Reidy writes

Sunday, 25 September 2011

Week 2 = Training hard, feeling great !

Unfortunately the last day of week 1 of my 12 Week Body Transformation was sad for me. I wasn't sure if it was appropriate for me to mention this in my blog but the more I think about it the more I think we need to raise awareness. On Saturday afternoon while working at Bondi I was tasked by Deano, my team leader to remove a seal off the rocks at North Bondi that had passed away at some point the day before. We believe it was our resident seal named Salty, Salty has been spotted hanging out around the bays of Bondi, Bronte and Tamarama for at at least the past 5 years. Now I'm not to sure exactly how Salty died but I suspect It was old age because he didn't have any wounds or battle marks on him. We opted for a water burial out at sea as the beach was quite busy and we didn't want to disturb beach goers especially children. It saddened me a lot at the time but was nothing on what I was going to experience the next day while working back at Bondi. On Sunday the 18th of September a beautiful woman took her life by jumping from the cliffs around the corner from Bondi and I was part of the rescue team that was involved in transporting her from the rocks out to the police boat waiting just offshore. For obvious reasons I will not be going into details but I guess I just wanted to write about how it made me feel and the way it affected me. I felt so much sorrow for her friends and family. I can't relate as I have never lost any loved ones to suicide and hope I will never have to go through what they are going through right now but I hope that she is in a better place than whatever it was that made her make the decision to leave this world. Life is so precious and I really think that all of us as a society have a responsibility to be nice to each other. You never quite know whats going through someones mind but maybe that simple act of kindness might change someones life.

On a brighter note early into my 2nd week Corey Oliver and myself went and hung out with the lovely ladies at the head office of the McGrath Foundation. These beautiful women work super hard everyday coming up with new and fun ways to raise much needed funds to supply breast care nurses to women fighting breast cancer. We talked with Tracey Bevan (Foundation ambassador and director) about a couple of ideas that us as their foundation friends along with the other Bondi lifeguards can lend a hand. A good friend of mine's mother has recently fought breast cancer, she is winning the fight but I saw first hand the effects it has on them, their family and friends and its not fun.

Training wise this week I wanted to be more prepared and focused than the first week. I had my exercise schedule for the week set in stone and I wasn't going to miss any of them. As well as completing all my weights sessions in the "Lean and Strong" section of my 12WBT I also nailed two swim squad sessions on Tuesday and Thursday, swimming about 3 km in each. Swimming is very low impact so it's great on the body and even if I am gasping like a goldfish out of water at the end of every main set the feeling I get after a big session is awesome. Plus I'm hopefully drawing closer to my goal of breaking 11mins over 800m. On the off days from the pool I belted out 3 sweat filled sessions with the team up at Shift 60 in Bondi. Many people have asked me what it is that's so different about the training up at Shift60 so I thought I'd let one of the men behind this revolutionary style of training, Damien "Chappy" Chapman tell you all about it.

On Saturday I also completed my first Super Saturday "Fun" Session. This week it was Climbing at the Sydney Indoor Climbing Gym in St Peters. It is the largest in the country and has about 3000 m2 of climbing walls. There are walls and climbs for all different levels, shapes and sizes plus and they even cater to kids during school holidays. In the 3 hours we were there I climbed over 15 walls getting a great all over workout but also having an absolute ball at the same time. When you reach the top of a climb after giving it everything you have got that feeling of satisfaction just blows you away! I think it's places like this that kids should be spending their play time as apposed to in front of a TV screen playing mind numbing computer games.

As I was born with ants in my pants I have a big problem with sitting still so when I woke Sunday morning for rest day with no plans I thought I would have a crack at the 8am yoga class down at a studio in North Bondi. Now I used to do a little yoga (in a heated room) but I have never done the normal type and boy did I struggle Bikram. I'm probably the least flexible person you know so watching all these guru yogis putting their bodies in strange positions was a little intimidating. It made me realise that I need to spend a lot more time stretching, especially if I'm going to keep pushing my body harder and harder to achieve my goals.

