Sunday, February 12, 2012

It was worth it

Well, here you have it. 40 days and, not quite 40 nights--its a long post but a goody. It will be my last blog for a bit, my goal is to be back posting 1-2 times a week... next week hopefully:

Compliance (points) 40%: Total points Nutrition=40, Total point Activity=40

Nutrition Total=30

Hidden sugars-- as best as I could track -5
Hank's bday meal & pie -2

Wine with friends -1
Half way cheat & final cheat of pizza & wine -2
Activity Total=40!! Woohoo
Points total for compliance=70 out of 80

Baseline & fitness testing 30%: Baseline workout and CrossFit Total

Baseline-- 500row, 40 air squats, 30 sit ups, 20 push ups, 10 pull ups
Baseline Before: 6:18
Baseline After: 5:31
CrossFit Total--back squat, shoulder press, deadlift
Lift                                  Before                     After_______
Back Squat (kg)                 55                          59
Shoulder Press (kg)            25                          27
Deadlift (kg)                     73                          77

Body Composition 30%: Body Measurements

Measurement                     Before                     After_______
Body Fat (Dexa scan)          27.9%                     22.4%
Weight (lbs)                      112                         112 (110 on dexa)
Chest (inches)                    33.5                        33.5
Waist (inches)                    28.5                        27.5
Hips (inches)                      36.25                      36
Biceps (inches)                   10.25                      10
Thigh (inches)                     21.5                       20.75

Before and after pictures...I think the biggest difference is in my waist (I'm not sucking in!) and the muscles in my back/arms, but I don't think the IPAD camera does our after pictures justice however close enough, I've included a few of Hank's because they are amazing!


Before After

Goals prior:
-increase strength
-eat better
-real push ups in a WOD (whole time)
-do a wall hand stand
-do 10 pulls ups
-run again, one day a marathon

Goals going forward:
1. Continue to make gains in Total lifts (short term 2-3 months)
BS: 62kg SP: 29Kg DL: 80kg
Work: Continue to work on as prescribed (5-3-1 method) strength, in WODs, work on form, during open gym, etc.
2. Eat an 80/20 primal diet (ongoing)
Work: Eat primal during the week except for special occasions (if so trade out meal for weekend), always eat a hearty, clean breakfast (save a brunch here or there), eat more fish & vegetables, be mindful of sugar and oils content and try to choose the best option. Experiment with paleo/primal recipes.
3. Focus on gymnastic & skillwork principles in CrossFit and truly try to master the moves--handstands- HSPUs, pull ups, push ups, dips, double unders (4-8 months)
Work:  Along with WOD and gym time, do "homework" at least 3x a week in the morning (maybe if I post morning here I'll actually be able to do something in the morning) do sets of handstand holds (eventually HSPU), push ups and dips. At the gym practice pull ups and double unders before or after a WOD.
4. Prioritizing faith and spirituality
Work: Practice daily spiritual WODs and bring messages learned at church to life (Fold, Push, Turn) in all that is life (relationships, goals, work, activity), do everything for Him.
5. Prioritizing Relationships. Setting goals and working toward something in business, health, etc. are very important, but relationships are what life is all about-- those who have with ones that are close, and those with ones who are not- our daily interactions with people are important. I hope to always be nice, be helpful and be thoughtful- to be a good friend, daughter, sister, fiance, co-worker and person.
6. Truly run again! (long term--18 months if I'm lucky)
Work: Continue to dream of running long distances again, but in the short term focus on WOD running and listen to my leg-- don't push it! Enjoy the new love I've found in total fitness and work to incorporate running as a part of the training and stress relief, not the whole. Give acupuncture or like things a try...when I can add it to the budget.

