SGX Journal C4W2D1 (Poor Orphan Carrot Cake)

Thoughts: Gah!

You know, I thought the Great Black and White M&M Invasion of last year was rough, but that has nothing on the Insidious Abandoned Carrot Cake Attack of the past two weeks.

Because we are technically in a crunch period at my company and working 10 am-10 pm most days, we have our dinners brought in by a catering company. Well, there must be some kind of super bargain going on with carrot cake from their suppliers, because these $#!$! folks keep bringing in desserts that are my particular favorites.

We are talking about Key Lime pie and carrot cake with walnuts and raisins.

I can say no to anything else (except for maybe free sushi), but OMG, I love KL pie and carrot cake! There’s always a ton of the stuff left at the end of the night, and my frugal Asian upbringing somehow kicks in and makes me feel BAD about letting food be thrown out, so I wind up Rubbermaiding 4 or 5 slices of cake or pie for my free day!

(I feel bad about chucking egg yolks, too, and I go through a minimum of 36 eggs a WEEK. I know…I can buy egg whites alone, but that conflicts with the Asian cheapskate gene.)

My free days are obscene cake and pie fests now. It’s appalling. I can’t even face the totals on my Diet and Exercise Assistant program. I just log the meals furtively and avoid looking at the total calories at the bottom. 😳

I need to stop assigning human feelings to inanimate, fat-and-sugar laden desserts. They aren’t forlorn, abandoned orphans. They are sugar-bombs just waiting to blow up my thighs and hips to their pre-BFL girth.

Someone please make them stop…please.

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Nutrition: SGX Training Day eating pattern
(Details omitted by request)

Regular (Non-SGX) Daily Supplements: multivitamin with iron, calcium 500 + D
Water for yesterday: 14 cups

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Workout:
7:45 AM Steady-state treadmill (3.8 mph / 14% incline / 45 minutes)
12:00 PM Upper body/chest focus workout

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The Awful Truth:
1. Didn’t space my meals out very well Sunday…left 6 hours between lunch and dinner due to being out and about with dbf.

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Brownie Points:
1. Did okay on water…
2. Was pretty much on plan Saturday at the Megacon thanks to a huge shaker full of protein shakes.

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Short-term Goals:
1. Try out new carrot cake muffin recipe to stave off carrot cake munchies ASAP.
2. Wake up for 7 am cardio every day instead of pushing it off until 8 am.

Megacon 2005

I just got back from my stint as a be-wigged booth girl (check out the pigtails) for my friend artist Joe Pekar at Megacon 2005. It was a great time–I met a lot of local artists, signed some prints, had my picture taken a lot, saw a LOT of wildly-dressed people, and managed not to have any of the glazed almonds being hawked at the vending cart right within my line of sight. Joe was sharing a table with another great pin-up artist, Alberto Ruiz, who did a quick sketch of me while I was chilling in the booth. I wish I’d taken a pic of his drawing. 😥

My friends (and fellow artists) Eraklis Petmezas, Joel Carroll and Ed Siemienkowicz also popped on by during the day to say hi, chat, and hand me a huge stack of their mini-comics and sketchbooks.

After spending an entire day surrounded by great artists and art work, I am absolutely dying to draw something myself. :mrgreen:

WoW might have to wait tonight….

Oh, and on a final note: The best compliment I got today from a Megacon attendee was, “Hey, do you work out? Your quads look great!”

Bwahahahahaha!

Click for more Megacon pictures!

Click the image to see more photos from Megacon!

SGX Journal C4W1D5 (Not-so-Thin Mints)

Thoughts: Today my supervisor generously donated two boxes of Girl Scout Thin Mint cookies to our room for general snacking.

Yes, I know that GS cookies are horribly overpriced and not even that tasty compared to home-made desserts, but there’s a lot of nostalgia tied up in my feelings toward Thin Mints. Those were my *favorite* GS cookies as a kid, and even now I have a mild hankering for a cookie or two.

