Bring it on!
As of this date there is one challenge that I am engaged in with Dwayne who I met in Malibu at the Biggest Loser Resort. Our challenge is simple whoever gets to 250 lbs first wins, and has to buy the other person something they want (within reason, otherwise you may see a picture posted of me in front of my new Aston Martin).
Well the challenge has become a little more interesting. Sherri, and Kent have both requested joining the competition. It told Dwayne via e-mail we should keep our bet the same as our weights are more relative to one another, where as Kent and Sherri are at a point of almost reaching their goal weights, so I think the competition with them has to be a little different. I propose the following:
- Official Weekly Weigh In On Sunday, Weights e-mailed to group.
- 60 Days Beginning This Sunday
- Highest Percentage Change in a Given Week Reflects Winner of Week
- Winner is determined by the person who has won the most number of weeks, or the first person to their goal, or if Dwayne and I reach 250 lbs.
- Losers have to pool their money and buy Louis I mean the winner a gift.
If the future losers would like to add any additional parameters I am game, but it might be easier to just send me something nice now.
Lesson On Hormones from the “Paleo Solution”
Let me preface what is written below that I am lazy and have done no further research on the topics below, and the information posted is from the perspective of Robb Wolf. I am confident in the veracity of his definitions, but must preface this so I don’t get super nerds sending me e-mails that I have gotten something wrong. I have done my best to shorten and simplify what he has written, but at times his conversational writing style has already simplified the topics, so some lines may have been copied verbatim out of the book.
More than anything else I hope that people just understand how much more complex a system is designed in our bodies that regulate hunger, energy, and nutrient delivery. All those frustrated weeks that I had of not losing weight, even though I clearly expelled more than I ate, have now been clarified in my mind. I always knew that the internal work involved was far more complex than I was told. Everything in the human body is comprised of systems, so why wouldn’t the most vital function beyond breathing be a part of a greater process of existence.
Begin plagiarism here…
Hunger in our bodies is controlled by hormones, in fact the hormonal release is what tells our bodies that it needs energy, and then sends the signals that tell the body it’s satiated. Hormones are chemicals that send signals throughout the body; all hormones interact with receptors which have a lock and key type of relationship. The hormones which are related to weight loss or weight gain, and fitness are the following:
Insulin hormone which regulates blood sugar, body fat, and aging, it functions as a nutrient storage hormone that maintains blood glucose levels. It also regulates hunger levels, and fat storage.
Glucagon helps harmonize blood sugar and energy levels between meals, and allows better access to body fat for energy. It’s the counter hormone to insulin. Together with insulin it helps to manage energy levels by storing and releasing nutrients at the right time. Insulin helps passage of nutrients through cells, while glucagon releases stored nutrients for energy.
Leptin is used for appetite control and metabolism, it tells the body how much fuel is stored, and when we feel “full”.
Ghrelin stimulates hunger, increase food intake and increases mass; it’s the signals which tell the body we are hungry or low on energy. When suffering from being stress or lack of sleep altered ghrelin levels can increase our sense of hunger. Sleep deprivation leading to increased hunger is a result of Ghrelin.
Adiponection is satiety hormone, it helps to tell us when we’ve eaten enough, but it also helps protect the arteries.
Perptide Y.Y. is a satiety hormone. Protein and fat release a lot of PYY which is why they are filling, whereas carbohydrates release a small level of PYY. It’s found in the GI-tract; it reduces hunger and improves the central nervous systems sensitivity to leptin.
Cortisol is an anti-inflammatory hormone which is needed in the body, but when the levels are too high it can cause fat gain. Its job is to raise blood sugar levels. It’s often referred to as a “stress hormone”, cortisol release from stress and lack of sleep increases body fat. It also decreases insulin sensitivity, lower the rate of bone formation, and cause a loss of collagen. Cortisol is raised by prolonged physical activity, caffeine, sleep deprivation, stress, and certain contraceptives.
Insulin-like Growth Factor-1 (IGF-1) It aids in recovery when elevated it can increase the incidences of cancer and aging. It needs to keep a balanced level in the body.
End plagiarism from “Paleo Solution” by Robb Wolf here…
These are just the most important hormones that deal with appetite and satiety, which for the purposes of my needs all that I need to understand, the actual digestive part is not as important. I can only control what I put in my body, not how it goes down. I’m sure there are some drugs out there which manipulate one if not all of the above hormones, but that really isn’t the way to create permanent change.
The hormone which has struck the deepest chord in me is Cortisol. I am only familiar with cortisol from some cheesy weight loss pill infomercial. So I knew it was related to stress, but what I didn’t know was its relationship to sleep deprivation. I always felt that the less sleep I got the more I felt I had to eat, it’s clear now that my body was telling me that I was hungry because I was tired exhausted form a lack of sleep. Rest truly is a necessary part of this whole process. I am going to have to be better about getting to bed early enough to sleep at least 7 hours so I feel refreshed.
Incorporating adequate sleep and rest is my next challenge.
I woke up today itchy, my entire head felt itchy. I looked in the mirror and the right side of my face had a rash on it. One look at the rash and I knew I was having an allergic reaction to something. I took a shower, hoping to cool it with cold water, and went about my day.
