Saturday, June 29, 2013

Day 350 - A new class, a new start

So, I took my first class at Rio Sport & Health today.  It was pretty amazing. It was simply called 'Club Strength', but wow was it intense.  There was a little bit of everything - ab work with balance balls, barbells, hand weights, push ups, lunges.. everything.  For a 75 minute class, you really, really got a full body workout.  I'm not crazy about barbells.  In fact, I pretty much hate them.  But, I'm looking forward to going back next week and trying again.  Who knows, maybe after enough classes I might decide to like them.  OK, that's not going to happen!

Friday, June 28, 2013

Day 349 - Trying something new

I'm becoming the queen of groupons.  We found a groupon for another local gym that had a one month membership for a really good price.  So, this afternoon I went by and signed up for my month.  I used one of their ellipticals for a little more than 30 minutes.  And, tomorrow I'm planning on going to one of their strength classes.  I really hope that this could be a way to fill in the hole left by my one class getting cancelled.  So, tomorrow is a big day.

The other exercise today was my regular Friday night yoga class.  In the summer, it's a little more active than other times during the year.  So, it's warmer and I'm sweatier, but, it's still a great class.  I love feeling that I'm pushing myself.  So, that makes me happy.

The rest of the day was just relaxing and hanging out with Michael and Steve.  For the summer, we've cut back to 60 minute sessions in the hyperbaric chamber.  Ninety minute sessions just get way too hot.  So, the time passes a lot quicker than I'm used to.  So, overall, it was a great day.  I am really looking forward to tomorrow!

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Day 347 - Bonus Personal Training

The lady who does my personal training is going to be unavailable for a couple weeks, so I got a bonus session in today.  I wasn't really expecting it, so it was a pleasant surprise.  Of course, she knows just how to push me to work as hard as I can, without going past.  I really wish I understood how she does that! 

I keep telling myself I need to make a list of the exercises she does so I can do them on my own.  Unfortunately, I don't think I'd ever be able to push myself in the same way, or get the same great technique.

But, other than the personal training, it was a pretty typical day.  Lots of work, lots of time with Michael, and a session in the HBOT.  So, pretty much a simple day, but really, really good.

Monday, June 24, 2013

Day 345 - Love/Hate Mondays

I definitely have a love/hate relationship with my Monday classes.  Mondays in general are hard days, as I am sure they are for everyone.  But, I usually love going to my classes as soon as the work day is over.  The hate part only comes in when I feel lazy and don't want to go.  But, the wonderful thing about having this blog is that skipping my workouts isn't an option.  And, it really has become a deeply ingrained habit - Monday laziness or not.

Tonight's muscle challenge class was hard, as usual.  I've been trying to increase my weights, and I've been doing better at it the last few weeks. I love the feeling that I am getting stronger and able to do more.  And, I love when my balance is better.  So, even though it's a hard class, it's definitely worth it.

Yoga is the second class on Mondays.  It was definitely hard tonight, but really good, too.  We started out with a few really good stretches, and hip openers.  I really like them because I really need them.  But, because I need them, they are hard, and stretch what I am capable of.  But, just like I am getting stronger in the muscle class, I am getting more flexible through yoga.  That's a great thing.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Day 344 - More Yoga

I had bought a pack of yoga classes from one of the daily deal places, but needed to finish them up this weekend, before they expired.  So, I had to drag my sorry butt out of bed early this morning, just to go to yoga.  It was a great class, but pretty challenging.  The good news is that she showed us great ways to build up to a shoulder stand, using a wall for leverage.  The bad news is I still manged to wrench my neck a little.  It's not hurt, just a bit sore.

The last class that I took was this afternoon.  It was a yoga nidra class.  Basically, it was all guided meditation and relaxation.  It doesn't count toward exercise, but it was really, really relaxing.  If I can ever get another good deal on classes, I'll defiitely go back.  I didn't have a single class I didn't like, and the instructors were all terrific.

It's hard to believe the weekend is over so quickly, but it is.  It's going to be a busy week, especially since Michael is off from school all week.  But, it should be a good week.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Day 343 - Almost like being at BLRN!

I did over three hours of exercise today!  It was almost like being back at the resort, but only half the exercise.  But, so much fun.

