Once more unto the breach

I have begun my birthday-present gym membership.

This is not a normal gym membership. I already have one of those, with access to a pool, weights room, etc. This is a different kind of program.

The core of the program is an extremely strict high-fat diet (which is going to pose all manner of logistical problems as I travel for work). This is expected to cause me to drop a lot of fat quite rapidly.

The second part of the program is the exercise. I am required to do a set of 15-minutes of high intensity exercise under supervision every day. This is not so much to lose weight. The point here is to (1) improve muscle tone, and (2) prevent the very aggressive diet from causing me to lose muscle.

As I sit here writing this, I am very aware of how hungry I am.

Having done a diet like this before, I know that this is normal in the early days and that my body will adapt when it realises that burning my fat reserves is a viable alternative. I’m told it will work quite quickly since this is not the first time I do this diet.

Yesterday I had to go have all my measurements taken. This gym is very particular about measuring results and a weigh-in at the beginning and end of the 15 day program is obligatory. I’ll put the various results up as I go.

I then did the first HIIT session. Yesterday was legs. Squats, extensions, calf raises, shin dips. The strategy is to get you to exercise to failure as fast as possible. You also burn through all the glucose reserves in your muscles, leaving you a little shaky but with (apparently) a higher metabolic rate for the rest of the day.

After every session there’s a set of abdominal exercises which, when you haven’t done any for a while, are quite challenging.

My starting point: 169 pounds (76.7 kg). 19% body fat. I’m currently at the top of the “ideal” range for the body mass index.

This gives me 15 days to violently change trajectory and get some early wins, and then I need to give some thought to what I do going forward. That’s a whole other category of challenges.


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