Still holding my own. No movement on the scale, as of yet, but I did show improvement in measurements...
Waist: 26.5 = .25" loss!
Stomach: 31.75 = .25" loss!
Chest band: 29.5 = .5" loss!
Total loss: 1 inch!!
So, there's proof that even if the 'scale' is not cooperating, progress is still being made on the Fat loss front!
The new strength training workout I've been doing has really been helping with keeping me motivated. I use a variety of Dumbbells
, ranging in weights from 5lbs to 25lbs, and use the appropriate weight for the muscle being worked. Then I have a Barbell
that I lift for Dead-lifts, Shoulder Press, and Chest Presses, and it is currently set at 42lbs! My upper chest muscles are REALLY beginning to show build up and that area needs all the help it can get!
Where the biggest muscle growth is showing, is through my shoulders, biceps, and triceps. My biceps look like a good sized camels hump, then the triceps have taken on that FIRM sway, underneath, when flexing in the mirror. Hard to describe, but there is a definite, noticeable, separation between the two muscles, when flexing. It's very encouraging! My shoulder caps just keep getting rounder and more pronounced...almost like my own built in shoulder pads!
Being fitted for a new shirt at work, the seamstress said.."You have nice shoulders for this top. The seam fits perfectly (it's very long) and that is very rare with the way this shirt is made. I, normally, have to make alterations cause the seam drags the shoulders down, but not in your case, your shoulders fill the area, perfectly". Nice!
Also, since my upper body is always the first area to Lean Out, I'm noticing the muscle growth across my Back, when I'm flexing! Wish I had a way to see my back, straight on, rather than from a side angle, in the mirror, then I could get a better judgment of progress. Bummer. Still, though, it IS standing out, to me, so there HAS to be some pretty good muscle growth happening back there. I'm the hardest critic, so if 'I' can see it...something HAS to be improving!
One more change in my fitness plan, since beginning this new strength training routine, is to incorporate HIIT, 5 days per week. It is suppose to be the best way to achieve that Lean body, without threatening any of the muscle I'm working hard on gaining. Long sessions of Cardio, are out, and now I just do a 24 minute HIIT on my treadmill, which includes a 2 minute warm up and a 2 minute cool down. I created a, pre-set program, that alternates me between 1 minute of slower, then 1 minute of faster. I will allow my HR results to tell me, if and when, it's time to increase the speed on the fast one. Right now, though, 5.5mph - 5.7mph gets my HR to the 85-90% of my (48yr) range. Tried to increase it to 6mph, but that made my HR raise too high (178bpm) so any increases will be gradual. Either way...HIIT is kinda fun! You HAVE to stay 100% alert, or those, sudden, speed changes could REALLY throw you...literally!!
One final change I'm TRYING to improve on....is increasing my calorie consumption. Since I eat 95% Clean, I find this can be quite the challenge, though. If I don't plan my menu, ahead of time, then my Macro numbers get off kilter, which makes the CALORIE climb harder to muster. But I'm learning!
Spark makes it kinda hard, cause THEY calculate our BMR, as if we are all 'sedentary', so this goes against everything I've learned off of the Body Building sites, which recommends waaaay higher calorie consumption, along with Heavy weight lifting, in order to build muscle. I DO know it is next to impossible (except for newbies) to build muscle AND lose weight (fat), at the same time. It CAN be done...it's just harder for most people, so BB recommends choosing, either, BUILDING muscle OR LOSING fat, and place your focus on just that ONE area.
THERE'S THE TOUGHIE!
I still have lower tummy fat to lose, so do I focus on THAT?? Where as Muscle growth BURNS more calories, so do I focus on THAT??
If I go with the latter, I know I'll HAVE to pitch the scale. (If not, then, at least, just forget about reaching that 125lb scale goal, any time soon). No doubt about it, that sucker will play mind games, like no other!!
But, one thing I DO know....my body DOES seem to have that muscle BUILDING ability, in spite of eating at a lower calorie amount, this is being proven, now, as it was in the past, also. So, I think, as long as I shoot for the middle ground, calorie wise, and keep it as close to 1500 - 1600, as I can, then I 'should' be able to accomplish BOTH of my goals, simultaneously.