Today I gave the Body by Science BIG 5 workout a try! It’s about bloody time!
Wednesdays are going to be my Big 5 day, since I only have to teach Body Balance in the evening (which I figure is going to help with any stiffness) and Thursdays are also a light day, with Seniors Gym (where I generally go for a short walk on the treadmill or 5 minute spin on the bike and spend the rest of the hour observing and chatting) and Body Attack in the evening. Hopefully I am ready for Attack! 🙂
I didn’t have my weights set quite right for this first session, so didn’t get a ‘perfect’ result this first time around, but I can tell you, I know I’ll feel this tomorrow! Arms, shoulders, back and glutes, in particular, are already telling me about it!
First up was the seated row, and I went quite a bit longer than I had to – weight was too light. I finally started to lose range of motion, so called ‘positive failure’ when I could no longer draw my elbows behind my body.
Then on to the chest press, and apparently I chose the weight conservatively again so went for about two minutes before positive failure. It seems I don’t know my own strength! 🙂
Seeing that I wasn’t pushing myself hard enough, I upped the weight for my narrow grip lat pulldown and called positive failure when my legs started quivering. Yes, my LEGS!? I think I was bracing that hard through my core and hip flexors that my legs started to fatigue! Can that be right?
I did a near perfect time (1:20) on the overhead press, though I changed hand position half-way through so I could keep going after 30 seconds. The wide position is REALLY tough! I called positive failure when my back started to arch like crazy!
Then I did the leg press. I started with the seat at 1 and the pin on 10 and could NOT move the weight AT ALL. Talk about a sticking point! I backed off to 8 and went for 4 1/2 minutes. I slowed my reps down to as slow as I could and could really feel my glutes, in particular, working hard. But in the end I called it quits out of boredom, not lack of form. Next week I’ll push the seat back and bring the weight up to see if the change of position can get me past that sticking point.
I ‘officially’ ended the workout with the Big 5, but added one-leg calf raises just for good measure. My left leg is so much weaker than my right! I did 10 lifts with 5kg weights on the left and knew all about it! But only just started to feel the exercise ‘kick in’ on the right by 9 and 10.
This week I took just over 15 minutes to complete the Big 5, and of that, just over 5 minutes was ‘rest’ time. That would be about an average of 1 minute per exercise. I don’t feel too bad about that result for the first time through. Just a bit of tweaking to do! So next week a bit of play with the weights, mostly bringing them up a notch, and seeing if I can get through the workout with a little less rest time.
In somewhat related news, I’m going to do something I didn’t think I’d ever do: I am going to buy a scale. I know that weight alone is not a good determinant of ‘weight loss’ success, but at the same time, I would like to weigh myself weekly at a more ideal time – early in the morning, on an empty tummy, rather than sometime later in the day with breakfast in and shoes on. Add measurements to that and I’ll really know if the diet and exercises are toning me up. (I think I’m going to exercise for vanity for a little while 🙂 )
What measurements do you take, and how often, to tell if you’re on track?