I have mentioned before that all the free time I used to have has been snatched away from me since I got married and had a child. I am still on a quest for more time and once I find a way to increase the hours in the day to thirty, I will definitely share this secret with all of you. I have made many changes to my life and the way I do things because of time, or the lack thereof. I have talked about why I started shopping online to save time. Well, another thing I started doing is meal prepping.
I don’t have time. My schedule is packed. I don’t feel well. It’s too hot. It’s too cold. Its my birthday. It’s too expensive. I’ll do it tomorrow………these and many many others are what we use to talk ourselves out of making the effort to be fit and healthy. There’s always something standing in the way of working out and eating healthy it seems but I have one word for this…Excuses!
Making the decision to workout and be healthy is not an easy one. Working out, if you’re doing it right, hurts because you are making your muscles work in ways they may not be accustomed to, or you are pushing them past their limit. Eating healthy is hard, the best tasting food is usually not healthy, if you have a choice between french fries and carrot sticks, of course french fries will win if you have no will power. To add insult to injury, losing weight takes a long time, in spite of what you may have heard, there is no quick way to lose weight that is also healthy and sustainable in the long run. It could take you years to reach your goal weight and this is with consistency and a complete lifestyle change. So of course it is simpler to take the easy way out and succumb to excuses.
When I started running a few years ago, I knew that I needed a good pair of running shoes and comfortable workout clothes and that’s all I thought I needed. I started running and as I talk about in my “Just Keep Running, Running, Running…” post, I started off with a 5k and gradually increased my mileage. Well, one of these Saturday’s, I was running along, happy with the progress I was making when I stepped onto the curb with one foot and felt a weird pain in my right knee. It was just a brief, sharp pain and I was able to shake it off and finish my run. I came home, went about my business and forgot about the whole thing. The next day I wake up to pain in that knee. It wasn’t a terrible pain and I could still walk but I feared I had injured myself and would never be able to run again and maybe even more importantly, I would never be able to wear heels again!
I’ve mentioned before that I wouldn’t say I’ve ever had an actual issue with my weight. I’ve always been within my BMI and when I do decide to lose weight it is usually due to vanity. I look in the mirror, don’t like the way my arms or abs look and I decide I need to lose 10 pounds or be more toned. Or I buy an outfit, try it on and it’s a bit snug and I make it my goal in life to make sure it fits. I started exercising because I wanted to make sure I stayed the same size, because again, I’m too vain to have a bigger dress size in my closet. Say what you want about my confession about being vain, but my vanity is what motivates me to wake up at 4 a.m. and workout and push myself to my max.
Selfish—adjective–(of a person, action, or motive) lacking consideration for others; concerned chiefly with one’s own personal profit or pleasure.
My husband and I have been married for seven glorious years. I would like to believe we are soul mates, if that is something that exists. We have the same goals for our future and we have so much in common that it’s weird. The one thing we do not have in common is exercise. When I wake up at 4 a.m to workout, he remains blissfully asleep. When I leave at 6 a.m. on Saturdays to go running, he kisses me good-bye, gives me a hug and wishes me good luck. I could easily lose motivation and give up on working out, after all it is way more fun and motivational to exercise with a partner than by yourself. But my motivation for being fit is greater than that, so I decide to be selfish.
I think everyone has an opinion about the effectiveness of heart rate monitors. Some people swear by them and will not do a workout without their heart rate monitor to get an idea of calories burned (guilty) whereas a number of people think they are useless and not a good indication of calories burned.
I think heart rate monitors are a necessity when working out and here’s why. When I first started exercising a few years ago, I didn’t use a heart rate monitor. I would estimate my calories burned based on the level of effort I put in and how much I was sweating afterwards. I would erroneously think I had burned 500 calories in 30 minutes and then go throughout my day armed with the knowledge that I had burned that many calories. I didn’t track what I consumed either and didn’t consider that calories add up really fast.