Monthly Archives: June 2010

Workouts – Old Skool

Today I opted to do my workout (NROL4W Stage 5B Workout 2 – half way through Stage 5!) at the gym at my work.  It’s been a while since I’ve been up there.

Back when I was a co-op student I used to come in early to spend some time on the elliptical thingy in order to beat the morning traffic.  I ended up getting up at the same time, but I was able to get in a half hour – 45 minute workout because the traffic was so much lighter that much earlier.

When I decided to start doing NROL4W and was faced with the daunting task of joining a gym, I ran the numbers.  I could either A) do my workout before or after work in the gym at work and drive myself in each day, or B) join a gym near my house and carpool.  Seeing as driving myself in would use up about a tank of gas a week ($40/week), carpooling would only be half that (~$20/week) and a gym membership is $13 every TWO weeks, well, carpooling and joining a gym is much cheaper.

Since Stage 5 takes so freaking long to get through (usually 2 hours) and driving home right after work takes at least an hour (but waiting, say, 2 hours only takes 30 minutes) I took advantage of a day driving myself in to get my workout in earlier and maybe make it home before 7.

Here’s what I had to work with:

4 eons old treadmills, an elliptical thingy, a rower, a weird cable machine, and some random “total body fitness” sled thing.  Oh, and a Smith Machine (groan) and tons of old ass plates and a barbell.

I’m used to the Oly bar at my normal gym, so I hauled the tiny little barbell out to the plant floor shipping are to give it a weight.  It came in at a very random 14.14lbs.  I called it 14.

This workout calls for back extension, and of course my awesome work gym doesn’t have the equipment for that, so, I got creative and discovered another use (besides coat rack and incline pushup assister) for the Smith Machine.

I set the bar down just about bench height, threw the pad on and put a bench in front.  Laying down with my hips just past the edge of the bench, I supported my legs on the bar.  Quite ingenious if I do say so myself.   I was nearly kissing the awesome floor while doing the extension, but hey, a girls gotta do what a girls gotta do!

The only other issue was trying to decipher the Pacific Fitness cable machine.  For lat pulldowns I’m used to seeing lbs or kgs as the weight identifier.  Not this time.  Numbers.  Plain ole’ integers.

#9 was challenging, and maybe a bit too much so.  I went down to #8 for my 3rd set and was able to get a much broader range of movement.  I don’t think I’ll be doing many more workouts in this gym in the future, but I think I will try to find some sort of conversion chart for integers to pounds for this thing.

That’s about it.  Post workout recovery was a simple blend of chocolate and mocha protein powder mixed with water, and dinner was scrambled egg wraps.

The last two nights after dinner I’ve been getting an upset stomach.  Today is much better than last night, but I’m still feeling blech.  I think I’ll go have a quick shower and then lay in the fetal position until bed.


I like food.

I think that one of the reasons I like lifting so much is because I like food.

Back when I first started to lose weight I used the whole “eat less, burn more” way of thinking.  To me a calorie was a calorie.  I ate a lot of the 100 calorie snack pack thingys, ate carbs ’cause I liked them, and avoided a lot of meat because it had fat in it.

It wasn’t until I read The New Rules of Lifting for Women that I really started to learn about nutrition, and about how our bodies treat, and need, carbs, fat and protein.  Since January I’ve been following  40:30:30 carbs:protein:fat balance to my food, and making an effort to eat as clean, or whole, as I can.  Yes, I certainly still eat the things I really want when I’m really craving them, but I find that a diet higher in protein is a really good fit for me.

I also like that I get to eat often.  I usually eat 5 meals a day.  Breakfast, morning snack, lunch, afternoon snack and dinner.  Workout days get a post-workout recovery shake, but I don’t really think of that as a meal.

Today’s workout was  good, but long, one.  I did the first workout of Stage 5 of NROL4W.  This stage is the same exercises as in Stage 3, but with 3-4 sets of only 4 reps.  The idea here is to use a weight on each set that is challenging for the 4 reps.  The first workout is usually a lot of figuring out what to use, so I upped my weights several times in most exercises.

Here’s my set up for a few things.   My gym is kinda ratty.

So is my copy of NROL4w.  I like to bring the book with me for reference the first time back through an exercise, in case I want to check up on form details.

My big accomplishment for today was making it all the way through the full body weight matrix.  That thing is evil.

It consists of the following, all with just your body weight:

24 squats

12 lunges, each leg

12 jump lunges, each leg

24 jump squats

You’re supposed to time yourself, rest twice the amount of time it took you to do it, then DO IT AGAIN.

What, you don’t think that looks tough?  Try it.

Today I did the full BW Matrix in 5:06, did my rest, then did a half Matrix in 2:11.  I should have done the whole thing again, but by that point I’d been at the gym for nearly 2 hours, and I was just ready to go home.

That’s the only crappy thing about Stage 5.  4 sets of each exercise (there are 7 of them) with 120s of rest in between each set means a lot of time at the gym.  The program calls for 3-4 sets, so I think when I’m doing this on weeknights I’ll do 3 sets, and maybe save the HIIT or the BW matrix for the next day.  We’ll see.

