Fit4Mom Body Back: Weeks 5 + 6

I’m tracking my progress through Fit4Mom’s eight-week, mom’s-only fitness program, Body Back. Never heard of it? It’s from the same company that offers Stroller Strides.

Read Fit4Mom Body Back: Week 1.
Read Fit4Mom Body Back: Week 2.
Read Fit4Mom Body Back: Weeks 3 + 4.
Learn more about Body Back.

Week 5 + 6 Recap

The excuses continued into week 5 and 6, with a lot of missed workouts due to a busy schedule as well as knee and shin pain, which seems to be getting worse. I ran a 5K on Sunday, October 19, and since then, other than the Body Back classes, I’ve been laying relatively low. Unfortunately, I think a trip to the doctor is going to be inevitable.

Despite knee pain though, October has just been an insanely busy month. I’ve tried my best to focus on eating better especially since I haven’t been able to give my workouts my all. For what it’s worth, the strategy has worked thus far, and albeit slowly, the scale is going in the right direction.

We’re headed into the final weeks of this session’s Body Back program, and with Halloween behind us as of Friday, I’m hoping I can give the last week my all. I’m excited to see the results of the last two months of work!

Workouts Weeks 5 + 6

Monday, October 13: Planned rest day
Tuesday, October 14: Body Back
Wednesday, October 15: Couch to 5K workout
Thursday, October 16: Planned Rest Day
Friday, October 17: Skipped workout
Saturday, October 18: Body Back
Sunday, October 19: Frank Lloyd Wright 5K
Monday, October 20: Planned rest day
Tuesday, October 21: Body Back
Wednesday, October 22: Skipped workout
Thursday, October 23: Couch to 5K workout
Friday, October 24: Skipped workout
Saturday, October 25: Body Back
I know I say this a lot, but Saturday’s park workout was tough. We did a ton of running, including hill repeats, with intermittent strength exercises.

Nutrition

Neither week five nor week six were perfect, but they were both pretty good. I made a solid meal plan for lunches and was able to go two weeks without eating out once during the work week (the weekend is a different story). I had this Creamy Crock Pot Chicken Chili for lunch (I’m experimenting with a few crockpot chili recipes lately), and I also made this Skinnytaste Spinach Lasagna Rolls recipe—an oldie, but goodie, which I had for lunch and dinner a few times. Bonus: The toddler ate it too!

Progress Report

Week 1: -.2
Week 2: -3.1
Week 3: +1.2
Week 4: -1.4
Week 5: -.7
Week 6: -.8
Total: -5 pounds

Follow Lou @ Mommy Sanest’s board Body Back Approved Recipes + Resources on Pinterest.

Fit4Mom Body Back: Weeks 3 + 4

I’m tracking my progress through Fit4Mom’s eight-week, mom’s-only fitness program, Body Back. Never heard of it? It’s from the same company that offers Stroller Strides.

Read Fit4Mom Body Back: Week 1.

Read Fit4Mom Body Back: Week 2.

Learn more about Body Back.

Week 3 + 4 Recap

The last two weeks have had their challenges. During the week of September 29, our family was on vacation in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. This past week just got away from me—I’ve taken on a few side projects, had an all-day workshop to attend over the weekend, and October just always seems to be a ridiculously busy month. These two weeks were excuse-filled, but honestly, sometimes I think that’s OK. More on that below.

Workouts Weeks 3 + 4

Monday, September 29: Planned rest day

Tuesday, September 30: Skipped workout

This is the first of many excuses you’ll find in this recap of my workouts, but FWIW, we were traveling to Wisconsin on Tuesday, and time just got away from me. Traveling with a two-year-old is hard, yo.

Wednesday, October 1: Couch to 5K workout

Thursday, October 2: Body Pump group fitness class

The resort where we stayed had a full-on gym, and I took advantage of the perk of free group fitness classes. If you’re not familiar with Body Pump, it’s basically a weight lifting class that hits every major muscle group in 50 minutes.

Friday, October 3: Couch to 5K

Saturday, October 4: Body Back Bootcamp

On Saturday, we headed inside for a circuit workout.

Sunday, October 5: Couch to 5K

Monday, October 6: Planned rest day

Tuesday, October 7: Body Back

Tuesday night’s workout was a tough one. It was another circuit workout, but with a twist. The instructor set up four stations, each with five to six exercises. Two stations were primarily strength exercises; two were cardio. Here’s how it worked: At your first station, you did each exercise listed eight times, then seven times, then six times, then five… you get the picture. Once you finished the station, you moved on to the next one and started the process over.

Wednesday, October 8: Skipped workout

Thursday, October 9: Couch to 5K

Friday, October 10: Skipped workout

Saturday, October 11: Skipped workout

On Saturday, I went to an all-day workshop for creative entrepreneurs–more on that in another post–so I skipped my Body Back class.

Excuses, Excuses, Excuses

So here’s the thing about excuses: I know I’m not supposed to make them. Here is the other thing about excuses: Sometimes they are legit. Here’s the other other thing about excuses: Sometimes they aren’t legit, but you just need a break, which is legit. I try really hard not to beat myself up over “bad days” or “bad weeks.” In fact, I find that classifying something like a day, week, or even a meal as “bad,” is exactly zero help.

