Fitness Journey Check in #2

Where has the time gone eh? It’s already half way through 2015! My new year resolution was to get fitter and stronger, and with all the hard work put in, I’m happy to report that progress is there! I’ve never been super active my entire life. When I wanted to fit into a smaller sized piece of clothing, I’d just eat less. I never thought that while I shrunk, I was also sacrificing my muscles. So the past couple of months, I’ve been working on changing my body composition – working on increasing lean mass (i.e. muscles), decreasing fats. How to do that? And guys, this will be boring if you’re not on the same journey so please feel free to check out older archives. Just go to the tabs above and choose a category you like!

 

My fitness journey chloeash

 

Anyway, changing body composition. Lift. Yes, weight lifting. Not just plain resistance, but actually lifting heavier. I used to carry a handweight of 2.5kg (about 6 pounds) on each arm, and I’d complain it’s heavy. Now, I bench a total of 40kgs and I can do 15 pushups (on my toes, not knees) without stopping. My training emphasizes a lot on legs and butt, and now I squat 50kg and deadlift 62.5kg. My ultimate goal is to do a pull up though. At the moment, I can only do half a pull up, when I used to have trouble just dangling myself >_< Getting there, slowly.

 

When some friends hear what I’m doing, their initial reaction is to ask if I won’t get bulky. That’s the most common question, really. Do you know how much work it takes to build muscle mass, let alone looking bulky? Instead of looking broad, I’m actually getting smaller in size. My weight is pretty much hovering around the same number so I can’t even be bothered with it anymore. I can now fit into clothes I couldn’t even wear in the last 2 years. I am more toned overall, and people, I haz a butt!

 

Coming in the next week, instead of focusing on strength, I will be focusing more on volume, i.e., maintain the weights I’m carrying now, but increase the reps (number of times) in a set. The objective is to increase endurance and to burn more calories, because I want to lean out more. I’ll also be incorporating cardio in my routine. I started on the treadmill yesterday (after all my usual lifting program), running for 3km in about 23 mins. I aim to cover 5km in 30 to 40 mins in the next 3 months. So now, my program includes lifting, high intensity interval training and long steady cardio. Objective: toย lean out further.

 

Oh, btw, nutrition has to be on point for all these to work. Sadly, I haven’t been strict enough on my food intake. People are already seeing my progress (including my mom who is my worst critic ever!) even when I sneak in junk here and there – Imagine how much faster if I actually didn’t cheat! I’m hoping I can stay more focused on taking in clean macros so any tips on staying focused is welcomed!

 

xoxo Lily

 

 

 

  • Anat13

    My aunt was a world-class weightlifter–she is in the Weightlifting Hall of Fame in the US–and did not look “bulky.” Weightlifting and bodybuilding are not at all the same thing. (Not at all dissing bodybuilding! It is cool too! But the two things definitely do not produce the same look.)

    • Lily

      Thank you Anat for clarifying that. I think many are still not very well informed about weightlifting vs bodybuilding. Then we have some women bodybuilders who look ripped and huge who claim they don’t use steroids. I call them b***s***.

  • Woo, go Lily! Get it! That’s awesome! I find it hilarious that people think we’re going to immediately bulk up. It’s actually really hard to do that – bodybuilders have to spend so much time being meticulous about their routines. I don’t think you should be hard on yourself about indulging in “junk” food every now and again, though. I mean, sure, if we skipped all the good stuff, we could maybe look *this* much better, but in the end, was that worth it? Nah, hahaha. I’d rather have my ice cream.

    • Lily

      Right, Larie? It takes years of hardwork and dedication to actually bulk up even for guys! Not to mention we don’t exactly have the right hormones to have really huge muscles. Lol!
      I need more motivation to stay on point nutritionally so I could reach my goal faster. Once I’ve leaned out then a bit of junk here and the won’t affect maintenance much. I hope. Heh!

      • In that case, you could use something that tracks your nutrition, like My Fitness Pal (there are tons). I do a lot of approximating with mine, but in general I like to fill it out so that I can keep track of days where I was maybe a bit too indulgent, and also see if I’m doing a good job of eating good amounts of protein vs fat vs carbohydrates, etc.

        • Lily

          Ah yes, I have that app. Should use it again. Thanks for reminding me. Just restocked on protein powder too. My protein intake is quite high so having a shake or 2 makes it easier compared to eating too much meat ๐Ÿ™‚

  • josie

    Wow. Great job you done. I can see that your facial features also slimmer within recent lotd pics. Can you kindly share which protein powder you consume? Thanks in advance

    • Lily

      Thank you for noticing Josie. I like cafe mocha protein powder from Dymatize Elite or Chocolate Supreme casein from Optimised Nutrition. They don’t taste like plastic for starters ๐Ÿ™‚

  • So good to read about your journey, I got lazy this week and have been eating badly again. I felt good at the start of this week with eating healthy and exercise, but the rest of the week was terrible on both fronts, now I feel bloated and “ugh”. Will start anew tomorrow!

