Tuesday, September 8, 2009
The 90 Day Fitness Effect - Let's See...
I am always up for a good challenge. When I am at the gym, I workout harder when people are around. I try to lift heavier, climb steeper, spin faster. However, when I have a weight or size goal, I sometimes find it too daunting to think about, and I unconsciously sabotage myself. Last year, my goal to fit into a Halloween costume wasn't realized, mostly due to a broken nutrition plan. It was solid, I just broke it. I think I felt overwhelmed at the prospect of actually achieving it.
My real goal, truth be told, is to fit back into my clothes from four years ago. They are a size smaller, which means a handful of inches must go. I love my body for what it is - healthy, functional - but I miss it's former, tighter shape. I miss feeling my lean arms and legs muscles pop, and I am not thrilled with the way my jeans currently cut into my waist. I answer only to myself, so it's easy for me to feel defeated when the inches don't go, and the scale stays put.
When presented with a physical challenge, I most always rise to meet it. Though I am not a runner, I have trained for 5k races (not much for most, I know, but that's a big run for me) and run them. Completing the race was the challenge, as was beating my own personal record.
This weekend at a party, my friend (and happily acquired family!) Amie mentioned that last year, she and her family had a contest to see who could change their body the most over an eight-week period. They even took 'Before' photos. Granted, she is gorgeous (and tiny at nine months pregnant, with a killer bod (legs to die for) and sky high heels), and I cannot imagine she'd ever have anything to change, but her story was so motivating. W and I are both trying to get in the best shape of our lives by our fortieths, and now I'm making it more of a competition. But I'm not competing with him, per se. I am competing with my former self-defeating beliefs.
When my friend Laura mentioned the 90 Day Fitness Effect (challenge) last week, I thought about it. You do two things in 90 days, and if you commit to it you get two months of free protein shakes, or a specified supplement. While I don't necessarily need two free months of anything, I love a challenge, and it is sort of nice to be rewarded with a healthy prize. I've waited until today to start the challenge, because one of the two things that must be done, is to exercise at least five days a week. I knew that I couldn't commit to it until after Labor Day weekend. So today, I begin.
The other of the two things is to take a supplement called Juice Plus+ every day. It's two capsules (one fruit, one veggie) that contains 17 fruits and vegetables and fiber. (Check it out on the popular television show, The Drs., by clicking here.) I took this years ago, and was reintroduced to it by Laura. I went to the website and saw some of my favorite docs touting it's benefits, including Dr. William Sears (pediatric guru), and I was back on it.
Here's the catch. I plan on working out every day, but now I know that it's a requirement for me to do so, and I really have to plan. If I can't get to the gym, or to a yoga class, I still have to work out. I'm thinking a 30-minute program with a warm-up, bicep curls (I have dumbbells at home), bellydance shoulder moves, push-ups, and some squats will be my emergency at-home work out.
For the next three months, I will be taking Zumba, yoga and spinning classes, lifting and doing cardio. I will be taking my supplements, and visualizing myself lean and strong. I'll be drinking tons of water. And each week, I will let you know about any mental or physical challenges that arise. Equally, I will share my great workouts, tips I discover, and good feelings that I have here with you, once a week. (And, of course, my progress.) This challenge will end five before my birthday. How auspicious. I am excited to have something so healthy to focus on.
Let's see what kind of body I can create for myself.
(I welcome your ideas, motivating stories, and tips. Email them to firstname.lastname@example.org, or post them here.)