Boot camp and beyond

I’ll fight you.
21 November 2006 (Tuesday), 9:16 am
Filed under: Boot camp log, NaBloPoMo, Tracking progress

This morning’s boot camp consisted of a lot of boxing drills and a bit of one-on-one punching through the pads T’ai had on his hands.  So much fun, but so knackering too.  The muscles along the side of my back are sore, especially on the right side (because I punch with my right, jab with my left).  Watching boxing on TV (or even worse, live) has no appeal for me — I don’t like watching violence — but having a first-hand understanding of a little bit of the skills they need makes me admire boxers more, in the abstract.  Doing more boxing-specific training at some point appeals, as long as I never have to hit someone’s face.

I didn’t enjoy boxing as much the day we did it at the first boot camp I attended, this time last year.  Having a few more tries to synchronize all the movements makes it only a little easier, but it removes some of the frustration of just not being able to make my limbs do what I want them to.

Another thing that’s improved a lot in the last year is my ability to jump rope.  The first camp I kept tripping over the rope and was hard pressed to skip more than ten times without getting tangled in it.  The second boot camp, last February, I committed to not being afraid of it anymore, and once managed 55 jumps in a row (I was counting).   Today our warm up was jumping rope for about ten minutes, and I only stopped a couple of times due to badly timed jumps (and a few more times because of coughing and not being able to breathe).  I also managed to spin the rope and jump faster than ever before, though I’m still nowhere near able to skip as fast as boxers or skilled elementary schoolers.


Remembrance Day means 19 days left of my 30 day trial
11 November 2006 (Saturday), 11:57 pm
Filed under: Flossing, Goals, Habits, NaBloPoMo, Photos, Sleep, Tracking progress

Grandpa/Ocean Voyager

Originally uploaded by secretagentarthur.
This portrait my brother took of my late grandfather a few years ago is better than anything I could write about Remembrance day. Instead I’m checking in with how the first 11 days of flossing, blogging and exercising have gone.

Flossing daily is pretty painless. This change in habit will probably stick: as I’m heading to bed I just remind myself that I can’t get into bed until I’ve flossed. It’s not that different from taking off my socks before getting into bed. Strange that it took me nearly until age 32 to realize this, but I’ll take it.

The daily blog posting is more tedious. I just don’t have that much to write about that I’m willing to put online and/or that fits with the general subject matter focus here. So after November I’ll likely go back to weeklyish blog posts, or find another topic/focus for a different blog, or just stop blogging all together. It’s not like there’s a lack of bloggy reading material online, so I don’t feel that compelled to add to the information glut. But this navel gazing/whining just adds to the problem, so I’ll endeavour to find more compelling subject matter for the next 19 days.

Exercising almost daily is somewhere in the middle of the hassle scale between flossing and blogging. This week (Wednesday, Friday and today) walking has been the default exercise choice despite climbing plans Wednesday and swimming plans today. I’m okay with that. Walking more (as a matter of habit) is another goal of mine and I haven’t been feeling slothful.

Swimming lost out to sleeping in this morning, and based on stuff I’ve read about sleep the sleep may have done me more good. Tomorrow I’ll need to get up earlier in order to work out with more intensity since I’ve got an appointment at 9 am at Granville Island Florists. If sleep again proves to be more compelling my goal is to fit in some Pilates or Dance Dance Revolution later in the day.

Progress: the wardrobe measure
23 October 2006 (Monday), 11:35 pm
Filed under: Outside boot camp log, Tracking progress

Friday after work Rachael and I walked from my work, along the Sea Wall and up the hill to my place before picking up Kirsti and heading over to Mandy‘s to eat and knit and stuff. At one point Rachael mentioned her theory on Winners, which is that you always find something but it’s never what you went there looking for. Saturday was the exception that proved the rule, for me: I went looking for a suit (ideally black); with Mounir’s assistance (I’m not marrying him because he’s so good at picking out clothes that look great on me, but it’s a very nice perk), I found and acquired three, one of which was black. Which was great — I like wearing suits to work and it was time for some more variety. However, since I’d bought two other suits at a consignment store on Granville earlier in the week, it was also time to clean out the closet.

Continue reading

My lowest (recorded) body fat percentage ever
23 September 2006 (Saturday), 4:19 pm
Filed under: Injury, Outside boot camp log, Tracking progress

21.5%. Which is firmly in the”Good” range on the printout I got. If I get it below 19.5% then it will be “Excellent” unless it’s significantly below that — anything less than 9% is “Risky”. Not really a danger at my current fat-losing pace. I was at 30.something% body fat mid-July and 23.2% mid-August. So this boot camp didn’t generate as dramatic a shift number-wise , but I feel sleeker. My weight is smack-dab in the middle of the “Excellent” range for my frame and height, so now it’s all about continuing to get rid of fat while maintaining or increasing muscle and getting faster and stronger and able to do pull ups and all that jazz.

