Progress Is Perfection

A blog to inspire, motivate, and unleash the awesome in everyone


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Not Measuring Up

Well, it’s been far to long since I’ve written anything. I haven’t been able to get my thoughts down in a coherent way, so I’ve been putting this off. Tonight though, I needed to write something. It’s just my thoughts tonight, with no real direction, but I’ll get there…

How do you measure yourself? How do you know if you’re achieving your life purpose?

Parenting? Reaching health and fitness goals? Progress?

Well, whatever it is, I’m not there. I’ve been going backwards for the past year and a half, especially in the last 6 months since my car accident.

My parenting is less than perfect, I’m not always present emotionally and we don’t do all the fun things I wish we could. I have an amazing kid though, I boast about him constantly. He’s intelligent, caring and is always making us laugh. I love him and want to be great for him. I want to smile and laugh and enjoy every single day with him, I need to be strong for him.

Reaching my health and fitness goals, this is the killer for me. My fitness goals have come to a halt since May of this year, all thanks to a car accident. I thought I would be better by now, it’s been 6 months. I thought I was strong. This healing process has made me question my strength, mentally and physically. I was in the process of training for my second Tough Mudder before the accident; that included kickboxing 5-6 days and running 2-3 days a week with some extra strength training added in. I was ready to kick ass at TM and bring home another headband. Well, that didn’t happen, and for the last 6 months I’ve been struggling to get back to where I was. It’s beyond frustrating to look back and see what little progress I’ve made; sure, my injury is slowly healing and I’ve improved that, but physically I’m not even close to where I was.

The daily pain is what gets to me; between the headaches, shoulder, neck and jaw pain, I have zero energy for anything extra after work. I’m trying, hard, to break through this. Push past some of the pain to test my limits and see how far I really can go, but it’s a slow process.

I’m not sure how to pull myself out of this slump. I’ve been trying to take it day by day, write my short and long term goals down, and push myself to succeed in those goals.

This last week and a half I’ve seen a considerable improvement in my physical abilities, which gives me some hope, but I’m still not there mentally. I’m stuck in this funk of feeling sorry for myself, pathetic and weak to let a car accident hinder my abilities.

I’ve been through so much shit in my life, that I’ve fought and overcome, so why is this getting to me? I’m honestly just exhausted from life, and this was my last straw. I’ll get through it, I always do, I’ll just have to fight a bit harder this time.

Nicole

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Abs Goal Achieved! What I Found Worked For Me

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I recently hit my long-standing goal of getting abs; something that I have wanted for what feels like forever. I last had abs when I was about 16, and then it was only because of my quickened teenage metabolism. It certainly had nothing to do with hard work or dedication.

It has taken 14 years to finally get on the right track, and over 2 years of various fitness and diet strategies for me to find something that works, and that fits with me and my lifestyle. It took a lot of blood, sweat and tears to get here. At some points I thought that abs may have been a goal that my body wasn’t capable of achieving. But, I trusted the process, stayed patient, and kept doing what I was doing.

Like everyone I’ve had my share of missteps along the way, but here is what I have learned from my health and fitness journey.

1. Calorie counting does not work for me, nor do I feel its necessary for everyone. Rather than focusing on numbers I focus on the type of food I eat. Whole, fresh foods. As little unprocessed food as I can. So no Lean Cuisine or Weight Watchers food (which I used to eat VERY regularly), and as little stuff out of a box as I can manage. For me this means a lots of lean proteins, veggies, whole grains, and some fruit. I find it most beneficial to just keep it to the basics. Once I started doing this, the weight loss came naturally, and I felt that I started to develop a more healthy relationship with food; food is not something that needs to be feared!

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2. Cardio and strength/weight training are both important. Cardio for fat burning, and strength training for building muscle and toning. Increased muscle also boosts your metabolism; double whammy! I try my best to do both multiple times a week. Incorporating different kinds of workouts in your routine is nice in that in that it (hopefully) keeps you from getting bored of the same old thing day after day.

3. Consistency is so important, especially when you fall off the wagon. And everyone does at one point or another. Don’t get discouraged and keep going.  If you eat unhealthy food for a few days or neglect your exercise for a week (or more), it’s not the end of the world. Just don’t let it go on too long and replace your healthy habits, and get back out there. Remember to make time in your daily routine for fitness even if its just 30 minutes a day. 30 minutes is 2% of your day, so make it work.

4. Throw out that scale, and use pictures and/or measurements for your progress. Also focus on how you feel (more energy, happier, healthier) or how your clothes start to fit better. Scales and calorie counting often go hand in hand with that focus on numbers for evaluating progress, but from what I see around me, scales consistently seem to do more harm than good for motivation, positivity, and body image. There is nothing more damaging then eating clean for a few weeks and exercising, only to see the number on a scale stay the same or barely move – EVEN THOUGH there are positive changes happening within your body. So take that sucker and hide it, or just plain throw it away.

Hopefully this is helpful for some of you out there 🙂 And just because I’m do darn proud of my hard work, here are my long-awaited abs. Here’s hoping I can keep them for awhile 😛

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– Veronica


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Insanity Workout; 3 Weeks Deep

It’s felt like the longest 3 weeks of my life; 3 weeks of the Insanity workout.

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I’m less than a week out from the Recovery Week, and it can’t come fast enough! Not to say that I’m unable to keep up with the workouts. In fact, they are (dare I say) becoming more manageable. But my body is definitely starting to feel the wear and tear and needs a bit of time off to recuperate. Although I was active and worked out regularly before, I had never done this many consecutive weeks of 6 days on and 1 off. My ankles, of all things, are feeling sore from all the plyometrics, and to a lesser extent so are my knees.

Other than that, I have good days where I power through and actually feel that I am improving, and other days (like today) where I feel like I’m barely going through the motions. With 6 days of workouts it’s inevitable that there will be days where you feel less than 100% because you’re tired, sick, have back pain from work, or your head is just not in the game, and thus not every workout is going to feel fabulous.

Am I seeing results? Sure am. But I plan on writing a detailed analysis of the program after I’ve fully completed the 2 months. I’ll go over some of the strengths and limitations of this regime, and how you can apply these tenets to other workout programs.

Until then wish me luck; apparently the next month gets even harder…

– Veronica