Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Day 76

These past days have been strange.  I have been jumping in the mornings and I like to jump barefoot. I've been working out late, but it's not night any more, so I have to keep an eye on the watch because I'm used to wait for darkness to begin exercising. I feel this incredible speed inside me during the day and sometimes it gets me in trouble with my loved people because I can't control this energy and intensity yet. It's like a fury inside me awaking from a long dream. But I like this a lot. I needed this volcanic eruption.

Now, the exercises... I wake up sore everyday. I even feel my arms complaining when I jump rope, but I don't seem to get bigger muscles. More sets and reps leave me cursing really loud. I still need to get stronger because I'm not able to do many push-ups and not even one pull-up. I love-hate the exercises.

This afternoon I will be deciding what to have tomorrow for the last indulgence. Will it be milanesa parmigiana or Schnitzel with fried potatoes? 

Meanwhile look at this back. 

Friday, March 26, 2010

Food Revolution

Tonight is the premier of Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution. A TV show that is going to be very intense and hopefully eye opening for a lot of people. It's about the kind of food schools in The United States are serving  their children. It's also about the high rates of sickness and death product of unhealthy nutrition but most of all is about a REVOLUTION.

Jamie's efforts will be to try and change the way children eat at school and at home by teaching people how to cook healthy economical meals that will save their lives.
Here is the trailer , and here are the program times as well as some sneak peaks of the show.

I first heard about Jamie's Food Revolution Project when he won the 1020 TED Prize, if you have some time watch his Talk. It's passionate and moving.

Unfortunately, I won't be able to watch the show here in Germany, must wait until it's on YouTube.
How is school food in your city?

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Day 70

I don't know if it's because of the blue sky or because it's day 70 but today I feel so happy. I'm trying to remember all the exercise, jumps and food that have been necessary to get to this point and I almost can't believe that I am this woman who has been able to do all that. Or that I am this woman in the pictures with nice abs and a stronger back.

These days I'm paying attention to how this new body feels. How is it to have strong and heavier legs, how do I walk now, the shape of my shoulders and how bigger they make me feel, how my posture has changed, the way I move around and move things around. This is a nice exercise to do since you are the person changing by bits everyday and it's easy to overlook your new condition.

There's another aspect of these 70 days that thrills me: the knowledge that you can understand how your body works and act accordingly to change and improve it. That's why I specially look forward to Patrick's mails explaining how food and body work.
Unfortunately that's something they don't teach you at school. Imagine a so auto-defined intelligent species that knows nothing about it's own physiology.
I want to learn much more and also study about female bodies and cycles.

Well, I have already jumped, it's sunny and I'm ready to enjoy our exercise free day. Can't wait to see what happens in the last 20 days.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Day 68

This week our exercises are tough. 6 or 5 sets of each exercise and 20 seconds of pause between them leave me like a stone on my mat just as I finish doing abs. Oh, but I love my shoulders... and my abs... and my calves and yes, also my booty. From now on we are best friends, my booty and me.

Wish you a sunny Tuesday!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Day 65

Are you also breathing the spring air? Since yesterday windows are open around here and I'm enjoying the mornings jumping in the balcony. Yesterday I was about to finish a 5 minutes set when a huge bird came flying over the roofs and landed at the neighbor's. It was a majestic crane. After months of jumping in a basement this is pure pleasure. The air, the trees and  the birds singing.

The other day I was reading a post in Abby's blog which led me to this page. If you need some inspiration for new ways of jumping take a look at their excellent videos. And admire the man's zero-fat body! I'm seriously thinking about getting this jump rope as a treat for being so committed to jumping. My actual jump rope is fine but I notice that the wind interferes with the rhythm of my jumping and that I need more speed.

I'm making a big progress in the jumping. I'm getting used to do it first thing in the morning and I like it a lot, even though it's still hard to move the body that early. But on the diet and the exercises I feel a little low.
It's not that I want to eat other stuff, not at all. It's that sometimes I feel that I've had enough animal protein, egg whites and yogurt for a whole year. It's also that these days inspiration has returned and the only thing I want to do is being at my studio and only leave when the muses leave. You know you can't tell them to wait a moment while you make lunch.
I know I have to eat. I know that by now I should be used to cooking and be organized but I'm not. Not always. I also know that there's only a little PCP time left.

About the exercises: they are getting tougher each week and I'm trying to do them the best I can, muscle failure and all but I don't see new results on my body. My weight remains the same but the results in terms of definition have been very slow these past two weeks. And there's only a little time left!!
Is this a plateau or am I doing something wrong? Will I achieve my goals in the time left? Why is this hip fat so stubborn?