I started out the day by getting to the gym early for my 9:00 class.  So, I got on the treadmill and did a quick fifteen minutes.  It was enough to get me warmed up and ready to go.  Then, I did three 30 minute classes, back to back.

The first class was stretch.  It was a great way to start.  Then, a new class called group core.  It was pretty intense.  I still can't do double leg raises, or some of the harder moves, but I modified.  Throughout this journey, I think I have become the queen of modification.  You show me an exercise, and I'll show you a way I can do something similar.  Hey, it's not a bad skill to have!

The last class was a tabatas class.  I love tabatas.  Twenty seconds of intense exercise followed by ten seconds of rest.  I don't know how many rounds we did, but it was a lot of fun.  The instructor gave us the exercise to do, so all we had to do was go as intensely as possible for twenty seconds.  I kept hearing Betty's voice in my head... "Piece of Easy" and "You can do anything for twenty seconds".  Oh the brainwashing!

Then, I came home and hung out with Michael and Steve for a while.  It was a nice relaxing afternoon.  Until I realized that I had to use up my yoga classes this weekend.  So, I went to a yin/yang class this afternoon.  It was 60 minutes of slow paced, but intense stretches, followed by 30 minutes of more active practice.  When I left, I felt totally stretched, and relaxed.  I wish I could do that class every day!

So, it was a great exercise day.  I really feel that I have come a long way with my endurance, balance, strength, and stamina.  I am still beyond frustrated about the weight, but I am dealing with that.  I really hope that when I see the doctor next he will have some answers for me.  Until then, I keep plugging away.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Day 342 - Making Progress

Today at lunch time I asked Michael if he wanted to go for a walk with me.  Since he's on his second day of summer vacation, and bored, he immediately said yes.  But, I didn't take into account how hot it was outside.

So, we started walking, and the first thing I noticed was that I was actually leading, instead of struggling to keep up with him.  That was a definite first!  But, pretty soon, he declared he was tired and wanted to go back home.  I guess the heat got to him pretty quickly.  The good news is that we did a mile in just over twenty minutes.  Not quite the three miles I was hoping for, but not back for a quick adventure.

Then, tonight I went to yoga.  It wasn't the regular Friday night instructor, but it was still really good.  I worked up a great sweat and got really stretched out.  Pretty perfect, actually.

So, all in all it was a great day.  Maybe this means that it's going to be a great summer.  I'm looking forward to the year anniversary of this grand adventure, and celebrating with a 5K.  Definitely fun plans!

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Day 340 - Ouch!

I had another personal training session today.  I thought I would be clever and do fifteen minutes on the elliptical before she got there, so I'd be warmed up.  I knew I was in trouble when she said 'Great, let's do 15 more!'.  So, the session started off with 35 minutes total on the elliptical.  By the time she left, I was a sweaty, quivering mass of depleted muscles.  Wow!

The great thing is, I am a lot stronger than I realized.  I can move heavier weights than I thought, and I think I did a pretty good job.  Of course, I was huffing and puffing, and my face was bright red.  But, I did it.  I was so proud of myself!  I hate spending the extra money, but it is worth every single cent.  I just wish I could afford to do it more often!

The really good timing is that we have started back up with the hyperbaric chamber again.  It was definitely hot tonight, but I am really hoping it will help with the muscle soreness and recovery time. (Did I mention the plank, side planks, and push ups???)  And, I just love the bonding time with Michael.  We don't get a lot of time to just hang out - even if he is glued to his tablet the entire session.

So, I am dead tired and expect to sleep like a rock tonight.  In fact, I think the pillow is calling my name.  Good night!

Monday, June 17, 2013

Day 338 - Sorry for going MIA!

Sorry for being gone for a week.  Last Wednesday I started getting really sick, and was sick for most of the week.  Then, I went to Pennsylvania for my Mom's birthday party.  So, I did get exercise over the weekend, but it was mostly the kind from running up and down the stairs a million times.  The good news is that it was enough exercise that my quads were burning when I went to bed Saturday night. That definitely counts as exercise!

Tonight, I was back to the gym for my Monday combination classes.  The muscle challenge class was really challenging tonight.  I think that I was extra weak because I haven't eaten much for the last week.  So, I had no reserves at all.  But, yoga felt really, really good.  I think after all the running around over the weekend, it felt so good to stretch and twist and bend!

