Posted by: xandra26fr | July 19, 2011

P90X Classic: My Equipment List

Here’s a list of the equipment I use during P90X:

1 – P90X Extreme Home Fitness Workout Program

1 – Iron Gym Total Upper Body Workout Bar – Extreme Edition

1 – Timex T5G971 Unisex Sports Personal Heart-Rate Monitor Watch

1 – 100-lb Lifeline Plugged Cable Resistance Band

2 – 6-lb Dumbbell

2 – 8-lb Dumbbell

2 – 10-lb Dumbbell

2 – 15-lb Dumbbell

1 – Yoga Block

1 – Yoga Mat

1 – Chair

This is the equipment I used; I’m sure other pull-up bars and heart-rate monitors work, too, but I can attest that both of these specific models still work great after 3+ months of heavy use. Also, the weights listed work for me (I’m 5’3″ and weigh between 125-130), so keep in mind that you’ll need to adjust the weights accordingly.

Posted by: xandra26fr | June 28, 2011

P90X Classic: Quick Recap of Round 1

Round 1 is done! And I’ve already started round 2 on Saturday, but I thought a quick recap of round 1 might be helpful (especially so I can compare the results to those I achieve from round 2)!

EXERCISE: Day 0 / Day 90+
Pull Ups: 1.25 / 6.5
Vertical Leap: 10″ / 11”
Push Ups: 21 / 28 (not sure what happened here…I usually do 30+ in one set during Chest & Back)
Toe Touch: 10.5″ / 13.5″
Wall Squat: 1:08 / 2:27
Bicep Curls: 7lbs x 35 / 10lbs x 36
In and Outs: 30 / 75

* Pressing play for 89 consecutive days (and tackling a 23-mile canoe trip, which I’m counting towards day 90)!!! I dedicated at least an hour of time everyday to making myself a healthier and stronger person, and I’m proud of myself for that!
* I can now do 6.5 unassisted wide-front pull ups!
* I can now do 8 unassisted reverse-grip chin ups!
* I can now do 1 unassisted corn-cob pull up!
* I have not consumed caffeine for 90+ days!!!

* Not increasing weight earlier.
* Not sticking with the diet more stringently.

* Using heavier weights.
* Using a 100-lb band to continue pull-up reps instead of chair assistance.
* Tailoring the nutrition so it’s more lifestyle-friendly; I want to eat better for life, not just for 90 days.
* Adding more activities that can be substituted, in a pinch, for workouts so I’m less restricted time-wise. (For example, my husband and I went mountain biking on Sunday and biked over 10 miles of trails, so I didn’t feel awful about not doing the scheduled Plyo workout.)

Posted by: xandra26fr | June 16, 2011

P90X Classic: Week 13

I’m on the home stretch!!!!

Day 85 (Saturday) – Yoga
Saturday morning Yoga…not much to report…other than the fact that I do love doing Yoga so much more on a Saturday morning than during the work week!

Day 86 (Sunday) – Core Synergistics
So, I guess pushing play everyday for the past 85 days took its toll on our DVD player…it wouldn’t work tonight! So, unfortunately, the Yoga DVD is still in the player but my husband went online and was able to piece together videos for me for most of the workout and then I complete the moves I know I skipped (the book is very helpful in times like this). Tomorrow I’ll be heading out to buy a new DVD player 🙂

Day 87 (Monday) – Kenpo
So, after work I stopped and bought a new DVD player and hooked it up as soon as I got home so I could do Kenpo. I was quite sad that this is the last time I do Kenpo and I’ll definitely be using this DVD even when I’m not doing P90X!

Day 88 (Tuesday) – Stretch
Yea for stretching! It felt really good to take an hour to take care of my body.

Day 89 (Wednesday) – Core Synergistics
I did Core when I got home from work tonight and it was great doing the entire workout with the motivation of the DVD! Don’t get me wrong, I made it work Sunday night with the help of my husband, but tonight was much easier to stay motivated and on track, time-wise.

Day 90 (Thursday) – Yoga
I can’t believe it’s DAY 90!!!! Our apartment community is tenting our building for termites today, so my husband and I took today and tomorrow off from work to go stay at a friend’s since we were kicked out at 9am (and we had to double bag all of our food, spices, vitamins, etc). The sad thing is, I didn’t end up doing Yoga because I forgot to bring the DVD with me 😦 I forgot the other DVDs we were supposed to return to our friends, too, so it certainly wasn’t on purpose. But we’re going on a 23 mile overnight canoe trip tomorrow, so maybe I can count all the paddling and core isolation toward the last workout??

So, I definitely pushed play for 89 days and I’ll be sure to write more once I’ve done the final fitness test, etc. Until then, I’m happy knowing I stuck with the fitness routine for 89 consecutive days (I wish I could say the same for the nutrition) and I’m already looking forward to round two!

Posted by: xandra26fr | June 10, 2011

P90X Classic: Week 12

Last strength training week!!

Day 78 (Saturday) – Cardio X & Chest, Shoulders, and Triceps
I did Cardio X in the morning and then Chest, Shoulders, and Triceps this evening. I almost managed an one-arm push up from my knees but they hurt my back, more than anything else, probably because of the wonky angle in which I position my body.

Day 79 (Sunday) – Plyometrics
I can’t believe that I just completed my last Plyometrics workout! That thought definitely helped me push hard throughout the workout and I asked my husband to remind me how good I feel afterward when I balk later at the thought of doing it just for fun 🙂

Day 80 (Monday) – Cardio X & Back and Biceps
I completed Cardio X this morning with no hiccups and nothing noteworthy. But this evening, I completed Back and Biceps…and I finally did an unassisted corn-cob pull up!!!! It only took 80 days, but hey, who’s counting 😉

Day 81 (Tuesday) – Yoga
So, this evening’s Yoga session went well. I have made so much progress in the first half…my lunges are much deeper and I can hold them along with everyone else. My right knee, shin, and heel are a bit painful (the pain starts on the side of my knee, feels like a shin-splint, and then shoots through the bottom of my heel), so I iced my leg after dinner and have a feeling I may skip Cardio X tomorrow morning since tomorrow afternoon is my last Legs and Back workout and I want to give it my all!

Day 82 (Wednesday) – Legs and Back
I skipped Cardio X this morning because my right lower leg is still sore. As for the Legs and Back routine, I’m excited to report that I completed 52 unassisted pull/chin ups! Also, I can’t believe that this was my last time doing Ab Ripper X! Again, I’m excited to report that I was able to complete all 349 moves 🙂

Day 83 (Thursday) – Kenpo
Kenpo was fun, as usual. I’m glad this wasn’t my last session because I enjoy it so much! I will certainly incorporate it into my fitness regime, even when not doing P90X.

