April measurements

Note: I realize I haven’t been posting much specifically about derby, but have much to share. I hope to have a new roller derby post soon! Stay tuned, readers!

Look at those arms... Left: July 2010 Right: Aug. 2011. No definition... just skin and bone. I don't know how I didn't break something when I first started in derby.

I’m happy with my results to this point, but not certain if I’m measuring correctly. Some numbers seem all over the map. I’m sure I’ll get more consistent measuring with practice. I feel strong, which is most important. I did 100 pushups today (in 5 sets, 90 second break in between) which is a big deal for me.

A stumbled across an old photo of myself, taken in July of 2010 and I compared it to a photo in Aug of 2011. In the 2010 photo I was new to derby and a scrawny, skinny bitch. Frankly, I look gross. I’m happy to have some muscly curves now.

My routines are becoming a bit more intense with more weight and I’m mixing in running as a consistent part of my routine (instead of running to train for specific events).

My current protein powder of choice.

As for my diet, in March I wasn’t 100% Paleo, but I think I’ve found a good balance. I’ve switched from Hemp protein to MyoFusion for post-workouts, which packs more protein punch. I essentially eat paleo for breakfast, lunch and dinner and don’t worry about straying from Paleo when I eat out or at special events (like birthday party dinners, etc). I’ve allowed some indulgences back into my life like ice cream  and sweet & sour candies and nibble on Paleo friendly chocolate too. (Lindt Excellence Intense Dark Chocolate 70% Cocoa). Sometimes I feel I’m still not eating enough but as long as I’m gaining, I know I’m on the right track.

Here’s my April 1 measurements.

January 1, 2012 February 1, 2012 March 1, 2012 April 1, 2012
Weight 119lbs 115lbs 116lbs 117lbs
Waist (narrowest point) 28.50″ 28.50″ 27.00″ 27.00″
Hips (widest point) 34.50″ 35.00″ 35.50″ 36.00″
Thighs (widest point) L: 16.00″
R:16.00″
L:16.50″
R:16.50″
L:17.50″
R:18.25″
L:19.00″
R:19.00″
Calves (widest point) L:13.50″
R:13.50″
L:13.50″
R:13.50″
L:13.00″
R:13.00″
L:12.75″
R:13.00″
Biceps (widest point) L:9.25″
R:9.75″
L:9.50″
R:9.75″
L:9.25″
R:9.75″
L:9.50″
R:10.00″

A couple of weeks ago, myself and some derby teammates participated in a Ball & Chain challenge which took place at the local jail. In addition to a 4k run (with 1.5k carrying a 60lb post with my team) we had to do a series of fitness challenges. I’m pretty pleased with my performance though the burpees are STILL killing me. For enjoyment, here’s some photos of the event… thanks to Preacher’s Slaughter for lending Grate Scott her phone to snap pics of us!

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Moonlight Run results and March measurements

My Moonlight Run goal was to finish somewhere between the 29:52-33:34 range which meant my pace had to be within the 8 min/mile range. I finished almost smack-dabb in the middle of that!

I’m pretty pleased with my placing as well! Even though I placed lower in my category from last year, there were many more runners to compete against. Stats comparison to last year below…

 Moonlight Run 2011 2012 2013 2014
Canon Time 36:27 31:41
Chip Time 35:47 31:28
Category Placing 5/93 6/156
Female 6k Placing 101/975 37/1135
All 6k Runners 283/1488 117/1671
Pace 9:46/mi 8:29/mi

As promised, I got around to my March measurements. Considering the slack I did in February, I’m surprised by the results. Plus, I either measured my thighs REALLY wrong the last two months or the hill running I’ve been doing to train for Moonlight Run made my thighs explode. Interesting stuff. We’ll see what next month brings.

January 1, 2012 February 1, 2012 March 1, 2012 April 1, 2012
Weight 119lbs 115lbs 116lbs
Waist (narrowest point) 28.50″ 28.50″ 27.00″
Hips (widest point) 34.50″ 35.00″ 35.50″
Thighs (widest point) L: 16.00″
R:16.00″
L:16.50″
R:16.50″
L:17.50″
R:18.25″
Calves (widest point) L:13.50″
R:13.50″
L:13.50″
R:13.50″
L:13.00″
R:13.00″
Biceps (widest point) L:9.25″
R:9.75″
L:9.50″
R:9.75″
L:9.25″
R:9.75″

Four weeks of paleo

I’m going to keep at it! I’m enjoying the food, I feel pretty energetic and although I really started craving sweets in the last week I managed to push through. In the end I strayed from paleo maybe 4 times (always gravitating to sweets). But I’ve found some semi-cheat recipes that will allow me to bake using agave as a sweetener and I’ve also read that 70% dark chocolate is okay once in a while too.

Interestingly enough, I haven’t missed the breads and grains at all.

