PEAK WEEK, Day 76: Cardio Flow (aka The One Day At the Zoo You Might Enjoy)

This is the Cardio Flow workout you’ve been waiting for: The one you might enjoy.

Finally, FINALLY, Autumn takes away the stupid build-ups.

Instead, from the very beginning you go straight through the workout, four reps of 10 moves, all in a row. To refresh your memory, that means four reps each of:

  1. Inchworms;
  2. Spider push-ups;
  3. Diamond jumps;
  4. Flamingoes;
  5. Ducks;
  6. Gorillas;
  7. Step-throughs;
  8. Bears;
  9. Crabs; and
  10. Mule-to-Frogs.

I hate the build-up so I much prefer this set-up. Plus, Autumn keeps it interesting by challenging you – and her cast – to do as many rounds of all 10 exercises as possible.

*** SPOILER ALERT ***

You will do 10 rounds.

BUT, I will add that if you are feeling ambitious, it IS impossible to beat Autumn and the gang and squeeze out an extra round. I know because I got a wild hair to do that today. So I did. Eleven rounds, finished at the exact same time as Autumn and everyone else. Here is my face after:

Cardio Flow DONE.
I can’t smile my face hurts from Diamond Jumps.

It occurs to me that there are very few photos of me smiling after finishing a workout. Even though I feel great and love the endorphin rush, I’m pretty sure I look like I want to pass out in every post-workout photo.

I’m aware of this, I really am. And today I tried to change it up and smile.

I won’t post the photos. I looked like I was being tortured. All grimaces and teeth.

This too is another clue that I need a break because my first time through 80 Day Obsession, I was smiling HARD after finishing each and every workout in Peak Week because it meant the damn thing was FINALLY checked off the list. Hell, you’d think I’d muster up a grin today at having f-ing Cardio Flow out of the way.

Yet the best I can manage is a look of dazed bewilderment.

I know it’s time to switch things up when I’m not finding joy in the little things. ESPECIALLY in not having to do Cardio Flow again. I hate that workout. Seriously. I know I should be super positive and tell you to follow the plan to a T, but I swear to God if I do 80 Day Obsession again I’m gonna swap the damn thing out for a different cardio workout. I don’t like dreading a workout, yet Cardio Flow was this program’s dentist appointment: You know you have to do it because it’s good for you but you hate every second of it and spend the rest of the day sore and vowing to never to it again.

I guess the take-away is it’s okay to hate the workout (and your dentist) so long as you keep going back for more. Interesting side note: My dentist is my godfather. Yet I still hate going in for check-ups.

Sigh.

Sometimes you just have to appreciate the ends and not the means.

In the meantime, good luck with today’s workout. I hope you enjoy checking this one off your list. Should feel real good!

Link to more Beachbody stuff. Feel free to message me with your thoughts on the zoo or writing requests.

Yours in worms and diamonds,

Katie

Phase 3, Days 72 & 73: Total Body Core and Cardio Core, respectively (aka I pull a Double Day)

The morning after my last post, I awoke nauseous. My stomach churned, my mouth watered, and I seriously considered kicking my boyfriend awake to demand he drag a trash can to my bedside in case I threw up.

If you remember, my last post focused almost exclusively on all the vomit-worthy occasions scattered throughout the Leg Day workout. Unfortunately, it seems the nausea was not limited to the exercise.

Also, I should back up a step. I was nauseous the entire day of my last post. After doing Leg Day in the morning and fighting back the vomit the entire time, I got home at 6:45 pm after a full day of work and crawled into bed, crashing into a deep sleep. I awoke at 8:45 pm, blogged, made myself eat something, and slept for another 12 hours.

Safe to say my body was fighting something. Probably food poisoning from the meats I dragged across the State.

My point being, I didn’t work out yesterday. And while it caused me some anxiety because it threw off my schedule, I know that I was truly not well because my worry was not deeply rooted. Instead of spiraling me into a deep depression that made me doubt whether I would finish this second round of 80 Day Obsession, the missed workout was merely a gnat to be brushed from the shoulder and forgotten in lieu of getting my health back and getting back on schedule.

