Friday, Friday, gotta get down on Friday… no wait, no I don’t. A, I’m not Rebecca Black. B, today is my day OFF from exercise.
Ahh, the day off. Guys, this here Fittie has been pushing, pulling, running and jumping like a champ. I do strength work. I go to two-hour pole classes. This week I ran 25 minutes straight (one day I went to 26 to assure a 2-mile run) three times. On one of those days, I had also done a pole class. That’s 2.5 HOURS OF EXERCISE in one day. (I do not recommend this often. I had an excess of energy. You can really wear yourself out keeping that kind of schedule, but I think once in awhile if you’re feeling it, you should just go with it.)
Let’s put all that together with a kickass diet, remembering to take all my vitamins (plus my ever-present thyroid meds and an extra VitD supplement after a blood panel revealed a lack thereof) and you have a Fittie who sashays into her nutritionist office for the bi-weekly checkin like she owns the place. It’s been two weeks, let’s see how we did?
You know you’ve been dealing with difficult weight for awhile when all you do with that news is laugh and say, “At least it’s not gaining.” Seriously, we are over the hump of this rag-a-muffin pace sucking the motivation out of me and onto accepting it and continuing to move. It’s time to find fun and gratification in the little things that make it worth it even if the scale is a son of a bitch who hates you. So I have made a list of the things that have kept me positive these past two weeks and continue to inspire me to treat my body the way I have been. I can cry about all this, or I can suck it up and realize that this is the lot I’ve drawn; I can choose to wallow and make it worse or rise above and make it better. I choose the latter. I hope my list provides some inspiration for you, too.
- The sweat. Oh yes. The slick, gross, wonderful, cleansing, overwhelming sweat that comes with a proper workout. I actually took a picture of how badly my forearm was sweating. My forearm! When was the last time you thought, gee, my forearm is sweaty? Try not to feel amazing when you realize every impurity is being forced out of your body by your own sheer will.
- The following shower. When I’ve had a hard workout, the shower that follows is bliss. I use twice as much soap. I put on music. I dance. I think about being the main force of my own health, and how good my skin feels when I’ve sweat like that, and the days just a few months ago when I couldn’t run at all. There’s something meditative about doing that under the continuous stream of steamy water.
- That glorious sleep. I like to exercise at night most days so that after that shower I can crawl into bed like a dead thing. Everything regulates when you work out regularly: it hits midnight and I want to go to sleep instead of pull an all-nighter of work, and that means every bit of work I do the next day is better. I sleep without waking, probably without moving. I wake up refreshed and jump out of bed.
- The sore. Even the bruises (from the pole) are reminders that I am finally prioritizing my own health above all else. Pain doesn’t feel like pain when you know what it was for and how it will help. That kind of pain is just proof you care.
- The milestones. Two months ago I couldn’t run five minutes at a stretch. This week I am inching achingly close to those 3-miles, that 5K I’ve been trying to get to for my entire adult life. The first few weeks it feels like your breath can’t catch up with your body; sometime last week, I felt it click into place as though I’d smacked it just right. Some huffing, some puffing, still, but mostly, big, deep, cleansing breaths that power the next step forward, and the next one, and the next one. When you get this far, stopping and losing that momentum is not an option. (Note: I’ve stopped before. Not this time!)
- The mirror. So, I’m not really losing weight. I’m going to close my eyes and let that go, and let the universe take over and hope it figures its shit out on that one. That doesn’t mean my body is not changing. Every piece of clothing I own is more comfortable; I feel better in it; I feel prettier and sexier at all times because I’m not pinching and pulling and adjusting. The proof hit me one day as I passed a mirror. I was standing so straight.
- The knowledge that NO ONE is responsible for any of these changes but me. There are few areas in life where this is true. Every bit of success, every loss, has multiple factors and blame and glory can be diffused. But with fitness, even if you have a trainer screaming in your ear, no one – no one – has done the work except you. I am responsible for every last bit of my health. We all get so down on ourselves when the reverse is true – when we are responsible for a little weight gain, or we eat more than we’d like, or we skip the gym. Then when we do good things for ourselves we downplay how responsible we are. Not OK. I have done every last scrap of this work. I get all that glory. All to myself. No one can have it, ever, but me. I’m selfish about it and I love it.
There’s more, I’m sure, but I’m leaving it open here to you, Fitties. If you’re working and are having a hard time seeing results, what do you have on your inspiration list to keep you moving?