Day 84 (Friday) – Stretch
I can’t believe I made it to this point! One recovery week to go before I can say I’m a P90X graduate!!! Stretching was great today, especially since my shin has been sore. Tomorrow is Yoga, so my leg will get another break from the high intensity moves. I’m so excited to start the last week of P90X tomorrow!!!

Posted by: xandra26fr | June 5, 2011

P90X Classic: Week 11

Second-to-last strength training week!

Day 71 (Saturday) – Chest and Back & Kenpo
This morning I completed my last Chest and Back routine! In the evening, I decided to do Kenpo instead of Cardio X (I simply enjoy Kenpo more). I must admit that I’m really looking forward to finishing this first round of P90X!

Day 72 (Sunday) – Plyometrics
Can’t believe I just completed the second-to-last Plyometrics session. My heart rate was, on average, higher during this workout than last week. It felt pretty good knowing that I’m probably leaps and bounds (no pun intended) beyond where I was that first week 🙂

Day 73 (Monday) – Shoulders and Arms
I completed Shoulders and Arms this morning and good thing, too, as it’s bedtime now and I never did Cardio X (I’d much rather have completed the required workouts than the optional one). I brought my highest intensity to an arm workout ever today and it felt good. My elbows (tendons, mostly) are a little achy and my arms are limp, but other than that, it feels good. I have a feeling that I’ve been dogging it for the past 10 weeks, when I could have been lifting heavier weights. My advice to female newcomers: DON’T BE AFRAID TO LIFT HEAVIER WEIGHTS!!!! Believe me, if you’re looking for results, maxing out at 10lbs dumbbells won’t get them for you!

Day 74 (Tuesday) – Yoga
Ummm, right, Yoga. Well, the consolation was that it was the evening, even though I felt as if there were a million other things I should be doing. But I did it…not only did I push play, but I persevered and completed the hour and half!

Day 75 (Wednesday) – Cardio X & Legs and Back
Cardio X seemed to go by quickly this morning…maybe it’s because I noticed that the actual workout (after stretching) is less than 40 minutes (much shorter than all the others). I felt like Legs and Back would be a serious struggle when I got home from work, so for the first time I put about a half of a scoop of Recovery drink in my water, which definitely helped. I don’t plan on making a habit of it, but it’s nice to know it’s an option that works if I’m desperate.

Day 76 (Thursday) – Kenpo
Yikes…Kenpo was tough this morning. As I’ve said before, I’m not sure if it’s the two workouts done yesterday and then trying to workout the very next morning or what, but my body took quite awhile to get into the groove of Kenpo. Once there, it was smooth sailing 🙂 I’m seriously looking forward to stretching tomorrow!!!

Day 77 (Friday) – Stretch
Ahhhhhhh…I waited until after work to stretch, so I knew the weekend was ahead of me and no more stress for the day, so I really enjoyed this! Here’s to the last strength training week! I can’t believe I’ve almost made it!!!

Posted by: xandra26fr | May 27, 2011

P90X Classic: Week 10

Only four more weeks to go – I can do this!!!

Day 64 (Saturday) – Cardio X & Chest, Shoulders, and Triceps
Cardio X seemed to go by so quickly this morning and then my husband surprised me by coming home early, so I was not as motivated to do the evening strength training session, but I made it through it just fine (and his encouragement certainly helped).

Day 65 (Sunday) – Plyometrics
Ok, so I think my body can tell that I worked out twice yesterday…I’m pretty exhausted after completing Plyo this week. My form was better on some of the moves (deeper squats/keeping my chest up), but then it suffered later in the workout because I was so beat. I’m pretty hungry today and it seems like a theme…the day after I do two workouts, I’m definitely more hungry than on the actual day I’m working out more. But, since tomorrow is another two-a-day, I think my body will have enough energy to make it through them.

Day 66 (Monday) – Cardio X & Back and Biceps
I felt pretty lethargic this morning during Cardio X; I don’t feel as if I slept enough, so it may just be the result of that. As for Back and Biceps, I increased my curling weight to 15’s for as many reps as I could manage (3-8, depending on the move) and then dropped down to 10 to round out the sets. It’s a pretty big jump, but it seemed silly to go spend money on 12’s when I already had 15’s around the house. My back is already tired so I hope it’s not too sore tomorrow. I also feel as if I tweaked the tendon behind my left knee. It seems a little weak when I put my weight on it and I found myself leaning to the right a lot when I was making dinner. I hope it’s better for Yoga tomorrow!

Day 67 (Tuesday) – Yoga
So, when I woke up this morning, my left leg still hurt, so I iced it before going to work. Yoga was almost unmanageable, but I persevered by going easy on the left-leg-specific poses. We’ll see how I feel tomorrow since I’m supposed do Cardio X and then actually work my legs in the afternoon during Legs and Back. Right now I’m feeling as if I may skip the morning Cardio X so I can concentrate on the Legs and Back.

Day 68 (Wednesday) – Legs and Back
So no Cardio X this morning…I’m still aware of my left leg not being 100%, so I wanted to give myself the best chance possible for completing Legs and Back this evening. I contemplated doing it this morning instead, but I hoped a few more hours of rest would do it good. And while I’m not sure it worked, I was able to complete Legs and Back tonight without too many adjustments. Surprisingly, I almost feel as if my leg felt better after the workout than before, but now it’s stiffening again. So, I’m going to ice it tonight just to be on the safe side. But I did have morale booster… I was able to complete 34 unassisted pull-ups/chin-ups during the workout!!! I still haven’t managed to surpass 4 unassisted wide-grip pull-ups in one set (and I’d really like to make it to 8+), but I was able to do 7 unassisted chin-ups in the first set 😀

Day 69 (Thursday) – Kenpo
I woke up this morning with my leg feeling a bit better, so I decided to do Kenpo this morning. Whether because I just worked out last night or not, I felt as if I had a little less energy than usual for Kenpo. But once things got going, I found my stride and it seemed to get easier as the workout progressed. I was feeling so good once I got home that I completed Cardio X for good measure. I did ice my leg afterward, in case the two workouts in one day inflamed my leg more than necessary.

Day 70 (Friday) – Stretch
Week 10 is complete!!! Only 3 more to go!!!!!
Stretching today came as a relief, especially after my leg hurting this week. I can’t believe I’ve made it through 10 consecutive weeks of pushing play every single day. I’m proud of myself and only wish my commitment to the nutrition plan had been more alike. I’m still proud of what I’ve accomplished with my diet changes, but I wish I hadn’t diverged as much. I can’t believe there are only 21 more days before I can say I am a P90X graduate!

