achieving financial freedom one lazy step at a time

Category: health (Page 1 of 2)

The health report – April

This is going to be a very short reporet for the same raison I am a bit late writing this post.

And that reason is that I screwed up my back.

I have only myself to blame. I know I have a weak back (left side, L4 to L5 to be very precise about it). And my back was already acting up a couple of weeks. I should have taken action then by doing specific back exercises and perhaps even stopping my fitness exercises.

But I soldiered on.

On saturday 2 april I even trimmed our hedge which really made my back worse. This was followed by me spending Sunday 03 April sitting in the car or on bad chairs while visiting family and friends all over Flanders. The combination of those two days made a manageable back issue into an unmanageable one.

To put it bluntly: my back was fucked up.

Even the simple fact of getting up from the couch was very painful. So doctors have been visited, pain medication taken and a physiotherapist visited twice weekly.

But even now is sitting in an office chair painful.

Fitness exercises, greasing the groove or rowing all came to a dead stop that weekend. Mentally i am very, very worried that I will not resume my exercise regime even when my back is fixed. Because this has been the pattern in my past. I am reminding myself that I now have a whole new mindset about exercises.

I also decided to not let these rest weeks be a complete waste a redlubled my efforts on eating healthy. This was helped by a week of double painkillers. Tranadol combined with Diazepam really take away your hunger!

I had to remind myself to regulary drink my proteine shakes because muscle loss is definitely happening! I just hope I am also losing fat! At the moment I stand at 105,5 kg.

Thursday I am visiting my dietician and with her I hope to fine tune my food intake to limit the muscle loss but still get below the 105kg while I can not exercise. Once I am able again to do all my exercises I will hope to rebuild the muscle mass as quickly as possible.

The health report – March

Sigh, I have been jojo-ing between 109 and 110 kg on the weight front. This morning I clocked in at 110.1 kg. While it isn’t really bad it’s also not very good.
I kind of lost focus a little bit, mentally I was a bit down and the kettlebell exercises are still pretty fucking brutal on my body. Finding a new equilibrium on what I need to eat to keep up with the demands the kettlebell swings place on my body is ongoing. I’ll explain in more detail below.

Fitness

Again, I didn’t miss any sessions. I like what I do and acutally look forward to lifting weights.

You can ignore the two lower bars, that’s a logging mishap where one session of exercising wasn’t logged. A bit annoying that you can’t correct this. Basically i plateaud at 30 180 kg. Yes I cracked my own goal of 30K!!

The logging mishap does mean that my total numbers aren’t a 100% correct anymore but I am not sweatting about those. They are pretty impressive even if I do say so myself 😉

Staying on a plateau was intentional because of my transition to a 20 kg kettlebell in my greasing the groove routine,

Greasing the groove

Greasing the groove was brutal! Last month I started at 10 reps with a 20 kg weight and my focus was on getting those reps up higher,

At the moment I am at 16 reps and hell was that increase brutal. Off course a 6 reps increase does mean 120 kg extra lifted, 8 times a day for 6 days a week. That’s a 5 760 kg increase. It was a bit much! I think my frugal habits came and bit me in the ass here. I went from 10 kg to 20 kg in one go to save money because kettlebells are expensive and I knew if I bought a 16 kg one I would need to buy a 20 kg one a few months later. I should have bought the 16 kg kettlebell and made the transition to that one.

The big jump in weight got me somewhat out of balance. And this on several areas. Food wise it had me getting the energy out of bad food. It also made me pretty tired, which didn’t help with the somber mood I was in. I did realise what was happening so I was a bit less disciplined and did miss a few repetitions. Like this week I only did them for 5 days and last week I had a few days with only 5 reps and not the normal 8. The reason was life getting in the way (like a Saturday of lots of yard work I didn’t want to interrupt every hour to go do my exercices). But normally I would make up for the missed reps late in the evening or on Sunday. Recognising my body needed a bit more rest I didn’t do it this time. I think I made the right call here.