Remember these:

They still haunt me. So I had to buy prunes to calm the chocolate craving. One or two are enough and they even give me a little head ache.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Day 61

I decided that it's time to put more flavor and texture to food. This beautiful sprouts are going to make my breakfast even more delicious and the lunch vegetables as well.

A big tablespoon of seeds and 4 days later.

Sprouting seeds is very easy, you don't need this fancy jar that I have. Just a glass jar, an airy cloth secured with a rubber band and water.  You can sprout a variety of seeds. My favorites are radish, lentils and alfalfa. The sprouts are crunchy, fresh and nutritious.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Day 60

Only 30 days left to finish PCP. An idea that fills me with joy and anxiety. Joy because there's nothing better than finishing something that you really wanted to accomplish, specially if it has been difficult, see what happens next. Anxiety because I know this last month is going to fly and there's still so much to improve.

I need to concentrate more and do it better at work out sessions. I also need to pay more attention to food. There is a part of me that doesn't want to eat so much any more, that is tired of cooking and stopping work or talk or nap for a snack. This part of me doesn't even bother anymore about taste or salt or texture. I need to hang on, follow the instructions for the week, remember how short time is.

After Patrick's post about intensity and duration of the work out I did my exercises last night thinking about that, having everything prepared before hand and counting the resting seconds. It took me 50 minutes without jumping (I do it in the morning). The quick pace is refreshing after a week of not being present in my body while exercising. Timing the session makes it a double challenge and much more fun. It's incredible the difference between 20 seconds of pause and 20 seconds of planks!

I hope to be able to post my photos tomorrow. I'm having troubles with the light and the model is having really bad hair days ;)

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Day 56

The past two days have not been so good. Something is going on with my stomach. A little pain, a little discomfort and nausea. On Tuesday night I was feeling so weak that I couldn't even think about exercising and last night I began to work out but wanting to finish as soon as possible. I couldn't bring myself to do the abs. Fortunately I have been jumping in the morning, So at least that.

Yesterday, in the afternoon I wanted chocolate. I was trying so hard not to think about it but at the end I went to the drawer, took out the box of truffles, opened it and began to smell them.... eyes closed.
Then I closed the box and run to the kitchen to eat a banana instead.

Today I'm feeling better. Took a very long siesta and my body is grateful for that.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Day 53, a balance

Since Friday I have been feeling strong. It doesn't mean that the exercises are easy to do, on the contrary, 5 sets of some of them leave my muscles shaking.
I'm jumping in the morning most of the days. It's not yet an automatic action. My plan is to turn the jumping into a normal morning step and continue doing it after day 91. I love how I feel after jumping. I become fast and alert and I achieve more in the morning.

This week's diet has been good. At breakfast I'm very hungry and I don't have trouble  finishing it anymore.
My favorite breakfast is an egg sandwich, a fish or chicken sandwich  and raw sticks of veggies. Lunch is usually enough and dinner is fine: some protein and vegetables. I don't like to go to sleep with a full stomach.

As Shivani mentioned I have also noticed some changes that could be considered a bit masculine.  Like  a line that appears  all along my chest when I do some exercises; but it's not visible after I cool down. I'm developing a strong trapezius muscle which I don't find particularly pretty and my back is turning into a v shape, but nothing exaggerated, on the contrary, that and the nice form my shoulders are getting make me look better proportioned in relation to my hips. I also was scared that my legs would become bulky with all those squats but it hasn't happened. 
I would say that most of the exercises we do must be easier for men, but I also think that they are very effective for women as well. Not only because it's a chance to use muscles that we normally don't pay attention to, but because they really create the muscles that we can later continue to shape the way we want.
It's very cool to know that you can rely on your triceps or your back muscles if you need to.

The transformations that I like the most are: 
My calves: they are getting rounder and strong, they look much better now. 
Shoulders and arms: some lines defining the muscles.
My back: feeling stronger. I think I have a better posture.
My abs: they are beginning to show.
My thighs: getting leaner. There is a line almost complete on the outer side from the knee to the hip.

What I would like to see by the end of the project:
Not even a little bit of bat wings
A stronger leaner low back
A smaller waist
Really lean gluteus, I know they will still be sexy.
That outer line on my thighs complete, which means getting rid of the stubborn fat around the hips.
Yes, still a lot of work!!