Fortunately, I got a hold of the box and read the following nutrition (if you can call it that) stats:

1 serving = 4 cookies, 170 calories, 24 g carb, 2 g protein, 7 g fat (4 saturated, 1 trans)

I am so not having one of those. Bleah.

When I’m ignorant of the true nutrition stats of a food, I find it easier to rationalize a nibble or two. How bad can a cookie be, right? When the full, awful truth is printed there in black and white, though, no amount of self-delusion can justify the cheat on a non-free day, alas.

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Nutrition: SGX Training Day eating pattern
(Details omitted by request)

Regular (Non-SGX) Daily Supplements: multivitamin with iron, calcium 500 + D
Water for yesterday: 17 cups

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Workout:
7:45 AM Steady-state treadmill (3.5 mph / 13.5% incline / 45 minutes)
12:00 PM Upper body/back focus workout

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The Awful Truth:
1. Had a nibble of key lime pie last night. Divine.

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Brownie Points:
1. Drank my gallon of water.
2. Went to bed at a reasonable hour.

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Short-term Goals:
1. Restock fridge.
2. Fix shirt for Megacon outfit.

SGX Journal C4W1D4 (Getting into the groove)

Thoughts: It’s taken me a few days to de-bloat from this weekend’s excesses, but I finally got a starting scale weight this morning. 134.8 lbs. I was 135.5 last week before the weekend Cake-o-Rama and Chinese buffet.

Even now, I’m not sure how accurate this is because I just realized this morning that I’m smack dab in the middle of PMS this week. I should have known from the Kashi Attack the other night. This happens to me EVERY month. The problem is that I don’t get any other PMS symptoms–I’m not moody, I don’t cry at the drop of a hat, I’m not hypersensitive to things people say to/about me (comes from being completely oblivious to social niceties), I don’t cramp, and I don’t dial up the bitch-meter according to my male co-workers–so I’m always taken by surprise by my evening cereal cravings.

(I did acquire a small zit on the right side of my chin, though, lest some of you think I am getting off too easy during PMS.)

It must be nice to be a Y-chromosome carrier who never has to deal with water weight fluctuations three weeks out of four, I think.

Anyway, the adjustments I’ve had to make in my diet have been pretty significant with SGX. In the past, I’ve pretty much stuck with BFL ratios (40/40/20), but SGX relies on something so different that I can’t use any of my old standby recipes. I miss the Kashi crispy bars and the cran-raisin strawberry crunch bars the most. 😥

I’m getting used to the flow of this plan more now, but I think my future, simplified maintenance routine will definitely be using Tom Venuto’s 50/30/20 ratio, especially when I return to running for cardio.

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Nutrition: SGX Non-Training Day eating pattern
(Details omitted by request)

Regular (Non-SGX) Daily Supplements: multivitamin with iron, calcium 500 + D
Water for yesterday: 18 cups

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Workout:
8:00 AM Steady-state treadmill (3.5 mph / 13.5% incline / 45 minutes)
10:00 PM Yoga for Athletes DVD

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The Awful Truth:
1. Final meal last night was more BFL than SGX–Yes, the Kashi Monster struck again. 🙄

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Brownie Points:
1. Treadmill workout flew by today since I had a book to read–Stuart McRobert’s Insider’s Tell-All Handbook on Weight-Training Technique
2. Have been drinking at least a gallon of water a day. I slosh when I walk around, I do.

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Short-term Goals:
1. Get some more eggs. Lots and lots of them.

SGX Journal C4W1D3 (Maggie the WoW-Playing Carb Monster)

Thoughts: Oh boy. I have a doozy of a confession to make.

I was perfectly on plan yesterday until meal 6, which I had at my parents’ house last night. I’d gotten a flat tire Sunday night on the way back to my place from their house, and my father came out to help me change the tire around 11:30 pm. Because the flat occurred closer to their place than mine, we switched cars so he could take my car to Sam’s Club the next day for a free replacement (bless the lifetime warranty!).

Anyhow, I drove over to the house to swap out cars last night and wound up having some home-cooked Chinese food for meal 6…correct ratios and all. However, there were also some very tasty Ferrero Rocher pralines at the house….

