Just Working on my Fitness!

As much as I love fitness and as long as I have been working out, I am no expert at all things exercise.  I don’t know the name of every move, I am not a natural born runner, and I don’t work out 6 or 7 days a week.  This is a hard thing to admit, especially in the healthy living world, but I want to be honest with my readers and let you know the point I am at right now.

Radcliffe Paula

Exhibit A.  Paula Radcliffe is an amazing marathon runner!  She is such an inspiration, but this is not the kind of athlete I am, and THAT’s OKAY! :-) (source)

This is more my speed! lol Does anyone else feel like you can really relate to this picture? Or just me?! Ha Ha (Source)

The truth is though, I want to learn more and I want to become an ‘expert,’ so to speak.  I absolutely love reading and learning about exercise of all kinds.  With that being said though, I have been stuck for way too long in the same boring routine. I used to work out all the time in college and enjoyed attending a variety of exercise classes that were offered to students.  I also loved having all the time in the world to get my work out done whenever I would like.  If I missed the morning, I would go in the afternoon.  Or if I couldn’t go at night, I could get to the gym in between classes.  I also ran the The Nationwide Half Marathon in Columbus May 2010, so having all that extra time in college made it a lot easier to train.  Going on a long run was no issue, because I knew I had all day to do whatever!

Sigh, those were the days when I didn’t have to work all day, clean my house, cook my dinner, or even do my dishes in the evening, (loved those campus cafeterias)!  Now that I work during the week though, have a family and house to take care of, and no longer have the amazing RPAC beckoning me to the gym, it’s a lot harder for me to find motivation.  (FYI – I am not looking for any pity whatsoever, and I know people have it a lot harder than I do!! I am just being honest about what I have been feeling and what I have been going through!)

I am supposed to be getting a gym membership fairly soon, thanks to a free offer from our health insurance.  However, we are just waiting for all the I’s to be dotted, and T’s to be crossed until we receive our passes.  If you remember from a previous post, before I was married I used to work out in my parent’s basement before work on their treadmill.  However, during that time I didn’t really push myself as hard as I could have.  I would run without as many sprints, hills, and length as I know I could have.  Without anyone else watching me, it was harder to work harder!

Another issue I have?  I do not want to become exercise obsessed, which is something I have definitely battled in the past!  I want to push myself, without pushing myself over the edge, if that makes sense?  I want to enjoy every moment I am exercising and I don’t want to overdo the amount.  I truly believe that I am in a great place right now, both emotionally and physically, and know I can handle a little more of a challenge.  The end of high school and early years of college were really rough for me. I worked out to strictly burn calories and to block out the problems I was facing in my personal life.  However, this time around I want to work out hard and prove to myself how strong I am as a person!  I also want to have fun, learn a lot, and relieve a little stress that comes along with life! :-)

You “Get to” go to the gym, not “Have to” go.

(Source)

I am also extremely excited to announce that I have been chosen to be a…

Fitfluential Ambassador, which is both an honor and a privilege that I take very seriously!  Knowing I have a platform like this opportunity makes me want to better myself and learn more about fitness so I can convey to my readers a sense of knowledge and excitement about exercise.  I am ready to take my work outs to the next level!

 

At this time, with no gym membership, my resources are a little more limited than I may like.  I don’t have the fancy weight machines, or fun group classes, so I know I will need to be creative and use what I do have to accomplish some awesome at-home workouts!  I am not looking to lose weight per se, but I am wanting to tone up and get stronger!!  I want to see what my body can do, and I want to prove to myself that my mind is strong enough to handle anything!

So here’s the deal…

1)  I am going to use the equipment and materials I have to experiment with some fun, new and resourceful exercises!  I know I have:

  • My running shoes and the ability to pound some pavement!
  • The elliptical I received for Christmas.
  • My Garmin Forerunner 305.

Garmin Forerunner 305 Variation Parent

(Source)

  • Exercise ball.
  • 5 pound hand weights.
  • BOSU!

(Source)

  • Yoga mat.
  • The internet for articles, Pinterest (follow me!!), and all of the Healthy Living Blogs I read every day!
  • Exercise Magazines.
  • My own imagination!
  • Exercise iPhone Apps.
  • Hmm.. am I forgetting anything?

