Mid-Year Fitness Challenge

Hi, guys! It’s been so long (a month of radio silence is really big no-no in the blogging world…oops!) that we might need to reintroduce ourselves ;). Seriously though, you know what can happen in a month – life. So we’re a bit behind the curve for May but I’m on a really great streak for the past two days with maximum effort in productivity and I EVEN TOOK DOWN OUR CHRISTMAS TREE. Pause for effect. Yeah, I took our Christmas tree down in May. But I didn’t let it get to June so I think that deserves some credit! And with this surge of productivity flowing through my veins I’m tackling this blog post now – before it leaves me.

Just like the rest of the world, Rob and I set a few resolutions for the New Year. Some of those were specific fitness based goals. That being said, we haven’t reallyyy gotten around to those fitness resolutions until…now. So what is the goal? Well, it’s a challenge¬†and a competition more than it is a goal. We are competing against each other to see who can lose the highest percentage of body fat in a 3 month period. And there’s A LOT at stake here, guys. Like any good competition there is a prize for the winner: the sole power to name our first born child with ZERO input from the other person. Why go so big? I guess it’s because we trust each other, we want to be motivated to put as much effort as possible into this challenge, and obviously because we’re insane bloody-thirsty competitors that are blinded by the power and thrill of winning so much that we can’t see straight enough to look ahead and realize that we may come to regret this (very permanent) decision. But what’s life without a few good and permanent regrets? ūüėČ

The challenge will run like so:

  1. We took a body fat test and full scope measurement at Arizona Body Fat Testing¬†which uses the Bod Pod to measure lean mass with air displacement plethysmography. Which is just a fancy way of saying that you sit inside this space pod three times consecutively in a 10 minute period and you can feel air pressure measuring you – and it’s wayyy more accurate than standard BMI tests that they offer at the free consultation (and sales pitch) at gyms. We took our test last Saturday, May 19th which means that 3 months will get us to a final challenge date of Saturday, August 11th.
  2. We will have a check-in at the 6 week mark, halfway through, to see where we’re at and refocus ourselves based on our results – if we need to – on Saturday, June 23rd. We’ll post an update of our progress and start taking bets on who everyone thinks is going to win ;).
  3. We take our final body fat test on the aforementioned date and you’re given full permission to blame the winner for whatever boujee name our first kid is saddled with for the rest of their lives.

To give some background here, this isn’t our first foray into the world of clean eating and working out. I have practiced clean eating on a consistent 80/20 basis for the past two years and I’m a regular group cycle class attendee at Reformed Pilates and Spin (like 4 times a week regular) with some Pilates sprinkled in here and there for good measure. Rob has practiced a 30/70 (the 30 being the time he spends eating clean and the 70 being the time he spends eating whatever the hell he wants with ABSOLUTELY NO repercussions because he is a male) eating habit accompanied by a 5-6 day a week gym regimen.

I totally look this good every time I work out, not red faced or splotchy at all.

All of that may sound well and good but let me tell ya, our starting percentages kinda shocked these two sexy and healthy (semi-healthy on Rob’s part) folks. Sooo here it is. I came in with a starting body fat percentage of 32.9% and 30%¬†or lower is considered healthy for a woman. Yeah, let that sink in for a second. Because it’s still taking time to sink in over here and the sting is REAL. My initial thought was “What the actual $#&% there’s no way this is right are you $#&%ing kidding me right now?! That’s what 2 years of hard work and dedication looks like?!” But then I simmered down (only slightly though – my natural resting simmer is nearly boiling) and thought to myself that this is a great starting point. It’s awesome that I’ve created a routine for myself and made health conscience decisions part of my every day, but I haven’t really shaped a plan that works for my body with specific results in mind up until now.

Rob’s results were a bit better but still not what he expected for himself. He came in at 19.5% body fat and 20% or lower is considered healthy for a man. So while technicallyyy this test says he’s healthy, he barely made the cut. That’s a big revelation for a guy commits to at least an hour in the gym every morning as early as 4:30a.

Now that we’ve gotten those awkward numbers out of the way… what are our game plans? Mine is pretty specific while Rob’s is a bit more abstract. I immediately (and when I say immediately I mean before I even left the Bod Pod place) added a macro counting app on my phone – Body Love by Anna Victoria. Not only will it count my macros for me and take into account my goals, but it will give me a week-to-week grocery list and meal plan equipped with 5-6 meals a day and alternate options should I take issue with one of the meals they are suggesting. In addition to this I have reduced the planned amount of Spin in my weekly workout regimen and increased the amount of resistance work (Pilates) and weight based training (Fit Body Guides by Anna Victoria). I love Spin. Let me rephrase, I LOVEEE Spin. But it’s safe to say based on my results that while it fully enriches my heart and soul and is a great cardio option, it’s not gaining me any muscle. I really need to gain lean muscle to help me burn the fat that I have so I can move the needle in the right direction.

Just casually lifting my dog who’s a whopping 32 pounds – NBD.

Rob’s plan looks like this – keep working out, add a little cardio into the mix (where there formally was close to none), make healthier decisions when possible (he added quinoa to a salad the other day and turned down a soda with lunch), and keep being a man and everything will likely fall into line. Can you guys tell I have some bitterness here about how differently the male and female bodies work? Just a¬†smidge of bitterness. Really though, making a concerted effort to include cardio in his workouts and eating a breakfast that isn’t part of the burrito-a-day plan is a BIG change for Rob. And it will probably work just as well if not better than my detailed and scientific road map, because, well, HE’S A MAN. Okay that’s the last time I’ll throw that out there…probably.

Rob lifting our (slightly heavier – 45 pound) dog.

So today marks Day 5 of this challenge and I really want a pepperoni pizza from Humble Pie, fresh baked chocolate chip cookies, a bowl of Kix cereal (or three), and pretty much anything else I can get my hands on that isn’t part of my meal plan. I haven’t cheated ONCE. Rob indulged in 3 bowls of Oreo-O’s so far but other than that he’s done pretty dang well. Okay guys, I gotta go now because I need to prepare my grilled chicken with quinoa, steamed veggies, and dried cranberry bowl while I pretend that it’s a steaming hot plate of sodium enriched chili loaded with cheddar cheese and a NON whole wheat tortilla on the side. Wish us luck!!

xoxo Ariel & Rob

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