Posted by: xandra26fr | May 22, 2011

P90X Classic: Week 9

Day 57 (Saturday) – Chest and Back
I felt like saying, “Hello, old friend” while I was completing this workout today 🙂 I have made some serious improvements since the last time I did this workout! I’m glad I recorded reps and such so I had quantitative evidence that gains were being made. Ab Ripper X was still a challenge, although some of the moves seemed more natural. I’m looking forward to the next four weeks as each week is different than the previous!

Day 58 (Sunday) – Plyometrics
I definitely didn’t have as much stamina this week for plyometrics, but I was working on going deeper in all of the squats and jumping higher, so maybe that was the trade off? I’m sore, both chest and back, from yesterday’s strength training, but I doubt that had much to do with it.

Day 59 (Monday) – Shoulders and Arms
Wow, I forgot how tired this training day made me. Granted, I increased weight since the last time I did these exercises, but man oh man, I’m going to be sore tomorrow! Ab Ripper X was one of the best yet, so that’s encouraging! I’ve decided that I’m going to add Cardio X to the remaining strength training days because I feel as if I have the energy but I don’t want to limit my nutrition any more (I’m still only eating up to 1,800 calories a day).

Day 60 (Tuesday) – Yoga
2/3 Complete!!!! I’ve gone 60 days without caffeine, artificial sweeteners, ice cream, fast food, potato chips, cheesecake, brownies, cookies, garlic bread, milk shakes, or alcohol. I had a chocolate bunny for Easter, but that’s all the chocolate I’ve had, too. And I had crackers this past weekend to calm my stomach…
Anyway, Yoga was good today…no real quantitative progress, but everything felt more natural 🙂

Day 61 (Wednesday) – Cardio X & Legs and Back
So, I completed Cardio X for the first time today and have mixed feelings. In my mind, the first half shouldn’t be classified as cardio at all. And I suggest to anyone thinking about substituting Cardio X for Plyometrics to seriously consider doing as much of the Plyo workout as you can, because it is by far a better cardio workout, even if you take more breaks than they do on the video. I will admit that I was sweating by the end and my heart rate finally reached the higher end of my aerobic zone, but I didn’t notice it climbing until toward the end of Kenpo moves.

Day 62 (Thursday) – Kenpo
Kenpo was fun, as usual. I don’t feel as energized today as I usually do, but I did Kenpo in the morning after having done two workouts yesterday, so it may have just been physics 😉 While I ate well yesterday and actually came in below 1,800 calories without feeling hungry, I’m starving again today and food seems to be all I can think about. I really need to figure out my nutrition so this doesn’t keep happening. My husband suggests I go back to a protein-rich, low-carb breakfast to get my day started off with enough nutrients and calories, and I think he’s right. So, tomorrow, I’m going back to the Fat Shredder Phase’s mushroom omelet and we’ll see how long it is before I’m feeling hungry (hopefully it will keep me from feeling ravenous, overall).

Day 63 (Friday) – Stretch
My husband is going out of town this weekend, so instead of stretching this morning, I spent time with him and stretched tonight when I got home from work, instead. I had the omelet for breakfast and a calorie/protein-dense breakfast definitely seems to help. I had a carb at lunchtime and another at dinner, but I think my body just runs better on more protein than carbs. We’ll see come tomorrow (Cardio X and Chest, Shoulders, & Triceps) and Sunday (Plyometrics) if I have enough energy.

Things I’m changing for the last four weeks:
No more fig newtons or pudding with protein powder…I really think I was consuming too many carbs. During the first phase I craved more carbs but during the second phase, I felt like I’d starve if I didn’t consume even more carbs, so I’d rather go with the phase one feeling.
I’m adding Cardio X to the strength training days. That means only nine extra workouts since there are only nine strength training days, so it may not make a huge difference, but I want to finish strong and this is how I feel like I can do that.
I’ve made a commitment to push harder…I feel like I quit when I’m tired but if I took a 10 second break, I may be able to jump back in and do more. Here’s to the last four weeks 🙂

Posted by: xandra26fr | May 14, 2011

P90X Classic: Week 8

Day 50 (Saturday) – Yoga
There’s something almost enjoyable about doing Yoga on a Saturday morning. I realize I wouldn’t feel this way if Saturdays were my busy day, but they’re not, so I get to truly enjoy Recovery Week. My balance postures are improving, which is good, and I feel more stable in the other poses. I’m looking forward to Core Synergistics tomorrow 🙂

Day 51 (Sunday) – Core Synergistics
I do think this is my favorite P90X workout. It works my abs without doing 300+ ab movements in 15 minutes, it works my back (especially my lower back, which is definitely getting stronger), I get to jump around enough to keep things interesting, and I lift and lunge enough to feel as if I’ve used my entire body afterwards. It’s a very rewarding workout and I think it may beat Kenpo as the most sweat-inducing.

Day 52 (Monday) – Kenpo
Finally, I feel like I’m back on track nutrition-wise. I’ve been truly struggling with feeling hungry, although it’s nothing like last week where I felt like I was starving all day. Anyway, I feel like today I’m back to eating the correct things in the correct amounts at the correct times. Kenpo was back to being fun again. I realized I’m much deeper in my horse stance now than I was a few weeks ago, and that I stay deep throughout the entire elbow series and vertical punches at the end. I didn’t appreciate how much more simply deepening that squat could enhance the moves. Surprisingly, I’m not that sore from doing Core Synergistics yesterday…

Day 53 (Tuesday) – Stretch
Just kidding! I’m sore today from doing Core Synergistics two days ago! Good thing we stretched today because my back was quite thankful to not be in use as much. I feel like my hamstrings were a little more flexible than they have been lately during the seated stretches. I still don’t feel as if I’m as flexible as when I started, but it’s still some kind of improvement 🙂

Day 54 (Wednesday) – Core Synergistics
Ok, so my lower back is still sore from the first round of Core Synergistics and now I finished round two. We’ll see how I’m feeling tomorrow. Other than that, I feel great. I’m still on track, nutrition-wise, and I feel like the two week hiatus (ok, not a true hiatus…maybe more like a speed bump?) was a temporary setback. I’ve figured out that my body doesn’t like so many carbs during the day, either. I can handle the carbs for breakfast, but when I eat them for lunch, it just leaves me feeling sleepy and lethargic come the afternoon doldrums, or worse, I feel like I could eat forever. So, I’ve reduced the carbs at lunch time and so far I’m feeling great. The last nutrition phase could start Saturday but I don’t think I’m going to follow it exactly. I think leaving the carb out at lunch and adding one back in for dinner would be better for me. We’ll see; the good thing about P90X is that I get to experiment with foods with a pretty stable test group since I’ve cut out caffeine, candy, and most processed foods. Now I’ll know if eating carbs at different times actually does effect my performance instead of wondering whether I was crashing from caffeine or a sugar high.