As you can see, this should be more than enough to get me started!  I hope to start trying a bunch of different exercises that I have found, and then eventually weaning myself off of those and start creating my own as well!

2)  Cardio:  My goal is to run 1-2 times a week.  I hope to make one of these a fast 1-2 miler, and the other a longer 3-5 miles (which I will build up to.)  At this time, I haven’t ran 5 miles since The Turkey Trot my family runs every year on Thanksgiving.  I have only been doing short runs recently, for example I ran 2.25 miles Sunday, but that was my longest run of the week. I had mono twice during college and in response developed chronic fatigue syndrom.  It is something I battle every day, and a huge reason why I don’t run near as much as I used to.  The good news is that I can always tell when I am starting to feel worn down, so it is during those times I will skip the cardio and go for rest instead.

3)  In the mornings, using the elliptical in our house is perfect for those cold, dark, and windy winter mornings!  I want to use the elliptical 3-4 times a week.  My long duration elliptical workouts will be 2 days a week, and the other 2 will be short 10-15 minute warm ups before my strength training.

4)  I hope to experiment with all sorts of exercises!  Yoga, Crossfit, Pure Barre (My good friend teaches!), Pilates (I bought a Groupon for 10 Pilates sessions, so I can’t wait to get started on those!), etc. Anything to mix it up!

5)  I hope to share my experience and progress with all of you!  I want to keep track so I can see the changes I am going through.  I will also keep you updated on how I am feeling, both physically and emotionally!

 

The above rules are just my guidelines!  If I do not accomplish one, two, or any of my goals during a week, I will pick myself right back up again and start over the next week!  No worries!  I want this to be fun and I want this to be something I look forward to, not that I dread!!

Questions:

 

Have you ever realized you need an exercise change?  Have you ever felt like you can give more to your exercises and fitness?

How do you find that balance between exercising and working out hard, without falling into the obsession trap?

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41 thoughts on “Just Working on my Fitness!

  1. I definitely relate to that pic– I know I don’t look good when I run, but that’s 100% okay. :)
    This year, instead of telling myself I need to exercise every single day as a resolution, I cut back to 3 times a week. Thus far, it’s been doable (though not always easy), but it’s so much more encouraging to have a goal that’s reasonable (instead of just setting myself up for failure again).
    I think the guidelines you set for yourself are great!

    • I like to think that if I looked good while working out, I am not doing it hard enough.. ;-) You are so right that having a difficult, yet attainable goal is the key to success, rather than having a goal that is so high you may let yourself down in the process. If I said I was going to work out 7 days a week by running 5 miles and doing strength training everyday, I would definitely be setting myself up to fail!

  2. i LOVE your “plan” you’ve set in place! way to be proactive while also striving for balance. i think that’s so important. i had no gym membership for about a year and still got in some great at-home and outdoor workouts – you’ll be totally fine! ;) have fun and always let me know if you have any questions or need encouragement!

  3. I definitely sympathize with you; I feel the same way! I used to be totally inactive & even though I’ve been working out for quite some time, I still don’t feel like I have that great of a hang on everything. Congrats on becoming a Fitfluential Ambassador!

  4. I definitely went through a few periods when I drastically changed my workouts. Most recently was this past summer/fall when I really started getting serious about incorporating strength training into my routine. At first, I did become obsessed. I was so afraid to not run one day, so I would always run in the morning and then come home and strength train after work. After two or three weeks, I was EXHAUSTED and couldn’t go another day. I finally had to just “let go” a little and accept that I didn’t have to run every single day. As a result, I really stepped up the strength training and ended up gaining weight initially, but my clothes fit SO much better after gaining some muscle and losing some fat. Definitely learned my lesson and I love my workouts now :-)

    • Ahh this is good to know! Thank you so much for being honest Michelle! Although I am not looking to lose weight, I may have become discouraged if I saw the number going up on the scale. I agree though, when your clothes fit that’s when you know you’re on the right track! :-)

  5. You said it perfectly with wanting to push yourself but not over the edge. It’s tough. I think the key is to having a goal that isn’t about weight. It’s either feeling good, having more energy, or a physical finish line like a race. It’s always hard to know the balance because people are always putting in more and less time than you. I try to work out 4-5 days a week and really cherish rest days. I understand they are important, and sometimes even schedule better meals or date nights for rest days. (more time!!) :) Great post!

