Last week was a good week. I've completed 2 full weeks of my exercise program.
It's not a very complex program, really. It just requires that I do it, and do it consistently. The program comes from the April 2008 issue of Prevention magazine. I don't know that there's anything especially outstanding about this routine. Consider: Prevention magazine comes out with a new routine every month that's going to transform our bodies! If they really hit on one routine that really changed things for lots of people they'd republish it.
I tried it the first time because it gradually increased the amount of time spent each week, and that was what I needed then. I'm doing it now because it worked for me the first time!
3 days a week, I do an endurance walk. Each week, I add on 5 minutes to the walk. 3 days a week, I do some strength training with a resistance band for about 15 minutes (let me tell you, I reallllllly feel it when I'm working on it. Not so much afterward, though.) followed by a different walking routine for each of the 3 days, adding on repetitions/minutes each week. First is 4x2's - 4 minutes of a fast past (4 mph) followed by 2 minutes of an easy pace (3 mph) repeated several times. The next one is doing 30 second surges - 30 seconds at 5 mph (walking, not running!), 1 minute easy (3 mph). The third is even stevens - a "race" pace 4-4.5 mph followed by a moderate pace (3-3.5 mph) with the length of time spent at each pace increasing by the week (week one was 1 minute each, 6 times; week two was 90 seconds each, 6 times, etc.)
I love having a treadmill for this program. I can set the pace, and just keep going steady until time is up. I know if I were trying this outside walking, I probably would not go as fast or as consistently as I do with the treadmill.
Want to know how I keep track of everything? It's high-tech, I tell you.
Ye olde Sticker Chart.
It worked before, and it works now, too! I think part of why a sticker chart works for me is that it's one thing I won't "cheat" on - I don't give myself stickers unless I did the work to get one. Otherwise I'll feel guilty, and that would totally bust my groove. The other reason it works for me is that other people (namely, Jude) can see what I have (or haven't) been doing, and that helps keep me accountable when there is no one else around to know if I did or didn't exercise.
Oddly enough, I've found social media (like twitter) to be useful - I love being able to post that I finally exercised after sitting around all morning in my pj's avoiding real work. Not that I love procrastinating. I mean, I love being able to post that I've finally overcome my procrastination and done something!
My number still aren't budging much, so I think I finally need to add in a calorie counting aspect to my routine. I've used babyfit (by spark people), and it's okay, but since I am not pregnant, and Nathanael's not nursing much, I think I might go ahead and use spark people.
My intent with counting calories is to help me get a renewed grasp on portion sizes. I believe that I will feel hungry at times, and I just have to figure out how to mentally deal with that. I need to shift away from carbs and dairy products and move towards vegetables and fruits. We don't really keep junk food in the house. I don't keep cookies, or snack foods or candies in the house very often. (I buy crackers for kid snacks) We eat whole grain foods, we avoid artificial food additives. I just eat a lot when I eat. And, I admit, I sneak foods when I'm out. That's probably really getting me (always has, but must change.) Like, eating out during our weekly shopping trip, or buying a "treat" like a cookie or chocolate bars or a donut when we go out at other times.
Charlotte over at The Great Fitness Experiment has been writing about intuitive eating. I think that's something I need to get a handle on. Separating my mental stuff from the physical need for food. It's all wrapped up and warpped up together right now.