I have never exercised regularly (intermittent yoga for a few months in between only), so when my cousin asked me to be her ‘guinea pig’ for a personal trainer course she was doing, I wasn’t sure if I should laugh or cry.
I was meant to eat well (and more quantity than I usually do), no diet soda or sugary drinks, lots of protein, and we were meant to work out 2-3 times a week at least.
We only ended up doing about 6 or 7 sessions rather than the scheduled 12, and through the sweat, tears, cravings and thoughts about how getting liposuction might be easier, here are the top 10 things I learnt over the last 6 weeks.
- Clothing plays a large part; usually, if I come back from work and change into my slacks, I just collapse on my bed. However, if I made it a point to change into my work out clothes, I eventually dragged myself out and went to the gym.
- Soda really is bad for you. I am (was) a diet coke addict. I used to have about 2 cans a day on average, get headaches on the day I tried to quit, and would get a crate when I went grocery shopping.
However, today I am proudly 50-day-diet-coke-free and going strong. I feel much less bloated and looking at the can reminds me of the metallic after-taste and I choose water instead.
- Your body tells you what it needs
I am a picky eater, and there are some things I am forever obsessed with, such as the Potbelly oatmeal choc chip cookies. I knew that I would give up if anyone asked me to give up those or pasta, so I negotiated a deal with my trainer that I could have cookies in the morning only, and pasta on the days I was going to work out. happy!!!
Other than that, your body tells you itself what/how much it needs at a given point in time.
- You are stronger than you think
My first few words to friends when I was starting the program was “there’s no way I can leave diet coke for 30 days”, and “I can’t do push ups!”..Here we are, 50 days later, no diet coke and I can do about two sets of 10 push ups (13 whiney ones and 15 at a stretch).
- Positive reinforcement is important
Feels great to hear that you’ve lost weight, specially if you have been putting in some effort!
- You need to eat, and eat right, after a work-out
This was new for me. I was unaware that eating after the work-out is what kick-starts the metabolism. Considering I work out at night (post dinner), this is the toughest part for me. Poultry, tuna, eggs or strawberries are great natural choices.
- Diet helps with weight loss, but exercise helps with strength and body shape
Since I was traveling in between, I did not exercise for about two weeks. However, I still lost half a KG during this time, simply through diet control. This is not the first time it has happened, but with the combination of diet and exercise, I feel like the shape of my legs noticeably changed.
- Watching fitness videos will not make you lose weight
I have had the Insanity Program on my PC for 2 years now, and multiple youtube channel subscriptions. If only watching these would help me lose weight. SIGH.
- The ‘feel good’ and active feeling people talk about takes a long time to kick in
I hear people saying how great I will feel after a workout, and how much more energy I will have. Either I am not doing it right, or not eating right, but I feel TIRED AS F. Could also be because of some deficiencies, so I have started taking some multi-vitamins.
- Staying active generally through out the day also has an impact
I got a Fit Bit as a birthday present in September, and I have noticed that staying generally active does make me feel more energized (who knew?). I measure this with the number of steps taken during a day, and after a few days, I would actually start feeling guilty if I did anything less than 5K steps in a day.
I started to make it a habit to either walk to the farther coffee shop to grab my iced coffee, or just go for some “mall walking” after work if I had no workout planned. Little things make a difference 🙂
Overall, I lost 2KGs in the six weeks (I feel i could have lost more if I behaved better). However, I was told by observers that I appear to have lost weight, so I’m not complaining. I don’t have any before/after pictures unfortunately, so you’ll just have to take my word for it 🙂
Also, how about that bitter-sweet muscle pain, eh? Let’s see how long I can keep up.