Back to the Gym!

I started this blog 6 years ago in February, 2010 with a simple post titled, I Went to the gym today.  The point of the post was that after a few years hiatus from exercise (and 20 pounds), I was going to use this blog as motivation to get back to a fitness centered life, a hopefully encourage others to do so as well.  It worked.

Over the past six years I went to the gym. started running, practiced yoga, and changed my diet.  I became stronger and fit and even lowered my cholesterol, blood pressure and triglycerides .

But alas, even the best laid plans…

In July, a medical issue side-lined me and, my exercise had been limited to walking my dog a few times a day.  This may sound like more exercise than it is as my dog is small and our walks are slow saunters around the block!  But movement is movement!

So here I find myself very happy and excited that, I went to the gym again.  I rejoined  Planet Fitness and have been there 3 times in the past week.  I’m coming back, and I’ll be blogging again too.  So far, so good

Transition to Winter Activities

It has been a busy few weeks.  So busy that I have totally gotten out of my exercise habit, uggh, why do I do this to myself?

 

As it has gotten darker and colder, my outdoor running has pretty much stopped, and so it is also a time of transition to the gym and yoga.  I did manage to get myself to yoga yesterday for the first time in over a month!  I was beginning to feel all sorts of tightness in my body and realized that it was time to get back to class.

I am making a commitment here and now to get to yoga at least twice a week (preferably more, but if I go 8 times a month, I will be getting my money’s worth out of my membership).  I also will get to the gym at least twice a week to keep up (and hopefully build) my muscle strength.  As I plan to do some skiing this winter I had better get into shape for the season — squats, squats and more squats!

 

I feel so good when I do these things, why do I let them lapse?

 

 

 

 

I am not completely done running however as I have signed up for a Turkey Trot 5K on Thanksgiving morning.  I will be visiting family and my son, daughter-in-law and possibly my daughter will be running the race too.  Closer to home, my running club (Coastal Athletic Association) has all sorts of fun things planned — monthly pub runs, a canned food run, a jingle bell run, even an evening run around Nubble Light to see the holiday lights!  I hope to join in some of these events and will share my experiences with you!

Let’s Get in Shape Together

I wrote this as a guest post on a cool blog, Drink Wine and Giggle.  The Drink Wine and Giggle gals are all about using the power of friendship to turn girlfriend time into life-enhancing experiences.  They offer activities that will encourage self-awareness; strengthen your bonds of friendship; be an inexhaustible source of fun; and make your life better in a lasting way.  Check them out! at drinkwineandgiggle.com

Let’s Get in Shape Together

The title of this post is Let’s Get in Shape Together – the key word being together. I have always found that it is a lot easier (and a whole lot more fun) to exercise and get in shape with a friend. Not only does the time pass more quickly when you have someone to talk to, but you will hold each other accountable for doing the exercise!

The hard part is finding a friend who wants to do the exercise you want to do at the time that is convenient for both of you. So rather than wait around for a friend to want to go to the gym, to yoga or for a run, a better approach may be to go out there and join in with people who already exercise. You may start out as strangers, but you may end as friends!

I have met all of my exercise partners, many of whom are now my friends, this way.

About twenty years ago, when I first got into exercise, I joined the local Y. It was convenient for me to go during lunchtime and so I started going a few times a week at noon. Within a few months, after seeing the same people week after week I started developing friendships. And since the only time I saw my “Y friends” was when I went to the gym, it kept me going. To this day, while many of us have moved away and few of us still go to that YMCA, I remain friendly with a handful of women whom I first met at the Y. We stay in touch and even get together a few times a year.

More recently, I wanted to get back into running. I noticed that my local running store had a 5K and a 10K training group forRunning Grace upcoming races. I signed up for the 10K group. The goal of the group was not only to train us to run the race, but also to encourage camaraderie among the participants. During my first run I met up with a woman who ran at my pace.  We started talking, trained side by side and completed the race. Now, 3 years later we meet for a run once or twice a week and even make time to go to the gym together. I met a new friend who I would never have met if I hadn’t first ventured out there alone to the running group.

These are just two examples from my life. There are many opportunities to join up with a group of people who share what you enjoy. Check out your local bicycle clubs (for all abilities), hiking clubs, ski clubs, adult softball and basketball leagues, bowling leagues and soccer leagues.

A Google search will yield groups and clubs in your local area where you can join in with a group of people who enjoy the activities you do and who will keep you getting out there and participating!

Happy Birthday!

This week my blog is 4 years old! 

 

 I started the blog in February, 2010 with this post:

I went to the gym today, as a matter of fact I exercised today, for the first time in 38 days.  Will this be the day I restart my fitness-centered life?  Let me back up.  I had been exercising regularly and rigorously for 20 years (minus the last 3 years).  I used to run 20 miles a week, I lifted weights, ran three half marathons, three 10 mile races, and countless 10K and 5K races.  I skied, snowboarded, ice skated, hiked, roller-bladed.  I had a house full of fitness equipment.  I easily exceeded the recommended 10,000 steps a day.

But then I stopped.  A combination of personal issues led me to alter every aspect of my life, including my fitness routine.  I’ve been trying to get back into it ever since.  In the past 3 years I joined 3 different gyms.  In total I’ve gone a total of 7 times  I even started running.  I was up to 4 miles three times a week, but then I stopped.

But, I went to the gym today…

I am happy to report that over the past 4 years I have indeed gotten back into fitness and into healthy eating.  I’ve lost weight, lowered my cholesterol and other health risk factors through exercise and healthy eating.  I’ve run some road races including two half marathons, got back into weight training and started practicing yoga.

This blog is called, Let’s Get in Shape Together, and as the name implies, the blog is meant to encourage you, my readers to also start, or continue, on your own health and wellness journey.  I like to share news and information that I find on healthy living, I try not to get too preachy…. And, I try to adopt the healthy habits that I write about.

If you are a regular reader, you know that I have adopted a near vegan diet, and I have never felt healthier or stronger!  I have several posts on the health advantages of a plant based diet, the health risks of milk and dairy, and the dangers of genetically modified foods.

Lately I’ve begun to change other aspects of my daily life.  I have been using less and less plastic in favor of glass for food storage.  I now use a non-toxic alternative to dryer sheets.  I am even attempting to change my make up and skin care products and make-up to those without toxic chemicals.

I’d love to hear from you on healthy changes you’ve made in your life, or health/wellness goals you have for yourself.

 

 

 

Getting Back to It!

After a bit of an exercise hiatus, I am getting back on track with getting to yoga, the gym and out for a run at least once each per week.   Not that once a week is good, but combined exercising 3x a week is OK.  I prefer to do something 4-5 times a week, but at least I’m moving in the right direction!

This morning the weather was unseasonably warm and I went out for a short (3 mile) run.  It felt great.  I have found that while it is tough to get up, get dressed and get out the door, once I start running I really do enjoy it!  And afterwards I am very, very glad I went!  The same holds true for yoga and weight training too.  The hardest part is getting out the door!

 

Things that keep me going are to remember why I exercise:running infographic

  • I exercise for my overall health
  • I exercise to keep my bones strong
  • I exercise to keep my heart strong
  • I exercise to prevent disease
  • Exercise makes me happy (maybe it’s the endorphins)
  • I exercise to shape my body
  • And yes, I exercise so I can eat a lot and still maintain my weight

I find it motivational to remember that:

I never regret when I make time for exercise, but I always regret when I don’t!

And I find that keeping an exercise log helps motivate me to stay on track.  The actual recording of my workouts keeps me accountable, even if it is only to myself!