As detailed daily in the last post, I completed the 30 Day Shred. Squee!
If you don’t want to read that long post, here’s a shorter recap:
- Completed ten days of each level and moved on to the next regardless of whether all moves were mastered.
- Attempted to complete the program in 30 consecutive days, but I ended up taking two separate days off about a third of the way through the month, so it actually took me 32 days to complete the program.
- Longest consecutive stretch of Shredding = 19 days.
- The only other cardio I did was the occasional walk ranging from 1.7 to 3 miles.
- Total walking mileage during 30 Day Shred = 31.3 miles.
- Did not follow the suggested diet plan. In fact, I ate like a PMSing fatty the entire month.
- Had to modify several of the jumping moves in Levels 2 and 3 in deference to my knee.
The point of doing the 30 Day Shred was three-fold: (1) get me off my unfit arse, (2) get me to do some strength training which I avoid like the plague, and (3) build up strength in my leg to help heal my bum right knee which has prevented me from running.
As I mentioned at the beginning of the last post, I took my weight and measurements before I started the program. I’m not going to give you the exact starting and ending numbers, but I will tell you the differences.
- Weight: Either -0.4 or +1 lb. (Since my scale seems to be on the fritz, I’m going to be kind to myself and say I stayed the same.)
- Arms (combined): -7/8”
- Thighs (combined): no change
- Chest: -1”
- Waist: -1/2”
- Hips: -3/4”
- Total inches lost: -3 and 1/8”
- I can now do a full sit-up though my legs still have to be flat on the ground.
- Strength in my weaker right arm increased a lot as at first I couldn’t do the leg and weighted arm lifts in the full plank position (from Level 3) but now I can.
- My body feels stronger. Hell, I actually have abdominal muscles now. Or at least ones that finally work.
- I’ve received a couple of unsolicited comments that my face looks slimmer.
- In the before and after photos I took, there’s not a huge difference, but there is a smoothing out of some of my chunky areas which is nice to see.
What I’ve (re-)learned over the last month:
- Those two pre-days were a god-send. If I had just gone at it full-tilt on the first day, I would have been a ball of sore the day after and would not have continued with the program.
- Doing extra leg stretches post-workout was essential for me to work out tight muscles.
- Diet is crucial for weight loss. I’m really jazzed about my results from 30 Day Shred, but it’s also a great reminder of the importance of what and how much you eat. Like some other people, I have a major sweet tooth and I’ve let it run rampant. But I do know that if I cut back on all that processed sugar-filled crap, I’ll have more energy, feel better and will lose weight. I’d probably sleep better too, which is another issue I’ve been dealing with for a while now.
- I work better and am more motivated by non-weight related goals. I want to lose weight because the number I’m at now is definitely NOT healthy, but thinking about it is just a whole world of stress in itself and that’s not conducive for maintaining a positive mindset. Instead, I find it more beneficial and rewarding to have other goals. I want to be able to do 10-20 full push-ups, 10-20 full sit-ups with knees bent, a two-minute plank, etc. Sure I want to weigh less, but more than that, I want to be fit. Now I understand why people like Cross-Fit so much.
So, where do I go from here?
I want to keep up the momentum, so I’m planning on doing a bit of exercise each day for the next month. My knee has gotten loads better since I started Shred, so I’m going to do a bit of running three days per week, but no more than two miles each time. I’ll see how it goes from there. I ran on Monday and there were some sporadic twinges in areas of both my legs, but I think it was just rust falling off as I’ve felt great since. I’ll alternate running days with three days of yoga and/or strength training. Right now I’m starting with a 30 minute yoga program I found on YouTube. After I did yoga this morning, I also did 10 full sit-ups, 10 arm and leg raises in plank position and 10 modified push-ups for shits and giggles. The seventh day of the week will be a walk day.
As of this coming Monday, I’m also doing three-weeks of fieldwork. So I’ll have a bit of help getting in some practical strength training whilst shoveling and moving wheelbarrows and be prevented from stuffing my face during the day (though god knows the Brits love their biscuits at tea time).
So there it is. The 30 Day Shred was worth my time and I recommend it to anyone who needs a kick in the fitness butt or is having a difficult time getting into strength training.
If you have any questions, leave them in the comments and I'll answer them when I can.