If there were ever a time for me to fall into a hole and wreck my knee, this was as good as it gets. In March, I committed to a true strength training program designed by my long time friend Trainer Paige.
Her Lean Body Bootcamp has worked for hundreds of others and I’ve know for ages that all my running was slowly causing muscle wasting, especially with my 0 estrogen and ok fine age. It’s easy to get in to a rut of doing the same thing over and over, so this was all about shaking me up.
Maybe it’s something about putting your money where your mouth is, but after 15+ years of training solo, I finally followed a plan designed by someone else! If nothing else, this alone was monumental.To my utter shock, I began to enjoy those 40 minutes of hefting around weights in the basement! Though I’ve long lifted weights it was more like a full body set in 20 minutes, rather than 40 minutes for just back and biceps.
Why this was such a shift for me?
- Committed to running less – 35 miles down to around 21
- 4-5 focused weight lifting sessions
- HIIT intervals on the treadmill, instead of my normal LHR
- Counting Macros – I doubled my protein intake and halved my carbs
- Followed a plan for possibly the first time ever!
- All details provided by a trainer and not me making it up willy nilly
Results? Not a major shift…just a .2% drop in body fat.
In all honesty, I tried to keep my expectations realistic. It was only 6 weeks after all and I’m not trying to lose a ton. This little chart is from Muscle Sound where I did my body fat testing and on the plus side I lost fat in my abdomen, which is the area I’d move love to change, but somehow I gained fat on my back area. I opted to use the same body fat measurement tool both times because whether one tool is entirely accurate or not, at least it’s the same! Since I also took measurements, which mostly changed in my chest…le sigh we don’t need anything to drop there, I feel pretty confident that there wasn’t much BF drop.
I like Muscle Sound because it doesn’t matter if you go at the same time of day, if you’ve eaten or worked out or whether someone is new to testing. It’s a body fat test using ultrasound. Previously it’s only been available to major sports teams, but here in Denver they’re going to be offering it now to everyone! It takes 2 minutes and can be done as noted any time of day, won’t matter if it’s your TOM or anything else because it looks at muscle density.
Why slow results?
- Possibly because I’m still running around 20 MPW, which is down from 40MPW
- During the muscle building phase it could help to drop the cardio
- I was really close on my macros, but not perfect as it was all an adjustment for me!
- Now that I’m used to hitting the protein goal, I need to focus on making sure the fat and carbs are right
Since increasing my protein was one of my IIFYM goals, it was perfect timing for me to try out Vital Proteins Collagen PeptidesVital Proteins Collagen Peptides. I mixed it along with half a scoop of my normal protein powder each morning to start the day, plus some tumeric!
But this wasn’t just about the protein, this was about my knee!! Heck yes, everything I do tends to somehow come back to running!I’d seen this all over the place, but didn’t really understand the benefits. A few weeks of using it and I can tell you for sure that my skin looks firmer and smoother which is pretty fabulous! Here’s the other reasons I’m loving it:
- Collagen will help my knee to repair because it’s good for joints, tendons and cartilage
- 1 scoop is 8 grams of protein, no carbs 30 calories
- Contains Lysine which is really good for dropping cholesterol (see how it all ties together!)
- Contains Leucine which helps to regular blood sugar levels
- There is also some research indicating better muscle building results from animal proteins, since I can’t do dairy I love this option
- Totally tasteless, so it can be mixed in to just about anything.
But there was one more thing I begged them to try.
Why?? I’ve been reading about the benefit of eating meat on the bone, bone broth and organ meat….organ meat just ain’t happening, so I was excited to also try their Vital Protein Beef Liver capsules. It has a lot of the same benefits of the collagen powder, but it’s made from what’s considered a superfood so it has other vitamins and minerals as well.I’m gonna kick this injury’s butt!
Any time you start a training program it’s great to see how it impacts everything. Thus, I went back to Inside Tracker for a follow up on all my blood markers. It’s super easy to order online, then you go to a local facility for the blood draw and wait for your dashboard of results and recommendations.
My last test was July of 2015, while we still lived in Florida. I was really interested to see if there was any change in things after living in Colorado for just over a year and…of course there were!
Previously, I talked all about using blood testing for athletic performance, so please read that. Today I’ll just dive in to the results and what they meant for me! As it turns out…I was still low in the same two Vitamins, which told me that my methods of attempting to fix it naturally wasn’t working.
Low Vitamin D — Super interesting to know that in November I did my annual health test and this was fine, so I definitely need to get more sunshine during the winter! You can see here the awesome information that’s provided with your test ensuring you aren’t just left with a problem, but have solutions.Low Iron – Definitely explains some of the fatigue and indeed can impact overall performance. I decided this time to start taking a low dose iron supplement and I am feeling the difference.
Other things like DHEA (a hormone related to my estrogen) was low and my cholesterol was out of whack. It turns out that being extremely stressed can spike your cholesterol and if I’m being honest, that certainly described me around the time of the test. It’s part of why I needed that Run Mindful Retreat so badly! That’s what’s happening around here lately to switch things up!
What are you doing to switch up training?
Have you ever tried counting macros?
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This post contains sponsored content for Vital Proteins and the Inside Tracker test was received free.