Jessica's Adventures in Exercising: Update
Tuesday, November 27, 2012Tweet
Given that we're in the time of the year when people tend to gain a pound or two, it seems like a good time to give you an update on my exercise plan so you know I didn't fall off the wagon in the past few months.
When we last left off I was still unemployed and so had jumped in with both feet to find an exercise regimen that worked for me, doing a combination of Couch to 5K, Wii Fit, and fitness classes.
What I'm Doing Now
Now that I'm working, and I basically leave in the dark and come home in the dark, I moved my running days to Saturday and Sunday, which has worked well. (Unlike the lovely stock photo here, there is no track on campus, so I run in the nearby neighborhood.) I just finished Couch to 5K this past weekend (yay!). The rec center on campus added two evening Zumba classes, on Tuesday and Thursday, so I go to those and drag various friends along with me when I can. I'm still trying to do Wii Fit occasionally, particularly when I need to stretch out sore muscles, but our Wii is on its last legs and keeps giving us error messages, so I'll have to take a break from that until we get a new one. I've also started doing a few of these ab exercises each night before bed.
What Has Changed
The biggest change has to be in my cardiovascular endurance. Couch to 5K starts you out with intervals of 60 seconds jogging, 90 seconds walking, which were doable but tough. The fact that I can now jog for half an hour without stopping is still amazing to me. I haven't quite jogged a full 5K (about 3.1 miles) as I'm still a slow jogger; in half an hour I've been able to jog about 2.4 miles. But that's more than fine with me! After how excruciating it used to be to run the mile in gym class, this is something to be proud of.
My calves have become rock solid muscle, which still catches me by surprise when I feel them. At the same time I seem to have developed cellulite in my thighs, which is confusing and frustrating. Also, my weight has started to creep back up, I think because I'm gaining muscle, but it seems a little strange when I'm basically doing hard aerobic exercise four times a week. I'm more concerned with my health and fitness than with my body image or weight, though, so I'm not going to worry too much about this for the moment.
Also, I've been doing the ab exercises for a few weeks now and they seem to be getting easier, so it seems like my abs must be getting stronger.
Where I Go From Here
I downloaded the 5K to 10K app because I liked using the Couch to 5K one for my jogs, and I'm happy to see that rather than just adding longer and longer times like the other one did, this app helps you move from jogging speed to running speed. That's really what I need at this point, so I can run a longer distance without giving up too much more of my time on the weekends.
The semester is winding down here, so unfortunately I only have a few more weeks of Zumba classes and then winter break, and I don't know what the fitness class schedule will be next semester. Classes help keep me on track in a way I can't do on my own, and I wish there were more evening fitness classes, but the only other one is a 9pm yoga class, and that's just too late for me. Depending on what next semester's class schedule is I may have to pony up for a real gym membership off campus to keep myself going. (At least the gyms all have sales in January, right?)
I'm going to try to keep up my ab exercises but add more repetitions each month. I've been using Illuum (recommended by Nikkiana on this post!) to keep myself accountable for doing them every night.
How do you keep yourself healthy and fit? Are you planning any New Year's resolutions around exercise?