This was the final week of my 10 week challenge with Farrell’s Extreme Body Shaping…
and all week I’ve had this song in my head….and so you should listen to this as you read this blog….
So I have to admit…since I knew I wasn’t going to be able to make it for the final testing day, I went ahead and did my testing this week (all except for the mile run).
Well, I won’t share numbers against numbers weight and measurement wise….because if you looked at them you would think nothing much changed. I did loose about an inch here and there, and even though my weight went up just a few pounds, my BMI stayed the same, so I know that weight gain is muscle.
I think another factor that needs to be considered in all this is that a couple weeks before I started the 10 week challenge I finished the Mill Race Half Marathon, which required 4 months of daily training before that. How do I know this should be considered? When I was going through the initial testing I ran my best mile time EVER IN MY LIFE coming in at 9:59. So yeah…I may have been slightly ahead of the game when I started this 10 week journey.
What would have been REALLY sweet is if I had taken these measurements before training for the Half and then seen how far I’ve come…oh well…I’ve never been great at long term planning :).
I WILL share my before and after with push ups, sit ups and sit and reach (yes-just like the one you did in grade school for the presidential physical fitness tests!). Sit and Reach: improved from 19 to 20, sit ups: I went from 35/minute to 38/minute. Not much change there, but I did do this test right after a crazy super-set of ab workouts…so my core was tired.
My FAVORITE improvement? I went from doing 30 pushups/minute TO 50/minute!!!! WHAT THE WHAT? That was crazy! True, I did them the girly way with knees on the floor, but I’ve ALWAYS hated push-ups. WITH A PASSION! Now they aren’t so scary thanks to the 10 week course. PS- I do have slight muscle definition in my upper arms thanks to all those push-ups….YES!
Now all of these measurements are ones that Farrell’s measures. And even though those measurements aren’t that amazing, there are other improvements that ONLY I notice that mean more to me than a number.
I’m addicted to the feeling of accomplishment after a workout. I will still say my favorite part of kickboxing class is the stretching afterwards, because it means we are DONE and a good stretch always feels great. However it’s more than just feeling good physically. There have been days I’ve walked into class feeling tired, stressed, angry, sad, and every other negative feeling you could have about your day. But something happens during that workout: getting your body moving, releasing endorphins (or whatever happens chemically in your body during a workout) and just focusing on your health for 45 minutes releases a good amount of that stress and brings your mood back to a more pleasant state. It’s wonderful.
It could also be the fact that during kickboxing I’ve occasionally visualized the person that made me upset in the punching bag…either way it feels good!
My clothes do fit better! True, I’m not a model. And I’m not to the point where I need to go shopping because I dropped 3 sizes. BUT, that “inner tube” that is around my waist that I feel I always have to hide is not as bad as it was before. That pair of pants that were starting to feel a bit tight are back to feeling like they were when I bought them.
I feel stronger all around. So earlier I mentioned that I had finished the Half Marathon before starting this program. Even though I finished, I trained poorly. I did what Coach Pat told us NOT to do and skipped cross training more often than I should have. As a consequence I developed runners knee a month before the Marathon, which is a result of not properly strengthening the muscles around the knee to support long distance running. Even after the half I would have knee issues in that it would lock up and get sore after sitting cross legged for a while or even sitting in a tall chair or stool that allowed my legs to dangle (we have these in our studios).
I know sad story right? But it DOES have a happy ending! Since doing Farrell’s I’ve noticed this pain occurring less and less and I KNOW it’s because my legs are stronger. YAY! I’m very excited to get back into running after this challenge and I look forward to finding ways to incorporate what I’ve learned with strength training at Farrell’s into my running.
So in conclusion (I think the last time I typed that phrase was in college…haha!), Farrell’s is awesome. I will sing it’s praises from here on out. If you are looking for a way to make that 2014 new year’s resolution of a healthier lifestyle stick for the whole year, then sign up for a 10 week challenge. It’s worth the investment. It’s worth spending 45 minutes a day sweating and losing your breath. It’s worth it to have a team of accountability surrounding you, encouraging you and staying positive as you make it through the 10 weeks.
Thank you Farrell’s for this wonderful opportunity. I’ve loved every moment of it!.
So…what’s next for me? Stay tuned….