Which is why I pulled a Double Day today.

Oh Double Days. Where you cram two workouts into a single day and hope for the best.

In college, these Double Days were notorious. They usually hit right at the beginning of the “official” start to basketball season, and then also at Christmas upon return from our 2-3 day break. My coach liked to use Double Days as a “motivator”; after a particularly gruesome loss to University of Nevada at Reno my freshman year, a game which we should have easily won, my coach promised we would return from Christmas break to Double Days, and warned us to not enjoy ourselves too much over the holiday lest we throw up Christmas ham all over the gym floor.

She wasn’t kidding.

I caught a 5 am flight out of Seattle on December 26th so I could make an 11 am practice in Moraga, California later in the day; after three hours on the court, we took a break, ate, lifted some weights…and came back at 7 pm for another 2 hours.

Surprisingly, my team wasn’t very good in college. Fear is simply not that great a motivator when it comes to collegiate athletics.

But I digress.

The point is, I knew today I had to pull a Double Day. Thankfully, I could not have picked two better workouts: Total Body Core and Cardio Core.

Total Body Core this week consists of two sets of 15 reps, where you do each series at a time for the 2 x 15 rep scheme before moving on to the next series.

I will warn you now: You will hear a lot of complaints from the cast both before and during this workout, and these complaints will mirror your own thoughts: Why are there so many GD pushups? Who made up this Turkish get-up move from hell? How the F can we do 15 reps of tricep push-ups after EVERYTHING ELSE in the workout??

I took comfort in these complaints because they told me I was not alone.

That said, the only way I was able to complete this workout is because I was finally able to take my own advice: LIGHTEN UP.

Seriously. Had I gone for broke and tried do lift the same weights I did last week, the workout probably would have been too hard, and I probably would have quit; ESPECIALLY in light of the fact I knew I was gonna have to fit two workouts into the day.

While part of me was disappointed that I was lifting the same weight I did when I started Phase 3, the larger part of me told that little voice to SHUT UP and do what I needed to do to get the job done. Because I just didn’t have it. I could feel it. Even if I had wanted to increase the weights, I’m not sure I could have. Whether I was still fighting the stomach issues or was affected by not eating as much as I normally do the day before, my energy and strength were not at full power. I was operating at about 80%.

Which worked, but not for an increase in weights. Here’s me praying to a higher power mid-workout:

The Day After Sickness
I needed all the help I could get.

Regardless, I got the workout DONE.

Then I went home, showered, packed my meals for the day, and got myself to work.

I left at 5 pm to return home and pack what I needed for the gym AND my soccer game.

Yes. Today was not only a Double Day; today was really a TRIPLE DAY.

I love Cardio Core because you can push yourself to whatever limit you’re at for the day. My limit today was shorter than normal: I had to take a few moments after jumping to clear the air with some burps, otherwise I was gonna throw up my pre-workout meal (I was still fighting some nausea, apparently). But even with those throat-clearing breaths, I still got a great workout. I just did what I needed to do to finish the workout before I had to leave for soccer.

I don’t have many notes to add about Cardio Core because the workout remains unchanged from what you faced in Week 1 of Phase 3. All I will say is that even though it was my second workout of the day, I felt strong enough to start the ab exercises even when Autumn was still pulling up her loops or joking with the cast. I was on a deadline, after all – I had to get to my soccer game on time!

So it was after Cardio Core that I proceeded to Perrigo Field to sweat it out for 90 minutes in the dying of the light with my soccer team.

These summer night on the soccer pitch are what I live for. This is why I signed up in the first place. When it’s 80 degrees out with a slight breeze and the sun lights up the sky until 10 o’clock at night. I live for that shit.

Which is all to say, I felt pretty good playing soccer, if only because I made sure I didn’t stop sweating.

PRO TIP #5: IF EVER YOU STOP SWEATING DURING A WORKOUT, IMMEDIATELY DRINK SOME GATORADE AND A SHIT-TON OF WATER.

