I’m well into week 2 of Insanity, and I am LOVING IT! I always break a sweat and get an amazing workout. My goal is to be able to keep up with Shaun T eventually! The workouts are dynamic and challenging. The meal plan is easy to follow. I am very happy with my results so far! Questions? Ask me! As a fitness enthusiast and Beachbody Coach, I’m happy to help.
Last week I began my Summer Triple Training Program: Insanity, Triathlon, Half Marathon. Quite the ambitious training program, but I’m starting to feel like a machine! This is my first time doing Insanity, my first triathlon, and my 4th half marathon (so I feel the most comfortable with running.) One week into my program, I’m realizing how tough it is to keep up with all my desired workouts while still feeling rested, but I’m not giving up by any means. If anything, this has forced me to dig deeper and push myself harder than ever before. Now, I just need to make time to rest so my body can properly recover. Sunday is my only day off, and I did 10 workouts in 6 days last week.
Monday 6/20: Insanity Fit Test AM; Swim Technique Class PM
Tuesday 6/21: Insanity Plyometric Cardio Circuit AM; 9 Mile Bike Ride on Fiesta Island PM
Wednesday 6/22: Insanity Cardio Power & Resistance AM; Swim Technique Class PM
Thursday 6/23: Insanity Cardio Recovery AM; rest PM
Friday 6/24: Insanity Pure Cardio AM; rest PM
Saturday 6/25: 9 mile run with hills AM; Insanity Plyometric Cardio Circuit PM
Sunday 6/26: Rest! (Plus a little road bike riding to figure out which one I wanted to purchase…more on that later!)
Looking back, I probably should have gotten 1 more bike and/or run in, but I don’t think I could have done it without sacrificing any Insanity workouts, and as an Insanity newbie, completing all 60 days is very important to me. Want to learn more about Insanity? Let me know! Here’s a pic of me doing the Pure Cardio workout. You can’t see my face to tell how hard I’m working, and how much I’m sweating, so just take my word for it!
Thursday night I intended to bike or run, but my body was telling me differently, and I had to rest. (I passed out on my couch in my work clothes at 6pm!) My triple training program is definitely a work in progress. I can’t wait to blog again to tell you about my updated vegetarian meal plan to fuel all my workouts. I have to eat a lot!
I did it! I’m a P90X grad again, and I must say I’m happy with my results. I may not be able to do 10 pull-ups yet, and I don’t have the complete six-pack I had hoped for, but this round got me much closer to those and many other goals. A quick reminder that this is the second time in 9 months that I’ve done P90X. The first time was August – November 2010, and the second time was Feb – May, 2011. I took 2 months off in between but didn’t get around to taking the fit test for Day 0 the second time; that’s why there are only 3 results. Overall, I’ve noticed positive changes in my body composition. My weight hasn’t changed much, but I have lost inches and gained muscle. I think P90X is an excellent fitness program, and I’d recommend it for most people. (It’s really intense, so there are other Beachbody beginner programs you can look at doing first: http://www.beachbodycoach.com/SDFITNESSDIVA .)
For P90X, you have to be willing to commit, press play every day, and follow the nutrition plan. (Yes, follow the nutrition plan!) Enough with the chit-chat, let’s get on with my results! (Please forgive my tan lines!)
Date 8/23/10 – Day 0 11/22/10 – Day 90 5/4/11 – Day 90 x2
Weight 110.4 lbs 108.2 lbs 108.2 lbs
Waist 26.25″ 25.75″ 25.25″
Hips 32.5 31 30
Pull-Ups 0.5 6 7
Push-Ups 22 43 50
Wall Squat 2’35” 4’48” 4’09”
In & Outs 48 125 155
Stay tuned for a post about what I’ll be doing after my marathon training is complete! (I’ve been doing marathon training simultaneously with P90X.) Rock n Roll San Diego is only 1 month away!
I’m a mere 5 weeks away from running my first marathon!! Saturday I ran 16 miles, my longest run to date, and I’m happy to report that I wasn’t completely miserable! It was tough, and I definitely felt like I was running for a VERY long time, but with the help of my running buddies, I made it. Jeremy ran 18 miles and said it was an entirely different ballgame. He had a tough time cranking out the last two miles, and I’ve heard that from other people as well…Is this “the wall” people talk about? I’ll definitely report back on that next weekend when I run 18 miles. I’m nervous for that one.
What am I doing the next 5 weeks? Today I finished P90X for a second time, and now I’m a Double Grad! (Jeremy has suggested that we’re P90X “Masters,” but I’m afraid to go as far as to say that. I’m not sure if anyone but Tony Horton himself could ever truly master that program!) I’m going to post my P90X results very soon, so stay tuned!
