MamaCreates

Behind the Scenes of One Mama's Life

Thrive90 – Phase Two Done!

As promised, I am back with my results from Phase II of Thrive90. As I mentioned in this post, I spent most of Phase II with a sprained ankle. Therefore I was not expecting big results; I said I would be content to maintain what I had accomplished in Phase I. After completing my fit test and doing all the measurements, I found that some things were maintained, but there were some improvements. Yay! Even injured, I still made progress!

Without further adieu…

  • I lost a half a pound (not much change, but Tony said that could be due to me increasing muscle, which weighs more than fat);
  • I took another half inch off my waist;
  • I lost an additional inch from my hips;
  • My thighs are another half inch smaller;
  • My arms shrunk by a half inch as well!

So Tony’s idea that I may not have lost much weight in the numbers due to muscle gain seems plausible to me since I continued to lose inches. In fact, if I  add them all up from the beginning, I have removed 6.25 inches from my body! While it’s gone from different places, it sure does add up; and it will never be allowed to return.

My fit test showed improvements as well. Though I can still only do one non-modified push up, I can now do two additional sit ups. I know that doesn’t seem like a lot, but for someone who couldn’t do any at the beginning of this journey, it’s a marked improvement. My flexibility has improved enough that I can now extend my hands about 6.5″ past my feet. I suspect that when there’s less around the middle, I will be able to do even better at this. I’ve never had difficulties in this area. My Wall Squat improved from 10 seconds to 15 seconds; and my static plank went from 40 to 50 seconds.

I am thrilled to see these little changes! But I have to admit that I wish I hadn’t sprained my ankle; perhaps my results would have been better. I was hoping I’d be further along than I am. So, I will just have to do better in Phase III.

And so I press on…

* As usual, all opinions of Thrive90 are my own. I am the one completing the program and the results are 100% mine.

Thrive90 – Down But Not Out

I’m just popping in here briefly to update my story on my Thrive90 program. I have technically completed Phase II as tomorrow (Sunday) is a day of rest. I will weigh myself, take measurements, weigh myself, and complete the fit test in a couple of days.

But I wanted to talk about something that happened during this part of the program. During the second of the four weeks, I sprained my ankle. But, like many of us moms out there, I ignored it. Or, at least, I tried to ignore it. I wrapped it in an ace bandage, used ice and heat, and elevated it. But I continued with my exercises, sort of. And I did not go to the doctor. So the second week I didn’t work as hard because my ankle wouldn’t tolerate many of the moves. I finally decided to go to have it x-rayed. So, during my third week I had a diagnosis of a sprain with instructions to rest it. Duh!

But, instead of using this as an excuse to skip my exercises, I decided to modify the exercises so that I could still workout without bothering my ankle. That was easier said than done, but I wasn’t about to quit halfway through this program. About halfway through week four, this week, my ankle began to feel better. So I gave it my all in the last two days – boy am I a bit sore!

As a result of my injury, I do not expect to have the same kind of results that I had after the first phase. I will be content to know that I have maintained. Check back in a couple of days and I’ll have those results posted. I am looking forward to starting Phase III of Thrive90 on Monday.

Is anyone else a member of Fit Marriage? I’d love to hear from others who are doing (or have completed) the Thrive90 program.

Thrive90 – Half Way Point

I have officially completed six of the twelve weeks of Thrive90! This means I have two more weeks of Phase Two and then four weeks of Phase Three.

Phase Two has definitely been more challenging than Phase One, but that’s a good thing. I am doing more; challenging myself. My muscles may not like it at first, but I know it’s working.

For example, in one of the new videos I had to do two sets of walking lunges. Now I had never done these before, and I had to do two sets of 20 each. The first part was ok, but it really burned toward the end of each set. The next day, I felt like my muscles were on fire! Fast forward to this week when I had to do the same thing again. They were still difficult to do toward the end, but the next day there were fewer fires to put out! Progress.

