Bells, Bikes and Belief

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I’ve now completed my 6th week of Functional Fitness and I can definitely see improvement in my workout.

In my first post, I mentioned using a 8kg for my first 2 classes. That was pretty tough. I even went out and bought my own 8kg bell to practice!

In my 3 class ever, my trainer Gerry promoted me to using a 12kg bell and that was even tougher. Like real tough. (Not to mention, my 8kg bell was sitting there, lonely ane brand new! *sad face*) I feel like I had to double my effort with the 4kg increase. What’s that you say? Sounds easy? Its only 4kg? You try it. See how you go and then tell me it’s easy. Here’s your workout.

30 x 2 handed swings
15 x sumo squats/goblet squats
30 x alternative hand swings

30 second break (we only had 15 second breaks but I’ll be generous)

15 x sumo squat with vertical thruster
30 x 2 handed swings
15 x sumo squat with vertical thruster

30 second break

30 x alternative hand swings
20 x knee crunches
30 x 2 handed swings

30 second break

10 x left handed squat press
30 x alternative hand swings
10 x right hand squat press

30 second rest

30 x 2 handed swings
10 x left kneel down get ups
30 x 2 handed swings
10 x right kneel down get ups

(I did replace these kneel down get ups with more crunches for obvious knee reasons but you should be fine)

Not so easy now, right? When you are trying to press the bell above your head, 12kg certain becomes heavier than you thought. Especially with your non dominant hand. I struggled. Yep, I’ll admit it. I got to 7 on my left and I felt like I could not do anymore. Gerry and the class had already finished their left handed set and I had 3 to go. I felt like I was holding the group up but I didn’t wanna give up at the same time. Gerry picked up his own bell and said, ‘How many do you have left?’. I told him 3. He counted and completed them with me. I could feel the emotion within my own body after I’d completed it. The relief and feeling of being proud my achievement washed over me but I still had those right handed ones to complete. They were slightly easier, only because I’m right handed. I pushed out the 10 reps without a break and felt much better after I finished them.

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I’ve now been using the 12kg for my last 3 classes and I can feel my body improving with this weight.

We altered the workout after that third class, only slightly but it was still an alteration. Instead of the second lot of squat thrusters, we replaced more crunches. We also added 5 high swings after every 10 in the 2 handed swings. This alteration was used in the forth and fifth class.

Gerry had been completing the exercises with us the entire time and I tried to stay at his pace so I could have something to gage myself on. He uses a 16kg bell. Wowie. I tried a bit of swinging with the 16kg and thought I might be able to move up a few kgs but wasn’t sure on another 4kg increase. Gerry suggested adding a small weight to the bell I had been using, taking it from 12kg to 14kg just for the 2 handed swings. Presses I would still use a 12kg so I could master it. I thought, that’s a pretty good idea. I like a challenge, why not?

It was only the next day, I had an upper arm day at the gym and there was that 16kg bell, just taunting me. I altered my own workout and decided to give it a try. It was only 20 x swings (along with 20 x push ups and 10 x 10kg bar bicep curls) in between each weight machine. That makes it a total of 200 swings for my entire workout. Did I complete them? Absolutely. Did it hurt and burn? Absolutely. However, did I feel greatness after them? Absolutely.

If there was one thing I could say about myself at the gym, it would be I have an attitude that I don’t give up. Do I feel the pain (good pain, not injury pain) and burn of a workout? Hell yes! I also have thoughts constantly running through my head of ‘Conquer’, ‘Learn to love the burn’ and for times when I am running ‘Run with your heart, not your legs’ ‘You’re brain will give up much quicker than your legs will’. It might sound corny and typical fitness inspirational but IT HELPS!

Yesterday saw me complete the sixth functional workout. I haven’t missed a week yet. Touch wood. If you keep training the same with no variation on your workout, you’ll never improve. So, this lead to a completely different set of exercises with the bell and the introduction of speed bikes. (This morning, I am sore. I’m not sure if I lacked technique last night but my back is aching. Whinge complete. Back to the workout) The group was split in half with one completing a kettle bell session and the other the spin bikes. As you can guess, we swapped after the completion of each workout.

