Israel Challenge Beginnings

I’m currently 3 days into the challenge and I must say, so far so good! It’s amazing how just 3 days of better eating and exercise can totally change my mindset. When I was eating crap and not working out I felt like a waste and I wasn’t happy. Now that I’m back on track my mood has completely improved, and I feel like I have purpose 🙂

Before I go into what I’ve done for the past two days I want to explain the challenge a bit better. The “rules” of the challenge might seem like a weird mish-mash, but it’s reflective of things that have worked for me in the past (and it had enough variety to keep me entertained!).

So, rule no. 1: At least 2 group fitness classes a week. I’d definitely like to do more than this, but I think that this is a very manageable number given that my schedule can be kind of unpredictable. After years of going to a gym with a limited class schedule, I’ve finally joined the Sportsplex in Bethel, CT, which has classes galore! I’m looking forward to experimenting with new classes and doing classes that I’ve read about in other blogs (Bodypump, mostly)

Rule no 2: At least 2 weight training sessions per week. I’m not going to lie, I rarely weight train. Though I know it’s really beneficial, it just seems counterintuitive to me. Mentally, I cannot process the idea that weight training promotes more weight loss than cardio. I don’t know why! For years, I’ve assumed that cardio is better, and I can’t seem to break that train of thought. I’ve been trying to add more weight training into my workout routine, but this challenge will force me to make it a priority at least twice a week. I’m looking forward to seeing the results given that I’ve never really regularly weight trained before.

Rule no 3: Running at least once a week. It isn’t exactly a secret that I don’t like running on the treadmill. I’ve said that time and time again. But given that I’m also not a fan of running in the cold, winter is definitely stunting my running endurance and fitness. I’m going to commit to running 3+ miles at least once a week–hopefully this will prevent my from losing all of my summer/fall gains. By the time I get to Israel (which is way warmer than New England) I’ll be able to start running outside again without starting completely from scratch.

Rule no 4: At least 40 minutes of cardio 5 days per week. This shouldn’t be too hard to accomplish, but I’m definitely making a commitment to fitness with this rule. Whether it be the elliptical, treadmill (bleh), bike, or raptor I will be getting my sweat on at least 5 days per week!

As far as staying in my calorie goals is concerned I’m definitely playing it by ear. I’m trying to eat less sugar and more veggies and fruit. Desserts are limited and I’m sticking with foods that I know are healthy. Real food too, not just fake processed crap. I’m loosely sticking to 1500 (though not strictly counting) so we’ll see what happens 🙂

Hope this gives everyone a better idea of my goals! Okay, so here’s how the weeks been so far:

Monday: Workout at home. 1 mile run on treadmill followed by arm strengthening moves (3 sets of 15 knee aka girly push ups, 3 sets of 15 tricep lifts using 10 pound weights, and 3 sets of 15 bicep curls using 10 pound weights). I ran another mile and then did ab moves (3 sets of 30 bicycles, 3 sets of 40 side to side abs [not sure exactly what theyre called] using a 10 pound medicine ball, and 3 sets of 15 blow-up ball sit ups). Then a ran a third mile and I was done-zo! That contributes to my running for the week 🙂 Rule no. 3 accomplished! And weight training to boot!

Tuesday: Ran 1 mile on the treadmill. 20 minutes on the elliptical. Ran another mile on the treadmill. 20 minutes on the ski trainer machine (like an elliptical, but raised so I reallllly felt it in my quads).

Wednesday: Today I’m just taking it easy. My quads are so sore from yesterday and my arms are still a bit weak so this will be a rest day 🙂

Tomorrow I’m taking a U-haul with my friend Elisa and we’re going to pick up a few extra things from the farmhouse (bed, desk, etc). Alana driving a U-haul down a snowy highway? I’m not quite sure how this’ll go. We’ll see!

Have a great night!

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