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A New Year for more Fitness

MaxenWMaxenW California
edited Mar 2010 in Fitness
Hello!

I'm a relative newcomer to the Icrontic Forums, but I've been following this particular forum section with interest for a couple months now and decided to finally contribute.

Last May I turned 30 and with that daunting new age thought about my physical health which I found somewhat lacking. I decided to spend the remainder of the year working to increase strength, flexibility and endurance.

To this end, I bought some running shoes, a heart rate monitor, set of 15lb and 25lb free weights a pull-up bar and set out. The first couple months was pretty much a disaster. I worked up a schedule that was overly ambitious and a bunch of life kept jumping on the tracks and derailed me.

After a couple of months and a move to another state, I was ready to try again. This time, though I was a bit more careful and slower in my pace. I started with running. I am NOT a very good runner, nor do I ever anticipate being a great runner; however, I have made significant improvements with my running ability.

I started out with the C25K (couch to 5k plan) so that I wouldn't burn myself out on it. Anybody who is interested in leaning to run, I HIGHLY recommend this plan. It starts you off very slow and every week you gradually increase your distance and time until at the end of 9 weeks you are running a 5k in approximately 34 minutes (11 minutes/mile). While this is hardly a stellar time, it's a great start from the couch!

After I completed this program in Mid September, I had to set up some new running goals. I set to have an average speed of 9 minutes/mile by the end of October and under 8.5 minutes/mile by the end of November. I ran 3.25 miles, 3 times per week and used the off days for stretching and other sorts of exercise that I'll get to below. On November 1st I ran a single mile and clocked in at 9:01 not quite reaching my goal, but honestly, close enough to make me happy.

Unfortunately, I must admit that the cold weather put a stop to my running progress.. I'll resume running in the spring and perhaps stop again in the summer saving this preferably outdoor activity for the spring and fall. Maybe I'll take up swimming in the summer to fill this void.

As for my other exercise. I got a copy of the P90X program that you see on late night TV. I must say.. it's.. pretty amazing. Aside from this past week which I've given myself off for reflection, vacation and to heal.. I've been doing selected portions of the program for 10 weeks now and the improvement with even that is encouraging.

The first day of the exercise routine goes like this....
2 sets of the following:
Standard push-ups
Wide Front Pull-ups
Military Push-ups
Reverse Grip Chin-ups
Wide Fly Push-ups
Closed Grip Overhand Pull-ups
Decline Push-ups
'Heavy Pants'
Diamond Push-ups
'Lanwmowers'
'Dive-Bomber' Push-ups
Back flies

Then you do 20 minutes of ab/core exercises.

The FIRST time I did it.. I could NOT do the second set. I struggled through the first set with incredibly low numbers, vomited and finished the ab exercise, vomited again and curled up in a ball for an hour. However, I've stuck with it.. and now in addition to doing both sets my reps per set are more than doubled.

Comparison Chart:

Week 1 (Monday, 10/19/2009)............ Week 10 (Monday 12/21/2009)
Standard push-ups................15/0...........25/25
Wide Front Pull-ups................3/0.............5/5
Military Push-ups...................5/0............15/15
Reverse Grip Chin-ups.............3/0..............6/6
Wide Fly Push-ups................10/0............20/20
Closed Grip Overhand Pull-ups..2/0..............5/4
Decline Push-ups...................5/0............15/15
'Heavy Pants'..................20@15lb/0........20@25/20@25
Diamond Push-ups.................5/0............10/10
'Lanwmowers'..................20@15lb/0........20@25/20@25
'Dive-Bomber' Push-ups..........5/0............10/10
Back flies.......................10@15lb/0.........15@15/15@15

I took some initial measurements using a homedic body composition scale for comparison.
152lbs, 8.5% fat, 44.6% muscle 5.3% bone.
Now I'm at
141lbs, 6.6% fat, 46.5% muscle 5.4% bone.

While I SEVERELY doubt that the fat % is accurate, I'm pretty happy with the change and the weight is probably pretty accurate - for a while I doubted that, but then I tested it by putting my weights on the scale and it got that number right.

So, that's where I stand now. Since I'm about to jump into the new year, I thought I'd wise to reflect on the past and project to the future.

I'm going to continue doing my modified P90X program, focusing on the Chest/Back, Arms/Shoulders and Legs/Back days on Monday, Wednesday and Friday respectively - spending the remaining days for recovery, stretching and the occasional yoga.

As for objective goals for the year:
Strength:
+1 inch of bicep growth (currently at 13in)
Visible muscle definition for all 8 of the abdominal muscles (currently at 2) - Yeah, vain - I know ;)

Endurance:
<8 minute mile (currently at 9 minutes)

Flexibility:
Regain my ability to do full splits and full pike position (hey, I used to be a gymnast)

So, there you have it.

Anybody else have some new year's resolutions to make?

Comments

  • kryystkryyst Ontario, Canada
    edited Mar 2010
    Sounds like quiet the regiment, congrats for sticking with it. I was considering P90x and have some friends that are using that program to but I know I don't have the willpower to keep up with it.
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