May is time to decrease my P90X workouts and continue my 4 days/week of running. It has been tough to keep up with P90X and marathon training thus far, so I’m ready to modify things from now until the marathon. This means no more double workout days if I can help it! The next 5 weeks I’ll focus on my running and sprinkle in 2-3 P90X workouts per week as I enter the home stretch of marathon training. Here is what I anticipate…
Tuesday: Speed work run
Wednesday: Plyometrics or Legs & Back (or rest)
Thursday: Medium Long run
Friday: P90X upper body workout (Chest & Back or Back & Biceps)
Saturday: Long run
Sunday: Yoga (or rest)
Let the new workout schedule begin!
P.S. What am I doing after the marathon? I have a couple of ideas that I’ll fill you in on soon!
I just got my PR at one of the most difficult half marathons in the US – La Jolla! I am bursting at the seems, I’m so happy right now. I finished with a time of 1:55:08! That’s nearly 20 minutes faster than my last half marathon in August, and 5 minutes faster than the goal I had set for myself of finishing in under 2 hours. How did I do it? Allow me to share my training journey with you.
I ran my first half marathon, Silver Strand, in November 2008 and absolutely hated it. I was miserable starting at mile 3 and said I’d never do one ever again. My time was around 2:17…Fastforward to 2010. I started running again and was craving a challenge. It had been 1.5 years since my only half marathon, and I figured I’d give it another try. My new friend Amber was a runner and triathlete, so she inspired me to get back into training mode and we started running together. Then, Nicole started running with me. We did some training runs for America’s Finest City and all ended up running at a different pace on race day. I was the slowest, barely beating my 2:17 finish time in 2008. I felt like I started off way too fast, so I slowed down after 5 miles, and the hill got me at the end. 2:13:50 was my time. I was happy to have finished, and definitely felt less miserable than my first half, but I still wasn’t satisfied. 3 minutes off my half marathon time from 2 years ago just wasn’t enough. If Nicole and Amber could run so much faster than me, I was convinced that I could too. I just needed a different approach.
With AFC behind me, I decided to introduce a new training program in my life. That program was P90X – an extreme at home fitness program based on muscle confusion. (You can find more info on it here: http://www.beachbodycoach.com/SDFITNESSDIVA .)
I give so much credit to my boyfriend for researching it and committing to do it. I was intrigued and asked if I could join him, so we started Day 1 together and stuck to the 90 day fitness program and nutrition plan. Over the next 90 days my body transformed into a very lean, mean, fighting machine! I toned up and was able to do pull-ups for the first time. My strength improved so much after P90x that we decided to do it again.
After 2 months off, in February we started P90X for a second time. That has been a huge part of my training regimen. We also joined the Vavi marathon training group which was huge for accountability. We run together 2x/week, and we’re supposed to do 2 runs on our own. Our coaches are very supportive and designed a great running program for us to follow. I layered marathon training of running 4 days/week on top of P90X 4 days/week (it’s normally 6 but I had to cut down), and the result was a PR at La Jolla Half Marathon! Not only was it a PR – I went from running 10+ minute miles to sub 9 minute miles – a huge improvement! It feels great. I am very proud of my boyfriend, Jeremy, who finished way ahead of me at 1:36:19! He hadn’t run much since our 2008 half marathon, but 2 rounds of P90X did a body good, and he had a killer time. Our good friends and couple Nicole and Mike started doing P90X around the same time we started it for a second time. They were impressed with our results and also wanted to become faster runners. Nicole finished in 1:54 and Mike 1:34. I am SO proud of all of us for PR’ing on such a tough course! The hills were still tough, but after passing several people on the steep upgrades, I knew my legs were more than ready.
Key P90X leg workouts for improving your running time are Legs & Back and Plyometrics. I’ll admit that I didn’t do Plyometrics the second time around because I was running 4 days a week, but I kept in Legs and Back, and the other total body workouts, including 90 minutes of yoga, leading up to La Jolla. We’ve been working out 8 times/week, but our bodies are so much stronger because of it.
It’s hard to believe we only have 2 weeks of P90X to go! I’ll keep incorporating P90X workouts into my marathon training as we approach the 26.2 mile mark in June. I’d say the two programs work quite well together, wouldn’t you? Now, it’s time for a cheat meal and tasty treat!
My next Beachbody workout! Let me know if you have any questions or want to order. Available now only through a Beachbody Coach, and I am one of them. 🙂 So excited for this new and intense program!