The other new thing in Phase Two is Power Yoga. Now I was a bit leary of yoga given its association with Hinduism and Buddhism. And being Catholic, I was not interested in the spiritual aspect of this form of exercise. But I remembered that either Dustin or Tony (co-creators of Thrive90 and FitMarriage) had emphasized that  they were making use of the fitness aspect of these moves only as they were Christians themselves. So I put my “pre-conceived” notions aside and gave it a try. It turned out to be a great workout! I got my heart rate up a bit, broke a sweat, and worked my whole body. Even the next day, though my muscles were still a little sore, I felt more rested than I had in a while. This has turned into one of my favorite videos to do.

** Links to  Thrive90 and FitMarriage are affiliate links.

Media and My Marriage

Continuing with Courtney’s Media Mondays, today we are discussing the role of media in our marriages. If you click on the words Media Mondays above, you will see five different ways that media can, or maybe has already, effect your marriage. They are all very important issues to be concerned about and/or watch out for in your relationship.

She discusses how the amount of time we spend online can neglect our husband’s needs. So true. I know I’ve been guilty of that.

Then there’s inappropriate relationships that can start so innocently. I know a woman whose husband started a few inappropriate relationships online; and I know how much this hurt her and her relationship. That trust is so difficult to regain. Right along with this one is the amount of inappropriate material that can so easily enter the house. Sometimes these two go hand in hand.

Though these are very real dangers, the nature of the internet is that it has many positives as well. For example, while there is so much filth out there, there is also such an opportunity to mentor and to grow.

The internet has provided a way for us to teach people we could never reach on our own. By the same token, we can also learn more than we ever could on our own. It’s a huge multiplication of the Titus 2 message! Here’s a list of things I’ve found to be extremely helpful in my marriage.

  • FitMarriage – Tony and Dustin have created some wonderful resources to help busy couples find time to get/stay fit together. Read my posts on Thrive90 to see this resource in action in my life (here and here are a couple of good ones).
  • Engaged Marriage – Dustin (from above) has his own website, where his tagline is “Don’t just stay married. Stay Engaged.” He is also the author of the ’15-Minute Marriage Makeover.’
  • One Extraordinary Marriage – Tony (from above) and his wife, Alisa, are the creators of ‘Stripped Down’ and Marriage podcasts; as well as the popular Seven Day Challenge.
  • Adding Zest to Your Nest – This site is comprised of a group of women who offer some very frank (and explicit) advice on meeting those bedroom needs.
  • Hot Holy and Humorous – Similar to Adding Zest, J (this site’s host) offers some frank and explicit advice as well.
  • Peasant Princess – This is a series of talks on the Song of Solomon (or Song of Songs). Mark Driscoll talks very openly on the marriage relationship, as designed by God, and isn’t afraid to speak the truth about how men and women have different roles in it. Each talk is approximately an hour and would make a great beginning to a ‘date night’ with your spouse. (see my post entitled Hopeful Transformations to read more about this resource in my life)
  • Sexually Confident Wife – Shannon Ethridge has a wealth of information here. You can sign up for short emails that offer one ‘Hot Tip’ each week to making your marriage better.
  • Kingdom Twindom – This blog chronicles the life – ups and downs – of one family’s marriage. The wife, the writer, has made some difficult choices and shares them on her blog. She is a wonderful example of living out her marriage vows. Some of her readers disagree. We, as Christian women, can rally around other Christian women and support their Godly decisions.

I know there are many more out there, but these are ones with which I am familiar.

Yes, there are many ways that media can drive a wedge between us and our spouses, but it doesn’t have to be that way. We can turn the tables and use it for good. Remember Joseph’s revelation to his brothers… “Even though you meant harm to me, God meant it for good, to achieve his present end…” (Genesis 50:20). God can use the internet for good through His people. Just as He saved the Israelites from starvation through the evil that befell Joseph.

Technology is here. We cannot escape it. Let’s resolve to take it back from the devil and use it for the good God wants in all our lives. Let’s let it bless our marriages with happier wives and happier husbands. Let’s bless each other as we learn from Godly women (and men) what works and what doesn’t; what God has designed, and how He has blessed this beautiful thing called marriage.

My challenge to you this week is to find a way to bless your husband (or wife) ~ at least once this week ~ via media. Please come back and let me know in the comments what you did and how it went.

* FitMarriage is an affiliate link; I am not affiliated with any of the other links.