    • Lily

      Yes tomorrow is another day. No point beating up yourself ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Yay Lily! Congrats! You’re working so hard and you should be very proud of yourself. If your mom noticed, shit got REAL! ;D The scale is stupid. The best measurement of progress is how you feel and how clothing fits. I once took measurements and weighed myself before I started working out. I don’t think I lost more than a few pounds on the scale but I lost several inches off my waist and gut. Muscles are heavy, yo! ๐Ÿ˜‰ Weight training is one of the best exercises you can do! You burn calories long after you’re done lifting. The fittest I ever got was when my husband and I were lifting weights for 30 minutes 4-5 times a week and doing an occasional cardio jaunt on an elliptical for 5-10 minutes just to warm up. I’m lifting weights again this weekend. You’ve inspired me! Thank you, my fierce friend!

    • Lily

      Yay to lifting weights again! I work out 6 days a week and it’s tiring but you’re right. If my mom noticed it, it’s REAL! LOL

  • Woohooo! Congrads Lily on making progress ๐Ÿ™‚ Fitting into old clothes is a great moment. I managed to squeeze into my pre-pregnancy jeans today. And I stopped weighing myself too – it is just too daunting to rely on numbers. Clothes don’t lie :p

    • Lily

      Clothes definitely don’t lie. The scale sucks. My boobs are shrinking too. Bras don’t lie either. Hahaha

  • Hey Lily, wow you are making progress for sure! I say you should be able to eat what you want tho! Where’s the fun in life if you have to eat clean like every single day? ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • Lily

      I definitely don’t eat clean every day. I follow a certain macro intake ie portions of protein, fats and carbs and sometimes it gets a little overwhelming. I try though ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Glad to hear about your progress and positive results! ;D
    Lately I’m just trying to walk more lately due to my irregular schedule. I should start working out for real!

    • Lily

      Any form of movement is great I think. Just staying active is already a good thing for the body. Thing is, I’m getting older and I need more muscles to stay strong and support aging bones and joints. That’s why I chose weights ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Liz

    So proud of you! Soon you’ll be able to benchpress those naysayers. ๐Ÿ˜‰ I’m not crazy about working out but try to walk daily outdoors. And lately I’ve been bypassing all the snack sales and going for vegetables and fruit instead. It’s so hard to say no to Pringles. -_____-

    • Lily

      Benchpress those naysayers. Hahaha! You know what they say about Pringles. Once you pop you really can’t stop!

  • Jaa

    I’ve been working out a little more now since the gym room and pool is only one floor away. No more excuses not to excercise. LOL I’m not as hardcore as you but I’m slowly building up my strength! The clean eating part is hard, though, as I seem to want to drink sugary drinks all the time!!

    • Lily

      Not really hardcore, Jaa. I’m trying to get it as much as possible while I still have that “ooomph” you know? LOL! The clean eating part IS hard. I’m still trying to figure it out.

  • Good on you Lily! And so impressed you can do push ups on your toes! You’re getting strong! I do it on my knees… or maybe not even that as I can’t remember the last time I tried. I think for women to bulk up we need to do HOURS of muscle work everyday, and have some weird protein diet, etc… xx

    • Lily

      HAHAHA weird protein diet. I’m drinking protein shake to make up for the protein intake. We NEED protein to build muscles. And yes to doing push ups on my toes. When I get stronger, I’m gonna try doing push up with one leg raised!

      • With one leg raised? wow!

        • Lily

          Yeah, when I’m stronger. I can do a couple now, but that’s it. It’s difficult! Haha

  • I just started exercising again. Not the type to build muscles but more condition. You are so right though, for the effect to be more lasting, I need some strength exercises too. I love these series, you are really inspirational! I gained so much weight in the last 3 year, I need to shed them all off. I am thinking about starting to visit a dietician too. A reason to gain weight was also the blog. Funny but through, it takes all my spare time so I am left with none. Now I prioritized exercise over blog, posting every second day but feel better about it. Keep up the good work, I can’t wait to read more about it!
    And oh wow 40 something kilo, I don’t think I can ever do that.

    • Lily

      Thank you so much Sara, for saying that my entry is inspiring you! This is just something I need to write down, to put my thoughts together… and at the same time, perhaps get some motivation from the like-minded. I’ve gained so much weight since the birth of my first child. I have YEARS to lose!

  • omg Lily amazing!!! That’s hell lotta weight to lift, kudos!!! I used to want to work out to get fitter and slimmer too, but i realized even with the help of a PT, my natural response is to design ways and means to slack out. *roll eyes* But once I stop working, I vow to spend at least 30-45min in the gym each day (baby steps!)…. so pls keep me motivated with your amazing progress!!

    • Lily

      Hi Linda, YES! When you have the time, do spend about an hour at the gym. You might benefit from getting a trainer if you want to get an idea of what program fits you.
      For me, as a, erm, middle aged woman, having a healthy set of muscles is like collagen to the body. So that’s what I’m working on ๐Ÿ™‚

  • Anthony2211

    My babe gets the idea of carb refeed day to being a baking day. ๐Ÿ˜› S’all good tho. It still can fit into the macro, just less food volume and need to recover the micronutrients from other sources.