I just got back from a lovely vandigicam photowalk at the Reifel bird sanctuary. My dad tells me I went there when I was a week or two old but didn’t enjoy it very much — since that was late January or early February I’m sure the weather was the pits. Today I enjoyed it. It was sunny and warm and perfect and ducks ate out of my hand and a chickadee landed on me (but didn’t eat) and it didn’t have much to do with boot camp except I was happy to be outside enjoying the fresh air and moving and hanging out with fun people in a distinctly non-urban environment even if I wasn’t walking at a fat-burning pace. My foot only got sore near the very end, too, so yay.

Last day of boot camp (Day 20)
22 September 2006 (Friday), 9:50 am
Filed under: Boot camp log, Injury, Tracking progress

I’m tired, but I’m quite pleased with my results over the last four weeks. I slowly jogged/sped walked the mile in 11:15, on the grass on the inside of the track because my foot complained less about landing on a springier surface. Then in the strength test I did 36 regular push ups. The last few were largely thanks to Jenny, who was spotting me and provided motivation to keep going. I’d done the same for her — she was aiming for 22 modified (from the knees) push ups, and managed 36. We were both beaming at our new-found strength.

So tomorrow I find out my new body fat composition, and once I catch up on sleep over the weekend I’m coming up with a plan for how to continue to grow and improve fitness and health-wise. My foot’s doing a lot better (obviously, or I wouldn’t be jogging) and I’m fired up by my progress.

I am stating officially, here and now: I love the burn.  Everyone had run and pushed up quickly enough that we had time for more abdominal exercises before stretching, and I enjoyed both the bicycles and the crunches.  The scissors, which we did before the other two, took more effort to love, but I focussed on the muscles that were complaining and embraced the sensation instead of getting beaten down by it.

I also love my new RMT (Registered Massage Therapist) and chiropractor. They were recommended by T’ai and my initial session with each was compliments of My Adventure Boot Camp, but I went yesterday for my second session and plan to use up all my massage and chiro benefits by the end of the year. They are both very very good at what they do. And I’ve got a tremendous amount of tension stored in my upper back. Rob, the RMT, said “Christina! Unacceptable.” as soon as he started working on it, and I tend to agree. I left feeling light headed, and I’m sure having the knot in my shoulder worked on helped me in the push ups today.

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NYTimes story on Exercise and Weight Loss
12 September 2006 (Tuesday), 7:10 pm
Filed under: Injury, Links, Tracking progress

Exercise = Weight Loss, Except When It Doesn’t

I’ve only had a chance to skim it, but it looks interesting. I have a bunch of other interesting links that ought to be posted at some point, though they probably won’t help out whoever it was who clicked through here from searches such as

photos of people at a fitness boot camp (I won’t violate my fellow boot campers’ privacy like that.)

justin timberlake pull ups (I have this ominous feeling those last two words might not refer to the exercise sometimes known as chin ups.)

sexy motherfucker prince free mp3 (Right.) Continue reading

Boot camp: Day 1
28 August 2006 (Monday), 3:26 pm
Filed under: About this site, Boot camp log, Tracking progress

Hi, I’m Christina. This is my fourth adventure boot camp, though they haven’t been consecutive. I’m committed to learning to love the burn, so that I can keep up a high level of activity after boot camp’s over.

That was my spiel this morning — the trainer T’ai gets people to introduce themselves on the first day by giving their name, which boot camp it is for them, and what they’re committed to for the next four weeks. One woman said that getting up to be at the field at 5:30 each morning, every weekday for four weeks, was a big enough commitment for her. More, like me, are looking to use it to establish a routine.

After introductions we ran around the track twice (1/4 mile per lap) to warm up, then up and along the length of the bleachers. Then to the start line for a timed mile run. I took a preventative couple of puffs from my inhaler beforehand, but still had to pause near the end of the second lap to cough up a lung (figuratively) and puke a little (literally). Stupid asthma. Stupid phlegm.

There were Canada geese on the grass near the eastern edge of the track. As we splashed through their shallow puddles on the first lap of the timed mile, I was convinced they were thinking “Was ist das?!” at the pack of twenty or thirty women jogging past. I’m not sure why German’s the native language of the Canada goose, but it is. My little upchuck episode meant I dropped back a bit from the group running at my pace, so I was alone going past the geese on the third lap. One of them hissed at me.

I crossed the finish line at 9 minutes 23 seconds, which I thought was 7 seconds faster than my timed mile on August 11, the final day of the last boot camp. Checking my records, though, I ran it in 9:23 then too. At least I didn’t get slower! I’d like to break 9 minutes at the end of this camp.

After the aerobic test (running) came the strength test (push ups). I did backslide on this: I did 30 regular push ups 2 weeks ago, but today could only crank out 23 before I’d reached muscular exhaustion. I’m climbing at Cliffhanger after work tonight — my arms and shoulders are likely to hurt tomorrow.

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