This month's workout has been one of the hardest I think I've ever done, if I'm totally honest, and I'm really quite glad I've been using it over Easter. I may have let myself go a bit on Sunday, but I tell you it was so worth it.
I aimed for level 2, minimum, on all workouts, but tried my hardest to reach level 3 on all barring Dark Side, because that was an active recovery day and I didn't want to overdo it. But while I found that I was able to do level 3 on Korra, Dragonborn and Mulan even on week 1, I wasn't able to progress past level 2 on The Witcher and Super Saiyan until week 4. It turned out that I'd chosen the two hardest workouts for the first two days of the week, but I suppose that's all right given that Sunday is and always will be my rest day, so I was ready for it.
Being a fan of the theme of these workouts is a pretty important detail, I discovered, because if I was just shown the workout without any kind of association to another of my interests, I'd have either not bothered with them, or I'd have absolutely hated them. But being able to use different soundtracks very day and indulging my nerdiness, I was able to keep up with them for five weeks. And if it wasn't for the association I'd have hated it. More than I did. Like I said: this was one of the hardest workouts I've ever had.
I mentioned, though, that I've tried to change my outlook on my exercise in the hopes of blasting through weight loss a little more successfully, by putting my weight-related goals out of my mind. Instead I exercised to try to improve my skill, which gave more immediate results than a distant physical image, as my skill improves with every rep. If I can do 10 reps in a workout on week 1, the time I aim for 11, the next for 12 and so on. Just one more rep. But weight-related goals take time, and that makes it easier to slack because 'what's one more day?'. I think it may have been this attitude to keep pushing myself that made the month so much harder, but I also think it worked. It also meant that I worked harder on the run-up to Easter, and again on the wind-down, so I know without a shadow of a doubt that I did all I could over Easter to allow myself the indulgence of an Easter egg.
I would certainly recommend Darebee. Head over, look at what they have. There are so many differently inspired workouts, there's bound to be something for you, and I know as a fact that I'll be back again for another month's workout, and I'll donate to them then as I did this month, because it was more than deserved. And while I can say that I have no desire to ever do those six workouts again, because they were hard, I know I probably will because I can't deny their effectiveness.
I lost half an inch from my waist this month, even despite my Easter egg a week ago, and given how slowly my weight loss has been going over the past six months or so, that is simply an incredible result. But I really have turned my mind more towards improving my skill and abilities; though it was initially a tactic to further goals I've decided to put out of my mind for the time being, it has become a much more real driving force than I expect and I subsequently feel a lot stronger and a lot more capable than I was at the end of February, and I'm surprised to find myself feeling prouder about that fact than about my missing half an inch!
Along with exercising to improve my skill rather than to primarily lose weight, I also changed my eating. I found myself afraid of carbs, which was silly given how much I exercise, and how vigorously, and by pushing my body through cardio and not giving it enough fuel to actually achieve it or to recover, I thought that that could be hindering my efforts, so I made a few small changes to my diet - namely replacing my afternoon veggies with either fruit or wholemeal bread and peanut butter - and I was feeling more energised than before, too. This was undoubtedly due partially to my renewed enthusiasm and my daily pride from the effort I put in every morning, but I think all three - the workout, the slight increase in carbs and the change in my mental focus - contributed equally to the results. But having a workout that effective and that I could genuinely look forward to, even if I dreaded it at the same time.
I'll be posting a full review of the website itself in about a week, so check back then for more detailed information ♥