Recovery is Important

I hate to admit this, but I actually pulled a lower abdomen muscle on Monday when sneezing. Yes; sneezing. This getting old is growing old.

What does that mean for me? It means that I had to take a break from exercising this week. All my weightlifting is with free weights which require a lot of core strength, and the abdomen is the base of that core and I couldn’t risk continuing to injure it so close to an ACFT. So, I did something I am not so good at; I took some extra time off from exercising to let it heal.

I’m happy to say that as of this morning (Saturday), the pain is all but gone. That means on Monday, I can start back up with my StrongLifts 5×5 and my running.

I know the de-load is going to psychologically be a bummer, and I also know that my run time will be atrocious. But, I will be happy to be back out there and making progress again. I like how I feel AFTER my workouts, although truth be told, I actually enjoy weightlifting. Running? Not so much. I’d rather be riding my mountain bikes, but the Army doesn’t care about that; they want me to run, so I will run.

Consistency and Dedication Win the Day

Driving a HMMWV during training.

When I left for training two weeks ago, I weighed a lot more than I wanted to. A LOT MORE. 200 lbs, to be exact. That’s the heaviest I’ve been in nearly 7 years. How did I get there? A vacation to Hungary and Christmas/New Year. I let myself eat anything and everything and the toll it took on my body was immense.

At the end of December, my wife and I resolved to do a Whole30 (we decided it wasn’t going to be a real Whole30, but more of a strict Paleo with Whole30 rules). I don’t know why we decided that, but here we are. The sticky part was that I was having to attend military training for two weeks in January which would make it difficult for me to eat Paleo. The food in the military is notoriously carb-heavy and MRE’s are the least healthy thing you can imagine putting in your body, so I had to think back to how I kept my Paleo diet during training in the past.

Enter the EPIC Bars, RX Bars, and Lara Bars. Between these three products, I had lunch every day that was clean and healthy. As for breakfast and dinner, I only stuck with foods that didn’t have grains, legumes, dairy, or added sugar. On the days when I couldn’t escape those things, I ate from my own lunch stash or I was fortunate enough to go out of the training area to get food from the local economy.

I was fortunate that the vendor who was catering our exercise noticed that I was ignoring certain items and after about the fourth day, if they had something very carb-heavy or completely un-Paleo, they would make me an option I could eat. It was very nice of them, and it was greatly appreciated.

What was the end result of the January not-so-Whole30 Whole30? I’ve lost around 14 lbs. I want to lose another 20 before May, so I’m sticking with the diet. I’m sticking with my exercise which consists of running and StrongLifts 5×5.

Consistency and dedication got me to where I am today, and it’ll keep me going towards my next goal.