I knew the instant I stopped sweating I would be on a one-way ticket to Cramp Town. That’s my tell. When, despite the heat, my body stops producing moisture and my shirt dries. I know at that point that I’m in trouble and am probably about to crash.

Tonight, however, I had the foresight to pack a banana and pick up a Gatorade at the gym. While I’m not a fan of sports drinks, by the time the final whistle blew, I was out of both water and my blue Gatorade…and I was still sweating. Mission accomplished.

Afterwards, I treated myself to a victory beer-and-a-half with my teammates at a local pub, got a burger wrapped in lettuce with a side salad, and then drove home to an epsom salt bath which had been thoughtfully drawn by my better half.

Which is all to say, you CAN do Double Days; you can even do Triple Days. But you have to plan for it. You have to eat right and stay hydrated and schedule your activities accordingly.

But assuming you tick all the boxes, you can get back on track even after a sick day.

For more info on the usual Beachbody shenanigans, check out the link. Otherwise, message me with any questions about Double Days or your own sick days, and how to handle them.

Knowing when to take a day off is tough, especially in the midst of a regimented workout like 80 Day Obsession. But knowing you can keep going, even in the face of something that feels like a huge set-back, is just another part of making this 80 day program a lifestyle.

If you ran into your own obstacles following the program, I hope you conquered them. And if you are having issues, hit me up. You’re not alone.

Yours in Doubles and Triples,

FitLuddy.

Phase 3, Day 67: Cardio Core (aka WEAR SUNSCREEN)

As previously blogged, Lake Chelan is my happy place.

It is also the place of some truly epic, terrible sunburns.

When I was in 8th grade, I decided to disregard my mother’s advice to a) avoid the sun, and b) WEAR SUNSCREEN, and instead laid out for three hours wearing nothing but…baby oil.

I’m cringing as I write this. As I do, the scars on my chest from my blistering sunburn tingle just a bit to remind me of my stupidity.

You would think that with that disaster under my belt, I would have learned my lesson.

You would think.

I worked out today at about 10 am. Here was my set-up:

IMG_0563
Note the blue sky and utter lack of shade.

My philosophy is that if I am working out in the sun before 11 am or after 4:30 pm, the only part of my body I really need to ensure has sunscreen is my face and perhaps the top of my shoulders.

Rarely, if ever, do I pay attention to my legs. My thinking is that they spend most of the time under me and therefore don’t get too much sun exposure.

Today’s workout was Cardio Core. It’s the same workout you did last week and the week before that. It’s 30 seconds of some sort of jumping exercise, followed by 30 seconds of a high intensity interval training (“HIIT”) move; repeat for a total of 3 rounds (i.e. 3 minutes total), then do an ab exercise.

Here’s some of the HIIT moves: Saddle jumps, where your legs are in sumo squat position and you jump; burpee popcorn (or whatever it’s called), where you do a half burpee and then pop up into a squat; and step-throughs, your good ol’ friend from Cardio Flow.

Think about your leg position for all of these moves; instead of your legs churning the ground directly beneath you, somewhat sheltered from the sun by the shade of your upper body, your legs are instead either out to the side of you or out straight behind you.

Now think through the ab exercises: Every one of them has your legs stretched out either in front of you or behind you.

My point is, there’s a lot more leg exposure in these workouts than you realize. Which in turn means there’s more sun exposure.

Which means this is the current color of my legs:

Sun Burn
The fingerprint is to demonstrate the redness. Whoops.

I am a grown ass woman who has suffered some horrific sunburns, and yet I STILL allow shit like this to happen. WTF is wrong with me?? I KNOW I can’t go out into the sun unprotected and yet I STILL do it. Correct me if I’m wrong, but I’m pretty sure this is the very definition of insanity.

