Friday, May 22, 2009

Fitness Test

A couple of friends of mine were talking about this book, Making the Cut by Jillian Michaels and how it really helps you lose those last 10 lbs and gives great results. So, I got on and ordered me a copy - curious about the program. I really love watching Jillian on TBL (and Bob too for that matter) and would LOVE to have her/him train me just once and kick my butt. This book outlines a 30 day plan of eating and exercise. The exercise routines are really similar to the CrossFit plans that I've seen. Single sets, medium reps on constantly different muscle groups with no rest. So, essentially your body is getting a cardio workout and you are constantly challenging different areas. I think the P90X is similar too, but I've never really tried it - only seen the infomercial.

She outlines a menu that she wants you to follow for those 30 days, but mainly it's about eating within your caloric allowance (based on your BMR) and adhering to the right protein/carb/fat ratio (mine's 30/40/30) based on a short quiz that tells you your oxidizer type. The diet says to limit the caffeine, processed foods, sodium and sugar as much as possible. And of course, drink lots of water. All doable.

I'm seriously thinking about trying this. I've concentrated so much on running that my upper body strength and ab strength has pretty much been ignored. This was blatantly obvious by the fitness test you're supposed to do before and after. There's an aerobic endurance test (doing step-ups for 3 minutes and then pulse check), ab strength test (as many sit-ups as you can do in 1 minute), upper body strength test (as many push ups as you can do in 1 minute) and a lower body strength test (hold a wall sit for as long as you can). I performed pretty much as I expected, but the upper body strength test threw me for a loop:
  • Aerobic endurance = Good (one pulse count away from Excellent! Thanks Running!)
  • Upper body strength = Below Average (seriously...real push-ups are killer. My little stick arms were shaking!)
  • Abdominal Strength = Average
  • Lower body strength = Excellent (I held that wall sit forever...I was shocked! Thanks again Running!)
This was a bit of a wake-up call for me. I just stuck with running to stay "fit", but I'm not balancing out my whole body. I need to focus on strengthening my core and upper body as well. I know it will ultimately help my running. But, I always have trouble justifying those "lift" days and time. I just want to run, run, run. So, I think I may try this plan. The workouts are tough, but only about 45 minutes. Adding that plus running will be tough, but it's worth a try.

Got a good 5 miles in last night while the weather is still cool. I slowed down a little from the previous run, but the wind was pretty brutal. Managed to average a 9:47 pace...still below 10:00 so I'm a happy gal!

My question for today then is how do you guys find balance between running and the gym?

Today I LOVE: four day weekends!!!!


Sarah said...

I am still trying to find the balance and time. With Crossfit being my main "strength" aspect of training, it's regimented- I do it at least every MWF at 5am...but running, I'm just trying to squish it in everywhere else. Miles here and there. Luckily I've been able to find folks to run with me for shorter distances, and a group to run with for the longer distances so I can get through marathon training for Tulsa. That reminds me...have you decided if you're going to do Tulsa yet?

Don't get discouraged on your average/below average areas. They are totally fixable and you should use it as motivation to kick some booty. Improvement is highly is running!

I might have to check out that book. I, too, like Jillian and Bob. Nutrition ideas would be welcomed for me!

maria k said...

that sounds pretty intense - but then again, it is jillian, so what can you expect! keep us updated if you go for it or not...personally, i know my fitness isnt completely well rounded but for now, im okay with being just in running shape.

Southbay Girl said...

i'm such a dork-I've had your old blog address on my blogroll-DORK!! I got it now!!! Of course we always have twitter!!

Willie said...

My answer is easy. I don't! OK so you should not listen to me, I'm soooo like you. Run, run, run, gym? What's that? Arms are only needed to balance you while you run right?

Good luck with your plan. You are doing the right thing and if it works maybe I'll give it a shot. Yes, you're my experiment. {evil laugh}...