Get in Shape Challenge Day 55 – Sunday 9th October

Today’s rest day I feel needs to be one of those days that I will look back on and be able to mark it as an important turning point in the challenge. I have had a terrible two weeks of training only managing something like half of the required sessions either due to tiredness, laziness or soreness. If I am going to achieve the goals I have set for myself for this challenge this trend of not doing sessions must change at whatever cost and so it will.

This week I am going to aim to do all six sessions starting with tomorrow’s cardio session. It will mean a great deal of discipline that I haven’t shown for the past couple of weeks, I do really know it is possible for me to get it done. So here we go!

Get in Shape Challenge Day 54 – Saturday 8th October

I had hoped when I went to bed on Friday night that I would be able to at least finish off what had been a horrid week, or actually two weeks, with one good weights session. All I can say to that is “here’s to hoping” as it didn’t happen.

To do a session today I knew that I would have to be right on the ball and be up by 6:30 am to be at the gym no later than 7:00am due to the amount of things I had on during the day. I slept through my alarm and didn’t stir until after 7:00am. I did toss up at this point trying to squeeze in the session but it unfortunately didn’t eventuate. I had to be out at Aquinas by around 8:30am to start loading the equipment for the St Thomas Big Band performance at the Perth Royal Show. The performance wasn’t due to start until 11:00am, however, I had no idea what the traffic or parking was going to be like so myself and a few other people headed into Aqunas early to ensure that we’d arrive with plenty of time.

After we had finished the show I knew there’s still be not time for a workout as it was straight off to a sound check for my gig that evening at the William Street Bird, by the time the check had finished the gym as in it’s last hour of being open.

I am very disappointed with myself for how this entire week has gone, there’s been such a lack of discipline which has resulted in me only doing two sessions. I am going to have turn this around next week seriously next week otherwise all the hard work I have done will be in vain very quickly.

Get in Shape Challenge Day 53 – Friday 7th October 2011

I was hoping that when I got up this morning my legs would be feeling a lot better and I would be able to get a good cardio session in to really try and turn around what has not been the most successful training week. Unfortunately today’s session was just not to be!

I got up when my alarm went off at 5:00am to find that now it was not just my right quadricep that was sore still as it was yesterday but now that my right calf was exceptionally tight all down the right hand outer side of it. It feels almost as if some has taken to my leg with a sledge hammer is how tight and battered it is feeling. I am not sure whether someone actually has kicked me at all, I suppose that it is possible especially from the physical toughness of Wednesday night’s game, however I can’t remember being kicked that hard. Another, and probably more likely, possibility is that yesterday whilst playing in the social muck around game I was running a little funny to protect my sore quadricep and as a result have now put more pressure on my calf.

You would think that as I got older  would learn the importance of resting and taking time off to look after my body properly, apparently I still have a to learn in managing my body! Tomorrow morning should be a weights session, I have lots on tomorrow so if I don’t go at 7:00am it won’t happen and that would make this the worst week of training since starting the challenge…something I’d really like to avoid if at all possible!!!

Get in Shape Challenge Day 52 – Thursday 6th October

Today I really needed to get up early to ensure that the weights session scheduled for the day would get done…any later than the 6am start would equal the missed opportunity which I wold not be able to make up later in the day. This is due to me making the commitment already to have one of Melissa’s younger brothers over at my place throughout the course of the day.

Unfortunately when my alarm went off at 5:00am I didn’t get up, there’s really no excuse as to why I didn’t get up other than laziness. As a result of this I have now missed two days in a row training which is quite disappointing.

I have noticed today that my right quadricep is very tight and sore from the full game of indoor soccer I played yesterday. I am supposed to be playing the usual social game of soccer this afternoon which I will have a light run at. I am hoping that it’s just tightness and that I haven’t torn anything in my leg, I suppose only time will tell with that one!

Tomorrow is supposed to be a cardio session, depending on how my quad is feeling will really determine whether or not I do a session and also how hard I push myself. I am hoping that it can be a session and also a hard pushed one as I am starting to really feel like I need a few good days to get back into the routine of things.

And I thought school holidays were supposed to make things easier to get everything done!

Get in Shape Challenge Day 51 – Wednesday 5th October

Today I was posed with a very interesting and difficult decision to make with regards to my training session. It was supposed to be a cardio day and I was hoping to be able to build ont he good results I set on Monday to push things even further. I found out late last night that the indoor soccer team tonight isn’t going to have any reserves, one of the other members is away on holidays (totally cool everyone needs holidays) whilst the another member has just decided that they don’t want to play this week. I know this will mean that I will be needed to play a full game and do a lot of running. So the dilemma was do I put my training regime first and just struggle through a game with no energy or do I put the needs of the team first and miss my training session to benefit the team?