Monday, March 8, 2010

Indulgence 2

This time I decided to go for something that wouldn't give me a headache. Or so I thought.
Whole-wheat baguette with butter, prosciutto  and  serrano ham slices, some potato chips and a glass of hungarian wine (all right, two glasses!).
Very good. Just the bread with butter was delicious. I enjoyed this meal a lot. The texture of the ham, that dangerous white stripe of pure fat, the ethereal crunchiness of the chips.  

The flavours were so intense that I had to eat slowly, the salt began to scrape my palate and I couldn't eat as many chips as I intended. Suddenly, it was too much. I planned to drink only one glass of wine sipping it slowly to make it last for  the whole meal. But then I really wanted another glass. 
It felt good when I said no to the third. It was enough by then, it was still wine, not just alcohol.

What happened next is that I got very thirsty. I needed to drink a lot of water. I didn't get drunk, I skipped that phase and had hung over instead. Heavy and with a little head ache. My pee smelled salty.

Next day I woke up with a very familiar sensation. The way I used to wake up sometimes before PCP, when I have had a party or a very rich meal. Something very different than waking up relaxed and clear headed.

In conclusion, it was delicious. I appreciated what I ate and enjoyed rediscovering this flavors but their heavy amount of salt and fat require a big effort for the body to recover.
I was disappointed with myself because I thought I would be able to control the quantities better and only drink one glass of wine. Instead I let myself go. Which makes me fear of day 91. If it was tomorrow I would be too tempted to have more than enough of this kind of food.

It was made clear that a clean simple diet makes me feel good when  I wake up and during the day.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Day 49

What can I say, the sun shines this morning and I read Patrick's mail and....yes!!!!!

Jumping in sets was a good change for me. It's easier to concentrate in breathing and at some point I could even let my mind go with the result that I didn't stumble for a long thought ( I was imagining a flying bubble that uses the energy from rope jumping and it's body is the capsule created around you with the rope constantly turning. I was flying just above some roofs in my bubble when I felt my legs giving up....)

Back on earth, my knee is not so good today. I felt  a little sting yesterday when I was doing the pistol squats.

Yesterday I was about to jump but instead Pablo invited me for a long and fast walk of an hour. I was forgetting that it's a great option for those days when you really really don't want to jump.
After that, working out was good. I like elevated triceps dips a lot. The 60 sec. planks? More like 45 secs.

I'm ready for my indulgence!!!!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Day 47

This afternoon while jumping I was thinking: After this 100 jumps, there will be 100 more and then 100 more and so on. Then, I will have completed 1500. Tomorrow I will wake up and there will be 1500 more and the next day and the next. Like a labour that is never finished. Like the poor man with the rock and the mountain.  Then I had to stop thinking like that.

It's so good that the human mind is able to switch to "live at the moment" or "tomorrow doesn't exist" mode.

It's also good that rope jumping is not pushing a rock, that there is a reason behind it.

If I could make a wish today it would be that I learn to like jumping, every day, even after PCP. That it would become natural to push myself like that everyday.

I guess the body and the mind have just realized that this training is far from over.

The kung fu sit-ups are fun but I balance a lot. Is it because I have a trapeze/pull-up bar? 

Tonight everything hurts. I walk funny.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Day 46

One day late but: CONGRATULATIONS for my fellow PCPers for those 45 days of hard work, cooking and transformation. Are you all prepared for what's coming?
I also want to welcome the new PCpers. I wish you a lot of fun.

These days I have been doing fine. My new diet is perfect in terms of quantity. I still have to fight a bit at the end of the breakfast to finish all the food but during the day I look forward to the snacks and I eat voraciously. I also have less egg whites in my menu, thanks a lot. What I'm missing is the fruit. I only get to eat one portion of fruit a day. To think that before PCP I didn't  eat fruit everyday. Now I'm falling in love with it's juicy sweetness.  Another triumph of PCP!

I'm trying to do the jumps in the morning. Somedays my will is strong, somedays the smell of coffee is stronger. When I jump in the morning my body feels heavier and I get exhausted faster but afterwards I feel great. Awake and speedy.

Since Friday I'm feeling better and stronger during my daily activities but the work out sessions are another story. I begin full of energy, doing as best as I can with leg jumps and squats, very happy because my knee is better. Then comes chest exercises or arms and I begin to loose power. Specially with the push-ups. I can only do one proper push-up. At the time of the planks I'm ready to collapse.
I notice more muscles in my body but I wonder if I'm doing something wrong because the progress with the push-ups is so slow.

Dear Patrick, when is our next indulgence? Tomorrow?