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30 days in [Mar. 31st, 2014|12:24 pm]
So, I'm 30% through my hundred-days-at-the-gym commitment. What are the results so far?

-I've gained 2 pounds
-I am not able to lift appreciably heavier weights
-Other than swimming, I am not appreciably faster
-Lifting yesterday, I twinged my old shoulder injury which made me temporarily lose control of the weight and pulled muscles on my left side in my arm and my chest wall that keep giving my twinges that make me scared it's my heart (yes, I am going to the doctor on Wednesday to get myself checked out, but taking Advil made it go away yesterday evening, so I'm not too worried)
-I have improved my abs so that I can do 3 sets of 10 leglifts on the captain's chair, whereas at the beginning I could only do 3 sets of 5

What is my analysis of these results? It would be easy to be discouraged, because the markers that we generally look for are not there. But I'm looking at it a different way. I was already walking quite a bit and lifting, though not with regularity and discipline. So my fitness in these areas was already pretty good. Therefore, it's not actually surprising to not see much change in so short a time, since my baseline in those areas was already high.

My swimming speed and my abs, however, were abysmal. I hadn't been swimming since last summer, and I hadn't been doing ab work. So it's not surprising that I saw quick improvement in those areas because my baseline was really low.

When we see a story about someone who made vast improvements in their fitness really quickly, they usually involve either someone who was not involved in fitness at all prior to their effort, or someone already in great shape who is now making fitness pretty much their full-time job (I'm thinking of actor training up for physical roles where they spend 6 weeks in intense training and such). If a person is starting from a position of "already working out and in reasonable shape," then the changes that upping that workout time will bring are going to be less dramatic.

Which is to say, yes it would be awesome to say that my cardio fitness went through the roof and I can now benchpress a Volkswagen. But also not a realistic expectation. My improvements are smaller, but they are there. And they will continue to grow.

[User Picture]From: ba1126
2014-03-31 05:01 pm (UTC)
I applaud your realistic attitude and your commitment!!

I have a Health Rider (kind of in between a stationary bike and a rower) and I am getting on it 5 times a day for 30 repetitions each time. Since I hit 70 this year, I'm determined to exercise, but getting bit by a dog last Fall has caused me to avoid walking. Your sharing is helpful!!
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2014-03-31 07:26 pm (UTC)
Good for you, finding a way around your avoidance of walking!
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[User Picture]From: hugh_mannity
2014-03-31 07:48 pm (UTC)
Yep. While I'm noticeably stronger than I was in November when I joined my gym, I can't benchpress a VW yet either. However I've noticed a bunch of little stuff: The way my pants fit, though the scale remains stuck. How much easier it is to climb a couple of flights of stairs or carry the groceries home.

I'll probably never be able to compete for Mr. Universe, but if I can make the next few decades easier, that'll do me just fine.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2014-04-01 04:01 am (UTC)
So far my clothes fit the same. I have been undergoing a lot of stress....
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[User Picture]From: bunny42
2014-03-31 09:11 pm (UTC)
Muscle weighs more than fat. That's a fact. Two pounds isn't much, since you've been working out. Can you see differences in how your clothes fit or how you feel (other than that pulled muscle)?

Who'd wanna benchpress a Volkswagen? Imagine twinging your shoulder with a VW over your head! Not a pretty thought!

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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2014-03-31 09:35 pm (UTC)
No difference in the way clothes fit. I just don't forget me that much progress yet. But that's okay, it comes slowly.
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