Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Chloe Ting 2 Week Challenge - Week 2 (Results)

I started week two feeling a little discouraged. Despite feeling stronger and generally in better health since starting, I guess I was secretly hoping to see some ab lines by Day 8. Instead I looked the same and my left wrist is killing me.
Screenshot of videos for days 8 and 9 of the challenge
Day 8: I had to adjust some of the planks so I could do them on my elbows to save my wrist, which was really hurting when I had to twist it or adjust balance (like during Corkscrews). Still, I got through all three videos today without stopping, sweat a ton, and felt wobbly afterward, so I know I still got a quality workout in.

Day 9: This was the last active rest day of the program, and I needed it! My wrist was glad for a break. Matt and I went for a short run that ended up not exactly being restful. The humidity was super high and there was no breeze. Of course, the minute we finished it started to rain.
Ali and Matt standing in a parking lot, smiling after a hard run
Day 10: My wrist felt marginally better but I was feeling pretty exhausted from the previous night's run. I almost flip-flopped this day with Day 11 to make it easier, but ended up finding the energy to get all four videos done. I changed some of the exercises to take it easy on my wrist. All those Army Planks, though!

Day 11: I was relieved to only have two videos today. We've had workers on the roof, which means my sleep has been badly interrupted and I've been waking up with headaches. These two videos felt easy to pound out after Day 10's four. Results-wise, I feel stronger and tighter everyday, but visually there's not much change.

Screenshot of workout videos for days 10 and 11
Day 12: This was the first day I didn't want to do the videos. I overslept and wanted to eat right away, so then I had to wait until I digested to workout. I did them around 4pm and felt...bored. The workouts were getting redundant. I turned on Dexter to watch while I worked out, and that helped a bit! 

Day 13: Watching TV really provided the perfect distraction for finishing this challenge, which I was beginning to find dull. I was still working up a major sweat during the workouts, but was not really feeling the same kind of muscular impact (read: soreness) I was during the first week. At this point, I was looking forward to being done so I could change things up.
Photo of text reading: "flat stomachs really need to stop being a thing people expect from others like...what the fuck do you mean I need a flat stomach when I have 7 meters of intestine in me"
This came across my Instagram feed this week and kind of reset my thinking, too. My hope in undertaking this challenge was to have fun and get motivated, not physical results. By Day 13, I was over it, and perspective is important. I will always come back to working out for mental and physical health, not looks.
Day 14: After taking my "after" pics, I just couldn't be bothered to do this workout. I was so burned out from this challenge! But today wasn't a failure, nor is it quitting. This routine has given me a sense of accomplishment, but I am ready to return to running as my primary workout.

It's funny to me that I can run the exact same route dozens of times in a row and not get sick of it, but 14 days of these videos - in various orders, all of which incorporate 19+ different exercises - just got boring for me! This is why running has always been my preferred workout and the only one I stick with longterm: it's the only thing that doesn't lose its edge.

As for physical results, I don't see much difference. I didn't lose any weight or notice a change in my muscle definition. When I flex really hard I can maybe see a few more lines in my abs. I intend to do the lower body workout once or twice a week to continue building strength for running.

Anyway, here are my before/after pics. I think the change is most noticeable in the side-view, both in my stomach and my thighs.
Face-forward side-by-side photos of Ali Flexing, showing minimal changes in her ab definition
Back-view of side-by-side photos of Ali
Side-view side-by-side photos of Ali
So, not bad for 14-days' worth of work, but like I expected all along - no miracles here. I will say I definitely feel stronger and my posture feels a bit taller these days. I'll incorporate some of these videos into my weekly routine, but at this point...I'm really ready to run again. It may not give me abs of steel, but it makes my heart and head happy, and that's worth more to me.



  1. I don’t know if it’s the camera angle or the lighting but I do see a difference in the two photos, although to be honest, you look great regardless.
    I think we’re the only ones who see the minute details on our bodies that others wouldn’t notice.

    I, too, can’t stick to workouts long enough to make them a habit. I’ll run 10 miles without even thinking about it but ask me to do a 30 min strength session and suddenly I have no energy. I think this is why we’re runners - we enjoy moving our bodies in one particular way over another. I will say, I like the way I feel when I do strength training but it gets boring very quickly.

    1. We tried to take the photos with the exact same angle and time of day, but I do think the "afters" look a little darker/more golden. It could be a trick of the light, but I do think I see some minimal results in person. But you're right, we are our own pickiest critics.

      I'm glad I'm not the only one who gets bored of strength workouts. It's too bad, since I also like the physical payoff!

  2. I agree with nomdeplume, I can also see a diff between the two sets of photos. Only you can decide if the effort is worth it. Posture is key--and your posture is better in the second side photo. Shoulders in your back pockets! (One of my trainers said that to me once).