I had three of them.

That woke the carb monster within, and combined with oh…5 hours of World of Warcraft last night and a new box of Kashi GoLean Crunch, well–let’s just say that my glycogen stores were fully-replenished for my lower body workout today. And I have to make up my cardio session tonight because 3:45 am bedtimes do not mix well with 7:00 am cardio. 😳

Some notes to myself for the next non-training day:

1) Do not visit parents on non-cheat days. If a visit is absolutely necessary, do not enter house or kitchen. Heh.
2) Post “before” photo of self on cereal cabinet door as a deterrent to Kashi raiding.
3) Pick up some SF Jello to snack on while playing WoW.
4) Set timer for WoW to ensure that I’m in bed by 12 am.
5) Have more solid food during the day.

Well, at least it all came out to less than maintenance calories for the day, and my human warrior girl is now level 11 while my undead priestess is up to level 7. :mrgreen: My virtual selves had a kickass evening even if I didn’t, hah!

And just for fun, here’s a preview of the print my friend Joe Pekar did of me for Megacon this Saturday. I’ll be sporting the outfit and a wig, LOL. The legs are the right size, but I SWEAR my arms are bigger than that in real life!

Megacon print

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Nutrition: SGX Training Day eating pattern
(Details omitted by request)

Regular (Non-SGX) Daily Supplements: multivitamin with iron, calcium 500 + D
Water for yesterday: 17 cups

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Workout:
12:00 PM Lower body workout
7:00 PM Steady-state treadmill (3.5 mph / 13.5% incline / 45 minutes)

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The Awful Truth:
1. 3 Ferrero Rocher pralines
2. 1 c. Kashi GoLean Crunch

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Brownie Points:
1. Had a great LBWO
2. Slamming down at least a gallon of water a day.
3. Came up with several acceptable meal combinations for SGX.

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Short-term Goals:
1. Make some protein pancakes.
2. Cook up some lime-garlic marinated steaks tonight.
3. Pre-prep a few more meals.
4. Clean out the scary things in the fridge.

SGX Journal C4W1D2 (Rules for Transformation)

Thoughts: Since I started my quest for fitness last year, I’ve been through three programs:

Body for Life
Leanness Lifestyle
Custom (Bulking)

I’m now on my fourth transformation routine with SGX just because I enjoy the challenge of trying out new nutrition plans and workouts and gauging their effectiveness.

Because I feel that it’s important to get the cleanest results possible, I try to follow some basic rules when I embark on a new transformation journey:

1) Always give a program a minimum of 8-12 weeks before making any judgements about its effectiveness.
2) Do not tweak the program until those 8-12 weeks are complete.
3) Take progress photos and measurements every 4 weeks.
4) Follow the program’s guidelines as closely as possible–this includes both nutrition and exercise.
5) Come up with versions of your favorite meals that still fall within the guidelines of the program as soon as you can.
6) Whining, making excuses, and quitting are for shamming slackers.

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Nutrition: SGX Non-Training Day eating pattern
(Details omitted by request)

Regular (Non-SGX) Daily Supplements: multivitamin with iron, calcium 500 + D
Water for yesterday: 18 cups

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Workout:
7:15 AM Steady-state treadmill (3.5 mph / 13.5% incline / 45 minutes)
9:00 PM Yoga for Athletes DVD

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The Awful Truth:
1. Nothing bad to report; I’m an absolute stickler when I start a new program. :mrgreen:

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Brownie Points:
1. Got through another 45 minute high incline treadmill walk.
2. Stayed 100% on plan yesterday with only one evening prep time.

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Short-term Goals:
1. Pick up my car from my parents’ house tonight.
2. Stop by Target for more cheapo eggs.

