I was never an athletic person. Physical Education was a nightmare for me. The happiest time in my life as a high schooler was when I got my appendix removed at 16 and was excused from Physical Ed class until I graduated. I wouldn’t really say I’ve had an issue with my weight, as a teenager and way into my late twenties I maintained a weight of 120 lbs at 5ft 6ins tall. I never had to worry about what I ate and working out wasn’t something I ever considered.
And then it happened, I turned 30. All of a sudden all I had to do was think about eating something and I gained 5lbs, or so it seemed. Suddenly, I couldn’t over indulge in food I enjoyed anymore like bread or croissants or french fries or pizza! This was a nightmare, I mean I could literally live on bread and pizza. And cheese, yea I would need to have the cheese too. Great! now i’m hungry.
One day, I put on a pair of my favorite pants and I COULDN’T ZIP THEM UP! What was going on? Who broke into my house, walked into my closet and shrunk my pants?! That was it for me. I knew there was no way I was going to buy bigger clothes, that would mean conceding defeat and this evil pant shrinking imp would’ve won. So, I decided then and there that I needed to make a change to my lifestyle. It started with the food, I either completely cut out or consumed in moderation simple carbs, fatty foods and anything fried. I also decided to switch to buying only Organic products where possible. This has nothing to do with weight loss, I was at a point in my life where I read a lot about pesticides and preservatives and wanted no part in it. The biggest and most difficult addition to my lifestyle was exercise. I started small, I walked 3 miles every day after work at a comfortable pace, then I increased my pace, then I walked a little and jogged a little and so on until I was able to jog the whole 3 miles. It took me an hour the first time I did that because OMG was I out of breathe and my poor legs. But this is how I became a runner. This past December, 5 years after I took my first step by walking 3 miles, I ran my 2nd Half Marathon with a time of 2hrs 25mins.
People ask me what my motivation is for exercising and staying fit. This is a good question because I think everyone has to have that one thing that motivates you to exercise when that’s the last thing you want to do. It could be because you want to fit into a wedding dress, or an outfit you bought one size too small (guilty) or it could be that you just want to be healthy and live a long life. For me, my motivation is simple, vanity. That’s it! I want to be the size I am now for the rest of my life. I want to be able to wear cute sexy clothes. So I drag myself out of bed every morning at 4am and exercise. I cook healthy food at home and prepare a healthy lunch for work and every time I want to throw my phone at the wall when the alarm goes off, I think about why I’m doing this and get my butt out of bed.
Being healthy is a lifestyle change, it is not something you can start for a few months and quit. I know this sounds like a cliche but it is so true. So take that first step, get on the treadmill that’s been gathering dust in your garage and think about what your motivation is for wanting to be healthy and use that motivation to push yourself everyday!