Update on my weight loss journey. I've reached another weightloss milestone - 145 lbs! I thought I would never break 150, as I had been there for nearly two months, but it finally happened. At 5'6", I could conceivably stop here, but my goal which was 140 lbs, is now 135, and when I reach that milestone, I've promised myself I'll focus on maintenance. I've been absolutely ecstatic to pull on fitness clothes that show a healthy, well defined physique, and I am proud to see curves re-emerging and slender but muscled limbs developing. The thought struck me today that I am designing, as I've always done; the only difference is that the canvas is now my body. That was a powerful realization!
I've increased running speed to 5.3 mph for my treadmill days and increased the cycle resistance load from 10-12 to 12-14 in spinning class. Resistance training at this point is mostly on Cybex machines. For the lower body, I favor the glute extension, hip abduction/adduction for a great hip/thigh workout, as well as the leg extension and leg press/curl. Occasionally I'll mix in lunges with free weights. For the upper body, I like the lateral pull down, bicep/tricep curls, chest press, incline press and overhead press. Like many women, my problem area is the abs. For abs/core I have been doing the torso rotation, ab/back extension plus 100 sit ups - alternating them on the medicine ball and directly on the floor on a foam mat with my legs elevated. There are a few other machines I have worked in, but those are the main ones; I alternate upper body and abs with lower body and abs but do some form of weight resistance training almost daily. I plan to add squats including the hack squat machine as well as freestanding squats, more core exercises and free weights as I approach the last ten pounds. Even though "strong is the new skinny", I'm not keen for that super-muscled look on me, so I am shooting for just the right amount of definition by completing three sets of moderate weights at higher reps on each machine.
I am amazed at how quickly I was able to develop muscle. I can feel long, rock-solid muscle on my thighs and legs where flab used to sit just a matter of months ago, and slender arms are taking shape once again. It's absolutely worth all the sweat, tears and sacrifice. I don't miss the sugar and the carbs (even with all the constant exposure to holiday goodies at the office this time of year.) My body has really embraced clean eating and healthy living. If you've been considering committing to fitness, I encourage you to take the step to begin your journey. Every milestone reached fuels me to reach higher. There is no such thing as too old, too fat, too awkward or any of the other excuses we hold up as barriers to reaching our goals. You CAN do it. The key is to take the first step. And then another, and another, and another. The empowerment you will feel from seeing the results is worth it. And besides: "I really regret that workout!" said no one, ever.