I had the bells first. It was a 5 round burst that consisted of the following:

10 x knee crunches
6 x swing, clean and press (each hand)
15 x sumo/goblet squats
30 x alternative hand swings
30 second break

After 3 rounds, I could literally feel the sweat running down my face. I was getting tired but I tried to keep my technique and good as possible. I also tried to complete the swings with 2 x 8kg bells (one in each hand), swinging at the same time. This time, it was too tough for me. I will try it again next week though.

Next was the spin bikes. It was almost like a HIIT session. There was a mixture of light and tough resistance, fast and slow-ish peddling and even 1 foot peddling. After that workout, I was exhausted. I use another word but let’s keep it ‘G-rated’. We took a heart rate measurement and I was working at about 162 beats per minute which for my age is about 85% work rate. Apparently that’s a good range. I’m not 100% sure on what the fat burning range for a 24-25 yr old is but I definitely feel skinner afterwards. *wink face*

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I know next week will be somewhat the same and I will try the 16kg swings again and see how I go. My presses have definitely improved on my right arm. I just need to work more on my left.

It’s upper body day at gym tonight so I guess I’ll see how I go. Who knows, I might be able to throw 300 swings in with the 16kg. I’ll let you know next post.

There are no reasons on Earth why you should not believe in yourself. Find your reason and conquer your dreams.

La love,
C. x

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Remember When?

Do you remember back when you first started a new job, a new hobby or even your first fitness regime?  Was one of your very first thoughts  “I am never going to be able to learn all this stuff, I’ll never be good at this or I quit.”

I most certainly do.  I used to think I wasn’t a bad runner but I could never run for more than a few minutes without getting tired.  I thought I would always be the same.  I was just supposed to run for short distances and that would be it.

I remember tearing my lateral collateral ligament in my right knee and thinking I may never be able to run again, let alone play football, if I don’t look after my knee and give it the right treatment.  I sat sidelined for 8 months doing recovery physiotherapy just to strengthen my knee enough to start jogging for 5-10 minutes at a time. By that stage, I couldn’t jog 400 metres without getting tired, I was so unfit.  (It also meant a fair few months not wearing heels! :O)  I started training with my team again and I was so worried about not getting hurt again that it affected my game, personally, as in I wasn’t giving 100% to the team.  My coach encouraged me to trust my body and that 8 months of physiotherapy would have made it strong enough to withstand the pressure again.  From that moment, I tried not to look into the past but to enjoy the present and look forward to the future.  My team trained hard and I trained harder.  I had something to prove.  I was just as good then as I was before my injury, maybe even better now I was in the right mindset.

How about my job for instance? 4.5 years ago I started here.  We have over 200 products and I need to remember most of them and what they are made up of so when a customer rings, I can at least clarify whether they are a real lead or just a time waster.  I did think, I will never know all of these.  Slowly but surely, I have learnt them, it may have taken me 4 or so years but I got there.

You will get there in your own time if you only help yourself. Image here.

An old saying goes “You start your life at the end of your comfort zone”. You will never know how great your are until you put yourself in a situation where you have only 2 options. Success or failure.  If you succeed, you now know you are greater than you once thought.  If you fail, there should not be sadness, but a hunger to achieve what you rightfully think you can do which in turn will bring about success.  Life should not be about how many failures we have but how many failures we learn from and turn into successes.

Last night, I went for my evening run.  Nothing unusual there. However, I was completely unmotivated and I just could not be bothered.  I crammed my brain with thoughts like ‘You will feel better afterwards.” Did I? Honestly, Yes. I ran quicker again last night that I have before. *GRIN* Another PB in my want for a quicker speed.  I may not have run for as long as I normally do, (it was only for 20 minutes) but I increased the speed of my treadmill to intervals between 10Kmh to 12kmh because I need to push myself to be better.  Did I feel like giving up and slowing down at some points. Absolutely.  Did I feel like I was going to be sick with 3 minutes to go.  Unfortunately yes, but I kept on going thinking I will overcome this.

My 20 minutes of running saw a pattern like this.

1 minute – 10km
1 minute – 11km
1 minute -12km
1 minute – 11km
(and repeated)

It was obviously the quickest 3.7km I have run to date. *YAY* Surprisingly, I am recovering quicker than before, probably because my body is getting used to run harder and longer.

I remember telling myself I’m tired and I can’t run further but I gave it a go.  I either succeeded or I didn’t.  It wasn’t a life or death situation but a chance to prove to myself that I am better than I believe. If you has asked my back in 2010 when I was walking around on crutches if I thought it was possible in 2 years I’d be running 5-6km, I would have laughed in your face and told you “You’re dreaming”. It’s amazing what the body can do when you set your mind to it.  Don’t give up.  Remember back to when you said “I can’t” and replace it with “Watch me”.

