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Major, Major, Major Break Through!

3 Jul

Hello Fellow Gearheads!

When I started on the elliptical machine, I lasted all of five minutes. After a couple of weeks, I lasted around 15 minutes before requiring a break. I’m still at the beginner level (level one), but the plan is to max out the timer on the machine (it only goes up to an hour), and then start working my way up to level 20, however long that takes.

Because of finals, I had to let the workouts fall to the wayside. I started working out again last weekend by riding hard on the drives around Fairmount Park (Forbidden, Kelly, Schuylkill, MLK, and a smidgen of Lincoln for good measure). I took Monday off, because the week’s workouts drained me. However, the next day I blew through twenty minutes on the elliptical machine easily!

This was a major breakthrough for me; I felt a massive performance improvement! Six minutes passed before I even broke a sweat. I spun at 68 RPMs consistently with a steady heart rate of 164 BPMs. Around 17 minutes in I went up to 174 BPMs, which I didn’t think was too bad at the moment, so my first thought was that next week I’ll go to 30 minutes. Then I thought, “Why not do it now?” I didn’t even stop spinning. I added ten more minutes to the elliptical computer on the fly and kept humping.

At about 26.5 minutes in, I looked down and my heart rate was at 180 BPMs! I wanted to keep going, but I wasn’t sure if that was safe. I worried that I might hurt myself if I let my pulse rise up to 200 BPMs. That number looks big when it’s your heart rate!

It felt great, but does anyone know if that’s excessive? I know I opened something up, because when I stopped it felt like someone shoved a baseball bat down my lungs! I gagged like it was my first time (or maybe second time) doing aerobic work after a respite.

I’m 40 years old, 6’2”, and around 215 pounds (the last time I checked my weight). I’d appreciate any comments.

Thanks,

Ron

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Muffin Top Epilogue

25 Jun

I’d like to thank Nikiya Callender Scott for inviting me to Fitwars and for the accountability that comes with being part of the group. From what I understand part of being in the group is posting before and after pictures. So I posted my pic here (including the previously blogged about evil muffin top!) . I look forward to gleaning inspiration from other members and hope that I can reciprocate.

I’ve been fooling around in the gym for about three weeks. I could see some change and felt close to buffed again. For me “buffed” meant my chest looked bigger than my stomach with a button down shirt on. However, when I took my before picture for Fitwars my muffin top (fortunately they’re mini muffins now) and my moobs (man boobs) stood out in all their glory. So Fitwars has helped me already. It made me realize that I need to stop patting myself on the back for losing 1/32” off my waist and get serious. The first mistake I made was screwing around with upper body exercises when I know I need to get my skills up in aerobic work and lose the fat first. Seeing your chest and shoulders swelled and veined up (that’s called a pump) right after a workout is sooooo rewarding. It’s like candy for gym heads. Well it’s time to eat my vegetables. So it’s back to the original workout plan and it’s also time to make a workout chart and get consistent. The original plan, instead of impressing myself in the gym, is to burn fat on the elliptical machine then build up endurance with free weights (that means lower weight and more reps). Once my endurance feels right I can begin to work on strength by increasing weight and still doing endurance sets. There is one thing I’ll be adding to my repertoire that I never thought I’d be able to do after fracturing my shin bone, that’s running. It turns out that bike riding was low impact enough to get me back into the groove of things and build my injured leg  up enough so I can run! The goal is to get the six pack visible before Fall semester starts. Anybody can get a 6 pack in 4 to 6 weeks, it’s getting rid of the layer of fat it hides under that’s the tricky part! Running’s always the move when your torso starts going wacky. Then I’ll be able to ride better…so I can run better…so I can ride better…so I can…uh oh, I think I have the workout bug! Happy trails!

These muffin tops are dead meat!

Muffins Are Made for Eating Not Wearing!

22 Jun

So, I looked in the mirror and decided I didn’t like what I saw. A year and a half ago I was riding and was in such great shape that even though I had a 34” waist I had to buy 36” inch pants to fit over my thighs. Then I broke my leg…puff, puff, puff went my body! Then I started school and I puffed up more. One day I looked in the mirror and saw these things hanging over the side of my belt- the dreaded muffin tops! So I’m joining the likes of some of my Facebook friends like Warren Massey, Nikiya Callender Scott, Christina Baang, and William Izaguirre, and getting my sorry butt back into shape. It’s been quite the ride (pun intended). Normally I’d stay in shape because of my job, but since my job is full-time student now, I have to actually exercise. So far I’ve sprained my belly-button doing sit-ups with a 25 lb. weight and screwed my knee up for week. I’m doing 20 minutes on an elliptical on days I don’t have time to ride. I’m almost to doing a straight 20 minutes on level 1. Just out of curiosity I wanted to see what the highest level, 20, felt like. After 30 seconds my knees started to hurt so I stopped. The next day my left knee was fine but my right knee felt like I was doing Tae Bo with a brick wall. Lesson to self…”I’m not 18…stop playing with the toys in the gym and just workout!” Happy trails…

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