I had a great workout last night. I pushed myself and ran faster than I've been running. Even upping the pace, for most of the workout I felt like I was taking it easy. The sit-ups were a struggle though, for some reason I think I've lost some ab strength.
I ran into one of those annoying gym things yesterday too. Some guy wanted to do regular pull-ups and dips, but apparently the pull-up bar and/or dip bars were occupied. So he took this giant weight plate and put it on the knee pad on the Gravitron. The Gravitron is this machine that helps you do pull-ups by using a weight stack to offset your weight, pushing you upwards using a pad that you kneel on. Well the moron left weight on the weight stack when he did this, so I had to enlist the assistance of my S.O. to get the weight off the knee pad without getting myself a chin full of upwardly mobile knee pad. I was highly annoyed that anyone would a) do such an idiotic thing just to use a machine in a way it wasn't intended to be used for and b) would not remove said idiotic adjustment to the machine so that other people could return to using the machine in the way it was intended to be used.
The plus side to the story was that once my very patient and helpful S.O. helped me get the weight off the knee pad, I was able to lower the weight offset for two of my sets of pull-ups. I do three sets of 8 pull-ups, and last night I did one set with an offset of 90 (so I'm pulling 60 lbs of my own weight) and was able to do two sets with an offset of 80 (so pulling 70 lbs of my own weight.) I think I can do one, maybe two, pull-ups unassisted now. My main goal at the gym (aside from upping my running speed) is lowering the offset on the Gravitron. Thursday all three sets will be attempted at an offset of 80. I'm shooting to have the offset down to 50 by the end of March. Totally do able at this rate.
I've also instituted a "gold star" system on my calendar. I put a calendar up on the wall in my "office" space at home (where I spend most of my time), I've been putting little different colored check marks to note when I worked out and when I stayed under my caloric budget. I recently went out and got those foil stars they used to use in Elementary school, and now when I do both, I get a gold star for the day ^_^ You wouldn't believe how hard those stars are to find, it took me a couple weeks to find them!
What visual reminders do you use to keep yourself on track? What kinds of rewards do you give yourself for reaching goals?