By het way, my record keeping of my greasing the groove rpetitions is just on a scrap of paper I throw away when its full.

Simplicity does work sometimes. I have off course also kept up my 50 reps of crunches so one bar represents both the crunches as the kettelbell swings as I always do them back to back.

Cardio

Rowing was a big fat zero. Which I realise isn’t good. Like I said above, i now realise I lost my equilibrium, in part because of the big jump to a 20 kg kettlebell.

I am glad I have a three part exercise regime because even if I screw up 1 part as I did now I still have the other two parts to fall back on. But I also need to learn from my mistakes. So the fitness and greasing the groove will stay on their present plateau while I find my balance once more on the food front and rebuild my rowing habit. I am going to really focus on my habit and begin with just 5 min of rowing. Actually how many minutes I row doesn’t even matter at the moment! More important is getting back in the habit of sitting on the machine and do something!

The health report – February

Eating wise I am back on track! The holiday splurge is but a distant memory and I clocked in at 108,7 kg! Earlier in the week I was even very close to the 108 kg but then started eating a bit more because my body was really screaming for more food. My exercise regime might have something to do with this as I kinda put the pedal to the metal here. Let’s dive into it!

Fitness

Once again, I didn’t miss one session. I think I can make it offical and say I like lifting weights.

Last month I lifted 26 832 kg and set myself a 30K goal. With this goal to be reached whenever since I do not want to push myself to much. Consistency and gradual improvements are still my main focus. Well, last week saw me lifting a total of 29 439 kg!

With this amount of kg’s lifted per week I’ll be closing in on the 1,5 million lifted in total within the next two months! Crazy numbers!

I have said many times before that progress is going to halt in the fitness department but this time I am serious.

The reason for this is pretty simple, I finally got a good 20 kg kettlebell!

Greasing the groove

For greasing the groove I keep to the 50 reps 8 times a day for my crunches.

Kettlebell swings I was at 25 reps with 10 kg for 8 times a day and then this beauty arrived.

20 kg of heavy iron. Don’t worry, I warned the delivery guy when he went to get the package from his van. It was a big eastern european guy and turns out he is a fan of kettlebells himself and lost 30 kg over the last 3 years!

With a decent kettlebell finally arrived last week I switched form 25 reps with 10 kg to 10 reps with 20 kg. Less weight in total, so you would think this would be easy enough.

Well, you would be wrong! It’s really a lot more exhausting and it probably explains why my body is screaming for nutrients.

It’s also a pretty great feeling to be honest. I already felt like I had a precent decent core strenght but this new weight is really ramping that up! I feel strong. Stronger than I have ever felt!

So my focus is now going to be to ramp my reps back up to 25. I am going to go slow and steady as is my habit. But since it is also lifting weights I expect my fitness progress to suffer from this. Injury prevention is still my nr 1 goal and this new kettlebell is pushing some limits there. No need to add extra pressure by also ramping up the fitness weights.

Another focus will be cardio

Cardio

Cardio wasn’t bad. But it also wasn’t good. I did about half of the rowing I should have done. But with stepping up the fitness weights and then switching to the heavier kettlebell I just didn’t have the energy for the cardio. I also just like the fitness and kettlebell swings a lot more than the rowing if I am honest. I never was a big fan of any type of cardio. But no exercise regime is complete without a decent cardio component. So I am going to keep at it but I am not going to feel too bad about it. Yes, it’s the weaker part of my work out regime, but hey at least I have a work out regime and it ain’t half bad!

The health report – January

I remained virus free for the last month! It is good to have my health back in full! Two years into this pandemic and I also remain Covid free. Since all reports indicate this Omicron variant is really, really mild it might be time for me to go kiss some strangers and update my immune system with the blueprint for this virus 😉

What did disrupt my new good habits were the holiday. Eating to much during the holidays did result in bad old habits making their comeback. I should have just continued with my normal routine instead of thnking that ‘a few days won’t make a big difference’. The new habits are off course less than 1 year old, and I have about 30 years of bad eating habits ingrained. A bumpy ride is to be expected. A course correction is needed! I clocked in at 111,3 kilo and while a 1 kg gain might not seem all that bad it needs to stop now before it gets worse. This is more a mental than a physical challenge.

