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…

Cancelling my gym membership and other January activities

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So. 2017. Here we are.

Have to admit, I did stop training over Christmas. And only started again the other day.

My final pre-Christmas workout was Uranos, where I beat my PB, and then on Christmas Eve (when I was sick of my family already and itching to do something physical) I knocked out a quick Athena.

I’d kind of forgotten that I can break with Coach every now and then and do those super-quick, no equipment workouts wherever and whenever. It felt quite nice to do a quick 7 minute workout, just to get the blood flowing.

And then post Christmas I was straight back to it with KENTAUROS. Jeez. I did it on a beautiful, sunny, freezing cold day in the park. Even though it was cold I was sweating buckets by the end. Blimey that workout tires me out. And my legs were aching for days.

On Monday evening, just before going to back to work after the break, I did Artemis. I quite like this workout – 50 burpees, 50 pull-ups, 100 pushups, 150 squats, 50 burpees. I beat my PB, but no star (still not mastered the pull-up).

The other thing I did this week was cancel my gym membership. Probably the opposite of what everyone else is doing at this time of year. £17 per month, and I wasn’t really using it. I’ve decided that wherever possible I will exercise at home or outdoors. And that there shouldn’t really be any excuses about that. I don’t need the gym.

So I’d better crack on with tackling that 2017 bucket list

 

Cancelling my gym membership and other January activities

Back in the gym

To be honest it’s fucking freezing outside. Sudden temperature drop for bonfire night. And so it was either do 2×2 Kentauros inside (and I keep getting paranoid that my jumps are pissing off my landlord who lives downstairs) or head to the gym. Gym it was. Also, as I’ve mentioned before, I find 2×2 Kentauros much harder).

I’ve been cycling a lot this week, so I wasn’t feeling like I particularly needed to exercise my legs, also I was a bit tired, so I only did 20m of lunge walks and burpee frogs instead of 40m. I was still exhausted.

After it was done, I did loads of stretching which felt really good. Especially since I did 50 correct-form jumping pull-ups earlier this week so I was acheing a bit.

And then the week was complete. I selected 5 workout days next week and confirmed my suspicion that coach is a bit kinder on you if you work out every day. This is what next week looks like…

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A quick observation from being in the gym. Freeletics really does work out your whole body. You can tell people who go to the gym lots and lift weights… their bodies are all out of proportion. Freeletics gives you an overall level of fitness and tone that I just don’t think you can get in the gym.

Back in the gym

JackKnives: like, wtf…

Saturday morning. Peeled myself out of bed and checked Coach. Nemesis (Strength). Oof.

Turns out it doesn’t take too long. I completed it in less than 30mins. And probably could have done it quicker.

And it’s also pretty simple. 5 sets of JackKnives and Froggers. JackKnives start at 50, then 40, 30, 20, 10, and the Froggers do that in reverse.

Unless you’re super flexible, you’ll probably look at the video of JackKnives, and think, YEAH RIGHT.

  
And you’d be right to think that. They’re fucking hard. I can get my legs up pretty easy, but getting my torso to do the same is impossible. And it makes your abs burn. Feels good in a weird way though.

So I kind of did them, in crap form, but I didn’t chicken out. And I did the Froggers with good form.

But God knows how to do JackKnives properly. Reckon that’ll need practice.

Meanwhile, I also did 10 pull-ups. I still find them really, really hard. Almost impossible. Have decided to do that every day to try and get better. My skinny arms just can’t pull my body weight. But I WILL get there!

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Oh, and I also downloaded the Freeletics Gym app. Have decided not to do that too. I want to see through the body weight app. And there’s something about lifting weights that doesn’t feel quite right for me… Looks cool though, and nice design. 

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Image: workoutlabs.com
 

JackKnives: like, wtf…

Strength in Numbers?

Header_Cheering2
Image: Freeletics

Today was my first workout in almost a week, after being away on holiday. And man, was that tough.

It was Kentauros (Standard). And I couldn’t get anywhere outside today so I did the 2×2 version. 2x 20m Lunge walks replaced by 40 Lunges; 2 x 20m Burpee Frog replaced with Burpees. Despite wanting to give up half way through, and sweating an AWFUL lot, I made it.

I also tried to take it slowly – seeing as I’d never done it before, it might make it easier to beat my PB next time – and to make sure that I did good form. I still find burpees really hard, but my form is getting much better and the movement much more fluid. I’m also finding I can do them more quickly. Kentauros makes you do 240 of the bloody things. I was cursing the app before I was even half way through.

I tend to check how quickly other people have done the workout before I start, and then decide what time I’m aiming for (usually I try to just not come bottom!). So if you’re on Freeletics, but haven’t followed many people, I’d recommend having a look at the Freeletics Reddit and following a few people who have posted on there. In particular, look for posts where people are searching for people to follow.

It really helps me to see other people’s struggles and successes and it’s always a boost when you get a #clapclap, even if it’s from someone you’ve never met. I’ve yet to workout in a group. I tend to get into a zone when I’m working out and can’t really see how I’d do it with others. Do people do the same workouts? Or do you just crack on with your own coach workout but with others doing the same nearby? Either way, I wouldn’t mind if the guys in the picture above came along and worked cheered me on..