If I sound perplexed it’s because this is not the only area in my life where I struggle to learn from my past mistakes; the other, most obviously, is staying consistent with workout out and eating right. Inevitably, I hit a wall or something happens and I go three or four months without breaking a sweat which enjoying every crumb and cookie along the way. For example, last year I felt GREAT after completing Hammer and Chisel, then multiple rounds of 21 Day Fix and 21 Day Fix Extreme. Then I started Tony Horton’s P90X3 (or whatever it’s called where you work out in 30 minutes and do a shit ton of pushups and pullups) the same week as Labor Day when my boyfriend and I went to visit some good friends in Bend, Oregon, for beer, wine, fried food, and giggles. After the weekend, the only thing consistent for the next few months, until I started 80 Day Obsession on January 15, 2018, was the beer, wine, fried food, and giggles.

So it worries me when I have an incident like today. What guarantee do I have that I won’t fall off on the wagon in the future? All I had to do today was WEAR SUNSCREEN, something that I know is for my own good. But I still didn’t.

How do I know that as good as I feel right now, working out and eating right, I won’t have a weekend down the road that completely throws off my game and sets me back a week? A month? A YEAR? (YES, after studying for (and passing!) the Bar, I didn’t work out for two years. I don’t know what happened. I don’t have an explanation. I think the Bar simply broke something inside of me and it took that long to heal.)

I guess the short answer is: I don’t have an answer. As much as I try to prepare for those Doomsday moments, I don’t really know what will happen until they occur.

If I had one piece of advice for myself, it would be this: Don’t focus on making it up the mountain; just focus on putting one foot in front of the other. Focus on the here and now and what you need to do TODAY to overcome your obstacle and get back on track.

For me, I think that will mean simply choosing a workout and DOING it. Even if it’s just yoga or something where I stare at Chalean’s ridiculous thigh-high workout boots (yes that’s a thing, I’m not making it up). If I move my body, the eating right will follow because it is a LOT harder to want to put french fries in your body after a good sweat sesh.

Don’t focus on the war, just the battle.

So I guess tomorrow it means my workout will be happening closer to 9 am IN THE SHADE, and I will be covering myself up with sunscreen AND a towel when I head up-lake on a friend’s boat.

I suppose even an old dog learns new tricks. Or can remember old tricks. Who knows. Just keep learning, damn it.

Check out the usual link for more program info, and above all, PLEASE, WEAR SUNSCREEN.

 

Phase 3, Day 62: Booty (aka The One Where You Don’t Stop Sweating)

There is a condition called hyperhidrosis. It’s street name is excessive sweating.

I know this because I just looked it up to see if I have a problem. Today was one of those days where I finished my workout in a pool of sweat and it wouldn’t stop pouring down my face. I was in a rush to get out of the gym, and for once, I had to change and shower before doing so. I could not, repeat, COULD NOT, take off my leggings; rather, I had to SHUCK them off me with a wet, squelching noise, like one does a wet suit, because they were completely soaked. To top it off, I was able to wring an actual stream of sweat from a different article of clothing.

Now, don’t get me wrong, today’s Booty workout will trigger all the sweat and all the burns. It’s three sets of 10 reps, where you do all the exercises in a row for 10 reps each, then repeat for another 2 rounds.

But I swear I wasn’t sweating this much last week. It’s like we hit summer and a dam broke within my internal controls so that the only way for me to self-cool is to drown in my own sweat.

Which means I spent the majority of the day feeling super dehydrated.

It’s hard to describe. I was drinking a lot of water, but even as I was inhaling fluids, it felt like it simply wasn’t…sticking. Like it was just passing through without being absorbed by my deflated cells. As a result, I was tired, extra sore, and a bit crabby.

I was also STARVING.

All in all, I’m not sure how pleasant I was to be around today. That was not helpful for the trip my boyfriend and I took to Ikea.

But, I turned it around tonight at dinner, when I had a beer. And then a juicy burger with cheese and bacon all wrapped up in lettuce. And thoroughly enjoyed the onion rings served with my boyfriend’s burger.

The fact that it was the beer that well and truly brought me back to life tells me that my body didn’t need water today so much as it did salt and electrolytes. So I made sure I got that and then some.

