30 for 30

And so it's here. The time has changed, the calendar page has changed, the cherry blossoms have changed, the weather is changing, and now, I too must change my routine, and get moving in the right direction. I started with the 25 day fitness and thought I had found the solution in the 60-minutes of working out a day, but like everyone, I struggle to find a solid, consistent workout regimen when time is limited and responsibilities and commitment on my time seem to take presidente.

You know the one I'm talking about... the 'oh my gosh, spring is here and I am still stuck in winter weight mode.' Yeah. That's the one. But there's no reason to hit the panic button, it's more about finding the right plan for each of us. There is no pill or powder to help us find the results we're looking for (despite convincing ad campaigns to the contrary) and at the end of the day, it comes down to each of us as individuals and what we're willing to commit to doing to implement the change we seek.

That said, I have come up with something that Doug and I are calling "30 for 30." While I'll be the first to concede that the name has been used in multiple formats and the overall theme (spring fitness overhaul) isn't novel in concept; but what is different is the way in which I am approaching it: total diversity, total discipline, total fun. That's right, I said it. Total fun.

So jokes and self-deprecation aside, I know what it means to suffer. I was an elite swimmer, a four-year, full-scholarship, Division I collegiate swimmer. Last year, I completed my first Ironman triathlon [Ironman piece] so both my family and myself are fully aware of what it means to not only 'be in shape' but also what the inherent difference is between 'training' and just 'working out.' You might just say it's in our DNA.

To be clear, in the former ('working out') you are doing a semi-monotonous routine, with the only clear objective being to mitigate any weight gain, or visible back slide. In a sense, it's the fitness equivalent of treading water; you're doing as little as possible, so you just don't go under. In the latter, however, 'training' is more focused in format, and more structured and metered in its progression. To extend the metaphor, it's not about treading water, it's more about swimming laps and keeping count of how far you're going. I guess put differently, it's about setting a goal and taking calculated, measured steps to get there. The "30 for 30" concept is all about training, not working out, and here's why:

1. I want to do 30 different workouts, over 30 consecutive days, to look and feel 30% better than I do right now.

2. To qualify "feel 30% better", I break that down into three sub-categories so that the measurements are a little more objective in nature:

  • 5lb weight loss: 5lbs per month is a completely sustainable weight loss rate, meaning it doesn't require crash or fad diets, nor any off the charts untenable fitness routine, nor any type of dangerous self-deprivation. It is a moderate, yet consistent alteration of my current routine, which maintained over a long enough time line will yield consistent, lasting, healthy results.
  • 30% more energy: sometimes it's just the winter doldrums, sometimes it's a natural side-effect of when we gain a little bit of weight or lose a little bit of fitness, but the general lethargy that I've been feeling over the last 90 days is starting to wear on me. As part of this 30/30 plan, I want to have 30% more energy than I currently do. No, I'm not talking about the foot-tapping jitters you get from too much coffee or some neon-colored, thermos-size energy drink in the 7-11 cooler, I'm talking about having consistent, metered, energy over the course of the day, day after day. I believe a change in my program (and the introduction of 30/30) will achieve this. It will shock my system, alter my resting metabolic rate, change my fat burning/storage mechanism, and in so doing, will have a direct impact on my energy levels.
  • 30% more comfortable in my clothes: okay, let's face it, no matter what the scale says, the first thing we notice every morning, is how those clothes are fitting as we get dressed for the day. It's unavoidable. People say 'the scale doesn't lie' and while I agree with this, it's our clothes that tell the real tale of what's going on with our bodies. Like many of you, I have 'winter clothes' and 'summer clothes' and they're not just divided by warmth and fabric texture. In the winter, all of us put on a pound or two and in the process (depending on how tailored you wear your outfits) we have basically two sizes: Normal and Normal+. I want to shed the latter and stay a consistent size year-round. Looking at some of the things that Doug has drawn up over the next month, I have no doubt that this will set me in the right direction towards feeling 30% more comfortable.

So today, April 1, is the first day of 30/30. I am doing a fitness class called YaLa with my friend Nicole, at Sports Club LA. It's a cardio dance class, to which I am terrified to attend.  I have limited coordination and am not in any way, shape or form a dancer who moves with ease in a structured class setting. Stay tuned. From there, and in the days ahead, I will be doing outdoor cross-training, running, cycling, yoga, swimming, weight-training, kayaking, and a slew of other things that are apparently labeled 'TBA.' My goal is to not only accomplish all of the goals and objectives I laid out above, but to bring you along with me for every step of the journey. In the end, there is no magic scroll, it's about the journey. I'll keep you updated on a daily basis and look forward to hearing from each of you.

See you on the road!