Friday, 30 December 2011

Two for the price of One

Session #4 of my workouts with Igor was tough! I learned that this human body is amazing, and that it is built to adapt and to survive! (to survive Igor's workouts even!)

I went to the workout dreading the hanging knee lifts because last time I did them, on Tuesday, I could only do 5 and then I had to rest. Horrified that I was so bad at them, I hoped not to embarrass myself again and do worse. Guess how many I did today before I had to not 6, not 7, but 10!!!! I was shocked! Yes, I know a good writer is not supposed to use multiple exclamation marks. Can you blame me?  I took a peek at the scale! It's looking good!

The other thing I am getting besides fitness training is Russian lessons.
I learned to say "Thank you " in every time he handed me a 10 pound dumbbell, I said, "Cпасибо".

More interesting facts about my trip tomorrow...

Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Snow at Last and a not-so-restful "rest day".

I woke up to discover two things this morning. One that it had snowed and I mean snowed overnight and that, two, I have muscles I never knew I had. How do I know? There are SORE!

Yesterday I could feel every step and every time I sat down I would wince. I know the soreness is only temporary and is good punishment for all the times I said to myself, "I really should start weight training again" and did not do it. I know it will not last. I really enjoyed yesterday's workout (well...all except the hanging knee lifts) and feel so good after each workout. I have got all A's on my nutritional compliance and I am surprisingly not missing coffee all that much.

I had some large leaf green tea this morning given to my by a special friend living in Beijing and it tasted so good in my little teapot.

Last night we got snow and today was supposed to be a rest day. Does Shovelling snow count? The kids and I shovelled snow and cleared the cars of their white blankets and then we went sledding. I was out for over an hour and I wasn't cold at all, a good sign. Training for Siberia. (It will only be 10 - 15 degrees C colder!)

The other thing I am not eating is SUGAR! Sugar is my downfall, and for the next two weeks I am avoiding all sugar. It is part of the Nutritional Plan that comes along with my training. Not all training plans Igor devises are this strict, but our plan and training program is aggressive because we only have 8 weeks to get me ready for my trip. So far no cravings yet....

News on the trip front, my flight tickets have been booked and paid for and I am so grateful for people in this world who are able to give, and do so when they see a worthy cause. Too many people are out there looking for what they can "get" and I admire and respect people who are willing to GIVE. My sincere thanks to Eric.

The other thing is that a very dear friend has loaned me her goose down Parka for the trip! I will be warm and toasty, thanks to Diane! She is another one of those people who I admire for her generous and supportive nature.

Tomorrow it is back to working out with Igor. Hopefully I will have some photos to show you of how it is going....

Session 3 with Igor...I'm ready!

Tuesday, 27 December 2011

The New Look of my Morning Coffee...

It is the morning after...
I survived my first work out with Igor, actually that part was easy. Looking at the "before " pictures was the hard part. I had become a master of the art of camouflage.  Denial is a horrible thing. When you are faced with a very honest photo of what you look like from behind in a bikini, you can't rationalise the twenty pound weight gain any more. My dear husband asked if I wanted to print it out and stick it on my fridge to help me in times of severe cravings or weakness of will power. I don't need to do that, the image is burned into my brain!

So with the photos safely downloaded I am moving on with doing something about it~!

I took a photo just before I was about to step into the gym. A historic moment! I love the vibe in a gym. It makes you want to sweat it out and work hard, the energy is contagious.
Olympic Silver Medallist Shelly-Ann Brown was working out at the same time and I exchanged a greeting with her, wow she is in great shape! I tried not to feel intimidated by how awesome I think she is. Let me just say that I have been active, I am a swimmer, but I have not been in a gym for years. When I say I am a swimmer, I swim 90 minute sessions with a swim team in Aurora. I have competed on a National level in Masters Swimming. I competed in Montreal  at the 2011 Canadian Masters Championships.

Yes, I have done a little bit of weights in my basement years ago, but let me tell you there is no way I would have done 15 reps of bicep curls without a fitness trainer standing there, watching every move. Not only that I would not have picked the weights I used. They would have been a few pounds lighter for sure, but with Igor there to make sure my form was good, I did it.

