Thursday, February 12, 2009


When I first started my healthier kick in July of 2008, I focused almost completely on diet. In September I decided to add cardio to the mix. A couple of months later, I added strength training in - mostly in the form of free weights added to cardio. Then came the 8 weeks where I couldn't work out at all (doctor's orders) and I slowly had to ramp everything back up again when I was cleared. I'm now working out several days a week and I'm trying to alternate between cardio and weight/strength training.

Last night was a cardio night...and despite being on the elliptical next to a guy with HORRENDOUS body odor, it was pleasant.

I play a little game most times when I work out. And it is this: make the calorie counter go to 100 every 7.5 minutes. The machines that I work out on are ones where you enter your weight and age into it prior to starting the work out. So as I've dropped weight it gets harder to reach the 100 calorie benchmark every 7.5 minutes...which means I have to move faster or raise the resistance. I already work out using intervals - alternating between low crossramp and resistance and then higher ones. To burn the necessary calories, I typically have to be at 174+ steps/minute for the lower resistance intervals and 155+ for the higher resistance intervals. I love this game most of the time.

I don't kill myself with it. My deal with myself is: work out for at least 20 minutes. As it gets closer to the 20 minute mark, I usually talk myself up to 30 and then progressively more. Once I hit 48 minutes, I'm dedicated to working out for the full hour. But usually by this time, I can't keep up with the 100 calories per time period...I've usually decreased the resistance and crossramp on one of the intervals. I've only worked out for the full hour a handful of times. Because my other deal with myself is stop when it is no longer fun (after the 20 minutes). If I make myself work out past the point of fun, it feels like a chore. And I am doing this for my mental health just as much as I am for the physical health.

Last night I decreased the intervals for a total of 4 minutes...but then ramped right back up. My calorie counter reached 800 by the end of the hour and I was SO proud of myself...because that IS 100 calories every 7.5 minutes.

I usually don't focus on the distance part of it - mostly because it doesn't move fast enough to be motivating. But last night, when I was done, I checked it. 4.73 miles.

I know, ellipticals don't really match up in running miles (like how the treadmill does). I use it because my knees are a constant source of pain when running. I'm hoping to drop another 35 pounds and then start running for real. Training for a half or full marathon sounds like fun.

Even though I know that I couldn't run (outside or on a treadmill) 4.73 miles in an hour now, I'm pretty proud of what that means for me now: I'm getting healthier.

I am really proud of myself.


Slackey said...

Great job with your workout. I like how you work out as long as you're having fun!

I'm just the opposite- it takes me a while to warm up to the exercise. About the first 15-20 minutes that I'm running, I absolutely HATE it. Then it starts getting more enjoyable. If I can make it past 3.5 miles, I'll stay on till I do 5 because I start getting my creepy happy running high.

PS, It's really hard to creep me out. I went back last night and read a lot of your old entries. I think it's a sign that we immediately need to become bff.

Have a great day!

Bonnie said...

That is awesome! Thanks for the comments the other day about being human, it meant a lot to me and actually made me smile. I'm doing much better now.