Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Things You Can Learn By Changing Your Intentions

Over the last two days I have been implementing my new goals: 2500 calories and alternating workouts. I have already learned some pretty exciting stuff. As it turns out I am stronger than I thought. This week I have changed from the 10-12 rep bodybuilding style lifting to a 4-8 rep strength focused routine. I haven't done this style of lifting in a long time so honing in on the right weight to use has taken some experimentation.

I am a huge RadioLab fan on NPR and they have this episode called "Limits." In it they talk about how the mental limits we set for ourselves sometimes keep us from doing things that we are actually capable of doing. Example, for years and years no one thought you could run a 4:00 minute mile. It was just believed to be outside of human capacity. Then in 1954 Roger Bannister ran a 3:59 and a mere two months later John Landy ran under 4:00 and since then it has become the standard for middle distance runners. Bannister broke a mental barrier and changed the parameters of the conversation.

I think I have broken a personal mental barrier this week. Instead of just adding a little bit of weight to each lift I do I decided to throw caution to the wind and just kept piling it on (of course I didn't throw safety to wind!). I have been hitting weights I didn't think I could even do a 1 rep max on, let alone do a set of 5. I am changing my parameters for how far I can push my body in the weight room and I think I am going to see some great results because of it.

Limiting myself to 2500 calories has also been a little different. I have actually been quite hungry a few times over the last couple days but sitting with that hunger has been a good experience. As an obese person I am used to eating a lot and eating all the time. I rarely felt hungry before because I was always snacking on something (and it showed). But now that I am limiting the amount of calories I eat, I have to be careful to spread them across the day which means sometimes I need to just wait to eat.

I have found this rather difficult but I am getting better at more effectively using my calories. If I cut out one of the eggs I eat in the morning that gives me about 100 calories I can use later for a small snack. I am also turning to more vegetables since they are low calorie but can be very filling. And finally portion control has become very important. We make some awesome homemade meals in my house (thank you wife for being a great cook and meal planner) but even homemade meals can get out of hand if I don't watch my portions.

I feel pretty good about the last couple days. I hope this change up gets me loosing weight again and helps me towards my path of living healthy.
And whenever I want to give up I just remember that this little girl wants to have her daddy around for a long, long time :)

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