Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Oh My God, Look at You! You Look.......Good

Since my last post when I bitched about people's comments about my weight gain, the number of comments has only increased. In fact, it reached an interesting point this past weekend at a local bodybuilding show here in good ol' PK. I ran into a ton of people who I haven't seen in months, since switching to my current Hole-in-the-Wall gym in the sticks. And without exaggeration, 95% of the greetings started with, "Oh my god, look at you!"--what? do I have a booger hanging from my nose? --"You look...(long pause)....good." I mean, really, can a girl take an offseason and put on weight without people commenting? I do know that most people are used to seeing me around 130 in my "offseason." And now I'm carrying 15 extra pounds (and a new rack), so it's definitely a noticible difference in my dimunitive 5'3 frame. But still, people. At least try to be a little less offensive or sound more convincing when you tell me I look "good." And of course, the comments continue on a daily basis from my coworkers. I actually had a bit of a breakdown about the whole weight/size thing at the end of last week (well, ok, a big breakdown). Complete with sobbing and talks of saying 'F' the whole competing thing. But thanks to the Homeslice, he managed to talk some sense into me, and at least calm me down enough to convince me to go another week or two on my current diet and continue to put on some more weight.

I knew a breakdown like this was inevitable. I've been fighting this whole weight gaining thing from the beginning....hence this blog. But I will admit, the upside to all of this distorted body image is the progress in the gym. Not only does my strength steadily continue to increase each week, but I have improved my technique on a lot of key exercises, which has probably also contributed to strength gains. I also started using a belt for some of those exercises. Something I've never done before. And yes, I have officially accepted that I am a female meathead. My strength is no longer functional. All of my flexibility is gone. And I sometimes carry a weight belt with me. I will continue to make fun of myself for using a belt, but there's no doubt that using one has made squats and dead lifts so much easier-relatively speaking, that is.

This past Saturday's weigh-in was 145.2...up about a pound, which is much more comforting than the last two weigh-ins that were +3 and +4 pounds. For now, I'm just trying to accept that not only is this weight gain necessary but that it's not permanent. I know how to diet. I know I can follow a contest prep and get in shape, and I'll do whatever I need to in order to be in shape (hell, I've done 3 hours of cardio a day for a week and a half). So this is only temporary for the next 8 months....

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Go Shawty, It's Your Birthday

An an entire week without posting=me being LAZY. Regardless, this week offered a number of significant strength gains overall. Pretty much all of my numbers went way up. We've kind of veered away from consistently doing 5x5's on compound exercises, but the few that I did do this week were pretty good. Deadlifting is not coming back as quickly as I thought, and I have a feeling that it's due to this nagging left hamstring injury (not exactly sure what the problem is) that sometimes causes my left foot to go numb. I'm thinking that it might be time to take a trip to the doc. I've heard very good things about ART therapy, and there is a doc nearby who has worked on several local athletes. One of these days I'll pull myself together and set up an appointment. See it really is amazing how lazy I am outside of the gym. So, I digress...back to the workouts. The most notable strength increase actually came with this morning's shoulder workout. We started with 5x5 standing BB presses. I have consistently struggled for weeks to get 85 for 5. But today, that came easy. And that was only my 4th set. So for number 5, I tried for 90....and I got it, clean and all. That was definitely a confidence booster. We finished the rest of the workout with 3 heavy sets of DB presses, 3 sets of DB side raises, 3 sets of 1-arm cable side raises, 3 sets of bent-over DB raises and reverse cable flies, and finished off with two sets of high rep 1-arm hammer presses. I love Saturday morning workouts.

Speaking of increasing weight...I nearly had a heart attack when I weighed myself this morning. 144. Fuck, I hate this! Up 4 pounds from last week. That's two weeks in a row of serious weight gain. 3 pounds two weeks ago, and now 4 pounds last week. I told the Homeslice this morning that we need to make some changes to the diet because I'm definitely putting on too much fat. He seemed kind of open to the idea, but still told me to get over it and keep eating for now. And I swear, if one more person at work tells me how much "bigger" or "bulky" I look, I'm going to dump my oatmeal on their head. The best is when they try to backpeddle and tell me that I look better with the weight and that I was "too skinny" before. I even had one woman tell me that I look "more womanly" with my "new curves." Seriously, bite me.