A compilation of what I have learned:
  • Breakfast needs to be filling and must have fats!
  • I can last longer than a day on paleo/primal (as opposed to vegetarianism)
  • Paleo dishes are colorful
  • Weightlifting is a challenge, but fulfills my achievement need
  • Don't make life decisions after a relaxing yoga class
  • Be balanced
  • Craving are tougher on weekends than during the week...but I can and did live without fulfilling them
  • Fruit is so stinking sweet
  • Read the label
  • When you trust in God, you can find peace and joy in every day
  • To focus on really living every day, not just Friday/ weekends
  • I can go three weeks without pizza and wine
  • Patience is truly a virtue
  • Always do your best, but know your best is different at different times, in different situations
  • Faith can get you through anything
  • Working at something little by little, chipping away, is a journey that takes time, but the joy is in the journey and the results are amazing
A compilation of what I was and am grateful for:
  • Family, friends, fiance & his family and time spent with all
  • CrossFit Brigade..Emily and Eric, all of the coaches and members
  • Opportunity to face and overcome challenges at work
  • rediscovering yoga/mobility and its impact on overall fitness
  • The grateful walk
  • That Hank and I found the Net church
  • Hard workouts that push me to my limits and show me what I am capable of
  • Giving myself a break from time to time
  • The serenity prayer
  • The discipline I have and continue to work on
  • New recipes!
  • Pre-made paleo
  • I'm more open than ever to the concept of learning and not needing to know everything/ have all the answers
  • Having more energy, not being so fatigued
  • During a don't think or stress about anything, the only thing going through your mind is surviving
  • The fact that I can make paleo recipes with honey now
  • Inspiring stories like Sam May's 
  • When Hank cooks for me
Final thoughts (on this challenge...don't worry I'll have more thoughts to share): WOW! Pretty amazing, huh? This primal stuff works. Both Hank and I truly want to continue this lifestyle as much as we can. We've signed up for another 8 months of CrossFit at Box 626 which we have grown to love. We hope to make better nutrition choices while being realistic-- we won't make everyone have paleo at our showers, etc. and we won't have a sugar free cake, don't worry! When I first heard about this challenge, I remember Eric saying only three glasses of red wine per week, and I thought oh no how am I going to do this?? I ended up have three glasses of red wine for the entire challenge! (healthy glasses, but who is measuring?) I did not have any cokes, sweet teas or juices- only coffee, water and sugarless tea- lots of herbal teas with different flavors helped. Plus, I'd like to celebrate the fact that I did some sort of activity for 40 days straight. It may have been 5 minutes, it may have been more than hour-- but it was an activity. I think that is pretty cool. It wasn't easy...I guess it wouldn't be a challenge if it was...but this was very worth it on so many levels! 

While I don't have to worry about writing down what I've had to eat, lets do it one more time for fun's sake...and to show you while I wasn't perfect the day after-- I wasn't half bad either.

B: eggs, bacon, parm, feta, spinach with unsweetened applesauce & banana
S: greek yogurt with wheatless granola (oats, seeds, nuts) and berries with paleo pumpkin muffin (called for honey in the recipe- I used agave nectar). I also had a rasberry dark choc piece... :)
L: tilapia with spinach & parm and a scoop or so of no sugar added choc. coconut ice cream...been dying to try this stuff...but it had some interesting was super delicious and I fear a new weakness of mine!
D: Taco Mamasita--chips with queso (not a lot like the other night), guac & salsa and a taco..a good number of beers, first time I had a beer in about 7 weeks.
A: jump rope, row 500m, 21-15-9 KB swings (green KB) and 20inch box jumps 4:19, handstands, pull ups practice (a few each)

Picture from Friday night-- we couldn't wait until midnight to enjoy pizza, wine & a little cheesecake bite (didn't get a good pic of it), but we did start a day early... :) Ate well yesterday through lunch and swam a mile...then this:

I pose a challenge to you!
Many of you reading are at different levels...some are a ton crazier than me, some just as crazy, and others think I am crazy. Whatever level you are at if you have not done a challenge and if you've been looking for something to give you the edge, something to fill the void in your nutrition and activity quest...I suggest you do a challenge of some sort, maybe not a 40 day, maybe even a 20 or 30 day. Make it a goal to do some sort of activity a day, exclude some sort of food or two (or more, but make it achievable) that has been giving you trouble and include a spiritual practice-- the spiritual WODs are excellent and you can always see messages from The Net online. Test yourself before and after, maybe even add a race or sign up to do something fun and active you haven't done in a while. Find someone to do it with you- I am so happy Hank decided to sign up an hour before the challenge started, it was really cool to go through this thing together. Share with others what you are doing to keep you accountable-- I always thought of my blog readers before making a decision.

It won't be easy, but I promise it will be worth it. 


  1. Yeah Ali! You look AMAZING! I am so proud of y'all. You are inspiring!

  2. THis is so outstanding Ali; you guys did so well & I love the reflections you recorded and the pix; they're great!!