Daily Archives: May 27, 2011
Today was the last day of the 6-week program, and despite some struggles, panting, grunting, groaning, complaining, cursing, and gritting my teeth I got through it!
These programs are designed to help you build up to doing 100 CONSECUTIVE push-ups and 200 CONSECUTIVE crunches and squats. But total today, over 9 sets, I did 245 push-ups, 378 crunches, and 331 squats!
The next step, really, is to take the test and see how many you can do consecutively. Well, I won’t be doing that today…maybe not even tomorrow because I want to let my muscles recover. But probably Sunday, I’m going to see where I stand.
I’m glad it’s over. It feels SO GOOD to have set a goal and succeed in doing it. It’s not the end of my workouts, of course–it’s just the beginning! But I think it really helps to set up a program with a finite amount of time so you have that “light at the end of the tunnel” to look forward to. And trust me, this is the third time I’ve started this program, but only the first time I got through it. It’s not easy, but it’s worth it!
What have I gotten out of it? Well, the most obvious result is my arms. OMG I HAVE TRICEPS! And yes, biceps too, but my triceps are popping like I’ve never seen them before! I never even saw them THIS defined when I rowed crew! Second is my legs. SOLID! Sure, my upper thighs need to lose some padding, but my legs themselves feel AMAZING. My knees don’t appear so knobby anymore with the muscles above and below them. And my core feels stronger too! The results are harder to see, and even difficult to feel with my hands, but I can tell my waist is tighter under the extra padding.
My heart rate monitor also has a “fitness test” in which it monitors your heart rate at a resting state to determine your fitness level. I took it on May 9, and had a result of 35, which was the low-end of “Moderate” for my age. That was a little over 2 weeks ago after I had ALREADY been doing this program for a while. I took it again today, and got a 38, which is in the beginning of the “Good” range. And this was only the first fitness program I’ve done, so it can only get better from here!
I’m also glad this program is over for other reasons: I think my body was finally beginning to adapt, as my heart rate monitor showed that I wasn’t reaching the same peak as I was in Weeks 4 and 5. That’s expected, and now it’s time to switch it up to work my muscles in different ways. I have a new strength-training program planned for the next month, so this is good timing. I think I got all I could out of this program for now.
Also, doing 245 push-ups puts a lot of pressure on the wrists. I would occasionally pause in the middle of a set (especially the final set where I work until exhaustion) to stretch and flex my wrists. I’m going to look into other ways to both strengthen them and correct my form some more for when I do this program again.
But overall, I felt this was a good “Intro to strength training” to get myself on a schedule, do some basic exercises that I could do anywhere (I have done this program in a hotel room on a trip before), and see some progress that keeps me motivated. It was a long 6 weeks, but SO worth it!
Tomorrow will also be the last day of the SparkPeople Boot Camp, so that’s two programs completed at the same time.
If I could give any advice to people considering programs like these, it’s this: You can do it if you put your mind to it. Just give it an honest try!
Yesterday’s report…. Read the rest of this entry