I was talking to my boss at the Evil Day Job the other day and she sounded surprised that I was doing Power 90. She said something like, “Isn’t that for men?”
Tony has both a woman and a man (young – he calls them “the kids”!) behind him for the Power 90 routine and she looks darned good. Firm and toned, yes, but not muscular like a Russian weightlifter or something. None of them are bulky that way. Even Tony doesn’t look like a massive weightlifter. These are not exercises to bulk up.
But it got me to thinking about WHY I choose to do Power 90 and why I like it so much, so I thought, hey, another blog post.
When you diet, you inevitably lose muscle along with fat (unless you’re exercising to counteract it). When you cut the calories significantly, your body will attack muscle first and hoard the fat cells. When you crash diet a lot without exercise…and then gain it back…this is bad, obviously.
Everything you gain is fat.
I’ve been doing this for years and years and YEARS. So my number one priority is to regain some muscle — which will improve my overall health as well as my metabolism, which has slowed to a snail’s pace.
I’m over 40 now. Losing weight is harder than ever. My metabolism is only going to slow down even more if I do nothing about it. My flexibility and strength are going to deteriorate. With That Man’s problems (hip and back plus he’s diabetic), he can barely get around most days even with weekly chiropractor visits and medication, and he’s not even 50 yet.
I don’t want to join him there in pain and constant doctor trips. I want to be able to play basketball with the girls or horse around with Middle (even if she kicks me in the knee!).
I don’t want to have to go to a gym and use equipment. While I do LIKE lifting on fancy machines, it’s much more likely that I won’t go if I have to find time to leave the house. I can do Power 90 at home over my lunch or after dinner each day with minimal equipment.
I simply like lifting weights and always have. I was a charter member of my high school’s strength club about a hundred years ago. I even got up early to be at school by 6:30 3 times a week to lift weights before class, even though we’d lift more in PE during the day. It got hard to find an exercise I hadn’t already done when it came time to lift in class. These were free weights too — just bars and weights locked on the ends. I could out-squat most of the boys in my class, easily squatting more than my body weight.
But when you lift that much…and then stop…where does all that muscle go? Sigh.
So an exercise routine that involves strength training is perfect for me. I used to hate to work out – especially cardio. So I didn’t want that to be the ONLY thing I was doing, for fear I wouldn’t stick with it.
Plus, I just like how I feel doing Power 90. I feel STRONG and dammit I need to feel strong in my life. In my workout, I can punch and kick and pretend like I’ve got one badass right cross and left upper hook. (In reality I’d probably suck in a real fight but while I’m working out, it feels great!) I’d probably love a boxing or taebo class but I don’t know of any around here.
There is a deep tiredness I get from the strength days that’s hard to explain. I always wonder if I’m going to be able to finish. I’m lifting to the point of muscle failure, and that’s not always a comfortable feeling. But it’s also exhilarating in a way. To push myself that hard and work out until my arms are shaky and my knees don’t want to carry me up the stairs. For someone who’s been so overweight most of my life, it makes me feel GOOD to do something I know I couldn’t do before, and conquer it. Every single day. I need that too.
I need it bad.
I need to feel strong and invincible at least for awhile. That’s what Power 90 does for me.
I can only imagine how P90X would make me feel. Maybe I’ll tackle it later in 2012.
As Tony says, “Do your best and forget the rest.”