The truth is, I have a lot of priorities, and I do the best I can to juggle them all. But when things start to fall apart, sometimes the best thing I can do is step away for a week, get my life back in order, and start fresh. At this point in my fitness journey, a few missed workouts does not mean that I’ve given up–I’ve been in the habit for long enough now that I know the difference between needing a breather and just being lazy. This past week, I needed a breather to catch up on some other aspects of my life.

Nutrition Week 3+ 4

Week 3: Honestly, it was tough to stay on track while on vacation. I did the best I could, eating breakfasts and lunches in our room, which had a kitchenette. However, I was not vigilant and it shows in my progress report.

Lunch and Snacks at My Desk

Packed lunch: Chicken salad with a low-carb tortilla and lettuce; hummus with chopped cucumber; two mandarins; string cheese.

Week 4: I got back on track and did pretty well this past week. A big help was that our instructor asked us to post our meal plans on Facebook, and I pretty much stuck to mine. I made healthy lunches and snacks all week, including the chicken salad recipe I’ve adapted from the Body Back journal. I’m going to post the recipe here later this week. I also made Cincinnati Turkey Chili, which is one of my staple recipes, and I ate that for dinner several times.

Progress Report

Week 3: +1.2
Week 4: -1.4
Total: -3.3

Follow Lou @ Mommy Sanest’s board Body Back Approved Recipes + Resources on Pinterest.

Fit4Mom Body Back: Week 2

I’m tracking my progress through Fit4Mom’s eight-week, mom’s-only fitness program, Body Back. Never heard of it? It’s from the same company that offers Stroller Strides.

Read Fit4Mom Body Back: Week 1.

Learn more about Body Back.

Week 2 Recap
What I love about Body Back is that the class really becomes a community of moms all working toward similar fitness and health goals. We have a group Facebook page where the instructor checks in with us between class sessions and challenges us to make positive changes, and we (the participants) can post about anything we’re struggling with or just share successes or resources. Several of us also joined My Fitness Pal and are tracking our nutrition each day using that tool.

Workouts Week 2
Monday, September 22: REST

Tuesday, September 23: Body Back Group Class

Our instructor led us through a tabata workout for Tuesday’s class, which sounded like no big deal when she described it. Tabata is high intensity interval training that goes something like this: 20 seconds of cardio, 10 seconds of rest, 20 seconds of a strength exercise, 10 seconds of rest. Repeat four times.

Whenever I hear that there is a built in “rest period” after only “seconds” of work, I’m all, “bring it on.” I can do anything for 20 seconds, right? The answer is yes, but I needed to be reminded of that many, many times especially as we neared the end of our workout.

Wednesday, September 24: Couch-to-5k (28 minutes total) + 10-minute Abs DVD

Thursday, September 24: 30-minute circuit workout DVD

Friday, September 25: Couch-to-5k (28 minutes total)

Saturday, September 26: Body Back Group Class

On Saturday morning, the weather was perfect for an outdoor workout. The park we use has an amphitheater with four sets of steps. Our instructor planned a workout that made full use of this feature.

We started by running a lap around the entire park, which I’m guessing is a third of a mile. The run ends with a hill climb that puts us at the top of the amphitheater. At the top, we do a strength exercise, bicep curls with a squat. Then we lunge 50 feet to the next station, where we do a squat with a shoulder press. Run to the next station holding the exercise band over our heads (This is honestly my least favorite part of the workout). At the next station, burpees. Run down the stairs. Another strength exercise. Run up the stairs. Frog jumps. Run down the stairs. Pushups. Run up the steps. Lunges. Run down the steps. Crunches. Time for another lap around the park.

What’s nice about this workout is that you can go at your own pace. What’s tough about this workout is that it’s going to challenge you, regardless of your pace. But that’s the point, right?

Sunday, September 27: Couch-to-5K (31 minutes total)

Nutrition Overview Week 2

Meals from Week 2 of Fit4Mom Body Back

Week 2 Nutrition
Using My Fitness Pal helped me stay on track with my nutrition this week, but there’s room for improvement. I am pretty good at staying within my daily calorie goal, but post-work snacking always seemed to derail me. Regardless, I’ll take this past week as a win. A few of my meals from the week (clockwise from left):

  1. Lunch at home: A classic turkey sandwich.
  2. Homemade tortilla soup: I ate this soup for dinner no less than three times last week. I’ll be posting the recipe on the blog soon.
  3. Lunch at work: I adapted a turkey salad recipe from the fifth Fit4Mom booklet. It was good! I added a low carb tortilla and lots of lettuce. It lasted me for three lunches, and I’ll definitely be making this one again.
  4. Easy dinner: It’s not easy to convince me to eat a salad for dinner, but add some seafood, avocado, and fresh corn, and I’m usually willing. Ranch dressing also does not hurt. Just saying.

The Week Ahead
I missed my Tuesday night class because we were in Lake Geneva, Wisconsin. I’ll be posting next week about how I attempted to stay on track during this mini-family vacation.