I share this because that meal was not really fix-approved for 80 Day Obsession. What I should have done was mixed myself up a shake and eaten some sweet potatoes. That would have been the extra clean, extra healthy option.

And I would have resented every moment of it.

Sometimes you just need a big burger and beer to get the nutrients you need. And sometimes it’s not about replacing the nutrients, but simply about ENJOYING a meal out with your SO without worrying about the meal plan.

My body needed tonight. I needed tonight. Which means that instead of kicking myself for going overboard and hating this slightly overly full feeling, I’m not bothered. It was the right meal for me in the moment, and it was the first cheat meal all week.

I savored every moment but now am already looking forward to a good breakfast tomorrow morning of greek yogurt and fruit and some cacao nibs.

I’ll handle Sunday dinner when we get there. Knowing now that I can’t eat eggs without having a reaction has been helping with avoiding those foods which trigger my lack of self-control. If I want to replace those baked goods with the meat sweats, that’s fine with me.

After all, my doctor said I could stand to eat a bit more bacon.

No pics today because I was in a rush to leave the gym, and I actually couldn’t get my phone to work because my fingers were too sweaty immediately following my workout. So check out the usual link if you want a visual, and hit me up if you’re searching for inspo.

Phase 3, Day 61: Cardio Core (aka Screw the Workout, Let’s Talk About Self Care)

Here’s what you need to know about today’s workout: It’s just like last week’s.

Boom.

With that out of the way, let’s talk about self care.

SELF CARE: noun; the act of caring for one’s self. Dictionary of the FitLuddy.

Sounds easy, right? Usually, self care boils down to the simple maxim of DON’T DIE during the day. You know, look both ways before you cross the street; don’t lick the wet paint; don’t pet the rabid bear. Things like that.

But in 80 Day Obsession, “self care” takes on a whole new meaning. After 61 days of HARD workouts, what are you doing to make sure your body can make it to the end?

Have you gotten a massage? Taken an epsom salt bath? Treated yourself to something nice?

If you aren’t taking the time to care for yourself, then you’re not getting the most out of this program.

Case in point: I did Cardio Core tonight then went to soccer. I scored! But I was also sore as f*ck when I got home. Even though we are in the middle of PROJECT GUT OUR RENTAL, I drew myself a bath, ladled in the epsom salt and baking soda, and soaked for 12 minutes. I’m busy and our apartment is in shambles, but I knew if I didn’t make time for this soak, I would be of no use tomorrow. With that said, this next pro tip draws on my OWN experience (I am NOT a doctor, so take it with a grain of [epsom] salt).

PRO TIP #456: To get the most out of an epsom salt bath, pour at least 1.5-2 cups of that shit in, followed by at least a 1/2 cup of baking soda, then soak for no more than 12-15 minutes; ideally, closer to 12.

My understanding is that you can actually soak too long, at which point, all the toxins that have been drawn out into the water by the epsom salt actually start to be reabsorbed by your body if you linger in the dirty water. So get the F out and move on to the next area of self care: MASSAGE.

PRO TIP #457: GET A MASSAGE.

Gentle reader. If you have gone this far through 80 Day Obsession without getting a massage, you are not truly living life. Seriously. I know how you feel. Your muscles are in knots; some days you can barely move; and if you don’t stretch in the morning, your hammies feel at least a half foot shorter than they did the night before.

Do yourself a favor and get a massage. Work that shit out. Get loosened up. It will help. Just make sure you don’t do the massage BEFORE the workout. Massage should be done AFTER, when you have nothing left to do for the day but maybe eat a good meal, watch some baseball or a movie, and drink a shit ton of water.

PRO TIP #458: If you get a massage, you need to be drinking at least 125% of your water intake immediately after.

Massage will loosen everything up, and in so doing, flood you bloodstream with a shit ton of crap that’s been released from your muscles. You need to flush your system. Drinking more water than normal will ensure you do. After a massage, your water bottle should be glued to your hand. Pound that shit and ask for seconds.

PRO TIP #459: KNOW YOUR LIMITS.