Day 55 (Thursday) – Yoga
I think today may have been my best Yoga session yet. Knowing that I’m doing Legs and Back tomorrow allowed me to get really deep in all of the lunges, and for the first time, I added the optional push-up before every downward dog. I waited until after work to complete Yoga, so that helped me stay focused on what I was doing. the torso twists are still a struggle, but I’m definitely improving!

Day 56 (Friday) – Stretch
I woke up in the middle of the night last night with an upset stomach, so I didn’t manage to complete the stretching before work today, but I did do it afterward. I’m starting the last phase tomorrow and I’m really excited that I’ve made it through 8 weeks of pushing play every day. I’ve also made it 8 weeks without caffeine, which for me is a huge accomplishment. I do crave a Diet Mt Dew occasionally, and I would indulge in a caffeine-free Diet Mt Dew if it weren’t for the aspartame. I haven’t had aspartame in my system for 8 weeks and I really think I’m better off without it. The only challenge is that Crystal Light has aspartame, too, and I used to love Crystal Light. So, I’ve been drinking caffeine-free black tea in addition to water, so I don’t completely lose my mind. But I miss the taste of the other drinks. I suppose I could drink Fruit2o, since it’s made with Splenda, but I’m trying to stay away from all artificial sweeteners until after I finish the 90 days. Here’s to the next 5 weeks! I hope to push myself to my limits during each workout!

Posted by: xandra26fr | May 8, 2011

P90X Classic: Week 7

Day 43 (Saturday) – Chest, Shoulders, and Triceps
I enjoy this workout, I really do, but until the one-armed push-up is moved to the beginning instead of the end, I’m not sure I’ll ever be able to do it 😦
I’m definitely getting stronger and since I had my right shoulder reconstructed, I never thought it would be as strong as it is now, so that’s exciting. I feel like a broken record when it comes to describing the rest of the workout…

Day 44 (Sunday) – Plyometrics
I can jump higher during the exercises but because of it, I expend more energy, so by the end, I was completely wiped out. I just kept telling myself that I get a week off from plyo…it seemed to help!

Day 45 (Monday) – Back and Biceps
The workout went well, but I swear toward the end that I’m not curling correctly but I’m sure it’s just muscle fatigue and I’m doing the best I can do. I feel like I may need to buy more dumbbells for phase three…the 10’s just don’t seem like enough any more.

Day 46 (Tuesday) – Yoga
I moved Yoga back to the evening after work this week and I certainly enjoyed it more and felt as if I were able to get deeper in the lunges. We’ll see how going deeper impacts my leg workout tomorrow. And instead of crane (which hurts my wrists more than anything), I did a headstand with my knees on my elbows. I felt silly just sitting in child’s pose.

Day 47 (Wednesday) – Legs and Back
Ok, my legs and glutes are pretty darn sore after this workout. More sore than I remember them being for quite awhile, actually. I didn’t improve my numbers with unassisted pull-ups this week (ok, maybe half a pull-up more), and I wonder if that’s signaling that the second recovery phase is right on schedule? Either way, I was happy to know that today was the last day I do Ab Ripper X for at least a week…I’ll take the small consolations. Strength training is done for this week, so I’m looking forward to Kenpo and stretching tomorrow and Friday. And I’m not sure what’s wrong with me, but I’ve been voracious today! I feel like eating everything in sight 😦 I’m trying to space food out by at least an hour and I’m not cheating food-wise, but I have a feeling this will be my highest caloric intake for a day since starting. I just hope tomorrow is better!

Day 48 (Thursday) – Kenpo
Well, this was the first time I didn’t totally enjoy Kenpo and I’m not really sure why. My inner thighs and glutes are sore from yesterday, so maybe the stiffness made the movements more difficult which in turn made it more of a struggle rather than an enjoyable experience? Who knows…at least week 7 is almost done! And I don’t feel like I’m constantly starving today, which is a relief!

Day 49 (Friday) – Stretch
I’m starting to feel a little burned out, so this recovery week is starting just in time! Stretching was good today, so here’s to week 8!!!

Posted by: xandra26fr | April 30, 2011

P90X Classic: Week 6

Day 36 (Saturday) – Chest, Shoulders, and Triceps
The one-handed push-up still alludes me…everything else seemed to go smoothly, but whether it’s because it’s towards the end of the workout, or I’m just a wimp, I face-planted each time I attempted to do a one-handed push-up on my feet. Someone at work commented that they were noticing definition in my arms, so I know these days must be working as intended. Abs went well today, too, which was a pleasant surprise. I feel like I’m finally getting the moves down or that my lower back can withstand the isometric-nature of some of the moves.

Day 37 (Sunday) – Plyometrics
Yea for plyometrics! Ok, so I wasn’t as sprite as I was last week, I certainly performed better than any of the Plyometrics days from the first phase. My energy level seemed a little low, but I think that has to do with the fact that I work out in the morning and by not eating a carb with dinner, I don’t have much of a glycogen reserve, or at least as much as I did during the first phase. So, I’m convinced my improved performance is thanks to my increased strength and endurance but I wonder what it would be like to have a carb at dinner…would I be super sprite or would it not really make a difference? On another note, I had a chocolate bunny for Easter today…I made it 36 days without eating candy, but I still haven’t had any caffeine! (PS – the bunny was DELICIOUS….I did have a major headache later, which made me wonder if it was worth it…)

Day 38 (Monday) – Back and Biceps
I tell ya…working biceps and trying to do chin-ups all in the same workout seems like too much. By the time we got to chin-ups, my biceps were tired…but maybe it’s a good thing and it will make my back work harder instead of me counting on my biceps to carry my weight. Hmmm, I feel like I’ve said this before…I wonder when it will sink in? I feel like I tweaked the right side of my neck during some of the pull-ups…it feels almost as if I slept on it wrong, but as it didn’t hurt when I woke up, I’ve got to think I did it during the workout. My legs are a little tired from Plyometrics yesterday, but other than that, I’m not really sore.