** Some of these websites contain explicit content. While it is Christian-based, it is intended for mature audiences of married couples.

*** This post is linked to Women Living Well’s Media Mondays. Please stop by and see what other Godly women have to say about media and their marriages.

*** This post is also being linked to Building Our Homes Together with Jesus. Please head on over to see what other ladies are doing in their homes.

Media and Me

Today Courtney over at Women Living Well is beginning a series called Media Mondays. The topic this week is Media and Our Walk With God.

I will admit that there are times that I have rationalized to myself that I am walking with God while I am on the internet. How, you may ask? Well, I subscribe to faith-filled blogs; I read articles on social justice issues and their Biblical implications; and I blog about my faith (sometimes). However, as Courtney points out, there are always chimes that call my attention away from what I’m doing, or should be doing. Those chimes do come in the form of sounds, but they also (at least for me) come in the form of colors and pictures and more articles. Sometimes I can find myself following rabbit trails for hours if I allow myself.

But that’s not the only reason that my time on the internet is not really time with God. Many times, what I am reading is someone else’s opinion, explanation, or theory. Yes, many of these people are more qualified than I am to interpret certain passages; however, they are not an adequate substitute for actually reading the Bible myself. The internet is not a substitute for quiet-time or prayer-time.

I also have to think about the behavior I’m modeling for my children. If I am on the computer all day, what am I teaching them? Let’s see, I could be teaching them that:

  • the computer is more important than they are;
  • the computer is more important the God and prayer-time;
  • the computer is more interesting;
  • this is how a wife and mother is supposed to behave;
  • they are an inconvenience or a burden when they ask me to do something.

I’m sure there’s more, but I think that’s bad enough. I’ll admit that I’ve passed more than one of those messages to my children at one point or another.

While my walk with God is important for me, I also have to realize that it’s important to my family. I need to model the behavior that I want to see from them. In order for me to raise children who love God and love to serve Him, I need to demonstrate that in my own life.

So there are many things – and inherently none of them are bad. The problem lies when I let the things I do compete with and surpass the needs of my family; and more importantly, my Walk with God.

I cannot seem to get the button to work! So this post is being linked to Media Mondays. Please hop over and check out what the other ladies have to say about Media and their Walk with God.

This post is also linked to Prairie Flower Farm’s Building Our Homes Together with Jesus. Hop on over to Linda’s place and find out we’re all doing!

Thrive90 – Phase I Done!

Over the weekend I completed Phase I of Thrive90! Yay! I was wondering if I’d make it. I seemed to start out really motivated during the first week or two, but life happened in week three and we had colds, allergic reactions, and bronchitis. My son and I were both under the weather. But I persevered and did not neglect one day of my exercises – I was grateful for the days of rest though. I did four weeks of Core Blast, HIIT Squat Walks, Strength Circuit, and Cardio. Not only am I still alive, but I am smaller than I was four weeks ago! “The proof is in the pudding,” they say.

So, here’s what I did:

  • I lost five pounds
  • My thighs are now 1 inch smaller
  • I took an inch off my hips
  • There’s one inch less around my waist
  • My arms are 1.25″ more narrow
  • My resting heart rate went from 78 bpm to 65 bpm

With respect to my SMART goals:

  • I am on track for my goal to lose 15 pounds in the three months – five per month;
  • I wanted to show improvement in three of the five fit test categories; and I showed improvement in all five! (I will still work to increase these even further during the next two Phases)
  1. Flexibility – I went from 3 inches over my toes to 5 inches
  2. Wall Squat – I went from 4 seconds to 10 seconds
  3. Static Plank – I went from 35 seconds to 40 seconds
  4. Sit-Ups – I went from zero to 4
  5. Push-Ups – I went from zero to one (It’s an improvement!)

I am thrilled to see all these positive changes happening! While I was a little disappointed in the number of pounds lost, I know that I made some eating mistakes; and I know that they’re not coming back.

