Saturday, February 14, 2009

Working Out

I read a comment from Jil on the other Kim's blog the other day, and it got me thinking...

Jil was talking about her lack of motivation to workout at the more repetitive types of exercise - like at a gym on the elliptical machine, stationary bike or treadmill... and I totally understand that. On the other hand she doesn't mind team sports or exercise of that type.

For me, I haven't EVER enjoyed any sort of workout - my "social anxiety" - kept me from doing any sort of team sport or even dance classes as a child... so I never grew up with that as part of my life. (I put "social anxiety" in quotes because it's not something I've ever been diagnosed with - it's just the only thing I can use to describe what happens to me)

I never got into exercise in any format for very long - I'd have short spurts occasionally, but nothing consistent... and for the majority of this weight loss surgery journey - I've fallen back into that same pattern. I'd be really great for a few weeks (like say 3) and then fall off the wagon for a few months. I never found anything that worked for me... and that is just as frustrating when you are trying to find a new routine - a new normal.

The thing that I've learned recently is that there are several things that have to happen for you to build that new normal for yourself. For starters, you have to commit to it - the more you get into it - the easier it gets, but yes - there will always be days that you have to drag yourself into it... I believe that will always be the case. The thing for me that gets me every time is that accountability box you see over on the right corner of the page... I'm determined to hit the goal each week - and to prove to myself and the internet that I CAN do it.

I think that no matter if you are 400 pounds or 100 pounds... you have to do something that you enjoy. That being said - I wouldn't say that my favorite thing to do is walk on a treadmill, BUT it's something that I can do consistently and I don't loathe it as much as say... ride the stationary bike. (What?! It hurts my boney butt!) If for you that is tennis - by all means play tennis 3-4 days a week... if it's swimming... get your suit on and get after it! If it's more of a routine that you can fit into your life... say Wii Fit or some other home based workout - GREAT! Get to it!

The key is consistency - until you are comfortable in your routine - I'd highly recommend telling a friend what you want to do in terms of a goal for the week and ask them to check in with you... just make sure it's someone that understands when you need a kick in the pants and someone that you'd be okay with them giving you that very kick.

Find your magic moment - some of us like getting up earlier in the day to get the workout completed before starting the rest of the day... I thought that was me, but since I wake up at 5AM just to get to work - I refuse to get up any earlier than that. (Plus I've carved out time in the morning to do my daily Bible reading) I also don't like having to get showered and dressed while sweating... So I choose to work out right after work - the second we get home from work - I change right into my tennies and shorts - head upstairs and pound the treadmill. I like getting it done before anything else in my evening routine, AND it helps me wind down from the day.

Also know what is too much and what is too little - meaning don't workout for an hour just to workout for an hour... I was doing that at first, but now I pack much more into my 20 minute workout than I ever did in the hour long ones. That might seem strange, but I'm on a preprogramed iFit workout that is 20 minutes long - sure I could do two, BUT the workout is so well designed that I'm pretty over it by the end. I could try that this weekend and see how it goes, but that 20 minutes of walking uphill is WAY better for my cardiovascular health than 60 minutes of barely pushing myself to the limit. Once I get through the 8 week program - I'll know how to adjust my incline and speed to get the most out of whatever time I have to devote to my workouts.

The most important thing is to own it, and do it... if you want to dance around the house singing into a hairbrush - do it to the fullest and do it consistently! You deserve the best body you can have... and if I can do it - BELIEVE ME - anyone can!

And let me know how I can help you - because I'd love nothing more than to be able to give back to others that have supported me, and I don't know of anything better than helping others get healthier.