Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Phasing out

As of Wednesday, I officially start phase 3 of ChaLEAN Extreme.  Eeep.  This program has moved so quickly!  I have really enjoyed how much variety there is between the three phases, and it has helped me see results with the weight training.

However, I confess right now that I have a burning hatred for Chalene's cardio workouts.  For me, they just don't get the job done like a run, or a long bike ride could.  The cardio section of the workout program focuses on high intensity interval training (HIIT), which is short bursts of really intense exercise, followed by a recovery.

The problem is, I am not a sprinter in real life.  I'm not someone who does well at going all out.  I am, however, really great at endurance, and at ramping up my intensity consistently throughout a given effort.  What this all means is that while I've been pushing myself really hard at these intervals, they are making me frustrated, and I end up not working hard enough, or working too hard and hurting myself, neither of which is a good use of my time.

So for phase 3, I'm going to stick with what I know works.  I'm going to do steady-state, moderate intensity cardio instead of HIIT training.  I'm absolutely 100% looking forward to this change-up in my routine.  I think it's just what the doctor ordered for helping me get through the last 30 days of the program.  In both phases 1 and 2, I had to take time off due to exhaustion, or minor injuries.  Both times, these problems popped up in the cardio workouts.  For me, this is a pattern that needs to be broken, here and now.  A workout program can only be effective if you can see it through to the end.  Sometimes, you have to make changes and allowances to get there.

It's just a great excuse to get sexy, really.  Cause that's what helmets make you.

Something else that's been crazy in my health/fitness part of my life is food.  Last week, I went back to morning workouts.  I even created a pact with Alyx to work out every morning before work!  One thing I noticed right away is that it has made me 1000% more hungry throughout the day.  When I lift weights, I get hungry; however, this hunger tends to be throughout the day.  When I lift weights in the morning, I am falling over starving between 8 am and 4 pm.  The hunger tends to subside after that, but man oh man!  Normally, I have a shakeology shake like this for breakfast:

But now with working out, I find that this isn't nearly enough to keep me going until lunch.  I am hesitantly considering adding in a morning snack.  Snacking does not generally work for me:  I find that I am better balanced mood and energy-wise when I eat 3 meals, and give myself adequate time to digest.  However, I just have this sense that without a mid-morning snack on my weight lifting days, I'm going to be struggling to get through the day.  So the plan for this week is to eat 3 meals on my cardio days, and 4 meals on my weight training days, with the majority of calories consumed before 3pm.  Hopefully, this will help with all of the fatigue I'm feeling from lifting in the morning!

Going into the third phase in ChaLEAN, I wonder overall about what changes I will see in my body at the end of the program.  I had hoped to lose weight when I started this program, but I think that was unrealistic of me.  I knew I wasn't going to follow the diet plan that came with the DVDs, and really, I'm happy with my diet.  We eat pretty healthy, but I don't count calories, and I allow myself dessert once or twice a week.  In addition, my body puts on muscle like a man's body:  I tend to put on a lot really easily, and it takes time for it to get really lean and efficient.  Typically, I only see weight loss when I'm doing cardio 5-6 days a week, and with the intensity of this program, I have not been in a position to do daily cardio.  However, the last phase is called the "Lean phase", and I'm assuming that it has been designed to provide people like me the opportunity to make our muscles leaner and more efficient.  After previewing the first of the 3 strength circuits, I'm already intimidated!  I have no doubts that I am going to see some results from phase 3.  I just don't know yet what those results are going to look like.

So there you have it, my weekly check-in of all things fitness related.  I hope I didn't bore you too much.  As usual, linking up with Allison for Tone-up Tuesday!


  1. I am so envious of your motivation. You're gonna make one breathtaking bride. :)

  2. Look at us, just posting pictures of ourselves looking like fools in helmets.

    Kristen. I didn't read this. because I hate exercise. but I know it's all inspiring and stuff.

    I'm just not in it today.

  3. If i work out at night I will not eat because i am so hot, I can't get up early enough to do it during the day, but i have been working out and i am starving to death. i am trying to figure out if that's good or bad.

  4. Ahhhhh
    I didn't exercise this morning. Because I was sick last night. And I thought that was a good reason to get my sleep in today.
    I'm proud of you - you're awesome.

  5. I am so not a sprinter as well....I ran my first marathon this summer, but could not sprint a mile to save my life!

    Congrat on everything girl, I can tell you've worked so hard :)

  6. I'm not a sprinter either. I have gotten myself in trouble for starting races out to fast. My husband thinks you should start off fast then slow down after you get away from the crowd. This does not work for me.


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