Friday, February 21, 2014

February Fitness Challenge

On February 1st I decided to start a fitness challenge for all my lipedema fitness facebook friends; it was inspired by the Tabata Intervals I have done with my CrossFit husband.

The biggest selling feature is that the entire workout takes just 4 minutes.  Everyone has 4 minutes, right?  It will probably take you longer than 4 minutes to read this, and in that time you could have completed a workout.

How it works is this, 20 seconds working (hard as you can while still keeping good form), 10 seconds of rest - repeat for 8 rounds.

There are even tabata timmer aps for your phone, iPad, etc. Some are free and adequate and some will cost you a little bit for more features, but basically they count down each round in various ways.  The very basic options with only a flashing light (or color change from green during workout, to red during the rest period), all the way up to a song created specifically for the workout that counts down while you jam out.  Pick one you like, for me I needed one with sound, as I couldn't always see the iPad I use for my timmer, but the song timmer I tried was annoying, I prefer my own music, and the one I picked allowed me to hear my music and the ap warnings when it was work vs rest phases.

I set up this challenge with movements that are required for living life with lipedema (actually for anyone living life).  Push-ups, Sit-ups, and Squats.  These movements help you move your body, get out of a chair, get up from bed, etc.  But these movements also strengthen your core, helping you do more than live - they make you feel stronger, and encourage you to try more, to be more.

The challenge is this: day 1 push-ups, day 2 sit-ups, day 3 squats, day 4 REST.  Repeat those days for every day of the month of February (ot whatever month you choose to start this challenge, because if you are still reading this post, you either really love me, or are thinking about trying this out for yourself).

When I began, I acheived pretty good numbers, I went all out and could not understand how anyone could acheive higher numbers of reps than I.  Not because I thought I was the best in the world, but because I was truly pushing myself as hard as I could.  My husband was great, he inspired and coached and ensured I kept good form, and then hit me with the reality (his numbers).  But when your body is going as fast as it can, you wonder how in the world you will get faster, stronger, etc.

At the mid month point I looked back at my results so far, and I was floored.  Not only had I acheived more and more reps, but was consistently doing so.  It snuck up on me, not enough to notice while doing them, but substantial when looking back at the amount I had done.

A great motivator is to post your results, which I did on my lipedema fitness facebook support group page, and even a few of the other ladies posted their results.  It gets you up at 11pm to put your sneakers on, becuase you know you have to post your results.  But I also began posting on my regular facebook page.

I love realizing that my worlds are meshing, the news I share with others like me on the support group is the same news I share with others like me in different ways.  Those friends I've made on the support group have crossed over to my personal life and my personal friends, people I have known for years, most who knew nothing about my lipedema, are here reading this blog, learning more with every post - how special is that?  Very, so share your hardwork with those that care about you, get them involved, and watch the motivation, inspiration and validation you receive from each of the parts of your life.

We are LIVING with LIPEDEMA, emphasis on the LIVING!!!

Results to date for February Lipedema Fitness Challenge:

  • Push-ups: 71, 74, 76, 94, 100
  • Sit-ups: 96, 96, 112, 120, 122
  • Squats: 123, 138, 136, 151, 156
But the most important thing I have learned from this challenge, is that I have a pretty big ego.  Here is a look at my facebook post from the 17th:

"Feb. Fit. Challenge, 2/17 results (push-ups): 4 rounds at 13, 4 rounds at 12, for total of 100 push-ups in 4 min.
Felt slow and out of sync, had music kicking even. Checked prior results this month: 71-74-76-94-100.
Crazy how our minds can take us out of our game, even when achieving more than we have.
New goal for me is not more reps per round, but less ego. Trusting my body, doing what I can and being grateful for whatever it is."

And to quote the White Stripes lyrics, "and I said it once before, but it bears repeating now"...

NEW GOAL FOR ME is not more reps per round, but less ego.  Trusting my body, doing what I can and being grateful for whatever it is!