My impressions of Thrive90 so far? It’s a great program! I’ve obviously seen positive results, but it’s more than that. I don’t have to drive anywhere; which saves me time. I don’t have to leave my children with strangers in a daycare; which allows me to be with them, and allows them to see me do something positive for my health. I don’t have to pay $25-75/month for a gym membership; which allows me to stay within my budget. The videos are easy to follow; and don’t have loud, obnoxious music in the background. All-in-all, the videos, the program itself, the email encouragement, and the extras, add up to a very positive experience ~ with positive results!

So, now it’s on to Phase II. I started that today with a new video called HIIT Mountain Climbers. If you recall, HIIT stands for High Intensity Interval Training. In this video we did 30 seconds of a modified Mountain Climber and then took a 60 second break. I think I had to do this about eight times. I did have to stop during the last one because I was actually getting very painful blisters in each foot. The weird thing (to me) was that I really didn’t feel it in my quads and glutes as much as I thought I would. That is, I didn’t feel it right away. But it did hit me a few hours later. Now, as I sit here, I am definitely feeling it (and my toes are still screaming too). I think I should go to sleep now so they can get some rest!

See you soon with another update. If you have a moment, would mind praying for me to keep up my motivation? I appreciate it.

* Once again, the links in this post are affiliate links in an attempt to help my family earn a little extra money. We paid upfront for the program; the opinions and results are all mine.

Thrive90 – Week Three Update

I am a little late in my updating my Thrive90 progress here. So I thought I should update tonight before Week Four actually begins!

After I completed Week Two, I did weigh in and found that I had lost another 2.2 lbs! Yay! That brings my total loss for the first two weeks to 3.6 pounds. Now I know that doesn’t sound like a lot of weight, but when I look at things that weigh around three pounds, I am amazed at how much is now gone. I am starting to see a few subtle differences myself. In fact, I felt just a little better in my church clothes this morning :>!

Each week, I am seeing differences in my ability to do the various exercises. For example, I can routinely hold my Static Pike for 30 seconds, I can do all 40 Mountain Climbers without stopping; and even though they’re modified, I can also do all 15 Chair Dippers without stopping. To me, that is incredible. I get such a feeling of accomplishment when I do something just a little better than I did it the previous time.

I also wanted to take a minute and talk about goals. I’ve never been much for setting goals – though I do realize their value and I’m learning how to set them. Who says you can’t teach an old dog new tricks?

One of the items that came with my Thrive90 Program was a SMART Goals worksheet. I don’t know where this concept originated, but it is not a new one. It is, however, new to me. For anyone else who may be new to this concept, let me explain. For goals to be successful, they need to be SMART. By this I don’t just mean intelligent. SMART is an acronym:

S – Specific

M – Measurable

A – Achievable

R – Realistic or Relevant

T – Timely

Basically, goals need to be something that is actually doable! By being SMART, I am actually setting myself up for success instead of failure. So I had to set two SMART goals at the beginning (three weeks ago).

My first goal was to lose 15 pounds by the end of the 90 days. I actually want to lose more than that, but in order to be realistic, this is only a 12 week program, I had to make my goal achievable within that time period. I guess that means I’ll have to keep exercising even after my 90 days are complete. Just kidding, I knew that was a reality when I started. Looking at my goal of 15 lbs., I would need to lose an average of 1.25 lbs per week. I am already slightly ahead of that goal and that is very motivating to keep going.

My second goal was geared toward the fitness test I took at the beginning. There were five areas in which I was tested: Sit & Reach Flexibility, Wall Squat Hold, Static Plank Hold, Sit Ups, and Push Ups. My goal was that I would improve in three of these areas by the end of Week Four, four of them by the end of Week Eight, and all of them by the end of Week Twelve. I know that I am getting stronger with each week, so I hope that I am on my way towards reaching that goal as well. I will find out for sure at the end of this upcoming week.

Thanks for the continued support I’ve received!

The usual disclaimer: Thrive90 and Fit Marriage are affiliate links through which I hope to help my family income. I purchased the program; and all opinions and results are solely mine.

Thrive90 – Week Two Update

Wow! Thanks for all the visits yesterday – it was the most visits I’ve had since starting this blog! A special thanks goes out to Dustin, one of the co-creators of Thrive90, who gave me a shout-out on both Facebook and Twitter! Dustin has his own website called Engaged Marriage, in addition to Fit Marriage, where he talks all things marriage from a Catholic Christian standpoint. There are some great practical things there, so go take a look.