    • Great Comment! ;-) I totally agree, we should enjoy and cherish our rest days as much as we do our workouts. That’s how we find the balance, not overly obsessing over either. Everyone has their own balance too, whether they work out more or less – rest more or less, and that’s okay!!

  6. Congrats! I was just chosen as a FitFluential Ambassador too :). And I don’t workout 6-7 days a week either, so don’t feel bad. In college, I obsessed over working out, so now that I’m in the “real world”, I want to be easier on myself. It’s all about balance!

  7. I can totally relate to you – I did half marrying and triathlons in college because we had so much time! Now after work it’s like 45 mins to get in a workout, cook,clean, plan a wedding! Ah! Ha but I commend for writing out a plan and tackling it- looks like you have an awesome start with all the equipment! Def pull strength trainin from the blog world great resources out there!

  8. Oh man I always had a hard time keeping an exercise routine. I dunno what it is, I started training with a trainer in a group environment a few months ago and it was the best thing for me! Obviously everyone is different but I felt like after doing it just a few times I knew I had found what I needed!

  9. Ooo.. I loved that quote about exercise is not about punishing yourself. So true. I think that’s why a lot of people hate it!! Gotta retrain your thinking to something more positive!

  10. I realized around the beginning of this year that so many of the times I ran, they were just junk miles. It was something I could add to my workout log, but severely lacking in quality (I would usually have the treadmill at a pretty comfortable speed and read a magazine the whole time).
    This year, I plan on working on more intervals, increasing the speed to where I’m uncomfortable, and also work on gaining strength.
    Great post!

    • I understand what you mean! I would pat myself on the back just because I went on a run, but the truth is that I wasn’t giving it my all. I would rather run twice a week while doing my best than run 4 times a week with all of the times being lazy. By the way, the name of your blog is so cute! ha ha it made me laugh out loud.. :-)

  11. This is such an awesome post it sounds like you have a great plan going!! I feel as though I get into exercise ruts and I have found lately that my favorite way to work out and challenge myself at the same time is by doing circuit style work outs! I have found a ton of them through blogs and through pinterest and they keep the work out exciting! I also completed the 30 day bodyrock challenge which was fun but I was happy when the 30 days were over so I could switch things up again!

    • Thank you Chelcie!! Would you believe that up until a month ago I really didn’t pay any attention to circuit workouts? I used to think I wouldn’t like them, or because it was not on a cardio machine I wasn’t burning any calories. So glad my eyes are opened now! I have heard about Body Rock, I am thinking of looking into it. Maybe I could incorporate it along with my other exercises..?

  12. Phew look how far you have come here! I think it sounds like you have a great plan.. to push yourself but to be conscious of not becoming obsessed. This is essential, and understanding it now is great! I am excited to read more about your progression :)

    • Thanks Tessa! :-) I agree that understanding it now is better than realizing it when the obsession happens. That’s why I wanted to talk it out (or write it out!), that way I would know my guidelines and the signs I need to look for in case I ever feel overwhelmed.

  13. Such an honest post! I always worry about becoming too obsessed with exercise. Your plan sounds great. It shouldn’t feel like a chore, either! You will do great :)

  14. I can totally relate! If you are looking for something new the Centerville Crossfit also offers boot camp classes. I have been doing them for about 2 months now and they are an amazing workout. My weight hasn’t changed much but my clothes are definitely fitting differently. It is a little more affordable than the traditional Crossfit as well($10 per class). I think they are totally worth the price, it is an hour of intense workout!
    I have also started Jamie Eason’s Livefit program on my own and am really enjoying that. It is a 12 week strength training program and I just skip it the days I do boot camp.

      • Google Centerville Crossfit. We do really similar things to the “normal” Crossfit but we use kettlebells and dumbbells rather than barbells. Like I said I think it is totally worth the price even just to do it a few times to try something new.

  15. Congratulations!!!!!!! That is amazing news! You will do AWESOME as a fitfluential ambassador and with your new training plan. I wish you the best of luck, can’t wait to read updates! :)

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