Actualy, the physical might be a solution for the mental. Exercises are definitely my saving grace. Eating too much is making the exercises harder. But the exercises are also a daily reminder that if I let go of my eating discipline I will eventualy also let go of my exercise discipline. And I don’t want that! So I stepped up my exercises a bit so that I force myself to be more disciplined in my eating as well.

It might never be the time to be a slacker for your health. But present time definitely isn’t the time for it!

Fitness

No sickness or holiday so I didn’t miss one session! And after a few weeks of remaining on a plateau this last week I also added a decent amount of weight to my routines.

With 26 832 kg lifted weight I ended just shy off the 27 000 kg mark. And where I was pretty happy with cracking the 25K barrier last month I have now set my sights on the 30K barrier. But steady progress remains the name of the game! So no rush and no particular date when I need to reach this goal.

Total weight lifted is now well over the one million kilo and with the current regime I will easily surpass the 2 million mark sometime this year.

Greasing the groove

Here I cracked the 50 reps 8 times a day for crunches! This was one of my goals I hoped to reach eventually and I did it. These goals are somewhat based on what I remember doing when I was 18 years old and in my best shape ever. I never found my old exercise schedules but do remember doing 3 times a 100 sit ups a day. I consider 8 times 50 as a good equivallent. So crunches wise I am at 47 years old in better shape than I was at 18!

Another -general- goal I have is 8 times 25 push-ups to mirror the 2 times 50 push ups I did daily in my youth. But I first need to lose more weight before I can start on that one. And the last one I have is to bench pressing 95 kg while weighing 95 kg. If I can reach those two also I will consider myself to be in the best shape I have ever been. I am confident I will eventually reach those as well.

Kettlebell swings remained at 25 reps with 10 kg. After buying the wrong kettlebells on-line I decided to go to a shop to buy the kettlebells of 20 kg I needed. Well, I wasted 1 hour of my life driving to and back from the shop only to discover that the max weight the shop had was 16 kg. I gave that one a couple of swings in the store and nope, I definitely need a 20 kg one. Back to the web but this time being really carefull to look at the dimensions of the kettlebell I am going to buy.

Cardio

Cardio still isn’t good. I have to be honest here, I completely lost the habit. It dropped to like 1 session of 10 minutes a week. Same story here as my eating, I need to regain my discipline.

Looking from a distance you might say I already do a lot even without the cardio. especially the greasing the groove bit is a bit insane with a total of 2400 crunches and 1200 kettlebell swings a week. But as I said in the begining, this is not the time to be a slacker in the health department. I need to get that cardio back up!

The health report – December

I fell ill again the last month. Still not Covid, but a lot of other bugs are going around and I caught one of those. It knocked me out good for about a week. I normally don’t get sick that much and this was now the second time in a 3 month period. I think it is a combination of fewer social contacts and also the losing weight which made my immunity dip.

Being sick had off course an impact both on my exercises and weight lose. The weight dropped fast the week I was sick but I probably started exercising too quickly again which left me HUNGRY. I didn’t really fell into my old bad habits (except for all the chocolate I ate) but I definitely ate too much the two weeks after being sick. The lesson here is that I need a post-sickeness food plan. Being sick while dieting whipes out any and all buffer you have left. So feeling hungry and wanting to eat more after is normal. I just need to make sure that next time I have – more- healthy alternatives where I can indulge in.

Bottom line is that weight wise not a lot off progress was made I clocked in at 110 kg Sunday.

The impact on my exercises you can read below.