I came to the conclusion that the team’s needs has to be more important than my own training routine so I missed the cardio workout.

The game was a fantastic effort, with no reserves it was always going to be a difficult slog against a physically demanding opponent who are always hard to score against. With great efforts from Melis and Rachel in defence and some fantastic saves from Gerard in goals we managed to fall over the line. Dave Haydon and myself managed to combine well enough to knock five goals in against them. Goal of the night was Dave’s juggle over the top of three players including the keeper starting from just over the half way line.

Tomorrow morning is a weights session, hopefully I can have more success with getting the session completed in the morning as it’s the only time I will be able to get it done.

Get in Shape Challenge Day 50 – Tuesday 4th October

Today’s weights session marks the 50th day of the challenge – it’s quite incredible to believe how fast the time has passed since beginning on this journey!

I rose at 5:10am to the sound of my alarm, it’s the first time I had set this new alarm to play songs from my ipod – I feel it’s the start of an exciting new era for me and getting up in the morning. after doing my abdominal exercises I headed into the gym for the weights session. I was on a very tight timetable today due to needing to be finished, washed and at Epic Coffee n West Perth to meet my good friend Samuel for coffee and a catchup.

Arriving at the gym by 5:50am I waited for the doors to open and quickly got myself onto the bench for my bench pressing by 5:55am. I started with the 62.5kg weight and managed to get out a total of 12 repetitions. My second set I increased the weight to 70kg and the weight felt really comfortable with me managing to get out 8 repetitions. I decided that today I wold push myself with the third set and see how would go with a weight of 75kg on the bar (this is only 4.5 kg lighter than my actual body weight at the moment). I lifted the bar and managed to get out 4 complete repetitions, it was difficult and the last one REALLY hurt, but it is a definite step up. I guess the only problem is now that my session later in the week I am going to have to try and replicate that performance.

I moved from the bench press to the incline press and shoulder lifts using the usual 25kg and 12.5kg dumb-bells respectively alternating between exercises. The first set of the incline press I managed the 12 repetitions easily with following sets of 12 and 10 repetitions. The shoulder lifts I managed a first and second set of 12 repetitions on 12.5kg, the third set got the better of me with me only managing to get out a total of 8 repetitions on each arm.

My shoulder press and bicep curls came next, for these I used the 22.5kg dumb-bells and the 12.5kg working the muscles groups alternately with a small rest period between each complete set. The shoulder press was only difficult in the initial getting the weight into position, once up I did sets of 12, 12 and 8 repetitions. My bicep curls went pretty good as well with me managing sets of 12, 12 and 9 repetitions. The last set of the biceps really hurt a lot and I reached failure point on the attempted 10th repetition where I just couldn’t lift the weight past halfway.

I moved onto a straight bench for my next two exercises, shoulder flies and triceps extensions. Using the 12.5kg weight for both exercises I managed to complete a full three sets of 12 repetitions on both lots of exercises. I know for a few weeks now I have been saying that I should increase this weight, I am a little concerned that the 15kg is just going to be too much for my arms to handle. I guess this is something that I will just have to get over and go for it in the near future.

Time was starting to get away from me, I had 10 minutes to complete my routine so I skipped my deltoids and moved straight onto my bicep curls and triceps dips. Using the 35kg bar-bell I managed to get out a complete three sets of 12 repetitions for the bicep curls as well as 3 complete sets of 12 repetitions for the triceps dips. Maybe I will need to start looking at adding weight to myself for the dips to try and get that little more work on my triceps.

I had enough time to quickly head over to the lat pulldown and I completed three sets of 12 repetitions on 60.

Today’s session turned out to be a really good one, I am hoping that throughout the week I can now keep building on this good momentum from the first two days.

Get in Shape Challenge Day 49 – Monday 3rd October

A fresh week and a fresh start, this I felt had to be my attitude towards today’s session after the shocking week of training (or lack of it) I experienced through noone’s fault but my own last week. Being a Monday, and the first day of holidays, I decided that the session would be an afternoon one so i could get some extra sleep. After a morning of doing wedding organisation with Melissa I managed to fight off the apathetic feeling of mid afternoon by going off to the gym.

Today’s session was to be a cardio one, I wanted to really smash out a hard worked session and set out on the cross trainer. I was going to be following my usual routine over 25 minutes increasing the speed in 2.5km increments starting on 7.5km/h every five minute period. From the beginning everything felt difficult, my nose was still extremely blocked so breathing was quite challenging. At around the 13 minute mark my right glute was starting to feel extremely tight (to the point I thought something was going to tear) so instead of pushing through the pain I stopped my run early and moved onto the row – I would have to make up some time on this one.

