I started a new experiment a few weeks ago and just wanted to give you an update on how it was going. First off my main purpose for starting this experiment was to try and reduce body fat and lower overall heart heart.
Before this experiment I checked my blood pressure and I was told I was at risk for hypertension. So I decided a good way to combat that would be to get more cardio into my life by swimming 2 times a week for 30 minutes. I am always around a pool so it just made sense with all the benefits that swimming can give you. Here is another article I wrote on swimming benefits: 8 Swimming Benefits Athletes Should Consider for Cross Training.
My secondary purpose for this experiment was to test recovery and my discipline. The good news is I’ve been keeping to my swimming. Bad news I haven’t stuck to my diet 100% which was expected.
Update on the heart rate: my average resting heart rate started off at 75 BPM. The next few weeks it was steadily dropping and during the 3rd week it reached my all time low of 66 Bpm resting. These first 3 weeks I was nearly perfect on my diet so reducing overall weight definitely helped in lowering my heart rate due to less load my body has to carry. The added cardio has been proving great for overall health in my everyday life, just walking around and during my lifting I can tell my cardiovascular capacity has increased slightly. This increased capacity has allowed me to push a little more in my lifting and recover better between sets and lifting days.
Weight update: I lost about 10-15 lbs in the 3 weeks. I saw this happening and decided I was losing weight at too fast a pace and needed to slow it down. I added steel cut oats to my breakfast which added another 300 calories a day. What I didn’t expect was I would be overeating during my cheat meals. When I say overeating I mean there would be an extra 1,000 calories or more in one meal.
Coupled with cookies every once in a while I gained about 10 of the pounds back the next 2-3 weeks. It’s amazing how quickly a few weeks can go by and these “little” decisions on letting the extra slide, can impact in such a short time. I wrote an article about getting back up and trying again in an attempt to turn myself around and it went well but looks like I need to reexamine my values and what I intend to actually do to get the most out of this experiment.
I will just have to Brush Yourself Off and Try Again and get back on the journey.
Swim improvements: This week I was able to swim 27 (50 yard) laps in 30 mins. I was able to keep pace at a minute per lap swimming freestyle for about 12 laps before I started to lose form and get too tired to keep pace. I then switched to breast stroke to rest my shoulders and be able to breathe more. I swam breastwork for 5 laps then switched back to freestyle and switched alternatively every 5 laps until the 30 minutes was up.
I felt really good after this workout and could tell my recovery is getting better and my body is getting used to the work load.
I am now on week 5 and put the last 5 pounds back on… sad face. I learned a few things and will reevaluate my thought process on making decisions about how much to eat, because that seems to be my “downfall” in the fat loss journey. I believe the choices I made were decent it was just the amount I let slide too much.
I also added 30 minutes of treadmill 2 times a week to compensate but I think I always wanted to add an extra hour of activity to my week in other means than weight lifting and swimming. Now that swim is almost over I will finally have my Saturdays to myself, I plan on using them to go hiking or snowboarding, something different than what I have been doing. I can’t wait to see what these changes will have in store for me.
Comment any suggestions on your favorite activities that aren’t strictly weight lifting, running or swimming. Anything that is active and can be outdoors.
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