Fitness

I only missed the one week I was really ill. And then the week after I restarted again. Honestely, I think this was a mistake as I was really weak and a longer rest period might have been better. It was a real struggle to get through my fitness program the first two weeks after being ill. I listened to my body and didn’t added any weight here. It was actually only last week that I felt like I had my full strength back.

So 1 week out and almost no progress made in the weights lifted. I did manage to crack the 25K barrier and lifted a total of 25 692 kg last week. And I also reached the 1 million kgs lifted sometime during the last month!

Greasing the groove

Same story here. I didn’t do any during the week I was ill and then restarted immediately once I was, barely, better.

Kettlebell swings remained at 25 reps with 10 kg because I was a cheap ass online and bought the wrong 20 kg kettlebells. The once I got are too big too use in a swing. See photo below off my stupidity.

I will go to a shop and try out one before buying!

For sit-up I did make some progress. I ended last week at 48 reps. I am pushing forward here to reach my end goals of 50 reps, 8 times a day, 6 days a week which will make a cool 2 400 sit-ups per week!

Geldnerd made himself a nice spreadsheet to track his own fitness progress. And I am now wondering if I should do the same for the greasing the groove part of my work out regime. It is pretty satifying to have see your progress in nice graphs.

Cardio

I wanted to dedicate myself more to my cardio and then I fell sick and out went that idea. Cardio is what I have up feeling weak and barely being able to get through the fitness. In a way it isn’t bad that I didn’t do it because I really restarted to quickly with my exercices. But the conclusion of my last report still stands: I am not doing enough cardio.

With the current situation I do need to be honest with myself here. I am restarting at 3 x 10 minutes and then see if I either go up in time again or if I stay at 10 minutes and just do it more often in the week. But first getting my routine of 3 times back!

The health report – November

I am back with another health report. The September report was a bit off because it only covered two week in which I didn’t exercise a lot due to holiday and being sick. I didn’t post in October but this doesn’t mean I stopped exercising or dieting. I was actualy pretty busy with both so get ready for some good progress!

In September my weight was 114,4 kg. After two months with the dietician I am at 110,9 kg. So things are going well on there. More importantly I feel more energetic and stronger which is good to keep up my exercises.

Fitness

I didn’t miss any fitness day since half september. Not a single one. Progress is a bit slower because I am already pushing some nice weights and I also did a nice progress in the kettlebell part of my greasing the groove routine, but more on that later on.

The below weight lifted chart shows the gap after the week of the fifht of September which was me going on a short holiday and being ill for a couple of extra days. And then it show me starting my fitness again and once more making slow but steady progress

Over the last two months I went from 22 217 kg lifted to 24 740 kg lifted! It’s why I don’t care all that much about the slower progress I am making here. Lifting 25 000 kg a week is decent enough. Remember, I started out with only 5 000 kg back in June 2020.

In total I am pretty close to cracking the 1 million kgs lifted! If only if I had 1 euro for each kg lifted ..

Greasing the groove

I missed one day which was me being flat out lazy. I felt a bit bad about it but then I look at the progress I made compared to August and holy cow! I am not feeling bad anymore!

In August I was at 16 reps with the kettlebell of 10 kgs. I am now again at my maximum goals of 25 reps! I should, once more, order a heavier kettlebell. I’ll probably order them in December as I need to order two. One for the home and one for work because I am getting fed up with lugging my kettlebell to the office. Yes dear reader, even when I work at the office I do my sit-ups and kettlebell swings every hour. My co -workers have gotten used to it and since they have seen me do it for several months now they went from laughing at the crazyness of it to respecting the sheer fucking lunancy of it.

The kettlebell swings do add another 2 000 kg of lifted weights to my routine every days or an extra 12 000 kg a week!

Sit-ups I went form 35 reps to 45 reps! That is 10 extra reps 8 times a day for 6 days a week. I now do 2 160 sit ups per week. And I am pretty close to my final goal of 50 reps.

Cardio

And here ends the good news show. This remains my weakest point. I continu to be stuck on only rowing on Sundays.