I had decided prior to the day that I wanted to row for a full 10 minutes and just see how far I could row. I started off the row with a stroke rate of 34 per minute and managed to get my average 500m time to be sitting below 1 minute and 55 seconds. I managed to hold this rate for the first 5 minutes of the row and was still feeling quite good. My stroke rate did drop a little at this point, as did my average 500m split but coming up to the 8 minute and 15 second mark I had clicked over the 2km mark. Whilst this was slower than I had gone before I thought to myself it might just be possible to come close to the 2.5m mark in the 10 minute period so I lifted my work rate. I pushed myself with a stroke rate of up to 38 per minute and managed to drop the split down to 1 minute and 50 seconds per 500 metres. This effort wasn’t enough with me just pulling up short by the 10 minute mark having rowed 2.42km, an effort that I really am quite pleased with.

My 10 minute cycle came next and I decided to approach this one a little differently today by alternating between two different resistances every 2 minutes. I started my cycle on a resistance of 8 and pushed myself hard for the 2 minutes keeping the power rate up at over 200Kw, I had fallen about 5 seconds behind the average time I would need to ride my 5 kms meaning that the next two minutes I would have to pickup the difference to achieve a distance of 5km. Dropping the speed to 6 in resistance I set about this task and managed to get back the lost distance by the 4 minute mark when the resistance went back up to 8. Throughout the entire ride this sea-saw between being on target continued depending on what the resistance level was until the last 2 minute cycle on 8 (8 t0 10 minutes). I managed to increase my work effort at this point and crept over the 5 km by the 10 minute mark riding a distance of  5.2km in the time.

To finish the session off I went through my stretching routine, everything was feeling quite good and loose by this stage. I guess the big test will be tomorrow and how tight I feel at 5:00am when I get up for my weights session.

Get in Shape Challenge Day 48 – Sunday 2nd October

Today’s rest day held special significance and meaning to me with it also being my 30th birthday. I woke up this morning feeling a lot better than when I went to bed the night before, and definitely better than yesterday morning, and was ready for a day of surprises and relaxation.

I definitely was spoilt on this rest day enjoying coffee in the morning, followed by a buffet lunch and a cruise on the sawn river to Fremantle and back with my lovely fiancee before enjoying dinner at Hahn’s Cafe to finish with. The day also gave me a chance to really unwind and relax, try to de-stress a little from what has been a very intense few weeks with so much to process and work through at the same time as balancing the end of school term and difficult people – it’s why I got so run down in the first place.

All I can hope is that this coming week is a much better one for the regime – I am now coming up to halfway through the challenge (I think it’ll be there about Wednesday this coming week) and whilst there’s been improvement there’s still a long way to go.

I have two weeks holidays now, I am really keen to commit to still going to the gym early in the morning I have seen over the course of the past five weeks that this is the key to me being successful at the gym. It’s now time to ramp everything up and get these results  have been chasing after!!!

Get in Shape Challenge Day 47 – Saturday 1st October

I woke up this morning planning to get the session done before my first student at 9:00am, this just didn’t happen. Instead of bouncing out of bed and being pumped for the final weights session of the bed I pulled myself out of bed barely being able to breathe. It seems like the term, the strain of a whole pile of other factors had finally worn me down to a point where I needed to stop and take note. To make things worse with today’s session is that I have come down with the first cold sore I have had for the past three years – this is the big sign of the amount of stress and how run-down I must be feeling.

Tonight I am supposed to be going out with the family and close friends to celebrate my 30th birthday, which is tomorrow. I am feeling gross at the moment, hopefully after an afternoon of watching the AFL grand final and having some down time I will be able to pick myself up ready for the big night.

Fingers Crossed!!!

Get in Shape Challenge Day 46 – Friday 30th September

I made the decision when I went to bed last night that I would take my time and not get up at 5:0am for a morning session. I have found over the past few weeks that  have had plenty of time and opportunity to get an afternoon session in – and this is what my plan was for today.

All of these best plans were thrown on their head just after 10:30am thanks to one of the year 12s who I am accompanying tomorrow in their final WACE performance messaging me asking if I could swing by school for one last rehearsal that afternoon. As the performance is tomorrow I really don’t have too big a problems with doing it, if it makes him feel more confident then I will happily oblige. The distance I had to cover, and doing it in peak hour, meant it just wasn’t possible to get it in…I guess it goes to show, yet again that the only guarantee to get the sessions completed is to go first thing in the morning!

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