I have been saying for years that I want to be healthier, but I’ve never really done anything about it long term. Instead, I’ve watched my weight slowly creep up, and I’ve become more and more grumpy and unhappy. Everyone has to find their own motivation and reasons for exercising and wanting to be healthier. And a lot of people don’t workout because, frankly (barring a medical condition), they’re lazy. Trust me, I know firsthand. I am about as lazy as it gets. It wasn’t until I stepped on the scale and realized I weighed the same amount as I did nine months pregnant that I really put my foot down.
That was at the end of September.
A mom blogger friend posted something the same week about a special that was being offered by a boot camp she had been attending, The Body Firm Atlanta. I ended up joining for a month, and started the first Monday in October. It has been exciting and difficult all at once. I’m pumped once I actually start working out, but getting myself there is another story. I feel strong (although exhausted) during the hour I’m there, but I am definitely sore that night and the next day. I’m tempted to take the day off some times, but I know that I just can’t. Taking off one day makes it easier to slack the next day, and the next, and, well…..
In the past, any sort of exercise that has caused me discomfort of any sort was one that I just didn’t stick with. I knew in my head “no pain, no gain,” but I kept trying to find some easy way out. Cutting calories is a great way to lose weight, but it won’t build muscle and help you become stronger. Taking walks is a great place to start, but if it’s a leisurely stroll once a month, you probably aren’t going to see any results. Ever.
Things I’ve tried recently:
Swimming: Holy. Hell. Why didn’t anyone tell me how hard swimming is?! I have a hard enough time gasping for air when I’m NOT submersed in water!
Insanity: What was I thinking?! The Fit Test on day one was as far as I got. I had trouble sitting down to pee for days.
Tennis: This should be fun, right? Wrong. It’s fast paced, on your toes, stop on a dime action. That lasted about 2 weeks.
Dance Central: Did you know there’s a workout setting? Yay for dancing! Dancing is fun! Except when you’re doubled over wheezing and can’t catch your breath and your dancing looks like you’ve been hit with a tazer.
Step aerobics: Music and stepping, that’s pretty simple, or so I thought. My face was beet red within minutes and I could hardly keep up. My calves were so sore I couldn’t walk right for days. Step aerobics 1, Tiffany 0.
Couch to 5k: Finally something that’s for beginners! I downloaded it on my iPod and managed to do all of a week. Jogging for only a few seconds left me panting with sharp pains in my side.
Yoga: It looks so calm and relaxing! And who couldn’t use a little relaxation? Wrong. So. Hard. Two days folks. Two. Days. That’s all I managed to eek out.
Bicycling: I picked out a shiny new bike at the store and was so excited to get started. Except my cutesy bike that I HAD to have doesn’t have gears. Have you tried riding a bike up even the tiniest incline with no gears? Legs. Hurting. So. Bad. I almost fell on my face when I got off after that first ride. Or I guess I should say, the only ride.
There are quite a few more activities that I have begun and quit within a matter of days. I made lots of excuses, it was too hard, I didn’t have time, I needed to ease into it, etc. And I’m not even going to begin telling you about the diets and diet pills I’ve tried!
Reality check: It’s never going to get easier, if you never get started.
I am terrified of waking up one day and realizing that I am morbidly obese and unable to do things with my children. I don’t want to have heart disease. I don’t want to end up with diabetes. I don’t want my children to be embarrassed by me. I don’t want to resort to having my kids do things for me because I am physically unable. While I may not be close to these extremes now, if I don’t get it together, it will happen. In reality, no one just wakes up one day and realizes they’ve gained 100 pounds. It happens one day, and one decision, at a time. Little bit, by little bit, those poor choices that we all make add up.
How do you get on the right track? It’s not easy, let me tell you. Find something that truly motivates you. I mean, REALLY motivates you. Not something like fitting in to a bikini next summer, because that’s so easy to dismiss and give up on. Find something life changing. What’s my biggest motivator? I want to climb Mount Kilimanjaro with my kids in a few years. It may sound crazy to some, but it’s something I really want to do. Could I do it now, in the shape I am in? Um, no. I’d have to be airlifted off the mountain for medical treatment before the end of the first day.
Getting into an exercise routine when your previous days have consisted of avoiding anything exercise-esque is difficult. But you just have to set your eye on the prize and truck along, one day at a time. Don’t say, “I’m going to work out 6 days this week.” Instead, say “I’m going to get up and workout first thing tomorrow morning, no matter what.” And then DO IT. Even if you really don’t want to, kick yourself in the butt and make it happen. You’ll be so thankful you did later. Every day you push forward and make yourself exercise is one day closer to your goal.
I’d love for you to follow along with my fitness and weight loss journey, so click on the Healthy Living tab above to see what I’m up to this week. For more fitness inspiration, check out Kat at I Heart 7, a mom of 5 that has gone from doing nothing to being a workout junkie in only 5 months.
Do you have fitness and health goals that you are avoiding? Don’t wait until New Years, make those changes today! Sound off below about what you’re doing (or avoiding) to make you a better you!