I have to repeat what I wrote last time: “doing three seperate exercices do help me mentally. Where in the past I just did one thing and then when I hit a rough spot in that one thing I usually quiet doing it completely I can now fuck up one of the three but still feel good about the fact that progress has been made in the other two

But the fact remains that I am not doing enough cardio. I am thinking of reworking my approach here. The girlfriend is pretty succesfull in only doing 5 minutes of rowing but doing it each and every morning. So I am thinking of switching it to 4 x 10 minutes during the week and 1 x 20 minutes on Sunday.

I’ll give it one more week and than perhaps change my approach.

But overall I had a good two months health wise: lost 4 kgs, made some progress on the fitness front and a lot of progress in greasing the groove!

The health report – September

I was a bit late with my last report so this one only covers two weeks. And in those two weeks I didn’t do a whole lot of exercises. So no overview of what I did or not did on the fitness, greasing the groove or cardio front. The low exercises was by design as I was (and still am) in holiday and my body could use a break. Since Friday the 10th September we went to a festival and 13th till 16th September we visited Ieper (more on this in my monthly expense report) I originally planned to take one week of. But that Monday the 13th I kinda fell sick so I didn’t restart exercising that Friday as intented, but only last Monday. So not a whole lot to tell on the exercise front except that I gave my body some well earned rest.

But I do have a lot of other stuff to talk about.

First of, I did manage to do my measurements once again (yes, the broken scale has been replaced).

Date:weightneckchestbellyarm
24-10-2017114 kg43 cm124 cm124 cm39 cm
15-5-2018104 kg42 cm115 cm114,5 cm38 cm
17-6-2018104 kg42 cm118 cm115 cm38 cm
15-7-2018101 kg41 cm118 cm115 cm38 cm
15-8-201899 kg41 cm118 cm113 cm38 cm
15-9-2018101 kg41 cm118 cm114 cm38 cm
15-10-201898 kg41 cm118 cm113 cm38 cm
02-02-2020115 kg43 cm124 cm 126 cm40 cm
16-06-2021117 kg45 cm126 cm125 cm41,5 cm
22-09-2021114,4 kg44 cm126 cm125 cm40 cm

Back down to around 115 kg, yes! But as you can see, especiale the cm measurements are somewhat correct and might indicate a certain evolution but they aren’t all that precise! I have been guessing that thanks to the last 15 months of exercises I added muscles but I have no way of knowing if this is correct. Since I am now going to make a serious attempt to really loose weight I wanted to get a correct and detailled measurement of my body. Enter the Dexa scan. So get ready to see the Sloth in all his naked glory:

behold: Skeletor Sloth!

As seen above, the Dexa scan also give you information on your bones, more importantely on your Bone mass density. Which in my case is still good. But truth be told I would rather have the dot above that line then just below.

But it is always good to know and I am curious if better eating habits will also improve my bones.

But then onto the good stuff: muscles!

Top 25 baby!

And good it was! Age matched I scored 75. This means that out of 100 hundred men aged 47 only 24 have more muscle than me. Definitely not bad and it shows that my exercises of the last 15 months have had some effect. The first goal is now off course to crack that top 20 for my age group.

For those who have met me it will be no suprise that there was also bad news:

My fat mass clocked in at 40,6 kg or a 35,8% fat mass. Ouch!

This also puts me firmly in the Obesity class 2.

Honestely I expected this and the whole point of the Dexa scan to was a clear picture of my current body composition so that in the future I can compare and see if any progress has been made.

To make that progress I have also started to see a dietician. First visit was an intake talk to discuss my goals and the second visit (last saturday) was to get started on Phase I.