So, here’s my observations while I adapted to this new style of eating, along with some body measurements and a food galley too!

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Food costs

Food costs for the four weeks, family of four: $400 (I rounded up)

This surprised me. I thought we were going to spend WAY more on groceries. Had we not had to buy non-paleo cereal and school snacks for the kids, this would have been even less.

Meal planning was key

We would buy HUGE pork loins and cut them into sections that would feed us for 3-4 meals, thus saving money buying in bulk. We bought chicken breasts by the case and bulk beef. Being in land-locked Alberta, fish was a little more difficult to come by in large packets, so we ate less of that.

I did NOT go organic, grain-fed, grass-fed, which is likely why we were able to keep our food costs in check. I did, however, buy produce from areas as close to my city as possible (less shipping time means more fresh and less preservatives) and my dad is a beef farmer and I know exactly what he feeds his cows. I can’t get more organic than that.

Now that I know where my food costs are, I can perhaps start integrating some organic into the mix.

There was no food waste

The recipes I followed usually had leftovers, which I would immediately pack up for lunch the next day. Call me weird, but it became a challenge to make sure my fridge was empty by the time my Sunday grocery shop came around.

I wrote awesome grocery lists

If by chance we didn’t use all the produce at the end of a week, I would alter a meal plan to make sure it got used up in the next couple of days in the new week. Then I would decide what else was going to be for supper for the week, cross-reference the recipes with items I already had in the cupboards/fridge and wrote my list.

Can I just say how awesome it was to shop on the outer edge of the grocery store? The only time I ventured to the inner aisles of my store was to pick up one or two items of miscellaneous goods like olive oil or coconut milk. My grocery shops always went so quick!

When in doubt: supper for breakfast!

I’m not a picky eater that needs to have a huge variety of foods to stay happy. I was content in eating leftovers (because the food was always good) and had my staple meal of bacon and eggs if I was ever lazy to make a full supper.

A couple days of what I typically ate…

Weekdays

Gym mornings
Breakfast: grab leftover meat from previous supper in the fridge and munch on that on the way to the gym. Other options: sliced ham and an apple. (Some people can work out on an empty stomach. I can’t)
After gym: protein smoothie with berries, OJ, almond beverage, banana and a coffee
Snack: Apple or banana or paleo trail mix
Lunch: Leftovers from previous supper
Snack: Apple or banana, green tea
Supper: Fresh paleo meal. Pack up leftovers into lunch serving sizes
Snack: Bowl of berries and/or protein powder in OJ post-derby practice

Non-gym mornings
Breakfast: bacon and eggs or veggie omelet, coffee
Snack: Apple or banana or paleo trail mix
Lunch: Leftovers from previous supper
Snack: Apple or banana, green tea
Supper: Fresh paleo meal. Pack up leftovers into lunch serving sizes
Snack: Apple with nut butter and/or protein powder in OJ post-derby practice

Weekends
Breakfast: Sweet potato hasbrowns, eggs, bacon, paleo pancakes, veggie omlette
Lunch: Graze leftovers in the fridge.
Snacks: Graze from fridge.
Supper: Fresh paleo meal or finish up leftovers, making sure there is something for lunch on Monday.

When there was no leftovers to graze from: I tried to have peppers, lettuce, tomatoes and avocado in the fridge so a quick chopped salad was an option. Having a small ham was also handy for quick snacks and meals.

You may have noticed I eat a lot of fruit. For those using paleo to lose weight, please note that fruit can slow your results. Because I’m trying to gain, I’m not so careful on consuming fruit.

Results?

I took some measurements today and here is the comparison from last month. It’s worth noting that this week I’ve made the official switch to 20lb hand weights for my weight training (whereas before I was using 15 lb weights for some exercises still).

Not a huge difference in size. But when I take into account that I weigh less and I’ve gained in some spots (grow left bicep, GROW), it’s a win in my books! I know there is a science to measuring so I’m doing my best to take measurements from the same spot month-to-month.

January 1, 2012 February 1, 2012 March 1, 2012 April 1, 2012
Weight 119 115
Waist 28.5 28.5
Hips 34.5 35
Thighs 16 16.5
Calves 13.5 13.5
Right Bicep 9.75 9.75
Left Bicep 9.25 9.5

Not a huge difference in size. But when I take into account that I lost weight while maintaining and even gaining mass in some areas, I think I’m on the right track! I know there is a science to measuring so I’m doing my best to take measurements from the same spot month-to-month.

My ultimate goal is to gain weight and increase my strength and power, which will not only improve my game play but keep me healthy overall.

Other observations/in summary

My chronic pain in my left shoulder is diminishing! I’m gaining some mobility back into it and can put on my winter coat with only a little discomfort. I don’t know if paleo is helping with that, but I don’t care. I just want it to continue to improve.

