45 days of Fitness: What I learnt

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.

  1. 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.
  2. 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.
  3. 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.
  4. 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).
  5. Positive reinforcement is important
    Feels great to hear that you’ve lost weight, specially if you have been putting in some effort!
  6. 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.
  7. 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.
  8. 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.
  9. 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.
  10. 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.

featured image source: http://www.castlewoodtc.com/2012/08/college-classes-healthfitness-life/


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