Thursday, December 4, 2008

Fit Bride, Part II: It's all about the yoga!

I planned to hold myself accountable for fitness progress and pitfalls weekly. Because of the holiday, I didn't quite make it... but I'm checking in now.

So far, I've been sticking to the plan pretty well. I've been doing yoga about 3 times a week and doing cardio, well, not enough, but some!

I swear yoga is the best exercise for me. It changes my metabolism so that I burn more calories all the time, and my flexibility and mental health are improving too. The last time I did a big healthy push was in my second year of residency. I tried everything with very little success. I was working out and eating smaller portions, but I just seemed to bulk up muscle-wise. I added yoga, and dropped down to my pre-residency weight. So, I knew yoga worked for me, but it seemed too expensive for me to do sustainably-- until I joined a gym that had classes. Yay!

Here is a snippet from a review article (science geek alert) that I read,
"There is a need to have yoga better recognized by the health care community as a complement to conventional medical care. Over the last 10 years, a growing number of research studies have shown that the practice of Hatha Yoga can improve strength and flexibility, and may help control such physiological variables as blood pressure, respiration and heart rate, and metabolic rate to improve overall exercise capacity."

J Altern Complement Med. 2002 Dec;8(6):797-812.

Psychophysiologic effects of Hatha Yoga on musculoskeletal and cardiopulmonary function: a literature review.

Raub JA.

In addition to the yoga, I've cut out simple carbs. It was hard to do initially, but you start to get used to it after a while. Whole grains can actually taste good, and I've learned to love Wheat Germ! I've increased my fiber from next to nothing to nearly 30 grams a day... no easy feat...

I've also cut down my processed sugar intake. This is so hard for me to do... Sometimes I just crave something sweet. I can't help it. So, I haven't been perfect on this, but I'm not binging on Kit Kats either ;) and hopefully I'll get there with baby steps.

I'm also using where I can track every single thing I put in my mouth (if I wanted to) and all of my activity. It's a bit obsessive, and it sends me into a slightly anorexic freakout mode, so I use it sparingly...

The net effect is that I've dropped 4 lbs, in 2 weeks, healthily. I know it's better to only drop a half pound a week, but I'm just going with what happens and not depriving myself, so I feel ok with it. That's great, right? Well, in just the course of me changing my dietary habits and going to yoga, Mr. Chris managed to drop 10 lbs!!!

First of all, I'm jealous (and a little frustrated), but secondly, he doesn't need to lose any weight-- at all. So now I have to figure out a way to shrink myself while keeping the boy adequately fed. Sigh.


AmyJean said...

Yoga is great! Bravo for doing it 3 times a week. That is impressive. Have you tried Bikram? I did three classes and about died... it's so good for you, but so dang difficult. You do feel your body changing though with yoga!

Being healthy is hard, especially around the holidays - blogging about your progress is a good way to keep accountable :)

Anonymous said...

Good for you! You can do it!

zoliepup said...

The holidays are going to be a struggle! It's a balance between being completely obsessed or not caring at all, and I find myself not walking that line so successfully all the time.

The yoga helps me to be mindful of what I'm doing. I like the Vinyasas best.