Phase 2 has come and gone, and I’m continuing to see improvement! My pull-ups and chin-ups are starting to increase, and I’m back up to 30 push-ups per set. I really hope that Phase 3 puts me over the edge and makes me fitter than ever before! I’m not sure if I’m going to reach my goal of a perfectly defined six-pack or 10 pull-ups, but I’m going to continue to do my best and see what happens. P90X is still challenging, and I am loving my marathon running group. I’m definitely enjoying the journey!
I LOVE Ab Ripper X! This 15 minute P90X core/ab workout really pushes me, and I envision a six-pack to keep me going strong. Normally, Ab Ripper X is done after an intense hour-long P90X workout, so you’re already tired when you get to it. I think that’s where the magic happens. You need to mentally and physically push your body to make it through. If you can keep up, you are doing 349 ab exercises every time you push play. It’s an amazing accomplishment!
Ab Ripper X Exercises (25 reps each)
1) In & Out
2) Bicycle (forward motion)
3) Reverse Bicycle (reverse motion)
4) Crunchy Frog
5) Cross-Leg/Wide Leg Sit-up
6) Fifer Scissor
7) Hip Rock and Raise
8 ) Pulse-Up
9) V-Up/Roll-Up Combo
10-11) Oblique V-Up (25 each side, right and left)
12) Leg Climb
13) Mason Twist (50 reps)
When I first started P90X, I couldn’t make it through every set without stopping. That changed over time, and now I’m doing advanced moves on many of the exercises all the way through! The beauty of P90X is that there are always options. If I’m struggling one day, I’ll use my hands for support on the In & Outs, for example. What’s important is that you keep good form while getting through as many reps as possible. If you find yourself struggling to get through the sets, do the basic version of each exercise – that is still really tough! Even when you can get through every exercises for a total of 349 reps, I recommend perfecting your form before moving on to the advanced options (hands in the air, crossed legs instead of wide legs, etc.) If I notice my form giving out on me, I will switch back to the basic version.
Oblique V-Ups are by far the hardest moves for me. I have not fully perfected my form yet on these yet, but I am happy to report that I can do 25 reps on each side! Below is a video of me working hard. Ideally, I’d be making contact with my legs, but I’m not quite there yet.
A few tips for getting through Ab Ripper X:
1) Make a playlist! Mine is perfectly timed with the DVD from beginning to end, and I like having the routine of songs to match the exercises. “Hallelujah” comes on right after I finish my last exercise, just in time for the cool down and stretching.
song #1: “Run This Town” by Jay-Z
song #2 “260” by Ghostface Killah
song #3 “Cinderella Man” by Eminem
song #4 “When Love Takes Over” by David Guetta
song #5 “Hallelujah” by Jeff Buckley
2) Invest in something thicker than a yoga mat! I bruise when I do these exercises on top of one or two yoga mats because I have a hardwood floor. My boyfriend bought a cushy pad from Target for $30 (embark Premium Exercise Mat), and I followed suit. No more bruising for me. At a minimum, try a small pillow under your lower back during the Pulse-Ups.
3) Do your best, and forget the rest! That is one of my favorite Tony Horton sayings because it is so true. Don’t skip ab ripper because you’re feeling too tired, can’t make time for it, or if you’re feeling discouraged. Simply show up and do the best you can. Success and more reps will come with time – I promise!
This is my second time doing P90X, so I already knew what was in store for me when it came to the nutrition plan…Phase 1 would be my least favorite. Phase 2 would be perfectly manageable. Phase 3 would feel like heaven. As a vegetarian and pescatarian, I worry about getting in enough protein on this plan. While I do eat fish, it’s rarely more than once a week, so I definitely eat more like a true vegetarian, and sometimes, I’ll go vegan for a day or two. I’ve found I can still maintain my dietary preferences while following the P90X Nutrition Plan. The book does a decent job of listing some vegetarian swap-in options for protein and gives a couple of non-dairy sources for dairy, but I’ve tailored the lists to show what I actually eat.
Sample Vegetarian Protein List:
– Beans (black, red, kidney, garbanzo, and more!)
– Egg whites or egg substitutes
– Veggie burgers
– Quorn meat substitute products (soy free)
– Nonfat Greek yogurt
– Tempeh or Tofu
– Protein powder
– Protein bars
– Raw nuts
– Almond butter
Sample Vegan Dairy List:
– Almond milk (also: Soy, Rice, Hemp, Hazelnut)
– Soy yogurt
Phase 1: Fat Shredder – A high-protein-based diet designed to help you strengthen muscle while rapidly shredding fat from your body.