SGX Journal C4W1D1 (New Experiment)

Thoughts: After a lot of research and thought, I’ve decided to try out another cutting program for the next 12 weeks. I know what BFL and LL can do for me, but some posts at the JSF Forums piqued my interest in the Swolegenix cutting program offered at Vizual Xcellence by Chris “Swolecat” Janusz. After spending 9 weeks bulking and building up muscle (woohoo!), I want to preserve as much of my gains as possible while cutting, and one of the points that kept coming up over and over in posts by people who have tried SGX is that they lost almost no skeletal muscle mass while cutting on the plan. I also got the impression that the nutrition for the plan was a considerable departure from my usual 40/40/20 macronutrient split.

In many ways, Leanness Lifestyle is a refinement of Body for Life–same macro ratios, same meal timing, just add more logging and cardio. SGX is a completely different system entirely.

When I signed up for my customized program, I agreed not to post my nutrition stats and meals here because each client’s ratios and stats will differ to some degree based on their starting stats and goals. My workouts will be posted, but my meals will have to remain a mystery to you all during this challenge. I will say that I received two different “eating patterns” or blueprints for meals with timing and macronutrient ratios specifically set up to maximize fat loss and lean mass retention. One pattern is for cardio only days, and the other one is for days when I lift weights as well as do fasted morning cardio. Both are different enough from BFL nutrition that I doubt that I’d ever have come up with them on my own.

The biggest change in my workouts will be the complete elimination of HIIT cardio. No running during this 12 week experiment. No intervals. I will be using the classic low impact, steady-state cardio at 65%-75% maximum heart rate for 45 minutes per session. Today, this amounted to 3.5 mph on a treadmill set to 14% incline. Cardio will be done 6-7 days a week first thing in the morning on an empty stomach.

On Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays I will lift weights at noon according to the tailored workout plan I received as part of my program.

Will this work? I guess we’ll see in 12 weeks!

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Nutrition: SGX Training Day eating pattern
(Details omitted by request)

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Workout:
7:15 AM Steady-state treadmill (3.5 mph / 13.5% incline / 45 minutes)
12:00 PM Upper body workout/chest emphasis

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The Awful Truth:
1. This was the Weekend of the Cake for me. I had a LOT of cake saved up from the catered meals of the week before.

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Brownie Points:
1. Got started with new SGX customized program immediately this morning.
2. Suffered through all 45 minutes of steady-state cardio on the treadmill.

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Short-term Goals:
1. Make some protein pancakes
2. Configure some new meals for my current nutrition plan.

Fitness Journal C3W12D6 (DOMS, dom-dom-dom-DOMS!)

Thoughts: OMG, I am already hurting from yesterday’s workouts. Seriously hurting! I don’t even want to contemplate how tomorrow is going to feel.

I switched back to BFL style pyramids yesterday for my leg workout just for the sake of variety, and also ditched the Smith machine in favor of the free squat rack and hack squack at Gold’s. I didn’t use nearly as much weight with the squat rack as I do on the Smith, (only 115 lbs) but my legs were officially toasted. I’m never going back to the Smith for heavy squats again. I think the pre-set pathway was hurting my lower back.

Anyhow, I am already getting DOMS this morning from the real squats (especially because BFL is higher volume than Max-OT) and deadlifts, and my upper back is starting to twinge, too. Jeremy on the Bodyforlife-tracker.com site issued a “Who can do the most push-ups in one minute?” challenge on their forums, and of COURSE I had to give it a go. I knocked out 61 full push-ups in one minute on my first try, and 66 about 30 minutes later out of boredom.

I love push-ups. They are the one exercise I excel at. RAWR!

Tonight is the first official Johnstonefitness.com Forum get together here in Orlando, and I’ll be having a massive cheat meal with some of the other members of the forum at the Roadhouse Grill. 🙂

I’m off to do cardio so I can finally get to that yoga dvd and hopefully make some of this soreness go away.

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Nutrition (1910 calorie free day)
1: 3/4 c. Keto crisp cereal
2: 1 scoop whey and 1/2 c. (dry) oatmeal
3: Chicken and broccoli stir fry with rice
4: Bar
5: Free meal
6: Luna bar (or skip)

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Workout
11:45 AM steady-state treadmill (2.8-4 mph / incline 5-12%)
12:30 PM Yoga for Athletes DVD