Day 39 (Tuesday) – Yoga
So, I switched Yoga to the morning this week because my husband is giving his Master’s presentation tonight. I am not a morning Yoga person…ok, I’m not a morning Yoga person when I have to work that day. The entire time I caught myself thinking of the things I needed to do at work and what I was going to wear to my husband’s presentation (silly, I know), and what I would take with me for lunch, etc. Saturday-morning Yoga is doable since Saturdays are usually slow-paced and relaxing, but I got the workout done and at this point, I’m happy with simply that. And my neck feels better…still a little stiff, but nothing like yesterday.

Day 40 (Wednesday) – Legs and Back
This was a tough workout. We didn’t make it home from the presentation until after 10 (he did an AWESOME job, by the way), and I didn’t have a good dinner because I ate at the symposium. So, whether it was lack of sleep, or lack of correct nutrition last night, this workout definitely tested my stamina. I increased the number of unassisted pull/chin-ups to 24 this time, so I know I wasn’t being lazy. I just found it more difficult to get off the ground for a few of the leg movements…

Day 41 (Thursday) – Kenpo
Last night, I noticed that my middle back was pretty sore…I’m assuming it’s from those pull-ups (all 24 of them)…and I was hoping a good night’s rest would fix it, but I’m still a little sore this morning. Anyway, I really enjoyed Kenpo today. Maybe because it made me sweat without the strength training? My legs are also sore from yesterday’s workout, but Kenpo kept my mind occupied so I didn’t concentrate on that fact during my workout. I like the little routine during the breaks because it really makes me feel like I’m making progress…not sure if the rest of the workout is just ho-hum, so I feel like I’m actually working out during the breaks, but even if that’s the case, I’m ok with it. In the end, I’m really sweaty and I feel really good. To me, that’s a great way to start the day.

Day 42 (Friday) – Stretch
Week 6 is complete! That chocolate bunny seemed to derail me this week and I really need to get back to sticking with the nutrition guide. I’ve been enjoying chocolate pudding with a scoop of protein powder after dinner and it’s really unnecessary (even though totally enjoyable and delicious). So, I’ll work this weekend to make some lunches for next week, which should help (variety certainly makes sticking with the plan so much easier). Anyway, this morning’s stretching session was relaxing. I’m ready to start the last strength training week of phase two so I can get to the recovery week. The timing works out well because by the time the workouts start to seem monotonous, the recovery week is thrown in to spice things up. Here’s to week 7!

Posted by: xandra26fr | April 23, 2011

P90X Classic: Week 5

Day 29 (Saturday) – Chest, Shoulders, and Triceps
My first new strength training workout was good. There are a lot of push-ups and I couldn’t make it through them all, and I couldn’t even manage a single one-arm push-up…guess I have a new goal!

Day 30 (Sunday) – Plyometrics
So, I was pleasantly surprised at how much more intense I was able to make Plyometrics today. However, with the intensity came the nausea, but I think it was worth it. It showed me that I am getting stronger and still have room for improvement. My chest and triceps are tired from yesterday, so it’s a nice break not to use them today. My husband helped me take my Day 30 measurements and photos, and I was so excited to have proof that positive changes are being made.

Day 31 (Monday) – Back and Biceps
Oh my…they’re not joking that this is a dedicated back and biceps routine, especially biceps…even my forearms are sore now and by the end, I simply couldn’t curl another rep, even though I was down to 5’s. And because it’s so concentrated, chin-ups were a joke. Usually, my biceps carry me through chin-ups, making them easier than pull-ups, but not today. I actually did less chin-ups than pull-ups for the first time since starting P90X. I can only image how sore I’m going to be tomorrow…I’ll probably wake up tomorrow with T-Rex arms.

Day 32 (Tuesday) – Yoga
Yoga was a little tough this week; my arms were sore from yesterday, so some of the poses seemed way more difficult to hold than last week. I found myself running through the reasons why I was doing Yoga just so I wouldn’t turn off the DVD. I’d consider it a low point, but I also had a lot of other things on my mind, so maybe that’s all it was. Either way, I stuck with it and finished the hour and a half. Next week’s Yoga session has to be better, no doubt about it!

Day 33 (Wednesday) – Legs and Back
So exciting! I completed 19 unassisted pull/chin-ups throughout the workout!!!! That’s six more than the last time I did Legs and Back! I definitely think the recovery week helped me here. Legs seemed a bit harder, but since I just did Yoga the night before, I think holding all those warrior poses tuckers out my quads, but I’ve tried doing  Yoga in the morning and it’s just not ideal. I have a feeling I’ll be pretty sore tomorrow.

Day 34 (Thursday) – Kenpo
Whoa. Talk about sore. I was really stiff this morning…mostly my glutes, hamstrings, and inner thighs. Kenpo helped loosen me up, but once I stopped moving, everything seemed to slowly tighten again so now going up and down stairs takes a bit of effort. So, maybe I should say I’m more stiff than sore. Either way, it tells me that even though I felt like I was dogging legs yesterday, I must have been doing myself justice. Kenpo itself was just random today…I did feel like I was able to put more body behind my cross punches and uppercuts, so that’s some sort of improvement.

Day 35 (Friday) – Stretch
I made it through week 5! I’ve heard so many people say that most people stick with P90X for the first 30 days, but that’s it…well, I’ve made it through 35 and I’m still going strong! Stretching this morning was such a relief, especially since my legs were so sore/stiff yesterday. I can’t believe tomorrow will be the start of Week 6!!

Posted by: xandra26fr | April 16, 2011

P90X Classic: Week 4

Day 22 (Saturday) – Yoga
Yoga as usual. It was definitely a nice change up to do yoga on a Saturday morning at my leisure instead of mid-week when I’m less relaxed. I’m still working on certain poses, especially the half moon/twisting half moon…by the point we get to them, my leg is tired and I can barely keep it up and keep my balance while putting an arm in the air and twisting my head. I didn’t have to come out of the warrior lunge during the warrior two/reverse warrior sequence as much as last time, which was good. I’m looking forward to tomorrow to try a new workout for the first time in over three weeks. I’m feeling a little stagnant, so I welcome something new.

Day 23 (Sunday) – Core Synergistics
Learning new moves was nice this morning. It took some time for me to watch, so I didn’t get the full workout in, but I jumped in as soon as I got the gist of what was going on (which didn’t take long…maybe two reps, max). Overall, it was an enjoyable workout, but I personally like plyo better (I realize they’re meant to accomplish different things). I’m happy to be doing core work, though, because it’s my lower back that limits me the most during Ab Ripper X, so I’ll take whatever help is offered! By far, this workout requires the most floor space, as many moves have you lying perpendicular on the mat.