Ok, enough ranting about that. On a (sort of) better note, this past Thursday was my birthday...and I got to celebrate it Hanukkah-style this year. Presents every night of the week leading up to the actual day. It was great, and I now have an entirely new gym wardrobe...yay for UnderArmor!! It's sad to say that I have much nicer clothes for the gym than for work. I'll spend $150 on a pair of sneakers for the gym, but I won't spend more than $40 for a pair of dress shoes for work. Oh well, why bother trying to look good for a bunch of criminals, right?

Saturday, October 11, 2008

It's NOT as Easy as Riding a Bike

Somehow I managed to make it through this past week in one piece...though I do have numerous bruises, cuts, and swollen joints. And let's just say I have a whole new respect for stairs. While I was by far the worst one in the class, I did enjoy some parts of the Officer Mountain Bike class. We definitetely did some cool stuff that I never thought I'd be able to do, like riding up and down stairs, doing a track stand, and completing the dreaded"M" course (which more or less consisted of riding your bike along the lines of two parking spaces in the shape of an "M"). The last day was by far the best day, though. The ten of us in the class and the two instructors rode 12 miles out to the local police range where we proceeded to do several drills involving our bikes and shooting. We simulated scenarios where we had fallen off our bikes and had to shoot at a suspect. Then we ran a course that requried us to slalom uphill, drop our bikes, and then complete a course of fire that consisted of shooting from behind various covers while standing, kneeling, and laying prone. At the end of the course was a simulated hallway where we got to empty our magazines on the target at the end of the hallway....very cool. After all that, we rode the 12 miles back to the department.

The entire week was draining physically and mentally. Though, it didn't take as much a toll on my workouts as I'd thought. Naturally, I didn't set the world on fire with my leg workouts, but I still managed to see some increased strength this week during some of my other workouts, especially back. Today's weigh-in was 140.2 (up 3 pounds), which continues to leave me scratching my head trying to get a baseline for my weight. I can't seem to stay consistent, and I don't know what the issue is. The Homeslice and I have put together a new diet for me to try out for the next couple of weeks. It's not all that different from what I've been doing, but it includes an extra 30 minutes of cardio immediately after my Saturday morning workout and a high carb meal of oatmeal, honey, molasses, PB, and some whey following that. This will hopefully provide me with a little extra stored energy for the subsequent workouts that week without taking in too many carbs on a daily basis. He's always all about experimenting and testing things out, which is a good thing. Because if it was up to me, I'd follow the same thing for the entire f'ing off season and make no progress.

Anyway, now that bike school's over, I can get back to putting all my energy into my own workouts and hopefully get on track to make some consistent progress.

Monday, October 6, 2008

You Never Forget How to Ride a Bike

Just a quick update since I didn't post at all last week. I had a really good week of workouts. It was definitely the first week where I felt strong and productive during all of my workouts. I pushed the envelope a little bit during chest on Tuesday, which made for a pretty uncomfortable feeling for the rest of the week (damn boobies!). On Wednesday, our trio mixed things up quite a big for legs and trained at Planet Fitness. We did what the boys like to call their "Extension Workout," which means we do one set of extensions after every set. For example, I did 4x10 on the leg press, and after each set of presses, I did a set of extensions. No doubt, it left my legs screaming for a couple of days. This workout was some great idea the boys drummed up while I was out for my surgery. See what happens when you leave guys to their own devices?

On a non-training related note, this past weekend was alumni weekend for Marist, and my four college roommates came up for the weekend. I have to admit, I was feared a bit of drama at some point in the weekend. I mean, when is there not drama when you put five girls together for any length of time? But much to my surprise, it was a completely drama-free weekend, and we had an absolute blast. The girls got hammered, and we have TONS of crazy, blackmail pictures and even some fuzzy video clips. By the time yesterday afternoon rolled around, I was completely shot and more than happy to lay on the couch for the rest of the day.

Now onto this week...I will be spending the week in bike school. That's right folks, I'm learning how to ride a bike again...police style, that is. Apparently it's different than how other people ride their bikes. From what I understand, we'll learn to ride up and down stairs, use our bikes for defensive and offensive purposes, and even shoot from the bikes. So, that should be very interesting. I just hope I don't get hurt. I don't even want to think about what I would do if I was out of the gym again. Here's to hoping I stay on two wheels...