Sunday, July 10

FITNESS | MY P90X WEEK 3 PROGRESS AND HASHIMOTOS UPDATE

p90x progress success
I've now completed three weeks of the original P90X workout and I would just like to say that I'm so proud of myself already! Sometimes I get in my own head and think things like, "What if I'm not seeing enough progress to impress everyone? What if I didn't lose weight this week? What if my body isn't changing quickly enough? And I have to remind myself that the fact that I've finished 3 weeks of P90X is an insane victory in itself! When I first got started with Beachbody I could barely get through a 25 minute workout. And since then I've fed myself the lie that I am just not capable of completing long programs. And yet here I am, completing one of the longest and arguably hardest home workout programs available! I'm so proud of myself!

Next up... I want to be really honest while sharing my journey so anyone who finds their way here doesn't just see the highlight reel but can see the struggle that goes on with things like this. I'm not a gym rat. I don't love to work out. But I love feeling strong and I have to take care of myself to feel good and right now I'm in a stage in my life where I want to prove to myself that I can tackle hard physical challenges and finish them! I want to push my body to see what it can do. That's why I'm doing P90X. Yes, I want to lose some weight and get more muscle definition but I also want to feel like a fucking champion by finishing it and proving to myself that I could do it!

So in the spirit of full transparency this update will have more of the not-so-lovely side of things. If you don't like reading about challenges then stop now because I'm going to be really honest with mine. 

I'll wait if you want to go ahead and hop back over to Pinterest for happy things.

Still here? Cool let's chat. This was the hardest week for me so far to stay consistent with my workouts. I don't know why. I just struggled more. I sweat more this week than any week so far. I had to really pep talk myself into going and pushing play. I even skipped a day and ended up having to make it up (2 P90X workouts in 1 day are no small feat ya'll!) This week I had a lot of trouble sleeping. Meaning that I didn't sleep 1 full night well until Friday. So I was dragging every day and had no oomph to give which made me not want to do my workouts. So on the workout side of things I give myself a C+ or  B-. I got them done, but I definitely didn't push myself as much as I could have and I didn't do them all on the assigned days like I should have.
thigh weightloss
Struggle number two... this is the week before my cycle so I've been moody and bloated and generally blah all week. And also just not looking forward to next week when I'll be even more bloated and in pain and wanting to eat every carbohydrate I can find. So basically for two weeks every month I feel like shit. And this was one of those weeks. My progress photo was a bit of a bummer because I woke up bloated (which is such a mood-killer isn't it?!). I did decide to look for the good in things which is that I looked about the same in this progress photo as last week which is actually a victory since I'm bloated right now and last week I took my photo on a day I felt super lean. So if my bloated day this week looks like my lean day last week that's definitely a win in my book!

Struggle number 3 is that I have an autoimmune condition that I have to manage called Hashimotos. I'm lucky because we caught mine before it turned into full fledged hypothyroidism and I have, over the last 2 years, been able to manage my symptoms with lifestyle choices of nutrition, exercise, and managing my stress levels. When I was first diagnosed I was a giant mess. And it took going on the GAPS diet for about a month, going gluten free, and then eventually going paleo for me to finally get in a place where my symptoms were mostly gone and manageable. 

Now that I'm not 100% paleo and now that I'm doing more challenging (read: stressful on the body) workouts, my symptoms have started to come back a little bit and I'm trying to find a new balance to where I can push myself more physically and still manage my symptoms and keep them at bay. My most common symptoms that come and go are bad quality sleep, bloating, irritability and anxiety, psorasis (you can see in the photo below), brain fog/memory issues, and trouble losing weight or rapid weight gain for no apparent reasons. There are tons of other symptoms but at this stage these are the ones I struggle with the most. And when my nutrition is off or my stress levels are high they start to come back stronger and stronger. When I've got everything in check they go away more.

Last year I had them completely gone when I was doing Piyo and eating strictly paleo. I went through a super stressful time personally and they all flared right back up and ever since then I've struggled to get them back under control. When I start to notice symptoms affecting me stronger I know it's time to dial things back in and work harder to stay on track with my nutrition and keep my stress levels low. Why is that important? Because Hashimotos is an auto-immune disease. So anything that causes inflammation in your body or stresses your immune system adds to the problem. For me... gluten, dairy, sugar, and most grains make my symptoms worse. It's just really hard to avoid all those things all the time. And stress I can try to manage but something life happens and things happen that are outside of my control so I just have to do my best to cope well and stay calm. 

hashimotos symptoms
I wanted to track my symptoms in this program because it is intense and generally low impact, more mellow workouts are good for people with auto-immune because you aren't pushing your body super hard. (I believe that's why I did so well when I was just doing Piyo... it's super low impact!) But I don't want to be limited to yoga my whole life and I really want to push myself as an athlete. I went into this commitment to P90X knowing that it would be a challenge for me to figure out how to keep my symptoms in check while pushing my body harder. The key, I'm finding, is in what I put INTO my body. Over the last 3 weeks I've cut out a lot of grains, sugar, and dairy and already you can see a difference in the psoriases that I have on my ankle. I know that I need to dial my food in even more to combat it it's just so hard to eat just lean protein and veggies exclusively. But this next week I'm committed to no sugar, no grains at all, and no dairy and I'm hoping to feel a shift by next weekend.
healthy recipes
I was asked what nutrition plan I was following. So far I've been doing a tweaked version of the Portion Fix (category 2) where I eat 4 veggie servings, 4 protein servings, 3 carb servings, 3 fruit servings, 2 fat servings and 3 oil servings a day. How I break that up is that I eat scrambled egg whites with kale and spinach for my first meal, a smoothie bowl with vegan chocolate shakeology, tons of spinach and kale, and frozen berries, topped with coconut or nuts for lunch, and then a dinner of protein, veggie, and carb. Up until this point I've been lax on my carbs and choosing things like rice, corn, or gluten free options and I know that I need to go grain free again so this upcoming week I'll be getting my carbs in as fruit, sweet potatoes, and almond milk instead of more traditional things like rice or tortillas or gluten free bread. I'm also going to be dialing back on my sugar. I've been sweetening my smoothie bowls and I'm going to stop and drinking sweetened drinks and having coconut ice cream so I'm going to cut those things out and see what happens. I'm also going to be a little more lax with my healthy fats because my body tends to do well on high fat mealplans so I'm adding some MCT oil into my coffee and smoothies. I'll report back with how that affects me, if it does at all. 

I wanted to share with you some numbers for my progress so far!!! I chose not to weigh myself before starting because scales are emotionally tough for me, and as someone who has an autoimmune disease that makes it super difficult to lose weight, I have learned that scales are not the best way for me to measure my progress. So instead, I took progress photos and measurements. 

I'm down a total of just under 5.5 inches! Most impressively 3.5 of those in my thighs which are usually where I lose the least so I'm super pumped about that! And I finally saw a small decrease in my arms which you might remember from last week I was so excited to see some definition in! My arms never seem to change so it's exciting to see progress in these problem areas! (Since January I've lost a total of 10 inches in my thighs thanks to Tony Horton's programs!) 




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