Base Level Of Fitness - Week 2 (Live)

Posted on Monday, July 9, 2018 at 10:34 AM into personal, exercise & fitness by Steve Woods.
Roughly a 10 minute read.

So in my last post about returning to a basic level of fitness I mentioned that I wasn't going to do a weekly update about my progress.

In retrospect I've decided that I will, but I'm going to do it over the course of the week instead of in one big chunk once the period is done with.

The reason for this is basically so that I can do a "live" diary of how I was feeling at that particular time, and to record why I think that was so - for instance, the time I went to bed, stuff I'd eaten the day beforehand. I want to get a better idea of how things impact my ability to perform exercise, even at this base level.

So without further ado, here we go - week 2.

Monthly Progress Data

Monday 9th July 2018

11am - Cycling

So this morning I had to really push myself to get out, and I knew I was only going to do the shortest route on my Endomono Tracker. Why? Well I was up until 3:40am last night because it was so hot and I'd gotten sunburnt so simply couldn't sleep properly. The net result being that I was knackered when I got out of bed and had zero motivation to do anything, except to not let my stats down. I did not want to miss a day. Oh, did I mention we had a BBQ yesterday as well? Suffice to say I wasn't feeling it - but I went out anyway. Great!.

Feeling - "Tired":
I really felt like I had a lack of strength - but I did before I even got on the bike to be fair. 

Good bits:
I was well hydrated, I'd been drinking a lot of water throughout yesterday.

Bad bits:
Only about 4 hours sleep, BBQ belly...


9:15pm - Late Evening Cycling

I was quite proud of myself for going out this evening because earlier on in the day I had said to myself "well, you were knackered and you went out today already so it's cool" , justifying the procrastination. It wasn't helped by the fact that I needed to do a quick grocery run which meant by the time I got back it was getting late, and the wind had picked up.

But then I thought to myself that it'd be the first chink in the armour if I didn't do a second workout, and that would start the slippery slope into being a lazy bastard - it was my first test, and I was failing. 

So out I went -  figured I'd do another easy mile like this morning just to get it over with. However I was pleasantly surprised to find myself challenging to push further and not just get it done and go home, so I doubled the distance and then added a little bit on for good measure. 

Excellent - it might not be the fastest time or the longest ride in the world but I'm having it. I managed to get myself out twice today despite feeling tired from last night, and also in the face of some less than amazing weather.  

Scratch another day off :)


Tuesday 10th July 2018

11:30am Short Cycle

So this morning I got up feeling lousy despite making the effort to get myself to bed at a decent time the night before. I think perhaps I had too much sleep, because it was almost as if I felt a little hungover to be honest. In reality I'm just still probably feeling the effects of my new-found fitness regime - after all, there's most likely a lot of damage to undo from the last few years and it's certainly not going to be an overnight thing.

Anyway, I managed to get myself out on a short ride to get the blood flowing and kick my day off properly. It was a bit cooler outside and there was a little wind but overall a pleasant ride around the local church.

The pace is off a little because there's a 400 yard stretch of the route where it is along the side of a field which is bumpy mud/grass and so I can't travel as quickly. But it's a nice ride anyway, got to love the fresh countryside air this time of year.


9:15pm - Late Evening Cycling

Tonight I went out fairly late but it was planned because the winds tend to die down with the sunlight. I took it easy, just enjoying the ride and added a little detour into the local park to do a grass circuit, just exploring really. 

St Oswalds Church Entrance

I do love riding around when there's no traffic or people around, and one other bonus is that when you're in the countryside you see countless little rabbits bounding in and out of the crops which is nice too.

I decided to extend the ride just a little bit tonight because I only did a short one in the morning, and I think if you check the stats I was actually cycling a little faster towards the end which tells you it's getting a little easier on the legs. I'm actually really enjoying getting back in the saddle to be honest so here's to tomorrow.


Wednesday 11th July 2018

11am - Cycling

A repeat of yesterday with regards the motivation. I was feeling lousy after a crap nights sleep, then coupled with my daughter waking up early and being ill (which was stressful) it was a miracle I actually dragged my arse out to be honest.

One bonus of feeling lousy is it makes me take stock of why it is - lack of sleep, added stress and just a general feeling of malaise contributes to procrastination so much, so I definitely need to work on this in order to improve how I feel and my motivation.

At least I got out though, however briefly. Let's see what this evening brings (hopefully England will win the World Cup semi-final against Croatia and I'll be feeling awesome!).


10pm - Night Cycling

Well, after the agony that was the England match which resulted in our exit from the World Cup, it was a miracle that I even went out. Feeling gutted!

Never mind - they did us proud. Roll on Euro 2020!

Two short exercises today, need to step it up a bit tomorrow but it all depends on how well I feel as I was feeling weak and lousy today. We'll see!


Thursday 12th July 2018

Two Workouts, But No Time For Blogging!

Today was my 10th wedding anniversary! Someone actually loved me enough to voluntarily put up with my crap for an entire decade! Wow - props to my good lady, right?

I went out in the morning and did a quick circuit of the church - I actually did a video for my Youtube channel about this whole fitness escapade, but my crappy phone managed to corrupt the MicroSD card so I lost all of the footage and will have to re-do it tomorrow. Bummer.