Day 24 (Monday) – Kenpo
Today, my sides are a bit sore, which is exciting since I wasn’t sure if the core workout really did me much good yesterday. Kenpo was fun, as usual, but I felt a little more sluggish until halfway through, in which case I don’t know if the end was in sight and that motivated me, or if my body finally woke up. Either way, I ended strong (but tired), and by the end my kicks felt less like flailing and more as if my leg had a purpose. If my sides are sore today, then I have a feeling I’ll be glad tomorrow is a stretch day (I’m usually more sore the second day after a workout) and not a yoga or core repeat quite yet.

Day 25 (Tuesday) – Stretch
Yea for stretching…this felt good and more productive than other stretch days. My husband mentioned to me last night that the decrease in my flexibility was most likely due to building new muscle…totally bittersweet! I love the idea of muscle but I also loved that I was flexible, so I’m going to have to work harder to keep lithe. If I could just manage to wake up 5 minutes earlier, I could spend an extra 5 minutes stretching at the end of each workout. So, I suppose I need to set my alarm for 5:40 tomorrow 😉

Day 26 (Wednesday) – Core Synergistics
Today’s workout was quite enjoyable. Since I mostly remembered what moves we did, I didn’t waste time watching for guidance, so I was able to jump right in. Because there isn’t any repetition in this workout, it seems to move quickly and hits most major muscle groups while focusing on the core. I think this may be my favorite workout! (Plyo is still a favorite, but the constant changing of exercises makes Core seem like less of a workout and more of a field day challenge from back in the day.)

Day  27 (Thursday) – Yoga
Again, I waited until after work to complete yoga and I made some progress. During Core Synergistics, I learned that I was supposed to be keeping my body off the floor during chatarunga, which I hadn’t realized since I’ve never done yoga before P90X, so this time, I worked on keeping my body aloft during each chatarunga, and it was a lot more difficult. But, it will make me stronger in the end, and that’s my goal. I still found yoga belly seven to be a challenge, especially during the twist movements, which I still haven’t been able to hold longer than a few seconds without it hurting my lower back.

Day 28 (Friday) – Stretch
Today’s stretching felt great. I can definitely say the recovery week is much easier than the three weeks of strength training and is a great recharge for my body and resolve.
Interestingly enough, my weight remained stable for the first three weeks, but I lost 2 lbs during the last week and my body fat decreased by 2%. So, ladies, if you’re getting frustrated about not seeing immediate results, maybe your body is like mine and is using the first three weeks to adjust and acclimate to the changes and come week four, you’ll see some progress. I do know it’s hard to describe women’s expected results from doing P90X because everyone responds differently to exercise and varying nutrition.

During Phase 1, the only “cheats” I had were on April 1st (the end of two weeks), I had 3 slices of pizza (pepperoni, sausage, mushroom, & olive) for dinner; on April 9th (the beginning of four weeks), I had 3 slices of pizza (veggie) for lunch; and throughout the first 2.5 weeks, I added natural peanut butter to five of my protein shakes. Otherwise, I tried to be pretty diligent with my nutrition and 2.5 weeks in, I discovered Bell Plantation’s PB2 (powdered peanuts with most of the fat removed), so instead of the 200 calories/16g of fat from natural peanut butter, I’m only consuming 45 calories/1.5g of fat if I add the suggested serving size to a protein shake, which has been a big help.

Things I’ll change for Phase 2:
To keep things manageable, I’m going to give myself the option of all-natural chocolate pudding with protein powder or fat free fig newtons as treats if I’m feeling like I really want Oreos or brownies (according to the P90X Nutrition Guide, Fig Newtons aren’t listed among the suggested snacks unless you’re in the Endurance Maximizer phase). I realize these foods have more carbs, but since I don’t plan on eating them everyday and I’m moving onto the Energy Booster phase, I think I’ll be ok. I will, however, keep an eye on things just in case this is too bold of a step this early in the game.

Posted by: xandra26fr | April 9, 2011

P90X Classic: Week 3

Day 15 (Saturday) – Chest, Back, and Abs
Whether it was the lack of stored glycogen from not eating enough complex carbs for dinner last night, or the reason why we take next week off from strength training, I found this workout a true struggle this morning. I was able to increase my reps for push-ups, but my pull-ups were a joke. I could only do 1.5 unassisted for the first set and it went downhill from there. Toward the end, I was simply hanging and struggling with all my might…that is, until I surrendered and used the chair. Maybe there is more science behind the nutrition plan than I thought. Today I’ll be back to the recommended servings, so hopefully tomorrow will be better. And as for abs, the workout seemed tougher than it was last week, too, but it was mostly my lower back that was causing me to take more breaks…I’m really looking forward to the first time I can do Ab Ripper X without any breaks!

Day 16 (Sunday) – Plyometrics
Ok, I feel as if I’m back on track. Plyometrics were tough, as usual, but I was able to steam ahead with the group and complete the exercises. I was happy to see that while I was within my target zone most of the time (I still exceeded it during the more intense jumping portions), I recovered much more quickly than previous sessions.

Day 17 (Monday) – Shoulders, Arms, and Abs
Today’s accomplishment was made during chair dips…I was able to do 16 reps with good form and practically touched the floor on each rep (meaning I was getting a good range of motion). My arms felt their strongest yet today, so it was a good workout. Abs were much better today than Saturday…I still took a few breaks, but I was able to keep going much longer in between rests. Maybe I’ll master Ab Ripper X during phase two?

Day 18 (Tuesday) – Yoga
Again, I waited until after work to complete Yoga, which helped with my concentration and ability to clear my mind of impending tasks. I’m not sure if there was an improvement since last week…I actually felt a little less limber, which made some of the balance postures more difficult. The core strengthening moves involving my legs being off the ground to one side still baffle me. I found myself using my arm as an anchor and it still hurt my lower back. As if I didn’t know my lower back needed work already, I’m hoping next week helps me strengthen it so I can progress with yoga during phase two. I’m feeling a little discouraged at this point…it’s day 18 and I just don’t feel like I’m seeing 18 days worth of improvements (perhaps that’s why we take a break from strength training next week)…I’m still optimistic…I just hope I’m not foolhardy.

Day 19 (Wednesday) – Legs, Back, and Abs
I woke up feeling pretty tired and unfortunately, I felt most of the stiffness in the middle of my back and my quads (go figure that today is legs and back). After I was up for 15 minutes or so, things started to loosen up in time for me to start the workout feeling decent. I was able to increase my chin-ups to 3.5 unassisted on the first set and was able to do 12 total unassisted chin/pull-ups throughout the workout. Progress is progress…I’ll take it….and I feel better than yesterday about this journey. And knowing today is the last Ab Ripper X session for a week and a half is heartening.