It might come as a suprise to many that my motiviation to go see a therapist was not so much to loose fat but actually to get more energy so I could continue to increase my exercises. I mean, the facts are facts and I need to loose 20 kg of fat at a minimum. But the thing is, I have always failed at loosing fat. But for the last 15 months I have been succesful in following my exercise regime! So my first goal is to add 5 kg of muscle and along the way hopefuly also loose 10 kg of fat. And if succesfull to do the same a second time and finally end up with an acceptable fat mass and a whole lot of muscle mass. The approach is called Body recomposition and is often the road less travelled. I also seem to have done it somewhat by accident over the last 15 months while eating like crap. So imagine what I can achieve when I get my eating right! I am pretty psyched about the future, I mean, Europe is slowly descending into a totalitarian dystopian nightmare but I am going to be fit as fuck!

The health report – August

No measuring as our weight scale is actualy broken (one of our cats is to blame). Although I did continue the slow and steady progress this was even harder in August than it was back in July. Yesterday I had my intake meeting with the dietician and she confirms I am probably missing necessary nutrients for all the exercises I am doing at the moment. Next week I am going to have some blood work done to check this.

I’ll write some more about the visit with the dietician in a separate post and just stick to my overview of my exercises for the last month.

Fitness

Once again I didn’t miss any fitness days. I also was able to add a bit of weight or reps to some exercises. But it is getting increasingly hard. I know I have posted before that progress here should slow down but now this is really happening. In part this is because of my greasing the groove routine (more on that later), But I believe it also is because I am not eating right. This is a big motivation for the moment to correct my eating habits!

Below you can see that the last three weeks my progress have been almost flat:

I still added 2 000 kg extra weight in total to my fitness exercises. Even if it is now over a six week time that is not bad. Hell, I am even starting to close in on the 1 million kgs lifted weight in total!

Greasing the groove

I got my sit up repetitions to 35 and then the 10 kg kettlebell finally arrived! The first week I switched my 25 reps with a 4 kg kettlebell to 10 reps with the 10 kg kettlebell and then over the next weeks I have added to the reps.

So currently I am at 35 reps for the sit ups and 16 reps for the kettlebell.

I am pretty happy with this progress and it might also explain why adding weight to the fitness routine is harder at the moment. Going from 10 to 16 reps might not seem all that much but it is 6 extra reps, 8 times a day for 6 days. For a whole week that is an extra 288 reps of 2 880 kg extra swung!

Cardio

This is where I am not very happy with myself. Rowing has been reduced to only once a week. And this time I didn’t even have the excuse of working a lot in the garden. I didn’t no anything in the garden!

I only did my rowing on Sunday. Weekdays I just could not find the mental energy to row for 20 minutes. So this was bad and I really need to apply myself more here. I am generally low on energy so I am hoping better eating will help here. But bottom line is I need to be doing more cardio and until my eating has improved I just need to push through and keep up the rowing!

I do have to say that doing three seperate exercices do help me mentally. Where in the past I just did one thing and then when I hit a rough spot in that one thing I usually quiet doing it completely I can now fuck up one of the three but still feel good about the fact that progress has been made in the other two, This progress then motivates me to correct the one thing that was not good.

So here is hoping on a better rowing report next time.

The health report – July

I dropped to 115 kg but didn’t get around measuring so no new table this month. I also came to the conclusion I am going to go see either a dietician of a health coach? In part this is because I am not loosing weight the way I want to. But also because it starts to become harder to add to my exercise routines. I seem to be missing the necessary fuel for all the exercising I am doing at the moment.

The slow and steady progress is still there but is it becoming harder.

In the first draft of this post I actually wrote I was not happy with how my exercises went but after some reflection I have changed by mind about that. I actualy am very ok with my exercing of the last month. Full explication of why I changed my mind below.

Fitness

I didn’t miss any fitness days and once more added something somewhere each and every week.

The week of 18/07 saw me lifting a total of 20 136 kg. This is 2 600 kg more than a month ago. It might explain in part why adding weight or repetitions to an exercise is starting to become more difficult. After all, I am a doing quit a lot as it is.

