What a difference 14 days can make
Tuesday, July 30, 2013
Somewhere on Spark I read an article, and I think it may have been by Coach Nicole, about jump starting fitness by setting a goal of doing 14 days in a row of exercise. The article did not give any specific types of exercise but rather the goal was to develop fitness as a way of life. The goal that I set was to schedule and perform regular exercise for 14 days in a row with no set duration for what I'm doing, the type of exercise or when I'd do the workout. Yesterday I finished my streak and want to say thanks to so many who encouraged me to keep working to reach the goal.
When I announced this goal in a previous blog many told me the streak would be its own reward. Those people were wise, especially now as I measure how my body has changed in two short weeks. My biggest pleasure is in the clothing size change. When I started this streak I was wearing a size 52 in men's jeans. As I write this blog I'm comfortably wearing a size 48 jean. In the two week period of time that was my streak I’ve had to take up three notches of where my belt buckles. My 3XL shirts were comfortable before I began my streak, they are now all too large and even a couple of 2XL shirts are becoming a bit lose. People are starting to notice that I am smaller and yesterday I noticed it myself while I was at an exercise station at the gym. Yes, there are also weight numbers to back up my change. Two weeks ago I was at 370.6 pounds. This morning I jumped on my scales and was at 353.8 pounds. No the weight loss was not the big weight loss we all know about from the first week of changing how we eat. I had been Sparking again for three weeks before my fitness challenge. In those three weeks my weight had gone from 386.5 to the 370.6 number. I can now see and clench muscles that did not exist even two weeks ago. Vain, perhaps, but I’ll take that progress. I can now walk up and down my halls in the buildings where I work without being so badly out of breath, and I can now walk from my office area to our central office which is a major non-scale victory for me.
If you are curious I’ll explain what I actually did for my exercise streak. In a nutshell I did cardio on a stationary bike, using a 20 minute interval style which I have since bumped up to 30 minutes and gone from a low intensity to moderate. The program is here on Spark somewhere, and has a warm up, steady state, intense work, back to steady state, and alternate followed by a cool down. The ramping up and down actually engages my mind in what I’m doing and makes the time seem to go by faster. I did strength training for upper body, lower body, and core. I’ve done walking, mostly at work in and around lunch. Spark videos are great for variety, thank you Coach Nicole. My Son gets frustrated with me sometime as I also use the Biggest Loser Challenge for Wii and their workouts for box fit and yoga.
Yes, the streak was its own reward which I did not fully understand until I wrote this blog. A dear friend just sent me an email that asked the next logical question, now what? I’ve been considering a cycle of exercise two days take one off and repeat. My plan would be to do cardio one day and strength training the next. I’m also considering a cycle of exercise each day of the work week and taking the weekends off, but Saturday and Sunday are so good schedule wise to get a good burn done. Again my thanks for so many kind words of encouragement! Now I’m off to EBay to see if I can find a cool fountain pen as my other reward.