Journal of My Road to Success
December 28, 2017: I had just finished watching the movie Fantastic Beasts when I noticed I had two voice mail messages. I sat and listened to the first message from Zak and started to cry. I couldn’t believe that I had won the sweepstakes. I had assumed that I would be starting the New Year trying to figure out what combination of things to try to get into shape. I texted friends and called family because I was so excited. Hopefully I will begin a journey from “fluffy” to FIT.
December 29, 2017: I ran out to Target and bought a few active wear tops and bras because I didn’t know exactly what to wear. I hurried over to Focused Results and met Dan who then measured me, took my picture, checked my BMI, etc. He also checked my walking gait and had me do squats. I wasn’t sure what to expect. I am still not sure what to expect. We set up consistent meetings for T/TH at 5pm and still need to add one more day during the week. I will sometime soon have nutritional coaching. Excited and hopeful right now.
January 7, 2017: Third day of working out. I AM SORE, but not crying. I met Dan and had no idea what to expect on the first day. Pleasantly surprised that he didn’t kill me the first day but he did two great things. One he made me sweat and feel like I was truly working out, and although I was very sore the next day, I was still able to climb stairs at work and function. Second, he made me feel like there was hope that I could get back in shape. I even looked forward to my second workout with him. Day two – weights with lunges ugh! So I said the weights were a little heavy and he handed me heavier ones. He constantly monitored my progress, encouraged me to keep going and challenged me to do even more. I was sweating and sore. The night before day three I ached and was trying to figure out how to complete my second night of homework. I was to work with my exercise ball and do squats against the wall, and to work my core I was to do that thing….the dreaded PLANK. I know most people have done a plank before, but I just learned how to do this and oh goodness do I shake and secretly or maybe not so secretly whine. I did the homework once but the second time I ached so badly I couldn’t do it. Day three I met Drew. I didn’t sweat, but I did workout. He did things differently. I really needed that after my other two workouts. I know he was just seeing how I moved and setting up a plan in his mind for me for next week, but I was able to continue to improve my skills. He used some sort of “tube” to roll out my thighs and I could have cried with relief. It helped me immensely. I felt like I would be able to walk again. Drew had me do some different exercises, which worked other parts of my body, and I really like the combination of trainers. I hope I will get to work with all of them. The two so far have been amazingly patient and inspiring.
January 14, 2017– I think I have found my muscle elixir. The foam roller takes my muscles from barely functioning to completely workable. I know it sounds crazy but I am able to go up and down stairs without crying out in pain. Yes, I still feel the muscles but it doesn’t feel like I am dying. Dan offered a foam rolling class that I will take him up on next week. I will get a feel for using it myself and see how I like it. I am continuing to do my homework of planks and squats. Some days I can handle 30 seconds other days I fail miserably but keep trying. I am doing a lot of core moves, balance activities and started the treadmill. This curved shaped treadmill is kind of fun and I actually like using it. The rowing machine wasn’t too bad. It feels good to sweat again. I know while I am working out it is a struggle but once I finish I have that endorphin glow that feels great. It feels even better after a shower.
January 20, 2017 – I was so looking forward to the foam rolling class only to be disappointed in myself. I worked out for a half an hour, finished my session and rolled (sorry for the poor attempt at humor) into the next class. I wanted the class to be all relaxation and feel good. Instead it was a healthy dose of stretching and rolling. After my earlier session, I was trying to hold up my body and was sadly unable to hold it as long as the other patrons in the class. I was annoyed with myself for not really knowing what I was doing even though the instructions were clear. To follow up with this hour long evening I went home and woke up in the middle of the night with horrific leg cramps. Mostly I think I was dehydrated and probably did too much. I decided that I needed to learn more about foam rolling before I took the class again. I started asking more questions to Dan and doing a little research. I am slowly learning more about it and he suggested I take another class to get more comfortable with it. I know once I feel more confident I will try it again. In the mean time I asked if we could work on strengthening my arms so I won’t be disappointed in myself again. I know I am being hard on myself after this class but I couldn’t help it.
January 26, 2017 – This is week four and we have started working more on cardio. The first 15 minutes I felt so out of shape doing cardio. Dan said if I wanted to swear at him in my journal I needed to change his name. Ha! After cardio stuff he had me do wall sitting and it was fairly easy. Do not tell him that. He will so have me doing weights and who knows what else. He did mention that I looked bored and that he would happily give me weights to hold. Ha, not a chance (at least not this time) It was the only thing that day that was actually easy and gave me a breather after the cardio part. I love the way they rotate what is being worked on. I went from a couple of weeks ago of barely being able to hold a plank to a whopping 47 seconds now. I know that may not sound like much but I was very proud of my accomplishments. Saturday I get to see how Drew did in his cage fight. Hoping he is now 6 – 0.
Exercises from memory over the past month completely non technical terminology: TRX – squats, squats with overhead arm raises, side lunges, push ups, jump and change forward leg from squat/lunge position. Balance ball – step on/off, balance, touch steps fast, leg raise and back down while holding weight, leg raise lift weight up, step up/down on balance ball, bench squat to standing and raising weight, planks, burpees, push-ups using bench, push-ups using balance ball upside down, mountain climbers, kick your butt running in place, jumping jacks, jumping jacks with a weight, wall sitting, Circuits of 3 exercises done 2 or 3 times.
Favorite things: laughing while working out, sweating after a work out but feeling like I have accomplished something, seeing slight definition to my waist / hips again, feeling more positive about myself, other patrons with quirky personalities that help inspire me to keep moving (even if they are talking to themselves)
Unhappy things: planks, cardio days when you just want chocolate, side plank (new as of today)
Goals: Join Weight Watchers to make that next step happen. I am slowly toning, now I need to start losing more than just inches. Super secret goal: being able to wear a bikini without anyone looking and then thinking she should NOT be wearing that.
