Thursday, September 10, 2015

NROLFW: Phase 3 Recap

See also recaps of phase 1 and phase 2. See weekly workout recaps including phase 3 here

I actually did the four weeks of phase 3 workouts in four consecutive weeks!! And only about a month in between finishing phase 2 and starting phase 3 (you're supposed to take a week off here and there, in between phases is a good time, but a month is probably a bit overkill in the rest). 

Like phase 2, phase 3 is a total of 8 workouts (2 workouts, 4 times each). They were of similar makeup in types and number of exercises, so also around 45 minutes or so to do each workout. It started feeling a little bit repetitive, both in comparison to phase 2, and between workout A and B - a row, single leg squat type thing, an ab thing, etc. But workout A ended in a "body-weight matrix" of squats and lunges that was killer! It was short but felt like it should be a workout on its own. 

One caveat on this phase, equipment-wise: so far I've only needed my dumbbell set, swiss ball, and pull-up bar (with resistant bands). However, this one included a bench press, thus necessitating a bench. Fortunately I have a piano, so I had to cart the bench down to the basement for this.

Performance progress

For the most part not exactly dramatic progress - moved from 10 pounds for most stuff to 15 pounds for most stuff. But I did cut almost a minute off the bodyweight matrix. 

BUT - the big improvement - I went from using two body bands (purple - 1 1/8" + green - 1 3/4") for offsetting resistance for assisted pull-ups, to only using the green one!! So previously this was about 90 pounds of resistance; now it's only about 50. 

Workout A

Workout B

Appearance progress

In the month between finishing phase 2 and starting phase 3, I went from 135 to to 133 (still running during that time - peaked for a half marathon and began marathon training). Over the course of phase 3, dropped to 130. So not a ton of weight lost, just a few pounds, but I think that's partially attributable to finding that fine balance during marathon training of refueling versus eating everything. Keep in mind I'm only 5'0", so 130 is still technically (just barely) in the "overweight" BMI category. But my goal as I got closer though was to hit 127 and be in a statistically normal weight category before we start trying to get pregnant. (spoiler: a month later and I've gotten there!) 

I haven't taken body measurements because I'm lazy, but will definitely do so by the end of marathon training (which will also align with end of phase 4 if I stay on track) for a solid comparison. 

I've had to replace my jeans again, and both my Old Navy jeans and Target trousers (read: at least slight vanity sizing at both) are now size 4! I even bought a skirt originally from The Limited at Goodwill, that's an XS - had I been buying it retail I would have sized up to a S, but I'm pretty excited that it fit well enough to be worth buying. 

Overall thoughts

I still think the workouts a bit long to be fitting in around marathon training, but outside of that perspective and working around 8 hours of running each week, it really isn't that time consuming. Although I occasionally feel a bit bored, the structure is helpful and important to me for sticking with a strength program. 

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