First Deadlift

Yesterday, I finally worked up the courage to deadlift. No machines, just the bar and some heavy weights (well, heavy by my standards). All I can really say, is WOW. The thrill and the excitement, the pride… I haven’t felt this proud of myself in a long time. Because of the arthritis, a lot of exercises are not possible for me without causing damage to my joints. Squatting, for example, is something that I’ve had some difficulty perfecting the form, simply because my knees do not allow for that sort of movement. But deadlifting…I got the form correct, and I fucking did it.

I’ve wanted to do it for so long. I’ve looked on with envy as I see the big muscles in the gym do it. I just never had the confidence, and I didn’t want to fuck it up if I didn’t have the proper form. Thanks to my trainer (and friend of 8 years), along with a nearly empty gym…I did it.

Holy shit. I can’t believe my workouts have been missing this. I’ve read women who did their first deadlift, and never looked back. I didn’t understand how one exercise could change everything. But I get it. I get the trill. I can’t wait for back/bicep day again. I can’t wait to see where I am in a year.

Dammit, I can’t wait to lift heavy shit.

Sometimes, Life gets in the way

The past week has been the week from hell. Last Monday, I ended a 2 year relationship. It wasn’t a bad breakup, but it was a breakup none-the-less. He lived with me, and we shared a townhome together. That Friday, July 1st, was my birthday. I had booked a romantic weekend trip to Chateau Elan for two, and I wasn’t going to waste that. So, we went together. While it was a bit stressful, we made it through like civil adults. Although, the roses on the bed had to be removed before we got there – haha.

We discussed who would move out, and my ex agreed to move. So, this Monday, the 4th, I came home to an empty house. I didn’t work out that day. Whoops.

Tuesday, I didn’t find time to work out, and last night, I did some exercises…but didn’t hit the gym. Ok. It’s time to buckle down.

I no longer have someone riding me to go to the gym, and that got me into a rut. He acted as my motivation, and I know he’s been hitting up the gym… so why am I having such a difficult time motivating myself!?

Today, my sister agreed to join me at the gym. I’m hoping I’ll be able to rebuilt the confidence I feel like I lost. I have friends who are willing to join me, but at the end of the day, I have to give myself the push to go. I cannot rely on anyone else but myself.

Time to get back on track.

Rest Day

I’ve had a hard time keeping true to rest day. When we first started, I felt like test days were just lazy days and I was going to lose focus by skipping the gym. I did more research and learned how important rest days really are…but that didn’t stop my guilt!

I had to get over the fear that I would give up, and focus on the positive that I’ve worked my ass off, and dammit I deserve a rest day!

Today, while a rest day, felt very busy! We visited family, I had to go downtown for some errands, and we ended our day floating down the river!

If only every day ended with a lazy float down the river.

image

image

Weigh-in Day!

image

Today was weigh in day! We take measurements, progress pictures, and weigh ourselves. I’m looking to gain 15 lbs of muscle by 2018. But right now, my weight has stayed about the same, though I did grow a bit in my biceps and my glute! Progress takes time, I’m happy to see the little changes, even if they are small.

First time on the bench

image

Today was the first time I’ve used the bench. It was a pretty big moment, to be honest. It’s the only thing left in the gym that I didn’t have the confidence to use, but thankfully, it was a Saturday and the only people at the gym were running on the treadmill.

I finally conquered the beast that has been holding me back. Now that I’ve done it once, and I got my form (hopefully) right, I’ll be able to work it into my routine!

Confidence Change

Well, last night marked the “habit forming” time period. I was scared I wouldn’t make it through the past three weeks. But I made it 21 days, and I haven’t missed a workout. When I walk into the gym, I feel confident. I feel like I’m at home. Compared to the first day I went…that’s a HUGE change.

I’m more willing to try out exercises, and I LOVE the free weights. It took me about a week to build up the courage to even step foot into the free weight section (and even then, I made sure to go at 11pm, so the gym was empty), before that I was only working on machines. Now, the majority of my workout is built around free weights.

I look back on all the times I have joined a gym in the past, and I wonder, “What made me fail?”. I think my failures in the past were due to 2 things:

  • I was only in the gym to lose weight.
  • I was not confident, nor willing to build confidence.

The gym is intimidating. But it shouldn’t be. Once you get over the initial intimidation, it’s a very friendly environment. The first step to getting into a routine is to build confidence. Everyone in the gym that you look at with envy…they all started out where you are.

I’m still getting over the idea of rest days, as well. It’s hard to go from 100% to 0% and then start back over again. I chose a routine that has my rest days on Sunday and Wednesday. To me, it’s the perfect balance. I don’t care to go out on weekends very much, and usually I would spend my days indoors. But now, I’ve been out and about, ready to jump into the gym.

When I wake up in the morning, I can’t wait to go work out. When I get home from work, I quickly eat and make my protein shake, then head to the gym. It’s so natural now, that I can’t believe I never did it before.

I’m feeling confident today, and it’s also “progress picture day”. I’m excited to see the changes I’ve made! I already feel stronger, and I can open the pickle jar all on my own now!