So…we have made it through the second week of the Great Jeans Challenge. Let us do an inventory of the efforts that have been put into place over the past week and part of this week. An important part of being successful in anything (health & fitness, personal, or financial goals, etc.) is being completely honest with oneself about the effort being put into the goal set forth. That being said, let us take a look at our weekly efforts to see where we might potentially need a boost. At a time like this I am reminded of a saying I received in a Chinese food fortune cookie (of all places I know right?!) it says, “Good advice jars the ear,” in short the things we need to hear may upset us. So prepare for some of the best advice that will help you along your road to achieving a healthy figure but know that some of it might jar your ear.
1. Eating for Loss
I know you have probably heard this innumerable times but I want to get this soundbyte into your ear at least one more time. “You can’t out-exercise a bad diet!” Sounds really simple right? If you eat bad food or eat poorly it will become apparent on your body. When it comes down to it most of us (myself included at times) we say we want to be a size smaller, fit into those skinny jeans or have a rockin’ six pack but then somehow we decided that it is okay for us to have a cookie or two…or three…or five. Sometimes we do really well at eliminating the junk, we are simply eating too much and refuse to actually take a look at how much we eat compared to what an actual serving size of our food is. The human body is an extremely complicated machine; it has plenty of complex functions happening while we are not even aware of most of them. Problem is the human body also wants to keep things as simple as possible, it does not like change and it does not go along with it easily. Anyone know what I am talking about? Yup you nailed it on the head, homeostasis or equilibrium.
So what is my point? You may have bumped up your working out to three or even four/five times a week, but I am also willing to bet that you have increased the amount of food you are eating or maybe even indulging in that cookie. Why? Well because you are working out lots more now, you need the fuel or (even better) one or two cookies won’t hurt after the hard work you have put in this week. Well here comes the bad news, your body throwing the practical experience of homeostasis in your face. You worked out harder, burned more calories and thus felt more hungry than usual and then…you ate more. Now, here comes the jarring advice. If you want to experience the kind of weight loss that will allow you to see the super strong abs that have been hiding for the last two years or so you are going to need to experience hunger on some kind of level. That does not mean you eat like a rabbit, only have salads or don’t eat after 3 p.m. It does, however, mean that you need to be eating clean and actually monitor how much food you are eating. When we start a clean eating diet but do not see any results most of us are simply eating way too much of that clean food thus maintaining homeostasis or (in other words) not losing weight. To get an idea of how much food one should eat for loss, take a look at a blog from a few weeks ago where I laid all of the information out about meals and serving sizes corresponding to a person’s weight and body fat percentage.
2. Are you doing those off-day workouts?
If you are not it is time again for some more good advice that jars the ear. Coming into the studio and getting a super intensive workout three times a week is great and it puts you at 3/5-completion rate for the week. The off-day workouts that are part of the Great Jeans Challenge are just as important to your weight loss goals as your workouts in the studio, which is why they were put in there. Think of it this way, doing the three PACK workouts and not the home workouts is like getting a 60% on a super important test. Now think about doing that every week…the end result may be passing (fairly close to failing) but it will not be pretty. This time you don’t have your parents to give you a hard time, it will be yourself. Here is a more in-depth idea of the importance of working out more than three times a week. At the studio we will get you to the 60% but just like in school, you need to get yourself the rest of the way to that 100% by doing your home-workout so…do your homework! If you don’t remember your homework assignment you can find it below.
Directions: On the two days you are not in PACK (study sessions haha) do the following exercises. Repeat 3-4 times with a rest of no more than two minutes between each grouping of exercises. Keep a fast pace throughout this circuit, minimizing rest periods.
Push-Ups or Modified Push-Ups x 12 reps
Mountain Climbers x 20 seconds
Lunges or Hip Raises x 12 reps
Burpees (without push-ups) x 15 reps
Squats or Box Sits x 12 reps
Plank x 60 seconds
Remember the Great Jeans Challenge is exactly what it sounds like, a challenge, all of the pieces of the puzzle must be utilized in order for us to see the picture we hope to at the end of the eight weeks.