Never, ever in a million billion years did I EVER think that I would be one of "those" people for whom working out at the gym was a stress reliever.
And then today I found myself explaining to a friend that I had been frazzled all day...until I got to the gym.
I am one of those people!
Working out at the gym is relaxing for me.
Who would have thought???
Certainly not me. Or pretty much anyone who's ever known me. *Giggle*
Don't get me wrong. It's not easy. It's hard work. But working out is not only making my body healthier, but improving my mental health as well.
As I mentioned last week, my plan is to work out at least 4 times a week. I got a good start this week; I made it to the gym Monday and Tuesday, despite our schedule being seriously out of whack. Then Wednesday and Thursday the calendar was just too full and there was no way to work it in. (I was working for my mom after her fall and Billy was on vacation this week, so we were really off schedule!) I was okay with that, however, because that left Friday and Saturday, so I'd still be good.
On Friday, however, Ammah Grace had a bad headache and didn't feel like going, so I ended up staying home with her.
By today, I was desperate!
The older kids had a birthday party to go to this afternoon. The gym closes early on Saturdays. I had to take Bay shopping for a gift, but Billy said he would take the big kids to the party so I could take the little girls and go to the gym.
Wasn't that sweet?! Actually, unless you know Billy well, you probably don't realize just how sweet that is. Billy is not a party person. Group activities in general are not on his favorites list, particularly when they involve a lot of people he doesn't know/barely knows, as this did. He loves me. :) And I think he knew I was about.to.snap. ;-)
We ended up getting there almost an hour later than I'd planned. We didn't have enough time to do what I really wanted to do today, but I was determined to make the most of it.
I did an abbreviated version of my planned routine in the weightroom, and then half an hour in the pool. I realized halfway through the weights that although I was "feeling the burn", the tension of the past few days was gone.
Another lightbulb moment during the past couple of weeks is that some nagging pain issues I've been dealing with for years are much improved. Although it's possible that my last bad flare is just on hiatus, I am definitely seeing some correlation between regular visits to the gym and my pain level. After three days "off" this week, I told Billy I was going to have to get there today or I wasn't going to be able to walk by tomorrow!
I know that is answered prayer, because many times over the past 9 years when I've attempted various types of exercise, it's made my pain worse instead of better. Something about the weight machines and the water exercise is just working for me this time. And I am thankful! The pain relief from working out is major motivation not to miss more than one day in a row!
I'm still doing some research on various fitness-related issues both for myself and to share with the kids as part of our health study this summer. I'll be sharing some of that research here over the next few weeks. I'll also be sharing some of my "plan" once I get it down in writing.
As I told a friend today, between my injury earlier this month, my mom's fall, Billy's vacation, and jumping into this rather suddenly at the first of the month without a plan ready, I've pretty much just been doing whatever I've had time for that didn't aggravate my ankle. But I need a plan! Desperately. :) So watch for that soon.
As I said last week, I'm excited about this journey, and also excited (if a bit nervous!) about sharing it with you. :)
Have you lost a significant amount of weight and kept it off? I'd love to hear how you did it! Do you have tips for gym newbies? I'd love to hear those, too. Leave me a comment here or on Facebook, or message me through the contact box in the sidebar.
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