It's the start of week 3 tomorrow and I'm looking forward to another successful 7 days of healthy eating and hard training, but because I'm probably doing a few more sessions than the average Joe I spoke to the team at Body Science about what sort of extra nutrition I may need to ensure I can keep my body working at 100%. They put me onto their legendary human performance specialist. He was more than happy to tell me exactly what I needed to keep pushing my body to its limits. This week is going to be the best yet and I can't wait for it to get started !!!

For everyone that is reading this and thinking about taking on their own 12WBT for what ever reason, all I can say is "JUST DO IT". Im feeling the best I ever have and may even give up beer forever. "Yeah maybe not forever but maybe a little more in moderation :)"

Next weeks  Super Saturday "Fun" Session I'm going to train with a Dragon Boat crew in Sydney. It looks like hard work but a lot of fun all the same. Let the good times roll !

Thanks for stopping by again :)


Saturday, 17 September 2011

1 week down 11 to go !

So the Saturday night before the start of my 12WBT I spent it preparing for the next 12 weeks. You'd think I would have been out drinking beer and tearing into a couple of Quarter pounders but I understand where Michelle is coming from when she urges her team of 12WBTer's to be prepared. Its so instrumental to be prepared and organised if you want to lead a healthy life. It's a little bit like how we do things on the beach as lifeguards. We are prepared to handle just about any situation as quickly as humanly possible and we do daily checks to ensure that equipment is working and ready to go. If we didn't then things wouldn't run smoothly and problems would arise.

Sunday morning I ripped right into my first weekly surprise for week 1, a fitness test. It involved a 1 km (1000 meters) run and a few other strength tests such as push ups and sit ups to name a few. I felt okay but I know there is much, MUCH more work to do to get back to my best. 

My first week has gone well so far. I've been prepared for each day and made sure I fit in at least 1 training session in each day. I like to mix up my training so on Tuesday night after already completing a weights session I went along to a swim squad. When you swim in a squad you push yourself a lot harder than you would if you were just going to the pool on your own. That night I swam over 3km and felt pretty good considering I haven't swum squad since I was 13. As far as I'm concerned swimming is one of the best exercises you can do. Its low impact and you work every muscle in your body. 

The next morning we started our lifeguard induction and to kick things off all the boys were invited to take a class with the crew at a new gym that has recently opened up in Bondi called Shift60. Its run by a couple of super friendly and very knowledgeable guys named Damien and Nick. Their interval based workouts are a combination of aerobic conditioning and functional resistance training and is suited to all levels of fitness. After the morning session I was hooked and after a long day working down in the office at Bondi I backed up for a second class that evening. Nick and Damien thought I was a little crazy but when you walk out of a session covered in sweat and feeling amazing its like a drug and you just want more.

I always knew the first week was going to be easy for me as I'm in the zone and all I am thinking about is staying on top of things like eating well and keeping my training consistent. Its the next couple of weeks that worry me. Thats when old habits start to come back and my mind starts trying to play the "Oh you can miss 1 session" or "Its okay, one burger won't matter" so I have decided to take measures to ensure I am reminded of where I want to be in 12 weeks. I have made the wall paper on my iPhone the list of my goals and I've also made little posters of my goals and placed them in strategic places around my house. Every time I walk past them I make a point of reading them to myself, sometimes out loud. Some may say its silly but I have no doubt many successes have come from silly ideas.