My 9:00 AM Crossfit session was something I have been looking forward to all week. Liz had me warm up practicing box jumps on stacked weight plates. The rubber coated plates they use at Crossfit are about two and half times the thickness of a regular plate. I started doing box jumps with a single plate. She had me do sets of 10; I would take a quick break and then start back up. At some point when Liz felt that I was doing well enough she moved me up to the two plates stacked together. I started this time doing sets of 5, with only a pause to take 3 or 5 deep breaths and then I would continue. I was then told to keep going until I could connect 10 straight box jumps. When I got to 10 we moved to the final stack of three. Again I started with sets of 5, and worked up to a couple sets of 10. My last set of box jumps was done with by taking one more plate and adding it the stack of three. It took about 5 sets of 5 reps to get the hang of the height difference. The warm up ended when I was able to do a connected set of 10.
Doing connected box jumps requires quite a bit of concentration. You have to build a bit of momentum using your arms, and then fight to keep your body square otherwise when you come down you will lose your balance and wobble all over the place, or end jumping back to far and turning the box jump into a broad jump. Also it’s important to focus the takeoff and landing on the balls of your feet, otherwise you will pound your heels to hard and probably injury yourself. I was focusing so hard to do them correctly that I didn’t record them, I wish I had because the last set of 10 on the 4 plates stacked together were the best set I had done the entire day, and I wanted to see if the level of athleticism I felt would appear on the video.
Liz taught me three new motions, the American Kettle bell Swing, the Hang Clean, and the Hang Clean with Squat. The American Kettle bell Swing is a slight variation on the Russian Kettle bell Swing that Michael C taught me in California. Most of the dynamics are the same except that the American Kettle bell Swing requires you to swing the bell all the way above your head. The rest of the motion is quite similar to Michael’s swings in that you use your hips to hinge, and load up to explode upward propelling the kettle bell. What is very different is that at the top of the motion it’s important to use your chest to start pulling the bell back down, so you don’t overextend the bell past your back, and so there is no pause at the top.
The hang clean is another Olympic Power move. It starts in a position which is similar to that of a dead lift; the only difference is that your starting point is a bit higher off the ground. From this hanging position you have to use your legs to drive the weight straight up, and then you have to drop your body below the bar catching it in the front squat position. The Hang Clean Squat is the same as above but you link a squat at the end of the motion. When you stand back up from the squat you lower the bar down to the starting position and start all over.
In the last 20 minutes Liz had me do a 12 minute Metcon. The Metcon involved 10 reps of Hang Cleans, 10 reps of American Kettle bell Swings, and 10 sit ups. In that time I was able to do 6 full cycles, and get 1 rep of the next cycle before I ran out of time.
We finished the session with a few minutes of stretching on a foam roller, or in this case a PVC roller. I am happy at the progress I am making in my physical ability. In doing the full sit ups I was able to do every sit up without hesitation. I am feeling more athletic every day.
After the workout I went to an Urgent Care center to have my rash looked at, after a 90 minutes of waiting I was given prednisone and sent on my way.
Washington Sports Club
My evening session with Ali started with boxing. Lots of it… I didn’t think I had enough fuel left in me to get through 2 hours of workouts after my morning session with Crossfit. After the first 10 minutes of boxing I felt surprisingly spry, that’s when Ali took me to the treadmill and had me do 1 minute of cart pushers in between 1 minute of boxing. After the last cart pusher I wanted to puke a little.
Ali then took me over to the area where they keep the Bosu. I am so sick of that little fucking half rubber ball, this entire week the Bosu has played an integral role in my physical misery. He had me start with mountain climbers while using the Bosu as support for my upper body, and then I went into Burpees similar to the ones I did the day before with Ian, and then finished with assisted push ups from my knees. Each exercise was done for 30 seconds each but was repeated 3 times.
I also did jump lunges, then one legged jump ups, and low sweeping kicks to a target Ali held. This was routine was repeated twice. In keeping with the theme of today which was circuit driven ass whipping, I had to do standing back rows two different ways, then walk around the gym with 35 lbs plates lifting them up as I walked, then I did straight leg dead lifts with just the bar. This cycle was repeated 3 times.
After some more boxing where I was throwing quick and powerful combinations, Ali had me work out assisted pull ups with the Bosu. I was spring boarding up from the Bosu and hanging to the bar, this exercise was supersetted with a planked bent over dumbbell row.
I am sure I left out a couple of exercises, the intensity was high and the transitions rapid, in fact I am sure the actual order of what I wrote above is incorrect, needless to say that in 60 minutes of work I was working at ultra high intensity levels for at least 50 minutes of it.
At the end of the session I was ready to go home, yet today being the last core class I wasn’t going to skip it. I went in a few minutes late after I changed, and ate an orange.
As it was the last class Ali clearly wanted us to remember him, because we did 300 crunches during the time of the class, with 100 of the crunches happening as the last exercise. The crunches we did in the last 100 were more like traditional sit ups, the last 25 I had to cheat and use my hands pulling against my shirt to pull myself at the apex of the movement.
Wednesdays as difficult as they are, have been very rewarding, and these days are proving to be exactly what I thought they would be, a “breakthrough day”. With all the hard work today I am still looking forward to getting it on tomorrow morning with Ian. This working out is becoming so addictive. The more I can see the changes in my body the more it motivates me to work harder and with more intensity. I’ve always wanted a beach body, even when I was skinny I wasn’t a beach body. I was in decent shape but nothing that would win me any contest. I just want to be lean, but strong.
Come on ladies take a ride on my future bicep…