Mind games over a pint of beer.

 

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This is a quick post to say that I very nearly fell at the first hurdle today. It’s so easy to make all these promises about what you’re going to do in the week on a Sunday. And then on Monday, a colleague said casually, “My meeting has been cancelled, so if anyone fancies a pint in the sun after work, I’m game”. It was on the tip of my tongue to say yes. I’d submitted a big proposal, had a productive day and the sun was shining.

But then I played a mental game with myself. I fast-forwarded to later in the evening. I’d arrrive home a bit tipsy after drinking on an empty stomach (one pint would no doubt turn into 2 or 3). I’d eat a big bowl of pasta (because it’s quick and easy).

Then I fast-forwarded to tomorrow morning, when I’d wake up a bit groggy and not want to exercise. So I’d miss another day. And then I fast-forwarded to the end of the week. I wouldn’t have been able to tick off my ‘no alcohol’ and ‘Freeletics’ goals on Coach.me.

Did I want to set that train in motion, or did I want to come home, exercise and then cook a healthy dinner? Early night, up early tomorrow morning for another Freeletics session?

I knew that the high of a cold beer in the sun wasn’t worth as much as the feeling of accomplishment if I stuck to my plan.

So I stuck to the plan. And now I’m sat at home, having had a delicious low-fat, high protein stir-fry after Freeletics, feeling pretty. damn. smug.

I have one thing to say about my work out today. Can anyone actually do Jackknives like the guy in the photo/video? I mean really? I can barely lift my shoulders off the floor. When does that get easier? I feel so ungraceful when I do them.

And that, my friends, is Monday. Over and out.

Mind games over a pint of beer.

And suddenly that milestone is right in front of you…

 

peter-hershey-282615Oh blimey, how has it been over a month since I posted. Sheesh.

So. What’s been happening? Well, last time I posted I was in the middle of a great week. I ran twice, swam every day and did my first Freeletics Gym session. More on that shortly. Since then, I’ve been a bit slack. I slipped out of the routine. And even worse, I could feel the belly that I’ve been working so hard to get rid of coming back again. I needed to take action.

Added to this, I realised that my mental milestone/goal is right in front of me. It’s my birthday this week, and it’s also Pride. On the same day. It wasn’t an official goal or anything, but I was kind of working towards being in peak shape for this day. And I’m not quite where I want to be. Maybe I was about a month ago when I was away. But since then, things have slipped.

Last week started off badly. I was at a wine tasting on Monday evening (no excuse, I know, I could have exercised in the morning). And on Tuesday we had some big work news first thing, and then I got drunk in the evening as a result of said work news. I’d almost written another week off, but on Wednesday I got back on track. I worked out every day for the rest of the week.

So, yeah. That Freeletics Gym session. I was in a hotel gym alone. I thought, why the hell not? So I did the first workout that Coach has set for me. It was: Upper Body I and Upper Body II.

10 Bench Press and 10 Bent Rows and then 10 Push Press and 10 Upright Rows. 3 sets of each. I had a max weight of 20kg, but to be honest I got quite confused about how to work out the weight. Don’t ask me why. I found it quite easy. It was pretty basic. I did enjoy the stretches at the end though.

BUT, I’m not about to join a gym again. I can’t stand working out around people, especially not in the weights area. It’s too posey. So I’m not likely to do any more Freeletics Gym workouts soon. I get enough exercise through bodyweight and running.

I won’t go through last week’s exercises in detail. That would be boring, but I am finding the new Coach great. I enjoy the shorter workouts and I feel easily as tired and satisfied as I did when they were longer.

Also I notice that they’ve introduced a whole bunch of new exercises. Which is great. Because sometimes it gets a little boring doing the same thing over and over again.

Yesterday I did my second Freeletics Running session. It was Maat. 200m then 30 seconds for 10 reps. I ran around the park near my boyfriend’s house. And made the mistake of running up a very steep hill halfway through the session. Nearly vomitted when I got to the top and it kind of knackered me out for the rest of the run. But I enjoyed it. 2k in 10 minutes. I can get on board with that.

I’m trying to up my frequency of working out again, so for a bit I’m going to try 5 Freeletics and 1 running per week. Could do a Bodyweight and a run on the same day to get 2 rest days, or could just have one rest day.

I’m also trying to get back on track with the nutrition. Cutting out beer pretty much completely and trying to reduce my reliance on carbs. Yeah yeah, I can hear you saying, you’ve said all this before. But if I write it down it gives me extra motivation.

It’s Sunday night right now. We’re going out for drinks on Friday night and Saturday is Pride. So I need to get all my exercise and good eating in before then. I’ve ordered a new vest to wear on Saturday, so it’s a bit of added motivation to work hard this week.

Have a great week. And sorry I’ve been a bit quiet. Would love to hear from you guys how your Freeletics journey is going. Tell me what you find challenging or difficult or share any tips you have in the comments below.

Have a great week!

And suddenly that milestone is right in front of you…

An aborted run…

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I’m away from home again. My hotel is right across from a big park. Perfect for trying Freeletics Running, I thought to myself.

So I set off yesterday for my first run. Now, I don’t really run. I get out of breath very quickly. It just doesn’t really suit me.