Igor said that I have good co-ordination and form. That is nice to hear. Session 2 is today and as session 2 approaches I am starting to feel some muscles protest. Yes, he warned I would experience some muscle pain.

Nutritional changes are required along with my training regimen.

My morning POT of coffee has been given a new look. (for two weeks at least!)
Check it out!

Coming up tomorrow:

News on preparations for the trip.

Monday, 26 December 2011

Let me introduce you...

As the Turkey left overs sit in the fridge ready to be pulled out for lunch, the cookies however are staring at me, calling my name and I am doing my best to ignore them. You see, I am not waiting for New Year to start my resolutions to "get fit and strong" and implement some sort of training regimen. It starts now, it starts today.

Let me me introduce you to Igor Klibanov, my Body Transformation Specialist and Kinesiologist of Fitness Solutions+. We have teamed up to maximize my fitness in preperation for my trip and we have 8 weeks in which to do it.

Igor Klibanov Body Transformation Specialist, Kinesiologist Ba Spec. Hons., OKA-CK, CSEP-CPT,PTS

Don't let that smile fool you. This guy means business! While part of me wants to run away, I know it is just that silly "fear of failure thing" that comes up and tries to get in the way. I know the next 8 weeks will not be easy, but If I can survive the "before" photos....then the rest is easy right?

While we were discussing my fitness goals for the trip I mentioned that I wanted to work on lower body fitness and stamina. (Can you say Squats!) Perhaps I will be able to kick faster and stronger in the pool when all is said and done. For those who know me and my swimming strengths and weaknesses, kicking is not my forte. I have good upper body strength and flexibility, but my lower body... well...there's no polite way to say it, it sucks! I have always been horrible on the stair master or on the treadmill with any sort of incline. One of my dreams or goals is to do the CN tower stair climb! If I embarked on that today, I would only make it about eight flights....So I think the opportunity to strengthen my lower body is very necessary.

Aside from the physical benefits this program will give me, there are mental benefits too. I will be required to face whatever Igor asks of me with a positive attitude and with enthusiasm. NO complaining! What better preparation for -25 C temperatures and the possibility of eating thinly sliced frozen fish and venison? Mental preparation is a valuable part of training for life and adventure. If you want to know more about that, read "The Flinch" by Julien Smith.
Julien told me that he used athletes in his research for the book.(Okay, it was a tweet) You can download the e-book for free if you follow this link.

Part of the process in embarking on this journey was the lessons I learned and the understanding I achieved after reading "The Flinch".

Okay Igor, let's get started on the Body Transformation!

Friday, 23 December 2011

One jab off a needle and suddenly the reality of it all hit home!

Welcome to my blog. I was born in South Africa and immigrated to Canada in 1999. Canada is now my home.  I live in Toronto with my husband and two young children.

Now that it I have my new passport I am getting all the more excited about my upcoming trip to Siberia. (More on how that came about later.) What really brought the reality of it all home to me was the needle I received in my left arm last night. Ouch! Actually to be quite honest it was two jabs. While we were about it, I got the Flu shot. (Same arm!!!)

If you have not had your flu shot you are not too late. According to my travel doctor, the flu season has had a late start due to the milder temperatures we have been experiencing. This means that if you have not had your shot, you can still have it and you will still have immunity for the flu that is going around. It is covered by OHIP and is particularly worth getting if you work with the elderly or children, or as in my case, you are planning a trip and you want to make sure you don't get sick before you go.

If you have any questions about the Flu shot click here for more information.

Stay tuned for developments, and news about  the preparation and training for my trip to Siberia in mid winter! You'll find out why I am going and what I will be doing.  You will also be able to follow my training and nutritional preparations, step my step. I will introduce you to my personal trainer and give you feedback on training sessions. Photos will show progress. Hang on to your hats!

Siberia! in Winter!

I can't wait!

There is soft Christmas music playing in the background here, tomorrow is Christmas Eve.

Merry Christmas to all of you and May 2012 be filled with adventure and opportunity. Most of all my you see with clear eyes the blessing all around you!  Have a wonderful time with friends and family!

Until next time...