I’ve gotta say- every day living that I’m living here is a good day. I still constantly have those “pinch me” moments where I can’t believe that it’s real, like earlier this week while hiking at Chautauqua. I’m just … so at peace here.
As you can see, I live on the edge.
Today is a very special day: it marks the last day of the third and final phase of Jamie Eason’s LiveFit trainer! In some ways, I can’t believe it’s over. But in others, the program seems like it’s gone on forever. I’ve definitely learned a lot over the last 13 weeks (the program is 12 weeks, but I had one week while I was in Oregon that I did non-LiveFit workouts). This post today is all about the good, the bad and the ugly. Well, maybe not so ugly.
I started the LiveFit trainer program on Monday, April 29th – just one day after we moved to Colorado. When I lived in Maryland I was teaching a minimum of seven group exercise classes a week (mostly Bodypump and Spinning), so those were the majority of my workouts. After performing the same exercise routine for years, I knew it was time to switch it up. Since every other single thing in my life was changing I figured why not start a new exercise program too? My friend Heather had been doing LiveFit for two weeks by the time I started and was raving about how great it was. For the first time in a long time I actually had the freedom to choose what my workouts were going to be, so I decided to start the LiveFit trainer program. I should also point out that I did not follow the LiveFit Trainer Eating Program, so I won’t be commenting on that at all. There are some decent recipes that Jamie Eason recommends, and I did adapt some of them into my diet.
LiveFit Trainer was divided up into 3 four-week phases. Phase One was definitely the easiest. The only hard part about Phase One was that it required no cardio. For someone that was used to teaching multiple Spinning classes each week, this was a little tough to get used to. I put my trust into the program and focused solely on strength training and heavy lifting. It also included 3 rest days in the first two weeks and 2 in the third and fourth (I usually still went hiking on most rest days). The weird thing is- I actually liked it! Phase One went against everything that I had been doing before (cardio, strength training with low weight/high reps) and I liked that. Change is good.
When I got to Phase Two, I was happy to re-introduce cardio to my routine (but dang- it was hard to get back into it!). Each week included 30 minutes of cardio 3-4 times per week. which was paired with a strength training workout focusing on a specific muscle group. Phase two added in an additional day for exercise which meant 6 days of workouts with 1 day of rest. I designated Saturdays as my rest day and started each new week on Sunday. One of the big changes with Phase Two were the twice-a-week leg workouts. They were brutal! But, if you know me, you know that I like my legs to be big and strong- so I (sickly) liked when leg day rolled around. Most of the workouts took about an hour, which is definitely a manageable amount of time. I packed a lot of heart-pumping, sweaty action into that hour!
I also took a lot of annoying, sweaty selfies during that phase.
After I completed the first workout of Phase Three my initial thought was you’ve got to be kidding me… All of the sudden, the workouts were much more intense- and much longer. While I did like the exercises that each day had to offer, this is the phase I struggled with the most. The biggest gripe I had about the Phase Three workouts is that many were complicated, high maintenance and a little unrealistic to do in a crowded gym. Instead of performing multiple sets of one exercise and moving on to the next, there were many that had you alternating between exercises for one set each. To successfully do this, all of the machines that you need must be available, which was hardly ever the case. At least with the other phases I could complete an exercise and move on to the next (and skip forward if a machine was taken). All of this leads me into my other complaint about Phase Three- the workouts were just too long! On some days, I spent two hours in the gym. I don’t know about you, but anything much over an hour is just too much for me. I’d rather pack a ton of intensity into a short amount of time and move on with my day. All of that aside, I did really enjoy the workouts. Each one pushed me to work harder and many left me sore for days (especially this particular day!).
Despite all of my whining, I still pushed through every single day and completed the workouts. I’m really stubborn about not only finishing something that I start- but also finishing it well. I knew that Jamie Eason wrote up each and every workout with a plan in mind, and I really respect that. I also like the satisfaction of being able to say (and know) that I did it.
Since the start of the program, I haven’t lost any weight, but I have certainly gained some muscle mass. I didn’t go into this as a “weight loss program” and was much more intrigued by the workouts and any new information (or exercises) I might learn. I imagine that if I had followed the diet plan strictly I would probably be a lot leaner by now- but it just wasn’t something that I was able to follow and not want to shoot someone. For me, any “diet” plan has to be something that I can happily follow and sustain- that’s the only way I have continued success. I definitely notice a difference in the definition of certain areas of my body- especially my upper back and shoulders (namely, posterior delts). I am noticeably stronger too- and that just rocks.
So what’s next for me? Well, I’m still trying to find a gym to teach Bodypump and Spinning at- that has definitely been a challenge since moving here. For the next week or two, I’m going to focus on learning the choreography (finally) for the latest Bodypump release, ride my Spinning and mountain bikes and hike (of course). After that, who knows? I am definitely looking forward to having the freedom to have my workout be whatever I want for a while. I will definitely still continue to lift and go back to many of the workouts from the LiveFit program.
Unless I can get this guy to be my trainer…
I’ll be sticking to doing my own thing for a while. 🙂
Just a few quick reminders: There’s a kick-ass FlapJacked giveaway going on (the winner gets a package of each flavor of high protein mix!)- I’ll choose the winner Sunday night!
My DietBet Game starts on Monday. You can sign up by this Sunday to participate!!
Have a WONDERFUL WEEKEND!!
Have you ever completed an (time specific) exercise program? Do you have to finish everything you start or do you usually drop off?