Progress Report
-3.1 pounds (-3.2 pounds total)

Follow Lou @ Mommy Sanest’s board Body Back Approved Recipes + Resources on Pinterest.

Fitness for Moms: Body Back Week 1

After unexpected health challenges, breastfeeding ups and downs, and struggles with my work schedule, the fog of new motherhood began to lift right as Emme hit the one-year mark in August 2013. I was mentally and physically ready to refocus on my well-being again, and for me, that meant getting back into a regular workout routine.

I did some yoga, tried various classes at the gym, and started running again, completing a handful of 5Ks and a 10K over the past year. In February, through my local mom’s group, I signed up to try Body Back — a fitness program for moms from Fit4mom, the same company that offers Stroller Strides.

From Fit4Mom:

[Body Back] is a results-based workout program designed for moms of any age. The workouts offer high intensity, interval formats that give a total body workout with an added combination of motivational support. Whether you just had a baby or had a baby 20 years ago, it will help any mom get her body back. Each session includes before and after assessments, 2 classes per week, Mama Wants Her Body Back DVDs, a nutrition plan, 1 red resistance band, and food journals. This class is for moms only, no children. It is recommended that you be at least 3 months postpartum before beginning this program.

I signed up for an eight-week session of Body Back after the initial trial class. Then I signed up a second time. After bouncing around trying various workouts, it felt like a good fit and a real routine. I enjoyed the classes, which were different every week and never boring; the instructors, who got to know all of us and were supportive; and the other moms, who wanted to encourage each other. And, even though I struggled to stay on track with the nutrition plan, I had solid results. I gained  a lot of strength, lost a couple pounds, and felt good.

I fell off the bandwagon big time this summer. I decided against signing up for another session, opting instead to just “drop in” to classes when I had time. I wasn’t in the best head space, and after months of being in good workout groove, I was coming up with excuses to bail every week.

Around Labor Day, I started to feel a bit more motivated, so in an attempt to get back on track, I signed up for Body Back again. And in an attempt to stay on track, I’m going to post weekly-ish about my progress here.

Session 1
The session began on Tuesday, September 16 in Memorial Park in La Grange Park. The first workout eases you in to the program—we weighed in, took measurements, and did fitness assessments. I love that while Body Back has a weight/fat-loss component, there’s a focus on gaining strength and endurance. We’ll do the same assessment in eight weeks to see how far we’ve come.

The instructor then passed out our materials and explained the nutrition program, which consists of clean eating along with portion control. The booklet includes recipes, a weekly workout plan, and space to track your meals. We also get workout DVDs, which have options for quick 20-minute workouts, so you can stick to the workout plan even if you can’t get out of the house and to the gym for an hour. Since this is my third session of Body Back, I was given the “Advanced” DVD. I already have three others, including one that is ab focused and one that is lower body focused.

Fit4Mom Body Back Materials & Assessments | Mommy Sanest

Not pictured: My resistance band. I was too lazy to get it out of the car.

The bicep curls, push-ups, full sit-ups, and squat numbers are all based on how many I did in one minute; the run (high knees in place), plank, and side-bridge (side plank) were all held as long as I could. Seriously, the run is my worst ever. Sad face.

And that was it! It’s always that easy, right?

Not exactly…

Session 2
Saturday’s Weigh-in: -.2

On Saturday, we did a cardio-strength-ab circuit workout. Cardio included things like burpees, sumo squats, and power squats. The strength interval typically included an exercise that targeted more than one muscle group, so for example, we did bicep curls with a curtsey squat. Ab exercises ranged from basic crunches to fancy planks with leg lifts and knees to the chest. We did each exercise for one minute before moving on the next; repeated the circuit; then moved on to the next set of three exercises.

Our instructor provides modifications, and you can always work at your own level. That said, this workout was challenging and, for the record, typical. I remember when I took my first Body Back class, I was surprised that the class was so tough. But, it’s designed to push you and help you get your fitness to the next level.

Last Week’s Workouts
Monday, September 15: REST
Tuesday, September 16: Body Back Assessment
Wednesday, September 17: REST
Thursday, September 18: Couch-to-5K, run/walk, 35 minutes total
Friday, September 19: Couch-to-5K, run/walk, 35 minutes total
Saturday, September 20: Body Back
Sunday, September 21: Couch-to-5k, run/walk, 28 minutes total

This isn’t my best showing ever, but to be fair, I had a pretty bad head cold. My goal for week 2 is to continue with Couch-to-5k, but also add in the Body Back DVD workouts.

Last Week’s Nutrition
Last week was a mixed bag, nutrition-wise. I did go grocery shopping and spend the weekend making sure I would be ready to hit the ground running with healthy breakfasts and lunches this week though.

Body Back Week 1 | www.mommysanest.comFrom left to right, clockwise:

  1. As a treat “for Emme,” I made SkinnyTaste Low-fat Peanut Butter and Banana Muffins.
  2. My typical breakfast: whole wheat English muffin, peanut butter, and banana.
  3. I made this Sweet and Sour Chicken recipe from Clean Eating magazine and took the leftovers to work for lunch twice last week.
  4. Healthy snack: string cheese and grapes.