In January 2008, I embarked on my weight loss journey. This is by far the longest amount of time I have ever committed to healthy eating and regular exercise without feeling as if I was missing out on life. As I blogged over the past year, keeping things interesting in the workouts has been a challenge for me. Because I work out at home, and because I do not have a personal trainer, I have to come up with my workout itinerary every day. For 7 years of working out 4-6 times per week, some days, I felt as if I was in a workout rut and was running out of choices of interesting workouts to do that day.
Photo credit: vtnative (photo may not be used without permission)
Earlier this year, when I blogged about the 289 workouts I completed last year, one trend I noticed was the fact I rarely completed any of my workout DVDs past level one. For example, I have done Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred DVD since I started my journey in 2008. In the first few years of conquering the level one workouts, I had to take several breaks because I was not strong enough to complete every repetition. As my body strengthened gradually, I did not need as many breaks. Eventually, the entire workout started to feel comfortable and easy, which stalled my progress.
In listening to the DVD trainers, they preach in order for our bodies to change, we need to push ourselves more and reach a level of discomfort. This is when I decided it was time to put on my big girl pants and enter the phase of level 2 workouts. Compared to level one, these routines increase in intensity by incorporating weights, jumps, planks, balance and speed. Exercises in plank position continue to be the biggest challenge for me. I continue to strive for proper form, but each time, it gets better and I am being patient with myself. Within the past couple of weeks, I noticed gradual progress because I am able to hold my body in resistance poses for longer durations than expected. The best part is I am again noticing certain parts of my body are getting leaner.
Now, I am starting to feel like an athlete. This is a long way from where I was when I started. I am less afraid to try crazy moves, like one-armed planks, warrior 3, or one-legged burpee’s. There are many days I am not sure if it is possible for my body to move in certain ways. However, I won’t know unless I try. I am starting to believe I am strong and my body will not break if I push myself. For busy mom’s like me, it is nice I found a way to advance my workouts without investing more of my valuable time. Considering how busy my life has been lately, I feel so lucky to be moving forward instead of sideways.
Level 3, I am coming for you!
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