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NROLFW Stage 7 Recap

September 2, 2013

And six months after I started, I finally finished all seven stages of the NROLFW program.

(Note: this doesn’t mean I’m actually done with the program. I still have the six “Final Cut” workouts to get through, but those are considered “optional”!)

Stage 7 was one of my favorite stages, if only because it focused on those functional movements I seem to love so much, and the workouts themselves were fairly short, simple, and to the point. I also LOVED that the last of both the A and B workouts called for AMRAP (as many reps as possible) of the exercises: for me, there really is no better way to see my progress than to see how many reps I can complete until “failure.” I also love the challenge of seeing how far I can go!

So here are my thoughts on stage 7 and my progress in the program, in no particular order:

  • I am definitely stronger, something I can tell not just by my progress in the program, but in the way I look. I am lifting heavier than ever (although, when it comes to certain exercises like lat pull downs, I think I’ve hit my limit—at least for now!) which feels incredible. And the physical results are great, too: my upper body especially looks different. My arms, shoulders, and back have never, ever looked this toned. I tried my wedding dress on a few weeks ago and was SHOCKED at how different my back looked in it now as compared to when I bought it in March (about two weeks after starting the program).
  • I know my results would be more dramatic had I really stuck with the nutrition plan. I definitely paid closer attention to my protein intake over the last six months and cut down on the amount of carbs I was eating, but I also had plenty of ice cream and other treats this summer. I’m not upset or disappointed at all, but I do know for certain that I would have had much more visible results if I had be more “strict” with my nutrition.
  • Functional movements are here to stay. I have never seen results like I have from doing moves like squats, pull ups, planks, deadlifts, etc. These will become the foundation of any plan I set for myself in the future, for sure!
  • Intervals are here to stay, too! There’s a time and a place for long, steady cardio (usually when I just want to zone out or relieve stress), but I have kind of fallen in love with the feeling I get after a 20 minutes set of really intense sprints. I know I’ll continue to do these, too.
  • I am so, so glad I am not training for a race right now. SO GLAD. The thought of running more than a 5k makes me want to puke. My, my—how things have changed!
  • I started the “Final Cut” on Saturday and GOOD LORD it’s a doozy. I was so sore yesterday I could barely climb up the stairs. Oddly enough, I LOVE that feeling after a workout (must mean that it’s working, right?!) and am really psyched to finish the last five workouts.

It’s weird to think I’ll be done with the entire plan in another two weeks or so, but I actually think I might start from the beginning (or modify it to focus on the workouts I really loved). If nothing else, the plan has made me realize that I’m stronger than I thought I was—and that I have the potential to get even stronger if I work at it!

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