Friday rolled around pretty quick and that meant Lifeguard Sportsman's day. Every year we have a team bonding day where we get together and compete in a selected group of sporting events. Some are main stream and others are just fun. The teams are drawn out of a hat except for the winners and last place team from the year before. (2010 winners Yatsey & Whippet, losers Maxi & Gonzo) They must stay together and try and either reclaim their crown or dig their way out of last place and hand over the wooden spoon. This year we were met with some fantastic weather conditions and some events that were going to keep everyone worried they may end up with the spoon. Fortunately for Myself and team mate Benny Sutherland we came in 6th place behind the winners Whippet and Yatsey. Others weren't so lucky with Bisho and Max Ayshford claiming the "wooden spoon" coming in dead last. Check out the video below for a wrap up of all the days fun. (please note video may be to large to load on mobile devices).

I had plans for making all my Saturday's super training sessions something different and fun but for this weekend due to the extremely hot weather I was called into work so I just smashed out a stairs session early morning then did a quick power weights session in my lunch break. Check out the picture's I took on Saturday below. I shot them on my iPhone 4 and stitched together in photoshop. The cameras on mobile phones are getting so good it's crazy.

So it's 1 week down and there is 11 to go. The hardest part for me this week was when the boys were celebrating the sportsman's day with a couple of beers and I was drinking water. I'm not a heavy drinker but I do quite enjoy a beer. Sometimes you need to make sacrifices if you want something bad enough and feeling one hundred times better is well worth it. Next week isn't as busy for me so I can really plan my sessions and get 100 percent out of them. Does anyone have any suggestions for my Super Fun Saturday Session ? I was thinking I might either head down to Cronulla and try some dragon boat racing or get to the nearest indoor climbing gym and spend a couple of hours there climbing.

Thanks everyone for stopping by :)

Live Your Dreams !


Monday, 5 September 2011

Blank canvas !

This is the start of a new chapter for me. Here I begin a journey back to the fitter person I have been in the past. As most of you know I work down at Bondi with some pretty fit dudes and my job as a lifeguard ensures that I need to keep my fitness levels reasonably high but because of my recent trip to Europe I have let myself go leaving my body looking like a blank canvas.

I have decided to take on the wonderful Michelle Bridges 12 Week Body Transformation. It’s an Internet based weight loss website that comes with training and nutrition programs suited to all shapes and sizes. You are also given regular updates, tips and support from the team at 12WBT the whole way through. I feel the format will work in well with my busy lifestyle and hopefully let me kiss good-bye to a beer belly I so proudly produced while gallivanting across the European countryside (see previous blog posts) !

As some of you may know I haven't always been fit and healthy. I spent a big part of my teenage years as a very fat kid and It definitely wasn't a time in my life that I was proud of.

At about the age of 20 I decided enough was enough. This wasn't the person I wanted to be anymore and started out losing weight very slowly. I watched EVERYTHING I ate, only drank water and kept my junk food intake down to zero. As for exercise I just walked and ran around the block (about 1km) near my house. I still remember my first run, it was terrible, I'm pretty sure I only ran the first 50m and then walked the rest. From that day on for the next 6 months I ran every morning and pushed myself to run that little bit further ever day. Pretty sure by the end I was running that block 3 times without breaking a sweat. A few years later I tried out for the lifeguards and got on the team. I still have to constantly watch what I eat and train consistently or it all comes creeping back.

People have this perception that there are some people born fit and healthy and they don't have to work hard to stay looking good, well I'm here to say thats Poppycock. If someone is looking trim and terrific then I'd put my life on it they have been training hard and eating right. For me I know what I have to do to get back on the wagon and thats train my mind. The mind is the most powerful muscle we have and mine is going to be working overtime to ensure that I'm eating well and training consistency throughout the whole 12 weeks to ensure i get the results I want. 

Its going to be an emotional ride and I know there will be some ups and downs but I'm focused and ready to make it through the whole 12 weeks.

Im going through my some of my 12WBT preseason tasks as we speak, things like: Introducing myself to other 12WBT'ers on the forums (see video below) and ridding my kitchen of any nasties that may tempt me. There is also an events section where you can find fun, fitness activities such as Dragon Boat racing in your area every week to get involved in. Cant wait !!!

Im excited to kick things off on Monday the 12th of September, lets do this !