Thursday, April 10, 2008
Things in life have been hectic, but I'm still "in it to win it" with this Body for Life Challenge.
I feel so good and my energy level is getting back up there. I absolutely love love love the strength training, but me being the cardio-a-holic that I am, I periodically cheat and do 15 mins. of cardio on my strength training days.
One thing that I'm trying to get accustomed to is the fact that I'm gaining weight. I'm up to 234, but I REFUSE to change my ticker! . Oddly, enough I'm NOT stressing out, because I can see the change in my clothes...and today I'm sporting a form fitting denim blouse that I was unable to wear even when I was at my lowest weight of 221 lbs. YAY ME!
But I have to say one of the biggest highlights of this challenge is the days that I get to lift with my niece NEWBEIN. That girl is a BADSHUTYOMOUF!!!! She can lift, press and squat with the best of the guys at the gym, yet she does it with elegance and grace...the girl doesn't sweat...she glistens. And she is such a huge motivator for me and the other women at the gym.
Last night I had to do an early workout, so I missed seeing her, but I thought about how she pushes herself to the limit so I did the same. Now mind you, I can't press the weight that she does, but where I could I added 5 or 10 lbs. in my workout and what a difference it made (as a matter of fact my arms, shoulders and chest are still tingling today...LOL).
Anyway, if you have yet to visit NEWBEIN's spark page, drop by and see what I'm talking about she is a true motivator!!!
And I absolutely can't wait until day 84 to see how different NEWBEIN and the other DIVAs who are "in it to win it" with this challenge will look!!!
Wednesday, March 26, 2008
So, I've been debating about whether or not to blog about an experience that I had Monday night at my new gym, then after my workout at my old gym last night, I decided to share my experience.
First of all, I'm absolutely loving this BFL Challenge. I'm eating well and do not feel hungry and I absolutely love how I feel during my strength training workouts.
Well as I mentioned in an earlier blog, I joined a second gym. As the new HR manager at my company, one of the first things that my team and I did for our employees was to set up a corporate membership. Now mind you, I have folks of various fitness levels at this company and I am constantly being approached with questions and heart-touching stories regarding their fitness concerns and goals. So it was important for me to find a gym that would not only have an awesome selection of equipment (STUFF), but to also have the right atmosphere (SPIRIT). During the contract negotiations and meetings with the managers, I always wore my regular clothes. They always greeted me with a big ole smile and the staff was super friendly. I clearly expressed my expectation of the environment that I was seeking for my employees and the Facilities Manager assured me that my employees would be well taken care of at this gym and he went on and on about the level of attention and care that they show to all of their members. He even provided some cute little charts and graphs showing their retention rates....
Anyway, let me get to the point. So Monday was a lower body strength training day so I headed to the NEW gym, I had already changed clothes at work. So I arrive and one of the managers who I had just met with LAST week was at the front desk, he looked at me and turned his head...no hello, good afternoon, Merry Christmas...Nothing. The person that checked my temporary pass barely made eye contact with me. Then as I headed off to the locker room to drop off my jacket, I passed by the Facility Manager, I smiled and waved at him, he looked at me turned his head and kept talking to the folks in his circle...okay, so maybe I had some type of cloaking device on...I don't know.
So I start my workout and I am the most full-figured person in all three of the weight lifting areas. The people were so cold. I would notice that they were looking at me, but if I smiled they would turn their head instead of smiling back. I tried to not read too much into anything and continue with my workout...thankfully I was working out to gospel music so I was able to keep my composure.
I guess what did it for me was later when I was on the squat machine, the Facility manager passed directly in front of me 8 times (Hey, who was counting? Ok, I was!!!). Not once did he make eye contact with me, then he had the audacity to start picking up the extra weights that were laying around the area and throwing them onto the weight rack of my machine (Can we say rude boys and girls?!).
Then the icing on the cake was what happened as I was leaving. As I said earlier the layout of this gym is awesome and they have the state of the art equipment. While walking down the super-wide hallway two really buff guys walked toward me. One was in my direct path. He paused briefly from his conversation and looked up at me then turned to continue talking, and kept walking directly toward me. He expected me to move out of his pathway. Well, it didn't happen. Just as I thought we were going to collide, he did a move which looked like what football players do to avoid getting tackled and barely missed hitting me. I walked by the front desk, no goodbye, hope you had a nice workout, Happy New Year's nothing.
So I asked myself was I reading too much into things? Was I being overly sensitive. Then after a very tearful conversation that I had with Diva Lu, I knew that I wasn't imagining things. She works at Curves and as it turns out her and the owner had just had a conversation that night about my new gym and a few others. The crux of their conversation was the difference between STUFF and SPIRIT (Thank God for Diva Lu and her words of encouragement and sense of humor that night).
Then last night I returned to my old gym. Yes, treadmill #6 will shutdown if your speed exceeds 4.0 mph. Yes, elliptical #3 makes squeaking noises and clicks while you're on it. Yes, the weight room is not big enough to whoop a cat in (not an animal hater, this is one of Mama's expressions of speech). Yes, they lack on STUFF but they have so much SPIRIT. And the folks at the old gym are not just nice to me, but they're friendly to everyone regardless of your size and whether or not you have a designer label on your workout clothes.
So I said all that to say that support groups are important to every aspect of this lifestyle change and fitness journey. I'm not giving up on my new gym (esp. because I locked into a 2-year contract). As a matter of fact, I'm planning to make a visit in the immediate future in one of my most classic business suits. And I plan to have a "Come to JESUS" meeting with the manager and remind him of the promises that he made prior to me signing the corporate contract.
I am privileged in that I have the opportunity to have a membership at two gyms. Not all of my employees have that luxury. STUFF is nice, but they deserve some SPIRIT as well.
Okay, I'm through venting and I feel better.
Thursday, March 20, 2008
Day 3 was a struggle...my workday ended on a bad note and I ALLOWED that to carry over into my workout.
I hung in there and stumbled through my lower body workout and was thankful to have TJOI214 there to listen to me vent about my day.
Anyway, I now better understand why I am a cardio-a-holic. Although I have always enjoyed my work, regardless of the position, I usually have high stress jobs. The old Deondra would eat to alleviate stress, the new Deondra would jump on an elliptical machine, stairmaster or treadmill, get in a zone and not get off until I had de-stressed (which would be 45-90 minutes later). Plus, cardio is easy to learn, to an extent you just hop on the machines and go. Well for the next few weeks, I have to learn to get in that same zone while I'm strength training and work on improving my form and technique.
Then the layout at my primary gym is not conducive for a *NEWBIE* who is training with free weights, so until I get into the swing of things, I will be doing my upper and lower body workouts at the new gym I just joined a few weeks ago (it is very high tech and you don't have to wait to use the equipment).
Anyway, I'm still in it to win it and am determined to stay with the program all 12 weeks.
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