Total numbers for about 13 months of fitness aren’t bad either:

Greasing the groove

I missed half a day of greasing the groove. It was a Saturday where I only did 4 reps and not the standard 8. It was also a where I did a lot of working in the garden and I just couldn’t find the energy to stop the garden work to come in and do my sit-ups and kettlebell swings and then gho back out again to continue. Especially because I was sweating like an otter.

I am also still waiting on my ordered 10 kg kettlebell so I decided to increasy my sit ups. Last week I did 32 reps for 6 days a week. That’s 1 536 sit-ups over a 1 week period. With all this progress you might be wondering why I would think last month was bad exercise wise. Well the main reason was my cardio.

Cardio

Rowing is still at 20 minutes and I actualy missed quit a few rowing days. I more or less skipped about half my rowing exercises!

The resaon for this is the work in the garden.

The weather in Belgium over the last two months made my grass grow really fast and really high. A heat wave and rain prevented me from cutting it when it was lower so now I had almost 2 meter high grass to handle. Cutting my grass in my garden has alwasy been done with a brush cutter. But believe me that 30 or 40 cm grass is a lot easier to cut then 2 m high grass. It normally takes me about 5 hours (spread out over serveral days) to do the entire garden. I have now spend over 10 hours and have still a spot to go (I also have aprety big garden). And it has been a lot more physically demanding work also. Where I normaly just let the cutting lying on the ground I now also need to clean up the cutting as it covers the entire ground preventing the new grass to grow. Adding extra work on top of the 10+ hours I have spend cutting the grass in the first place! The warm, very mosist weather hasn’t helped either. It has been a brutal couple of weeks. And the rain and sun are making the freshly cut grass grow so fast that by the time I will be finished with the last of the high grass, the spot I started will be ready to be cut again! And I beter do cut it right then, to avoid having to deal with too high grass once more …

So I was a bit miffed about missing all that rowing but writing it all down made me realise I actually increased my cardio work out! Just not on the rowing machine but by working the brush cutter for several hours a week.

Now I am actualy happy I skipped the rowing as it would have been to much stress on my body and probably would have leaded to injuries. And an injury would have stopped all exercises.

If I sum it all up: I did all my fitness and improved in weight or repetitions. I improved the sit up reps of my greasing the groove and in an entire month only missed 120 reps which is tiny compared to the total of sit ups I do in one week now. And yes, I missed around 7 rowing exercises. But each one of those was replaced by at least an hour of working with a brush cutter in my garden. Physically speaking, last month was probably the most physically demanding month since my university years! So hell yeah, I am actualy pretty happy with last month!!

The health report – June

Yes, I finally got around to weighing and measuring myself! So here is the overview table.

Date:weightneckchestbellyarm
24-10-2017114 kg43 cm124 cm124 cm39 cm
15-5-2018104 kg42 cm115 cm114,5 cm38 cm
17-6-2018104 kg42 cm118 cm115 cm38 cm
15-7-2018101 kg41 cm118 cm115 cm38 cm
15-8-201899 kg41 cm118 cm113 cm38 cm
15-9-2018101 kg41 cm118 cm114 cm38 cm
15-10-201898 kg41 cm118 cm113 cm38 cm
02-02-2020115 kg43 cm124 cm 126 cm40 cm
16-06-2021117 kg45 cm126 cm125 cm41,5 cm

I am still keeping my focus on a slow and steady progress in my exercises but it is time I start to look at my weight again. Rowing with this much extra weight is starting to become more difficult. But I’ll go into that in the rowing segment.

There are a few interesting things to note in this overview.

First is off course that my weight is bad. 117 kg is the heaviest ever in this overview.

But I have been exercises for the last year and that 117 kg isn’t the same kg as the 115 kg I was in February 2020 (last decent weighing I did before starting to exercise).

How can I tell? Well, both neck and chest are now a full two cm wider (and my arm 1,5 cm) and believe me, that is not where the fat is on my body.