For once, I’m not talking to the 25-year old me who didn’t know that more than 2 Long Island Ice Teas were never a good idea.

No, I’m talking about knowing yourself and your body well enough at this point to know WHAT you have to do, WHEN. For me, this meant getting food at the pub after our soccer game tonight instead of waiting until I got home.

To explain: After our victory, a few of us went out for celebratory drinks at a local pub. I didn’t plan for this, but I figured that with all the sweating I did (it’s humid AF at the moment), a beer was exactly what I needed, and would take the place of the yellow I needed to consume before day’s end. But then I was left with the dilemma: Do I wait to eat until I get home so I can mix up a shake with spinach and Shakeology, or do I find something somewhat fix-approved on the menu to make sure I don’t crash?

I sat down in the pub and my stomach answered the question for me: FOOD. NOW.

Sure, I could have pushed it and waited an hour until I got home. But I would have been miserable and not enjoyed my time with my teammates. After the Cardio Core and the 90 minute soccer game, my body was close to shutting down; I was at my limit.

So I ordered a steak salad, picked out the largest chunks of the blue cheese, and enjoyed myself.

Sometimes, it’s just not worth being perfect if it means you’ll turn into a monster. I came home and had the energy to take a bath, shower, stretch, and now blog for you wonderful people. YOU’RE WELCOME.

Self care will help you make it through all 80 days when your body might otherwise quit. And taking care of yourself isn’t selfish. If anything, it’s a huge benefit to those around you. After all, if you’re not taking the steps necessary to be your best self, then you’re robbing others of the ability to benefit from you being your best self.

Take the time and make the self care count. It will pay dividends, I promise.

If you want more info about programs that might help with self care, such as a plethora of yoga options, check out the usual link.

Otherwise, get some sleep and prep for the million lunges we’ll be doing for Booty day tomorrow.

 

Phase 3, Day 53: Legs (aka STILL SWEATING)

I don’t remember sweating this much my first time through Phase 3 of 80 Day Obsession.

Maybe it’s because the outside temperature barely got above freezing during that time period. Maybe it’s because I was wearing leggings which absorbed all the sweat so I didn’t notice. Either way, I’m hot and noticing now.

The dam continues to break on Day 53 as we get into Leg Day. Lots going on, and lots of tips, so let’s get crackin’.

This time, there are four series in Leg Day, comprised of three exercises each. In each series, the first exercise is done with weights on the sliders; the second exercise is some form of jumping with weights; and the third exercise is done “only” with weights. Here’s how it breaks down:

SERIES 1: Side-to-side squat, alt. weighted squat jump, figure 4 squat.

SERIES 2: Slider side lunge, half skater lunge jump, low rocking side lunge.

SERIES 3: Slide front diagonal lunge, split squat jump, Buddha squat.

SERIES 4: Sumo double slide in, sumo cross jump, goblet sumo squat.

FAVORITE MOVE: Figure 4 squat.

LEAST FAVORITE MOVE: Sumo cross jump.

Some of these moves are familiar, or you can figure out what they are from the title. Side-to-side squat, for example, is done with toes on the sliders and a single weight at your chest. Keeping your toes pointed straight ahead, you drop into a squat, then slide your left foot out to just past the width of your shoulders; while staying in the squat, you slide your right foot together to your left; then slide your right foot out to just past the width of your shoulders, stay in your squat, and slide your left foot together to your right. 16 reps in Week 1 of Phase 3.

Some moves are unfamiliar, but not in a bad way. My fave, the figure 4 squat, for example, is new, but a welcome change. Here’s what it looks like:

Figure 4 Squat
How long can you go.

I like this exercise because of the stretch you will get in the leg that is crossed over your supporting leg. I will add that it is normal to wonder if you are getting low enough to make the exercise count. So long as you can feel the burn in your supporting leg by the 10th rep, then yes, you are getting low enough. If you’re not getting that burn, consider loading up with a bit more weight. BUT, before you do, consider the all important pro tip below.