But actually, my first run seemed pretty easy. I did ‘Bastet’. It basically goes:

100m then 2 min rest
200m then 3 min rest
400m then 5 min rest
200m then 3 min rest
400m then 5 min rest
200m then 3 min rest
100m

It was quite straightforward. However, I got to the final 200m and my phone died. Sometimes I hate iPhones. I left the hotel with 50% battery. In my rest parts, when I was walking through the park I browsed the internet – nothing massive. By the time I was half way through I was at 33% and then it just shut off. Grr. So I didn’t actually finish the run.

I did notice that I didn’t get that horrible sick feeling I usually get when I run – I think it’s because I took it at a sensible pace and the rests were spaced about right. Also it was a great head-clearer, and the fresh air was good… maybe I’m being converted (pah, after 1 run!)

Going to give it another go tomorrow morning. In the meantime, I’ve been swimming in the pool every morning, which feels good.

 

 

 

An aborted run…

Sunday Night Training

Last night I did something I never usually do. I trained. Sunday nights are usually for movies, a roast, a bath, book and early bed.

But last night I had an early dinner and I’d had a fairly lazy day. I needed to exert some energy. So I pulled on my shorts and go to it. Incidentally the ‘small’ training shorts I bought when I started Freeletics are now considerably less baggy than they used to be. Seems all those squats do make a difference.

And I was glad I worked out. It took less than half an hour and then I slept like a baby.

I started with:

Endurance (full body)

5 sprawls, 20 high knees, 20 jumping jacks, 30 secs rest x 5 sets

Pretty straightforward. Felt like a warm up, and certainly raised my pulse.

Then

2/4 Venus

50 push-ups, 20 sit-ups, 50 squats x 2 sets

Thought this would be easy, but either I was out of practice or was tired. The push-ups were really hard. I wanted to do it under 10 minutes, but only managed 12:15.

Then I stretched and had a bath. And felt like I’d got a head start on the week. Will definitely be doing that again.

Here’s where I am versus week 1

Sunday Night Training

Strength vs Cardio

I’ve always been a skinny guy. I have a fast metabolism, and have always been fairly active. I cycle to work and always have lots of energy.
When I started Freeletics, it was because I was developing a beer belly. My waist hasn’t increased, but my belly has!

I also didn’t have much muscle definition, especially on my arms and chest. Over a year of Freeletics I’ve also learned that I didn’t have much definition on my legs either.

So for ages I’ve been selecting Strength Coach, in order to build muscle. But recently I switched to Strength & Cardio so that I could shift a bit more of that belly fat, and to mix things up a bit. And I’m quite enjoying it. I’m also going to start doing Freeletics Running this week (hopefully!), as I find running really hard and can’t really do any distance.

So I’ll keep you posted on that. 

What Coach do you use, and why?

Strength vs Cardio

Is May too late to think about your summer body?!

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It’s May, and summer is around the corner. Time to put some effort in for that summer body. Even though I kind of object to that term. But still. It’d be nice to look good on the beach.

I’ve had a bit of a break – no reason apart from laziness. Too many nights going for post-work drinks, which not only means I don’t exercise in the evening (and am more likely to eat pasta for dinner!), it means I’m also less likely to get up early with a clear head after a good night’s sleep and head to the park.

I know that alcohol is the single biggest reason I don’t exercise. If I drink (even one or two drinks), my sleep isn’t good quality, I wake up groggy and I end up drinking tea in bed and scrolling through the internet on my phone for too long.

My challenge is that I work with my friends, and my job involves a lot of socialising in the evening. Most nights of the week, someone is bound to suggest going to the pub after we finish at the office, or there’ll be some event or other. It’s also much more difficult when the sun’s out.

So I’ve been trying to be really strict with myself. I try to decline, or make plans after work that don’t involve drinking. And where possible, I exercise in the morning, so that at least I’ve got it out of the way first thing. That feels so good.

But Coach 2.0 is really helping. The workouts are shorter, but no less taxing. I’m much more likely to haul myself out of bed in the morning and do a Freeletics session if I know that the whole thing isn’t going to take longer than 30 minutes, including warm-up and stretching. I really like knowing what part of my body is being exercised each day. And it all feels more efficient and clean.

Overall I’ve noticed more people refer to me as being in really good physical shape. I know my body looks more in proportion, that I have more stamina and commitment in lots of different areas. Freeletics works.

I’m going to start taking progress photos more regularly. Every week. Here’s where I am versus week 1, which is now over a year ago.

Here’s to Summer 2017!

 

 

Is May too late to think about your summer body?!

Freeletics Bodyweight Coach 4.0: Review #3

Getting into the swing of the new coach now. Yesterday was:

Conditioning
Interval: Legs, Core

3x rounds of

Squat Jumps
Bicycle Crunches
Split Lunges
Single Leg Hip Raises Left
Single Leg Hip Raises Right

2/5 Morpheus

And today I ACHE. The whole session took about 20 minutes. I was sweating and tired by the end. And today my glutes and thighs ache.

It’s quite difficult to do a whole set of new exercises when you can’t stop and re-watch the videos to make sure you’re doing it right, so I didn’t give myself a star, but things can only get easier.

Freeletics Bodyweight Coach 4.0: Review #3