Anyway, today I wanted to do Kentauros in under an hour, or more specifically under 58 minutes, which was the bottom score on the people I follow.. And I did. 53 minutes. BOOM.

I drank quite a lot on holiday. Not good for the belly. I’ve now adjusted MyFitnessPal’s Carbs/Protein/Fat percentage goals to 45/30/25% respectively. Seems like this is the thing to watch, rather than overall calories.

 

Seems that Freeletics are launching a new Freeletics Gym app this week. Have to say I find this a bit confusing. Isn’t the whole thing about freedom from having to have a gym membership/weights/machines etc. Hence the name?

Personally I like the way that Freeletics is helping me gain a body shape that is in proportion – in a way that I find people who use gyms don’t have (either arms that are too big, or chest, or legs. In fact, hardly ever legs – people tend to hate leg day, don’t they).

 

Strength in Numbers?

HELL WEEK #1

I was a bit worried about being able to complete Hell Week. Not only because the workout regime look HORRIFIC, but because I was travelling again and wasn’t sure where I’d be able to exercise. Turns out, apart from the first day, when I needed a pull-up bar, the whole weekend was sans-equipment, so I was able to do everything from the comfort of my hotel room. Only thing was that I didn’t have a mat, so came very close to carpet burn.

So here goes…

DAY 1: HADES and 2x PERSEPHONE

Hades was pretty tough. I hadn’t worked out for a few days, and the burpees nearly killed me. I did slightly duck out of the pull-ups as I didn’t have access to a bar, so I did pull-downs on the machine in the hotel gym. Still, was pretty tough. I also did the running on the spot rather than over a distance. But this workout still wiped me out and I had another one to do that day.

Although when I came to do Persephone towards the end of the day I was more than ready for more. Lunges are pretty straightforward, but then with more bloody burpees and straight leg levers (which are surprisingly difficult), this was pretty difficult. Also I had to do the whole thing twice.

My progress photo after this was very encouraging, albeit it was under generous hotel bathroom lighting. But I can definitely see my body changing now, and it feels great.

DAY 2: PROMETHEUS & HERMES

Really enjoyed Day 2. I was well up for it and smashed two PBs. Felt amazing afterwards.

DAY 3: THANATOS & 3xATHENA

Day 3 on the other hand was a bit of a killer. Got through it though if only to be able to say I’d completed a hell week, and to see what next week had in store. Also, did quite a good time on Thanatos and then realised I was basically doing squats rather than stand-ups as I hadn’t watched the video. So I’m going to remove the star from that one (I’ve got it again next week so will give it a proper go).

3xAthena – wow. That was hard. 225 of each exercise was a killer. Especially the burpees. I am finding myself getting quicker at everything though and that it’s easier to do each exercise properly.

And that was it. Not as taxing as I had feared. And the endorphin rush yesterday was huge.

Next week there’s a day where I’ve got to do 100 pull-ups. There’s no way on god’s earth I can do that.

Also, the warm-ups and stretching have changed to Warm Up Pro and Stretching Pro. Oooooh, exciting!

Oh, and finally, my diet has been shite this week. Not much alcohol (dry January has really had an affect on my overall drinking), but rubbish food as I’ve been away from home. Need to get back on that next week.

HELL WEEK #1

The Calm Before the Storm

Today was the final day of Week 6, which I’ve spread over two weeks. It was 2/3 Metis Strength followed by two 400m sprints and two 200m sprints. And do you know what, I quite enjoyed it.

Coach seems to have been giving me lots of leg workouts over the past couple of weeks. So actually, it was pleasing that I didn’t find the Burpee Squat Jumps, Froggers and High Jumps particularly taxing. I feel a lot stronger and seem to have more stamina.

And I enjoyed the runs too. I did them in the gym on the treadmill. I should have really gone outside as it was such a beautiful day, but I couldn’t think of the right space to do the sprints (everywhere is pretty hilly around Bristol and there isn’t a running track nearby).

When I started I kind of thought maybe this would be a fad, that I’d stop after a while, but I’ve found myself getting quite addicted. Of course, shelling out money for the coach means you’re kind of invested, but there’s something about seeing what Coach has in store each week that I look forward to finding out. I like it that it’s not all planned out at the beginning.

I stopped Dry January the day before yesterday. We had a three-hour board meeting at work and so I kind of needed a drink after that. I did feel really disappointed in myself afterwards though. I’ve really enjoyed not drinking, feeling more alert, getting more done, feeling more healthy. I don’t want to slip back into bad habits.

I’m off to Vancouver on Monday for a week with work. So as I sat on one of the mats at the gym stretching after today’s workout and completed the week on the app, I was THRILLED to see that next week is Hell Days. This is going to HURT:

Day 1


Hades
2x Persephone

Day 2

Prometheus
Hermes

Day 3

Thanatos
3x Athena

3xAthena looks horrible.

But the hotel I’m staying in has a gym, so I reckon I can really focus and do one workout in the morning and one in the evening. Ouchy.

 

The Calm Before the Storm