Things I have done to help and wonderings: Talked to LBMS nurse about Focused Results, talked to acupuncturist and she went and loved it. Mentioned it on Facebook to my friends. Talked with my friends at the high school. Wondered about offering reduced rates for LBMS, LBES, and LFHS teachers. I think they would be interested. Wondered about a program where you go outside running with runners and offered suggestions on their gate, inspired them, checked to make sure they were doing things correctly and then added strength classes for them.
February 4, 2017: Ugh the “stomach flu” is going around and I didn’t feel very good on Tuesday. My son was home sick and I was trying hard to not end up in bed too. I still showed up and we did a modified work out. Thursday, I was almost back to normal and we began working on lunges across the room and new exercises. Saturday was AMAZING!!!! I got to do cardio that didn’t feel like cardio. I put on boxing gloves for the first time ever and got to hit Drew’s gloves. I had never done this before and it left a big smile on my face and it didn’t even feel like working out. I enjoyed it, and hope he will incorporate more kickboxing moves for me. I love that the trainers listen and come up with new ideas all the time. It has been a little over a month and both Dan and Drew change up exercises and keep me on my toes. I love it and I can feel myself getting stronger. I managed to do a plank for 1 minute on Thursday woohoo! Then I got hit with the side plank. A new exercise that goes up there on the list of things I don’t like so much, but I did it and I know I will see results!
February 12, 2017: Woohoo! I combined my Weight Watcher’s program with the personal training and lost three pounds in one week. On Thursday I was angry with my teenage son. I bet that sounds familiar, and asked for a HARD workout. I was granted my wish and lo and behold my body decided on Saturday that I was SORE. I probably did something stupid and twisted my back too much. Saturday I was given a gentler workout to help with my messed up back. No, you cannot use soreness as an excuse not to workout. The Saturday workout helped loosen me up and I followed it up with swimming. So you would think that I would feel better. Nope. Not Focused Results fault, but mine because I moved furniture out of my mom’s house from 10 am – 6:30 pm on Sunday. Then I had to transfer the furniture into my house and bring the U-Haul back to the rental place. Finish time 9 pm. Oh and am I sore.
February 16, 2017: Tuesday Dan went easy on me because I was still hurting! We did a lot of core work and stretching to help strengthen my back. It must have worked because today I did the special of the week and brought my son along to workout. I felt great. I can see where my 7 weeks of training kicked my son’s butt. (Ha!) He still enjoyed it and I will try to pay to get him in once a month to get ideas, suggestions etc. to set up a workout routine for him. It felt great to see him sweating and breathing heavy and me to be able to complete the sets without feeling like he looked. Oh and the Weight Watchers… I hit my 5 lb. loss this week. A total of 5.5 lbs. so far. I still have a long “weigh” to go but anything helps. I just need to keep a positive attitude and try my best.
February 23, 2017: I ended up changing my schedule this week for my CT scan on Saturday. Nervous because I have lost 7.6 lbs. and need to take steroids for a few days. I have heard horror stories about gaining weight and being hungry while on steroids. I worked out with Drew on Monday, Dan on Tuesday and Thursday. They mention how I am getting stronger and have to swap out my weights to heavier ones. They take the exercises that I can do and put a twist to them to challenge me even more. Burpees now have a jump at the end. Planks have knee bends or toe taps. Lunges across the room use hand weights. I like the feel of getting stronger. I definitely notice my body responding to the workouts. I laugh at the fact that my pants are getting looser and felt like I had to keep pulling it up during the workout. I know it isn’t amusing to the trainers but it lets me know the training combined with the Weight Watchers is working.
March 9, 2017: I ended up gaining back 2 lbs. Not horrible considering the steroids, but definitely frustrating. I haven’t been able to take the weight off yet so I told Dan about it and he ramped up the workout. Even now, after taking a long hot shower, I am sitting on my couch trying to will myself to get up. (Maybe even whimpering a little) The benefit was I wasn’t super hungry at dinner and had an omelet, asparagus and a banana. I felt wonderful, but sore after working out. I felt empowered and energized completing my workout and working my way towards a more fit me. I am not expecting a skinny me only a fit, healthy, smaller me. Thanks guys! Building confidence is rewarding all by itself. Oh yeah, and I did 30 push ups and then a killer plank at the end.
March 25, 2017: Had kidney surgery on Friday the 17th to which they didn’t find anything, but oh was I sore. My green dye for St Patrick’s Day ended up being whatever dye they put in my kidneys. I had cramps and the chills and went to work Monday feeling miserable. I managed to trudge in to see what Drew could do for me on Monday and then take myself home to sleep. I explained where I ached (the whole lower half of the trunk of my body). Drew put me to work sweating and
doing stability and mobilization. It wasn’t like any workout I had before. Instead it focused on helping me to feel better. I thought I was kind of crazy for going in and working out, but it turns out it was the best thing for me. I went home to shower and immediately felt 1,000 times better. The next morning I woke up smiling and as if the surgery had never happened. My students even commented that I looked so much better than the day before. I was so impressed! I was a little concerned that I was going from Drew on Monday to Dan on Tuesday. I didn’t know what my workout would be like and even though I felt wonderful I was concerned that I would regress. My fears were completely unfounded. Dan worked me slowly knowing that I was still recovering and I continued to feel even better. I met with Dan again on Thursday and Drew on Saturday and they were slowly building me back up with the warning that next week we would amp it up. Hopefully with spring break here I will feel like “bring it baby.”