Actually, my chest is now 1 cm more than my belly. Back in 2017 both were the same size (124cm) and I weighed 114 kg then too. If you actually compare the 114 kg of 2017 with the 115 kg of February 2020 You will notice my neck and chest measure the same. That 1 kg of fat can be found in the 2 cm of difference of the belly!

Conclusion: the 117 kg now contains more muscle. Something you would expect after one full year of exercising. Those muscles explain why the chest and arm measurements went up and I now have the belly width of my 114 kg weighing self. I roughly added 3 kg of muscles over the last year!

Honestely, I am pretty motivated now to lose 3 kg so I can compare one on one with the 114 kg back in 2017! I am not going to make it a hard goal (because I don’t do those anymore) but I am going to focus a bit more on what I eat and see where it takes me.

Let’s dive into the exercises

Fitness

Again, I did not miss any fitness days and continued to add something (either a little bit off weight or some extra reps) to an exercise each and every week.

The result is a slow and steady progress. At the writing of my last post I had lifted 15 504 kg in one week. Now I am at 17 530 kg or 2 000 kg’s more!

Since I am doing low intensity but lots of reps I was wondering if I was actually building strength. Turns out I am! With friends visiting for a BBQ I finally could test how much my maximum bench press weight is now (somebody has to lift it if I can’t because no safeguard on my in house set-up). Pretty happy to report my max is now 70 kg!!

So yes, this low intensity, lots of reps approach does build up strength. Also, I do not think I will ever again weigh less than 95 kg but if I am at 70 kg bench pressing now, 95 kg should be reachable with this approach! I just have to keep the slow and steady approach! I’ll check my max bench press again sometime next summer.

Greasing the groove

I missed one day of greasing the groove. A wednesday where we went to visit Bruges. No American and Asian (because pandemic) tourists means us Belgians have this beautiful city once more all to ourselfs! For some strange reason Bruges does not have dedicated ‘do your sit-ups here’ spots all over the historic centre so no greasing the groove that day. I did go to the office twice in the last month and yes I did do my exercies there. Strang looks from the few co-workers present? You betcha! Me not giving a crap? You betcha!

I also stayed at 25 reps of sit ups for the entire month as I was building up my kettle bell swings. I am glad to report I reached 25 reps there too! So that was 25 reps, 8 times a day for six days for the kettle bell swings and also for the sit ups.

The kettle bell weight is only 4 kgs because that was what I had laying around. I have ordered a 10 kg weigth and I am waiting on it’s delivery. When that one arrives I will drop my reps to 10 reps to compensate for the heavier weight and then start to build those up again. In the mean time I will increase my sit-up reps because I am adding something, somewhere each and every week …

Cardio

Didn’t miss any rowing last month! Woohoo!

So yes, that does mean rowing for 18 minutes when we got back from our day visiting Bruges. It also meant rowing for 20 minutes in our current 31 degrees celius heat wave (I was a puddle of sweat on the floor afterwards). I did both and I am pretty proud of it!

I also reached 20 minuts of rowing this week because I continued to add one minute every week. I am going to stay at this level for the next month. I have a few reasons for this:

  • I think I build up to 20 min a bit quick. Once at 15 minutes I feel like I should have added 1 min only every two weeks
  • 20 minutes of rowing in a heatwave is crazy. Luckily next week promises lower temperatures but I can use a less intense week or two. Also thinking about buying a mobile airco unit …
  • I weigh 117 fucking kgs! And I am rowing for 20 minutes at a pretty decent tempo. Somewhere around the 15 min mark my body is really not liking it anymore. I can’t really blame it. A person of my weight should not be doing this! Especially not in a heatwave … The reality is I need to get rid of some fat if I want to continue to add time to my rowing.

So rough goals for the next month are:

  • adding a bit to my fitness (I am ok there, not really having pushed myself too hard over the last month).
  • adding some sit up reps to the greasing the groove routine (I am actually eager to add some here since I didn’t do it for a month!)
  • staying at 20 mins of rowing
  • a bit more focus on food and see where I am weight wise at the next post

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