I do want to step it up. I have lost a little more than 7 pounds since the beginning of 2010. I'm happy to see a loss and can feel a difference for it, but I don't think I've been doing my best this winter. I know I've been struggling a little with backsliding the past couple of months, and I really don't think I've done enough in the area of exercise.
I've only averaged two trips to the gym per week over the winter months. Now, this is something. I also walk about 30 - 40 minutes a day for my commute, but my winter weekly gym attendance is nothing compared to what I was doing in the summer and fall when I averaged 4-5 visits to the gym a week.
I felt better when I worked out that often. I also find that one of the many benefits of exercise is that it makes the food stuff, making healthy eating choices in terms of what I eat and how much I eat, a lot easier. I'm not sure why that is, but there is a clear connection. When I'm working out a lot, I am doing better in almost all areas of my life.
I also think part of my journey to becoming a healthy writer is learning to love my body and appreciate what it can do. Exercise helps a lot with that. One of the slogans everywhere at my gym is Know Your Own Strength. When I attended the body pump weight lifting class 2-3 times a week, I was learning how to love how strong I could get and what I could do physically. It felt so empowering. Furthermore, nothing made me smaller as quickly as strength training.
Yes, some of this need to learn to love my body is typical female hangups with body image. Another part of it comes from the fact that since my sister had a stroke at the age of 5, she has had physical disabilities. I spent a good part of my life feeling guilty for being able bodied, so learning to love what my body can do has been a very hard lesson that is still in progress.
In many ways, I've missed working out hard at least 4-5 times a week, and I hope to get back into that pattern this spring. It's something I've started working towards already. Daylight Savings Time has really helped. It's so much easier for me to go to the gym when it's still light out, and there are fewer clothes I have to put on to go outside.
This spring fever need to increase your exercise is also influencing my Weight Watchers buddies. Several have signed up for running races. A bunch of them were talking about it after a meeting a couple of weeks ago, and they inspired me to finally purchase some kick butt sports bras. This has been on my list of things to do for awhile. I am well-endowed in the chest area and hover in the D to DD range. I need a super supportive athletic bra. I've asked around for recommendations, and several friends mentioned the bar system that the Title IX Web site has for rating sports bras - the more bars the better the support. Given how expensive these super duper sports bras can run, I wanted to try some on first.
Walking home from the metro one day, I passed a lululemon athletic store. I went in to see what they could do for me, and I walked out with 8 killer sports bras. I can vouch that the ta ta tamer (someone has a sense of humor as that is the real name) is amazing. There's almost no movement at all. It's actually made a difference in my workouts. I no longer hold myself back on certain moves in my classes that previously had been very uncomfortable due to the size of my chest. These bras will also make it easier for me to contemplate the idea of adding running to my exercise repertoire. I plan to go for a run with my friend Elise Hayes at the WRW retreat in a couple of weeks as a kind of experiment. It'll be interesting to see how it goes.
I have done my best to set myself up for a successful spring in terms of exercising more. I went to the gym 3 times this past week, and I'll get back to that 4-5 times a week range soon.
Does the arrival of spring make you evaluate your current efforts to become a healthy writer? Are you doing your best? Can you do more? Do you want to increase your efforts?