Day 20 (Thursday) – Kenpo
Kenpo was fine today…I was lagging a little toward the end, but I was still well within my target zone. For some reason, I enjoy this workout. I think I like deviation from all of the other routines and find it refreshing to be doing something different while still sweating a ton…almost like a weekly detox (silly, I know). My hamstrings and glutes are a little sore today, but it’s a good sore and I feel as if my upper thighs are tightening overall in a good way, in the back especially.

Day 21 (Friday) – Stretch
Week 3 is done!!! Twenty-one whole days without candy or caffeine! 😉 Oddly enough, in my dream last night, I had the realization that I had been drinking my favorite soda (Diet Mt Dew) for the past two weeks which has both caffeine and aspartame, and I was so bummed that I hadn’t thought of it earlier and that my claim to three weeks without was false. And then I woke up so excited that I haven’t been drinking Diet Mt Dew…bizarre. Anyway, stretching was much needed this morning, as I’ve been feeling less flexible than when I started. I’m getting anxious for the first phase to be done so I can measure myself and see if I’m making progress…I hope to finish phase one strong! I’m also looking forward to loosening the food constraints a bit 🙂

Posted by: xandra26fr | April 1, 2011

P90X Classic: Week 2

Day 8 (Saturday) – Chest, Back, and Abs
The start of week 2 finds me desperately wishing I could do more unassisted pull-ups. I did two in a row for the first set but then only one for each subsequent set, and then I used a chair. I was able to do dive-bomber push-ups (minus coming back under the fence), so I was really excited. And I still wasn’t able to complete Ab Ripper X, but I did the best I could…I’d say I can finish 70% of it.

Day 9 (Sunday) – Plyometrics
Since I knew what to expect this week, I was able to push a little harder. According to my heart-rate monitor, I pretty much exceeded my target zone while I was doing the exercises, but I felt like I was working within my means (as in, I wasn’t going to pass out or keel over). My triceps aren’t as sore as they were this time last week, so I see that as a good sign.

Day 10 (Monday) – Arms, Shoulders, and Abs
I was able to increase my weight this week (using the fitness sheets has really been helpful)! And since my triceps aren’t feeling as sore from Saturday, I was able to do the last exercise of the bonus round for the first time. While my arms felt swollen this time last week, they feel tired but strong (not massive :D).

It has been 10 days since I’ve consumed caffeine and candy…and I feel pretty darn great! The other crazy thing is that my face has cleared up!!! I’ve been going to the dermatologist on and off since the age of 10, so to be able to get my face clear in 10 days without the use of antibiotics, topical creams, or insane amounts of vitamin A is FANTASTIC!! (I haven’t changed my frequency of washing my face, so I’ve got to think maybe it was the aspartame, simple sugars, or some sort of food allergy…or the combination.)

Here’s to 10 more great days!

Day 11 (Tuesday) – Yoga
I waited until after work to complete this week’s Yoga workout, as I was constantly checking the clock last week, and while I was able to engross myself more, I may have exerted myself too much for the LBA routine tomorrow since I’ll only have a little over 12 hours in between. I was excited at my progress at being able to poses more fully and hold them longer, but I certainly still need more work to perfect many of the moves.

Day 12 (Wednesday) – Legs, Back, and Abs
I woke up feeling drained this morning but made it through Legs, Back, and Abs with decent results and quite a few improvements. I was actually able to complete 3 unassisted reverse-grip chin-ups in a row! Overall, I completed 12 unassisted pull/chin-ups throughout the entire workout, so I’m happy to see that even though I’m feeling exhausted, I am getting stronger!

Day 13 (Thursday) – Kenpo
I went to bed early last night trying to counter my lethargy I felt all day, but it didn’t really help. Kenpo was a struggle today. I felt as if I just didn’t have the energy to keep pace, to the point where I paused the DVD for a second midway through to drink some orange juice (which did help). My glutes are sore today from adding weight to the lunges and squats yesterday…it’s a good sore, though.

Day 14 (Friday) – Stretch
Yea!!! Two weeks down, 11 more to go…
I slept much better last night and completed the stretching ready to start my day. I’m looking forward to a treat tonight – PIZZA 😀 We’ll see how it affects my workout tomorrow, but it’s been two weeks without caffeine or candy, so I feel it’s well deserved and will make continuing the nutrition plan a little easier for the next two weeks.

Posted by: xandra26fr | March 25, 2011

P90X Classic: Week 1

Day 1 ( Saturday) – Chest, Back, and Abs
So, I have completed the workout(s) from the first day of the classic P90X plan. I have a very long way to go before I can bust out push ups and pull ups like they do, but it is a start. The amount of protein I am consuming today seems excessive but I suppose my body just needs some time to adjust and I’m sure it will thank me later in the week that it has the fuel it needs to make it through the workout. Right now, I feel tired and I have a bit of a headache, but I’m sure it will get better…hopefully soon! Tomorrow is supposed to be grueling…but I’m still looking forward to it.

Day 2 (Sunday) – Plyometrics
This workout was all it promised to be – as intense as I chose it to be and intense it certainly was, even though I couldn’t finish all the moves. I stayed toward the top of my heart-rate zone and even exceeded it a few times. I was sore from Day 1 (my triceps especially due to all of the push ups) and for the rest of the day, I felt as if I had the flu. I was achy and I had a headache, but I suppose the latter has to do with the sugar and caffeine withdrawal…my liver can only work so hard to rid itself of all of the sugar from Oreos, brownies, chocolate malt milkshakes, candy, and caffeine from the 2-3 cups of coffee I drank each week day for at least the past year. And while it sounds gross, I had a sweet taste in my mouth for most of the day…again, I suppose it’s the sugar leaving my system.

Day 3 (Monday) – Arms, Shoulders, and Abs
While my triceps were still sore from the Day 1 workout, I was able to work through the tricep exercises with minimal weight while maintaining good form. I wasn’t sore from the plyo workout, so that tells me I need to work on my cardiovascular stamina so I can push harder next time, muscle-wise. As my abs were still sore from Day 1, too, I wasn’t able to complete all of the Ab Ripper X, but I’m hoping (as it’s only the second time) that I’ll get stronger with time. The headache is still present, and I’m still achy, but I can make it up and down the stairs without walking funny (although I feel pretty winded afterward). I was also pretty tired in the afternoon…granted, I was sitting at my desk trying to concentrate on work, but my husband wonders if I’m eating enough (even though I’m trying to follow the nutrition plan, breakfast was hard this morning because of getting to work).