My after-supper catnaps made their way back into my life in the second half of my paleo month. I have to monitor this carefully and listen to my body. Between roller derby practices and strength training, I fear overtraining and getting worn out. We’ll see how that pans out.

I’ve noticed a change in my body for sure (taken after my 30-day ab challenge). I’ve leaned out while adding muscle. It’s kind of cool! 🙂

Are you trying paleo or another way of eating to help improve your performance? I’d love to hear about it!

New Year’s Eve, Part Deux!

GOOOOAAAALLLLLLSSSSS!

Am I EVER glad I documented this year. It’s shown how far I’ve come, even though some days I felt like a bambi on skates or a pylon. I have a lot of things to be proud of and a lot to still work on and look forward to. 2012 is going to be a year of hard work, for sure!

Like many sports and news shows are doing retrospectives, I’m doing a year in review of the goals I set on this very day last year. The original post can be read here, with the followup post here. It’s not necessary to read my 3 month, 6 month and 9 month progress (but if you really want to, links are provided) because I have my goals outlined in this handy-dandy chart!

Charts are awesome! NERD POWER!

Taken in June 2010

You can see I still have some things I need to work on. And that’s TOTALLY OKAY when I see how much I’ve accomplished. I’m proud of myself for sticking to my plan.

Now with all these fitness and nutrition goals I’ve set, it was bound to have an effect on my body performance and shape. I have to say, I’ve impressed myself. Not only am I stronger and more solid on my skates I started to see these weird bulges show up on my body that turned out to be muscle. I realize by simply adding strength and muscle won’t make me a better skater until I figure out how to use it to my abilities, but for now I’m reveling in the fact I have muscle.

I’m kicking myself I didn’t take a before photo last year. So this is the closest one I could find that shows my body. I’m not overweight or particularly unhealthy, but I see some definite soft spots that needed a lift.

For anyone writing goals for 2012, TAKE BEFORE PHOTOS! PLEASE!

So now, the after…

For those interested, you can see my after photos by clicking on the thumbnails below. Clicking on the photo of my tattoo will show you simple body shots (the best I could do with my webcam and please ignore the mess behind me because I’m in the process of putting away all my Christmas crap). Clicking on the photo of my torso will show various body parts in full-flex mode (as flexy as I can get, anyway. I’m not very good at it 😛 )

Click here for

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Anyone else feel ridiculously awkward after seeing those? **Cherri puts her hand up**

So now, what next?

NEW GOALS!

In addition to the chart above, I want to add…

Moonlight run, get my time somewhere between 29:52-33:34. (That’s going to be a toughie)

Head game, head game, head game. Which means finding my groove to get myself psyched up for a game, find ways to keep myself motivated and positive when things don’t go right and focus on strategy and playing smart.

Aggression RAWR!

Be a more patient jammer. I saw this time and time again while watching worlds. If a jammer was faced with a wall of three, they didn’t try and crash through… they would hop around and wait for the opening. I’ve come to realize that last year I would get impatient and either back block or cut the track.

More intricate footwork. I’m getting really comfortable on my skates. I want to be able to hop forwards, backwards, sideways, onto my toes and have it be instinctual so it’s another tool in my tool kit when playing.

Work towards PBJ. That’s pivot, blocker, jammer

Fix my neck and shoulders. Years of chronic tension isn’t doing me any favours. I need to really focus on getting those muscles working right.

Lift heavy, like the big boys. Going into 2012 I’m on 15 lb weights, each hand (sometimes 20 lb depending on the exercise). I really want to work up from that.

Gain weight in muscle. I’d love to see another 10 lbs added. In order for me to do that, I’m going to have to….

Go Paleo. That’s the only way I see myself making gains. Protein is my friend. Don’t worry, it’s not a carb-free diet. I just get my carbs from sources other than grains. I think I’m going to have to buy a book on this one.

Boring body stats

I have no idea how to do this but I’m going ahead and giving it a shot. It’s just a new way I want to track progress.

Weight: 119 lbs

Height: 5’5″

Waist (at belly button): 28.5″

Hips (at widest point): 34.5″

Thighs (mid point): 16″ (PS they are even now!)

Calves (mid point): 13.5″ (even)

Right bicep: 9.75″

Left bicep: 9.25″

I took a chest measurement but it’s just embarrassing. (yah, yah, it’s not a secret I have no boobs)

Final note: You can do this too!

I want to encourage my readers to set small goals, document and celebrate when you’ve succeeded. I don’t think I would have ever stayed on track if I hadn’t had your support! So thank you for continuing to read! The benefits are huge, regardless if you’re in derby or not. I’m looking forward to my next year and hope you’ll join me in your own success too!

Happy New Year!!!

PS: I successfully changed out my roller skate plates and will have a post on how I did that in the new year!