Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Week 6 Update

This is Week 6 of my 15-Week Plan. (I am starting to think my readers will probably be relieved to stop hearing about this in 9 weeks. Tough!) I didn't post an update last week, which would usually be a bad sign, but I think was just being lazy.

I actually had a pretty excellent week last week. I stayed in budget, ate a fairly healthy diet (with, as we've seen, a large number of vegetables and a few fruits included), and lost a few pounds. As of the beginning of this week, I'm 6.2 pounds below where I started, which puts me on track to complete my 15-pound goal.

I've still been doing strength training three times a week very consistently. Lifting the weights and doing the ab work is challenging, but I'm usually moderately happy on my way to the rec center, and I try not to think about the specifics until I'm in the thick of things. I leave exhausted, but find that when I go to bed on those nights, I have a feeling of tremendous well-being. I haven't noticed that I'm stronger in any non-gym context, but then again, my life doesn't really require any heavy lifting or I'd already be stronger anyway, right?

This week is going OK so far. I made an interesting vegetable side this weekend for my afternoon snack, but found that, after eating one portion on Sunday and one on Monday afternoon, I just couldn't eat it anymore. (I included sweet potatoes, which are almost the only vegetable I don't like, and I think that's what's putting me off it.) So yesterday I had Doritos for my snack instead. And then I decided to totally blow my diet and eat like a crazy person last night.

But I was able to un-decide it later, which is rare, so instead I had a low-calorie frozen dinner before going the rec center. After the weights, I still hadn't eaten nearly enough for the day, and I knew I needed some vegetables, but I couldn't really think straight (too hungry and tired), so I ate a can of corn. That was perfectly healthy and will help me satisfy my requirement for "starchy vegetables", which are the only category I ate none of last week. (I got in my dark greens, oranges, beans and peas, and "others", but I don't eat much potatoes or corn while dieting.) Before bed, Mosch cut up some cantaloupe for me (thanks, Mosch!) and I ate that too.


Debbie said...

How's the calculus going? I haven't heard much about that lately.

sally said...

About your strength training program - are you doing a full body workout 3x a week or alternating different sections (upper, lower, abs) on different days? No, I'm not asking this to set up second-guessing your trainer - I'm just curious how your program's structured.

Tam said...

I haven't done any calculus lately. Uh oh! Big trouble!

In answer to Sally's question, I do the same workout each time, which includes arms, back, legs, and abs. For most things, I either do two sets, or I do two things that work the same muscles (for instance, I do leg press and also squats).

For arms/back/chest/whatever, I do these things with free weights: chest and reverse fly (2 sets each); side and front lifts (2 sets each); something my trainer calls "drawer pulls" (1 set). I do biceps and triceps (2 sets each) using the functional trainer. I do pushups with part of my body resting on an exercise ball (during the same time as I do the ab stuff below). And I do the assisted dip/pull-up machine (1 set each of pull-ups and dips).

For legs, I just have the leg press and squats (1 set each), and two different calf machines (1 set each), which I think are for different muscles.

For abs, I do 20 straight curls, 15 diagonal curls on each side, 15 outside curls on each side - all of this with my legs propped on one of those large inflated balls - and then I do 15 lifts of the ball with my legs, which seems to be a lower ab thing (but also makes the tops of my thighs sore).

In addition to this, I start by walking 3 short laps (0.1 miles each) to warm up, and I generally walk 2-3 more laps somewhere in the middle of the exercise, to give myself time to recover from various things.

At the end, I stretch for about 5-8 minutes.

The whole thing takes me about 45-50 minutes and I'm exhausted afterwards. Even though it's strength training and not aerobic, I keep a pretty high heart rate (~100-110) the whole time.