This is the hardest phase for most people, but I feel it is definitely hardest for vegetarians. Depending on your required calorie levels, you will be eating 5, 7, or 9 protein servings per day. I fall into the Level 1 (1,800 calorie) level, and therefore need to find a way to fit 5 vegetarian proteins into my diet which feels like a lot! This is completely different to my normal way of eating, but I manage by having 1 protein at breakfast, 2 at lunch, and 2 at dinner. I recommend spacing it out like this because I find it hard to eat more than 2 servings of protein in one sitting.
A day of vegetarian protein servings could look as follows: protein powder and fruit smoothie for breakfast (1), salad with hard-boiled egg whites and kidney, garbanzo, and/or black beans for lunch (2), and two veggie burgers for dinner (2). I highly recommend finding a protein powder that you enjoy and using it in phase 1. I find that mixing ON Cookies and Cream protein powder with unsweetened vanilla or chocolate almond milk is a quick and easy way to get a protein and dairy serving. It’s also utterly delicious! I’ll even sneak 1 TBSP of almond butter in there occasionally for extra protein. I’ve been reading up on vegan protein powder options but haven’t personally tried them yet. Alternatives to whey are soy, hemp, rice protein. Just be careful not to have too much processed soy in your diet. That is something I actively watch myself. As a general rule of thumb, I will always try for whole foods sources to get my protein (like beans) first before I turn to processed foods (like tofu).
Remember not to stay on phase 1 nutrition longer than necessary. The first time I did P90X, I stayed on it for the standard recommended 4 weeks. I never felt low on energy, but I did get sick of all the protein. Now that I’m doing P90X for a second time and have a lower body fat percentage, I did the phase 1 nutrition phase for 1 week, and then switched to phase 2. I will spend most of my time on phase 2 and then switch to phase 3 once we get to the phase 3 workouts.
Phase 2: Energy Booster – A balanced mix of carbohydrates and protein with a lower amount of fat to supply additional energy for performance.
This is the phase I’m following right now, and I find cutting down to 4 protein servings (for Level 1 plan only) is much more manageable. Egg whites for breakfast (1), sandwich with meat substitute for lunch (1), and vegan burritos for dinner (2) make me a happy girl! I recommend picking up Tony Horton’s new book Bring It! for vegetarian and vegan recipe ideas. Tony supports eating a plant-based diet! (He actually considers himself a “flexitarian” and will eat chicken and seafood too.)
Phase 3: Endurance Maximizer – An athletic diet of complex carbohydrates, lean proteins, and lower fat with an emphasis on more carbohydrates.
I am the happiest during phase 3 because I love the breakdown of 2 proteins, 1 dairy, 2 fruit, 2 veggies, 1 fat, 3 carbs, and of course all my snacks/recovery drinks/bars. I don’t think much guidance is needed here because getting enough protein in essentially becomes a non-issue. I can’t wait for phase 3 to come so I can enjoy whole grain carbohydrate goodness each meal of the day!
Sources for Vegetarian and Vegan Recipes:
Whole Foods market
Bring It! – Tony Horton
Living Vegan for Dummies
karmachow.com – Chef Melissa Costello
P90X 2 Nutrition Guide
In closing, Tony Horton reminds us that what you eat has a direct effect on how you feel and how you look, so let’s all choose wisely! Please let me know if you have any other healthy, whole foods fuel options for a vegetarian diet.
Questions? Need more info? Let me know! You can also post your comments here, and I’ll respond.
Update: P90X 2 came out in December 2011 and it has a vegan meal plan!! I’ll make sure to post on that too, but I am very pleased with those meal options. It’s about time vegan options were given in workout plans! I eat mostly vegan now, so let me know if you have any questions on that as well.
Thanks for reading!
Phase 1 came and went so fast! I don’t remember it going by so quickly the first time we did P90X…so is this a good thing or a bad thing? My pics are decent, but I’m definitely not where I want to be yet. I’m my own worst critic this time around because I’ve set my goals higher, and I really want to achieve them! I should probably listen to what Tony Horton says in his new book Bring It! “There’s nothing bad about wanting to look good…But the problem is that most people exercise for the wrong reasons because they’re focused solely on the outcome and not the journey.”
So, I would LOVE a six-pack. Is that unrealistic? Maybe. Maybe not. I came close last time I did P90X (Aug-Nov 2010), so I just need to figure out what I can do to up my game the second time around! Any suggestions on how to get that six pack? I know it’s a combination of diet and exercise, but how extreme are we talking?! Here are some pics of where I’m at today.
I’m going to try and focus on the journey and celebrate how my body looks and feels over time. I can already tell I’m getting stronger, and my energy levels are high. Today I purchased Tony’s book Bring It! because I’m really curious to learn about Tony’s nutrition style. I’ve already read some great things, but I’ll save my post on that for another time. Until then, I’m going to do my best and forget the rest!