I have this Nike Dri-Fit tank that I love wearing. I bought it two years ago as a treat to wear during my first triathlon (new clothes=faster time…it’s science.) It’s green, my favorite color, and it has a built-in sports bra, a perfect feature for someone in the IBT Club. <-think about it – you’ll figure it out.
I took 2nd in that race and loved every minute of it. Pushing myself, “picking” people off, kayaking in circles. I felt fit. I was fit.
Flash forward to today. Two years later and I still love that shirt. It’s starting to fall apart in places but I still wear it a lot.
The thing is: It fits much differently now. As I’ve gotten stronger, my body has added muscle. My growing lats strain against the fabric. My pecs (not my breasts – see IBT Club reference above) fill out the top a lot more. If I were using this shirt to measure my progress outside of the gym, I might feel discouraged. It’s becoming too tight, which usually means that you’re becoming too fat. Too big. Too muscular. Too much of …something.
I know better.
I measure my body progress inside the gym.
Deadlifts – 5×10 at 185 pounds
Where I can lift heavier than I ever have before.
Where I can jump about 5 inches higher. Then 5 inches more.
Where I don’t become as fatigued during my runs.
Where my muscles grow.
Where PR’s are made.
Where I’m literally “hulking” the crap out of this shirt.
And it feels so damn good.
To measure progress by MY standards and mine alone. What a rebel thought.
That’s what strong women are – rebels.
QUESTION: How do you measure your fitness progress? How are you improving?? Is bigger better?
LOVE! I am getting bigger and stronger and I LOVE the way my body is changing and I can see more definition. You look freaking fabulous and love that you are busting out of that shirt now. Get it girl…you ROCK! XOXO
Great post!!! I measure my fitness progress by two things
1) how much of my love handle isn’t there anymore
And for the more serious answer
2) when I finish the WOD in any place other than dead last +5 minutes—- how it used to be when I started. I’d be Finishing the workout in the corner while the next class started ;)
Yes! I notice shirts fitter tighter in the arms & shoulders recently and I love it – getting stronger. I’ve never focused on gaining muscle before, but I am loving it! I truly believe strong is beautiful!
Such an important concept. You are one strong mama! And looking better than ever!
I love the message of this!! :)
Feeling fit & knowing you’re fit by YOUR own standards is key. Love it!
You look strong, girl!
Hot damn. I need to start lifting heavier! Keep it up, mama. Such a great example for the little ones and such a happy mama :) xoxo
i definitely struggle with this. i’m obsessed with the scale, but i also love the fact when a weight becomes ‘too easy’ in the gym. i also find more reward in fitting into a pair of ‘skinny’ pants more than anything else.
I definitely see a strength difference in you from the first pic to the second in the tank; keep being a rebel and making YOUR own progress! Unfortunately, I feel like I haven’t seen much progress… That I may have gone backwards, actually. I’m not as tight, not as toned and although I’m lifting heavier, it’s not substantially different than before. But I’m in a happy and healthy place and feel good! Hoping to get on a schedule to start measuring progress, though, because I’ve never tracked any sort of PRs besides running times. Maybe it’s time to start that up with weights too!
and you look damn good. Wear it out sista!!! Keep up the PR’s!
You go girl! That deadlift rocks!
I use my favourite jeans as a measure of whether my workouts are working!
Hahaha first I just have to say that I LOVE “IBT Club”…I’m right there with ya girl. (Although breastfeeding is pretty awesome for that reason – I’m kind of loving it!)
On a more serious note, I love what you’re saying here! Some of my clothes fit me differently than they used to, but I don’t care…in fact, I am proud that my body has carried and delivered a baby, and is stronger and more muscular than before.
My favorite color is GREEN too! :)
Wow! Great post. I struggle with knowing that my clothes fit different now that I’m more ‘fit’ and not thin. It’s a hard mental struggle. I love the picture of you doing your deadlift, some amazing muscles!!
I measure progress by noticing gains in strength or endurance, just like you mentioned. If I do it by how something fits or by the scale, I go crazy.
for me it is the ability to keep up with my child and STILL have some energy left over at the end :-)
good for you! we can all learn SO much from you and i think the best message you give is LOVE YOURSELF!
I love this!
I’ve been “a runner” for a few years now and because of my workouts outside of running (strength training and different forms of cross training), I’ve gained speed. And I know it’s those other-than-running workouts that have really made the difference, and it’s fun to see that in my times!
Could not agree more. Love feeling fit and being able to feel stronger and do more. PS – I think you look way better in the tank now than then anyway. Super healthy and strong! And happy too. :)