Monday, September 30, 2013

Twelve Weeks of Sweat For This?

Three months ago I got an e-mail that the university was offering an exercise program for faculty and staff that have a sedentary lifestyle.  It was one student's doctoral study to see what would happen if you take 100 or so people that do nothing and make them exercise like crazy three days a week.  My initial thought was, "how bad can this be?"  Famous last words...

I have a busy life, but none of it includes exercise and aside from grocery shopping and the never ending laundry, it has very little movement.  I figured I really had nothing to lose except a few pounds, and maybe my pants would finally fit.  The class started on July 17th, right after Ryan's birthday at Hibachi Japan. 

On the first day they had us do a ton of tests like how many curl ups and push ups you could do in a minute, skin fold measurements, balance tests, blood work, etc.  I was a bit disappointed and discouraged because I weighed more than I did when I gave birth to Colin. 

During our 12 weeks we met three times a week and exercised for about an hour.  On the first day I met two new friends and for some reason, they thought it would be a good idea to do kettle bell boot camp.  For 12 weeks I had bad thoughts toward our trainer, Oliver.  Oddly, he seemed to enjoy the fact that I was shooting him daggers from my eyes.  He liked it when we were on the verge of tears.  (Okay, that one might be a bit of an exaggeration as I never actually cried.)  He really did enjoy it when we came limping back day after day.  I kept trying to convince Jen and Lucy that Zumba and Yoga would be perfectly good alternatives.  They would laugh and go back for more punishment.  Like a sheep to the slaughter, I would follow them dragging my feet all the way.  As the weeks went by, I no longer felt like I wanted to vomit or curse Oliver to within an inch of his life. 

Every week we had to weigh in and get our blood pressure checked.  I watched my weight creep up and I was getting really mad.  I gave up my polar pop habit.  Who gives up 32 oz. of Coca Cola goodness every day and still gains weight?  I do.  Who gives us Lucky Charms and donuts in favor of fresh fruit and Frosted Mini Wheats and gains weight?  I do.  Who literally sweats their behind off and gains weight?  I do.  Overall, I gained close to five pounds.  There were a few times that I wanted to quit.  If I had been exercising on my own and Duane didn't need me for his dissertation, I would have totally bailed on this nonsense.  If Lucy and Jen weren't looking forward to seeing me and my smiling face as Oliver kicked our butts, I would have quit.  But I didn't.

Today we repeated the original tests.  I went from being able to do six (yes 6) push-ups in a minute to doing 30!  I know, right!?!  I lost fat on my arms, thighs and hips.  My balance improved by a ton.  My blood pressure was better, even though I take medication for that and hadn't eaten at Hibachi Japan, which is the equivalent of eating a salt lick.  I have to retake the blood tests on Wednesday, but I am sure they are better than they were. 

My pants still don't fit all that well, but heck yeah, I will take it.  Maybe we can concentrate more on my abs in the next 12 weeks.  Looks like Oliver is going to have an opportunity to have more fun at my expense.  He better watch out because Lucy, Jen and I are coming back for more. 


Emily Cureton Booth said...

Good job! That is quite a task to take on and I'm so impressed you stuck with it considering everything else you have going on. I think it's somewhat normal to gain weight when you start exercising since you're building up muscle where there wasn't any before. So even though you are losing fat, you are gaining muscle. This is a good thing!

Kate said...

Thanks Emily. I really do feel better.

Kate said...
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