What I love most about Suzanne’s weight programs she’s designed for me is the self confidence it gives me. I always always always leave the gym feeling stronger than I did when I walked in. It’s expected now. It makes me feel powerful and happy.
One of my favorite new moves that Suzanne sent me is the Weighted Plank Pulls. This move is HARD. Seriously. Not only are you doing a plank with only one hand, but you’re trying to stay in the same position while you pull the weight back and then forward again. This is a killer ab workout. My body is usually shaking by the last few reps!
Another new one for me is the Eccentric Incline Pushup. She has me doing this to “failure,” meaning you do the exercise as many times as you can before your muscles just give out. So far my “failure” for pushups is 10. I’m hoping as the weeks go on that number goes up a lot more.
She also suggested I start doing this triceps stretch during my cool down session. This isn’t a new move for me, but it’s definitely one I neglect. I am pretty good about stretching after my workouts now (too many injuries woke me up to that!) but for some reason I always forget to stretch the upper body too!
The other night I went to Body Pump. I’ve been trying to go again once a week. In the last two months I’ve been half a dozen times or so. I’m not currently doing a program from Suzanne and just needed a change up in my workout routine and schedule. While it’s sometimes difficult for me to make it to class, I’m always glad I go. Even when I’m hobbling around for days afterwards!
So last night at Body Pump there was a new teacher and he was much harder than the others. I don’t know why, it’s basically the same routine every time, but for some reason it was more challenging. There were several moments in the class when my muscles were shaking and sweat was dripping down my forehead that I wanted to quit. He said “You came here for a reason, WORK IT!” And I reminded myself, of COURSE this is going to be hard, that’s why I’m here! The challenge is good for me mentally and physically. The difficult workout gets me out of my rut, pushes my body to the limits and it MAKES ME STRONGER.
The next night I went to Spin class. I went back a few weeks ago for the first time in over a year. The first time I had some knee discomfort–difficult to say if it was pain because I am so hyper sensitive now! I took a few weeks off from spin and went back again. I told the teacher before class that I might leave half way through and told her it was due to an injury. I hate leaving a class mid-way through because I feel like it’s rude and disruptive. She said that was okay.
The class was challenging but unlike last month, I took it easy and didn’t try to burn out right at the beginning of the class! The session was all hill climbs. I went easy on the resistance (I still added resistance, just not as much as I’d normally do) and there were a lot of standing climbs, which also helped. This time I made it through 45 minutes of class.
As I left early the instructor said at least I made it longer than half way and she was right! I did what I could at the time and listened to my body when it was time to go. My knees were feeling okay during class, after class and the next day. I’m hoping that next time I go I can stay for the full hour!
Every day I get stronger and stronger. I can feel the weight lifting sculpting and shaping my body and as I walk around I can feel the difference it makes in my knees. Dare I say, my knees are getting happier?
About Lisa Eirene Lisa lost 110 pounds through calorie counting and exercise. She swims, bikes, runs, hikes and is enjoying life in Portland, Oregon. Her weight loss story has been featured in First Magazine, Yahoo Health, Woman's Day and Glamour.com.