PRO TIP #79: START LIGHT, ESPECIALLY ON THE JUMPS.

This is a tricky one to follow because you have just spent the first two Phases building up your weight. Shouldn’t you be lunging with at least what you handled in Leg Day at the end of Phase 2?

In a word, NO. Phase 3 is all about shredding out, and as Autumn explains, you need slightly lighter weights to do that. This is especially true on all the jumping moves, as the focus should be on getting lower and jumping higher, not necessarily on using the heaviest weight possible.

Still, it’s hard to resist the urge to test yourself. As always, listen to your body and go from there.

BUT, PLEASE, heed this next pro tip above all else.

PRO TIP #92: START WITH A LIGHT WEIGHT ON THE LOW ROCKING SIDE LUNGE.

If you scoff at my advice to start light with the weight, please at least follow it for this ONE exercise. The reason being is that low rocking side lunge puts a slow burn on your lower back if you’re not careful, and if your weight is too heavy, you could hurt yourself just from standing up.

Here’s what low rocking side lunge looks like:

low rocking side lunge
look up!

From that position, you then rock back to the middle, then out over the other leg. You NEVER come up from that low hinge, which means your lower back is engaged whether you like it or not.

For me, I didn’t realize how hard my body was working to protect my lower back until I realized I was working my ABS; that is, by rep 11, my abs were tired from being held tight to protect my lower back. Had I been lifting anything heavier than 15s, I probably would have hurt myself. As it is, I don’t plan to increase the weight for this exercise to anything more than 20 pound dumbbells, and even that might be pushing it.

To give you an idea of what my weights looked like, I pretty much stuck with 15 pound dumbbells for ALL exercises, which the exception of the sumo double slide in (I did 20 pounds instead), and goblet sumo squat (22.5 pounds). This was probably a bit too heavy for the jumps, but I was able to complete them all with good form so I think I started at about the right place.

PRO TIP #56: BRING A TOWEL.

This one is self-explanatory. Don’t be THAT GIRL who doesn’t clean up after herself at the gym. At least my shirt caught most of my mess!

img_0502-e1529551002324.jpg
Gray is not a good color for me right now.

Which leads into my last pro tip.

PRO TIP #80: IF YOU ARE SWEATING MORE, YOU NEED TO BE UPPING YOUR WATER INTAKE.

Last night, I blogged about the insane amount of sweat I generated doing Cardio Flow. After that workout, I downed two 24 ounce water bottles, three cups of herbal tea, and another 16 oz cup of water. This was on TOP of the water I’d already consumed during the day before my workout.

Even with this excess water intake, I woke up down more than pound and a half. I would be ecstatic but for the fact I know that “weight loss” was really just water loss, and that despite my best efforts, my body still needs to replenish fluids. I know this because of the…color, and….timing…of certain…..bodily functions throughout the day.

And, after the performance my sweat glands put in this morning at the gym, I am again pounding water and tea to make sure I stay hydrated.

Again, if you are sweating a good deal more than normal in Phase 3, you need to make sure you are drinking more water. Your body (and its functions) will thank you.

Well, that’s me for the night. Hope you found this helpful and that you’re loving Phase 3. I have a love-hate relationship with it. I love how much stronger I feel, but I hate some of the moves. BUT, I have to add that I do love how quickly the exercises seem to go. So far, the workouts in Phase 3 seem to be the best laid out in that they flow nicely from one to another so you don’t spend the whole time thinking you have another set to complete.

Of course, I say that now. Tomorrow, we have stupid modified 1/2 Turkish push-up, so I’m sure I’ll change my tune. Watch the video in advance for a sneak peek of what I’m talking about.

Or, message or email me for further deets. The usual goods found at the usual link.

Rest up! Tomorrow’s gonna be a doozy.

Phase 3, Day 52: Cardio Flow (aka The One Where You Look Like You Just Climbed Out of a Pool)

So, I lied.

Yesterday’s blog post, I told you today’s Cardio Flow would be better than it was in the past because you wouldn’t have to build the exercises one on top of each other. Rather, you would just go straight through all the exercises for as many reps as you can in the allotted time, which totals about 8-10 rounds.