Not to worry though - I capped off the day with another short little ride to the church and down to the bottom of the village on the evening and although I was a little tired after having a big meal (sweet n sour chicken, if you're interested) I still felt pretty good for getting out again. 

Remember, it's about consistency and habit-formation at this point - not distance or speed.

Track 1 - Morning

Track 2 - Evening

Friday 13th July 2018

Lunchtime Cycling

Eeek - Friday 13th, probably not the best day to be cycling on the roads - but I braved it anyway :)

I actually paused halfway around the route to record my first vlog (above) about this whole fitness thing because I want to start taking it really seriously. I'm really starting to hate this little bubble of fat I'm carrying around my stomach and the general level of unfitness I'm feeling. I can see this becoming an obsession, which basically means I'm going to go all out and change everything to make it a success.

I think one of the main things I'm going to have to change though is my sleep pattern - I need to reverse the current pattern which is "stay up late, get up late". I really want to become a morning person again - I find I'm so much more productive and energetic if I got to bed early and get up early but for some reason I'm finding it incredibly hard to switch things around.

Work in progress though - baby steps. At least I'm keeping it up.


Evening Cycle

So I went out this evening despite everything in my head telling me not to simply because I've been feeling really lousy all day - but that's the trap! I refuse to fall into "oh just this once" and set myself up for failure. I know why I'm feeling crappy, it's a lack of sleep and not eating properly, as well as being stressed with work so it's nothing I shouldn't be able to push through. 

No excuses!

Having said that I do need to work on the sleep thing as I keep mentioning, and not eating properly is just dumb. 

Working on it!


Saturday 14th July 2018

Early Doors for once

So this morning I dragged my arse out of bed earlier than usual because I've noticed that my first workouts were getting later and later, to the point where I felt I was putting them off a little bit. Not today! 

So I went out at around 7:30am and also mixed it up a little bit by going to the local park and attempting some pull-ups. Well, that was a real eye-opener.

It turns out I can't even do five pull-ups, which is shocking. How I have left myself get into this state I will never know, but I know I'm going to sort it out. It's amazing how you don't notice the damage you've caused yourself until you watch your flabby ass struggling to lift itself up. 

I feel pretty embarrassed about posting this video up to be honest, but I'm going to anyway because it's motivation for me to sort this out. I don't want to be this fat, unfit guy any more and I can take this one of two ways:

1) the way my head thinks: "man you might as well give up now, it's too hard"


2) the way my heart thinks: "in six months you will manage to do twenty of those fucking pull ups, and in 20 years time you'll look awesome and healthy while walking your daughter down the aisle instead of hobbling along on a stick".

Guess which one I want most.

Fuck that video, and fuck this fat.


Evening Cycle

This evening I decided to go out a little earlier than I had been, rather than leaving it until late. I'm not sure if that affected my energy levels but I certainly felt a lot better, like I wasn't fighting the bike and just getting on with it.

I actually stopped and had a chat with one of my neighbours, an elderly chap who I've not spoken to properly despite living in the house for four years and turns out he's a nice bloke - nothing really to report but it's nice to meet people simply by going outside and saying hello. He was walking his dog and was halfway around my usual route when I turned the corner so that was a nice surprise.

I've had a chance to digest this mornings failure on the pull-ups and have decided not to beat myself up about it. The thing is, it isn't a surprise that I'm unfit - it's why I'm doing this in the first place and it's not going to happen overnight.

One thing I did take to heart while watching some Youtube videos tonight as well is the fact that when you're working out, six months seems like an eternity looking forwards - but looking back it seems to happen so quickly (I mean it was January, I can remember everything I was doing back then - it's no time at all).

So - the choice is to simply keep plodding on and I'll start to see positive changes soon for definite. But in the moment it feels like nothing is happening.

Hey - tomorrow is two weeks worth of workouts and I've not missed a single day - woop!


Sunday 15th July 2018

Evening Cycling

Eagle-eyed readers of this blog (hi, you two!) will have noticed that I've only recorded one cycling entry today - and that's because this morning I woke up in agony with "Charley Horse" or "Leg Cramp" (or "fucking hell !! help !! it hurts!!" which is what I believe I called it). 

The muscle on the back of my left calf had cramped into basically a tennis ball and was absolutely wrecking - it took ages to rub it back down into something bearable and then for the rest of the day my leg was hurting every time I walked on it - not good!

So - it looks as though I may have some sort of vitamin deficiency after all, certainly a mineral deficiency and it's probably heat-related because it's been uncharacteristically warm of late. More care needed - I've spent the day basically drinking mineral water and adding extra vegetables to my sandwiches etc to counteract the problem.

I am, however, dreading going to sleep tonight - I do not want to wake up with that pain again!

Having said all that, I was itching to get out and felt like I was totally letting myself down - so I snapped in the end, and did a quick mile-and-a-half in the evening once the weather had cooled down and the wind had dropped. 


Two Weeks!

Can I just take this opportunity to point out that today marks two weeks since the start of this exercise shenanigans, and I'm feeling pretty proud of myself for sticking with it.

I'm going to end this blog post here as it's getting pretty long - suffice to say, I'm going to continue doing it, but perhaps not keeping a daily update (unless you want me to, hit me up in the comments), because it's a bit "samey".

Make sure you follow on my Youtube channel though as I'll be posting update videos then as I continue my training. Roll on six months!

Thanks for reading!



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