Monday, May 7, 2012
Tony Horton of P90X
About a month ago the realization hit home - it was time to bring the upper body into the act. As a runner I had convinced myself that I was getting all the cardio and exercising I needed to keep me healthy, active and strong into my golden years. That fantasy began to erode when I noticed my arms were not only developing skin-wings, but were weak. Something clicked and the next phase of my fitness life began.
After much research the hubby and I decided to check out the popular P90X. We have seen the tv ads but have also seen results among our friends. Although my husband has been doing weight training for years in the comfort of our garage, I had been the hold out and now I was joining the fray, but with the help of Tony.
The program has been very manageable and enjoyable. We are almost at the 30 day period and although I have gained 3 pounds and am not happy about that - I am seeing and feeling the difference. For starters, I have a butt now. Well, the old butt is starting to climb up to where it used to be. My thighs are more toned. My arms are starting to show a tiny bit of definition. The most important change though is how I feel. Strong. A word that I never really associated with my body. I feel taller, confident.
But let me get back to that weight gain for a moment. I have been disciplined and keep my weight between 138 and 140. Now I'm weighing in at 143. I've been told it's muscle but after some research it seems my body is adjusting and adapting. It could also be water weight that accumulates in the muscles. Whatever it is for certain I am not allowing it to derail my efforts.
If you have been following this blog you will know that here we speak honestly and proactively. We are about health and fitness first and then celebrate the side effects of those efforts. To that end I want to share the lessons I've learned with anyone that is beginning this journey or supporting someone that is.
1. Health and fitness should be your most important goals. When you expect obvious physical changes you may get discouraged and then give up. Do not set yourself up for failure. Keep track of the weight and inches lost but also keep track of what you are gaining. Take time to log how you are feeling. Strong, happy, confident.
2. Strong is the new skinny. Get your priorities straight. Strong is not always visible so embrace the fact that even though you may not see definition or bulging muscles, you are still benefiting from the efforts through strength.
3. Have a realistic goal and image in your mind. I'm 48 and I will never look 20 again. Keeping that in mind I am only trying to make the best of my body as it is today. No matter how hard I work I will never reclaim all the things that made 20 so awesome so let that go and move forward. On a side note, I have hung out with beautiful young women and even the fittest and most beautiful have a dimple here and there so - even perfection is not perfect!
4. Surrender to the process. If you are going to begin a weight loss or training program SURRENDER completely to the process until you have completed it. So many people decide early on that they don't like this or that and slowly they relinquish the program. I hate the yoga part of the P90X but I have to trust in the process as a whole that it will work. After almost 30 days, the yoga is helping me with the focus problems that so often derail me. Bottom line - trust the system, trust the experts. Once you've mastered the program then you can feel free to personalize the program to your needs.
5. STOP QUITTING! Commit to committing. Before you even start commit yourself to not quitting. Whether it's a 30 day or 90 day program promise yourself that you will at the very least complete the program. Health and fitness is driven by the feeling accomplishment. Do not rob yourself of this vital part of the process. Once you prove to yourself that you can FINISH you will have broken a pattern that used to define you to yourself. My goal is always to finish. It may not be pretty or awesome but I can always tell myself that I FINISHED and that provides the inner strength I need to tackle everything.