I am now halfway through Week Two and I’m doing well. My hamstrings are not as sore as they used to be, and I did the HIIT Squat Walks again today. I am making it through all eight walks, but it’s still difficult. Right now I am proud that I can make it through the whole thing. Yesterday, when I completed the Core Blast for the second time, I found that I had improved in some areas, but stayed the same on others. That’s OK. At least there were some noticeable improvements. I could hold the Static Pike a couple of seconds longer. I made it through the whole 30 seconds of jumping jacks. I know that sounds easy, but it wasn’t for me last week. Still can’t hold that boat pose though – something to keep working on!

My nutrition is making improvements as well. I am finding that I can get through periods of slight hunger without running to a handful of chocolate. Speaking of chocolate, I have also found that I can just eat 3-4 kisses instead of 10-15. Progress, not perfection is an important motto for me to have right now. I made another chicken salad last night and added some red to my green in the form of tomatoes and red peppers.

Nighttime is still my most difficult period. I can get most of my computer stuff done only after the kids (and hubby) go to bed; and that’s the time I feel the most tempted to splurge. So, when I decide I’m going to allow myself a little chocolate, instead of bringing out a whole bag or box, I only take out the amount I’m going to allow. That way, I don’t absent-mindedly take another bite or handful. I have found that once I’ve settled in for some computer time, I don’t want to get up. If the food is in the other room, then it’s not as likely that I will go get it. It seems to be working.

And so, I keep plugging away – one day at a time. I would love to hear from any of you who have done, or are doing, the Thrive90 program – thanks for stopping by!

* Disclaimer – as previously stated, the links to Thrive90 and Fit Marriage are affiliate links, in an attempt to help with household expenses. The links to other websites are just links. I have not been paid or compensated to write these posts. I purchased the program and the opinions are solely mine.

Thrive90 – Weekend

Over the weekend, I tried out the last video in Phase One of Thrive90. It was a 30 minute cardio video that can be used on one or both of the two cardio days during each week. They suggest that you can do any cardio activity for at least 30 minutes or you can do this video. It was designed to get my heart rate up – and that it did! I could really tell that I was out of shape; some of these things were really difficult and I couldn’t keep up. But it was ok because I knew two things: First, I did my best; and Second, it would get better if I kept doing my best.

Sunday was a day of rest, which I definitely needed. In fact, my hamstrings were so sore, I wanted two days’ rest!

I did give myself a little motivation though. The program has you weigh and measure after every four weeks, but I wanted to know that my sore hamstrings were worth it. So, I got on the scale. And while it may not seem like much, I was proud to have lost 1.4 lbs! It was motivating enough to get outside and walk for 30 minutes – even with sore hamstrings! It was motivating enough to keep me committed to exercising this week and to help me do better with my food choices.

I look forward to a better week, with improvements and continued weight loss!

Thrive90 – Day Five

The first week of Thrive90 is almost over and I’m still alive!

Today I did a new video that was called Strength Circuit. I have to admit that this is the first workout I really struggled with. It wasn’t because it was a bad workout. It was more due to the fact that I’m out of shape and the symptoms I encounter with Thoracic Outlet Syndrome. Many of the exercises involved over-the-head movements and those are difficult with TOS. I actually experienced tingling and numbness for about a half hour after the workout was complete. Let me repeat that this is due to my medical condition and not the program itself. Then, there were a couple of exercises that my out-of-shape body just couldn’t handle. I look forward to improving my abilities in this circuit training; I am told that I will get better with each time I do it.

There is one thing I am really proud of though – one of the things in the circuit was a static plank. Basically you put your weight on your elbows and toes and raise your body off the ground, while keeping it flat. In my first video this week, I had to do this and cold only hold it for 20 seconds. Today I was able to hold it for the full 30 seconds the first time and 20 seconds the second time. I am proud of the improvement. I know it’s something really small, but any small improvement gives me motivation to keep on course. I get to do a new video tomorrow and then rest on Sunday. I am looking forward to do a weigh-in on Monday!

See you tomorrow – thanks for stopping by!

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