12-Week Fitness Challenge Ends; Lost 9.5 inches since January!

Saturday was my last weigh in for the Gold’s Gym 2014 Challenge and the total results are pretty awesome. I’ve lost 2% of my body fat and 9.2% of my total body weight. The big bonus — I’ve lost 9.5 off my waist and hips. Sweet!

My 12-Week Challenge Results
I started the challenge weighing 239 and ended up at 217. Great overall, but my weight loss slowed considerably during the last 6 weeks of the challenge. I was down just a few pounds. The 5 pound increase over the last couple of weeks really hurt. Lack of tracking was a big part of that slowed weight loss. Read More

Spinning Monkey On My Back

spinning class, fitness

Don’t think I’m addicted to cycling? Well I just picked up a pair of cycling shoes. Tomorrow I’m installing the cleats so i can clamp my shoe on the pedal. Oh, the spinning addiction is real!

Well my November Fitness Challenge – 2 spin classes/week – may be over, but I can’t stop spinning! It’s official. I’m addicted to that damn cycling class.

How bad is it? After the first two weeks of my challenge, it was clear those 2 classes per week weren’t enough. To get my fix I’m now doing 4 classes a week.  Heck, I did back-to-back classes Sunday morning.

I leave each class feeling exhausted and amazing.  No other exercise – weight training, yoga, walking/running – makes me feel the way I do after spinning.  There are five things that make spinning awesomely great.

1. I’m In Control
Yes, I follow the instructor. But I’m in complete control when it comes to setting pace or the resistance levels. I’m pushing myself as much as possible, but when fatigue hits (and it does) then I can slow my speed or my tension until I’m able to catch up. Sure I’m in a class, but it’s my own personal workout.

2. I Feel The Difference In My Runs
Since I started cycling, I’ve noticed a difference in my 5k-interval training. I’m a little faster, I’m not as winded after a session, my legs feel stronger and my knees recover much faster.

3. Spinning Kicks Everyone’s A$$
Doesn’t matter if you are overweight or buff, spinning is an equal opportunity destroyer. When I walked into my first spin class, I felt self-conscious. I found a bike in a corner in the back of the room. For some bizarre reason I thought people would watch the fat chick trying to pedal. Ha! When spinning, folks are doing their own thing. You have no idea what resistance levels your classmates are using. Plus everyone gets fatigued and lightens the tension settings…everyone, including the instructors.

4. I Love The Group Environment
Most group exercises I can do without. I find them boring.  I’ve had the complete opposite experience with my spin classes. There’s so much excitement and energy in the class it feeds your workout.

5. Awesome Music
I know nothing about newer music. With few exceptions, if it’s after 1995 I won’t have a clue. Spin class has introduced me to some great new music like…well, I can’t name the artists, but I’ve liked what I’ve heard. Occasionally my ears bleed from the catwallering of a Katy Perry song.  For those, I tune out the “singing” and focus on the beat. My weekend spin classes find me singing along at the top of my lungs to the best classic rock mixes – Zeppelin, Rush, Skynyrd, U2, Motown. Just brilliant.

What’s your workout addiction?

Taking the LiveLife Active Plunge

liveLife ActiveWeight Watchers just announced its new LiveLife Active Challenge and I’ve signed up.

The challenge lasts through June 1. Each week I’ll kick my workouts up a notch and keep track of all my activities via eTools.

Since I’ve been focused much more heavily on exercise the last couple of months, I’m very excited about participating in my very first challenge. So what’s on tap this week?

Week 1 Daily Workout Plan
Monday – 45 Minute Power Walk (3 miles)
Tuesday – Body Sculpting
Wednesday – 45 Min Power Walk (3 miles)
Thursday – Body Sculpting
Friday – 45 Minute Power Walk (3 miles)
Saturday – Brambleton Ribbon 5K (walk)
Sunday – Day Hike at Great Falls

Brambleton will be my first 5k in about 10 years and my first 5k this year. Can’t wait to start.