That’s about all.  Today is Father’s Day, so we’re heading over to my mom and step dads house for ribs.  They make amazing meat products, smoked, BBQ’d and usually with homemade BBQ sauce.  And, since I burned through a whopping 912 cal during my workout, I think I’ll indulge a bit.

Woo hoo!

Well, it’s official, I’m done Stage 4 of NROL4W.  I’m more than half way though.

I tried my best to beat myself up tonight.  Sometimes it’s hard to really push yourself when you’re working alone, but today I gave it my level best.  I definitely had to wait and stretch before I could make it don the stairs from the upstairs area to the change rooms on the main floor.

Tonight’s workout called for 15-20 mins of HIIT and while I normal alternate walking/sprinting on the treadmill, I really wasn’t feeling running today, so I opted for the bike.  The upright kinda bike.

Well, after doing Bulgarian split squats and reverse lunges, my legs were pretty close to jello.  Soooo, the sprint intervals were just about the ouchiest thing ever.

Anywho, I finally got out of the gym at 7:30pm, got home, showered and realized I forgot to stop at the grocery store on the way home from the gym, so out I headed.  We’re lucky in where we live.  We’re only about 400m from a grocery store, liquor store, and hardware store in one direction, and a beer store, Walmart, Blockbuster and Bulk Barn in the other direction.  So I popped in my headphones and walked over to the grocery store.

My normal go-to post-workout dinner is eggs, but for some reason I just wasn’t feeling them today.  I decided to let the grocery store inspire me, and am I glad I did.

In homage to my Jewish heritage (I’m 1/8th or something) I had smoked salmon on a bagel with some cream cheese!

In a completely unhealthy manner I had an Everything bagel with herb and garlic cream cheese, I skipped out on the capers though.  Mostly because I forgot I had them.

That’s all for now.  I’m going to pretty much fall asleep on the couch until Derek gets home.  I always sleep like a log after a good workout.

I hate techno.

Why do they always pump techno music into the gym?  Like, why is it that lifting weights and techno always go hand in hand?  I think of lifting weights as bad ass, and, well, to me, techno is nothing but.

A week and a half ago, on a recommendation from someone on The Nest, I ordered a Tune Band to house my iPhone whilst at the gym.

Like that, but I got black instead of red.  I’m looking forward to it arriving (estimated arrival date is June 20th, why must shipping things to Canada for cheap be so difficult?) so that I can rock out while lifting without the fear of my phone dropping out of my pocket on a particularly deep squat, or while doing Swiss ball crunches.

Last Tuesday my husband and I ran in a 5k.  A super hilly 5k.  And, we thought it would be a good idea to go for a 4.8km run on Monday to “see how we could do”.  Yeah, bad idea.  This time last year was when we started running, and we ran a lot (relative to not at all).  Three times a week using the Couch to 5k program.  Once we ran the 5k last year (same race as last Tuesday) my seamstress said to stop losing weight/inches, and it started to get humid and, well, I stopped running.  Since we bought our house in November I’ve gone running in our neighbourhood alone maybe 3 times.  I have been doing HIIT through New Rules of Lifting for Women, but I only ever cover about 2k at a time, and it’s done in 1 min of all out sprint, with 2 mins of walking.  So yeah, not much training for last weeks race, combined with a silly run the night before left my legs in pain for several days.  Then the weekend came around and I wanted to get work done on the house, so, no gym.

All that preamble was basically to say that I went to the gym tonight for the first time since June 3rd.  11 days.  Bad raynes.  As expected, it wasn’t quite the workout I would have expected had I gone on, say, June 5th, or 6th, but all in all, it wasn’t too bad.

Today I did Stage 4A Workout 4 of NROL4W.  If you’d like to know what the program is, check out the book.  I love it.

Today’s post-workout recovery shake is something new for me.  I’ve been reading The Female Body Breakthrough and, while I learned about the importance of post workout recovery in NROL4W, Rachel Cosgrove mentions the importance of including carbs.  So, today I did!

Today I enjoyed:

~ 1 C frozen raspberries

1 scoop chocolate protein powder

1/2 C skim milk

1/2 C water

Thrown in my Kitchen Whiz (Magic Bullet Knockoff) and blended until done.  Yummy.  I’ll do this again for sure.

Now I’m off to make dinner, which is my workout night usual of 2 eggs and bacon on a whole wheat english muffin.  Normally I use peameal (Canadian) bacon because it’s very lean and very delicious, but I’ve got some regular bacon that needs to be used, so today we dine in salt.


Welcome to raynes gets ripped.  This will, hopefully, chronicle my journey to becoming ripped.


adj. Slang

1.  Having an extremely defined physique; toned: ripped, bulging muscles.

Ok, maybe not ripped, per se, but I’m definitely aiming for an increase in strength and muscle definition, and a decrease in body fat.

I plan on using this blog to help me stay accountable to myself, to help me keep track of how I’m feeling and doing as I go along, and just maybe to help someone else.