Home Again Home Again Jiggity-Jig!

I have to say, writing is like exercise:  the more you stay away from it, the harder it is to pick it up again!  And while I’m on the subject of exercise:

I have been plugging along in the fitness department.  I mentioned in a post (The Dreaded Topic)  I wrote about 2 months ago that I embarked on a fitness regime (alright, this is weird, I just went back to that post… June 5, it is now August 5th!).  So how have the last 2 months been?  Let me refresh your memory of my baseline:  walking upstairs to my bedroom was probably the most I exerted myself prior to taking on this challenge.  I wish I could say I am exaggerating for effect.  So my plan going in, for those that did not read:  do something physical every day.  I picked 20 minutes as my start time.  I guest posted early on over at Running On Sober, so I don’t remember the specifics, but for the first probably 5 or 6 weeks I did exactly that… every single day.  I started on the machine with which I was most comfortable (elliptical machine), but then I decided that going with comfort when it comes to exercise has never served me well, so I started mixing it up.  Here are some examples of the progress made within 2 months:

Elliptical Start time/mileage:  20 minutes, 1.25 miles, about 100 calories, Current:  45 minutes, 4 miles, 450 calories burned

Swimming Start:  6 laps, Current:  25 laps

Stationary Bike:  no stats to report, it hurt my knee, but the fact that I did it at all is something

Local Walking Start:  barely a mile, small loop within my development; Current:  I have built up to a 3.1 mile loop that starts in my development but extends beyond it

And, last but not least, the treadmill (or Dreadmill, as I thought of it)…

Start:  probably struggled to walk a mile around 20 minutes (I did not keep track of those early stats), Currently (as of yesterday):  46 minutes, 3.1 miles, interval walking/running

Now, none of these number are going to be making headlines over at ESPN, but the point is the progress in an incredibly short period of time.   There aren’t any major physical changes, but the mental ones are astounding.  Here’s the biggest example:  about 5 weeks into this commitment, I got an email from my unbelievably fitness-minded sister-in-law.  She knows of my new commitment, and has been encouraging me all she can.  She is the type to run in triathlons, half-marathons, mud runs, and other insane things, so she gets emails about local events regularly.  She forwarded one onto me:  a sober 5k walk/run sponsored by the Caron Foundation, and offered to walk it with me if I was interested.

Now, let’s pause and consider the information I gave you earlier:  2 months ago, ZERO exercise daily, never in my life have I been a sports-oriented person, never competed in anything physical… and now I am actually CONSIDERING this?!?!

Yes, I am.  I wanted to reply no, hit the delete button, and never think about it again, but I couldn’t do it.  So, first, I told my husband, who was encouraging and supportive, as always.  Next, I let my recovery-and-fitness-minded blogging friends know of this recent development, and, predictably, all are strongly encouraging me to do it (Bye Bye Beer has graciously offered to walk it with me, bless her soul!).  Finally, I started seeing if I could physically even do it, and to that end found local 3.1 miles loops, did treadmill workouts, in an attempt to get my time down.  My commitment to myself is this (and yes, I know I will be getting yelled at by my “exercise sponsor,” as I like to think of Christy, for not just signing up):  take the month of August and see what progress I can make in increasing running/decreasing walking for the 3.1 mile sessions.  Since it is only August 5, I’ve got some time, I will check back in on this subject in a few weeks!

Final mental breakthrough, and then I’ll stop rambling.  As it turns out, there was a promenade near the house that I stayed in last week that was flat, paved, and exactly 1.5 miles long  (another sign, in my opinion!), so I did that a few times last week.  Still being new to this whole outdoor running/walking gig, while at the same time being technologically handicapped when it comes to ipods, my playlists are disorganized and often interrupted with tween music.  So as I’m doing the “ralk,” as I call it, on the promenade, a song keeps coming up that was popular a year or two ago with the Disney crowd, It’s called “Who Says” by Selena Gomez.  I remember when my daughter listened to it a lot, and I remember thinking it a cute song, but that’s about it.  Now, as I’m regularly exercising, the music is an integral part in the process, and I am listening intently to the songs.  And this one is haunting me, although I don’t know why.  So I’m actually running as I think to myself, “pay closer attention and figure out why this song is bothering you.”  And the chorus comes on:

Who says, who says you’re not perfect?

