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Monday, December 31, 2012

Rest week, then rest week

Rest Week #1 was about reaching personal records. And I am happy with what I was able to accomplish.

Rest Week #2 was actual resting. I was supposed to start my new workout, but between family obligations, holidays, and bad weather it just didn't happen. I did get my new 100lb heavy bag though and went a round or two on that. It was fun!

Yesterday was back to the grind. Pressing the 10kg bell wasn't as hard as I thought it would be (see? I am stronger!). I figured it would irritate my bad shoulder, but it didn't. Though today my hamstrings are a little sore from squatting. I didn't expect that!

Today was snatching, push pressing and double jerks. I picked up exactly where I left off with snatches. I jumped up to the 14kg for the push presses and double jerks since I was able to do a 16kg PR. I did 3 sets of 5 for each and while it was challenging, I could do it.

Back to karate today also. I got new sparring gear (thank you again and again!) and sparred my teacher for the first time. I had a blast!!! I know she went easy on me, but I don't think I did too badly. I can't wait for that to become a more regular thing!

My new running partner is on the out. She injured her ankle (not running) and is off for a bit. That's ok, I don't mind waiting for her. Besides, running is so much easier with someone than by yourself.

2013 better watch out! I am excited to see what this year will bring me!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

The Mental Aspect

The past year and a half has been tough for me. I hit my peak non-pregnant weight and was probably in my worst shape ever, even though I was half-heartedly running a few days a week. There was a period of a few months that were the most difficult time in our marriage yet. And though we worked through it, I got very depressed. I have struggled with depression on and off for most of my life, but this was probably my worst.

We joined the local YMCA last January and I was working out and running about 5 days a week, 2-3 hours a day. It was a small outlet for me and I lost weight. I still felt like I was drowning though. It just felt like it was one thing after another. Over the summer, I slacked off but was able to maintain the weight loss.

At the end of June, I bit the bullet and joined the adult karate class at the Y. It was something I had been thinking about doing for quite a while, since the kids started karate back in March. I instantly fell in love with it! Two months later, I joined kettlebell class. Through those classes, I found my happy place!

It's rather difficult to describe what this has done for me mentally, but I will do my best. First, my self-esteem and self-confidence has vastly improved! I can honestly say I feel good about myself now. Both have become my outlet, lifting and swinging heavy objects is FUN! And it's challenging, there is always something new to try, even if it's just the same exercise with a heavier bell.

In karate, each movement is strong and precise and has purpose. Whenever I get stressed or can't sleep with all those worrisome, depressing thoughts running through my head, I take a deep breath and go through each of my katas in my head. I perfect each movement and stance. I make them strong. And guess what? It clears my mind and I can relax (even fall asleep!).

Physically, I know I am stronger. I am getting muscle tone in my arms and legs. I walk with my head up, my posture is better. And I want to get stronger!

I can't talk about all this stuff without mentioning people. Through my classes, I met some pretty awesome friends and my life is better with them in it. Each week, I look forward to my classes to get stronger, learn more karate, and spend time with some pretty awesome friends!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Rest Week

After working hard in Kettlebell class the last 9 weeks, this week is rest week. But I don't really get to rest. Instead, I use this time to set some personal records and figure out some maximums. I have never done this before and it was pretty fun!

*10 Double Cleans with 14kg in each hand (14kg is about 31 lbs), the 16kg feels a little awkward yet so I didn't want to try that yet.

*5 Swings with 28kg (28kg is about 62 lbs), this was easy so I went heavier....

*30 Swings with 32kg (roughly 71 lbs). This weight surprised me the first couple swings! But once I found my balance, I was good. I could have done more sets, it was fun!

*1 Squat with 28kg. That was enough! LOL

*Single Press, each hand 14kg. Easier than I thought, even on my left side!

*Single Press, each hand 16kg (about 35 lbs). I managed on my right side just fine, my left, not so much. I was only able to get it about halfway. However, I was able to Push Press the 16kg on my left, so I'll take it!

So those were my PRs for yesterday, tomorrow I will try for some more! I also did 100 snatches in 5 minutes with the 10kg (22 lbs) but that wasn't a PR. And that felt easy after the other things I did!

Meanwhile, it was not rest week for karate. I tested and earned my orange belt! I am also learning a new kata - Heian Nidan. I already know the three basic katas, plus Naihanchi Shodan and Heian Shodan. **Google is responsible for any possible spelling errors!**

One last thing, I would like to publicly thank Kettlebells. Ever since I had my first child, I have had a saggy mom butt which has progressively got worse with having my other two kids. All of you other moms know EXACTLY what I am talking about here! Over the last nine weeks, my butt is noticeably perkier! And I am not ashamed to admit that every time I get dressed, I spend a few minutes admiring the return of my old butt! So thank you Kettlebells, and with just that one significant improvement in 9 weeks, I can't wait to see what will happen in 2013!



Thursday, December 13, 2012

Yup. I know.

I'm a total slacker. So let's recap the past year, shall we?


*I lost approximately 20lbs between January and June. Woohoo!

*In May, I face-planted in the road on a run and sprained my ankle pretty bad.

*Later that month, I lost my running partner.

*Started slacking on my running.....

*Dealt with some pretty serious depression during the spring and summer.

*Picked up a Karate class at the end of June! Loving it!

*Still slacking on my running.

*In the early fall, I picked up a Kettlebell class in addition to Karate. Loving it too!

*Last week I found a new running partner! Back to running!


Karate and Kettlebells have done more for me both physically and mentally than anything else I have tried. Between January and June, I was working out 2-3 hours a day, 5 days a week. The last few months, I have been working out 2 hours a day, 2 days a week. I now have muscle tone, I have maintained the weight loss, and I feel stronger and more confident. People tell me I look like I have slimmed down quite a bit the last few months, and though I am not losing that in weight, I am in inches.

I have my yellow belt in Karate and am very close to getting my orange belt. I have also began helping with the kids' Karate class in the evenings.

My new running partner I met through Kettlebell class. We both wanted to do a little more, so it's back to a 5k running program! We are doing the 5k 101 if you are interested. We meet before Kettlebell class to run 2 days a week and meet on a third day during the week to run and do extra kettlebells on our own.

I can't put all this out there without mentioning the awesome people I have met through these classes. They have become great friends and I enjoy working out and hanging out with them!

I am hoping to start 2013 continuing to grow stronger both mentally and physically, get back into running full force (so much easier with a friend!), and building my self-esteem.


Wednesday, January 4, 2012

It's fun to stay at the Y-M-C-A!

We joined the local YMCA the other day. A good friend of mine begged me to join so we could go together. However, by the time I joined, it was only another $20 a month for Shaun to join. And then, by the time we paid that, it was only another $10 to add all three kids. So we just did it. Funny how that works!

So later that night, I met up with K (same friend that just cost me an arm and a leg) and we "worked out" together. Started on the treadmill (feels like forever since I have ran) and I made her run a whole mile straight at a 12 minute pace. It about killed her, but she did it. And I was secretly happy that I barely broke a sweat!

Next was the stair machine, which wasn't bad. Then K wanted to do some ab work. Which, after having 3 kids, kills me. But I did it (and am paying for it 48 hours later). I think we may try to meet up a few days a week and do this.

There is a yoga class I may sign up for with Caitlin. Some "grown up" girl time. And K and I may attempt a Zumba class and make fools out of ourselves. Neither of us is very coordinated.

All in all though, I think this will be good for us. I need to get back into my running (their treadmills are better than mine and with the cold weather around, that's good) and I definitely need to lose weight. So here's to 2012, weight loss and running!