Potential & Focus

4 Jan

I found this little saying the other day – it’s very relevant as I embark on a new challenge.

‘Face new challenges, seize new opportunities, test your resources against the unknown and in the process discover your own unique potential’

John Amatt

It’s now 2 years since my journey with exercise began and I ventured down to my local pool and did those all important fourteen lengths. Since then I’ve reduced my weight further, totally changed my body shape and really enjoy lots of different exercise so the big question today is where to do from here?

Personal trainer showing a client how to exerc...

Image via Wikipedia

I know there is more to be achieved, there are now areas of my body that perhaps concern me more now than they did a few months ago, mainly because I know they could be changed. Now that the fat has diminished, the loose skin is more apparent, however I am learning that if I develop the muscle further this could have a marked impact on this and improve the appearance.  Despite the fact that I look fine with my clothes on, thanks to very clever underwear choices, I’d like the naked me to look better and also to just see what could be achieved!

It’s not an easy process to build, strengthen and lengthen muscles but it can be done – just in case anyone is worried I’m not after the Madonna look, just to enhance the tone!  I am more than up for the challenge, I’ve learnt that I am a competitive person so this is what will drive me – proving to myself that it can be done or at least giving it my best shot. There is a degree of realism, in that I was very overweight for a long time, I’m 44 and my biology might present some limitations however let’s give it a go and see what happens.

The target areas are:

  • Stomach
  • Upper Arms
  • Thighs and Hips
  • Bottom

There are three approaches that I’m going to combine, this may change so keep reading the blog to see what happens.

1.  Tracey Anderson – a trainer from the States who uses a method called ‘strategic muscle exhaustion’  – a friend has been using this for the past few months and has seen some pretty significant results. It uses a lot of mat work with free weights and so far all I can tell you is that it’s hard and it hurts!  This is great though as you can break down the exercises into chunks and do them  at home.

2. Swimming – it’s great for toning, it’s cardio and I do love it so I’ve upped my lengths, I can also use the health club in a hotel next to work, so I’ll be in the pool straight from work as much as I can now.  As before I’ll be alternating between breast stroke and using the kick board.

3. As well as the new pool I get access to the gym so I have an appointment booked for early next week with a personal trainer to re-assess my gym work, I want to ensure that I am doing the right work and using my time and energy in the right way.  So let’s look at both cardio and weights.

So what are the objectives and the timeline?

  • A pair of size 12 jeans (read my next post for some useful views on the challenge of buying jeans!)
  • Less self-conscious about my upper arms!

And all of this by the end of April!

For me physical challenge is a new thing, I used to be more focused on work and some ‘brain’ things.  I’m not losing sight of these either!

I’m in a good ‘head space’ at the moment, over New Year some things didn’t work out quite in the way I’d thought however I can confidently say that my life is richer because they happened and my focus hasn’t changed, if anything I’m a bit more determined!   I’ve made the decision to take down another blog I’ve written over the last couple of years, it’s about an old life and just doesn’t feel relevant anymore and it’s more than time to move on from that.

There are lots of new things going on in my life now, I have a new camcorder and SLR camera, I’m looking at a new blog that shows my experiences of becoming more creative, the photo was taken by someone else of me and then I got a bit creative with it, it shows an interesting reflection, I’m sure too that some more of the work will find its way onto this blog too!   I’m also doing some writing for some third parties which is exciting.  It feels like a good balance.

So on the whole 2012 feels like a year of growth and opportunity for me – physically, mentally and creatively!   I hope you’ll find the next chapter of my story interesting!

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