Who says you’re not worth it?

Who says you’re the only one who’s hurting?

Trust me, that’s the price of beauty!

Who says you’re not pretty?

Who says you’re not beautiful

Who says?

And, just like that, my mind talked back to the questions, and said, “You say it, and you’re the only one who says it.”  And I thought of all the people in my life, and the voice is right… I am the only one saying negative things about me.  Well, immediately I started to cry, and now I am running down an extremely crowded promenade with tears streaming down my face.  I refused to make eye contact, but I can only imagine what the hell those people were thinking!

Even though it is the sappiest song ever, it is staying on my playlist, as a reminder that I only have one critic, and she has a proven spotty track record when it comes to making these judgments!

Today’s Miracle:

12 people at my meeting today, not a record, but a great number!

Posted on August 5, 2013, in Self-Care and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 26 Comments.

  1. You can do the Sober 5K! You are stronger than you think!


  2. runningonsober

    Josie!!! I wish I could LOVE this post, instead of just the like option, lol.

    You have made so much progress in your physical stamina and fortitude, but even more so, you are starting to have those mental breakthroughs with deep revelations about yourself.

    So, let me just ask… What’s holding you back from signing up?

    You know you are capable. You know it’s a great cause. You know the timing is so coincidental… Wait, what does your tag line say? There are no coincidences.

    Don’t let fear hold you back…

    So very proud of you!


  3. That is so fantastic! i know what it’s like to start from near zero and I have a long way to go as well. You have accomplished a great thing, especially in fighting that damn perfectionism we all deal with. Good luck!


  4. I am a big fan of this song. Funny for me I would always crank it up in the car or wherever. I hope our kids understand the meaning of the song too. I’m in for the 5k. Joey recently told me on a crabbing trip I need a bra. It cracked me up and he is right.


  5. You give me great hope that I can accomplish this 5K. I will post on my fitness progress as well! Great stuff! Thanks for the motivation!


    • We are totally doing this together. I actually injured my calf today, so my newest advice to you, stretch, stretch, stretch!!!


    • runningonsober

      Don’t stretch cold muscles though. That’s how you tear stuff.

      Either stretch after your workout or after a brisk ten minute warmup. Or both. There’s actually a lot of debate as to if stretching even helps, but nearly everyone agrees that if you *do* stretch, do it after your muscles are warmed up.


      • Umm… guess what I did yesterday?!?

        It’s feeling better today, I can walk on it, so no major catastrophe, and now I know the proper time to stretch, I will be golden when I’m back on my feet completely!

        Now baby needs a new pair of… sneakers! G2BG, maybe we could do a joint post on our trips to the sneaker store 🙂


  6. Time With Thea

    No matter what height or weight, age, outfit, equipment, whatever… I am always impressed to see people out there doing something to move their bodies in some shape or form. I am at a time in my life where things a little stressful and my daily hour of exercise (running, walking, weights, cycling, yoga) are what helping get through the day till things calm down again. It is so worth the short term and long term benefits. Keep up the great work! ~Thea


  7. I have her albums on my ipod too…at first just so my girls could listen to her in the car, but I admit she’s grown on me. That’s a great song. I’ve also had moments where I’m overcome by emotion from a song or something that pops in my head and I know I look crazy but frankly don’t care. We’re going by quickly enough that maybe no one will notice, ha. You’re doing great and I love how you broke down the personal progress you’ve made in only two short months. It took me a long time to see anything like that.


  8. Awesome work! So proud of you!


  9. Good for you! I am always available for a walk and would love to do a walkathon. It’s been ages.


  1. Pingback: It’s All In Your Head | themiracleisaroundthecorner

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