Friday, March 7, 2014

P90G - Weeks 7B-13A, B, and C

At long, long last, P90G has come to an end. By the time I got done repeating numerous weeks due to illnesses and tragedy (the kids’ grandpa on Jack’s side of the family died unexpectedly of liver failure), it was considerably longer than 90 days. At times, it was considerably divergent from Gentle, too.
I mentioned that for the last section, I would be making some adjustments to add some difficulty to my workouts. One of those was to phase out Air Pullups, and do Almost-real Pullups. Frankly, Air Pullups were hard enough at first. I’m now up to 8 Almost-real Pullups per set, with one toe on a chair to give a bit of a boost. (With legs the consistency of pudding by that part of the workout, it’s not as much of a boost as you might expect.) Anyway, the P90X guy said that was ok, so technically it’s not cheating.
This last change gave rise to a new event in the Feline Olympics. You already know about the Swinging Leg Dive, where the contestants wait until I’m mid-kick before trying to dart between my legs without getting hurled across the room. I've nearly perished more than once as my flying foot met fur instead of floor.
While Jack was home, he got to see the Double Shoulder Balance Lounge, where Jax stepped onto my back while I was doing a sad imitation of pushups, draping himself across my shoulders. Let me tell you, having a tubby tabby aboard increases the difficulty level quite a bit.
The new event is the Screaming Death Pullup. Damon’s enormous fluffy gray cat, Potto, is the only contender. Potto’s favorite hangout is atop the pullup bars. He lies along them, paws hanging down leopard-style, and beach ball belly hanging down sumo wrestler style. A gray sumo leopard.  If you watch all the way to the end of thisclip of Rollin’ Safari, you’ll see a leopard that looks just like Potto. Actually, most of the animals look like Potto in one way or another. 
How this works: Potto, aka The Silver Bullet, dashes across the room, vaulting neatly onto the pullup bars, and then ravages the hand invading his domain. He seems to be playing, but for a cat of his size, playing feels a lot like falling down the garbage disposal. Here I can’t even do a pullup with two hands, and Potto is already trying to motivate to use only one. Be very glad he’s not your personal trainer.
Potto as a Baby
Another interesting change was that, at the same time I got my cute little workout outfits, I also got cute little weights. Pink ones. They’re only 3lbs each, but 3lbs is more than 0lbs. Lifting something besides air totally revved things up, though not as much as if I’d used pasta sauce cans like Tina.

P90X Guy: I’m grabbin’ my 40 pounders. What about you?
Amazingly Musclebound Man (with a hint of a sneer): I’ve got my 50’s.
Trim and Beautiful Woman: 30’s for me!
Me: THREES, OKAY??????? AND THAT’S PLENTY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

No, I’m not ready to post “after” pictures yet. I feel hugely better, and my overall health has already improved noticeably, but the 5 lbs I lost (without trying to lose weight—I’m only trying to get strong and fit, with weight loss being a happy byproduct over time) don’t make a visible difference yet. Let me just assure you that there are some muscles getting toned underneath the layers of fat.
What’s next?  Well, I’m already a week into P90M, with M for Medium. That means I’m working out for 30 minutes a day instead of 20—a 50% increase! Did it make a difference? Well, by Day 2, I couldn’t walk or lift my arms again. And Plyometrics, that fearsome jump training workout…don’t ask me how this works, but 30 minutes of Plyo comes out to exactly twice as long as 20 minutes.
The first Sunday after school gets out, I’m going to take the plunge to full-out P90X. Once that’s over, if I can still get out of bed, I’m going to do a totally different exercise program for a while.

If there’s one thing I’ve learned so far, it’s this. Exercise isn’t the good china, that you only use once in a while on special occasions—it’s a way of life. So eat well, exercise hard, and feel great! And someday you, too, might be able to almost do a pullup. Just like me.

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