My favorite spot to bike as a kid was on Sugar Tree Rd. This was not because there were actual sugar trees lining the road. Sadly my neighborhood was not the model for the Candy Land board game, and there were no gingerbread houses owned by witches on my block. Sugar Tree Rd. was the destination for biking because it had a huge dip into a valley followed by a hill. I’d pedal fast and hard down the valley, picking up speed until I was almost flying like I had E.T. in my bike basket. The momentum would carry me at least halfway up the huge hill, but then gravity started to shove back against momentum and I’d have to start pedaling…and pedaling.. and OH MY GOD you’re going to have to pedal harder than that if you want to reach the top! I don’t care how short your legs are! Push harder!
Which is how weight loss seems to be. Those first 100 pounds just seemed to whoosh by. I could almost hear the air passing past my ears as they fell off. But now as I’m approaching the summit of my goals, I’ve got to pedal harder and harder and check to make sure I’m in the best gear. Nevermind that I still haven’t figured out what gear is best on my 10-speed bicycle over 10 years after I got it.
New muscle mass or not, I think I’m in a plateau here. It would be awesome to think I’ve gained 5 or 6 pounds of muscle in the past month. It would also be awesome if my cat started producing chocolate milk from his nipples. It doesn’t mean it’s going to happen. But my measurements haven’t changed and all my clothes still fit, so I don’t think I’ve gained any fat or if I have it’s unnoticeable.
So, it’s time to pedal a little harder and push myself more in my exercise. I’ve been reading about High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) over on Marla’s site and started applying that to my running this week. After I warm-up, I do intervals where I spend 2 minutes running at a moderate pace and then 1 minute running like crazy, like crazier than Arkham Aylum’s track team. Repeat 5 times and then cool down. And wow, this is definitely a work-out. My heart rate got higher than it ever has before, though still within safe zones. I also felt strangely energized after running like that, like how I felt after running around the yard as a kid, heart racing and all alive.
I’m also going to be a bit careful with my dinner portions. Lately when I’ve been putting away extra food into the fridge I’ve been putting away some of it into my stomach too. I’ll scrape the couscous into the Tupperware and take two spoonfuls off the top, like a Mafia boss skimming profits. So, no more of that. We’ll see how this goes in the next couple weeks and if needed make adjustments accordingly. My brother’s wedding is in three and a half months and I’d really love to wear the size 10 dress I got for $2.50 at my Goodwill store shopping spree last month.