES and I know there are so many approaches to treatment in abnormal mammogram.  I continued with my daily routine, work family life and continued to workout every day, giving each my 100 and sometimes more. I enjoyed the 4th of July and really enjoyed my family reunion.

Days later it was time.  I woke up worked out, showered and drove myself to my appointment.  I had a short wait and then it was time scans, 3D scans and ultra sound. In between I read a book “Girl Code”. NOW to make me nervous I had to repeat each test again and no one was saying anything and I was unable to read their expression.  On the third repeat I couldn’t take it I had to leave the waiting  area and cried but shockingly it was short.  I went back in and on the last ultrasound I just waited in the room for the doctor.  I wasn’t sure if I wanted her to hurry in and just telll me what was our next step or take as long as necessary.  But she came in.

I went cold, numb and weak.  Well it turns out I have cyst in each breast and benign. The purpose of the repeats was to be sure there was nothing hiding. I dressed and on my way out I cried. As I was walking to the car my daughter called and I told her where I was and why as well as the outcome.  She was angry but happy.  Once in the car out of nowhere I cried hard and I felt a weight lifted from me.

So the next day I continued with my workout and each day I have included a new goal.  I still shed a tear but know I am blessed because so many do not get the news I did.  It’s GREAT, LIFE IS GREAT.  I will continue my workouts staying focus.  Silly how I stayed focused through this, but I NOW know I am STRONG.  Also my fitness journey ha a companion- My Life journey which is changing all for the best.  It is surprising how so much greener the grass looks and the sky is bluer, rain feels great and again LIFE IS GREAT. Although I’m still reserving my thoughts on humidity .

Enjoy life and much as you do your fitness journey.  I once thought it was the same but its not.

Challenging Workouts

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My workouts some days are challenging especially when my RA is painful and a swollen joint or two. I’ve had followers and friends state they are not sure how or why I workouts with swollen joint, so I want to clarify.  I’ve hade RA since childhood and there wasn’t a lot of excuses and believe it or not I am better as an adult than a child with RA.  I will never compare my flares with others as everyone’s pain is different as well as how each of us is able to deal with the pain.

I really try not to allow my pain unless it is severe dictate my day, so that is why I use a towel. That is my workout towel on my exercise mat.  I use it for extra cushion for my left thumb. There are days I am unable to put pressure on my left hand .  If I try I am fallling over , slipping because my balance is off.  BUT with the extra cushion it really decreases the pressure and impact of my weight on the left hand and I can do my workout without laughing at myself. Yes I do that too and so would you if you saw a rep without the towel.  Now I also use the towel at times for the right knee but not often.

I just want to share if you really want to workout there is a way to adjust and sometimes you have to be created for yourself. Of course I do not recommend anyone to push themselves beyond their level of comfort or safety- KNOW YOUR LIMITS.  I know mine. And for now the towel works.

To a week of pushing through and not allowing RA always dictate our next moves in working out.   If you have a deficit of any kind I am saluting you too- Adjust and Push through.  WE GOT THIS.

Staying Committed

My fitness journey has hills, mountains, winding roads, slopes, gravel and smooth surface.  I encounter them all and my lesson which I have to focus on is “Stay Committed “.

Having a relationship with myself, just slain for knowing your mindset and your weakness; I know mine most of them when it comes to working out. I know if I come to a complete halt in my workouts  for greater than two days, I’m setting myself up for a failure or probably a hard restart.  With this said I encountered an almost halt on my workouts today.

My fitness journey is me following a workout and calendar and sometimes as I am now for the next several days combining two workouts.  Today I increased weights, jumped higher, lunged lower and just put on a “you got this show”. I was all in and when it came to my second workout my muscles were burning.  The energy was still there  but I didn’t want to push through to injury or super exhaustion, I’ve been there.  What did I do? Well there is a modifier in my workouts and I followed the modifier for half of my second workout then I was able to return to normal workout.

Modifying does not make it easier, you still have to push hard and give it your best or “100”.  It just mean a decrease in your lunge, or decrease in your jump maybe a bounce.  There are many who think modifying is for beginners or those  testing the waters of a workout. All FALSE.  Now I know because I’ve  heard I wouldn’t want to modify any workout, I’d rather wait until I can do it for the ultimate gain.

I will not bash, trash or argue the “wait”, but will you start. I will continue to reiterate. First make a decision that you really want to make a change (I’m talking about workouts but it can apply to any goals in life).  Ready for the change then COMMIT .  This is why I modified and why I push through.  I am committed to my fitness journey whether my results are slow or fast because without the commitment my results will be, oh yeah I will not have any results.

To weeks of commitment to yourself and to your goals as I am.

Pushing Through

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Just a few days ago, I’m not sure what was going on but after my first workout which was with weights I felt fatigued.  Weird as it sounds it was not a normal fatigue like I’m tired  but as if I was fatigued and wanted to do something else.  WHAT the heck ? SOMETHING else, really.  I had to check myself.