But, I am now completely exhausted.  So, I'm calling it an early night.  Tomorrow is a rest day, but I'll be back at it onWednesday.  Have a great night!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Day 331 - Some Days are Just Really, Really Hard

I forced myself to go to the gym tonight, despite everything that's happened today. I was doing well until the Beatles "A Day in the Life" came on. I just lost it, right in the middle of a set of squats. But, I did put it back together and finish out the class. Yoga was hard. I couldn't settle my brain. But, I made it through somehow. Not the best set of classes I've ever had, but at least ...I went.

I did completely fall apart when I got home, and there was chocolate involved. Not a terrible amount, but enough. But, it could have been a lot worse. Tonight I am just holding Michael really close and telling him how much I love him. I don't know what else I can do. Thankfully, tomorrow is a rest day.

Sunday, June 9, 2013

Day 330 - Yin/Yang Yoga

I tried something new today - a yin/yang yoga class.  It was 90 minutes long and really fun.  The yin part of the class was a lot of gentle stretches held for about five minutes each.  You don't realize how tight your hips are until you hold a hip opening stretch for that long!  The yang part of the class was more what I am used to - more active postures in a flow.  Then, the class ended with savasanah.  I really enjoyed it.

During the stretches I had a lot of time to just think and process.  I kept coming back to the fact that I have gone from viewing exercise as a way to punish my body for being fat to actually enjoying the movement.  Where before I wanted to lose weight for a myriad of superficial reasons, now I want to be able to do more.  I want to be more flexible.  I want to be able to go hiking.  I want to move.  While that may sound really basic and simple, it's a huge change for me.  And, I have started to appreciate my body for everything that it can do, and does for me.  Again, simple, but a huge change of philosophy for me. 

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Day 329 - Super Saturday!

One of the best things about weekend is being able to relax and spend time with my family.  But, another great thing is being able to pick which exercise I want to do for the day.  I have a couple options at the gym, but that means getting up early.  And, now that Michael's special needs yoga class is finished for the summer, that's not available.  So, today, I decided that I wanted to get on the elliptical and just go for it.  In an hour I was able to burn 813 calories!  That felt great!

One thing that's been going on for a few weeks now that I haven't mentioned is that I no longer need my CPAP machine.  I didn't really want to talk about it because I wasn't sure it was real.  But, it definitely is real.  I have needed the machine for just about 20 years.  Now, I think I am sleeping better without it than I ever did when I needed it.  So, even though I am still frustrated with the fact that I can't seem to get past this plateau, I do have a wonderful, tangible health benefit from this journey.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Day 328 - Busy Week, Busy Day

Today was a really busy day, to cap off a really busy week.  It's all really good stuff, but I haven't been keeping up with my posts as much as I would like.  But, the good news is that I went to my Friday night yoga class tonight, and it was great, as usual.  I love the feeling of well being and relaxation after a great stretch.  And, my balance is getting so much better.  I love that!

But, the best part of the day was talking with Michael's teacher.  He has had two perfect weeks in a row now, and she is so proud of him.  And, the better thing is that he is proud of himself.  I love that he has turned a corner this spring, and is doing great.  Some days are just wonderful.  Oh yeah, it's Friday, too!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Day 324 - Abbreviated Monday

I had a parent support group meeting tonight, so I could only go to one class at the gym tonight.  But, I definitely made the best of it!  I was able to hold a straight arm plank for a full minute!  I wa so proud of myself!!!  And, the rest of the class was really, really good as well.

The highlight of the day was just a side conversation I had with a friend.  She shared a success of her son, and it just made me smile ear to ear.  It's her victory, so I can't share the details, but it's just so wonderful when you hear of other kids doing wonderfully, and especially doing things that are so typical for their age.  Success makes me so happy!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Day 322 - Yoga with Michael

It was a little sad today - Michael and I had our last ASD yoga session until the fall.  It was a great class, but definitely bittersweet.  When Michael was asking when we would start up again, you could tell he was really sad to have such a long break.  But, hopefully, he and I will do a practice on our own during the summer.  I love doing yoga with him, and I know he enjoys it.  But, I also know that he enjoys being witht he other kids and a 'real' teacher.  But, we will do the best we can over the break!