Less Whining, More Butt-Kicking!

It’s now the first week of March, and now that the initial spark of motivation from our New Year’s resolutions has faded, I’m starting to see and hear the same tired old excuses trickle back into the online fitness communities.

“I’m too busy at work/school/home.”

“I was too sore/tired from xday’s workout to do my planned workout today.”

“I was soooooooo hungry/bonked out/PMS’ed that I couldn’t resist the chocolate/cookies/Twinkies/ice cream/pizza at work/home/my parent’s house.”

“My (fill in the blank with body part of your choice) hurts!”

Well, boo hoo hoo. I guess it is now time for my annual spring ass-kicking motivation rant.

The thing about an effective cut is that it will never be comfortable or easy if you’ve moved past the adrenaline rush of uninformed newbie enthusiasm. Once you are in decent shape and have acquired more knowledge about nutrition and exercise, losing fat means your belly will always want more food, your muscles will always be somewhat tired, sore, and worn out, and your now over-educated brain will overflow with excuses to justify extra food and more days off for recovery/improved performance/lean mass preservation.

Riiiiiiiiiiiiight.

I hate to tell you this, but the fact of the matter is that with very few exceptions, most of us just aren’t that elite. Yes, that includes me AND you, dear readers. (Ultra marathon runners like Julie and MarathonP can ignore this last statement.)

This is simply what happens when you are working out intensely while at a caloric deficit, and, alas, a caloric deficit is the only guaranteed, scientifically-proven way to burn off the fluff without resorting to surgery. And when you are already close to goal and have cleaned up just about everything in your diet and are posting some decent weights and speeds at the gym, guess what? You will need not only any old caloric deficit to get even leaner, but strict compliance to VERY clean and consistent eats indeed and workouts that push you harder (and very possibly longer) than the ones that got you to 20% body fat.

At some point we all have to ask ourselves if it is worth eight or more weeks of feeling less than 100% in order to achieve our fitness goals, because we all know where cheating on meals and skipping workouts will take us:

Exactly nowhere.

If looking like a fitness model were as easy as eating 50% clean and working out in a half-assed way for 30 minutes 2-3 times a week on the rare occasions when we weren’t feeling tired, out of sorts, stressed out, sore, bloated, or otherwise not absolutely perfect, don’t you think there would be more Monica Brants sashaying around the gyms, malls, and grocery stores?

As Tom Venuto so aptly put it:

“It’s not supposed to be easy. Disciplined people succeed; undisciplined people don’t…Nothing changes by doing what’s fun and EASY.”

So to all of my fellow fit wenches and future fit wenches out there who feel themselves slipping off the path to summer bikini goddesshood a mere two months into 2008 — I say it’s time to bitch up, knock off the wussy girl excuses, and get back on the clean eats and workout wagon 110%. Set your goal and don’t stop until you get there.

Remember, it will only get harder as you age, and the last time I checked, every last one of us is getting older by the minute.

😉

3/7/08 Log: It’s all about the eats

Still hanging at 140.6 today, but my top 4 abs are coming out more each day and I look leaner all around while still muscular and strong. My legs and glutes are sore from Wednesday, and I opted to do Yoga for Athletes this AM instead of TT or HHA. I tried a warmup set of deadifts but my lower back wasn’t awake enough to perform them safely at a challenging weight. I may end up swapping Friday’s TT/intervals workout with Saturday’s intervals/HHA workout depending on how late I have to work tonight. My gym closes early at 9 pm on Fridays.

I thought the week went by fast! I have been so busy that it’s just a blur of sleep, exercise, eating, driving, and work work work. I look forward to having some downtime this weekend to garden and work more on my wardrobe contest pieces. The challenge will be to stick to SGX meals without the structure and limited pantry access provided by the work day. I’ve been very consistent this week with food, coming in at 1530-1560 each day and following the macronutrient ratios in the plan carefully. I think that 139 lbs and 20% bf is doable by Monday if I can just keep it up through the weekend.

No more Sunday pancake brunches for me until this challenge is over.

The sad truth is that, for me, this challenge will have to be won by diet more than exercise. I can exercise until I collapse, but my body is so efficient at maintaining homeostasis even at high, intense activity levels that I see no progress at all unless I hit the nutrition just as hard as my lifts and intervals. That’s just one of the side effects of being:

A) female (our bodies don’t like to give up fat because we are designed to incubate babies for 9 months through feast or famine), and

B) physically fit (what’s impossibly strenuous for a sedentary person is just a vanilla workout for our bodies).

My 100% ban on “cleanish” trigger foods for the rest of this challenge has already saved me from cheating more than 5 times this week. I’ve looked at the trail mix jar, the box of Kashi Go Lean Crunch in the pantry, DH’s evening bowl of popcorn, the mint choco chip ice cream, and the deli meat drawer so many times this week, but since they are all completely off limits until I hit goal (even on cheat meal days), I didn’t touch any of them.

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WORKOUT
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– Yoga for Athletes (20 min)
– HHA Fat Burning Cardio (30 min)
– Either TT Mass Fusion Workout C + Bodyweight intervals, OR just the bodyweight or bike intervals

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NUTRITION
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SGX menu (Meals 5 and 6 will be determined by which workouts I choose to do