I got the 8 rounds right and everything else completely wrong.

For Phase 3, Autumn takes the zoo back to four reps for each exercise. But you still build one exercise on top of the other until you’ve built up to all 10 exercises. THEN, instead of doing an additional two rounds…you do an additional EIGHT. Yes. EIGHT ROUNDS.

The reason I misremembered this is because, like child birth, I’m pretty sure I blocked it out. Or rather, doing it the first time through just never registered with me. You can absolutely zone out and disassociate doing this workout. And then you look up and you’re on Round 7 of 8 and you have no idea where the time has gone. Pretty sure that’s what I did last time. I don’t remember doing this set-up because I didn’t remember doing the set-up the FIRST time around, which is pretty much the only way to survive. You have to focus on the moment, forget how many rounds you have left, and just know that at the very least, you are capable of accomplishing four reps of each exercise because that’s what you did all the way through Phase 1.

Regardless, even that strategy won’t stop you from sweating.

Buckets of sweat that go flying with each diamond jump; rivers of sweat that course down your legs and soak your socks and shoes; a thin sheen of sweat that coats your entire body and attracts blades of grass like kids to pointy objects. Here’s me in the aftermath of all this sweating:

All the sweat.
WHAT JUST HAPPENED. My socks are squishing in my shoes and I can’t feel my face and yes that’s grass on my forehead.

Now, was part of this sweating due to working out in the balmy PNW heat we’re enjoying on the cusp of summer? Absolutely. But part of it is also just me.

I’m a sweater. Always have been. And this workout reminded me of that and also of the pure volume of sweat I can produce when pushed, especially in the heat.

In case you also produced an obscene amount of sweat during this workout, here’s an anecdote to make you feel better about yourself.

Two weeks after graduating from college, my best friend and I hopped on a plane to New Zealand for a 15 day excursion around the North Island. At the end of those 15 days, my best friend left, as scheduled, and I stayed….for two and a half years. During that time, I joined a basketball team (old habits die hard) which eventually had the honor of traveling to Fiji to play their National Team to help them prepare for the 2008 summer Olympics.

The Fiji that we visited, the main island of Suva, was NOT what one pictures when summoning pristine images of the island nation. While the people were amazing and their hospitality unbeatable, the infrastructure was solidly third world, and it extended to their basketball gym.

At some point in the last 30 years, the gym had been brand new, and probably had air conditioning that worked. But by the time we arrived in early 2008, neither was true. The “air conditioning” was simply leaving all doors open to the 90 degree heat with 100% humidity and hoping for the best. As a result, the gym floor had warped. There were dead spots in the floor that made dribbling impossible. The basketball went down…and did not come back up.

But the heat…I’m from the Pacific Northwest. And while I love me some heat, I’m not built for humidity. I’ll overheat like a Husky in Hawaii. Which means that during our practices in Fiji, I didn’t sweat. I melted. I wore spandex shorts under my mesh basketball shorts. I sweated so much that I not only sweated through my spandex shorts, but also through my mesh shorts. And when I say “sweated through,” I mean that after our two hour practice, I was able to wring sweat out of BOTH sets of shorts. To this day, I have yet to participate in another activity that had me wringing sweat out of my BOTTOM wear; sports bra, yes. But shorts? F no.

Until today. Today came close. Had the workout lasted for a full hour, I likely would have approached the sweat level experienced in Fiji.

As it was, I was so sweaty, that at the end of the workout, on my walk back to my apartment, I passed a group of millennials who, upon checking out my wet appearance, started asking one another, “Is there a pool around here?”

No. No there is no pool. There is just Cardio Flow.

So now I’m hydrating with copious amounts of turmeric tea and water, all so I can get my muscles ready for the quick turn-around time that will be Leg Day in less than 12 hours. Wish me luck.

Link here for Beachbody shenanigans, including towels.  May your sweat run hot and your water stay cold.

Good luck!