Day 4 (Tuesday) – Yoga
Ok, I have never done yoga before and while an hour and a half was boring, I must admit it was challenging and I couldn’t believe how sweaty I was. Granted, my muscles were tired from the previous workouts, but I hope to build up my stabilizing muscles with future yoga sessions. I am a pretty flexible person, but I still found some of these moves impossible for the time being. I look forward to seeing the progress come day 90. This is the first day I didn’t have a headache! My triceps are still sore, as are my abs, but the soreness is definitely waning.

Day 5 (Wednesday) – Legs, Back, and Abs
My legs cramped just before bed last night and as I couldn’t get comfortable, I didn’t sleep too soundly, which I felt was quite unfortunate as I knew I was waking up to the leg workout today. However, once I warmed up and stretched, my legs were doing a bit better and the exercises actually helped with blood flow, so they weren’t cramped for the workout. The pull ups are still a bit of a joke; I can do one full rep each time but then I need the chair and I mean NEED the chair. I could see how bands would be beneficial here instead of the bar because I don’t know how much weight my arms are lifting versus my legs (as today was the leg workout, I don’t feel awful about this, but I would like to build up my strength for more full-rep pull ups eventually). The ab workout was better than day 3, but I still wasn’t able to complete all reps…probably half to two-thirds of the reps, but I feel stronger. Surprisingly, my lower back is what hurts for the first few exercises and limits my reps. I suppose it’s only day 5, but I do hope my back gets stronger soon! Tomorrow is Kenpo and I’m using Friday as a stretch day before starting week 2 on Saturday. I’m just excited that I’ve almost completed week 1!

Day 6 (Thursday) – Kenpo
So far, I think this is my favorite workout…perhaps it’s just because I was engaged trying to get the sequence and rhythm so the time flew by and I found myself almost more sweaty than when I did plyometrics. My upper, inner thighs are sore today from the leg workout yesterday, but my calves are fine, as are my quads.

Day 7 (Friday) – Stretch
I found this very necessary, as I’ve been feeling much tighter from the workouts…the stretches weren’t difficult but effective. Week 1 is done! Yea 🙂

Posted by: xandra26fr | March 19, 2011

The First P90X Grocery Trip

Thank goodness for my husband! Going to the grocery store on a Friday night isn’t what either of us would call ideal or potentially entertaining, but we went last night so I could start P90X today, including the suggested diet. And believe me, it was much more doable with him there and his suggestion of getting to the meat counter before they cleared out for the night was very helpful, as it would have meant making another trip today to get the salmon for tonight’s dinner.

We spent under $230, but I didn’t get ingredients for every single meal for the week as I don’t foresee myself having the drive to make the lunches for which they provide recipes (much more time-consuming than to what I am accustomed). We are following the recipes for dinners and mostly for breakfast, it’s just the lunch that won’t be as structured (I appreciate them breaking it out into a portion approach so I can make this work). Quite a few of the items will last awhile, too, like the molasses, and the dry mustard, etc. We’ll see how long it is until we need to go again.

A third of the groceries we bought on our first trip...most were in the fridge already.

And my husband is fabulous…he’s trying to make the transition as easy as possible, so he’s been in the kitchen most of the day, roasting red peppers, making soup, poaching chicken…He’s AWESOME! I feel like, with his help, I may just be able to do this 🙂

Roasted Red Pepper Soup

Posted by: xandra26fr | March 13, 2011

Fitness Test and Photos

Friday night, the pull-up bar arrived and I assembled it in about 15 minutes and tried a pull up (I was so excited that I could do one). So yesterday, my husband helped me with tracking my time for the fitness test, recording the results, taking measurements, and finally, photos. I passed the test – yea! So, I’ll be able to start P90X once the DVDs arrive next week (and we make a trip to the grocery store). The measurements brought me to tears…I know it’s silly, but I felt defeated at that point like they were asking for measurements just to highlight the fact I’m not in ideal shape. I’m used to measuring my waist at my natural waist, not right across my belly button so my ‘fun’ is included (some call these love handles, I call them ‘fun’ because whether they came from eating double stuf Oreos or enjoying a lazy Sunday afternoon, or both, I’m sure I had fun at the time!) Moving on after a good 20 minutes of feeling ridiculous, we completed the measurements and then later took the photos.

So, today I’m a little sore…mostly my biceps, but my calves, hamstrings, and upper abs feel a little tender, too. I figured out that I need a couple more sets of dumbbells (I held a 5 & 2 in each hand because they suggested using 8’s, which I don’t have)…so I’ll pick those up this week, too.

“Before” Photos:

March 12, 2011

March 12, 2011

March 12, 2011

March 12, 2011

Posted by: xandra26fr | March 11, 2011

So, it begins…

On Tuesday, I took the plunge and ordered P90X, a pull-up bar, and a heart-rate monitor. Last night, I thought I’d gain some insight as to what a woman’s expected results might be from completing P90X or at least P90X from a woman’s perspective; unfortunately, there wasn’t too much that seemed applicable to a 29-year-old who was starting out in decent shape, so I decided to try to document my journey for anyone else out there like me. So, here goes…

I suppose the best place to start would be to list my overall goals and purpose of doing P90X: I want to get stronger and build my endurance so I can start rock climbing and bouldering (I don’t have the upper body strength, nor the stamina to do it for real…I’ve played at the rock gym but I can’t call myself a ‘climber’ yet), and of course, looking and feeling better is an expected bonus.

I want to be able to do pull ups…notice the pluralization…I have high hopes. I’d like to have a balanced enough diet that I don’t feel like I need three cups of coffee to get me through the workday. The other potential bonus of a better diet is clearer skin…I have an awful habit of scratching at any bump on my face or chest so I look all splotchy, even if I’m wearing makeup.

I have a head start (at least I feel that I do), in that I’m in decent shape – don’t get me wrong, I can’t run to save my life…literally, if someone were chasing me my only hope at salvation would be to flail and scream crazily in hopes of scaring them away (picture Danny Kaye in ‘the Court Jester’ at the end of the sword fight scene against Basil Rathbone – after he ‘snapped’ himself out of being the greatest with a blade, of course). But, I’m a caver and an occasional diver, I love to hike, and I love the outdoors, in general.

So, I suppose this is the deep breath before the plunge…waiting on the DVDs and heart-rate monitor to arrive.