Most females I know feel like at somepoint in their late teens or their 20’s their metabolism slows down, their life speeds up, and their body shows how much has changed. A lot of you are really good about working out, eating healthy foods, and keeping your body whipped into shape. I am not one of you.
Or, I wasn’t one of you, until recently. I’m going into my 8th week (out of 12 weeks) on P90X. I had Tom take some pictures (that you will NOT find in this post) before we started P90X. You may remember the post I put up when I first tried it out and thought I was dead the next day. It was really tough starting out. While I have gotten stronger as time has gone on, they are still tough work-outs for me. I’m not going to be someone that at the end of 12 weeks of this program, you look at and go “WOW, you look SO GREAT now.” The main reason for this is that Tom and I only changed our eating habits about three weeks ago. Soft drinks, most desserts, fatty foods and empty calories aren’t completely gone, but they are saved for the weekend. I am learning new recipes from Cooking Light and other sources that have yummy, low-fat meals and offer enough variety that Tom and I don’t throw in the towel after two weeks. We also make sure to have salad for dinner at least once a week (I make chicken to go with it, and we have different toppings to keep from getting bored.) I have found some yummy, low-fat desserts that we keep in the freezer for when we need to satisfy a sweet tooth in the middle of the week.
After we changed the diet, we could see more of a change. Well, Tom could. And some friends could. But I couldn’t. It was so gradual that I didn’t notice a change in the mirror. And it was frustrating. My weight has only gone down about 4 or 5 pounds from eight weeks ago. And my clothes aren’t falling off of me. But people would say they could see a difference in my stomach or my face. Hmm…
Tom and I decided to take some more pictures last week. *gasp* There was a difference! It wasn’t a HUGE difference. But it was noticeable enough for me to not feel discouraged anymore, to feel that the diet change was worth it, to feel like working out was worth the hour (or more) that it dug into my day. Finally. Tom was so in shape to start with that the changes in him were more obvious. Plus men just can whip their bodies into shape more easily than women. It’s a fact: Check it out here, here, or here. Or just ask any woman in a couple that is trying to get healthier together. The point is, it’s easy to get frustrated and down when you are trying hard and seeing little reward. But seeing the side-by-side pictures helped me. I could finally see a difference, and that was the motivation I needed in order to keep going.
But why weren’t the pounds falling off of me? Well, I’m doing a lot of muscle toning and weight-lifting with this program. I spend more time each week doing that than doing basic aerobic exercise (aka: cardio). So my next step is to up the cardio so I can see fat melt away and to allow the muscles I’ve been trying to tone to actually make an appearance. My goals have been to feel good about how I look in pictures (it’s been a long time since I looked at a picture and didn’t think of my weight), to fit into some clothes I haven’t worn in a while because they’re too tight, and to feel good about myself at the beach this year. I would love to see pounds dropping down on the scale, but I don’t want to focus on that because I’ve seen it’s not the best way for me to measure progress.
So I have a few of questions for you. What do you do to stay healthy, and if you’ve done this for years, is it as effective now as it was a few years ago? Are you trying to get into a healthier lifestyle? And do you have any healthy recipes you can share? Please, do tell! =)