Workout update

Ferns biceps December
Bigger, better, stronger…

At the gym. Doing triceps. First set. Earphones in, music loud. I don’t talk to anyone at the gym.

In my rest period, a hugely built, bald man hovered around the machine, I saw his mouth move. Talking to me.

I removed an earbud.

“Can I work in with you here?”

I nodded. “Sure.”

I watched him move the pin to the very bottom of the weight stack.

“I just have to remember to change the weight before my turn,” I joked.

He smiled at me. “Well, you’re tiny,” he said.

I made a face, “I’m working on it…”

“No no… you’re good!” he sounded apologetic, “I mean, compared to me, you’re tiny…”

I smiled. “Yeah…”

I put my earbud back in. I realised he was still talking to me, still explaining, something about how he was really big and I was not. I removed the earpiece again and caught the tail end.

“… you look great…” He looked embarrassed.

I smiled, “Well, thank you.”

As we worked in, he was really sweet. Making idle chit chat. Asking what weight I wanted as he finished so he could change the pin for me. Got the weight wrong on one (too heavy!), I laughed and called him on it after I had done 3 reps and wondered why I was struggling.

“You obviously aren’t to be trusted!” I accused him.

He stammered an apology and then was impressed when I finished the set at the heavier weight anyway. Pure pride and stubbornness on my part.

I finished triceps with a new personal best. Biceps were in his vicinity also. I knew he was watching. Again a new personal best.

So, I’ve been saying that I like to see the pretty when I work out, that it motivates me. He wasn’t pretty. Just big. But obviously what works just as well for me is a witness, not to push, but just to trigger my stubborn pride and make me try harder because someone is watching.

Sounds about right.

I can’t NOT mention this because it made me laugh: The guy had a hard-on at one point. I WAS NOT STARING AT HIS CROTCH, I just was looking generally at him, I noticed, and looked away. Then I made a special effort not to look again because I’m sure he would have been totally horrified if he had seen me notice *laugh*.

I am (as always, it seems) struggling with motivation. I feel like I have stalled, which makes me feel like I am spinning my wheels. I feel this even though I know I am getting stronger (heavier weights) because I am not *seeing* visible progress. My December photo looks much like my October one to me (you can see them side by side in the sidebar here).

I have a sore back at the moment due to two hours sitting on concrete for a child’s graduation ceremony. I have skipped cardio due to it, though it’s an excuse really, since I could really get on the bike. Deliberately choosing to skip sessions is a really bad sign. Previously, regardless of how I felt, I would still go. I am starting to slip.

The lead-up to Christmas doesn’t help with motivation. More socialising, more travel, more drinking, more eating… all that.

I’ve had a chat with a personal trainer who will discuss my program with his nutritionist partner, and they will come up with some suggestions for me to kick it up. He has stressed diet (and I know he’s right), and that I won’t get to where I want without nailing that properly. I am hoping that whatever they come up with will re-motivate me. I won’t change anything until the new year so I guess I just do the best I can manage in the next couple of weeks, and then see.

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18 Comments

  1. No progress to be seen? I see plenty! Good luck with the exercise. I know I had a good run when I want to skip certain exercises, means the others were done with propper intensity :)

  2. Ferns,
    It is 90% nutrition, I’m tellin’ ya! You are working hard and will see even more results with proper diet. It is all about the protein. The recommendation for women is 60 grams per day, if you want to build muscle then 100 grams are recommended. I am well challenged to just get in 60 grams as I am not a big eater and it seems you are not either. Protein powders, drinks and/or bars will do the trick. Shoot for 80 grams and you will notice a huge difference. Also, no processed food. Keep up the good work!

    1. I know you’re right, and you are spot-on: I’m not a big eater. I don’t eat a lot of junk (so weight has never been an issue), but I also don’t eat *well* or mindfully.

      I do have protein powder, and have a food alarm on my phone (fucking annoying!) that goes off every couple of hours to remind me to eat (or have a shake), so I think I am doing *better*, but still not great.

      I still drink whenever I want, and if I feel like a fabulous meal, or nachos, or something else not good for me, I just have it. I am not good at depriving myself, denial makes me want to kick things and go ‘FUCK YOU!!!’ *laugh*

      I expect the nutritionist to give me exactly the same advice you have just given. If I can get some structure around it, I might be able to get somewhere with it.

      Thanks for the encouragement.

      Ferns

  3. As a former gym denizen, I can attest that with people in all sorts of positions, it’s hard *not* to look at somebody’s crotch once in a while. However, it’s less common for people to walk around with erections, so you must have made quite the impression on the gentleman.

    And looking at your pictures of muscley goodness, I can well understand why.

    Don’t be too down, though. Women, lacking in testosterone, simply aren’t going to *easily* build up huge guns. The changes will be more subtle, as your back develops and your shape becomes more hourglassy, and your curves tighten up, and …

    Umm, excuse me, I have to go now.

    1. “I can attest that with people in all sorts of positions, it’s hard *not* to look at somebody’s crotch once in a while.”

      *laugh* Inorite?!!

      “However, it’s less common for people to walk around with erections, so you must have made quite the impression on the gentleman.”

      He was probably looking at my arse… *wiggles arse*

      “And looking at your pictures of muscley goodness, I can well understand why.”

      *smile* Thank you!!

      Ferns

    1. Pffftt… lies!! Unless you mean comments like these on your fitness posts:

      “You look great!”
      “Looking good man.”
      “You’re doing great, sunshine!”
      “You look great”

      Oh the dissing, it must hurt you so…

      BTW, I took you off my workout crew list because even if you are working out like a demon, since you haven’t updated your logs in FOREVER, there wasn’t much point linking to anything. That bums me out, so let me know if you start logging again.

      Ferns

      1. I haven’t updated my logs because I stopped bicycling for the season… sort of. I have quite a few rides that have not been logged in on my fitness pages.

        I’m not sure how to start logging my lifting workouts. I see that you’re still using Jfit. I’m just using pen and paper at home, so I have to find some convenient way to put that up.

  4. You really are doing quite well and even though the changes may seem subtle to you, they are definitely noticeable to others.

    I know what you mean about the motivation thing too. I have the same thing and it’s compounded by my strange and frantic work schedule.

    I have found one thing that helps is changing up the routine a bit. I’ve also started using the treadmill as opposed to the stationary bike. With my knees and ankles like they are, it also adds the exciting new element of possible embarrassment if I should do a face plant at a full on run.

    You’ve come a long way and just looking at the progress you’ve made, and stalking your logs, inspires me to keep going. Keep up the good work!

    1. “You’ve come a long way and just looking at the progress you’ve made, and stalking your logs, inspires me to keep going.”

      Oh yay! I’m so glad.

      And you have been doing amazingly well given your work commitments!!

      Be careful with your knees and ankles won’t you? Once you do damage, recovery with soft tissue is fucking tough!

      Ferns

  5. This has nothing to do with the current topic, but I just talked to Pauline, and am meeting her at the old workplace at 7:00 a.m.. She promised to slap the shit out of me, have her friend Sherrie take a photo, and you will have your photo in the morning!

    Good morning, Ms. Ferns

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