Tonight is a rest night for me.  I am flying to Sydney to see a client with my boss.  I am going to hopefully get some pics and post about it tonight/tomorrow, depending on how many Vodka/OJ’s I’ve had.

C.x
(P.s. Next time I complain about my job, remind me of this trip yeah? It’s not that bad after all huh? ;))

Radiating Self Belief

Self Belief.
By definition: Trust in your own abilities

Self Doubt.
By definition: A feeling of having no confidence in your abilities and decisions

I know at one point in my life, I used to have huge amount of self belief.  It even got to the point where I used to ask for harder tasks and homework because I knew I was capable of achieving more than what I was already doing.  If I believed in myself then why am I now constantly asking the same questions?

What has changed within myself?  Why do I doubt my own ability?

It’s a question many people ask themselves every day.  The next question should “How can I flip this doubt into belief?” which is exactly the question I have asked myself over the last two days.  I cannot assign a date to where I stopped believing in myself but I know it has to change.  I know there are many people in my life that believe in me and wonder why I now question myself.

When I looked up the symptoms of self doubt, I did assign a few with myself:
* Fear
* Perfectionism
*Second guessing myself
*Lack of achievement

But when I looked at the causes of self doubt, I couldn’t truly assign any to myself because they didn’t fit “wholey” to myself.

WELL… IT’S TIME FOR A CHANGE AND I WILL CONQUER THIS.

Newly found belief in myself happened on Sunday night when I decided to go for a walk.  I was meeting a friend of mine and he had been told to meet him somewhere else than where we normally meet.  I decided to give jogging a go as I was feeling good and thought “I’ll just see how far I can get.”  Normally, I would get half way and give im because I was too tired, but I shouted at myelf (actually out loud too!) do not give up, keep going.  I jogged the entire way.  I was SO happy for myself and my friend could see it.  I was “radiating” happiness like the sun radiates heat.  He was so happy that I was so happy right at that moment.  I knew he believed I could do it and now I could say I had done it.
Self belief moment #1 accomplished. 

But wait… There is a more.  😀

I got home from having such a wonderful evening, that I found myself asking, “Could it be possible that I could do it again?” Monday evening after work, I found myself in the same situation.  Wanting to run outside in the sun and not cooped up inside on my treadmill.  I sent a text to my friend but he was busy.  I could have easily said, “Oh ok, I’ll just use my treadmill, nevermind.” but I though, “No, I am going to do this and I WILL at least make it as far as I did yesterday, if not further.” I put on my favourite shorts and tied my laces and pumped myself and Keith {Urban} up and just jogged.  I didn’t worry about the world and if I looked fat.  I didn’t look too far ahead of myself and just keep a steady pace and said over and over (in my head and out loud) “You can do this, you’re over half way, the finish is just over this hill” and I jogged not only what I had the day before, but the entire way, right from where I started.  In a nutshell, I was ecstatic.  I’d said to my buddy that I’d text him my result.  This is what it said.  “I jogged the whole way.  F**k yes.” He told me later on that night that he was so proud of me and I couldn’t help but beam at his words.
Self belief moment #2 accomplished.

Even over the past 24 hours, I started something that I have never done before and I was pretty chuffed with the response I got.  Okay, it’s not breathtaking or groundbreaking BUT yesterday I helped out my friend Luke at his small restaurant on Mt. Macedon called Top of the Range Tearooms.  I was basically the barista’s assistant all day and if you had asked me on Sunday to carry a tray full of coffees without spilling it, I would have gone back to the “doubting Thomas” (well, Candice) and said I couldn’t.  After doing it for 6 hours yesterday, I’d say for my first attempt, I did great!  I managed to only slightly spill one glass of wine and it wasn’t even a lot.  I wasn’t sure if it was something I would like doing but I gave it a crack and both Luke and Brent said I did a fantastic job for my first time.  I’ll only get better right? 🙂

I haven’t been so proud of myself in a very long time.  I know this is the turning point in my life to turn that doubt into belief.  Self belief is a wonderful thing and I hope that if I continue to believe in myself, my happiness with life will improve.  It’s like killing two birds with one stone, hey?

C. x