I do feel this way if I am fatigue from working out some fierce.  Now I had given my 100 and had increased the weights slightly but the feeling of wanted to do something else.  Hmm maybe I was a bit stressed but this usually pushes me to a GREAT workout.  Was I being lazy? hungry? or just one of those days I didn’t want to do anything.  Not sure but my remedy was to STOP.

I STOPPED, prepared myself a protein drink, read a chapter in my PD book and yep just like that I was rejuvenated.  This does not always work but it did on this day and I kicked my second workout up a notch or two and gave it not 100 but 150.

I’m not sure yet what was going on but being committed to change is so important.  I’ve learned do nothing for change will accomplish a 100 at nothing.  Slow or Fast being committed will get me there.  I reached my goal that day. Pushing Through with no excuses.

To a week of no excuses to your goals.

Are You Doing This Correct

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What?, what the heck am I talking about?, doing what correct?

I have to share as I recently shared with someone in conversation about caloric intake.  It is normal especially if you are only using caloric calculation for your weight loss.  I am aware everyone is not into physical fitness and a workout is just not a desire,  psss but take a walk 2-3 times a week.  Okay back to calories, she stated she was decreasing her intake by 500-1000 calories a day and was very tired and felt like her energy had been drained.  The numbers are correct to decrease caloric intake daily.

HOWEVER, if you are already in a deficit, this does not apply to you.  She had begin with a deficit and then attempted for a few weeks (she did not say how many) decrease her intake.  Now let’s take in account she had just added a workout routine.  NOW be it said I am not a nutritionist, but it is so necessary to calculate your lifestyle into your intake.  The glory will be great for a few weeks or months then the body goes into starvation mode this really applies if you have a very active life and even more so if you are in a fitness program.

What do I recommend?, well most workouts, trainers have a nutrition recommendation, no they have several as applies to you and if you are good as you are I applaud you so many are. There are as many like me that require assistance, again what I like about my choice of workout there are calculations  to assist with intake as well the recommendation for proteins, fruits, vegetables, carbohydrates and there are several choices of free food.

So before you decrease caloric intake ASK or SEEK assistance to be sure you are not sabotaging yourself or your workout.  To a fitness of results CONGRATS you’re on the right track.

Nutrition Deprivation

I recently had a conversation with a friend in the middle of which the it turned hurried and without meaning and I really was about to end it and then she apologized.  Her words were not “I’m sorry it was I am hangry”. Oh was my reply because I was still recovering from a nice conversation to an out right weird ALMOST nasty conversation.  I suggested a quick nutrition bar to prevent overeating and later angry for the indulgence. I handed her one of mine with water.

Within minutes she was okay, our conversation was normal. She then asked do you always carry extra food and snack around? Well no was my reply and then I went on to share with her my fitness journey and nutrition as I am with you.

I have extra around because there are days I workout harder than others and as a “beachbodyondemand” subscriber sometimes I will do more than one workout. Of course I do have my post shakes and protein however I noted that I will gain inches and pounds worked out really hard or no change at all.

First let me clarify this happens any way, the fluctuation of weight, inches, energy because we are not the same daily and do not consume the same foods day in and day out, well I don’t.  HOWEVER I begin calculating my intake and my nutrition and noted a deficit.  Now to loose weight there should be a deficit but not a tremendous one.  I had a TREMENDOUS deficit and my body was holding on because it was hungry.  I know that sounds odd and it is because I wasn’t hungry. I also know with time because of years of eating disorder I would loose the weight and inches.

This was and is not my goal, I lift weights, do cardio for several reasons and being thin is not one.  I eat now to be healthy and workouts are for fit, healthy, muscle tone.  “Nutrition Deficit” would destroy it all.

So, I drink nutrition shakes and have packages (single serve) on me, nutrition bars a fruit. And eat accordingingly to recommendation for my workout. Nutrition Deprivation will slow the body’s response to a hard workout whether it be weights, cardio, running, kickboxing any physical activity on a regular.

If you are noting a decrease in response to workouts it just MAYBE  a nutrition deficit, perhaps you’re similar to me and may not get hungry.

To weeks of healthy, satisfying nutrition  I’m saluting your health and workouts.

It Was Just One Day

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It was just one day and that day was Monday – Memorial Day, I decided to skip my workout, but I did my steps in moving about but again I skipped my workout.  I did not feel guilty but my body is so programmed I noticed a change in energy.

Tuesday’s workout was good, no great but I had to push myself since it was so easy to skip Monday’s workout.  Now there are times when my schedule change and life throws us curves that we have to make adjustments.  However being committed and focusing on  goals, for me its “my fitness journey”. Just a share if you’re not committed you can make an excuse everyday that will deter your goals.

What the heck am I saying, well it’s easy stay committed to your goals, even if you get off course for one day and maybe two  but don’t make it an end.

To COMMITMENT