So I joined Jillian Michaels's program last weekend, but it took me until today to try one of her workouts. The site works like this: You fill out your profile with your height, weight, goal weight, age, and some other basic information. You choose one of two workout levels. You fill out a quiz about what effect eating various foods has on you. Then the site designs a workout program for you.
I thought, wow, you know, I'm a former triathlete and all, so this should be fine. I originally signed up for Level 2, but then my brain kicked in and replayed some of the scenes from Biggest Loser where contestants were crying and throwing up. So I backed off to Level 1. Yesterday was supposed to be a day off so I just did a short run (I have some things coming up this weekend that might interfere with my workouts, so I was getting them in when I had time). Today I tried one of her circuit workouts and it was pretty intense. I made the mistake of trying to jump rope for my 5-minute warmup. If you are like me and haven't jumped rope much since you were 8 years old, let me tell you, jumping rope is tougher than it sounds. And, I couldn't find my jump rope and had to go out and buy one. So I was already low on time and this warmup got me sweaty and tired even before I started the real workout. I did about half the workout and went for my cooldown walk. I felt a little dumb about it but realized that this meant the program was doing what it needs to do: Challenging me.
I've had more fun with the meal planner and grocery list tool. Jillian's podcasts have made it fairly obvious that she's no cook (her menus for callers are always boring: Vegetables, chunks of grilled protein, and quinoa). The recipes on the site are pretty amazing though. I made the Miso-Glazed Scallops with Soba Noodles and they were almost restaurant-quality, especially once I added a drizzle (about a teaspoon) of sesame oil and a squeeze of lime. I do wish the site had a calorie tracker built in. I've been using FitDay. If I were able to follow Jillian's meal plans completely, though, all the calories would be pre-counted for me.
The one tool I haven't had as much success with are the message boards. The problem is actually that the site is so successful: There seem to be tens of thousands of people using the site, and the discussion threads get so big and messy that it's hard to know where to jump in. But people do seem friendly.
I'm using my same handle, toledolefty, on Jillian's site so if you see me, say hello. And if you haven't listened to the podcast from July 20 yet, I recommend that you run over to the website and download it. There was a great bit on the way that people hold themselves back from living becuase of concerns about their weight. Just because we're working on something in our lives, doesn't mean we have to negate all our other good qualities. "We're always going to be working on something," she said. I can't really give you the sense of how powerful it was, so like I said, listen to it. It was an eye-opener for me.
Maybe if I'm nice to Jillian, maybe she'll go easier on me tomorrow...